How to Test the Spirits

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Dr. Brown opens up a major chapter in his Authentic Fire, asking what principles we are to use to evaluate the Charismatic Movement and then seeing what the conclusions actually say. Listen live here 2-4 pm EST, and call into the show at (866) 348 7884 with your questions and comments.

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Hours 1 and 2:

Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: The greatest sign that the Holy Spirit is at work is that people are drawn to the Jesus of the Scriptures and exalt Him! When that happens rejoice; that’s from God!


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Other Resources:

A Great Big Blind Spot

Cessationist Call-in Day #2

What Questions Would You Ask Pastor MacArthur?

  1. If someone falls into a trance because they were touched by heaven in some way, I would think they would get something out of it, and some of us might like to know what it was.

    If they say something like, “All I can tell you is that in the presense of the Lord there is no darkness at all, no place to hide, and I didn’t feel like hiding. Anything that is dark leaves, and at first that began to happen……..”, then I might think that something real did in fact happen to them, unless I have a good reason to suspect them of going into some kind of con man routine for some reason or another. But if I have no reason to suspect they were playing games, it seems to me that they may very well have experienced something good from the Lord.

    If they have nothing to say about their experience, I suppose I might wonder if they simply fell on the floor and acted as if they were in a trance or something. Yet it could be that they just didn’t want to talk about it at the time, or for some reason or another were not at that time able to communicate what they were experiencing.

    If we are touched by the Lord in some way, shouldn’t we be changed somehow by the experience, or have a new perspective on some old carnal way of thinking, or have established in us something we knew from the scripture, and now we see the importance of it in some greater light?

    I’ve had very few dreams during my life where I thought the Lord might be communicating something to me, and they were very short. Only two that I can think of and that’s been in over 50 years of living, while I’ve had many thousands of nightmare type of dreams that do not make any sense, and /or are just plain wrong.

    Shouldn’t we expect the difference between heaven and hell to be something like an old horror black and white film, and a new, living, clean, and moral movie which is both informational and uplifting, educating, and enlightening?

  2. Ray,

    Very interesting perspective. While you are way more literal than me, I think I basically agree with you.

    In my own liberal way, I also agree with Dr. Brown and Jonathan Edwards. And, importantly, the Apostle Paul.

    The way to know if something “odd” is valid is to see if it produces love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

    I, personally, think this is the short list. I would also include tolerance, healing, reconciliation, grace, generosity, forgiveness and others stuff.

    More simply put — does it make us better people? That’s the test.

  3. Dr. MB’s logic outlined in using the arguments of the opposition while filling in examples with their own identified protagonists for forming their assumptions shows both the limitations of their logic, and the reasoning of God’s example of, ‘Come, let us reason together’. It is the forthright sincerity too that carries the day. It seems the opposition is throwing out all living of sacred textual persuasion on employing the gifts with their tainted bathwater for declaring any and all applications or affects error. What does I John say about discernment, and what is the basis for it, first and foremost the testimony of Jesus, i.e. his life, death, burial, resurrection and ascension, whereby He declared ‘it is better that I go away’. Why? So He and the Father can send the Holy Spirit.

    I agree that power of affirmation of the shared word or Gospel is written as confirmation of the message, with the qualification that that the message must come forth as the more permanent reality than affirming manifestations or gifts. This keeps our loyalties centered on Christ, not on experience first and foremost.

    I was slain in the Spirit for the very first time this year, and was healed of a shoulder rotator cuff impingement at the same Anglican church which practiced a very orderly liturgy. The person administering the gift, the Pastor’s wife, glowed, and we both noticed the ‘wave’ of the spirit coming from behind her, to and through her hands, into my body. I had been in agony for months from what appeared to be an old injury becoming more acute after aging and some stress I have gone through for one year. It was healed in milliseconds. This is unusual, but not strange, and is of the authentic–as was requested in Jesus’ Name.

    Praise be to God the Father and the Lord, Jesus the Christ.

  4. One thing that lingers is that when John M. expounds on the scriptures, he has a gift of teaching. When he gives his opinion on the Charismatic movement it is conveyed with a very different dynamic and logic, where the gist and assumptions stated fall to the ground so to speak. He simply has no anointing when speaking against the anointing work of the Spirit coming to people through believing and Spirit filled other people.

    Hearing his speech to his Seminary students I was appalled that so little substance was offered to back up his gift applications antagonist opinions.
    This has me wondering if it is he himself doing the preparation or research for his radio and pulpit teaching. Why is the difference between the talk in the video given the students and what is offered nationally on radio so radically indicated in manner, detail, and logic?

    It almost seems as if he is two different people, one on the radio or in the pulpit, another when not expounding scripture. He then should go back to scripture to find what it says of the Holy Spirit, of spiritual gifts applications, and gifts use advocacies in the churches of the Apostolic letters. Time to permit the fire of preaching and teaching into other compartments of who you are and might be, John M.

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