When Jesus warned about the road to the kingdom being “narrow”, I think he realized how easy it would be for us to wander off into ditches. And just like we in the northern climes know all too well, when you realize you’re veering toward one ditch, it’s also easy to over-correct and find yourself in the other ditch. Such it is, I think, with the balance we need to maintain in these days between Spirit and Truth, not getting into false teachings like the obsessive “signs & wonders” movement, and not over-correcting and getting into legalism, shunning the very thought of anything “supernatural.”
BST Series: Part 2
Today’s Talk Notes
Andrew Strom (author of “Kundalini Warning-Are False Spirits Invading the Church?”, New Zealand pastor) article “Miracles Are A Must!”
Ditch #1: People addicted to “signs and wonders”
Adrenaline Junkies: A sense that people are trying to live from “mountain top” to “mountain top”.
Power Seekers: Simon the Magician Acts 8 (vv 4-22): A need for power
Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word. Philip went down to the city of Samaria and proclaimed to them the Christ. And the crowds with one accord paid attention to what was being said by Philip when they heard him and saw the signs that he did. For unclean spirits, crying out with a loud voice, came out of many who had them, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. So there was much joy in that city. But there was a man named Simon, who had previously practiced magic in the city and amazed the people of Samaria, saying that he himself was somebody great. They all paid attention to him, from the least to the greatest, saying, “This man is the power of God that is called Great.” And they paid attention to him because for a long time he had amazed them with his magic. But when they believed Philip as he preached good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women. Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And seeing signs and great miracles performed, he was amazed. Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit, for he had not yet fallen on any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then they laid their hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit. Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was given through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money, saying, “Give me this power also, so that anyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” But Peter said to him, “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money! You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. Repent, therefore, of this wickedness of yours, and pray to the Lord that, if possible, the intent of your heart may be forgiven you.
Entertainment Seekers: Trump phenomenon, reality TV, Kardashians
Weak of Faith: need signs & wonders to believe
- Matt 12:38-42 | Then some of the scribes and Pharisees answered him, saying, “Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you.” But he answered them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is here. The queen of the South will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, something greater than Solomon is here.
- Deceived or deceivers? Gold Dust, Angel Feathers and Sid Roth: rejected his religion, now Messianic Jew—excited like a child with anything looking like a “move of God”—but before turning to Christ he turned to the New Age, needed Jesus to set him free from his evil “spirit guide”. No discernment?