Listen to the above clip as Dr. Michael Brown gives a misleading picture of regular Pentecostal / Charismatic church life.
Whoa, wait a second here. I’ve heard this before. See, I know a thing or two about this, because not only have I been a member of a Pentecostal Church for the last thirteen years. Before that I was a devoted visitor, not a member, of a church that came straight outta Toronto! I was not a member, not because I saw something fishy with that church, but because I was in rebellion! I didn’t want to be a member. I didn’t even have a valid reason, I hardly has any reason at all. I just didn’t wanna, period. But this is not the normative charismatic experience. Not in pentecostalism and not in the Toronto movement.
See, most of the time it is professing believers who go to the front of the stage after a church service to receive what is called prayer service. It’s what you see in the Rodney howard-browne videos. Where he yells fire and they fall limp on the ground. That has nothing to do with being born again, at least not normatively. In my pentecostal corner here people hardly fall over anymore, but they receive prayer service anyway. And the prayer service is pretty much always associated with a visiting preacher, a rain man, a witch doctor, as Conrad M’bewe said at Strange Fire.
People don’t go to the front because they want to become christians. They go there, because they want a special anointing, a special touch, a special touch, from the “Rain Man.”
The rain man supposedly brings God to them in a way their ordinary pastor can’t. And they play sappy background music and beckon people to come saying: ”do you feel dry in your spirit? do you need a fresh anointing in your life? Come forward, we pray for you. Pastor so and so has promised to not leave this evening until he or someone in his team has prayed for everyone in this building, if need be. Come forward, come meet with the Lord.” And then people go home having learned nothing, and having been fed nothing.
In the next weeks church service the pastor revisits how awesome the precense of God was and how many gave their lives to Jesus. And when time comes for the next rain man event, the same people are in the front again receiving prayer service. Rinse and repeat. Dr. Brown is giving a misleading picture of regular pentecostal slash charismatic church life. I’ve heard pentecostals do this before. One pastor, the leader of the Finnish pentecostal church, did this in a radio debate against an ex-pentecostal atheist and another pastor did this in an article in the pentecostal newspaper.
When Pentecostals defend speaking in tongues, they say something like: I heard my mother speak in very old Swedish one time, or: I heard about an old Romanian man, who got really convicted when suddenly somebody spoke in an old Romanian language, that only he knew. Great, good for you, I didn’t ask you about the one in a million legendary tale of somebody speaking an ordinary language, I asked you about the gibberish you people speak every day. That’s the normative thing. Defend that, please!
Contributed by Simon J Kok
Hear Simon J Kok’s “Gracious Response To Dr. James White’s Elephant Room 3” – Here
Listen and read more BTWN content concerning Dr. Michael Brown – HERE