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Skip to comments.Saul And The Charismatics...
Posted on 02/14/2012 4:00:49 PM PST by pastorbillrandles
And when Saul saw the host of the Philistines, he was afraid, and his heart greatly trembled. And when Saul enquired of the LORD, the LORD answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets. Then said Saul unto his servants, Seek me a woman that hath a familiar spirit, that I may go to her, and enquire of her. And his servants said to him, Behold, there is a woman that hath a familiar spirit at Endor.(I Samuel 28:5-7)
I have no problem believing that God sovereignly granted revival in the 1960′s -70′s, renewing faith in the reality of Jesus, introducing church people to Jesus for the first time, and baptizing multitudes from all walks of life, and over the spectrum of denominations in the Holy Ghost. The movement became known as the Charismatic renewal.
Why not? Didnt He promise us that
it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:(Acts 2:17-18)
I myself came to Christ at the end of the 1970′s, in a charismatic church. But the critical question of any movement is not one of the beginning, but of the end how does it end?
Of course in one sense the Charismatic movement never ends, for it didnt begin in the 1960′s nor at Azusa street, but in Jerusalem. It shall never end, being established by Jesus, clothed in the Holy Spirit and known as the church.
But the charismatic movement as a historical reality, that sovereign move of God of 40 years ago,which turned so many to Jesus and the Spirit in a godless day, has been co-opted by its leaders and seems to be going the way of King Saul.
Saul seriously disobeyed God at several key points in his life, doing what he felt was right, rather than adhering to the Word of God. He wouldnt go by the Word, but by feelings. God called that rebellion and even witchcraft,
And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king.(I Samuel 15:22-23)
One of the problems with the Charismatic movement, was that it was beset with a variety of false teachers. Oral Roberts, with his seed faith, prosperity teaching. New Thought influenced teachers such as Kenneth Hagin and Copeland, who taught that we are all little gods, and could create our own reality by our words.
Who can forget the deliverance movement which was basically superstitious hysteria, but brought millions into bondage? How about the attempt by some to bring about order, imposing the cultic and oppressive shepherding movement?
False teaching imposes a terrible toll, it breaks down the defenses and corrupts the soul. Doctrine, good or bad, is not insignificant, it is of critical importance.
The Prophetic movement heralded by the false Kansas City Prophets and John Wimber, promoted experience over doctrine, and induced millions into spiritual drunkenness and gnostic mysticism.
These are just a sampling of the influences which flooded into the wake of millions of people coming to a living faith in Jesus and an awareness of the Holy Spirit. Like an accumulation of toxins in a body they have had an eroding effect on the church.
Time fails me to go into the other excesses such as the unbiblical ecumenism, the Toronto and Pensacola movements, neo apostles and prophets, and spiritual warfare.
The common theme of all of these excesses is that the charismatics have always been strongly urged not to judge! Discernment has been ridiculed and criticized! These things have taken a toll.
The charismatic movement is in danger of ending like Saul
At the end of Sauls life, he went into the occult. God wasnt speaking to him anymore. Samuel was by now dead, although Saul consistently ignored him whilst alive. Saul had chased David away. killed the priests and found himself in real trouble.
And when Saul enquired of the LORD, the LORD answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets.
He who had once purged the land of witches and wizards, now sought out a witch, that he might commune with the now dead Samuel!
Benny Hinn is just one Charismatic leader who has testified of his own necromancy,(communication with the dead). He tells os his frequent visits to Kathryn Kuhlmans tomb, to get an impartation of her anointing!
One of the strangest experiences I had a few years ago [was] visiting Aimees tomb in California. This Thursday Im on TBN. Friday I am gonna go and visit Kathryn Kuhlmans tomb. Its close by Aimees in Forest Lawn Cemetery. Ive been there once already and every so often I like to go and pay my respects cause this great woman of God has touched my life. And that grave, uh, where shes buried is closed, they built walls around it. You cant get in without a key and Im one of the very few people who can get in. But Ill never forget when I saw Aimees tomb. Its incredibly dramatic. She was such a lady that her tomb has seven-foot angels bowing on each side of her tomb with a gold chain around it. Asas incredible as it is that someone would die with angels bowing on each side of her grave, I felt a terrific anointing when I was there. I actually, II, hear this, I trembled when I visited Aimees tomb. I was shaking all over. Gods power came all over me. I believe the anointing has lingered over Aimees body. I know this may be shocking to you. And Im going to take David [Palmquist] and Kent [Mattox] and Sheryl [Palmquist] this week. Theyre gonna come with me. Youyouyou gonna feel the anointing at Aimees tomb. Its incredible. And Kathryns. Its amazing. Ive heard of people healed when they visited that tomb. They were totally healed by Gods power. You say, What a crazy thing. Brother, theres things well never understand. Are you all hearing me?11Benny Hinn sermon, Double Portion Anointing, Part #3, Orlando Christian Center, Orlando, Fla., April 7, 1991. From the series, Holy Ghost Invasion. TV#309, tape on file.
Familiarity with the Word of God would deliver Hinns followers, for God says He hates the sin of necromancy. Isaiah tells us that those who seek anything from the dead have no light in them,
When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? Consult Gods instruction and the testimony of warning. If anyone does not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn(Isaiah 8:9-12)
The flavor of the day in Charismatic circles is Bethel church in Redding California, headed by a Word Faith, Prophetic movement, pastor , Bill Johnson. At His Bethel School of ministry, he teaches students to honor the Generals of revival, that is leaders such as Smith Wigglesworth, Aimee Semple Mcpherson, Evan Roberts, and others.
Honoring them to Johnson means compiling a vast collection of their books and artifacts,and opening a generals library for charismatics to visit. But like Hinn, Johnson also believes in visiting their tombs, and literally soaking the anointing by being in the presence of their graves.
Bethel Students Soaking Anointing Off of Tombs !
Those who discern are seeing countless other evidences that like Saul, the Charismatic movement has gone into the occult, for false prophecy, dream interpretation, necromancy,spiritual drunkenness are all characteristics, not of christian spirituality but the delusion, a revival of deceiving spirits that Paul warned about, as a consequence of rejection of the Word of God.
For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.( 2 Thess 2:8-12)
Great piece Bill. I was a child back in those days of the 70’s and my parents came to know Christ personally through that renewal while in the Catholic church (among a group who were relegated to meeting in the basement of the church). (I was raised well by them and later in life came to receive Christ as well.) They left the Catholic church right after then as did most of their friends.
I think this is a familiar situation that happens throughout church history. Martin Luther and other Protestants had the same type of conversions as they through off the shackles of the old church that became more about money and religion and wanted little to do with Christ.
Look at the status of all those reformers churches -now. They became the thing that their founders despised an now reject truth.
The same thing happened with the churches in the “charismatic movement”. It became about money, power, influence and compromise. These clowns with all their books and mega-churches won’t stand up against anything as sin.
The one thing that remains constant is Christ and his truth. America itself can be lumped in with those churches heading to apostasy. Like Israel - we will probably be handed over to our enemies. But at least Israel has an eternal covenant with God and can count on being restored at some point.
Uhhhhhhhh . . .
there was in the Old Testament . . . some folks who tossed a dead man’s body into a grave of a prophet.
When the new dead body touched the prophet’s bones, the newly dead came back to life.
Nonsense is nonsense.
However, none of us have it all figured out.
The errors and assists to hell in the non-charismatic, non-Pentecostal churches may be less obvious, less flashy, less garish . . .
However, they are AT LEAST
And, as varied and plentiful.
Ping to OP and my response at
Your piece is interesting regarding the Charismatic movement. I was very young when it took root. But, I remember how easy it was to call yourself a charismatic because it didn’t threaten anyone! You could call yourself a Christian and it didn’t come with the stigma of judgement. Yet, as much as Jesus loved, forgave, and blessed others; He never backed away from telling the truth about sin and the Father’s punishment. Many Christian churches have run from preaching fire and brimstone and yet isn’t that the very reason why Jesus allowed himself to be hung on a cross?
Quix you are right, there are many things we don’t understand, and e don’t have it all figured out. However please consider;
* The men who threw the body into Elisha’s tomb, weren’t seeking God or His anointing. It was a miracle!
* We are not told that pilgrims went to Elisha’s tomb or any other of the known burial sites of God’s servants, after the miracle in 2 Kings. People then would have understood such as an idolatrous practice.
* True also that the “non charismatic” world equally has errors. I think the whole subject of the apostasy is worth discussing, to “snatch some from the fire” and that we might be prepared for Jesus
* I believe in the baptism of the Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit. I believe Satan has raised up Hinn, Crowder and Bentley to discredit the Spiritual gifts, The problem is that too much of the Charismatic World accepts or at least refuses to discern these charlatons and buffoons.
I am flattered that you think I wrote this, but it was pastorbillrandles in post one. :)
Its (Past) Time for a Charismatic Reformation
1. Lets reform our theology. The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity. He is God and He is holy. He is not an it. He is not a blob, a force, or an innate power. We must stop manipulating Him, commanding Him and throwing Him around.
2. Lets return to the Bible. The Word of God is the foundation for the Christian experience. Any dramatic experience, no matter how spiritual it seems, must be tested by the Word and the Holy Spirits discernment. Visions, dreams, prophecies and encounters with angels must be in line with Scripture. If we dont test them we could end up spreading deception.
3. Its time for personal responsibility. We charismatics must stop blaming everything on demons. People are usually the problem.
4. Stop playing games. Spiritual warfare is a reality, but we are not going to win the world to Jesus just by shouting at demonic principalities. We must pray, preach and persevere to see ultimate victory.
5. Stop the foolishness. People who hit, slap or push others during prayer should be asked to sit down until they learn gentleness is a fruit of the Holy Spirit.
6. End all spiritual extortion now. Christian television ministries must cease and desist from all manipulative fundraising tactics. We must stop giving platforms to ministers who make outlandish claims of supernatural financial returns, especially when Scripture is twisted, deadlines are imposed and the poor are exploited.
7. No more Lone Rangers. Those who claim to be ministers of Godwhether they are traveling evangelists, local pastors or heads of ministriesmust be accountable to other leaders. Any who refuse to submit their lives to godly discipline should be corrected.
8. Expose the creeps. Churches should start doing background checks on traveling ministers. Preachers who have been hiding criminal records, lying about their past marriages, preying on women or refusing to pay child support should be exposed as charlatans and shunned if they do not repent.
9. Stop faking the anointing. God is God, and He does not need our help to manifest Himself. That means we dont sprinkle glitter on ourselves to suggest Gods glory is with us, hide fake jewels on the floor to prove we are anointed or pull chicken feathers out of our sleeves to pretend angels are in the room. This is lying to the Holy Spirit.
10. Lets return to purity. Weve had enough scandals. The charismatic church must develop a system for the restoration of fallen ministers. Those who fall morally can be restored, but they must be willing to submit to a process of healing rather than rushing immediately back into the pulpit.
11. We need humility. Ministers who demand celebrity treatment, require lavish salaries, insist on titles or exhibit aloofness from others are guilty of spiritual pride.
12. No more big shots. Apostles are the bondslaves of Christ, and should be the most impeccable models of humility. True apostles do not wield top-down, hierarchical authority over the church. They serve the church from the bottom up as true servants.
13. Never promote gifts at the expense of character. Those who operate in prophecy, healing and miracles must also exhibit the fruit of the Spirit. And while we continue to encourage the gift of tongues, lets make sure we dont treat it like some kind of badge of superiority. The world needs to see our love, not our glossolalia.
14. Hold the prophets accountable. Those who refuse to take responsibility for inaccurate statements should not be given platforms. And prophets who live immoral lives dont deserve a public voice.
15. Lets make the main thing the main thing. The purpose of the Holy Spirits anointing is to empower us to reach others. We are at a crossroads today: Either we continue off-course, entertained by our charismatic sideshows, or we throw ourselves into evangelism, church planting, missions, discipleship, and compassionate ministry that helps the poor and fights injustice. Churches that embrace this New Reformation will focus on Gods priorities.
In due time--when the group of KC prophets (...and again the Toronto airport renewal...) --began exalting spiritual experience over sound doctrine and refused the correction gently offered by the recognized elders & leaders, there were (Biblical) partings of the ways.
God blessed John's devotion to ministry and faithfulness to His Word with many verified healings and powerful works of the Holy Spirit.
Furthermore, John Wimber personally led many people to personal salvation in Christ -- usually one at a time-- before any of his detractors even knew his name.
I recommend the pastor/author check his church and movement history carefully before painting the memory of Godly men with such a broad brush.
Romans 14:4 might contain a word of wisdom.
There are lots of people I put on a high shelf and wait and see what God does with or about them.
Off the wall charismatics are easier to throw rocks at.
I don’t know if UNFITTING judgment of others is worse than the gross junk of such folks . . . or not.
It is a hazard.
We reap what we sow.
And haughty judgment has a very ugly harvest.
And that's REGARDLESS of how kosher or off the wall the one being judged is.
The Lord Jesus said: “It is the Spirit that quickeneth, the flesh profiteth nothing, the words that I speak, they are spirit and they are life.” (John 6:63)
In another place Jesus said: “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but the words that I speak shall never pass away.”
Again, Jesus said: “I will build My church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
“....He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name.” (Philippians 2;8b-9)
I met Wimber personally 1:1 in Taipei.
He’s the real deal.
He’s one of the most humble, most authentic, most balanced, most practical most Biblically accurate Bible teachers and Pastors I’ve ever known or known of.
I’ve heard that Billy Graham speaks in tongues privately. If so, his theology may be in the ball park of the standard I observed in John Wimber. Otherwise, John is head and shoulders above Billy Graham, in my book.
There are a couple of books out now by his wife and his daughter. They are well worth reading.
EVERYONE GETS TO PLAY
By John Wimber author and Christy Wimber ed
THE WAY IN IS THE WAY ON by John Wimber:
THE WAY IT WAS by Carol Wimber:
And Kris Vallotton of Bethel’s HEAVY RAIN: RENEW THE CHURCH—Transform The World
& his: DEVELOPING A SUPERNATURAL LIFESTYLE: A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO A LIFE OF SIGNS, WONDERS AND MIRACLES
are GREAT, Biblical, edifying, practical
& his SPIRIT WARS looks good but I haven’t read it yet.
If folks followed any of us around 24/7 and published even 20% of what we said every day . . . we’d all be in trouble with big groups of people, detractors, professional rock throwers.
Thanks for your kind & respectful words about the man whom God used to ruin me for the cause of Christ.
His video series are very edifying and greatly humorous.
And virtually all his staff I’ve ever met with or talked to on the phone have been top flight in fruits of The Spirit, too.
“ruined me for . . . “ . . . is that now a well known term? LOL.
The anointing for ministry comes from the Holy Spirit.
Anything anyone contracts or inherits from a dead person is not Him.
I don’t think there’s any comparison between Elijah or Elisha and those high profile charasmatic leaders of today who don’t have half the integrity of those OT prophets.
I’m with pbr on this one. I believe in the baptism of the Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit. I also believe that a lot of error and deception has crept into the Pentecostal movement with it’s emphasis on the gifts, flashy, showy, name it and claim it theology.
People are too busy seeking the Spirit, the power, the healing, tongues, whatever manifestation du jour they hear about and not seeking Christ alone, the author and finisher of our faith.
The Holy Spirit’s job is to point to Christ and lift Him up. People are no longer looking to Jesus but the Spirit.
When I was in church Sunday, the pastor was praying that the Holy Spirit would come and be with us, that He was *invited* etc. No mention of Jesus, who said, where two of three are gathered together, there I am in the midst.
The gifts and manifestations can be faked or counterfeited.
The fruit of the Spirit and Christlikeness can’t.
I graduated from an Assembly of God college in 1992. I left the Pentecostal / Charismatic movement 12 years ago and have never looked back. I am an ordained Southern Baptist pastor today. I have never once regretted my decision and departure from the movement. I am spiritually stronger today than ever. I have a much greater insight into spiritual truth, with a much greater illumination and understanding into the things of God.