Having a Form of Godliness But...
Recently, I was listening to a podcast by a well-known and very popular personal growth ‘expert’, and my blood began to boil.
The podcast invited four so-called ‘Masters’ who were to address spiritual truths. Before I go on on this semi-rant, I have to make something clear. The content was good, excellent even.
Herein, in my opinion, lies the problem.
The 30 minute episode centered mainly on:
- Overcoming obstacles
- A concept of God
- How to be be Happy
All good things, right?
As I was listening to the panel of four 'Masters' (of which only one was a Bible believing Christian), it upset me. And what upset me wasn’t the good that came out of their words and interventions. No. What upset me was what didn’t.
You see, 95% + of what was talked about was very good, but there was this 5% poison that would go unnoticed by most – as usual.
The apostle Paul warned us about what was to come in ‘The Last Days.’ He wrote these words in his second letter to Timothy:
“But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (2 Timothy 3: 1-7)
That last part! Did you catch that? That’s it! That’s what bothers me with today’s personal growth gurus. They :
- Love pleasure rather than God. Find your bliss, be happy and fulfilled is their mantra. Got happiness?
- Prey on the gullibility of vulnerable women. Sorry ladies. I will expand on this below.
- Teach and preach the necessity of ‘constant learning and development’, but never come to the knowledge of the truth (i.e. the message of Scriptures and the person of Jesus-Christ)
- Have a form of godliness, but deny the power thereof (i.e. the One True God and Jesus Christ)
The apostle mentioned that from such people we should turn away. But what do we do instead? We embrace them and elevate them to the status of experts and… Masters. And Christians are just as guilty of this as the masses. Heck, even I have been guilty of this at times – to my shame.
And now, I feel I must, for the sake of clarity, explain the second point about women. So ladies, bare with me…
Women are more religious than men. That’s an inherently good thing. They attend Church more and tend to be more devout, on average, than the average man. But there is also a down side to this religious trait in women.
Here is an excerpt from Wikipedia on the gender gap in Eastern Enlightenment pursuits:
“Sociological investigation indicates that certain sectors of society are more likely to engage in New Age practices than others. The majority of participants are from the middle and upper-middle classes of Western society. Sutcliffe noted that although most influential New Age figureheads were male, approximately two-thirds of its (66%) participants were female. The movement is strongly gendered; sociologist Ciara O’Connor argues that it shows a tension between commodification and women’s empowerment. Sutcliffe described the “typical” participant in the New Age milieu as being “a religious individualist, mixing and matching cultural resources in an animated spiritual quest”.
Women tend to flock to New Age beliefs because it makes them feel empowered in our post-modern culture, does away with a patriarchal system they detest, does away with God as a Father figure, does away with everything that they find distasteful with Christianity, which incidentally in most cases is the Faith of their ancestors. In short, the New Age is very in tune with post-modern feminism.
It is also interesting to note that the most influential figureheads of the New Age are males, which confirms Paul’s statement of “this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts.”
Just as it happened in the garden, New Age is a seduction that mainly appeals to women, and they fall for it in mass – unfortunately.
So, this is in large part why my blood was boiling as I was listening to this podcasting Guru of personal growth and his guests.
The large majority of what we are taught today by ‘masters’ gives an appearance of godliness but denies what makes the power of true godliness – God and His revealed Truth in Scriptures applied to our daily lives.
We are taught everything by these gurus, from The Secret, to humanism, to NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming), to how to be happy, to how to be successful and wealthy… all without the one TRUE source of it all: the ONE True God of Scriptures. This makes adherents always learning… but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Like the Messiah said to the religious leaders of old:
“But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you shut off the kingdom of heaven from people; for you do not enter in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.” (Matthew 23:13)
When Paul mentions the denial of what constitutes godliness, he speaks of God Himself – the Holy Spirit. This vital element is ALWAYS missing in contemporary personal growth teaching curriculum. And yet…
“In him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’
“Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill. In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.” (Acts 17: 28-31)
Indeed, in an age where we brag about our modern knowledge and skill, we still fall for the same old crap, and we call it NEW.
May God have mercy on our collective folly and EGO (EGO = Edging God Out).
I hope this post has offended you away from modern gurus and back to Him.
End of Rant.