New Age Monitor ~ July 1988 ~ Constance Cumbey




When I spoke to the “Friday Night Massacre” [Cumbey refers to coming under attack by the "cult experts"] at El Toro, California in December, 1983, I dissected a book that was representative of the way New Age thought was penetrating the church of Christ. The book was Jeremy Rifkin’s The Emerging Order. The book which proudly proclaimed the evangelical and charismatic churches would be the chief instrument to bring the New World Order to birth (probably not an untrue statement!) This book was published as part of Ballantine’s Epiphany book series. That is supposed to be “Christian” orientation. The book was enthusiastically endorsed by John Bernbaum, Director of Christian College Consortium; J. Edward Hakes, Dean, Trinity College; Merold Westphal, Philosophy Department Chairman, Hope College; Bishop James Armstrong, President National Council of Churches; Gilbert Bilezikian, Professor of Bible, Wheaton College; John W. Alexander, past President, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship; Floyd W. Thatcher, Vice-President, Executive Editor, Word Books; Richard V. Pierard, Professor of History , Indiana State University’ John Stoner, The Mennonite Central Committee; Wes Michaelson, former Editor, Sojourners; Jay Kesler, President, Youth for Christ [Christianity Today, Board of Directors] and last , but not least, Senator Mark Hatfield.


I was to later find out that Spiritual Counterfeits Project had endorsed that book as well.


Cumbey relates about how, on that night in El Toro, CA [1983] she appeared in a debate with a panel of cult “experts” on the Rifkin book and Brooks Alexander sided with her. This was before she discovered SPC’s endorsement of the Rifkin book…


Thereafter I counted Brooks as an ally until a few weeks later. In January, 1984 somebody was to send me an extremely interesting book by Major Edgar Bundy of the Church League of America. Called how Liberals & Radicals Are Manipulating Evangelicals, the book contained an extensive discussion of SCP’s role in radical socialist politics. On page 6, Bundy said:


“The Berkeley Christian Coalition [the previous name of the Spiritual Counterfeits Project], another radical, so-called evangelical community, dedicated over a page to Rifkin’s book in their SPIRITUAL COUNTERFEITS PROJECT newsletter and listed the address of Rifkin and the People’s Business Commission for those who wanted further information’ The review by SPIRITUAL COUNTERFEITS PROJECT lists Rifkin and co-author Ted Howard [also active with Werner Erhard’s The Hunger Project] as members of the People’s Business Commission, a “secular think-tank” based in Washington, D.C. and devoted to examining issues of importance to the future of American society and concerned about the worldwide drain of natural resources and its impact on the economy. Rifkin and Howard launched a skeptic research project to evaluate the potential influence of the charismatic evangelical movement on America’s misuse of natural resources… R. and H. see real hope in a Christian spiritual renewal.”


Cumbey called Brooks Alexander to confront him on the SCP endorsement of Rifkin’s book and he dissimulated.


Richard Quebedeaux, an astute, albeit perhaps detached, observer of the Evangelical scene reported on the direction that certain Christian communities were taking in the late 70’s ––drastically to the left. In his book The Worldly Evangelicals, he named names and gave specifics. He wrote, “[T]hree distinctive communities––each with its own journal–– function as the most prominent collective expressions of the radical wing of the evangelical left.”


Those three communities were, per Quebedeaux: (1) The People’s Christian Coalition in Washington, D.C., publisher of Sojourners (formerly the Post American) [Jim Wallis]; (2) Jubilee Fellowship in Philadelphia…; and, last but not least, (3) the Berkeley Christian Coalition, publisher of Right On ( later renamed Radix Magazine.)


Theodore Roszak specifically gave the Christian Liberation Front a leading designation as an entry point to the Aquarian frontier in his 1975 book the Unfinished Animal. A lisitng of all Roszak’s entry points is given elsewhere in this MONITOR. Of the orientation of the Berkeley Christian Coalition, which includes the Spiritual Counterfeits Project, Quebedeaux writes:


Each of these three radical evangelical communities has less than 100 active members and is made up predominantly of young, white, well-educated singles from upper-middle-class evangelical backgrounds… And though they won’t admit it, all three communities are gradually moving toward an espousal of some form of Christian socialism, tinged with Marxism. …


Opposition or Entry Point?


Theodore Roszak copyrighted Unfinished Animal: The Aquarian Frontier and the Evolution of Consciousness in 1977. A grand chart was presented on four successive pages in a subsection of the book entitled “The Whole Holy Works.’ Of his chart, Roszak said:


“The chart that follows on the next few pages offers some idea of the many portals, grand and humble, through which people currently invite the experience of transcendence [altered states] –– or some fleeting glimmer of it–– into their lives.” The chart was titled “Aquarian Frontier: Points of Entry.” One claimed point of entry was Judeo-Christian Revivals.” The list included among the obvious eastern and Lucis Trust type entries the following:


New Pentecostalism (Jesus Freak* sects and communes, Charismatic congregations in the mainstream churches, Right On (Christian [World] Liberation Front Journal). (This was the magazine of the Berkeley Christian Coalition. Christian World Liberation Front was the organization that spawned the Berkeley Christian Coalition and Spiritual Counterfeits Project.)



Editor’s Note:


Jesus Freaks were “invented” by Pat Matriciana 


~emphasis added


Interviewed by Daniel Hopsicker [Mad Cow web site]…


I shot it at him: "Are you Agency?"


I meant, of course, was he from the Company. The good ‘ol bad ol’ CIA. But this is, apparently, not considered a polite question, though god knows why not… because before he [Matrisciana] answered he coughed, and looked surprised.


Maybe he’s just not all that used to direct address. But at the end of the meal he said to me that for some reason he’d told me a lot more than he was planning to, so I guess it was a successful tactic.


"I’ve been to Berkeley, too," his reply began


"I was 'detailed' to Berkeley in 1965, to establish a countervailing force to Mario Savio's Free Speech Movement. While there I founded the Campus Crusade for Christ.


And then it was his turn to grin:


"I invented," he [Matriciana] told me proudly, "Jesus freaks."



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