Sunday, May 25, 2008

Doing a NEW Thing!!

Although I've been working all weekend, I am so grateful to various friends for keeping me in touch with what's going on in Florida. I must make mention of the fact that two very important people have given their impressions for the first time on what they think of Lakeland Florida. I must admit I wasn't hugely impressed or thrilled with Terry Virgo's opening post - but I am assured on good authority by someone who was at Prayer and Fasting that Terry said;

"You need to understand that because in a minute I am going to be really, really positive!".

Thank God! It all sounded very eerily deja-vu-like from my past about other moves of God. So all those who aren't Todd Bentley fans and were claiming Terry as a supporter - hold on just a minute. Scott has also been "persuaded" into sharing his thoughts on Lakeland! Yes - I am to blame. But he is so different from me in that I sometimes feel like I need a cork to bung my proverbial flow of thoughts - he on the other hand needs his opinions bullying out of him. And I really appreciate his perspective - and I know you will too. He says;

"Think what you will about Todd Bentley, but this should not be swept aside, because these are miracles and this is revival... this quite simply is God. I'm always amazed when christians willfully refuse to believe what their mighty God has done and is doing".

Can it be argued that one of the problems (again) is that God is doing a "new" thing? I am from the generation who most remembers Toronto and Browsnville even though we weren't permitted to be part of either. So laughing, shaking and falling is very familiar to me. But healings, signs and wonders aren't! This is new! Is that the problem? Ern Baxter always warned that the biggest opponents to the current move of God would be those from the last revivals. Can we expect to see those from the former charismatic movement vigorously opposing Todd Bentley's styles? Surely just because it's "new" - is no excuse whatsoever. I tracked down this excellent quote from the mighty Jonathan Edwards;

"Some make their rule to judge of this work by, instead of the Holy Scriptures, is history or former observation ... if there be anything extraordinary in the circumstances of this work, which was not observed in former times, theirs is a rule to reject this work which God has not given them, and they limit God, where He has not limited Himself.

And we who live in those latter days where in we may be especially warranted to expect that things will be accomplished which it will be said, who hath heard such a thing? Who hath seen such things?".

Let's remain open-minded and eager for what heaven has to reveal. Surely oh surely God has many, many surprises in store for climax of the ages! Final bit of news before I head off to work (and HOW excited am I!?) - it seems Pete and I don't have to worry about finding the funds to get to Florida anymore (unless God miraculously provides it of course!):

Don emailed me this;


Todd Bentley just said he will be coming to Birmingham in August -- NEC Arena!

He also just had John & Carol Arnott on stage, telling that Scott McDermott, pastor of the UMC at Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania, told him that two angels visited him in his office. The angels had on backpacks, and told Scott that they were visiting all the revival spots of the 90s, to see if those places wanted a new outpouring. Those places that are hungry will receive fresh fire! Todd had John pray over those places, then prophesied over John that this anointing will be going back and forth between Lakeland & Toronto. Carol Arnott, shaking like a leaf, said the Lord told her - right then - that he is pouring salt into the 90s revival wells, to purify the water and bring forth a pure revival of love and power.

Have you seen the guy who is beginning to see through a glass eye, and whose amputated legs have grown an inch so far????

The glory of God was soooooooooo powerful tonight, that Roy ended up falling off his chair, most of the platform staff was totally blitzed, and Todd could hardly talk. Amazing miracles taking place tonight! GLORY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



James B said...

That's so encouraging to hear - I can see why Terry's article would be of concern. Anyone who knows anything about God TV knows there's no real connection between the altar in Jerusalem and the Florida Revival other than they are both sponsored by God TV! I think it's pretty stupid to say that people would write off the revival just because of that.

Dan Bowen said...

Its such a difficult balance to hold isn't it. Why do Christians feel we must go from one extreme to the other? Either threw everything out because of an altar (which is my church background and I am determined not to be there again) or to accept everything because we don't want to reject anything! That's why the Word and the Spirit are so key. The Bible provides us with clear guidelines on what is and isn't of God and the Spirit brings an unction to our hearts so we know whether GOd is moving or an emptiness when it is the flesh or the devil.

Don said...

Great quote from Edwards, Dan! Pls email me the reference, so I can find it myself.

I left some similar quotes on a comment at Heat & Light (the post "Be the Revival"), about the possibility of taking offense at a move of God, but the owner did not seem too impressed.

As you say, there is such a demand by people that God use only "perfect" ministers to do his work, and have all their doctrines neatly arranged and approved before opening their mouths or laying hands on anyone. Interestingly, God seemed to allow and bless teachers with imperfect doctrine, even in the first century. In Acts 18:

"Meanwhile a Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria, came to Ephesus. He was a learned man, with a thorough knowledge of the Scriptures. He had been instructed in the way of the Lord, and he spoke with great fervor and taught about Jesus accurately, though he knew only the baptism of John. He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more adequately."

I'll bet that Todd Bentley will look back, 20 years from now, and be sorry he said some of the things he is saying now -- but I'll also bet he won't be sorry that God used him to testify to the reality of God and his desire to show his loving mercy through physical healing and deliverance from the enemy's kingdom. We do indeed have the Holy Spirit to bring us into all truth, and filter out error. I can trust God to bring Todd into a more complete and accurate understanding of the Truth, in areas where he may not understand correctly.

On another topic, last night Todd was saying exactly what Bill Johnson says: that giving glory to God by openly declaring the stories of miraculous healings, opens the gate for the Spirit of Christ to repeat those same miracles at the time they're discussed.

Bill uses the verse, "The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy" (Rev 19:10) to explain this. Not testimony by Jesus, but testimony about what Jesus has done, releases power into the atmosphere for faith and the ability for miracles to be duplicated.

So, whenever a story is told about a specific kind of healing, expect it to be possible for the listeners to experience the same healing as the testimony is going forth. What an exciting thing!

"They overcame [the devil] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death." (Rev 12:11)

Dan Bowen said...

Hey Don!

Sorry meant to put a link to the Edwards quote on Pentecostal Postit Notes. The reference is:

Jonathan Edwards - "The Works of Jonathan Edwards - Volume 1" - Banner of Truth Trust, Edinburgh (1974) - (pp369-370).

I'm not quite sure where "Heat and Light" is in terms of revival, Holy Spirit etc. I've read some v good stuff (and got an awesome video clip of a raising from the dead) - but they've linked to the SGM mother church in Wales ... so who knows?!

"I'll bet that Todd Bentley will look back, 20 years from now, and be sorry he said some of the things he is saying now -- but I'll also bet he won't be sorry that God used him to testify to the reality of God and his desire to show his loving mercy through physical healing and deliverance from the enemy's kingdom".

This is such an awesome quote and truth. I hope that Todd Bentley is grounded in enough grace and is free from condemnation that he isn't condemned by his failures and flaws but rather lovingly guided by his heavenly Father! BUT ... I couldn't agree MORE!!

I wonder ... who will God be prouder of. Someone who in 20 years has made mistakes, said stupid things, and yet stepped out in faith earnestly desiring to see the Kingdom of God come in power and signs and wonders.

Or ... someone who in 20 years can proudly say; "God I haven't got one conversion, one miracle, one sign, one wonder to show - BUT! I was orthodox God! I was right doctrinally! I read John Piper! I didn't say anything heretical or dodgy! I didn't actually do anything but I was still right!".

It kinda reminds me of the parable of the talents and let's remember what God said to the one who buried his talents in the ground and did nothing with it.

I want to challenge these cynics of revival and "discerners". When was the last time YOU prayed for the sick? When was the last time YOU brought a prostitute, a drug addict, a homosexual, a lesbian, a transvestite into your church? When was the last time you held someone with AIDS and sobbed with them through their pain? When was the last time?

Or have you been too busy being "right"?

Ern called it "Paralysis of Analysis" and I think it's the greatest danger facing the Church right now.