Wednesday, November 07, 2012

On Discerning Unusual Yet Possible God-manifestations

Kevin from France wrote me today with some questions. (Thank you Kevin!)

Kevin writes:

Hi brother,

My name is Kevin, I'm from France, how are you doing ? I saw on your blog that you are kinda following the people we see in the films of Darren Wilson... I just got the last one (Father of Lights) and it's so awesome. I finished reading his book "filming God" which is incredible too !

I have a question for you, since you are an older christian than me (I am 26 years old and have followed the Lord since almost 2 years now) I am kinda disturbed about some strange things I saw on videos and heard about, a phenomenon that Darren talks about in his book, those manifestations in some churches where almost everybody shake, and roll on the ground or bark and stuff like that. I know that this is pretty controversal but maybe you can give me your opinion about that, in France we don't really have this in meetings....

I know that for exemple Darren told that he experienced it for the first time in the church where the Angel spoke to him but I have hard time believing that the Holy Spirit will make people almost uncontrollable... I also read testimonies about people which have been delivered of a spirit named "kundalini" which provoke those kind of effect on people, that is a spirit from meditation or hinduism something like that... But I have seen those manifestations in meetings of awesome people of God like Jason Westerfield and Bethel church etc.... So I'm kinda lost there...

What are your thoughts about that ?
Thanks a lot
Be blessed !

I responded:

Hi Kevin - thank you for writing.

Re. unusual manifestations (barking like dogs, etc.) I strongly recommend that you read Randy Clark's excellent book There Is More! (Reclaiming the Power of Impartation). Randy was there at the beginning of the Toronto Blessing. He writes about these manifestations and how they were handled, and how John Arnott came to view them.

Here are a few thoughts on unusual manifestations in general.

1. I don't seek manifestations, I seek Jesus. If God gives a "sign," it's because the sign points us to Christ. Signs are not to be worshiped; God is.

2. Discern what is from God and what is not. Here good leadership is essential.

3. Just because something is weird does not mean it is from God.

4. Just because something is weird does not mean it is not from God. Surely the movement of God's Spirit is not confined to our very limited imaginations.

5. I have to believe it is possible for God to, at times, so move upon and in a person that they have a hard time controlling their physical and emotional responses. For example, sometimes when I am preaching I begin to cry. I cannot stop this emotion and could not if I tried. Often my tears are tears of joy. The joy that wells up within me is, precisely, uncontrollable and from-God. So uncontrollability cannot be a sign that an emotional or physical response is not from God. It can be a God-thing, and evidence that it is a God-thing can be healing, or deliverance, or greater love for Jesus, or the knowledge of being loved by God, and so on.

6. Simply because similar manifestations are recorded in other religions does not invalidate what can be authentic experiences that are of God.

I hope this helps.

Again, thanks for writing. Blessings!

John Piippo