The Wheat and the Tares
I hear much about fake Christian movements, and those who believe anything. Many complaints are true and justified. How do you explain apparent miracles in the middle of dubious ministry events? How can you tell what is true?
Nothing should be a surprise. We are in the end times, and prophecy is being fulfilled. Do not let the negative push you away from what is God! But remember, the positive is still around as well.
(1) Real miracles, good minister:
I have seen very large prayer meetings where the devout have come to honor and praise God. They bring their petitions also before their heavenly Father, and pray that it is God’s sovereign time, and will, to answer their prayers. The music honors God, and the worshippers are lost in the presence of God. Their hearts are right, and for some, it is the right time for God to show favor to their needs and requests. The atmosphere is one of holiness and purity.
All of this is real, and Jesus has promised that if we ask anything of the Father in His name, if it is God’s will, He will hear our prayers, and give us what we have need of. The Lord we serve is not a man that He should lie. He is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. He healed thousands of years ago. He even made personal visits to people called by His name. He continues to do this today, and will also do this in the future as well. His greatest desire is to minister to His creation, and love and help them. All that is required is for us to believe in Him, and ask with humble hearts, according to His perfect will.
The minister, through all of this, is obedient to God, and properly gives God the glory for what is happening. He is lost in the atmosphere as well, and is humbled by what God is doing. He preaches the Word of God accurately.
(2) Real miracles, bad minister:
A common experience now is that sincere Christians pray for healing, and their prayers can be answered. However, they might be in the presence of a false signs and wonders minister, who seems to take credit for their faith and the resulting healing. We then might doubt the genuine healing, and reject what God has done.
We need to discern between the false and the true in the same meeting. What we see are the “wheat and the tares coming up together.”
Jesus explained how God would deal with the mixed picture we see now:
Mat 13:24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:
Mat 13:25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.
Mat 13:26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
Mat 13:27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?
Mat 13:28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?
Mat 13:29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.
Mat 13:30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
In a case where the miracles are real, but the minister is false, sowing tares among the wheat (deception), we must still be responsible, and both acknowledge what God has done, and deplore the minister. We must not reject God’s work, just because there is something wrong with the minister, or something wrong with other individuals present, who might contribute to a negative atmosphere.
If we incorrectly assigned true miracles as the “work of the devil,” this would grieve the Holy Spirit, and the very heart of God. The devil will also be successful at convincing you to reject God’s work as evil. Do not give the devil this opportunity to deceive you out of a blessing.
We must remember that God can take negative circumstances, and bring something positive out of them. In a sea of unbelief and fraud, God will still see the few faithful individuals who are crying out for the true presence of God. He will still respond to their faith and hearts, while ignoring the false ones.
(2) False miracles (sensationalism), bad minister
The minister here lacks holiness, and offers sensational, possibly physical, experiences that excite crowds. He lacks true alignment with the Word of God, and frequently ignores the Bible, not preaching from it. Either that, or he distorts the scripture, or openly lies about it, so that it justifies the sensationalism. The minister may make unscriptural or artificial remarks, like “faking” the gift of tongues, and say things that are obviously not holy in nature.
One example that comes to mind is a minister that claims that angels have a fragrance, and that the bible mentions this. The truth is that the bible does NOT mention this, and he just made this up. So he lies to the crowd. This same minister runs around screaming “sheek a boom bah !” and “BAM !!!” at people. He also kicks them. This is NOT the Holy Spirit at work.
Also, the focus of any worship service is Jesus. Other spirits, like angels, should not take priority over Jesus. If they do, then this is a false service, because any true angel will glorify God, not accept worship for itself.
(2 a) bad people too
There can be times when everything is false, and people may be open to deception, looking for sensationalism, rather than God’s true presence. These are thrill seekers, not God seekers. In this case, the devil can have a holiday. There is no atmosphere of reverence or worship. There is no holiness. Nothing is sacred. If supernatural events occur, they are either contrived, or demonic in origin. The supernatural is just something exciting to do, and has its own fascination.
People that lust after lies with itching ears will be deceived. There is a danger of demonic oppression coming from the service that will persist after the service as well. People may become ill. Here, people will get what they are looking for, which is not God, but the “wild supernatural.”
(2b) “good” people
This combination is tragic. They do not see the minister as false, and while they do not have bad motives, they are not really well defined in their faith, and so they are easily deceived. They do not know what they want, and go along with the crowd. The atmosphere can be as in 2a, but these people do not see anything wrong. So they become deceived, victims of their own ignorance, and are open to demonic oppressions of different kinds.
At first, they may not notice anything, but eventually they will get pulled into experiences with demonic manifestations. They will go away from meetings thinking that works of the devil are actually God.
Some of the complaints I hear about people barking like dogs comes under this category. For most people, this sounds horrible, but to the genuinely deceived, this is “God.” since they really do not know who God is anyhow.
To them “God” is some kind of sensational experience. To them, God is not a person, and as long as they stay in this atmosphere, they will never know who God really is.
So, think for a moment. What kind of minister do you have? What kind of atmosphere do you have? What are you really looking for? What kind of person are you? Your answer will determine if you have really found God’s true presence or not, and the ultimate answer to your prayers.
See also “Fake and Real Charismatics” Click here for more
See also “Baptism of the Holy Spirit & Tongues” (the real gift) Click here for more
See also “The Church is having a power failure” Click here for more
See also “God’s Glory- a Practical Application” Click here for more
See also Speaking in Tongues – the Science and the Spirit Click here for more