Rick Joyner

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Rick Joyner

Rick Joyner is a public speaker and author. He founded with his wife the MorningStar Ministries in 1985.[1] He was born in Raleigh, North Carolina in 1949[2] and grew up in Richmond, Virginia.[3]


Morningstar Ministries[edit]

Rick Joyner and his wife, Julie, founded MorningStar Ministries in Jackson, Mississippi in 1985.[4]

By the mid-1990s Joyner was president of MorningStar Publications, located at that time in Charlotte, North Carolina.[5]

By 1994, Joyner appeared in news reports[6] regarding his participation in plans to build a biblical theme park, in particular, with Reggie White, who had been unsuccessful in his attempts to purchase the Heritage USA theme park property.[7]

The ministry hosts multiple conferences annually, with Christians from across the country and globe attending.

In 1997 Joyner purchased 320 acres of land in Wilkes County, North Carolina near Moravian Falls and moved the headquarters of MorningStar there from Charlotte.[3]

In 2004 MorningStar purchased part of the Heritage USA complex (originally established by Jim Bakker and PTL in Fort Mill, South Carolina) for $1.6 million.[8] The complex has been renamed Heritage International Ministries Conference Center.[9][10] Joyner also promotes the "Kingdom Business Association" which is located in the same complex.[11]

Christ's Mandate for Missions (CMM) merged with MorningStar Missions in 2009. [12]

Advisory and other leadership roles[edit]

Joyner has been a part of the Apostolic-Prophetic Movement and an advocate for the Fivefold ministry and has been considered a leader in this movement since he published "The Harvest" in 1989, in which he predicted there would soon be a Prophetic Movement and a separate Apostolic Movement.[13] In the mid-1990s Joyner was one of the all-male members of the "International Advisors-At-Large" to the evangelical Christian women's organization Aglow International.[14]

Joyner is also the founder and president of "the Oak Initiative."[15] This non-profit organization is for Christians who desire "to Unite, Mobilize, Equip, and Activate Christians to be the salt and light they are called to be by engaging in the great issues of our time from a sound biblical worldview."[16]

Controversy[edit]

In 1998 Joyner's "MorningStar Ministries" was grossing $7 million a year, and that year it was denied a religious property tax exemption by the North Carolina Department of Revenue for an airplane, four tracts of vacant land, and two residential houses — one that Joyner lived in and one where Don Potter lived and had a recording studio.[17] Department director John C. Bailey said, "[w]ith MorningStar there are a lot of tracts with costly improvements that affect tax liability significantly... If we did not limit exemptions, it would increase the burden on people, like you and me, who own homes that are not affiliated with any group.” MorningStar appealed the Department of Revenue's denial.[18][needs update] Also, Joyner's MorningStar Fellowship Church filed a $20 million lawsuit against York County, South Carolina over the unfinished 21 story hotel on their property that Jim Bakker had started in the 80s. The latest news is that MSFC has filed an appeal of Judge Hall's ruling “that MorningStar has not provided substantial evidence to back up its claims.” The building has never been finished and the county found the church in default after they missed a deadline to show their ability to fund the project.[19]

Controversy has also accompanied Joyner's support for Canadian revivalist Todd Bentley. Bentley has claimed that God heals the sick, and sometimes even raises people from the dead in his meetings—including three people in Pakistan[20]—reports of which were carried by Morningstar TV[21][22] which is part of Joyner's Heritage International Ministries. ABC's Nightline[23][verification needed]) reporting concerning the "Lakeland Revival," before his marital problems became news, that "Not a single claim of Bentley's healing powers could be independently verified."[24] However, the Charlotte Observer reported on the same series of meetings, "The revival's media relations staff has tried to document healings. They e-mailed the Observer information on 15 people reportedly healed, providing phone numbers for each and noting that 12 had received medical verification. The Observer contacted five, plus three whose names were not provided, including Burgee. Each said God had healed them through, or related to, Bentley and the Lakeland services."[25][26]

Joyner's public relationship with Bentley began when he appeared on stage in Lakeland with other church leaders to “lay hands” on Bentley.[27] After Bentley's divorce from his wife in 2008,[28][29][30] Joyner decided to oversee the process of "restoring" Bentley along with Jack Deere and Bill Johnson.[31] Joyner made the announcement of the remarriage on March 9, 2009.[32][33] He also released a statement as to why he chose to be a part of this restoration.[34]

There has also been some controversy about Joyner joining the Knights of Malta: Order of Saint John (chartered 1888). Joyner released a long statement explaining who they are and why he joined.[35]

Joyner is a promoter of the Seven Mountain of Influence Theology, which advocates the need for Christians to be involved in leadership in the seven spheres of cultural influence.[36] Joyner promotes the ministry of Lance Wallnau who teaches on the 7 Mountains of Influence Theology. MorningStar Ministries carries a long list of materials by Wallnau.[37]

Joyner has tested positive for the COVID virus though he has claimed the US and South Korea were defeating it "through prayer."[38] His church is still holding services without social distancing or masks.[39]

Criticism of Rick Joyner's Book "The Final Quest"

Rick claims to have had many visions, including visions of famous deceased people in Heaven. Joyner is a professional writer but is vague sometimes when it comes to providing actual names of who he meets in his visions. There is an unspoken rule that when a person meets someone they know in a vision, they must provide the name of that person in the description of the vision they write about.[citation needed] We are left with the questions “Why does Joyner fail to provide names of some of those he meets? Is he worried about readers getting upset if the names are revealed?” Three examples are included below:

1. Reformer: "We were empty wretches by the end of our lives.....We could trust no one because we were living in such deception ourselves that we did not even trust each other.... But we, ourselves, secretly feared and despised everyone." (p. 108 Final Quest)

2. Reformer's Wife: "That was our demise, and it is the same for many who are here in the lowest place." (p. 113 Final Quest)

3. What Joyner said about the Modern Evangelist: "Then he began to tell me why he was in the lowest rank in heaven." (p. 117 Final Quest)

Confusing Theology in Rick Joyner's Books About His Visions

Joyner claims to be clearly within the mainstream Protestant arena but the theology in his books about his visions gets some readers confused. There are some quotes below to inspire discussion about Joyner's theology. He seems to some, to have mixed New Age thought with Christianity but it is up to readers to make their own personal opinions about this.

1. "I looked at the fire on the water and I saw that the water was composed of multitudes of beings - people." (p.41, The Torch and the Sword by Rick Joyner)

2. "As they (the evil horde) drank, they changed before our eyes. The hard, tortured, demonic looks softened into human faces. They kept changing until they were like pure children again. After they were transformed, they asked for vessels to take the water to the others in the evil horde." (p.162, The Torch and the Sword)

3. "Then the angel explained, "What you see with the eyes of your heart is more real than what you see with your physical eyes." (p.147, Final Quest)

4. Wisdom said "But this dream is more real than what you think of as real." (p.49, Final Quest)

5. Rick plunges a sword into his body and then says "My mind then began to awaken. Understanding began to grow within me until I felt like the universe was opened before me, perceiving and understanding its secrets." (pp. 83- 4, Torch and Sword)

6. Rick: "I could see that the sword was also alive. Even the gems were alive! " (p.81, Torch and Sword)

7. Female Statue: "The king and I are one." (p. 106, Final Quest)

8. A silver sword has the power to redeem. Rick is told by Christ to redeem people with the sword. (p.80, Torch and Sword)

9. Jesus: "If you were to fully have My mind you would be able to know everything about everyone you encounter, just as you have begun to experience here." (p.141, Final Quest)

10. The Man: "You can set people, cities, and even nations free with the light of this torch."

Rick: "I then noticed the torch was breathing- it was alive!  I grabbed it with both hands and a surge of power flowed through me as if I had completed some kind of electric circuit. My vision increased, my mind became even sharper, and I felt my strength growing." (p.36, Torch and Sword)

11. "Being awakened in this way, I began to realize everything in this place was alive- the trees and grass, but also in a strange way it seemed that the mountains themselves were alive. Even the clouds were somehow trying to speak."  (p.39, Final Quest)

12. "The water was alive" (p.40, Final Quest)

13. "I looked at the fire on the water and I saw the water was composed of multitudes of beings- people!" (p. 41 Final Quest)

In popular culture[edit]

In April 2013, Joyner and his daughter, Anna Jane Joyner, a climate activist, participated in the Showtime documentary Years of Living Dangerously, a 9-part series focused on climate change. In the fourth episode, celebrity Ian Somerhalder follows Anna Jane as she tries to persuade her father, a climate change denier, to change his mind about global warming.[40][41]

Personal life[edit]

Rick and his wife, Julie, have five children: Anna, Aaryn, Amber, Ben, and Sam.[42]

References[edit]

  1. ^ MorningStar Ministries, About MorningStar Ministries, Official Website, USA, Retrieved June 18, 2017
  2. ^ Stolberg, Mary (September 7, 1999). "Negativity Scene:Bias Affected Ruling, Leader Says". Winston-Salem Journal. p. A1.
  3. ^ a b Railey, John (December 20, 1997). "Ministry Based on Prophecy Sees Place in Wilkes County". Winston-Salem Journal. p. B9.
  4. ^ http://www.newreleasetoday.com/authordetail.php?aut_id=876
  5. ^ Chapman, Dan (June 2, 1994). "NFL Star Will Bring Message of Hope". The Charlotte Observer. p. 1A.
  6. ^ http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1994-06-19/business/9406190148_1_new-heritage-usa-theme-park-inner-city
  7. ^ Chandler, Charles (February 7, 1999). "Reggie White Envisions Religious Theme Park Near Charlotte". The Charlotte Observer. p. 1H.
  8. ^ Tribble, Sarah Jane (September 29, 2004). "Former PTL Land Goes to Ministry". The Charlotte Observer. p. 1Y.
  9. ^ HIMCC Staff (December 25, 2016). "Heritage". HeritageConferenceCenter.org. Fort Mill, SC: Heritage International Ministries Conference Center (HIMCC). Retrieved 25 December 2016.
  10. ^ https://www.google.com/maps/place/Heritage+International+Ministries+Conference+Center/@35.0604132,-80.912073,15z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x95aee40d1105862a!8m2!3d35.0604132!4d-80.912073
  11. ^ https://kbabiz.com/about-us/
  12. ^ http://eaglemissions.org/about/morningstar-missions/
  13. ^ The Harvest, pages 60-67 ISBN 978-1-59933-104-1
  14. ^ Griffith, R. Marie (2000). God's Daughters: Evangelical Women and the Power of Submission. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. p. 151. ISBN 9780520926172. Retrieved December 24, 2016.
  15. ^ http://www.theoakinitiative.org/board-members#.WVW5TOvytEY
  16. ^ http://www.theoakinitiative.org/our-purpose#.WVfy1evytEY
  17. ^ http://www.dornc.com/taxes/property/decisions/scans/wilkes/Morningstar%20Publications%2098PTC168,%20COA.pdf
  18. ^ Stolberg, Mary (September 7, 1999). "Tax Haven on Earth? Religious Groups Add Voices to Growing Chorus Seeking Exemptions". Winston-Salem Journal. p. A1.[full citation needed]
  19. ^ http://www.heraldonline.com/news/local/article12342179.html
  20. ^ http://www.christianpost.com/news/controversial-evangelist-todd-bentley-claims-3-raised-from-dead-in-pakistan-crusade-152907/
  21. ^ MorningStar Ministries Staff (September 28, 2015). "Three People Raised From the Dead in Pakistan" (excerpt of full video). Retrieved 2015-12-14.
  22. ^ Bentley, Todd; et al. (September 25, 2015). "Three People Raised From the Dead in Pakistan". morningstartv.org. Retrieved December 14, 2015.
  23. ^ name=ABCNews070908>Kofman, Jeffrey; Yiu, Karson & Brennan, Nicholas (July 9, 2008). "Thousands Flock to Revival in Search of Miracles". ABC News. Retrieved July 7, 2008.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  24. ^ Lake, Thomas (June 30, 2008). "Todd Bentley's Revival in Lakeland Draws 400,000 and Counting". St. Petersburg Times. Archived from the original on July 4, 2008. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
  25. ^ Chandler, Charles (June 19, 2008). "Tattooed Preacher Says God Heals Through Him". The Charlotte Observer. Retrieved December 24, 2016.
  26. ^ Reed, Travis (July 28, 2008). "Florida Revival Drawing Criticism—And Thousands of Followers". The Pantagraph. Bloomington, IL. Associated Press. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
  27. ^ Revival Alliance Staff. "Public Statement on Todd Bentley from Revival Alliance". Archived from the original on November 21, 2008.
  28. ^ McMullen, Cary (August 12, 2008). "Evangelist Bentley, Wife File for Separation". TheLedger.com. Lakeland, FL: Gatehouse Media. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  29. ^ TFFM Board of Directors (August 15, 2008). "From the Board of Directors". Abbotsford, BC, CAN: The Fresh Fire Ministries (TFFM). Archived from the original on August 20, 2008.
  30. ^ Roach, David (August 19, 2008). "Faith Healer Todd Bentley Separates From Wife, Draws Criticism From Charismatics". Baptist Press. Archived from the original on 2009-01-12. Retrieved December 13, 2015.
  31. ^ Gaines, Adrienne S. (March 10, 2009). "Todd Bentley Remarries, Begins Restoration Process". Archived from the original on March 14, 2009. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  32. ^ Joyner, Rick (2009). "Todd Bentley Begins Restoration Process" (Special Bulletins). MorningStar Ministries. Morningstarministries.org. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  33. ^ Grady, Lee (March 11, 2009). "The Tragic Scandal of Greasy Grace". Archived from the original on January 2, 2010.
  34. ^ http://www.freshfireusa.com/writings/view/172-SPECIAL-BULLETIN-Todd-Bentley-Restoration
  35. ^ https://www.morningstarministries.org/about/questions-and-answers/knights-malta-rick-joyner#.WVV9yOvytEY
  36. ^ "Church Planting and the Seven Mountains | MorningStar TV". www.morningstartv.com. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
  37. ^ "Lance Wallnau Biography | MorningStar Ministries". www.morningstarministries.org. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
  38. ^ https://friendlyatheist.patheos.com/2020/11/02/pastor-rick-joyner-who-said-the-u-s-was-defeating-covid-with-prayer-has-covid/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter
  39. ^ https://www.facebook.com/RickJoyner.MorningStar/videos/351272532819200/
  40. ^ "Coal--Climate Connection To Hit TV Screens Nationwide | PlanetSave". planetsave.com. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
  41. ^ University, Santa Clara. "Anna Jane Joyner". www.scu.edu. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
  42. ^ The back cover of "The Harvest, 20 Year Anniversary Edition"

External links[edit]