I have hated gossip and slander and mocking for as long as I can remember. I always thought it unfair to judge someone on some perceived flaw when you don't even know them or their life. Once I got a peek into the realm of the spirit and saw the spiritual dynamic, I was even more galvanized in my position. I used to think it was just the evangelicals that did those things because that was the group I was from, but realized eventually it goes across all denominations even unto the most well-known in the Christian world.
And in case you are wondering, Yes, I have been guilty myself. When I was a child we used to mock those people who lifted their hands to pray, spoke in funny languages and believed God still did miracles. But do you know what? I grew up. I finally got to the point where I would strongly let people know that I didn't want to hear what they were saying about people if it wasn't nice and there was no point in the telling. I remember that more than once someone started talking about a character flaw someone had and rather than join in, I would with a most serious expression say something like "I want to thank you for letting me know about this. This is serious. We should pray for them now." Then, I would get on my knees and close my eyes and pray without ceasing until some of them literally left. It only took a couple times before people learned I didn't want to be a party to it.
Fast forward several years... I had been thinking about a few evangelists out there who seemed to be winding down, maybe getting off track in their focus or direction, and I was thinking about how sad it was. One day I suddenly found myself sitting next to one of those men. Millions of people know his name and probably millions have been saved through his preaching of the gospel. In the hour and a half I was there with him I couldn't help but think "Where is that anointing? Where is that power he carried? I don't feel anything from him except tired and a little testy." In my mind I had already judged him and written him off. (just being honest with you, not that I am proud of it by any means)
As I weighed these things in my mind suddenly the Lord spoke to me. "Where are the intercessors?" That was all he said. He really didn't have to say anything else. I suddenly realized that what I "said" in my mind, I would have dropped to my knees to pray if I had heard someone else say those things in the past. "Where are the intercessors?" Yes Lord, you are right. I don't pray for him anything like the way I used to. This brother was just weary. He spent his entire life from youth serving God and I was not looking at that. I was looking at him in the wrong light. "Where are the intercessors?" Where are the Aarons and the Hurs to hold up the arms of the generals of the faith. There is no reason a 65 year old man or woman should be diminishing in strength as they serve the Lord, at least not if they have people willing to lift them up in prayer.
And Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated. (Deut. 34:7 KJV)
Those whom we have admired in the past, those we have learned from, those whose meetings we have attended, lets keep them lifted up in prayer. Supernatural strength should be their portion. Let their gifts and annointings only increase. Lord help us to pray... and help them to finish well.
* Just a clarification... I believe that God's presence was still powerfully upon this brother but I was not allowed to sense it as God was doing something in my heart that day.
Our "Right" to Walk in the Supernatural
I have a strong and passionate desire to see people “walk” in the things of the spirit. What things am I talking about? Basically, everything talked about in the word of God that has to do with the power of the Holy Spirit being on display. This would include miraculous salvations, supernatural conviction of sin, healings and miracles of every type, signs and wonders and other miracles that one can not explain away by natural means
I get asked all the time by charismatics, “Why is it important to have all this supernatural stuff as part of your Christian life?” Many are looking at what they perceive the “supernatural Christian life” to be and wonder where the discipleship went. Where is the talk about the cross and the blood and dying to self? What happened to holiness and purity? Where did humility go? I understand, I really do. Many have asked me how seeing in the spirit or having a life of God’s power manifested helps them be a better Christian. Does it help me in some way?
The short answer is that having a life where you see what the Father is doing and hear what He is saying will bring you into the walk you were destined for. Looking at Jesus as our example and emulating His life will cause us to fulfill our purpose. Jesus Himself said “The works I do, you will do, and greater works than these because I go to my Father.” Paul said “I come to you not with excellency of speech but with a demonstration of power.” Why would Jesus make such a blanket statement such as this? He didn’t say “The works that I do a few of you will do.”
One of the biggest complaints I hear is that I am trying to “push” this supernatural stuff on everybody. There it is… You see what I have found is that even in the camp of those who believe God still does the miraculous, many don’t want to believe that this is normal Christian life. The power of God thing is rare and special, precious few have attained that level, etc., etc. We don’t all walk in those things and neither are we meant to do so. Yes we have our Benny Hinns but we can’t all be Benny Hinn can we? I mean, that is why millions of people from all over the world
go to Benny Hinn, because we don’t all carry that kind of Holy Ghost power right?
(I’m not picking on Benny Hinn, he is just known by everyone)
I’m as guilty as anyone. There is something about believing there is someone extra special who can talk to God for us… a prophet… a Moses.
The thing is that Matthew 10:8 is very inclusive to all believers. The word obligates us to walk in supernatural power.
Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give. (Matthew 10:8 NKJV)
If we are not walking in this, it isn’t because God has a different set of instructions somewhere. This is for all believers.
And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. (Mark 16:17-18 KJV)
What about seeing in the spirit? How is that normal? If God wants you to see He will open your eyes, right? What is your biblical reference for that belief? How are we so sure events in the scriptures that define our beliefs were sovereign acts of God? The bible talks about eyes that see.
But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.
For verily I say unto you, that many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them. (Matthew 13:16-17 KJV)
I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eye-salve, that thou mayest see. (Revelation 3:18 KJV)
My own spiritual sight began to open and develop without me having an understanding role in seeing it come to pass. I wasn’t trying to “see” and I wasn’t trying to “walk in miracles” in the early days of my adventure in God. The things I did, I did because I had a passion to see people set free. I had a burden upon me that was like an anguish in my soul that grieved for those in torment and bondage and so I would pray. Two important things began to happen. After 8 or 10 hours of being in prayer, my spiritual eyes would open and very often I would see those things I was praying against in someone’s life. Also, miracles, deliverances and healings would happen. It didn’t take long to realize that there was a connection. I realized that I may not be Benny Hinn but it seems like if I persevere in prayer, the Lord shows up in power.
I also learned at that time that not everyone wants to pray that way. It isn’t that they can’t, they just don’t want to. Many times, I have asked people who are desperate for miracles to spend a day with me agreeing in prayer for their situations and have only had a couple people ever agree to do so. The others did not have the time. They would however go to meetings with special healing evangelists in the area. I’m not judging them but they clearly had been led to believe somewhere along the way that only the special few could pray and expect God to move. They did not see themselves as being someone who could and thus felt that they were wasting their time by trying to pray for miracles. Again, believing that only a special few operate in the “supernatural” while us normal folk limp along until we can get to the man or woman of God. If you teach people this you are doing them no favors.
The High Price Jesus Paid
One of the reasons I give that people should embrace everything given in the word is that Jesus paid a dear price for us. I feel we have a responsibility not to get by but to thrive in our spiritual life in God. I was listening to a well-known evangelist and writer say that Jesus did not pay the price for us to walk in the supernatural, but rather just for salvation and healings. I don’t believe he is right. I believe Jesus paid for every good thing we have or have access to in this life and in the life to come. Everything.
Did Jesus redeem us so that we could have a life like John or Peter or Paul, or so that we could hold on until we make it to Heaven? I think you may know where I stand on this question. Many have said that the miracles in the bible were all sovereign by God and that those who performed these miracles were not looking for them or asking for them to happen. Philip being transported for example only happened once to Philip and he didn’t ask for it or desire it. I don’t think we can make statement like that without some special knowledge about or from Philip.
Like believers today, I think there were some, like Philip and others who desired to be used of God in any way He chose to use them. I believe Enoch, Elijah, Moses and those like them chose the life they lived. They chose just like we can choose. Yes, we CAN all be like Benny Hinn. Absolutely we can. No one excluded. But…
Remember when the Lord told 500 or so people to tarry in Jerusalem for the Holy Ghost? How many were willing to go and tarry? Less than half went, about a hundred and twenty. That was their choice. They waited and received the gift of the Holy Ghost and tongues of fire sat upon each one. That sounds rather powerful and supernatural to me. They chose to be there. Do you desire to walk in the supernatural power of God? It’s a choice.
Go and tarry… make the choice.