Oh my goodness! Has anyone else here been to the revival meetings in Lakeland, Florida? I was there for two days and it was awesome! The best thing about it, besides the constant testmonies of healing and dead-raising, is that it is not man-centered. Jesus gets all the glory alone. Bob Jones, for those if you who know him, said that this is not a "revival"-- this is maturity; the body of Christ has come into its next level and that the power that has been poured out is ABIDING!
I can't wait to see what else God does in the coming days and how many of us will play huge roles in His plan. I don't know about you all, but I have GOT to be part of what He is doing TODAY!
God is too awesome and vast for us to be thinking small in these times.
I will enter this and more into my blog at worshipbeyondradio.com/worshippers_blog_to_the_nations/html. Feel free to comment here or there!
God is AAAAAAAAAAAAAAWWWWWWWWWWWWEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSO OOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMME!
Let's Go Up,
Thanks for the report - I've been wondering, and have a few friends who have been as well.
This could be a great thread - I truly believe in miracles, healings, yes .. even the possibility for resurrections ... yet, I find myself skeptical all the time. It breaks my heart that I'm so skeptical about these type of moves, and I have to confess, I've been right in the "thick of" many of them.
I've heard many say it's not glorifying man, but then I keep hearing constant reports of how overly-flashy Todd B. is, and how he draws so much attention to himself with all the fanfare, noise, and demonstrative actions (ie. pushing people, hitting people, saying "ba, boom, bam, shazam", etc., when he prays for people ...".
I'm not judging that - I cannot, as I've not been, and even THEN, I'd be very cautious before I formed any judgment whatsoever.
I also have to keep in mind that as long as the "vessel" is "mankind", fallen, nowhere near perfect, there will be "issues" we'll need to graciously overlook.
Look forward to more reports, and other input.
me too, Fred, me too.
Obviously you do not want to mess with a Canadian preacher - he might kick you in the face!!
I think this is a pretty great opportunity for wisdom and maturity. We've been praying here that if it is truly of God that it would be made famous - that it would continue, expand and spread around the world. We've also been praying that if it is of human (or worse) origin that God would blow it up in spectacular fashion so that nobody would be able to deny that God is sovereign.
But yeah - without having been there and from only seeing brief reports and clips on YouTube it is hard to have a sense of what is actually happening.
It's really none of my business, but, I thought I might share my perspective. I was raised AG and my parents were all caught up in Rodney Howard Brown, Brownsville, Toronto Blessing, Benny Hinn etc. They made me go as a child, or when I was 11-18 years old. Honestly, I think this stuff is fake. I nearly left the church altogether because of seeing churches pulled apart, "dead" people jeered at and emotional fanaticism gone rampant. I used to be deathly afraid to give my honest opinion about this stuff because I would be mocked and jeered and acused of being unspiritual and not in tune with the Holy Spirit. I have seen people shake, roll, bark and testify, and several years later the same people have the same problems they shook and rolled in the door with, or even worse they are "storm chasers"...always looking for the next spiritual high with little substantial grounding to local church work. I am not saying that God cannot use these experiences, but I have seen more lasting transformation in the non fanciful work of the local body committed to reaching their community with the gospel. Just my 2 cents.
You know, Stephen, I do believe for some people it can be fake. I used to know people who would roll and shake and laugh and scream, but afterwards they were the same cursing, bitter, angry, lustful, wicked people they were before. That's why at first I had a problem with it all. But always remember that with every good thing God imparts, there is a counterfeit from darkness.
Remember Simon the sorcerer who did many miracles in the sight of the people and everyone wondered at him and called him the mighty power of God. This was well after Pentecost and the many ways in which the Holy Spirit manifested God's power. But when Peter came with God's true power, it was undeniable, even to Simon the sorcerer, that this power was greater and more real than what was known in that land at the time.
I'm telling you, if you have a heart for Jesus and His truth, you will sense and see that God's power is real through these signs were seeing in these days. Jesus said Himself that the Pharisees didn't really care in their hearts to know the father, so they couldn't discern that He was really God's son! I want to encourage you not to look for the fake or faulty, but look for God in it. We can miss out on so much that He has for us if we shun everything that we would naturally label as "off" or "weird." I'm guilty of it too... I'm not accusing anyone of anything.
I can certainly understand where you're coming from... it's just like a black man who has been wronged by so many whites that when someone white genuinely shows him love and respect, he can't receive it. It's real, and that's just where the enemy wants us. So just look for God, discern with love and truth what is His heart and what isn't.
Let's Go Up,
I can assure you, just because someone (myself included) may not be a part yet, may still be "testing and trying" the Spirits, trying to get a grip on their own discernment .. doesn't mean they don't "truly have a heart for Jesus and His truth ...".
I sent a long PM, but after settling down and re-reading your post, I came across the most important line of all, which said "I'm not accusing anyone of anything". Thanks.
However, so much of the language in that paragraph sets off so many red alerts. Blanket appeals to 'not look for the fake or faulty, but look for God 'in it'" are just not sound AT ALL. It says "throw out discernment, throw out the testing of spirits and just try to see God in it".
While we do have to resist the urges to be skeptics, we ABSOLUTELY MUST use discernment and "test the spirits", as the "Spirit of the prophets is subject to the prophets". So, allz I'm saying is to be careful, and constantly check your Spirit, and don't allow someone to convince you to carelessly just "look for God" in everything.
My thoughts& concerns about the revival so far are all listed here:
Be the Revival, Don't go to One
Be the Miracle: the Miracle Workers
I've been in a conversation of late, however, than may have lightened some of my concern a bit... I'll blog on that as soon as I've done some more follow-up on it.
It is interesting that the Bible has instances both in the OT and NT that show that those without God's Spirit have the power to heal and do miracles.
I am never concerned or in disbelief over whether God can show us great signs and prove His power in us and around us. But, the people claiming God's power, need to be watched and scrutinized.
Revival is about the heart and mind...not the body...
I've been wondering how long it would take for this to come up. I've been checking into this revival now for a couple of weeks and haven't seen anything overtly unscriptural or anything that absolutely turned me off to it.
I'm not as entirely skeptical as stephen (skepticism's not always a bad thing so long as it is laced with openness), and I'm not entirely open as james (openness is not always a good thing when it is blind to truth), but I rest somewhere in the same arena as Fred.
For me, "testing the spirits" and operating in the spiritual gift of discernment are not biblical suggestions, they are commands. 1 John 4:1 CLEARLY says: Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. It's that simple. I think that the reason we've had so many kooks in the church (especially in the charismatic movement, of which I am a part) is because we didn't test the spirits.
That being said, God does weird stuff. He makes donkeys talk and Jesus made a literal appearance to the apostle Paul. He struck dead people who lied in church and raised a young boy to life who had fallen from a window and broken his neck. God is most definitely in the business of the supernatural (and more often than not, weird).
I take the position of Gamaliel from (appropriately enough) the book of Acts chapter 5, verses 38 and 39:
Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God."