LAKELAND, FL: My thoughts…..(Part 6)

Posted by Gabriel (G²) on June 25, 2008

If anyone kept up, earlier I shared some of my thoughts on PRISON MINISTRY and why it seems those with giftings in those paticular areas/giftings (i.e. gifts of encouragement, helping others, administration, mercy, etc) don’t get recognized as much. Personally (though in Florida God may be doing many great things), I’m waiting for the day when there’ll be as much excitment about getting involved in the lives of the Black Community and seeing them rise up—-the fatherless being taken care of through adoption/people with solid families interacting in their lives and showing them how to be men, widows being married instead of baby-daddies going about their way and women no longer believing their being on welfare/medicaid makes them inherently less of a woman/worthless than others, folks coming out of poverty/no longer WIPPING THEMSELVES OUT THROUGH ABORTION, etc. And for that matter, prayerfully for those focused on Florida there’ll be more excitment/coverage and support of things many Christians in the U.S are doing which seem to get less than they deserve. One example would be things such as this street ministry called TEEN CHALLENGE:

Wilkerson was convicted by an article in Life Magazine about a Gang slaying in New York City. And then after some years of providing an intense “discipling” type of ministry to gangs in NYC concentrating on getting ’em saved, and Spirit filled started to branch out. “Cross and Switchblade” is the account of the early days of the ministry.

By independent evaluation the TC “success rate” based on hard-core addicts who enter the TC program, and successfully complete it is just over 86% STILL “clean” 5 years after “graduating”.

They are now operating in 6 Muslim countries partnering with “Global Renewal” (Pakistan was the first one) under a unique set of governmentally approved ground rules: The Muslim addicts coming into the program are encouraged to pray to Allah for themselves, and then the Teen Challenge staff then prays in the Name of Jesus – and the folks in the program can experience for themselves who actually “delivers the goods”, moves in power and delivers – and subsequently accept Jesus as Saviour and be filled with the Holy Spirit.

To see more info, go here:http://teenchallengeusa.com/

Many of these kats who came in of course are dealing with sinful behaviors which are by-products of their drup/substance abuse habits…..and yet they’ve been set free. Many who’ve done street preaching have perhaps preached to these kats and they were still unable to get set free. They knew they were already going to Hell and that they were in Trouble, yet that didn’t set them free. Getting “down & dirty”/involved with those kats made a huge difference, loving them where they were and seeing them come clean eventually. Of course these things are happening among racial minorities…and in fact, regarding Florida, many kats I know of are doing these very things. As said previously, many of the individuals who’re in these same revivals getting attention, though the excess are an issue, are the ones going out & ministering to the poor, feeding the hungry, visiting people in prision, and walking in the power of God/impacting folks for the Lord. Not all, of course…..but there are many and the presence of some bad apples shouldn’t be allowed to represent the rest in the bunch. Have friends and family–like my friend named Mrs.Harris who’s all for what’s going down in Florida Revival and all the kats like Bickle, Todd Bently, Patrica King, etc……and yet, despite how the excess bothers me/needs to be adressed, she does youth work in a detention center/correctional facility. She works with the kids who were the runaways, prostitutes, and ones no one else wishes to work with. She seeks to promote racial renconcilliation, seeing that she’s white and the majority of her girls are black…and though the culture gap makes it hard at times to relate, they still see/appreciate her encouragements/being REAL with them as she’s daily in the trenches praying for them/building them up in the Lord. She and others have prayed over their campus/against things, and many miraculous things have happened in the past 3yrs—from having a very strong WICCAN Prescence on the grounds disappear/dwindle to having more solid Christian Staff come aboard and support from those even in the secular camps because of their astounding work.

We both have seen healings, wonders, and has been a TREMENDOUS blessing to me in my walk with the Lord Jesus. But again, this isn’t something that seems as common in Black CULTURE as what happens in many of the circles of folks involved at Florida. And many of them I think would benefit from seeing the miraculous/those who’re gifted in working wonders (and if you recall, I believe we discussed this in another thread when I brought up the instances of folks dealing with sin issues being touched by the power of God/Changed—one guy I saw during my tour of “The CALL” in Alabama shared his testimony of how the Power of God freed him of his addictions… http://video.google.com/videosearch?…ny&sitesearch= and I’ve heard/seen personally many others like that which have been a huge blessing to me. But in thinking about the Florida Movement, there are times when I cannot help but wonder “Man, Lord…all of those healings/wonders taking place down there with people apparently being saved—–and I wonder why it’s not happening on the streets where many of these kats may need it most, seeing that we’re preaching the Gospel/TRUTH to them and doing best as we can

We’re seeking to Beware of hype and exaggeration seeing that J. Lee Grady from Charisma best said said, “some of the language used during the Lakeland Revival has created an almost sideshow atmosphere. People are invited to “Come and get some.” Miracles are supposedly “popping like popcorn.” Organizers tout it as the greatest revival in history.’…….Such brash statements cheapen what the Holy Spirit is doing—and they do a disservice to our brothers and sisters who are experiencing New Testament-style revival in countries such as Iran, China and India. And We have a long way to go before we experience their level of revival. Let’s stay humble and broken before the Lord…..Miracles are awesome. Crowds are great. But miracles and crowds alone don’t guarantee a revival. Multitudes followed Jesus during His ministry on earth, but many of the people who saw the dead raised or ate food that was supernaturally multiplied later crucified the Son of God. It was the few disciples who followed Jesus after Calvary who ushered in a true revival—one that was bathed in the fear of God, confirmed by signs and wonders, tempered by persecution and evidenced by thousands of conversions, new churches and the transformation of society. We should expect nothing less.

.but man, if they could only see something more to know how REAL YOU ARE AND HOW COOL YOUR POWER TO HEAL/DELIVER IS!!”

1 Corinthians 2:4
My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power,
1 Corinthians 2:3-5 (in Context) 1 Corinthians 2

Should there come a time when Miraculous Signs and WOnders accompanying the GOSPEL (Acts 14:2-4 (in Context) Acts 14 )

          Regarding the simple things mentioned (i.e. compassion, mercy, benevolence, etc), I’m reminded of something another said on the issue when it seemed that many for Lakeland, Florida, seemed to be dissing those who were pretty conservative on the issue.

For when critiquing the movement, one individual had this to say:

I have never clucked or barked but recently at a home prayer group a women there started shaking (I thought seizing) everyone ignored it and we went home. The next week she did the same thing only much more violently – this time she got a deliverance. She is newly saved and had been heavily into witchcraft. She didn’t even remember half of what was happening to her….. if she’d been in a place where no one would allow that manifestation… she’d still be bound but everyone else would be comfortable.

I think most of the fleshly excessive manifestations could be dealt with by teaching the elders to handle them with love and in private. But I’d still rather have the mess then not have anything.
Too many churches with millions filing in and out every week – no fire no love just rote. This is not the church of Christ. His church is on fire and that was the example He left and most ignore in favor of order in the church. I can’t blame anyone but I look at the McArthurs and see ‘order’ and no fire – you say he has given much – I think he has legitimized the quenching of the Holy Spirit. Hinn, White and Copeland (none of which I’d give a hoot for) they stir people to want more. I think most of the WoF teachers are just greedy….. so was Solomon????
Why would the Lord use the Crouches to spread the gospel in the Middle East and China???? He does. Big hair, grotesque make-up, scandal……. maybe they are the only ones crazy enough to broadcast into the M.E.

I know in my flesh I don’t see it – if I had my way I’d want them off the air…. do you see any one stepping up to replace them? So maybe the Lord knows better then me…

Paul said, some preach the gospel out of selfish ambition – but praise God at least it is preached.

My favorite Christian personality is Wayne Monbleau of Loving Grace Ministries. He is charismatic yet balanced. Be blessed, andrea


In hearing that, I thought it had many solid points. Theology without HUMILITY or PASSION FOR THE LORD is a deception, as that’s what many of the Pharisees had.But on the flip, Though not PARAMOUNT above all else, it’s nonetheless of importance….alongside things such as DISCERNMENT) If you’re interested, Reformed CHarismatic Joshua Harris did an EXCELLENT teaching on the subject of how one should basically seek the BEST OF BOTH WORLDS—-PASSION for the Lord in EXPERIENING HIM but also in LEARNING OF HIM IN THEOLOGY/LOVING HIM WITH OUR MINDS (http://video.google.com/videosearch?…oxy&sitesearch

Mark 12:29-31 (in Context) Mark 12
The Greatest Commandment

28One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
29″The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.[] 30Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.'[] 31The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'[c]There is no commandment greater than these.”

1 Timothy 1:3
[ Warning Against False Teachers of the Law ] As I urged you when I went into Macedonia, stay there in Ephesus so that you may command certain men not to teach false doctrines any longer
1 Timothy 1:2-4 (in Context) 1 Timothy 1

1 Timothy 4:13
Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching.
1 Timothy 4:12-14 (in Context) 1 Timothy 4

1 Timothy 4:16
Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.
1 Timothy 4:15-16 (in Context) 1 Timothy 4

1 Timothy 5:17
The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching.
1 Timothy 5:16-18 (in Context) 1 Timothy 5

2 Timothy 4

1In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: 2Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. 3For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 4They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. 5But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry. 6For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure. 7I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.
2 Timothy 4:2-4 (in Context) 2 Timothy 4

Titus 1:9
He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.
Titus 1:8-10 (in Context) Titus 1

Titus 2:1
[ What Must Be Taught to Various Groups ] You must teach what is in accord with sound doctrine.
Titus 2:1-3 (in Context) Titus 2 someone mentioned this and I thought it was pretty noteworthy:


Also, something another said in response to the siter who was in support of Bently:
let me tell you a story. I remember, some years ago, I went on a mini mission trip with a Christian organisation, to West Africa. This was a time of transition for me. I was still in my very Charismatic church. I was on the trip with about a dozen Christians from a variety of backgrounds. We were all broadly claiming to be Evangelical. About half were Charismatic. A couple of the people on the trip were members of a prominent, conservative Evangelical church, in our capital city. I spent a month living with all of these Christians. These two conservative Evangelical young women, changed my views, on just who was Spirit filled or not. I watched them be faithful in prayer, day and night. I saw how they respected and diligently studied God’s word, and led the group in Bible study that allowed God to speak, through His word, in context. Not just some kind of Christian divination of plucking out verses and saying how God had spoken to them. These two “conservative Evangelicals” in that month, were the most passionate evangelists, who encouraged us to go out into the bush, to go and preach the gospel, with the local church ministers. When anyone had a problem, feeling homesick, of discouraged, or in physical or emotional pain (some of the other team members had a couple of painful ailments during that month) it was frequently these two girls who would be trusted to pray with them privately. Some of the local people, we were treating (it was a clinical mission), died while we were out there. They comforted us.

I cannot explain how passionate these girls were for the Lord Jesus Christ, and for the gospel, and to honour his word. One of them had frequently risked her employment chances because she would openly tell future employers that there was a night of the week that she would not work, because she was leading a Bible study class for new believers, or for people exploring Christianity.

These two women, would not have been shaking, or jerking around in a prayer meeting, or in a time of praising. However, it is so easy to judge superficially. Does this make them less passionate than people who have a lot of external showiness? God used their example to turn around my thinking. As a Charismatic (and I don’t claim this for all Charismatics) I had been taught that Conservative Evangelicals were dead, in their orthodoxy. I was taught that they had no passion for the Lord and were ineffective in ministry. These young women were in a church that was growing, through Evangelism. Young people mainly students or young city workers (because of its location) were being trained in God’s word and being discipled. They were gaining Christian maturity. Another friend I made from this conservative church, became is currently a missionary in the Sudan, where she is risking a great deal, in order to bring the good news to Muslims, in a country where Christians (along with other black Africans) have been and are being horribly persecuted.

I don’t agree with MacArthur’s cessationism, but I think with some conservatives, although they say they do not believe in the continuance of the gifts, they effectively operate in them. Often, I think the problem is “tongues” and the other manifestations, such as you were describing Caleb. MacAuthur would probably define prophecy differently from you. However, I know plenty of Christians who do not speak in tongues, who are so clearly moving in different spiritual gifts. Prophecy, the word of wisdom, the word of knowledge. Yeah, they still pray for the sick, and God does heal people. Do you think that MacArthur has ever uttered the prophetic word, so that people have been convicted of their sins, and turned to God in repentance? I do. I heard a testimony, on one of his radio programmes, from a woman, who had been living a Lesbian lifestyle who had repented and was being baptised through this ministry. Who is to say that God will not speak to or through someone who diligently seeks Him? Who prayerfully submits himself to God’s word? I find MacArthur, pretty bold too. He stood up at a pastor’s conference full of Reformed Evangelicals (Calvinists, like himself) and told them why they should be premillenial, rather than amillenial or postmillenial, on the basis of the doctrine of election. This may not mean much to you, but this would have gone down fairly badly in a group of people who are generally speaking amillenial and/or partial preterist.

Do you think that Conservative Evangelicals don’t pray for people who have been caught up in the occult? My pastors do, and they are very conservative? What do you think would happen if someone started manifesting in a meeting??? Our pastors are often called to the homes of non-believers, who have been dabbling in the occult, and now feel an eerie presence, or have Poltergeist activity going on in the home. Yet no public tongues speaking in our church, no dancing or shaking, or barking like dogs.

I have to say, one of the things that changed in my Charismatic circles, post Toronto, post Brownsville, is the way in which we treated manifestations. One year, I went to a large Bible week, and remember a woman screaming and falling down backwards, during a worship service. What happened? People from the ministry team went and prayed for her? To those around, it was clear that this was a deliverance occurring. However, when Toronto and Brownsille (later) came along. It was the Spirit filled believers, who were manifesting all over the place. This was seen as desirable, because it meant God was working. Whereas, a year or two before, this was a deliverance from demonic oppression/ possession.

God is using the Crouch’s in the Middle East. If they are preaching the gospel, God be praised. However, why the fanfare? TBN, is a station which took off at least one ministry (whether we would have agreed with it or not), which regularly spoke out against the ravages of Islamic persecution in the Middle East. They took off this ministry because they didn’t want to offend Muslims. Now there is courage.

Caleb, another thing I will say for MacArthur, is that I challenge you to find an occasion, when he has been interviewed on national TV, in the USA, where he has vacillated about the gospel. I think he’s been on “Larry King Live” a good few times. So have some TBN favourites, some Emergent leaders and popular “Evangelical” leaders like like Rick Warren. These other Christian leaders would not say that people are going to hell, if they do not know and turn to Jesus (repenting of their sins). Some have denied that you should avoid Eastern religious practices such as Yoga, if you are Christian. You see these other guys, and they want to be popular, they want to liked by the masses they want you to buy their books and come to their conferences. MacArthur, seemingly could care less if you like what he has to say. He says the gospel message boldly. He may be the one dissenting voice on a religious panel, even if there are other Christian ministers with him. Do you just think, reading the book of Acts, for instance, that a boldness in proclaiming the gospel might be evidence of someone being truly Spirit filled?

Now, I’ve just finished studying the book of Acts with our youth group. I was honoured, to be able to look at Pentecost with them. In order to understand the Spirit’s work a little better we looked at the passages in John: 14-16 where Jesus promises the believers the Comforter, the Helper, the Counsellor, like Him, who would be with them when He physically left them. We also looked at the end of Luke, 24 where before Jesus ascends to heaven, he tells the disciples to wait for the Holy Spirit, whom He will send. The work of the Holy Spirit, is seen very much as leading them in Truth, reminding them/ teaching them about the Lord Jesus Christ, glorifying Jesus, convicting the world of sins, convincing them of their need for righteousness. The Holy Spirit is very much engaged in gospel ministry. He is the source of it, and the sustainer in it. After Pentecost the disciples were transformed so that they preached boldly. It’s not too easy telling your people that they have killed the Saviour, for whom they claim to have been waiting for centuries. How many modern preachers, would be lambasted now, for saying that kind of thing, because they are not showing cultural sensitivity? Would they be called intolerant fundies? Would they be told that they should just be extending the love of Christ to people? I just wonder.

I don’t think JM denies the gifts of the Spirit. He defines prophecy as bringing forward accurate implications from Scripture. It is not as if he does not believe in the work of the Spirit today! I don’t know how you would like him to perform for you, to convince you of his joy. Quite frankly, the hysterical, drunken laughter does not convince me of the joy of the Spirit either. I am not saying that this is your experience either. I saw a lot of things in my experiences within the Charismatic church. A lot of people who were manifesting the most have fallen away.

In addition, do you realise that discernment is a Spiritual gift. I used to believe that this was a touchy feely sensation that happened when something was not quite right in a meeting. However, discernment involves engaging the brain. One has to know the truth, in order to discern error.


What are ya’lls thoughts on the issue? the things she shared regarding Macarther, as I couldn’t of said it better. To be clear, I definately feel where the one sister in support of Bently is coming from regarding manifestations. If it happens, it happens…..and I think Dave Root did a pretty good article on the subject once (Is It Scriptural to Be “Slain in the Spirit”? ) that helped me keep things in perspective. Often times, in the name of “ORDER”, we end up hindering things (And if we’re to be honest, what we sometimes mean in saying order is really “CONTROL” due to fear of the unknown/what may be beyond us). As an excerpt from one of the articles (with two passages from Acts added in by me), Here are most or all of the places in the New Testament where demons caused people to fall to the ground:

“Even while the boy was coming, the demon threw him to the ground in a convulsion. But Jesus rebuked the evil spirit, healed the boy and gave him back to his father.” (Luke 9:42. This is repeated in Matthew 17:14-15 and Mark 9:20)

“Whenever the evil spirits saw him, they fell down before him and cried out, “You are the Son of God.”” (Mark 3:11)

“When Jesus stepped ashore, he was met by a demon-possessed man from the town. For a long time this man had not worn clothes or lived in a house, but had lived in the tombs. When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell at his feet, shouting at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don’t torture me!”” (Luke 8:27-28. This is repeated in Matthew 8:28-29 and Mark 5:2-8)

“In the synagogue there was a man possessed by a demon, an evil spirit. He cried out at the top of his voice, “Ha! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are–the Holy One of God!” “Be quiet!” Jesus said sternly. “Come out of him!” Then the demon threw the man down before them all and came out without injuring him.” (Luke 4:33-35. This is repeated in Mark 1:23-26)

Acts 8:7
With shrieks, evil spirits came out of many, and many paralytics and cripples were healed.
Acts 8:6-8

Acts 16:17
Paul and Silas in Prison
16Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a slave girl who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. 17This girl followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” 18She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so troubled that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her. Acts 16:16-18 (in Context) Acts 16

From these passages we can see that pastors, prayer team members, and so on should be sensitive to the fact that people can fall to the ground under the influence of demonic spirits. This has happened at my church on at least one occasion when a man came forward for prayer, then fell to his knees with his face to the floor, “dry heaving” as if he needed to vomit something out (which apparently happens sometimes when demons are coming out of a person). On another occasion, a demon began manifesting itself in a woman in the congregation at our church, and she was gently taken to another room for counseling and prayer. The New Testament demonstrates that these things can and do happen, and therefore churches should be sensitive and prepared for such situations.

      That said, It of those who’re CONSERVATIVE like Macarther….for in his church/many like it, it seems as if many of the arguments they make from Scripture don’t truly prepare people for things such as aiding people in deliverance——and while many of those in the Charismatic movement try to tackle the issue, mistakes happen…..and then when manifestations/excesss happen happening in CHarismatic Circles recieve criticism with the “excesses” is the focus (such as in Macarther’s Book “Charismatic Chaos”, which certainly had some great points but in many places was unfair. And I definately agree regarding how it seems in many respects Macarther’s arguments against anything Charismatic have truly legitimized “a qiuenching of the Spirit”. Perhaps what I’m trying to say is that just as an reaction to wanting God by allowing excesses can be deadly (like the article from Charisma you gave mentioned), so is it the same with people reacting to those same excesses/seeking to honor God in having order by being too “RESTRICTIVE”/”RESERVED”.

Even if it’s an issue of people wanting a scholarly approach to things/preaching & simple expository teaching of the Word, there are plenty of Charismatic Kats who do just that—and yet they’re willing to overcome the “spooky” extremes and devote prayerful, open-minded study to the subject of demonology. Sam Storms is a great example I THINK (who used to be a CESSATIONIST—but later switched sides in life to the Charismatic side (http://www.enjoyinggodministries.com/search-results/?keywords=DEMONIZED&show_results=N%253B)). Another would be kats like Derek Prince, who was very much into deliverance ministry/believed in the reality of spiritual forces operating the world, and of the power of demons



However, as the one sister earlier quoted who is in support of John Macarther, as she said, I don’t think JM denies the gifts of the Spirit….& It is not as if he does not believe in the work of the Spirit today!

whereas others like Joel Osteen, T.D Jakes, Rick Warren, or others have literally kept QUIET on issues of the Gospel, I’ve never seen Macarther flinch ONCE—-and boldness is truly a WORK OF THE SPIRIT OF GOD

Acts 4:29
Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness

Acts 4:31
After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.
Acts 4:30-32 (in Context) Acts 4

Acts 9:28
So Saul stayed with them and moved about freely in Jerusalem, speaking boldly in the name of the Lord.
Acts 9:27-29 (in Context) Acts 9 (Whole Chapter)

Acts 13:46
Then Paul and Barnabas answered them boldly: “We had to speak the word of God to you first. Since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles.
Acts 13:45-47 (in Context) Acts 13


Acts 14

In Iconium

1At Iconium Paul and Barnabas went as usual into the Jewish synagogue. There they spoke so effectively that a great number of Jews and Gentiles believed. 2But the Jews who refused to believe stirred up the Gentiles and poisoned their minds against the brothers. 3So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of his grace by enabling them to do miraculous signs and wonders. 4The people of the city were divided; some sided with the Jews, others with the apostles.
Acts 14:3
So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of his grace by enabling them to do miraculous signs and wonders.
Acts 14:2-4 (in Context) Acts 14

Acts 18:26

Acts 19:8
Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly there for three months, arguing persuasively about the kingdom of God.
Acts 19:7-9 (in Context) Acts 19

Acts 28:31
Boldly and without hindrance he preached the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ.
Acts 28:30-31 (in Context) Acts 28

Ephesians 6:20
Ephesians 6:19-21 (in Context) Ephesians 6

18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
19Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

Boldness for the Gospel is a true evidence of the Spirit of God at worl—-not to mention being persecuted for the sake of the GOSPEL/CHRIST’S NAME (Matthew 5:10-12 )….and if one does a google video search on Macarther on TBN verses others, one should be able to QUICKLY see that. Does he have perfect theology? Of course not, but neither do I or you or numerous others (and as my friend wisely said, the only one I agree with 100% is myself, ).

I’d also like to re-emphasize that even though he may have a false teaching of WHOLESALE Cessationism, the fact that he’s willing to work with those in camps DIFFERENT than his means alot (at least in my book), as evidenced by his working with many Solid Kats who’ve done much for the Kingdom—-folks like Mark Denver (from www.9marks.org , dealing with establishing godly churches with Sound Doctrine/Practice), John Piper and C.J Mahanney (Reformed CHARISMATICS), Albert Mohler, and numerous others. Again, for evidence, all one need to do is check out the Conference entitled “TOGETHER FOR THE GOSPEL” ( http://www.t4g.org/speakers.html ) to see how Macarther supports the gathering together of men from various denominations for the sake of exalting Christ. I’m very grateful for this, for as you know/agree, and very pleased seeing how though folks disagree with each other, they’re still able to focus on what they have in COMMON AND WHAT REALLY MATTERS. And they all SHOW HOW IT’S A REALITY THAT WE CAN LEARN FROM AND ASSOCIATE with Believers holding DIFFERING interpretations ——For what’s ESSENTIAL is THE CENTRALITY OF THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST/UNITING FOR THE SAKE OF SPREADING THE GOSPEL…..

What we can and cannot agree on but still be united on is a sensitive subject for many (but there’s room for it, as explained here–Together for What?— otherwise bump denominations which all have something they divided from others on because to them it didn’t seem like it was true to God’s Spirit ). Matt Slick, actually, has written some pretty solid articles on the issue—one entitled Doctrine Grid and the other entitled APOSTASY in the Christian CHurch. Seeing that Spiritual Gifts is a SECONDARY issue alongside many others, I tend not to trip as much as long as the BASIC BUILDING blocks are in place. For not all Followers will resemble each other or belong to the SAME GROUPS. And People who are on Jesus’ side have the SAME GOAL of BUILDING UP THE KINGDOM of GOD, & THEY SHOULD NOT LET THEIR DIFFERENCES INTERFERE WITH THIS GOAL ( I Corinthians 12, Ephesians 4:1-16)


Some of my dearest friends in highschool (which was predominately REFORMED/Very Much into Cessationist Theology— www.dominionchristian.org ) are NOT CHARISMATIC—-and yet when I looked into their lifestyles/passion for the Gospel, I was challenged in numerous ways and learned much from them/the various ways in which God’s Spirit was at work as they did from me….The Spirit of God was moving with them as much as it was on my side of the street. It’s one of the reasons why I decided to become a REFORMED CHARISMATIC, due to how it seemed both those in the Charismatic Camp and Reformed/Conservative ones have many nuggets of truth but not the WHOLE PICTURE—and combined, they could bless one another if they simply chose to listen.

This may be a bit of a tangent, but all the talk of the Revival taking place in Florida has had me buggin a bit—specifically, seeing that there’s indeed much excitment over the healings/wonders done there for the Gospel and calling it “THE GREATEST REVIVAL THE WORLD HAS EVER SEEN “(as well as comparisons to things like Brownsville, Welsh and Pentecostal revivals alongside Azusa Street, British Revivals as seen in Charismatic Renewal In Britain: Roots, Influences And Later Developments – Rev Dr David Hilborn,)….. but interestingly enough no one seemed to be acting as excited when other things of the Lord were happening that seem COMMONPLACE/LESS “GLAMOROUS”—-or rushing to those areas where things counter to what’s happening in Florida weren’t happening

According to I Corinthians 12 1 Corinthians 12 , these are the 9 gifts/manifestations of the HS:

I Corinthians 12:8-10
a. The word of wisdom
b. The word of knowledge
c. Faith
d. Gifts of healing
e. Working of miracles
f. Prophecy
g. Discerning of spirits
h. Different kinds of tongues
i. Interpretation of tongues

Going alongside that (including those of the arts, as Exodus 30:35, Exodus 35:30-32 & Exodus 31:2-4 says), here are the other job qualifications that fall into the arena:

I Corinthians 12:27-29
7Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. 28And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets,
third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues. 29Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues[a]? Do all interpret?

Continuing, these are the other Scriptures dealing with the issue (revealing things like the gift of mercy, serving, teaching, benevolence/meeting the needs of others, generous giving, encouraging, leadership, mercy and serving):

Romans 12/ Romans 12
4Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. 6We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his[b]faith. 7If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; 8if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.
I Peter 4

10Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms. 11If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

……Why is it that those things which are known as SIGN GIFTS (i.e. Words of Knowledge, Healings, Working Wonders, etc) seem to get more attention and wherever they’re at, people say revival’s TRULY THERE…..and yet in those other areas where things like mercy, benevolence and leadership are taking place EXCEPTIONALLY well people act as if that’s LESS OF A REVIVAL or SOMETHING WORTH TAKING SIGNIFICANT NOTICE/INVESTMENT in?

Guess I’m on a bit of a soapbox with things, seeing that this is a passion of mine and I’ve written about this before (LOCK-UP: Releasing the Gifts of the Spirit among PRISIONS & Kats doing 25yrs to LIFE? )….but it truly does seem odd to me that those things which Jesus said meant the world to Him do seem to get belittled very often in the lives of those attending things like that in Florida–how much praise and focus goes to things like this?:

Matthew 5:7
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.

Matthew 5:43-48

Luke 6:27-36, ON LOVING ONE’S ENEMIES…..

Matthew 25:34-40

37″Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?‘ 40″The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’b

Galatians 6:10
10Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

Titus 3
Doing What is Good
1Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and to show true humility toward all men.

Someone happens to not be Charismatic (like those similar to Macarther/others that’re Cessationists)…..and yet they’re out there doing those things Jesus did. Why would that be less of the SPIRIT OF GOD? Or something we shouldn’t run to as easily as many are going to in FLORIDA? For another example, someone recommened to me a ministry run by a Conservative Evangelicals named Chuck Colson. His ministry is not really charismatic but I don’t think they are against it either. They are interdenominational and not tied to any one group. Chuck went to prison during the 70’s as part of the Watergate scandal in the Nixon administration, locked up for several years where he got saved and started this ministry after being released…..and many of his other stances are things which other Charismatics stand for (plus the fact that many of his actions are gifts listed in I Corinthians 12 and Romans 12, such as the gift of Mercy and Leadership and Administration. )

I greatly appreciate the work he does, seeing that Colson’s later life has been spent working with the organization devoted to prison ministry called PRISON FELLOWSHIP ( Prison Fellowship )

  • Promoting faith-based prisons to promoting the principles of restorative justice (i.e. an approach to justice focusing on healing broken relationships, repairing the damage done by crime, and restoring the offender to a meaningful role in society, etc),
  • stimulated dialogue between victims and offenders in order to facilitate reconciliation,
  • Assisting children and families of prisoners…
  • Post-prison support through the giving of small start-up loans to qualifying ex-prisoners to enable them to start small businesses–providing a means for them to support their families and lead a productive life within the community

Again, I was HIGHLY impressed—as this seems to be a premier example of simple CHRISTIAN LIVING among those who’re often most forgotten in societytaking the “Gospel of Christ to their side of the street” and seeking to make sure they’re taken care of. It was also refreshing to see the Wilberforce Forum and seeing the Christian Worldview/Advocacy aspect of the ministry, as well as seeing the justice reform efforts done through Justice Fellowship (Justice Fellowship website). Yet how many Charismatics were celebrating the work God was doing through this individual and treating that with the SAME EXCITMENT AS MANY DO WITH FLORIDA? As someone once told me, The gifts of the Spirit have functioned in many prisons fellowships that he was aware of. In the Louisiana Angol Prison they have a thriving prison fellowship run by the prisoners themselves. How much press does this get by many today, irregardless of whether one’s Charismatic or Not?

Being Black Hispanic, it has always been a passion of mine to find ways to make the Gospel CONTEXUALIZED for those on the streets (, (Does anyone here know of any MINORITY/BLACK Emerging Leaders existing?.-TRIBAL CHARISMATIC: Contexualizing the Gospel/Spiritual Gifts among American Indians? —and yet honestly, it was bothersome to me seeing how many of these great healings/wonders in Florida were predominately WHITE CULTURE—-and not much of that’s seen in many Black/Minority Churches that I’m aware of. The issues they deal with are more radical, IMHO, and yet when it comes to those things which all Christians can do such as social work like helping someone pay the rent due to low minimum wage, being a father to the fatherless, and other issues common to minorities, there seems to be less excitment/activism. I haven’t gone to Florida yet, but for me it’s frustrating since there’s enough trouble in Social Work trying to aid those on the streets/Urban Culture….and yet whenever I talk of something God did in that avenue, people seem less passionate for that as I am. Or they’ll say “Well, that’s good and all…..man, Florida’s A TRIP ISN’T IT??!!”.For me, what demonstrates true REVIVAL is that one’s faithful to love the Lord and to LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR (Luke 10:25-37, Matthew 25:31-40)? and that they’re also faithful to this:

James 1
27Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

Even though I don’t doubt much of what’s happening in Florida with the miracles/wonders are of God, I still have some serious reservations about what happens afterward….for for the purpose behind all of God’s miracles was to INCREASE PEOPLE’S ATTENTION of the GOSPEL and to DO GOOD AMONG MEN (I Corinthians 2 & Acts 2:22, and especially Acts 2:40-47 since that shows a pattern of the FRUIT following any wonders the Apostles did, where people were being added to a community of Believers where the church devoted herself to God and each other through prayer, fellowship, hospitality and radical acts of generousity–with concern for the physical welfare of its poorest members, even if this means others have to sacrifice and give a great deal—being clearly demonstrated. As GENEROUS GIVING.COM said on the issue:

When believers live in true Christian community, their generosity should visibly set them apart from all other communities. This generosity, which results from the Holy Spirit’s work in believers’ hearts, is an essential aspect of genuine Christian community. In fact, when the apostle Paul describes what true Christian fellowship (koinonia in Greek) looks like, he calls it the partnership of giving and receiving (Philippians 4:15). It would be difficult to exaggerate the significance of this passage. In these few verses Luke describes the church immediately following Pentecost and gives a great picture of what true Christian community looks like when the Spirit is at work. There appears to be a direct connectionbetween (1) the outpouring of the Spirit, (2) the people’s devotion to prayer and the apostles’ teaching, (3) fellowship and hospitality and (4) selling possessions and giving to the needy. It seems clear that the apostles had been teaching the church to practice generosity, for when the church devoted itself to their instruction, their generosity toward one another reached astounding heights and became a critical part of the early Christian lifestyle (Acts 4:34-37; Acts 6, Acts 10, Acts 20:33-35), Acts 11:26-30 , II Corinthians 8-9, Romans 13:8-10, Galatians 5:13-15, Luke 10:25-37, Matthew 25:31-40), (Galatians 6:1-10,
I Timothy 5, James 1:27

Charismatic or not, is social activism happened not true REVIVAL since one’s doing the things God said bless Him? Even regarding the OLD SKOOL revivals back in the day, I take note of some things. I don’t see them as being less of the Spirit—-but the same, if NOT MORESO.

What to make of the Second Great Awakening (1790-1840s)— the second great religious revival in U.S. history and consisted of renewed personal salvation experienced in revival meetings, alongside major leaders included Charles Finny,Peter Cartwright, Asahel Nettleton, etc.—and was known for how it encouraged an eager evangelical attitude that later reappeared in American life in causes dealing with PRISON REFORM, TEMPERANCE, WOMEN’S SUFFRAGE/RIGHTS, AND THE CRUSADE TO ABOLISH SLAVERY? It was simply amazing witnessing the Political Implications, seeing how In the midst of shifts in theology and church polity, American Christians took it upon themselves to reform society during this period. For Historians stress the understanding common among participants of reform as being a part of God’s plan. And consequently, individual Christians contemplated their roles in society in purifying the world through the individuals to whom they could bring salvation. As Wikipedia said, Interest in transforming the world eventually became reapplied to mainstream political action, as temperance activists, antislavery advocates, and proponents of other variations of reform would seek to implement their beliefs into national politics. While religion had previously played an important role on the American political scene, the Second Great Awakening would highlight the important role which individual beliefs would play, doing much to illuminate issues of faith through present day.

Why SHOULD that be considered less of a TRUE revival than FLORIDA????

What of the The Third Great Awakening, which was a period of religious activism in American history from the late 1850s to the 1900s affecting pietistic Protestant denominations and characterized by a strong sense of social activism and gathering strength from the postmillennial theology that the Second Coming of Christ would come after mankind had reformed the earth and actually acted like “SALT OF THE EARTH” (Matthew 5:12-16,Matthew 5:12-14, Mark 9:49-50 , 1 Peter 2:11-13, Titus 3:1-3 , James 2:15-17 , 1 John 3:16-18).
It’s from here that we have great Christian men such as D.L. Moody, greatly influenced the cause of cross-cultural Christian Missions AND THROUGH WHOM MANY WERE SAVED THROUGH HIS PREACHING OF THE GOSPEL….

and from here we saw the development of The Social Gospel Movement, as did the worldwide missionary movement…..and with Social Gospel Preachers, things such as the rich EXPLOITING THE POOR/GLOATING IN RICHES to were exposed—alongside the help of reformers in the Progressive Era, which was a period of reform which lasted from the 1890s to the 1920s and that fought for things like social justice, general equality and public safety. Other reforms came about that were noteworthy, especially the battles involving child labor, compulsory elementary education and the protection of women from exploitation in factories–plus, the prohibition of alcohol.—and even greater sponsoring/growth of missionary activities in the U.S and around the world…..and of course, who could forget about things like Young Men’s Christian Association (“YMCA” or “the Y“)…..dedicated to replacing life on the streets with prayer and bible study.—?

Why does it seem, however, that this ALONGSIDE THOSE TODAY PROMOTING SUCH THINGS recieves LESS attention/PRESS than the Revival in Florida? Are DOING these kinds of things somehow less of an indicator that someone’s ON FIRE FOR GOD?

should you get the chance, these audio sermons may bless ya (from Sovereign Grace Ministries), as they precisely deal with what you’re describing:
The Non-Spectacular Gifts
Many Gifts, One Spirit – Josh Harris

Meant to tell you earlier that I did some research on the word “revival” since it’s used quote often in our times (especially, in Florida at the moment—as well as with things like Brownsville/things of that nature)..and it turns out that the phrase actually isn’t in the BIBLE—-at least, not in the sense that we use it today (Revival meeting…which developed during the Second Great Awakening and popularized by ). As I’ve noticed, many people look to examples in Scripture where people had times of following the Lord intensly and called that “revival”, but what I was reminded of recently was how the Bible term to describe those things was “REFORM” . It was when the hearts of the people changed…..sin wasn’t tolerated/idols destroyed…..and changes in the ways man related to one another was PARAMOUNT to the development of things.

  • Nehemiah 13:1
  • [ Nehemiah’s Final Reforms ] On that day the Book of Moses was read aloud in the hearing of the people and there it was found written that no Ammonite or Moabite should ever be admitted into the assembly of God,
  • Nehemiah 13:1-3 (in Context) Nehemiah 13 (Whole Chapter)
  • Jeremiah 7:3
  • This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Reform your ways and your actions, and I will let you live in this place.
  • Jeremiah 7:2-4 (in Context) Jeremiah 7 (Whole Chapter)
  • Jeremiah 18:11
  • “Now therefore say to the people of Judah and those living in Jerusalem, ‘This is what the LORD says: Look! I am preparing a disaster for you and devising a plan against you. So turn from your evil ways, each one of you, and reform your ways and your actions.’
  • Jeremiah 18:10-12 (in Context) Jeremiah 18 (Whole Chapter)
  • Jeremiah 26:13
  • Now reform your ways and your actions and obey the LORD your God. Then the LORD will relent and not bring the disaster he has pronounced against you.
  • Jeremiah 26:12-14 (in Context) Jeremiah 26 (Whole Chapter)
  • Jeremiah 35:15
  • Again and again I sent all my servants the prophets to you. They said, “Each of you must turn from your wicked ways and reform your actions; do not follow other gods to serve them. Then you will live in the land I have given to you and your fathers.” But you have not paid attention or listened to me.

IMHO, what’s needed now more than ever isn’t another “revival”—-but “reform” among God’s PEOPLE.–much as it was with the OLD SKOOL reforms happening in various historical revivals…



Isaiah 58

True Fasting

1 “Shout it aloud, do not hold back.
Raise your voice like a trumpet.
Declare to my people their rebellion
and to the house of Jacob their sins.

2 For day after day they seek me out;
they seem eager to know my ways,
as if they were a nation that does what is right
and has not forsaken the commands of its God.
They ask me for just decisions
and seem eager for God to come near them.

3 ‘Why have we fasted,’ they say,
‘and you have not seen it?
Why have we humbled ourselves,
and you have not noticed?’
“Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please
and exploit all your workers.

4 Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife,
and in striking each other with wicked fists.
You cannot fast as you do today
and expect your voice to be heard on high.

5 Is this the kind of fast I have chosen,
only a day for a man to humble himself?
Is it only for bowing one’s head like a reed
and for lying on sackcloth and ashes?
Is that what you call a fast,
a day acceptable to the LORD ?

6 “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke?

7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—
when you see the naked, to clothe him,
and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?

8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness [
a] will go before you,
and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.

9 Then you will call, and the LORD will answer;
you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.
“If you do away with the yoke of oppression,
with the pointing finger and malicious talk,

10 and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.

11 The LORD will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.

12 Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins
and will raise up the age-old foundations;
you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls,
Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.

13 “If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath
and from doing as you please on my holy day,
if you call the Sabbath a delight
and the LORD’s holy day honorable,
and if you honor it by not going your own way
and not doing as you please or speaking idle words,

14 then you will find your joy in the LORD,
and I will cause you to ride on the heights of the land
and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob.”
The mouth of the LORD has spoken.

Some other Scriptures on the issue of “revival” vs “reform” that I thought were interesting and that perhaps everyone involved in this dialouge can consider:
Judges 7-12 (on the History of Israel and how they seemed to be in and out of “revivals”, only to do right back into sin once the need for the Lord went away over time—the continual cycle of sin, repent, deliverance, sisn, etc…)

2 Chronicles 19:4
[ Jehoshaphat Appoints Judges ] Jehoshaphat lived in Jerusalem, and he went out again among the people from Beersheba to the hill country of Ephraim and turned them back to the LORD, the God of their fathers……In Jerusalem also, Jehoshaphat appointed some of the Levites, priests and heads of Israelite families to administer the law of the LORD and to settle disputes. And they lived in Jerusalem.
2 Chronicles 19:3-5 (in Context) 2 Chronicles 19 (Whole Chapter)

II Kings 18-20, 2 Chronicles 29, 2 Chronicles 30, 2 Chronicles 31 & 2 Chronicles 32 ((on the Reforms of Hezekiah, who brought back the long-forgotten practices of PASSOVER/RE-INSTITUTED funding for the temple which had gone into disrepair for ages because of previous generations)

II Kings 21-23, or 2 Chronicles 33-35 (On Josiah’s REFORMS—which were and are the most substantial and extensive of any of the kings ever to be in existence in Israel)

Ezra 3 , Nehemiah 7 & Nehemiah 8 ( on Dedication to restoring Faithfulness to the Law/WORD of God, as what happened when Ezra read it to the people–alongside previously having the people restablish their connection to serving the Lord ONLY as opposed to the manifestations/gifts He’d given them as signs of who He was–for the reason they went into exile was due to their exalting their military strength God had given and being proud over the many wonders He’d done previously, even though there was open apostasy/idolatry and injustice in the Land that God hated. Hence, why the return to the Promise Land started with their relaying the foundations of the temple, which used to symbolize their relationship with the Lord and what got PRIMARY FOCUS)

My heart on the issue:

http://www.christiandiscussionforums…&postcount=106 (on the issue I have with things and on trying to bring REFORM/RECONSTRUCTION from the inside out to much of what happens in Hyper-Charismatic—and Charismatic circles–in general, irregardless of the various branches like Thrid Wave, Word-Of-Faith, Apostolic/Prophetic, Vineyard, etc….and the same for other things as well which’re NON-Charismatic too)

__________________I’m all for REFORM—FINETUNING THINGS and working with the existing structures as they are, as opposed to throwing things out wholesale (and there are many biblical examples of this)—but when looking at the examples of the Bible, there were many times when things were RADICAL ENOUGH TO BE THROWN AWAY/STARTING OVER NEW rather than trying to “REMIX” something.



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