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Too Much Holy Spirit? Too Much Bible?

We can take the church and make a big two-way division: the traditional church and the Charismatic. The determining factor is how they view the Holy Ghost. 

If you walk into a traditional church gathering or service, you will see a great emphasis on the Word; everything looks proper, and not too much emotion. The Holy Ghost is ignored in their gatherings; everything is predetermined or programmed; they know what they will teach, at times, with months of anticipation.

On the other hand, if you walk into a charismatic church, you will see more passion; depending on the level of love, you will see people shouting, running, jumping, etc. It is all about the Baptism of the Holy Ghost and the power we receive with such baptism. 

After years in the church system, I conclude that I have a problem with both approaches. I believe both have a form of godliness but deny the power of God. In 2 Timothy 3:1-5, the Apostle Paul describes to timothy the culture of the last days, 

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, fourtreacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people. (NIV)

Paul finished his list by pointing out those who appear to be Godly but are not. The reason they are not godly, the reason why they have a “form of godliness,” is because they deny the power of God. 

When I look at the church today, the same Pentecostals seem to have so much fire; the same Pentecostals that love to speak about the power of the Holy Ghost seem so powerless when it comes to overcoming sins in their secret places. Immorality seems to be out of control! They deny the power of God by an ultra-focus on our imperfections, God’s love, and his mercy, not judging, and so on. So, the power of God is good for Sunday services, but is it not suitable for our lives? 

On the other hand, what can we say about the traditional church? Well, they are boring, but they also deny the power of God in their gatherings, as there is no room for any expression of the gifts of the Holy Ghost. Again, everything is predetermined. They neglect to see that preaching and teaching the Word without the Spirit will have devastating consequences. 2 Corinthians 3:4-6 tells us,

And we have such trust through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God, who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. (NIV)

My most significant conclusion is that both groups are deceived. If you think you can have a gathering and preach and teach without total submission to the Holy Ghost, who is guiding you? The Bible tells me that it is the Holy Ghost who guides us into all truth. John 16:13 tells us, “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.” (NIV) On the other hand, the charismatic wing of the church must remember Matthew 7:21-23,

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ (NIV)

If we are not doing God’s will, what spirit is manifesting to make us look so convincing as we prophesied, cast out demons, and performed miracles? 

Beloved, the bottom line is that we can’t divorce the Holy Ghost from the Word… it is impossible. We have been picking sides for all these years, the Holy Ghost on the one hand and Word on the other. This is precisely what needs to be corrected. 

Too much of the Holy Spirit? The question itself is offensive. Too much Bible? This question is equally awful. Without the Holy Ghost, you don’t have the Word; without the Word, you don’t have the Spirit.

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