The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Has the Holy Spirit slain you lately?


#21

The fact I’ve gone up to the front and experienced someone trying to push me back but not letting them (like Pilgrim’s experience) and witnessed some of these manifestations (that only seem to result in a phyical reaction e.g laughing and falling back- not the type of healing Sherman experienced), shows I’m trying to catch this wind. I didn’t immediately diss it. I gave it a chance. I prayed that God would show me if this was His Spirit. The first experience I had of this very real power, was back in about 1995. The power came on me and I couldn’t get up off the floor. My head was stuck to the floor and try as I might I couldn’t lift it up. This made me very frightened and so I prayed very fervently and sincerley ‘Jesus, if this is you, then please let me know it’s you and I’ll quite happily lie here as long as you want me to.’ Still the fear: ‘Jesus you can see I’m scared with this. Is this you Lord? Please give me your peace, that this is you’. Still fear. I prayed this about three times and still the fear and so I thought 'sod this, I’m getting up now, and so I did and went back to my seat and concluded this was not of God. I didn’t quite give it up after that. During the years people manifested this phenomenon and I would look on suspiciously but always pray, ‘Lord forgive me, if this is you and I’m being negative’. I’ve had people pray that I’d be baptised in the Holy Spirit- many times. (I thought, maybe I’m not getting this because you need to have it, to get it.) And so, many have prayed but no baptism seems to happen. I think I’d know if it had.

Sturmy, you say

and I understand why you think this. I thought this too, which is why I tolerated it for as long as I did, but then if God can allow evil things that happen to ‘Christians’ then is this any different? When I was 15, I was wagging off school one day. :sunglasses: (I told my mum I felt unwell). I remember at this time, I’d been wondering about the purpose of life and if there was a God and had prayed ‘God let me know if you’re there’. A few days later, lo and behold He answers my prayer. Two lovely Jehovah’s Witnesses knocked the door and had answers for all my questions. They had the ‘truth’. I nearly became a Witness and went out on the preaching work. I got diassociated (not disfellowshipped, as I wan’t baptised, but it’s the same thing) for leaving and having boyfriends. Why did God give me a ‘stone’ when I’d asked for bread? He allowed me to be deceived and their deceptions (which I believe they’re not aware they are deceiving) have had a lasting impact on my life. I still carry lots of guilt and can’t seem to feel assurance that I’m ‘saved’. I know they do have a lot of truth, but they also have a lot of bad stuff. God allowed it. I don’t know why. He is allowing nutters like Todd Bentley to deceive people. :cry: Sturmy, what did you think of the documentary? :wink:


#22

Hi Catherine
I agree completely with the documentary and have been trying to warn people for many years.
My father was a minister in the AoG here in the UK and I remember a prophetic message at the annual conference back in the early 70’s that the Pentecostal movement was backslidden and needed to seek God’s face again. There were warnings given but not heeded. Everything that that minister prophesied has come to pass and the Pentecostal Church in the Uk is now in total dis-array and, I believe, in its death-throws. We have taken our eyes off Jesus and have become lustful for signs/wonders and emotional kicks.
The Torronto blessing came to my church and one woman who was ‘slain’ (and as far as I know - being slain in the Spirirt scripturally means you do not get back up ie Annanias ). This woman was in good health but from that day until this her health has gone completely. She has been ‘diagnosed’ with M.E. She is a mess and has done great harm to the church with a controlling spirit.
I have never seen any good come from these sorts of gatherings and manifestations. On the contrary, I have heard countless false prophecies, seen countless fake and very temporary “healings” and I am convinced that they have done tremendous damage to the church.
Sturmy (Hi) you ask why God allows it? I think the word ‘genuine’ is the important word in your quote. If a believer lusts for something not of God, He may well allow that soul to experience something which, long-term, may be an important lesson.
The OT is full of how God’s chosen people become dis-satisfied with their bride and go seeking pleasure from a harlot.


#23

I agree completely with Pilgrim. I am in the USA so I think the timing here was different. I recieved the Holy Spirit (as I posted above) in an AOG church in the early 1970s. It was a small church and its members cared a lot about each other. Then later on, the charasmatic (Spirit Baptism) churches, along with a whole bunch of other Biblically conservative churches got themselves mixed up both in secular politics, becoming known as ultra right winger members of the Republican Party and in supporting some television “evangelists” to the point that said “evangelists” became millionares.

And then there was the whole ‘Gospel of Prosperity’ thing which is about as far from Jesus’s teachings as you can get.

I wonder if they know how many people were chased away from Christianity in general by these antics?

I still say you know the Holy Spirit by the fruits of the Spirit.

Christians should certainly vote, but to push their members to vote one way only is not from God and you can’t force Christian “morality” on nonChristians via laws. And all Christians do not have the same morals anyway. Ironically these are some of the same people now complaining about Muslims trying to force their laws on communities.

They are right to oppose this and many other people also oppose but it is still ironic.


#24

I too was raised under cessasionist theology. When I was 24 though I was exposed to believers who believed in the BHS and shared their testimonies. Knowing these people were being truthful, I decided to study the issue for myself. And like with infernalism, the more I studied the case for cessasionism, the more it slipped between my fingers like sand. In short, after 3 months I came to believe it was possible they better understood scripture on the issue than I did. And then God intervened in my life and I experienced the BHS. It was a life-changing event for me, one that even changed my perspective on scripture, again, similar to the lights coming on in regards to UR.

I’ve found that there are several factors involved in someone recieving the baptism with the Spirit.

  1. Believing that such is for today and for them. If a person does not believe that such is for them then they will not know to lift their sails to catch the wind of the Spirit, though they be buffeted by the waves pushing their boat.
  2. Participation in a community of faith that believes in and practices the BHS. It is very difficult for people to embrace something that their community of faith does not support. And recall the cases in Acts where it was the prayers of the community of faith that positioned them to be filled with the Spirit.
  3. The sovereignty of God also comes into play for it is evident in scripture to me that God intervenes in some people’s lives without their desire or consent. I’m reminded of Paul and of Cornelius and his household.
  4. How people are predisposed to view the BHS based on their previous experiences with flakes and phonies. Paul notes how the flaky practices of the Corinthians would hinder unbelievers from believing. This is especially true today with all the recordings of flaky practices and flaky doctrine related to the BHS. People see stuff on the internet and assume errantly that all Pentecostals and Charismatics are flakes and phonies.
  5. The desire of the person for the BHS. People who really want to live in the power of the Holy Spirit, seek it, study it, and make any changes they feel necessary to live in it. Blessed are the hungry!

These are just the factors that come to mind immediately. There are others, I’m sure. The BHS is neither evidence of spiritual maturity or holiness or correct theology. And I believe that many things we do and say as believers are inspired by the HS though we do not even recognize it. I believe that God would have all people saved and all the saved living in the reality of the baptism with the Spirit!


#25

I too have experienced ministers trying to push me over, but I’ve also experienced being overwhelmed by the presence of the Lord. I’ve been in meetings where, like in the videos though not quite that extreme, where people were laughing and crying and some were jerking, and I didn’t feel anything at all. On the other hand, I’ve also been in the middle of a celebration of launching a new fellowship with over 700 attending the first service. It was a joyous occasion but as I looked around the Lord spoke to me saying “It could be full.” I understood that it could have been full that day “IF” we’d have done the work of reaching out. It could be full next week IF we’d reach out with the love of God. And the group could dwindle to nothing IF we did nothing. I was broken with God’s love for people. Waves of grief washed over me. Everyone around me was worshiping and rejoicing and I was under the seats balling like everyone I loved had died. I was a wreak, broken, couldn’t talk. Someone asked my wife if I was ok. Knowing me, she said, oh yea, God’s just dealing with him about something. He’ll be fine. I was overwhelmed with God’s love for people and grieved that we/I do not give our lives loving others into the kingdom.

So are the events under discussion from God or of the Kundalini spirit? I don’t know. I tend to think it’s like the outpouring of the Spirit that happened at Corinth. It was God moving, but a lot of immaturity, flakyness, some phonyness, and seeking attention was mixed in. God genuinely moved in some people, but for others it’s at best an expression of selfishness, and for some possibly demonic oppression (if they are already submitting to that).

We need discernment, but/and I find it challenging to judge a whole movement. And I’m often reminded of what Seargent Kilrain said in the movie Gettysburgh, “I’ll take men one at a time. Any man that judges by the group is a pea-wit.” Also, I respect men like Oral Roberts, Peter Waggoner, and others, though I don’t see eye-to-eye with them on some things, I believe they love God and love people. And being I have not been involved any length of time with any of the fellowships that are fully embracing that movement, I find it challenging to judge the fruit of such in individuals lives.

Well, anyhow, thanks for reading my thoughts. Blessings on you all!


#26

I appreciate everyone’s input on this complex topic. My friend who laughs in the spirit, (allegedly) says that the experience really helps her to let go of some of the hurt she may be feeling (she’s a single mother to five kids). Maybe something is going on by God, that seems silly to my intellect. Then again, maybe something in her subconscious is causing her to do this, in order to let out pressure from worry or something. I know of phsychiatric conditions where the person may have uncontrollable crying. I don’t love my friend any less. She believes it’s the Holy Spirit, and it’s up to God to put her right, if it isn’t.


#27

Sherman, I was going to read the rest of the thread before responding to your testimony, but there’s too much.

That is so exciting! You brought tears to my eyes – I would love to be involved in something like that. But I think you may have touched on a key element to the whole “charismania” thing, and that is this: Have we in the church become too insular, “ministering” to one another (which is good, certainly) and forgetting that the anointing for healing and miracles was specifically offered to us, His disciples, as an adjunct for evangelism – signs following? We have to manufacture “miracles” and “moves of the Spirit” because we aren’t seeing it on the streets. And since we, most of us, know that the great bolus of what we “see” in church is, well, just isn’t real – it isn’t really happening, and we know that, it’s hard to “work up” the faith to believe that when we lay hands on that half-drunken street person and command his mind to be healed, it’s not only possible but promised that our Father will confirm the good news of the Kingdom with signs following.

I have also had the experience of being “slain in the Spirit” which, I’m convinced, is for most people a voluntary yielding to what is expected (Fall down; we promise someone will be there to catch you so you won’t be hurt. If you’re wearing a dress, don’t worry; the nice church lady will have a cloth draped over your legs before you reach the floor.) The only time I ever felt anything even approaching “overpowering” was once when Kenneth Hagin laid hands on me. It was like a white kind of “power” rising up in me, but before it got all the way to my head, he moved on and it subsided. I tried to yield to it, but you know, it just wasn’t happening. But I’ve had what I would call visions and I’ve seen miracles (from my own hands, which I knew to be miracles first-hand) – instantaneous miracles and nearly instantaneous, and in a couple of serious situations. If it hadn’t been serious I would probably not have had the nerve to act.

So, I DO believe in the power of God, and yeah, I even believe He does weird things to people sometimes (but not to me, thus far). I can sense His presence when I turn my heart toward Him. Yes, I could lie to myself (and convince myself, too) and make reasons why that stuff didn’t happen or was a coincidence and would have happened in any case, and I’m only deceiving myself and so on – or that it’s some kind of snake spirit-of-power seated a couple of inches below my navel and not really God in me at all. But I never could get into the laughing thing, let alone the shaking and shivering. God just never did that to me, and for a long time I thought there was something wrong with me, that I couldn’t let go and yield to Him like the others did. Now I wonder whether they weren’t faking it in the hope of making it, too. :laughing: Although I’m sure it was real for at least some of them.

Anyway, my thoughts. Sherman, I want to go out prayer walking with you, Bro! Nothing like that ever happens to me. :wink:

Blessings, Cindy


#28

Cindy- I share your wonderment at Sherman’s testimonies and would willingly join you two on that prayer walk if we lived near by. :smiley: I’ve been thinking about all these signs and you have mentioned what I’ve been thinking: real signs and miracles accompanied the followers of Jesus as they shared the good news. It seems that these signs and miracles served to ‘prove’ that what these ‘Christians’ were telling people was true. Shouldn’t that be the case today? You and Sherman are very blessed to have witnessed real miracles but I have only seen the dodgy ones e.g people saying they don’t need their walking stick, and then next week they walk in with said walking stick, or someone who had some internal problem that you can’t see, but is now better. We never see the real change that Sherman experinced with the drug addict. I do believe that God can still do these kind of miracles through people, but maybe not enough people have the right attitude or faith to be able to allow these miracles.


#29

Cindy, yep I think you’re on the money when it comes to why we do not see more miracles. I’m reminded that the number one reason that is recorded for Jesus performing miracles was because He looked on the people and had compassion on them. He saw their deepest needs and was moved to meet those needs. He saw the needs of the lost because he walked among them and did not isolate himself.

Another miracle I saw happened when I was at a camp for the physically and mentally handicapped, in FL. I was a counselor, helping the young pastor who set it up. One morning we woke early and were saddened to learn that it was expected to rain all day. As we talked and prayed together under the outdoor shelter, as the sun rose we could see a huge black thunderhead coming our way. It would have ruined the day for the campers so we prayed and then told the storm that it could not come near the camp. Well, it continue towards us, but then we watched it split and surround us, and stayed that way all day. Most of the day the wind was a breeze with a cooling mist, but no rain. It was probably the most comfortable day the whole week we were there. We had a great time.

On the other hand, in chapel that evening the Lord had something to teach me. During worship I stood in the back watching the campers and praying for them. One young man raised his hands and staired up at the ceiling and just sat there transfixed. He was one of the least responsive of the handicapped there. I didn’t even know if he knew what was going on around him, though he did seem to respond to music with some movement, like raising his hands that night. Anyhow, as I was watching him, I started feeling so sorry for him, pity, thinking he’s missing out on so much. The Lord spoke to me though and said, “Hey, don’t feel sorry for him; you have no idea what I’m showing him!” And I had the sense that God was opening up the heavens to this young man, blessing him with a spiritual revelation that I can only imagine, angles, maybe even the very throne of God, or the Lamb. Talk about an about-face! I had the distinct feeling that I was the one missing-out, that needed to be pitied! After that I began to see the campers in a different light. Yes they had physical and metal challenges in comparison with what is “normal”, but not only do we not know all that God is doing in them, but we don’t even know what is “normal”. What God showed me freed me up to love and respect the campers more when I didn’t even know I wasn’t loving and respecting them as much as the deserved.

So I saw a miracle in that it did not rain on us all day, but the greatest miracle was worked in my heart when I came to see others who were different from me in a greater light, not as deserving my “pity” but as wholly loved by God and blessed in ways that are beyond my comprehension. We all have struggles, challenges, simply because of being born in this present evil age, but is it worse to be crippled in body or in our soul. I find that those with the least physical challenges often have the most difficult spiritual challenges - like pride and self-righteousness which plagued, enslaved my soul for so many years.

20…“**Blessed **are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.
21 **Blessed **are you who hunger now,
for you will be satisfied.
**Blessed **are you who weep now,
for you will laugh.
22 **Blessed **are you when people hate you,
when they exclude you and insult you
and reject your name as evil,
because of the Son of Man.

23 “Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven.
For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets.

24 “But **woe **to you who are rich,
for you have already received your comfort.
25 **Woe **to you who are **well fed **now,
for you will go hungry.
**Woe **to you who **laugh **now,
for you will mourn and weep.
26 **Woe **to you when everyone speaks well of you,
for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.

What worries me about the story of the rich man and Lazarus is that I’m a “rich man”! So blessed in many physical ways, and yet such a mess deep inside! One thing that gives me great hope though is that over the last few years, since coming to believe in UR, the number of people who have been speaking evil of me has greatly increased! Hallelujah!!! Wahooo!!!

On my grave marker (if there is one) I hope that it can some day truthfully be written - “He loved the hell out of people!”


#30

Sherman, you’re a blessing. :smiley:


#31

I agree! Hilarious! My Catholic friends especially found it funny!


#32

I wouldn’t give it a wide berth. You want to be more in contact with the Spirit not less. It is possible to be spiritually dry.

So people being slain in the spirit may be more spiritually wet. I haven’t fallen down yet but I have had other experiences.

A preacher I know explained once how as a little boy he would crawl under pews and get in the ladies handbags. A lot of the ladies were slain in the spirit…the reason he knew for sure that it actually happened is that they were falling on concrete.

Falling on concrete is quite a risk to take to fake being slain in the spirit.

We worship a personal God so expect Him to get personal…Welcome it. Getting personal is a sign of a healthy relationship.


#33

People will “risk” most anything for acceptance… be that perceived acceptance of God, or others; and there’s nothing quite like religianity to foster such conditionality.


#34

I don’t know if it’s that much about acceptance, Davo. Well, maybe it is. Most places they have the men stand behind and catch you, so it’s not that big a deal. IME, it’s not that much about being slain in the Spirit, though. I do think it’s a real experience in some cases, but I’ve seen people get hurt (once to the point of requiring stitches) sometimes if the guys were on the other side of the room. :frowning: This is NOT a good thing especially, when the person doing the falling is an old lady.

Plus, I discovered long ago (to my rather naive shock) that preachers have the same tendency most of us have when it comes to stories. Every time you revisit a memory, you change it; whether consciously or not. Generally, the changes go more in the direction of ever-so-slight embellishments rather than toward making the story more boring (and possibly more in accord with the facts, whatever facts are.) When you pile up these little embellishments over a period of time, they make some amazing stories. I’m all for experiencing the power of the Spirit. ALL for it. I’m not into showmanship, though. Much of the time, in my own experience, there’s a lot of showmanship in these kinds of meetings. I’m not happy about this, not feeling superior or anything. This is just the way of things, sadly. We think we have to have spectacular displays of “power,” but that doesn’t really do anything to grow the Kingdom of God.


#35

Well, I had three exposures. Some multiple times:

Once a few years ago, in the rural south. A “full gospel” Pentecostal minister touched me. He said the Holy Spirit had something I been wanting for a long time. I could feel the power and a message was communicated.
I know a Roman Catholic priest, with the gift of healing and the power to hear God’s voice. I’ve been to several of his services and I have fallen down at times. He does the healing service after the mass.
There used to be a Catholic priest give healing services but he is now passed. My mom joined me for some of his Christmas dinners.

And they do have volunteers in the services I’ve attended, who stand behind you and glide you down, if that’s what your direction is. Nobody lets you just fall.

Here’s how you can tell the real from the non-real. Folks on TV like Benny Hinn, Leroy Jenkins, etc., show folks always being healing immediately. I know what the reality is, as the Catholic priests and even Native medicine men have told me. Some are healed immediately and fully, some not at all, some only partially and some healing takes a bit of time to accomplish. And another thing. The Roman Catholic priests are not multimillionaires from doing the healing and services - unlike folks like Benny Hinn.


#36

Sorry but you need to go back and study on unbelief and doubt.

They are to be avoided at all costs.

The New Testament also says to die to self daily…For all we know the Spirit is giving people assistance in this area.

Nothing is impossible with God and God’s power hasn’t disappeared from this world just because a lot of people have gotten poor at recognizing it and claiming it with authority.

You need to read up on the believer’s authority.

You do more damage as a biblically uneducated Christian to other Christians than an unbeliever does.

Either there is dominion and power or there isn’t.

But personally I refuse to be a spiritual leper.

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me and people with spiritual sense know to claim that verse regularly.

It is the favorite verse of Tim Tebow the son of Christian missionaries.

If you want to own the power and authority of God then you claim it.

The devil likes to discourage people from claiming God’s power but that is exactly what people need and what resurrection is all about.


#37

The Power of God in You.

An anointed study by William R. Cunningham with many enabling verses for people to look up and meditate upon.

pursuingthetruth.org/sermons … dinyou.htm


#38

I personally know about God’s power from my mother’s testimony.

She used to suffer from epilepsy and depression. But God cast the epilepsy from her. Oftentimes reading scripture regularly will cast out an epileptic spirit.

And there was nothing normal about her going down in an epileptic seizure in the grocery store checkout line with a seizure.

A few years after that she told me God had taken her epilepsy away and she threw her Dilantin away.

Then while she was suffering depression God started to push her out of bed to get up and write God themed poems…She told me that He did this several days in a row until she started to get up on her own.

She wrote a booklet called 140 Inspiring Sonnets which she mailed to heads of state around the world encouraging peacemaking.

I have dozens of the letters those heads of state sent back thanking her for her poetry book.

Reagan, LBJ, Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Golda Meir, Ladies in Waiting to the Queen of England, etc…

I have dozens of these letters she called her “collection” and I think I may have to start a museum for them…but they really belong to God.


#39

You want to get spiritually wet and experience a miracle then go back to the bible and start practicing what God tells us instead of this weak man made imitation spiritual junk food religion that we have now and most churches feed us.

Start fasting …start praying…start reading…start seeking God for the answers…Get active and see if God doesn’t respond to you when you get serious.

The worst thing that could happen to us is that we could get stuck in pews instead of going places for God.

Seven Signs of Spiritual Dryness

enlivenpublishing.com/blog/2 … l-dryness/


#40

If you don’t believe my witness then how about the witness of Jesus?

Matthew 22:29 in the letters in red “Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.”