John Bevere writes this book to defend and expound upon a teaching that is solely derived from the Old Testament. New Testament verses are then twisted to try and sell it to the present day church. This teaching is known as ‘covering theology’. The problem is, just like Jesus taught us a better way than the old ‘eye for an eye’, Jesus taught us a better way on how the New Testament church is to conduct itself. Please observe the following New Testament Scriptures which clearly rule out ‘covering theology’ for the New Testament church and give us a better way:
1. But Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:25-28 NLT)
2. But that does not mean we want to dominate you by telling you how to put your faith into practice. We want to work together with you so you will be full of joy, for it is by your own faith that you stand firm. (2 Corinthians 1:24 NLT)
3. I left you on the island of Crete so you could complete our work there and appoint elders in each town as I instructed you. (Titus 1:5 NLT)
4. And now, a word to you who are elders in the churches. I, too, am an elder and a witness to the sufferings of Christ. And I, too, will share in his glory when he is revealed to the whole world. As a fellow elder, I appeal to you: Care for the flock that God has entrusted to you. Watch over it willingly, not grudgingly—not for what you will get out of it, but because you are eager to serve God. Don’t lord it over the people assigned to your care, but lead them by your own good example. (1 Peter 5:1-3 NLT)
5. Have confidence in your leaders and submit to their authority (allow yourself to be persuaded) because they keep watch over you as those who must give an account. Do this so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no benefit to you. (Hebrews 13:17 NIV)
6. And the leaders of the church had nothing to add to what I was preaching. (By the way, their reputation as great leaders made no difference to me, for God has no favorites.) (Galatians 2:6 NLT)
Now compare these verses with the legalism that is spelled out in the following PDF that briefly describes ‘covering theology’. Notice how the New Testament Scriptures in it are twisted to fit their purpose. It appears that it was forgotten that legalism was nailed to the cross and replaced by grace:
I feel blessed in being able to discern and write about mis-teachings on different subjects in the Bible. I usually keep my writings pretty concise. But since the book ‘Under Cover’ is quite lengthy and I am not a theologian, I have also included the following PDF that was written by a theologian and is much more in-depth at exposing the errancy of the book:
I want to further point out some additional facts that clearly distances ‘covering theology’ from God’s vision of the New Testament church:
1. A NT church was never designed to be run by one man. It was designed to be run by a group of appointed Elders.
2. The word ‘pastor/s’ only occurs once in the NT and it is in conjunction with ‘teachers’. Their purpose is to equip God’s people and build up the body of Christ.
3. There has to be an underlying joy of working together in serving under someone.
4. There will be times of disagreements (Galatians 2:11). If things cannot be worked out, the solution is not rebellion, but of parting of ways for awhile (Acts 15:36-41) or moving on in separate ministry. Disagreement is far from rebellion, but most churches that adhere to ‘covering theology’ consider any kind of disagreement as rebellion.
5. Those who lead must be able to persuade those under them. Those under must be able to willingly, not grudgingly, follow. Unity is key in the NT church. I served as an Elder that was pastored by the man who was also my mentor. It was truly a wonderful and blessed experience. The Holy Spirit was allowed to reign in the that church and there was no dissention among leadership because we all truly loved working together. No one lorded over anyone else. We all helped guide our Pastor in his vision for the church.
6. Since the Protestant Reformation, the salaried, full-time visionary of a church has become what we call the ‘pastor’. God recognizes this and works with it. So are we to work with it and support it if this is the structure. How much power the pastor has compared to the group of elders depends on the denomination.
7. The biggest danger of ‘covering theology’ is that it leads to dictators, and dictators lead to abuse. It is the perfect breeding ground of which cults arise.
8. ‘Covering theology’ is nothing more than a continuation of the law that brings condemnation. Proponents of it try to inflict guilt upon those who have found the better way and label them rebels who are setting themselves up for the sin of witchcraft. Galatians 5:1 reminds us, “So Christ has truly set us free. Now make sure that you stay free, and don’t get tied up again in slavery to the law.” If we truly take the yoke of Jesus (Matthew 11:28-30) upon us, we will feel the rest He brings to our souls.
In conclusion, I have actually saved the one solitary verse from the New Testament that blows the book ‘Under Cover’ right out of the water. It is absolutely no plainer than this:
For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus. (1 Timothy 2:5)
For further posts on the subject see: