Tagged in: Brian Zahnd

Brian Zahnd believes that Buddhist is closer than the whole faith movement?

I am not even joking. Brian Zahnd (my former pastor) actually tweeted it. This is crazy, insane and hypocritical on so many levels. Those who do not know Brian and his history will not understand but being a former member of Word of Life Church in Saint Joseph, Missouri…. I was there!

Fot those of you that do not know, he started the church in 1981 in midtown Saint Joseph and going on the fourth month, it almost closed its’ door. It struggled for years and he had to fight a lot of criticism for not being theological trained. He did not even finished at Missouri Western State University.

It was not until the event I am about to tell you about things started to change for the church. They moved to the old Platte College building and things started to look up. However, it seems that Brian Zahnd himself has forgotten was the Lord spoke to him all the years ago.

Here is the tweet from him a few minutes ago that I am reacting to,

What about the prophetic promise in Acts 16?

In the early 1990’s, he claims that the Lord spoke directly to him from Acts 16:5 that if he would preach faith, the church would grow. He did start preaching faith and the church did grow. It grew so much that they had to move to a rather large facility on the edge of town.

So the churches were strengthened in the faith and grew daily in numbers. (Acts 16:5)

So I guess we are left to wonder if God lied about the prophetic word or if Brian Zahnd has lost his way and his calling? I personally heard him declare a hundred times that he was anointed to do two things: preach faith and do altar calls.

You see, after this encounter, Zahnd went fully into the prosperity message and preached faith almost every single message. He was widely criticized for it locally but he kept preaching it and people kept coming to Christ and be blessed. It was working for him and for the church.

The reality is that he was so deep into it that he was one of the most radical preachers in the country about prosperity. The new building was actually dedicated by Dr. Lester Sumerall. People like Casey Treat, Jesse Duplantis and R.W. Schambach was regulars at the church on Friday nights.

The television show he had on Daystar back them was called “Yasha Na” (Hebrew word for victory now). He was really committed to preaching victory (more on that later). In some ways, Word of Life Church was just a smaller version of World Harvest Church pastored by Rod Parsley.

That is the history so I guess God changed his mind on it or something? I didn’t know God was double minded.

Brian Zahnd preached faith, life victory to the masses!

The whole vision of Word of Life was to preach faith, life and victory to the world and the church did it well. It was that emphasis that raised Gene Saunders up many times from the death bed.

The emphasis was something that made people re-think what they believed and who God was. They were awakened to the God of Abraham, Issac and Jacob that supplies all our needs according to His riches. It there was a fault with it, it was that it was preached so much that many other issues were never talked about.

Every February, Brian would do a weekend of eight hours of teaching called the Faith Life Seminar.

The issue of life was very important too. It was about being alive in hope. Jesus came to give us life, not dead religion that leads us to be more bond up than we was before we got saved. After all, all religion does is add another devil to the list that need to cast out. Only life in Jesus set the captive free from death, hell and the grave!

Victory was the battle cry of the church. They lived, breathed and slept for victory in finances, health, relationships and every other area of life. It was probably the over riding emphasis beside faith at the church. The main point of victory at Word of Life was healing and deliverance!

I wonder if Zahnd has forgot all this?

Personal Relationship No more: A look at the gospel of Brian Zahnd

As I have said before, my former pastor Brian Zahnd, keeps going off the deep end of systematic theology. Today, he is openly mocking having a personal encounter with Christ… or at least it looks that way on Twitter.

I like Brian. I use to love work with his teams at Word of Life to win the lost. I learned alot from them about production. They were always amazing at their evangelistic efforts. He would burn to win the lost locally and internationally. In no way do I have any hard feelings for him.

What I can say I am at a loss sometimes. I mean he is becoming more well known for being weird and making some outlandish statement like Americans can’t really understand the Word of God than he is known for faith, life, and victory. Those use to be his battlecry to America. Believe it or not, at one time; he loved America!

As I said before, I was there when he changed course and started preaching Catholicism and he was “packing his bags” to leave the Charismatic movement.

Personal Relationship is everything

Brian Zahnd JerusalemI am at a loss why Brian would bracket having a personal relationship with Jesus. It is as if he questions it today. It would not surprise me really. He is slowly following the footsteps of Ulf Ekman, the charismatic pastor that left the faith to become a catholic a few years ago. Is Zahnd trying to make Word of Life Church the new Catheral of St. Joseph. After all, Twin Spires is hardly used these days.

I remember when he preached the gospel with authority, we did a huge outreach to the city about being left behind and thousands came to Christ. Since then, he has went on Lester Sumerall’s television network and publicly mocked the rapture of the saints and talked complete craziness on national television. Here is the video on Youtube.

Now, he is on twitter questioning personal salvation. I am just lost here. I mean this was the central point of every service I was. He would never let service end without an invitation to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. He called it the most important thing he did in ministry.

I remember a short discussion we had a few years ago where he told me that is called to do two things: preach faith and do altar calls. It seemed he is quiting both of them. It is more concerning to me than anything.

Let me be very clear: there is nothing more important than having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World. I love to preach about revival and the Baptism of the Holy Spirit but neither of them mean a hill of beans or are even possible without a personal relationship with Christ. We call that salvation.

A global falling away is underway

Brian Zahnd countryIt is sad but there is a global falling away happening. We see it with teaching like Joseph Prince out of Singapore, Ed Young down in Dallas and of course, the famous Carlton Pearson falling away that destroyed the city church in Tulsa and beyond. It is sad that Brian Zahnd is signing his name to the list of people involved.

One thing that we should rejoice about: falling away must exist in the company of revival. There can not be a great deception happening without a great move of the Holy Spirit happening to counteract it. This means we are on the brink of a major revival that will have the impact that the Jesus People movement or the Brownsville Revival did. That is great news if you ask me.

I believe we will see many pastors come out with some pretty outlandish and confusing ideas that are not scriptural in the coming years. It will make them look really foolish but in the end, it will be the driving force for the one billion soul harvest. People will quit listening to their pastor as if they are the Holy Spirit. They will open their bibles and meet the third man of the trinity themselves.

A fire baptized people of God will break out revival across the nation in no time. It could start in Tennessee and spread to even the smallest of towns in days. We know it is not just ideas because Lakeland spread very quickly from a conference to a baseball stadium and being aired in over 100 nations. I mean it all happened in a matter of a few days.

It is time to be in the gospels

As pastors are becoming more and more fruity; it is more important than ever to be in the gospels. We have to know what the red letter say and do not say. Jesus meant what He said and said what He meant. Nothing will be stronger in this life and the life to come than the Red Letters of Christ. They are the kiss of Heaven to humanity.

I believe there will be a revival of Christology in the next few years. People will start to go deep into the claims of Christ. I do not just means unbelievers but people are followers of Jesus will start to really look at the messianic claims. This is what Daniel saw in his prophetic vision.

But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. (Daniel 12:4)

This is a video of Brian before he went off the deep end of Christianity. I am going to guess 2005 or before. I am not sure. It was at Hillsongs Church in Australia.

Has Brian Zahnd lost the faith?

Brian Zahnd is my former pastor. My father grew up in King City, Missouri and Brian is from Savannah. I spend several years at Word of Life Church in Saint Joseph, Missouri. The pastor I remember was up to his eyeballs in the word of faith movement and the focus was completely focused on “faith, life, victory.” The Church was basically the local version of Victory Christian Center (Billy Joe Daugherty’s church). In fact, Victory’s long time youth pastor came from Word of Life.

Faith was everything at the church. Brian proclaimed often that Acts 16:5 was his key for ministry. He believed that the preaching of faith was critical to the growth of the church. His testimony was “God said to preach faith and the church will grow.” He was amazing at doing two things: preaching faith and doing altar calls. He could not do alot of things in ministry but these he did very, very well.

I look back at many of the services and realize that God did some amazing things. I was there where people like Steve Hage, Jesse Duplantis, and Eastman Curtis came to do ministry. Lives were forever changed in those meetings. It was not just having church, it was about expanding the Kingdom.

Brian Zahnd departs from faith

I do not mean that he lost his salvation or he is a heretic. I am not willing to make that call. What I am willing to say is that he did leave the faith message behind. In his words, “I am packing my bags and leaving the Charismatic movement.” His emphasis on faith became an emphasis on the desert fathers that had mostly views of catholicism. He has a special place in his heart for St. Augustine of Hippo. I am not saying that we should not study history (we should and I encourage it) I am saying things changed.

Word of Life Church saw about a third of the membership leave for other churches. The reason was spiritual. God said to Brian (his own account) that if he preach faith, the church would grow. Now, that he was not preaching faith, it is only natural to assume that he was not doing what God had told him to do. People need faith, not history lessons.

I have been gone from Saint Joseph for many years and when I am in town, I preach in smaller Pentecostal churches. I have not been to Word of Life Church for many years but I do follow them from a distance. I have watch the transformation of the messages from the pulpit and I must say I am surprised at it.

This is a trend that I see with friends in ministry that are dabbling in the writings of NT Wright. I have read his books but it was not anything that I would throw out centuries of revelation and prophetic understanding to embrace. Wright has some good things to say but pastors changing their whole doctrinal statement and focus the Holy Spirit has given them is too much.

Brian Zahnd misses something about history

He loves history. He always has. He used it often in preaching faith. I do not question his study of the history of the church one bit. He probably knows it better than most professors do to be honest.

However, I think he misses something very important: Church history is not the study of names and events but it is the study of mantles and mandates. When we understand this truth, it changes everything that we need see and know about that great cloud of witnesses.

When we realize there is power in the stories; the power of the testimony; then we can respond with our heart positioned to cry, “If you are still God, you can still do it!” History should create in us a desire to see what they saw in our lives in our day in our culture. It is doesn’t, we missed the point of church history.

I find it hard to read the stories of men like Count Zinzendorf, William Seymour and TL Osborn and not be inspired to see what they saw in my life, in my city and through my ministry. It is hard to read it as mere facts. Church history is living and in for us to receive as an impartation. I truly believe in the words that I cried so many times on the floor in Toronto, “There MUST be More!”

Zahnd is still my brother

Even if I am a strong Pentecostal with an emphasis on faith and he does not, he is still my brother and I would still share communion with him as part of the brethen in Christ. Relationship is based on blood (of Jesus), not common  agreement to doctrinal truth. When we rally to doctrines, we form demoninations. When we rally to the blood, we form the Kingdom of God. Personally, I am far more concerned about the Kingdom of God in and through our lives than I am about being part of a “corporate fellowship” that is more dogmatic about a position that dynamic about the gospel of the Kingdom.

We have to be careful to not make theological differences more important than being a brother or sister in Christ. I might not attend Word of Life again (over doctrine) but that does not mean I would not welcome them as my siblings in the Lord. Jesus said whoever believes in Him is my brother and sister in the Lord.

It is impossible for God to raise up fathers in the faith and spiritual sons and daughters when we determine our relationship based on theological statements. I am not sure what we are doing with 1 Corinthians 4:15? Where is the spiritual fathers and mothers that relate to in love, not doctrine? They are few and far between.



Brian Zahnd and heresy

I am far from a heresy hunter but a question that I keep getting is about my former pastor, Brian Zahnd. It is well known and by his own admission, that his theology has radical changed. In some ways, if he pulled an Ulf Ekman and turned Word of Life into a Catholic Cathedral, I wouldn’t be surprised.

It is kinda surprising as Brian, while self-taught, had a strong emphasis on the Word and he build his ministry on faith. He would tell everyone that God told him to preach faith and the church would grow. He would always say he knew two things: preach the faith message and do altar calls. I have watched some recent services from Word of Life and I can’t say he is doing either, anymore.

I still like Brian Zahnd and I am still a friend on Facebook and I follow him on Twitter. I wish nothing but the best for the guy. I had some sharp disagreement with some of his teachings back then (and still do.) An example would be the man of God teaching that was so common in those days. All in all, most of his teaching was standard Word of Faith doctrine…. much of which that I subscribe to as well.

brian zahnd

Brian Zahnd and Catholic theology

I remember it well. I was in the service sitting where I always did. Zahnd stood and told how he was sitting on his porth reading a book called The Confessions of St. Augustine. It is the writings of a Catholic monk from the forth century. I was younger then and did not think alot of it. I just figured it was adding a new layer to the message of Faith that Brian Zahnd build his ministry on.

I know that Jason Upton suggested the book. Jason is a pretty solid guy that loves Church History and is a prophetic guy by nature. I met Jason back in 2000 during The Call DC that was being organized by Che Ahn and Lou Engle. Jason is a cool guy but he loved the desert fathers alot.

Brian ended up slowly getting deeper and deeper into Catholicism. I watched from afar his ideas radical change. His theological statement would read very different today than it is 10 years ago. I am not sure if half of it would even be in tact. What was a detailed doctrine statement has been replaced by the Apostle’s Creed and the Nicene Creed. The issue with that is that if leaves more questions than answers. What is his current Estacalogy, Pneumatology, and Christology to name a few.

As I see it, he has stepped right in to the Joseph Prince from Singapore is preaching among others like John Crowder, D.R. Silva, Paul Ellis, and Jeremy White. This heresy (that is exactly what it is) has been publicly rebuked many times and is the subject of Dr. Micheal L. Brown called Hyper Grace. I suggest any believer wanting to understand grace read it.


Pacfism and Brian Zahnd

I have touched on this before when I wrote Brian Zahnd and Gospel of Peace. While this is not a huge issue, it is a departure from where Zahnd stood for a very long time and I have to ask why the complete change. He used to celebrate the 4th of July with about an American as you could get. He encouraged everyone to love God, love the people and love America.

I remember a friend took me to church one day. He was considering stealing a car so he could go back to prison. That was his desire. He came into the church only to use the restroom and saw a huge banner that read, “It’s time for war.” in the sanctuary. He wanted to stay to find out what a preacher would say about war. He gave his life to Jesus in that service.

Somewhere along the line, he changed and started condemning the use of the military for the United States and leaving the impression that war as a tool was demonic and the Pentegon was a vessel of satan.

What I do know is my last discussion with him online was about the atomic bomb dropped in Nagasaki, Japan in 1945. I will include it here.

There was a time that I would have never had that discussion with Brian. As someone that has lived (and currently living) in the Philippines, I have seen and heard the scars of the second World War. I believe that General Douglas MacArthur made the right call to put the final nail in the coffin to make sure the Japanese did not regroup and attack the Philippines again.

In many ways, Brian Zahnd has become much more pacifist that many to the degree that he wrote a book about it. To be fair, I have not read the book and probably wont. I like Brian but I know we will disagree on this subject.


So Is Zahnd a heretic?

I can’t say. I do not even know what he really believes anymore. I do know some of his soteriology is interesting. (I am being gracious here) I do know he has departed from Pentecostal thinking and he proclaimed that he was packing his bags and leaving the Charismatic movement. When he did that, many packed up their bible and left Brian Zahnd’s church as well.

Leaving Pentecostal theology and the Charismatic movement does not make you a heretic. What is unclear is beside soteriology, where he stands currently on the other core values of the Christian Faith. I know that Dr. Micheal L. Brown tried to get them out of him at a debate at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City.

My advice to anyone listening to a teacher that a doctrinal statement is unclear would be make sure you have along your Bible, a Strong’s Concordance and a book on Systematic Theology. Be a Berean. Check what he is saying is true in the gospel and by reading up on scholars like Stanley Horton has said about it.

For those interested, this is an older clip of him preaching when I believe he was more solid doctrinally.

Preach faith until you have it!

I was raised around people that knew what it meant to preach faith. It was just something we talked about once a year or so. It was something that pounded into us week in and week out.

While I was in High School, I attended Word of Life Church in Saint Joseph, Missouri. I remember when Brian Zahnd would pastor the church as would preach faith. In fact, he believe the sercet to growing a church to “preach faith and the church will grow.” He based that on Acts 16:5. “So the churches were strengthened in the faith and grew daily in numbers.” 

When I lived in Tulsa, you are surrounded with Word of Faith churches and my first introduction to ministry was working at Destiny Church in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma; a church that believed in the power of faith without excuse. Faith your family’s salvation, healing, deliverance and evangelism was common themes under Eastman Curtis.

I consider the Faith message as one of many layers of my theological framework today.

PETER Boehler

Peter Boehler was one to preach faith too

If you do not know who Peter Boehler is, he was a leader in the Moravian movement back in the 1700’s. He would go back and forth between Georgia and Herrnhut, Germany. Many just known them as “the Germans.”

On a boat one time, a storm was coming against them and everyone but the Moravians was freaking out. They would just starting singing praises everywhere they went on the boats and they have no fear. They were too full of faith to fear anything.

This especially impacted a young man from England that just couldn’t figure out why they were do peaceful when everyone else was fearing death by drowning.

A few months later, the english man asked Peter Boehler want to speak on at a church. Boehler responded these words,

Preach faith till you have it; and then, because you have it, you will preach faith.

Faith is something you can impart, it is something you have to grow in. It does not just happen. It is something you that must cultivate and as you do, it is will increase.

It is like signs and wonder. They should follow the believer. However, if they are not; you should follow them until they follow you. Chase faith until faith chases you. Trust me, faith and miracles will follow you when you believe God and change the anointing on your life.

I like to compare it to my time as a wrestler. I did not just get to the state championship. I had to practice everyday and grow in my confidence that I was ready to wrestle in the championship round at the University of Missouri. It all started with wrestling my own doubt and fear of failure at practice every day.

By the way, if you are wondering who the English man was, his name was John Wesley. You might have heard of him from driving by your local United Methodist Church. Yea, that is the same guy.

end time harvest

Preach faith for the End Time Harvest

Many of you are like me and you got annoyed at the over-emphasis on prosperity in the faith movement. It seems that any discussion of faith had to do with finances. Many started to wonder if the prosperity message was little more than the American Dream with a little Jesus sprinkled on top. I will admit it, I wondered that more times that I care to remember.

The message of prosperity is biblical and it is critical in our generation but it was misguided and misunderstood. Most of the passages calling us to preach faith for finances almost always connected to the great commission. Prosperity is not for you but it is through you. 

The other missing link in the message of prosperity was the other side of the coin. We are to preach faith but we are also to preach generosity.  Without generosity, prosperity has lost its mission. I believe hearing Don Finto preaching this at a meeting and it really impacted me to this day.

One of the things that the power of God will do is give you the power to prosperity but just a few words later in Acts 1:8; we are told to be witnesses to the death to the ends of the earth. We prosper for the gospel to to the most remote villages in India and Africa.

I like to say like this: you do not give to get but you give so the lost can get Jesus.


Why do you preach faith?

Giving and claiming your seed is great if it is for biblical reasons. Are you claiming that saved would be saved and the gospel would run swiftly across the land or are you focus on getting another rental house for usersy on the lower class? Is your faith for the people going to hell without Christ or getting more money than you can spend in your lifetime?

I believe the most important thing we can do as believes, especially those of us that believe in prosperity is stop and consider why we want prosperity. Is it for selfish reason or do we really want it for kingdom purposes? I think many will be surprise at their motives. Most are not as pure as we want them to be.

Why many would defend us to preach faith. They can not be the person of generosity they want to be because they wanted to give the appearance of being more prosperous than they was. They did this but taking on more debt than they can handle. Remember, Paul said be in debt to no one but the debt of love.

I believe that the true blessing of the Lord has no payments due on the third of the month. If your debt hinders you from fulfilling the call to be generous so that other can preach faith in the remote corners of the world; that is sin.

Dr. michael Brown

Brian Zahnd vs Dr. Michael L. Brown: Soteriology Debate

I just saw an older debate with my former pastor, Brian Zahnd and my former Bible College professor, Dr. Michael L. Brown on Youtube. To top it all, it was hosted by another former pastor, Mike Bickle at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, Missouri.

I would say that all three of these men, among others, have formed my faith to where I am today. All helped this radical guy saved in the fires of the Brownsville Revival that went to Central Bible College and ultimately finished up at Oral Roberts University. They all mark a time in that my path. Continue reading…

Brian Zahnd & the Gospel of Peace

Before I start into this discussion, let me say this: I am a former member of Word of Life Church in Saint Joseph, MO that Brian Zahnd is the Senior Pastor of and has been since its’ planting.

I would have to say I was around fifteen when I met Brian or as we called him BZ. He was an over the top Word of Faith and prosperity preacher. He was regularly having speakers like Jesse Duplantis, Joyce Meyer and Steve Musney come to speak. I sit and listen to many of the greatest voices in the faith movement back then. Word of Life was like a scale down version of Victory Christian Center in Tulsa.

I left Word of Life…twice. It was to join the staff of the International House of Prayer in Kansas City under Mike Bickle once and the second time was over a misunderstanding with one of the pastors.

I still am friends with Brian on Facebook and follow him on Twitter. However, I have not spoken with him in a maybe a decade face to face.

Brian Zahnd changed

I remember hearing him in a small group in a prayer meeting talk about St. Augustine alot and I was a little turned off by the over use of Catholic theology but did not think alot about it. After all, back then, the differences were not as dramatic as they are today!

Don’t misunderstand. I am not throwing stones at him. Brian was a man that I love because he was simple. He knew how to do two things (by his own admission): preach faith and do altar calls. He was very good at both!

Somewhere along the way, he left what he calls “consumer christianity.” He also changed his view on the Defense Department of the United States dramatically. He used to be a very strong supporter of our military and was very patriotic.

Brian has turned into a Pacfist

I saw a series of videos recently that featured Brian going head to head with my former Bible College President, Dr. Micheal L. Brown. I somewhat was impressed that Brian Zahnd did so well against such excellence of theological education. (Brian is self taught) Dr. Brown is like debating Stanley Horton or history with Dr. Eddie Hyatt. I have to give BZ respect for taking the challenge!

Somewhere, he has become a minister of pacifism and call it Peace. This is a far cry from the Brian Zahnd that use to cover his church from side to side with American flags and threw a huge party at the church for Independence Day.

In fact, a friend of mine drove me to church because my Chevy Camero was broke. He walked into a the sanctuary and saw a huge sign that said, “It’s time for war.” He stayed to see what the gospel had to do with war. He also came to Christ that morning. His conversion was because of a sign that had to do with war.

What do I think of Zahnd’s throwing out of half of the gospel

I am concerned, as many, that Brian has threw out much of anything from a Hippized gospel that looks more like something John Crowder. I do not, for one minute, that believe that God has given us this confusion of a Jesus that looks like it a banner for Woodstock!

One thing I am concerned about is I remember that Brian Zahnd condemning the heresy of Carlton Pearson a few years. It seems that much of that theology is not presented by Brian himself. That is what is alarming to me.