W hat I am about to release is excerpts from a letter to TA McMahon. It is being edited because personal things that were in regards to TA and myself I have taken out because of my friendship with him.
Open Letter to The Board of The Berean Call
I would like to respond to your article on The Harbinger in several parts: one, my own personal research on the book and why I do believe it is truly a warning to America for such a time as this;
secondly, my disappointment in not allowing the author of TH to have any chance to respond to the Berean Call’s critique after many attempts to contact TBC; and thirdly, my concern for The Berean Call and those you now look to for support and discernment, in light of Dave’s absence.
A little bit of background: I first heard Jonathan on a local Christian radio program, “Stand Up For the Truth” on Q90, a Christian radio station in Green Bay. Calvary Chapel of Appleton is really responsible for that program coming into being because of Jim Wallis being invited as a keynote speaker for an annual event called “Lifest” (2010), hosted each summer in Oshkosh. We know him to be a Marxist socialist posing in sheep’s clothing, wanting to influence thousands of young people with his ideology. I wrote a letter to every Christian radio station and some of the largest churches in the state of Wisconsin, informing them of who Jim Wallis really is and what he really wanted. Mike LeMay, station manager, is a Berean. He did his own homework on Jim Wallis, and they talked on the phone. Long story short, he came to the same conclusion that we did, and as a result, he was encouraged personally to be a watchman on the wall. “Stand Up for the Truth” became a reality shortly thereafter, and you have been on the program yourself several times at our suggestion.
So, driving to the office one day, I tuned in to Q90. Mike and Amy were interviewing Jonathan Cahn about TH. As I listened, I thought, “that is an interesting point… if it’s true”, or, “I never knew that before….if it’s true.” If what this Messianic believer from Jersey was saying is true, it would be amazing. By the time I got to the office, I wanted to know, who is this guy? – and I want to read TH for myself. My first impressions of the book after the first several chapters: disappointment. I had heard him give a presentation on TH as factual events in history since 9/11. Then as I read, I thought to myself, some will not give this a second glance, because he has put it into novel form. But by the time he gave his reasons for the style, feeling like the Lord showed him it would reach a broader audience other than believers, I understood and saw the wisdom of putting it in novel form. In the interview you and I both listened to with Jonathan, Jimmy DeYoung, and David James, the question was posed to Jonathan about it being put into novel form, and Jimmy replied, ‘I understand, I have done the same thing with some of my own books.” As a result of this interview, we both came away with 2 very different opinions.
My next step was to find out, who is this guy? So, I called a pastor I respect and look up to, and it turns out that he knows of Jonathan. I wanted to know, is he a sensationalist, overly Pentecostal, etc., and his answer to me was, “no, not at all. As a matter of fact, the people he most likens himself to, and is most like minded with, are with Calvary Chapel.”
Then I heard his personal testimony, how he had rejected Judaism, believed really in nothing, until he was born again. So much for the case you make for “guilty by association” because of the publisher. Jonathan is just as much opposed to the Toronto Blessing, Brownsville, Todd Bentley, etc., etc., – go down the list – as you or I would be. How do I know? Because he told me so. So, when I read the book, we at Calvary Chapel of Appleton were making our way through Deuteronomy, chapter by chapter and verse by verse. After reading TH, I returned to study for that Sunday’s message in Deuteronomy 28 and the blessings God would give to Israel if they obeyed, and the curses that would come upon them if they did not, only now with TH in mind. What Calvary Chapel pastor, or any truly solid bible pastor, does not apply Old Testament truth to the New Testament Christian? First Corinthians 6:10 says, “ Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted.” And Romans 15: 4 – “for whatever things were written before were written for our learning that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.”
In reading the book for myself, I really couldn’t put it down. Everyone from my mother on down that I have spoken with has said the same thing. Many have said they read it in one sitting, or multiple times. But before I would endorse it or encourage others to read it, I did all my own research with some help. I Googled everything from Washington’s inaugural address, to St. Paul’s church, to the Freedom Stone ceremony at Ground Zero; from the Sycamore roots that were bronzed (bronze always represents judgment in the Scriptures), to the ceremony of the replanting of the cedar in the very spot with a panacea tree; from Tom Daschel and John Edwards’ speeches, to times and dates of the stock market crash, 7 years to the day. I quote Jonathan Cahn’s response that he wrote to the article in the latest Berean Call on TH, referring to the Shemitah, I quote:
“Nor would the reader begin to have an idea of the magnitude of The Mystery of the Shemitah – namely that the greatest financial crash, Wall Street collapse in American history, happened to take place on the one day given in the Bible on which a nation’s financial accounts were wiped away – not just once – but twice – the two greatest financial collapses in Wall Street history – occurring seven Hebrew years apart, the exact time period ordained in the Bible for this to occur – down to the exact biblical day. I just happened to come across the work of a man who did a statistical analysis of the chances of just two of these crashes happening when they did, and he admittedly did using the most conservative of criteria and found it to come out to, at the very least, one in a million, three hundred sixty one thousand, eight hundred and eighty nine.
I had done my own research and viewed photos of the events long before Joseph Farah asked me to review his DVD. I had no idea that Joseph had been struck by TH like I had. But even before I did extensive research on TH, I already was convinced that we as a nation were past the point of no return. After 2008, America deserved what we got: a socialist president with a socialist agenda, as Curtis Bower explains so well in his DVD, Agenda: Jim Wallis, appointed as President Obama’s “spiritual advisor”!
My younger brother, a day trader and knowledgeable student of economics and prophecy for many years, tells me that on the day in September 2008 when the market fell the US economy would have imploded had the Fed not pumped billions into the market. But the fat lady has been singing for quite a while now, while America is busy watching American Idol, and Donald Driver on Dancing with the Stars. I am personally convinced that TH is much bigger than Jonathan Cahn or TBC. I believe it is a tool that God will and IS using to say to America, “wake up, the Bridegroom is coming”.
Speaking of implosions, I was sent a personal copy of Joel Rosenberg’s yet unreleased book, called Implosion. His subtitle is: “Can America Recover From it’s Economic and Spiritual Challenges in Time?” Job 12:23 says, “He makes nations great and destroys them; he enlarges nations and guides them. He takes away the understanding of the chiefs of the people of the earth and makes them wander in a pathless wilderness. They grope in the dark without light and He makes them stagger like a drunken man.” On page 128 of Joel’s book he says, “One thing is clear, however, to nearly all Americans. We are in grave danger, both economically and spiritually.” The main gist of the book is his 4 categories concerning the fall of America – 1) Economic collapse. 2) terrorist attack 3) natural catastrophes, and 4) the rapture – which I know is what Dave Hunt believes, that it would be the rapture that would be the primary vehicle to seal the fate of our nation.
Back to the interview between DeYoung, James and Cahn, they had accused Jonathan of replacement theology. Jonathan was given the chance to explain why he does not believe in replacement theology, and neither is it anywhere taught or implied in the book itself. They at least gave Jonathan an opportunity to address the issue and other misunderstandings. Proverbs 18:13 says, “he who answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame to him.” Again, TBC had made up its mind, they were not going to allow any communication or extend a courtesy of at least allowing Jonathan a chance to respond to the article, even after its release. Both TA and myself listened to the interview between DeYoung, James and Cahn within days of each other. To DeYoung’s and James’ credit, they at least allowed him to state his position on this, and though they were cordial at the time, Following the interview, David James wrote a blistering review on TH, with the intent of a book later on.
That brings me to the article on TH. In all my years of reading TBC, I have never heard a tone degrading a person while giving reasons why they might be off scripturally. Usually, articles written by TBC have been done with grace and dignity. But in this article words and phrases are used such as, redundancy, miserably, insufferable, repetitious, led astray, false teacher,” greater condemnation”, preposterous, “serious biblical problems”, inane, fallacious, “reads like a 9-part seminar”, blasphemy, lying prophecies; “not enough space here to evaluate”, “struggled through”, and “greater condemnation”; enamored of, enthralled with, “book falls apart”, and “no clear gospel”. On page 232 of Chapter 21, Jonathan explains Jesus’ redemptive work for us on the cross, that a person must be born again; he explains that He is the Saviour, Yeshua; that God is salvation, the Messiah. He asks the question, “so how does one become saved?” and presents the gospel message. It can’t be any more clear. I am quoting several paragraphs of a well-laid out presentation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Harbinger deals with facts of history that cannot be denied, they are too numerous to be coincidental, and calls for America to hopefully repent. Yet this is where TBC misses the whole point – these events of themselves are so amazing they are beyond any degree of coincidence.
Which leads me to my third and final point: my concern for TBC and it’s future.
The lights came on for me during the interview with Jonathan, DeYoung, and D. James. In the middle of the interview, James wanted Jonathan to know he did not believe in the sign gifts. While James was grasping for scriptural backup on what he had just said, DeYoung quickly jumped in, offering him Galatians 2:20. I believe that in David James’ mind, TH had to be squelched and done so quickly, because if you don’t believe in the sign gifts, it’s over, as The Harbinger is nothing if not a book about God still speaking today through signs. I know Dave Hunt does because of my many years in talking with him – believe in the sign gifts. I find it interesting that the actual title of Dave’s book, “An Urgent Call to a Serious Faith” is , “An Urgent Call to a Serious Faith: A Prophetic Alarm for the Body of Christ”. My concern would be that The Berean Call, in Dave’s absence, is looking for input from sources that don’t even represent your own doctrinal statement. In my opinion this should be of serious concern to TBC.
In reality, what D. James and others who believe like him have apparently never thought through is that if, since the Apostle Paul’s day, even 1 miracle or 1 healing has taken place anywhere in the world among any tribe, tongue, or nation, then their entire premise is flawed and they do not have a verse to stand on. And who can say they have such omniscient knowledge? On this basis alone, this teaching they and others are so certain of completely falls apart. In addition, unlike D James, I believe – as the prophet Daniel stated – that some things will be shut up and sealed until the time of the end – and now the Lord has simply allowed Jonathan to connect some very big dots, to open people’s eyes to the lateness of the hour. I would also like to know how Jimmy DeYoung can state in interviews and a local appearance that once a person receives the mark of the beast they can repent and become “unmarked”, because God would understand them wanting to feed their family. This was spoken by him at an event here in our area, and our women’s ministry head heard it. He has also said this on Brannon Howse’s radio program, specifically on September 28, 2011. This completely goes against the clear teaching of Scripture in Revelation 14:9-11, and in my opinion is ignoring the warning for such who do so in Revelation 22:19. He is falsely telling people that they can be saved after they take it, completely naive to what it means eternally to do so. How can this be? Can we agree that DeYoung’s unscriptural position on that is far more dangerous than anything Jonathan has written?
Finally, the article’s final statement about fruit, that a corrupt tree cannot bring forth good fruit, and “by their fruits ye shall know them.” As for judging a tree by its fruit – there is not a week that goes by that we don’t get an email or call on the impact the book or DVD is having on lives – and we are just a random sample of the thousands who are experiencing the same throughout the country. We have gone through hundreds of the books in our bookstore as people give them to family and friends. This week, an elderly gal called the church office to thank us for showing the Isaiah 9:10 program in our cable TV slot (we broadcast around the state of Wisconsin every week with our services and conference sessions). She said that she was completely engrossed in the narrative, and by the end of the show, just stunned at the content. She began to weep as she told a person on staff how she simply wanted to fall on her knees in repentance for all the time she had wasted in life, doing things she was utterly ashamed of. She indicated she would be having her entire family over to watch the DVD and read the book and to discuss the effect it should have on them all. She thanked us profusely. She asked us to pass that along to the author or whomever we wanted to.
TA McMahon and Dave Hunt have been long time personal friends of Calvary Chapel of Appleton and I still hold TA and TBC in high regard for many years of being contenders for the faith, but on this particular issue I simply have to agree to disagree with their assessment on TH. I suppose that if Paul and Barnabas could have a serious disagreement over taking John Mark on Paul’s next missionary journey, I suppose TBC and Calvary Chapel Appleton will have their times of disagreement, in this case, over The Harbinger.
Senior Pastor, Calvary Chapel of Appleton, Wis.