Rick Joyner is a Christian author and speaker who founded MorningStar ministries (morningstarministries.org/) in 1985. He has authored more than 50 books and is one of the leading proponents of the New Apostolic Reformation. He claims to regularly get visions and dreams from God that he conveys in books, seminars, and online articles. Because of his high-profile influence within Christian circles, I have analyzed a lot of his writings and comments.
The following is a collection of quotes by Rick Joyner from numerous sources. Its purpose is to provide you with documentation about what he teaches. He claims to be the spokesman for God who gets visions and dreams. If this is the case, then what he teaches will be in harmony with Scripture and we ought to examine what he says.
After having read a lot of his material, I can say that most of what he teaches is good. In fact, occasionally he will say something that is very helpful and biblical. However, there are also things he teaches that are problematic., even heretical For example, he said that Jesus is not a man. This is heresy.
Rick Joyner says Jesus is no longer a man
If Rick Joyner actually hears and sees visions from God, then what he teaches should be in harmony with Scripture. In this case, it is not. And, it is a very serious issue.
“There is a tendency to continue relating to Him as “the man from Galilee.” Jesus is no longer a man. He was and is fully Spirit. He took the form of a servant and became a man for a brief time, making a way for us to know Him by and through the Spirit.” (Joyner, Rick, There Were Two Trees in the Garden (The Divine Destiny Series) (p. 40). MorningStar Publications, Inc, a division of MorningStar Fellowship Church. Kindle Edition, underline added)
How could he get something so basic, so wrong? Jesus is called a man in 1 Tim. 2:5. Colossians 2:9, says “in him dwells all the fullness of deity in bodily form.” Furthermore, according to the Old Testament law found in Numbers 4, Leviticus 8, and Exodus 29, in order for someone to be a high priest, he needed to be a man of at least 30 years old (Num. 4:1-3). Furthermore, according to Hebrews 6:20 and 7:25, Jesus is the high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek who lives to make intercession for us. If He is not a man, He cannot be a high priest. If He’s not a high priest, we have no intercessor. (See the article, Why was Jesus baptized? for more on this)
References used for the following quotes by Rick Joyner
Joyner, Rick, There Were Two Trees in the Garden. (The Divine Destiny Series) MorningStar Publications, Inc, a division of MorningStar Fellowship Church. Kindle Edition
Joyner, Rick. The Harvest. MorningStar Ministries, a division of MorningStar Fellowship Church. Kindle Edition
Joyner, Rick, The Final Quest (The Final Quest Series Book 1, MorningStar Publications. Kindle Edition.
http://www.elijahlist.com/words/display_word.html?ID=23783 & 11737
Quotes from Rick Joyner
I have inserted comments after many of his quotes.
Final Quest Book – Vision from God
Joyner had actual visions from God recorded in his book, The Final Quest, The Final Quest Series Book 1, MorningStar Publications. Kindle Edition.) The following quotes are from that book with page numbers provided)
“As I continued to seek the Lord about this great spiritual battle that I had seen, I received a series of related visions and prophetic experiences.” (Joyner, Rick, The Final Quest, The Final Quest Series Book 1, p. 4. MorningStar Publications. Kindle Edition.) “The visions contained in this book all began with dreams“… “Some of these visions also came under a very intense sense of the presence of the Lord, but the majority were received in some level of a trance.” (p. 6). “I also felt I could be much more accurate if I related these experiences just as I received them…” (p. 7).
Matt: according to Joyner, he has related what his visions and dreams were as accurate as possible in his book, Final Quest, the majority of which, he received in a trance. This is similar to the New Age adherents who go into trances and receive visions from ‘god.’
There are different levels of prophetic revelation
“There are many levels of prophetic revelation. The initial level is prophetic “impressions” (p. 5) … “Visions can also come on the impression level. They are gentle and must be seen with “the eyes of our hearts” (p. 5) …”The next level of revelation is a conscious sense of the presence of the Lord, or the anointing of the Holy Spirit, which gives special illumination to our minds” (p. 5) … “Open visions” occur on a higher level than impressions…Open visions are external and are like watching a movie screen” (p. 5) … “Another higher-level prophetic experience is a trance, which is like dreaming when you are awake” (p. 5).
Joyner spoke with Paul the Apostle
“I can only say to you now what I have already said to you through my writings,” Paul stated, looking me resolutely in the eyes. “However, you will understand them better if you realize that I fell short of all that I was called to do.” (p. 69).
“If you are to accomplish all that you are called to do in your day, my ministry [Paul’s epistles] must not be viewed as the ultimate, but merely as a starting place.” (p. 70).
“I knew that Paul was right concerning the wrong use of his teachings as a foundation, rather than building upon the foundation of the Gospels.” (p. 70).
“Knowing what I was thinking, he put both hands on my shoulders and looked at me even more resolutely in the eyes.” (p. 70).
“Many will soon walk the earth who will do much greater works than we did.” (p. 70).
Matt: Since the New Testament teaches that people have visions and dreams in the last days (Acts 2:17-18), I will not automatically reject Joyner’s claim of visions and dreams. Nevertheless, speaking with Paul the apostle would be an incredible opportunity – if it were real. Discussions with Paul are problematic since the Bible actually forbids anyone from communicating with the dead (Lev. 19:31; Isaiah 8:19). Now, to be fair, Joyner is not seeking Paul through mediums. Instead, his communication is supposed to be in a vision or dream that came from God. But, just saying he has visions and dreams from God does not make it so. In fact, it means he must be examined all of them more carefully. After having read so much of what he has written, I cannot take him seriously. His casual conversation with Paul the apostle lack reverence. He conversations with Jesus (below) lack awe. I don’t buy it.
Matt: Claiming to have spoken with Paul the apostle, can elevate one’s self to a dangerous level of spiritual authority in the church. Furthermore, to say that Paul told him that he had fallen short of his own ministry is problematic as well. Really? Paul failed? Add to that the idea that Paul’s writings were merely a starting point, which is dangerous. Where are we to go if the New Testament scriptures are not foundational? Visions and Dreams from apostles and prophets? This is a formula for heresy.
Matt: Paul supposedly told Joyner that instead of using his teachings as a foundation, we should use the Gospels. But this is wrong. Paul’s writings are just as inspired as those of Christ (2 Peter 3:16) and are foundational to doctrinal truth. We don’t separate one set of scriptures in the New Testament and give them priority over others. Essentially this means who divide the teachings and potentially set them against each other. I don’t see the ‘real’ Paul saying anything like what Joyner said he said.
Joyner talked directly with Jesus
“The Lord Jesus Himself then appeared right in our midst. He took the time to greet each one personally, congratulating us for reaching the top of the mountain.” (p. 18).
“The [last days’] church will demonstrate My nature and My ways as they have never been demonstrated before by men.” (p. 72).
“As you yourself have taught, it was when the two on the road to Emmaus saw Me break the bread that their eyes were opened.” (p. 72)
“The Lord then stopped and looked at me with an expression I pray that I will never forget. He smiled. I did not want to abuse this opportunity, but I somehow felt when He smiled like that I could ask Him anything and He would give it to me. So I took the chance. “Lord, when You said, ‘Let there be light,’ there was light. You prayed in John 17 that we would love You with the same love that the Father loved you with. Will You please say to me now, ‘Let there be love in you’ so that I will love You with the Father’s love?” He did not quit smiling, but rather put His arm around me like a friend. “I already said that to you before the creation of the world when I called you.” (p. 78).
Jesus said, “You must see My judgment seat in your own heart because that is where it is now.” (p. 78).
“There is still someone you must meet before you return to the battle,” He said as we walked.”…”Then I recognized a man who was close by.” (p. 79).
Matt: I’m always disturbed by people who claim to have seen the risen Lord Jesus. Now I am not saying that Jesus cannot appear to people. I see nothing in Scripture that denies the possibility – even in the present day. However, and this is my opinion, how could anyone speak so casually about his encounter with Jesus who smiles and puts his arm around you like a friend? At my conversion to Christ, I experienced an incredibly profound presence of the Lord. It was strikingly powerful and left me face down in tears of repentance. (read it here) My experience is not the normative principle, but heck, how can true Christian talk of personally meeting Jesus and then write about it in such a casual way? I find it to be unrealistic. Joyner’s writings do not display this incredible and profound sense of awe one would expect in the presence of Christ. Instead, it was more of a casual conversation. I don’t find this credible at all.
Matt: Jesus said, “I already said that to you before the creation of the world when I called you.” Huh? So, Jesus spoke to Rick Joyner before the creation of the world? Am I misreading it? Or, is he saying that the call of Christ was before the creation of the world? It is unclear.
Five Fold Ministry
“The unity of the Spirit is not a unity by conformity; it is a unity of diversity. For this reason the Lord gave diverse ministries—apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers—to equip the saints.” (There Were Two Trees in the Garden (The Divine Destiny Series) (p. 109). MorningStar Publications, Inc, a division of MorningStar Fellowship Church. Kindle Edition.
“Those who are seated with Him in the heavenly places are seeing the long-awaited Great Awakening getting traction. The revival of faith in America has already begun.” (“A New Hope! We’re Witnessing Birth Pangs of a New Beginning” 6/9/2020, http://www.elijahlist.com/words/display_word.html?ID=23783)
“In December 2018 I had a dream that “the Second American Revolutionary/Civil War was inevitable, it was right, and it would be successful…We are in the Second American Revolutionary/Civil War. We are in the first stage, but we are in it.” (Ibid. elijahlist.com, 6/9/2020)
“We are in the times of the beginning of a new epoch for Christianity. True apostolic Christianity is being restored to the earth.” (The Great Commission Is About To Be Fulfilled, http://www.elijahlist.com/words/display_word.html?ID=11737, 1/7/2013)
Matt: Joyner is not the only one saying that there will be a great spiritual awakening all over the world and that the proclamation of the gospel will lead to great conversions and repeated and profound victories of Christians proclaiming the gospel. It is common among the New Apostolic Reformation adherents. I can’t help but wonder if it is a form of telling people what they want to hear. Christians want to believe that we will be victorious and everything will get better. Personally, I don’t see it that way – not that my opinion is correct. But, in Matthew 24:3, the disciples asked Jesus what will be the signs of His return and the end of the age. Jesus answered and spoke of the arrival of false christs (Matt. 24:5), wars (v. 6), famines and earthquakes (v. 7), Christians being killed (v. 9), false prophets arising (v. 11), lawlessness increasing (V.12), and that the gospel will be preached to the whole world as a testimony and then the end will come (v. 14). From what I can see, it does not fit into the New Apostolic Reformation’s everything-gets-better teaching.
Matt: His dream that there will be a second American Revolutionary war is interesting. Given how things are going in America, I could see it happening. But, we don’t need visions or dreams to make such a prediction. Our country is being torn asunder between the left and the right, with the oppression by the left getting worse and worse. It will go so far and if it reaches the breaking point, there’s going to be violence. I hope this does not happen, but it’s possible. Do we need a vision or dream from God to verify this? Joyner could just simply be reading the times.
Jesus is no longer a man
“There is a tendency to continue relating to Him as “the man from Galilee.” Jesus is no longer a man. He was and is fully Spirit. He took the form of a servant and became a man for a brief time, making a way for us to know Him by and through the Spirit.” (Joyner, Rick, There Were Two Trees in the Garden (The Divine Destiny Series) (p. 40). MorningStar Publications, Inc, a division of MorningStar Fellowship Church. Kindle Edition.)
Matt: As I stated above in the opening of the article, Joyner’s teaching here is heresy. If he is really from God, why is he getting this basic scripturally based teaching wrong? It seriously threatens his credibility – which I believe is already weak and crumbling.
“When the next great wave of the Spirit begins to move, the magnitude of this harvest will ultimately astonish even the most optimistic believers.” (The Harvest, Approximate Location 572)
“The news media will be dominated by the harvest until it has fanned the flames throughout the world.” (The Harvest, Approximate Location 597)
“Large cities will experience periods of almost zero crime as their populations come under the conviction of the Holy Spirit and the light of the church drives darkness from entire regions. Pornography, prostitution, illegal drugs, abortion, and drunkenness will cease to exist in many areas without the passage of a single law.” (The Harvest, Approximate Location 600)
The inflow of new believers will be so great in places that relatively new believers will find themselves leading large congregations.” (The Harvest, Approximate Location 605)
“Angelic appearances will be so common that they will cease to be related as significant events.” (The Harvest, Approximate Location 610)
“The Lord Himself will appear to councils of apostles and elders to give them directives.” (The Harvest, Approximate Location 611)
Matt: As stated above, Rick Joyner and others in the New Apostolic Reformation make the same predictions about the rise of Christianity, the incredible victories all over the world, and mass conversions. This is consistent with the eschatological view called post-millennialism. Now, I’m not saying post-millennialism isn’t possible, but I don’t hold to it. I label myself a pessimistic amillennialist. In other words, I see Scripture telling us things only get worse. It is not the intention of this article to delve into this very deeply.
Matt: Again, as stated above, in Matthew 24:3, the disciples asked Jesus what will be the signs of His return and the end of the age. Jesus answered and spoke of the arrival of false christs (Matt. 24:5), wars (v. 6), famines and earthquakes (v. 7), Christians being killed (v. 9), false prophets arising (v. 11), lawlessness increasing (V.12), and that the gospel will be preached to the whole world as a testimony and then the end will come (v. 14). This does not fit into the New Apostolic Reformation’s everything-gets-better teaching.
Matt: I cannot help but wonder if proclamations of great Christian victory are exactly what the Christians want to hear. People tend to listen to those who tickle their ears., and say encouraging things. Is this what is happening in the New Apostolic Reformation? Perhaps.
Rick Joyner gets revelation from God
“And that’s what the Lord showed is going to be released this year 2017. A whole new breed of prophetic ministers with a different vision and a different purpose, and when they start prophesying you’re going to see the builders arise and finish the work on the house of Jerusalem.” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bzroAL5H5DY&t=110s)
Matt: Getting revelation from God is very common among the so-called apostles and prophets in the New Apostolic Reformation. It happens all the time – and they speak about it casually as if it happens all the time. I simply cannot understand how anyone could so whimsically convey what the infinite God of the universe is telling them. Nevertheless, Acts 2:17-18 says that in the last days (these are the last days presently), people will have visions and dreams. Therefore, I don’t deny that it can happen. But, again, why are so many in the NAR’s casual about them? It is almost as though Jesus is their buddy. This is disturbing and lacks credibility.
“The Lord Jesus said that the publicans and harlots would enter the kingdom of God before the Pharisees and other righteous men in Israel. The demonic religious spirit that worked in the prevailing religion of that day was further from the heart of God than many of the great sinners of the land. In the same way, homosexuals and radical artists who have fallen to some of the lowest forms of perversion are still in fact much closer to the true worship of God than many churches.” (The Harvest, Approximate Location 1478)
Matt: This is a surprising statement. I cannot help but wonder what is behind it. Is Joyner laying the groundwork for the rejection of critical thought based on scriptural examination? I don’t know. And, why say that homosexuals and some in the lowest forms of perversion, or closer to the true worship of God than many churches? This is blasphemy, especially when Joyner claims to speak for Jesus.
In my opinion, be very wary of Rick Joyner. Though he may have a lot of good things to say, as the Scriptures say, a little leaven leavens the whole lump (1 Corinthians 5:6). Given his casual and multiple encounters with God and the apostle Paul, along with his denial that Jesus is a man right now, Rick Joyner cannot be labeled as a good teacher.