Joel's Army & "The Day of the Lord"
The following excerpt is from the Joel's Army booklet by Jewel Grewe, an important history of the late 1980s when the Latter Rain movement connected with the "Kansas City prophets." These groups then connected with John Wimber of the Vineyard movement, which had already been established as an "experiment" of C. Peter Wagner. These movements would all coalesce together by the 1990s and converge into the New Apostolic Reformation.
What began as a cult on the fringes of Pentecostalism would rise up to become mainstream neo-evangelicalism.
This history is very important to understanding the doctrines of the New Apostolic Reformation. In the late 1980s the doctrines were much more blatant. The church growth movement experts hadn't yet "tweaked" the doctrines to make them less offensive to evangelicalism-at-large. What follows is an explanation of the new heretical teachings about "incarnation," Joel's Army and the "Day of the Lord."
The "Day of the Lord"
The “Day of the Lord” is re-interpreted by the false prophets to mean that Christ will come to His Church and incarnate (become God in flesh) an army of believers – thus giving them supernatural qualities to execute judgment on the Church. The “Day of the Lord” is also misconstrued to mean a time of judgment, starting with the Church. The key text they love to quote is from I Peter 4:17: “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the House of God.” The common orthodox interpretation of the text is that God will punish the righteous when they sin, and punish the ungodly at the coming judgment. This is quite adequate and clear. Ever since the inception of the Church, the Holy Spirit has been in the business of judging and purging the Church. God's sovereign judgment will continue to chasten, cleanse and purge the Church until the judgment seat of Christ when the saints will receive their rewards and the records of service are set straight.
The “Day of the Lord” as seen through the eyes of the New Wave “prophets” will be a time when Joel’s Army, led by these “prophets,” will pour out God's wrath on the church! Then, they claim, for the first time in two thousand years the “pure church” will come forth. In other words, the blood of Christ did not avail, nor will it, in the last days because this Joel’s Army and the “prophets” will do what Jesus Christ’s blood could not; i.e., “cleanse” the Church. If indeed it takes this Joel’s Army to purify the Church, then all the preaching of the Cross from the early Church to the present was in vain. And rather than the Cross of Christ being God's final answer to “walking in newness of life,” we should look for another.
This Joel’s Army heresy, as it is applied to the Church and the world, is not only in total conflict with the true Gospel of Christ, but represents a radical new rendition of the doctrines of redemption and purification. By all analyses it is “another gospel.” It poses a real threat to unstable churches because it is yet another great deception beguiling the Church.
The following is a further account of Jack Deere's “bloody slaughter on the church by Joel's Army” that will turn the scene of the Church to blood and darkness before perfection.
"The Scripture never encourages us to warn the unbeliever of the wrath that is to come. When the prophets speak to God's people, they warn God's people about what's to come. And then he says to God's people, not to the unbelievers, but he says to God's people, “let the land, those who live in the land of Palestine, let them tremble” – now how could that be? Our Lord Jesus is coming back, we all believe that. But why should God's people tremble? …He's going to come TO the Church. He's going to come TO the Church before He comes FOR the Church. 1 Peter 4:17 says that judgment is near and that it's going to begin with the House of God… The Lord Jesus, before He comes and visits judgment upon the earth, He's going to come and visit it upon His Church. And no one, no one, in His Church is going to escape that judgment….
"You really want the Day of the Lord to come? Woe to you, woe to you who long for the Day of the Lord. That Day will be darkness, not light… He's coming in judgment. He's coming to purify His Church. He will not come back for that Bride. He will come to purify that Church and make it His Bride and that's why judgment is going to come….
"How is God going to bring judgment upon His Church, and then judgment upon the land after His Church? He's going to do it with a large and mighty army. Now what is this army like? He says, first off in verse 3, well, first of all He said that this army is totally unique. This army, there's never been one like it, and there never will be one like it in ages to come… When this army comes, He says it's large and it's mighty. It's so mighty that there's never been anything like it before… “Begin the slaughter and begin it in the temple and begin it with the elders, the leaders of my people.” And they walk through the land and they start and they begin to slaughter and, you know God has already started that? He has already started with the biggest names in His household? He has already started the slaughter… and it is coming now among the Church. He'll start with the leaders, but He'll move out into the Church. That's why, when He says in verse 2, “It's a day not of rejoicing and happiness, it's a day of darkness and gloom. It's a day of clouds and blackness, like dawn spreading across the mountains.” You really want the Day of the Lord to come? Woe to you, woe to you who long for the Day of the Lord. That Day will be darkness, not light." (Jack Deere, “Joel’s Army,” Vineyard Ministry International, audio cassette, 1990) [emphases added]
This Joel's Army booklet is being republished into a second edition with important updates. Available soon from Discernment Ministries at http://www.discernment-ministries.org.
Reading and listening to the kind of war this Joel's Army is supposed to wage against the Church in the last days, we learn that not only is it totally unscriptural, but it reflects an ominous spirit. Far from being redemptive, it is destructive and even sadistic. It is a spirit that denies Jesus is come in the flesh and that the Church was purchased with His precious blood.
"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish." (Eph. 5:25-27)