Charismatic Friends

Posted by: Tom

Charismatic Friends - Wednesday, January 31, 2007 9:05 PM

I was wondering if anybody still has Charismatic friends.
Although I still have a few acquaintances that are Charismatic, the close friends I had when I was a Charismatic, also left the movement.

Tom
Posted by: Arashi-dono

Re: Charismatic Friends - Thursday, February 1, 2007 1:28 AM

Apparently, i never HAD any friends when Charismatic - for once i left the movement, i never ever heard from any of them again; neither people i went to church with, nor the other ministry people i worked with for so many hours each week to run a campus ministry, nor any of the people with whom i used to drive so many miles to attend the latest "happening" church.

- too bitter? {Truthfully, that was somewhat of a relief since it wasn't until quite some time later that i was really able to (at all successfully) defend my jumping ship from charismania. But it was still a bit surprising}.

So no - no charismatic friends. A couple acquaintances who are still 'sort of' charismatic, hurt but not sure about fully abandoning thier pentecostal heritage, but no full-on charismatics.

- M.
Posted by: Adopted

Re: Charismatic Friends - Thursday, February 1, 2007 5:38 AM

Quote:

Tom said:
I was wondering if anybody still has Charismatic friends.
Although I still have a few acquaintances that are Charismatic, the close friends I had when I was a Charismatic, also left the movement.


It has been my experience that not only do Charismatics leave the movement but they often leave Christianity altogether. This is much like ExRoman Catholics; after they discover the hypocrisy and depravity of the heretical sacramental system they leave the church or at least refuse further participation. Many feel and rightly so, that they have been used. Since they have been taught by the priests that the RCC is the "true church" they tend to believe that all Christianity is somehow like Rome and refuse any further study of the Scripture. IMO, the heresy is somehow infused or ingrained and this is exactly why the Charismatic (as well as the RCC) cult movement is so dangerous.

The only old "friends" that I know of from the Charismatics are now a very secular and worldly people. This is also why I believe that if there are Christians in the Charismatic movement (or the RCC) they're on their way out and will truely and permanently escape only by God's grace and the Scripture Alone.

Denny

Romans 3:22-24
Posted by: Robin

Re: Charismatic Friends - Thursday, February 1, 2007 5:51 AM

I still have friends in Charismania that think I've just settled for "head-knowledge-only" Christianity, which they find very distasteful. They wouldn't know I was a non-Charismatic if they saw me, though. I still close my eyes and raise my hands in worship; I get emotional when something in God's word gives me a glimpse of His majesty; I have all the passion and fervor I did as a Charismatic.

The difference is that now I get excited about His attributes and providence more than about my own feelings or this-or-that manifestation or event or circumstance. If you ask me, I think they are the ones who are settling for less than the fullness and best of Christianity.

I have lost touch with most of my old Charismatic friends. I know that some have rejected Christianity as "fake" and abandoned themselves to the world. I know that one has rejected church but supposedly not Christ. Two are now in PCA churches <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/bravo.gif" alt="" /> and a few remain in the formerly SBC Charismatic church we left which has become obsessed with finding and jumping into whater the "latest move of God" is. Having an adolescent need to be On the Cutting Edge of What God is Doing in the Earth Today, our former church literally competes with other Charismatic churches to show itself more "in tune with the Spirit" than it's neighbors.

<img src="/forum/images/graemlins/puke.gif" alt="" />

-Robin
Posted by: Arashi-dono

Re: Charismatic Friends - Thursday, February 1, 2007 8:44 AM

Quote:
Robin said:
...I have all the passion and fervor I did as a Charismatic.

The difference is that now I get excited about His attributes and providence more than about my own feelings or this-or-that manifestation or event or circumstance. If you ask me, I think they are the ones who are settling for less than the fullness and best of Christianity.


Hey that's great - i really like how you said that. In fact i think 'm gonna steal it! <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/uptosomething.gif" alt="" />

Sometimes it's so hard to explain to people the difference between emotion and emotionalism.

- M.
Posted by: Tom

Re: Charismatic Friends - Thursday, February 1, 2007 12:54 PM

Quote:
Robin said:
I still have friends in Charismania that think I've just settled for "head-knowledge-only" Christianity, which they find very distasteful. They wouldn't know I was a non-Charismatic if they saw me, though. I still close my eyes and raise my hands in worship; I get emotional when something in God's word gives me a glimpse of His majesty; I have all the passion and fervor I did as a Charismatic.


Careful brother, there are some that frown on raising hands in worship <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/coffee2.gif" alt="" /> But I actually think that it is great that you do, though I rarely do it anymore.
Posted by: bassbum

Re: Charismatic Friends - Saturday, February 3, 2007 2:53 PM

I left my AoG church almost a year ago and now attend an OPC.

I have kept contact with a few of my friends from the old church but some of it has to do with my profession. You see, I'm a mechanic and one thing you don't want to lose is a friend who is a mechanic.<img src="/forum/images/graemlins/nope.gif" alt="" /> There is one lady from the old church that I have kept in close contact with though. The funny thing is that since I left the church and became reformed it seems she has gotten deeper and deeper into some of the more exotic stuff ie. banners, shofars, trips to the Toronto Blessing, wearing camo for spiritual warfare, ect. I have tried to show scripture to her but as Robin said she thinks I now have "head knowledge" only and am not as spiritual as her. I still keep in really close contact with her hoping that her eyes will be opened to the truth. Oh, one last thing,she is married.................to me.

I finally dawned on me yesterday that one of the real problems with Charismania is that it is totally based on feeling and emotions. In that paradigm feelings always trump scripture. That is an area that men cannot compete. So what happens is the men are never really seen as being as spiritual as the women and this usurps their authority in the church and more importantly in the home. God help us all.
Posted by: Caroline

Re: Charismatic Friends - Saturday, February 3, 2007 8:12 PM

I'm sorry to hear about your wife. It is difficult, I am sure, to see her slipping further and further into error like that.

I'm not sure that I understand the man/woman distinctive that you are drawing. In the churches that I attended, the men were the ones in charge of the church, and the women were treated lower than dirt--even had to wear only dresses and were not allowed to cut their hair or wear makeup or jewelry. The UPCI is different from a lot of Charismatic denominations, though.
Posted by: bassbum

Re: Charismatic Friends - Saturday, February 3, 2007 10:01 PM

I have noticed in the various ExCharismata threads the type of church that you are describing, Caroline: long dresses, long hair, no jewerly, ect. That is nothing like my old church. In my opinion, it was male led but women driven. Most of the activities in the church revolved around women. Men's ministry never got off the ground. The only two ministries that men every participated in was building maintenance and sportsman's club (hunting and fishing).
Posted by: Robin

Re: Charismatic Friends - Sunday, February 4, 2007 4:57 AM

In both Charismatic SNC churches we went to, women were considered to be more "sensitive to the Spirit" than men. It always took longer for men to "get it" than the women for whom spiritual sensitivity was considered much more natural.

And since being "sensitive to the Spirit" is so important to being On the Cutting Edge of What God is Doing in the Earth Today (I know, I'll pro'lly overuse that phrase here but I'm so stricken by the arrogance of that mindset), our two Charismatic SBC churches tended to be "feminized" despite lip service to male headship. Women having to wait for the men to "get it" before going on ahead was thought to be God's dynamic for both churches and families, keeping the impulses of both genders in check.

I think that this "feminization" of the church is more apparent to folks who are many years removed from Charismania. It's rarely the reason anyone leaves the movement, but it's one of those things that you look back on and go, "Oh, crud. Was I really like that?"

It took me longer to see it (but then, being male, it's expected, right?), but a system built on and so dependent upon emotionalism just naturally tends towards femininity.

-Robin
Posted by: Arashi-dono

Re: Charismatic Friends - Sunday, February 4, 2007 5:49 AM

Yeah, in the AoG and TACF churches i attended it was almost taken for granted that there were going to be a lot more women in heaven than men - because the women 'went down' so much faster and spent so much more time weeping on the floor, and all us unfeeling men so often just stood round feeling embarased, wishing we could let go and be so 'spiritual.'

And though men were always 'officially' at the top of the hierarchy, it really was usually the women who were directing things - because of course, they were so much more in tune to the spiritual.

- Michael
Posted by: Caroline

Re: Charismatic Friends - Sunday, February 4, 2007 7:18 AM

Hmmm ... that's interesting. At the UPCI churches, the women were considered the super-sinful ones, the men were all holy, except insofar as they were tempted by the evil women. Women weren't allowed to do hardly anything in ministry, except cook and clean.

There were a few exceptions to that. If a woman was really good at flattering the pastor, if she sidled up to him after the services and said in a breathy voice that he was a great man of God and that she just really felt the presence of the Lord around him--well, then suddenly, she was thought to be a great example of spiritual virtue, a positive Prov 31 model, the standard by which every woman in the church was measured.

If a woman disagreed with the pastor, then she was a Jezebel, a harlot, a witch, etc etc and everybody thought she was going to be the downfall of the church. <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/rolleyes2.gif" alt="" />
Posted by: Tom

Re: Charismatic Friends - Monday, February 5, 2007 10:15 PM

bassbum said:

Quote:
I have tried to show scripture to her but as Robin said she thinks I now have "head knowledge" only and am not as spiritual as her. I still keep in really close contact with her hoping that her eyes will be opened to the truth. Oh, one last thing,she is married.................to me.


I will be praying for you and your wife.

But there is something else that came to mind as I read that.

While I believe for the most part what you said about head knowledge is certainly true.
I just thought I would mention something an old Pentecostal pastor once said during a much needed rebuke of the congregation.
He said (and with a lot of passion I might add):
Quote:
I am a minister of the Word of God. However, do not ever believe something just because I said it. Believe it because the Word of God said it, I am just a fallible human, just like you!


If there was one thing that stuck with me all these years from my experience in the Pentecostal Church it was my pastor saying that.
What is ironic about him saying that is that unbeknown to him, that quote played a huge part into my eventual leaving the Charismatic movement.

I want to also say that although I disagree today with much of his theology. I did gain a profound respect for him, in that he lived what he believed.
I got to know him through the 3-4 years I attended there and found out that he spent a lot of time on his knees and in study of the Word of God, in fact he wore out a Bible a year.

Tom
Posted by: Tom

Re: Charismatic Friends - Monday, February 5, 2007 10:36 PM

In the Pentecostal Churches that I attended, though what you talked about certainly occurred.
I also found that in many cases, men just didn't really want to get involved in anything that involved more than maybe ushering, maintenance and social things like going for coffee with the boys, or anything to do with food.
Many women on the other hand, were willing to attend Bible classes held by elders, attend prayer meetings etc...
But come to think about it, what I just described is generally what I have found to be the case in most non-Charismatic Churches I have attended since then.

Can men blame women for things like these?

Tom
Posted by: Caroline

Re: Charismatic Friends - Tuesday, February 6, 2007 7:39 AM

Quote:
Tom said:
I want to also say that although I disagree today with much of his theology. I did gain a profound respect for him, in that he lived what he believed. I got to know him through the 3-4 years I attended there and found out that he spent a lot of time on his knees and in study of the Word of God, in fact he wore out a Bible a year.


These are the saddest cases to me. I knew one Pentecostal preacher like this also. So sincere, so deceived. Unfortunately, sincerity doesn't mean that much, really. If someone is wrong, they are wrong, even if they are sure they are right. That someone can persist in being wrong while praying and reading the Bible isn't admirable--it just means they are stupid. I know, because I did just that for many years. I suppose I can excuse myself in that I was sincere, but I was without excuse--I had the Bible right there with me.

[color:"red"]Edited:[/color] Added "quote" tags.
Posted by: Tom

Re: Charismatic Friends - Tuesday, February 6, 2007 8:33 PM

Quote:
Caroline said:
Quote:
Tom said:
I want to also say that although I disagree today with much of his theology. I did gain a profound respect for him, in that he lived what he believed. I got to know him through the 3-4 years I attended there and found out that he spent a lot of time on his knees and in study of the Word of God, in fact he wore out a Bible a year.


These are the saddest cases to me. I knew one Pentecostal preacher like this also. So sincere, so deceived. Unfortunately, sincerity doesn't mean that much, really. If someone is wrong, they are wrong, even if they are sure they are right. That someone can persist in being wrong while praying and reading the Bible isn't admirable--it just means they are stupid. I know, because I did just that for many years. I suppose I can excuse myself in that I was sincere, but I was without excuse--I had the Bible right there with me.

[color:"red"]Edited:[/color] Added "quote" tags.


Caroline

I agree and I can only hope and pray that my former pastor, did eventually see the light.

Tom
Posted by: ProgDog

Re: Charismatic Friends - Monday, March 24, 2008 1:16 PM

I was "ejected" from a charismatic/pentecostal church and have had no-one contact my family after our departure. That was 2 years ago. I have had contact with some of the members of the charismatic movement locally and found that their friendship is quite conditional, conditional upon my attendance to their cult. I am now searching for a reformed church that preaches the true gospel. Much of the charismatics in my city have embraced other heresies such as G12 and kingdom now theology. I lead my family down a rather lonely path at this point. But praise God for He is holy and good and worthy of our praise! <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/ClapHands.gif" alt="" />
Posted by: Robin

Re: Charismatic Friends - Monday, March 24, 2008 2:00 PM

This is a safe place, ProgDog. Welcome to the Highway!
Posted by: gotribe

Re: Charismatic Friends - Tuesday, March 25, 2008 7:34 AM

Welcome to the Highway! You've come to a good place for fellowship and learning.

Take some time to explore all the resources available here on the discussion board as well as the Highway Website. You'll find a lot of food for your Christian growth!

Also, if you're looking for a Reformed Church, why don't you visit the Church Locator forum? You might be able to find something or someone here might be able to help you find a church in your area.

Kim
Posted by: Relztrah

Re: Charismatic Friends - Sunday, August 24, 2008 9:34 PM

As I read your posts there is a common thread: the overall decrease in the charismatic population. Yes, I know that Benny Hinn still attracts his hundreds of thousands and somehow the others remain on television. But as a movement, hasn't it run out of steam? Back in the 80's when I was swept up in the fervor and enthusiasm, it seemed that nearly every denomination (historic Protestant and otherwise) had a charismatic group. And the traditional Pentecostal denominations were being invigorated while thousands of independent charismatic churches were sprouting up overnight like mushrooms. Now you have to go looking if you want to find a genuine tongues-speaking church where the members receive words of knowledge willy-nilly. They've grown up (at least chronologically), calmed down and become mainline evangelicals.
Posted by: Robin

Re: Charismatic Friends - Monday, August 25, 2008 2:47 PM

How I wish that were true! But in the "big picture" that the world sees, the vast majority of people world wide who identify as Christian is either Roman Catholic or Charismatic (as in TBN followers). The message of healing and wealth and health and personal fulfillment is far more appealing to "seekers" than the gospel call to self-denial and a surrendered life.
Posted by: Tom

Re: Charismatic Friends - Thursday, August 28, 2008 3:08 PM

Not sure if that is true or not.
One thing that comes to mind however, after you mentioning Benny Hinn, is that although there are many Pentecostal Churches that warn against Benny Hinn and his type, many others have bought into him and that sort of teaching, hook line and sinker. In fact, they will not even listen if you try to show them some of the heretical teaching Hinn and others preach. I was soundly rebuked by my own sister for doing so.
Another person politely told me that, I am misunderstanding what Hinn is trying to say. When I asked what I am misunderstanding, they didnít have a reply.

Tom
Posted by: rpavich

Re: Charismatic Friends - Saturday, January 24, 2009 6:54 PM

I'm actually an "Ex-Charismatic" currently going to an AOG church.

I was saved almost 4 years ago and and didn't realize that there was a difference at all in different denominations...I soon learned that there certainly is!

I'm currently looking for a Presbyterian church nearby because there are no "Reformed" Churches that are close to me at all.

My biggest problem is that I REALLY LIKE the people there...they are personally nice people for the most part...but studying scripture is NOT a hallmark of the Charismatic church! The more I learn, the more I see why everyone starts their sentences with "I think..." rather that "The bible says..."

Posted by: Pilgrim

Re: Charismatic Friends - Saturday, January 24, 2009 7:41 PM

Originally Posted By: rpavich
I'm currently looking for a Presbyterian church nearby because there are no "Reformed" Churches that are close to me at all.

Why not make a request in our "Church Locator Forum" with any particulars you are looking for in a church. It is possible one or more could be offered for your inspection. shrug
Posted by: CovenantInBlood

Re: Charismatic Friends - Saturday, January 24, 2009 9:20 PM

Originally Posted By: rpavich
I'm actually an "Ex-Charismatic" currently going to an AOG church.

I was saved almost 4 years ago and and didn't realize that there was a difference at all in different denominations...I soon learned that there certainly is!

I'm currently looking for a Presbyterian church nearby because there are no "Reformed" Churches that are close to me at all.

My biggest problem is that I REALLY LIKE the people there...they are personally nice people for the most part...but studying scripture is NOT a hallmark of the Charismatic church! The more I learn, the more I see why everyone starts their sentences with "I think..." rather that "The bible says..."


From personal experience, I suggest you leave as soon as you can. Not that you should burn any bridges, of course. But if you're anything like me, the longer you stay, the more unbearable the unbiblical teaching & worship will become, & you'll start to resent these folks. Like Pilgrim says, you should put a request in the Church Locator forum. We'll be happy to try & find something in your area.
Posted by: Hitch

Re: Charismatic Friends - Sunday, January 25, 2009 10:33 AM

Originally Posted By: rpavich
I'm actually an "Ex-Charismatic" currently going to an AOG church.

I was saved almost 4 years ago and and didn't realize that there was a difference at all in different denominations...I soon learned that there certainly is!

I'm currently looking for a Presbyterian church nearby because there are no "Reformed" Churches that are close to me at all.

My biggest problem is that I REALLY LIKE the people there...they are personally nice people for the most part...but studying scripture is NOT a hallmark of the Charismatic church! The more I learn, the more I see why everyone starts their sentences with "I think..." rather that "The bible says..."

Thats a move up. For years everyone ended their sentences with 'should the Lord tarry'...
Posted by: rpavich

Re: Charismatic Friends - Friday, February 13, 2009 5:01 PM

Pilgrim and Cinblood,
I'm sorry for not replying sooner...I didn't get an email alert.

I'll try the locator forum, thanks for the tip.

C-in-blood,
you are right; I'm still there and now I do feel like I resent them more. I can't even bring myself to sit in the service for the most part...

bob
Posted by: Robin

Re: Charismatic Friends - Friday, February 13, 2009 5:11 PM

I was like that too for the last several months of my sojourn in an AOG church after leaving a "Third Wave" church. The music offended me (it paid no homage to Christ nor extolled His work), the sermons offended me (very much the same "Christian witchcraft" I heard in the previous church - how to get God to do for you), and not long after, the people themselves offended me by turning on me for daring to question - let alone object to - the "word from God" that was being preached there.

Kyle is right... run like a scalded dog! You may not like what you become (even worse than a Charismatic, LOL!) if you stay and continue to harbor resentment for the deepening offenses against the truth and against your soul.

We'll do everything we can to help you.

Posted by: sojourner

Re: Charismatic Friends - Saturday, February 14, 2009 2:05 PM

I may be the oddball here but one of my best friends is a member of a charismatic church(The Message).Rather than being in conflict about everything we concentrate on the things that makes us brothers in Christ.We share prayer requests weekly and if either of us has a special Quiet Time in the morning we email the encouraging word to the other.
My company subcontracts work from my friends company consequently that brings us into phone or face to face contact almost daily.We can spend hours enjoying an afternoon of fishing while talking about tongues or divine healing without beind adversarial.
Years ago my "Paul" in the faith taught me that being confident in what I believe would help overcome the fear that naturally comes with discussing opposing views whether it be evangelism,cults or whatever.
Thanks for the opportunity to share.
Posted by: Robin

Re: Charismatic Friends - Saturday, February 14, 2009 7:58 PM

That's great, Sojourner! It's apples and oranges, though... One is an ex-Charismatic attending a Pentecostal church. The other, your situation, is a friendship between two individuals who respect each other.

One who has come to the truth cannot help but be "offended," for lack of a better word, to hear it perverted from the pulpit Lord's Day after Lord's Day. I too have friends in the Charismatic movement that I respect, and we still share devotions and enjoy amicable debate about areas of disagreement.

It's different because my Charismatic friend and I are equals on the river in a fishing boat. In church, however, there is a clear distinction between leader and disciple (follower) so that differences matter much more because the one is expected to practice what the other teaches. It is an unequal relationship in which submission to the local authority conflicts with conscience and higher authority.

If it is possible to leave that church and remain on friendly terms as an equal with members of that church, so much the better. But such respectful breakups are rare indeed.

Posted by: Nick Mudge

Re: Charismatic Friends - Sunday, February 15, 2009 2:41 PM

As a newbie, it seems that most on here equates "Charismatic" with Hinn, WOF, Arminianism and general lunacy. I can't comment on the Californian scene but although we do have lots of people of that persuasion, there are also some good reformed streams who also hold to the need for the Baptism of the Spirit to empower the people of God to fulfil the great commission- a view held by respected men like M Lloyd-Jones and John Piper
Posted by: Robin

Re: Charismatic Friends - Monday, February 16, 2009 5:58 AM

First of all, welcome to the Highway, Nick. Thanks for participating!

I guess we haven't really defined what we mean by the term "Charismatic" right here on the discussion board, because it is clearly and specifically defined and described on this web site already (click here). And while there are Reformed teachers who subscribe to (or permit) some particular doctrine or practice common to Charismatics, there are no "Reformed Charismatics" in the most honest use of either word.

I've even visited a Charismatic Presbyterian church (EPC) which claims the Westminster Confession as its doctrinal standard.

I (and others here, I'm sure) would argue that the Confession, not to mention Scripture, is in direct conflict with the practices of that denomination.

Again, welcome!