| Toronto - my story and some questions|
I have seen much on this site re this subject and do not wish to stir up upset or harsh unpleasant remarks..but it is interesting that this experience has reached even my small little town in South Africa and left me somewhat disturbed and anxious.
I was brought up in a pentecostal church and was what I thought then was a christian for the first 22yrs of my life...yes I prayed the sinners prayer and prayed for baptism in HSpirit, but question now if I ever was truly converted then. I found my christian experience very unsatisfying and eventually turned to New Age and consequently dabbled in every kind of occult (with exception of satanism) imaginable for the next twenty years. These teachings left me equally unsatisfied and I continued to pray that the true and living God would reveal HImself to me. By an act of incredible grace God responded and drew me back to Himself. I will not go into details here but it was completely without any human intervention as I could not tolerate christians and they only spurred me deeper into my occult teachings. However having repented, I started attending churches in my area. Yet I still wrestled with the same problems in the church as I did 20 years ago and secretly preferred the New Age teachings and Eastern Philosophy. I had gone to the Pastor of the church I joined and explained my occult background in detail as I felt I may need deliverance, he prayed a simple prayer but not much changed. Then six months ago I heard about some people in a town about 2 hours drive away that did deliverance - they were a Dutch reformed church - so I went and during that session felt several presences leave me. It was very quiet and controlled yet effective.
After this I felt a deep and desperate desire For God and started attending a different church who have a Holy Spirit meeting. I had read and was deeply touched by Andrew Murray's book "Experiencing the Holy Spirit' I felt that I had never truly experienced the HS and this was the reason why my christianity had been so unsatisfying. I had been taught when I was younger that when a person prays for the baptism they have to believe they have received even if they feel absolutely nothing...thus I sincerely believed I had experienced all christianity had to offer....Having been in the occult for the last 20 years I was completley oblivious to the Toronto Controversy and was so grateful to be delivered that I just wanted to be in a safe place and assumed that the church would offer me this safety.
Almost immediately i began to notice some strange things, ie the shaking, laughing, convulsing etc and a quiet alarm came over me. Yet I was desperate to receive the fullnes of the HS and thus allowed people to lay hands on me and went through a fire tunnel when some visiting American speakers came on route to Mozambique. I did not shake or laugh, but I did start having many visions and have a very strong sense of Jesus being with me, but everything that happened in these visions with Jesus basically revolved around Him loving me and pampering me with gifts like flowers and diamonds very much like a lover would. I also received a tongue after going through the Fire Tunnel which I identified as Tagalog (via a language indentification website) as the tongue kwept me awake at night and I would see the words flashing before my eyes. The literal translation of this word Tagalog means 'coming from the river'. However with all this I still felt so unsatisified and found some of the visions quite strange to say the least. I also questioned many of the others who had startling manifestations as to their experience and was a little worried when I heard them respond about the feeling of ecstasy and joy which was the standard answer. I must say for the record that amongst many other things I was a fully iniated Reiki Master and experienced this exact feeling of ecstasy, love and peace when my 'third eye was opened'. Eventually I decided to research the Toronto blessing and then discovered the entire controversy regarding it. Naturally I then became very concerned that I had gone out of the frying pan into the fire and extrememly disturbed at the thought that something evil could be such a huge part of the church worldwide. Please note I am not making a judgement here as I am in great fear of blaspheming against the Holy Spirit - I have tried speaking to leaders in the church here but get no answers. They jsut tell me not to doubt my experience with God. I decided to withdraw from the meetings until such time that I had better discernment on the issue, but also find the meeings strangely addictive - I keep wanting to go back? But the questions I wrestle with at the moment are:
1. Do I have to go back for further deliverance?
2. Is it possible because my heart was sincere before God that what I received as in the tongue and visions were truly from the HS?
3. Is it possible that within the whole Toronto thing there is an equal amount of Holy Spirit and evil manifestations depending on the persons relationship with Christ?
If you managed to read this far - thank you and I hope to hear from you. Please for all those who are pro-Toronto don't take this the wrong way - I dare not pass judgement but am sincerely concerned as to what step to take next.
In all of this I have found the purity and beauty of the teaching on this site something that has kept me grounded and helped me not to go in complete despair over this issue.
I would appreciate any sincere and loving responses. Thank you.
| 2011/10/11 7:45||Profile|
| Re: Toronto - my story and some questions|
Thanks for sharing this... this is a serious thing, and you ask very good questions. I want to read this over a few times and pray before I respond, but let me just say that I appreciate your openness and honesty in this.
| 2011/10/11 8:33|
| Re: Toronto - my story and some questions|
First off thank you for sharing your testimony its not always easy to do. As for offending anyone on here that is pro-Toronto its going to be few and far between. Many attribute the shaking and manifestation to the New Age Kundalini, something you maybe aware of. Here are a couple helpful videos I found reference this. One popular among SI is Andrew Storm's Kundalini Warning.
Here are a couple of videos that may help you.
Fellowship of the Martyr: Demonology:Kundalini
Andrew Storm's: Kundalini Warning Parts 1-3
I would say if you still feel like you are connected to the occult via the "Toronto Blessing" I would seriously consider breaking any agreements and bonds you may have made spiritually with the occult in that aspect.
Another resource I can suggest is a book called T"he Bondage Breaker" by:Neil T Anderson. He specifically talks about Deliverance from the Occult and demons. Something that may help you.
As for the tongues, I found in my own walk as a Pentecostal that "Tongues" is not a sign of Holy Spirit baptism but one of the gifts of it, there are many other gifts that can come with it. The mark of Holy Spirit baptism is Holiness and Love in a supernatural amount and its quite personal between a believe and God Himself. Someone who has a very balanced view of Holy Spirit who can be found on SermonIndex is Zac Poonen, he is very wise and very practical and has been a great blessing to me.
Zac Poonen: The Power of the Holy Spirit Part 1-4
This series may help :)
On visions I would say Does it line up with the Written Word of God? If NO then it wasn't from God, if Yes then there is a chance it was. The Word of God must be our final and only authority OVER dreams, visions, and other things.
As for your last question, there is a chance the Lord moved and blessed some BUT it must be noted the ratio is far from half and half. We must keep on guard and protect our hearts from the things that so wishes to get in and Satan is one of them and he is a decieptive to his very core and so we must be sherd as snakes but as inocent as Doves. In my opinion the Toronto thing did more harm than good and shouldn't be something you partake of.
Sorry I loaded you down with resources but this topic as far as explaining it is beyond my personal ability, I hope you find what I linked for you helpful. Follow Christ and His word diligently and God will guide you where you need to go.
| 2011/10/11 8:48||Profile|
| Re: Toronto - my story and some questions|
First I would like to thank you for sharing your testimony. I would like to second the things said by mguldner. The sources he gave you should be very helpful to you, and I hope that you will listen and learn from the sources.
My thoughts about your 3rd question "Is it possible that within the whole Toronto thing there is an equal amount of Holy Spirit and evil manifestations depending on the persons relationship with Christ?" are this:
I believe that the Holy Spirit manifest himself in many ways, and the experieces of people are not always exactly the same (the Reverand Jonathan Edwards speaks about this great mistery in his diary which is a great read!), but one thing that is always the result of a move of God is a turning away from sin by the people involved. If the result of the movement is true repentance from the people and a turning to the foot of the cross, then I believe it is safe to say that it is a move of the Lord. If there is any other result then it very questionable.
But as mguldner said in the earlier post, if you truly seek after the Lord in prayer, in the Word, and fasting over this issue you are facing then He will respond with an answer just as He graciously answered your prayers when He drew you to Him. He shall never leave us nor forsake us and will reward us with more of Himself if we will seek after Him.
May the Holy Spirit reveal truth to your heart, and give you discernment in this time.
| 2011/10/11 9:37||Profile|
| Re: Toronto - my story and some questions|
Thanks Krispy - I appreciate the serious attitude in which you have responded...
| 2011/10/12 6:07||Profile|
| Re: Toronto questions|
Thanks Matthew and Givens...I appreciate your answers although sadly at the moment I have no access to sound on my computer so cannot listen to the audio sermons....however just wanted to say that part of the reason for the extreme confusion I am having is this.
When I was delivered I experienced a very definite withdrawal from all worldy things to the point that I did begin to feel dead to things I used to do as in watching TV, mindless shopping and also all interest in the occult which had previously plagued me.
Whilst I was going to the "Holy Spirit" meetings I was also earnestly feeding on God's Word, was very influenced by Andrew Murray and was continually drawn to the sermons on this website, studying them daily. As a result of this I often felt I was in a totally different place to other believers in my church. During this time I also continued to pray constantly for the Holy Spirit and began to get a deeper awareness and concern for sin in my life than ever before as well as an inward surge of unexpected love towards fellow believers including those who were in the 'Toronto type' church. I also found myself often crying and feeling very broken most of the time. From what I have read these are true signs of the beginning of God's Spirit working....yet I know I received something from the Fire Tunnel and various impartations.
I do believe that it was because of all my study on this site that I began to realise there was no talk of sin and repentance and the fear of God in my church and I spoke to several leaders in our church about this...but always came away feeling my questions had not been answered. One of the visiting speakers that came to the Tor type church gave a huge prophecy promising revival in our town - our small town is saturated in occult practices and many pastors have been killed over the last few years...(personally I think many now live in fear of their lives). Well needless to say this prophecy has been circulated to all the churches and many seem to have accepted it. Again I'm not saying I dont but there is no mention of sin, repentance or brokeness in this prophecy just blessings from God. Well I also felt a need to mention this (very humbly)to the leaders but I dont think they took me very seriously.
I think what you said about breaking any agreements made with the the occult world with regards to the Toronto blessing is helpful advice and something I will do. I am beginning to think that the Lord has protected me to a certain extent in that whilst perhaps spirits may have attached themselves to me, I do not believe they have possessed me. Also because of my past I have every day prayed for the covering of the blood of Jesus over my life as this is a hectic town and I have had some night attacks since being delivered. My thoughts are that this blood may also have protected me from the Toronto blessing as I noticed I never fell over when everyone else was falling, laughed or convulsed - I just observed what was going on around me.
| 2011/10/12 7:00||Profile|
| Re: |
hi, i do not think this is a demon problem. ithink it is the slyest trick of satan.when you get drunk in the "spirit" or laugh out of your feelings.it is all about you and your dreams were about you and God rewarding you.it is how you feel. laughing uncontrollably while someone else is preaching or reading or singing is at best rude.it is about Him and when john the beloved saw Him on the isle he fell at His feet as if dead.God is holy ,not haha.my thoughts of months of toronto.jimp
| 2011/10/12 8:16||Profile|
| Re: |
Thanks Jimp...do I understand you correctly then in saying you believe satans sly trick is making people become obsessed with themselves? but that there is no actual demon activity there? Distracting them from the more important things and distracting me by making me worry unecessarily?
| 2011/10/13 2:51||Profile|
| Re: |
hi,if satan has you self centered ,he has you.the life i now live is not my life but Christs...altars are where people die and we are to present ourselves as living sacrifices(dead folks). you are buried with Him... dead men don't seek out things that exalt the man who died. it is all about Jesus and His finished work. i saw this tear up a great church for a few years and will be praying for you for this is a strong deceptions and big demons guard big deceptions.
| 2011/10/13 6:11||Profile|
| Re: |
I just had a look at some of the utube links left by Matthew, although I cant hear the sound on my computer, just the images are bad enough. I just felt such a deep sadness when I see the huge volumes of people who are manifesting so violently. You know I left the church 20 years ago because I found it lacking and half dead...yet honestly compared with this it was far superior. Even what I encountered in the occult was mild in comparison with this...at least then it is clear that you are in the darkness...but this in the church is quite terrifying......and seemingly so easily imparted...in the occult one almost has to work and serve very hard in order to reach the stage of kundalini...it is for the 'special' few 'masters'(well this was my experience) and the dangers of kundalini are actually taught even in the occult...yet here in the church it is so easy to receive (if it indeed be the kundalini). A friend of mine who goes to that church was discerned by someone to have a kundalini spirit, yet she accredits it to the fact that she did martial arts although she has been born again for 10 years and has only recently felt the movement up her spine associated with it. Strangely she seems unwilling to go for deliverance and unconcerned about it. I only thank and praise the Lord that my involvement was limited and for a couple of months only...but continue to seek His Will for me..where to from here...
| 2011/10/13 7:20||Profile|