Monthly Archives: June 2018

An Embryonic Idea

I’m sure they are out there, but in all the protests and screaming, I have yet to hear an idea, solution, strategy how to handle the 600,000 illegal immigrants who enter the USA each year. Nor have I heard a suggestion what to do about the 20,000 children and teens who are roaming our country from Central America. Incidentally, of the 20,000, only 2000 came to this country with their parent(s). “…ripped from their mother’s arms” is predictable incendiary rhetoric.

“Unaccompanied minors.” That phrase has unsettled me since I met some “unaccompanied minors” in the aftermath of the Sudan crisis.

“There was no place then, and few places ever, that offered a more stimulating environment for creativity than Florence (Italy) in the 1400s” (Leonardo da Vinci, Walter Isaacson)

With the modeling done by the Guinness family, A British soap company (Lever Brothers-?) and the Cadbury people during the Industrial Revolution in Ireland and England, I have an idea. It is embryonic. Those companies built villages for their employees with a plan for improving their hygiene and ability to build a life. They attempted to touch every aspect including education in every aspect of life.

The Creator of the universe has not run out of ideas, especially in the areas that Jesus declared redemption and creation. (Isaiah 61 & Luke 4) With a vision of a 21st Century Florence—“stimulating environment of creativity.” I also refer you to Greensburg, Kansas. We did 2-3 extended meetings there as well as a couple one-niters. When the city was destroyed by tornado, they rebuilt it with a vision for the future. Technology and the electric grid underground, for example.

Looking at the crowd on any day trying to gain entrance into our country, how can we tell which ones of those kids are the “best” that President Trump says we want? Some have not been parented. Most have not been tutored and prepared for life in our culture. We are given the opportunity to shape them and train them to become the best. We cannot forget that in those crowds are some of the “worst.” This sounds like a ridiculous hope for utopia. More than that, in fact, it is battle for the souls of the lost and for the soul of our country—the City on a Hill.

A vision keeps coming to me—I cannot say where it comes from. I see new cities and villages and renovated rural towns not just to house, but to heal, train, educate and teach community. Others have tried this—(ie. the high rise buildings in Chicago). As smart as Americans are, we can learn why they didn’t work and then build on their purest ideas.

Perhaps, a better approach is to go to the source of the problem. Take all this to Central American nations—“You shall bless the nations—Genesis 12) Not to colonize sovereign nations, but to plant resources, leaders and a vision of economics, education. Plant the 7 Mountain vision. What about Daniel in Babylon? Joseph in Egypt? Early Christians in the Roman Empire?

I am waiting for the results of the weekend call for people to leave their churches if the pastor didn’t address the border situation. The “call” sounded like a demand to attack our government and president. My inclination is to issue a call to leave churches where spiritual leaders do attack the government and president. Leave to establish communities that will build. Let’s make Isaiah 58 our stimulation.

Let’s announce to the world with the 7 Spheres of influence and authority (legal and military) that this is who we are and if you want to come to USA, then this is the path to participation. You are welcome to become one of us. If you see yourself being assimilated into our values and society, then bring your best tools, ideas, culture. We don’t need for you to try to change our country into Honduras or El Salvador. We want your best traditions and skills to make us better. If you can see yourself in that role, then come join us and work for the American dream.

One of my mentors said to his children, “If I start swearing, run! My choice of vulgar language means I have run out of ideas and ability to rationally communicate.” Some of the current actions and language in our country on both sides of any conversation is described in that statement.

In our legitimate defense of what we treasure, we have allowed the American vision to grow dim. The opposition is about deconstruction—tearing down. How shall we stand against the invasion which the southern border is only a symptom?

It is an embryonic idea. The Creator/Redeemer is found in the Kingdom of God, of which the Church is a local outpost. God works through the Kingdom and Kingdom people.

Your idea? Your suggestion: what amendments to this? If this experiment of “by the people…” what will you contribute? If building a new city is not possible, how can your segment of the Kingdom do it locally? Perhaps God has brought you to the Kingdom for a time such as this!

©2018 D. Dean Benton dean@deanbenton.org

Will Spiritual Awakening Touch North Korea?

In case you didn’t know.

• World Vision and Samaritan’s Purse were founded by Bob Pierce in response to post-Korean war orphans. Pierce left nothing of his life on the court—perhaps foolishly. His total commitment to mission cost him his marriage, his ministry, his family and his health. He was attached to Korea with his last breath. His daughter wrote an insightful biography: Man of Vision, by Marilee Pierce-Dunker.

• The Korean Orphan choir came to our city in the 50s-60s and some came to our church—as I remember. Pierce brought the choir to the USA to build awareness and support. I have been curious about the spiritual state of Korea since then, and when we started working in churches that shared their buildings with Korean congregations—then when Pastor Cho and his church became a world-wide sensation. Then the Methodist Korean church in Seoul, Korea became huge by any measure.

The Korean Church has been graced (“You shall bless the nations….) to teach us about prayer and evangelism. Twenty-seven thousand missionaries have been sent from South Korea to cities around the world. The mountain top prayer gatherings are a phenomenon. There may be some, but I know nothing in USA to compare.

Some weeks ago, I sensed that Kim Yong Un had a spiritual awakening and wondered if that could be true and if so, how. A pastor from South Korea filled in blanks for me. Before the Korean War, North Korea was the spiritual center of Korea, experiencing awakenings and revivals. When it became evident that the war would change North Korea, the pastors went south. They became leaders of what became the SoKo mega-churches, while the NoKo communists destroyed the church buildings. The Church went underground to sing silently and to whisper their prayers.

In the early 70s, the North Korean government was collapsing. The SoKo churches built an evangelism plan to take supplies and the Gospel north. A central leadership of all denominations built a plan to plant—replant—3000 churches. The collapse did not happen—I think it survived because of China’s intervention. The SoKo churches worked on their plan of taking the Gospel to their families and fellow Koreans for four years. The plan is still in place.

In a Christianity Today interview, the SoKo pastor said that every SoKo church prays in every public worship event for the North and for government leadership.

The freedom in SoKo has brought a huge economic lift. Lance Wallnau tells mighty stories of his leadership conferences and God’s call to business and government. Many of your high technology devices are from Korea. Many business leaders are Jesus people.

This very well could be Korea’s time for breath-taking conversions—beginning with Kim Jong-un. It will take some time for NoKo to break out of the slavery mindset, much like Israel coming out of Egypt.

We know Koreans. They are uniquely wired in the Spirit. We have talked to Koreans in the USA on assignment and have heard them sing and pray. They are especially graced for evangelism and making connections. I sense beneath all the horrors over many decades, there is a Kingdom foundation that is soon going to push through the surface.

How does a born again Kim Jon-un make that public? How does he make restitution? Who will disciple him? Soul-stirring to contemplate and pray for.

Jesus, we celebrate the foundation of belief in North Korea. I speak Kim Jong-un’s name to You. Holy Spirit, however You work the redemption call and conviction, we invite you to enter his world and secret heart places to reveal the Father, the Son and Yourself. Thank you and praise You for commitments that no one should perish. Let it be so!

Dean dean@deanbenton.org

What I’ve Heard this Morning

1. Research shows the best thing that a father can do for his son: Hang out with him. It is during the hanging out time that values & virtues are shared and teaching moments occur. The kid learns he is important and valued. The kid learns that what he thinks and wants to do is important. That, of course demands a certain kind of dad.

2. Sixteen percent of USA population has IQ of 85 or lower. That restricts what can be learned and how they must be taught. Some is genetic connected. IQ is not static. EQ can be a dynamic life-enhancer.

3. Head Start was a disappointment. Those enrolled in the pre-school level had an early advantage, but by 4th or 5th grade it had disappeared. The non-academic by-products of Head Start were measured. The enrolled in Head Start were more apt to graduate, go on to college, not get pregnant and stay out of trouble. Studies say the reason is the socialization.

All of that is attainable and without great financial cost. All we need is families and leaders with a vision of and for the next generation.

D. Dean Benton dean@deanbenton.org

More at Stake

The 7 Mountain Mandate has an odd beginning. In 1975, two major leaders of youth movements were to meet for the first time. Bill Bright of Campus Crusade for Christ and Loren Cunningham of Youth With A Mission (YWAM). On the night before their meeting, each man had received a message from God, both about the same subject. Bright was shown 7 Mind Molders and Cunningham was told about 7 spheres of influence. (Google this for more info)

Lance Wallnau picked up that thinking after a conversation with Cunningham—as I remember.
The spheres were listed as:

Business—including medical community
Government
Media
Entertainment—sports, movies, television, music
Family
Education
Religion

Wallnau draws seven mountains and says the people & movements that control the top of each mountain determines the narrative and influences, if not controls, culture and other mountains. The 7 Mountain Mandate has expanded and now has many leaders and distractors. The thinking behind this movement makes sense to me. The most fascinating element is Wallnau’s calling them mountains and nations. His suggestion is that Jesus’ command to “Disciple nations…” is about geo-political regions and these seven spheres of influence.

God told Abraham that he would “bless nations.” It was prophetic and a command.

I saw the picture and read the words of Robert DeNiro at the Tony Awards. He used the f….word twice to express his hatred for President Trump. His raised fists and his facial look was an expression of hatred. The audience of entertainers applauded and congratulated DeNiro.

Which influencers are molding the minds and dictating the narrative and attempting to solely control the actions of the other “Mountains”? Media and entertainment.

When we say that “The church” or “Education” is under attack, who is the attacker? Where did the money come from to fund the high school march?

The challenge is to influence or be the mind molders. I do not want Religion to control the six other spheres. Either Islam or Evangelicals. The commission to disciple nations includes running for political office. Look at the attack on those who carry a contrary message or interpretation. The attack is guttural, brutish and without restraint. Not many are willing to put family, reputation, and every piece of life on the line. God does work in government. He puts a Joseph in a powerful place. Note that Joseph was empowered because he was qualified.

South Korea is a bright example of Christians influencing business, education, government, ect. We met a Korean couple who talked about the prayer practices of the Korean church. They go to prayer at 4:00a.m.. The lady said, “When we hear about people who go to prayer at 5:00, we assume they are backslidden.” The comment was accompanied by laughter and indication of how seriously they pray.

God has imbedded each of us with purpose, mission and passion. Some of us are called leadership in one of the 7 Spheres. The consequences are horrendous if we refuse or neglect.

There are Americans who are hoping for a failure in the Korean conversation. Others are seriously desiring an USA economical collapse to drive Trump out of office. They are willing to sacrifice everything we treasure to destroy the people they hate.

There are reasons to pray for the Korean summit. There is much at stake. And hearing God’s voice calling you to discipling nations.

©2018 D. Dean Benton dean@deanbenton.org