Letter to Bill Johnson From “A Child”
I’m writing because a lot of us kids are not happy about what you and your friends are doing. I heard you want us to be one big happy family. I want that too, especially if you all play NICE (like no stuff I see on GOD-TV: no electrocutions of people!) so first I’ve gotta know some things. Our Daddy Insays there are bad people out there who just LOOK like his kids, but aren’t, and that they actually want to HURT us so he says we have to be careful about playing with strangers. I’m not saying you are a stranger Bill, but you sure do some strange things!
Like you and your friends do things that our Daddy doesn’t let US do, such as tell people to give them their money so then they’ll get rich, and also BULLYING others!!! Like your BFF, that guy with the tats! (Remember him, that one you tried to explain about, and you said, “Have you seen him with his wife? Have you seen him with his kids? I have.” ) He did VERY bad things like head-butting a man with a very sick tummy right where it hurt SO BAD and lying that he was healed. He died!) and I know our Daddy would want us to stop people from doing these very bad things. So this is very confusing to me.
And Daddy always likes us to be very well-behaved in public, so we don’t give the wrong impression to other kids, ’cause then they won’t want to be adopted into our family, so this is real sad ’cause Daddy loves those stray kids. I’m sorry to say this to you Bill, but I’ve seen you on TV with some very WEIRD people, like that snakelady who shook her head and hissed some strange words, (and I sure wouldn’t want to be in HER family!) You should tell her to mind her manners better! And everybody acting drunk! Everybody knows Daddy doesn’t like people being drunk. Or even worse, some of your friends pretend to smoke baby Jesus and toke the Ghost, and call that the HOLY SPIRIT!!! That is naughty!
And you and your friends always preach about stupid stuff too, like girly looking angels with feathers that fall, and drop gold dust, (and then Emma became a him, that is so weird!!!) and who wants to hear about angels anyway? I don’t need my ears tickled. I don’t need Glory Clouds. I need to hear about JESUS!!! And then there’s porta potties taking people to Heaven (what’s up with that!!!) Bill, in all that stupid stuff, I never hear much about what Daddy’s best son did on the cross to bring us home to him! Yes, Jesus is all I want to talk or sing about.Your songs are sooo boring too, singing over and over again, until you’ve gotten yourselves practically hypnotized; and you sing scary stuff, like “fire fall down on us we pray.” Wouldn’t fire burn you?? It is all VERY STRANGE, this fire!
Daddy helps us to be orderly in public, so I don’t think his training is bad at all, (if that is what you meant, that ’cause we don’t like this kind of weird stuff, that our “training is defective”). He asks us to read his letters a lot so we remember what pleases him. We love him so much we read his letters over and over again, because he uses such wise words. I reeallllly think you should read his letters more Bill, your talking might be better! And you won’t teach wrong stuff such as “the anointing Jesus received at his baptism was the equipment necessary to make it possible for Jesus to live beyond human limitations.” Then you said Jesus was born again. Someone smart told me this is the kenotic heresy. So read Daddy’s letters more and all your talking might not have so many mistakes in it.
Daddy always says when you love the true things it is easy to understand his words. So just use short sentences and no hard words, like how you said we have to give up “denominationalism.” I think denominations are a good thing Bill, like someone smart once said, “Denominations mean that somebody somewhere still believes something.”
So I have this question for you, Bill, and I sure hope it doesn’t hurt your feelings like last time someone asked you a question like this and it seemed like you were ready to cry! Well, you swallowed hard a lot. Anyway, Bill, here it is: Are you sure it is “in GOD’S name” you and your friends do what you do?
Your friend, I hope,
Author update, 2009 : Mr. Johnson came to town just recently, perhaps to decree some apostley things for us all, as is his wont. Perhaps he has decreed we are a cancer-free zone now, like his hometown of Redding? So, I updated this piece I wrote when we left a church very dear to us because they aligned with Bill Johnson’s Bethel Church, an organization our children named “The Kick Your Face Crew.” That moniker is in response to Johnson’s protege, Todd Bentley, whose notorious initiation into the deeper things of God was when he kicked a worshiping old woman in the face with his biker boot in obedience to the prompting of the (Holy?) Spirit.
The video I used to link to this letter, and set it in its context, has been pulled from YouTube. Sad. It was so easy to spot that judgmental spirit sitting heavy on the brow of the one who tells us we may not judge. But scroll down the page of the last link in the letter above. There is the text, but without those tears he choked back, when he delivered it at his pulpit in Bethel, his usual ad hominem attack of critics (…” Have you seen Todd with his wife and kids?”…But sadly, Bill, we have! We have seen Todd abandon them for an adulterous relationship! And a re-marriage that is completely unscriptural). Johnson defends the charlatan there with no biblical support, propping up Bentley’s seeming integrity. Johnson’s lack of discernment reached its peak in the in the falseness so evident when stood at the podium at Todd’s commissioning ceremony, with its parade of lying prophecies and weird manifestations. Within weeks Bentleys’ debauched nature was clearly evident to all with eyes that see.
There can be no more defense of Todd Bentley. Reputable journalists such as World Magazine and the producers of Nightline have agreed with the bloggers who first sounded the alarm about Lakeland’s blatant charlatanism. The record of supposed healings and dead-raisings is non-existent. Ample documentation is online regarding the gnostic and new age practices of Johnson and his friends among the International Coalition of Apostles.
My friend M’Kayla writes about some of these issues on her excellent blog. She has had experience as a leader in the Healing Rooms, and was trained in the Sozo style of prayer Johnson popularized. Now she is effectively demonstrating the unbiblical roots of this movement, and ministering to the brokenness of those coming out of the Extreme Prophetic.
And Craig at CrossWise is an encyclopedia for all things Bill Johnson, and the Latter Rain Movement. Because many of us believe Bill is the most dangerous of them all, because he is the most wiley and the most winsome.
The sickest thing in the theology of this man is that he says he does not “allow for sickness.” How is that working for you and your wife, Bill? I know it doesn’t work for me nor myown. I do not understand the callous theology of those who would say to a paraplegic like my gentle and humble brother-in-law, that the reason he was not healed when Johnson prayed for him was that my brother did not have enough faith. Words fail. And thanks be to God, my brother-in-law’s faith has not.
And let this be said of all who have passed through their strange fire, that it has not burned them.