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Category Archives: Revival

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How Long Will We Be Satisfied With Happy, Shallow Revivals?

By Bert Farias

Charismatic-worship

Many of our so called modern revivals are happy but shallow. This is of deep concern to me for I am not seeing the old anointings any more. My heart grieves especially for the young people who have never witnessed the real power of God.

Honestly, some things I see today are appalling. That old teaching that we are free from the Law has raised its ugly head again. Certainly, we are free from the Law written on stone, but we are not free from the Law that is written in our hearts. Continue reading “How Long Will Shallow, Spiritless Revivals Suffice?” »

Beware of Superstar, Self-Appointed Church Personalities
By Bert M. Farias

Bert Farias

Bert M. Farias — revivalist and founder of Holy Fire Ministries

Are these popular ministerial personalities great in the sight of the Lord or only in the sight of man? Are they really known in heaven or only on the Earth? Are they God-anointed or self-appointed? Is it ministry they deliver or some subtle form of hype?

“Many who are great in the sight of the Lord are living in cottages and hovels, and are scarcely known, unless to a few neighbors equally obscure,” said William Jay.

Believers, especially Christian ministers, need a baptism of clear seeing and holy discerning. Our ministry marketing budget may be soaring high, but our perception can sometimes be so low. Our motives need refinement. The refiner’s fire is near the door. Will you open it? Can you see the narrow way to holiness? Or is all the smoke blocking your view?

Before me now I see the impression I saw months ago. There are two scenes. One is of a clear and sunny horizon lined with an endless row of people. The other is of a vast forest. Dense fog covers the forest, and out of the fog comes the Lord Jesus Christ. Christ, for the most part, is not found among the general populace. People have to really look to recognize Him.

Think about it. Our Savior was not born in a big metropolis, but in the small town of Bethlehem. And He grew up in the despised region of Galilee. He was not born in a palace where kings are, but in a lowly stable. The wise men had to really search and diligently follow the star to find Him. When Jesus entered into ministry, it is written that He had no place to lay His head (Luke 9:58). He did not have a ministry headquarters. He died a criminal’s death on a cross, naked and nearly alone. His grave was a borrowed tomb. His throne was an invisible one hidden from the multitudes of those who were healed and delivered through His ministry. He was called meek and lowly; certainly not the description fitting for a king. But today, ministry is so different.

A church brings in a special speaker. He’s known all over, so the people flock to hear him. They come from everywhere, every night. At the meetings they jump, sing and shout. They hear the newest revelation proclaimed with jubilation. The people are saying of the special speaker:

He’s on TV,
I love his personality.
His ministry is so big,
His clothes I really dig.
He’s so wonderful!
And his wife looks so smart,
Her latest hit song
Is at the top of the chart.
Oh, I love to hear him speak,
And I hate to see him go.
Maybe he’ll stay another week,
Or speak again on his daily show.

The same church brings in a name unknown. The people stay away by the droves. A few faithful gather to hear the Word of God. They long for holiness and a vision of Jesus. With a broken heart, the little “no-name” preacher weeps for lost souls as he delivers a word from God.

The big personality was sent by man. The little “no-name” was sent by God. The crowds who came from miles away came to hear a man. The smaller group came seeking Jesus. One set of meetings produced much excitement but no fruit of holiness. The other smaller meetings generated far less excitement but resulted in a brokenness and a lasting work of holiness in those who came. This may seem like an extreme example, but it makes the point.

Just because someone or something is big doesn’t mean it’s godly (and it is also understood that bigness is not tantamount to ungodliness either). In fact, it’s a greater test of our devotion to be big (whatever “big” means to us) and yet remain holy, than it is to be small (whatever “small” means to us) and holy. And let’s not forget that smallness is not equivalent to godliness either. Discerning the difference between hype and holiness is what’s important. But we are so often fooled by the “big” while being unaware and undiscerning of the “small.”

Holiness is not only sought but bought: “Buy of Me gold tried in the fire that you may be rich” (Rev 3:17). Have you been tried in the fire? Have you tested your teachings? Have you experienced and even suffered for the truth you believe? Truth is to be bought, not sold. We sell the truth when we sell our souls to pleasure, profit and earthly popularity. We buy the truth when we are tried and found true, when we suffer with godly sorrow the pains of our personal Gethsemanes, and yet remain private about them. When we allow God to strip us of all glory-seeking and subtle pride, we are buying the truth.

Too many today are selling messages they never bought. When we minister forth from what we’ve personally experienced or suffered, the Spirit will produce a far greater effect of holiness in the hearers. The deeper the suffering is—or has been—usually the more perfect the obedience. The more fiery the trials, and the deeper the burning, the purer and richer the vessel becomes.

This is what we must understand: God’s measuring gauge and standard of holiness is so different from man’s. Bigness and smallness are terms not found in Christ. Here is the criterion for holiness: Is Christ made visible? Is He seen and heard? Is the ministration of Christ being imparted? Is His Word being made manifest? Are the people changed more into His likeness? Is it producing a spirit of holiness and an increase in the fruits of righteousness? Are they paying less credence to men and personalities and reverencing God?

The problem with today’s generation is that we elevate the teachings of popular Christian teachers and we have a tendency to place greater value on them than the Scriptures. We elevate their charisma, their eloquence, their humor and wit, their style, and even their cuteness and good looks. We even sow our finances into the same.

Beware of hype. Beware of those who glory in appearance void of substance. Beware of emotional excitement that lacks depth. Beware of hypnotic smoke with no holy fire.

Hype fakes the happening while delaying true holiness. Hype is infinitely more dangerous than we can ever imagine, because it lies to us and tells us that something great is happening, when in fact, very little is going on.###
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Bert M. Farias, revivalist and founder of Holy Fire Ministries, is the author of several books, including the newly released My Son, My Son, which he co-wrote with his son Daniel for the purpose of training up a holy generation. He is also co-host of the New England Holy Ghost Forum, a school of the Spirit. Follow him at Bert Farias on Facebook or at @Bertfarias1 on Twitter.

[Source: http://www.charismanews.com/opinion/the-flaming-herald/45699-beware-of-superstar-self-appointed-church-personalities; accessed 10-16-14.]

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Evangelist Steve Hill, Passed away March 9, 2014

Editor’s Note:  Steve Hill, the evangelist who brought an untold myriad to Christ over decades of ministry, the best part of two of which was after he had decided to  give up on the ministry after fulfilling his last scheduled engagement on Father’s Day, June 18, 1995, at Brownsville Assembly of God church in Pensacola, Florida, graduated from his earthly course on March 9th, and matriculated to receive his eternal rewards from his Lord, Master, and Savior, Christ Jesus. Many articles have been scribed already, many more will come. His life and ministry was worthy of all such human tribute. Here we republish two, and provide links to a few others. Thank you, Heavenly Father, for the earthen vessel called Steve Hill, who, though he himself would have strenuously eschewed such platitudes, would well be classified among those the writer characterized as “men of whom the world was not worthy” (Heb. 11:38). We thank you and praise your for the Holy Spirit’s saving and sanctifying workings so powerful as to redeem and renew former drug and sin addicts such as our brother, Steve, and empower him with the burning fire that melts men’s hearts, wooing them to the receive the Savior, and may the hot embers left behind by such a firebrand for Christ explode in firestorms of evangelism throughout the world as they are fanned by hurricane-force Winds of the Holy Spirit! Amen! Hallelujah!###

Steve Hill: You Can’t Have It
By Steve Hill

Charisma Editor’s note: Sunday, March 9, Steve finished his race. Oh, to have seen that moment when he saw Jesus for the very first time and heard Him say, “Well done.” He lived every day of his life for that moment. It is truly fitting that we would post this article of his this week as we celebrate his homegoing.  

My friend, there is coming a day when you will receive your reward for the work you did here on earth. None of us are aware of the time set for that event, but you can rest assured it is coming, and it is coming quickly. Continue reading “Remembering Evangelist Steve Hill” »

The Divine Perspective

By Dr. C.R. Oliver

Moreover the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah a second time, while he was still shut up in the court of the prison, saying, ‘Thus says the LORD who made it, the LORD who formed it to establish it (the LORD is His name): “Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.”‘ Jeremiah 33:1-3

The prophet viewed everything through the eyes of the Lord God, not determining his reality by his surroundings or his circumstances or his times. Jeremiah was not blinded by the opinions of others, the ruling courts of his day or his rejection by the established clergy. He had been to God’s Holy Mountain and knew things are “not as they seem.” Not trusting his own reason or guiding his own pathway, he sought wisdom from only one source. Deep within him burned the fire of God and part of his being was the Word ingested. Self-evident was the truth of his declaration, “Call to Me and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.”

My God, that is what we must have in these days! Continue reading “Acquiring A Divine Perspective” »

Charles Carrin Preaching at Westminster Cathedral in LondonIn His first sermon Jesus told the people in Nazareth, “The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me because He has ANOINTED Me to preach the gospel…” (Lk. 4:18) As with Jesus, so with us: There can be no authentic preaching of the gospel without the anointing of the Holy Spirit.

My 60+ years of ministry can be divided into two equal parts. For the first 27 years of pastoral work I was a hardline nonbeliever in the baptism and gifts of the Holy Spirit. My denomination insisted that miraculous works of the Spirit vanished when the Apostle John died and I wrongly carried that error to my congregation. During that period I never saw an alcoholic, drug addict, suicidal person, or someone with similar problems, be miraculously delivered by the power of God. It did not happen nor did I expect it. My ignorance of Scripture was very costly to me and my flock. Continue reading “Power For Preaching Through the Spirit’s Anointing” »

With all the proliferation and promotion of the prophetic that is happily taking place now in some streams and camps of the Church, it is critical that we understand what the true Purpose of the prophetic really is. Some prophetic novices and new prophetic groups appear to think that prophecy itself, whether in the form of personal prophesying over people or publishing prophecies on the Internet, for example, is the goal of the prophetic. Moreover, the actions, attitudes, and speech of some regarding the prophetic seem to indicate that they think that the prophetic is an end in itself. But, it’s not.

Though it may seem enigmatic to say, prophecy is not the Purpose of the prophetic. The true Purpose of the prophetic is not the prophetic itself as an end in itself. It’s not just prophesying. It’s not seeing who can prophesy the most, the loudest, the longest, the most authoritative sounding, or the most profoundly. It’s not to use the prophetic to build a name for oneself, or to promote and proliferate a ministry, a minister, or a movement, or to develop a means of support or income for a ministry, or to sell books, or to become well-known or famous, or to build a church, a following, or a prophetic organization, or to achieve personal ambitions. The true Purpose of the prophetic is none of those things. Continue reading “Prophetic Purpose” »

John MacArthur

John MacArthur

Pastor John MacArthur has announced a “strange fire” conference to be held this October, claiming that part of the charismatic movement “offers to God unacceptable worship, distorted worship. It blasphemes the Holy Spirit. It attributes to the Holy Spirit even the work of Satan.”

If these charges are true, this means that many leaders in the charismatic movement have committed the unpardonable sin and are therefore hell-bound. If these charges are not true, Pastor MacArthur has seriously overstepped his bounds and misused the Word of God.

And it is only fair to ask whether Pastor MacArthur, in his rightful zeal to correct excesses or errors in the charismatic movement—what he calls “strange fire”—is also guilty of rejecting the true fire. Does he embrace the glorious things the Holy Spirit is doing worldwide, resulting in the salvation of tens of millions of souls, or does he write them off as the result of emotionalism and deception? Continue reading “John MacArthur’s Strange Fire Conference” »

By John Stallings

And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. (Isa. 59:14)

In the past few weeks the world has had a ringside seat to watch, obviously a world-class liar, bicyclists Lance Armstrong admit that he’s weaved a web of lies for years about his use of performance enhancing drugs. How frustrating is that? It seems that to him the truth isn’t a valued coin in the realm he inhabits.As the poet said, “Oh, what tangled webs we weave when first we practice to deceive.” Continue reading “Truth Has Fallen In The Street” »

By Charles Carrin
All church failure is directly related to congregations detaching themselves theologically and experientially from the Kingdom of God. Apart from the Kingdom and the Holy Spirit’s empowering, churches, pastors, ministries, have no power. None. They may have great organizational skill, great advertising programs, and possess the best technological aid, but in New Testament terms these are not power. They are deceptive counterfeits.

The next failure most churches make is to re-organize themselves into competitive, denominational groups that treat each other with suspicion and fear. Personal ministries frequently do the same thing. Jesus loved the church and gave Himself for it. So must we! But Jesus spoke of the church (ekklesia, Gr.) only three times in the gospels. In contrast, He spoke of His Kingdom some 130 times. Unlike modern Christianity, His focus was on the Kingdom. If we are to be like Him, ours must be also! Continue reading “Why Do Pastors, Churches, Ministries, Fail When The Holy Spirit Has All-Power?” »

[Editor’s Note:] For several years I have been receiving the email messages Andrew Strom sends out. I have also read many of his writings in which he addresses various issues regarding the insidious infusion of New Age teachings and practices into large segments of the Charismatic stream, in particular, as well as issues related to the so-called “New Apostolic Reformation” and the restoration of the prophetic. We also had one extended phone conversation, I believe in 2007, in which we touched briefly upon a number of issues of common concern. While I cannot say that I know everything about his theological/doctrinal positions, beliefs, and motives, and thus am in no way endorsing the totality of his ministry, in general, I agree with much of what he has written regarding the error and delusion associated with the aforementioned movements. Continue reading “WARNING: Bill Johnson and Bethel Church” »

Charles Carrin is my dear friend. I know him personally, albeit far too briefly, having met him initially in the first part of the ’90s. Charles Carrin is the real deal, a genuine, Spirit-infused, Spirit/Fire-baptized, yet thoroughly humble “man of God!” Now an octogenarian for two years, he is a Spirit-ignited prophetic patriarch and elder-statesman to the Church Jesus is building, hailing from a by-gone and vastly under-appreciated era and personal wilderness experience but bringing forth with him a quality and quantity of wisdom manufactured and tempered in the crucible of trial, trouble, and tribulation that is not only rare, but genuinely rarefied. Words fail in attempting to describe the value and worth of “old soldiers,” in the words of General Douglas MacArthur, such as Charles Carrin, but perhaps the most fitting words are that he exemplifies the Scriptural phrase, “treasure in earthen vessels.” I regard him as one on the same plane as the likes of Tozer and Ravenhill to their generation. In this open-letter, Charles trumpets a profound, poignant, piercing, and powerful prophetic message to former fellows of a denomination he still cherishes that gave him the “left foot of fellowship” when he finally eschewed its warnings and teachings, accepted and obeyed God’s Word, and received the Father’s Promise of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit, after nearly 30 years of dedication to and ministry in that denomination. But, we publish this heartfelt cry because of its applicability not only to the constituency of that particular rapidly declining denomination, but also to many other denominations and sects of believers, as well as whole “movements,” who claim the name of “Christian” and a “name” of being alive, but are really spiritually dead (Rev. 3:1). I highly commend this letter to you for your reading and meditation—and then your weeping, mourning, repentance, and praying—as it pierces your heart. “If anyone has an ear, let him hear” (Rev 13:9). [Steven Lambert, Publisher] Continue reading “An “Open-Heart-Letter” to Primitive Baptists (and others)” »

By Joseph Mattera

In my reading of the word of God over the past 34 years I have noticed a keen difference between the biblical measure of success and the way many American churches seem to measure success.

Many of the ways American churches measures success are in fact direct violations of the teachings of Jesus in Matthew 23. In this passage Jesus speaks against people loving titles, celebrity status, and desiring prominent places in public events. Through the centuries theology and church practice have been greatly influenced by the surrounding cultures. The following are my opinions regarding five myths for success that have crept into the church from American culture. Continue reading “Five American Myths of Successful Churches and Ministries” »

REVIVAL WILL COME…
“If all the sleeping folk will wake up,
If all the lukewarm folk will fire up,
If all the dishonest folk will confess up,
If all the disgruntled folk will cheer up,
If all the depressed folk will cheer up,
If all the estranged folk will make up,
If all the gossipers will shut up,
If all true soldiers will stand up,
If all the dry bones will shake up,
If all the church members will pray up…
Then we can have a revival!” -R. G. Lee

When men in the streets are afraid to open their mouths and utter godless words lest the judgments of God should fall; when sinners, overawed by the Presence of God tremble in the streets and cry for mercy; when, without special meetings and sensational advertising, the Holy Ghost sweeps across cities and towns in Supernatural Power and holds men in the grip of terrifying Conviction; when “every shop becomes a pulpit, every heart an altar, every home a sanctuary” and people walk softly before God-This is Revival! Today the word Revival has largely lost its real meaning. Our present generation, never having witnessed the mighty movings of God in nation-wide spiritual awakening such as has taken place in past generations, has little conception of the magnitude of such a “visitation.” Continue reading “This Is Revival!” »

The late Dr. S. M. Lockeridge, a pastor from San Diego, California, preached this dynamic and timeless message as part of a sermon in Detroit in 1976.

My King was born King. The Bible says He’s a Seven Way King. He’s the King of the Jews—that’s an Ethnic King. He’s the King of Israel—that’s a National King. He’s the King of righteousness. He’s the King of the ages. He’s the King of Heaven. He’s the King of glory. He’s the King of kings and He is the Lord of lords. Now that’s my King.

Well, I wonder if you know Him. Do you know Him? Don’t try to mislead me! Do you know my King? David said the Heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament shows His handiwork. My King is the only one of whom there are no means of measure that can define His limitless love. No far seeing telescope can bring into visibility the coastline of the shore of His supplies. No barriers can hinder Him from pouring out His blessing. Continue reading “That’s My King” »

By Oliver B. Greene

(One of the fiery preacher’s thousands of timeless radio messages heard by millions during his 30-year ministry–1935-1976. Though he preached it so many decades ago, the essence of this masterpiece message reverberates with the vibrations of Truth from the Spirit of God through the annals of time and remains as true today, if not more so, than the day his sharp, piercing words streaked through the radio airwaves at the speed of sound. Ed.)

 

“Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.” (Luke 6:22-23)

Thank God for my preacher friends! I dare not touch God’s anointed, but I do not hesitate to say that the dirtiest gang of thieves this side of Hell are the Gospel-denying, compromising liberals and modernists who deny the verbal inspiration of the Scriptures and preach to please people instead of preaching the Word as it is laid down in the Bible.

Hell will be hotter for these preachers than for ordinary sinners who sat in the pews and listened to their social gospel. Oh yes, there will be preachers in Hell (2 Cor. 11:13–15). Just as surely as God has God-called preachers, the Devil has Devil-called preachers. Continue reading “Unpopular Preachers” »

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