Tuesday, August 26, 2014

September Trip to the Jungle

We are heading back into the jungle in September.  We have a very busy trip planned with a lot of travel and a ton of teaching and preaching.  The schedule is below for those who would like to pray for us.
September 11th - Fly from Cusco to Lima.  Take the night bus for 6 hours to Jauja.
September 12th - Arrive in Jauja around 6am.  Teach a group of pastors and leaders on the function of the local church and how to prepare a sermon.  In the evening, Wehrner preaches.
September 13th - Spend the day driving to Satipo.  Scott preaches the evening service.
September 14th - Wehrner preaches the morning service in Satipo.  Discipleship the rest of the day with Miguel.
September 15th - Spend the entire day traveling to the village of Chembo, arriving by boat after dark.  Wehrner preaches in the evening.
September 16th - Teaching the leaders in Chembo throughout the day.  Scott preaches in the evening.
September 17th - Teaching the leaders in Chembo throughout the day.  Wehrner preaches in the evening.
September 18th - This will be the longest day.  Leave Chembo by boat early in the morning.  Drive eight hours by truck to Satipo.  Take the night bus to Lima for 10 hours.
September 19th - Arrive in Lima.  Fly back to Cusco.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Espinar, Laborers, and a sickening story from the Isrealita cult

I once again find myself overwhelmed with the burden of having an immense amount of need and very few laborers.  We traveled to Espinar today to visit, encourage, and talk about how we might help a new church about five hours from Cusco up in the mountains. 
With a population of around 30,000, Espinar sits at 13,000 feet in the Andes.  It is a very difficult town because half the town is involved in cults.  There are 10,000 Seventh Day Adventists and 1000 Israelitas, not to mention the stronghold of the Mormon church.  We heard a very disturbing story about the evil of the Israelitas in Espinar, which is in the video below.
This little church started when Jorge Trujillo and his friend left the Iglesia Evangelica Peruano (IEP) that they were part of because it started compromising their doctrine.  The IEP made an alliance with the Presbyterian church USA to promote gay clergy.  They started learning sound doctrine with no other books other than a Bible, which is sufficient.  They have learned a lot and desire fervently to learn more.  Jorge, who is 26 years old, asked us a lot of questions about the function of a church and preaching.  We talked a long time about expository preaching and church government.  Even though they preach the gospel in the midst of great opposition, they only asked us to pray for more laborers to bring in the harvest. 
Our church will be getting to know these guys a lot more over the next few years and helping them with resources and maybe some training.  Again, we beg God for laborers.  I could put 14 families in greatly needed places tomorrow if we had churches that were willing to send, and Christians who were willing to go.  The video below is of our trip.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

The Israelite Cult of Peru

La Iglesia Israelita del Nuevo Pacto Universal (The Israelite Church of the Universal New Covenant) started in Peru and is growing rapidly throughout South America. As you read through the doctrine of this bizarre cult, you will see similarities with other cults such as the Mormons, Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah Witnesses, and various others. This is one of the most bizarre cults in South America.

The Israelite cult started in the jungles of Junin. Perú as a break off of the Seventh Day Adventist church when the founder, Ezequiel Ataucusi Gamonal, received a revelation from God to restore the alliance with man.  They are not of Jewish descent, but Peruvian

The Isrealitas believe that when the Catholic church abandoned the truth, the true church has been dead and in darkness until 1955 when Ezequiel received his revelation. They believe that the church is only alive in their movement. 

Ezekiel claimed to be the patron saint through his predecessors Moses and Jesus. He declared that Peru was the “chosen nation”, and the place where the New Jerusalem would descend to at the end of the world. According to Isrealita beliefs, the Incas were not pagans, but prophets of God. 

Ezekiel is referred to as the Messiah and boasts of the titles “My Lord”, “The Man”, “The Pastor of pastors”, “The Son of Man”, “The Only Begotten of God”, “Israel”, “The New Inca”, and “The New Moses”. Ezekiel claimed to be the reincarnation of Christ and is called the Christ of the West, while Jesus is called the Christ of the East. Ezekiel even claimed to be above Jesus by being the fleshly form of the Holy Spirit. 

According to the followers, there are four generations of judgment. The first generation was with Noah and the flood; the second generation was with Lot and Sodom and Gomorrah; the third generation is the Isralitias today. This generation will last 2000 years and after the years are ended there will be seven years of punishment. In the 1990's the Peruvian Israelitas believed the end of the 2000 years were coming to an end. 

The Israelitas hoped that Ezekiel would put on the famous red tunic and begin to preach. Ezekiel predicted that at the end of the third generation, he would put on the red tunic and preach for 1260 days. At the end of these days he would be crucified by the Catholic church. The antichrist would rise to power soon after his death. Ezekiel's body would remain unburied for three days and then the Holy Spirit would come to carry him away. 

The Israelita beliefs were shaken when Ezekiel died in the year 2000 from a heart attack. The Israelitas made some changes to their doctrine and appointed Ezekiel's son, Ezequiel Jonás Ataucusi Molina, (I will call him Jonás from this point on) to take his place. Ezequiel is buried in Lima today and his grave is a special place of pilgrimage for the Israelitas. Today, the Israelitas pray to to the dead Ezekiel to provide their needs and they believe that his son Jonás is omnipresent and forgives sins.

Since the time of Ezekiel's death and the succession of Jonás, it is believed that Jonás will fulfill the role of Ezekiel at the end of the third generation. After he is carried away by the Spirit, Jesus Christ will supposedly descend from Heaven with countless angels with chariots of fire to rescue the true Israelitas, who will be all gathered in a specific place. White clouds will descend from the chariots to determine the thoughts of the people. Only those who think of only God will be taken in the chariots to Canaan, the promised land, for 1000 years.

The life in Canaan will be different. There will be no commerce, marriage, or procreation during the thousand years. Everyone will speak Arabic. Everyone will be like angels and never age. They spend their time farming and no one can enter the land. The wicked generation that cannot enter Canaan will be vampires. The Israelitas that never made the cut to enter Canaan are counseled to flee for the jungle during the thousand years and build their own “promised land” to escape judgment. 

At the end of the thousand years the chariots of fire return and take the Isrealitas to other planets.

The Israelite cult bases their beliefs on the Bible, but this “special” interpretation can only be made know to the person by the Holy Spirit when they first believe.

Other Strange beliefs
  • God is Peruvian.
  • God took on the form of various Inca kings over time and eventually became Ezekiel.
  • The ten commandments of the Incas are hidden in Machu Picchu and have not yet been discovered.
  • Peru is holy ground.
  • Ezekiel is the vicar of the Holy Spirit and infallible.
  • The world would be destroyed in the year 2000 with exception to the Amazon jungle. Obviously this did not happen but the Israelitas claim it did happen, but you must see it spiritually.
  • Ezekiel would be the president of Peru. Of course, this did not happen either. The Israelitas claim it did happen, but you must see it spiritually.
  • Ezekiel would die and then raise from the dead three days later. Never happened. the Israelitas claim it did happen, but you must see it spiritually.
  • Ezekiel will return to the earth again in 2000 years and take his followers with him in mototaxis.
  • The Israelitas evangelize throughout Peru and South America by preaching in plazas dressed in sack cloth and always with a beard.
This may seem like a joke, but hundreds of thousands of people are being deceived into following this cult. It may not be surprising today, but even some “evangelicals” are calling this cult a branch of Protestantism. The Israelita cult is advancing rapidly through South America by targeting uneducated and isolated people in the jungles and mountains. I have seen the Israelitas preaching in the plazas of small towns outside of Cusco, and I know people who are part of the cult. 

Please pray that the light of the glorious gospel of Christ will demolish the strongholds of the devil in Peru.