Roberts Liardon, in a message to Kensington Temple (KT) an Elim Pentecostal church in London demonstrates in one single sermon everything that is wrong with the contemporary charismatic and pentecostal church. Speaking as a leader of KT’s Bible college, Liardon tells Christians to leave “dead dumb churches.” What’s his definition of dead and dumb? According to Roberts, if a church is not a prosperity preaching Pentecostal church (Word of Faith) then Christians should leave.
I don’t think I’ve ever heard more dangerous words from a Pentecostal/charismatic leader in all my time as a Christian – and I’ve heard some dangerous statements. What’s even more dangerous is the platform that Roberts is speaking from. KT is one of the most influential Elim churches in the UK. Elim, at one point, was a very strong biblical and evangelical Pentecostal denomination. These days it is spiritual soup. The following transcript is taken from Roberts message. It can be found from 4.48 to 12.19.
Ignorance is not bliss. There is no blessing in being ignorant.
That’s why you should not go to a dead dumb church.
If you are going to a dead, dumb church, I have a prophecy for you – leave that dead dumb church!
You say, ‘Brother Roberts, how do you leave a dead, dumb church?’
Watch me, (walks off stage)
‘And where should I go?’
Probably the church that everyone is scared of is where you should go. That’s probably where Jesus goes.
- The church that usually is called a cult.
- That’s called extreme.
- Not balanced.
- Over the top.
All those words are good, when they are accusations. ‘Cause normally that is where the Lord is at.
You say: ‘But I want to be respected.’
If you want respect in religion, you have to come to the lowest common denominator of belief to find common ground of agreement, which means compromise for all you KT people. It means to back off from preaching boldly about what you know to be the truth of what God will do. Because bold believing, and bold preaching, does not cause you to be respected.
It causes you to have two emotions, love and hate at the same time.
Now if you just want to have that middle of the ground, where you are real sweet, and you are real nice, well you don’t want to come to KT, or come hear me , because I don’t care if you hate me. I’ve had haters all over the world for thirty years. I have survived the hating crew. If they could have killed me, I’d have been dead in my fifteenth year of ministry. fifteenth year of ministry. But I survived by the grace of God and I’m here to irritate them for the rest of my life. Hopefully, you too. I don’t care much for having a lot of respect. I mean, I love to be accepted and honoured, but it’s not a thing I have to have to survive. What I have to have is victory. What I have to have is to know how to get a hold of victory in every area of my life, every area of ministry, and get it from heaven, where it comes right and stays strong. But if you are going to a dead, dumb church, a church that don’t bring you revelation knowledge, and power to live it, then you need to leave that dead dumb church and go someplace else. A place where the pastor and the people are on fire and they’re preaching and laying hands on you and they’re casting out and casting in and doing the gospel every day, in front of you unashamedly.
You say: (mockingly0 But that’s not my ministry.
Then you are fired, or you’re sacked.
Because the only ministry that God backs up, is Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and the book of Acts. You’re ministry sucks. (Is that too rude? – That’s a California word)
I don’t care what you want. God won’t back up what you want. He backs up when you stand on chapter and verse – not what you want.
You say, But I don’t like it that way’
He don’t ask you if you like it that way. He just does it the way he wants to do it according to the chapter and verse. – Good preaching Brother Roberts – Amen if I say so myself.
I left a dead, dumb church, never to return or send a post card. I was fifteen years old. They licenced me at 15 years old – as a Pentecostal holiness preacher. At 15 years old. I was one of the youngest in that particular network. And they decided they didn’t like the Word of faith Movement and we did. My family and I did. And so I went to the pastor – the one that was overseeing me in my ministry and development. A nice man. Dead, but nice. He Loved Jesus, going to heaven, but dead. You can be a dead nice man., while you still breath and sing Amazing Grace – you can still be dead. England’s full of dead living people all over over the pulpits all over England and Europe.
He (the pastor) didn’t like the Faith Message at the time, he thought it was heretical and thought it was wrong – and so I walked into his office and booked an appointment – I was no more than 16 and said, “we’re leaving your church” (that’s the best way to announce it. Just say it.)
He put down his glasses, looked up at me and goes, “why?”.
I said, “because we like the revival that’s on called the ‘faith revival’ and you don’t”.
He goes, “well I have some concerns,”
I said, “yeah, and we don’t.”
He said, “I think you are making a mistake”.
I said, “we don’t”. And I said, “here’s my licence, I turn it back in. – God bless you.”
He sat there for a few moments, and then said, “I…I…I don’t know what to say.
I said, there isn’t nothing to say, bye.”
And that’s how I walked out of the dead, dumb church I was a part of for all those years. Thank God I did, or we wouldn’t have found KT. I’d have been stuck in some dead thing in Oklahoma, pastoring a little white church with 30 people in there, a bunch of country folk with big bellies just going “praise the Lord!” and that’s where I’d ‘ve been stuck for the rest of my life.
. . .Please be a part of KT or something like it.
You say: But Brother Roberts, how do you find a good church?
Well, ask them. When was the last time they prayed for the sick, then go find someone who got healed and go talk to them. Ask them, ‘Do you cast out devils on Sunday morning?’ If they laugh nervously, then leave. Ask them, “Do you give altar calls and do you give the call for people to speak in tongues at your services and cell groups? If they laugh nervously, leave. If you go to their praise and worship, and it’s dead as a funeral, leave.
That has to be the most pastorally irresponsible advice ever uttered by any pastor ever. There is nothing here about Jesus Christ. The questions people should be asking are questions like:
- What does this church believe about the bible?
- What do they believe about God?9
- Do they believe in the Trinity?
- What do they believe about the atonement?
- How is this church governed? Does it have biblical eldership, or is it a one-man band?
- Do the leaders of this church have the biblical qualifications for leadership (character, gifting, scriptural knowledge, and church recognition)?
Whereas making traditions like altar calls, ‘tongues’, ‘healing’ and accusations of being a “cult”, the marks of a good church is quite frankly spiritual suicide.
I’ll blog more about this in future, but for now I just wanted to highlight the huge issues with Liardon and the message coming from an Elim Pentecostal pulpit.