Would You Believe… The Occult Coming To Nazarene Theological Seminary?

Nazarene Theological Seminary promotes occultism and Roman Catholic mysticism. I’ll say it again. Nazarene Theological Seminary promotes occultism and Roman Catholic mysticism.  At least that’s what it seems to me.  Maybe I’m wrong, but man, what can one say when it’s not even done secretly now?  Let me explain.

I nearly went apoplectic last night as I was wandering though the Nazarene Theological Seminary’s website and the various course offerings!  Now the pieces of the puzzle continue to be put together, and there is less doubt in my mind- if any- about where our Nazarene Theological Seminary is heading.  And there are many more course examples to give, including the many mystical books that are part of the required or suggested readings for the various pastoral degree programs.  To me, this is truly sad and so pathetic to see unfolding.

When I recently did several posts about Tony Campolo and his appearance at Eastern Nazarene College (False Prophet Tony Campolo Promotes Doctrines of Demons), I talked about his blatant promotion of contemplative prayer practices, and his reference to what the Celtics called that “thin place”, meaning the occultic Celtic spirituality that tries to equate it with true genuine Christian worship (Tony Campolo’s Thin Places: Occultic Christianity).  I said to myself, how can this man and his contemplative heresies be tolerated so much by a denomination that talks and preaches holiness?  Well, I think I know now.  Because it is tolerated and taught by our very own seminary that prepares the future pastors of a holiness denomination!

So, here is a course being offered for next spring by Professor Doug Hardy.  It’s called Celtic Spirituality,and this link will take you where you can download the entire syllabus (under the category The Ministry of the Christian Church-Spiritual Formation),  and view other course offerings that smack of contemplative spirituality.

Here is the course description:

Course Description, Narrative, & Rationale
The renewal of interest in and even fascination with all things Celtic in recent decades begs the question: What do so many find compelling about these peoples and their culture? Embedded within the more well-known expressions of Celtic art, music, dance, and story are references to lesser-known spiritual traditions, both pre- Christian and Christian. What characterizes Celtic spirituality and what is its relevance for Christian spirituality today? In this course, these and other questions will be explored from the perspective of the Christian Celtic tradition.

Knowing Doug Hardy’s background and what he is involved in, and what he recommends for good reading over at Windsor Hills Camp in New Hampshire, is enough to know that this is a bad thing- not a good thing.  This is not a question of studying false ideologies to get to know about them and refute them.  No, my friends, this is indoctrination of perhaps your future pastor with occultic practices.  This would be laughable, if not for the fact that souls are at stake here, and I stand by my statement from the Campolo article that this is nothing but doctrines of demons being taught.

To further prove that point that this is not a simple study of a false ideology, here are some of the goals of the course for the students:

Before even starting the course, students are required to: Incorporate into your prayer practice at least two offices (morning, midday, night) from the Fitzgerald Celtic Prayer Book, daily for a minimum of 5 of the 6 pre-module weeks.

The course will supposedly provide opportunities for the following:

1.    Practice prayer and meditation using Celtic Christian resources.
2.    Learn the basic history of Celtic peoples, places, and especially the saints.
3.    Articulate a Celtic-informed theology of creation, asceticism, and/or mission.
4.    Contextualize Celtic perspectives and practices into current life and ministry.

The required texts are:

Balzer, Tracy. Thin Places: An Evangelical Journey into Celtic Christianity.
Davies, Oliver (Trans. & Intro). Celtic Spirituality (Classics of Western Spirituality).
de Waal, Esther. Every Earthly Blessing: Rediscovering the Celtic Tradition.
Fitzgerald, William John. A Contemporary Celtic Prayer Book.
Newell, J. Philip. Listening for the Heartbeat of God: A Celtic Spirituality.
Newell, J. Philip. Christ of the Celts: The Healing of Creation.

After Classes End, here are some requirements:

Read Balzer’s Thin Places and incorporate into your prayer practice the Celtic Blessing / Meditation / Reflection Questions

Write a Theology Paper (minimum 10 pages) articulating your Celtic-informed understanding of a specific topic in one or more of the following areas: theology of creation; theology of asceticism; theology or mission.

There is no doubt left in my mind that at the very least, the leadership at Nazarene Theological Seminary have no problem with doctrines of demons being taught to future pastors.  I will not insult their intelligence and assume they don’t know what’s going on.  I have already given you some serious connection problems that Professor Dean Blevins has with promoting contemplative spirituality via his support and involvement with YouthFront and Barefoot Ministries.  And Doug Hardy’s involvement with mystical practices (Mystics Who Are Being Promoted To Nazarenes) including his work with Spiritual Directors International, leads me to conclude that at the very least, NTS is negligently allowing false doctrines to be promoted and taught there.

This makes me sad to see, but then it also makes me angry, when the thought comes to mind that for every semester that goes by, for every year that a new class comes in, the deception of our future pastors is continuing.  When will it be stopped, and who really cares about this?  Or have I gone mad, and should I just get with the program?  Brothers and sisters, what will it take to stop this madness?  If I reported next week that Santeria was being practiced at NTS, and chickens heads were being cut off as offerings to God, would that raise an eyebrow?  What will it take for as many Nazarenes as possible to call or write our seminary, and our general Superintendents to say, enough is enough?  For the love of our students, and the love of God, please stop this and speak out now.

May God help us.  Please, be a watchman on the wall, and sound the alarm.


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24 responses to “Would You Believe… The Occult Coming To Nazarene Theological Seminary?

  1. Manny, it’s almost time for “that” email I sent you. I need to review my mathmatics because the rate of the slide into apostasy is even greater than exponential, so I am wondering what would be the proper mathmatical term to use.

    “What do so many find compelling about these peoples and their culture?”

    Perhaps the same weakness that led to the fall of Adam and Eve, the same sin that begiled the Israelites, and the same modern day dissatisfaction with the truth of God’s Word, instead wanting an even “better” way. THE LIE continues.

  2. Manny, This appears to be the most blatant mischaracterization of truth yet to be taught by NTS to those who one day will stand before a congregation and pretend to teach the truth.

    I wonder if this is an elective or a required course? Second, how many students will actually protest to the school leadership or board-of-trustees about courses like this being taught? And finally how many will report back to their churches who pays the bills in support of NTS and let them know what is going on.

    Perhaps if more churches know what is going on, they would not support it. I know I won’t the next time we take up an offering for our Seminary in church.
    Lige

  3. Not sure, although I think its an elective.
    It’s under the category of The Ministry of the Christian Church – Spiritual Formation.

    Here are all the choices under that topic. The asceticism course should be interesting.

    SPF550 Christian Spiritual Practices: Prayer and Scripture
    SPF560 Christian Spiritual Practices: Sacraments and Asceticism
    SPF570 Christian Spiritual Practices: Connection and Service
    SPF650 Ministry of Spiritual Direction
    SPF790 Celtic Spirituality
    SPF790 Seminar in Spiritual Formation

  4. As a Nazarene Student Pastor let me just say that I no longer encourage any student to attend a Nazarene College.

    Sadly, this type of teaching falls in line with the CoTN “Big Tent” approach to theology. This is yet another example of the False Gospel that we are warned about in Scriptures. This type of teaching is only made possible by the CoTN rejection of the inerrancy of Scripture.

    While it would seem important to sound the alarm, it would seem that they would not listen. It is almost like casting your pearls before swine.

    Grace and Peace.

  5. If what you report is 100% completely accurate we should be concerned. The problem is, nothing I’ve ever read from you and your group is ever in context or completely accurate.

    Many more people are concerned too about our church but we cannot trust any source that consistently shows hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, and causes dissensions and factions.

    If those concerned would spend as much energy on Saving the lost and Discipling the Won, we could create a revival in the COTN that you seem to long so much for. When was the last time you actually led someone into the Kingdom of God? Is the great commission that Christ gave us really being done though your efforts?

    Wow, if only your heart and attitude had been pure all along, this information would be taken more seriously….as it needs to be. Perhaps God will actually raise up someone with pure intentions that can awaken our dear church. Having followed you now for nearly 2 years and having read nearly everything on your blog, please allow me to say… “It seems to me” (as you so often say) that you are doing more harm than good and I am praying that someone with your information but a good heart will rise up and speak.

  6. To Concerned Reformed Nazarene,
    I’m sure you will not comment again after my response, but let me address your comments and respond.

    You said: “nothing I’ve ever read from you and your group is ever in context or completely accurate.” Can you give examples please? Probably not, but this is typical. Nothing to back up what you accuse me of.

    First, why can’t you identify yourself with a real name? I don’t hide anything on my blog, people know who I am. Where are you from in Ohio, and what church are you from, or at least the District? I don’t hide who I am, because I am not ashamed of what I am doing. I am held accountable by God, not by people.

    Secondly, this is typical of people who cannot refute anything that I or other Nazarenes are saying, and so you proceed with this kind of hate mail. I attack ideas; you attack people personally.

    Third, I thought only Jesus Christ knows the heart. Yet you judge my heart by saying “if only your heart and attitude had been pure all along” as if you know it is not. That only God knows.

    So please allow me to say: when you have anything of substance to say, like refuting anything I have said here, please write back. Otherwise, you have simply attacked me personally, and not my ideas or beliefs.

    P.S. Can you tell me whether you are okay with Celtic spirituality? And on what basis if so?

  7. A Concerned Reformed Nazarene,

    I would love to read a blog that is “completely accurate”. Please supply the link.

  8. If anyone is about winning the lost and discipling the won, it is those who are concerned about the abandonment of Biblical truth and standards,.

    Conducting business by survey and popular teaching may bring numbers, but the result is to join the lost and lose the won as true believers seek faithful shepherds.

    I’m wholeheartedly with Manny on this; he gives supportive data. I have yet to see it answered in like manner.

    No, not all of the COTN has gone rogue, but it’s no thanks to the elements popping up and growing stronger and more abberant in the educational institutions. (Not just the Nazarene denomination BTW)

  9. I have responded to “A Concerned Reformed Nazarene’s” post, my response is in brackets.

    “If what you report is 100% completely accurate we should be concerned. The problem is, nothing I’ve ever read from you and your group is ever in context or completely accurate.”

    [to clear up this issue please use the link to view or download the course syllabus for Celtic Spirituality (http://www.gcmin.org/media/documents/celtic_spirituality.pdf) the course is as described on the blog, and not taken out of context. It would appear that either you are aware of these issues and desire to suppress them or that you choose not to believe the truth that is presented to you.]
    ——————-

    “Many more people are concerned too about our church but we cannot trust any source that consistently shows hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, and causes dissensions and factions.”

    [The Bible says in Ephesians 5:11 – “Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them.” If by exposing the deeds of darkness (heretical teachings) causes you to speak the statement above then you have spoken well, for the Bible says in Matthew 5:11 “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me.”]
    ——————-

    “If those concerned would spend as much energy on Saving the lost and Discipling the Won, we could create a revival in the COTN that you seem to long so much for. When was the last time you actually led someone into the Kingdom of God? Is the great commission that Christ gave us really being done though your efforts?”

    [When the lost are saved, the saved are discipled, and the discipled serve; it is because the Gospel of Christ is preached and taught – “For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, for it is the power of salvation to everyone that believes, first for the Jew then for the Greek. – Romans 1:16” Those that reject the full inerrancy of God’s Word and hold to heretical positions are preaching a false Gospel (Galations 1:6-10) and no one can be saved when a false Gospel is preached and no one can be discipled when a false Gospel is being taught.]
    ——————-

    “Wow, if only your heart and attitude had been pure all along, this information would be taken more seriously….as it needs to be. Perhaps God will actually raise up someone with pure intentions that can awaken our dear church. Having followed you now for nearly 2 years and having read nearly everything on your blog, please allow me to say… “It seems to me” (as you so often say) that you are doing more harm than good and I am praying that someone with your information but a good heart will rise up and speak.”

    [I find it troubling that you believe that you can judge the pureness of a person’s heart, according to the Bible we cannot even understand our won heart – “The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; who can understand it – Jeremiah 17:9” The only person that can judge the heart is the Lord God and his Word -“For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. – Hebrews 4:12

    It seems that you are attacking a person and not the message he is speaking. Typically, this is what people do when they do not want the truth to come out. If you truly want the truth to come out, identify yourself as I have done (By the way, I hold a district license on the New England District – home of ENC), as the author of the blog has done, and as so many others who have posted on this blog have done.

    Also, how can exposing the truth be doing more harm than good? The Bible says in John 17:17 that God’s Word is truth, and John 8:32 says the truth will make us free.]

    Grace and Peace

  10. Knowledge is power. How can pastors truly fight against something if they are completely ignorant of it? Learning ABOUT other cultures and religions is completely different from learning to FOLLOW them.

  11. Very true, knowledge is power. It is a shame that Dr. Hardy’s intention with this course is NOT to help students be aware of dangerous practices, but rather to INDOCTRINATE future pastors with occultic ideology and unbiblical practices.

  12. You do realize that several of our current Christian practices originated with the Celts, right? There’s a Lutheran church nearby with a symbol that I can only assume they take to mean the Trinity…however, the exact same symbol is used in Celtic mythology and references the Triple Goddess. Where do you think Christmas trees come from? Why do you think we celebrate Christmas on December 25th? If you are a Christian as it is recognized today, you are also “indoctrinated” with Celtic ideology.

  13. If this was a true “knowledge” based class it would be an elective under “Apologetics” not under “Spiritual Formation.” No one would have an issue with an apologetical course being taught on Celtic Spirituality, but to include this course in “Spiritual Formation” reveals the truth behind having this class.

    Grace and Peace

  14. Carleigh,
    Do you use a Christmas tree to worship God? I don’t. It is a symbol that reminds us of Christmas- that’s all. At least for me.
    So to equate Celtic occultism with Christmas trees is a stretch.
    If you would like to justify the Celtic occultic practices by what the word of God says, go right ahead.

  15. Carleigh,
    While there may be some truth in some elements of what you said (the symbol of the trinity) what you may be overlooking is that this class is in the Spiritual Formation section not apologetics or even church history. According to the syllabus the student is encouraged to use Celtic meditation and symbols to enhance his or her prayer life. Now I am almost certain that this sends up a red flag with you.

    Also, Satan does not gain a foothold in a seminary, denomination, and a generation except by slowly and continually introducing a small amount of falsehood into the truth. Once a person accepts this “new truth” making a jump to incorporate Celtic Spirituality in to your prayer life is easy.

    Grace and Peace,

  16. I must say that I feel so sorry for you and the fear that seems to envelop you. Fear seems to be a common denominator in so many churches and as you well know becomes a tool for controlling their adherents. One must be very careful in espousing fear because they put themselves in direct danger of denying the Holy Spirit. If we have the faith that our ministers and potential ministers are led by the Holy Spirit then we know that the Spirit is the gift of God that leads to all truth. To believe that potential believers in Christ are defenseless from the wiles of Satan amounts to a denial of the Spirit. I am praying for you and your restoration to spiritual wholeness.

  17. Dear MissouriElder,

    I’m sorry, but if that’s directed at me, I can assure you, there is no fear in me whatsoever, because I trust in God completely.

    Is there any specific falsehood from this article I wrote? Is there anything here I have attacked that is biblically sound? If so, please tell me if it is and why; otherwise, that is a failure of a fellow Christian to correct and reprove another brother- scripturally.

    If you cannot do that at all, then I will certainly pray for you, that you will open your eyes to the truth, and not be deceived by the falsehoods of satan.

    And how can non-believers protect themselves from the wiles of satan? They can’t! Only if they are born again, in which time the Holy Spirit indwells them and they then can be guided into the truth by the Spirit. That cannot happen if they are not children of God.

    One final thing- some ministers are led by the Holy Spirit, others now are being led by another spirit, another Jesus. We need to have discernment to correct and rebuke those who are in error.

  18. Thanks for your reply. Perhaps I have made a false assumption in assuming that anyone who submits themself for the study of ministry is a believer. As you so correctly state a non-believer has no protection from the wiles of Satan. My assumption is that divinity students are believers and, therefore, receive the protection and the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Personally I believe that temptation serves a purpose in the formation of a believer and especially a candidate for the ministry. It is all part of the necessary process of refinement and purification. It becomes the duty and obligation of the ordaining body to determine if a candidate is worthy of ordination. My entire point is that we must trust in the cleansing and guidance of the Holy Spirit and to place our trust in the providence and wisdom of God.

  19. I can agree with that point you made completely. One of the points that I wish to emphasize on this blog is that we MUST be watchmen on the wall – ALL of us- and warn the fellow believers when danger is coming in to the church. To do so would be negligence and very serious matter, according to the Jesus and the apostles.

    So therefore, what I am doing here, as well as many learned and ordained pastors, is scripturally supported and a necessary duty as a Christian. I could never fully trust without question anyone, ordained or otherwise. Some of our ordained ministers are nothing but wolves in sheep’s clothing, or else they are badly deceived.

  20. I am deeply offended by your article. It is filled with blatant lies and misunderstandings about the topic at hand. To further the message of Christ, one ought not to judge, but to love. This article is full of cast judgements on your part. The Christian faith is as diverse as humanity itself. In 1 Corinthians 12 we can read about the Body of Christ and how diverse it is. Who are the members of that body? All those who believe that Jesus Christ is their Lord and Savior. Members of the Baptist, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian, Nazarene, Greek Orthodox, Episcopal, and Catholic Church are included in that, among countless others. To narrow your view to only Nazarene theology and practices narrows your view of the Body of Christ. I currently attend one of the Nazarene Universities and I have received an amazing education and I have learned quite a bit about Nazarene theology and beliefs. I used to be a member of a Methodist church, so I am quite familiar and fond of Wesleyan tradition. I am now an active member of the Roman Catholic Church and I love Jesus Christ with all my heart, and I will live for Him all the days of my life. Before you refer to Catholicism as ‘the Occult,’ please do your research as I have done as a university student. Catholicism is indeed Christian whether you want to acknowledge that or not. We can also learn a great deal about Celtic Chrisitan Spirituality. It would help all of us to slow down and listen for God’s voice in this fast paced world that we are all now living in. Lastly, we can all learn from one another a great deal about life and about God. Thank you for your time and may God richly bless you.

  21. Thank you for your comments, Robert. I let it through because you are a first-timer.
    Please understand that I give folks a second chance to BIBLICALLY refute anything I write on this blog. After that, I usually ignore any further comments.

    Scripture says that the preaching of the Cross is an offense to many. The Bible also teaches that “wide is the way of destruction, and narrow is the way of life.” Sorry if it offends you, but the truth is the truth.

    First, you did not specify one blatant lie that I told here or even one misunderstanding. Just a general accusation. I don’t usually let comments through if someone even says this without supporting the accusation, but again, you are a first-timer here.

    I am sorry you are attending a Nazarene university at this time. I would not trust a single one of them today to send any of my sons, unless they repent of what they promote right now. And I am a life-long Nazarene.

    And my view is not primarily from a Nazarene perspective- it is from a biblical perspective, and that is why I have been sounding the alarm in my own denomination. I do not hold an undying allegiance to all that the Nazarene church teaches. It also makes mistakes, and it is making plenty right now.

    I have done my research, and compared these things with scripture. I have learned something from Celtic Spirituality- that it is not biblical. It must be rejected by all Christians.

    I listen for God’s voice primarily through His word. If I think I hear His voice in other ways, it still must line up with scripture, otherwise it is the voice of another spirit- not God’s.

    Thank you, and if you can refute anything here that has been written, I’ll be glad to repent of my mistake. But it cannot be from your opinion- but from the word of God.

    Manny

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