Posted by: Damon Whitsell | December 1, 2008

THE WORD OF FAITH MOVEMENT: Holy Spirit or Familiar Spirit?

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I have been studying Mormonism for the last few years. I have read numerous books about them. I am fascinated by their history, culture and theology. My interest began one day at WalMart in Panama City Beach, Florida. I was in the book section looking for a beach read. I love sitting on the beach, drinking a cold beverage and reading a great book. So I picked up a book called “The Mormon Bomber”. It was the true story of a ex-Mormon that bombed some other Mormons in Utah.

I was so fascinated by their culture that I even visited the Temple Square in Salt Lake City. I visited Brigham Young’s grave. I have read just about every book that I can find on them.

Something that really stood out to me is the testimonies and accounts of the Gift’s of the Holy Spirit in operation in their services. In Mormon history, there have been many occasions of people speaking in tongues and getting revelations from God. There have been many reports of healings, miracles and visions just like in the Charismatic Church of today.

The Mormons believe in an open canon. They believe that God is still speaking to His Prophets with Divine Revelation. In addition to the Bible, they have the Book of Mormon, the Peril of Great Price and the Book of Doctrines and Covenants. In other words, they have their Bible like we do, plus a lot of other stuff. I have read much of it and cannot accept it. I do not believe that Joseph Smith was a Prophet no more than I believe that Kenneth Hagin was a Prophet. I reject every single vision and experience that Joseph Smith claimed. I reject Kenneth Hagin’s visions too. I also reject the extra Biblical ideas and revelations of all the other Charismatic teachers of today.

I have done much study of Joseph Smith. Witnesses agree that he was sincere and passionate. There are many accounts of him praying, fasting, studying the Word, witnessing and weeping over his church. Same with Kenneth Hagin. But once ministers start preaching their dreams and visions I am off the boat.

Both the Charismatics and the Mormons give testimonies of the Holy Spirit, great joy, laughter, signs and wonders. But are these manifestations from the Holy Spirit of God?

The Mormon Church is NOT Biblical Christianity. They have different ideas about Jesus, God and the plan of redemption than those expressed in Scripture. It is a cult. Many Charismatic Teachers have ideas about Christianity that are in addition or apart from the Bible, but Charismatics are born again Christians.

The point is that both can be tapping into Familiar Spirits thinking that they are in tune with the Holy Spirit. Just because you have visions, manifestations and exceeding joy with goosebumps does not mean that it is the Holy Spirit of the Bible.

Any Christian that begins pressing into the spirit realm is opening himself up to deception. The best bet is to always stick to the exact written Word of God. Feelings and experiences can be duped by the devil in order to deceive. I believe that Joseph Smith was deceived. He went beyond the plain written Word and thought that he was hearing from God. I believe that Kenneth Hagin was deceived also. He did a great bit of preaching and teaching based off of his visions and experiences that are not in the Word of God. Both of these ministers heavily influenced their followers to go deeper into the Spirit, but which Spirit is being drawn upon?

I have been to many so called Holy Ghost Meetings that may not have had much to do at all with the True Spirit of God. Many things can be staged and manipulated to appear to be from God. Gold dust, angel dust, gold fillings, doves feathers, vapors and fake tumors that are really chicken livers have been a part of many of the great Holy Ghost services of the Charismatic church. Jim Jones was good at this stuff. He did fake healings to draw a crowd for the money. Many are still drinking the Kool-Aid.

These manifestations are not scriptural at all, yet those that are duped into believing them get really excited and will believe anything. Take the Lake Land Revival and the Brownsville Revival. Much hype and fakery, but charismatics took it hook, line and sinker. No different than those poor Mormons that are utterly deceived.

We will ceased to be deceived when we bacome Sola Scriptura, Only Scripture!

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