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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)
>> “ 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.” <<
Hinn would not be my choice, but I still think that you may be pushing the envelope a bit here. There have been thousands of miraculous healings at Hinn’s meetings, and YHWH is fully capable of using a weak disciple to his advantage.
I suggest finding a 1965 edition of the Amplified Bible, and reading the New Testament therein. It provides much deeper insights into the realities of the first century church than do other versions.
>> There’s not a shred of Biblical support for Holy Spirit taking a vacation after John ran out of ink at the end of Revelation.
There’s not a shred of Biblical support for some angelic host or messenger coming down out of Heaven and declaring in 70 AD on June 4th at 13:00
“TWEEEEET! EVERYBODY OUTTA DA POOL. STOP ALL THIS SUPER NATURAL GOD-STUFF. Holy Spirit is now on sabbatical. Y’all have to wrestle with Truth and demons on your own—Christ didn’t really mean what He said about The Comforter. Tough tacos. No more swimming in this Church Era Dispensation. Plod along in the flesh in your Christian walk as best you can. Holy Spirit has done all the COMFORTING and leading into All Truth He was scheduled to do. Fooled you! Bye.” <<
Time to quit fearing that the HS will embarrass you in public.
That really is the point I am trying to make. Thanks. What passes as "gifts of the Holy Spirit" today - i.e., the sign gifts - are and have been faked and, had they been the TRUE gifts of the Spirit, would have resulted in souls genuinely saved and lives changed that bring glory to God. For example, when Peter healed the lame beggar on the steps to the temple (Acts 3) he didn't wait until a crowd had gathered nor did he cause an uproar to draw attention to what he was about to do, but he quietly spoke to the man and said, "Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk. and he did. It was the healed man who jumped up and down and raised an uproar attracting attention to Peter and John. To those that gathered, Peter then preached the Gospel to them and souls were saved. It was not their intent to draw praise for themselves but to glorify the Lord and win souls for Christ.
Far too many "televangelists" and revival preachers use gimmicks to draw supporters to their events all to raise money to continue lavish lifestyles. That does NOT honor Jesus nor do most of them preach the straight Gospel but a perverted one that does not save. That alone is evidence that whatever "gifts" they boast they have are not from God. We had a Charismatic traveling evangelist couple in our church and I asked them one time if they needed interpreters during their sermons in foreign countries. They said they did. So I wonder how is it that if they have the gift of tongues, why can't they miraculously speak in the language of those they preach to or, like the disciples at Pentecost, why don't they have the ability to speak and everyone there "hears" the gospel in their own language? They did not have an answer. There is nowhere in Scripture teaches that tongues is EVER to be used by someone alone for their own edification but it is always for the unbeliever's benefit.
I don't believe that what is called the "Cessationism" view is from Satan nor that those who think the sign gifts were for the establishment of the church and ceased once the New Testament was completed and the Apostles died are teaching something that takes away from the glory and work of God throughout the church age. I guess my view is that of:
A strong Cessationist would appeal to the principle of Sola Scriptura, insisting on three propositions:
1.the completion of the canon of the Bible
2.the infallible and sufficient authority of the Bible
3.the perfection of the Scriptures to guide the Church
According to a strong Cessationist, a person with a gift of power is also a prophet because healings and miracles were always signs associated with the divine confirmation of the genuineness of a prophet in the periods when God revealed new truths with respect to the doctrine. A strong Cessationist might concede that prophecies might be useful in the guidance of the Church. Nevertheless, he will insist that the Church can be perfectly guided to reach the right decisions if it applies the principles, teachings and examples of the Bible.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cessationism)
As far as what God allows during the Tribulation period, we already know that some will have the abilities to do miraculous things. But I do not believe at all that we are there yet. All in all, I respect others rights to believe as they choose and how they feel God leads them. It is not up to me to convince anyone, that is the Holy Spirit's job. All I can do is to speak as I am led and it is NOT by the devil!
**What about the thief on the cross who went to Pardise with Jesus? He was never baptized in water.**
After healing the man of his leprosy, Jesus said unto him, “see thou tell no man; but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded, for a testamony unto them.” Matt. 8:4 (same story in Mark and Luke)
The thief was still under the Law, “For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth.” Heb. 9:16,17
After his resurrection, before ascending to heaven, the Lord gave those commands, that we read of at the end of the gospels, to his disciples to follow and administer. The Lord commanded “that REPENTANCE and REMISSION of sins should be preached in HIS NAME among all nations, BEGINNING at Jerusalem”. This first was administered in Acts 2.
**What about the person who truly accepts Christ minutes, or hours before death and has no access to water or time to be baptized in water?**
Truly accepts? Do you know the condition of the soul that intimately that you can judge a person’s salvation? The ‘get right with God’ just before death mentallity is one of the biggest reasons people live in sin. They love the world too much to give it up until they see that they are hopelessly on the way out. They are told all they have to do is confess and believe, and think “well, I can just do that while I’m breathing my last breaths”.
The keeper of the prison, in Acts 16, is a favorite of the ‘just accept the Lord’ crowd. Curiously, they place little regard to how Paul and Silas then “spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house.....and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.” vss 32,33.
When I was first witnessed to of the apostolic, Acts 2:38 message, I resisted, thinking of a brother, a wonderful grandmother, and others that had passed away. But, I had to realize that I’m not their judge. I was witnessed to of portions of the Word that had not been regarded as essential. I had to accept it or reject it.
**Water baptism is SYMBOLIC!**
There was symbolism in the OT of baptism. Read my post #138 for a list of those.
**I have been baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.**
The Lord’s command for baptism was heard by Peter and the others. On Pentecost, when Peter commanded the convicted hearts to “repent, and be baptized EVERY ONE of you in the NAME of Jesus Christ for the REMISSION of sins”, there is no record of the other apostles correcting him on the name.
**When I was baptized in the name of the Father, SON, and Holy Spirit; I was baptized in the name of Jesus.**
So you sign your checks “Father, Son, and Husband”? (if you’re married, that is)
Thats why, if a sect doesnt teach baptism in the name of JESUS for the remission of sins, then they are in disobedience the the Lords hand picked and properly instructed apostles. They knew that the name (singular) in Matthew 28:19 is Jesus, for:
The Christ declared his name to not be his own, but his Fathers. JN 5:43
The writer of Hebrews declared the son received his name by INHERITANCE. Heb 1:4
The Sons name is not Son, its JESUS, for he was named that by Gods order to both Joseph and Mary. Matt. 1:21 and Luke 1:31
The Christ declared that the Holy Ghost, WHICH PROCEEDETH from the Father (JN 15:26), is sent by the Father in MY NAME.
The term ‘Son of God’ is scriptural; the term ‘God the Son’ is found nowhere in scripture. Neither is ‘God the Holy Spirit’, for that matter.
**Have you been baptized in the name of Father, Son (Jesus), and the Holy Spirit.**
Yes, as a teen, and the words did not include ‘for the remission of sins’. I was rebaptized 12 years later in the name of Jesus for the remission of sins.
**Jesus Chriat miraculously changed my life. He did for me what no man could ever do in delivering me from a lifestyle of total destruction.**
Are your sins remitted as per the Lord’s commands? He changed lives before he went to the cross; healings, changes of heart and mind, messages of conviction and hope, etc. But, as I already pointed out, they were still under the Law. When Philip preached and performed miracles unto the Samaritans, “there was great joy in that city”. Then a few verses later they are said to have believed and were baptized, but did not receive the Holy Ghost until sometime later when Peter and John showed up.
I can go on, and will, if there is a request to discuss more. Even any questions about why the ‘oneness movement’ doesn’t teach the ‘trinity’ will gladly be answered. Any response may take a few days, as I’m an OTR truck driver, and still live in the low tech past when camped out in the sleeper. But, I will leave you with this: Acts 2:38......is it from heaven, or of men?
In a nutshell, anything you add to the finished work of Christ on the cross as a prerequisite for salvation is what you’re trusting in.
If you add baptism, then you are trusting baptism to save you and you are saying that the death of Christ isn’t enough.
If you add taking communion, then it’s the eating that saves you, not Christ.
Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sins. NOTHING else is capable of remitting sin and granting forgiveness. If it was Christ died for nothing.
Christ’s death alone is sufficient. If it wasn’t, Christ would not have said *It is finished*.
Being dunked in water baptism does not save anyone. It’s not Christ and _________.
It’s Christ, period.
It isn't saying that all the gifts to the church or the fruit of the Holy Spirit - which also includes love - will cease. I Corinthians 13:8-10 says, "Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears.". So love never fails, but tongues - the supernatural power of tongues - will cease just as prophecies and partial knowledge will. Why Paul spoke of tongues and not healing, I don't know other than it is something God always will do. Because he said "prophecies" and "knowledge" is why I believe it is speaking of the completed revelation of God - the Bible. No new prophecy or unrevealed knowledge was omitted from it. Some people even say that tongues is some kind of "heavenly" language, the language of angels, but I know it can't be that simply because Paul said it would "be stilled" or stop. Obviously we will all speak some kind of language in heaven, but it will not be the same as the tongues in I Cor. 13.
However, I do agree that too much emphasis is placed on the "showy" outward demonstrations of tongues - which Paul said was the least of the gifts. Each person will answer to God for however he uses the gifts God gives and all of them are for the ultimate glory of God.
Indeed, dear sister in Christ, any suggestion that the blood of Christ was inadequate is an insult to God.
And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, [I say], whether [they be] things in earth, or things in heaven. - Col 1:20
God’s Name is I AM.
Ditto even implying that He quit being the Miraculous God He’s always been.
**Christs death alone is sufficient. If it wasnt, Christ would not have said *It is finished*.**
He finished the requirement for sacrifice for sin. “There remaineth no more sacrifice for sin”.
**In a nutshell, anything you add to the finished work of Christ on the cross**
I didn’t ADD anything, HE laid down the requirements that make one “buried with him”, as Paul referred to it.
Jesus christ is the one who said one ‘must be born of the water and of the Spirit’, and commanded baptism at the end of Matthew and Mark. He commanded ‘that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name beginning at Jerusalem. Where is that fulfilled....Acts 2:38.
The apostles went about ‘dunking’ people just as fast as they could under awkward (Jews in the presense of Gentiles: The conversion of Cornelious and household included an order for immediate baptism ‘in the name of the Lord’), harrowing and painful (tortured and beaten Paul and Silas didn’t dilly dally), the eunuch didn’t pass up on what Philip apparently taught while riding in desert. Paul promptly RE-baptized men in Ephesus.
You’ve got to move a muscle to be born again, nomatter how you dodge the water baptism issue. Whether going to hear a preacher, making an effort to repent, making a verbal confession, or getting ‘dunked’ (You need to repent for mocking it, imo), there’s effort in being converted.
His apostles were right; and your claiming Christ yet rejecting his and his apostles words.
The eighteen wheeler is warmered up, gotta go for now. Adios.
In context, He is talking about being born physically to Nicodemus. He never said that one had to be baptized. He used the word elsewhere so if He meant baptism in john 3, then He could have said it.
In Matthew, all He commands is that the disciples baptize. He never said that it was a requirement for salvation in that book.
The passage in Mark is controversial as to its authenticity and I see LOTS of people with lots to lose in their doctrine and theology hanging a lot of emphasis on a passage of Scripture of uncertain origin. I suppose that you also agree with the rest of that quote in Mark where Jesus finishes up by saying.....
Mark 16:15-18 And he said to them, Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.
Therefore I trust that you also hold to the belief that all believers will speak in tongues, lay hands on the sick and see them healed, will pick up serpents with their hands and no deadly poison will hurt them.
I've noticed that certain groups like to use that passage to support their doctrine of baptism being necessary for salvation and ignore the rest of it (the signs that follow), while the charismatics like to use that verse to support the signs that follow but deny the necessity for baptism. Both groups pick which part of the passage to allow and disallow.
I can't recall that I've seen anyone hold to ALL that it teaches, that is the necessity of baptism for salvation and the signs which are to follow.
Salvation is a GIFT (Eph 2:8-9) and there is nothing you can do to earn it or qualify for it. There is passage after passage in the gospels where Jesus says that all one has to do is believe. The tax collector at the temple simply cried out for God's mercy and Jesus said that he want away justified. The thief on the cross didn't have time to be baptized.
Galatians 2:15-21 15 We ourselves are Jews by birth and not Gentile sinners; 16 yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, so we also have believed in Christ Jesus, in order to be justified by faith in Christ and not by works of the law, because by works of the law no one will be justified.
17 But if, in our endeavor to be justified in Christ, we too were found to be sinners, is Christ then a servant of sin? Certainly not! 18 For if I rebuild what I tore down, I prove myself to be a transgressor. 19 For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.
Baptism has become a work which people have added to faith in Christ so that they can feel like they did something to earn God's favor or that somehow they contributed to their own salvation somewhere, but all that does is leave room to boast. If the works of the Law didn't save, then no new work that man has decided to add to faith is going to save either.
Thanks for the many comparisons you have assembled in this comment. They are interesting, and I wish a little time to consider them all. I saw your OTR association in another post to this theme. I have pressing commitments also. Certainly I believe that in the Old economy, the blood of bulls and goats propitiated The God by covering sin, but could never take it away. And that only the Blood of The Christ would both cover and wash it away. I've done more, but it's not complete -- economics call -- more later --
OK, I see the reasoning there. That makes sense.
"For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a PERFECT MAN, unto the measure of the stature of the FULNESS OF CHRIST." Eph. 4:12,13. Also, we know that in 2 Tim. 3:15, it is the Scriptures which are able to make thee wise unto salvation. That the man of God may be PERFECT, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." 2 Tim. 3:17.
If the Scriptures can make a man PERFECT, and these gifts were given to make us into a PERFECT MAN, and when that which is PERFECT is come, then I believe it is the PERFECT WORD of God, that Paul is speaking of in 1 Cor. 13. When God's perfect word has been completed. Which it has. And why in Revelation, Jesus Christ warns that if any man take away or add to this book, his part will be taken out of the book of life. "This book" refers to the whole word of God; not just Revelation. I believe the Book of Revelation is the end of God's Revelation to mankind, for His reasons and purposes. His Word has a beginning and an ending. IOW, that which is PERFECT HAS come: God's complete Word to mankind. All that He would have us know. There is now no reason for prophesy, or tongues, or partial knowledge. But love and charity never fail.
My opinion only. :)
And a good one at that.
Am beginning to wonder what has happened to Holy Spirit’s leading and working in y’all’s lives.
Am busy on other writing projects . . . but goodness . . .
Please don’t let the tedious prissy junk from hell discombobalate you!
These still ARE the END TIMES
HOLY SPIRIT STILL IS VERY MUCH ALIVE AND WELL AND OVERTLY ACTIVE IN THEM.
All the counterfeit stuff is chaff. Why get lost amongst the chaff?
Not to worry. It’s just a matter of sorting some things out.
Peter's "last days" speak of revival, when all ISRAEL will be saved. I don't have my Bible in front of me, but I believe it is Acts 2 or 3 that he references Joel's prophecy of the last days before Christ returns. (Visions, dreams, tongues, etc.)
Paul's "last days" speak of apostacy. See 2 Tim. (people having itching ears, turning their ears from the truth, following doctrines of deceit, etc.).
The question is, are they speaking of the same "last days"? They can't be. One is speaking of REVIVAL. The other is speaking of APOSTACY.
I believe Paul's "last days" refers to the last days of the Church the Body of Christ. Everything we have now is by faith. Not by sight. And remember, tongues are for a "sign". To who? Israel. But Israel is blinded and set aside during this age of grace. So what good would tongues and other signs be to us? When the Body of Christ is raptured, signs will once again be forefront. Because Israel is forefront. They will be NECESSARY for tribulation saints.
At this time, they are not necessary for the body of Christ. All our blessings and inheritances are in the heavenlies. Not on things on this earth. That's why Paul tell us not to be concerned with things on this earth. We have the perfect Word of God, the COMPLETE REVELATION, as He has seen fit to give us. We know the beginning, the middle, and the end. What more could be added as extra-prophetic in order to make his final Amen in Revelation be added to?
I am NOT saying He doesn't perform miracles today. He most certainly does. He heals who He will and He doesn't who He doesn't. It is HIS will, not man's power of laying on of hands that He responds to .
We are told that we know how to be hungry and how to be full, how to be with and how to be without, how to be on top of the world, and how to be down in the ditch (so to speak), and that it is ALL through Christ strengthening us that we iive this life in this age of grace.
I pray you understand what I'm saying here. God Bless! smvoice
I know many charismatics use the Joel prophecy about the last days to justify what they consider the practice of the gifts as it seems to have been increasing in these days, but I agree with you here.
It’s obvious the *last days* prophecy referred to in Joel was fulfilled in Acts 2. We now have the Holy Spirit indwelling the hearts of believers everywhere since He has been poured out on us. I don’t think that that can be used to justify the claims of the apparent sudden rash of signs and wonders people are claiming.
And I hate to have to qualify it also, but that does NOT mean I don’t think they happen. It’s just that I don’t think they happen to the degree that many people claim. I think there’s a real lack of discernment about when it’s genuine and when it’s not that’s the problem.
Hebrews 6:1,2 speaks of the "doctrine of baptisms" (plural). From http://www.scribd.com/doc/21641047/Baptism-or-Mikvah:
In a similar way, Rabbinic literature uses the term "born again"to refer to at least 8 different occurrences, each of them a life changing experience:
When a Gentile converts to become an Israelite (Hebrew).
Immersion of repentance (Johns baptism), similar to the previous point.
At age 13 when a Hebrew boy chooses to embrace God's covenant and be numbered with the believers.
When an individual gets married.
When an individual is crowned king
As a disciple of a Teacher/Rabbi, you are immersed in his name to show that you follow him.
When an individual becomes a Rabbi (Teacher).
When an individual becomes the head of a rabbinical school.
The water is not used to remove any physical uncleanness, but rather as a symbolic spiritual cleansing and rebirth. The mikvah symbolizes moving from one state to another - from ritual impurity to ritual purity, from one phase of life to another.
When we respond to the message of the Gospel through repentance and faith, the ceremony of baptism is then done as a confirmation and testimony of the inward change. The ceremony, in and of itself, is not what imparts spiritual cleansing but the faith and trust of Jesus Christ by God's grace. Therefore, baptism is not what saves us nor does it cause the remission of sins, only the blood of Christ is able to do that.