Olbermann Wants To Know About Palin's Religious Beliefs. Well, Keith...
Bruce Wilson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 03:33:53 PM EST
(summary: all evidence indicates Sarah Palin's Christianity isn't about the "Rapture" : it's about Christians achieving dominion over the Earth.)

In a November 24th, 2009 segment of MSNBC's Countdown, Keith Olbermann asserted that Palin's religious views are not unusual, in terms of American culture. That might be true if giving Samurai swords to graduating religious students, claiming Christians can learn to raise the dead, and advocating the religious cleansing of unbelievers, is normative within Christianity.

Recent statements from Sarah Palin that appear to be rooted in end-times theology have sparked renewed discussion on Palin's religious beliefs [1, 2, 3, 4]. But none of the commentary on the subject - from Jeffrey Goldberg, Frank Rich, Keith Olbermann, and others refers to what's actually taught at Sarah Palin's churches, even though there's extensive evidence on that subject. This story present a case, heavily substantiated with video footage from Sarah Palin's most important church, the Wasilla Assembly of God, which radically challenges emerging liberal media narratives that purport to explain Palin's religious beliefs.

But Palin's Church Does Not Teach A Pre-Trib Rapture, and over the course of the past year, working together with a research colleague, I have extensively documented that Sarah Palin is tightly associated with the top leadership of a newly formed Christian tendency called the New Apostolic Reformation. The goal of the movement ? - This is not about the "Rapture." It's about Christian supremacy.

This is not speculation. Leaders in that movement have repeatedly, publicly claimed Palin as one of their own, and no less than five major movement leaders, including four ICA apostles [see here for ICA membership list], have appeared at the church where on October 16, 2005 Thomas Muthee blessed and anointed Sarah Palin and called on God to protect her against "every spirit of witchcraft." But journalists and mainstream media missed the significance of that event, during which Muthee outlined the heavily branded "Seven Mountains" agenda that asserts Christians should seek to "infiltrate" and "influence" (Muthee's words) key areas of society such as business, government, education, and media.



Sarah Palin and the New Apostolic Reformation

video, below: on October 16, 2005, Kenyan evangelist Thomas Muthee blessed and anointed Sarah Palin and called upon God to protect Palin from "every form of witchcraft." Muthee is an international celebrity to millions of Christians worldwide due to the phenomenal success of a 1999 pseudo-documentary called "Transformations," which claimed that, by driving out witches and demons, Christians could cause miraculous transformation of cities, towns, and geographic areas: major reductions in murder, violent crime and alcoholism, and miraculous reversals of environmental degradation. Several Transformations videos have since been produced, and the phenomenon functions now as a globally influential ideological franchise, with police departments of entire US cities now working with local churches to attempt such magical "transformation."

The Wasilla Assembly of God played a major role in launching the "Transformations" phenomenon by bringing Thomas Muthee to Alaska the very year the first Transformations video was released, and by raising a substantial sum of money for Muthee's Kenya ministry. As I wrote for the online publication Religion Dispatches, in Fighting Demons, Raising the Dead, Taking Over the World ,

Transformations I was released in 1999. The same year, it reached the members of a Mat-Su Valley, Alaska, church network (the Valley Pastors Prayer Network) whose pastors were so gripped by the video that they made contact with most of the religious figures shown in George Otis Jr.’s production. And they were so especially taken with Thomas Muthee’s story they brought him to Alaska in 1999 and raised $30,000 so Muthee could buy land in Kenya to build his church. As detailed in a late October 2008 Associated Press story by Garance Burke and an AP investigative team, Sarah Palin’s Wasilla mayoral records show that she borrowed the Transformations I video from her former Wasilla Assembly of God pastor in 2000.

In late September 2008, the Wasilla Assembly of God removed over three years of archived audio and video from its church website. But a vigilant alternative press blogger had already located and saved the footage shown in the first video, below. The second video, a 10 minute mini-documentary, includes footage by journalist Max Blumenthal, captured from a September 20, 2008 appearance Thomas Muthee made at the Wasilla Assembly of God.



video clip, below: as noted in New York Times reporter Laurie Goodstein's October 24, 2008 story YouTube Videos Draw Attention to Palin’s Faith,

Ms. Palin has had long associations with religious leaders who practice a particularly assertive and urgent brand of Pentecostalism known as “spiritual warfare.” Its adherents believe that demonic forces can colonize specific geographic areas and individuals, and that “spiritual warriors” must “battle” them to assert God’s control, using prayer and evangelism. The movement’s fixation on demons, its aggressiveness and its leaders’ claims to exalted spiritual authority have troubled even some Pentecostal Christians. Ms. Palin delivered an enthusiastic graduation speech for a class of young spiritual warriors in June at the Wasilla Assembly of God, the church in which she was raised.

While there was considerable media attention lavished on Palin's June 8, 2008 speech to Wasilla Assembly of God Masters Commission students, mainstream media wholly failed to delve into the nature of the Masters Commission program, which teaches Bible memorization, "prophecy," and "authority" according to Wasilla AoG head pastor Ed Kalnins, who was the Masters Commission program's first graduate. The program is international and graduates several thousand students per year.

At the end of the June 8 Masters Commission graduation ceremony, at which Sarah Palin received an honorary Masters Commission diploma, students in the program were presented with swords (both samurai swords and also one western-style broadsword.) Ten minutes before that ceremony, a speaker onstage addressed Sarah Palin, who at that time was still in the audience.

Videos 1 and 2, below - Palin's Masters Commision graduation speech. Video three - Graduating Master's Commission students are presented with swords. Video 4 - national Masters Commission speaker Jayme Montera, addressing those same Wasilla Assembly of God Masters Commission students prior to their graduation, waves a sword about onstage, then plays an extended video clip from Mel Gibson's American Revolutionary War movie, "The Patriot."



video, below: in audio from a June 13, 2008 church conference, held outside of Seattle, Mary Glazier told the top leadership of the New Apostolic Reformation about how, in 1989, Sarah Palin joined Glazier's personal Wasilla prayer group. Glazier has since become one of the NAR's top leaders - one of it's apostles, and Glazier also serves on the elite Apostolic Council of Prophetic Elders (ACPE).

In late September 2008, Glazier released a prophecy which seemed to suggest that John McCain would win the presidency but then be killed in a tragic act of terrorism which would leave Sarah Palin, during a period of national mourning, "standing alone and she was mantled with the American flag... stepping into an office she was mantled for." The Palin/Glazier relationship was confirmed in a January 2009 Charisma magazine article,The faith of Sarah Palin, which established that the Palin/Glazier relationship continued into 2008 and quoted Glazier stating that her prayer group has been praying for Palin's political success since even before Palin became mayor of Wasilla because, according to Glazier, Palin has been chosen by God.



video, below: on January 7, 2009, no less than 3 ICA apostles appeared at the Wasilla Assembly of God. One, Dutch Sheets, told his audience that his fellow ICA apostle Mary Glazier "was the lady who brought us into the state." Glazier then delivered, from the stage, an extended prophecy.



video, below: As shown in the 10 minute mini-documentary, below, The Seven Mountains agenda is promoted by many of the New Apostolic Reformation leaders, including Thomas Muthee, Lance Wallnau, and the NAR's head C. Peter Wagner.



video, below: ICA apostle Lance Wallnau appears at the Wasilla Assembly of God and advocates the "Seven Mountains" agenda, which proposed that Christians infiltrate and take control of key sectors of society.



video, below: Global Harvest Ministry Founder C. Peter Wagner is the head apostle of the New Apostolic Reformation. Mary Glazier is an apostle in Wagner's International Coalition of Apostles. One of Glazier's fellow apostles in the ICA is the newly-joined Reverend Samuel Rodriguez, who has shared a podium with the late Senator Ted Kennedy, prayer together with Barack Obama, and heads the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, which bills itself as representing over ten million evangelical Hispanics and five million Hispanic charismatic Catholics. Rodriguez has been dubbed the "Hispanic Karl Rove." In the video below, C. Peter Wagner tells a classroom of students attending a course at his leadership institute that the New Apostolic Reformation is the "most radical change in the way of doing church since the Protestant Reformation."



videos, below: Another notable ICA apostle is Retired Col. Jim Ammerman, who presides over approximately 6-8 percent of the active duty chaplains in the United States ministry. In mid-2008, Ammerman published, in his military chaplain endorsing agency newsletter, a letter calling for Senators Clinton, Obama, Biden, and Dodd to be tried and executed for treason, for voting in 2007 against a bill that would have made English the official language of the United States.

During the 1990's, Ammerman helped incite the militia movement by giving speeches across the United States in which Ammerman claimed that a vast conspiracy, headed by international Jewish bankers and Illuminati and backed by up to 1.3 million foreign troops hidden on US military bases and in national parks, was imminently ready to seize control and throw Christians into concentration camps.

The anti-Jewish elements of Ammerman's conspiracy theory was nearly identical to that of Texas megachurch pastor John Hagee, who, like Ammerman, has claimed that international bankers, headed by the European Rothschild family, control the US economy through the Federal Reserve.




Display:
Laurie's description of the movement as "assertive" is FUNNY- it's the understatement of the year in my book.  I would say a more appropriate word would be ABUSIVE.

I would also use either "threatening" or "dangerous" in place of the word "urgent".

People need to talk with walkaways if they want to know just how bad and dangerous this movement really is.

by ArchaeoBob on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 04:29:32 PM EST

You were right to challenge me on that Mark Sill/Hagee/Rodriguez post. It was a significant oversight on my part and I've meant to amend it but I've been busy. Best, BruceW

by Bruce Wilson on Wed Nov 25, 2009 at 04:35:53 PM EST
Parent


Your message is far too important than to trust it to a pompous gas-bag such as Keith-O. He doesn't do religion too well.

If anything, based on his last outing with Palin and her faith, he'll actually create a backlash against what you're try to accomplish.

And I say that as someone who greatly admires your work in this area.

by Frank Cocozzelli on Thu Nov 26, 2009 at 09:02:33 AM EST

As one who has followed the Internet and this blog since before Olbermann or Maddow had these sort of shows, I would add my support for both of them.

They have not come fully up to speed on Domionist vs Fundamentalist issues, and even when they do have folk like Mikey Weinstein, Max Blumenthal, Jeff Sharlet, or Frank Schaffer, much less Jeremy Scahill, I think there is a level they cannot cross.

However there is nothing equivalent on cable and nothing even that close elsewhere beyond MSNBC.  Democracy Now is able to delve much further and sooner, covering this years before MSNBC, but they also are barely able to see the Theocracy in the wings, and how deep and widespread it is, or the level of subversion it represents.

As with so much else, memes that are commonly held can be called out on a bumper sticker as everyone will understand the underlying message, but wrapping your head around the threat of Theocracy from Sara Palin, much less the hidden structure that supports her when what is visible looks vaporous, takes a lot more discussion, and even enough facts to achieve believability of your points and many of those needing further references for those facts to be believed.

All of this could never be achieved on a show like Countdown, and most viewers would be gone if you tried. I very much applaud those listed above for being able to keep the ideas within the bounds that would not label them as kooks if they went there, but still push the envelope a bit and a bit more as what happened before begins to sink in.

As events bring Ideas to the forefront I would suggest that those here with new books out, or old books gone to paperback try and make themselves available to Democracy Now, Countdown, Rachael Maddow, and even Jon Stewart, and Stephen Colbert because these are the only places that I think the Ideas expressed here will get a fair hearing.

by FreeDem on Mon Nov 30, 2009 at 02:25:37 PM EST
Parent


...but I think there is room for disagreement on the whole speaking in tongues thing. To my way of thinking, the road from speaking in tongues to deliverance ceremonies and other sorts of dangerous behavior is a short one... especially when obstacles such as law are out of the way.

xDxEx

by xDARKxENERGYx on Tue Dec 01, 2009 at 12:07:25 PM EST
Parent



Without Olbermann the anti-Semitism behind Hagee's "pro-Israel" message would have never made it into the news.  McCain's rejection of Hagee's endorsement would have never taken place, and millions of Jews would not have been warned of the dangers of embracing people like Hagee.

It would be nice to think that our more careful and academic approach to warning about the extremism of the Religious Right would make the news, but it does not.  Olbermann and Maddow do.  I personally put in years of work trying to get the message out about Hagee including taking videos by hand to Jewish leaders, with no results whatsoever.  One airing on Olbermann and the message went around the globe in 24 hours.  Whether we like it or not, this is the reality.

 

by Rachel Tabachnick on Thu Nov 26, 2009 at 03:09:47 PM EST

We encounter that all the time- people don't listen to us when we tell them that the programs or systems they try don't work (for instance, the Continuum of Care program for homeless shelters is really a dismal failure that perpetuates stereotypes and homelessness!)- and the people listen to who they want to- usually those who are exciting or controversial or who tell them what they want to hear.

One of the things needed is advocacy- more of it.  In my discipline, things like advocacy are considered "beneath" many purists, but when done, it makes a difference in this world- and we all should try to make the world a better place for everyone.

I wish people WOULD listen.  Most people don't want to take the time to understand the subtleties of science and research- a loud and catchy headline is what they look for.  

That is not what science and research is about, although what we find may be spectacular.
 

by ArchaeoBob on Thu Nov 26, 2009 at 09:18:53 PM EST
Parent


using Keith Olbermann or Rachel Maddow as conduits is very problematic.  Keith Olbermann really is a misogynist and a gender loon, who never hesitates to take it to the gutter when he discusses women in politics.  He is also just makes invents things out of whole clothe, and is also a bore and a jerk.  Maddow is not much better, and she wastes a ton of time on her show about stuff that just doesn't matter or is just fluff.  This has all been gone over exhaustedly on Bob Somerby's Daily Howler website for years now.  I can sympathize with your plight, but there have to be better conduits than Keith-O or Maddow, because in the end they are just going to burn you.

-------------
"I believe in a President whose views on religion are his own private affair" - JFK, Address to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association
by hardindr on Fri Nov 27, 2009 at 12:08:23 PM EST
Parent
Maddow's show had Jeff Sharlet on repeatedly over the course of the last summer - over a half dozen times, I believe. No other media venue gave the C Street House coverage even vaguely comparable.

And its possible that without Countdown news of John Hagee's late 2005 anti-Semitic sermon - which caused John McCain to renounce Hagee's political endorsement - would never have gotten out. Olbermann was the first mainstream media voice to pick up that story from the Huffington Post (which picked it up from Talk To Action).

So, do you think it would have been better if Maddow and Olbermann hadn't covered those stories ?


by Bruce Wilson on Sat Nov 28, 2009 at 08:09:49 AM EST
Parent


If you know of better media conduits, I'd love to hear of them. In my experience there are precious few in American media discourse who pay attention to the intersection of religion and politics.

by Bruce Wilson on Sat Nov 28, 2009 at 08:21:22 AM EST
Parent
in most of the mainstream outlets, the news is biased and demonstratively racist- so it's also questionable when it comes to dominionism, because dominionism does provide a service to the elites.  As I've mentioned elsewhere, racism isn't just using certain words- it is also what is left OUT of the story.  Ditto with dominionist covering- you don't hear much about it, ergo it's not a real problem.

I'm glad for any coverage we get in this fight.  While I'd rather it go mainstream, it's good that some of the shenanigans are actually being talked about at a national news level.


by ArchaeoBob on Sat Nov 28, 2009 at 02:14:21 PM EST
Parent





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