Sexta, 24 de Maio de 2024
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Stranger Revivals

Influenced by false teachers, many people believe that the bizarre practices that today are seen in many evangelical cults are brightening proof. For these people, the revived church, that is, the church where the Holy Spirit is really working is one in which all scream, stomp, dance and cry frantically. In some communities, this bizarre form of "revival" comes to incredible excesses, with people sending sound laughter, rolling on the floor, barking, growling and howling like animals or imitating drunks staggering. All these dreadful practices are attributed to the power of the Holy Spirit in remarkable performance over the people.

It will, however, these strangers manifestations are even evidence of the action of the Spirit in one's life? Does the Spirit who moved the prophets in the Old Testament (1 Pet 1:11), who served in the life and ministry of John the Baptist (Luke 1.13-15), who anointed the promised Messiah (Luke 4.16-19), which enabled the church to the testimony of the gospel (Acts 1.8) and that inspired the writings of the Bible (2 Peter 1.20,21) is the same spirit that makes people become barking four on the church floor or rolling frantically between the banks of the congregation?

Of course not! In fact, in the New Testament, the people ruled by the Holy Spirit did one thing: witnessing boldly about their faith through preaching and godly living (Acts 1.8; 4.8-13,31; 6.3; 11.22-24). Thus, acts of hysteria that are seen in many churches today do not reflect anything of true spiritual revival.

Another common misconception is enlivened consider any movement that God will use to promote conversions. Every believer must remember that being used by God is not proof of spiritual force, since God uses anyone, even the worst unbelievers!

In fact, the Bible shows that the devil was used by God in the life of Job and Paul so that these men knew more about the Lord and His grace (Job 42.5; 2 Cor 12.7-9). Demons were used by the Lord to his plans come true (1 Samuel 16:14; 1 Kings 22.20-23). People and even unbelieving nations were used by God in the fulfillment of its purposes (Is 10.5,6, Acts 4.27, 28).

Also in the history of the Christian church you can see God using terribly corrupted religious institutions to promote the conversion of his elect. Luther and the other first generation of reformers are examples of conversions that occurred within the Roman Catholic Church, at a time when that church was a true den of criminals.

No, so why consider revived a movement simply because it is used by God in the salvation of the lost. Nor should the believer surprising when the Lord uses false churches or even the most horrible pagan sects to meet his rescuers designs. Moreover, it is necessary to emphasize that the true believer, when converted into so corrupted contexts soon realizes, through the Holy Spirit who dwells in it (1 John 2.20,21,27), that there is no place and quickly flees into the walls a church that preaches the truth.

Also quite common nowadays is wrong thinking that the revived church has an explosive growth. Although often God bless the living church with numerical growth, the increase in members of the evangelical community is not necessarily proof that it is a movement full of spiritual force.

In fact, Jesus never said the gospel and sound doctrine would have wide acceptance in this world. Rather, he said that the preaching of the true faith attract a small number of people (Mt 7.13, 14; 22:14; Luke 12:32; 13.22-28), and his ministry, as proved this is true (John 6.66). Moreover, said it would have wide acceptance would be a lie and what would be multiplied lawlessness. Have love, coming from transformed hearts, this would cool in almost all (Mt 24.11-13).

Like Jesus, Paul and John also said that the true doctrine would have few followers and fables had huge success among men (2 Tim 4.1-4, Rev. 3.4), which suggests that the rapid and uncontrolled numerical growth of a church proof is often that their leaders do not preach sound doctrine.

Indeed, believers cannot forget the fact that "wherever the carcass is, there the vultures will gather" to the mountains, leaping hysterical about the putrid meat from false preaching (Mt 24.28).

All these notions distorted about what is a revived church must therefore be rejected and replaced by a concept based in Scripture and not the inventions of false teachers. In the light of the Bible, a possible definition of revived church would be as follows: revived church is one whose members are mature doctrinally, have a straight life of holiness, are dedicated to the service of Christ and demonstrate joy for their salvation in a vibrant worship and a dynamic and loving communion. Any group that tell revived and does not fit in any way that definition is proud, he deceives himself and, with their disorders and follies, stain the good name of the church of God before men.

It was precisely what happened in the Corinthian church. There the services were marked by misuse of the gift of tongues (which at that time still existed) and great confusion (1 Corinthians 11.20,21; 14.19,23). Nevertheless, those believers considered themselves the cream of Christianity and were full of himself (1 Cor 5.2). The apostle, however, wrote to them saying that, in fact, they were immature, carnal (1 Cor 3.1,2), tolerant of sin that reigned in their midst (1 Cor 5.1) and disunited (1 Cor 1.10-13; 6.7; 11:18) . Paul saw as the poor people to basic notions of decency and order, getting to have to teach them how to behave during services (1 Cor 14.26-40).

May God spare us so error and enliven our church the way that his word teaches, freeing us from such stranger revivals.

Pr. Marcos Granconato
Soli Deo Gloria
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