It has now been over thirteen months since the launch of the Lakeland Outpouring with Todd Bentley.
What a difference a year makes, eh?
As the aftermath (both good and bad) continues to unfold, I found myself reflecting on some of the lessons that we hopefully have learned during the days that have followed Todd Bentley’s downfall. I’ve written them out in a post over at Examiner.com. I’d love it if you were inclined to go over and take a peek.
At the same time, I wondered what lessons you might want to add to my list as you’ ve reflected on the events of the "Lakeland Outpouring."
Or is this a dead horse, better left alone?
What a difference a year makes. In just a few days, it will be the one year anniversary for the launch of what became known as the Lakeland Outpouring. In my opinion, God graciously used that series of gatherings to encourage, motivate, heal, and speak to many around the world. Some will tell you that the ministry extentions (direct and indirect) are still having great impact in numerous places across the globe even now. As the Lakeland event progressed with Todd Bentley last summer, however, there were serious errors made, some in doctrine, some in practice, some in behind the scenes character issues. Character trumps "anointing," every time, and eventually the Outpouring imploded. In my book, that doesn’t necessarily nullify the good that was done, but it certainly demonstrates how the Kingdom can be temporarily hampered and besmirched.
Todd Bentley, now remarried, is in the midst of a restoration process under the leadership of Rick Joyner. Yesterday, Rick released the following public statement, "Todd Bentley Restoration, Part II." It is rather lengthy, but I am reproducing it below in it’s entirety as an added place of record. To find the original post, CLICK HERE.
Also – I’ve just discoverd that Joyner has released a series of video interactions with Todd dealing with all of this. I haven’t had a chance to view them yet, but you can find them HERE.
Charisma magazine reported yesterday that:
Todd Bentley, who became well-known for leading the Lakeland Outpouring until he stepped down after announcing he was divorcing his wife, Shonnah, has remarried.
He has also entered into a restoration process led by MorningStar Ministries founder Rick Joyner, it was announced Monday.
Joyner said Bentley and his new wife, Jessa, married "several weeks ago" and have moved to Fort Mill, S.C., where MorningStar is based. Jack Deere of Wellspring Church in Texas and Bill Johnson of Bethel Church in California will assist Joyner in overseeing Bentley’s restoration process.
Editor J. Lee Grady, in a separate column, had this to say:
…we charismatics still seem to have a habit of elevating gifting above character. It’s almost as if the end justifies the means. (So what if a preacher ruins one marriage and makes a hasty decision to marry a younger woman—the important thing is that we get him back in the pulpit to heal the sick!) That is a perversion of biblical integrity. God can anoint any man or woman with the Holy Spirit’s power; what He is looking for are vessels of honor that can carry that anointing with dignity, humility and purity.
Amen, Mr. Grady.
Here is a copy of the latest newsletter from Freshfire Ministries.
In his blog, Charisma magazine editor, J. Lee Grady, reflects on lessons learned in the aftermath of the Lakeland meetings with Todd Bentley.
Here are some excerpts:
Freshfire Ministries published an update on Nov. 28, 2008, regarding accountability issues with Todd Bentley. Freshfire is the ministry that Bentley founded and the letter reflects their current position and understanding. It is their first update since August 15th.
Originally published on their ministry web page, I have reproduced it below.
Chris Cole, the UK and Ireland Regional Director of God TV and founder of the Cross Rhythms website, recently posted the final(?) statement from C. Peter Wagner regarding the Lakeland Outpouring and Todd Bentley. The original post, including Mr. Cole’s preliminary comments, can be found here.
Wagner’s lengthy statement follows below.