THE INTOXICATING SPELL OF RODNEY HOWARD-BROWNE and Rick Joyner
An Eye-Witness Report on the
Canadian Escapades of the “Holy Ghost Bartender”
by Yves Brault
In this day and age as frantic spiritual manifestations attract the masses, becoming wilder as present-day religious leaders continually offer greater spiritual and physical benefits to their flock, an ever-increasing disregard for biblical principles and doctrines pervades the Church while many call these days the greatest revival we have ever known.
While the gifts of the Spirit are greatly emphasized, the fruit is rarely even mentioned. The word “anointed” has become the religious sales pitch of the nineties. There are anointed preachers, anointed singers, anointed messages, anointed praise-a-thons. Everything seems to be anointed—with a catch. True, we “have an anointing from the Holy One,” and “we have received an anointing which abides in us” (1 John 2:20, 27), but the meaning often carries a sense of “getting” it by attending some special kind of meeting and giving a certain sum of money in return.
The phenomenon of being “slain in the Spirit” has become commonplace, particularly in well-orchestrated demonstrations of laying on of hands that include a “catcher” behind the one being prayed over. Of course, that person is well aware that the catcher will gently deposit him on the floor. This sense of safety is essential. I myself, volunteered on a regular basis in those sessions. It always bothered me to see the abuse of the practice. It becomes a show where the preacher lays flat a follower as the gladiator of old would overcome a captive. Many times you can hear an “ouch” as the individual hits somebody or the floor too hard. Or you can see those on the floor waving their hands or positioning themselves more comfortably. If they’re conscious enough to feel pain or move their body, they’re conscious enough to remain standing.
The laughing phenomenon has had a phenomenal impact since the early nineties. It is characterized by uncontrollable laughter and is often accompanied by body jerking, convulsions, spinning, or in other cases catalepsy, or even slumber. Interestingly, the Bible doesn’t mention these phenomena as being a norm for Christian living. Laughter and joy are discussed aplenty, but no ecstatic physical contortions of this nature is said to manifest an inward feeling of joy.
One may argue that such effects will not hurt, that although there might be some abuse caused by excess zeal from the part of the followers or lack of control from the part of the leaders, as a whole the Church can only benefit from this laughter revival. But ultimately any doctrine or action that has no basis in the Bible should raise concern. If it’s not found in the Bible, where does it come from? In this case, if the source is not the Holy Spirit, there are only two options left: the flesh, and darkness.
A number of believers blame the devil or demons for causing wild physical demonstrations. While it is true in some cases, the main agents are manipulative techniques that stimulate the flesh, or carnal nature, whose works are contrary to the Spirit. Several works of the flesh are listed in Galatians 5:19-21. They are in sharp contrast with the fruit of the Spirit. Paul also tells us not to partake with those whose practices are not fitting for the saints (Ephesians 5:3-7), and admonished us “not to have any fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them” (vv. 8-11).
One has to realize that hysterical laugher, twitching, uncontrollable body spasms and the like occur in metaphysical pagan and other non-Christian groups. The manipulative technique “mesmerism” defined as the capacity to raise the emotional state of an individual or a crowd by different means, to an abnormal but controllable intensity, frequently causes faintings, convulsive movements, immoderate laughter, piercing cries, slumber, and so forth. Sometimes this technique is even used in the name of God, that is, disguised with Christian terminology. We could even say that we’re experiencing a revival of this technique. This is mainly due to an overemphasis on “signs and wonders,” an obsession with sensational experiences, and a disregard for true Christian doctrines, character and living.
The False Teachings of Rick Joyner
By Joseph R. Chambers, D.D., 1999
The doctrines of Biblical truth have always been the love and joy of godly men and women. When the soul of man is regenerated by the Holy Spirit, it is a regeneration unto righteousness or rightness to God and His will. The joy of such individuals is to discover truth and with great delight live that truth. The Word of God is the sword of the Spirit by which the believer is pruned and prepared unto righteousness. Righteousness is our willing surrender to right conduct according to the Word and will of God. Holiness is His work of imputation and impartation. We act in obedience toward righteousness, but He makes us holy by the divine work of redemption.
Biblical truth and doctrine are absolutely imperative for true righteousness and holiness. It is impossible to bring a clean thing out of an unclean thing. The root and foundation must first be purified and established. If the doctrines are not pure, then the fruit cannot be pure. "For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches." (Romans 11:16, KJV).
The Holy Spirit in Proverbs said, "The wicked desireth the net of evil men: but the root of the righteous yieldeth fruit." (Proverbs 12:12, KJV). Again, He said, "A man shall not be established by wickedness: but the root of the righteous shall not be moved." (Proverbs 12:3, KJV). The Book of Job gives an eternal principle. "Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one." (Job 14:4, KJV).
The impure doctrines of our present church systems have muddied the waters of religion until it hardly favors the Holy Bible and the true church. Revival is impossible until we return to "the love of the truth." (II Thessalonians 2:10). The love of the truth is the saving power of God.
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