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Sunday, November 23, 2014

He Said That? Part 3

We have looked at several quotes from Star Scott in the previous two posts. The following are further illumination of his apparent desire to be seen as above the congregation in his ability to hear from God for the purpose of not only running the church, but running your lives.

"We live in a day when we've  lost sight of the fact that God predominantly speaks to men that are placed by Him in roles of leadership." (Knowing God's Voice...Pt 2)

"And I want you to see that one of God's major methods of guidance is divine authority, spiritual authority, recognition and confidence in God's order, that allows me to be led by orders of my superiors."  (Knowing God's Voice...Pt 5)

"You're going to be deceived and you're going to become shipwrecked if you refuse to understand that God has put counselors, overseers, and spiritual authority into your life who will speak to you the Word of God.  They hear the Word of God from a different perspective and on a different level than you hear it."  (Knowing God's Voice..Pt 2)

He is stating unequivocally that one of our major methods of knowing God's guidance is by the established leadership.  Throughout the years we attended Calvary Temple, there were numerous teachings that established this "truth". Fortunately, the Word of God does not support this. The word of God shows us a new and better way.  As mentioned in the previous post, Star Scott has greatly exaggerated a biblical truth for his own purposes.

Much of the teaching entitled Knowing God's Voice, Doing God's Will  includes encouragement to put God's word above all else when seeking to hear God's Voice.  But once again, Star Scott has another message and the above quotes give us the real thought he wants to communicate.  He uses circular reasoning to say - yes, God's word is the primary source of leading but His word says obey them that have the rule over you, therefore, obey me and you will be fulfilling the scripture. (For an accurate explanation of the biblical meaning of Hebrews 13:17, read this) So in the end, Star Scott wants you to seek God in His Word and discover that God's primary source of leading is the men he has placed over you, your superiors.

This is not to say we should not seek counsel from a pastor nor follow the example of the godly men and women in our lives. And as far as how the church functions, of course we should follow the guidelines set down by those in authority. But for my own personal life and that of my family, I believe that God has set husbands as the priests of their own households and has given each one of us the gift of the Holy Spirit who leads and guides our individual lives. (Star Scott once said that the husband's only role in the family is to reinforce the teaching of the pastor and be sure it is carried out in his home.) The pastor is not to reach into the home and usurp the role of the husband. Beyond the order established for a church or home, each individual must hear from God - we each one will stand before God on our own. No pastor, husband, parent or other authority will be standing next to us. And if no one will be standing with us then surely God does not intend others to be responsible for our own relationship with Him. We are responsible, and He has given us the ability to walk this walk of faith.  Seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.  2 Peter 1:3

Why is this such an important subject? Because man is not infallible. Star Scott is not infallible. He does not have some special ability to hear God for my life that God has not given to me. An elder of a local congregation leads and guides the church for the sake of order and growth in the church. The danger comes when the members are convinced that to disobey the pastor (even when he is wrong - see previous post)  is to disobey God. And when the pastor himself is communicating that very message, the members must understand they are in a very dangerous, authoritarian, and even cult-like group.

The following scriptures tell us of the precious relationship God has granted each one of us through the death and resurrection of His Son. He gave His all so that the door would be opened and Jesus would come and have fellowship with us. Should we say - no, we want a king (man) over us? Jesus is our High Priest, not Star Scott.

Not that we have dominion over your faith, but are fellow workers for your joy (said Paul) 2 Cor 1:24

And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven's Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus.  By his death, Jesus opened a new and life-giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place.   Hebrew 10: 19-20

My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they will follow Me.  John 10:27

For as many are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God. Romans 8:14

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding: in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Proverbs 3: 5-6

Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, "this is the way, walk in it" whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left." Isaiah 30:21

But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. John 14:26

And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever - the Spirit of truth. know Him, for he lives with you and will be in you. John 14: 16-17

Some of us who spent many years under the teachings of Star Scott and his associates have had a difficult time recognizing the twisting of scripture that allows a pastor to gain control over our individual lives. I suggest researching the following subjects:  authoritarian churches, abusive churches, and religious abuse. The links posted on the right side of this blog are all very informative. As believers in Jesus Christ, we must protect ourselves from false teachers that deceive many. Please do not take lightly the many voices warning fellow believers of the unbiblical and dangerous teachings of Calvary Temple.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

He Said That? Pt 2

In the previous post, we quoted Star Scott expressing his belief that he is always right and you are always wrong even when you may be right and he may be wrong. He attributes his "infallible rightness" to his position as an elder and your "defiant wrongness" to your position as a subordinate. In this post, we look at two additional quotes from Star Scott's teachings that reinforce his belief that he is alway right and the rest of us are always wrong (and the women are not only wrong but evil).

"I don't think we are the only ones ones who are right; but I think we're right, amen? When I share with somebody, there is no question  in my mind that  I'm right and they're wrong if we disagree." (A Little Leaven Pt 1 2008)

In context, Star Scott used the example of healing to illustrate why he is right and others are wrong. Someone is saying it is not God's will to be healed and Scott says of course it is - so therefore I am right and they are wrong. His "example" was limited to a clear biblical truth that the majority of bible believing Christians would agree with. But what was communicated? He uses an obvious example  to prove his point that he is always right and you are always wrong. In addition, he starts the comment saying WE are always right and ends it by saying "I'M  right". The congregation once again hears Star Scott's declaration of his innate rightness and position of authority.

Not only does Star Scott spend a lot of time reinforcing his superiority, he also communicates messages "between the lines". 

Please note the following conversation between Star Scott and his wife:

"I asked Greer this morning, "How would you summarize the message of the last six months? What have you heard over the last six months of our teachings? She thought for a minute, she said", "women are evil....I know that's how a woman is hearing it." (Ezra and Nehemiah Dec 2008)

Even Greer recognizes that the people, specifically the women, are hearing something other than what was being preached. Should not a pastor have grave concern if the message he is preaching is perceived as something entirely different? Apparently not Star Scott - he continued this message for six months.

Star Scott has long been known for exaggeration. In many ways we gave a pass to him - writing it off as "you know how Pastor Scott is - he exaggerates for effect". But that is exactly the point - he uses exaggeration to get across his hidden message. In this case, women are either seen as evil or at least suspect of being evil. Women apparently absorbed a message for at least 6 months that they are evil.   And it is not just the women hearing that they are evil, their husbands are hearing the same hidden message. (not to mention their children). Because they are now labeled "evil", women are less likely to speak, to ask questions, give their opinions, or disagree. And underlying all teachings is the ongoing message from Star Scott that he is ALWAYS RIGHT and SUPERIOR.

  • But the wisdom from above is first  pure, then peaceable, gentle and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.  James 3:17
  • For by grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought...Romans 12:3
  • He that speaks truth shows forth righteousness, but a false witness, deceit. The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.   Proverbs 12:17,18
  • For such people are not serving our Lord Jesus, but their own appetites.  By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people.  Romans 16:18
Communicating the Word of God should be dependent upon speaking the word with purity, allowing the Holy Spirit to bring the message to each heart. It should not be done with exaggeration or with hidden messages, or with insistence on receiving the word from a superior vessel, i.e. Star Scott. The next post will highlight a couple of comments made by Star Scott that speak of his ability to hear the Word in ways that the rest of us just cannot achieve.  

Thursday, November 13, 2014

He Said That? Part 1

The following is a quote from Star Scott of Calvary Temple that should cause all of us to be concerned. 

"The authority, even when it is wrong, is right. What I mean by that is this: as the subordinate, if I'm, right and defy the authority, then what has happened? I have become wrong, because it is not about the issue, primarily, it is about the heart." (Star Scott I will Build My Church Pt 7)

(The context of this teaching - I Will Build My Church - concerns spiritual authority and the elders placed in local churches. Though Star Scott says he is referring to non-doctrinal matters, he is in fact talking about someone being RIGHT and someone being WRONG. Therefore, his one example of "the time we start church" is not relevant. His statement is clearly talking about right vs wrong. The concept of authority vs subordinate is communicated as one being always right and one being always wrong. By extension, the hearer or reader understands this to mean he is not to bring truth to an elder. What is spoken and what is understood can sometimes be two different things.)

My first response was the scripture "Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ." Ephesians 4:15. In looking at this verse in context, I do not see any place where it says "except the elders or except the pastors or the authority".  verse 4 says "there is one body and one Spirit"....vs 6 "who is over all and through all and in all."  We are to speak truth to all our brothers and sisters - no matter their position in the body. We are one body, being prepared to meet our bridegroom. We have all sinned and come short of the glory of God and therefore all are in need of the ministry of the body. 

Galatians 6:1 says: "Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness." Again, I do not see in context an admonition to NOT speak to a pastor or teacher.

1 Timothy admonishes us: Do not entertain an accusation against an elder unless it is brought by two or three witnesses. We are told how to address the "authority", but I cannot find any scriptures that tells us no matter how wrong the leadership may be, I am out of order by bringing truth to a brother. But the fact that we are instructed HOW to bring truth to an elder lets me know there is a time for doing so. Are we to run to the pastor every time we don't agree with something he is teaching? Or we don't like the new requirement to turn out the lights when we leave the bathroom? Of course not. But Star Scott is stating if you have a differing opinion or disagreement about a teaching, you have a heart issue if you approach them.

And a further thought - Star Scott says:  "If {you are} right and defy the authority..."  Suppose the authority is telling me to lie on my income tax? We know without a doubt that this would be wrong. Would I be defying God if I refuse to obey the elder telling me to lie? And try to tell him that it would be sin for me to lie on my income tax and sin for him to tell me to do so? Does Star Scott really believe an elder who is "wrong" gets a free pass just because his is in a position of authority? And we should obey just because he is our elder?

Suppose the authority is telling the congregation we must now attend church every Monday morning for prayer. Am I out of order if I go to an elder and express my disagreement with missing family prayer for corporate prayer? Am I automatically defying authority?  

So now my question to members of Calvary Temple - why would your pastor admonish you with the above statement? Why would he say that speaking the truth to an elder is out of order? Could it be that he wants you to stop hearing from the Holy Spirit concerning teachings coming from the pulpit? (in other words, stop being like the Bereans). Is he trying to gain compliance from the congregation?  "just do what you are told and shut up". Since when are we to disregard the still small Voice within us?

One final note: I find it interesting that Star Scott's comment equates being right with defiance. Just because you are right or have a different opinion and desire to speak truth to an elder does not meant you are DEFIANT. Of course, no one wants to be seen as defiant so the threat of being seen in such a light takes away our desire to even know the truth much less speak it.