David wrote at 2007-06-14 05:44:11
In short, the Potter's House is a cult.
A cult is any organization that systematically compromises a persons ability to have a relationship with God. A 'Christian' cult is one that claims to be doing things 'God's way', but in practice compromises a persons ability to have a relationship with God. The Potter's House follows the discipleship/shepherding heresy. The central pillar of Potter's House theology is the headship doctrine, where a single human leader acts with God's authority over the believer's life. What this means in practice is that to obey God is to obey the human headship (the pastor). And therefore members do it unquestioningly. Furthermore, as God's authority in the local church, the pastor is accountable to no-one in the church. He has no equal and his life is opaque, because he cannot be questioned, for to question him is tantamount to questioning God.
The headship doctrine, as it is called, has no support whatsoever in the New Testament. All proof texts used to support it are taken grossly out of context. Eph 5:23 eloquently states what entails Biblical headship:
Eph 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.
Does a husband share the responsibility of being the headship of his wife? Of course not! But consider the above verse carefully. Paul equates the husbands headship over the wife as Christ's over the church, which is over all believers. Would Christ share that responsibility? The connecting word 'as' in this verse renders the answer to this question; of course not. But according to Potter's House theology, Christ does not just share the responsibility of His Headship of the believer, He completely delegates it to human authority, to the supposed 'pastor'. This is an outrage and nullifies much of what Christ did on the cross. For on the cross Christ finally did away with human headship, the Levitical priesthood, and ushered in a new covenant, where all believers have equal access to the throne of grace, to God.
Therefore, the Potter's House is a cult because it compromises a persons ability to have a relationship with God, because it places human leaders between man and God. Consider Jesus' denunciation of the Pharisees:
Matt 23:13 "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the kingdom of heaven in men's faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let those enter who are trying to.
This may be helpful:
- God's purpose was set out in the garden, where He was in direct fellowship with man.
- Sin entered and that fellowship was lost.
- As an interim solution God appointed human heads for His people (the Levitical priesthood)
- Christ restored God's plan for direct fellowship with man.
- The Potter's House, via the headship doctrine, implements a type of Levitical priesthood, thereby nullifying Christ's work.
Hope this helps.
Tim Dyer wrote at 2007-11-10 09:10:18
Actually it is not a cult, but people that only have religion and not Jesus will tell you that because they are not used to a REAL relationship with Jesus Christ. Either that, or they're bitter which can cause all kinds of heart ache. I've never heard the gospel preached how its supposed to be until I came here. Of course, we are not a perfect church not our we the only church with saved, born again Christians. If your hearts not right with God, or if it is, come out and visit us. We are not associated with the T.D. Jakes Churches. We also go by "The Door" and "Victory Chapel" depending on where your located. Pastor Mitchell is in charge of our fellowship.
A person w/concern for the victims of the P.H. wrote at 2008-05-14 16:11:46
I was involved in a Potters House church for 7 years and became emotionally and spiritually sick. In the beginning I was "love bombed" and felt like I had the best of friends. But I quickly learned that the environment is very controlling. They teach that if you don't "tithe" you will go to hell. They occupied the majority of my time. It was like you could be saved and then lost, saved and lost, and I never felt I was "good enough" no matter how much I tried to go by the churchs teaching. To be in ministry you could not have a t.v., and also we were alienated from family. I would strongly recommend people not to get involved. Also, if you leave, you are shunned and preached about. They will tell you that God planted you there and if you leave you will lose your "destiny", which scares a lot of people and so they end up staying, as I did for way longer than I should have, even though I knew something was very wrong. Although they may appear to be christian, they are very controlling and cultic.
Elizabeth wrote at 2008-07-09 07:26:22
Scanning the web I came across this thread. It is very relevant to a current issue in Australia at the moment. A national TV program, Four Corners, focussed on the Brisbane Christian Fellowship and the devastation it has produced. It sounds just like the Potter's House. "The central pillar of Potter's House theology is the headship doctrine, where a single human leader acts with God's authority over the believer's life." In BCF their central pillar is also the headship doctrine. In fact they wrote a book called, "Lift up your heads", The Coming of the Gospel of Headship." It is sad to see how much pain and division this doctrine has caused in so many churches in so many places. Read http://www2b.abc.net.au/tmb/Client/MessageList.aspx?b=37&t=1&te=True
to see over a hundred responses to the Four Corners program, The God of Broken Hearts. The were all victims of this "headship" doctrine that twists the Scriptures.
PHKid wrote at 2009-11-26 13:20:13
There is a lot of sound biblical teaching at the Potters House, but once you're in for a while you will start to be influenced by the bad aspects of it (whether you realize it or not). These bad aspects are beliefs that:
- Potters House is the only fellowship doing the real will of God
- Most other churches are only religious and don't measure up in some way to PH, and will occasionally be mocked over the pulpit
- You will start feeling like you always have to be at every PH event otherwise you will be labelled "lukewarm" or not "on fire". This will in turn distort your view of God, in that you feel you have to continually be doing spiritual things for the Kingdom in order to stay in God's good books.
- You will start isolating yourself from unsaved family and friends, and will always put church in front of family gatherings. God should come first in your life, but not necessarily church activities or services. Family needs to generally take a higher priority than church.
- You will start to believe that almost all people who leave the Potters House are "in rebellion" or not right with God. You will think that there is almost never a good reason to leave the Potters House.
There's many more aspects which are not covered here. If you're in long enough, you won't really notice these beliefs creeping up on you, and you won't notice how judgmental you become of those you don't believe measure up to PH standards.
For more info, Google "potters house forums".
Ed wrote at 2010-08-27 20:15:00
When Jesus was on this earth many said, he was casting out demons by the ruler of demons. Many accused Jesus Christ. Jesus said,"If you love your father or mother, brother or sister more than me is not worthy of me". GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, THAT WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM SHOULD NOT PERISH, BUT SHALL HAVE ETERNAL LIFE. (John 3:16).
Potter's House is not a cult. Read the bible and you will know taht Jesus is the only way to heaven. Potter's house is saving souls on this earth...
Darion wrote at 2010-09-14 01:29:26
I can appreciate your enthusiasm. I was in the same church as you for many years. Essantially, the plan is to bring in people and treat them really well, befriend them. After they have let their guard down then ministry standards are placed upon them. For instance, you cannot date and be alone, you cannot date without permission, you cannot attend movies or rent movies, you are not supposed to hang out with friends that are not in the church (people from other churches are carnel supposedly), the list goes on and on. Most of your time needs to be accounted for as well. If you start to slack your pastor will pull you to the side and ask what is going on with you. As long as you say you're trying he'll likely leave you alone. If you decide to ask detailed questions, he'll say that the devil is talkign to you. This church is filled with some of the most close minded people I have ever met. It is designed to make it so you listen soley to what your pastor says and dont question it. I could give you alist of many pastors that have slept with other pastors wives while still pastoring. This church is beautiful on the outside but once you scrape off a few layers you'll soon realize it is a collection of people trying to justify their own existence and feel like they are accomplishing something in life. If you look around, there are virtually no people in that church that have accomplished anything with themselves. Ask yourself why is that. I can go on forever about pastors and leaders looking at porn and rebuking other for doing it. The list is unending. Its a church full of hypocrisy. Find a new church before you end up regretting time wasted like myself. Beware, once oyu leave you'll be labeled and given a title and also mocked from the pulpit. You'll also lose your friend because they arent supposed to talk to you unless they are trying to convert you back.
sammie.jae wrote at 2010-10-28 15:13:23
I attend victory chapel currently and they saved my life.....yes i do spend a majority of my time with them, but its my choice. Never once have i been shunned for not going to outreach, or missing a service here or there. My pastor is probably one of the most forgiving and wonderful people i know. i have seen 3 people leave the church since i have been there 2 were kicked out for there sins, and honestly i agree with pastors logic on making them leave, although at first i didn't but then he explained that if he allows one person to get away with fornicating, lying, just sins in general what kind of example is that setting??? the problem people have in this church and the reason people call it a cult, is that you are held accountable for your life. my pastor has said to me on multiple occasions that he cant force me to do anything his way, that everybody has free will but he will be the first to come to you if he thinks you are doing wrong, and not living for god, so you can make it right before its to late. the problem with this generation is that nobody is held accountable..and please don't think i am an old lady because i said this generation because I am only 22. Victory Chapel is a good place to be, their are genuinely caring people here. i feel sorry for those who say otherwise. oh yes and back to those who left. one of the 2 that were kicked out, he went on a spiritual mission, as he called it. he went from church to church trying to find himself again. witchin 3 weeks he came back "home" yes he had a talk with pastor but that was only so he could reassure that the problems were gone. and can i just say that these 2 people who were kicked out were never EVER once mentioned on the pulpit. NEVERRRRR. there business is there business. the girl who left on her own terms was moving to another state, and if we were truly a cult she would have been pressured to go to the victory chapel that is in her county, but instead it was just make sure you find a house of god, that makes you feel comfortable, and don't forget who you belong to(GOD) no gossip, no hatred and ALLLLL of us as the church still talk to her on almost a daily basis. I don't know I could go on and on and argue all of these statements but its not worth the time. until your heart is good with god and you can realize that this is GOSSIP which is something i keep seeing as i read all of these posts and not just that but you need to wake up and repent. accept your faults and what you did wrong and forgive yourself as god forgave you. that is what we believe at my victory chapel and anybody who leaves is always welcome back as soon as they take accountability for there sins. and don't try to say you were perfect when you left because nobody is perfect and it was something YOU were doing that got you kicked out or it was your own conviction that made you leave because your not ready for god to move in your life yet. hopefully one day you see this and return to church whether it is cfm or any other house of god, just find him and never let go!!! good luck and god bless
sadly deceived wrote at 2011-06-11 02:47:04
i also attended a potters house church this year thinking i had found a true church that preached the truth. they instantly took me in and were like my best friends straight away. the small church did everything together constantly meeting 4- 5 times a week at the church and pastors home. i trusted them, but eberything was great until i disagreed with the pastor. they refused to let me breast feed my daughter in thier church even though i had always done it discreatly. and they taught that we should not give money to tv evangelists or overseas missions but all our giving should be to the potters house. when i disagreed with the pastor because i have been partners with various tv trusted tv evangelists for years, he started to get mad.i cryed when they acted like breast feeding my child was wrong. but he didnt care, had no compassion and accused me of acting like a spoilt child. i told them i couldnt attend a church that wouldnt understand my childs needs. he didnt care. i left after 2 months . all of a sudden these people who had been my best friends, didnt care that they had hurt me so much. theres no compassion in that church. every thing is ok until you dont let yourself be pushed around, and you stand up for yourself, thats when things go wrong, and you see these people are not who you think they are.
Iamoutnow wrote at 2012-12-13 21:30:03
I spent 18 yrs in The PH,Victory Chapel,The Door. It is a bible based Cult.I Pastored,Assisted,and Directed in this fellowship.I ignored the signs from the very beginning,being I was not a prior Church goer,I really knew no different.Most of the Pastors are not humble.Leaders are novice.Councils members do not protect the flock.The are cover ups behind the scenes.Immorality is covered up.They say you can leave anytime,but discuss leaving with the Pastor or members and you will be encourage not to do it,you will be out of the will of God.You choose the church over your marraige.Disobey Headship you are a Rebel.People with TV's are looked down on.Must sign a contract to Pastor.Your church can be taken away from you by headship.I tested headship,they were very pervasive of doing it his way.Deviate from the pattern receive warning,due it enough ,go back to the mother church.READ TWISTED SCRIPTURES by Mary Alice Chrnalogar.I did not want to believe I was in a cult....I had to get out..Many Pastors are caught up,established,they do not want to start over.Many thought leaving 4 Square and AG was a wise choice until you come under the controlling headship.Enter the inner circle and you will eventually find out the True Colors.Of the 18 years I seen a lot of shattered lives fron this Shepparding Movement.
The good fig wrote at 2012-12-29 07:38:58
The Potters House is a cult. I was a Pastor, I held all the roles in the church. But the shepherding doctrine/ headship has hurt so many people's lives. It has destroyed relationships, marriages and lives. If you are in the potters house you need to look beyond the surface of Friday or Saturday night music scenes, witnessing, conferences, men's discipleship. Mitchell himself spread two things that destroyed a work of God. He began to judge other churches and people. He preached it over the pulpit. All the others leaders stumbled over this. Second, he began to make comments that if you disagree with headsip you will become a rebel. No where in the bible does it state that you cannot have differences with your pastor. Our headship is Jesus Christ. Mitchell tried to sue a couple who was pioneering in Fiji Islands and he lost. You haven't heard that yet. David Vicary was wrongly accused of something he did not do. Mitchell rebelled against four square leadership in the 70s. Mitchell is the seed that planted rebellion. He has done much harm to the kingdom of God. He has diminished the majesty and glory to the potters house people. I know because I use to be just like them until Jesus showed me the hypocrisy of this organization. They follow the tenets that they want to believe in the bible, yet they ignore the greater teaching that Jesus taught. Which is greater to follow a set of beliefs that the potters house holds dear or to follow the whole bible. We are to serve Jesus. He is the head of our lives. The other things that I hate about this organization is the always talk bad about the last pastor that was leading the flock, they talk about you over the pulpit that you are a rebel, they constantly are pandering to their flock for more money. Trying to make you feel bad that you have money even though you tithe. The hypocrisy never stops with this organization.
Child of God wrote at 2013-03-15 13:24:24
I'm in agreement. After attending for 2 years - knowing some think was right for the majority of the time - I'm in agreemnent - IT'S A CULT
psy wrote at 2013-03-16 06:04:12
how can you say NEVER when you're not always there?
The place IS a manipulative cult; from the emotionally evocative guitar arpeggios played during altar call to the milieu control practiced routinely therein. . .
Isn't it now obvious to you!
Still Love Jesus wrote at 2013-03-22 03:17:46
PLEASE BE WARNED - THE POTTERS HOUSE IS A CULT
I have just had a look at this thread and i can confirm all the allegations in this post against the Potters House are completely and utterly true.
I attended the potters house in Sydney Australia for more than 15 years. I was deeply involved in all ministries. I can vouch for all that has been said here and there is much that has been left unsaid.
I can say that many if not all Pastors preach false doctrine, leaders HIDE blatant sin or abuse of the saints, hypocrisy, lies, deception, clicks and we can go on and on. The Potters house is a CULT. The lies that they speak not only about what God has to say but also the lies they speak against those who have left church is disgusting.
STAY WELL AWAY FROM THIS CULT
NowISee wrote at 2013-12-29 02:09:00
I too spent many years in this cult. Now I can look back and see how I used to be a pharisee while in that cult. Wasted many years of my life and gave much of my money to them. God forgive them.
Confused churches wrote at 2014-11-18 12:52:54
Not quite sure what to think about PH, seeing strange things happening amongst the congregation. Last week at Sunday service, we were made to go to the alter. In a stern voice pastor says, "everyone to the alter now". So everyone looked at one another and proceeded to the alter. Very uncomfortable feeling. Then, before service a 3 yrs old asked me if I speak in tongues? I replied, ah no. She says, I do, as pastor says let's bow our heads and pray. The 3 yr old, is mimicking her parents speaking in tongues. I am not getting a good feeling here about this. My husband tells me, well looks like you find yourself a cultist church. I don't this is funny and I sure don't like the vibes I getting from this church. I can't seem to concentrate on my personal prayers to GOD because of the loud praying in tongues all around me. I found out that the church gives a tithe to the mother church which makes no sense to me. This PH doesn't have any type of tax accountability, no 501(3)c or some type of DBA.
SEan wrote at 2014-11-28 01:34:09
I left Potters House today after struggling for many months with many unsettling feelings and observations. My 6 year old felt so bad after every sermon he would go up to get saved again even though he went up at the morning service as well. He was terrified he had upset god? He's 6 for goodness sake. I questioned the pastor and that was not a good situation and his wife got very upset at the thought she may have to go through tribulations for christ, i asked why the pastor did not go to the hospitals to heal little children and sick people, i asked why tithing is no longer required except by their church. I asked why speaking in tongues involved talking gibberish whilst biblically it was to speak foreign languages. I was not popular and that was abundantly clear, he wanted me to leave my house and children (i had been with my partner 15 years) for 6 months until we got married...i didn't as it was confusing for my children and an outrageous demand. The last straw was being checked up on by the pastors wife at work and frequent visits unannounced to the house etc. This is not a good church to be involved with for so many legitimate reasons it is a cult, if you are thinking of leaving but feel you will be letting god down and you are hanging in there i urge you to watch strange fire on youtube and it will become clear that you are in danger. Also if you stay too long the brainwashing and false doctrine will render you incapable of leaving. There is hope god will not forsake you and today i feel like a massive weight has been lifted. This is a genuine appeal to anyone who is thinking of leaving Potters House is a curse on your life and cultic, watch the video sermons for clarification.
Katrina wrote at 2015-02-26 15:17:16
Some of you sound utterly confused n some have some very valid points. I used to attend the PH but was kicked out over a year ago. I I did not deserve it. Since then God has helped me realise I lot of things n re-establish my foundation in him. I now attend a great church where God resides. One thing God showed me through this is to trust wholly in Him because humans will only let u down. The PH is full of humans and we fail from time to time, not saying what they do or have done is right, but God tells us to forgive. Seventy times seven! Holding onto grudges only causes deep wounds and God wants us to move on with our lives. We will give an account of our lives so live it to the best of ur ability and let go.
God bless n may we point ppl to a God who is not limited to our church mindsets. Someone has to show them the way.
former_PH cult member wrote at 2016-05-27 14:23:01
I too once belonged to this organization. It is a man-made & manipulated organization where all the money flows up to the main church in Arizona. So the more baby churches are planted, the more money will be flowing up. They beat people over the head about tithing even though tithing is not required. If it was required, it would be paid only to Levites who are not allowed to have any possessions. The bible tells us to be cheerful givers and not to give out of compulsion. If that's the case why do they always have to give you a guilt trip before collecting money every service?
I really hope more people begin to wake up. The pastor is not your headship. Jesus Christ is the one who covers you. There is no mediator between God and man.
Also, anytime somebody leaves the church you will only hear the pastor's side of the story. You are told not to associate with the ones who left because they might infect you with a rebellious spirit. If that's so, then were you really their friend? Or were you just acting like you were. Do you know how hard it is for those who leave and are shunned by all their former friends? If you don't care, I hope it doesn't happen to you someday.