John MacArthur accuses half-a-billion Christians of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit

See also the following posts: 

Today one in four of the two billion people who identify themselves as Christians are Charismatics or Pentecostals (ref).  I want to be absolutely clear that I am very happy to identify myself as one of their number.  Do I have concerns about some charismatic leaders? Of course!  Do I believe that abuses have occurred in many places? YES.  There are some who call themselves charismatics, but their beliefs and practices are frankly unbiblical. Surely there are extremes in every movement.

Unapologetically, I do believe that much good is coming out of our movement. The Charismatics and Pentecostals are acknowledged by experts to be  proliferating like no other previous movement in history. It seems to me that the movement contains many  vibrant, faith-filled people who have a deep trust in God, a sense of a relationship with God, and a strong desire to share the gospel.  Outside of the West the Charismatic and Pentecostal Movement dominates the Evangelical church.  Whether you are Charismatic or not yourself, I hope you agree that these hundreds of millions of people are our brothers and sisters in Christ, and that we share in salvation together as one Body.

You can imagine then that I was a bit disappointed  when I first heard that John MacArthur was hosting a conference entitled “Strange Fire,” about what he feels are the errors of the Charismatic Movement. It seems pretty clear from this title and the use of Leviticus 10:1–2 that this is likely to be a conference hostile to the ideas I hold dear. But, of course I accept that there are cessationsts who think differently on these issues. I concluded that there was nothing I needed to say about it at the time.

What has totally shocked and appalled me now, however, is viewing the brief clip with which I end this post. In it John MacArthur accuses the charismatic movement as a whole of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit:

Here is a transcript of the relevant portions:

“Why don’t evangelical leaders speak against this movement?  Why is their such silence? Look When somebody attacks the person of Christ the Evangelical world rises up and says “no, no, no!”  . . . the Holy Spirit has been under massive assault for decades and decades, and Ive been asking the question ‘where are the people rising up in protest against the abuse and the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit?‘ The only thing I can suggest is that they have been literally backed up into a corner by intimidation that they need to be loving and accepting and tolerant and not divisive in the body of Christ, thats been the mantra. . .”

This clip does not appear to limit the accusation of blasphemy but applies it the whole movement. This is very serious and concerning since Jesus describes  blasphemy against the Holy Spirt as the unforgivable sin (Mark 3:28-29).  Christians should not accuse one another lightly of this sin.

I have reviewed the other other media clips by MacArthur and in various places he speaks of  “aberrations, heresies, terrible manipulation and deception,”  claims that in the Charismatic Movement an implanting of the Word of God into people “just doesn’t happen,” and that the movement has a “wrong understanding of Scripture.”

Its clear that MacArthur is an extreme cessationist as he even states in one of these clips that he believes that we cannot bind Satan, something that I am surprised to hear, since even traditional denominations have exorcism rites.

In the clip “Why is it important to warn people against charismatic error?” he assumes that all charismatics teach that if you give them money you will get health and wealth.  He then states,“people caught up in any kind of error are cut off from God’s blessing.”  I really feel that is again going too far.

For example, take baptism. I presume that since we are both baptists, MacArthur and I would agree that, if what we believe turns out to be correct, those who teach and practice infant baptism are in error.  But I would definitely not argue that every pedobaptist is cut off from God’s blessing!

It seems to me that MacArthur has made a fundamental error: He is confusing primary gospel issues with secondary issues. Surely we all believe in the centrality of Christ, in the gospel, in the authority and trustworthiness of Scripture, and in all three persons of the Trinity. Charismatics are definitely Evangelical. These are the things we should contend for, and we have enough enemies already without taking up arms against each other.

I have many friends on both sides of the charismatic debate. I do know many who are solidly reformed and calvinistic, and may even describe themselves as cessationists but would find MacArthur’s tone and generalising unfortunate. There are many in the new reformed movement who would go further and describe themselves as theologically if not experientially charismatic. However, in one video MacArthur seems to take aim against those who are “open but cautious” about these things, claiming certain well known pastors are giving “cover” to true charismatics.

We can have different perspectives on disputable matters. But lets do so as brothers who are one in Christ. Lets be like the elder Arminian John Wesley who shared fellowship with Calvinist Simeon and gladly preached at George Whitefields funeral despite previously describing his doctrine as damnable heresy.

There is a complex spectrum of views on Calvinism and Arminianism which leads to disagreements that will probably never be resolved, and yet many today do not oppose each other on this issue so angrily.  There is a similar specturm on Charismaticism vs cessationism.   These days I generally see a softening of these arguments however. It seems to me that MacArthur’s intervention may have its aim at stoking these fires.

I believe that whatever your view on the charismatic issue you should not be called a blasphemer and heretic.  Do you agree?

UPDATE

A reader has kindly pointed us to a previous sermon in which MacArthur expands on what he means by charismatics blaspheming the Holy Spirit:

“Mostly this comes in the professing church from Pentecostals and Charismatics who feel they have free license to abuse the Holy Spirit and even blaspheme His holy name. And they do it constantly.

How do they do it? By attributing to the Holy Spirit words that He didn’t say, deeds that He didn’t do, and experiences that He didn’t produce, attributing to the Holy Spirit that which is not the work of the Holy Spirit. Endless human experiences, emotional experiences, bizarre experiences and demonic experiences are said to come from the Holy Spirit…visions, revelations, voices from heaven, messages from the Spirit through transcendental means, dreams, speaking in tongues, prophecies, out of body experiences, trips to heaven, anointings, miracles. All false, all lies, all deceptions attributed falsely to the Holy Spirit . . .

The Charismatic Movement has stolen the Holy Spirit and created a golden calf and they’re dancing around the golden calf as if it were the Holy Spirit. It is a false form of the Holy Spirit. They’ve exploited the Holy Spirit and demanded to be able to do that in an uncriticized manner. Nobody can say anything against them. That’s divisive, unloving, cantankerous . . . So the Charismatic version of the Holy Spirit is that golden calf who is not God, not God the Holy Spirit, but a false creation, an idol around which they dance in their dishonoring exercises.

From “The Modern Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit”

 

 

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About Adrian Warnock

Adrian Warnock is a medical doctor, and a writer. Since 1995 he has been a member of Jubilee Church London which has sites in Enfield, Wood Green and Ilford. Adrian serves as part of Jubilee's leadership team alongside Tope Koleoso. Together they have written Hope Reborn - How to Become a Christian and Live for Jesus, published by Christian Focus. Adrian is also the author of Raised With Christ - How The Resurrection Changes Everything, published by Crossway. Read more about Adrian Warnock or connect with him on Twitter, Facebook or Google+.

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  • bloomingdedalus

    Pentecostalism is just an adaptation of African Voodoo – there’s nothing remotely Christian about it. There are no words for incompetence in parenting so deep that someone would put their children through this as I was put through it.

    • cowboybob

      I am no expert on this issue (I am rancher), but I have thought about this somewhat. I think that mentally ill people are attracted to Pentecostalism because of its irrationality and also because Pentecostalism condones insane and inappropriate behavior such as screaming, shouting, running, wailing, hopping, and other such things where insane people could fit right in and indulge their theatrics for attention. I think a large proportion of Pentecostal preachers are mentally ill also, given that the overwhelming majority of them are uneducated, and that there is no requirement for rigorous scholarship to become a Pentecostal “minister.” I understand that the level of education one has is not a determinant of mental illness, and that intelligent people can also be mentally ill; I am just speaking in general terms and general trends.

      I also believe, based upon my studies, that Pentecostals and many Ex-Pentecostals who have not had appropriate therapy, suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. You will find many Pentecostals suffering PTSD symptoms as follows: stomach ulcers, depression, disassociation, troubled sleep, irritability and outbursts, difficulty concentrating or remembering, hypervigilance (like extreme paranoia), exaggerated startle responses, etc.

      I encourage all who are interested in PTSD to get “The Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Sourcebook,” by Glenn R. Schiraldi. It is available on Amazon and I have a copy, of which I have found great use.

  • Breckmin

    I attended Grace Community for years and John MacArthur is my former pastor. John taught that the Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit was a First Century sin committed by the Pharisees (in that Jesus was saying that the Pharisees were hopeless because they were seeing His miracles/signs and still blaspheming) so it makes no sense to me that John would be saying that anyone today is committing an unforgivable sin. I think what we have here is a misinterpretation of the phrase “where are the people rising up in protest against the abuse and the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit?” The abuse and blasphemy here is not talking about the unpardonable sin that Jesus was referring to but rather John is saying that sins against the Holy Spirit are being committed in a different way…. why aren’t more pastors speaking out against this chaos and abuse? sort of questioning. For the record, I do not personally agree with John’s position on the historical blasphemy of the Holy Spirit (exactly) nor am I a cessationist. I DO agree with “most” of his criticism of specific theologies being taught by Pentecostals that are being examined and discussed at the Strange Fire conferences. John is a humble servant of the Lord when you talk with him personally and there is no one living that I have more respect for (no matter how much we disagree on peripheral theology). John is doing an important work here for the Lord out of his love for the church and out of his love for Jesus. He is asking for accountability which is needed (much needed) in the charismatic movement.

    • Breckmin

      Bottom line: He wasn’t talking about THE B.o.t.H.S. or the “unforgivable sin” so this whole line of criticism is pretty much incongruous to his statements. Of all the people I have observed in this lifetime…. John MacArthur walks the talk the most consistently. His knowledge of the N.T. fills his mind and heart up with the Word of God and that enables him to live an authentic Christian life. If you understood what he meant and where he is coming from… you might be able to find more common ground with his criticism of aberrational practices in the charismatic movement/denominations (not all of them…but clearly some of them).

  • Citizen99

    If your only complaint is that MacArthur is picking “secondary” versus “primary” issues to complain about, you’re argument against him is weak. It seems he is correct. The man knows his bible. That you downplay the way the HG is used in the Charismatic movement because you fill it’s a minor offense to God….does not jive with scripture. God takes blasheming the HG very seriously…according to scripture. I suggest you do also.

  • eric

    John macrthur says blasphemy agsent the holy spirit is a final rejection of Jesus.

  • Chris Dagostino

    I don’t portend to be able to literally see spirits the way Christ did, so I don’t know if it’s the Holy Spirit or an entirely different spirit working through those who speak in tongues. If the cessationists are wrong, it could very well be the former; if they’re right, then it stands to reason that it could be the latter. Since there are intelligent men in the Church who make strong cases for and against Cessationism, I just kinda throw my hands up and say, “Come whatever may.”

    The Pentesmatic denomination is comprised of hundreds of millions of believers, so I hope for their sake that those gifts of the Spirit haven’t ceased.

  • TheQuandarer

    I realize I’m a day late and a dollar short on this issue, but I understand “blaspheming the Holy Spirit” to mean that someone attributes the work of the Holy Spirit to Satan. Am I right? If so, MacArthur essentially has his theology backwards.

    • Dominic D

      You are absolutely right. And that man is leading Christians away from the true work of Holy Spirit because he doesnt understand and probably has never asked God about it or he answered his own prayer rather than waiting on the Lord

      1 Corinthians 2:14 KJV

      But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

  • Darin

    Why can’t Christians get along? Don’t you see that the world is looking on? Doesn’t the Lord say to turn the other cheek? All of the debates and the conflicts and the arguments between the churches just causes more confusion to the gospel. Do we not know where confusion comes from? Certainly not from God….God forbid!! We must pray for those who oppose or oppress the gospel and never let them see anything but the Love of God…..do not accept the ways of the world but do not take offence when you hear someone make accusations or give you reasons to believe the way they do……your life should line up with the holy scriptures and that is it. Do what the Lord commands and you will have fulfilled the law of God……this is the free gift of salvation to mankind if we trust in the Lord and believe that he is the Savior of our life and we turn from our wicked ways and crucify the flesh, take up our cross and follow him……..do not fight and argue and debate over the church beliefs because the world is watching and they see and know everything you do. Christians are an example of Christ…..who are you representing?

  • Miguel Pereira

    Many people wonder what the “unforgivable sin against the Holy Spirit” is. In the original Greek the word sin here is “blasphemos”, which in Greek means a “profanation”, an exposure of special knowledge.
    It is obvious that in the universe everything is trying to run down to undifferentiate into nothingness, or some are being built up by that which is running down. Our person is a closed circuit in the arising reticular formation of the medulla oblongata of the brain.
    Whatever undifferentiates this circuit causes pleasure. Ultimately it can undifferentiate into nothingness. There is a veil in the brain which veils the great satisfaction of deep sleep and other common causes of unconsciousness. Pleasures override this veil.
    There is a secret sound, called the “lost word” which gives you moments of near nonexistence. If the nonexistence was total you would remain permanently nonexistent. This sound is the cylindrical sound. It induces other closed circuits which, by the attraction of confluency, causes the personal closed circuit some undifferentiation, which is that euphoria called “nirvana”. The “lost word” bypasses that veil, and shows that nonexistence will be the total satisfaction of all desires.
    There is a Hebrew word, which is called “onomatopoeic”, which means that it sounds like that which is described. It is the “lost word”, which means a “well”, a hollow cylinder, spelled “aleph yod nun”, translated, “ain”, but pronounced “eyennn…, like the German word for one, “ein”.
    Ain also means nothingness, that which is sampled by paying attention to this sound; and an eye, and a ring. When meditating upon this sound you will also see inside your closed eyelids concentric rings, like an eye, with black in the middle, then around that, rings of violet, blue, green, yellow, orange, red, and outside that, brown.
    Knowing that the satisfaction from undifferentiation into nonexistence is infinitely greater than any possible joy of a billionaire, is the special secret of the Holy Spirit. In the one substance, energy, motion can only be in closed circuitry, that there be something to move out of the way and fill in behind. Everything is ultimately composed of closed circuits.
    The true opposite polarities are the direction of this circuitry: counterclockwise (male) on one side, and, clockwise (female) on the other side. The iron in the cytochromes of every cell are magnetically polarized, facing out, counterclockwise in males, and, clockwise in females.
    Undifferentiation of circuits by the undifferentiation provided by confluency (counterclockwise and clockwise are confluent when face to face) is polarity cancellation. A very fast polarity cancellation rate is fire. A fast polarity cancellation rate is identical with a fast entropy production rate, which is an analogue of velocity in mechanics, and likewise, but without the gravitational component, accesses globally bent timespace. The Underworld is in globally bent timespace.
    So, those who “know where it’s at”, know the secret of the Holy Spirit, don’t want immortality. They are “unforgivable” for they don’t want to be forgiven. They want to delve into the Lake of Fire for the orgy into permanent nonexistence, the eternal satisfaction of all desires.

    • Brokenit

      What a lot of complete rubbish !

  • Timothy Law

    What MacArthur’s doing/has done is not surprising. He’s not condemning those who love God in the movement. Simply, it’s that the movement is not required for whatever good Christians have done, whether some identified with that movement or not. Because those good deeds are done out of the credit of non-charismatic movements, though not denying God as the source. But MacArthur and I would not agree that some Charismatic movement has any credit – if so, it is still from non-charismatic.
    Much can still be said. But as I said before, not a surprising thing by MacArthur. There are giant movements from the East (Asia) that have been emphasizing that which is similar to StrangeFire for a while now. Glad to see America has caught on a bit.

  • Lamar Carnes

    The problem is very much deeper than you are indicating. Paul the Apostle, states so clearly that the most important aspect of the Christian life is “LOVE”, not only love toward God, but love toward our fellow saints, even as the Apostle John so indicated in his short epistles. In fact, if we do not “love” the brethren who we can see how can we love God who we cannot see, so says John! And Paul speaks of the gifts of the Spirit which were being give by God to the saints in the Churches, but the message he spoke was to specifically the Corinthian Christians. They were out of order on all of these gifts issues in terms of improper teaching on the subject as well as misuse of the same. He states clearly that the most important gift anyone can have is to be able to preach the Gospel, prophesy (tell forth) the word of God to others. And in fact, just on the issue of one particular gift (languages) he states he would rather speak I a “language” people understood than having abilities to speak in all known languages. It is to bad that translators have always used the Greek term glossolalia into the English term tongues when in fact it means language. Then h speaks about NOT every person has the same gift and each has a different gift. And not only that, but GOD is the controller of a gift and by His discretion and at the time and place and person gives various gifts. So He may give a gift or He may not! He may withhold gift or gifts for multitudes of years if He so chooses. He has done that before. For 400 years folks did not hear from God on one occasion. He is in charge and not a Church or a Pastor or an individual. Yes, one can pray for God to bless with a gift but God may or may not give it. So, to be dogmatic that ALL of the gifts have to be functional in the Church all the time and everyone having the same gift also at any given time and season, is unbiblical and false teachings. I NEVER heard one true and factual person speak in a known language on this earth as a gifted ability like what took place on Pentcost and I have searched and searched and listened and waited for now 50 years and never can find one. It is time to go forward in faith and preach Christ to the lost and get busy building up the saints in the faith and exercise the gifts that we have that are authentic and observable and factual. Love, helps, preaching Christ, teaching the word of God, being kind, helping orphans and widows, giving, sharing, praying for others, sharing one anothers burdens, etc.! Yes, we pray for the sick and ill, and many times God heals folks, but many times He doesn’t, do it the way we would wish and it is not immediate. Many times folks die and it isn’t because they lack faith or the prayer hasn’t faith, but God hasn’t chosen to do so, for He wishes to take the person home to glory. Immature people get caught up in these things and do not move to maturity in the faith. They stay hung up on labels, and incorrect doctrine and preach things so strange it is totally heretical and not sustainable by the scriptures. John is much more closer to the truth that the Pentecostals will ever be and I was ONCE one of them. I know first hand. John would never say God can’t do something in the areas of miracles or a special gift display when He wishes, but John, as well as the major Church Fathers, recognized that God was not doing He hone in the beginning days of Christ and the Apostles. And remember GOD is in charge of the gifts and not people or preachers. If HE doesn’t give it no amount of wishing, hoping, and demanding will avail, and until HE does people need to quit mis-representing God on the matter! Blame toward a person or the person claiming a gift and it not function by saying they just did not have enough faith, is foolish and wrong. God doesn’t make mistakes and if He has given a gift it will function and one will know it and so will everyone else. Let’s move away from these side-line issues which keep Christians mixed up and apart, by following the word more carefully and not our own personal desires or feelings.

  • susan johnson

    I agree with some of the statements that John Macarthur made in his discussion on the charismatics but not everything. Also, no one can bind satan, only God has the power to do that. Satan is so much powerful than mankind, so anytime we need help against his deceitfulness, and lies, God Almighty is the only one who can help through our prayers. So I do agree with JM also on that. Lots of false teachings that go against scripture is being taught leading the flock astray. This binding satan is another practice in the churches where pastors are mis-leading people to do. JM is just pointing out all the errors, so that the church can be more aware and discerning of false teachers and practices that go against scripture.

  • Ajit Perera

    Adrian, you have to admit that the heresies of the New Wave/Charismatic movement are horrendous and plethora. It is true, isn’t it, that they do attribute to the Holy Spirit things He has not said; things that are clearly extra biblical and frighteningly New Age, things that He has never revealed; constructs of the preacher’s own mind and hermeneutic and a reflection of his/her materialistic desires. Have these actions and words not been amply documented by Christian authors and even secular sources? Is this NOT an insulting of the Holy Spirit? Is this NOT a feeding into His mouth things He has never said or even wanted said, judging by the context of the Scriptures? Is this not a terribly dangerous thing to do and should not those who hold to the faith once for all given in His Word and to the utter inerrancy and infallibility of the Scriptures point this out and rebuke these aberrations out of love for God and one’s neighbour?

  • Fredrik Hahn

    John McArthur is a great speaker. Maybe that is why people listen to him? He sounds wonderful but the content is so militaristic.

    We have never heard of or seen any ‘assault on the Holy Spirit’ in any church in 40 years or even read about one.

    The only thing I have seen that may be close is people that have not been baptized in the Holy Spirit criticizing Spirit-filed believers because they don’t have the power of God in their lives. It seems maybe John has the religious spirit of the pharisees to deal with?

  • https://juliadaybydaydotcom.wordpress.com/wp-admin/ Julia L. Baumann

    All I know is that …….[MOD: REDACTED AS ACCUSES MACARTHUR of wrongdoing, something that is banned from these comments see the Comment Policy]…responsible for an erroneous interpretation of the Gospel.

  • https://juliadaybydaydotcom.wordpress.com/wp-admin/ Julia L. Baumann

    It is ironic John does not even realize his own blasphemy when he judges people. We blasphemy the Holy Spirit when we sin against creation conceived by the breath of God in what we think, say and do. It reminds me of Lucifer who wanted to make himself like the Most High. This pride of being a judge of others is the very blasphemy John condemns. This thinking seems subtle and yet is so glaring as to make me turn away from the theology John teaches.

  • https://juliadaybydaydotcom.wordpress.com/wp-admin/ Julia L. Baumann

    John MacArthur also thinks making a linguistic comparison between the ancient Hebrew Chaldee and Aramaic languages is heresy. For example the words used for God in Chaldee Genesis 1 and the word used for God in Aramaic John 1 are almost identical. He does not seem to realize that Greek philosophy that permeates the rhetoric of the New Testament conflicts with the message. I realize part of the point is the juxtaposition of the political allusions in rhetoric of the translation but he should explicitly state this when he teaches.

  • john mancini

    John is a good guy but he does not know what he thinks he knows.
    The bigger abuse of the Gifts of the Spirit is not teaching them today and denouncing them as “not for today”.
    John the Baptist came announcing” Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world”. He NEVER followed that up with ” believe my baptism and reject His (Jesus’s) baptism.
    Isn’t it a tragedy., only to teach only the baptism (repenetance and water) of John and reject the baptism of the Lamb of God. See Acts 18:24 to the end where Priscilla and Acquila rebuke Apollos for teaching only the baptism of John and Acts 19:1-6 where Paul’s is furious with Apollos.

  • john mancini

    If the Apostle Paul were to come to your church pulpit, would he be permitted to read his words from every book he has written without your pastors trying to correct him? Would he be able to read 1 Cor and 2 Cor without some degrading commentary from your intellectual pastor who thinks he knows more than Paul?
    I personally think the Apostle Paul would be thrown out and deemed a charismatic wacko from 75% of the churches in America. I would hope yours or mine isn’t one of them.

  • Bobby Gilbert

    The problem with the horse riders is they represent the Spirit. The Horses have already arrived and one is running. It is a 50 year count to 50 year count. It is like a 50 day count to a 50 day count. One week has 7 years. One week has 7 days plus one, the 8th day. Explanation will not happen here. Keep in mind the 50 divided by 3 1/2 comes up around a 14 for a day count. A normal day count has 12 hours.
    The White Horse – Jesus Movement highest point 1972 – Jesus enters Jerusalem
    The Black Horse – Sin – Abortion-Marraige-Post Modern – Jesus cleanses temple
    The Red Horse – Join to – Do you see it? – The Question about John
    The Pale Horse – Death

    We are in what is called the 2nd Pentecost. We are heading towards the 2nd Resurrection which will be seven years and can be understood by the seven years or the metaphor of the 2 witnesses.

    Have fun figuring this out. Begin with understanding the names of Rachel’s children in birth order and name. Read the incident in Shechem. You will better understand Jacob’s trouble as well.

    Understand the Passion Week. It is the Passion Paradigm. Peace

  • Bobby Gilbert

    The Adopted are up next. For people who like dates, 2020 is the date SEPA has planned to accomplish their goals. BRICS is countering the control. I guess everyone knows who the World Bank is.

    If you don’t understand how a currency can be introduced, read up on the Euro. You will know when the middle of the week is coming. If you see the middle of the week, the first day has come and gone. I don’t know how the rapture works after you reach that point. I do know that we will be called to pray like Jesus in the garden. After the garden, the middle of the week starts for the 2nd Resurrection.

    If you are figuring this out, you can see how one week, Tribulation, can cause so much confusion for two weeks. Jacob does not confuse his weeks when he fulfills them for his wives, Leah and Rachel. Laban had us pretty fooled.

    15 weeks with 70 works . . . 11 weeks are complete. 2 weeks are running and are almost done. 2 weeks to come. One is probably running, the 2nd Pentecost. One remains, the 2nd resurrection.

    The week which holds these weeks together for our sake is the Passion Week, The Passion Paradigm. Shavuot!

  • Rickyjay58

    Preach Christ crucified! All else is arguing over meat sacrificed to idols. The accuser is made happy when the body is rent.

  • Copacetic Coleman

    I can appreciate your position, but you don’t use biblical support for your argument. You can easily say, “I really feel that is again going too far.” It takes a bit more to actually apply scripture to support your response here. You also rely on inflammatory remarks like the title of this article to appeal to people on an emotional level rather than on a spiritual, or even logical, level.

  • Stephen Sponsler

    Adrian, he is correct, though this can be EQUALLY as true in any church, it is only more readily apparent in those particualr congregations that have a vice for sensationalism and emotionality which is not OF the Spirit, then at times for instances can be a reuslt of It. Most in these movements are putting the cart before the horse, ‘thinking’ themselves righteous by good deeds and bible reading when in the end none of that matters ultimately. A person can have the entire bible memorized and preach a sermon and still be totally unchanged by God. Only God knows in the end. A child of God who has Truly Be Transformed and walking The Way of Christ with discernment (One of the gifts) will readily see the fallacies arising like red flags before a hurricane approaches. I don’t know that this movement actually is taking the ‘country by storm’ but if it is, we are in a very dangerous position as it leaves open for scrutiny those of unbelief. It simply is not credible. Additionally, being ‘filled with the spirit’ is a farce. There is no such thing as a stand alone..what spirit is it? even satan (or that which is not God but appears to be godly at its best) masquerades as an angel of light and can appear and ‘feel totally godly good and warm. What better deception that to think one is in Christ when they are knocking on the doors of hell. MacArhtur is pointing out the opposite and going to extra measures to make a point since it appears so many are so willing to go to the opposite extreme and neglect Truth; the Grace based movement falls right into the ranks of the same ideology completely neglecting the Wrath of God. Isn’t it like that though with so many things? The pendulum swings back and forth, one then the other to balance out but has no Center in the Light. JOY is not an emotion but the Nature of the Light of Christ in the Life of God. In attempts to avoid suffering as a form of instruction and obedience, the whole movement seeks to avoid it and in doing so , is avoiding God in the process (that is a broad statement, and not meant to be taken as an over-generalization) I don’t think MacArthur is over-generalizing, he has made a point to not over-imply that. I just finished watching his two video series on YouTube about Deceived Christians referring to Matthew 7: 21-27. A person who merely walks into a church and starts praising God never having Truly been transformed is blaspheming the Works of the Holy Spirit by chicanery…’that person’..not all persons. This tongues movement has got to end. Paul himself said it would go away, and never once does anyone ever interpret them, without interpretation how does one even know what they are saying? How do they not know they are speaking out for a demon? What value is it. Paul spoke of that as well. It is also though a good thing we are keeping tabs on each other in all regards, but I do fear ‘those movements’ as they are referred to opens the doors to all forms of deception. Frankly, it isn’t honest. Oh, I read that additioanl statement added from John’s words. he is correct. The Holy Spirit DOES NOT plant thoughts in our heads nor give us emotions. This ‘planting of the word of God” or Seed of Faith movement is founded, it’s foundation is based on falsity. You’ve referred to is so will use as an example. ,Mark 4:13 “And he said unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables?”
    Jesus is saying that if you don’t understand this parable you won’t understand any of the parables he taught. This is a foundational teaching friends, we need to get it Right or the rest is a house built on sand. Misapplying the parable of the sower does great damage to Gods people. First, by falsely claiming that God works like some kind of cosmic slot machine. But the real damage is in the fact that believers are robbed of the true meaning of this teaching.
    The parable of the sower is at work every time Gods Word is Revealed to they who have Eyes that See and Hears to Hear through Revelation and/or a sense of Spiritual intuition. In fact it is at work right now in many of you who are reading this. I know that many of you will read this and say “I don’t believe that. I don’t believe that my favorite preacher would preach a false message” You’ll reject what I’m saying. You’ll actually be rejecting the words of Jesus. The devil has come already to steal this word . Some of will hear and say and receive it gladly. “ Glory to God” …. Hallelujah ” But won’t take the time to really meditate on this word and apply it. And then a testing will come. Testing because of the word sown in your heart. A test to see if you really believe, trust in, rely on, adhere to what you claim to believe. You’ll be challenged. God Himself will allow that challenge, that test.Will you pass the test? Or will you revert back to your traditional thinking?And of course some of you will hear and believe but you won’t give this word the proper place in your life. You’ll think about it for a while. You’ll decide that it’s right but then you’ll get on with your life. You’ll get busy with your job, your family, your daily responsibilities and it will recede further and further into the recesses of your heart until it has no real value to you.And the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches will have choked the truth out of your heart. But there is more, what are we to do once the word is Received into the heart. This is where it can get to the Ugly side of the Truth. When it is received that is when one will see how ungodly one has always been! This calls for the next side of Repentance, dying on the cross; He who loves his life will lose ti, and he who loses this life (his life) on account of Me will Find It”. A truly repentant person of their very life will have turned away from earthy sensationalism and emotionalism seeking preferences. In some ways, it’s glorifying ones self and not God. The wisdom of God is Justified in and by His Children.

    This is not to imply however sum total, that many are not in Christ, they just have yet to break out of the shell and bear true fruit. It’s but a sad state of affairs, ‘Carnal” (Cain) Christians. Judging others in the light of these words does not help matters at all and might even make them worse, I’m well aware of that. maybe everyone needs to take some time to sit down and actually THINK and wrestling with God like Jacob and get to the root of their core issues rather than struggling to avoid them. But, we cannot judge personalities…God isn’t set out to change personalities so much as our character. I see no humility in any of these man-created doctrinal movements which we are told to avoid. Doctrines of men. This movement didn’t exist 1000 years ago…that is why it’s called a movement.

    You will know them by the fruit they bear…and the fruit of these so-called ‘movements’ which shouldn’t exist in the first place as then stemmed from sensational seeking people to begin with is frightening. Look at the history and go back to how it all started, it’s not pretty. For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

  • Dominic D

    An example of True Blasphemy of Holy Spirit is a person looking at a human being who is healing others, speaking in other tongues, in a trance, vision, or doing other supernatural things, AND then calling that spirit inside them to be demonic. That’s what really breaks His heart. You can be possessed by spirits, evil or good, yet there is only ONE who is Good. God is Spirit (John 4:24)
    Jesus, living as a man was Filled with that same Holy Spirit, which is still God. It was through the Holy Spirit that the miracles were done, not by flesh, but God working Through the flesh. John MacArthur has the wrong view on charismatics and refuses to believe you can receive the Holy Spirit in that manner. Holy Spirit is tangible. It is not whipped up emotion, or euphoria. It is God himself touching your soul. That is maybe why he did not receive the Holy Spirit, because he never believed or understood what Holy Spirit is; He’s a spirit but the spirit of GOD, here, on earth. The heavens were opened when Jesus was baptised, no where in scripture has it ever closed. I have a problem with people who ‘add’ another New Testament to the bible so-to-speak, teaching people specific parts of the bible are no longer active and we no longer have access to the things that happened in the book of acts. Prove it! You can’t. The NT is still active for today, and the book of Acts is evidence of it. I suggest to read the scripture below, great stuff to support what pentecostals or charismatics believe. Either way, I prefer them to be refererenced as just Christians. :) God bless.

    Matthew 21:22
    John 3:5-6
    *1 Corinthians 2:14
    Acts 19:1-7

    • Dominic D

      The things of the spiritual realm are of value. Thieves counterfeit things of value. That’s why the enemy took it! It’s of great value, and these things are being made known to the body of Christ more and more.

      1 Corinthians 2:14 KJV

      But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

  • cowboybob

    The Pentecostals that are tongue talkers are simply deluded. It is not a language. It is not “blasphemy”, it is just childish nonsense. They are children and should be treated as such. I know that John takes himself too serious at times(I did not say that he is a Pharisee), but a person has to pick his battles. If the Pentecostals want to be super extroverts and display “holy laughter” and strange behavior, that is their liberty. Some people are turned off by their boisterous juvenile behavior, so they can go to Lutheran church.

  • cowboybob

    In browsing some Pentecostal websites with pictures of gatherings and meetings, I was struck by a strange sight of obesity. Now, we all know that some people are fat or bubbly somewhat.
    However, when it gets to the point of not being able to perform basic functions without undue stress, I think we need to take a closer look at what is going on. Are these people just a little big large or are they gluttons at the table,
    consuming food like wild hogs? Are they having some medical problems, or do
    they have a problem with self-control? And, let me be clear that I probably
    have been guilty of this myself.

    Traditionally, one can commit gluttony in several ways, according to Thomas
    Aquinas (reference Wikipedia):

    (1) Eating too soon

    (2) Eating too expensively

    (3) Eating too much

    (4) Eating too eagerly

    (5) Eating too daintily

    (6) Eating wildly

    Now, look at this list again, and tell me that Pentecostals regularly violate
    several of these guidelines. I would say I have always seen Pentecostal
    meetings where they (a) Eat too soon, (b) Eat too much, (c) Eat too eagerly,
    and (d) Eat wildly. I was among Pentecostals recently, and I was struck by
    something I never noticed before: they were devouring their food as would a
    hungry dog or a hog. Being away from that crowd for several years, and seeing
    this activity struck me as memorable.

    What is wrong with all this gluttonous behavior? Who is being harmed? Well, in
    most ethical systems, we are taught how to be good to others, but also we learn
    forms of self-control because an extreme lack of self-control in one area
    almost always signals a moral problem in many other areas. It is an outward
    sign of an inward disorder. Why do we become gluttons? Are we substituting food
    for socializing? Are we substituting food for not confronting undesirable
    situations (cowardice). Are we eating because we are lonely? Are we devouring
    food because we lack meaning and spirituality in our lives (I think this is the
    piece de resistance, myself)?

    Also, think about the prohibition of alcohol among some of the more extreme
    fundamentalists. Well, do they prohibit and police gluttony? Well, drunkenness
    is only a subset of gluttony! What is drunkenness? Consuming too much alcohol
    to the point of neglecting our duties. Again, lack of self-control is the key.

    What do you remember about the hoggish consumption of food in your Pentecostal experience?

  • Howard Gardner

    I posted the following question on John MacArthur’s website: “If spiritual gifts have ceased then it seems that you and I must now be seeing face to face while the Apostle Paul saw only through a glass darkly. Would that not make the Bible obsolete?” The answer I got totally ignored the question and drifted towards ridiculing Benny Hinn – I gather Mac doesn’t like his haircut. Eventually a woman from his church chimed in “You aren’t answering his question.” Afterwards I was blocked from posting any further on the site and I suspect she was as well.

    • Brokenit

      Yes, I also noticed the straw man argument is constantly used to malign the gifts of the Spirit instead of addressing questions in relation to Scripture. It is amazing that people who profess to be preaching sound doctrine refuse to reason from the Scriptures.

  • Evangelina Vigilantee

    Well, I hate to break it to you but he is a wolf. J.M. has also claimed that it is okay to take the mark of the beast and still be ‘saved,’ when this will land you in hell according to the bible. From that point on I tossed him out.

  • Evangelina Vigilantee

    I totally agree, I received the baptism of the Holy Spirit and gifts, (but not speaking in tongues). That is totally biblical and current. The bible says when that which is perfect has come the gifts will cease, but it goes on to describe ‘perfect’ as being with God in heaven, face to face, when the gifts are no longer needed. They argue that ‘perfect’ is the closed canon, but that is not in the bible. Then… come all the ones who, if they don’t think the gifts have ceased, they think that the only proof of this baptism is tongues, but not all get this gift. I got the baptism but not that gift. (see 1 Corinthians 12-14). Then, when I do talk about this baptism, due to all the confusion, all they can picture is senseless babble, when all I did was say I got the baptism (and not that gift, but others). That gift is real and some get it, but there are many who never had the real baptism of the Holy Spirit and just ‘fake it’ as regards the gift of tongues and talk nonsense babble to ‘prove it’ to others. I have also seen the real gift in action. Then… I constantly run into the ones who think the gifts have ceased and when I talk about these things, they accuse it of being some demonic occult based activity. Now that IS blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. They don’t even know and they call it the devil. I think of when they accused Jesus of performing miracles by the power of demons. Not a good idea…

  • Jim Lopinto

    ( From ” God’s ” Dutch Uncle ” & Bible Myth Buster on Face Book )

    What ever happened to SCRIPTURE ( rightly divided ) to Prove Doctrine with ? In most of these Posts , I see RELIGIOUS OPINIONS , I’m really getting tired , of hearing OPINIONS , with NO SCRIPTURES to back them up !

    In GOD’S sight , Religious Opinion , has about as much Authority , as a Non – Christian’s statement of unbelief , in the Bible being God’s Word !

    CHRISTIANS , of ALL Denominations , need to RETURN to THUS SAYS THE LORD
    & tell GOD’S OPINION ( Rightly Divided Scripture ) instead of their Own !
    ” Wisdom , is the Principle thing , therefore , get WISDOM ” ( Book of Proverbs )
    ” If any man thinks he knows anything , he knows NOTHING YET , as he ought to Know it . ” ( 1 Corinthians 8 vs . 2 )
    ( From a Former Catholic , Former Traditional Pentecostal , & now Charismatic / Pentecostal since 1985 – Bible School graduate , & Ordained Minister – age 67 . )
    Please study GOD’S PLAN FOR MAN by Finis Dake ( 1,000 page Bible study book , in which Dake studied the Bible for 75, 000 hours , BEFORE writing this book ! He was a True SCRIPTORIAN / MENTOR , as was KENNETH HAGIN ( dispite all of the Anti _ Charismatic Opinions ! ) WAKE UP , PEOPLE !

  • Jon Davis

    When he said all this, he did the original blasphemy. Remember that the role of the pharisees in itself was a good and proper role, it was only their attitudes and twisted views that made them out of line.

    Matthew 12:22 (sort of NIV but John MacArthurized because I personally think the shoe fits)
    Then they brought him a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute, and
    Jesus healed him, so that he could both talk and see. 23 All the people
    were astonished and said, “Could this be the Son of David?”

    24
    But when John MacArthur heard this, he said, “It is only by Beelzebul,
    the prince of demons, that this fellow drives out demons.”

    25
    Jesus knew his thoughts and said to him, “Every kingdom divided against
    itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against
    itself will not stand. 26 If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided
    against himself. How then can his kingdom stand? 27 And if I drive out
    demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your people drive them out? So then,
    they will be your judges. 28 But if it is by the Spirit of God that I
    drive out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

    29
    “Or again, how can anyone enter a strong man’s house and carry off his
    possessions unless he first ties up the strong man? Then he can plunder
    his house.

    30
    “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with
    me scatters. 31 And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be
    forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. 32
    Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but
    anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either
    in this age or in the age to come.

    33
    “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and
    its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. 34 You
    brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the
    mouth speaks what the heart is full of. 35 A good man brings good things
    out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things
    out of the evil stored up in him. 36 But I tell you that everyone will
    have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they
    have spoken. 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your
    words you will be condemned.”


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