The Ancient Jubilee 98 Wineskin PatternThe new model for the gospel and church as Jubilee 98, throw away old computers and buy new Wineskins is as new as Babylon and as refreshing as the Aztec slaughter in Mexico. The Aztecs (a favorite paradigm in many new groups) had their 52 week and 52 year cycle which was really a perverted Jubilee. In Israel, the food failed because others had taken away the land while Israel was celebrating their daily new wineskins, women and music paradigms. Among the Aztecs, there was a similar feeling of doom and fear that the heavens would fall. Sacrificing up to 20,000 useless people and attracting the gods with music would help them prop up the heavens one more year or one more "Jubilee."
The Latest issue of New Wineskins (aka Wimber's Vineyard and the Sophia-Zoe complex in mortal complex with the Jehovah-Logos) patriarchialism is the UGLIEST issue of yellow journalism ever spread before the "drinking" world of pagan religionism.
The Old Wineskins was the musical, perverted worship of Dionysus who was the universal NEW winesking god of His time. Jesus refutes the worship of Zeus and Dionysus and refuses to put His Words into anyone of the WORLD or Kosmos or within the WOLF-PACK.
Rubel Shelly and Randy Harris appeal to the Aztecs for justification for Jubilee 98 type revivalism as a way to destroy what we all agree is often clearly destructive theology. However, because most people know little of the Aztecs or their Babylonian counterpart, it is easy to use the word as a secret code--a "dead affect image"--to control those who will never read history. This is a widespread attempt to abandon the Word we have never understood or applied, and then try to build on sand--
"The United States in recent years has witnessed a resurgence of shamanistic cults among all classes and all races. Storefront salvationists prosper in Harlem, and snake handlers in Appalachia: these are psychedelic prophets who advocate hallucinogenic drugs (music produces endorphins, a powerful morphine-like drug), revivalistic preachers who capitalize on the medium of television, prophets of a strange new cybernetic age (throw away the old computers), and mystical seers who bring suburban matrons a revelation from Tibet (or from the Aztecs in Mexico). All these people, despite the evident sincerity of most of them, are really religious entrepreneurs or shamans... (Farb, Peter, Man's Rise to Civilization. 182)
Farb, and any good history of the Aztecs, shows that there is a direct parallel between the pattern of destruction of the Aztecs and the failure pattern of old and new movements to "ferment" the wine and allow the expansion of the church to "meet the needs of the twentieth century." However, the aztecs were destroyed because they broke down the walls for the Spaniards and gave them too much honor as gods.
An ancient shaman was a "medicine man, wizard, witch doctor, or priest-magician." He might be the most conservative pattern keeper in the world. He is often a professional problem solver and not always a true teacher. He says that he has a "familiar spirit" but Paul knew that it was just a "resounding jar" from which he got his message as the Corinthians got theirs out of their own "spirit." Their mumbling tongues were "mysteries" which, again, point to the necromancers. The "wineskin" people in Corinth mumbled by singing and praying in their strange speech and thought that it came from God. Paul, however, said that it came out of their own spirit. Out of their exuberant, mad mind. As Paul's clarification to the Ephesians shows, a few of the churches reverted to Dionysos worship which gave the women permission to continue speaking in tongues (probably with instruments) in the Christian assembly.
In carrying out its Willow Creek Seeker responsibility to model worship to conform to the appetites of the unbelievers, there may be an inadvertent lapse into the ancient beliefs that a human "god manipulator" or "worshiper manipulator" can bridge the gap reserved by and in the name of Lord Jesus Christ Who is full Deity. To accomplish the "hard-rock" sell among choservative believers you need a "facilitator" skilled in "theatrical programming" To see how this is accomplished and sold by Woodmont Hills, Rubel Shelly and Jubilee 99 with Lynn Anderson, Click Here.
Facilitation means 2. Psychologically increased ease of performance of any action resulting from the lessening of nerve resistance by the continued successive application of the necessary stimulation." (Webster).
"Work with the worship planning committee, the preaching minister and worship presentation groups (music, drama and technical) to facilitate group worship experiences which will help bring worshipers into the presence of God.
In all ancient "liturgy," the purpose was not to allow the seeker to find and contact God directly. Because most ancient priests and prophetesses depended upon "sexual and emonitional abnormality" the worship drama was (is) a living demonstration of the ecclesiastical hierarchy. What does that mean in english? Well, it means that the "acts" of the drama are intended to showcase the musicians (as acknowledged by the ancient Willow Creek Pattern). By seeing how "holy the virginal harem of the gods were" the worshippers would be motivated to holiness. By seeing how talented the performing priest (read: preacher) is we will want to model ourselves after him. And this forces the "worshippers into the presence of God" and forces "God to land upon our drama or dance team as a helioport."
"This brings the earthly world into a hierarchial system, because earthly things such as sounds, colors, forms, stone, etc. are used, especially in the sacraments, to express the ecclesiastical hierarchy. All things belong to the ecclesiastical reality. In the mystery of the church all things are interpreted in terms of their symbolic power to express the abyss of divinity. They express it and they guide eveything back to it." (Tillich, Paul, A History of Christian Thought, Touchstone, p. 96). Click Here for the book.
As modern "restorationists" do not attempt to restore "the church of the first century" and the idea of the second incarnation is to supply what is lacking in the deliterious first incarnation of Lord Jesus Christ, the god of Catholicism and Reformationism was not the God of the Bible:
"God was rediscovered in Romanticism--not the God of orthodoxy or deism but of mysticism, pantheism, and immanent cosmic process; not the juridical monothheistic patriarch
but a divinity more ineffably mysterous, pluralistic, all-embracing, neutral or even feminine in gender;
not an absentee creator but a numinous creative force within nature and within the human spirit." (Click Here to see how the Zoe Group adapts)
As a rediscovery of the ancient Babylonian mysteries was considered as a brand-new invention, art became the midwife to reincarnate Biblical Christianity as a private religion with a "look at me" performance to attract those not spiritually minded:
"Moreover, art itself--music, literature, drama, painting--now took on a virtually religious status for Romantic sensibility...."
"The artistic enterprise was elevated to an exalted spiritual role, whether as poetic epiphany or aesthetic rapture, as divine afflatus or revelation of ethernal realities, as creative quest, imaginative discipline, devotion to the Muses, existential imperative, or liberating transcendence from the world of suffering.
"The most secular of moderns could yet worship the artistic imagination, hold sacred the humanistic tradition of art and culture, the critics and essayists its high priests. In art,
the disenchanted modern psyche could yet find a ground for meaning and value,
a hallowed context for its spiritual yearnings, a world open to profundity and mystery." (Tarnas, Richard, The Passion of the Western Mind, p. 373). (For the Book Click Here)
A lack of faith may make us too anxious about saving the world which can only be saved by an application of God's Word. Why is there a flood of revivalism and the secret code of ancient Babylonia and Mexico? Farb notes that Shamanism has its own revival because of the false notion that orthodox religion must solve all of life's ills (marriage, children, drugs, mourning, bank account, broken auto). When our human schemes fail--and they always fail--the church throws up its hands and abandons its "post" where Jesus left it to preach the Word "as it has been entrusted to you." When this happens, a new leader with a magical solution is right there because--
"The revival of shamanism in the United States is probably symptomatic of the weakening of orthodox religion's ability to regulate social behavior and to maintain social values--and of the lack of any stirring new philosophy or ethic to replace the vacuum left by traditional religions." (Farb, p. 182)
Despite the large crowds at Jubilee 97 (12,000) and probably at Jubilee 98 (7,000) and the commercially-successful "church plants" those who go looking for magic outside of the Word and the local body of believers have really thrown up their hands. They should not be sent "across the Seas" to find someone to solve their problems (See Rom 10:5 and it counterpart in the wilderness).
Don't we need to fill the vacuum with the total Bible taught on an adult level without the "leaven" of personal opinion and the false belief that we can do anything more than plant and water? While there are many good people earnestly searching for the kingdom of Christ to come in the real life of the church, we should remember that Jesus said that the true kingdom is within us. It is realized in little "cups of cold water" and not through great revival efforts.
By promoting all of the doctrinal error which churches of Christ, and history, believe is wrong because it is harmful, Jubilee 98 will alienate those who most need change. It will produce another denomination which cannot be distinguised from others because its premise is to break down the walls. This theme is seen in the Bible and is connected with new wineskins (Amos 5-6; Isaiah 5), instrumental music and women leadership. Doesn't the theme of Jubilee 98 prove that the "tribe" has lost its inheritance and needs someone to take it away from those who bought it at a high price?
While revival is always needed and the church always needs moving closer to the will of Christ, those who advocate change the most seem headed in the direction of human models which have just as many problems as the Restoration Movement.