They are deceived.
ERRORS OF THE CHARISMATIC MOVEMENT
Introduction: Some practices of the Charismatic Movement are not according to Scripture. These are:
1. Speaking in Tongues
2. New Revelations
3. Ecumenical Movement towards Rome
4. Slaying in the Spirit
Question: Why do people become interested in the Charismatic movement or Pentecostalism?
Answer: Because of worldliness, lack of vital, inspired ministry and spiritual deadness. Don't become backslidden, cold or lazy for God, but be on-fire for God, souls and the Bible.
The main Charismatic/Pentecostal doctrine is that: "speaking in tongues is the initial evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit." They claim that one who has not spoken in tongues does not have the same power for service as one who has.
If we show that tongues are not for today, we have disproved the Charismatic Movement.
A fundamental law of life is that the Word of God must always govern our experiences. Tongues has divided the Christian world this century. The question is not "are tongues genuine?", but it is "are tongues Biblical?" When experience contradicts the Bible, then the Bible always takes precedence. Why? Because we can misinterpret our experience or have false experiences.
Let us examine tongues as follows:
1. Reasons why Biblical tongues are real languages and not Charismatic gibberish.
a) Tongues could be interpreted, gibberish cannot.
b) The Greek word "glossa" in the New Testament used for tongues means real languages.
c) In Acts 2:6,8 those Jews at Pentecost heard God's message spoken in their own language or dialect. “Every man heard them speak in his own language.” v.6,8,11.
d) The same word "glossa" is used for tongues in Acts as in I Corinthians 12-14.
e) "Glossa" is plural meaning many languages. Gibberish is singular as it is non-classifiable into more than one type of gibberish.
f) 1 Cor.14:21 states that tongues were a foreign language given as a sign to unbelieving Israel.
2. Reasons for spiritual gifts.
Why are spiritual gifts given?
a) To glorify Christ, not to glorify the Holy Spirit. "He shall glorify me." John 16:14.
b) To edify others, not to edify self. "Seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church." 1Cor.14:12. Paul rebukes them for their wrong use of tongues in 1 Corinthians 14:4 "He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself."
c) To equip the church (Ephesians 4:12) for the work of the ministry.
3. Reasons for Tongues (see chapter 99 for a discussion of this).
Tongues were given to:
a) Warn unbelieving Jews. (I Corinthians 14:21).
b) Confirm the word with signs. Mark 16:17-20.
c) Confirm the Apostles as God's true messengers.
I. PASSAGES MISUNDERSTOOD BY CHARISMATICS.
1. ACTS 2. TONGUES AT PENTECOST.
Pentecost means "fiftieth" because it was held 50 days after the feast of Firstfruits (Leviticus 23:15-22). The Jewish calendar in Leviticus 23 is an outline of Christ's work.
Passover pictures Christ's death as the Lamb of God (1 Cor. 5:7).
Next ……… Firstfruits pictures Christ's resurrection (1 Cor. 15:20-23). Sunday
Day 50 …….. Pentecost pictures the formation of the church.
50 DAYS INCLUSIVE
PASSOVER ↓FEAST OF FIRSTFRUITS (RESURRECTION SUNDAY)
SABBATH PENTECOST SUNDAY
AFTER PASSOVER = 7 SABBATHS AFTER FIRSTFRUITS
(SATURDAY) = 50 DAYS AFTER FIRSTFRUITS
Passover came, then the Sabbath, then followed the Feast of Firstfruits which was always on the first day of the week (Sunday).
• Jesus rose from the dead on the Feast of Firstfruits (Sunday) and "became the firstfruits of them that slept." (1 Corinthians 15:20).
• Pentecost occurred 50 days after the Feasts of Firstfruits, which was the day that Christ rose from the dead (Leviticus 23:15,16). This was also a Sunday.
• Christians meet on Sunday, the first day of the week, because:
1. On the Feast of Firstfruits (Sunday):→ 1. Christ rose from the dead, and
2. On the day of Pentecost (Sunday): → 2. the Holy Spirit indwelt believers, and
3. On the day of Pentecost (Sunday): → 3. the Church formed.
• On the Feast of Firstfruits, the priest waved a sheaf of grain before the Lord.
• On Pentecost, the priest presented two loaves of bread. Why? Because at Pentecost the church formed, which in this age is made up of Jewish and Gentile believers united in one body (I Cor. 10:17). Leaven (yeast) in the loaves (Lev. 23:17) indicates the presence of sin in the church on earth.
• Pentecost, like Calvary, was a once-for-all event that will not be repeated. The Holy Spirit who came at Pentecost permanently indwells believers (John 14:16,17).
• Wind, fire and tongues accompanied the coming of the Holy Spirit.
• The filling of the Spirit gives believers power for witness and service (Acts 1:8). God never commands us to be baptised with the Spirit, because this happens at salvation when we receive Christ as Saviour. God does command us to be filled with the Spirit (Eph. 5:18) for power to serve Him. At Pentecost the Christians were baptised with the Spirit (Acts 2:18,38) and were filled with the Spirit (Acts 2:4). After that, they experienced many fillings with the Spirit (Acts 4:8,31; 9:17; 13:9,52; 6:3; 7:55; 11:24).
Question 1: Did only the 12 apostles speak in tongues at Pentecost or did all 120 speak in tongues?
Answer: The evidence supports only the 12 apostles speaking in tongues:
1. "They" in Acts 2:1 refers back to the "apostles" in 1:26.
2. The apostles only are addressed in Acts 1:1-13. Before Pentecost, only the apostles were promised that "ye shall be baptised with the Holy Ghost not many days hence." (Acts 1:5). "Ye" here only refers to the apostles.
3. "them" and "they" in Acts 2:3,4 on whom tongues fell refer to the apostles.
4. "every man heard them speak in his own language." (Acts 2:6). The crowd heard them (the apostles) speak in tongues.
5. "Are not all these which speak Galileans?" Acts 2:7. Those who spoke in tongues were Galileans, not men of Judah. Even an angel called them "men of Galilee." (1:11).
6. When the men of Judea accused "these men" (2:13) of drunkenness, the group that responded were, "Peter.....with the eleven." (2:14), that is, the apostles.
7. Tongues was one of the sign gifts given to the apostles.
“Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and
wonders, and mighty deeds.” 2 Corinthians12:12.
Note: There is no record that the 3,000 people saved at Pentecost spoke in tongues, yet they all received the Holy Spirit when they were saved. (Acts 2:38).
No woman in Acts 2 is said to have spoken in tongues.
Question 2: Who were the devout Jews from every nation under heaven in Acts 2:5-12? Answer: After Alexander the Great had conquered Tyre (332BC), he came to conquer Jerusalem. To his surprise, Jaddua, the High Priest, followed by the priests and people of Jerusalem came out to welcome him. Jaddua showed Alexander how he was prophesied in Daniel 8:1-8, 20-22 as the first king of Greece who would conquer the Persians whom Alexander despised. So impressed was Alexander with these Jews that he appointed them as administrators of his far flung empire, as far as India. These Jews became prominent leaders in their communities. It was descendants of these Jews who had flocked to Jerusalem for the feasts of Passover, Firstfruits and Pentecost that Peter spoke to in Acts 2:5, "And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven."
The Greek word "Katoikeo" (2730) used here for "dwelling" means to have a fixed and permanent habitation, in contrast to “paroikeo” meaning a temporary resident. This refers to many wealthy foreign Jews who had a permanent residence in Jerusalem for the convenience of being near the temple. They were pilgrims visiting Jerusalem. These men came from India, Africa, Asia Minor etc. Because they had been living in other countries for over 300 years, they no longer spoke Hebrew. They were devout men, religious Jews, observing Jewish rituals, but like Nicodemus, were not yet born again. These visitors on the day of Pentecost heard the wind and came to investigate it. They were amazed to hear simple, uneducated Galileans suddenly speaking perfectly at least 16 languages from where these pilgrims came. Few people outside Parthia spoke or understood Parthia's guttural language.
The Medes came from high, wild, rugged plateaux beyond Assyria. To their utter surprise they heard their languages being clearly spoken at Jerusalem. Elamites came from east of Babylon. Pontus is now southern Russia. Arabians boasted many dialects. Each person on that day heard "the wonderful works of God" (the content of the Gospel) in his own language. (Acts 2:11).
Question 3: "What meaneth this?" Acts 2:12.
Answer: If the spectators had known Isaiah 28:11 they would have interpreted this to be a red alert danger signal of judgment soon to come. Peter presented the gospel, and concluded it with an invitation for them to be saved in Acts 2:39,40. "For the promise is unto you, and to your children (Jewish residents of Israel), and to all that are afar off (Jews of the dispersion), even as many as the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation." Jews were now being evangelised in Gentile languages.
Note: First century Jews warned fellow Jews of judgment soon to come, and of the plan of salvation as the only escape. Tongues continued until Jerusalem fell in 70AD.
Key: Wherever Jews lived throughout the first century world, the same means of evangelism was followed. Some believer who possessed the gift of tongues witnessed to them in the language of where they lived. Once God judged and scattered the Jews in 70AD, there was no further need for tongues. Consequently, the gift of tongues was withdrawn permanently. Hence "tongues were a sign not to believers, but to (Jewish) unbelievers!!" I Corinthians 14:22.
Acts 2:14-21. Peter explains the Holy Spirit's coming.
At Pentecost, no interpreter was needed since every man heard the message in his own native dialect. Peter denied the accusation of drunkenness by saying that it was only 9am and orthodox Jews did not eat or drink before 9am on a Sabbath or holy day (v.15). On the day of Pentecost, Peter quoted Joel 2:28-32 in conjunction with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. His introductory words, "But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel" (Acts 2:16), may seem to indicate that he considered Joel's prophecy as being completely fulfilled then. However it is apparent that the events of the day, though extraordinary, did not completely fulfil Joel's prophecy. The day of Pentecost events were only a partial fulfilment of Joel's prophecy. Joel's prophecy will be ultimately fulfilled just after the Tribulation when Christ returns to rescue Israel. The wonders in heaven and in earth (Acts 2:19,20) clearly did not occur on the day of Pentecost or on any other day in church history.
Notice the events of Joel 2:28-32 and Acts 2:17-21 as follows:
v.28 1. Afterward (in the last days (Acts)), I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh;
2. Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, (gender);
3. Your old men shall dream dreams, (age);
4. Your young men shall see visions, (age);
v.29 5. Upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy, (Social class);
v.30 6. I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.
v.31 7. The sun shall be turned into darkness,
8. The moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord come.
v.32 9. It shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered.
10. In Mount Zion, and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance for the remnant as the Lord hath said.
Explanation of Joel 2:28-32.
The Lord announced that "the great and terrible day of the Lord" (v.31) would see God "pour out my Spirit upon all flesh." The context shows that the "all flesh" refers more specifically to all inhabitants of Judah.
a) the fourfold use of "your"(v.28)‘your sons and your daughters…your old men…your young men’
b) Ezekiel 39:29 is a parallel passage: ".....I have poured out my Spirit upon the house of Israel, saith the Lord God."
c) Zechariah 12:10 is a parallel passage: "I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced."
This pouring out of God's Spirit would be true regardless of gender, age or social class.Joel 2:30,31 The great and terrible day of the Lord will be preceded by wonders and signs of impending judgment (2:10 - “the sun and the moon shall be dark” and 3:15).
• Blood, fire, and pillars of smoke suggest the effects of warfare, possibly nuclear warfare.
• The sun turning to darkness occurs in Revelation 6:12 and 16:10.
• The moon turning to blood occurs in Revelation 6:12 "there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood; and the stars of heaven fell...."
• Though these events will signal doom for God's enemies, God's people should interpret them as the precursors of their deliverance.
a) Matthew 24:29. "Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken; Then shall appear the sign of the Son of Man..."
b) Mark 13:24-27. "After that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light...."
c) Luke 21:25-28. “There shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the
Joel 2:32. At this time of judgment, whosoever (of the Jews) shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be delivered. "Whosoever" refers to repentant Jews, as seen in Zechariah 13:9, "they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people:"
Note: In Acts 2:16-21, Peter does not say that this is the fulfilment of Joel's prophecy, because the signs and wonders predicted had not occurred at Pentecost. Joel's prophecy concerns Israel before Christ's glorious appearing. Peter saw in Joel's prophecy an application to the church. Peter was saying: "This is that same Holy Spirit that Joel wrote about. He is here!" "This is that", means the Holy Spirit's coming, not the events of Joel's prophecy as they will come later. Pentecost was a sample of what Joel predicted. Peter did not declare Pentecost as the complete fulfilment of Joel 2:28-32, but only as an illustration, a partial fulfilment, and a similar situation. Therefore, the supernatural signs that the multitude witnessed at Pentecost were the results of the Holy Spirit coming, yet only a glimmer of the future.
Key: "Afterward" in Joel 2:28 pin-points the time of the Spirit's outpouring in this passage. It is after Jesus Christ has returned at His glorious appearing. The context of Joel 2 does not allow us to link this outpouring of the Spirit to events before Christ returns. This refutes the thought that today's tongues are a sign of Christ's second coming. Tongues at Pentecost prepared the way for Peter's message of salvation which brought 3,000 people to Christ that day. Charismatics often use Joel 2:28-32 to support the continuance of tongues today, as they quote Joel 2:23,24 of "the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month. And the floors shall be full of wheat...." The former rain, they say, is supposed to be the initial outpouring of the Spirit in Acts 2, and the latter rain is claimed to be today's Charismatic Movement.
The context clearly speaks of literal rain giving abundant crops. Spiritualising it, the former rain would mean the riches of David's and Solomon's kingdom, and latter rain would refer to even greater blessing of Christ's kingdom after His second coming.
a) Tongues at Pentecost were real languages understood by visitors to Jerusalem.
b) Baptism of the Holy Spirit occurs at salvation. It is not to be sought, nor are tongues an evidence of this baptism.
c) Tongues was a warning to unbelieving Jews to repent.
d) Tongues was an evidence of the Holy Spirit coming to form the New Testament church, and to miraculously authenticate Peter's message of salvation.
2. THE CHARISMATIC DOCTRINE OF SUBSEQUENCE.
Acts is a book of transition, changes and history.
Changes happen in almost every chapter, such as:
a) The Old Covenant fades out, and the New Covenant enters. Even Paul was caught in changes as seen by his Jewish vows (Acts 24:18 and 21:26) showing his tie to the Old Covenant.
b) Acts passes from synagogue to church,
c) Acts passes from law to grace,
d) Acts passes from Old Testament saints to New Testament saints,
e) Acts passes from Jewish believers, to the church made up of Jew and Gentile
The only teachings in Acts that are normal for the church age are those that are doctrinally confirmed elsewhere in the New Testament letters to the churches.
Charismatics and Pentecostals take a different approach: They build their theology on the miracles of Acts 2,8,10,19 and on a misunderstanding of I Corinthians 12,13,14. (This is really a rebuke and criticism of tongues, not approval). Historical transition begins at Acts 2:4, the core point of all Charismatic teaching: "And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance."
Doctrine of subsequence defined: Charismatics teach that at conversion a Christian receives the Holy Spirit in a limited way. Later on, in a subsequent experience the Christian receives the "fullness" of the Spirit, by being baptised with, in or of the Spirit. This experience is accompanied by speaking in tongues, new spiritual motivation, and sometimes miracles. They teach that the Baptism of Holy Spirit:
1. Is usually distinct from and subsequent to (after) the new birth.
2. Is evidenced initially by the sign of speaking in tongues.
3. It must be earnestly sought.
Question 1: Which passages do Charismatics use to teach subsequence? Answer:
1. I Corinthians 12:13 cannot be used because it says that the Holy Spirit baptises every believer into the body of Christ at salvation. No tongues are mentioned, nor are we commanded to seek the Baptism. The gospels and epistles don't show subsequence.
2. Acts 2 and 8. Believers received the Spirit after salvation, an element of subsequence.
3. Acts 10. At Cornelius' household, believers were baptised in the Spirit at salvation. No subsequence.
4. Acts 19. John's disciples at Ephesus were baptised in the Spirit at salvation. No subsequence.
• Believers spoke in tongues in Acts 2,10,19, but not in Acts 8 at Samaria.
• Believers did not seek earnestly for the baptism in any of Acts 2,8,10,19.
• None of Acts 2,8,10,19 ever commands tongues for anybody else.
Question 2: Charismatics claim that the disciples had the Holy Spirit long before Pentecost, because they were already saved and because of John 20:21-22, their proof passage.
Answer: To this we say "yes" the disciples were saved before Pentecost as seen from:
a) Luke 10:20 "rejoice because your names are written in heaven," to the 70 sent out by Christ.
b) John 15:3 Jesus to his disciples"Now ye are clean through the Word which I have spoken to you."
but "No" they did not yet have the indwelling Holy Spirit because they were still pre-Pentecost.
Question 3: If tongues are necessary, why did none of the 5,000 who believed and received the Holy Spirit in Acts 2-4, also speak in tongues?
Answer: Because tongues are not an evidence of Baptism of the Holy Spirit. For something to be normal for everybody, it must happen to everyone. And it did not happen to everybody. Consider that of all the 16 salvation events described in Acts, only 2 groups spoke in tongues:
1. Acts 2........................... 3,000 at Pentecost................................. no tongues
2. Acts 3, 4....................... 5,000 at the Beautiful gate.................... no tongues
3. Acts 5:14...................... Multitudes saved................................... no tongues
4. Acts 8:17...................... Samaritan believers............................... no tongues
5. Acts 8:37-39................. Ethiopian eunuch.................................. no tongues
6. Acts 9........................... Saul on Damascus road........................ no tongues
7. Acts 10:46.................... Cornelius' household......................... tongues
8. Acts 11:19-24……….... Greeks saved at Antioch………………. no tongues
9. Acts 16:14, 15.............. Lydia.................................................... no tongues
10. Acts 16:16-19............... Demonised damsel................................ no tongues
11. Acts 16:25-34............... Philippian jailer and his household....... no tongues
12. Acts 17:1-4................... Thessalonian believers.......................... no tongues
13. Acts 17:10-12............... Berean believers.................................... no tongues
14. Acts 17:15-34............... Athenian believers................................ no tongues
15. Acts 18:8...................... Crispus and Corinthians at salvation..... no tongues
16. Acts 19:1-12................. 12 disciples of John at Ephesus.... tongues
17. Acts 19:18-20............... Ephesian believers................................ no tongues
18. Acts 28:23,24............... Roman believers.................................... no tongues
Question 4: John 20:21,22, "he breathed on them,and saith unto them, receive ye the Holy Ghost"
Charismatics think that after the resurrection, the eleven disciples received the Holy Spirit in the upper room, but that they later on received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost which then gave them their real power.
Answer: This view is wrong because:
1) John 20:22 was not a permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit, but just a temporary filling of the Holy Spirit to supply their spiritual needs up to Pentecost, just like many Old Testament saints had for a short time. e.g. Samson, John the Baptist (Luke 1:15), Elizabeth (Luke 1:41), Zacharias (Luke 1:61) and Simeon (Luke 2:25).
These gospel passages were not intended to be the norm for today. This filling of the Holy Spirit must not be confused with the Baptism of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, Caesarea and Ephesus (Acts 2:1-13; 11:15-18; 19:1-7). It may have been just a pledge or promise that would be fulfilled at Pentecost. Chrysostom (345-407 AD) and others held this view. John 20:26,27 shows the disciples still fearful behind shut doors, and faithless, eight days later.
2) John 7:39 "But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified."
This refutes the Charismatic idea that the disciples had the permanent indwelling Holy Spirit in John 20:22. They did not have the permanent indwelling Holy Spirit because Jesus had not yet ascended, nor was He yet glorified in heaven. The Holy Spirit would not come until after Jesus had ascended to heaven to receive the glory He had with the Father before the world began (John 17:1-5).
3) John 16:7 ".....if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you." Jesus ascended to heaven, then 10 days later, the Holy Spirit came at Pentecost.
4) Acts 1:8 "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me...."
This teaches that in Acts 1:8 the Holy Spirit had not yet come upon the disciples. They were still waiting for the Holy Spirit to come on them. Here, receiving power to witness, came at the same time as they received the Holy Spirit. If the Holy Spirit had come on them in John 20:22, they would not have been waiting, nor would they be powerless.
5) Acts 1:4 "they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, ye have heard of me."
This promise was made in John 14:16, "I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever."
Here they were still waiting for the Holy Spirit. All these events occurred in a period of transition. The disciples believed in Christ and were Old Testament saints, but they never knew the full experience of the indwelling Holy Spirit until Pentecost. In the upper room there is no evidence that they were seeking or asking for the Holy Spirit, nor anywhere else in the New Testament. Christ had promised the Holy Spirit would come, they were just waiting for "not many days hence." Acts 1:5. No one asked for the Holy Spirit in Acts 2, 8, 10, 19 or anywhere in any letter to any New Testament church. Why? Because the Holy Spirit always indwelt a person at the point of salvation. Romans 8:9
"If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." How can a believer have Christ, but not have the Holy Spirit? You can't separate the Godhead. "Ye are complete in Him." Colossians 2:10. If we have Christ as Saviour, we are complete; we do not need a second blessing, nor a baptism of the Holy Spirit because we already have it at salvation.
In Acts 2:2,3 Christians were first baptised by the Holy Spirit.
In Acts 2:4 they were then filled with the Holy Spirit, and the apostles spoke in tongues.
Tongues purpose was to:
1. Be a sign of judgment to warn unbelieving Jews to repent.
2. Authenticate the apostles as God's messengers and their message as being from God. Charismatics claim that Acts 2 should happen to everyone. If so, why do we never see a rushing mighty wind, and cloven tongues of fire on people? The Charismatic Movement has decided to use tongues, and then looks for verses to back up their practice. Reject this error as unbiblical.
3. ACTS 8:4-19. SAMARITAN SUBSEQUENCE
“When they believed Philip, they were baptised.” v.12.
The apostles at Jerusalem sent Peter and John, “who when they were come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Ghost (for as yet he was fallen on none of them...) (v.16)
Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.” Acts 8:12-17. Charismatics use this passage to support two errors:
a) Doctrine of Subsequence: The Samaritans received Christ and are baptised, followed by a time gap. Then they received the Holy Spirit.
b) Slaying in the Spirit: They lay hands on a person’s head, for them to “receive the Holy Spirit”, the person falls over backwards, and they have supposedly received the Holy Spirit.
Question 1: If the Holy Spirit can be given by laying on of hands, then why didn’t Philip lay hands on them, and save Peter and John the long journey?
Answer: God wanted the Samaritans to link their receiving of the Holy Spirit with the apostles and the Jerusalem Church.
Question 2: Why was there a delay in the Samaritans receiving the Holy Spirit after believing?
1) Background: Much hatred existed between Jews and Samaritans. If the Samaritans had received the Holy Spirit at the moment they believed, the terrible rift between Jews and Samaritans could have continued into the Christian church, as permanent disunity. Pentecost was made up of Jewish believers. If the Samaritans had started their own Christian group, the age-old rivalries could have continued.
2) God wanted the Samaritans to understand the authenticating power and authority of the apostles, as channels of divine truth. The time gap was there to show the Samaritans that they were under apostolic authority.
3) It showed the Jewish Christians that the Samaritans were in the same Church, had the same Christ, the same salvation, the same Holy Spirit, and the same acceptance by God.
4) Grammatical reason, in Acts 8:16:
“For as yet he was fallen upon none of them.” The Greek word for ‘as yet’ is ‘OUDEPO’. Some lexicographers note that this word means that something that should have happened hasn’t happened yet. It was like saying that the Samaritans were saved, but for some strange reason, what should have happened (the Holy Spirit coming) had not occurred. ‘OUDEPO’ implies that the Holy Spirit should have come immediately.
This was not a Samaritan Pentecost, but a step of growth for the Church. God wanted everyone to know that there were not two churches, but only one. God wanted to reverse the hatred barriers right at the start. God wanted to establish the apostles’ authority outside Jewish society.
Question 3: Why is there no mention of tongues at Samaria?
Answer: It is because there were no unbelieving Jews present. Jews would not live at Samaria, because they hated the Samaritans greatly.
5) This phenomena of believers not receiving the Holy Spirit until Peter came and laid hands on them, was never repeated anywhere in the New Testament. It was a transitional period.
Hence it is wrong to conclude that receiving the Holy Spirit is a work subsequent to salvation, and that it requires the laying on of hands. Philip could not do it. Hence we cannot impart the Holy Spirit by laying on of hands.
4. ACTS 10. CORNELIUS’ HOUSEHOLD. NO SUBSEQUENCE.
If there was a rift between Samaritans and Jews, there was an almost unbridgable gulf between Gentiles and Jews. A Jew would not enter a Gentile’s house.
Peter and six Jewish brethren (v.11-12), went to Caesarea. Peter preached the gospel to Cornelius, a Roman Centurion, and to his household.
“While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Spirit fell on them which heard the word. And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God.” Acts 10:44-46.
Many Charismatics falsely conclude from this that anyone who gets saved must speak in tongues, as proof of salvation.
Question 1: Why did Cornelius’ household speak in tongues (languages)?
Answer: Because there were Jewish Christians present who did not believe that the Spirit of God was for the Gentiles. Hence, this agrees well with 1 Corinthians 14:22 that tongues were a sign to Jews that believed not. Peter and his six Jewish friends were all astonished.
Question 2: Why were they all astonished?
Answer: Because the Holy Spirit fell upon a Gentile. Yet it happened here, and these Gentiles were speaking in tongues.
Question 3: How did these seven Jews know that these Gentiles had received the Holy Spirit?
Answer: “For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God.” Acts 10:46.
The fact that the Apostles understood the Gentiles’ tongues to be magnifying God indicated that the tongues were a known language to the Apostles. They knew the same gift of the Holy Spirit was given, because it was accompanied by the same sign, tongues, of Acts 10.
The same tongues of Acts 10 were just like the tongues of Acts 2, as seen from these references.
“On the Gentiles also.” Acts 10:45.
“To have received the Holy Spirit as well as we.” Acts 10:45. “The Gentiles also.” Acts 11:1.
“The Holy Spirit fell on them, as on us at the beginning.” Acts 11:15. “God gave the like gift, as he did unto us.” Acts 11:17.
“God also, to the Gentiles, granted repentance.” Acts 11:18.
The Jews could no longer claim spiritual superiority over the Gentiles, only equality. (Ephesians 3:6 and Colossians 3:11).
Charismatics should note two things:
a) There is no gap between belief in Christ and receiving the Holy Spirit. There is no subsequence here.
b) Tongues are mainly a judgment sign to unbelieving Israel (I Corinthians 14:21-22). God also used tongues to convince unbelieving Christian Jews that the Gentiles could receive the Holy Spirit, and that they ought to be welcomed as equals into the Church. Without tongues, the apostles would not have been convinced that the Gentiles could be saved.
Note: Acts 11:15 “As I began to speak, the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning.”
The outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Cornelius’ house occurred eight years after Pentecost, yet Peter could not point to any continuous flow of tongues among the churches, when he explained to the Jerusalem church leaders what had happened to the Gentiles. After eight years, Peter still had to say “As on us at the beginning”, not “as on all the churches regularly”. Here is a case where the absence of tongues speaks volumes. If speaking in tongues was a normal experience in churches, Peter would not have had to reach back to Pentecost to cite a similar example.
5. ACTS 19:1-6. JOHN’S DISCIPLES AT EPHESUS. NO SUBSEQUENCE.
Two Charismatic claims are made in this passage:
A) That speaking in tongues is the initial evidence of the Holy Spirit baptism.
B) That laying on of hands imparts the Holy Spirit to someone.
This is used to support “slaying in the Spirit.”
Both of these claims can be shown to be false, in that tongues and laying on of the apostles’ hands were for the following reasons, which are found in this passage:
A) Tongues were necessary to warn the many Jews in Ephesus that God’s program had changed, and that the Jews needed to receive Christ as Saviour. Many Jews lived at Ephesus, as seen by:
i) Twelve disciples of John the Baptist were Jewish. (19:3).
ii) Paul spoke boldly to the Jews in the synagogue for three months, who hardened themselves, believed not, and spoke evil of that way. (19:8-9).
iii) Paul separated his disciples to the school of Tyrranus for two years, so that all Jews and Greeks in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus. (19:9-10).
iv) Vagabond exorcist Jews in 19:13 try to imitate Paul’s casting out of demons in 19:12.
v) Seven sons of Sceva, the Jewish Chief Priest, also tried to imitate Paul’s casting out of demons, in order to establish their own authority as equal to Paul’s, and hence to counter Paul’s message. The demonised man leapt on them, and overcame them, so they fled out naked and wounded. (19:14-16).
vi) This was known to all the Jews and Greeks at Ephesus. (19:17).
vii) Alexander (v.33) was a Jew (1 Timothy 1:20; 2 Tim. 4:14). Therefore, Paul’s authority, as a messenger of God to be believed, and Paul’s message of Christ, to be received, was proven to all the Jews by signs of tongues (v.6), miracles (v.11), and casting out of demons (v.12-20).
viii) Apollos, an eloquent Jew came to Ephesus and mightily convinced the Jews
publicly that Jesus was Christ. (Acts 18:1-28).
Because of the many Jews at Ephesus, eight groups being mentioned, tongues spoken by John’s twelve disciples was very much in keeping with its stated purpose in I Corinthians 14:21,22 as being a warning sign to unbelieving Jews at Ephesus to repent. This was the main reason why God gave tongues to these twelve men.
KEY: On every occasion that tongues were given, there were unbelieving Jews that needed tongues as a sign to convince them of something.
Acts 2: Unbelieving devout Jews at Pentecost heard the Apostles speak in tongues warning them to repent.
Acts 10: Cornelius' household at Caesarea spoke in tongues to warn unbelieving Christian Jews (Peter) that the Gentiles had received the Holy Spirit and should be welcomed into the church on an equal footing with Jews.
Acts 19:1-33: John's twelve disciples spoke in tongues at Ephesus to warn fellow unbelieving Jews to repent and believe Christ's gospel preached by Paul.
Acts 18:1-17 and I Corinthians 12,13,14: In Acts 18, Jews are mentioned 6 times at Corinth. Hence the tongues of I Corinthians 12,13,14 were within the correct context of warning the many Jews at Corinth to repent.
None of these men were seeking the gift of tongues.
Tongues at Ephesus were a sign to Jews at Ephesus (and elsewhere) that salvation was now only possible by faith in Christ. Note:
a) Faith in Christ yet to come could no longer suffice, since Christ had arrived and purchased salvation on the cross.
b) Knowledge only of John's baptism (Acts 19:2) could no longer suffice.
c) Mosaic legalism, having performed its purpose, must be abandoned.
B) Charismatic error that laying on of hands imparts the Holy Spirit
This passage may seem to teach that salvation occurs and then the Holy Spirit is received after or subsequent to salvation, because of Acts 19:2,6.
“He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed?” 19:2.
“And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues and prophesied.” 19:6.
If this error is not corrected by studying the context of Acts 18:24-19:7 of Apollos knowing only the baptism of John, another error is believed of making tongues a sign of receiving the Holy Spirit. Acts 2,8,10 shows that Acts 19 does not teach a second experience with tongues as evidence of such an experience.
These 12 disciples of John and Apollos mentioned here were not New Testament believers (Christians), but only disciples of John the Baptist. Like their teacher Apollos, they only knew John's baptism, and knew nothing of Holy Spirit baptism. (18:25 and 19:3).
Question 1: "Since ye believed" what? (19:2).
Answer: These 12 disciples were Old Testament believers still living in the superseded Old Testament age, similar to Jesus' disciples before Pentecost and to Old Testament saints.
They were baptised by John in water "unto (because of) remission of sins" (Matthew 3:11) yet to come in Christ.
They believed in Christ to come, but this belief did not impart the baptism, indwelling, sealing, and filling of the Holy Spirit. They did not have the New Testament salvation provided by Christ's death. They were like many Jews living in the transition period between the Mosaic age and the Church age. They still performed and trusted Mosaic ceremonies for salvation, while looking forward to Christ (Acts 15:1,5). These 12 Ephesian disciples, (like modern Charismatics) did not lack faith, but they lacked correct doctrine for faith to take hold of.
Paul's discussion with them was as follows: John's disciples: "We are believers."
Paul: "Have ye received the Holy Spirit since ye believed?" v.2. (Paul knew that if they had've believed in Christ after Pentecost, they would have received the Holy Spirit). John's disciples: "We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost." v.2.
Paul: "Unto what then were ye baptized?" v.3. John's disciples: "unto John's baptism." v.3
(Note: Paul here realised that their missing link was information about Christ, not information about the baptism of the Holy Spirit. So Paul preached Christ Jesus to them, not the Holy Spirit).
Paul: John baptised with the baptism of repentance, saying that they should believe on Jesus Christ who was to come after John.
John's disciples: They believed.
They were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Paul laid his hands on them.
The Holy Ghost came on them.
They spoke with tongues and prophesied.
Question 2: Why did Paul lay hands on them?
Answer: To show them that as Jews, they were no longer to follow John the Baptist's teachings, but they were to follow Christ's teachings as taught by the Apostles.
Paul laying hands on them imparted the Holy Spirit to them.
This would have strongly established the Apostle's authority to them.
Question 3: Why were they given tongues? Answer: To connect them with Pentecost.
To show them that they were now part of the church with every other believer in Christ. To warn other Jews at Ephesus to receive Christ, and that the Apostle's message was of God.
Note Acts 19:11,12, "God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul."
Many Jews were convinced by the tongues and miracles that established Paul's authority as a messenger of God, and with the message of God.
Sceva the Chief Priest's seven sons tried to duplicate Paul's miracles of casting out evil spirits. This was done in order to neutralize Paul's authority to stop Jews leaving the synagogue for Christ. The demonized man beat them up. This led to many more Jews and Greeks coming to Christ.(19:11-20).
Note: The anointing of the Holy Spirit is the initial act of indwelling of the Holy Spirit as seen from Luke 4:18; Acts 4:27; 10:38; 2 Corinthians 1:21; I John 2:20,27. “Anoint” means to apply.
Question 4: Why was there a short time delay in them receiving the Holy Spirit after believing Paul's message?
Answer: A similar time delay occurred with the Samaritan believers in Acts 8 for the same reason.
Receiving the Holy Spirit by Paul laying his hands on them identified the Ephesian disciples with the Christian church established since Pentecost under the Apostle's authority. In Acts 8, no believers spoke in tongues because there were no unbelieving Jews in Samaria that needed the warning to repent. Jews hated Samaritans and would not live in Samaria
Tongues at Ephesus connected this work with God's work at Jerusalem. God's program was no longer centred in Israel. The casting away of Israel in God's judgment was now underway.
Acts is not a norm for the church age, but a narrative of the transition period:
1. From Synagogue to church,
2. From law to grace,
3. From Old Testament saints to New Testament Christians,
4. From mainly a Jewish body of believers to the body of Christ, with neither Jew nor Gentile.
Once the transition between the old and new covenants had been accomplished, with the Holy Spirit poured out, the Holy Spirit was then available to all who believed in Christ at the time of belief. This is how God works today.
Peter was present in Acts 2,8,10. There must be one church, as Jesus prayed in John 17:20-21, not a Jewish church, a Samaritan church, and a Gentile church.
Jewish witnesses heard tongues spoken by Gentile converts in Acts 10, by John's disciples in Acts 19, and the Jewish witnesses Peter and John verified the Samaritans’ conversion in Acts 8.
Paul wrote about the Holy Spirit many times, but he never stated that the normal Christian experience is the same as what people experienced in Acts 2,8,10,19.
Paul was saved in Acts 9, and gave his salvation testimony in Acts 22,24,26, yet never does he say that he spoke in tongues at his salvation.
The experience of the apostles is found in the transitional book of Acts, while the teaching of the apostles is in the epistles, which are our guide for today. In no New Testament epistle is there any teaching of a second blessing after salvation which is evidenced by speaking in tongues.
Michael Green in “I believe in the Holy Spirit” says: "The Charismatics were always out for power. Paul's reply was to boast not of his power but of his weakness through which alone the power of Christ can shine". When I am weak, then am I strong. The power of a Christian comes from the patient enduring of suffering, reviling, hardship and of thorns in the flesh.
6. DOES LUKE 11:13 TEACH THAT WE MUST ASK GOD FOR THE HOLY SPIRIT? NO
"If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him."
This was a valid request for the disciples up until the end of Christ’s earthly ministry just as with some Old Testament saints who received a temporary filling for a task.
At the end of Christ's earthly ministry, he said: "I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever." (John 14:16).
The disciples were now not to receive the Holy Spirit in answer to their own petition, but in answer to Christ's petition. Hence today the Holy Spirit is given to all who believe, because of Christ's prayer, without the individual asking for it. When we receive Christ as our Saviour, we immediately receive the Holy Spirit also. (Romans 8:9,14,16). Believers today are not to pray for the Holy Spirit because this prayer of the disciples (for the Holy Spirit) was answered at Pentecost.
Charismatic’s Careless Handling of Scripture.
Charismatics use these verses to keep people from questioning the movement.
7. THE SIN AGAINST THE HOLY SPIRIT. Matthew 12:22-32.
When you oppose a Charismatic, they often become very angry, and reply with scriptures that are misinterpreted and misapplied.
They claim that if you criticize tongues or Charismatic doctrine, you are doing what the Pharisees did who opposed Jesus in attributing Jesus’ work to Satan. They accuse you of coming close to committing the unpardonable sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit.
Question: What does Matthew 12:22-32 really teach?
Answer: Jesus had just healed a man possessed with a devil causing blindness and dumbness. The obvious meaning of this miracle was that Jesus was the Messiah. The Pharisees, however, not wanting to believe in Jesus, attributed His miracles done by the Holy Spirit to Satan.
This blasphemy against the Holy Spirit can only be committed when one observes Christ physically on earth doing miracles. Since Christ is not physically on earth today, it is impossible to commit this sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, that is, the sin of attributing the works of Christ to Satan.
Note: a) This sin was an historical event.
b) It can only be applied to one who rejects the work of the Holy Spirit in presenting Christ’s salvation.
c) It can never be used in challenging a Charismatic viewpoint.
8. JESUS CHRIST THE SAME YESTERDAY, and TODAY, and FOREVER. Heb. 13:8.
Charismatics use this verse to teach that: What happened “yesterday” during Christ’s earthly ministry and during the apostle’s lifetime, is happening now. They use this to claim that: tongues are for today, new revelations happen now, healings continue, & miracles of first century magnitude still happen now.
Does the Charismatic interpretation of this verse stand up to hermeneutic principles?
Literally, Hebrews 13:8 means: Jesus Christ is unchanging yesterday, today and forever. This is true of Christ’s nature or essence. But it is wrong historically, which disproves their claim. Why should “yesterday” only go as far back as Jesus’ earthly ministry?
Note these problems with their position:
a) Jesus never spoke in tongues during His earthly ministry.
b) As far as “forever” is concerned, none of the gifts are forever. I Corinthians 13:8-13 clearly states that the gifts of prophecy, tongues and knowledge will not endure forever.
c) Do we still offer lambs as blood sacrifices? No, because while Jesus Christ is the same forever, God’s methods of operation change throughout history.
d) Do we still walk about naked as Adam and Eve did in Eden before the Fall? No, because God’s method of operation was different then. So with tongues. Charismatics force a meaning into Hebrews 13:8 that is not there in order to justify their belief that tongues, miracles, healing and prophecies are happening today just as they did in the first century.
9. THE PROMISES OF POWER IN MARK 16:17,18
“And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they 1cast out devils;
2they shall speak with new tongues;
3they shall take up serpents; and
4if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; 5they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
Charismatics claim that today, these signs follow the preaching of the gospel where it is preached in the Holy Spirit’s power and faith. These four “shalls” were deliberate proofs that the apostles performed to publically demonstrate their authority, yet nobody can do these at will today successfully.
This is shown to be false because of our previous discussion on Mark 16:11-20 (p.499-500).
10. WILL BELIEVERS DO THE SAME and GREATER WORKS THAN CHRIST’S MIRACLES AS JOHN 14:12 SEEMS TO SAY?
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.”
Jesus’ miracles were:
a) Creation - turning water into wine.
b) Healing the lame, lepers, blind and deaf.
c) Casting out demons.
d) Control of nature - stilling storms, walking on water, cursing the figtree, multiplying loaves.
e) Raising the dead.
Question: Are there any documented cases of ordinary believers since 96AD doing the above miracles to the same degree as Jesus? No, never. No one comes close to Jesus’ miracles. John 14:12 means that Jesus referred to the total ministry of believers preaching the gospel after Pentecost.
The greater works applied initially to the apostles that Jesus was speaking to. They were given power to perform special miracles as credentials of their office (Romans 15:18,19; Hebrews 2:3,4).
For example, Peter preached one sermon and 3000 people were saved in one day. This may have been more than were saved in Jesus’ entire three year ministry.
While Jesus’ earthly ministry was confined to Palestine, the gospel in the church age would go to the ends of the earth.
These are the greater works that believers would do.
Believers works are greater in scope of influence and in number, but not greater in quality.
11. QUESTIONS ANSWERED
Question 1: What is the evidence of being filled with the Holy Spirit? Is it speaking in tongues?
Answer: This evidence of being filled with the Holy Spirit is:
a) Exhibiting the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22,23 of “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance.”
b) Walking worthy of the Lord as described in Ephesians 4,5,6. We are filled with the Spirit
as we exhibit these 40 qualities.
Tongues are not the evidence of being filled with the Holy Spirit because:
a) All believers did not speak in tongues (I Corinthians 12:30).
b) The Holy Spirit distributes gifts as He wills (I Corinthians 12:7-11).
Question 2: What about miracles being done by Stephen (Acts 6:8), Philip (Acts 8:5-8), Barnabas (Acts 14:3), the seventy (Luke 10:1,9,17,19), or in Mark 9:38-41?
Answer: Sign gifts authenticated the apostles and their appointed representatives. Stephen and Philip belonged to the seven appointed by the apostles in Acts 6:1-7 by the laying on of hands (v.6). Paul and Barnabas had hands laid on them as commanded by the Holy Spirit to go on Paul’s first missionary journey. (Acts 13:1-3).
The seventy that Jesus sent out did not have the office of apostle, but were “sent ones” to proclaim Christ’s Kingdom as Christ personally directed His program on earth. Both the seventy and the man casting out demons were before the church age started, and does not establish a precedent to be done by all church age believers.
Question 3: Does 1 Corinthians 1:7 include miracle workers in the Corinthian church other than the apostles?
Answer: “so that ye come behind in no spiritual gift.”
“In no gift” means “in no favour, or gracious endowment.” The word used here (Charisma) does not necessarily refer to miraculous endowments, but includes all the kindnesses of God towards them in producing peace of mind, humility, steadfastness, etc. Paul is saying that they possessed, in rich abundance, all those endowments which were bestowed on Christians. This does not teach that non apostles did miracles.
Question 4: Why would God allow error in Charismatic meetings where the Holy Spirit was blessing?
Answer: We must not assume that because God is blessing a church, then all aspects of that church please Him. Many Charismatics assume that because people are being saved in Charismatic churches, and large numbers attend, then all aspects of Charismatic doctrine and practice are God approved. In Revelation 2 and 3, the churches at Ephesus, Pergamos, Thyatira and Sardis each had good and bad aspects. Hence we must not think
that because a church looks good in some areas, then all aspects of that church are good. Many people have been saved in churches with false doctrine.
Note: Satan’s attacks are most pronounced in churches seeking to uphold sound Bible doctrine, who win souls to Christ, who seek to live holy lives, who expose Satan’s lies, and who attack Satan’s Kingdom.
Satan would not attack but help to build churches that teach error and promote Satan’s Kingdom, such as JWs, Mormons, New Agers, etc.
Question 5: Do people have the genuine gift and power to “slay people in the Spirit?” Answer: This has no Biblical basis whatsoever.
Any appeals to Daniel (Daniel 8:16-27), Peter, James and John on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-7), John on Patmos (Revelation 1:17), Ezekiel (Ezekiel 2:1-3), or the multitude coming to arrest Jesus in Gethsemane (John 18:1-6), will not do, because in each case these people fell to the ground because of direct contact with God or an angel of God.
People instead fall on their face, (not on their back) and worship God, not become unconscious.
“and so falling down on his face he will worship God.” I Corinthians 14:25.
This slaying in the spirit (falling backwards) is mentioned in Isaiah 28:11-13 where Israel was warned to repent after hearing other tongues (v.11), “yet they would not hear” (v.12) so God judged them by them “falling backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.” (v.13). Hence, people falling backward is a sign of God’s judgment on those who refuse to hear God’s warnings. This is a strong warning against the evil of Charismatic slaying in the spirit.
Question 6: How does the Holy Spirit lead us if not through revelations, visions, dreams & prophecies?
Answer: 1) “Thy Word (Bible) is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” Psalm 119:105. God may use a passage of Scripture personally applied to our situation.
3) Open and closed doors.
4) Wisdom of pastors. Some believers are bad advisors. God speaks to us through the Bible as we apply it to each situation. Avoid the advice of fools, ignorant and wicked people. Leadings, impressions, hunches etc. are not always reliable because we may have overlooked some facts which lead us to a wrong impression. So, get all the facts, match them with Scriptures and make the choice based on whether a situation is in line with Bible truth, or against Bible truth. The Holy Spirit will then give you peace as you act according to the Bible.
Question 7: Isn’t it a good thing for the Charismatic Movement to unite with Roman Catholics if they are winning Catholics to Christ?
Answer: The end never justifies the means. God calls us to be separate from sin and false doctrine. The Charismatic Movement has the approval of the Roman Catholic church who established the “Catholic Charismatic Renewal Office” in 1972.
The Charismatic Movement will bring about unprecedented ecumenical unity, which will lay the foundation of and usher in the worldwide harlot church of Revelation 17, Mystery Babylon the Great, the Mother of Harlots and abominations of the earth. This church will bear the name of Christ, but give loyalty to the Antichrist who will be able to perform signs and wonders (Revelation 13:3,13,14,15).
Popularity has slain more prophets of God than persecution ever did. In Christianity today, whatever is popular, whatever is accepted, whatever brings good feelings, whatever brings unity, all become the accepted norm for the church.
Luther said: “Unity without truth is treason.” Truth is being set aside in the name of unity. Darkness and light are mixing and embracing.
In John 17:17-21, Jesus first prayed that we would be sanctified by the truth of God’s Word, (v.17), then He prayed for unity (v.21) based on truth. The basis for unity is always the truth of God’s Word.
Question 8: Why should we question the source of prophecies and knowledge if they come true?
Answer: The test of a true prophet is 100% accuracy. We should consider all a “prophet’s” predictions to see if every one always comes true. If he correctly predicts 99 times and one time he is wrong, then he is a false prophet (Deuteronomy 18:22). Also his prophecy must agree with all of Scripture. Demons have access to much information and can make correct predictions to win people over.
Question 9: Why do we have to go into such intricate and complicated studies to know the answers on these Charismatic issues? Why can’t we just accept the Scriptures at their first surface interpretation?
Answer: The Bible has shallow parts and deep parts. Even Peter said that some of the Bible was hard to understand (2 Peter 3:14-16). Hence we need to study the Bible carefully and thoroughly (2 Timothy 2:15). The problem with the Corinthian church was that they were content with immaturity. Hence they could not understand other spiritual truths (I Corinthians 3:2,3). The Lord has given Bible teachers who must study the Bible to rightly divide it, so that Christians will not be tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine.
Question 10: Are you saying that it is impossible to cast out demons today because of Mark 16:17-20?
Answer: No. Nobody today has the gift of casting out demons (a type of healing). Demons are cast out today because of the prayers of Christians (James 5:14-16) and by the power of the Lord Jesus, not because someone has the gift of exorcism.
Question 11: How do you explain that some people seem genuinely healed at Charismatic meetings?
Answer: When John Wimber visited Sydney in March 1990. At his meetings he invited people to come for healing of disorders such as:
a) Bad backs and necks.
b) Problems with left big toe.
c) Nervous disorders.
d) Unequal leg lengths.
e) Breathing problems.
These conditions are not in the same league as Jesus’ and the Apostle’s healing the blind, lame, deaf, raising the dead, curing the insane, etc.
When John Wimber was asked if he had success in healing Down’s Syndrome children, (a genetic disease which cannot be healed by psychosomatic factors), he replied that he had prayed over more than 200 such children, but he admitted that not one child had been healed. This shows the Charismatic healing Movement to be false.
In the Indonesian revivals it was claimed that God raised people from the dead. The trouble was that the locals had different definitions for death. If a person was unconscious they deemed him as dead.
Question 12: Doesn’t Joel 2:28-32 say that before Christ returns men and women will prophesy, etc.?
Answer: No, it doesn’t. Read Joel 2:27 which tells us that after Christ has returned in glory, Israel gets saved; then read Joel 2:28 which says afterwards (i.e. after Christ’s return) your sons and daughters shall prophesy. This happens in the Millennium, not in the church age.
12. COUNTERFEIT ECUMENICAL UNITY OF TODAY’S TONGUES
When tongues appears in fundamental and evangelical churches, strife and division result.
Yet when tongues occur in liberal churches where doctrine is not important, then unity results.
The Charismatic Movement produces a counterfeit unity.
a) Instead of Christ being the centre, they give the Holy Spirit central attention. Jesus said of the Holy Spirit, “He shall not speak of Himself. He shall glorify me.” John 16:13,14.
b) Instead of the Bible being the basis, their experience becomes the way of knowing God’s will. “If they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” Isaiah 8:20.
Old liberalism and new Pentecostalism have joined and denominational barriers began to fall.
1) An Assembly of God Pastor refers to an Episcopalian priest who has recently received the Charismatic spirit baptism and ministry “power”, yet still does not believe in Christ’s virgin birth or resurrection. The Assembly of God Pastor well asks: “I can’t understand why God would give all that power to a fellow so far out on the liberal left.”
2) Pentecostal Christadelphians deny Christ’s deity, His pre-existence, and personality of the Holy Spirit, yet they speak in tongues. It does not matter what a person believes doctrinally, as long as he speaks in tongues as evidence of the “baptism of the Holy Spirit.”
Question 13:How can this experience be available to anyone regardless of how heretical are his views?
3) Rome took in the Charismatic Movement, when in 1975 Pope Paul VI blessed a gathering of Catholic Charismatics. Both Rome and the Charismatic Movement hold to similar positions on the Bible in that they both allow new revelations from God beyond the Bible.
Roman Catholic priest Edward O’Connor of Notre Dame writes in “The Pentecostal Movement in the Catholic Church”, p.23,28,32 that:
“Although they derive from Protestant backgrounds, the Pentecostal churches are not typically Protestant in their beliefs, attitudes or practices. p. 23.
Catholics who have accepted Pentecostal spirituality have found it to be fully in harmony with their traditional faith and life. p.28.
It cannot be assumed that the Pentecostal Movement represents an incursion of Protestant influence.” p.32.
O’Connor says that Catholic Charismatics have been brought back to Penance, devotion to Mary, and devotion to the Real Presence in the Eucharist, through their “baptism in the Holy Spirit.”
The Charismatic Movement does nothing to unsettle Roman Catholic faith or traditions.
The Catholic “spider” is about to welcome the Charismatic “fly” into its parlour.
Charismatics may have been “slain”, but not “in the Spirit”.
13. TRIBULATION APPROACH TO TONGUES
Tongues at best is a learned gibberish; at worst it is caused by demon possession as in occult tongues.
The devil uses tongues to:
a) distract from the real issue in salvation, which is faith in Christ as Saviour.
b) distort spirituality, as people think that tongues produces spirituality.
In Corinth, tongues had nothing to do with spirituality, but were associated with carnality. Satan counterfeits Christ as the Head of the church, with the Antichrist to be the head of ecumenism.
In 2 Thessalonians 2:8,9 the Antichrist’s coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders. The antichrist will have a false gift of miracles, healings and tongues.
Some illnesses can be demon induced, and cures can be achieved by Satan removing the demons from people in order to deceive the world. Hence the Satanic counterfeit of tongues and healing will confuse the lost and hinder them from receiving the gospel. They will reject the truth, hence 2 Thess. 2:11 says,
“And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion that they should believe a lie.” As a person consistently rejects truth, his heart is hardened, and he is incapable of discerning truth from error, and chooses error. eg. Pharaoh, JWs, Mormons, etc.
“When they (religious leaders of the day) shall say unto you, seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep and mutter: should not a people seek unto their God.” Isaiah 8:19.
The Hebrew word for “familiar spirits” is “OB” and in the Greek Septuagint is “EGGASTRIMUTHOS”, both words meaning ventriloquist demons, fallen angels who control the vocal chords of their hosts. “Peep” means a high falsetto voice. o “mutter” means a deep hollow voice.
The best documented modern case of this is Helene Smith in Switzerland who spoke in an ancient language of India. At first, many thought that she had the gift of tongues. However, her “gift” proved to be a clear case of demon possession, because when the demon left her (Luke 11:24,28), she had no recollection of what had happened.
In 1 Kings 22:22, a wicked spirit appears in heaven, offering to fulfil a mission as a lying spirit in the mouth of false prophets on earth. Hence, a lying spirit can impersonate the Holy Spirit. Modern spirit-baptisms with tongues and healings are often due to demons impersonating the Holy Spirit.
Question: How will Satan successfully deceive the world into worshipping him?
Answer: By the Satanic healing of the Antichrist in Revelation 13:3,4,12-15, and by the miraculous gift of tongues that Satan gives to the Image (v.15).
Hence, Satanic healing and tongues will become a worldwide delusion as the Antichrist draws near.
In Matthew 24:4,5,23-26, “For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.”
Question: How will they deceive?
Answer: By signs and wonders.
Question: What will they be trying to make people believe?
Answer: That whenever they do these signs and wonders, it is the Holy Spirit manifesting His power.
Refuse to go and see what is going on.
Some Pentecostal preachers intentionally use hypnosis to temporarily heal people and to suggest to them to speak in tongues.
eg. An American Pentecostal “evangelist” and “healer” named Valdez, offered Franquin the hypnotist $100,000 a year tax-free to be a Pentecostal evangelist and healer. Franquin refused. This was reported in the Sydney Daily Telegraph newspaper, Jan. 26, 1956.
14. HYPNOTIC IMITATION OF TONGUES AND HEALING.
Many Charismatic preachers are religious hypnotists.
Any good hypnotist can make his subject speak in tongues, or feel that he is healed of some illness (only to relapse later), or by a touch putting the poor victim into a trance (Charismatics call this “slaying in the spirit.”)
A Charismatic preacher can hypnotize people if the following conditions are met:
a) The person must be convinced of the hypnotist’s ability,
b) The person must be a willing subject,
c) Repetitive, rhythmic music, as occurs in many Charismatic rock music bands.
d) The person must be expecting something to happen (e.g.: to be healed, or to speak in tongues, or be slain in the spirit).
Most people can apply hypnotic suggestions if they knew how. When a preacher has unknowingly produced the necessary mental condition in a susceptible person, things happen which may deceive the preacher into thinking that he has some special gift of the Holy Spirit. When others think that he has this gift, they are ready to be the next victims.
Hypnotists admit that it is very simple to give a person a headache, toothache, shorten a limb, remove pain, pass a needle through a man’s hand painlessly, impart the “gift” of tongues, make a person feel and think that he is healed. (This is always a temporary healing just as Charismatic healings are). Religious hypnotists go on deceiving others, calling it the “Baptism of the Holy Spirit.”
Our body is like a prison to keep our spirit in, but it is also like a fortress to keep out the corruption of demon spirits. Normally our mind and body repels demonic attacks. But if we allow our mental fence to be broken down by surrendering control of our mind to another
person or spirit or to group pressure (as in blanking your mind to speak in tongues, or allowing yourself to be slain in the spirit, or healed) then we are exposed to demonic attack.
The victim is unable to restore the fence in his own power. He must re-submit to being only guided by the Bible, not by some religious hypnotist. The sad end of such a victim is that often, morality drops, Bible truth is rejected and error is embraced, spirituality wanes, tongues takes greater control, and mental breakdowns often occur.
Enoch Coppin, who was a hypnotist in his unsaved days had practised many hypnotic healings, the giving and taking away of bodily afflictions and speaking in tongues, insists that their source is the demonic forces of Satan.
15. MENTAL SUSCEPTIBILITY and SURRENDER OF THE WILL.
Once a person has been made mentally susceptible by:
a) Wrongly applied, falsely interpreted scriptures (as in all cults),
b) Listen to exciting testimonies of healings, tongues, and wonderful spiritual experiences, the door into his mind is open for Pentecostal seducing demons to enter, who impersonate the Holy Spirit.
Many Charismatic healers imply that someone in the audience has a very sinful sex problem. Many people have a temptation to sexual sin. This is used to make the person feel inferior, as a second rate Christian in need of so-called “Holy Spirit Baptism”. This is a commonly used trick to make people’s minds susceptible to think that they need tongues, healing, slaying, etc. as a solution to their problem. This is a high pressure selling technique. Many Charismatic healers trick people to believing that they are healers by claiming to make a person’s legs equal in length, when they were equal in the first place.
Example 1: Two old ladies on crutches came to the front of a Charismatic service to be healed. After the laying on of hands they were hypnotically convinced that God had healed them. On the way out they both fell down the steps breaking their hips. Friends then sent for the Charismatic healer to heal them, but he refused to come, nor did he visit them in hospital.
Example 2: A young man claimed to be healed from sinus. When asked how he felt, he replied, “I am healed, but I still have the symptoms.” He was surely deceived.
Question: What is the Charismatic spirit baptism?
Answer: The human being has two nervous systems, the voluntary in the brain, and involuntary which controls involuntary actions such as heart muscle contraction, breathing, etc. Normally the voluntary system is in control, but in the so-called spirit-baptism when one speaks in tongues, he by-passes his brain, allowing the subconscious mind to become active. Hence tongues comes from the involuntary nervous system as gibberish which is disconnected from the conscious commands of the brain. Hence, control of one’s life is given to the subconscious involuntary nervous system, when real control should be given to the mind controlled by the Bible as it directs the voluntary conscious mind, and as it consciously weighs every decision in accordance with Scripture to be right or wrong.
Question: Is healing in the Atonement?
Charismatics claim that healing is in Christ’s atonement for sin, as a benefit available to all believers today. If this were true, then no believer should ever get sick or die.
Physical healing has been secured by Christ’s atonement but we only get it at Christ’s return when we receive our resurrection bodies, not now in the Church age.
“with his stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5; “by whose stripes ye were healed.” 1 Peter 2:24
Peter tells believers that the healing we have is “past tense”, a spiritual healing received at salvation. We do not have complete physical healing today because:
1) Healing left Paul.“Trophimus have I left at Miletum sick.” 2 Timothy 4:20. Paul couldn’t heal him.
2) “Epaphroditus ... was sick nigh unto death.” Philippians 2:25-27.
Why did Paul let him get so bad?Why didn’t Paul heal him straight away?Why didn’t Epaphroditus heal himself, if every believer can do it? Did he not have enough faith? Paul never criticized him for lack of faith. His raising to health was an act of divine mercy, not an atonement right.
3) “Use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake and thine often infirmities (sicknesses)”. I Timothy 5:23. This would have been madness if Paul could heal Timothy. Why didn’t Timothy heal his own stomach and other often sicknesses by laying on of hands as Charismatics do? Why use wine? Did Timothy lack the faith to be healed?
4) “Luke the beloved physician.” Colossians 4:14.
Luke would not have continued as a physician if he (along with all believers) could heal at will.
5) “Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him...” James 5:14-15. Why didn’t the sick man heal himself if healing is in the atonement? The “prayer of faith,” not the “gift of healing” shall save the sick. The sick believer was to call for the church elders, not the healer, or the person of great faith.
6) “I will glory in my infirmities (weaknesses, sicknesses)..” 2 Corinthians 12:9,10.
7) “The creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption.” Romans 8:21.