04:55 01Sep10 Gilbert Carthigasu -
Thank you for this great article; as a pastor of a Pentecostal church that
loves Israel it is encouraging and insightful.
One question: As a Gentile who goes to many Israel focussed meetings I have
seen many "odd" things like women wearing the talit and blowing the shofar etc.
What guidelines would you give to such people.
-- Dr Juster replies:
I think that the issue for Pentecostals and Charismatics concerns the
issue of respect in using traditions outside of the boundaries of normal
Jewish usage. Those who are in non-traditional streams of the church
tend to not have a sense of the holy or reverence in using religious
symbols and rituals. So the issue is when and how the shofar is used in
Judaism and with this in mind having guidelines for our use that maintain
some reverence. In the same way, the tallit is now used by women but not
part of doing the hora dance. Again, the issue is not men or women
today, but who and how. In addition, as a symbol of Jewish identity for
Jews, we have to think out how Gentiles in a MJ context can join and use
such a symbol. I am not giving answers, but calling for a respectful
06:18 01Sep10 DK -
Your writing is my heart's desire. I'm wasted on doing the wise, humane
service. We need God in His greatest form. We will never get there if we
give into serving Him our way.
08:07 01Sep10 Almena Carthigasu -
Very good teaching especially to us Gentiles who are just embracing the "the
08:22 01Sep10 Janelle -
Amen and amen. The fine line gets even finer after you pray Hebrews 4:12. God
has increased the discernment between truth and error, cultural sensitivity and
spiritual power when the believer doesn't just agree with Hebrews 4;12, but
actually prays it: "Lord, separate my spirit from soul-control, that my spirit
would get Your Mind on the matter."
08:51 01Sep10 Paul Hunt -
Also, "...the Lord confirmed their words, with signs and wonders following." If
one is not teaching His word, then the signs are false.
09:48 01Sep10 CB
What a great lesson. In the past I have stuggled with explaning shaking to
visitors or non believing guests. Personally I have questioned the "gold dust"
phenomena because it doesn't make sense to me. I desire to be open as well as
-- Dr Juster replies:
It is a difficult issue. I have known gold dust miracles in South
America from friends who have experienced it and who are trustworthy.
However, they have not made it central, but only as a sign of God's love
and favor. So many times people seek to mimic what God has done in the
past or seek to make such phenomena happen again, to manufacture it. I
want to give space for God's spirit to sovereignly move, but want to
balance a place for the testimony of the supernatural and to make our
services comprehensible but not go overboard with anything goes!
10:17 01Sep10 MAH -
I am opposed to putting a lid on the HOLY SPIRIT. He is a gentleman and will
not act weird if you keep your eyes on JESUS the only focus! I do not like
this whole SEEKER SENSITIVE THING! Allow HS to move as He wills, let go of the
fear of man and be more interested in the fear of G-d! Why not allow the GLORY
to be like a cloud? It engulfs the atmosphere. PRESENCE TAKES OVER!
10:35 01Sep10 Gail Coon -
A wonderful insightful article. I am watching my church shrink in size ...
tradition is robbing us as a congregation.I am a spirit filled believer in a
group that is frightened of spiritual things and manifestation so I am praying.
12:48 01Sep10 Pelham Gross -
Ah yes. I remember well my Baptist days when "all things must be done decently
and in order." Meaning pre-determined denominational-set order, of course. I
held to this in my preaching -- until one night in Arkansas a lady in the back
got overcome, started speaking in tongues, and the POWER of God hit me up in
the pulpit. Adjustment time! Nowadays, there's this monstrous cultural
sensitivity in our gentile church leadership that goes something like this: "MY
people are just not ready for 'the Israel thing' yet." And I'm thinking: Do we
wait for a Zechariah 14 scenario to fall on 'OUR' people before we let them
know that GOD IS ON RECORD -- on course, and on time to destroy everybody and
everything not lined up with GOD'S true Israel nation? Do not 'OUR' people
trapped in ignorance, arrogance, greed, and even rebellion DESERVE to be given
the revelation of God's Truth from His Word?
13:13 01Sep10 Jannai -
Amen! I pray that the power of the Holy Spirit will manifest through us and
with us, that all who see and hear will experience the Presence of G-d which
will change their lives forever! "I am not ashamed of the Gospel, because it is
the power of G-d for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew,
then for the Gentile." Romans 1:16
13:17 01Sep10 Dan Benzvi -
The problem we see in all this, is that some are building whole ministries that
are centered on the supernatural at the cost of putting the center of our
faith, Yeshua, on the back burner.
-- Dr Juster replies:
Sadly, this does happen but we should allow God to be sovereign and not
to seek to manufacture stuff!
14:08 01Sep10 Philip Mafunga -
Couldn't agree more. After all, Yeshua says He will send us the Spirit who will
lead us into all Truth. Diminishing the power of God through His Spirit is just
as good as rejecting the very Truth that sets men free ... in other words, this
is having a form of Godliness that denies its very power. May we be open to the
move and manifestation of the Spirit of God who reveals the Father and Son to
us that we may know God better. He is the Spirit of Wisdom and revelation.
18:57 01Sep10 Amy Balch -
A word well spoken and much needed to be heard by the Blood-bought Church
today! My heart grieves for how we have closed (slammed) our "collective"
doors, in today's politically correct, seeker-friendly climate, in the face of
the precious Holy Spirit -- and often God, for that matter! Truly to the
determent of our souls!
19:09 01Sep10 Abbie -
I went to a church years ago where the Pastors were spirit-filled Christians.
Somehow they got upset when we ministered the Baptism in the Holy Spirit in
Bible School. The next year they put a ban on any of this, stating that they
wanted anyone to feel comfortable sending their child to our church. What was
funny was that we had asked for a different speaker each night to share their
testimony and four of the five majored on the Baptism in the Holy Spirit! The
fifth person was a part of the church hierarchy and followed the ban while the
others knew nothing of this grieving policy.
21:09 01Sep10 Phil Guse -
Well put. The tension that exists in our sensitivity to both the Spirit and
those around us has many trapped at each extreme. Your article exposes the need
for a balanced approach that places our confidence in Jesus' desire to reveal
His love through us without being a stumbling block.
22:13 01Sep10 Margaret -
I have notice that most churches do not want to believe in the manifestation of
the Ruach HaKodesh. I have been told to test the "spirit" many times because
they do not believe it is Him. I always answer that I serve the Living G-d and
only Him I worship and adore. Therefore, I believe and trust that it is "His"
Ruach HaKodesh that speaks through me in tongues and gives me the joy and peace
of Y'shua, because as in Revelation 19:10...'Worship G-d for the testimony of
Y'shua is the Spirit of prophecy.'" May we all who truly worship G-d in spirit
and truth, believe and trust that what we receive is the Spirit promised.
06:50 02Sep10 Jeong Lee -
As churches in America follow seeker service, many Korean churches are copying
them. Their cultural approaches are very attractive, however efforts to
manifest the power of God is poor. I agree you "our effectiveness in presenting
the Gospel to our people has more to do with spiritual power than cultural
10:38 02Sep10 D. Miller -
While I agree that Adonai moves in ways unknown to us and how He wills, I stay
stuck on the fact that not once in scripture does it say Yeshua ever manifested
the Holy Spirit by falling to the ground shaking/squirming or let loose with a
bunch of non-coherent babbling. Shaul speaks of those things in effort to put
a halt to some of the pagan practices that were so UNEDIFYING to the body as a
whole. When one person out of the kehilah stands and begins to babble (or
speak "in tongues") it is NOT edifying to those around him/her, or even to the
person doing it, as they themselves don't even know what is coming from their
mouths! It is declared over and over again that Adonai works in ways that
edify the body of believers as a whole, not in ways that will feed the fleshly
desire to see "weird" things. We are not to be so focused on hoping out of the
ordinary things happen that we'll lean on making sure that they do.
Manifestations of the Ruach HaKodesh will always be in line with scripture,
which of course is far above our own ways anyway. We do need to beware.
-- Dr Juster replies:
Yes, one should not babble out without interpretation. However, in my
experience the Holy Spirit includes the reality of power and when there
is great power, it is difficult for the weak to stand; hence the priests
in the Temple and even those who came to arrest Yeshua. We simply do not
have much information about such things in the N.T. Yeshua was at a
level that he could experience amazing levels of power and still be
16:24 02Sep10 The Rev. Dr. Nicholas A. Marziani -
Beyond issues of spiritual power, there is the important matter of spiritual
identity, ie. who we are while at worship. I find it interesting that the
current Pope is rather unconcerned that aspects of traditional Roman Catholic
worship may be "insensitive" to prospective church members (or even current
members!). He's singularly concerned with Catholic spiritual identity - who
and what the church is supposed to be at prayer.
The same idea applies here, I think. If the LORD has called a Messianic
congregation to be a place where spiritual gifts are valued in their
manifestation, then integrity demands that they be true to that calling, that
identity. To dissemble or cloak who we really are is a form of lying, and Paul
certainly had words to share with Peter concerning that very point!
22:31 02Sep10 Rose Mary Baca -
I've been listening to some of Derek Prince's teachings on how we ourselves are
triune in nature, as spirit, soul, and body -- 1 Thess 5:23 -- (a series called
"Bible Psychology"). The teaching explains the various articles in tabernacle
of Moses and the stages required for us to enter the Holy of Holies where we
receive the revelation and fellowship of God in Spirit and in truth that our
spirit longs for. I think we need to be in that intimate fellowship with God in
order to be able to discern between spiritual and the soulish.
01:08 03Sep10 Sean Steckbeck -
I've found the solution to balance in this phenomenom. The problem with both
the seeker sensetive (contextualized) and power of God moves is that both of
them practice extraction and attraction models. Meaning we attract them with
either contextualized forms of what they do or with the power of God, then
extract them from their existing communities. Rather, it would be the easiest
to practice if the disciple-maker/congregation planter would practice making
disciples within their existing communities. There would be no need for
contextualization, because they are already living their cultural reality out
on a regular basis. And the power of God can invade their existing
05:51 04Sep10 SS -
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! What a balanced view! One for which I have
longed since leaving a Pentecostal setting to come into an understanding of the
Scriptures from the Jewish point of view through our Messianic brothers and
sisters in Messiah. Our particular congregation does not embrace the gifts of
the Ruah as you have presented them in this article. In my opinion, they are
much needed for the reasons you have given. Since you are much respected by our
rabbi (who we love), I sincerely hope that he will consider your article with
much prayer and wisdom.
23:07 05Sep10 David -
Thank you for addressing this important subject in such a sensitive way - that
is, sensitivity toward God and His workings. May we first seek to please God
before trying to please man.
08:22 06Sep10 Susan Stanage -
Thank you for encouraging the Body of Christ to speak forth the prophetic Word,
in the U.S. many churches "deny the power" of God and keep quiet. New comers
are looking for the Power of God to help them grow and be edified. Something
that is different from the secular humanistic that quenches the Spirit.
23:00 08Sep10 Carol Reid -
This rings so true for those of us in Gentile churches as well. We belong to a
Foursquare church that is a far cry from the spiritual foundations that Aimee
Semple laid (particularly Jesus as the Baptizer in the Holy Spirit). Our body
is shrinking I believe due to restraining the Holy Spirit from operating fully
during our gatherings. There is a strong man-pleasing spirit at work.
-- Dr Juster replies:
I do have great respect for the 4 Square and do know churches that pursue
the presence and power of the Spirit. However, we have seen a great turn
away from the Spirit to sociological methods as I noted above and that
would include Pentecostal churches as well.
15:03 11Sep10 Vicki -
This absolutely delights me, as the entire time I was reading I was thinking of
some of the young people here in the U.S. who are so hungry for the
supernatural. It may be the only way to "win" some of them.