Faith in God’s ability to lead than the devil’s capability to mislead – Ps Mark Tay / 对神大能带领的信心胜于撒旦误导的计谋-郑马可牧师

Patricia King shared how in the past, as a minister of God, she voiced her concern to God about the Faith movement propagated by Kenneth Copeland and how it was introducing deception into the body of Christ. As she was praying, the Lord told her that Kenneth Copeland was “his man”. Stunned and puzzled, Patricia King stopped praying and pondered over what the Lord has revealed to her. Much of what she knew about his ministry has been circulated via word of mouth but she has never personally heard him preach before.

Very often, gossips and rumors have discredited and slandered ministers and ministries and caused much distrust and disunity in the body of Christ. And those who spread them usually did so out of goodwill and fear that “the body of Christ would be deceived”. As believers, we should however refrain from passing judgment based on word of mouth (gossips and rumors) and learn from Jesus who judge not by what he sees with his eyes, or decide by what he hears with his ears (Isaiah 11:3). In the end, Patricia King wisely took the time and effort to attend Kenneth Copeland’s meeting and found his teachings to be biblical and a great blessing to her.

But the Lord was not done renewing her mindset. Subsequently, she experienced what is now commonly known as “Holy Laughter” during a meeting. However, even with this new experience that she had, she was still overwhelmed by what she saw during the Toronto Blessing outbreak. People were flapping their hands like roosters, barking like dogs or roaring like lions. “This can’t be right” Patricia King thought to herself. Once again, she petitioned to God about the body of Christ being deceived by the devil. She reckoned that church service is supposed to be orderly, not chaotic. Surely God would not have His children barking like dogs or roaring like lions. Then to her surprise, the Lord repeatedly prompted her with this question “Have you ask me?” Though shocked by the Lord’s questioning, she was still unconvinced.

All her protest and debating with God over the manifestations in Toronto came to an end when she herself experienced the presence and power of God before dropping to the floor at the pulpit. She never got to preach a word. Subsequently she had her first “roaring” experience. Patricia King had come close to dismissing the move of God in Toronto as the work of the devil because she had leaned on her own understanding and failed to “ask God”. Being presumptuous, she dismissed “roaring and barking” as manifestations of the Holy Spirit. While she felt that the body of Christ had been deceived on both occasions, God has graciously shown her that it wasn’t so.

Like Patricia King, many believers have been quick to dismiss “unconventional” manifestations or teachings as works of the devil. The heart of the discerning however, acquires knowledge and the ears of the wise seek out a matter (Proverbs 18:15). If we are to call ourselves wise and discerning, we will take the time and effort to acquire and seek the truth in His Word and Spirit especially when dealing with the “new and unconventional” things of God. Unless we enquire the Holy Spirit, we will not be able to accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but consider them foolishness which was what happen to Patricia King when she first encountered the new things that God was imparting through Kenneth Copeland and in Toronto. The Apostle Paul even went as far as to claim that we cannot understand them because they are discerned ONLY through the Spirit (1 Cor 2:14). Any attempt to understand anything apart from God easily leads us into error.

Patricia King however, cautioned believers to back up every divine encounter and experience with scriptures. For the roaring experience she had, she found out that “The LORD roars from Zion” (Amos 1:2 & Joel 3:16). She also found a scripture that says “Israel’s watchmen are blind, they all lack knowledge; they are all mute dogs, they cannot bark .. (Isaiah 56:10). The watchmen were supposed to bark. When asked about what she felt about Todd Bentley, Patricia King referred the saints to Jeremiah 3:8 whereby God gave faithless Israel her certificate of divorce and sent her away because of all her adulteries. From this scripture, she explained that God divorce Himself from Israel and surely God can commit no sin. As such believers should not readily view divorce as a sin but learn to look at each one on a case by case basis. She however made it clear that while she didn’t see every divorce as a sin, the bible’s stand on adultery is clear.

In conclusion, our “righteousness” isn’t always God’s standard of righteousness (read Matthew 5:20-47). We should not confuse the prejudices of our society and culture as God’s prejudices. Not every believer who divorce is a sinner although church and culture tends to see them as one. As with every new move of God, many “new and unconventional” revelations and manifestations will be pour out. When that happens, believers should not be quick to judge or dismiss anything as the work of the devil unless we have personally checked with the Spirit and Scriptures. No longer will we pass judgment on ministers and ministries based on word of mouth but let us instead, be believers who have more faith in God’s ability in leading us into all truth than the devil’s capability in deceiving us.

Ps Mark Tay

P.S: Many thanks to Sis Patricia King for her wonderful sharing and teaching and her continual appeal to believers to be humble before God ...

(Translated to Mandarin by Sis Mary Tan)

帕特丽莎 . 金(Patricia King)在新加坡神荣耀领域的课程中分享她早年的见证。身为神的仆人,她向神申诉Kenneth Copeland 所宣传的信心运行将给基督肢体带来欺骗与误导的讯息。就当她在祷告中向神申诉时,神对她说:“Kenneth Copeland 是我的仆人”。神的启示使帕特丽莎非常的惊讶和疑惑。其实她那时并没亲身听过Kenneth Copeland 的分享,而是从流言中听到许多关于Kenneth 的负面报道。

很多时候,八卦的闲言闲语、谣言不但使到神的仆人和事工受到诋毁和诬蔑,更是在教会肢体中引起许多的猜疑和分裂。而那些谣传的人多是出于好意,担心“基督肢体会被误导”。身为基督徒的我们,要谨慎我们的言语,不要道听途说妄下定论。反之要向我们的主学习如何行审判不凭眼见,断是非也不凭耳闻 (以赛亚书11:3)。最后,帕特丽莎 . 金抽空去到Kenneth Copeland 的聚会听道后发现他所教导的不但符合圣经的教义,而且让她获益不浅。

此后,神并没有停止在她的思想上做更新的工作。接着她在一个聚会中经历了所谓的“灵里的喜笑”。虽然有了这次的经历,在“多伦多祝福”盛会中圣灵的大彰显,看到人们向公鸡一样的拍着翅膀、像狗一样的在吠和狮子般的吼叫,帕特丽莎 . 金还是无法接受的认为“这绝对不正常!”同样的,她再次的来到神面前向神投诉,她认为,这些都是撒旦作为在欺骗神的肢体。教会的聚会应该是很有次序而不是这样乱七八糟的。还有,神决不会让祂的儿女像狗一样的吠和狮子般的吼叫。很奇妙的,神却不断地问她:“你是否求问过我呢?”她所觉得惊讶,但还是无法接受。

所有对“多伦多祝福” 盛会中圣灵彰显的抗议和辩论在她自己在讲台上被神同在的大能击倒在地上的经历终告结束。当时她根本没机会开始分享就被圣灵充满倒地。此后,她也亲身经历了“犹大狮子的吼叫”。帕特丽莎 . 金因依靠自己的聪明而否定了“多伦多祝福”是神的作为。更断定“吼叫和吠”绝不可能出自圣灵。但当她觉得神的子民在这两件事上被恶者欺骗的同时,神却以无限的慈爱纠正她。

就像帕特丽莎 . 金 一样,很多信徒在看到非传统的彰显和教导就急着下定论那是从魔鬼而来的。聪明人的心得知识;智慧人的耳求知识(箴 言 18:15)。若我们说自己有聪明和智慧,在聚会看到新和非传统的彰显时,我们就会花时间从神的灵和话语中寻求真相。除非我们请教圣灵,不然我们将无法接受从神而来的新事,还可能把它当成愚拙的事。就像帕特丽莎 . 金早期面对神赐给Copeland的恩膏和“多伦多祝福”的彰显时那样。师徒保罗更在歌林多前书2:14 说我们不能明白,因为这些事惟有属灵的人才能看透 。不管想明白或了解什么事, 我们若不寻求和倚靠神就会很容易地做出错误的判断。

帕特丽莎 . 金 提醒信徒,每一个神圣的经历都要有圣经真理的根据。在她所亲身经历的狮子吼叫,圣灵以“耶和华必从锡安吼叫” (阿摩司书1:2;約珥书3:16)来印证祂的作为。神也启示她“他看守的人是瞎眼的,都没有知识,都是哑巴狗,不能叫唤(以賽亞书56:10),神的守望者本应像狗那样的叫唤。当在问及“Todd Bentley”事件时,帕特丽莎 . 金引用了耶利米书3:8, 这里说到神因背道的以色列行淫,所以给她休书休了她 。从这经节,她解释说神与以色列民离婚而如果离婚是罪,那神不是犯罪了吗?因此我们不因该把所有离婚的人都当成有罪,而应该视个别情况而定。她也强调,她虽不认为所有离婚都是罪,但绝对赞同圣经对淫乱罪的看法。

总挂来说,我们的“公义” 准则未必是神“公义”的准则(请读马太福音5:20-47)。我们不应该把社会和文化的成见与神国度的文化混为一谈。虽然教会和社会常常视离婚的信徒为罪人,但神未必是这样看的。神每一次做新事时,都会有很多新的、非传统的启示和彰显涌出来。当这些事发生时,除非我们已得到圣灵的和圣经印证,否则,身为信徒的我们不应该急予论断或把这些事归纳于魔鬼的作为。不要再道听途说,毫无根据的批评论断任何神的仆人和事工。反之,我们该对神能带领我们进入一切真理有着坚定的信心胜于害怕撒旦能误导的计谋!

Ps Mark Tay


注:非常感谢帕特丽莎 . 金姐妹的分享和教导、还有她那不断提醒信徒要在神面前谦卑求问的忠告。。。