Home > Apologetics, Apostasy, Heresy > The Heresies of False Prophet Rick Joyner

The Heresies of False Prophet Rick Joyner


Joyner, Rick

False Prophet Rick Joyner

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Prophet or Heretic?
Rick Joyner heads Morningstar MinistriesOff-site Link   Many supporters of today’s controversial Renewal and Revival movements consider him to be a “prophet”and/or “apostle”.

Others, including theologians, apologists and cult watchers, rightly consider Joyner to by one the most unsound and dangerous teachers around. His error-filled, unorthodox teachings include (but are not limited to) Kingdom Now (or Dominion) theologyextra-biblical revelation, and the denial of the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Rick Joyner is neither a true prophet nor apostle. He teaches too much error to be either. He holds out (by his many books) an appearance of taking us to higher ground when in reality he robs us of a rich doctrinal heritage as well as the Bible. His dominionism is false and utopian and he confuses the resurrection and reign of Christ with the present state of the Church, thereby misleading Christians with false hope.

Joyner’s claims of revelation knowledge produce a dulling effect in regard to a desire for the Scriptures.

Joyner’s books are a jumble of confusion. One has to wade through a lot of sludge to find a few nuggets of truth.

The CRN Journal Off-site Link says that Joyner is peddling a ”dark mysticism” and they conclude:

”Joyner leaves us no middle way. Either we treat him as God’s chosen super-prophet for the end-times, or we treat him as a man in the grip of evil deceit and seek to expose him as such”

Joyner’s false teachings abound and multiply. It may be sloppy writing or unclear theology but it becomes even more serious as Joyner slips into teachings that would be welcome in a Kingdom Hall [Meeting place ofJehovah’s Witnesses – AI].

How should we view Jesus? We should view Him as the Bible does. John 2:21-22 and Luke 24:39 make it abundantly clear that Jesus arose in His physical body. The bodily resurrection is a foundational truth in the Christian faith. Jesus, as our mediator, exists in a glorified resurrected body. He is forever the God-man.

This truth of the two natures of Christ is called the hypostatic union and has always been defended by the Church. Christ exists in two natures, human and divine (Philippians 2:6-7).

Apparently Joyner either denies this or simply does not understand it. He proposes:

“There is a tendency to continue relating to Him as ‘the MAN from Galilee.’ Jesus is not a man. He was and is Spirit. He took the form of a servant and became a man for a brief time.”72

Joyner couldn’t be clearer in his declaration: “Jesus is not a man. He was and is Spirit” (emphasis added). Joyner finds himself closely aligned with Gnosticism, one of the most threatening heresies of the early Church. More specifically, he is bordering on a form of Docetism, a view which denies Christ’s true humanity by saying that Christ only appeared to have a physical body. However, based on a multitude of Scriptures, theologian Louis Berkhof summarizes the view of historical orthodoxy:

“The incarnation constituted Him a complex person, constituted of two natures. He is the God-man. … The one divine person, who possessed a divine nature from eternity, assumed a human nature, and now has both.”73

Surely no true prophet of God would deny the human nature of Christ or that Jesus is in a resurrected glorified body. Paul reminds us in 1 Timothy 2:5, “There is one Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” How can Joyner say, “Jesus is not a man”? If we accept Prophet Joyner, then we have eroded the doctrinal truths that separate Christianity from the cults.

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Examples of Joyner’s false prophecies abound. For example:
In the late 1990s, Joyner jumped onto the Y2K bandwagon as he claimed that the Lord ”finally did begin to speak” about the issue. According to Joyner, God supposedly revealed that, ”The most severe difficulties will come from the panic generated by the situation” and ” The Lord told me to observe the problems that Y2K will cause in the natural world as a reflection of the problems we have in the body of Christ.”

Thus according to Joyner’s revelation the Church must not have had problems since Y2K was a non-event.

Typical of the Joyner/Jones prophecies is this December 31, 1997 this oneOff-site Link  (RealAudio). It includes the type of judgement prophecies that have become popular in today’s so-called renewal and revival movements (e.g. LA is to be leveled by earthquakes AND nuclear bombs; the Mississipi will be 35 miles wide…). Check the date, and the time-schedules hinted at. (Nine months: this movement is always talking about spiritual pregnancy, things born in the spirit, etc. One of the manifestations looks and sounds like someone givingbirth). 

Note that at the time, Joyner was selling cabins at his East Coast ”Moravian community.” (Morningstar Prophetic Bulletin, April, 1998)

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Prophets? Apostles? Super-Apostles?
Like other leaders in the fore- and background of the controversial renewal/revival movements, Joyner rarely refers to himself as a prophet. However, these leaders refer to each other as apostles and prophets – and certainly do not discourage their followers from addressing them as such.

In his book “The Harvest,” Joyner says:

What is about to come upon the earth is not just a revival, or another awakening; it is a veritable revolution. The vision was given in order to begin to awaken those who are destined to radically change the course, and even the very definition of Christianity. The dismantling of organizations and disbanding of some works will be a positive and exhilarating experience for the Lord’s faithful servants. A great company of prophets, teachers, pastors and apostles will be raised up with the spirit of Phineas…
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Self-serving Illusion
Though Joyner’s doctrinal statement is a rather standard one, we will see that in many places his writings and books contradict and undermine it. One can only wonder if his doctrinal statement is merely window dressing and subterfuge; or if perhaps his allegiance to a movement which views itself as a superlative extension of the Church has moved him aways from a more stable and orthodox foundation. Joyner is like a child musician playing many sour notes with the good ones while telling us he is an accomplished prodigy. When we object, he will call attention to the few good notes. Joyner’s trumpet is offkey and giving out an ”uncertain sound” (1 Corinthians 14:7-8 javascript popup window. Had he lived in the Old Testament era, he would have been stoned by now (Deuteronomy 13:1-5 javascript popup window18:20-22 javascript popup window)

Joyner unabashedly promotes his most bizarre and unrealistic ideas this way:

”In the near future the church will not be looking back at the first century church with envy because of the great exploits of those days, but all will be saying that He certainly did save His best wine for last. The most glorious times in all of history have now come upon us. You who have dreamed of one day being able to talk with Peter, John and Paul are going to be surprised to find that they have all been waiting to talk to you! You have been chosen to see the harvest, the fruit of the seed that they were planting.”

Joyner is so bold as to state that nations will be overwhelmed by the newly appointed apostles and that ”Miracles which exceed even some of the most spectacular biblical marvels will cause whole nations to acknowledge Jesus … The appearances of angels will be so common that they will cease to be related as significant events. The Lord himself will appear to councils of apostles and elders to give them directives.”

Joyner has two major obsessions: ”Prophetic Restoration” and ”Apostolic Restoration.” He explains these as follows:

”A new wave of ministries is about to be released with extraordinary prophetic gifts. Others with revelatory gifting who were sidetracked because of controversy, or other problems, are about to get back on the fast track … The apostolic ministry that opened the church age will be raised up at the end to complete it. The Lord is restoring the apostolic authority of the church and soon this will become a major emphasis. There will be almost a general openness to this as men of true apostolic authority, with a true apostolic lifestyle, take their place in leadership.”

Glaringly absent from Joyner’s agenda is any biblical warrant for his words. There is no Scripture offered as proof for this self-serving illusion. Ephesians is clear that the Church is built on ”the foundation  of the Apostles and Prophets.” (Ephesians 2:19 javascript popup window). Why would God have to lay the foundation all over again? The Church, since the time of Paul, is described as ”God’sbuilding. ” (1 Corinthians 3:91-10 javascript popup window). A building, especially God’s Church, is not in need of another foundation. No wonder Joyner gives not Scripture for his grandiose imaginings.

Many people involved in the renewal and revival movements have reported that they are told, by Joyner and other teachers, that we can not find everything that’s currently happening in the church in Scripture precisely because God is doing a ”new thing.” Instead, Joyner has prophesied that there will be ”super apostles.” These apostles are said to be needed to administer the ”new thing” God is doing. Thus Christians are encouraged to not judge, discern, or even pray about the teachings within these movements. After all, like the apostles of old, who participated in writing Scripture before, the new ”super-apostles” won’t steer you wrong… would they?
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Joyner Discourages Discernment
Not surprisingly, as a false teacher, Rick Joyner not only lacks discernment himself, but also strongly discourages Christians from obeying Scripture when it talks about applying biblical principles of discernment. He tries to silence critics of his ministry and teachings and/or the movements and doctrines he supports by suggesting that critics have what he terms a ”Jezebel spirit,” or ”religious spirit.”
Even if one takes the liberty to judge the prophet and his message, you are labeled a ”pharisee,” or worse yet possess a ”religious” and ”Jezebel spirit.”PFO director Steve Cannon points out a recurrent theme is Joyner’s writings, a concept called ”The Two Ministries.” Joyner describes the second of the two ministries as ”faultfinders” and says they are a destructive force.” Cannon maintains, ”This doctrine … is used, I think, to intimidate any who may criticize, into thinking that by doing so, they are operating under the spirit of Satan.”
Joyner doesn’t stop there in his efforts to escape accountability:
Still going further afield, Joyner warns that cult research is dangerous and ought not be be pursued. This would surely keep the discerning off his case. As much warning as there is in the Bible against false religions and heresies (e.g. ”test the spirits,” 1 John 4:1 javascript popup window), Joyner’s words are ill-advised and foolish:

”Few who devote themselves to studying cults or deviant doctrines are able to distinguis the true word of the Lord, and usually their hearts are immediately darkened by the very evil they seek to expose. We will be changed into that which we are beholding (II Corinthians 3:18 javascript popup window). There is an implied warning in the Lord’s message to the church in Thyatira about ‘knowing the deep things of Satan’ (Revelation 2:24) javascript popup window. The more we focus on what is wrong, or the practices of the evil one, the more we, ourselves, will be changed into the nature of what we are seeing.”

Thus, according to Joyner, to be discerning – to be a Berean javascript popup window – is to go into darkness. That’s what Jehovah’s Witnesses say of Bible study apart from their literature – they too discourage any type of discernment. Once again Joyner sounds more cultic than Christian.

Moreover, in the above citation, Joyner demonstrates yet another example of his frightful handling of God’s Word. The people of Thyatira did not ”know [know by experience] the depths of Satan,” which in the context was idolatry and sexual immorality (Revelation 2:20 javascript popup window, simply because they were discerning! They did not practice these things since they were able to discern their evil nature and avoid them. Knowing the depth os Satan is not the study of false teachers like Joyner but the practice  (knowing by experience) and promotion of immorality and idolatry.

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A Supporter of Aberrant, Unorthodox and Heretical Teachings
Joyner says:
I have never been part of the Vineyard, though I did minister at Vineyard conferences a few times, and have always appreciated them. I have never been a part of the movement that originated in Kansas City, though I have the highest regard for them.
He does, in fact, promote the teachings and prophecies of the “Kansas City Prophets”, and publishes the prophecies of Bob Jones, introducing or interspersing them with his own comments and/or clarifications. See, for example, the Shepherd’s Rod prophecies.

He promotes Latter Rain and Manifest Sons of God theology, and claims that from among the Manifest Sons of God “super-apostles” (“35 Pauls”) will be created.

One doctrine increasingly promoted is that of the Corporate Christ where the Church itself (actually, a “Remnant” = those who now accept the “new move of God”) becomes Christ the moment it subdues and rules the earth. In his book “The Harvest” he says:

The doctrine of the rapture was a great and effective ruse of the enemy to implant in the church a retreat mentality, but it will not succeed. Already this yoke has been cast off by the majority in the advancing church and it will soon be cast off by all…
Rick Joyner, The Harvest, 1989/1990 revised booklet on pg.121, as quoted at Let Us ReasonOff-site Link
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The Final Quest
Joyner’s book “The Final Quest” should be read in light of that view. In the book, Joyner relates an ongoing ”vision,” which he claims to have received in a dream. In early 1995 he published a condensed version of the first dream in his Morningstar Prophetic Bulletin and The Morningstar Journal under the title “The Hordes of Hell Are Marching”. Both publications are found at his site

Later he published two additional condensed versions of subsequent visions. The three together are found hereOff-site Link 

(The vision sounds much like those relayed by Bob Jones. Like Jones, Joyner is taken into the heavenlies, shown things, has things explained to him, is told how spiritually astute and wise he is, etc.)

Joyner says these became the most popular writings Morningstar had ever published. Therefore, he decided to publish them in a book, and to include to full versions. Two more sections were added, and the book ends with “To be continued…”

The Final Quest is about Joyner’s vision on what he sees is the war is now underway between those who support the “move of God” and those who oppose it. Those who oppose the “move” as seen by joyner, comprise the hordes of hell. The “move of God” Joyner supports is the Toronto Blessing and similar renewal and revival movements. Oppose this ‘new thing God is doing’ and you’re in trouble… Thus Joyner’s “Final Quest” vision provides a chilling background to his “Civil War in the Church”Off-site Link vision.

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Given Rick Joyner’s ongoing record of false prophecies, unbiblical and unorthodox teachings, extra-biblical revelation, lack of accountability, and other problems, the publisher of Apologetics Index strongly warns against involvement with Rick Joyner and Morningstar Ministries.
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– Articles –
Christian Beware the New ProphetsOff-site Link An extract from the book Beware the New ProphetsOff-site Link by Bill Randles
Aberrational, Heretical, Heterodox, Suborthodox or Unorthodox Civil War In The ChurchOff-site Link by Rick Joyner
Christian The Faulty Foundation of the Five-Fold MinistryOff-site Link by Robert Bowman.
The New Testament is particularly clear about the temporary role of the apostles, since they were chosen to give eyewitness testimony of the risen Christ (Acts 1:21-26 javascript popup window5:32 javascript popup windowLuke 1:1-4 javascript popup window1 Cor. 9:1 javascript popup window ). Paul indicated that he was the last person to see the risen Christ and receive an apostolic commission (1 Cor. 15:8 javascript popup window ).
Aberrational, Heretical, Heterodox, Suborthodox or Unorthodox God’s Lightning RodOff-site Link Informative article about Rick Joyner, published in the April, 2001, issue of Charisma Magazine, which itself often promotes questionable teachers, doctrines, movements and organizations (including false prophetscontroversial renewal/revival movements, the Trinity Broadcasting Network, etcetera). For important additional information, seeRick Joyner and Charisma MagazineOff-site Link, at Harvest Ministries. See also Rick Joyner’s Response to the Charisma articleOff-site Link, as well as Charisma’s Response to Rick JoynerOff-site Link
Christian The Higher Life of Rick Joyner: Chasing the Delusion of Power and DominionThe Quarterly JournalOff-site Link, October-December 2000
Aberrational, Heretical, Heterodox, Suborthodox or Unorthodox The Hordes of Hell Are Moving. Parts I, II, IIIOff-site Link Joyner’s vision – which he says was given to him in a dream – on the war that is now underway between those who support the “move of God” and those who oppose it. Those who oppose the “move” as seen by joyner, comprise the hordes of hell. The “move of God” Joyner is talking about is comprised of the Toronto Blessing and relatedrenewal and revival movements.
Christian Prophetic Mandate – Levels of Integrity, Truthfulness, and ResponsibilityOff-site Link a public rebuke of Rick Joyner and Bob Jones for false prophecy
Christian Rick Joyner: Christian GnosticOff-site Link (Contra) Two-part, indepth look at Rick Joyner’s teachings through an exposition of his book “The Final Quest”
Christian The Sinking Of The Los Angeles BasinOff-site Link A look at the Joyner/Jones prophecies regarding earthquakes and nuclear bombs in California
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– Book Revies –
Christian The Final Quest – A Review and CritiqueOff-site Link (Contra) by Eric S. Weiss. Thorough and well-reasoned.
Christian A review of the book “The Final Quest”Off-site Link by Richard Engstrom
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– Media –
Aberrational, Heretical, Heterodox, Suborthodox or Unorthodox Bob Jones/Rick JoynerOff-site Link Billed as a prophetic message for 1998, given December 31, 1997. Includes judgement prophecies increasingly typical of today’s renewal and revival movements (e.g. LA is to be leveled by earthquakes AND nuclear bombs; the Mississipi will be 35 miles wide…). Check the date, and the time-schedules hinted at. (Nine months: this movement is always talking about spiritual pregnancy, things born in the spirit, etc. One of the manifestations looks and sounds like someone giving birth).

Note: regarding this message, see the article “Prophetic Mandate – Levels of Integrity, Truthfulness, and Responsibility” – a public rebuke of Rick Joyner and Bob Jones for false prophecy. The article includes a transcript of a section missing from the tape…

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– News Articles Database –
» Database of archived news items
(Includes items added between Oct. 25, 1999 and Jan. 31, 2002. See about this database)

Newer items:
» Rick Joyner News Tracker.
» Other news items in which Rick Joyner is mentioned.

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– See Also –
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– Sites –
Aberrational, Heretical, Heterodox, Suborthodox or Unorthodox MorningstarOff-site Link Rick Joyner’s official site
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– Quotes –
One of the greatest hazards affecting maturing prophets is the erroneous interpretation of the Old Testament exhortation that if a prophet ever predicted something which did not come to pass he was no longer to be considered a true prophet (see Deut. 18:20-22). The warning was that if this happened, the prophet had been presumptuous and the people were not to fear him. If one predicts something in the name of the Lord and it does not come to pass, he probably has spoken presumptuously and needs to be repented of, but that does not make him a false prophet. No one could step out in the faith required to walk in his calling if he knew that a single mistake would ruin him for life.
The Prophetic Ministry, The Morning Star Prophetic Newsletter, Rick Joyner, n.d., Vol 3, No. 2, pg. 2.
Bob [Jones] was told that the general level of prophetic revelation in the church was about 65% accurate at this time. Some are only about 10% accurate, a very few of the most mature prophets are approaching 85% to 95% accuracy. Prophecy is increasing in purity, but there is still a long way to go for those who walk in this ministry. This is actually grace for the church now, because 100% accuracy in this ministry will bring a level of accountability to the church which she is too immature to bear at this time; it would result in too many ‘Ananias and Sapphiras.’ That so many the (sic) prophetic ministries are still missing so much is also meant to work humility and wisdom in them so that they will be able to handle the authority and power coming in the near future.
The Prophetic Ministry, The Morning Star Prophetic Newsletter, Rick Joyner, n.d., Vol 3, No. 2, pg. 4
What is about to come upon the earth is not just a revival, or another awakening; it is a veritable revolution. The vision was given in order to begin to awaken those who are destined to radically change the course, and even the very definition of Christianity. The dismantling of organizations and disbanding of some works will be a positive and exhilarating experience for the Lord’s faithful servants. A great company of prophets, teachers, pastors and apostles will be raised up with the spirit of Phineas…
Rick Joyner, “The Harvest”
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