Outgoing Head Calls on Churches Not to Lose Pentecostal Experience
As new leaders for the Assemblies of God prepare to officially take office Oct. 8, the outgoing head is advising the Pentecostal group to continue embracing their Pentecostal practice.
Mainly, relying on the Holy Spirit, according to General Superintendent Thomas E. Trask.
Pentecostalism is one of the fastest growing segments of global Christianity with at least 500 million adherents worldwide. And where countries are openly Pentecostal, they are experiencing "remarkable growth," said Trask in an interview with Today's Pentecostal Evangel, a publication of the Assemblies of God.
"In the American culture, it's easy to think we can build the Church apart from the work of the Spirit," he said. "But history shows us where that leads. Churches that once had the touch of God have lost it because they did not rely on the Holy Spirit. We too can lose the touch of God."...
Well, JD, I would suggest you read the booklet on spiritual gifts,
or one of several sermons on the topic, "Speaking in Tongues for What Purpose?"
"Spiritual gifts are one of the means by which God is accomplishing His work through His people - the church, today. By carefully studying the Scriptures we find all we need to know to fully use the gifts He gives. At the same time, in an attempt to hinder the work of God in the world today - Satan and the world continue opposing God's work with efforts to stir up confusion, controversy and division in the church. One such area of opposition has surrounded the gift of tongues.
In this portion of his epistle, Paul contrasts the gifts of verbal communication - prophecy and tongues. The contrast is drawn by directing attention back to the purpose of the gifts, what was being spoken and to whom. In doing so much of the confusion about the gift of speaking in tongues and what God intended it to accomplish is clarified."
Abigail wrote: Scripture please? Where in the Bible does it state that the gifts of the Spirit ceased when the Scriptures were written?
Our Lord gave power to perform confirming miracles to 82 people. The apostles in Mt 10 and 70 other disciples in Lk 10. This was in connection with his earthly ministry to the Jews, Later he said to these same people they were to use these signs when he broadened the message to the whole world in Mk 16. A historical side note (Mk was written in AD 58) - Mr 16:20 And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with [them], and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.
Silas, sent to the brethren with the results of the Jerusalem counsel of Ac 15 confirmed his message to them with signs. Ac 15:32 And Judas and Silas, being prophets also themselves, exhorted the brethren with many words, and confirmed [them].
But we are told who exercised these gifts if you will receive it.
3 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him; 4 God also bearing THEM witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?
JD wrote: Fellow Saint, have you submitted yourself to Stephanas? I quote these verses to highlight the fact these letters were written in a historical context. The office of prophet was exercised in these churches. They had the spiritual gifts. One of the gifts was prophecy. That is speaking truth one has not learned. It is by revelation and was needed before the Scriptures were written. Tongues were for a sign to the Jews during the transition. They have ceased when the need for them ceased which was sometimes before 70 AD! The apostles and 70 prophets were the only recipients of sign gifts!
Scripture please? Where in the Bible does it state that the gifts of the Spirit ceased when the Scriptures were written? I know!! You will answer I Cor 13:8âbut Scripture does not say the gifts of the Spirit will ceaseâyou have to read it into the Scripture. Even if you don't agree, admit it!!!
Thanks JD. Historical books they are, but worthy of doctrine. Speaking in tongues and submitting to Stephanus are two entirely different things, one being the manifestation of the Holy Ghost(which is still active and alive here on earth in the church) and the other a person who is no longer here but was evidently in some authoritative position back then. Stephanus isn't here now and I"m not in the same group as he was(many centuries separating us). He's not in my church either so I can't submit to him. Just some common sense says there's a big difference between Stephanus and speaking in tongues. Also Stephanus didn't write an epistle and he nowhere comes close to saying what Jim said.
Fellow Saint wrote: But the Bible says "forbid not to speak with tongues." If speaking in tongues is not valid behavior then why did the Apostle say it shouldn't be forbidden?
1Co 16:15 I beseech you, brethren, (ye know the house of Stephanas, that it is the firstfruits of Achaia, and [that] they have addicted themselves to the ministry of the saints,) 16 That ye submit yourselves unto such, and to every one that helpeth with us, and laboureth.
Fellow Saint, have you submitted yourself to Stephanas?
1Co 16:12 As touching [our] brother Apollos, I greatly desired him to come unto you with the brethren: but his will was not at all to come at this time; but he will come when he shall have convenient time.
I quote these verses to highlight the fact these letters were written in a historical context. The office of prophet was exercised in these churches. They had the spiritual gifts. One of the gifts was prophecy. That is speaking truth one has not learned. It is by revelation and was needed before the Scriptures were written. Tongues were for a sign to the Jews during the transition. They have ceased when the need for them ceased which was sometimes before 70 AD! The apostles and 70 prophets were the only recipients of sign gifts!
Yes, Jim, I've seen the comments. And there's no scripture to support them. But let's make it fair: You beg the Assemblies of God to give something up from their faith, so why don't you ask your church to do the same or, adopt that which you ask the A-G to lose from it's faith. The choice is yours. I'm just playing by your rules. Asking for the Holy Ghost is not nonsense. What's nonsense is to say you aren't supposed to do this. See Luke 11:13 and the accounts in Acts. It was taken literally then and should be now and is by some. Those who don't are in grave error or promoting nonsense. Speaking against the receiving of the Holy Ghost deprives one of sanctification and thus being acceptable to God(Romans 15:16) yielding lamps empty of oil and due to rejection. If that's the doctrine you want to spread, that's your choice, but one with which I cannot take part. Speaking in tongues is not nonsense. If it is, please quote the same statement from the Apostles. Jim says "Speaking in tongues is not valid Christian behavior." But the Bible says "forbid not to speak with tongues." If speaking in tongues is not valid behavior then why did the Apostle say it shouldn't be forbidden? Jim, you're making the Christian faith far more confusing than it needs to be with those kind of statments.
"f you're understanding of Jesus Christ is not formed by the truth of the Scripture, you're not dealing with the biblical Jesus. If I'm good with words and I can move your feelings. Then I tell you those feelings are really the presence of Christ and His Spirit in your heart. How do you know? You trust me. No, it's to be anchored in truth."
I don't know what Jim wants them to lose. It's in the Bible. Jim, receiving the Holy Ghost subsequent to conversion is fully scriptural. Jesus promised the Holy Ghost is given to those who ask and the Christians in the following years(See Acts) believed this literally. The Assemblies of God and any other church which believes in receiving the Holy Ghost has nothing to lose but should keep that which has been entrusted to them.
Are Experiences a Valid Source of Truth? Yes, if they are from the Holy Spirit.
Does God Still Give Revelation Today? Yes, The Holy Spirit gives understanding of the Word of God, gives admonition to repentance, gives instructions and guidance to individuals.
Does God Still Give Prophecies? Yes, covet to prophesy. Prophecy is the testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ, speaking of sin, righteousness, and judgementâtelling of the imminent coming of our Lord.
Proper Biblical Interpretation cannot be done without the illumination of the indwelling Holy Ghost.
Does God do Miracles Today? Yes, God is still in the miracle working business.
How do Spiritual Gifts Operate? By the indwelling Holy Ghost.
Does God Still Heal? Yes, Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever. He is touched with the feelings of our infirmities. He came to heal, deliver, and save. 1Pe 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
Speaking in Tongues. 1Co 14:39 Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues.
What is True Spirituality? Being filled with the Holy Ghost and led by the Spirit.