Kingdom Now/Dominion/Restoration theology
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Mon Dec 19, 2005 at 03:52:28 PM EST
In part as an answer to a thread on Dark Christianity--in which people asked if the coercive practices in "pentecostal dominionism" are the result of one person, much as a lot of the coercive tactics within Scientology are the result of one person--I wrote a reply which I am expanding on here.

Specifically, I am writing here on the history of what is alternatively known within the pentecostal community as "Kingdom Now", "Dominion Theology", and/or "Restoration Theology".   As the pentecostal and pentecostal-esque charismatic churches are where some of the earliest strains of dominionism have showed up, and as dominionism is actually an integral part of the theology of some of these groups, I felt it would be good to explore a bit on where this madness originally cropped up.

Dominionism, or more properly, what Chip Berlet recently termed "Christian Nationalism" and what in the pentecostal and charismatic communities is alternatively referred to as "Kingdom Now Theology", "Dominion Theology", or "Restoration Theology" (yes, as in the Ohio and Texas Restoration Movements) has a bit of a complex history within the pentecostal community.  However, it's an integral part of the theology of much of pentecostalism at this point, has been to greater or lesser extent a major part since at least the thirties and in some extent since the beginnings of pentecostalism, so it's important to understand--if, in part, to learn how even mainstream churches are being affected.

There are five major periods in time that I've identified specific influences in dominionism among pentecostals:

a) Some of the backgrounder (i.e. the belief they are an Elect, the whole Rapture thing, etc.) stem from the birth of pentecostalism itself in 1902 and even with predecessors of pentecostalism, in particular, with aspects of the Holiness and British Israelism movement (the latter also spawned Christian Identity).

Specifically, Pentecostalism itself is a descendant of the "Holiness Movement" in Protestant churches in the 1800's, and whilst most historians define two periods of "pentecostalism" of which "neo-Pentecostals" are the second main flavour, I'm not sure this is such a valid distinction--seeing as "neo-Pentecostalism" actually is descended from movements within "old school" pentecostalism.

The "Holiness Movement" was a movement within the Methodist church that aimed at "church reformation"--in fact, the principle of "baptism in the Holy Ghost", which is typically seen as the solitary proof one is a "true Christian" in those groups, started within Holiness.  The pentecostal movement itself started out as a split from Methodism--starting in 1901, a large revival broke out at a church called the Azusa Street Mission, and the controversy over whether the "speaking in tongues" and other "signs and manifestations" were signs of demonisation or "God's Outpouring" ended up in the split between pentecostals and the Methodist Church.

In fact, much of the theology that was the basis of the "five-fold ministry" (remember that term--it becomes important later) was around as early as the 1830's.

The idea of "rapture" common in premillenarian dispensationalist dominionist groups (of which the majority of pentecostal groups supporting "dominion theology" tend to follow, and certainly most "Christian Nationalists" in the pentecostal movement) is also quite recent, Biblically speaking.  DefCon America has done a good writeup on the subject, but here I'll refer to the specific sources that the DefCon America article used.  John Darby was the originator of the "rapture theology" back in the early 1800s, and much of his theology is actually the basis of beliefs within the pentecostal flavours of dominionism:

Inspiration and Infallibility of Scripture Darby was unswerving in his belief that the Bible was the inspired, infallible Word of God, absolutely authoritative and faithfully transmitted from the original autographs. If the world itself were to disappear and be annihilated, asserts Darby, "and the word of God alone remained as an invisible thread over the abyss, my soul would trust in it. After deep exercise of soul I was brought by grace to feel I could entirely. I never found it fail me since. I have often failed; but I never found it failed me."

Once questioned as to whether he might not allow that some parts of the New Testament may have had only temporary significance, Darby retorted, "'No! every word, depend upon it, is from the Spirit and is for eternal service!'" Darby felt compelled to affirm his fidelity to the Word of God because "In these days especially . . . the authority of His written word is called in question on every side . . . "

Deity and Virgin Birth of Christ On the deity of Christ, Darby is no less compromising than he is on the place of Scripturein the believer's life. "The great truth of the divinity of Jesus, that He is God," says Darby, "is written all through scripture with a sunbeam, but written to faith. I cannot hesitate in seeing the Son, the Jehovah of the Old Testament, the First and the Last, Alpha and Omega, and thus it shines all through. But He fills all things, and His manhood, true, proper manhood, as true, proper Godhead, is as precious to me, and makes me know God, and so indeed only as the other, He is 'the true God and eternal life.'" If Christ is not God, concludes Darby, then "I do not know Him, have not met Him, nor know what He is." As one of the truths connected with the person and work of Christ, Darby cites the "miraculous birth of the Saviour, who was absolutely without sin . . ."

Substitutionary Atonement Just as the doctrine of the deity of Christ is written all through the Bible, Darby maintains that the propitiation secured by the sacrificial death of Christ "is a doctrine interwoven with all Scripture, forms one of the bases of Christianity, is the sole ground of remission--and there is none without shedding blood--and that by which Christ has made peace; Col. 1:20."

Darby is convinced that without the atoning work of Christ, man must bear the guilt of his sin, and remain at a distance from God without knowledge of Him or of His love. But thankfully that is not the case, for as Darby points out, "There is death in substitution--He 'bore our sins in his own body on the tree'--'died for our sins according to the scriptures' . .."

Resurrection of Christ For Darby, "the Person of Christ regarded as risen," is the pivot around which "all the truths found in the word revolve." "Many have, perhaps, been able, in looking at the Church's hope in Christ," says Darby, "to see the importance of the doctrine of the resurrection. But the more we search the Scriptures, the more we perceive, in this doctrine, the fundamental truth of the gospel--that truth which gives to redemption its character, and to all other truths their real power." It is the victory of Christ over death which gives the certainty of salvation. It is the resurrection, asserts Darby, which "leaves behind, in the tomb, all that could condemn us, and ushers the Lord into that new world of which he is the perfection, the Head, and the glory." Consequently, this doctrine characterized apostolic preaching.

Return of Christ Darby believed that it was essential that the church have a right hope. That hope he understood to be the second coming of Christ. At his coming, Darby maintained, Christ would take the saints to glory with Him, to become the bride, the wife of the Lamb.

The combination of these two ideas in the crucible of pentecostalism led to the following--that pentecostals (and later dominionists) generally believe they are the first group since the early church of the Apostles to have actually gotten things right (and are proven so by speaking in tongues and "signs and wonders") but are also expressly an elect of God.

This becomes very important in later developments.

At least one source discussing dominionism even ties it to earlier theocratic movements.

b) Many of the coercive tactics were solidified in the very early years of pentecostalism, in particular, the concept of deliverance ministry. To give an idea of how long this has taken place, Aimee Semple McPherson (who is regarded as the world's first radio preacher; she was associated with the AoG and may have faked her own kidnapping) was preaching some aspects of deliverance ministry all the way back in the mid-1910s when she started her radio preaching empire. (McPhereson is still promoted in Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International literature, is still held as a pioneer in the Assemblies proper, and ended up founding a "breakaway" group from the Assemblies--the International Foursquare Church--which was the first "radio" church.  Interestingly, the AoG and Foursquare split over the issue of divorce--which came up because her own husband sued to divorce her on grounds of abandonment.)

The role of "radio preachers", and later televangelists, in the role of promoting dominionism has IMHO been underestimated.  Aimee Semple McPherson as early as the twenties was setting some of the foundation for "word-faith" theology and dominionist speech:

With God, I can do all things! But with God and you, and the people who you can interest, by the grace of God, we're gonna cover the world!

Another site quotes thusly:
It's for your good! You have no business being sick - everyone of you should get well and get up and go to work, huh? Get up and go to work and earn some money and help send the gospel out! Amen! If these dear students, bless their hearts, are called to struggle and strive and pinch pennies and make their way through school and go out and lay down their lives for Christ, then certainly it's no harder to ask us to get a good job and work at it, and not give a tenth, but give the whole business, except just what we need to keep ourselves alive. That's what they'll be doing out there - what's the difference? Am I right or wrong? I believe that I am! "Wist ye not I must be about my Father's business?!" THIS IS MY TASK!!

The same site details how even at this early date "sheep-stealing" among dominionist churches was seen as acceptable, as well as infiltrating mainstream churches:
I was so interested (in this radio program). I awakened the young lady at our house and I said, "Listen to this!" When Joanne came, it came to the part about the nuns even waving their hands and the people all cheering, I told of an experience of mine in Illinois where we were in a Foursquare church that had just been opened and the power was falling. Right next door to us was a convent. The sisters became so interested in the shouting and people praising the Lord, that they came over to see what it was all about. They had such sweet faces - in these black and white headgear. People had been falling under the power of God! Just going down under God's power all around. Do you know, that God's power struck them and they went down just the same way! Under the power of God! By and by, the Mother Superior came in to see what had happened to their daughters, and the power of God struck her. Why, we're all the same! I mean, we all have a heart, we all have tears, we all have sins, we all need a Savior, we all need the blood, and every one of us can work for Jesus. Whether we go across the ocean or whether we stay at home, this is our task. Lord, make us soul-winners, every one of us.

The beginnings of "stealth evangelism" also are present even at this early date:
Mark 16:15 (says), "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature!" And if you're ushers, orderly, prayer tower, band, teachers, employees, members - get your uniforms on! Oh, let's all shine where we are!

And here, too, high demand to be blatant regarding one's demand that everyone "convert or else" shows up even at this early date:
I heard a story this week of a man who wanted a gardener. He advertised and his friend sent a beautiful recommendation concerning a certain man and he said, "He's just a wonderful gardener!" He said, "He's capable of planting a kitchen garden. He's capable of nursing bulbs and bringing them up to fruition. He has the infinite patience of a gardener. He's able to put in a formal garden, and old-fashioned garden." The man began to say, "My that's just the man I want!" He came to the end of the page, turned it over and there were just three words there: "But he won't."

This man could do it, but he wouldn't. My, how many people are here that could pray in that Prayer Tower, but they won't? They could fill the last row in the choir, but they won't! They'd rather sit out there and see. They could be in the illustrated sermons, but they won't. They could be an usher, but they won't. They could fill-up the orchestra, but they won't. They could join the new club I'm talking about, "I Am Sending," but they won't. You say, "What is that club?" It's to pay $35.00 every six months or even one semester; to pay the tuition of a student through school, but they won't. They could draw from the bank if they had to - a good many people could do that - and buy one short-wave radio station, and say, "Sister, go to it! If you have this, this desire in your heart, God bless you and, more power behind you and prayers." But they won't.

Much, if not most, of the support for dominionism within the pentecostal and charismatic movement is based on support from televangelists and the "travelling pastor circuit" as I'll note further in this essay.

Lest people doubt this was just a radio phenomenon, the first major victory for "proto-dominionist" groups in the pentecostal movement as well as among Southern Baptists was none less than legal prohibition of alcohol.  It was not until the 1930's--with the Depression and a crime wave directly related to bootlegging--that the constitutional amendment was reversed.  Some of the major supporters of Prohibition were the very same denominations that now are backing dominionism.  We forget the lessons of Prohibition at our peril.

At least one other sites notes that the roots of dominionism may go all the way back to the very founding of the pentecostal movement--pentecostalism is itself an outgrowth of a "Restoration" movement that occured in the Holiness churches in the late 1800s, and pentecostals generally see themselves as the "restoration" of the original church (aka everyone else has screwed it up before they came along and they're the first in 1900 years to get it right).  This is also, likely, where the Ohio and Texas Restoration Movements get their name--the "father church" of the Restoration Movements and Vision America is a pentecostal-esque "independent charismatic" church in Ohio.

c) A great deal of the foundation for dominionism within the Assemblies and other pentecostal groups is the "word-faith" movement--aka "name it and claim it". Early word-faith preachers operated back in the 30's and 40's and "word-faith" teaching is pretty much the basis of nearly all modern televangelism and radio preaching.

As I've noted, Aimee Semple McPherson may well have been the first "name it and claim it" preacher on the airwaves.  She was followed by several others--in fact, this is one of the areas that is pretty much "core theology" in much of the Assemblies of God and other pente churches, and is viewable on pretty much any religious network.  

The basis on how "name it and claim it" is less known among those who've never been involved in pentecostalism.  In fact, "name it and claim it" is an extension of dominion theology, or rather, dominionism and "word-faith theology" have identical roots.

In the dispensational churches (including the pentecostal-flavoured dominionist groups) it's believed that God gave man dominion over the earth, but God (and man) lost dominion when Adam and Eve were tempted by the serpent in the Garden of Eden.  It was with Jesus's death (and, in some variations, spending three days in hell literally either being tortured by or wrestling with the devil--more on this in a bit) that people finally regained the ability to gain dominion but the world outside of the True Church (in their eyes, the pentecostal and charismatic movements) is still literally Satanic.

This, in a word, is the root of the spiritual warfare theology that is practiced in dominionist churches within the pentecostal movement.

d) At around the same time, "latter rain" or "manifest Sons of God" theology arose at or around the same time; William Branham has been generally recognised as the "father" of that movement, and it dates all the way back into the 30's and 40's (notoriously, William Branham has been associated with the Ku Klux Klan--not uncommon in Indiana in that time period; Christian Identity groups including the Aryan Nations have also been known to use Branham's speeches in their literature). This sitehas some further info on Branham in regards to the latter-rain stuff; of note, Branham was quite influential in regards to the Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International, and in fact an FGBMFI newspaper from 1961 crows:

In Bible Days, there were men of God who were Prophets and Seers. But in all the Sacred Records, none of these had a greater ministry than that of William Branham, a Prophet and Seer of God.... Branham has been used by God, in the Name of Jesus, to raise the dead!

Latter-rain theology actually was so far out that even the Assemblies of God initially rejected it (in 1948), but due to the lack of practical enforcement in the church "latter rain" theology was still heavily promoted and mixed with "word-faith" theology.  (The AoG actually has two main groups of churches--one operated by the denomination itself in Springfield, and a much larger body of churches who are affiliated with the AoG but own their own properties, etc.  As I've noted before, procedures for becoming an AoG preacher are incredibly lax (literally signing a statement of faith, getting a recommendation from another AoG preacher, and paying a fee), similar to those in Calvary Chapel or Vineyard.)

Interestingly, "latter rain" has quite an early history in the pentecostal movement.  

Per this link, many of the spiritually abusive tactics that existed in the AoG related to "latter rain" and word-faith and "spiritual warfare" teachings have a very early history.

e) "Latter rain" and "word-faith" theology combined in the 50's in the Assemblies of God traveling-preacher crucible to form what is now known as "Brownsville", "Toronto" or "Third Wave" theology which is a major basis for dominionism in that denomination. Again, we have an identifiable "origin"--in Paul Yonggi Cho (nee David Yonggi Cho), who also is head pastor of Yoido Full Gospel Church in South Korea (which is not only the largest Assemblies of God church in the world, but may be the largest Protestant chuch in the world--the main church itself holds about 18,000 people but if membership in the thousands of satellite churches throughout Korea is any judge membership is closer to a million).  Yoido Full Gospel was founded literally only ten years after the AoG entered South Korea.

Cho originated some of the most coercive practices within the Assemblies of God (including the use of "prayer gangs" and prayer cells, the entire Brownsville thing, etc.); this, and the existing coercive tactics in the AoG and pentecostalism itself (including holding "men of God" as sacrosanct, the emphasis on Biblical literalism, etc.) combined with "manifest sons of God" theology (borrowed from the Oneness Pentecostals) and the existing "word-faith" theology in AoG churches combined in a deadly crucible to form the basis of "spiritual warfare" within that church.

Deception in the Church, a watchdog website following the "third wave" movement and more generally the word-faith and "latter rain" movements in pentecostalism, has more info on Cho specifically.  This link has info on Cho and the "Third Wave" stuff (including specific mention of the dominionist church in Kentucky I walked away from, which was practicing "third wave" theology back in the 60's).

This expose notes the "Third Wave" origins from within the word-faith movement.

(A bit of explanation re this whole "third wave" stuff so I don't sound like I'm speaking Greek.  Generally, pentecostal groups following this particular flavour of theology see three major "outpourings of the Holy Spirit"--the first being at Pentecost itself, the second being the beginning of the Pentecostal movement, and the third being placed generally anytime between the sixties to the eighties depending on when the "third wave" movement entered the church.

Much of the charismatic movement started during the early days of the "third wave" in pentecostal churches and is heavily influenced by this--Ted Haggard's New Life Church is a primary example of this, as are other dominionist megachurches that only identify as "independent charismatic".

Some sources list the waves as starting with Azusa and the second and third waves being the Charismatic movement and the Brownsville-esque "third wave" revivals.)

Regarding dominion theology in and of itself, at least practiced in dominionism:

This link notes a few names of note that haven't been already mentioned--Earl Paulk, Kenneth Copeland (who is a major televangelist), and Ed Silvoso.  Kenneth Copeland is a major televangelist; the other two are best known in the "travelling preacher" circuit.  The same link details some of the decidedly peculiar (in comparison with, say, mainstream Christianity) beliefs in "Restoration Theology":

Using Earl Paulk's words as his primary point of reference, Robert M. Bowman, Jr. has written about Kingdom Now / Dominion teaching.  In the process he has given us a condensed summary of the Kingdom / Dominion ideology.  Remember, current SW practice finds its conceptual home in this setting.  Bowman writes:

"In the very beginning God created the universe and populated it with spirits (or angels) who lived in perfect obedience to Him.  However, a third of these angels, led by Lucifer, rebelled against God's authority; becoming the demons... The angelic rebellion occurred in a "gap" between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2.  The result was that the earth, which was the "capital city" or headquarters of the demonic Evil Empire, was brought into chaos and made formless and void (Gen. 1:2).  In order to win back unchallenged dominion over the universe, God introduced into the earth, Man, a race of creatures which God intended to become a resistance movement that would conquer the Devil's home planet and thus lead the way in taking back dominion over the entire universe.  Man was to be a race of "little gods," exercising divine sovereignty ... thus overwhelming the devil's forces.  Unfortunately the father of this race was tricked by the devil into forfeiting Man's place in this plan and actually brought God's first plan to naught.  God was then forced to come up with a "Plan B" to take dominion over the earth.  His solution: to introduce into this fallen race a man in whom the divine nature dwelled fully, who would become the prototype of a new race of human beings in which the original godhood of Adam was restored.  This divine Man was Jesus Christ, a perfect manifestation of God, the Father, and the "first fruit" of the "incarnation of God." This race of "little gods" who are spiritually united with Christ as members of His "body" is the church, constituting collectively with Him the complete incarnation, a corporate manifestation of God in the flesh, which together will overcome the devil and restore God's dominion unchallenged on the earth.  Ultimate victory over the devil, then, depends finally upon the church accepting the calling to be little gods. It further depends on the church's submitting to the fivefold ministry through whom God is seeking to mobilize the church into a unified army prepared to take dominion back from the devil."

As stated above, Adam was tricked out of his real identity.  Kermedi Copeland states, "After Adam had given it away, God didn't have any more authority here."  Ed Silvoso echoes: "Because Adam, God's deputy on earth, transsferred his legal dominion to Satan, God became obligated to recognize Satan's legal standing."

According to Copeland, Pauk and Silvoso, God's authority was terminated on planet earth and he was now on the outside looking in.  Jesus' death and resurrection was an attempt to regain from Satan what Adam had transferred to him.  It was an attempt to reclaim legal authority over the earth, authority which Adam had forfeited.  In what is called "identification teaching" some spiritual warfare enthusiasts teach that after Jesus' death He descended into hell, was attacked by Satan, and became a sinner.  But God raised him from the dead and Jesus was "bom again." He became the first bom-again man and the prototype or "pattern son" for all born-again believers.  Believers are meant to partake of the same power and authority as Jesus and, with this endowment, reclaim the earth and the heavenlies through spiritual warfare.  But the Church, like Adam, botched the plan because of its unbelief and ignorance.  Finally, now at the end of the age, in the time of the Latter Rain (since the 1950's), the Church has been given new prophets and apostles to lead the church to establish God's lost rule in the earth.  Using Spiritual Warfare techniques and tactics, the Church will take whole cities and nations for God and will at long last take control of the heavenlies, having cast Satan down.

Ed Silvoso writes: "The Church now has been placed potentially in the control of the heavenly places once ruled by the prince of the power of the air.  But this reconstituted church must engage and defeat the enemy and retake the heavenlies in the name of her Lord, so that the eyes of those still being held captive by Satan will be opened."

This is the Kingdom/Dominion plan­of-the-ages.  It is the master plan out of which flows the sundry variety of techniques, tactics, and rationale found in the SW movement.  Leaders, who espouse SW theology and push it, operate knowing the whole of the plan, but often it seems like the movement is marketed like a jigsaw puzzle without the cover picture.  Saying this another way, many followers just "belly-up" to the SW smorgasbord and choose those selections that most appeal to them with the hope that these choices will help their plans of evangelism--they are dangerously unaware of the larger and distorted context of the Spiritual Warfare movement.

Per this link, C. Peter Wagner and the founders of Youth With A Mission (a group that itself is a front-group of the Assemblies of God) are also listed as major promoters of dominion theology within pentecostal circles. Earl Paulk, a major fixture in the Assemblies of God traveling-preacher circuit, is again mentioned as the possible inventor of the term "Kingdom Now Theology" (which is often used as a synonym for dominion theology in these groups).

The spiritual-warfare emphasis in dominionist pentecostal groups dates all the way back to the Latter Rain, per the same article.

Many sources have noted Earl Paulk's part in promoting dominion theology, and there are hints he may have coined the phrase within the AoG itself.

"Restoration" is also a common code word in pente circles in particular for dominionist theology--this article speaks about this in detail in several articles, including the links between the Third Wave movement and Christian Reconstructionism. (Many of you are familiar with the Ohio and Texas Restoration Movements--well, that's where they get their name from. It's a pentecostal codeword for "dominionist".)  This link also notes how "restoration" is a code-word or synonym for "dominion theology". Per this article, George Warnock is mentioned as possibly having coined the phrase "dominion theology"; again, it is squarely linked to Latter Rain teachings.

John Kilpatrick and Rodney Howard-Browne are listed as influential in spreading dominion theology per this link, which also details the relationship between "third wave" teachings, dominionism, and "word-faith" theology. (Howard-Browne is also influential in spreading "third wave" teaching in general and is often listed as the person who brought it to Toronto and later Brownsville; Howard-Brown and Cho are probably the two closest "parties of blame" for spread of "third wave" flavours of "spiritual warfare" dominionism.)

Per the same article, Assemblies of God televangelists Benny Hinn and Kenneth Hagin are listed as promoters, and in fact Hagin and Hinn may have coined the phrase "dominion theology" in part (if anything, the phrase was part of a preexisting movement in the AoG, but it's difficult to determine who actually invented it).

This article notes, again, strong connection between dominion theology and Third Wave theology (including the idea of "cursing people in the name of Christ").

One particular area of spread of these doctrines, too, is the role of the Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International.  The FGBMFI is essentially the Assemblies of God's first "front group", and was originally set up as a front to target businessmen for conversion.

FGBMFI started in 1953 and has actually been one of the most active of the forty-plus AoG front groups in both explicit attempts to interfere in international politics and is also the front-group most consistently associated with dominionist movements in the US including Vision America (Ohio and Texas Restoration Movements).  (An example of some of the kinds of stuff taught at FGBMFI get-togethers is here--this is a testimonial from a walkaway from the group.)

FGBMFI is also one of the major sources for spread of the "Third Wave" aka Brownsville movement in the AoG (which is highly spiritually abusive and is much of the basis of dominionism in these churches) starting in the 50's from Paul Yonggi Cho's Yoido Full Gospel church in South Korea.  Cho has been saluted by FGBMFI and in AoG-affiliated churches the FGBMFI and Cho's church are often cross-promoted (see for an example--this is from a dominionist church, and the links section is a veritable who's who of dominionism in pente and charismatic circles).

Regarding the FGBMFI, they have a rather long and ignoble history with dominionist movements:
(from this Dark Christianity post

My starting plan was to help dogemperor with the Big NOLA list. I was suspicious of a local national/international relief organization - Northwest Medical Teams.
I became suspicious when they attended a Full Gospel Business Men "Mayors Prayer Breakfast" AFTER they had been informed that FGBMFI went ON THE RECORD last year not allowing a Muslim Iman to lead a prayer. FGBMFI "interfaith cover" was blown.
I was suprised when NW Medical Teams attended the event even with the knowledge, so I made a note to dig deeper.

Stories about the Prayer Breakfast

When digging stuff up a number of names surfaced. For those of you who are bona fide researchers I am sure bells will ring: Greg Feste, Malachai Foundation, Council on National Policy, Morning Star International, Champions for Christ, Every Nation. Ultimately...that history was way too convoluted for me to follow and I decided it was not relevant to NW Med Teams per se. I just wanted folks to know as you dig, things come up.

ENTER: Pastors Resource Council, stated to be organized by Tony Perkins of the Louisiana Family Foundation. Names: Lee Dominique and Tony Perkins

The Pastors Resource Council has a Compassion Fund, on the bottom of their page, they are copyrighted by Chest of Joash.

Chest of Joash is registered with the Louisiana Secretary of State:
Names associated with Chest of Joash:
Riley Hagen, S.Chris Herndon, W.Lee Dominique (oh, snap!)
PLUS its mailing address is SUGAR LAND TEXAS.

On the PRCCompassion site, there is a list of their "Partners"
On this list is the "Northwest Medical Teams, President Bas Vanderzalm"

Information on Bas Vanderzalm, from NW Medical Leadership page

Note: Previous Jobs of Bas Vanderzalm:
Salvation Army Harbor Light Center Boston AND World Relief
(Both of which are on Dogemperor's Big NOLA list as Bad Guys)

Other Information:

(AERDO, as an aside, is an umbrella group for dominionist "charities" including multiple Assemblies of God fronts and Pat Robertson's "Operation Blessing".)

The "prayer breakfast" article mentioned in the quotes notes how the FGBMFI is in fact associated with the Ohio Restoration Movement.

Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International is also one of the primary conduits for spread of coercive tactics that are associated with dominionism and dominion theology in these churches.  Among other things, the FGBMFI were a major force in integrating the Red Scare into premillenial dispensationalism (an effort which led ultimately to an attempt to amend the Constitution), and there are multiple reports of spiritual abuse from the group.  The FGBMFI was also one of the founders of the charismatic movement; per this link there are evidences that "Charismatic" movements were started in mainstream churches by Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International as a deliberate attempt at "sheep stealing" (targeting other Christians for conversion).

The Peace Corps article on FGBMFI is especially telling:

Most members agree that we are "living in the last days," and that they are called to harvest souls before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Most of the group's members are businessmen, but prominent U. S. members include high military officers, ex-officers, or managers in the military-industrial complex, many of whom worked within the nuclear weapons establishment. Many of them believe that the Gog-Magog war prophesied in the Bible will culminate in nuclear war, but that they will be raptured before the apocalypse.

(References: 1. Larry Kickham, "The Theology of Nuclear War," inset on The Full Gospel Business Men's Fellowship International, Covert Action Information Bulletin, No. 27, Spring 1987. )

One of the persons linked in this way is Oliver North, who post-Irangate commonly gives talks at pentecostal churches.

FGBMFI is, much like the Assemblies of God itself and several other pentecostal groups with dominionist tendencies, strongly linked to televangelism and the "parallel media" of dominionists:

FGBMI produces books, a magazine called The Voice (in seven languages), and Christian TV programs which are aired on networks such as Trinity Broadcasting and PTL, as well as independent stations. In fact, the group provided the seed money to found the Christian Broadcasting Network, PTL teleministries, and Trinity Broadcasting. The fellowship holds national, regional, and world conventions. Gen. Efrain Rios Montt, the evangelical ex-president of Guatemala, spoke at the world convention in 1984. At the 1986 world convention, people gathered the signatures and addresses of potential supporters for Pat Robertson for President.

A legitimate case can be made that the FGBMFI is the first "modern" dominionist movement:
Washington DC: Since 1964, FGBMFI has held regular military prayer meetings in the Washington area. There are now three chapters there, including one in the Navy Officers' Club, and the Secretary of Defense even arranged to have two prayer rooms built in the Pentagon.  Reagan administration staff members have been instrumental in organizing FGBMFI prayer meetings among the Washington elite. A 1986 FGBMFI brochures list people "vitally affected" by the prayer meetings: Lt. Gen. Dick Shaefer, Col. Speed Wilson, Col. Hank Lackey, Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, Commandant of the Marine Corps, Chief of Naval Operations, Maj. Gen. Jim Freeze, Maj. Gen. Jerry Curry, Col. Andy Anderson, Chief of Staff of Army, Chief of Staff of Air Force, Sgt. Maj. Bud Nairn and 1st Lt. David Nairn, and Brig. Gen. Charles Duke.  (Some of the above people were unnamed in the brochure. ) FGBMFI founder Demos Shakarian was a participant in the Washington for Jesus rally in April, 1980. (See also Govt Connections. )


Honduras: FGBMFI has been forming affiliates in Honduras since 1978, and currently has more than 20 chapters in the country. Most chapters meet in exclusive hotels and restaurants, and they collaborate closely with World Gospel Outreach.  The Hotel Honduras Maya chapter of FGBMFI supplied seed money to a military school for teenagers (Nido de Aguilas or Nest of Eagles) with the hope of creating disciplined, anticommunist, and God-fearing future leaders.  It was reported that a CBN film crew traveled with members of the Full Gospel Businessmen's Association (sic) to film contra forces in Nicaragua (actually in Honduras).

(Yes, that's right--they actively supported the Contras.)
Government Connections:

Former President Ronald Reagan has close ties with the Full Gospel Business Men's Fellowship. In 1970, five FGBMFI members, including Pat and Shirley Boone, Harald Bredesen, and George Otis, prayed with then-California Governor Reagan at his home in Sacramento. Otis, a former Lear executive, was overcome with the Spirit and began to speak in the voice of God. He compared Reagan to a king, and prophesied that Reagan would "reside at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue" if he continued to walk in God's way. Apparently Reagan took the prophesy very seriously.  James Watt and Herbert Ellingwood were among the members of the Reagan administration who participated in FGBMFI. Ellingwood and others within the administration organized hundreds of prayer meetings and Bible study groups in the Washington area. Carolyn Sundreth, a Reagan aide who later worked on Pat Robertson's presidential campaign, invited Nita Scoggan, the wife of a FGBMFI member, to form a prayer group in the White House. Reportedly, Col. Oliver North attended the prayer meetings.  In 1978, Reagan confidante Herbert Ellingwood told the Los Angeles Times (in a story which Reagan confirmed) that a FGBMFI prayer group healed Reagan's ulcers.  Ronald Reagan has also given his testimony at FGBMFI prayer meetings.  (See Activities for further Washington DC connections. )

Private Connections:

Prominent right-wing activists, such as Joseph Coors (Heritage Foundation) and Sanford McDonnell (McDonnell Douglas Corporation), are members of FGBMFI.  The connections between FGBMFI and Pat Robertson are numerous. Robertson has preached at FGBMFI prayer meetings. Long-time FGBMFI member Harald Bredesen was Robertson' mentor and teacher, and has been on the CBN board of directors since 1962. He is a frequent speaker at FGBMFI meetings, and was present at the Reagan presidential prophesy.  On the board of regents at CBN University is FGBMFI member Maj. Gen. Jerry Curry. George Otis, also present at the 1970 meeting with Reagan, formed Middle East Television ("broadcasting from the Armageddon bowl") in Israelioccupied Lebanon, which he later turned over to CBN. Herbert Ellingwood, FGBMFI member and formerly of the Reagan administration, worked on Pat Robertson's presidential campaign.  In Honduras, the fellowship works with World Gospel Outreach. The 1986 FGBMFI president, John Arevalo, was also the World Gospel Outreach director.  The mission of that religious and charitable organization, led by a banker turned evangelist Rev. Allen Dansforth, is to prevent commmunist revolution by serving the Honduran poor, particularly children whose "minds are soft" and who are "naturally dependant. "

In fact, per at least one history of the hijacking of the Republican Party, the FGBMFI are likely some of the prime architects (notably, they are listed as being just the Assemblies of God, which IS accurate--the FGBMFI is an Assemblies front group).

Almost makes me wish for the good old days of Aimee Semple McPherson and the Four Square Gospel Church. (Although she sure was the very model of the modern televangelist, wasn't she?)

BTW, talking about waves, this quick and dirty Fogel chart sort of helps to put things in context.

by Psyche on Tue Dec 20, 2005 at 03:24:37 AM EST

Regarding Aimee Semple McPherson--she was the originator of some of the basis for the theology behind dominionism in the Assemblies and later Foursquare (in that the whole word-faith thing and the push to "Christianise" the planet, as well as pushes for pentecostals to get involved in litigation, originated with her--remember, her and Billy Holliday (two of the main radio-preachers at the time--Billy Holliday was more the fire-and-brimstone one) were two of the main promoters of Prohibition.

I think my point is that--contrary to claims that dominionism started in the 80's or even 70's (which MAY well have been true in the Southern Baptists and some other groups with "dominionism problems") dominionist tendencies may well have been in pentecostalism since the beginning.

To give some perspective:  The Azusa Street Revival finally ended around 1909-ish.  The Assemblies of God was founded in 1914 (they were one of the first pentecostal groups to actually form their own denomination).  Aimee Semple McPherson started as a traveling evangelist in 1916 and as a radio preacher in 1918 (the only reason she didn't start earlier is because at that time the US Navy controlled the broadcast airwaves thanks to wartime censorship).  Aimee split with the AoG (because her husband wanted to divorce her) and founded Foursquare as the first "radio church" in the very early 20's.

The really major pushes really started in the 30's and 40's, but the framework was there practically from the beginning in the Assemblies and other pente groups.

(As it is, I've heard quite a few reports of dominionism out of Foursquare too, so I'd watch them carefully as well.)

Regarding the Foley chart, that is helpful to explain to folks.

(Unfortunately for those not so much worried on church history or apologetics, it seems that in studying parts of the dominionist movement--especially within the AoG--apologetics study is almost a necessary evil, because even much of the church history generally is not available to outsiders.  Most of it either is whitewashed history by the AoG itself or from people researching movements within it because of grave concern (usually apologetics based but increasingly regarding the spiritual abuse aspects); the Assemblies does not in general teach about the founding of the church or the history of its movements (my sister actually learned about the Assemblies/Methodist split from, of all sources, a Southern baptist college's divinity course before most SBC colleges stopped allowing women to take divinities degrees; no, she doesn't have a divinity degree but at one time was considering ministry, and as no Assemblies of God colleges were accredited she had to go to an SBC college due to relying on federal aid).

by dogemperor on Tue Dec 20, 2005 at 08:31:27 AM EST

I wasn't praising her...just an attempt at humor (however feeble). ;-)

by Psyche on Tue Dec 20, 2005 at 03:38:37 PM EST
Okee, my bad :3  

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Thanks dogemperor! Wow, that was quite an overview! I was curious to know if there are any moderate to liberal-progressive movements in pentecostalism that could counter some of these dominionistic tendencies. I have always appreciated in pentecostalism a certain openness to gender, race and class diversity that I do not see with such intensity with Southern Baptists and other protestant groups. I wonder if this openness has influenced some churches or groups of churches to become more democratic and not so set on theocratic isolationism.

by Carlos on Tue Dec 20, 2005 at 11:36:31 AM EST
Unfortunately, the spiritually abusive tactics within the pentecostal movement are so intrenched that generally people who disagree with the dominionist bent find themselves as "throwaways"--kicked out.  (This story details a preacher who ended up as a "throwaway".)

Interestingly, some of the people who have been affected the most (to the point of walking away) have been some of the fiercest opponents to dominionism.  Unfortunately, they tend to find they are unable to stay in their churches.

Some have ended up going into charismatic branches of mainstream churches, and many end up as independent Christians not associated with any particular denomination.  (Sadly, the climate in most pentecostal and pentecostal-oriented "charismatic" groups does not lend to reform or even welcoming of dissent.)

Others tend to end up in the larger evangelical movement (which includes people, like Robert Bakker and Jimmy Carter, who--whilst sharing some religious beliefs including the belief in being "born again"--are not dominionist by any means and are some of dominionism's fiercest opponents; "evangelical" is a big spectrum going from folks like Carter and Bakker to hardcore dominionists with a LOT of grey in between).

by dogemperor on Tue Dec 20, 2005 at 12:31:29 PM EST


I assume you mean Billy Sunday, the evangelist?


But Billy Holiday sure could preach in her songs.

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