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Featured Discerning between the Holy Spirit and counterfeits (e.g. Kundalini)?

Discussion in 'Requests for Christian Advice' started by TruthSeek3r, Dec 2, 2020.

  1. TruthSeek3r

    TruthSeek3r Active Member

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    Based on an overwhelming amount of testimonies I've watched, I feel strongly compelled to believe that the Holy Spirit still works and manifests today. However, I'm also aware of the big controversy around certain manifestations and the potential danger of counterfeits.

    For instance, revivalist movements such as the Toronto Blessing have spurred a wave of controversy around the origin of the strange manifestations observed in their services, which many believe to be caused by counterfeit spirits pretending to be the Holy Spirit. For example, Andrew Strom published an influential three-part documentary (1, 2, 3) and a book in which he argues that the observed manifestations are suspiciously similar to the symptoms reported by individuals who have undergone the so-called "Kundalini awakening".

    Moreover, after watching testimonies like this one: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCB64jBvrG-9f8RWWbNSJMBg, I'm utterly convinced that counterfeit experiences such as the Kundalini awakening are a real thing.

    My questions: how can we discern between genuine Holy Spirit manifestations and counterfeit ones? How can we make sure that we are filled with the Holy Spirit and nothing else?
     
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  2. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    For starters, perhaps we should acknowledge that to be filled with the Holy Spirit does not require us to be "out of control" physically and emotionally.

    If that is done, we can go on to discuss the value of the Holy Spirit's guidance, the promise that his lead will protect the church from having the gates of hell ever prevail against it...or any other of the important issues relating to the HS.
     
  3. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    I wrote the following as part of a lesson in the Discipleship course I teach at my church:

    2.) Is the Holy Spirit ever physically violent in his interactions with believers? Should a believer expect or desire to be “slain in the Spirit”?

    No. There is no instance in the entire New Testament, nor is there any teaching in it, that supports the idea that the Holy Spirit in manifestation of himself will act upon anyone with physical violence. Instead, we are told by the apostle Paul that peace and gentleness are fruit of the indwelling Holy Spirit. (Galatians 5:22) Even in the instance with lying Ananias and his wife Sapphira, the Holy Spirit does not throw the two around, or convulse them, or make them scream in agony. They simply drop to the ground dead. (Acts 5:1-11)

    Not once in all of the New Testament is anyone “slain in the Spirit.” What's more, not one writer of the New Testament ever uses the phrase or implies such an idea in his writing. Ecstatic prostration accompanied by convulsions, and/or incoherent babbling, and/or manic laughing or crying have no biblical parallel except in instances of demonic possession! (Mark 9:17-27; Luke 8:26-36)

    3.) Should all believers prove that the Spirit is in them by speaking in tongues and performing miraculous healings?

    No. Scripture doesn't even hint at such a test. Instead, those things we are told in the New Testament to expect as signs of the Spirit indwelling the believer are things like holiness (John 16:8), the fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, etc. - Galatians 5:22-23), changed thinking (Ephesians 4:23-24), and transformed desires (Philippians 2:13).

    4.) What is the “baptism of the Spirit”?

    The answer to this question has become increasingly confused in recent times by the erroneous teaching of two baptisms of the Spirit: One to save a person and another to supernaturally empower them. Does the Bible teach two baptisms of the Spirit? No, it doesn't. The phrase “baptism of the Spirit” refers to one's conversion, to the moment when one is indwelt by the Holy Spirit and thus “made alive” unto God spiritually. Nowhere does the Bible teach a second baptism of the Spirit after one's conversion. In fact, the phrase “baptism of the Spirit” itself does not actually appear in the Bible. The following verses are pertinent to this matter:

    Galatians 3:27 (NKJV)
    27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.


    The lost person is saved by being “baptized into Christ” and made a “new creature” (2 Corinthians 5:17) in him. How is one “baptized into Christ”? Paul the apostle explains:

    Titus 3:5 (NKJV)
    5 not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,


    The Holy Spirit “washes, regenerates and renews” the lost person, by coming to dwell within him or her (John 14:17; Romans 8:9). Called the “Spirit of Christ” (Romans 8:9), the Holy Spirit's presence within a person infuses them with spiritual life, the life of Christ himself, and in this sense the newly born-again person has “put on Christ,” or been “baptized” into him. It is by the Holy Spirit that the lost person, dead in trespasses and sins, is “quickened” or made alive spiritually unto God.

    Ephesians 2:1 (NKJV)
    1 And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins,


    Romans 8:10-11 (NKJV)
    10 And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
    11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.


    5.) Is there any teaching in Scripture that directs us to expect and seek after a second baptism of the Spirit in order to be specially empowered by God for the performance of supernatural acts?

    No. The very first baptism of the Spirit happened at Pentecost, described in Acts 2:1-4. It was at this time that the first born-again believers came to be and the prophecy of John the Baptist was fulfilled:

    Matthew 3:11 (NKJV)
    11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.


    The immediate result of the Spirit indwelling (baptizing) those in the upper room was evangelism. The newly-indwelt disciples began to preach the Gospel in the street, heard by those listening in their own mother tongues (not some unintelligible “spirit language” - Acts 2:7-11) The apostle Peter’s evangelistic speech is even recorded in the chapter. Unfortunately, some have focused on the ability of the first Spirit-indwelt believers to be heard in various tongues and have made speaking in tongues a litmus test for being saved and supernaturally-empowered by God. The tongues in which these first Christians spoke, however, were manifested in order that they might share the Gospel, not prove they were saved or possessed of supernatural power.

    Three times in the book of Acts, the Spirit comes upon people (Acts 2:1-4; 10:44-48; 19:1-6), baptizing them spiritually (Ro. 6:1-5) making them “new creatures in Christ.” By this overt supernatural means the Christian Church began. Only in Acts, however, do we read of the Spirit coming upon groups of people this way. What's more, there is no teaching in the New Testament by any of the apostles that a Pentecost-like event should be expected to occur commonly, or that there should be multiple baptisms into the Spirit. Perhaps what is most significant, however, is that there is no recorded instance in the New Testament of anyone being baptized into the Spirit more than once. The apostles are repeatedly filled by the Spirit but this is not the same as being baptized into the Spirit which is to be born-again spiritually.

    6.) What does it mean to be “filled with the Spirit”?

    When a believer is “quickened,” or made alive spiritually for the first time, the Holy Spirit takes up permanent residence (Hebrews 13:5) inside that believer; the believer becomes a “temple” of the Spirit of God. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20) But although the Spirit lives inside the born-again believer, he may not have full control of that believer. So long as this is the case, the believer will not be able to manifest the Spirit's character, wisdom, holiness and power in full degree in his life.

    Romans 8:5-6 (NKJV)
    5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.
    6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.


    Romans 8:13 (NKJV)
    13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.


    The apostle Paul distinguishes between being indwelt by the Spirit and being controlled by him as the difference between “living by” the Spirit and “walking by” him.

    Galatians 5:25 (NASB)
    25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.


    Every born-again believer “lives by the Spirit,” that is, they have spiritual life by virtue of the Spirit being within them. But not every believer is “walking by the Spirit.” They are not living in obedience to the Spirit's will and way, moment-by-moment, throughout each day; they are not resting in his transforming power, patiently trusting him to make them more and more like Christ.

    Paul goes further in his letter to the Christians at Rome and explains that being under the control of (“led by”) the Spirit is a mark of being a true child of God:

    Romans 8:14 (NKJV)
    14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.


    When a believer is controlled by the Holy Spirit, when he is spiritually-minded rather than controlled by the impulses of his flesh, the life and power of the Spirit flows without hindrance in him, filling, transforming and equipping him for service to God. This is what it means to be “filled with the Spirit.” As often as a believer steps out of the flow of the Spirit's power by disobedience and self-will, he must turn again to God, submit himself to the Spirit's control, and be filled once more. So it is that a believer may be filled by the Spirit many times throughout his life.

    Blaspheming the Spirit.

    In a growing section of the evangelical Christian community, the pursuit of a sensual experience of God has led to a kind of blasphemy against the Spirit. In an effort to “experience God,” many believers today are chasing after tingles, warm sensations, and electrical pulses that run over and through them. They cheer at fog (aka “glory clouds”) coming out of air vents, and gasp at gold dust and feathers falling from above. “This is the Spirit of God!” they say. But when they are pressed to explain how they know this, the answer is ultimately “I just know! And if you knew the Spirit like I do, you would, too!” Thus, without good grounds, believers assign to the Holy Spirit experiences and actions to which they cannot adequately connect him. It may well be that he is not involved at all in the things they are feeling and experiencing and so to say that he is amounts to lying about the Spirit which is tantamount to blasphemy.

    The apostle James warned of the “wisdom that is not from above” (James 3:15), describing it, among other things, as “sensual,” that is, oriented on what appeals to our physical senses and our emotions. We are fundamentally sensual creatures, interacting with reality in large part through our physical senses. When we are confronted with interacting with God, who is a Spirit and not accessible to our senses like the material reality in which we constantly move, we may begin to try to force an experience of Him that conforms to our natural sensuality. But when we do this, we corrupt and diminish the spiritual nature of our fellowship with God and open ourselves to demonic deception. So it is we are commanded in Scripture:

    John 4:23-24 (NKJV)
    23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.
    24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."


    In the record of Scripture, when God “showed up” He did not resort to fog, feathers and gold dust; He did not confine Himself to trivial things like giving people shivers, and tingles, and warm oozies; He did not make them laugh like maniacs, or writhe about in ecstatic prostration. No, when God manifested Himself, He empowered one man to kill a thousand with the jaw-bone of an ass, the wicked were swallowed alive by the earth, cities were destroyed by heavenly fire, seas were parted, mountain tops were clouded in thunder and lightning, and the dead were raised to life! How is it, then, that the expectations of modern believers of God have grown so small? How is it that so many have settled for a momentary shiver instead of fire from heaven? How is that believers enthuse over gold dust from air vents instead of the conviction of the Holy Spirit driving them to their knees in deep and full confession of, and repentance from, their sins? How is it that when a person claims God is manifesting Himself in these trivial ways, so many are eager to believe it without skepticism? This is where a sensual pursuit of God leads people: Grasping for anything that might provide a sensual experience of God, however silly and trite.

    Matthew 12:38-39 (NKJV)
    38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered, saying, "Teacher, we want to see a sign from You."
    39 But He (Jesus) answered and said to them, "An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.


    Satan is the Great Counterfeiter. At every turn he is looking to deceive believers with false facsimiles of God's truth, presence and power. He comes to us as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14), offering us half or twisted truths, and/or outright lies made to look like “good sense.” If we aren't “sober and vigilant,” as Scripture warns us to be (1 Peter 5:8), we will soon fall prey to his deceptions. So, it is that we must have more than “I just know!” as a basis for our claims that the Spirit is at work. If we say, “These shivers are the Holy Spirit!” we must be able to prove it; if we say, “This healing is by the Spirit's will and power!” we must be able to show that it really is; if we say, “This vision is from the Spirit!” we had better be able to fully justify our claim. When believers get in the habit of making unfounded, unproved and unprovable claims about the work of the Spirit, they run the very great risk of falling under false beliefs and the destructive manipulations of the devil.

    We would not accept “I just know” from an atheist or Hindu making a case for their beliefs; we would scoff at the man who said, “Zeus exists because I just know He does!” We ought to show the same skepticism toward any believer who makes a claim about the Holy Spirit that cannot be properly justified from Scripture and proved to be true by standard rules of evidence. If someone claims the Holy Spirit gave sight to a blind person, produce the once-blind person for examination and verification of the claim; if someone claims to have healed a person's bad back, let them show there really was a genuine back problem to begin with and that true healing of it has actually occurred; if a person claims the Spirit raised someone from the dead, such an extraordinary claim requires extraordinary evidence in its support. If believers don't insist on solid justification for claims made concerning the Holy Spirit, they will soon become guilty of blaspheming him and made the dupes of religious hucksters eager to make merchandise of them.
     
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  4. TruthSeek3r

    TruthSeek3r Active Member

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    What about Acts 4:29-31

    29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.

    What about Acts 8:14-17

    14 When the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to Samaria. 15 When they arrived, they prayed for the new believers there that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16 because the Holy Spirit had not yet come on any of them; they had simply been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.

    What about Acts 19:1-7

    While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2 and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” 3 So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?” “John’s baptism,” they replied. 4 Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. 7 There were about twelve men in all.
     
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  5. NBB

    NBB Well-Known Member Supporter

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    No, when the apostles asked the people if they received the Holy spirit when they believed, they didn't ask something like 'did you got the new birth when you believed' because receiving the new birth at conversion its something God does 'automatically' when people believe/convert, and nobody needs to pray or wait or someone lay hands to receive this.

    But being filled with the Holy spirit which is what happened in pentecost actually, 'and they were filled with the Holy spirit' and other occassions sometimes people needed to ask and wait, and someone needed apostles to lay hands on them, some also were already filled with the HS but were filled again in some occasion in the bible.

    And this is overlooked but very needed by every christian and smearing pentecostals for believing in this is doing a big disfavor to God.
     
  6. NBB

    NBB Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The Holy spirit doesn't do anything unpleasant or make you loose control.
    But a person may 'manifest' themselves and do all sort of stuff if God is present and they have devil related spiritual problems though. Like starting screaming not able to control themselves and things like that.
     
  7. NBB

    NBB Well-Known Member Supporter

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    "God is not accesible to our senes" more false that statement it cannot be, you never ever felt the presence of God brother, he can be sensed a lot. I suggest you drop John Mcarthur for a bit and stop smearing pentecostals, and reconsider a bit. This is not about anything 'sensual' or emotions tinglings things anything like that.
     
  8. honey badger

    honey badger i am

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    the patterns of the process are found in everything ...
     
  9. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    What about it? Does this passage indicate that the apostles were baptized again in the Spirit? No. It says only that they were filled with the Spirit. If you want to assert that the Spirit came again upon the apostles as in Acts 2, you must explain how the Spirit had left them without the apostles ceasing to be born-again, in Christ, spiritually-regenerate children of God; for it is by the indwelling Holy Spirit that all of these things are accomplished in any saved person (Titus 3:5; Romans 8:9-11; 1 John 4:13).

    No, the Spirit was in them all along, but in response to their prayer filled them, that is, took full control of them, and through them exerted His saving power upon the lost to whom the disciples spoke.

    Again, I don't see anywhere in this passage any mention of the "new believers" being baptized a second or third time by the Spirit. In fact, they were only actually spiritually born-again for the first (and only) time after Peter and John told them of the Spirit and the "new believers" received Him at the hands of the apostles.

    And, again, there is nothing here in this passage that indicates multiple baptisms in the Spirit. What I read is a description of people being spiritually-regenerated for the first (and only) time by the coming of the Spirit to dwell within them. No where in the NT will you ever read of those indwelt by the Spirit losing the Spirit and then being baptized again by Him. Filled, yes, baptized, no. And these passages you've cited all bear this out. In none of them, is the Spirit re-baptizing anyone.
     
  10. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    Scripture, please. In the accounts of Acts, when the Church was just beginning to be established and miraculous signs were necessary to the proving of the spiritual authority of the apostles, the imparting of the Spirit was necessary. But after Acts you read nowhere the teaching that such "laying on of hands" is necessary to a person being born-again.

    In any case, the new birth is synonymous with the Spirit coming to dwell within a person and by so doing placing them in Christ. See Romans 6:1-11; Romans 8-11; Titus 3:5; 1 John 4:13, etc. There is no "second birth," no spiritual regeneration, without the Spirit coming upon a person - except in the singular and special circumstances of Acts as I explained above.

    As I said, a born-again believer is filled many times by the Spirit but baptized into Christ, that is, born-again, only once.

    Who is "smearing Pentecostals"? I haven't said a word about Pentecostals. I've just looked at what the Bible teaches. And it doesn't teach multiple baptisms in the Spirit.
     
  11. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    What do you think it means that God is a Spirit? Can you hug a Spirit? Can you smell a Spirit? Can you taste a Spirit? Can you see a Spirit? No. The apostle John even wrote that "no man has seen God at any time." (1 John 4:12) Scripture frequently sets the spiritual in contrast to the physical. (Galatians 5:17; Romans 8:5-8; Galatians 5:19-24, Galatians 6:7-8, etc.)

    I have no association with John MacArthur. I don't, then, need to drop him.

    For many - some of whom I know personally - it most certainly is.
     
  12. NBB

    NBB Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't want to discuss this, because its so precious to feel something from God himself, that i just insist to you that the whole 'spirits can't be felt' is so incorrect, that you may even miss the oportunity to seek God presence itself, which can be felt but is him close to us, not an emotion, when i feel God presence sometimes i don't even feel emotions of myself, i just stay serious, glad, and reverent, and if possible still.

    Good that you don't follow John macartur then like lots of cessationists, he doesn't even distinguish between the weird stuff and other pentecostals that may be experiencing something from God, he is teaching dangerous stuff, that what pentecostal feel is not God and they are all deluded, this is so wrong on so many levels and dangerous and can cut down the work of God if people believe him.

    if you are filled with the Holy spirit, you are going to feel his presence in yourself anyway.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2020
  13. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    This is an important area of discussion.

    There is a tension between traditional theologies and what happens in believers lives.

    Discernment is much needed as there can be a mixture of manifestations as the enemy tries to infiltrate a genuine move of Grace.

    When the soldiers tried to take Jesus and He said I AM (john 18:6) the Power of the Spirit was manifest and the soldiers were thrown to the ground.

    In the Old Covenant the levites in the temple were unable to remain standing in God's presence.

    I have no doubt that at times He manifests this way but I have also seen the counterfeit.

    It is so easy to judge in principle but mis-discern.

    It comes back to the discernment gifts operating in a fellowship of unity which is rare these days.
     
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  14. Maria Billingsley

    Maria Billingsley Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I believe I can speak from authority on this subject matter. In the 80's I was involved in advanced meditation techniques that incorporated the Hindu Religion. The kundalini or demonic possession happened to me ; uncontrollable body movements, jerking, verbal outbursts, demonic visitation's, out of body experiences and sleep paralysis, quite the list. Anyway I became a born again Christian around 82 just before all the "crazy stuff" started to happen like the Toronto Blessing and such. I was not part of this at all even though I was affiliated with AOG. Slaying in the Spirit was not present at that time.
    Fast forward, all the years between my salvation and lets say coming back to the Lord in repentance I had no idea such things were going on. AND when I viewed the plethora of videos I was astonished to see how Hinduism crept into the church. I was beside myself.
    After a few years of disgust, I started to understand how lucky I was to have experienced the dark side so that when I come across such abhorrent behavior I can share my story with confidence. The problem is, those who are deeply involved have no discernment on this level and unfortunately thrive on this negative, unholy energy in order to prove they have the Holy Spirit even though it is false, perhaps unknowingly. The lack of knowledge will lead to unrighteous behavior. Pray for them.
    Be blessed
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2020
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  15. lismore

    lismore Maranatha

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    Hello TruthSeek3r. For me it's quite simple. When you are filled with the Holy Spirit you have the desire to glorify God, you know the truth and you are convicted of sin and righteousness.

    If the manifestation does not glorify God, does not bring truth and does not convict of sin and righteousness then it is not from God.

    God Bless :)
     
  16. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    "Feel God's presence"? I don't know of any place in the New Testament where I am told to try to "feel God's presence." I don't even really know what you mean by the phrase. When God met with Moses, when He met with Job, when He met with Paul, they didn't get the warm fuzzies but were on the ground before His holy majesty and power. When the apostle John met the Lord in his revelation, he, too, fell to the ground overcome by the presence of the glorified Saviour (Revelation 1:12-18). Is this what you feel? Are you dropping to the ground, overcome by the power, and glory, and holiness of Almighty God? When I hear other Christians today talking about "feeling the presence of God," they are talking about sentimental, semi-romantic, fuzzy feelings, emotional Jesus-is-my-boyfriend type stuff, that is utterly unlike the experience of those who have actually been in the presence of God. These Christians chase after the feeling more than they chase after God Himself. Some are so keen on the feelings that if they cease to have them, they can't find their bearings spiritually, and end up in a crisis of faith.

    The Bible tells me to look for God's conviction of me, for the fruit of His Spirit to manifest in me, for inner, divine peace, for a passion for holiness, for the illumination of God's truth by the Spirit and his comfort and strengthening of me, and for God's discipline. But nowhere in the NT am I instructed simply to "feel God's presence." This is a modern twisting of the Christian life and experience of God, unsupported except by eisegesis and contortion of Scripture.

    I am a soft cessationist. You can look up what that is, if you like. I am more inclined toward MacArthur's perspective than that of a growing segment of modern, hyper-charismatic, NAR Pentecostals. Certainly, he is far more biblical in his take on the character of spiritual living than any Pentecostal I've encountered. I don't subscribe to his full-blown cessationism, however.

    Is MacArthur dangerous? More so as he more deeply embraces and espouses Reform theology and stands as a sort of "rock-star" of the perspective among Reform folk. I think his "doctrines of grace" are far more damaging to the Church than his views on Pentecostalism, though. But that's another discussion entirely.
     
  17. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    Luke 24
    31Then their eyes were opened and they recognized Jesus—and He disappeared from their sight. 32 They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us as He spoke with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?

    Was this 'burning in the heart' a deception?
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2020
  18. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    Is this intended to counter all I've written?

    Is this account prescriptive? Is it telling us we ought all to seek to feel our "hearts burning within"? Is there a command here to do likewise?

    What induced the "burning", exactly? Does the account say it was how they felt God's presence? Or was it a reaction to what he said to them?

    Unlike the apostle John, the men on the road to Emmaus had no idea with whom it was they were speaking. Is this what NBB is referring to? The reaction of a person unaware they are in God's presence?
     
  19. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    To be fair, I think 'balance' is a better word than 'counter'.

    I don't think a matter has to be prescriptive to be valid.

    I am not saying your reminders of how Moses, Job, Paul and John were rendered prostrate in His presence are not timely - they are, and we encounter too little of this.

    Of course if you don't believe God is meeting His believers miraculously and personally in this age then you must conclude that all such claims of encountering God are deceptive.

    My mum is a classic case - alone as a widow in a country house in bed at night - feels strangely warm and was physically moved about in bed as internal organs in her stomach were healed and put back in the right place. This was a condition she struggled with for 28 years since I was born. And the word she heard "well done thou good and faithful servant" - was that coming from Satan as well? She lived to 98 and touched many lives with the Good News of Jesus.

    All I am saying is that while deception is rife genuine encounters with Him are happening and can be felt by the recipient without them being rendered totally prone.
     
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  20. TruthSeek3r

    TruthSeek3r Active Member

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    The crux of the matter appears to lie in how the concepts of "baptism of the Holy Spirit" and "being filled with the Holy Spirit" are defined. Some think they are synonymous expressions. Others, like yourself, think that baptism of the Holy Spirit means to receive the Holy Spirit for the first time at the moment of conversion (thus, shared by all believers), whereas being filled with the Holy Spirit is dependent upon the believer's lifestyle (and, thus, not everyone experiences it). I really want to avoid playing definition and semantics games. Whether we call them "baptism of" or "being filled with", what matters is that we both agree that there are special moments when the Holy Spirit can come over someone in a notable way, empowering them for witnessing, and these special moments can take place more than once. That's undeniable from Acts 4:29-31, right?

    Now, regarding your claim that the apostles became born again in Acts 2: there is no verse in Acts 2 that says that the 120 became born again at Pentecost and hadn't been born again up until that point. You appear to base your claim on the assumption that the apostles received the Holy Spirit for the first time in Acts 2. However, John 20:21-23 tells us otherwise:

    21Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 22And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

    Furthermore, there is no reason to doubt that the 120 disciples in the upper room were already water baptized and believed in Jesus as their messiah by the moment Acts 2 happened. Add to that that they were all together engaged in intense prayer (and possibly fasting) for about 10 days before the Pentecost event. Despite all of that, are you seriously saying that none of them was already born again when Acts 2 took place?
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2020
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