Wednesday, June 18, 2014

DISCERNING THE SPIRIT BEHIND MODERN SIGNS AND WONDERS


In the New Thought and Latter Rain Pentecostal and Charismatic Churches of today, there is a new set of supposed modern-day Apostles and Ministers of Positive Thinking that are part of the New Apostolic Reformation preaching Kingdom Now Theology. They are also endorsing a new set of Signs and Wonders and Spiritual “gifts”, which are manifesting in their churches, but not in more traditional ones. Furthermore, these Signs and Wonders not only appear to be very odd, but far removed from the Biblical landscape of true spiritual empowerment such as the Apostles received on Pentecost.

In former times, the gifts of the Spirit that were sent by Yahweh God to those who believed in Yahshua as the Messiah and Son of God were meant to equip the Apostles and the disciples of Christ for ministry. This included giving them a supernaturally-charged understanding of God’s Word, the wisdom that comes from it to teach, and the power to prophesy, to be heard in foreign languages, to heal the sick, to cast out demons, and to raise the dead. As it says in the Gospel of Mark:
Mark 16:17-18 - “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; 18 they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
There was no gold dust or feathers falling from the air and being perceived as signs from God in former times, nor did the people make oddly inhuman sounds, act like dumb animals, or jerk about wildly like lunatics as they do in this Latter Rain version of Signs and Wonders. Instead, believers were powerfully equipped to understand and deliver the Gospel to the lost, to fight against the wiles of the Devil, and to lead the lost to salvation and spiritual growth in Christ.

There are also other spiritual manifestations going on in the Charismatic Churches that are not of God. As an example, shortly after I was baptized before the age of 30, I visited a Pentecostal Church where a Charismatic Conference was being held after being invited by a friend. While there, I went up front after the preacher there made the invitation to come up, and I was “slain in the Spirit” and fell backward, and experienced holy laughter as I laid on the sanctuary floor. This Charismatic Conference was publicized by the Church I was baptized at, and my home Church was also affiliated with the Vineyard Churches, which I initially did not know were ring-leaders in this whole False Gospel, Post-Millennial, Reconstructionist Theology!

But thankfully, I had been truly baptized by the Holy Spirit long before this, so I often felt led to question that “Slain in the Spirit” experience as I became more familiar with the Bible. As I did, I eventually realized that no such spiritual manifestations appear anywhere in the Old or New Testaments. As my Sister in Christ Shari Nelson succinctly pointed out, the Prophets and Priests of God in the Old Testament fell FORWARD with their faces to the ground when they were in the presence of Yahweh, NOT backward!

In this respect, it is interesting to note that the Tribe of Dan is prophetically linked to a serpent causing a rider on a horse to fall backward in an Old Testament prophetic Scripture. I have listed it below, and given an interpretation of it in the statements in parentheses within it:

~*~ Genesis 49:17 ~*~
“Dan shall be a serpent (or wicked spirit) by the way
(i.e. the Way of Yahweh, and the Cross),
A viper (i.e. deadly enemy) by the path (i.e. the Path of Salvation),
That bites the horse’s (or Atonement Bulls) heels
So that its rider (i.e. the Church) shall fall backward (into error).”

As such, the Tribe of Dan is not only linked to the Serpent or the Antichrist by tradition, but to Taurus the Bull as one of the Beasts of the Tribulation. Incidentally, it is the Pleiades Star Cluster representing six of the Seven Churches of Revelation (it is minus one - the Church of Philadelphia or the Bride of Christ - because it is taken in the Rapture) that are riding on the Bull or Beast from the Earth during the Tribulation!

Later still, I finally realized that the Church I was going to was not doctrinally sound when an avowed “prophet” of the Vineyard movement named Terry Lamb stood at the front of my church and gave a prophetic word. In that word, he said that the Church was going to go through the Great Tribulation and there was no Rapture.

This sent up red flags in my mind the minute I heard it, and I knew then that something was terribly amiss with the Theology being taught there. Due to this, I left that Church and started attending an Assemblies of God Church that taught a Pre-Millennial view of Eschatology. Although my new church was not without its own doctrinal problems, it was a safer place to grow in my knowledge of God and His Spirit until I was ready to study the Word of God fully on my own.

At this time, I am grateful to God that He led me to abandon the Churches that had initially shaped my perceptions of the Kingdom of God because they taught erroneous Theology. For example, the Bible tells us that the God we worship has sent us the Holy Spirit to instruct us - but NOT to make us babble like idiots, bark like dogs, baa like sheep, or moo like cows in Church as if we were little babies or dumb beasts rather than made in the image of an intelligent and lovingly mature God.

On the contrary! The Bible makes it clear that the Spirit of God does NOT humiliate or belittle His charges, but desires to uplift, educate and edify God’s true saints. In fact, the Bible tells us that the key to an empowered life is to have a DIRECT personal relationship with God through the Holy Spirit, which includes a real internal dialogue being exchanged between the one true God we follow, and each person seeking His love, guidance and help. Only then will the following gifts of the Spirit be seen again in the Churches in America and the world:
1 Corinthians 12:8-11 - “...for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.”
Our God’s love manifests itself publicly through His Spirit in ways that strengthen His saints for ministry, healing, leadership, service, and intercessory prayer. This is done through dreams, visions, and words of knowledge, not odd supernatural events that defy logic or reason. In fact, it is my contention that the spirit in Churches that makes people act like animals, or jerk about wildly like crazy people is not of God. This can be seen in the fact that these behaviors not only humiliate the person they happen to, but do nothing to prepare these believers for serious ministry and power against Satan and his demons - and that is a terrible tragedy. Only zealously desiring true spiritual gifts can change this situation and bring the power of God in Christ back into so many churches that are settling for less:
1 Corinthians 14:12 - “Even so you, since you are zealous for spiritual gifts, let it be for the edification of the church that you seek to excel.”
If you desire to break away from the false Signs and Wonders that you have been settling for out of ignorance, and you wish to see the real Signs and Wonders of a life fully connected to God’s heart and Spirit, then get down on your knees and ask God to forgive you for settling for less than He is offering. Also ask Him to give you discernment, which comes from His Spirit, and which will show you what it means to have a real relationship with Him! If you can’t think of the right words to say, please say the following prayer out loud, or one like it:

PRAYER FOR SPIRITUAL GROWTH:
Father God Yahweh, please have mercy on me, a sinner, and forgive me and all those who are settling for much less power, love and intimacy than You are offering all who are faithful to Your Son. Father God, break the curse of the lying spirits that are manifesting counterfeit Signs and Wonders in today’s Churches. Please be merciful and release many from their deception!
Yahweh God, please grant me and all those who ask for Your true gifts of healing, knowledge and wisdom to receive the Holy Spirit in abundance. May the Spirit of God take up residence in my heart and theirs so that they will be able to see and know Yahshua and You fully, Father, even as they are known.
May I and all the believers in this world learn to crave the hidden Signs and Wonders that are only present when believers have a real relationship with God. May I and all my brethren learn to yearn more for inner intimacy with Christ and His Spirit rather than for outward Signs and Wonders, so that Your Real Signs and Wonders as listed in Scripture can become manifest in all of us, as You see fit.
In Yahshua’s Powerful Name, I pray, Amen!
In addition to displaying many counterfeit Signs and Wonders in the Churches associated with the leaders teaching within the New Apostolic Movement, many of these same leaders believe in Kingdom Now or Dominion Theology, which takes the focus of the Church off of watching and waiting for our Messiah Yahshua’s return, to forming His supposed Kingdom on Earth without His return being necessary. Those within the Kingdom Now Movement in the Church are essentially planning to take over the world and set up a Totalitarian Theocracy where it is not Christ Who is at the head, but these new Apostles and Prophets that believe in Dominion Theology, which is a different Gospel than the one first entrusted to the saints that was focused on the Salvation offered by Christ and His imminent return to rule over and judge this world:
Galatians 1: 6-12 - “I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, 7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed. 10 For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ. 11 But I make known to you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. 12 For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ.”
In the above Scripture, the Apostle Paul twice repeated that those who are teaching this false Gospel that is different than the one he received by direct revelation from Yahshua Ha Mashiach or Jesus the Christ should be accursed, or viewed as cursed because they are hateful of the true Gospel, and detestable to God. As such, the leaders of this false Gospel are not to be embraced as “New” Apostles, but as heretics leading others on a detestable path that can only lead to doom!

Leaders in the New Apostolic Movement that preach Kingdom Now Theology include the following: Mike Bickle, President of the International House of Prayer; Lou Engle, Founder of The Call; Mike and Cindy Jacobs, Founders of Generals International; Bill Johnson, Head Pastor of Bethel Church; Rick Joyner, Founder of Morning Star Ministries; Rafael Cruz, pastor and father of Sen. Ted Cruz; and C. Peter Wagner, Founder of Global Harvest Ministries.

I also know that Francis Frangipane is involved in these heretical movements, as are most of the big name Televangelists like Kenneth Copeland, Benny Hinn and Joyce Meyer, as well as Mega-Church Pastors like Joel Osteen and Rick Warren. For a more comprehensive list of proponents of the abominable heresies of false Signs and Wonders and Kingdom Now Theology in the Church, here is an excellent instructional video by Sandy Simpson:

“A Tale Of Two Kingdoms” at Vimeo:

There is also a companion article to this video that can be found here:

A Tale Of Two Kingdoms by Sandy Simpson, 8/27/11

In truth, there is much more that could be said about these heresies within the Church today, as the above video shows. So do not let this article and the above video be your sole instructional guide on the subject. Please do your own research, and read some of the articles at Wikipedia and elsewhere on the Web regarding Kingdom Now Theology, Dominion Theology, and the New Apostolic Reformation, as well as some good books on the subject, such as:

Authority, Accountability, and the Apostolic
Movement by Dr. Stephen Crosby 

Dominion Theology: Blessing or Curse? 
An Analysis of Christian Reconstructionism 
by H. Wayne House and Thomas Ice 

After my closing below, I've linked to three of my blog articles that are related to this article in subject matter. I hope that you will make time to read them too. In the meantime, may our Father God Yahweh bless you all! Yahshua is coming very soon, so learn to preach the truth in love while there is still time! Maranatha!

Your Sister in Yahshua,
Helena Lehman of the
Pillar of Enoch Ministry
http://pillar-of-enoch.com

RELATED MUST READ ARTICLES:

DO YOU MANIFEST THE FRUITS AND GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT?

SPIRITUAL BLINDNESS, THE DESTROYER OF THE CHURCH

QUESTIONING THE POWER OF SPIRITUAL GIFTS - THE UNPARDONABLE SIN!

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