Palin’s Strange New Christianity – What The Media Missed

An excerpt from an interesting article:

The New Christianity: What the Mainstream Media Has Missed
By Bill Berkowitz
April 2, 2009

In May 2008, Bruce Wilson, co-founder of the blog Talk2Action, made a short video featuring a recording of Pastor John Hagee preaching about how God had sent Hitler to hunt the Jews and force them to Israel. The video went viral and McCain was forced to disassociate himself and repudiate Hagee’s endorsement. Hagee slunk off the national stage.

Flash forward to September of last year. McCain (now the GOP’s presidential candidate) chooses a relatively obscure political figure, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, as his running mate. When a CNN reporter asked a GOP campaign spokesperson about Palin’s religious beliefs, she would only say that “the Republican vice presidential candidate has ‘deep religious convictions.’”

Wilson began looking into Palin’s religious background. What he found was far more interesting than the fairly run-of-the-mill Christian Zionism of someone like Hagee.

Bruce, can you explain what you found when you started looking into Sarah Palin’s religious background and affiliations?

Bruce Wilson: Sarah Palin is, broadly speaking, in the emerging postdenominational movement, which by 2000 encompassed 385 million Christians and is vastly different from the faith as it has been practiced in recent centuries. We identified Palin as in a majority tendency of postdenominationalism known as the neocharismatic movement, or the “Third Wave.”

Evangelical missionary reference work World Christian Trends calls the Third Wave “a new and disturbingly different” kind of Christianity whose members “can accurately be called radical Christians with some pentecostal /charismatic parallels” and which has, as one of the distinctive characteristics of Third Wave Christian ministry, a heavy emphasis on healing miracles including raising the dead—an emphasis promoted from the pulpit in sermons at Palin’s most central church, the Wasilla Assembly of God.

We also found extensive evidence that Palin is in a religious movement founded in 2001 that has coalesced out of Third Wave Christianity; the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR).

The NAR is bent on radically reinventing Christianity, and is fast becoming the vanguard of the global Christian Right. Its leaders have openly declared that their aim of achieving worldwide biblical government and a utopian age in which evil—as an ontological category—has been banished by purging demon spirits and unbelievers from the earth.

Palin is directly, personally linked to not one but two major NAR leaders, Windwalkers Ministry International founder Mary Glazier and Thomas Muthee—who have both publicly described battling alleged witches with prayer-warfare. Through Glazier, Palin appears to be under the authority of the man who founded the NAR and has announced the advent of a second Reformation, C. Peter Wagner.

Charismatic manifestations as extreme as raising the dead aren’t what is problematic about Palin’s religious tendencies; Third Wave and NAR theology is militantly anti-pluralistic and anti-democratic, the quintessence of Christian religious supremacy.

Read the full article here:

Palin’s Strange New Christianity – What The Media Missed

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