WHAT REALLY HAPPENED IN LAKELAND? Todd Bentley Interviewed on GOD TV
January 20, 2013
For the first time since the Lakeland Revival ended in August 2008, GOD TV founders Rory and Wendy Alec interviewed Todd Bentley of Fresh Fire Ministries and asked the hard questions we all want to know… WHAT REALLY HAPPENED IN LAKELAND?
LIVE from their Jerusalem studios, Rory Alec indicates this interview has seemed long overdue, yet it is right on-time according to God’s timetable. Many, including GOD TV (especially Wendy), took much persecution for their association with Todd Bentley when the public became aware of Todd’s marriage problems, subsequent divorce and finally, his remarriage to his new wife Jessa.
Todd Bentley is asked many direct questions during this interview that many have no doubt been curious to hear answered. “Did you actually commit adultery?” “Were you having a physical relationship while you were married?” But by and large the overall question was “What happened?”
Admitting and agreeing with Wendy that the first three months of the revival (later called the Lakeland Outpouring) were pure and without sin, Bentley admits that while it wasn’t yet public knowledge, he had separated from his wife in early July 2008. The healings and miracles that happened in Lakeland were real and all God. Bentley points out that God’s miracles continued in spite of his sin because the revival was about Jesus, not about Todd Bentley. But Todd knew that he was in error and needed to step down. At that point, other evangelists began to preach the services instead of Todd as Todd got much needed rest, but also made the decision to finally go public with what was happening in his marriage. Bentley shares openly and transparently about his personal struggles and state of mind during this time.
Bentley then shares about the offer from Rick Joyner and Bill Johnson to oversee his restoration and how he saw the heart of the Father in these two men of God when so many others had turned away from him.
Many wonder about Todd’s former wife Shonnah and where she stands on all of this today. Included in the interview was a phone conversation with her family pastor Brent Borthwick (http://windword.ca/leadership/) who gave a statement on her behalf. He stated that she has forgiven Todd and gives her blessing on his continued ministry and calling of God on his life.
Also included was a phone interview with Rick Joyner regarding Todd’s healing and his response to restoration. He said he believes Todd completely submitted himself to correction and restoration and as a result has a stronger foundation today than many.
During the show, Todd refers to having marriage problems prior to the Lakeland Revival and speaks of the attempts that were made to bring healing. He talks about Bill Johnson’s support in helping to mend his marriage. Confident the marriage had been restored to a level that would endure, Todd began to travel again in ministry with great anointing. Here is a link to a letter from Bill Johnson sent to Rick Joyner in 2011 which confirms this: http://www.morningstarministries.org/resources/special-bulletins/2011/update-todd-bentley-note-bill-johnson#.UPxJ2Gf8iSo
As Christians we have no problem forgiving a sinner when they come to Christ. But can you forgive them more than once? What about after they become a Christian and mess up? What about after they become a leader and mess up? Are we able to see a true heart of repentance in someone and forgive them again? And again, if necessary?
Where does your heart stand when it comes to forgiving a Christian (leader or non-leader) when they mess up? In reality, are any of us above being deceived by the evil one and making mistakes?
The answer to this and any questions we have goes back to the coined phrase: “What would Jesus do?” Whatever Jesus would do, should be what we do also.
God forgave Peter after he denied him three times. God forgave David after he committed adultery with Bathsheba, had her husband killed and married her. God even allowed David to remain King after his true repentance and then allowed David and Bathsheba’s son Solomon to become King.
Matthew 18:21-22 “Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”
This interview on GOD TV was an incredible, pure display of the Father’s heart of forgiveness and restoration. Through tears, Bentley admitted his sin, repented before the public, and asked their forgiveness. Additionally, Wendy Alec publicly forgave Todd Bentley for the persecution she and GOD TV received as a result of Todd’s sin. And following Jesus’ instructions in Matthew 5:44, Wendy also publicly forgave and blessed her enemies who had persecuted her and GOD TV, as well as asked their forgiveness for GOD TV’s role in any wounding they may have experienced.
Matthew 5:44a “But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven.”
If you missed the broadcast, GOD TV likely will be re-airing it and possibly posting it in their ON DEMAND viewings. It is definitely a must-watch broadcast for anyone, especially those affected by the consequences of Todd Bentley’s choices. This broadcast offers a much needed platform for healing and closure. The Lord surely is faithful as we see how His grace is truly sufficient and His power really can be made perfect in our weaknesses.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
This post is not intended to elevate Todd Bentley, it is promoting the UNDENIABLE message of grace and forgiveness through this interview I saw today. Even if Todd Bentley turns out to be a fraud in the future, or he falls into sin again, I stand by what I posted here today and what I witnessed on this broadcast. It was genuine. People are not perfect, can fall prey to the enemy and can make many mistakes. But the key is TRUE repentance. We must pray for Todd that the enemy’s traps do not ensnare him again.
NOTE: Comments were once welcomed and people were entitled to agree or disagree with this post. However, I would not approve negative comments that did not carry a spirit of love. I read them, but did not publish them on my blog. Sadly, I got tired of reading the ugly, hateful, critical, bashing comments that many who profess Christianity were posting. So I closed the comments.
NOTE 2: This is being added on October 30, 2013. Since this particular blog post continues to get hundreds of views per week, I wanted to add another layer of conversation about Todd Bentley, his restoration and his return to ministry. Here is Rick Joyner talking about it on PROPHETIC PERSPECTIVES: http://www.morningstartv.com/prophetic-perspective-current-events/messengers-power.
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