by Randall Hardy

If someone comes and preaches another Jesus than the one we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you submit to it readily enough. 2 Cor. 11:4

Why Another Piece Of Paper?

Since early summer, the charismatic church in Great Britain has been preoccupied with what has been called "The Toronto Blessing". I have not been surprised by the spread of this experience, feeling from the outset that it was going to be more than just one of those passing phases which the Church has gone through over the years - recent ones in particular! I have been amazed however, by the endless paperwork that has been generated by the interest in this "outpouring". In one way therefore it is with regret that I have felt it necessary to add to the documents available. My desire in doing so is to examine the teaching behind these manifestations and to ask what THE LORD may or may not be doing through this.

The Need For Careful, Biblical Study

Papers and articles focussing on this phenomena divide into three types - those written by the enthusiasts, others by those who condemn it completely and finally ones authored by those who like Gamaliel choose to sit on the spiritual fence (Acts 5:34). Sadly the vast majority of papers which have come my way have been very light on Biblical examination of the events that are taking place at present. This is as true of those who have written critically as those who are encouraging others to drink deeply. I hope not to follow such a path in this study: my aim is to examine carefully Scriptures which are relevant and so provoke consideration of the teaching which has over the years prepared the way for what we see happening now.

The documents I have read by those who are involved in this move are without exception weak in both their use and exposition of the Scriptures. So weak that I feel there would be little benefit in taking space here to repudiate the handful of texts they are clutching at to support their "roarings" and "shakings". By way of example though I would point out that the passage in Acts 3 where the only occurrence of the phrase "times of refreshing" in the whole of Scripture is to be found, is a passage that is evangelistic in nature and consequently provides no support for this description being applied to events within the Church. In context Peter seems to be looking forward to the return of Christ and specifically the preceding restoration of Israel (Rom. 11:19-27).

A Central Scripture

One Scripture cited in support of the way meetings are being increasingly conducted in the light of this move is Luke 11:11-13. This is where Jesus taught "If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?" Christians are being encouraged not to hold back by the claim that it must be the Holy Spirit that arrives, since it is the Holy Spirit who is being invited to "come upon" the gathering. This is the vital issue. Is this passage being quoted appropriately? If it is, then this must be the Holy Spirit that people are receiving. If it is not, then there is ground to investigate further whether or not these events are the work of God's Spirit.

Two points need to be made initially. Jesus taught that we should "ask the Father to give us the Holy Spirit" - I understand that common practice today is to "ask the Spirit to come". Secondly, the work of the Holy Spirit is to convict people of sin, righteousness and coming judgement as well as to lead believers into all truth. There seems to be little evidence of this level of conviction and as I will seek to demonstrate later, no increase in the desire for the truth. For these reasons I found my own heart unsettled with Luke 11 being appealed to, and so I asked THE LORD to make it clear whether I was resisting His work and His word or whether what Jesus taught on this occasion was now being quoted in error by some. It was over two weeks before I believe THE LORD gave me His response. I ask you to test my conviction for yourself. The phrase I heard from THE LORD was "for He gives the Spirit without measure."

The above is from John 3:34 and the whole verse states "For He whom God has sent speaks the words of God; for He gives the Spirit without measure." This is in a section that seems to be the apostle John making an author's comment as he wrote his account of the life of Jesus and is perhaps therefore his introduction to the story which follows, (though it is now separated from it by the introduction of chapter divisions.) What follows is the account of Jesus's conversation with the Samaritan woman at Jacob's well. In 3:34 we have a clear statement by the Holy Spirit (through His inspiration of Scripture) that when the Father gives Him (the Spirit) to anyone it is without measure. In the context John is saying this about Jesus and so we have every person of the Godhead involved in this very simple but important statement. John here states that when we receive the Holy Spirit we receive all of Him not a part. If I visited you at home and you welcomed me in you would have to welcome all of me - it would be impossible to think of asking me to leave one of my arms or legs outside.

Receive the Spirit - but how often?

For years we have debated in the Church when and how believers are baptised in, or filled with the Spirit, but we have failed to consider another New Testament term, that of receiving the Holy Spirit. It occurs in 9 passages in the New Testament (John 7:39, John 14:17, John 20:22, Acts 2:38, Acts 8:15,19, Acts 19:2, 2 Cor. 11:4, Gal. 3:2, and Gal. 3:14). However, this description puts an emphasis on our responsibility when we first encounter Him in power - we have to welcome Him into our lives, we have to receive Him. (David Pawson in his book The Normal Christian Birth points out that Evangelicals have majored on the un-Biblical practice of "inviting Jesus into our lives/hearts" and neglected to teach that it is the Holy Spirit whom we are to "receive".) My concern here though is to emphasise in the light of John 3:34 that when we receive the Holy Spirit for the first time, because He is a person and not a commodity, our Heavenly Father gives the whole of Him to us and not a portion. I agree that we seldom recognise that the fullness of God already dwells within us because we have not allowed Him to fill every part of us (Eph. 3:19, 2 Pet. 1:4). However, our failure to allow the Holy Spirit to fill us continually does not negate the truth that we have received Him in His fullness.

Look at Acts 19:2 listed above. Paul asked those men if they received the Holy Spirit when they believed. It seems that he expected that this was the normal time to do this and that it should be an identifiable experience. In contrast he also encouraged Christians to continue being filled with the Spirit. It is as if we leak or more probably allow other things take the space in our lives that He should fill. We are like a glass with a number of stones in it. When water is poured in until it overflows, the glass appears to be full of water, but when some of the stones are removed then there is space for more water. At such times do we need to receive the Holy Spirit again? And again? And again?.....

Think once more of my visit to your home. You receive me, but you then realise that you are not giving me your full attention. I doubt if you would ask me to step outside, knock on the door again so that you could receive me once more and then give me all of your attention. That would be absurd! All you would need to do is change your attitude (repent), ask my forgiveness and behave differently from then on. Similarly, we do not (cannot) start all over again with the Holy Spirit.

The Fountain of Flowing Water  

Twice in his gospel John records Jesus's teaching relevant to our need for constant refilling. In his conversation with the Samaritan woman already referred to above he said, "Everyone who drinks of this water shall thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life." (John 3:13,14). Later, at the Feast of Booths, Jesus taught, "If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, 'From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water.'" John adds "But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified." (John 7:37-39).

On both occasions Jesus spoke of the source of flowing water as being located within the one who drinks the water that He supplies, once they have initially received it from Him. John very clearly identifies this water as being the Holy Spirit who was not given at the time of Jesus's sermon, because Jesus had not been glorified. Knowing therefore that I have the Holy Spirit residing in me as a spring of living water I have to ask "How can I receive Him again?" Returning to my visit to your home, we are in conversation when a knock comes to the door. The one person you know it cannot be is me - I am sitting there in front of you. How silly then if you said, "That must be Randall Hardy, I will go and let him in." Even if the man at the door used my name it could not be me - could it?

Who Is At The Door?  

I fear however that today we are seeing Christians who should know better treating the Holy Spirit in this way. When they were first filled with (or if you prefer, baptised in) the Holy Spirit, they received Him. Though this is not the place to look at the topic in depth, I believe that He does not come and go from us with our every whim of unfaithfulness, if he leaves it will be for ever. (If you have difficulty with this could I suggest that you study Hebrews 6:4-8 [note in v4 the specific mention of the Holy Spirit], and the writer's argument is carried through to 10:26-31. Peter similarly in his warning about false prophets emphasises the finality of turning from Christ. 2 Pet. 20-22.) Having therefore once received the Spirit of God, and assuming that we have not become apostate, He resides within us. Therefore we must ask, "If the Holy Spirit is in residence already, who can this spirit be that people are encouraged to receive time and time again?

Perhaps the "Toronto Blessing" is not new (Ecclesiastes suggests that there is nothing new under the sun), perhaps it was one of the things which Paul had to counter at Corinth when he wrote the words quoted at the start of this study? Paul states that along with the false doctrines and false teachers the Christians there were welcoming into their homes and meetings, they were receiving another spirit which they did not receive previously. Clearly this is not the Holy Spirit, though it (they) may have been masquerading as the Spirit of God.

The Pathway of Error

We must ask why the Corinthian Christians were willing to receive this alternative spirit? We know that they received false teachers who did not preach the same Jesus nor the same gospel as Paul preached - it is very probable that because they listened to bad teachers they were believing wrong doctrine. Perhaps they had been taught not that the Holy Spirit dwells within the believer once they have received Him, but that he comes in some mystical way upon the Church when it is gathered and has to be invited to do the same every time it meets. The details about the Church at Corinth are speculative on my part. However, we do not have to speculate about events of recent years.

In approximately 1982, I attended a meeting at which John Wimber was the speaker. He taught that "the Holy Spirit comes upon a meeting in waves". In response to this, when he slowly waved his hands through the air and said words to the effect of "Here comes another wave" the majority of the congregation would sway slowly in the direction in which his hands were moving. I admit that some people were apparently healed in that meeting, others who were prayed for were not. I acknowledge that I felt a physical sensation during and for some time after that meeting. I have also to acknowledge that I left that meeting aware that he was a man who not only did not know the Scriptures well, but also did not have a love for the truth they contain. I raised my concern over the un-Biblical nature of his teaching about the Holy Spirit with the minister of the fellowship which hosted the meeting. I mention it here because I believe that it is this wrong teaching which has over the last twelve years prepared the ground for the events of this summer and for some time to come.

The Need To Be Doubly Cautious

At this point I want to stress that I am very aware of the danger of calling the genuine work of the Holy Spirit evil (Matt. 12:31), and that those who accept the role of teachers in the Church are scrutinised more sternly (James 3:1). As far as I am able to know my own heart, I can say that I am raising these objections to teaching which has become popular in the charismatic church because I believe it is not founded on the word of God. I have also found no freedom from THE LORD in my own heart to approve these doctrines and do not see in them any firm foundations on which a believer may stand. My own experience is what most would call "charismatic" and I am convinced that this is as vital a part of the Gospel now as it was in the first century. However, I am dismayed at the way the leaders of the present day charismatic movement have seemingly pursued every wind of doctrine that has blown up in the last twenty years or so.

The above is very relevant to my concern about the teaching that the Holy Spirit "comes upon" meetings when invited to do so. Whilst there is no Biblical support for this doctrine, the vast majority of charismatic church leaders have seemingly been happy for the flock under their oversight to attend conferences where this has been a major foundation for the teaching and ministry. In fact many have been eager to be associated with this teaching themselves. Could it be appropriate to ask "Why"? I would not wish to speculate. Scripture however, makes it plain that in the days prior to the return of Jesus one will arise "whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish,". Paul continued that such people are those who "did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. And for this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they might believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness" (2 Thess. 2:8-12).

No one can be definite as to whether these are indeed the end times or not - we do know though that the Scriptures reveal patterns of events throughout human history. If in the last days failure to receive the love of the truth causes men and women to be led into deception then that will be equally as true in every year which precedes them. I ask you to carefully consider if the popular charismatic church and its leaders in particular have not been guilty of valuing other things more highly than the truth? If as I believe they have (my specific concerns are clarified later), then the New Testament makes it clear that they have opened themselves up to gross deception. I suggest therefore that we must consider carefully the so called "Toronto Blessing" in the light of the lack of love for the truth that there is in the Church at this time. (Please note that even its nick-name is untruthful in that it did not originate with the Airport Vineyard in Toronto - it was imported from the USA!)

Examine All Things Carefully

I realise that some who read this may be very perturbed by what I have written. If I can provoke you to seek for the truth in these matters I am glad. However, if you believe that my objections to current events are not true to the Scriptures and have, as seriously as I have with my own doubts, taken them to THE LORD and believe He has shown you true Biblical foundations for the doctrine that lies behind the phenomena I ask you share it with me "so that the limb" in me "which is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather be healed." However, if it provokes because it challenges your experience, or that of your friends, and yet you cannot fault me from the Scriptures I ask you to "Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves!" (2 Cor. 13:5).

Did The Apostles Receive The Spirit often?

Some may wish to argue that in the book of Acts they "received the Spirit" on several occasions, with Acts 4:31 quoted as an example. If we look at the passage carefully we see that they did not pray to receive the Holy Spirit, but to be given boldness in preaching God's word in the face of persecution. Luke records that they were all "filled" with the Holy Spirit and begun to do what they had prayed to do! This is an example of the inner well of the Spirit bursting forth and does not in any way indicate a second reception of Him by those present. Peter, who we know was present both at Pentecost and here in Acts 4, is quite clear that for him the two occasions were very different. Again Luke in reporting to the elders in Jerusalem Peter's explanation of the events in the house of Cornelius is quite clear. In Acts 11:15 we read "And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, just as He did upon us at the beginning." It was clear to Peter that God had treated these Gentiles exactly like he had treated the Jewish apostles at the beginning. It seems therefore that Pentecost was a unique experience for Peter, if it had been repeated from time to time, then he surely would have said words to the effect of "as He does with us whenever we meet".

If you look at the passages quoted earlier which speak of "receiving the Spirit" you will notice that those in Acts are all referring to the occasions when people first believe. (Today regrettably, we have many who have never been told about the Holy Spirit when the Gospel is preached to them and so have to wait for some time before they receive Him, as in Acts 19.) Similarly, in Galatians 3 Paul is pointing the believers there to examine their first experiences of conversion. If it had been happening in their gatherings I think it is reasonable to expect him to have said "This is the only thing I want to find out from you: do you keep receiving the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?" He did not and it is my argument here that today's popular instruction to "Keep receiving - keep drinking the Spirit" has no Biblical foundation.

Is Today's Practice Non-Biblical or Un-Biblical?  

I started by seeking to understand how Luke 11:1-13 is relevant to this so- called "outpouring" of the Holy Spirit. I put it to you that those who keep asking to receive the Holy Spirit are denying the very truth of what Jesus taught. Jesus explained that we have a Father who cares for us, and if we ask Him honestly and earnestly for His Spirit He will give Him to us. If having received Him (and this I would equate with having been baptised in Him) I then go and ask THE LORD to give Him to me again, I am declaring that that which I had received was not the Spirit of Truth. By implication it must have been a snake and not a fish! This must be very close to blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Perhaps in reality what most people who are receiving this present spirit(s) are saying to THE LORD is "The one you have given me is not satisfying enough, please can I have one more to my liking?"

If This Is So What Is God Doing?

Amos 3:7 tells us "Surely the Lord GOD does nothing, without revealing his secret to his servants the prophets." It is therefore reasonable to expect to find some indication in the Scriptures as to what current events may indicate. The Bible provides us with examples of His ways and works, though not necessarily the details of His actions. What follows are a number of passages which I believe demand serious consideration if we are to examine the events of this summer from a true Biblical foundation. Paul knew the penalty for not teaching others the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:27), and it is important that we listen to it without selecting only those aspects which we find to our liking.

Not Every Spirit Sent By God Is Of God

We need to recognise that there are occasions when THE LORD sends a spirit other than His Holy Spirit! In 1 Kings 22 and 2 Chronicles 18 Michiah tells Ahab "Now therefore behold, THE LORD has put a lying spirit in the mouth of these your prophets;". It is worth reading these passages because they demonstrate clearly that THE LORD gives people the counsel and revelations that they want when their hearts are not fully surrendered to Him. We are told that this lying spirit deceived four hundred of the prophets of Israel! One man by contrast remained true to his God. (The majority are not always right.) Concerning King Saul we are told, "Now the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD tormented him." (1 Sam. 16:14-16 also 18:10 & 19:9). It is obvious that Saul had turned away from THE LORD, but I want to be clear that I am not implying that this is the case of all who have experienced the "Toronto Blessing". My point in referring to these two passages is to emphasise that it is very possible for a spirit to be "from THE LORD" and yet be a different spirit to the Holy Spirit.

Will The Church Be Treated Differently From The Jews?

There is another passage which speaks of THE LORD sending a different spirit upon people. Paul in Romans 11:8 says about the Jews, "God gave them a spirit of stupor, eyes that should not see and ears that should not hear, down to this very day." He is quoting Isaiah 29:10 - I recommend again that you read the whole chapter, though I will confine my comments to vs. 9-14. In 9 & 10, we find a people who become drunk, but not with wine - note, this implies that it is not the genuine article. They are blinded by the "spirit of deep sleep" which THE LORD has poured over them. Consequently the prophets and seers are unable to discern the word of THE LORD. This is then emphasised by the picture of the sealed book which neither the taught nor the untaught can read. In Romans Paul clearly identifies this as applying to the Jews and their hardening to the Gospel for the benefit of the Gentiles. However, many prophecies of Scripture have more than one fulfilment because they predict a pattern of events and not simply a single occasion. If a deceiving spirit brought a veil in the past over the faces of God's people could one be doing so today? If the Church today is of a similar nature to Israel then, then we cannot say "No".

We should ask then what attitudes in the heart of Israel caused THE LORD to treat His chosen people so? Isaiah 29:13,14 supplies the answer, "And the Lord said: 'Because this people draw near with their mouth and honour me with their lips, while their hearts are far from me, and their fear of me is a commandment of men learned by rote; therefore, behold, I will again do marvellous things with this people, wonderful and marvellous; and the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the discernment of their discerning men shall be hid.'" Lip service, outward show of religion and hearts that are not humble in the presence of God are the attitudes which in the past provoked THE LORD to send a deceiving spirit amongst His people, especially their prophets. I have already said above that there are many who seemingly prefer to pursue other objectives than to "receive the love of the truth". We should not deceive ourselves by thinking that this applies only to non-Christians, the New Testament has many warnings about false teachers within the Church. Sadly, we act as if we are far too mature (evolved) these days to need those kind of warnings. I should imagine that in the early Church there were many wolves around whose synthetic fleece made them appear to be "lovely people".

Judge Not, But Test Carefully

Today we need to test carefully what men teach, and observe how they live - Paul wept over those who had set their minds on the wrong agenda and warned others not to follow their example (Phil. 3:17-20). Jesus told the Pharisees of His day "I have come in My Father's name, and you do not receive Me; if another shall come in his own name, you will receive him. How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another, and you do not seek the glory that is from the one and only God?" (John 5:43,44) Those who accept praise from other people reveal themselves to be unbelieving towards God! In the modern charismatic Church there are many who seem to prefer the adulation of men and the glory of "signs and wonders" than to "Be diligent to present themselves approved to God as workman who do not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the word of truth." (2 Tim. 2:15) Yes, we can have a wrong attitude to the Bible and bury our faces in it to the extent that we fail to recognise Jesus - Jesus had just accused the Jews of this in John 5. However, He also made it very clear that working wonders in His name is no guarantee of His fellowship with a person! (Matt. 7:22) The road to eternal life is indeed hard and difficult and few find it and those who travel along it must keep their hearts open towards THE LORD paying close attention to Him if they are not to wander off it.

Has The Church Lost Its Ability To Discern Good From Bad?

Returning to Isaiah 29 we find that it is those who have failed to nurture a genuine fear of THE LORD who are blinded by this deceiving spirit of stupor. Again it is emphasised (v14) that the result is a complete loss of spiritual wisdom and discernment. Is this what we see happening in many fellowships worldwide today? I believe we must consider these things carefully. I am surprised by the tolerance of many today of teachings and actions which ten years ago would have been strongly resisted. Has the twentieth century Church already begun to lose its ability to discern truth from error, good from bad? I fear that this is the case, and yet I do not fear because I know that all these things are in the hands of an almighty God. However, this question must be faced especially when the secular press report's "each possession lasts about an hour." - can unbelievers see what believers cannot?

Men Call That Which Is Bad Good!  

It has been widely reported that one manifestation of this spirit is people making animal noises and in particular "roaring like a lion". There is no statement in the Scriptures that identifies this as a work of the Holy Spirit. In Daniel 4 we are told that in spite of a clear advanced warning Nebuchadnezzar found himself behaving totally like an animal as the result of God's judgement. Similarly passages such as Is. 13:21,22, Is. 34:11 and Jer. 50:39 list a variety of animals in the context of them possessing places which have experienced judgement. In one (Is. 34) the nation concerned is Edom, the descendants of Esau who despised his birthright and whom the New Testament uses as a warning to Christians not to neglect their salvation. The other two speak of Babylon, which from its origin as Babel has long been associated with false religion and demonic activity.

It is in the same section of Jeremiah that we do find an occasion predicted when THE LORD will cause people to roar like lions "They will roar together like young lions, they will growl like lions' cubs." (Jer 51:38) What follows in the next two verse is not blessing but judgement, a judgement that is very similar to that described in Is. 29. THE LORD causes the Babylonians to roar like lions in order to lure them into a perpetual sleep!

All together I could find roaring lions mentioned 17 times in Scripture and the majority of occasions it is as a metaphor. The references are listed below, grouped into their descriptive categories:

It has to be noted that none of the 11 references which describe people as "roaring lions" could in any way be considered to identify it as a blessing. All are negative, either likening them to the destructive nature of this animal or as in Jer. 51 to the outworking of a curse.

My desire is to prompt you to consider these things carefully. Therefore it has to be asked: Why are those charged with protecting the flock failing to teach what the Scriptures have to say? Why are they eager to embrace such questionable practices? Why are they unable to discern good from bad? Could this be a time when THE LORD has poured out a spirit of stupor on those who are called by His name but possess hearts which are far from him? Is He turning the charismatic church into a literal laughing stock?

Personal Experience And Convictions  

Originally many thought that this phenomena would be another passing phase similar to several of recent years. I doubt that very much, I believe that this spirit will probably continue to grow in popularity and all evangelical Christians (along with other charismatics) will find themselves coming under various levels of pressure to accept that this is of God. Already this is happening either as the result of people feeling left out or because friends have "felt better" after receiving this spirit, and to question their experience would be to "condemn" them. Further, I have observed two things about those who have accepted this as the work of the Holy Spirit. The first is that they are completely taken up with it to the extent that it often distracts them from applying themselves to THE LORD's business in other things. Secondly, and of importance here, they are unable to allow others who doubt the authenticity of this spirit to be of that opinion - they continually return to the subject until either the objector succumbs or there is open conflict. Such compulsion is not listed amongst the fruit of the Holy Spirit!

Early this year we became aware that many were praying for THE LORD to send a spirit of unity. (With hindsight on what I have written above I would say that by doing so they were denying that this was a characteristic of the Holy Spirit whom they had already received. Eph. 4:3 etc.) We sensed that He was saying that this is what He would give them, not the Spirit of unity, but a spirit of unity. Christians in denominations old and new have spent years rejecting the unity of the one Holy Spirit, and yet now we find the barriers being laid aside because another spirit manifests itself in all types of fellowships! What an insult to the whole of the Godhead! But I fear that this will continue and those who will not accept this spirit will continue to be pressurised, dare I say harassed, in the hope of making them conform to the image of a "united" church, in which others are never criticised. The exception to this, as always, will be that criticism of the "non-conformists" will be acceptable. In many ways I hope that I am wrong in this, but the sense of caution I have is strong and it has not faded with time.

A few days before he first heard of the "Toronto Blessing" Clifford Hill (Prophetic Word Ministries) saw two sheep locked in conflict for over half an hour. He was so concerned that he went out to try and separate them. He failed, and a third sheep which tried to intervene was killed. At that point he believes THE LORD said to him that "An alien spirit is moving among the flock and will cause much division and hurt. Exhort the believers to stand firm, to seek the truth, to keep their eyes upon the great Shepherd of the sheep and never to lose their love for Him or for one another." In the edition of Prophecy Today in which he reported this Clifford was unwilling to commit himself as to whether this was the spirit behind the "Toronto Blessing" or not. I believe it is.

Keep Your Attention Fixed On Jesus

I have written this paper in the hope of encouraging firstly those who have not found freedom in their spirits to embrace this latest "wind of doctrine and experience". You will probably come under much pressure in future months. Make sure that there is nothing between you and THE LORD and do not be swayed by the counsel of men. For about a year now THE LORD has been continually reminding us to keep close to Him - I encourage you to do the same. Secondly, I have written at length to encourage those who have embraced the teaching that has paved the way for this alien spirit, to examine the Scriptures to see if these things are as they have been taught or not. I trust that my arguments have been built not on "proof texts" but on the contexts of the passages I have looked at. I hope that you will carefully consider if it is possible for Christians in the twentieth century to receive another spirit as it was for those in the first.

I believe that it is THE LORD's intention to use this alternative spirit to bring as many as possible to their senses and to recognise where they have been following the desires of their own hearts and not walking in a genuine fear of Him. I ask you again to let me know if you find what I have written contradicts the Scriptures in any way. I want to encourage all to seek after the truth.

This study is intended as a stimulus to personal bible study. Every effort has been made to be accurate, but the reader should test everything (Acts 17:11; 1 Thess 5:21). Please report errors and omissions, and queries unresolved after consulting THE LORD to the writer: Email Randall Hardy

Randall Hardy 13 Mauldeth Road West, Withington, Manchester, M20 3EQ.
© R Hardy: October 1994.  This paper may only be copied in its entirety for private non-commercial use. All other usage requires the written permission of the author.

Christian Bible Studies Main Page
Amen Home Page