When I was much younger in my Christian walk, I was really opposed to the charismatic. Now that I have matured, and a long way from where I was, I am still opposed to what we know today as the charismatic, but now I know why I am opposed and why the spirits must be tested. In my early days my opposition was more about denominational teaching than biblical understanding. Yes, teaching in the church should be biblical but the fear of all things charismatic seemed to have set aside the biblical description of power. Instead of seeking the true power that was to be given to those who believe, many churches threw out anything charismatic because of the distorted views of the charismatics. And yes, those views are distorted, but scripture is not. To have ignored what the bible clearly states puts the non-charismatics in the same level of false teaching as the charismatics. The charismatics saw that there was more to the church than what they were seeing but failed to test the spirits and were deceived. The non-charismatics ignored the scriptures that were set out plainly in front of them, but the fear of evil won out over the fear of God. I was taught that the Pentecostals / Charismatics were wrong and yes today I still believe the same. But they are not wrong to believe there is the same biblical power available to the church today. There are many levels to the charismatic from mild to extreme, just as there are those same levels in fundamentalism. So while it was made clear that the charismatics were off track, I also believe so were the Methodists (my upbringing), including the seminary that taught me that. 

        You will see this aversion to the charismatic in those doctrine and theology guidebooks I talked about yesterday. Many will say we don’t believe as they do, as in charismatics, about certain things. They make sure that the reader knows that we don’t do as they do. Here are a few examples that show this.  Yesterday I referenced cessationism and here is an example of this demonic doctrine. This Baptist college and seminary stated, “that they have gone on record in its Definition and Direction Statement as holding a non-charismatic position. (Really what they are saying here is they don’t believe what the bible states) They defined their position by saying that “charismatic refers to a belief that all of the spiritual gifts listed in 1 Corinthians 12:14 are available today.” (Nowhere does the bible say they are not) Then in their beliefs section they said, “We believe that God established the church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Himself being the cornerstone, and that He confirmed the apostolic message with signs and wonders in that era. Having served their divine purpose, the revelatory and sign gifts of the Spirit, including tongues and the gift of healing, have ceased. (But the other gifts haven’t?) We believe that God continues to hear and answer prayers for the sick and afflicted according to His sovereign will.” (Not very often) This teaching does not come from God but satan because satan knows what the power of God will do to him. By getting the church not to use the weapons at hand means an easy victory. At this point you would say this college and seminary does not believe what the bible states but believes in doctrines of demons and the false teaching of man. So, what kind of an education do you think you would receive? 2 Timothy 3:5 “having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.” But it is not just those who flat out deny the power that is available, you also have those who say they believe but reality shows they do not. 

        In the discipline (2008) of the Wesleyan church I used to belong to, they had a weak statement on the gifts of the Spirit. They even separate the Holy Spirit from His gifts. If the Holy Spirit is present, so are His gifts. They state, “We believe that the gift in the Spirit is the Holy Spirit himself and He is to be desired more than the gifts of the Spirit which He in His wise counsel bestows upon individual members of the church.” They think this even though Paul told us to 1 Corinthians 14:1 “Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy.” If you desire the Holy Spirit, you desire the gifts as well. Why wouldn’t you? As these are gifts given to build the church. 1 Corinthians 12:7 “Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.” The lack of gifts explains the collapse of the church. They are more concerned that the gifts were not emotion than actually exercising those gifts to build the church. They said, “the relative value of the gifts of the spirit is to be tested by their usefulness in the church and not by the ecstasy produced in the ones receiving them.” That is a bizarre statement as how in the world are the gifts of the Spirit not all useful. 1 Corinthians 12:8 “To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.” Just imagine all these in effect in the church. Yes, you are correct, if you were thinking the church would then look like Jesus. Matthew 4:23 “Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people. 24 News about him spread all over Syria, and people brought to him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed; and he healed them.” Matthew 11:4 “Jesus replied, “Go back and report to John what you hear and see: 5 The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. 6 Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.” 

        They did the same with tongues. They said, “we believe in the miraculous use of languages and the interpretation of languages in its biblical and historical setting but it is contrary to the word of God to teach that speaking in an unknown tongue or the gift of tongues is evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. We believe that the use of an ecstatic prayer language has no clear scriptural sanction and it should not be promoted among us.” Now it would sound like I might be defending the charismatic here, but we saw with Peter Acts 10:44 “While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. 45 The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on Gentiles. 46 For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, 47 “Surely no one can stand in the way of their being baptized with water. They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.” Then Acts 19:4 “Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. 7 There were about twelve men in all.” The reality as scripture states, is that tongues is evidence of the Holy Spirit. But having said that, real tongues is evidence, not meaningless babble you hear in charismatic circles. In both cases they said they believed in the gifts and languages but from my experience with them, they were nowhere to be seen. Instead of seeking the power God said the church would have, they were more concerned to make it known that they were not charismatic. The problem was that they in their effort to separate themselves from the charismatic, rejected the true power, of which they did not have, that is available to all who would believe. The fear of the charismatic kept them away from the true power from on High. We also see this in the reference part of bibles there is often clarity made. When talking about tongues in the NIV there is a note saying, “or languages”. This is referencing that tongues is not babble, like the charismatics.

        When I say I am against the charismatics, I am not against the power of God as a cessationist would say. I want to be part of all the power and authority God has to offer His church, that same power that created all things and that same power that raised Jesus from the dead. Jesus said Mathew 28:19 “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” That is a lot of power and authority and yes, the church would do as Jesus did and as the disciples did. Mark 6:12 “They went out and preached that people should repent. 13 They drove out many demons and anointed many sick people with oil and healed them.” The Gospels and Acts were not just stories but a guidebook for the church. This is what the church was supposed to look like. I believe exactly as scripture tells us to believe; there is power available to all who would believe, but the spirits must always be tested. Luke 24:48 “You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.” It really is ignorant to think that only those first few disciples would have the power from on High. 

        In the Old Testament we saw that when the Holy Spirit came upon a person, there was power. Judges 14:6 “The Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon him (Samson) so that he tore the lion apart with his bare hands as he might have torn a young goat.” 1 Samuel 10:6 “The Spirit of the Lord will come powerfully upon you (Saul), and you will prophesy with them; and you will be changed into a different person.” 1 Samuel 16:13 “So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David.” Then in the New Testament, Matthew 3:11 “I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Paul said, Romans 15:18 “I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done— 19 by the power of signs and wonders, through the power of the Spirit of God. So from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum, I have fully proclaimed the gospel of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 2:4 “My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power 5 so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.” Acts 19:11 “God did extraordinary miracles through Paul, 12 so that even handkerchiefs and aprons that had touched him were taken to the sick, and their illnesses were cured and the evil spirits left them.” Ephesians 3:16 “I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.” 1 Thessalonians 1:5 “Our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction.” Paul said Galatians 3:1 “You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. 2 I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by believing what you heard? 3 Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh? 4 Have you experienced so much in vain—if it really was in vain? 5 So again I ask, does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you by the works of the law, or by your believing what you heard?” The church has decided the flesh would be better. Most churches do not want to accept what the bible really states because that means they would have to acknowledge they are off track and repent.

        The charismatics were right to believe what the bible states, but they were wrong for not testing the spirts and were deceived especially in the areas of tongues. If tongues were a sign, then there would also be the power to heal and cast out demons. The charismatics are just as powerless as those who believe in cessationism. The charismatics were exposed by covid, as were all churches. The Baptist college and seminary flat out reject the possibility of God moving in power today through His disciples and you should have nothing to do with them. On the other side of the coin, you have the Charismatics who do believe there is power available, they just didn’t stick to God’s word and were deceived just as Jesus warned us. Mark 13:5 “Jesus said to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. 6 Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and will deceive many. 21 At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 23 So be on your guard; I have told you everything ahead of time.” But then you have those like the Wesleyan church who say they believe but really, they don’t. There are many who are not cessationists and would never acknowledge that teaching as truth, but at the same time the word of God is not truth in their own lives, nor do they truly believe what the bible states. They seem content to continue in the strength of their own hands. The reality is they do not believe Jesus when He said, John 14:11 “Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. 12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”

        All three examples are wrong because the power of God is not present. Yes, there is power present in some cases but satan is masquerading but for the most part it is not power from on High. These next verses are where the fear of the charismatic came from and rightfully so, but they should not have ignored scripture in the process but should have sought out the truth because there are as many verses that talk about God’s power. Mark 13:22 “For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.” 2 Corinthians 11:13 “For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. 15 It is not surprising, then, if his servants also masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.” 2 Thessalonians 2:9 “The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, 10 and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing.” 

        When I was a part of the charismatic church, there was some power, but it was a distortion of scripture and not even a close representation. The little power there was, was not of God. I heard a false prophet say to us one time at a meeting, I see the blood of Jesus across the front, so He said come, so I thought all I need to do was stand there as I had a knee issue, but nothing. He would not even pray for me. The same night two little girls were there with a deadly disease, and they went back to their seats crying because he would not pray for them. You would think that if the blood of the Lamb was present there would have been tremendous healing instead of just talk. Usually there was a lot left to the imagination and lots of emotion. People were supposedly slain in the spirit, but it was not the spirit of God. They would fall on their backs, but scripture states it is face down before God. Falling on your back is sexual submission as in animals. That is how satan distorts and many fall for it. Prayers would go unanswered just like every other church. The charismatics say because they babble in tongues that the Holy Spirit has filled them, but there is no power other than some carpet time. I shared this example already, but it describes how the tongues of the charismatic is not like the tongues of scripture. I was at a men’s breakfast at a Pentecostal church and the speaker was a missionary who went to a remote part of the world. He shared the story of speaking to these people about the gospel with his interpreter. Then in this setting where every single person spoke English, he babbled away in front of guests which led to absolutely nothing. We know what tongues is from Acts 2:5 “Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6 When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. 7 Utterly amazed, they asked: “Aren’t all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? 9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” 12 Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?” Tongues it is not babble, but a language, even in prayer. In this day and age where cultures are mixing this should be the norm but instead every culture has their own church. Even in the same building you will have a church with a different language that meets later in the day.  

        The charismatics are just as powerless as the non-charismatics except they have more things like fairy dust and angel feathers, lots of words of so-called knowledge like the Julie Green I talked about yesterday. Both sides have been led astray by emotionalism as everyone likes good singing and powerful sermons. In non-charismatic churches, satan doesn’t even have to do anything supernatural as they don’t even believe there is power available to all who believe, his work is already done. This is why it is crucial to test the spirits. 1 John 4:1 “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” These false prophets are everywhere, and not just in the charismatic circles. Doctrines like cessationism and there are many others, are doctrines of demons. When the Baptist college and seminary denounced the gifts of the Spirit, they can no longer be called Christ followers. By the way this is the lie they are teaching the next generation to believe and many will stumble. Matthew 18:6 “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.” Matthew 23:15 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when you have succeeded, you make them twice as much a child of hell as you are.”

            This is how you test the spirits. When this college /seminary was talking about cessationism, doctrine of demons, they said it was not truth, yet they only spoke from a human perspective and that is because you will not find it in scripture. Yes, there is no power in the church but not because it is not available. Scripture does tell us that there is no power because the church has rebelled against God’s word and the abomination that causes desolation has decimated the church. The desolation is so destructive that Jesus said Matthew 24:22 “If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened.” We saw rebellion and lack of power happen time and time again in the Old Testament. What scripture does tell us is that when God turns His face from us, there is no power and our enemies defeat us as disobedience always leads to defeat. Can you imagine saying the gifts of the spirit are no longer necessary when there is sickness all around us and for the most part God is not answering prayers. The church is slowly dying while other religions like Islam are growing rapidly. Yes, some people are healed, get better or are cured, but that happens across the board whether you go to church or not, but the numbers are small compared to the amount of sick there is both physical and mental. Then add what most don’t like to talk about and that is the demonic. Jesus sent out His disciples in the same power and authority He had. Luke 9:1 “When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, 2 and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.” 

        As we celebrated at Easter, Jesus is still alive, and we are still supposed to be His disciples. The bible is the living word of God and still applies to His disciples no matter what year it is. Demons are still here, and people are still sick, and we desperately need God to turn His face back to the church. God’s plan was to send the Holy Spirit and all His gifts, not just the ones someone deemed suitable. John 14:15 “If you love me, keep my commands. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 16:12 “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. 14 He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. 15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.” 1 Corinthians 12 4 “There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.”

        At Pentecost, the Holy Spirit was poured out on the church and not just for those few people but also for those who would follow as Peter said, Acts 2:38 “And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.” When you received the gift of the Holy Spirit your life will never be the same, as the power of God will be dwelling in you. This is how it was supposed to be. John 1:14 “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” 1 Corinthians 3:16 “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?” Ephesians 2:19 “Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.” 

        As we saw at Pentecost, those in the upper room were totally changed and became fearless servants of God and the power from on High flowed from them. They received the Holy Spirit and the gifts given to them. They didn’t pray and ask God to hopefully heal someone like the church does today. The gifts of the Spirit were poured out on them and they did as Jesus did. Acts 3:6 “Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” 7 Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. 8 He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God. 9 When all the people saw him walking and praising God, 10 they recognized him as the same man who used to sit begging at the temple gate called Beautiful, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.” Acts 4:29 “Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus. 31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.” Pentecost was the beginning and not a one-time event. Ananias and Saphira both died because they lied to the Spirit. Acts 5:12 “The apostles performed many signs and wonders among the people. And all the believers used to meet together in Solomon’s Colonnade. 13 No one else dared join them, even though they were highly regarded by the people. 14 Nevertheless, more and more men and women believed in the Lord and were added to their number. 15 As a result, people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter’s shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by. 16 Crowds gathered also from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those tormented by impure spirits, and all of them were healed.” Acts 8:4 “Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went. 5 Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Messiah there. 6 When the crowds heard Philip and saw the signs he performed, they all paid close attention to what he said. 7 For with shrieks, impure spirits came out of many, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. 8 So there was great joy in that city.” Here is another way to test the spirits. See if this happens at your church. James 5:14 “Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” Charismatic or non-charismatic, this is not happening as described in scripture.

        It really is strange how much the church resists the Holy Spirit. Stephen said Acts 7:51 “You stiff-necked people! Your hearts and ears are still uncircumcised. You are just like your ancestors: You always resist the Holy Spirit! 52 Was there ever a prophet your ancestors did not persecute? They even killed those who predicted the coming of the Righteous One. And now you have betrayed and murdered him— 53 you who have received the law that was given through angels but have not obeyed it.” Isaiah 30:9 “For these are rebellious people, deceitful children, children unwilling to listen to the Lord’s instruction. 10 They say to the seers, “See no more visions!” and to the prophets, “Give us no more visions of what is right! Tell us pleasant things, prophesy illusions. 11 Leave this way, get off this path, and stop confronting us with the Holy One of Israel!” Today more than ever, the world needs the church to be the church, but it starts with the church returning to God’s word and believing. This means turning from wicked ways which are the ways of men and women and satan. When the church turns from their wicked ways, God will turn His face back to us and power will flow once again. Jeremiah was told to write these words. Jeremiah 36:2 “Take a scroll and write on it all the words I have spoken to you concerning Israel, Judah and all the other nations from the time I began speaking to you in the reign of Josiah till now. 3 Perhaps when the people of Judah hear about every disaster I plan to inflict on them, they will each turn from their wicked ways; then I will forgive their wickedness and their sin.” Jeremiah then sent Baruch to the Lord’s temple. 6 “So you go to the house of the Lord on a day of fasting and read to the people from the scroll the words of the Lord that you wrote as I dictated. Read them to all the people of Judah who come in from their towns. 7 Perhaps they will bring their petition before the Lord and will each turn from their wicked ways, for the anger and wrath pronounced against this people by the Lord are great.” Some responded but King Jehoiakim burned the scroll. Then God said, 31 I will punish him and his children and his attendants for their wickedness; I will bring on them and those living in Jerusalem and the people of Judah every disaster I pronounced against them, because they have not listened.”

        Today the church still refuses to listen even though we have been warned that hell is real, meanwhile the church has been decimated but there is good news in the midst of this desolation as God promised there will always be a remnant of believers. As Peter said Acts 2:38 “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call. 40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” We live in a corrupt generation, a generation who still rejects the true power of God. Here is this verse again about the gifts of the Holy Spirit. If we believe the Holy Spirit is present as most do, then the gifts will also be present. So you have to ask, is the Holy Spirit as present as most church believe? 1 Corinthians 12:4 “There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.” God’s plan was to give these gifts to the church. How can someone in the same breath say that when they got saved, the Holy Spirit was present but then reject His gifts. 

        The gifts will return when the church returns to God’s word and believe what God says. Read this as if to the church. 2 Chronicles 30:6 “People of Israel, return to the Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, that he may return to you who are left, who have escaped from the hand of the kings of Assyria. 7 Do not be like your parents and your fellow Israelites, who were unfaithful to the Lord, the God of their ancestors, so that he made them an object of horror, as you see. 8 Do not be stiff-necked, as your ancestors were; submit to the Lord. Come to his sanctuary, which he has consecrated forever. Serve the Lord your God, so that his fierce anger will turn away from you. 9 If you return to the Lord, then your fellow Israelites and your children will be shown compassion by their captors and will return to this land, for the Lord your God is gracious and compassionate. He will not turn his face from you if you return to him.” Daniel prayed, Daniel 9:17 “Now, our God, hear the prayers and petitions of your servant. For your sake, Lord, look with favor on your desolate sanctuary. 18 Give ear, our God, and hear; open your eyes and see the desolation of the city that bears your Name. We do not make requests of you because we are righteous, but because of your great mercy. 19 Lord, listen! Lord, forgive! Lord, hear and act! For your sake, my God, do not delay, because your city and your people bear your Name.” Jesus said Luke 11:9 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. 11 “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13 If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” 

        If the church is to go to the ends of the earth with power and authority, we must obey God’s word. We must believe, Ephesians 4:11 “Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. 14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” We must believe that the church can do as Jesus did with the power given to us from on High. John 14:12 “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.” And we must believe that we need to be sent in power and authority. Mark 16:15 “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well. 19 After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God. 20 Then the disciples went out and preached everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied it.” 

        God wants to bless us with His presence and power. Don’t be stubborn and obstinate and reject the good gifts God wants to give us. Hebrews 2:3 “How shall we escape if we ignore so great a salvation? This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him. 4 God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.” God will do the same today, but we must accept His word and reject the ways of man / satan.