Bill Johnson and Altar Calls?

There has been quite the discussion of late on Facebook about the altar call that Bill Johnson from Bethel Church in Redding gave on Easter Sunday.

Some people will just find issues with Bill Johnson for being well, Bill Johnson. I understand that some people question parts of his theology. I love him but I just can’t get down with some of his eschatology. I get the reason that some people have issues. I even get why some Pentecostals don’t warm up to him very quickly. I do not think Bethel Church in Redding is a cult like some do but they want to make sure people know they disagree with Bethel Redding. I am not one of those types. I am Pro-Bethel ultimately.

What I thought of Bill Johnson’s altar call?

It was solid biblically for the most part. Yes, it was meant to get “decisions.” It was not the Brownsville Revival by any means but it was not Joel Osteen either. It was a “Come to Jesus” message but it was not too far out there that it crossed into heretic grounds. (I have seen some pretty bad Soteriology at altar call time)

The whole idea of come up and pray with someone and all your problems are over is not unique to Bill Johnson or Bethel Redding. It is widely preached in Pentecostal and Charismatic churches. It is strong on grace and weak on repentence. It is the aftermath of this hyper grace stuff that is still going around our churches.

Neo-Pentecostal Soteriology

I do not have the time to really break down what is happening but there is a new belief system about salvation in many Pentecostal churches that just do not want to talk about repentance. What Bill Johnson did in this video was you would expect Adrian Rogers to do or any other Baptist preacher. It is not what you would expect at a Pentecostal church that people use for a model in ministry.

The whole “put your head up and slip back down” is not biblical nor is it Pentecostal. It is not open altars. It is not revival ministry. It is based on the works of D.L. Moody; not Smith Wigglesworth.

This is not only not our tradition, our values or our heritiage but it is not even biblical. Jesus made it quite clear that you are ashamed of Him; He will do likewise in Heaven.

We need to get back to Pentecostal altar calls!

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