Todd Bentley and the Florida Outpouring

Todd Bentley has been conducting a series of meetings in Lakeland Florida known as the Florida Outpouring. Apparently people are being healed and if this is a true movement of God I think it’s great. However I have some concerns I’d like to share with you that leads me to believe that this is nothing more then another Satan inspired hoax perpetrated by Mr. Bentley and some of his cohorts……..


Todd Bentley is a 32 year old man from Canada. Apparently he was “saved” at 17 and shortly after began preaching. He also began prophesying during this time and allegedly people came to know the “Lord”. You can read more about Bentley here.



Like many of today’s “prophets” Bentley claims to have visited heaven and actually met with the Apostle Paul. He makes some interesting claims about this “visit”, such as;


1)    Paul told Bentley that Abraham co-authored the Book of Hebrews.


2)    Paul told Bentley to eat the Books of Titus and Hebrews.




Most biblical scholars agree that Paul is the author of Hebrews and most likely Luke penned the book for Paul due to the language used. This is the first time I’ve ever heard that Abraham was the co-author…I’ve always assumed the Holy Spirit inspired the writings of the Bible….silly me. I guess we aren’t as privileged as Bentley to actually visit Paul and get the scoop first hand??



Eat the Books of Titus and Hebrews? I suppose this makes sense as Bentley probably couldn’t read the manuscripts in their original language. Fortunately for Bentley Paul had the gift of tongues because it appears Paul spoke to him in English!!!



Bentley hasn’t only visited heaven, but he also sees angels! You can read the rest of this outstanding article here.


Todd Bentley and the Angel that carries the “Winds of Change”:

…the second night of the Lakeland meetings…he said he saw an angel he described as carrying the “Winds of Change.”

Asking him to describe this angel, Bentley replied that those familiar with the life of William Branham would recognize the angel from being a relevant factor in his healing ministry. He felt that this angel’s appearance signaled a “shift in the atmosphere” for the meetings and felt that an openness for revival had been ushered in.
-Teresa Neumann, Reports of Revival Breaking Out in Lakeland, Florida

This is a new youtube clip (from Florida) where Todd Bentley talks about this angel:


Of course Charisma Magazine has reported on this “move of God” and you can read Lee Grady’s column here. Grady believes this “revival” is “of God”….which doesn’t surprise me at all. Charisma has a LONG history of endorsing these types of “ministries” only to wind up with egg on their face…as I believe will be the case with Bentley and his “Lakeland Outpouring”.


This “revival” has it all folks….holy laughter, people being slain in the Spirit, mass healings and hour long worship music highlight this “revival”. A buffet of signs and wonders all thanks to Todd Bentley. Here’s a 10 second clip of people “drunk in the Spirit”.


Now, isn’t one of the Fruits of the Spirit self control? Laughing uncontrollable, dancing in the aisles and acting “drunk in the Spirit” hardly demonstrates self control….which makes me question what “spirit” is actually in control of this “revival”.


There are just too many red flags here for me to believe that this “outpouring” or whatever they’re calling it is Holy Spirit inspired. In all of the videos and articles I’ve read I have yet to hear the word “repent” or anything even remotely close to anything biblical.  


Matthew 7:15

Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”


Any thoughts?


Hat tip to Dorothy for all her help!!!!!!!!













29 thoughts on “Todd Bentley and the Florida Outpouring

  1. I think you should give it a shot- actually view the revival for a week and maybe consider going. I was there, and found it to be totally opposite to what you wrote- the interesting thing is…. you could be using Scripture to fight Scripture- for example in Acts 2, you would probably use the same Matt 7:15 against Acts 2, judging by your tone. If you want to be totally fair and sincere, tune in for a week or two- but take care. Don’t take shots at leaders/people who actually have more ‘revival’ (the true Life of Christ) than yourself, more souls saved, more orphans helped and more widows helped in Africa. As an African missionary, I think you need to be fair, instead of just critical- for example anyone can have a blog that criticizes leaders… but few people actually go out and serve others. Anyone can tear a house down, but can actually build a good house.

    Phil: Welcome to Theology Today John!

    I can’t attend…I live in Greece…but it’s doubtful if I would even walk across the street to go and see it in person. I will be watching on God TV this weekend.

  2. Hi Phil,

    Interesting that Bentley was told to eat Titus. Paul instructed Titus to shut their mouths (Titus 1:9-12)

    I can’t thank you enough for the addition of the videos. I’ve been convinced they were using these techniques and the videos confirmed my initial thoughts. Thanks. Everyone here should take the time to listen to them and recognize what is known as hypnotic/sublimenal mind control. Scarey stuff.

    I work in marketing so I did recognize some aspects of this type of marketing being used by Bentley, but wow….those videos really were enlightening.


  3. Hmm, what do Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard and Bentley have in common? L. Ron based his sect on complete science fiction, minus the bible. Bentley bases his ministry on the bible using science fiction.

    Bentley was in the third heaven? (can’t wait to see what his “thorn in the flesh will be?
    He went to Paul’s house?
    Paul lives in a cabin??
    Paul told Bentley “not everything is in the bible”??? (RED FLAG, BIG RED FLAG!)
    Paul spoke to Bentley the inexpressible words he (Paul) was commanded not to utter??
    A ladder is needed (like in Jacob’s vision> to move from the 2nd to the 3rd heaven. So i guess that God’s realm is layered, like a cake?? Mmmm…
    Bentley said “a green liquid and it was pouring onto my eyes!” Didn’t I see this scene in an episode of X-Men???
    Bentley says again “So I ascended the seven atmospheres of heaven”, were on earth is that in scripture???? Again NEW REVELATION, (RED FLAG!!!)
    These poor people are so desperate to archive a new “experience” that they blind themselves to the fact that scripture alone is sufficient, they inadvertently create a golden calf out of their desire to experience something new.

    Phil: Welcome to Theology Today Sergio! Yep, these folks look for experience after experience….what happens when their experiences stop?

  4. What happens? They get disillusioned with God, the Bible, and everything remotely associated with Christ. The backlash is coming. And the people who have been blinded will need to come to terms with it. Be ready.

  5. “In all of the videos and articles I’ve read I have yet to hear the word “repent” or anything even remotely close to anything biblical. ”

    I was actually at the revival last night and during the worship, Todd himself was on the ground repenting to the Lord, imploring everyone in the room to repent too..

    You can see it here.

    You also said, “Now, isn’t one of the Fruits of the Spirit self control? Laughing uncontrollable, dancing in the aisles and acting “drunk in the Spirit” hardly demonstrates self control….which makes me question what “spirit” is actually in control of this “revival”.”

    I see your point but did King David not dance naked in front of his people in 2 Samuel 6, being undignified for the Lord, though despised by his wife?

    These are the words of Pastor Stephen Strader regarding the Florida Healing Outpouring on April 30, 2008:
    The word “revival” is used a little too flippantly among Christians, yet the intent is usually pure. We want to see the Holy Spirit changing lives. We want to see Him healing bodies, hearts and lives to the point that people are never the same. Obviously, our desire is to have this happen as part of our daily lives—to walk as Jesus did, following the Father’s lead and leaving a trail of signs, wonders and miracles. Yet when this happens in a remarkable fashion, for a remarkable length of time, we label it as a revival. That same element of time will tell whether what’s going on in Lakeland, Fla., is a revival. One thing is clear, though: God is moving.

    If people are being saved and delivered of addictions and physical ailments in the name of Jesus, who are we to say it is not the work of the Lord? 1 John 4:2 says, “This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God..”

    I encourage you to read the story from Acts 5.
    When they heard this, they were furious and wanted to put them to death. 34But a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, who was honored by all the people, stood up in the Sanhedrin and ordered that the men be put outside for a little while. 35Then he addressed them: “Men of Israel, consider carefully what you intend to do to these men. 36Some time ago Theudas appeared, claiming to be somebody, and about four hundred men rallied to him. He was killed, all his followers were dispersed, and it all came to nothing. 37After him, Judas the Galilean appeared in the days of the census and led a band of people in revolt. He too was killed, and all his followers were scattered. 38Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. 39But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God.”

    If this is not of God, time will tell because Todd’s ministry will fail and fall away and will be remembered no more. But if this is truly a move of God, woe to the one who stands in the way of the Lord.

  6. Well, as for the assertion that scripture alone is sufficient, Jesus of Nazareth had something to say about that:
    “You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.” Jn 5:39-40
    Sergio, you are right to rely on scriptures, but Jesus did not say that they would save you. If you have not had an experience with The Holy Spirit, allowing you to truly say Jesus is Lord (I Cor. 12:3 … no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit)then you are relying only on head knowledge of scripture. Jesus spoke to the Pharisees, who really had the scriptures down, and admonished them to come to Him. So, have a personal experience with Jesus Christ today. And, have new experiences with Him everyday. In fact, seek and you will find, ask and it will be given, knock and the door will be opened.
    Regarding the ridicule of Todd having to “eat Titus and Hebrews” perhaps you should ridicule John for eating the scroll at the behest of the angel in Revelation. Or, perhaps you would like to rebuke Ezekiel for eating the scroll, in Ezekiel 3:1.
    Lastly, Gamaliel had some wisdom for us in Acts 5:38-39 “And now I say to you, keep away from these men and let them alone; for if this plan or this work is of men, it will come to nothing; but if it is of God, you cannot overthrow it–lest you even be found to fight against God.”

    Phil: Welcome to Theology Today Kent!

    So are you saying we shouldn’t warn the sheep a wolf is in their midst? I hope not because you would then be asking me to disobey God….which I won’t do. Please see the following link and then tell me there is no cause for concern?

  7. Hi there!
    Just wanted to give another view on the goings on in Florida. I have just come back from a visit there, where I went to the evening meetings every night for 6 nights. In my time there I was impressed by the strong focus on Jesus as Lord and the fact that every night ,I believe, apart from possibly one, there was a call to repentance, and an invitation to people to make Jesus Lord of their lives. I have come away from my time there with a strengthened love for Jesus and people and was impacted by the integrity and humility of the team that I saw there. Thanks for the opportunity to add my opinion, may God bless you lots and lots.

  8. Kent, thanks for your input, if I may quote you…

    “If you have not had an experience with The Holy Spirit, allowing you to truly say Jesus is Lord (I Cor. 12:3 … no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit)then you are relying only on head knowledge of scripture.”

    Paul was speaking to the Corinthians which where doing everything from desecrating the Lord’s table (Chap 11) to vicious immorality (Chap 5). The “experience” that you are referring to has nothing to do with the context of what Paul is saying here. Paul was stating that no one, by the Spirit of God will curse Christ, in contrast, those who truly say, and believe that “Jesus is Lord” will say it by way of the Holy Spirit who comes (completely, not in parts) upon all believers at the moment of Salvation (Acts 2:38).
    It’s simple really, to say “Jesus is Lord” and truly believe it, is an act of faith and a complete and total reliance on the truth of scripture which is the word of God (Rom 10:17), and that can only come by way of the Holy Spirit (Gal 3:2).

    “So, have a personal experience with Jesus Christ today. And, have new experiences with Him everyday. In fact, seek and you will find, ask and it will be given, knock and the door will be opened.”

    Every time I open the scripture, every time I study and divide God’s Word, I stand in awe Kent. I stand in complete and total awe because the scripture is the truth of God, every nuance, every jot and title is inspiration and revelation. Jesus Himself said in John 17:17 “sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth”. Thus implying that the word not only sanctifies, but it is also the whole truth of God, and that my friend is enough for me.

    “Regarding the ridicule of Todd having to “eat Titus and Hebrews” perhaps you should ridicule John for eating the scroll at the behest of the angel in Revelation. Or, perhaps you would like to rebuke Ezekiel for eating the scroll, in Ezekiel 3:1.”

    Kent, please, this comparison is borderline heretical. You cannot compare Paul, John, or Ezekiel to Bentley! For God’s sake, Bentley’s “experiences cannot be verified by scripture. He was taken up and angles performed heavenly surgery on him!!!! Come on! Besides, unless there is a Book of Bentley in the bible, I cannot and will not compare.

    Finally, remember who Gamaliel was referring to… Jesus Himself!
    The bottom line is that everything MUST line up with scripture, I cannot rely on an experience that is not supported by the bible, why? Simply because my heart is deceitful than ALL else (Jer 17:9).

  9. I forgot to comment on the first part of the post…

    “Well, as for the assertion that scripture alone is sufficient, Jesus of Nazareth had something to say about that:
    “You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.” Jn 5:39-40”

    Again, this is taken out of context.
    The Pharisees thought that by holding on to the Mosaic law they would be saved. He is basically saying, You search the scripture (which was the books of the law e.g. Torah, Talmud that included the codification of the law, Mishna ect.) for in them you think you are saved. The Pharisees were blind to that fact that salvation was by faith (as in Abraham, he believed God and it was accounted to him as righteousness). Jesus is in no way implying that scripture in not sufficient, he was merely stating that the Law of Moses had no power to save, and that is backed up in Joh_1:17, Joh_8:35, Act_10:28, Act_13:39, Rom_7:1-6, Rom_8:3, Rom_10:4. There are dozens of other references.

  10. Sharon,

    May I recommend that you view the two videos that Phil posted right after his article here. What you were exposed to in Lakeland was a charade by some very clever marketing people. It’s mind control and it’s used heavily in marketing.

    Watch the two videos…

    In the meantime, would you mind sharing with me what sermons he preached, including the scriptural support he used that strengthened your love and understanding of Jesus?

    Thank You

  11. Luke 9:49-50 Now John answered and said “Master, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow with us.” But Jesus said to him, “Do not forbid him, for he who is not against us is on our side.” Mark 9:39 But Jesus said, Do not forbid him, for no one who works a miracle in My name can soon afterward speak evil of Me.”
    Let’s let God be God in America again. He is in everything because He is God. His ways and thoughts are not ours and Praise Him for that because if they were we would all be in trouble. Thank You Lord for your Grace!!!

  12. Whatever Todd is, he is at least someone after the Spirit of God and has put himself at the Lord’s disposal. Brazenly, even. What you are seeing is a new thing in the church (at least in North America): something called faith. May I suggest not using the standard of dead theology to discern whether or not this Lakeland phenomenon is of God. Recall it was the learned theologians who knew the Scriptures well who couldn’t recognize the Word of God standing right in front of them. Why? All they possessed were words wherein they thought they had eternal life. Something had to die in them for them to receive the testimony of the Lord, for them to recognize Who this was in front of them. They had traditions, they had learning, they had the respect of their peers,they had their own holiness (they were good rabbis). God is Other than we are; be careful about blaspheming (slandering) the Holy Spirit. That it seems something foreign to you should give you pause. The Pharisee’s adornment of the monument to the prophets “witnessed against them” (the very act of thinking they were beyond the mistakes of their fathers revealed they were very much like their father’s “who killed the prophets”). Again, why? They had the pretense to think they were beyond being contemporary with God, that God was already done. They flattered themselves in thinking God was nothing more than the image they created of Him. God will offend the mind to test the heart.

  13. Todd Bentley the Beast from the Pit or the anti-christ?
    To read some of the posts in the blogosphere on the internet, you would think that Todd Bentley was the Beast from the Pit, or at the very least the False Prophet ushering in the coming of the Antichrist. Tattoos, earings and all!
    Todd is evil, he’s a deceiver, he’s this, he’s that, and the other thing. The stories I have read on the internet about him are astounding. I have rarely seen so much hatred focused on one individual. There is one blogger in particular, (Miriam Franklin) ( who seems to have nothing better to do in life than bash what is going on in Florida and the rest of the Christian Community Of course, this particular blogger has been bashing everything going on nearly everywhere else in Christianity, so I am not really surprised.
    The fact is that Todd Bentley is just a guy with a past from Canada who got saved at 17. He makes no excuses about the fact that he was in prison, did drugs and OD’d three times the year before he got saved. Those things are in his past. Scripture says that old things have passed away.all things become new. II Corinthians 5:17. It is wrong and sinful to try to bash someone because of who they were before they met Jesus Christ. Period.
    If you believe that God does not intend for the modern church to have the power of the early church, you are not going to like Todd. You are not going to like his theology. You are not going to like his visions and his angels. I, however, do like angels and believe in them and I also believe in healing. I don’t like the powerless, intellectual church of the United States. It does not reflect the life of Jesus as reflected in the Gospels and the book of Acts. I choose to believe that scripture applies to the latter house just as it did to the former.
    Peter and Paul saw angels. Paul had visions of Christ. Significant events in scripture where always heralded by the appearance of angels. Visions are a normal way of communication from the Lord. So are dreams. The Book of Joel says so. Todd has yet to promote anything that I can’t find in scripture.
    People are freaked out because he had a vision where he claimed Paul told him he wrote Hebrews with Abraham. That is a take it or leave it kind of thing. Can you prove Paul DIDN’T? There is stuff in Hebrews that you can’t get from Genesis. There was divine inspiration and divine revelation involved. How God did that is not something He bothered to tell us about. The secret things belong to God. Read Deuteronomy 29: 29.
    If having a conversation with a departed saint in a vision that God originated is necromancy, then Jesus practiced necromancy. In Mark 9:1-4 on the Mount of Transfiguration Moses came and spoke with Jesus. Scripture tells us that Moses DIED, so Jesus had a conversation with a Dead guy while he was in the flesh.
    I saw dozens of people get out of wheelchairs and walk last night in Lakeland. How many people have we prayed out of wheelchairs, O Heresy Hunters? I saw probably a four to five hundred people respond to the Gospel for salvation in Lakeland this weekend. How many people did you lead to Jesus this weekend, O Heresy Hunters?
    Todd is controversial because the church is so DEAD, DEAD!! We should be rejoicing in what the LORD is doing, and not be focused on the vessel God is using. The vessel in this case is just a guy like the rest of us. He’s young, he’s rough and he is passionately in love with Jesus Christ. I have never seen a man so hungry for the Presence of the Lord. Are You that hungry? The Holy Spirit is his best and closest friend.
    Todd is not a theologian. That is not his calling. He is an evangelist. His job is to equip the saints to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ. He is doing that amazingly well. I think it is because he is doing that so very well that the heresy hunters are screaming so loudly. His success in AMERICA is exposing the sharp contrast and the failure of the ministries of America to do the same. They are trying to get people to focus on the flaws in the vessel rather than focus on the fact that their ministries are so barren and empty of true, biblical fruit. Shame on you!
    Jesus told John’s disciples to tell John that the blind see, the deaf hear, the lame walk and the Gospel is preached to the poor. Those are the authenticating marks of the true Gospel according to Jesus. Of course, Jesus wasn’t theologically trained so His opinion probably doesn’t count with the heresy hunters either. Shame on them.
    Read Mark 16: 15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
    16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
    17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
    18 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.
    Those are the “RED WORDS” the important Words from Jesus.

    LUKE CHAPTER 9:1-2
    Jesus called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases. And he sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick. Amen!

  14. I have attended this revival for many weeks. In fact, I have been there since the second night of Todd’s meetings (4/2/08), long before this became “revival”. Initially, I was so excited to see God move in such a mighty way. I was encouraging my pastor, several other pastors that I know, many friends and family members to “come and see what God is doing.” There were few times when I was uncomfortable with what was happening in the meetings, but I figured that I was just being critical and reminded myself that God’s ways are not my ways. I continued to support this revival, even after I heard my own pastor voice his concerns. I was quite vocal about these misgivings others had. I continued to defend Todd, God, etc., etc.

    However, as time as passed, I have become increasing concerned about several things. First of all, I have worked in the medical field for over 20 years (in radiology). I have noticed that there have only been a very few “documented” miracles in comparison to the numbers that have claimed miracles. I am aware of at least two claims of healing that I believe to have possibly been real. There was the child with the elbow fracture and her x-rays. However, I would like to know the dates between the first set of x-rays and the 2nd, as healing, especially with very young children can be quite quick…especially if it was very mild fracture. Also, I would love to see the type of fracture, position, and the view (AP, lateral, etc.) of the second set of films. (Sometimes a particular view will not show the fracture that is actually there.) There was also a young man who testified one night (before TV/internet) about being healed from Hepatitis C, with the lab work to confirm. Again, with false positive/negatives that can happen with labs. I’d love to see what his actual lab values were and see a retesting to confirm. Although I do believe that this individual could very well have been healed, but because of how I’ve seen other things handled in this revival, I would just like to see more documentation.

    Much of the “miracles” that I have seen over the weeks have been based more on what people believe that have happened, more than medically documented miracles. Many times over I have seen people with metal rods in their spine be “healed”. Todd will ask, what couldn’t you do, and usually has them bend over. This act of bending over is declared as a miracle. It is not. Most folks with metal rods in their back or neck CAN bend over, as these rods (Harrington rods) very seldom go the entire length of the spine. In fact, I have metal plates/screws in my neck and can bend my head from side to side and front to back. I remember one night when a woman with bulging discs in her neck came up to declare her healing. Todd felt along her spine and said “I don’t feel any bulging discs in your neck”, and then announced she had been healed. A disc bulge is something that you will NOT detected by running your hand up and down the spine. It is not something that can be physically palpated. Only imaging with MRI or CT would show the presence of disc bulges and if they were compressing nerve roots or affecting the spinal cord/spinal canal. I saw where this declaration of healing caused the room the go wild. My feeling is that if this is truly a bonafied healing…PRAISE GOD! But let’s confirm these miracles. That is what the world really needs to see! But alas, very few healings are actually being confirmed.

    Secondly, my concern is the focus that has been placed on Angels, visitations, manifestations, etc. Although Jesus is mentioned throughout the night, though an altar call is given… far more emphasis is being placed on these other things than is acutally being given to the Jesus and him crucified (as Paul would say). The cross, the resurrection, holiness, repentance, dying to the flesh, etc., are merely glossed over and not really preached. What is being given more time, more emphasis are these other “experiences”.

    The atmosphere here has changed from the very first meetings…at least it seems to me. And as I said earlier, I have been at revival since April 3rd…the 2nd night Todd was here in Lakeland. Something is wrong and I am concerned. Somehow the gospel that saves and keeps is not being preached as it should. Jesus…not even the Holy Spirit… is to be focus. In the Gospel of John, it says the when the comforter (Holy Spirit) would come, it would not speak of himself, but of Jesus. My concern is growing. I think we need to really pray and ask for discernment. I’m all for revival. I am all for miracles. But is there another Jesus, another gospel that is being preached here?

    Phil: Hi Dawn…welcome to Theology Today. I’ve received emails from people voicing the same concerns as you have shared….thank you for this comment.

  15. Thanks Dawn for bringing up the same concerns I’ve been having, for I’m Reformed Charismatic….and I’ve had many friends and family going down there. However, despite any great things occuring there, I’ve wondered about things of concern from a different perspective.

    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 ….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 society—taking 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…, 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 happening 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?

  16. I would be most curious as to what others thoughts would be on what is the most flawless organization/school of thought one can join should they choose to leave the Florida Gig/Movements and Organizations associated with it.

    To be clear, again, there are many things within it that are RIGHTFULLY denounced ()….but I have noticed a trend in many abandoning it that they may say everything within it is bad/evil…and yet in my quest to be as discerning as possible with all things and check all things against the Word, when I look into the organizations which they often flee to, I’m able to quickly notice flaws in those camps as well—some of which are just as glaring as the things in those camps which they point out to others….and often, what seems to be the case is that those camps get a free pass regarding their issues and it seems the rationale is “Well, it’s not as bad as……” That, to many, comes off as a double standard since it gives the impression that one’s camp which they stand in (and for that matter, WHO THEY ARE AS AN INDIVIDUAL) is the one without FAULT and thus in a position to be above reproach or able to condemn/cast judgement or rate others.

    In Biblical Terminology, it’d be like living in the Books of I-II Kings and Chronicles and telling someone “You need to get your butt OUT OF ISRAEL—IDOLATRY EVERYWHERE!!!” and then having them jump over to the sister nation of Judah, which though more righteous in some regards had PLENTY OF MESS ON THEIR SIDE OF THE STREET for which THEY WERE IN TROUBLE TOO WHEN GOD’S LAW CAME TO LIGHT. Or for a different analogy, it’s as if people are being called to come out of a country ripe with corruption and yet there’s no destination which they’re headed====with nothing but continual wandering and vunerability to a myriad of things that wouldn’t be an issue had one had a solid homebase. You’re effective sailing blind….

    And this is something I’ve seen in literally ALL CAMPS to some degree or another. One camp’s Charismatic and another’s Baptist—and yet, even when both stand against post-modernism, often times both will get into disputes just as intense and label the other in SIGNIFICANT ERROR—even to the point of using the “heresy” term on one another (whether it be with the Baptist and exalting “The Sinners Prayer” or with the Charismatics and “Tongues”/Baptism of the Holy Spirit—-or the excesses seen in botH….or in the Calvinistic camp with theologies such as “Once Saved, Always Saved”…etc). And the range includes things such as worship styles, dress when attending church, casual verses formal settings, preaching from a pulpit verses preaching in a living room setting, etc.

    I’ve written more about this elsewhere—( #6, regarding something a brother of mine in the Lord wrote of the danger it seems we can fall into by becoming “NEW PHARISEES”)—for it seems that much of the Christian WOrld in the West is involved in a never-ending TURF WAR, where everyone’s at War with someone else and all sides claim to have “THE TRUTH.”

    Though if one leaves something on the basis that perfection/being as biblically accurate as possible is the goal that every true believer aims for, it’d seem that the rationale should flow over to all other areas of life—including the areas where one lands after leaving a place that seemed inefficient. So for the sake of consistency and in honor of the Word’s admonition to check every word against the Word of God, accepting what is true, and rejecting what is false—-take the Good, reject the bad (, 1 Thessalonians 5:18-22, Hebrews 5:11-17, Proverbs 14:15, Proverbs 19:2, Proverbs 18:13, Proverbs 18:15, Proverbs 18:17 ), and do as the Bereans did with Paul, as a preacher who gives God’s true message will never contradict or explain away anything that’s found in the Word (Acts 17:10-11)—, what would be the most flawless organization one could join in leaving FLORIDA/LAKELAND REVIVAL?

    Whether one thinks it’d be Baptist, Charismatic, Lutheran, Methodist, Non-Denominational, Reformed, Evangelical, Church of CHrist, Home CHurch movement, or any other group one can think of, which one would be the best to hook up with? On what basis would you make your defense that the paticular group you’re apart of is the most valid one (or at least one valid one among others which you consider to be valid)?

    Granted, one needs to deal with the issues of GRAVE ERROR verses LIGHT ERROR—or ESSENTIAL verses NON-ESSENTIAL issues (which Scripture’s Clear on)….but apart from that, what would you do? And if you or I could find a flaw/unbiblical aspect to it anywhere involved—whether big or small–would you be willing to leave? And at the point where it seemed that no organizations/groups left were flawless according to Biblical Standards, what would you do? Would you make peace and “compromise” with one or continue to search in hopes of finding it? Or would you do your own thing entirely?

    If interested, it’d probably be best for saints to study the OT (specifically, the Books of I-II Kings and Chronicles), as it was just as messy as the denominational landscape is today….and QUITE REMINISIENT . Remember Jehu (II Kings 9-10 )?

    I’ve always found it funny the man was raised up by the Lord to call out/repay the wickedness of Ahab/destroy his evil influence…..and yet so much error was BLATANTLY tolerated in his side of the street. Minus the fact that the man went FAR beyond the Lord’s command with his senseless slaughter/bloodbath (which he was denounced for later by the prophet Hosea, Hosea 1:4-5)The man eliminated one form of idolatry, Baal worship, only to uphold another by continuing to worship the golden calves Jeroboam had set up which CAUSED THE FALL OF ISRAEL TO BEGIN WITH:

    I Kings 12:25-33

    1 Kings 13-14

    II Chronicles 13

    When studying the actions of Jehu, one quickly realizes that his motives were more political than spiritual.

    If he had destroyed the golden calves, his people would’ve traveled to the temple in Jerusalem, in the rival southern kingdom, and worshipped there (which is why Jeroboam set them up in the first place).Baal worship was associated with the dynasty of Ahab, so it was politically ADVANTAGEOUS to destroy Baal. The golden calves, on the other hand, had a longer history in the northern kingdom and were validated by ALL POLITICAL FACTIONS.

    Baal Worship was anti-GOD (IN THE OBVIOUS SENSE), BUT THe golden calves were thought by many to be the visible representations of God himself, even though God’s law clearly stated that such worship was idolatrous (Exodus 20:3-6)( Exodus 32)

    As the Word shows, Jehu was devoted to God only to the point that obediance served his own interests….and like Jehu, the same is happening today when men in the name of GODLINESS are denouncing the sins of others/rallying the church while excusing sin in their own lives or going against MANY OF THE STANDARDS IN GOD’S WORD THAT THE KINGDOM OF GOD ARE ALL ABOUT.

    Consequently, you’re often left wondering why there is still mess taking place in the camp……

    The same thing happened with King Jehosophat:

    2 Chronicles 17

    Jehosaphat was a righteous man after God’s heart, & he did much to reform the nation from where it once was. The people of Judah were Biblically illiterate, never taking the time to listen to and discuss God’s law and understand how it could change them. Jehosophat realized that knowing God’s commands was the first step to getting people to live as they should, so he initiated a nationwide religious education program

    However, despite all of the good that Jehosaphat accomplished & how deeply he was committed to God, he permitted much sin to happen on HIS WATCH AS WELL.

    At one point, he allied himself with the infamous King AHAB, in a bid to “strengthen the nation”. He solidified this alliance by arranging for his son to marry Athaliah, the daughter of wicked King Ahab of Israel, and then made a military alliance with him……..with Jehoshaphet’s popularity/power making him ATTRACTIVE to the cunning/opportunistic Ahab (II Chronicles 1

    Though Jehosaphat had believed he was doing a “good thing” AND HAD MANY GOOD THINGS to help elsewhere, the effects of his alliance were devastating due to Jehoshaphat incurred God’s Wrath (II Chronicles 19:2), and it was through ATHALIAH that Judah was exposed to the EVIL PRACTICES OF ISRAEL, FOR SHE HELPED PROPAGATE BAAL WORSHIP IN JUDAG & THIS EVENTUALLY LED TO THE SOUTHERN KINGDOM’S DECLINE/downfall (II Kings 8:18-29)…and also, When Jehosophat died and Attialiah’s son, as well as her husband perished (II Kings 9-10), Athaliah became Queen, she seized the throne and almost WIPED OUT ALL THE DESCENDANTS OF DAVID (II Chronicles 22:10-12).

    The same scenario isn’t an ISOLATED ONE. Anyone who’s honestly studying throughout the books of I-II Kings and I-II Chronicles will quickly find that out….

    It happened with Jehosaphat’s father before him, II Chronicles 15, before his confidence in God began to slip & he began to rely on human means via alliances with PAGAN NATIONS…II Chronicles 16, rather than turning to the God who helped him earlier, II Chronicles 14…….)

    It happened with nearly all of the Kings after Jehoshaphat in Judah…..

    Even with King Hezekiah ( II Kings 18-20), the man was regarded as someone who had a close relationship with the Lord…..and kick this, HE WAS A REFORMER!!!!!!

    The man boldly went itn and cleaned house, having altars, idols and temples completely destroyed…..however, despite all of that and the many great things he witnessed in his lifetime, he still tolerated many GREVIOUS WRONGS which served to hinder generations after him (i.e rashly showing his wealth to the Bablylonian envoys and placing Judah on Bablylon’s “NATIONS TO CONQUER” list, etc).

    The list could go on, but I bring all of that up because I thought it’d be relevant to the situation.

    I think that it really serves as a CHECK FOR ALL OF US. I think for those who are often contending on the issue of doctrines/theological truths and referencing the Past, it should alarm us all that perhaps our standards are in many ways HEINOUS to the Lord and our LOGIC FLAWED………

    Granted, people see the Emergent/Emerging Church and say “BEWARE!!!! FALSE TEACHINGS/DECEPTIONS….

    We get MAD seeing foolishness like THIS:

    Yet, Would I’d be mad at a church promoting idolatry of FAVORTISM?

    1 Corinthians 1 1 Corinthians 3
    Let’s call a spade a spade: would I be cool with GOING to a church that maintains what’s basically a Exclusivism (those who think themselves superior to all other believers because they follow Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or Christ. or some other teacher)?
    ….. When I as a Christian take pride in the fact that study the teachings of people like John Piper and exteem him (or Sandy Simpson and any other ministry you or I am thankful for and support) and yet I’m constantly boasting of how solid they are….and yet I look down upon others not holding to where they stand, that may be me commiting a sin of FAVORTISM… Or when I keep quiet over the fact on what the Bible says on the issue of RACIAL RENCONCILLIATION (which I’ve written about before, Does anyone here know of any MINORITY/BLACK Emerging Leaders existing? ) and not calling out those same authors “contending against errror” when they’re not fighting for that in their own churches and are SEGRATED RACIALLY—AND MAKING EXCUSES FOR IT.

    And the same thing when people are proud that they as individuals or their church follows CALVIN….or ARMIUS, George WHITFIELD, John Owen, John Bunyan, Oswald Chambers…AND THEY KNOW ALL OF THEIR ARGUMENTS and yet are more loyal to studying them than CHRIST/HIS WORD AND SPREADING THE GOSPEL….would I attend a church like that and be COOL?

    Or would I be cool attending a church where they put down other believers who are dilligently seeking to spread the work of the Kingdom of God and be faithful to the Gospel simply because they do not belong to the same camp (i.e. “I’m a Cessationist, you’re a Charismatic….I’m Baptist, you’re Pentacostal, I’m Prebysterian, you’re Methodist….& therefore I wouldn’t reference you as someone I could learn from or who is actually aiding the Body, etc)?

    Or to a church that isn’t excited about giving FINANCIALLY to the body of CHrist.? Or one where there’re things like

    * Gossip/SLANDER (#23, #118 )

    * Mercy less (Micah 6:8, Matthew 23:23

    * Favoritism (huge in so-called biblically sound churches)

    * Respect of Person (we accept a truth of MacArthur over someone less Seminary astute) (Luke 14:7-11, Leviticus 19:15

    * Lack of Compassion (Proverbs 14:31, Proverbs 21:13, Proverbs 22:2, Proverbs 28:9, James 2, ETC)

    * Not showing Impartiality/Accuracy in judging matters (good and bad), whether with public figures and their actions (false prophets included)Proverbs 11:1, Proverbs 20:23, Leviticus 19:15), personal issues, offenses, or other things, etc.

    * Divisiveness

    * Ungodliness

    * * Anxiety and Frustration

    * * Discontentment

    * * Unthankfulness

    * * Pride

    * * Selfishness

    * * Lack of Self-Control

    * * Impatience and Irritability

    * * Anger

    * * The Weeds of Anger

    * * Judgmentalism

    * * Envy, Jealousy, and Related Sins

    * * Sins of the Tongue

    * * Worldliness

    Still curious.

    For even if the sin doesn’t seem as OBVIOUS/UGLY as other sins such as being a pedophile or child molester, it’s still UGLY TO THE LORD……..and it makes no difference to exchange one form of idolatry/sin for another.

    I’m still surprised when it seems Christians in the name of defending against error BLANTANTLY go against II Timothy 2:23-26. But What’s in the book’s in the book, regardless of frustrations (and going against that’s sin just as much as any excesses happening down there in Florida).—Saying “I’m sick of all this pussyfooting around and skirting around the issues” as many have said doesn’t seem to hold much weight if Paul HIMSELF ADVOCATED it—-and he dealt with more issues EFFECTIVELY than you or I combined. Is it “pussyfooting” as you say in being kind, not quarrelsome, gentle with others and graciously answering concerns folks have?

    It basically tackles the question of “Have Christians become so preoccupied with the major sins of our society that we have lost sight of our need to deal with our own more subtle sins?” ….and I’m glad Jerry Bridges wrote it since it takes one back to the issue of what holiness truly means….aand addresses a dozen clusters of specific “acceptable” sins that we tend to tolerate in ourselves—such as jealousy, anger, pride, unthankfulness, and judgmentalism.

    As Christians, we believe that all sins are considered equal in God’s eyes. Yet while evangelicals continue to decry the Big Ones–such as abortion, adultery, and violence–we often overlook more deceptive sins. And it seems we have created a sliding scale where gossip, jealousy, and selfishness comfortably exist within the church. In short, some sins have simply become acceptable.—AND that just as culture has lost the concept of sin, the church faces the same danger. As one kat said on the issue, “The motivation for this book stems from a growing conviction that those of us whom I call conservative evangelicals may have become so preoccupied with some of the major sins of society around us that we have lost sight of the need to deal with our own more `refined’ or subtle sins.” And in the book Bridges addresses these “respectable sins”–sins, that though they bring dishonor to God, are too often overlooked among Christians. We are apt to focus on the obvious ills of society and our attention to those seemingly great sins somehow convinces us that our small sins are acceptable.

    Bridges begins this book, as he usually does, by laying the foundation of the gospel. He addresses the Bible’s continual exhortations that we are to “be what we are.” We are called saints and are expected by God to act like those who have been set apart to be holy. We are to act like a people who have been separated unto God. While the Bible makes it clear that any conduct unbecoming a saint is sin, and while all Christians acknowledge that we do sin, we are still prone to ignoring certain transgressions that simply do not seem that serious. “We can readily identify sin in the immoral or unethical conduct of people in society at large. But we often fail to see it in what I call the `acceptable sins of the saints.’ In effect, we, like society at large, live in denial of our sin.”

    All sin, no matter how subtle it may seem to us, is malignant. It “wages war against our souls.” Some subtle sins we commit without really thinking about them, either at the time or afterward. “We often live in unconscious denial of our `acceptable sins.'” But even these sins are “an assault on the majesty and sovereign rule of God. It is indeed cosmic treason.” But, in His sovereign good pleasure, God has graciously provided a remedy for sin in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. After discussing the ramifications of Jesus’ sacrifice on our behalf, Bridges transitions to a word about the power of the Holy Spirit, teaching how He works in and with us to cleanse us from our sin.

    And here, after about fifty pages of important introductory material, Bridges begins to discuss individual sins he has identified in his own life and in the lives of other believers. Here is the list:

    * Ungodliness
    * Anxiety and Frustration
    * Discontentment
    * Unthankfulness
    * Pride
    * Selfishness
    * Lack of Self-Control
    * Impatience and Irritability
    * Anger
    * The Weeds of Anger
    * Judgmentalism
    * Envy, Jealousy, and Related Sins
    * Sins of the Tongue
    * Worldliness

    Each one of these is discussed in some detail: how the sin can be identified, how it dishonors God, how it affects a Christian’s life, and what Scriptures we can use to overcome it. He encourages the reader to go slowly from chapter-to-chapter, pausing to meditate on the Scriptures he provides and seeking to allow them to challenge and, if necessary, to convict. The person who reads the book quickly will be rewarded, but the one who reads it slowly and meditatively will surely be rewarded more.

    Jerry Bridges has long served the church in the area of applying the gospel to personal holiness, using the Word to convict of sin and the gospel to restore hope. This book is a welcome addition to his already powerful list of books. The respectable sins he outlines I could often identify in my own life as ones that I have been willing to overlook. I suspect the same will be true of any Christian who takes the time to read it. This book is built upon a simple premise and Bridges executes it powerfully. I don’t know of any Christian would not benefit from reading it and from considering those subtle, dangerous, respectable sins.

  17. On the Book by Jerry Bridges that I’ve been considering and that has had me thinking regarding the issue of Florida/making sure the same vigilance placed in dealing with the excesses/sins down there is done in our own lives regarding those things we don’t rasie fuss over much but that’re just as offensive to the Lord when seen Biblically

  18. You might be helped by reading a comment from Sharon Cooke on this website.

    In terms of verified healings what do you do with the guy who came up asking the Lord to restore sight in a blind eye and he leaves seeing. The church is so stuck in religion that something radical like this is attacked.

    I am completely for theology and would like to see more of the word preached but if nothing else I believe because of the works…

  19. Irwin,

    (Quote) May I suggest not using the standard of dead theology to discern whether or not this Lakeland phenomenon is of God. Recall it was the learned theologians who knew the Scriptures well who couldn’t recognize the Word of God standing right in front of them. Why?

    What occurred at the time of Jesus wasn’t that they just had OT scripture as their plumbline, but that in Babylonian captivity they had written books that had superceeded scripture in their eyes. They formulated the Talmud, Midrash, etc. Have you ever read any of this? If you had, then you would understand why they couldn’t understand the scriptures. They had so perverted them that they weren’t able to see what scripture said.

    Jesus railed against their man made work. They placed yokes on people that were as burdensome as Pharaoh did to the Israelites in Egypt. If you ever read the Talmud, you will see just what they professed and how totally decadent it was.

    Theology in a nutshell is doctrine and the role of doctrine is to reveal God’s attributes & characteristics, how we are to govern ourselves, what attributes we are assigned and what attributes that divinity holds. I heard a great sermon yesterday using a visual of fixed quantities of walnuts and rice in a jar. If you put the rice in first – all the walnuts don’t fit. If you put the walnuts in first, then all the rice fits. How we assemble our doctrines plays a huge role in understanding. Doctrine should fit like a hand in a glove…and if one doctrine contradicts another, then something is out of kilter. It’s called systematic theology and it isn’t dead.

    To come to all this understanding sounds like a lot of work. It is, but it is a labor of agape love. The problem we are seeing today isn’t that scripture isn’t quite clear – but that we have so many unscriptural man made doctrines that have invaded the Church unchecked, that the waters are very muddy for many.

    There are now those who say the Spirit is their guide, but I have to ask – what spirit? How and by what rule do they discern which spirit is leading them? You take the time to develop a systematic theology and you can eliminate doubts about many of these things.

    There are plenty of people out there with opinions. I always say I have opinions and convictions. My convictions are based on extensive study of scripture…my opinions have not been fully studied out but are based on logical follow through. If I take an opinion and scripture reveals it to be wrong, then I have some backing up to do to find error. In the beginning, I backed up a lot, but after years of study, that has subsided dramatically.

    So reasoning in scripture – is it still scriptural?

    Take a look at Luke 24:27. Jesus was walking with 2 men in Emmaus – and what does he do: And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.

    Jesus used scripture – what a novel idea. Imagine that.

    What did Peter do with the Ethiopian Eunuch – Acts 8:35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning at this Scripture, preached Jesus to him.

    Peter used scripture – another novel idea. I wonder where he got it?

    All I can do is say – study study study…there is no such thing as dead theology….or then we would have to say doctrine is dead…and Paul told us to content ernestly for the faith once delivered and to abide in the doctrine of Christ.

  20. Really nice job on the post. Keep fighting for the Gospel… I’ll take my Bible over an experience any day. For even satan can disguise himself as an angel of light…. that kind of leads me to think that if you believe in manifestation over the revealed word of God even satan can look pretty.

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