Spiritual formation seeks to lure evangelicals into ancient Catholic and Orthodox contemplative practices in order to draw closer to God, experience His presence, and hear His voice apart from Scripture. In order to embrace this mystical form of spirituality, contemplatives are willing to compromise at virtually every turn. Central doctrines such as sola fide and sola Scriptura are shrugged off as secondary. Methods never found in the Bible as the true means of spiritual growth and of knowing God, are emphasized. And complete heretics such as Thomas Merton are seen as reliable spiritual guides to spirituality. The contemplatives have sold out to Catholic mysticism and abandoned the clear teaching of Scripture. Sadly, in the process many undiscerning evangelicals will follow suit. Gary Gilley
Gary Gilley of Southern View Chapel is spending the entire year of 2012 reviewing the Spiritual Formation movement. I strongly encourage everyone to read his articles as well as several great book reviews of those involved in this movement. He has recently reviewed contemplative prayer. I also recommend his article on the wildly popular Ann VosKamp book, One Thousand Gifts.