Patricia King and Extreme Prophetic
I just listened to a video that Patricia King made available on her website about the current controversy surrounding her ministry and teachings. I wanted to comment on some of the things going on in the body of Christ in general because I think everyone needs to take a deep breath, take a step back and think about some things.
The Witch Hunt for Doctrinal Purity
I have some real problems with the doctrine police out there. Everyone seems to agree on the need for doctrinal purity. My question is, Who’s Doctrine?
If you are Pentecostal, you can hold to the foundational truths of the movement and be butchered by you Southern Baptist brethren for daring to believe that there is such a thing as a baptism in the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking in tongues. That is Pentecostal doctrine, but Southern Baptist doctrine officially holds that all such manifestations and gifts ceased with the death of the last apostle or the close of the New Testament period, depending on which interpretation you use.
If you are of the group that believes that the five-fold ministry is the timeless model for the church and that all 5 offices still exist today, EVERYBODY has you on their hit list. It’s like the one thing the Pentecostals, the cessationists and the liberals all seem to be able to agree on – this group is wrong.
The one thing every group needs to remember is whatever group you belong to, that group was at one time persecuted by other Christians as being heretics. Read your history.
There are some things that are absolute and non-negotiable, but the witch hunts are very rarely about those. They are about peripheral issues, things that truly are not essential for salvation.
Doctrine Over Character
This one really drives me nuts. I think my favorite example of this is the KJV only guys. There is a group running around who truly believe that the King James Version of the Bible is the only bible you can use. Like Jesus spoke King James English or something. They will beat you hammer and tong on this issue. Some will even declare you are not saved if you read any other version.
There’s only one thing wrong with this picture. The guy that founded the group has been married four times. Apparently, as long as you read the correct version, you don’t have to obey it.
Another case that really got to me was the uproar over the Kansas City Prophets back in the late ‘80’s and early ‘90’s. A Kansas City pastor circulated an enormous document and tapes regarding all the doctrinal errors of Mike Bickle, Paul Cain, Bob Jones, etc. John Wimber came in and investigated the allegations. There was a meeting between this pastor, John Wimber, Mike Bickle and Paul Cain. Mike publicly apologized for errors that in fact were made. They were earth-shattering errors such as in relating the fulfillment of a prophetic word, he got the dates wrong on the drought. The drought happened just as the prophetic word said it would, but Mike reported the wrong dates in a meeting.
Oh, there’s a deception that will rock the foundations of the church, don’t you think?
Shortly after this meeting happened (like a few weeks), the pastor who started this witch hunt faxed his resignation to his church from Atlanta, where he was living with his secretary. I don’t think any man wakes up one day and says, “Gee, I think I’ll destroy my marriage, my ministry and my future today. Wonder if my secretary will run away with me?” I think it highly probably he was involved with her while meeting with these guys to hammer on them about their doctrinal errors because the time frame between the meeting and his resignation was so short.
Guess he didn’t consider adultery a doctrinal error.
To say I am not impressed with the modern heresy hunters is an understatement.
I have some personal experience with this ministry. Earlier this year I had the opportunity to serve for a few weeks at their headquarters in Maricopa, Arizona. I want to make clear that I am not currently associated with this ministry in any way, other than as an internet subscriber.
I went out to provide some assistance in their administrative area. As such, I was around the members of the team on a daily basis. Patricia was in and out during this time.
What I saw there was a group of people who passionately love Jesus. Every day the administrative staff starts with prayer. They pray for what is going on in their areas and they pray for each other. When there are any difficulties (equipment breaks, etc.), the first thing they do is pray and ask the Lord for His wisdom in finding the solution. I saw this on a daily basis. They also prayed every day for the people who had registered for the current conference.
One of my job duties was to open the mail. I saw the requests that came in from the ministry’s partners. Patricia values her partners. I know for a fact that every request that comes in is prayed over. I heard more than one conversation about what can be done to show appreciation to the partners. As a matter of fact, at the Growing in the Supernatural Conference that was held in May, Patricia and whatever speaker she had in tow would go out where people were waiting in line for the doors to open in the morning and just pray for people.
Ron Cocking, Patricia’s husband, was a pure joy to meet. He worked every day mailing out resources that were requested and in whatever needed to be done. I have never met anyone who can pack a trailer the way Ron can. I am in awe. When it came to practical servant ministry, Ron is the absolute best.
Character and Fruit
I could go on and on about what I saw, but the bottom line is that I saw consistently godly character in everyone that I dealt with at Extreme Prophetic. It did not matter if we were loading out a trailer at 2 am following a conference or at 8:00 am in a prayer meeting, the members of that team were the same. They were kind, gracious and generous.
You can posture and fake a lot of things. You can look good in front of a crowd or in front of a camera, but you can’t fake out the people who work for you. They know where the money goes. They know what your real attitudes toward people are. Everyone that I met at Extreme Prophetic held Patricia and Ron in the highest respect, and Patricia and Ron treated the staff with respect and love.
My pastor is always hammering on me about knowing people and ministries by the fruit they bear. What’s the fruit? He always asks me that when I talk to him and ask his opinion. The fruit that was produced in my life was this: I fell more deeply in love with Jesus. In a period of a few weeks, the Lord transformed me. I learned to hear his voice more clearly. I lost a lot of fear and realized that the Holy Spirit was more able to guide me and teach me than satan is to lie to me and deceive me. I regained my hope and the courage to pursue the call of God that is on my life. I regained my love of holiness and the determination not to tolerate anything in my life that hindered my intimacy with Jesus. I would have to say that that’s pretty good fruit.
So from this little worm’s point of view, what I saw was a walking, breathing, living representation of the life of Jesus in a group of people who are determined to make that reality known to whoever will hold still long enough. I can’t speak to doctrinal purity and the like. Who am I to make that call? What I can say is that I have dealt with enough fakes and flakes in ministry to know when I am looking at the real deal.
Someone once said that if you have a right heart and wrong doctrine, God will fix your doctrine, but if you have right doctrine and a wrong heart, He can’t do anything for you. Patricia and her team are actively pursing the heart of Jesus and I don’t think you can have more of a right heart than that. I’m not worried about their doctrine. They love the Lord enough that if He has a problem with anything they are doing, they will change it. And He is quite capable of making His displeasure known.