Breaking News: “Houston should be referred to police for investigation” – Royal Commission’s Senior Counsel

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The Australian reports,

Senior counsel calls for Hillsong founder to be referred to police

HILLSONG Church founder Brian Houston should be referred to police for investigation after he failed to report child sexual abuse carried out by his father, the royal commission’s senior counsel has found.

Simeon Beckett, counsel assisting the Royal Commission into ­Institutional ­Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, also found Brian Houston — who was national president of the Pentecostal church umbrella organisation ­Assemblies of God when he heard about the abuse — had a “conflict of interest” and never told police about his father Frank Houston’s abuse of a boy from the age of seven in 1970. He first found out about the abuse in 1999.

His submission says that Frank Houston admitted the abuse to his son and this confession could have been used to secure a conviction had Brian Houston ­informed police. “As that information may relate to contravention of a law … it is submitted it is appropriate to refer Pastor Brian Houston’s conduct to the NSW Police Commissioner,” it says.

The commission heard evidence that Frank Houston abused several children in Australia and New Zealand in the 1960s and 70s while at the Assemblies of God, ­before Hillsong existed.

The account of the boy was first made to other church pastors in 1998 and Frank Houston ­offered the victim $10,000, the commission heard. Months later, when the money did not arrive, the victim phoned Brian Houston, who was also a senior pastor at the Hills Christian Life Centre. The commission heard Brian Houston responded: “Yes, OK, I’ll get the money to you … You know, it’s your fault all this happened. You tempted my father.” Brian Houston denied the ­exchange.

Mr Beckett said in his submission to the inquiry, released yesterday, that the Assemblies of God did not follow its complaint procedure between November 1998 and December 1999. Under Brian Houston it ­abrogated this duty by “not interviewing the complainant to determine the precise nature of the allegations (and) not documenting any … steps it took”.

“In 1999 the Assemblies of God set aside its own policy for handling allegations against ministers, and ignored Pastor Brian Houston’s conflict of interest in order to permit Pastor Brian Houston to handle the allegations of child sexual abuse against his father,” the submission says. “In 1999 and 2000 (he) and the national executive of the Assemblies of God did not refer the allegations of child sexual abuse against Frank Houston to the police.”

Mr Beckett also found the ­Assemblies of God offered Frank Houston a chance to return to his ministry, despite the allegations and the fact this was against policy.

Frank Houston, who has since died, was allowed to resign and was ­offered a financial ­“retirement package”. His son was present in the boardroom of the Hillsong Church — merged with Frank Houston’s Sydney Christian Life Centre — when the resignation letter was tabled, the commission heard. In a submission on behalf of Brian Houston, Hillsong lawyer Mark Higgins said there was a “preponderance of evidence that (he) had a reasonable excuse for not reporting (the) allegation or Frank Houston’s confession to the police”. The content of the findings were not disputed, however.

Source: By Rick Morton || Dan Box, Senior counsel calls for Hillsong founder to be referred to police, The Australian, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/in-depth/senior-counsel-calls-for-hillsong-founder-to-be-referred-to-police/story-fngburq5-1227162370779, Published 20/12/2014. (Accessed 12:00AM).

Houston’s 2014 God-given “Vision” (Part 1): “New grace” scrutinised

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Recommendation: Before Brian Houston/Hillsong removes this controversial sermon from the internet; once again defames his critics for taking him out of context and uses his authority to remove/sensor his own material, please watch the full sermon at the end of this article. Then, click below to read an article that examines what Brian Houston actually said and how to realistically interpret his words.

Brian Houston’s controversial concepts on Muslims & Homosexuals

In this article, a segment of Brian Houston’s controversial “God-given Vision” for 2014 will be reviewed. We will then do a very quick overview of how Brian Houston and Hillsong have progressed toward achieving this vision throughout the course of 2014. Lastly, we will publish Chris Rosebrough’s critique as well as the transcript of the video below. We will personally review this sermon in articles to come.

DID BRIAN HOUSTON ACHIEVE HIS GOD-GIVEN VISION FOR 2014?

For people to understand how controlling Hillsong is, it is important to understand what it means when a “pastor” casts “vision” over their movement. It is important to note that Hillsong supporters see the vision Brian Houston casts is a vision supposedly given to him by God.

“Hillsong Church has a great vision that was given by God. This vision is inspiring a lot of people and churches all around the world. Thank you for this great work. I’m watching from Sao Paulo, Brazil. God bless you all. ;)”
Source: Eduardo Godoi, Vision Sunday 2014, YouTube, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPnikhaDwDw&google_comment_id=z13vd1mgcsibi5y5x04cddnixpy2vjjhusg0k, Published 10 months ago. (Accessed 16/12/2014.)

This means, Brian Houston is considered a prophet of God. To question the vision of the prophet is to question God Himself. Paul Nevison (a member “of the creative team at Hillsong Church for over 14 years, first in London and now in Sydney, Australia with the Hillsong Film & Television team“), states,

At the start of every year, we have what’s called Vision Sunday. It’s always a highlight for our church, as Brian and Bobbie cast the vision for the coming year.”
Source: By Paul Nevison, PIONEER AGAIN: Behind Our Vision Presentation, Hillsong, http://hillsong.com/blogs/collected/2014/march/pioneer-again-behind-our-vision-presentation, Published 05/03/2014. (Accessed 07/09/2014.)

This above quote is taken from a Hillsong article that promotes Houston’s controversial 2014 Vision. In this video it appears Brian Houston wants his church to accept his God-given vision/idea that unrepentant occultists, “minority groups” and terrorists should be embraced by Hillsong church.

We encourage you to carefully watch Brian Houston’s body language in this controversial video snippet. (Note: This was the video we uploaded earlier this year that caused Hillsong to launch an official complaint to YouTube which resulted in our account shut down.)


[Click here to download video]

 This video is up for ‘research or study, criticism or review’ and ‘reporting of news’ under ‘Fair Dealing’ under Australian Law. This video is up for high public and international interest.

Considering this “God-given” vision was cast at the beginning of this year, it is worth quickly reviewing Brian Houston’s agenda to see if his “New Grace” vision panned out.

hillsong satanism illuminati occult witch free mason

Occultism
Not only does Brian Houston push his occultic Word of Faith Doctrine, this year Brian Houston has promoted and encouraged Christians to embrace the gnostic, neo-pagan film, ‘Noah’ by Darren Aronofsky. There was a bit of backlash against leaders who promoted this film.

We will be producing further articles examining Hillsong pushing occultism in their movement.

Queerstianityhillsong lgbtqi gay homosexual
Through our Hillsong Queerstianity coverage, Brian Houston and Carl Lentz received Christian backlash in America over their remarks on same sex issues, and rightly so.

The truth is, although Hillsong is blatantly grooming Christianity to embrace Queerstianity, Brian Houston has decided to pull out his sheep skin to hide his agenda before the Christian media. He stated,

“My personal view on the subject of homosexuality would line up with most traditionally held Christian views. I believe the writings of Paul are clear on this subject.”[Source]

After watching the above vision, which Brian Houston do you believe?

Chrislam
hillsong islam muslimBrian Houston earlier this year also allowed Hillsong TV to produce one of his messages where he claims that Christians and Muslims serve/worship the same God. When caught, he did not repent but deceitfully mislead his readers into believing that he was maligned by critics and that he didn’t mean what he said.

“Pull the Allah one, Brian” (Part 2)

Hillsong’s “New Grace” agenda
What makes the above footage even more disturbing is the fact that Brian Houston challenges his congregation with these unrepentant men by asking them, “How’s that for an encouraging front row in church?”

It is important to consider this challenging concept. Who sits on the front row of Hillsong Church? Do visitors? Members? Or do we usually see leaders sit in the front row of Hillsong?

If people still honestly think that Brian Houston is not pushing his own “new grace” agenda, can someone please explain his eight second innuendo in the above snippet. (*nudge-nudge, wink-wink* Is that what it looks like to you?)

What Christian minister does that? What is this? What is Brian Houston pushing?

CHRIS ROSEBROUGH’S REVIEW

Thankfully, Chris Rosebrough has weighed in to review Brian Houston’s “vision”. Listen below to Chris Rosebrough’s critique on the above controversial vision segment of Brian Houston.

DECEMBER 15, 2014

The Pioneer Spirit?

Click Here to Download this episode

Program segments:
• David Herzog Teaches How to Walk Into Your Future

• Creflo Dollar’s Dream About Miles Munroe
• Miles Munroe’s Interview With Benny Hinn
• Brian Houston on the Pioneer Spirit
• Sermon Review: A Peace of Christmas – Joseph by Paul Richardson of West Ridge Church

Source: Chris Rosebrough, The Pioneer Spirit?, Fighting for the Faith, http://www.fightingforthefaith.com/2014/12/the-pioneer-spirit.html, Published 15/12/2014. (Accessed 16/12/2014.)

TRANSCRIPT

“Second thing, is a pioneer reaches the unreachable and includes the excluded. I LOVE THIS THOUGHT! Think about this: the first three individuals, when the gospel goes beyond Jerusalem and Judea to Samaria and then ultimately to the uttermost parts of the end- the first three individual con- uh converts that are mentioned. In other words, new believers.

The first one is a wizard. His name’s Simon who confounded the people with magic tricks. They were astonished with his magic. He’s a sorcerer. A wizard.

The second one, (later in Acts chapter eight), is an Ethiopian eunuch. Putting it bluntly, he was castrated. Which I guess made him a part of a minority group. [8 second pause, looking to see if people understood what he was implying].

The third one was a terrorist. [Laughter] His name was Saul in Acts chapter nine. The bible literally describes Saul as breathing threats and slaughter against Christians. And not only that, he was described as being f- in full agreement with Steven being put to death.

How’s that for an encouraging front row in church? The first three, what have you got?

You’ve got a guy who’s still got his tarot cards in one hand and his astrology charts in the other hands. You’ve got a guy with real sexual identity problems; he’s not sure who he is. He’s not sure who he is. And then you’ve got a third person who’s a terrorist! That’s pretty encouraging for the worship team when they look down. I love the fact that maybe, not terrorists, but I love the fact that still our church is church for whosoever will to the Lord may come, should never be built on superstars necessarily or people who’ve got it all together. It’s rarely reached people at all walks of life: the down and out, the up and out, everything in between. And I pray we always be that kind of church. And a pioneering spirit keeps that kind of spirit happening in the church.

Third thing about a pioneering spirit is a pioneer sings a song that is music to the uninitiated but sounding brass to the establishment, in other words stepping forward into new ground, not everyone who represents the statuesque  or the establishment gets excited about the new thing that God is doing.

In the bible you can see that the uninitiated, those who have just been literally connected to Jesus, there was great joy in the setting. Acts chapter 8, verse 7, there was great joy in the city the bible says, its verse 8 I think.

Great joy, but not everyone thought that way. Couple of chapters before in Acts chapter 6, God was doing an amazing thing, the church was multiplying. They were having quickly to keep up with all that God was doing and so there was a little bit of reorganising the way things could be done so the Apostles could keep in the Word and keep in prayer. And in the middle of that it describes Stephen, Stephen is described as being full of faith.

Listen to it, it’s in Acts chapter 6, verse 8, it says, “Stephen full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people”. And then it says there arose some from what is called, (it’s important you think about this)- they were from what? – the Synagogue of the Freed Man. Tells us where those people were from, so Alexandrians etc, who were disputing with Stephen.

In other words they were angry about the new grace, about what God was doing.

And who are they? They were the Synagogue of the Freed Man, literally former slaves who had come into new found freedom and had encountered a grace for themselves and yet were opposed to the new thing that God has done.

Often with the spirit of a pioneer you start taking new ground, you start occupying all streets- and it’s incredible how often- it’s not the people out there in the world that get upset about what Gods doing, in fact they’ve got a heart that’s open to it. It’s often people who experience grace themselves, who have known the freedom of Jesus Christ themselves and yet when grace goes into something new, God begins a new thing, it’s amazing how they are the people that are quite often the blindest and the ones that find it the most difficult to see.

Music to the ears of the uninitiated sounding brass, sometimes to the statuesque. I don’t what to be one who has encountered the grace of Jesus myself and misses out when God begins to do new things. I want to keep that pioneer again spirit, so I stay on the edge. I was pioneering when I was 25, 26, 29 years of age and I’m almost 60 and I want to keep looking forward and I want to keep the same pioneering spirit today. Because once a pioneer, always a pioneer.”

Source: Published by Hillsong Church, Brian Houston, Vision Sunday 2014, YouTube, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPnikhaDwDw, Published 02/02/2014. (Accessed 05/09/2014.)

Here is the full sermon:

The above unedited January 2014 vision sermon was replayed and streamed online across the world at Hillsong Conference 2014. However, it was not not surprising that Hillsong TV edited out most of the controversial segments and published their edited sermon on their Hillsong TV YouTube channel.

His edited sermon can be seen below on YouTube.

Hillsong TV // The Spirit Of A Pioneer, Pt1 with Brian Houston

Published on Apr 13, 2014

Published: Hillsong TV

A pioneer is a person who is among those who first enter or settle a region, thus opening up for occupation and development by others. In this message, Pastor Brian Houston shares the Vision for Hillsong Church, urging the Church to pioneer again.

For more information about Hillsong TV with Brian Houston follow us on Twitter, Facebook and our Website – https://twitter.com/Hillsongtv |http://www.facebook.com/hillsongtelev… | http://hillsong.com/tv

proof_YouTubeSpiritOfPioneer_13-07-2014Hillsong TV // The Spirit Of A Pioneer, Pt2 with Brian Houston

Published on Apr 20, 2014

Published: Hillsong TV

A pioneer is a person who is among those who first enter or settle a region, thus opening up for occupation and development by others. In this message, Pastor Brian Houston shares the Vision for Hillsong Church, urging the Church to pioneer again.

For more information about Hillsong TV with Brian Houston follow us on Twitter, Facebook and our Website – https://twitter.com/Hillsongtv |http://www.facebook.com/hillsongtv | http://hillsong.com/tv

proof_YouTubeSpiritOfPioneer2_13-07-2014

How Brian Houston strives to win the world to Jesus…

1-2-3-4- HOUSTON STARTS THE TWITTER WAR

It’s interesting to see that people are becoming more aware of Brian Houston’s social media campaign to further his ‘cult of personality’ and Hillsong. We were notified of this twitter exchange via Facebook and thought it gave an interesting insight into just how Brian Houston handles those he claims to care so much about.

Hillsong & Brian Houston Exposed

His online antics are hardly representative of pastoral behavior, to say the least. We encourage Christians, and non-Christians, to continue to challenge Brian Houston on social media and express your ongoing concerns to him.

5-6-7-8- WILL HIS TWEETS EVAPORATE?

How do you think Brian Houston should have responded towards the author of this tweet?

proof_TwitterHillsongSexBong_12-12-2014

It’s easy to see that Brian Houston was not dealing with a Christian critic but the world he claims to strive to win. Is this the appropriate way to reach out to the lost?

@hillongLA and  are both horseshit for the truly deluded. RT

Source: Meghan Wilkes, Twitter, https://twitter.com/80BPMs/status/544636043228499968, 3:32 PM – 15 Dec 2014. (Accessed 17/12/2014.)

Be sure to check for yourself before ‘authentic and genuine’ Brian Houston’s response to Meghan mysteriously disappears (as is so often the case).

Brian Houston’s controversial concepts on Muslims & Homosexuals

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HILLSONG’S FALSE INCLUSIVE GOSPEL

Hillsong has continually downplayed and rejected the Christian gospel and the need for repentance. The work of Cameron Buettel has continually exposed Hillsong’s continual lack of preaching the gospel of repentance.

As a result of this, we have noticed how Brian Houston has vehemently been grooming his church to be ecumenical and embrace different beliefs, ideas and forms of false “Christianity”.

Three things Brian Houston has been specifically pushing in Hillsong is Chrislam, (what we call) Queerstianity and pagan Roman Catholicism. In this article we will be looking at the definitions Brian Houston has provided so we can understand what he means by “Muslim” and “homosexual”. While Brian Houston is deliberately vague, he has provided us with just enough substance for us to see how his mind sees certain groups of individuals. In fact, he has created enough imagery for his audiences so he can conjure certain stereotypes in their minds.

ACCORDING TO BRIAN: MUSLIM = “MUSLIM EXTREMIST”

hillsong islam muslimEarlier this year, we exposed Brian Houston gas-lighting his audience to believe that Muslims and Christians serve/worship the same God. We pointed out the fact that Brian Houston was promoting the false liberal “inclusive” gospel and was pushing the idea that Christians can embrace Muslims as our Christian brothers and sisters (Chrislam).

Brian Houston’s Allah “clarification” exposed the fact that he has no problem deliberately misleading Christians around the world over the things he believes. Furthermore, in his statement he claims,

“If you listened to the message in its entirety, my point was that; who a Muslim extremist believes God is, determines what they believe God does, and what they believe God loves.” [Source] [Emphasis ours]

In Brian Houston’s Allah clarification he linked Muslim to “Muslim extremist”. In other words Houston appears to link Muslims to Muslim terrorists. However, in his sermon there was no such link made. In his sermon, he only referred to Muslims once. In his well though-out clarification to the media why did Brian Houston link Muslims to extremists?

What does the word “extremist” normally conjure? What was Brian Houston hoping to achieve in this?

ACCORDING TO BRIAN: HOMOSEXUAL = “CONFUSED IN THEIR SEXUALITY”

hillsong lgbtqi gay homosexualThis year we also published a series of articles exposing Brian Houston grooming his church to embrace what we call Queerstianity.

The Anthony Venn-Brown, John Shelby Spong and Ben Gresham connection have effectively been pushing the same-sex agenda behind the pulpit of Hillsong. As a result, Brian Houston and Hillsong are furthering the gay agenda.

Recently Brian Houston and his church hit American headlines over Houston’s remarks over same sex issues in America. As a result of Houston’s controversial statements, it appeared that some journalists, bloggers and apologists were digging through our articles and started reviewing the Houston/Gresham connection.

Certain individuals reviewed Brian Houston’s sermon “Scandal of Grace”. In this sermon, Houston said the following:

“Well it’s the weight when a young person growing up in a church feels like they are confused in their sexuality. They feel like “maybe I’m gay” and they go to a youth leader and they are rejected.” [Source]

So according to Brian Houston, someone who thinks they are gay is “confused in their sexuality“. In other words Houston thinks a homosexual can be someone with sexual identity problems.

Don’t think that this information is not important. It is. These insights into Houston’s mind are helpful for us considering his very controversial God-given vision for Hillsong at the beginning of this year for 2014 and the way Hillsong has progressed this year.

Media and communities expressing concern that Hillsong is a cult (Part 2)

The Hillsong “church” movement has been an embarrassment to the face of Christianity for decades. It becomes tirseome hearing both Christians and non-Christians label the Hillsong movement a cult, claiming “the church just wants your money”. It is not uncommon to hear from ex-members or average street person the idea that Hillsong is controlling and brainwashes it’s member. They have often expressed their comments after witnessing either a family member, friend or loved one be directly effected by the Hillsong doctrine, environment or it’s charismatic leaders.

Here is just another person’s conclusion, explaining why they believe Hillsong is a cult. Once again it appears that Hillsong are failing to convince the world that they are genuine Christianity. The question is, why can’t Christians or Christian leaders see Hillsong for what it is? Why are Christian leaders tolerating this dangerous movement and allowing this movement to cause continual damage to Christians and communities worldwide?

The Hillsong Church Cult

Hillsong Service in LondonHillsong Service in London

While paying a friend a visit in London, I came along the so-called “Hillsong Church” to one of their regular services at the Dominion Theatre. Though I don’t believe in the supernatural, I thought it to be a good idea to please the person who invited me. However, I was not ready for what awaited me beyond the door of the big musical theatre, as it closed behind me and behind hundreds of others. To make a long story short: I think this “church” is more like a cult and may be extremely dangerous for simple-minded people.

service, concert or brainwashing deluxe?Service, Concert or Brainwashing deluxe? – source: wikipedia

The hall was pitch black when suddenly the lights and a projector with lyrics went on and 12 people came on stage and sang for about 20 minutes. They sang songs like “Arms Open Wide“, with passages like: “My whole life is Yours, I give it all, surrendered to Your name and forever I will pray. “It was more like a concert than aservice, and everybody stood up and cheered. You get the idea if you have a look at the image above. Until this point I was shocked because of the whole topic and the message which the lyrics transported but it was OK. The real shock awaited me after that.

The Hillsong Church Cult has its own Steve Jobs

Some guy who looked a bit like a plump version of Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs entered the stage and told the thrilled audience of his visions and that everything positive that happened in their lives was the will of God. It was rhetorically impressive because he used the word “imagine” at the beginning of every sentence he spoke and a piano and an electric guitar were playing silently in the background to give his speech even more power. “Imagine we could fill the O2 arena next year. Imagine every one of us (Hillsong members) could get five more people into Hillsong. Imagine we would visit the schools and talk to the children” At that moment I really became angry. They want to go to the schools and to teach their opinions to helpless children? I hope this is not permitted by the law and hopefully I will have the chance to send my children to a school where they only have education in ethics and philosophy rather than religion.

It was a hard time for me up this point because every time the audience was urged to stand up and pray, I sat down. This sounds easier than it actually is because if hundreds of people are standing and you are the only one in the crowd who doesn’t follow the rest of the group, it is an unpleasant feeling to say the least. Then after a prayer the collection bags were handed out. I even saw some people who gave away their credit card number and the permission for a certain amount of money to be withdrawn from the bank.

hillsong_sydneyA regular weekly Hillsong Church service in Sydney – source: harmelings.com

The Hillsong Church Cult is not charity

After that, I started to take pictures and a video in order to have proof of what I had seen and experienced. After the “service”, many people asked me what I thought about the event. At first I tried to avoid unpleasant questions with answers like “It was interesting but I don’t believe in things like that.” Later we went to a pub where we were met up with some guys from the Hillsong Church and some people who only were visitors like myself.

After a few glasses of Guinness I had to ask: “Where is the difference between Hillsong, Jehovas Witnesses and Scientology and Christianity in general? Haven’t you watched movies about indoctrination? ” The answer was that “Hillsong does help the poor in the third world and that the money is used to make services like the one I saw possible and to get more and more people even closer to the love of Jesus and God”. In my opinion this is also true for the Jehovas Witnesses. They claim to support the third world with their moneyand everyone knows that they collect money from their members to make their church bigger and even more powerful in order to “save” people. In fact, there is no real difference when it comes to the concept of a sect or cult.

This Hillsong Church is a huge empire with over 21.000 members worldwide and is criticized from many different directions including the media and politicians. Their methods are similar and other groups like TEN SING are even more popular here in Germany and may be considered equally dangerous. As far as I know at least they do not try to collect money.

I am an atheist and believe in nothing but the pursuit of wisdom and knowledge which is, in my opinion, the task of science. For me, religion is the cessation of thinking. I wrote a quite complete article in german language called Forschen VS Glauben (engl. research vs. faith) and made the “steep thesis” (ger. steile These ;-) ) that everyone who visited a university should be clever enough to not believe in mystic tales like the creation myth or the concept of god. Before I went to the Hillsong service, I thought that things like that exist only in music videos like Genesis – Jesus he knows me.

What bothers me the most is that I had not founded a cult by myself. I mean, it should be easy to get some followers and to make people believe in something like the Flying Spaghetti Monster with simple answers to the complex questions of life. Everything good that is happing to my church members would be because of healthly living and everything bad comes from the Spaghetti Monster. Piece of cake. But to be honest I would be satisfied if busses like this would be driving around more often.

Last but not least I would like to thank Liron. She was so kind to help me out with grammar and spellchecking!

Source: Geschrieben von Marc Tönsing, The Hillsong Church Cult, MarcTV, http://marctv.de/blog/the-hillsong-church-cult/, 06/07/2009. (Accessed 10/12/2014.)

If you want to want to research what a cult is, you might like to read our article here:

Media and communities expressing concern that Hillsong is a cult (Part 1)

RELATED ARTICLES

Denton Interviews Levins On Hillsong: “I was detoxed from toxic Christianity”

“I was a Christless, creedless, and clueless Christian in Hillsong”: A testimony of God’s grace.

Brian Houston calls Christian pastors “intellectual pride-filled Pharisees” & “evil people”

Faith fights, snake bites and a Hillsonger’s insights

Rick Warren’s subtle-back slide into Catholicism concerns “Christians nationwide”

Take note that Hillsong is STILL scheduling Rick Warren to speak at next year’s Hillsong Conference.

This man has been exposed into pressuring Christians to embrace Chrislam and the pagan Roman Catholic religion as legitimate Christian sects.

Hillsong: This is war!

Christian News reports on American Christianity’s reaction to Rick Warren’s false call to unity,

Rick Warren’s Call for Christians to Unite With Catholics, ‘Holy Father’ Raising Concerns

In a new video, megachurch leader and author Rick Warren is calling for Christians to unite with Roman Catholics and “Pope Francis,” who Warren recently referred to as the “Holy Father”—a move that is raising concerns among Christians nationwide and is resulting in calls for Warren to repent.

Warren made the comments following his visit to the Vatican last month, where he spoke at an interfaith conference on the “Complementarity of Man and Woman.”

“We have far more in common than what divides us,” he said in the two-minute video released by the Catholic News Service on Wednesday, described as being an outline for “an ecumenical vision for Catholics and Protestants to work together to defend the sanctity of life, sex and marriage.”

“They would all say, ‘We believe in the Trinity; we believe in the Bible; we believe in the resurrection; we believe in salvation through Jesus Christ,” Warren asserted, speaking of the various denominations within Christianity, of which he included Roman Catholicism. “These are the big issues.”

The author of the bestselling book “The Purpose Driven Life” then sought to defend Catholics from those who take issue with the practice of seeking the intercession of Mary and the various deceased persons that have been sainted by the Vatican.

“Sometimes protestants think that Catholics worship Mary like she’s another god, but that’s not exactly Catholic doctrine,” Warren contended. “People say, ‘What are the saints all about? Why are you praying to the saints?’ And when you understand what they mean by what they’re saying, there’s a whole lot more commonality [that we have with Roman Catholics].”

“There’s still real differences—no doubt about that,” Warren stated. “But the most important thing is, if you love Jesus, we’re on the same team.”

He closed by speaking of his belief that Christians and Catholics serve as co-laborers for the cause of defending life and family.

“When it comes to the family, we are co-workers in the field in this for the protection of the sanctity of life, the sanctity of sex and the sanctity of marriage,” Warren said. “So, there’s a great commonality and there’s no division on any of those three.”

But Warren’s comments have raised concern from Christian leaders nationwide, who are now calling the Saddleback leader to repentance. Matt Slick of the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry (CARM) repudiated each of Warren’s points.

“Sure, there are Catholics who love the real Christ, the one who died on the cross for our sins. That is not the problem,” he said. “The problem is the Roman Catholic Church’s false teachings concerning Mary and salvation.”

“Rick Warren says both the Catholics and the Protestants believe in the Bible. But, there is a significant difference between the Bible of the Protestants and the Roman Catholic Church, which has added seven books,” Slick wrote. “[T]here are numerous problems in the apocryphal books, such as the teaching of salvation by works [and] the offering of money for the sins of the dead.”

“Warren implies that both Protestants and Catholics have the same view of salvation,” he continued. “Though it’s technically correct to say that Catholics believe in salvation through Jesus Christ, they reject justification by faith alone in Christ alone. Instead, it teaches that good works of various kinds are necessary for salvation.”

The Christian apologist then pointed to several Roman Catholic teachings on Mary, mainly from the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), such as that Mary “by her manifold intercession continues to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation” and that “[b]y asking Mary to pray for us, we acknowledge ourselves to be poor sinners and we address ourselves to the ‘Mother of Mercy,’ the All-Holy One.”

“Rick Warren has not only failed to recognize the problems in these serious areas, but he has lent his credibility as a Protestant pastor in support of the Roman Catholic Church,” Slick wrote. “This should never be done by any Protestant pastor who takes the Bible seriously. I must conclude that Mr. Warren does not take the word of God seriously and/or he does not understand the damnable teachings of Roman Catholicism regarding salvation.”

“Rick Warren needs to repent,” he said.

Source: By Heather Clark, Rick Warren’s Call for Christians to Unite With Catholics, ‘Holy Father’ Raising Concerns, Christian News, http://christiannews.net/2014/12/02/rick-warrens-call-for-christians-to-unite-with-catholics-holy-father-raising-concerns/, Published 02/12/. (Accessed 10/12/2014.)

Hillsong: This is war!

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WHY PASTORS AND CHURCHES NEED TO WARN THEIR FLOCKS AGAINST HILLSONG

This article will be examining the false claims made by Hillsong’s invited guest speaker Rick Warren, in contrast to some damning evidence put out by the Roman Catholic Church on their 2008 World Youth Day.

hillsong islam muslimWe ask again, what god does Hillsong worship? We say this in light of Hillsong embracing pagan religions such as Islam and Roman Catholicism. We say “embracing” because of Brian Houston’s insistence that his movement preaches an inclusive gospel and an inclusive Jesus (a gospel and a Jesus you will not find in the bible).

Recently, Pastor Jordan Hall said the following about Hillsong’s invited guest speaker Rick Warren for next year’s Hillsong Conference 2015:

“What this man [Rick Warren] is demonstrating is that he is not a Christian brother… I think he is wicked folks…”

This is the video that Pastor Jordan Hall was reviewing.

Hear Jordan Hall review Rick Warren’s Roman Catholic promotional video below. This is well worth your while.

Rick Warren Anathematizes Self (Listen)
Rick Warren Anathematizes Self (Download)

When this video was published on FaceBook by Catholic News Service, Dan Phillips from the Pyromaniacs blog commented on the above video.

“Absolutely appalling. What a wretched failure of Christian leadership… to say nothing of basic Christian fundamentals. God grant him repentance, and God spare others from being misled.”
Source: Dan Phillips, FaceBook, https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10152421040155723&comment_id=10152422050505723&offset=0&total_comments=361, 28 November at 00:25.

Those that are being mislead are those that will be attending Hillsong Conference 2015 next year. What makes Hillsong conference so dangerous is that they are brazenly declare in their marketing gimmicks that Hillsong are hearing from God.

Their “SPEAK – WE’RE LISTENING” campaign is supposedly based on the prophet Samuel hearing from God in 1 Samuel 3:10. However, their choice of immoral and deceitful teachers are a clear indication that the Hillsong leadership are definitely not hearing from God and that they have no clue what a fine bible teacher looks like. One corrupt teacher they are still allowing to speak at Hillsong Conference 2015 is Rick Warren.

Houston claims Hillsong Conference are hearing from God and are bringing “the finest Bible teachers”

You know something is wrong with Driscoll when he is invited to speak at Hillsong Conference…

We remind you again that it was Tony Palmer that said to Kenneth Copeland’s Word of Faith cult that, “Brothers and sisters, Luther’s protest is over. Is yours?

Well according to Rick Warren it is. And according to Hillsong it is. Why? Because they don’t stand for Jesus and His gospel. If they knew the Christian faith, they wouldn’t be pointing Christians to be “coming home to Rome” and worshiping their deity.

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“Pillar of FIRE…” WYDSYD08 booklet

In our article on Hillsong embracing Roman Catholicism (Part 4), we went to great lengths exposing how Hillsong and the Roman Catholic church are grooming Christians and churches to embrace Rome.

Furthermore, we covered the fact that Hillsong had no issue leading thousands of Roman Catholics at World Youth Day in “worship”.

However, if you were in the city of Sydney in 2008, you could not escape the litter of small World Youth Day pamphlets titled “Pillar of FIRE, Pillar of TRUTH”.

This booklet specifically defines the difference between the Roman Catholic Church religion from Christianity, teaching what it means to be a true Roman Catholic.

The relevant pages below refute Rick Warren’s argument that Christians and Roman Catholics have “more in common”. After browsing the below booklet, Christians need to ask the question:

Do I believe Brian Houston, Rick Warren and the Pope that “Luther’s protest is over or are they trying lying to me?”

To give you an idea what is taught in the below booklet, we read,

“Some people promote an especially attractive idea: All true Christians, regardless of how they live, have an absolute assurance of salvation, once they accept Jesus into their hearts as “their personal Lord and Savior.” The problem is that this belief is contrary to the Bible and constant Christian teaching. The Bible makes it clear that Christians have a moral assurance of salvation… but the Bible does not teach that Christians have a guarantee of heaven. There can be no absolute assurance of salvation.” - Pillar of FIRE, Pillar of TRUTH, WYDSYD08, Published by Catholic Answers, Inc. 2008.

To see the content online, click the below link:

Pillar of Fire, Pillar of Truth

If you have a problem with this material, you have a problem with Rick Warren and Hillsong. Not Christianity.

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Houston said to Royal Commission his father never preached again; witnesses disagree

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Brian Houston gospel issue

Evidence at the Commission and various comments on our site have revealed fascinating insights into the dealings of serial pedophile, Frank Houston.

Recently, a commentor shared this information on our site:

I attended Hawkesbury Church (then Hawkesbury Christian Centre) in the early 2000s under its minister Ian Woods, who was then State Superintendent of the AOG and presumably also on the National Executive.

Frank Houston was parked at Hawkesbury after he was stood down and the congregation was told to treat him like royalty. Certainly there was no warning to families in the congregation that we were harbouring a pedophile. He was our National Leader’s father, and a super-apostle in our movement.

Although I do not believe there was a risk of him reoffending, still, what I recall was the total veil of silence that fell over the matter, to the extent that one Hillsong member left the Sunday service when Brian Houston was forced to say something, believing that Frank was guilty of some kind of financial mismanagement.

Brian says that his Father never preached again. I’m pretty sure that’s wrong. While he was with us, he was allowed to preach. Brian is, yet again, a liar.

Source: Truth_will_out, News reports from Royal Commission on Hillsong 08/10/2014, Hillsong Church Watch, http://hillsongchurchwatch.com/2014/10/08/news-reports-from-royal-commision-on-hillsong-08102014/#comment-10079, Submitted on 2014/10/09 at 10:12 am. 

The New Zealand Herald reports,

Child molester pastor Frank Houston was ‘still allowed to preach’ after abuse warning

Soon after accused pedophile Frank Houston was stood down by his son Brian Houston – who now runs the popular Hillsong Church in Australia – he was seen on TV preaching in Canberra, a witness has told a national inquiry.

Barbara Taylor, the evangelical pastor who told the Pentecostal movement in 1998 its honoured preacher Frank Houston was a child molester, says it took her months to get the church to take the matter seriously.

Frank Houston died in 2004 and had admitted to the sexual abuse of children in Australia and New Zealand.

She also told a hearing of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse that in June, 2000 she had written to Brian Houston about his father saying she had been told “a week after you said you were going to discipline him by standing him down he was preaching and prophetising over people in Canberra”.

Brian Houston wrote to her saying he was hurt by her letter and that Frank Houston was receiving “restoration counselling”.

He also asked her to contact him by phone in future, she said.

Pastor Taylor kept notes of her interactions with the abuse victim, known as AHA for legal reasons, and her dealings with members of the executive of the Assemblies of God (AoG) – the body to which Pentecostal churches are affiliated.

She wanted the matter settled by the church not the “secular courts”.


Hillsong Church leader Brian Houston. Photo / AAP

Brian Houston was national president of the AoG when allegations against his father surfaced.

In late 1998, 20 years after her son told her, the abuse victim’s mother informed Pastor Taylor about Frank Houston – the pastor who was treated like royalty by the devout family.

The commission on Wednesday was taken through Pastor Taylor’s notes recounting her attempts to organise a meeting between AHA and Frank Houston.

She had written to Frank Houston five months after the allegations were first raised and her many attempts to contact him failed. She said he rang and was angry “that I was pursuing” him”.

Pastor Taylor also recorded AHA was extremely distressed the matter had become known but agreed to meet Frank Houston.

AHA told the commission on Tuesday Frank Houston offered him $10,000 during a meeting and asked his forgiveness. Some months after that he received a cheque from Brian Houston.

Pastor Taylor also said she wasn’t kept informed of the actions taken by Brian Houston or the AoG but she considered: “If he (Frank Houston) confessed to Brian he would have really meant it and Brian would have brought him to a place of repentance.”

Pastor Taylor said that at a later meeting with Brian Houston he told her it was a one-off incident by his father and commented the incident was about a “little boy who walked through a room without his clothes on”.

“I took it his father had trivialised the incident to Brian”.

The hearing continues.

Source: Child molester pastor Frank Houston was ‘still allowed to preach’ after abuse warning, New Zealand Herald, http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11339319%20, 08/11/2014, 4:50 PM. (Accessed 29/11/2014.)

Media and communities expressing concern that Hillsong is a cult (Part 1)

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Two Paragraphs report,

Is Justin Bieber A Member of The Religious Cult Hillsong?

Pop star Justin Bieber is hanging out with his friend and pastor Carl Lentz over the Thanksgiving break. The Biebs posted a photo of him making a snowman with one of Lentz’s young daughters. His fans think it’s sweet.

Lentz, the 36-year-old hipster who preaches at Hillsong NYC (a spin-off of the Australian Evangelical megachurch Hillsong), met Bieber in 2008 when Bieber was just 14. “I have a special role in Justin’s life, spiritually,” Lentz told the New York Postrecently. Lentz is not your stereotypical pastor. He favors mohawks, tattoos, rap and skinny jeans. Hillsong has a troubled history including the fact that its founder confessed to molesting a 7-year-old (he was never prosecuted). The megachurch is considered by some to be a cult.

Source: Is Justin Bieber A Member of The Religious Cult Hillsong?, 2Paragraphs, http://2paragraphs.com/2014/11/is-justin-bieber-a-member-of-the-religious-cult-hillsong/, 28/11/2014. (Accessed 29/11/2014.)

RELATED ARTICLES

Denton Interviews Levins On Hillsong: “I was detoxed from toxic Christianity”

“I was a Christless, creedless, and clueless Christian in Hillsong”: A testimony of God’s grace.

Brian Houston calls Christian pastors “intellectual pride-filled Pharisees” & “evil people”

Faith fights, snake bites and a Hillsonger’s insights

Hillsong scandal: Dupe not lest ye be duped…

You Need More Money

Hillsong scandal makes a mockery of Christianity in court

This article is covering two news stories reporting a Hillsong scandal last decade. This scandal is not a parody. This Hillsong scandal and the following court proceedings actually occurred.

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Brian Houston writes in his book “You Need More Money” how to become a “money magnet”:

GET COMFORTABLE AROUND MONEY

It is time to relax and become comfortable around money. You need to stretch yourself and position yourself right out of your comfort zone.

For example, it may involve a little exercise like putting on your best clothes and ordering coffee in a fancy restaurant or hotel lobby. Even though you could make the coffee for half the price at home, the total experience may enlarge your thinking. You may even feel better about yourself and life. [Source]

What do you call a “big-time property developer” who is not a big-time property developer? A fraud. So what do you a “pastor/financial advisor” who is not?

What is ironic about the below scandal is that Brian Houston will not allow what he called a “predator” back into his earthly kingdom. But who turned him into this “predator”, Brian?

And one might ask just why Mr Houston’s own “predatory” behaviour is still tolerated? After all, what is the difference between Mr Orehek owning an upmarket motorcycle and an investment property, and Brian Houston owning the same?

Well, the obvious answer is – a court case. The only difference is that no one has gone after Brian and Bobbie Houston for promising “your best life now” concepts, along with their own Word of Faith outlook on tithing as a part of their “prosperity” doctrine. If you’re going to exercise their kind of ‘faith’ you might as well book it all up on Visa Card.

Didn’t executive pastor Joel A’bell get his fingers badly burnt over this scam, along with another “pastor’, to the tune of some $540,000? Where were the prophets, who could have pointed out the loss (pun intended)?

Where were the good shepherds of Hillsong, who should have warned against such an investment scheme wherein some people were expecting unrealistic returns? Did anyone check Mr Orehek’s credentials (degrees in business and investment management and his licenses with ASIC) first? Anyone?

Actually Brian Houston, your leadership, your members and Orehek fell for your lies and gimmicks. The joke is not only on you, it is you. Do you still believe that your book “You Need More Money” has even one scrap of credibility left in it now? And did Mr Orehek fall under the influence of that publication and become ensnared in the “gospel of greed”?

The Sydney Morning Herald reports,

Jailed for ripping off Hillsong Church

A failed Sydney property developer who convinced the Hillsong Church and its parishioners to invest millions of dollars in a property scam has been jailed for 18 months.

Robert John Orehek, 45, was a successful businessman and member of the Pentecostal Hillsong Church when fellow parishioners began to approach him in 2002.

Sentencing him in the District Court in Sydney today, Judge Bennett said Orehek had been driven by greed and an inability to say no when he accepted offers of investment money which well exceeded his management ability.

“Orehek felt that he was invincible and other people in the church thought they were invincible,” Judge Bennett said.

“With the power of God they were able to trust each other implicitly.”

Orehek collected $4.6 million from investors, claiming it was for use on property projects in Sydney’s north.

Instead he lived a “lavish” lifestyle, owning a red Ferrari, a Porsche, and a Ducati motorcycle and used $150,000 as a deposit on a $3.5 million luxury beachside apartment.

Judge Bennett jailed Orehek for 18 months, allowing a 15 per cent discount for his guilty pleas to three fraud charges and one breach of corporate regulations.

When his 18-month non-parole period expires, Orehek will be released on a $5,000 bond to be of good behaviour for two years and four months.

Judge Bennett said Hillsong’s interest in Orehek’s business was the “beginning of the road to disaster”.

“He had greater ambition for wealth and the lifestyle it might provide,” the judge said.

“Unfortunately these ambitions substantially outweighed his ability to manage his finances.

“Instead of moderating his lifestyle (Orehek) continued a relatively extravagant lifestyle.

“He chose to forge ahead, enticing investors to part with their money, leaving them out of pocket.”

Orehek was expelled from the church and banned from setting foot on any Hillsong premises after his conduct became known.

Twenty-seven people, including a quadriplegic, lost money in his schemes.

The judge found there were special circumstances in the case, saying it was Orehek’s first criminal offence and it had caused him suffer severe anxiety and depression.

Dressed in a black suit, Orehek sat looking sombre as he was sentenced.

He will be eligible for release in May 2009.

Source: Jailed for ripping off Hillsong Church, Sydney Morning Herald, http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/jailed-for-ripping-off-hillsong-church/2007/11/21/1195321837164.html, Published 21/11/2007 – 1:44PM. (Accessed 26/11/2014.)

The Australian reports,

‘Fraudster’ blames Hillsong

ROBERT Orehek admits he did the wrong thing but claims it was the materialistic ethos of the pentecostal Hillsong Church that made him do it.

The 45-year-old former property developer is the man known for “fleecing” $25million from investors — predominantly members of the Hillsong congregation — to fund a property empire that failed spectacularly in 2003.

Mr Orehek faced the NSW District Court yesterday on four counts of fraud — to which he has pleaded guilty — but his trial has placed the spotlight on the “greed is good” mantra of the Hillsong empire, which preaches that material wealth is a badge of God’s favour.

Mr Orehek strenuously denies the portrayals of him as an evil property developer intent on embezzling investor funds.

And he has an unlikely ally. Consumer advocate and real estate novelist Neil Jenman — who has built a reputation for fighting unscrupulous property spruikers — yesterday took to the witness box in defence of Mr Orehek.

Mr Orehek, Mr Jenman said, was a “dreadfully inept businessman” and “not particularly intelligent” but not someone who had set out to deceive investors.

In 1998, Mr Orehek was a small-time property developer, building single houses and “dual-occupancy” apartments. He had been worshiping at Hillsong twice a week for five years but had made “very few friends”.

That changed in 1998 when parishioners discovered Mr Orehek was a “property developer”. Suddenly he was contacted by “more than 100″ members of the congregation seeking to invest in his developments.

Among those church members to invest were Hillsong pastor David Crafts and executive pastor Joel A’Bell, who poured in a combined $540,000.

The churchgoers were chasing returns of 25 per cent on their investments that Mr Orehek said he could deliver because he intended making 100 per cent on all equity invested, and “didn’t want to be too greedy and keep all the profits myself”.

Mr Orehek’s workload of two small-scale developments suddenly grew to more than 10 major projects. The group unsurprisingly fell into liquidation in 2003.

But before the crash Mr Orehek, who believed he was “blessed to make money”, started spending big, moving into a multi-million-dollar apartment and buying a Porsche and a Harley Davidson motorcycle.

Following the collapse, a suicidal and “deeply remorseful” Mr Orehek was banned from worshipping at Hillsong.

On behalf of Hillsong management, elder Kevin Brett wrote to Mr Orehek in February 2004 threatening to call the police if hereturned.

“I was in shock. I thought it was a public place, I didn’t think they could stop you going to public places,” Mr Orehek said.

Hillsong refused repeated requests for an interview, but in a written statement the group’s founder Brian Houston — who had been a neighbour of Mr Orehek in the late 1990s — defended the move to ban the failed developer.

“We maintain our right to ask anyone displaying predatory behaviour to cease attending our church, and it was our leadership’s belief that there was a good reason to do so in this situation,” Mr Houston said.

In court yesterday judge James Bennett said Mr Orehek’s actions as his company crumbled reflected someone who believed “perhaps with a little of trust in God it will all work out at the end of the month”.

Mr Orehek has been charged with four counts of fraud over the use of investor funds for different property development projects to which they were prescribed. He is also accused of using $150,000 of investor funds to pay a deposit on an apartment in Sydney’s exclusive Balmoral.

He is expected to be sentenced on September 5.

Source: By Anthony Klan, The Australian, http://www.theaustralian.com.au/archive/news/fraudster-blames-hillsong/story-e6frg6no-111111426458225/08/2007 12:00AM. (Accessed 27/11/2014.)

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