What Steve Jobs did for the computer ... Pentecostalism has taken the clutter out of Christianity and boiled it down to its essence, making it easily available to anyone who wants to believe.

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Rob Fall's picture

Say what??

Hoping to shed more light than heat..

G. N. Barkman's picture

If this is the future face of Christianity, we're in greater trouble than we ever imagined!

G. N. Barkman

Richard Pajak's picture

Is it any worse than the death induced by Cessationism?

Richard Pajak

G. N. Barkman's picture

And what death would that be? The death of inviting extra-Biblical revelation to deceive us?

G. N. Barkman

J Ng's picture

G. N. Barkman wrote:
And what death would that be? The death of inviting extra-Biblical revelation to deceive us?

You mean the death of a glorious worldwide movement that rests on, um, a hoax attributed to the Third Person of the Godhead?

Agnes Ozman, they claim, first wrote in "Chinese" just as she spoke in that tongue; so her spiritual successors continue to speak and act out the same gibberish (they've stopped the chicken scratching part, smartly enough) and say it's the Pentecost:
http://krex.k-state.edu/dspace/bitstream/2097/1371/1/JonathanRoot2009.pdf (p. 90 - 91)
http://web.ku.edu/~ksreligion/docs/history/pentecostal_movement.pdf (p. 3, fn Cool
http://www.freegraceresources.org/pentecostmovement.pdf
http://wlsessays.net/files/KruegerPentecostal.pdf
http://francisgumerlock.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/Tongues%20in%20th...
http://uir.unisa.ac.za/bitstream/handle/10500/4469/Botha.pdf?sequence=1 (Section 2:2)
http://coursematerials.vision.edu/rs439/doctrine_baptism.pdf
http://books.google.ca/books?hl=en&lr&id=A9zNmi8ubYsC&oi=fnd&pg=PT218&dq... or http://www.prayeroven.co.za/e_boeke/Roberts%20Lairdon/Roberts%20Lairdon-... (p. 224)

Still, some of them proudly have their pants on fire (claiming linguistic verification in direct contradiction of their own kind on the Chinese xenoglossia claim):
http://books.google.ca/books?id=TNr81DFwANIC&lpg=PA1&ots=tujgmpTUmd&dq=a...

Kinda makes cessationism look good, I'd think.

Richard Pajak's picture

"Kinda makes cessationism look good, I'd think"

If it takes all that to make cessationism look good then cessationism must be in pretty dire straits.

Richard Pajak

JG's picture

If you didn't go out and pick up manna this morning, then you are a cessationist. You may or may not believe that Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today, and forever. You may or may not be putting God in a box. But if you didn't collect manna today, you absolutely do believe that the way God deals with His people changes over time. You do believe that He sometimes actually stops doing things that He did in the past for a particular reason, even when those things were a real blessing to His people while they lasted.

The same is true if you've ever heard a prophet say something that didn't come true, and you didn't stone him. If continuationists are going to be consistent, they'd better get practicing on their stone-throwing, it seems to me.

Or if you offer your sacrifices (you do offer sacrifices, don't you?) at the temple in Jerusalem rather than the tabernacle in Shiloh.

Or if you hear someone "speaking in tongues" and don't look around to see to which foreigner he's speaking in his own language. If you don't do that, you really don't believe Acts 2 is happening today. You think that kind of speaking in tongues has ceased, and that speaking in tongues today is something different from what it was in Acts 2.

We're all cessationists.

Cessationism does induce death. It induces the death of false teaching by placing unrivaled authority in the Scriptures. It induces the death of a pride that demands that God act in a certain way just because He acted in similar ways at some time in the past. It kills the love of power that drives too many people. It destroys the ambitions of those who want to lord it over God's people by claiming that they get special words from the Lord that no one else gets. Cessation can indeed be quite deadly. That's hardly surprising, because it is Biblical, and Hebrews 4:12 and Jeremiah 23:29 tell us of the devastating power of God's Word.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

JG, I would have to say that the way you are using the word "cessationist" is different from the way I've heard it used by many fundamentalists today. If you mean that many miracles of the past are no longer occurring, there wouldn't be many who would disagree. However, the way cessationism is used by many pastors, Bible teachers, etc. today is to say that (for example) not only are tongues not in use the way they were in Acts, but also ANY appearance of something called tongues is necessarily false. That's a qualitative difference.

I don't really know where I stand on God's use of miraculous gifts in our time, but I can't see how God allowing someone to speak to someone else in his tongue does damage to the sufficiency of scripture, since there is no new "revelation" occurring. I would certainly want to see some verification to believe that such a gift actually appeared, but I can't see how we (or the scriptures) bind God in a way to prevent his use of miraculous gifts as he sees fit. And although I'm no prophetic expert, I believe scriptural prophecy has already told us that visions, dreams, and other miraculous gifts will appear again in "the end times," whatever those are defined to be.

Dave Barnhart

J Ng's picture

Richard Pajak wrote:
"Kinda makes cessationism look good, I'd think"

If it takes all that to make cessationism look good then cessationism must be in pretty dire straits.

Jest sayin' Biggrin

JG's picture

The point is that the general concept of cessationism, that God chooses to work in different times in different ways, is obviously Scriptural. Yet, even those continuationists who claim to have on a seat-belt (like Mark Driscoll) trot out the "Jesus Christ the same" argument to support their view. The immutable character of our God has no bearing on this question, because we all know His dealings with us change, even though He Himself does not change.

If the cessationist/continuationist debate were only about tongues as Biblically described in Scripture, I would also agree that it doesn't touch on the sufficiency of Scripture. But it obviously goes way beyond Biblical tongues to "spirit languages", extra-Biblical revelation, etc.

We were told tongues would cease (time unspecified). We don't see anything happening that is remotely like Acts 2 anywhere in the world today. No one does. Does that mean God can't, in isolated instances, miraculously enable one of His people to speak an unknown language for a specific purpose? I don't believe it does mean that -- of course He could do that.

But I think it is pretty obvious that the gift as it is described in Acts 2 is no longer being given on a regular basis today, anywhere in the world. And I believe that what we observe today is entirely consistent with the stated purpose in I Corinthians 14 of the giving of tongues, as a sign to disobedient and unbelieving Israel.

A miracle is not the same as a spiritual gift. Caiaphas prophecied, but had no spiritual gift of prophecy. Cornelius had a vision before he had the Holy Spirit. Nebuchadnezzar had dreams. God can do anything anytime, but a spiritual gift is obviously (based on Romans 12 and I Corinthians) something that you are expected to continue to exercise repeatedly in service.

If you tell me of a missionary who miraculously was able to speak in the language of his hearers without language study, I'll say, "Praise the Lord, God worked a miracle." If you show me a man who can travel to different tribes every week and give them the Gospel in their languages without ever learning them, that's when I'll think we're talking about the spiritual gift of tongues. It is called a diversity of tongues in I Cor. 12:28, after all. Yet today's "tongues-speakers" can only handle one language (that no one else can understand), and even the missionary stories we sometimes hear only deal with one language. One language for one day may be a wonderful miracle, but it isn't the spiritual gift described in Scripture.

Ok, I'm wandering around, so I'll quit....

JobK's picture

JG wrote:
If you didn't go out and pick up manna this morning, then you are a cessationist. You may or may not believe that Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today, and forever. You may or may not be putting God in a box. But if you didn't collect manna today, you absolutely do believe that the way God deals with His people changes over time. You do believe that He sometimes actually stops doing things that He did in the past for a particular reason, even when those things were a real blessing to His people while they lasted.

The same is true if you've ever heard a prophet say something that didn't come true, and you didn't stone him. If continuationists are going to be consistent, they'd better get practicing on their stone-throwing, it seems to me.

Or if you offer your sacrifices (you do offer sacrifices, don't you?) at the temple in Jerusalem rather than the tabernacle in Shiloh.

Or if you hear someone "speaking in tongues" and don't look around to see to which foreigner he's speaking in his own language. If you don't do that, you really don't believe Acts 2 is happening today. You think that kind of speaking in tongues has ceased, and that speaking in tongues today is something different from what it was in Acts 2.

We're all cessationists.

Cessationism does induce death. It induces the death of false teaching by placing unrivaled authority in the Scriptures. It induces the death of a pride that demands that God act in a certain way just because He acted in similar ways at some time in the past. It kills the love of power that drives too many people. It destroys the ambitions of those who want to lord it over God's people by claiming that they get special words from the Lord that no one else gets. Cessation can indeed be quite deadly. That's hardly surprising, because it is Biblical, and Hebrews 4:12 and Jeremiah 23:29 tell us of the devastating power of God's Word.

And I am not even a hard cessationist (more of an "in practice" cessationist).

Solo Christo, Soli Deo Gloria, Sola Fide, Sola Gratia, Sola Scriptura
http://healtheland.wordpress.com