Posts Tagged ‘Discernment’

IN PRAISE OF DISBELIEF

In our constant struggle to believe we are likely to overlook the simple fad that a bit of healthy disbelief is sometimes as needful as faith to the welfare of our souls.

I would go further and say that we would do well to cultivate a reverent skepticism. It will keep us out of a thousand bogs and quagmires where others who lack it sometimes find themselves. It is no sin to doubt some things, but it may be fatal to believe everything.

Faith is at the root of all true worship, and without faith it is impossible to please God. Through unbelief Israel failed to inherit the promises. “By grace are ye saved through faith” … “The just shall live by faith.” Such verses as these come trooping to our memories, and we wince lust a little at the suggestion that unbelief may also be a good and useful thing. It sounds like a bold cancellation of the doctrine of faith as taught in the Scriptures and disposes us to write off the brazen advocate of disbelief as a Modernist.

Let’s look at the matter a bit more closely. Faith never means gullibility. The man who believes everything is as far from God as the man who refuses to believe anything. Faith engages the Person and promises of God and rests upon them with perfect assurance. Whatever has behind it the character and word of the living God is accepted by faith as the last and final truth from which there must never be any appeal. Faith never asks questions when it has been established that God has spoken. “Yea, let God he true, but every man a liar” (Rom. 3:4). Thus faith honors God by counting Him righteous and accepts His testimony against the very evidence of its own senses. That is faith, and of such we can never have too much.

Credulity, on the other hand, never honors God, for it shows as great a readiness to believe anybody as to believe God Himself. The credulous person will accept anything as long as it is unusual, and the more unusual it is the more ardently he will believe. Any testimony will be swa1lowed with a straight face if it only has about it some element of the eerie, the preternatural, the unearthly. The gullible mentality is like the ostrich that will gulp down anything that looks interesting… an orange, a tennis ball, a pocketknife opened or closed, a paper weight or a ripe apple. That he survives at all is a testimony not to his intelligence but to his tough constitution.

I have met Christians with no more discrimination than the ostrich. Because they must believe certain things, they feel that they must believe everything. Because they are called upon to accept the invisible they go right on to accept the incredible. God can and does work miracles; ergo, everything that passes for a miracle must be of God. God has spoken to men; therefore every ‘man’ who claims to have had a revelation from God must be accepted as a prophet. Whatever is unearthly must be heavenly; whatever cannot be explained must be received as divine; the prophets were rejected, therefore everyone who is rejected is a prophet; the saints were misunderstood, so everyone who is misunderstood is a saint. This is the dangerous logic of the gullible Christian. And it can be as injurious as unbelief itself.

 The healthy soul, like the healthy blood stream, has its proper proportion of white and red cells. The red corpuscles are like faith: they carry the life-giving oxygen to every part of the body. The white cells are like disbelief: they pounce upon dead and toxic matter and carry it out to the drain. Thus the two kinds of cells working together keep the tissues in good condition. In the healthy heart there must be provision for keeping dead and poisonous matter out of the life stream. This the credulous person never suspects. He is all for faith. He accents the affirmative and cultivates religious optimism to a point where he can no longer tell when he is being imposed upon.

 Along with our faith in God must go a healthy disbelief of everything occult and esoteric. Numerology, astrology, spiritism, and everything weird and strange that passes for religion must be rejected. All this is toxic matter and has no place in the life of a true Christian. He will reject the whole business without compunction or fear. He has Christ, and He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. What more does the Christian need?

 from The Root of the Righteous by A. W. Tozer

TAKING ERROR WITH APOSTOLIC SERIOUSNESS

Martin Downes emphasizes a perennial need in the Church, but perhaps never more important than now simply because the lack of discernment among pastors and laymen alike is pronounced.

Every generation of the church needs to cultivate doctrinal discernment with regard to truth and error. Every generation of church leaders need to practice pastoral vigilance in the nurture and protection of the flock. God’s Word on these matters must be understood and applied.

In this regard there are unchanging positive calls to preach the Word (2 Tim. 4:1-2), to teach the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:27), to hold fast to the gospel (1 Cor. 15:1-2), to follow the pattern of sound words (2 Tim. 1:13; 1 Tim. 4:6), to guard the good deposit (2 Tim. 1:14; 1 Tim. 6:20), to appoint faithful men able to teach others also (2 Tim. 2:2), and to teach disciples all that Jesus has commanded them to obey (Matt. 28:19-20).

These imperatives set the tone and direction of Christian ministry. They call for a wholehearted commitment to love the Lord our God, to be faithful stewards of the gospel, and to feed his sheep (Jer. 3:15; 1 Cor. 4:1-2; Titus 1:9; 1 Peter 5:2).

Alongside these positive calls are the unrelenting warnings about the presence of false teachers, and clear instructions about how to deal with them (Rom. 16:17-18; Eph. 4:14; 1 Tim. 1:3-4; 2 Tim. 2:16, 22-26; Titus 1:11; 3:9-11; 2 Peter 2:1-3). These warnings are clothed in powerful images. False teachers are wolves, dogs, waterless clouds, fruitless trees, wild waves, wandering stars, and their teaching will eat up like gangrene (Matt. 7:15-20; Acts 20:29; Phil. 3:2; 2 Tim. 2:17; Jude 12-13) .

It is required of church leaders that they keep a watch on themselves, their teaching, and the flock entrusted to their care (Acts 20:28, 31; 1 Tim. 4:16). They must have a solid grasp of sound doctrine, held with a clear conscience, and an ability to mix it with false teachers (1 Tim. 1:5, 19; Titus 1:9). Truth must be taught and those in error must be rebuked and their teaching refuted.

Scripture never soft pedals the true nature and effects of heresy. It regards the most virulent forms of error as soul destroying and insidiously evil (Gal. 1:6-9; 2 Cor. 11:1-4, 12-15; 1 Tim. 4:1-3; 2 Tim. 2:25-26; 1 John 2:22; 4:3; 2 John 7). Harold O. J. Brown underlined the seriousness of rejecting the true gospel and embracing a different one:

 

…just as there are doctrines that are true, and that can bring salvation, there are those that are false, so false that they can spell eternal damnation for those who have the misfortune to be entrapped by them.

 

 

Nevertheless, in God’s providence, these errors have been the occasion of producing greater clarity in the articulation of the essential articles of the Christian faith. They have also provoked some of the most substantial responses to be found in the theological literature of the Church. Alfred North Whitehead, of all people, rightly remarked that “wherever there is a creed, there is a heretic round the corner or in his grave.”

Rather more positively, Martin Luther was right to say that “If heresies and offenses come, Christendom will only profit thereby, for they make Christians to read diligently the Holy Writ and ponder the same with industry…Thus through heretics and offenses we are kept alert and stouthearted and amid wrangles and battles understand God’s word better than before

The Necessity of Discernment

from the blog of Adrian Warnock 

As a believer living in the West, I’m constantly reminded of the need to exercise discernment, especially when it comes to matters such as claims of spiritual gifts and the activity of the Holy Spirit. I thought today I would go to one of my favorite works by Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Joy Unspeakable.

Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Photo by Iain MurrayDirectly before this quote, the Doctor points out that in all ages there are two main dangers confronting Christians when they need to evaluate claims regarding the reappearance or revival of gifts in the church. The first danger, he says, is to immediately reject such reports, which he is not afraid to call “quenching the Spirit” (1 Thessalonians 5:19). He goes so far as to call that the more common danger. The second risk is, of course, the opposite to this—uncritical acceptance of everything, which leads to extremism.

He is always very systematic in his thinking, so he goes on to list why we need to be careful to weigh and test everything we hear about. My paraphrased version of his reasons why we need to be discerning are as follows:

  1. The Bible tells us to. (See, for example, 1 Thessalonians 5:19-22.)
  2. Studying Church history throughout the ages should strongly warn us of the consequences of being naive and accepting everything that is reported to be a “work of God’s Spirit.”
  3. Clear evidence we hear of demonic activity in the occult. He argues that it is even possible for evil spirits to “heal” people.
  4. The amazing things that hypnotists can make their subjects do.
  5. The clear weakness and suggestability of people as demonstrated to us through modern psychology and what is called “hysteria.”
  6. The fact that there is a real devil whose goal is to destroy us, and as a result inspires and empowers his servants.

Matthew 24:24: For false christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect—if that were possible.

He then stresses that he is concerned to warn those who are passionate about God, and open to him acting today in dramatic ways. He is clear in the context that he would count himself among that number. The Doctor was clearly not an extreme cessationist.

In this quote he explains what we should not rely on to enable us to make appropriate judgments. Next week we will examine the tests that the Doctor believes should be applied.

I am speaking particularly to those good, honest, spiritually-minded men and women of any age whatsoever who are longing for revival and reawakening . . . For it is your very anxiety to know the fullness and the baptism of the Spirit that constitutes your danger and exposes you to this possibility of not using your critical faculties as you should. . . .

Do not rely only upon your inward feelings . . . that is entirely subjective, and while I do not discount the subjective altogether, I say it is not enough. You must not rely solely upon some inner inward sense, because that is the very thing the devil wants you to do. That means you are not using your full critical faculties; deciding in a purely emotional and subjective manner.

. . . do not be swayed even by the fact that something reported to you makes you feel wonderful . . .You may say, ‘I have never known such love, I have never known such peace, I have never known such joy’ . . . Do not say ‘I feel this is right, everything in me says this is right . . .’ It is not enough. The devil is as subtle as that . . .

Lastly, do not base your judgment on the people who are . . . making their report to you . . . It is often some of the best, most honest and sincere people who can be most seriously led astray . . . The devil does not waste any of his time and energy with your smug formalist — he is safely asleep, already under the drug of the devil, though he is sitting in a Christian church.

Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Joy Unspeakable, (Eastbourne UK: Kingsway Communications, 1995) 193-195. Emphasis mine.

The Vital Importance of Discernment

In an age which finds the realm of Christendom increasingly littered with the debris scattered by the “winds of doctrine” (Eph. 4:14), the need to develop discernment is critical for believers. The prerequisite is the crying need among believers for thorough knowledge of the Bible. –JB

 

This article is by John MacArthur:

In its simplest definition, discernment is nothing more than the ability to decide between truth and error, right and wrong. Discernment is the process of making careful distinctions in our thinking about truth. In other words, the ability to think with discernment is synonymous with an ability to think biblically.

First Thessalonians 5:21-22 teaches that it is the responsibility of every Christian to be discerning: “But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil.” The apostle John issues a similar warning when he says, “Do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1). According to the New Testament, discernment is not optional for the believer-it is required.

The key to living an uncompromising life lies in one’s ability to exercise discernment in every area of his or her life. For example, failure to distinguish between truth and error leaves the Christian subject to all manner of false teaching. False teaching then leads to an unbiblical mindset, which results in unfruitful and disobedient living-a certain recipe for compromise.

Unfortunately, discernment is an area where most Christians stumble. They exhibit little ability to measure the things they are taught against the infallible standard of God’s Word, and they unwittingly engage in all kinds of unbiblical decision-making and behavior. In short, they are not armed to take a decidedly biblical stand against the onslaught of unbiblical thinking and attitudes that face them throughout their day.

Discernment intersects the Christian life at every point. And God’s Word provides us with the needed discernment about every issue of life. According to Peter, God “has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence” (2 Peter 1:3). You see, it is through the “true knowledge of Him,” that we have been given everything we need to live a Christian life in this fallen world. And how else do we have true knowledge of God but through the pages of His Word, the Bible? In fact, Peter goes on to say that such knowledge comes through God’s granting “to us His precious and magnificent promises” (2 Peter 1:4).

Discernment ? the ability to think biblically about all areas of life ? is indispensable to an uncompromising life. It is incumbent upon the Christian to seize upon the discernment that God has provided for in His precious truth! Without it, Christians are at risk of being “tossed here and there by waves, and carried about by every wind of doctrine” (Ephesians 4:14).

By John MacArthur © 2007. Used by permission. This article originally appeared here at Grace to You.


Test Revival With Doctrine

The wreckage of the Lakeland Revival was followed by a flurry of posts in the blogs on discernment. The comments by John Piper stood out as some of the best… –JB

 

(Author: John Piper)

Lee Grady, the editor of Charisma, one of the main charismatic magazines, has written a lament and critique of the Lakeland “revival” which is now in a tailspin over the leader’s announced separation from his wife. Grady’s summons to pray for the church and our nation is right, and among his commendable questions and observations are these:

  • “Many of us would rather watch a noisy demonstration of miracles, signs and wonders than have a quiet Bible study. Yet we are faced today with the sad reality that our untempered zeal is a sign of immaturity. Our adolescent craving for the wild and crazy makes us do stupid things. It’s way past time for us to grow up.”
  • “True revival will be accompanied by brokenness, humility, reverence and repentance—not the arrogance, showmanship and empty hype that often was on display in Lakeland.”
  • “A prominent Pentecostal evangelist called me this week after Bentley’s news hit the fan. He said to me: “I’m now convinced that a large segment of the charismatic church will follow the anti-Christ when he shows up because they have no discernment.” Ouch. Hopefully we’ll learn our lesson this time and apply the necessary caution when an imposter shows up.”

Charismatics will not be the only ones who follow the Antichrist when he rises. So will the mass of those who today in thousands of evangelical churches belittle the truth of biblical doctrine as God’s agent to set us free (John 8:32).

Discernment is not created in God’s people by brokenness, humility, reverence, and repentance. It is created by biblical truth and the application of truth by the power of the Holy Spirit to our hearts and minds. When that happens, then the brokenness, humility, reverence, and repentance will have the strong fiber of the full counsel of God in them. They will be profoundly Christian and not merely religious and emotional and psychological.

The common denominator of those who follow the Antichrist will not be “charismatic.” It will be, as Paul says, “they refused to love the truth.”

The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false, in order that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12)

Our test for every Lakeland that comes along should first be doctrinal and expositional. Is this awakening carried along by a “love for the truth” and a passion to hear the whole counsel of God proclaimed?

Discernment, Revivals, and Godly Common Sense

There have been many posts concerning the Lakeland “Revival” in Florida. Of all of them, this appears the most balanced, most sensible, and most Biblical – good guidelines not only for the Lakeland affair, but for any gathering that claims to be a revival.

from Cerulean Sanctum

I’ve received further e-mails asking for more of my thoughts on discerning what is truly of God when signs and wonders and revivals break out. This comes on the heels of two posts I wrote last week (here and here) discussing events at the Lakeland “revival” down in Florida.

At a time when discernment appears lost on vast portions of Evangelicalism and the charismatic movement, basic, biblical principles are needed to discern truth from error. While I believe that the spiritual gift of discerning of spirits cannot be condensed into a set of tips, I also believe that basic rules for discernment CAN be derived from the biblical text and from plain, old common sense. God gave us a brain smart enough to avoid eating obvious poison, and so we should use the brains He gave us to make wise choices about truth and falsehood.

What follows below frames my own set of rules for discernment. You may disagree or have better rules. And to those friends of mine who will most certainly be hurt by what I say here, I can only ask that you consider these things and take them before the Lord.

Always begin with healthy skepticism.

I always come to the miraculous with a healthy dose of skepticism. This is not the same as faithlessness because I wholeheartedly believe that God can do miraculous works. I also realize that the Enemy can mimic those works. God will not deny blessings to people who test the spirits to see if they are of Him. It’s a little like having a spam filter up all the time. The good stuff will get through and the rotten stuff won’t. And even if a piece of good stuff gets caught, God is not so weak that He won’t continue to do a good work in us. If that means He has to reattempt what got trapped in the filter, He most certainly will because He loves us enough to do so. He never punishes people who remain vigilant because they love Him and His pure works. On the other hand, people who open themselves up to everything wind up filled with garbage, a mess that can take a lifetime to undo.

God has a way of proving Himself true in time, but the Enemy never does.

By their fruit we will know them. Their fruit will remain, too. A little water under the bridge is a good thing because it allows us to test what is happening against Scripture, just as the Bereans did in Acts. One of the rotten fruits of phony miracles and revivals is that they open people up for even more error. A pinch of yeast leavens the whole lump of dough. Lies breed confusion, and “miracles” that come from the Enemy or from the hand of tricksters will only bring confusion in the long run.

Consider the past fruits of anyone or any group working the miraculous in the name of Christ.

Look at their theology closely. Also realize that words matter, and that some people confuse terms on purpose or twist them so that they look right even though they aren’t. Oneness Pentecostals may not seem antitrinitarian on the surface, but attempting a 1:1 analysis of their terminology with orthodox Christian doctrine ultimately reveals their error. We must also realize that a group with odd theology may continue to spawn odd theology even if they attempt to distance themselves from the past error. In charismatic circles, far too much deviant doctrine and practice has come out of the Kansas City Prophets of the late 1980s and early 1990s. One can trace all manner of craziness since 1990 directly back to that group, including the recent Lakeland “revival.” Anything “birthed” out of that movement should have an automatic red flag attached to it, as should any former leaders connected to it. This includes organizations and ministries such as IHOP, The Elijah List, MorningStar Ministries, Passion & Fire, and a whole host of others that looked favorably upon Mike Bickle, Bob Jones, John Paul Jackson, Rick Joyner, Paul Cain, and anyone else who came out of the Kansas City Prophets movement. In fact, since the entirety of the modern prophetic movement in charismatic circles is inextricably linked in a tangle to those groups and individuals, it may be best (and I say this with a heavy heart) to avoid the prophetic movement altogther as a national entity until God purges the corrupted seed.

Real miraculous works from God are often imitated by the Enemy.

Moses threw down his staff and it transformed into a snake. Pharaoh’s two magicians threw down their staffs and they turned into snakes, too. We must never forget this. Just because a miracle occurs doesn’t mean it came from God. The difference is that God’s miracles prevail and the Enemy’s never do. We must also consider the character of those who are present at the miracle. We know Moses was God’s man. But who owned Jannes and Jambres? We must apply that same thinking to discerning the source of miracles.

Any appeal to spiritual beings apart from the members of the Trinity is dangerous.

God created the heavenly hosts, including His messengers, the angels. A third of the angels fell and became demons. These spiritual beings are real. The error of Evangelicalism is that it tends to ignore them. The error of charismatics is that they tend to fixate on them. God commands the angels, we don’t. He has, though, given us authority over demons by benefit of the work of Christ and the Holy Spirit living in us. However, we dabble with spiritual beings at our peril. The demonic comes as an angel of light remember. When I hear people appealing to angels or talking about them the way they are discussed by Todd Bentley of the Lakeland “revival,” I’m instantly alarmed. You can’t go to the Scriptures and find the apostles talking about angelic beings the way some charismatics do. That kind of talk is not there in the Bible, our source of truth. When we pray, we can ask God to send His angels to minister to us, but we should always test spiritual entities and go to the Lord to request them, not ask them directly. We may attract the wrong kind of spiritual entity if we bypass the Lord and His will concerning the sending of angels for assistance.

The whole counsel of Scripture matters, not just a verse here and there.

I am increasingly convinced that chapter and verse markers are one of the worst things to happen to the Bible. Because we added them, too many people pick and choose verses to contruct their theology rather than considering the whole counsel of Scripture. Charismatics do this more than anyone, creating elaborate fictions out of disjointed strings of verses. The old joke about the man who randomly opens his Bible to “Judas hanged himself” and then to another verse that said “Go and do likewise” applies here. I can guarantee that the vast, vast majority of Christians dashed on the rocks of phony revival and fake miracles wind up there because they don’t understand the whole counsel of Scripture. Sadly, our atrocious understanding, especially in those circles hellbent on mountaintop experiences at the expense of study, leads to error and heartbreak. The Bible cautions that God’s people are destroyed for lack of knowledge, and that knowledge comes from His word. Get wisdom; understand what the Bible says from cover to cover!

God’s revivals and miracles are not chintzy.

Real revival takes the worst people possible and transforms them into God’s people. Real miracles take the most desperate situations and conditions and alleviates them. God never settles for cheap. Read the miracles and revivals in the Bible; the miracles force entire cities to stand up and take note, while the revivals have thousands coming to Christ. While it might seem like a great thing that the tennis pro had his tennis elbow cured by the laying on of hands, if that’s the extent of the miraculous, something’s wrong. God does much bigger (and much more documentable) works. If we come back from a revival with a healthy glow, but a couple weeks later we’re just as ornery as we were before we went, that wasn’t real revival.

Novelty is not of God.

Yes, the Bible says that God does new things, but He only does them from a basis of what is old and established. God is not into tricks. He does not use flash to enhance His workings. He doesn’t have His servants dance jigs around someone they’re praying for, doesn’t have His people wave their arms and act like bad magicians. There’s no “Alakazam!” and no need for it. God isn’t into show. Preachers, prophets, and revivalists who make a big deal of novelty are supplementing. And God needs no one to supplement His power.

If a movement, revival, or series of miracles “feels off,” the Holy Spirit may be trying to warn us.

The Holy Spirit confirms truth, and all true believers have the Holy Spirit in some measure. If we’re around a miraculous event and we feel wrong about it, there’s a good reason to believe that’s the Holy Spirit talking. We better listen. Unfortunately, too many people who supposedly have the Holy Spirit living in them have turned a deaf ear to the Spirit’s warnings. Also, too many people have no ability to discern the voice of the Spirit in the midst of the background noise of life. That’s a terrible loss because the Bible explicitly states that we’re to be guided by the Holy Spirit. If we fail to listen to Him in situations that call for discernment, how will we be able to discern those difficult situations that normal Christians encounter? For instance, Paul and Silas were followed by the slave girl who announced that the two were from God and were proclaiming the way of salvation. On the surface, how many Christians would love to have such an ardent helper? But Paul, by the Spirit, saw the demon controlling their “assistant” and cast it out. That kind of discernment only comes by the Spirit of God.

We Christians are to seek Jesus, not signs and wonders.

We must remember this passage of Scripture:

For I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me to bring the Gentiles to obedience-by word and deed, by the power of signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God-so that from Jerusalem and all the way around to Illyricum I have fulfilled the ministry of the gospel of Christ; and thus I make it my ambition to preach the gospel, not where Christ has already been named, lest I build on someone else’s foundation, but as it is written, “Those who have never been told of him will see, and those who have never heard will understand.”
-Romans 15:18-21

The entirety of Paul’s context above is evangelizing the lost. Do we understand this? Signs and wonders are largely for the lost as a confirmation of God’s power. As Christians, we already know about signs and wonders; they should not shock us. We know Christ, and isn’t He greater than signs and wonders? He is our sufficiency, not signs and wonders. He is the source, and the source is always greater. Yet look how many people flock to so-called revivals just to see signs and wonders. This is a mockery, frankly. It detracts from Jesus, and the Holy Spirit always points to Jesus, not to signs and wonders. This is not to say that Christians cannot come to Jesus for healing or for a miracle, but that these are by far secondary to Christ alone. If anything, we Christians should not be surprised at miracles, but by the lack of them! They should be second nature to us, not to the point of us being blasé about them, but that we understand them as the inherent outworkings of the normal Christian life.

Real revival breaks out only among the humble.

Revival breaks out where God moves, not where some Christian celebrity moves. Any Christian preacher or revivalist who claims that revival follows him or her is operating out of spiritual pride. Genuine revival breaks out among people who have no names to make for themselves, around ministries that are local and less well known, and in backwater places with no marketing arm to promote them. It breaks out through the long-travailing prayers of humble servants, not the boasts of fly-by-night Christian celebrities who line their pockets with sales of cheap Christian trinkets or “pray for pay.” Remember, the Enemy loves to boast and loves the limelight. The people God uses to bring genuine revival are often the very people who were once scorned for their piety, humility, and singleminded devotion to Christ.

Christ Himself warned that genuine faith would become a rarity.

I am continually shocked that so many in the charismatic movement keep believing for some massive revival right before Christ returns. In many branches of the charismatic movement lurks an almost post-millennial frenzy that finds people believing we Christians will hand over a perfected world to the Lord at His second coming. Yet the Lord Jesus Himself asked whether He would find faith on earth at His return. Mark 13:20 says that if it were not for a cutting off of the chaotic days of tribulation, no one would be saved. We are heading into dark, dark times where even the elect might come close to falling away. So whenever I hear calls of worldwide revival, I’m leery. Revival to whom and by whom? Is this what the Bible teaches? If so, I’ve been unable to find it in the pages of Scripture. This is not to say that genuine revival will not come to this place and that dotted across the globe, only it probably won’t look like the kind of revival that some modern revivalists are trumpeting.

For more thoughts on this, please see the following previous posts:

Charismatic Churches and the Cult of the New
How Not to Be a Charismatic Headcase
Strange Fire in Florida?
Thursday Thoughts