Recently my husband received in the mail a complimentary invitation to get four issues of Guideposts magazine. I thought friends had sent in for the invitation, but have found out otherwise from them. However, what I did learn from my friend is that they are using a devotional which is an indirect descendant of the heresy that emanates from Guideposts magazine.
There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. Proverbs 14:12
According to their website, Guideposts magazine was started in 1945 by Norman Vincent Peale and his wife; it has a circulation of over 4.5 million, the most for any religious publication. Peale is the author of the book, The Power of Positive Thinking, written in 1952, which has sold over 20 million copies in 41 languages. He was pastor of Marble Collegiate Church of Manhattan for 52 years. He also had a weekly radio broadcast on NBC for 54 years called the “Art of Living”. This “pastor”, who died in 1993, was very influential, one of his disciples was Robert Schuller, pastor of the Crystal Cathedral in Los Angeles, who then also discipled Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church in Southern California. These men have had a tremendous treacherous dominance within America at large and the visible church specifically for years pushing the false doctrine of self-esteem. We can see the terrible consequences of the teaching of these men within our society on a daily basis, doctrine that has held sway for the last 70 years.
For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Mark 8:36
Norman Vincent Peale combined psychology with religion, as a means of overcoming his own inferiority complex, thus he promoted a doctrine of self-esteem. This amalgamation resulted in the formation of the Institutes of Religion and Health, which he was affiliated with as president of the board and chief fund raiser until his death. This merger of religion and psychology, pioneered by Norman Vincent Peale, gave rise to Christian psychology. Given the pervasive influence of psychology within society at large and the Christian church specifically, it is important to know the beliefs that Peale held.
As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: (11) There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. (12) They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Romans 3:10-12
Norman Vincent Peale believed that religion was a scientific way for thinking through problems. He denied the deity of Jesus Christ, His sacrificial death upon the cross for our sins, and His resurrection from the dead. Peale defined faith as one’s confidence in their ability to overcome their problems and succeed in this life. Peale believed that self-esteem is supreme, and his method for overcoming adversity was to tap into God’s energy so as to release this spiritual energy into one’s life for benefit, which is occultic to its core. He taught that prayer tapped into this great power through the subconscious mind which he said Jesus called the kingdom of God within you. His teaching was picked up by Schuller who spurned the doctrine of sin, rejected repentance, hated holy living, and christened Christ as One Who was all about Self. Warren ran with this and wrote his book A Purpose Driven Life to ensure sinners that God created the church as His place to meet their five deepest needs; the need for people and the need of purpose, principle, profession, power. Sadly, the outcome of the recent trial of Brock Turner for his rape of a defenseless woman shows how the message of self-esteem and the supremacy of the individual over everything has warped our judicial system to the point where the current jurisprudence cares more for the perpetrator than for the victim. The punishment was handed down with the perpetrator of the crime in mind, not the victim nor the laws that he willfully broke.
Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. (18) For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. (19) For your obedience is come abroad unto all men. I am glad therefore on your behalf: but yet I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil. (20) And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen. Romans 16:17-20
Norman Vincent Peale, obviously led by demonic spirits, also believed automatic writing to be a legitimate way for God to communicate with us since he promoted the book The Jesus Letter. This book was written by Jane Palzere and Anna Brown, as they were dictated to by a demon masquerading as Jesus. Peale found their book fascinating and gave strong endorsements for the book and for the authors, considering them to be of God. God Calling is another book written through automatic writing with messages purported to be from God which the anonymous authors believed were of greater worth than the message of the Scriptures. This is the book that gave Sarah Young the desire to write directly from God and resulted in her book Jesus Calling. This is the devotional that my friends are using, and will continue to use even though they were lovingly warned. Norman Vincent Peale, a man highly esteemed by others, supported this type of occultic communication and it has become entrenched in our churches. All of these books have had enormous influence within our society and the church.
Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; (2) Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; 1Timothy 4:1-2
To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. Isaiah 8:20
Devotional publications which are promoted by heretics and produced by demons must be shunned by God’s children who know and love our Great God and Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. We must not be like my poor friends who think they are somehow above being deceived. Otherwise the words of Jesus Christ make no sense, for He warned us to make sure that no man deceives us. They are like many, who have left the lies of the enemy they were taught through some sort of false religious system, to only be led astray again by the many who are out to deceive and lead others into perdition. My dearest brethren please make sure you are not taken captive by the deceit of the enemy.
For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. (19) While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. (20) For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. (21) For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. (22) But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire. 2 Peter 2:18-22
Lord Jesus Christ may we follow and obey only You as You lead us by Your Holy Spirit and we rest our faith in You and Your Word which You have preserved for us. Amen!