Thursday, January 7, 2010

Fellowship vs. Followship - Part 3

Following Signs

Who Has Bewitched you?

People often confuse following Christ with following signs and wonders. They are not one and the same. When the Apostles were spreading the Gospel, they soon came across Simon the sorcerer.

"But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one: To whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, This man is the great power of God. And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries.

But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done." Acts 8:9-13

Both Simon and Philip performed signs and wonders, but the difference was the preaching of God's kingdom.

The people in Samaria made the same mistake we see many making today. They assumed that because Simon could produce spiritual wonders, he was working in the power of God. As we can see, that was a false assumption. These individuals were deceived because they never questioned the source of the supernatural signs produced by Simon.

"Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world." I John 4:1

Some will say, "Don't question it, just receive it." Know that this is exactly what Scripture says not to do! God says to "Prove ALL things" (I Thessalonians 5:21).

Don't Fall for the Hokey Doke

"And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders." II Thessalonians 2:9-10

Don't believe the lie that Satan has no power. Such is not supported by the Word of God. It is not that he has no power, but that he does not have absolute power as does our God. He is a spiritual creature and can produce spiritual manifestations. This is why we are to test the spirits to see if they be of God.

"For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." Matthew 24:24

The reason God exhorts us to use Christ alone as our standard is precisely because there WILL be false Christs and false prophets; especially in the end times. The word "Christs" is the word for "anointed". There will be people who have false anointings and are speaking false words they declare to be from God.

One comment we received about the Priestcraft series is that it is "common sense" that such people are not part of the kingdom of God. However, the Bible indicates that such knowledge may not be so common.

God does not present this casually. He says these false anointings will be so effective, that they shall deceive the very elect if possible. That is a serious warning from God precisely because the level of deception will be so strong.

If such were not the case, then how could you get hundreds of professing Christians actively following that which is Scripturally unsound?

The Nature of the Prophetic

In the above video, Todd Bentley states that Jesus would appear "in person", coming "in the clouds surrounded by an angelic host", and step "foot" on their stage that next day. Then he begins to back track by saying he needs to explain because people don't understand the "nature of the prophetic".

Why does he have to do this? Because he reads a "prophecy" some woman claims has come from God, but does not weigh the words of this "prophecy" with the word of God. Todd presents - and the people just take for granted - that it is so. They go straight from reading an unchallenged prophecy into seeking supernatural confirmation. When we examine what God speaks about prophecy, we can see that it bears no resemblance to what is going on in many churches.

God's word holds two primary messages for His people in the latter days: "Repent!" and "Be not deceived". In speaking of the time leading up to Christ's return, God says deception will be rampant and there will be a great falling away from the faith. His protection against this is that we measure all according to the standard of His word.

Are there such things as spiritual signs and wonders from God? Absolutely! Satan is only a counterfeit; he cannot create life only pervert it. However Scripture indicates that God does nothing willy nilly; there are purposes why God brings forth signs and wonders.

"And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen." Mark 16:20

"Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know." Acts 2:22

God uses signs and miracles to confirm His word. It is a witness to the people that the message and the messenger have been sent from Him. Please notice that in such cases, the words preached are of critical importance to the signs being made manifest. The standard God gives us for determining what is true is His word, not signs and wonders.

There has been an explosion of "prophetic" movements which are defined, not by the word of God, but by experiences in the supernatural. Many of these ministries openly promote teachings that are diametrically opposed to God's word because these revelations are rooted in individual "prophecy" and not Scripture.

Someone only has to say, "God is saying..." and the church starts rejoicing. We are never commanded by God to simply receive the words of others regarding what He has said.

"Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge." I Corinthians 14:29

What is being "judged" here? The veracity of the prophecy! Is it of the right spirit? Is it in line with Scripture? Has the Lord indeed said what is proclaimed? If we just drink down "prophecies" without that discernment, we may be drinking down poison.

"If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul." Deuteronomy 13:1-3

If a prophet's words come true with signs and wonders, YET what they preach doesn't align with God's word, we are still not to listen to such persons. Even in the presence of real signs and wonders, we are still to evaluate the word to determine if the origin of the spiritual manifestation is from God.

People have perverted the gift of prophecy and are using it to preach "new" and unBiblical words from the Lord that need no validation from Scripture. The words are valid simply because I say they came from the Lord.

Here is a video testimony from Andrew Strom who had been involved in the ministries of Patricia King, Bob Jones, Todd Bentley, and others involved in this misguided "prophetic" movement. He gives an insiders' view of spiritual manifestations such as angel orbs, gold dust, etc. and the seeking of experiences over repentance which he claims brought in counterfeit, demonic spirits (kundalini).

All That Glitters is Not Gold

If the word being confirmed by these supernatural signs and wonders is false, then can these signs be from God? Let me ask it another way. Will God sign off approval on that which He has not said and which contradicts Hid word?

One of the "signs" being experienced in some churches today is the appearance of gold dust. It is said that this started with a Brazilian woman named Silvania Machado as gold would seep out of her pores, fall from her hair, or rain onto her body. Similar assertions have been made about other ministries such as Ruth Heflin, Benny Hinn, Patricia King, Joshua Mills, Rick Joyner, and others.

It is also claimed that these gold "signs" are a reminder of how precious, majestic, enduring, and pure God is. However, in May 1999 when Machado spoke at Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship, the Pastor (John Arnott) gathered some of the gold specks and had them analyzed by the University of Toronto Geology Department. Charisma magazine also contracted the U.S. Geological Survey to conduct tests on another sample of the gold dust. The results from both proved that the "gold" was nothing but plastic glitter.

Can God send plastic gold glitter from Heaven? Sure. By why would He do so? Whether He would send down pure gold dust is another question altogether, but why would He send plastic?

Yet, even if the analyzed dust had been found to be pure gold, it still would not mean that this was a "sign" from God. Let's not lose sight of what the Scripture says. Whether a cheap magician's trick or a satanic lying sign and wonder, the test for what is truly of God is to look to His word.

When we search for any semblance of support for gold dust in Scripture, we are taken to God's rebuke of Israel for their idolatry. As Moses comes down from the mountain, he finds the people worshiping the golden calf and does the following:

"And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it in the fire, and ground it to powder, and strawed it upon the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it." Exodus 32:20

The punishment for God's people worshiping a false god was for them to drink down the gold dust made from the idol. Now we have "idols" in the churchworld being lifted up who are giving the people gold dust, and many are continuing to drink it down.

The interesting thing is that the presence of these "signs" is weaving a sort of ecumenical fabric through groups in and outside of the Christendom, including the occult. There have been visions and testimonies in the Catholic Church where Mary and Jesus are showering people with gold glitter. Psychics and New Agers often speak of guidance from angels and seeing angel's feathers fall supernaturally as they seek divine unity.

If we start defining what is "of God" by the experience (as opposed to Scripture), then how can we assert that idolatry is false when they have the same experiences? What could such signs possibly mean but that there are many paths to God? People are now being united, not by the power of God's Spirit, but by supernatural signs and attestations. I cannot help but wonder if this is but one of the many ways in which satan is seeking to establish his one world religion. If he cannot get Christians to stop talking about "Jesus", then he will simply displace Jesus with supernatural visitations and words from "angels", so that the people will worship satan, thinking they are worshiping God.

"For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works." II Corinthians 11:13-15

"Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind." Colossians 2:18

Again, I am not asserting that God cannot perform any of these "signs", or any such sign He so chooses. I am pointing out the many errors that arise when we forsake the word of God in favor of supernatural experiences. I am imploring people to turn back to the standard God gives us to protect us from error: His word.

There are certain things we can use to see whether a supernatural event is of the Lord:
  • Examine the Scriptures to see if there is precedent for such a manifestation.
  • Examine the doctrine coming forth from the vessel "ushering in" the manifestation to see if the doctrine is sound. God will never sign off on that which is error.
  • Ask the Lord for discernment to understand the spirit behind the manifestations you see.
God never tells us to just assume signs and wonders are from Him. His exact and repeated instruction to us is that we test these things to see if they be of Him. Don't let others tell you that following God's instruction represents a lack of faith. Stand on His word and you will not fall for deception.

Fellowship vs. Followship


  1. This series is so on point. I pray those who have tasted the goodness of Christ take heed to follow Him and Him alone.

  2. Thank you for sharing these great truths on the false church and their teachers. I can certainly relate to what you have written as I am one whom God had saved out of the strong delusion of the babylonian church. O Church of Jesus awake!

  3. These things can only be accepted when people depart from the Word.It makes me think of the "eucharist" which bleeds in Catholic churches from time to time. This is totally Satanic and has no purpose.


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