When over four thousand people gathered for the Lead Like Jesus Conference in Louisville, Kentucky last year and thousands more watched by satellite in churches across the country, there was nothing but approval and applause from Christian leaders and the media. These events are being held several times a year and are attended by nationally known Christian speakers like Max Lucado, Rick Warren and Henry Blackaby. In fact, Rick Warren is on the board of Ken Blanchard's Lead Like Jesus organization. The stated purpose of the conferences is to help people become leaders by following the leadership habits of Jesus Christ. The purpose is not one of evangelism, but rather teaching the traits of Jesus to help others achieve personal success.
Given the near complete absence of emphasis and concern over sound doctrine in evangelical churches today, is it any surprise that conferences like this are allowing a platform for New Spirituality proponents within the heart of once Bible preaching churches? During the famous Downgrade Controversy among believers in England in the 1870's, famous London preacher Charles H. Spurgeon took a courageous stand for sound doctrine in the face of false teaching that was coming into the Baptist churches of his day. Today, pastors like Max Lucado invite the false teachers into their churches to teach Christians how to “Lead Like Jesus”. We've come a long way, baby.
Ken Blanchard's Lead Like Jesus Conferences are a case and point. A look at the Board of Directors for the organization is instructive. Besides Rick Warren's familiar face, we have Laurie Beth Jones, author of several books including Jesus CEO: Using Ancient Wisdom for Visionary Leadership. She is a corporate leadership coach and she travels the world telling business leaders how to be more effective and “spiritual”. There is a problem, however. To be featured as a speaker at Christian conferences, Laurie keeps some rather strange company.
Laurie was a featured speaker at the 1998 and 2003 Business and Consciousness Conferences. This is the same conference that featured the occult author and New Age guru Barbara Marx Hubbard. Hubbard channeled a demonic retelling of the book of Revelation that turns the Last Judgment into a mockery where those who oppose world peace and tolerance are the goats, and those who embrace her occult spirituality are the sheep. She says that those who oppose this new spirituality are a cancer that must be cut out of humanity. (That would be you and me as blood-washed believers.)
At the very same conference was none other than long time occult teacher Matthew Fox, author of The Coming of the Cosmic Christ, who is currently calling for a “New Reformation” of spirituality where the recognition of the Divine within will be worldwide in scope and transformational for society. Those are just two who spoke at the same conference with Laurie Beth Jones. What does Laurie believe that she would willingly have her photo featured on the Business and Consciousness website along with information for Shamanic healing, achieving altered states of consciousness and Sacred Sexuality? Why would Ken Blanchard have her on his board of directors for Lead Like Jesus unless he too believes the same things or has no problem with them? (I have pointed out Ken Blanchard's numerous New Age ties in a previous column. His endorsement of Vijay Eswaren's In The Sphere of Silence, published on June 4, continues to be featured on the book's website.) Ken remains silent as these questions have been raised.
Laurie, like most who are undermining biblical teachings despises doctrine. On her website she states this:
"First, we must remember what unites us rather than what divides us, and cast aside doctrines
and tribal beliefs—the we're-better-than-you-stuff. We don't need to lose our traditions
but we do need to gain the understanding that Jesus did not come to set up a new religion,
but to teach us about the individual connections we each have with God.”
Laurie Beth Jones www.jesusceo.com
Laurie's mission isn't teaching sound, biblical doctrine and sharing the Gospel, but as it says on her website header, to “recognize, promote and inspire divine connection in myself and in others.” This would explain why Laurie can float and cross pollinate so easily between conferences of those who promote the doctrines of anti-Christ and those who claim to be evangelicals.
So where are the Christian pastors who see what Laurie Beth Jones and Ken Blanchard are doing? Where is the deep concern for truth here? Why does Rick Warren who is also on this same board not see one of his purposes as contending for the faith? Where is the passionate and fiery love for Christ and His church that led so many martyrs to early and terrible deaths? Why is there a Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy among nationally known leaders like Max Lucado who invite this right into their church? Thousands of spiritual leaders in San Antonio have been invited to attend a free breakfast for the Lead Like Jesus Conference, drawing even more under the influence of Ken Blanchard and Laurie Beth Jones. The need for watchmen on the wall in this hour is desperate.
Jesus as a leadership role model is offensive to nobody. It is Jesus as Redeemer that is the stumbling block to a dying world. The claim that we need saving from eternal damnation and that we can do nothing to save ourselves is offensive to the pride of man. But it is recognition of this fact that drives us to Jesus Christ, the only Savior of the world.
Ken Blanchard and Laurie Beth Jones are Trojan horses coming right in the doors of God's house. The great delusion is upon the church and only those with ears to hear will rise and shake off their somnolence before it is too late.
The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof? Jeremiah 5:31
Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what fellowship hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? And what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? For ye are the temple of the living God...Wherefore come ye out from among them and be ye separate saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. (II Corinthians 6:14-17)
© 2005 Ingrid Schlueter
Ingrid Schlueter has been producer and co-host of the Crosstalk Radio Talk Show on the VCY America Radio Network for 18 years. She is author of numerous articles on current issues and is a regular columnist for Wisconsin Christian News. She has also authored, Parent Police: The UN Wants Your Children. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://sliceoflaodicea.com
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