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Joined: 2006/9/16
Posts: 2190

 A few more thoughts on the Lakeland "stuff"

Things have been said pretty well here as to the nature and effects and "stuff" occuring in these meetings and elsewhere. The comments I share below are not new and may be somewhat redundant in regard to what many others have already said on this issue. I can't take credit for them because they were from a spiritual elder whom I respect sharing some of his thoughts on this current revivial or however one would term it. But I thought they were insightful and are in the same vein as the thoughts from John Piper that were shared below and others. In the comments below, I especially took notice of his views about false christs and how he tied it in with 'anointed ones'. Anyway, for what they may be worth, see below:

The Florida revival is making news even in the secular media and is the 'talk of the town' among believers everywhere. I'm not in a position to make a responsible evaluation, since I've not closely tracked happenings. I did visit a few You-tube sites at the request of friends, enough to see that there is much that is troubling about this revival, and most of the friends that write me, whose discernment I would more nearly trust in such things, have raised serious questions and registered deep concerns. Thomas lea, whom I believe you know, is one that has also been negatively impressed. He forwarded a carefully documented comparison that demonstrated remarkable parallels between some of the experiences reported by Bentley and well known occultic phenomena. Perhaps you saw that.

It is wonderful to see God move in mighty ways among His people and it is natural that this would bring great excitement and attendance. Miracles drew the multitudes to Jesus, but they did not keep them there. We can rejoice in the miraculous only so far as such manifestations of power lead to the real Christ being really formed in the real people of God. So for me, it is wait and see as the whole thing matures.

The other question I have is the nature of the 'word' or message that this revival is confirming. Does the word being brought have real substance?

The question always to be asked is what is the end result? I've read a little of the Whitfield / Edwards revivals (the great awakening) in New England and observed that when miraculous signs and wonders broke out, the phenomena was cautiously respected as having something of the Lord in it, but there was also great warnings issued concerning suspected mixture and the danger of delusion, so much so that on one occasion, when Edward's wife was reported to have actually levitated, rather than glorying in such manifestations, there was almost a sense of embarrassment and grave warning against the tendency to permit such things to distract from the real burden of the Word. Grave and sober admonitions were issued against the danger of a misplaced trust in anything other than the true grounds of Christian assurance. The miraculous was not despised, but neither was it trusted. There was a studied avoidance of permitting the miraculous to become the emphasis.

On the other hand, a measure of mixture and immaturity is never a final evidence of divine disapproval, but some of the power demonstrations associated with this revival seem disturbingly un-characteristic of the Holy Spirit.

Though healings and miraculous encouragements of faith would seem an indubitable blessing, the question is ultimately which gospel and which Jesus do the signs and wonders support and confirm? Otherwise, we should consider an alternative interpretation such as the Lord warns in Deut 13:1,

"If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and he gives you a sign or a wonder, and the sign and wonder comes to pass, of which he spoke to you, saying, 'Let us go after other gods' - which you have not known - 'and let us serve them,' you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the Lord your God is testing you to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul."

I like to point out that the when Jesus said there shall arise false christs and false prophets that shall come so near as to threaten the deception of the very elect, the word christs simply means 'anointed ones'. So we are warned that the great deception would not come merely by individuals showing up and claiming to be Christ. That wouldn't threaten to deceive the very elect. But rather 'anointed ones' that confirm their presumed validity by the apparent confirmation of great signs and wonders "so much that if it were possible they should deceive the very elect." So the gist of my point is that the time is upon us, and the church cannot afford to play at this, but must take diligence to prove all things. But to prove something, the criteria of such proving must first be known, and that criteria is perilously lacking in this dark day.

David Winter

 2008/6/25 9:54Profile

 Re: A few more thoughts on the Lakeland "stuff"

The horse is dead... you can stop beating it now.



 2008/6/25 11:44

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