Let's Hear It For Tommy

Thanks for the cover story on Tommy Barnett ("He Dares to Give Love Away," by Joel Kilpatrick, March). His love for people is genuine and contagious. The same can be said of his family.

Having already attended his pastors school in Phoenix, our daughter went on to attend the Master's Commission there. It truly revolutionized her walk with God. We will never view church the same again.
Lawrence and Jeneen Hicks
Batavia, New York

Thank you for recognizing our pastor, Tommy Barnett. Since my wife and I made Phoenix First Assembly our home 10 years ago, we have seen our three grown children make commitments to Christ. Today they all are active in ministry.
ran and Linda Hehman
Phoenix, Arizona

Stop Bashing Catholics

As a Catholic subscriber, I was dismayed to read two letters to the editor in the March issue reflecting anti-Catholic bigotry at its worst. Catholics do not worship idols, nor do they pray to statues of Mary and other saints.

Yes, we pray to Mary and the saints (not their statues), just as we ask fellow Christians on Earth to pray for us. If the living can pray for us, why not those who are eternally alive and before the throne of God? Rarely, if ever, should someone be allowed to express a view in print without signing his or her name.
William Norton
Augusta, Georgia

Statues--like photographs of our loved ones--only remind us of saints. We Catholics don't pray to them. We believe Jesus, and only Jesus, redeems and saves us.
M. Miksch
Platte Center, Nebraska

Catholics do not pray to statues. For those who believe they do, I recommend the book What Catholics Really Believe by Karl Keating.

Dear brothers and sisters who read Charisma, Jesus died for Catholics too. Please do not throw stones at us. And please sign your letters.
Marge Connolly
South Bend, Indiana

The Demon Debate

I disagree with John Eckhardt, who said Christians can be possessed by demons ("Can a Christian Have a Demon?" March). In Matthew 12:25-30, Jesus said a kingdom divided against itself cannot stand. I think Jesus made it clear that you cannot take over a man unless he allows it, as indicated in verse 29. If a Christian can be possessed, where is our hope?
Gina Murray
Fairview Heights, Illinois

Thanks for your courage to print the article on deliverance by John Eckhardt. It is factual and long overdue. I have had a ministry of deliverance for 40 years. Please keep up the good work and don't be discouraged by the negative letters you may receive. The devil is our No. 1 enemy, and the church is his goal.
Stan Riley
Prescott, Arizona

I disagree with John Eckhardt. How can we automatically assume that a new convert needs some level of deliverance, as Eckhardt suggests? Where does discernment come in? This is a blanket assumption that everyone has demons. When do we get free? I thought Jesus taught that he whom the Son sets free is free indeed.
Dolores Ford
Chicago, Illinois

I was disappointed when I read the article by John Eckhardt. I was very upset to see the author promoting the incorrect idea that if you are sick with cancer you must have a demon. I also do not accept the idea that after we have received total forgiveness and justification from our Lord that somehow we are still subject to demonic curses.
Richard Hankins
Shady Shores, Texas

It is outrageous that anyone who is truly born again and living for God would be demon possessed. The Word says we cannot serve two masters. I do not believe that we will have or can have both in us at one time. This is a lie from Satan. Shame on anyone who perpetuates it!
Susan Clymer
Wichita Falls, Texas

In regard to Christians having a demon, all I have to say is this has to be the biggest bunch of crock I have read in some time! The ignorance and twisted theology of such an article is not worth the time of an intelligent reply! I can't believe you printed this article in your magazine. I believe in deliverance, but when Christ sets you free, you are free.
Rev. Wayne Crownover
Boise, Idaho

A Christian can be vexed, oppressed and obsessed but not possessed as Judas Iscariot was. Judas was only a believer, follower and a disciple, but he was not a Christian or filled with the Holy Ghost. Your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost (1 Cor. 6:19-20), and He sanctifies your spirit, your soul and your body (1 Thess. 5:23).
Rev. Scott Perry
Glorious Community Holiness Church
Vero Beach, Florida

I found the article by John Eckhardt to be lacking. This is a controversial issue, and I think you should have run it in a pro-and-con format. Ask the question, and then have credible biblical scholars debate whether a Christian can be possessed by a demon. This way, your reader can make an intelligent decision about this.
Mary E. DeMuth
Rowlett, Texas

I am concerned with the part of John Eckhardt's article that says "most will agree that sickness is of the devil," especially the part about cancer. I strongly disagree with that statement. My daughter is 11 and a born-again Christian, but she was just diagnosed with cancer. This kind of cancer develops when you are a 4-week-old fetus! That tells me that the devil had nothing to do with this. God is the creator of life.
name withheld
Rock Falls, Illinois

The theory of Holy Ghost-filled believers being demon possessed is a false doctrine that the devil would love for the church to believe. Instead of teaching a doctrine of fear, let's get people washed in the blood of Jesus and filled with the Holy Ghost. It is time for the church to understand the power Jesus gave to us.
Kevin Brown
Pasadena, Texas

John Eckhardt seems to base his thesis primarily upon the fact that his experience is contrary to what the Word of God says. He wrote: "We couldn't question our experience because we knew what we were seeing. So we began to question our theology." So if the Word of God seems to contradict what you see, you alter your theology?
Rev. David L. Bruce
Aubrey First Assembly of God
Aubrey, Texas

Benny Hinn on Dateline

I am writing regarding Benny Hinn and his response to the Dateline report (People & Events, March). I saw Dateline and his response on TBN. Benny answered some of my questions, but not all. Why was the issue of his brother not dealt with in the article or on his TBN response to the charges? When holding an office in the body of Christ, you have to be without reproach.
Claude S. Avilez
Alta Loma, California

All ministries have aspects that must be handled like a business. It appears that Benny Hinn has made several adjustments in his business practices, and he is to be applauded for that.

We know that not all the people who come to his meetings are healed, and Pastor Benny would be the first to admit that. But we weep for joy as we watch thousands come to the front of the auditoriums to accept Christ as their Savior. That's the bottom line--not a few minor operating problems that have been corrected in the past.
J. Ron Mikels
Knoxville, Tennessee

nding Miss America

I disagree with the person who wrote a letter complaining about Erika Harold's stand for abstinence (Letters, March). Does everyone called to stand for abstinence need to tack on at the end of the purity message, "Oh, and if you mess up don't worry about it, Christ will fix it"?

My hope for my 11-year-old daughter is that she will stay sexually pure until marriage. We need people such as Erika Harold to lift up that standard for young women. I'm sure Erika would agree that Christ restores all, but her message is abstinence. Period.
Minneapolis, Minnesota

I want to say something to "name withheld" who complained that Erika Harold did not address the issue of restoration for people who have lost their virginity. You should be ashamed of yourself. Of course God restores sinners, but to criticize those who have not sinned shows you've failed to learn your lesson. Your blessings stand in jeopardy.
name withheld

In response to whoever wrote the letter about Erika Harold, I agree that Jesus Christ's love covers a multitude of sins. But no amount of sacrifice can ever get back what is lost through disobedience. Although you are forgiven, you will never be able to give the precious gift of your virginity to your future mate because of your disobedience.

Erika Harold should be applauded for her courage to teach abstinence to the world. To disagree with her message is contradicting the Word of God.
Michael A.C. Rebey
Hammond, Indiana

Praise God for Erika Harold's choice to abstain from sex until marriage and to promote that choice. I agree with Erika that she is successful because of it. Virginity gives single women freedom, power and self-respect. Losing our virginity outside of marriage makes us a slave to sin.
Cathleen Smith
Faith, South Dakota

Missing Children

Thank you for the great article on missing children ("Someone Is Stealing the Children," by Andy Butcher, March). Because we have been trying to get the church involved in this frustrating situation, your article was a breath of fresh air to us.

It was refreshing that a national Christian magazine put into print the plight of families who daily face the absence of much-loved children. This may or may not be the tool God chooses to use to bring back our stepgranddaughters, Christy and Abby Steyne, but it is a needed encouragement.
Kathryn and Robert Miner
Milton, Vermont

Christian Dance Clubs?

Regarding your article on Christian dance clubs ("Our Love Is Loud," by Sandra K. Chambers, February), it's not the first time I've seen Charisma cover such "gray" issues in the Christian community. I think it is crucial that the editor come up with a balanced view with biblical information to support the outreach mentioned rather than leaving it to the reader. It would also be most beneficial to include the views of pastors or leaders in the Christian community. This will help the reader come to a better conclusion.
Ruth Lim Wan Kie

Thank you for finally doing a story on the Christian rave scene. I've been wondering for years when you guys were going to notice this outreach. I have been sponsoring outreach raves since 1998.

I have seen kids get saved, delivered from drugs and totally turned around for Jesus at these events. Hopefully your article will open eyes to this ministry and we, the promoters, will get the support from the church that we desire.
Bryan Ketler
Charlotte, North Carolina

Christian dance clubs? Give me a break! What next? Believers' bars? Let's stop trying to make the gospel so palatable that it makes everyone sick, and the only "drunk" we experience is on ourselves and our selfish desires to label every worldly activity that we want to participate in "Christian."
Matthew Sassano Jr.
Canisteo Valley Assembly of God
Canisteo, New York

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit