The second step in discerning whether or not the Jesus you’re hearing about is the same Jesus of the Bible is this:
Compare what you read that the “Jesus” in a particular book may say with what Jesus actually said in the Bible.
We would expect that the Jesus of the Mormons or the Jehovah’s Witnesses contradicts what the Jesus of the Bible says. It is blatant and in your face, it easier to deal with the deception, because it is so obvious. Unfortunately, there is a much more sinister and nasty violation of Jesus’ deity going on. The reason? The lies have been packaged in Christian terminology and for this reason, Christians are not noticing. We tend to take things at face value. For instance, if I buy a particular book at the Christian bookstore, I assume it’s good. There’s not any bad doctrine in it, is there? I mean, the bookstore wouldn’t carry a book like that, would they?
As much as it’s terrible to admit, bookstores are businesses. And if a book is a bestseller, they’ll probably carry it if it is written by a “Christian.” It will make them a lot of money. This is where we need to rely on the Holy Spirit for wisdom and discernment.
If you have been to a Christian bookstore at all in the past few years, then you are probably familiar with Jesus Calling. This book sounds so good. Who doesn’t want to read a book that is written in the voice of Jesus? Yet, how do we know this really is the Jesus of the Bible speaking? As you flip through the book, you will discover verses written at the end of each devotion (it is written to be used as a devotional book for each day of the year). Since the author uses verses at the end of each devotion, this must mean that this is not a counterfeit Jesus talking, right?
The final authority on anything is the Bible. Even the Jesus of the Bible used it as His final authority. How can we do any different? We must measure everything we read by it. It is no different with a book like Jesus Calling.
So with this in mind, let’s look at some examples of the contradictions which occur:
1. On the January 15 devotion, “Jesus” said this:
“The future is a phantom, seeking to spook you. Laugh at the future!”1
But, when we look at Scripture, is this what He says? No, Jesus tells the disciples “to watch and be ready and to not be deceived by the false Christs and false prophets that will come in His name (Matthew 24: 3-5, 24, 42, 44). 2
Hmm, I don’t hear anything about laughter when it comes to the future.
2. On the January 28 devotion, “Jesus” said this:
“I am with you always. These were the last words I spoke before ascending into heaven.”3
Interesting, because that’s not what the Bible says!
His last words “were not that He would be with them but rather that they would be His witnesses: ’And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But you shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witness unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.’ (Acts 1:7-9) (emphasis added)” 4
3. The August 23 devotion should really make us pause:
“Entrust your loved ones to Me; release them into My protective care. They are much safer with Me than in your clinging hands. If you let a loved one become an idol in your heart, you endanger that one-as well as yourself. Remember the extreme measures I used with Abraham and Isaac. I took Isaac to the very point of death to free Abraham from son-worship. Both Abraham and Isaac suffered terribly because of the father’s undisciplined emotions. I detest idolatry, even in the form of parental love.” 5
Where in the Bible does it say this? Which “Jesus” is this information coming from? Most certainly not the Jesus of the Bible. The author twists the account to mean something entirely different than what actually happened. “This perversion of Scripture by the ‘Jesus’ of Jesus Calling can entice the undiscerning reader into believing this extra-biblical account, which attempts to provide new revelations.” 6
I could go on with other examples, but I think that says enough. Please know that I don’t say these things to be unkind, but rather to inform others. I, too, did not realize the depth of deception which was occurring here. In fact, we were given a box of these books and I gladly handed them out, thinking I was doing something good. However, since the Holy Spirit has shown me the truth, I have apologized to Him, but I would also like to apologize to anyone reading this blog who received a copy from me. It was done innocently and I certainly don’t want to come across as hypocritical.
In part three of this series, we will look at other aspects that make this book a dangerous one to read.
Please don’t hesitate to ask any questions or leave any comments (as long as they’re done with kindness ) I look forward to hearing from you!
1. Sarah Young, Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence (Thomas Nelson, 2004, 2011), 16.
2. Warren B. Smith, “Another Jesus” Calling, How False Christs Are Entering the Church Through Contemplative Prayer (Lighthouse Trails Publishing, 2013), 62.
3. Young, Jesus Calling, 29.
4. Smith, “Another Jesus” Calling, 60.
5. Young, Jesus Calling, 246.
6. Smith, “Another Jesus” Calling, 78.