Examining Michael and Debi Pearl
Question #1 - Do they use the right Bible? Do they believe the right Bible?
Pearls take a strong stand for the King James Version of the Bible. They not only encourage people to use it, but it is the only Bible they will accept for Mr. Pearl's prison ministry. As some of our readers already know, we also take a strong stand for the King James Bible. However, the King James Bible issue is not the only issue. There are too many people these days that take a stand for the KJV and then correct it, ignore it, or deny it in practice.
I have found Mr. Pearl misquoting the scripture. This should be taken with a grain of salt. He used another translation of the Bible in the past and he may have trouble quoting the King James correctly at times. If this is the reason it would behoove him to take the time to look up the references and quote the Bible correctly when he is writing. When a person is speaking there is more call for patience and mercy, but when writing, it is not so much trouble to look the verse up and get it right.
Here is an example:
"Now the Bible says that 'no man yet despises his own flesh but cherishes it and nourishes it.' " (Michael Pearl, January 1998 NGJ, "An Idea We Tabled") In this case it would seem that he should have remembered the "eth" endings on the words, especially since he quotes this verse correctly in To Train Up A Child (Chpt. 5, p. 38, Aug. 2000 edition). Changing the words to "es" gives the impression that he is willing to tinker with the word of God. No doubt some will consider this straining at a gnat. Perhaps. But where are we going to draw the line once we start "updating"? Jesus Christ said, For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Matthew 5:18 If this be true, then what of changing word endings? Is it OK to just update the words a little? Perhaps then it's alright also to update the "archaic words" and the "thees and thous." Where does it end?
Galatians 5:9 A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.
Michael Pearl also prides himself on being a Greek scholar. This is apparently why he holds to the King James Bible - because he knows the Greek. He tells us, "...understand that I first started studying Greek 40 years ago. I use 3 or 4 different Greek Bibles regularly, and I don’t necessarily believe any of them." (March 2004 NGJ, "Prisoners Freed") The context of this quote was related to his request for only King James Bibles to be donated for his prison ministry.
The curious thing is that he says he does not necessarily believe any of the Greek Bibles he has. This statement creates some questions. Which Greek "Bibles" does he refer to? Why does he use more than just the Textus Receptus? Does he even have the Textus Receptus, and if so why, would he "not necessarily" believe it? Hmmmm......That's a strange statement. We read in Psalm 119:160, Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever. [That means that there has been a perfect word of God right down through the ages since the "originals" were first written.] If he doesn't necessarily believe any of his Greek texts the implication is that he doesn't necessarily believe the Textus Receptus if he has one. So, my question then is, If he doesn't necessarily believe the TR, how does he know the KJV is reliable? Or, does he hold to that odd position that the KJV was "re-inspired" and there is no Greek preserved without error? It is a very confusing statement.
Contemplate what you read. Don't just take it that this is a wise person because they say they are, and therefore what they do must be OK. If it violates the scriptures and sound reasoning, it is wrong, no matter who it is.
Psalm 119:128 Therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right; and I hate every false way. [Emphasis added.]
Do they give Bible answers for problems addressed? Do they give any answer?
The Pearls are full of answers and advice on many subjects. In fact, answering questions seems to be a big part of their ministry. Their followers esteem them very highly for their answers. But, what kind of answers do they give?
Sad to say their advice and answers to situations are often either totally impossible to prove from scripture, or they do not bother to use the scripture that would back up what they say. [Note as of 2012: This appears to be an area where some improvement may have occurred. More research needed.] This gives the impression that the Bible is really not that important to them, and most significantly, it leads their followers to regard their advice more highly than the word of God.
In the July-August, 2004, "No Greater Joy" we find the following comment in a letter sent to the Pearls by an English woman:
"Thank you so much. I am sure you get many letters like this, and I am sorry this one is so long, but my heart is so full of thanks. I wanted to let you both know you speak into our lives. I wish you could observe our family and lead us further into the joy of parenting. God is using your written words to great effect in our home."
Please notice how the Pearls' speaking, leadership and words have become so important in these people's home. This is pathetic. Where is God's word? Why is it that she feels they would benefit so much more from having the Pearls right there to help them? They have the God of the universe, the Almighty, the Great I AM, the Creator of the human race and the Institutor of the family dwelling with them if they are saved! And, if they possess the King James Bible, they have His very words and instructions for mankind in their own hands and language. Isn't that enough?! Apparently the Pearls' teachings have conveyed to them that God and His word are not enough! This is horrifying.
2Peter 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: 4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
[By the way, that was a very self-serving letter for them to print in their publication. People who like to print a lot of "you are so wonderful" letters about themselves should be disturbing to us. Just who are they trying to impress and what are they trying to prove? Jeremiah 9:23-24 Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD. More later on this.]
A Gross Lack of Scripture
Have you ever noticed how little the Pearls use the scripture? Yes, they do use it, and occasionally they use it quite well, but overall there is a lack. When people that profess to be wise and godly use so little of God's word, they call themselves into question as to their spiritual honesty. If they really love the Lord so much, why don't they use His commandments more?
1John 5:2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
When I first came into contact with the book To Train Up A Child, one of the things that bothered me was that they so often give mandates and ideas about training children with no scripture to back it up. Sometimes there is good scripture to back up something they set forth, yet they do not use it. Sometimes their idea or "fact" is not Biblical, so of course, they give no scripture to back it up.
It is frustrating to read a book like this; you begin to realize that the writer must have a much higher opinion of themselves than they do of the word of God. And, this is the same word of God that ...is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 I cannot emphasize this enough. If you have read this book, or much of their materials please consider how often presuppositions and "facts" are set forth with NO Biblical evidence or support. How can this please the Lord, who has magnified His word above all His name? Ps. 138:2
Add to this the fact that some of the scripture that they do give is taken right out of context and the picture is even more unimpressive.
In their book To Train Up A Child I tried to make notations as to how much scripture is used in each chapter. I hope that this is accurate, but please go check it out for yourself if you have the book. This was the August 2000 edition so there may be some variation among editions. Hopefully they have added more accurately used scripture since 2000, but I'm skeptical.
Introduction, Foreword and back cover - No scripture.
Chapter One - To Train Up A Child - One and a half verses in eleven and a half pages! (And this is basically the foundational chapter. How can this be?)
Chapter Two - Childish Nature - References and verse fragments. One whole verse. Verse fragment used tritely and totally out of context as subtitle.
Chapter Three - Parental Anger - Partial verse, and one reference used uncertainly.
Chapter Four - Tying Strings - One verse. (Not surprising since this is non-Biblical psychology.)
Chapter Five - The Rod - After nearly 32 pages with minimal scripture, they load in the scripture in this chapter, but go check the context. Is it talking about little ones, or is it referring to adult children?
Chapter Six - Applying the Rod - One and a half verses.
Chapter Seven - Philosophy of the Rod - Several verses and portions here. Beware though. Verses that contradict his premise on fear are left out.
Chapter Eight - Selective Subjection - Verse fragment.
Chapter Nine - Training Examples - Eight and a half pages with approximately three quarters of a verse. (What!? Is there never an example in the Bible of the Lord training His children? This is nothing short of brazen neglect at best, at worst it is arrogant self-importance. Possibly we should call it something worse.)
Chapter Ten - Safety Training - Verse fragment.
Chapter Eleven - Potty Untraining - No Bible (even where it could be used). [I hold that this method is highly doubtful as well. I know someone who used it and the results were considerably less than claimed!]
Chapter Twelve - Child Labor - No Bible (Never mind that God puts all His "kids" to work for Him.)
Chapter Thirteen - Attitude Training - Four actual verses or portions of verses (one is used twice).
Chapter Fourteen - Emotional Control - No Bible. (Hello?)
Chapter Fifteen - Training In Self-indulgence - Two and a half verses in a short chapter, but one out of context. References at end regarding riches.
Chapter Sixteen - Bullies - No Bible. (Hello, again?)
Chapter Seventeen - Religious Whips - No scripture applicable to subject.
Chapter Eighteen - Imitations - Two verses and a fragment. More would have strengthened point.
Chapter Nineteen - Homeschool Makes No Fools - Verse fragment not addressed to main subject. No Bible used to show need for homeschooling. [And, by the way, we have met some homeschooled fools.]
Chapter Twenty - Personal - In Mr. Pearl's "Letter To My Sons" - Less than one verse total and one misquoted. In Mrs. Pearl's "Letter from Mom to the Girls" - Three verses (While Michael Pearl imparts some useful information in his letter it's disappointing that he did not support the accurate parts with the word of God! What foundation is he then giving his sons and readers? Answer" HIMSELF.)
Chapter Twenty-one - Conclusion - Half a verse. Not surprising since conclusion is very unbiblical.
The startling lack of scripture in a book that allegedly is teaching people to raise children God's way is no great shock when we read the statement on the back cover (same edition) more carefully. It says in one box: "From successful parents, learn how to: Maintain fellowship with your child - Spank Less - And get total obedience." Quite simply we ask, where is God and where is His Book? According to their statement, we are to learn from "successful parents," the Pearls, how to train children to self-gratifying ends. Why not learn from God the Father how to raise children that will glorify Him and exalt Jesus Christ? Of course, the Pearls would might tell us that this is what they meant but, if this were true, they would spend more time telling us what God says than what they think. God's method of success is quite different from theirs.
Joshua 1:8 This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.
From reading their material it appears that the Pearls are basically offering their own homebrewed child psychology. A little psychology, a little Bible and a lot of the Pearls' philosophy and ideas go into the mix.
Colossians 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
To those of you who claim to be Bible believers and also follow the Pearls teachings I ask, how is it that people who profess to love and believe the Bible are so eager to exalt those who neglect it? Who are you really following?
Proverbs 22:20 Have not I written to thee excellent things in counsels and knowledge, 21 That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth; that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee?
John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
The word of God is the truth that gives a sure foundation to be trusted without reservation. When the Pearls do not give the word of God, they are offering nothing more than their own ideas - good or bad. Psalm 119:31 I have stuck unto thy testimonies: O LORD, put me not to shame. Because the Pearls - and you - do not stick to the word of God, they are in peril of being put to shame. [Note: Since the time of this writing they certainly have been put to shame. There have been abuse cases, even resulting in murder, reported among their followers which, whether they were wrong in their application of the Pearls' methods or not, calls the Pearls into question - especially since they do not use much Bible to support their teachings and their response to these problems in some instances was dubious at best.]
Try Again, Ma'am. I Think You Missed Something.
Here is an example of their advice giving based upon their own wisdom instead of the word of God:
NGJ, July-Aug., 2003 (www.nogreaterjoy.org)
Arranged Marriage --Debi Pearl
Dear Mike and Deb,
My sister went through the courtship thing and married in complete harmony with Dad and Mom, etc. and she really believes she married the man whom God chose for her; but things have not worked out too well. Although her husband was raised in a rough family, he was a very nice guy when they did the betrothal year, but changed dramatically after the marriage. He belittles her, puts her down, makes her feel worthless and says she can’t do anything right. He has lied to her, complains about anything she does, and tells her she did a terrible job. He spends money foolishly, and then yells angrily at her when he is broke. She feels anxious, hurt, and not sure how to make him happy. She has always been the sweetest, kindest person, and has always gone out of her way to please everyone. She is one of those people with a quiet spirit. I would fight back or at least give him a piece of my mind, but she could never do that. He gets worse as the months pass. What can she do?
Dear Sis, Most men cannot read minds or spirits and have no idea how crushing their words can be. If he is from a loud, rude, yelling, name-calling family, then he is just acting out what he grew up with, and he presumes she is just like the females he knows best. When a man first marries, he often has to learn that his wife is not one of the guys. As the weaker sex, a young married woman needs to allow her feelings to show when her husband is wounding her. In other words, she needs to cry loudly, brokenly, and express to him (not to you) how hurt she is. He will be shocked and embarrassed, and soon learn to treat her more kindly. This is not to say she should go around with a pouty, unhappy or disappointed countenance, always ready to whine or reproach him when she does not get her way. That would be a sure way to run him off (to the office, sports or another woman). I am not suggesting that a wife should live with a chip on her shoulder, ready to show him how much he hurts her. A woman needs to ask herself, “Am I being a sensitive, silly girl, trying to manipulate my husband with my feelings, or am I truly mistreated?” If a husband takes a verbal slug at his wife, she needs to let him know she has been hit and that it really hurts. Pretending everything is fine will only make her broken or bitter.
Some men won’t respect a woman until she earns it. If a woman lets her husband know that she desires his company but not his criticism, he may just like her better. Not everything that crawls like a worm is a worm, but who is to know unless it hollers “Ouch” when walked on?
Where is the chapter and verse to prove anything she says? What scripture is there upon which to base this? Part of her advice is correct - a wife should not be overly sensitive nor manipulative with her husband. But isn't crying loudly and brokenly a form of manipulation? It certainly doesn't seem like a useful method for convincing a husband to be kinder, especially a man from that type of background. Maybe Mrs. Pearl has been too protected to know that this kind of crying fit is highly offensive to many men, and that they would only despise their wife more if she responded thus. The Bible says, Proverbs 25:15 By long forbearing is a prince persuaded, and a soft tongue breaketh the bone. It would seem Biblically, that if the young wife would have her husband to be kinder, she should use a soft tongue - reason with him patiently as if she had a mind and could use it.
Also, the big sister is only mildly rebuked. The big sister was in fact very out of line in writing to the Pearls about this question. First of all, her attitude toward her parents sounds somewhat disrespectful. Secondly, since when is it her responsibility to seek marital counsel for her sister?
The Bible gives clear guidelines on how such a matter should be dealt with, yet Mrs. Pearl never mentions them.
Proverbs 25:9 Debate thy cause with thy neighbour himself; and discover not a secret to another: 10 Lest he that heareth it put thee to shame, and thine infamy turn not away.
Matthew 18:15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. 16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. 17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
The Biblical answer for the "big" sister would be to mind her own business and pray. When she is approached by her sister with complaints she should tell her sister that their marital problems are none of her business and she does not want to hear them. She should show her these passages of scripture and admonish her to follow God's word. If her sister truly needs marital counseling she should send her to an older, godly woman, Titus 2. She should ask her sister, "Have you told your husband how you feel about this?" If the answer is "no", big sister should gently but firmly admonish her to debate her cause with her husband himself - albeit with a meek and quiet spirit. (I know some people don't get that, but let's take the whole counsel of God for what it says, folks, and not pick a choose what we want for our own agenda.)
From the tone of the letter it is also presumptuous to assume that things are accurately presented since the "big" sister takes the side of her "little" sister completely and paints her brother-in-law as a monster. It is always very perilous to take sides in something like this. The "big" sister carrying her "little" sister's hurts will have no one to "make up with" if the married couple sorts the thing out and gets peace. She may struggle for years to forgive her brother-in-law for things that she should never have known about. This is why we are warned so clearly in Hebrews 12:15 not to let any root of bitterness spring up.
It seems to me that the Biblical answer for the young wife is to follow the plan of the above verses. She should discuss the matter with her husband in an open and honest manner. She should tell him how he's hurting her and point out the change in him since the marriage, and perhaps point out that his behavior is not befitting of one who claims Christ. (If she cries during this discussion, that's fine, but not loud crying to shame him for some injury - real or imagined.) If he won't hear her, the most logical people for her to go to are probably her parents since they would be closest to the situation and should be able to witness to the fact that he is treating her this way, if it's true. Another option would be the pastor and his wife, or any godly couple who has been a witness of the problem at all. They should confront the young husband with her, pointing him to the scriptural duties of a husband and believer (Eph. 5:25-33, Col. 3:19, 1 Peter 3:7-11). If he still refuses to listen and obey the Bible, it should be presented to their church and he should be dealt with by the elders or leaders of the assembly. If the young wife feels fearful about following this plan through, then she would be wise to pray fervently and entreat her husband with the soft tongue.
The Pearls are had in reputation as being great experts on marriage, and yet in this example Debi Pearl does not encourage open discussion of the matter and conversation between the husband and wife to restore the relationship they enjoyed before they married. Did you notice that? Very strange. Her suggestion is more of a mind game tactic than a godly response to unbiblical behavior.
This is not a single occurrence. I have repeatedly read answers to people's questions that contained little or no scripture. Go check it out for yourself.
The Answer that Wasn't
I also found an incident where only half an answer was given, and it was not scripture either. It was more along the lines of self-justification. The article was called "To Teach Or Not To Teach?" and appeared in the July-August 2003 "No Greater Joy." The question was:
"Dear Debi, We have read your thoughts on the woman never being the spiritual leader in her home (not leading the kids in Bible studies, etc., even if Dad doesn’t do it), but in one of your books or tapes, Michael suggested moms lead a neighborhood children’s Bible group and said Debi had done that for years, using Child Evangelism Fellowship’s materials. Could you please clear up how these two concepts do not contradict each other?"
Michael Pearl answered this with a lengthy discussion of how his wife told their own kids Bible stories by telling them to the children in a totally random manner during normal every day activities. Strangely enough, he never addresses the question about Debi teaching neighborhood children the Bible using CEF. It is curious that Mr. Pearl does not answer this issue. The Bible clearly says, But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. 1Timothy 2:12 So, if Debi Pearl was not teaching men, what she was doing was not biblically wrong. Why didn't Mr. Pearl explain this? Beware when people give half answers or diverted answers for no apparent reason. There probably IS a reason somewhere. (I, for one, would like to know if she ever "helps" with the teaching at seminars where there are mixed men and women present. Maybe a reader knows the answer to this.)
Mr. Pearl also does not explain why it is "OK" for mom to teach the kids Bible stories in a random manner, but not to have a "Bible study" with them. This is confusing.
In the course of the "explanation" given Mr. Peal makes these comments:
"We told Bible stories and family stories interchangeably, with equal enthusiasm and reality. The Bible stories were not told in a 'religious/pious/principle/devotional' context. They were spoken of 'on the fly.' The kids would make reference to a Biblical story with the same ease and confidence that they would speak of a past experience."
"We didn’t have one reality for living and another for religion. We didn’t sit down and get 'spiritual', sober, grave, and bored."
"Many Christian adults who grew up having family devotions and Sunday sermonettes have no clue as to who God is and would be shocked to discover what God has done in the past..."
These comments were made in the context of teaching kids the Bible in the Pearls' sort of "upbeat," hippie manner, just popping it in here and there. While we certainly should not have two realities - one for living and another for religion, the impression that could be taken from this is that the Bible does not need to be taken more seriously than "real life". (I maintain that the scriptures are more real than most of "real life.") The psalmist wrote, Princes have persecuted me without a cause: but my heart standeth in awe of thy word. Psalm 119:161
Should kids really think of the Bible on the same level as their family history? Stop and think about that. When two or three different members of a family tell the same story, you are likely to end up with two or three different versions which sometimes contradict each other. At times they may not even be able to agree on what actually happened and someone may come across as a liar or exaggerator! Kids should be taught to both love the Bible and to stand in awe of it. They should be confident that God's word IS truth, Jn. 17:17. To place it on the same level as family history is to degrade it to same level of uncertainty and possible mistake.
Secondly, "sober" and "grave" are two Bible words that are virtues, not faults or "yucky" as Mr. Pearl seems to imply. It is required that deacons (1 Tim. 3:8), deacons' wives (1 Tim. 3:11), and aged men be grave. The admonition to be sober is given no less than twelve times in the New Testament epistles, the most famous one probably being 1Peter 5:8; Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: (Notice in that verse that sobriety is necessary to avoid being devoured by the devil. Beware of whom you follow. They can lead you into danger.) This does not mean we cannot enjoy our Bible time and relating Bible stories, but there ought to be soberness about it that will cause sinners, old or young, to Stand in awe, and sin not... Psalm 4:4
While the Pearls commend family devotions other places, here Mr. Pearl seems to imply that family devotions are of lower value in teaching kids who God is than the Pearls' storytelling method. Thank the Lord that all parents do not share his opinion.
Deuteronomy 11:18 Therefore shall ye lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes. 19 And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. 20 And thou shalt write them upon the door posts of thine house, and upon thy gates:
Yes, it is Biblical to teach your children the word of God at all times throughout the day. But, note that it says TEACH, not tell them as stories on the same footing as family history. Their hearts should stand in awe of God's word.
Note: The Pearls are producing the Bible in comic book form. Notice the title at the top of the page - "The Ultimate Superhero Comic!" My Lord and Savior is not the Ultimate Superhero and His word is not a comic book. Added to that is the fact that super hero comic stories are not true. Is this then a good format to represent the eternal truth of God Almighty? This is in keeping with their slap happy method of telling kids Bible stories. The same observations apply. Does it really teach kids, and adults, reverence for God's word to read it like some Marvel super hero in a comic book? I think not!
Also note that it says "ye", which is the plural of "you" in the King James Bible, and no distinction is made as to whether this is male or female teaching the children. :-) The wise mother of Proverbs gives law to her children, Prv. 1:8 and 6:20, and king Lemuel's mother taught him prophecy, Prv. 31:1! Timothy's mother and grandmother taught him the scriptures and the faith, 2 Timothy 3:16 and 1:5.
(I would also like to point out Michael Pearl's derogatory comment about "Sunday sermonettes". While the Lord's church is sadly full of such things, it is in keeping with his overall bad attitude about "church" as we call it today. The fellowship of the believers where the word is preached for edification and instruction of the saints should be an excellent place to obtain an understanding of God's word. Mr. Pearl does not make this clear in his comments. The old adage, "The narrower the mind, the broader the statements" comes to mind.)
It is a strange thing that for all the Pearls talk about talking about the Bible, it actually seems difficult to catch them doing it much in their writings.
Forget the Bible, Just Seek God
Here is another curiosity gleaned from "No Greater Joy":
The Pearls' daughter and son-in-law wrote an article called "Safeguarding Your Children" in the September-October 2003 edition of NGJ. In the article, Rebekah Anast writes about a young lady she knows who is keeping herself for her future husband despite the fact that there are few rules or
laws in her home regarding her conduct in the matter. Speaking of the girl's parents and their zeal for God she writes: "...From the day her parents got saved, they began to seek God with their whole heart. Not religion. Not Church. Not even the Bible. Just God, and God alone. They laid aside their vices completely to follow Him." [Emphasis added.]
Note that she writes that "They laid aside their vices completely to follow Him." This comment reminds me very much of the "stop sinning" teaching that they have been called into question about. Is it possible, humanly speaking, for those of us living still in this corruptible flesh to put aside our vices completely? 1 Cor. 15:52-54
Question: If we do not seek God through His revelation of Himself - the Bible, how can we be sure that we have the right God or that we have a proper understanding of Who He is? No matter what translation of the scripture you use, this doesn't make sense! It seems to even contradict the statements her dad made in the article we just covered. But, there is no disclaimer in her article to indicate that this was an unbiblical method of seeking God. The girl and her parents are rather set forth and exalted as a good example.
Psalm 119, the longest chapter in the Bible, teaches us the tremendous importance of God's word.
Psalm 119:9 Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word...11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee...80 Let my heart be sound in thy statutes; that I be not ashamed...104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way...130 The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.
More than that, the word is said the be the seed in the parable of the sower (Luke 8) and in 1Peter 1:23 we are ...born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. I would not question the salvation of the couple that Rebekah wrote about, but from scripture we must conclude that it was not God that led them to seek Him but not the Bible.
Psalm 138:2 ...for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.
By the way, perhaps this attitude of Rebekah's that it was cool for this family to "just seek God and God alone" explains why she and her husband are so enamored with getting messages from God from her dreams rather than from the Bible. Rebekah had a whole blog dedicated to mostly just this. She claims the dreams are not revelations, yet the manner in which she and her husband treat her dreams points to the fact that they put a lot of stock in them and believe that they are getting special messages from God, some of which she obviously feels are for a much wider audience than just their family. [Please see the Secret Doctrine discussion if you have not read it.]
Did It Say That?
The Pearls are also guilty of making the Bible say what they want it to say. This should always be watched for in experts. It is pretty common for them to twist the scriptures to fit their presuppositions or to make it teach what they want it to say. For an example of this please see my comments on some of the study of Esther by Debi Pearl and her friends. Debi's study of Esther.
The conclusion we might come to from reading the Pearls' writings is that they think more highly of their own ideas than they do the word of God.
Psalm 118:8 It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.
Beware! Do not hand your brain over to any guru. Always, ALWAYS compare their teaching to scripture! If it does not agree with The Book, it is not God's way, no matter how wise it may sound to you or anyone else, and no matter how much the experts may commend themselves.
2Corinthians 10:17 But he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
18 For not he that commendeth himself is approved,
but whom the Lord commendeth.