At age thirteen I was "slain in the Spirit" at a Bill Gothard seminar. At age fourteen I spoke in tongues during a worship service.
I've heard prophecies, seen miracles, "sensed" evil spirits and experienced "movements" of the Spirit while seeking God's will.
I was taught a radical division between the Old & New Testament, between Isreal and the Church and between Law and Grace.
Yet, I was never taught the basics of the Christian faith in any systematic or coherent sense during my teen-age years. Latter in life, as I was separated from this environment, God providentially brought the works of Spuregeon, Edwards and the services of the Banner of Truth into my possession. Thus I learned to understand the Bible in a more comprehensive manner, especially exegetically.
The most impacting lesson I learned was the sovereign and gracious provisions of God's salvation. And that salvation included a sanctification within the context of God's Law. I finally understood that I was saved by Christ's obedience to the Law, that He "condemned sin in the flesh, 4 that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit." Rom. 8:4.
No longer did I seek God's will outside His Word, Law and Spirit. No longer was I seeking a Spirit pitted against His own Law--a Lawless Spirit. No, I desired God to work in me to do and work His good pleasure. Praise be to God!
Pastor Shawn Mathis was raised by God-fearing parents, served in the Air Force, worked as an electrical engineer and then entered the ministry by Godâ€™s grace....