Poncho Lowder is the lead pastor of a church in Austin called Planetshakers. Planetshakers, much like Hillsong, is an international organization based out of Australia whose focus is on music and experience. Planetshakers is a church that promotes extrabiblical experiential encounters with the Holy Spirit while minimizing the actual content of the gospel.
Poncho Lowder has authored a book called Purse God, a seeker-friendly book that teaches his readers to “passionately pursue” a relationship with God daily in order to reap the benefits of that relationship. One review on Amazon stated, “Pursue God will equip you to give yourself to Jesus and His cause for your entire life.”
Lowder claims his conversion was based on an encounter with the Holy Spirit, devoid of any mention of Jesus, his death, burial, or resurrection. His website states,
Poncho believes that lives are changed through an authentic encounter with the presence of God. His life was radically transformed through one moment with Holy Spirit at age 19 while sitting in the back row of a church. Since that moment Poncho has given his life to whole-heartedly seeking God and challenging others to live the dream that God has for them. He carries a calling to contend for the miraculous and to walk in complete faith in God’s goodness.
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Lowder’s teachings are no different than those of his mother church. He teaches his followers to contend for miracles while actively seeking the Holy Spirit. A thorough perusal of his website, the name, Jesus, could nowhere be found. However, “Holy Spirit,” “God,” and “experience” were named repeatedly.
- Worship: Enter into an atmosphere of Presence-driven worship, where the Holy Spirit will move in your life. (source)
- Kids: Your kids are the future! They’ll have so much fun and grow closer to God in our amazing Kids Church experience for all children 12 and under! (source)
- …a place where people just like you can have a life-changing encounter with God that will empower you to reach your world. (source)
His sermons are full of motivational new-age hype designed to encourage people to go out into the world and enact social justice change in the name of Christianity. This is the false gospel of Poncho Lowder and Planet Shakers. If Christ crucified is ever preached in his church, it has been extremely difficult to find and is most certainly minimized, at best, while sensual experiences and social change is the primary focus of this movement.
Poncho Lowder and Planetshakers Church, Austin are to be avoided.