by Lasaro Flores

    As I look at much of what is referred to as the moving of the Holy Spirit of God in the crusades or church services of many of the preachers and televangelists on TV, I cannot in a good conscience accept it to be Scriptural. Not only is there so much of false doctrine being taught, but also much of what is being practiced cannot be of the Spirit of God. In fact, just last night as I was looking at a particular church services, the pastor, in trying to justify himself for his actions, told the congregation  that if there was anyone that objected to what they were doing and said that it was of the flesh, told them that it was alright to start in the 'flesh', and if that they were sincere, then the Holy Spirit would take control of their worship and praise of God and make it 'spiritual'. Now I ask: Can we truthfully say that what this pastor said is of the Spirit of God? Can we say that the Holy Spirit moved him to say such a thing that clearly contradicts the Word of God? I think not!

    I honestly try not to be critical and judgmental, and even give the benefit of the doubt to those with whom I disagree in many points with respect to the things that they do. But when it comes to the things of God which we are to believe and practice, then it becomes another matter. I realize that even then there can be many things that we as Christians  will disagree on, nevertheless, we are still responsible before God to "prove all things"; and to "hold fast that which is good" (1 Thessalonions 5:21); especially regarding the doctrine and practice of the "one faith" (Ephesians 4:5) "which was once delivered unto the saints" (Jude 3). I know that Christians, and even churches, can be 'different' in their praise and worship of God; for instance, a Baptist or an Assembly of God church; in other words, one could be more 'conservative', and the other more 'expressive'; yet, even if there are 'differences' in some areas, essentially there will be a SCRIPTURALITY to it because it is "in spirit and in truth" (John 4:23,24). ALL TRUE PRAISE AND WORSHIP OF GOD REQUIRES BOTH THE SPIRIT AND THE TRUTH!!!

    Now, what is my problem? someone might ask. Well, it is not so much a problem, but a concern because of what I see taking place within a "visible professing Christianity". It is a concern because of the kind of 'Jesus' that is being witnessed to; it is a concern because of the kind of 'spirit' that is being manifested; and it is a concern because of the kind of 'gospel' that is being proclaimed. Everything that we do as Christians gives a testimony of who we are, and of what we believe; especially when we come together as a church to praise and worship Him whom we confess to be our Lord and Savior. I have to say that our words and actions within the confines of the church walls reveals much of our Christian profession. Therefore, it is imperative that we "know how (we) oughtest to behave...in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth" (1 Timothy 3:15); and this can only be true when the blessed Holy Spirit is in control of all of our words and actions, so that we can speak the truth, "as the truth is in Jesus" (Ephesians 4:21), and that "all things be done decently and in order" (1 Corinthians 14:40).

    Another thing that this same pastor that I referred to said was that they didn't have a bulletin, or an order of worship, but whatever they did in their praise and worship was to be led by the Holy Spirit. But after watching the services for a few minutes, I wondered if the Spirit of God was leading it: I noticed that the people were being 'emotionalized' with the music and the 'feelin' good' preaching, ending with trying to get the people 'slain in the Spirit'. In fact, it was the typical church service that we're getting accustomed seeing on TV. Yet it was 'tame' compared to others that I have seen, such as the ones that are involved with the 'laughing revival', or like the one where the preacher swings his coat around, or blows on the people, and they all fall down. What is truly sad is when this preacher, after the people fall down, tells his assistants to pick them up, so that he can knock them down again. But worse, is when he has children or young people on the stage, that after being knock down, they start shaking with convulsions.

    The reason that this has happen, and is happening and getting worse, is because professing 'Christians' have been seduced into receiving "another spirit" (2 Corinthians 11:4). The doors of the churches have been opened wide to let the so-called 'anointed' prophets and preachers come in preaching "another Jesus" and "another gospel". All of these goes hand-in-hand; for if it is "another Jesus", then it is "another spirit" that is received and "another gospel" that is accepted. When this is true in an individual or church, then it is impossible to "worship the Father in spirit and truth" (John 4:23), and to "worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness" (Psalm 29:2). It is imperative, then, that we take heed and "search the scriptures" (John 5:39), and "believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world" (1 John 4:1), lest we be drag into "damnable heresies" (2 Peter 2:1) and find ourselves offering "strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded...not" (Leviticus 10:1) in our Praise and Worship of God.