Mysticism in the Church: 10 Things to Watch For

man holding book and pondering

I’ve talked with so many people who report that when they heard or read something that was supposed to be Christian, they got what I call “that gritty feeling”—a sense that it wasn’t quite right, theologically, but they couldn’t pin down the problem. If that’s ever happened to you, you’ll find these downloads useful: Mysticism in the Church: 10 Things…

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Mysticism and Spiritual Formation

Mysticism and spiritual formation. I’ve deeply researched these for 10 years. We each need to grasp the whats and whys of the mysticism that’s already in so many of our churches. Check out Dr. Gary Gilley’s excellent 5-part article on mysticism, starting with Part 1. Spiritual formation is a Trojan horse in which mysticism is riding into the Bible colleges…

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Christianity Has No Room for Mysticism

In February 11, 2013, the Christian Standard magazine featured an article by J. K. Jones titled “The Spirit in Spiritual Formation.” The article contained a gentle criticism that Christians need more mysticism. Many things about God are mysterious, beyond our understanding. But we shouldn’t confuse mysterious with mysticism. The following text is what I wrote in response to that article.…

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Be Still/Still, Small Voice

These days, when a writer focuses on Psalm 46:10 and 1 Kings 19:12, heads up: a number of such writers are promoting mantra meditation (“contemplation”). Note that Psalm 46:10 does not mean, “There, there. Lull yourself into an altered state where you can really know God.” (And—if you keep this up—you’ll ultimately conclude that you ARE God.) The chapter’s context…

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Understanding Mysticism

Some people confuse mysticism with mysterious. They’re not the same. Many things are mysterious. But mysticism is an “ism”—based on the idea that we can’t connect with God via our normal senses. Which means, normal Bible reading and prayer are inferior spiritual practices, and so we need to discover spiritual secrets to “go beyond” and “break through” to God. Gary…

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