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Apr 16, 2009

Modern day God Molesters

In the 1960's, when Charles Manson was being tried for the Sharron Tate murders, Americans sat in absolute dismay as the courtroom pictures and interviews were played on television. It was nothing short of terrifying. Everything from the shaven heads of theDarin Hufford Mansoneerie, witch-like female followers of Charles Manson, to the infamous pictures of the bloody crime scene, were permanently burned into the minds of that generation. We had seen nothing like this before. We hadn't even entertained thoughts this bad. It was as though evil had jumped hundreds of levels in just a day.

There was one scene in particular that I remember. Charles Manson sneered at the cameras with a weirdly knowing look in his eyes. He was both crazy and sane. He was incomprehensible and sometimes, oddly enough; strangely profound. He looked straight into the camera and said, "You haven't seen anything yet." He basically told reporters that he was just a small picture of what was about to be turned loose on America. One day, he promised, Americans would embrace a mindset of such selfishness that it would result in outright anarchy. I believe that day is today, except I believe it's an emotional anarchy. We have become a generation that pleases ourselves without the slightest regard for who may be injured along the way or what it might cost in the future.

In one of my my last posts, I addressed the rise of pedophiles in American society. There are now sex offenders living in every neighborhood in America. Hundreds and thousands of pedophiles are freely roaming our streets. It's become an epidemic.

I believe there is a molester-mindset that Americans have adopted without evenrecognizing it. Most of us would never harm a child, but we've been trained to think and reason through the same seductive and manipulative patterns as those who do. What is worse; I see the molester-mindset being fed to modern-day Christians. In fact, I think our religion has embraced the same selfish patterns of thinking as a molester. We have become blind to the hideousness of our teachings, and I've discovered that even the most hardened criminals of our day find our modern day Christian reasoning to be repulsive. This is perhaps the element of Christianity that became the catalyst that would eventually awaken my spirit from its long religious slumber, and drive it to demand change.

The very essence and thought processes of molestation follow the same pattern most of the time.

Molestation is physical penetration without relational penetration.

When a person physically penetrates another person, without the slightest desire for relationship or love, they are molesting that person. They are penetrating that person for their own gratification. They're in it for their own means and purposes, and the heart of theDarin Hufford other person matters not. A child molester often takes pride in his sick and ingenious methods of breaking through all the protective barriers surrounding a child, in order to get what he wants. Many of them have testified that the "hunt" is more exciting than the actual molestation experience itself. Watching, studying, waiting, planning, moving in and then, when the moment is right; striking. There is a certain gratification that they receive by beating the emotional system and getting what they want.

When I was a pastor in the Institutional church, I sat in amazement at some of the teachings that the people openly embraced. The things they would say - the terminology they used - the way they would openly talk about their spiritually manipulative tactics, the pride they took in their successes at maneuvering the levers and buttons in the unseen realm in order to get what they wanted. It astonished me to the point where I thought I was losing my mind. In those days, there were times I thought I was the only one alive who could see how awful and disgusting our religion has become. The foulness of casual comments, slogans and clichés bent on selfishness burned my soul like a hot iron.

Our crafty teachings on "how to get answers to prayer" and "how to receive a miracle from Darin HuffordGod" are many times nothing more than a study of seduction and manipulation. In so many ways, modern day Pentecostalism has become a secret meeting among spiritual perverts, who conspire against God to penetrate the throne in order to take for oneself and leave without the slightest desire for relationship. Thousands of Christians have been raised to act, think and behave with the same selfish and underhanded mind of a child molester. In many ways, we've been conditioned to become modern-day God-molesters.

We're taught to find ways to manipulate the spiritual world based on memorized truths we've gathered from scripture. Truths that were supposed to find their beauty and power through the fragrance of relationship have been hijacked and used as tools for self-gratification. We use His Name as if it were nothing more than a spiritual bobby-pin to pick a lock in the heavenly realm. We use faith as though it were our personal whore, there to serve us and give us what we want: a car, a raise, money, a promotion or a mysterious check in the mail at just the right time.

We've been brought up with the wisdom of slum-dog children without a family. Our formulas are nothing but a witches' brew of gathered ingredients from godfather pastors, traveling evangelist Gypsies and twisted pieces of scripture. We rattle off the prayer of Jabez, because someone told us it gets the best results. We quote the Bible in an effort to force the Hand of God to give us what we want. We gather in groups of two or three, hoping to get Him on a technicality. We use things like worship, communion, giving and even love, so we can penetrate the throne of God and get the results we want.

This generation reminds me of the woman with an issue of blood. Her very life is slowly draining out of her. She's tired, flushed, pale, emaciated. She is short of breath.DArin Hufford bloodIfsomething doesn't change soon, she'll expire and she knows it. Through the crowd, she spots the author of life Himself. The very one whose breath made Adam's heart begin to beat is standing only a few yards away.

What does SHE see?

She sees His magical garment. The same garment that the people would later cast lots for after they murdered Him. The same garment that brought healing to all the sick and demon-possessed people in Gennesaret. Surely she had heard by now how all the people of that place had begged Jesus to just touch the edge of His cloak. News of this cloak must have made its way to this dying woman and now the man with the famous robe was in her town. She thinks to herself, "If only I touch his cloak, I will be healed." She uses all the faith she can muster and reaches out and touches........

What happens?

At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, "Who touched my clothes?"

Her faith literally sucked power from the Son of God and amazingly, Jesus Himself had no intimate knowledge of who took it from Him. She accessed the power of God with faith, but power is all she got. She got the healing! It worked! She used faith and it worked!

But in the end, she left that place no closer to the Heart of God than she was the day before.

Even Jesus Himself did not take credit for her healing. He said, "Your faith has healed you." He didn't go on to ask her to follow Him. He didn't come to her house for dinner. He just turned and went about His business. Jesus knew that she got what she came for. She did not come to Jesus for Jesus; she came for a healing. 

Under the circumstances I think it's perfectly understandable why this particular woman would have her eyes on nothing but a healing. It's hard to fault her for that. I think she had unique circumstances that called for it. Today however, we take that story and through it, we have developed a generation of people who seek the power of God every day of their lives without the slightest desire for intimacy with Him. We've been taught to thinkand behave in our everyday lives like this particular woman did in dire circumstances and the result is that we've become a selfish and perverted generation. We've made Christianity about penetrating the throne of God for power's sake and not for relationship's sake. 

This was the same temptation that kept Moses out of the Promised Land. He was more comfortable beating the rock like he did in the olden days, than talking to it. Even Gideon made a golden Ephod at the end of his ministry that the people "whored" themselves after. They worshiped the way in which to determine God's will over God Himself. They were whores because they didn't want relationship; they wanted access to power. Even Elijah was bewildered at the end of his ministry when God passed by the cave he was hiding in. There was fire and wind and power, enough power to actually split rocks, but God was not in those powerful things. He was in the small voice of relationship.

From the fall of Adam and Eve to today, man is fixated upon the power and not the person of God.  

Physical penetration, without relational penetration.

For the last 20 years, I've watched Christians "Name it and claim it." I've watched them stand on Scripture and get others to agree with them in prayer for the thing they want. I've seen people give their entire paycheck in the offering or recite a prayer someone sent them over email, all in an effort to penetrate the throne of God and access His miracle power. Then one day it works! They got the blessing. They were healed. The check came in the mail. They got the job or the raise they were praying for.

But they are no closer to the Heart of God than they were the day before.

They merely learned how to manipulate things in the spiritual realm to their advantage. They learned certain spiritual principles that are true for every man, and maneuvered them for their personal benefit. They had no intention of developing a deeper intimacy with God's heart. Their only aim was the thing they wanted.

Sadly, these people end up becoming our spiritual leaders because our religion judges a DArin Hufford cliffperson's spirituality by the results they get. Whether or not they know the heart of God is insignificant. They are lifted up and considered wise and powerful because they found a loophole in heaven and they were able to suck the power from God for personal use. Make no mistake about it, though. A person's ability to tap into the power of God does not make them a friend of God. It only makes them a God-molester.

This is the spirit of the verse where Jesus is saying that in the end there will be people who performed great miracles in His Name, but He will tell them, "Depart from me, I never knew you." He is literally saying, "You molested me and violated me for a time, but that time is finished. I won't let you take from me anymore because you do not know me, nor were you ever interested in knowing me"

Know this: The heart of God is just as grieved when His power is extracted from Him by someone who has no interest in His heart, as a little child's heart is grieved when a wicked child molester violates him or her for their own gratification. While He may not be as helpless as a child in the matter, His heart feels the full weight of the violation like only a child's heart can.

There are two kinds of people in this world: People who seek the power of God and people who seek the person of God. The Free Believer movement is a mass exodus from the mentality that seeks power. We are people who desire intimacy with the Heart of God. If we were to find out today that God will never heal us, never do a miracle on our behalf and never supply us with supernatural power for our daily lives; we would still seek Him, because He is Who we want. It's the very Heart of Love that we are intrigued with. We are men and women after the Heart of God.

We do not put our faith in the power of God. We put it in the person.

 

Darin Hufford


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Comments

  1. Gravatar
    Silas

    Excellent Post! A remarkable analogy Darin.

  2. Gravatar
    bob c

    Darin, I think Jesus was busy doing what he saw His Father doing: going to restore a man's servant. On the way Father was drawing the woman to His Son. Perhaps the exchange between them once she was healed, sowed a seed of relationship in her heart; part of Father's plan. Her motive was largely selfish: she was dieing. The faith Jesus commended had to be more than preditory.

    Agreed that many go the God coldly, superstitiously in ignorance. But the evil effect on a child from a molester can't be compared to the effect of a sinner's loveless power grab from "God. Father is not undone. Saddened, yes because He loves that child who is killing himself spiritually. The greater crime is done by religious leaders who play on people's needs to put cash in their own pockets.

  3. Gravatar
    Dana

    That was really good, right before I left my IC, the catch phrase in the 'church' was, "Jesus Power Super Power" (JPSP), I still see it in people's status updates on my Facebook account, you nailed it, puts a new meaning to the phrase "Being Power Hungry" and they disguise their lust for power by camouflaging it with the name of Jesus.

  4. Gravatar
    Bob Greaves

    Well said. Thanks.

  5. Gravatar
    Jean-Paul Holcomb

    Thank you Darin for the strong reminder that this is all about relationship with God.

    Rabbi Daniel Lapin talks of a teacher that enjoyed teaching on Love in this way. Around Thanksgiving he would ask each student if they liked turkey. Inevitably one unwitting student would exclaim, "I Love Turkey!" To which the Rabbi would reply ,"no you do not. If you loved turkey you would give to the turkey. To eat it for Thanksgiving dinner is to only take from it."
    This simple example is helping to transform how I interact with those I love.

  6. Gravatar
    Tracy Simmons

    Darin, this post is so true, so powerful, and so right on. Thanks for your continued boldness.

  7. Gravatar
    Jeff

    Excellent article, I'm reading a book that is dealing with relationship, worship, secret place. The story he uses is when Paul and Silas are in prison, beaten & tortured they begin to worship not to get an answer to "WHY GOD", not to be freed, but just true worship. How do we know, because when the chains fell off and the cell doors opened, they didn't leave, because they were so in that "SECRET PLACE" in the middle of their turmoil, they had no desire to leave. That's what a relationship does..."for I know whom I have believed in and am persuaded that He is able..." God help me to get to that "PLACE"

  8. Gravatar
    gettingbetter

    I have wondered more than once what it would be like to begin, and live, a relationship with the Lord in a third world country. Their values are so different than ours. Perhaps that's why we hear of how on fire for him they really are. And why no amount of being fussed at from the pulpit gets the same results in America. As a culture, we're concerned primarily with our own comfort and prosperity. I've longed to know what walking with Father is like, without all that mentality in the way. It's so widespread. I echo Jeff... God get me to that PLACE...

  9. Gravatar
    Lori

    Thanks Darin. I believe you've hit the nail on the head. We truly need to seek God to have an intimate relationship with HIM and not just seek his power. As humans we always seem to just do what is self-satisfying and do what needs to be done to get US ahead. If only we could all start asking God what HE wants us to do, or how he can use US instead of US using Him - regardless of how uncomfortable it may be. Wow, how much better our world would be.

  10. Gravatar
    david backus

    WOW, tell us how you REALLY feel. don't hold back! LOL! Anyway for quite some time I have drawn some striking parallels between rapists, pedophiles and the religion I grew up in. The similarities are disturbing.

  11. Gravatar
    Nancy in Corpus Christi

    Hey Darin,

    Based on David’s behavior in Scripture I used to wonder why he was called a man after God’s own heart. Now I get it. In spite of his behavior, God’s ability to make himself real to David in his heart [spirit] wasn’t diminished. He was a love-won child of God…after intimacy [realness] with God’s own Heart. No religion, including Christianity, has any appeal once the human spirit [heart] begins to see and experience the real God—and living loved! Let the adventure of getting to know Him in a way I never learned in Christianity—continue! Yippee.

    Thanks for being so real.

  12. Gravatar
    Darin Hufford

    Well spoken Nancy.

  13. Gravatar
    Dana

    Just wanted to add, with all due respect, until a man has to deal with the issue of blood, like a woman has to every freaking month :) he will never understand what that poor woman had to go through for 12years, 365 days a year. (I won't get graphic.)It stated in the bible that she thought to herself "If I can only just touch the hem of his garment, I will be healed." Jesus responds, "Daughter, your faith has healed you." He calls her daughter, that says to me, she was one of his." Loved the article, thought it was excellent for most part, but got to disagree with you regarding the heart of the woman.

  14. Gravatar
    Darin Hufford

    His love for the woman is not, and WAS NEVER in question. The fact that she didn't know him or his heart is shown in her reaction to getting caught. She fell trembling before him scared to death. She did need a healing, I won't argue with that. She didn't however, come for relationship. It was her faith that extracted the power from Him. It wasn't a personal touch from Jesus that came in the midst of relationship. (on a side note) And I say this tongue and cheek - Men DO have to deal with the issue of blood when that time comes. This woman's husband wasn't mentioned in this passage because he hung himself eleven years prior to this.

  15. Gravatar
    Shannon Brown

    You have me laughing very hard with that last comment!!! :)

  16. Gravatar
    Brian

    I think this post has wrecked me. Hmmmmm, yep. I'm tweaked.

  17. Gravatar
    Darin Hufford

    Shannon - Yea Kim and Aimee thought that was pretty funny. My wife reminded me that I live in a house with 5 women and in about 5 years from now I'll be chasing after the famous garment begging for a healing.

  18. Gravatar
    Norah

    I agree with Bob C and I think that by overworking the point you lost the truth. Norah

  19. Gravatar
    Shannon Brown

    Oh, she's so right!! Hold on tight...you are about to start riding a giant never-ending mood swing. What an adventure! I don't know how you men do it.

  20. Gravatar
    Deb

    Norah, when I look at all the other comments here where people got the truth of this article I find myself shocked that you feel the truth was lost. Bob C's comment (as far as I'm concerned) didn't have much to do with the article. He added his assumptions ("Jesus commended her faith") that were not even in the text. I feel bad for Darin when I read comments like this. He comes out and sings a song, and everyone feels it's their job to hold up score cards on what shirt he was wearing when he sang. The truth of this post is that many Christians today try to penetrate the throne of God for it's power and not because they want to know Him. I don't see how that truth was lost!!!

  21. Gravatar
    David Boss

    The truth wasn't lost for me brother! I see this stuff in Christian thinking every day. Great job!!

  22. Gravatar
    Dana

    That was pretty funny. :P

  23. Gravatar
    vincent

    mmm, it's interesting the woman fell on her face in fear of what jesus might do to her after she extracted power from him ... why do people keep falling in fear before a "loving father"?

  24. Gravatar
    debsfree

    Good one Darin. Once again I see no padded remarks or plugged up religiousity here :)

  25. Gravatar
    Joy

    In a large church people came up to the alter to receive healing and their other wants. I remember looking around and recognizing a real spirit of self lust and gratification for their own desires. Like they were almost in an animalistic drive to "get what they desired from God". It was a bit sickening. It also reminds me of a time when a close friend was "praying for a good house". They were expecting something grand and perfect from God. They ritually prayed and manipulated with their faith. God doesn't necessarily grant wishes like a genie. Would if he wants you to go into a less grand home in a troubled neighborhood so you can be a witness? Instead of the grand home you are STAMPING your faith upon God is more concerned about the home in your spirit where you truly find happiness.

  26. Gravatar
    Skip

    Great insight brother.

  27. Gravatar
    jenny

    Again, wow! That story is used to beat people over the head for not having enough faith. That is such a different way of looking at it.

  28. Gravatar
    scott

    for sure not the way the story is typically taught. interesting perspective. the truth is very true though, we are in it for ourselves, forgetting that God has already done more for us than we deserve, and he did it gladly. He gave us his Son.

  29. Gravatar
    Charlotte Fairchild

    I have been the woman with the issue of blood. This woman is not named

  30. Gravatar
    Charlotte Fairchild

    She was not named, and the book was written by men. 95% of sexual molestation is perpetrated by males. Yet you give an example of a woman who is unnamed and unimportant to the writer. For all you know she gave money and she stayed at the cross when men did not. Jesus wanted to know her. Details were given or we wouldn't know she had an issue of blood. Jesus told many people their faith had healed them, and their response was sometimes extravagant, sometimes there was no thanks. If there was no thanks, we heard about it. (healed of leprosy, one thanked and the others did not.)

  31. Gravatar
    Tessie

    I do understand what's being said - it's about seeking Him not what He offers, and I agree.
    But it does come out pretty harsh. I've seen people go up for prayer for their needs, who really don't know God well, or at all, but I still feel compassion for them, and I believe God does too. He has broad shoulders and is able to take it. And often they have come into relationship with Him down the track, sometimes years later. And it's their own loss if they don't pursue Him more for intimacy.
    Plus let's face it - many people are scared of the intimacy because they have a wrong view of God anyway!
    We probably have all done similar things and been selfish at times, and we have a forgiving God, who knows our hearts and is able to change them. And often does.

    I guess Darin you are talking about people who blatantly use "power" to get what they want, am I right?

  32. Gravatar
    Amanda Cherie

    I love your reference to the woman who received healing from her faith by touching Jesus's garment. And even more, your compassion and understanding in the following statement, "Under the circumstances I think it's perfectly understandable why this particular woman would have her eyes on nothing but a healing." I think that so many people are in need of that kind of healing nowadays that they cannot handle focusing on anything more than a solution to their illness. Moreover, poor health and then death will get each of us at some point in each of our lives. When we recognize & accept that, maybe we can realize that the temporary salvation of our flesh is not as important as the eternal salvation of our spirit. That kind of mindset has really helped me in dealing with my Chronic Myofascial Pain Syndrome, back pain, and injury arthritis. The pain becomes inconsequential when I remember that it is only temporary & that we will all be pain free in Heaven. Thank you Jesus!!!

  33. Gravatar
    Darin Hufford

    This article isn't about stuff we do every now and then. It's about deliberate teachings that are created for the purpose of forming this mentality in the minds of entire congregations. Yes, we all do stuff like this and though it's selfish and wrong when we do it, God is loving and forgiving. I'm talking about a taught way of thinking here. There are entire denominations that are teaching people "How to get answers to prayer" and "How to access the power of God." that's what I'm confronting.

  34. Gravatar
    Tessie

    Phew Darin! Thanks for clarifying. Not being in the US I probably misunderstand because I've not come across it to that extent.

  35. Gravatar
    Jennifer Simpson

    Wow, God-molesters.. this article makes me think of the old time prophets..blunt but true. And most people will not want to hear this because it exposes their illusions of godliness for what they are.
    You know, I have been there, done that and I still find myself trying to manipulate God at times, like you said we all do, I am okay with you going after along with the institutional mentality, because I still want the parts of me that are sick exposed to the light. That means God has the opportunity to have mercy on me and heal me..:o)

  36. Gravatar
    Chris

    One important error in this post, demonstrating a shallow knowledge of the context of the "woman with the issue of blood".
    She was NOT treating Jesus' cloak as a fetish or idol. The border of the cloak/mantle was symbolical of the authority of the person who wore it... hence Jesus criticism elsewhere of the Pharisees "making broad the boarders of their cloaks" - ie, they were giving themselves greater authority than they really possessed. Hence the woman was appealing physically to the divine authority that she intuited that Jesus really had - a perfect expression of faith.

  37. Gravatar
    Darin Hufford

    Chris - is that really the "important error" that you saw in this post? Seriously??? After this entire article, did you honestly come away feeling like you needed to school me concerning how the people of that time viewed the edges of cloaks??? Can you not see that your educated understanding of the cloak not only DOESN'T change the point and purpose of this article, but it actually highlights it a thousand times over? The woman's faith was in the divine authority and the power that Jesus had, rather than in the person of Christ. The bottom line is that after her healing, she left that place no closer to the Heart of God than she was the day before. It may have been a perfect expression of faith Christ, but sadly it didn't get her any closer to Him. Her heart was focused on his "divine authority" rather than on his heart. She got her healing but she missed the heart of relationship.

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