Category Archives: Revivals

Looking Back at the IHOPU Student Awakening

Gabriel Russ, a former intern at IHOP KC, described his experience with the IHOP KC Student Awakening in a lengthy but touching blog article he wrote called “Looking Back at the IHOPU Student Awakening“.  This article is both compelling and touching, and it is my hope that even as you read it, you will be reminded of the kindness, grace, and love of our Heavenly Father who desires to heal, change, and restore our hearts.  The entire article, found originally at his website (see the link above) is posted below:

looking-back-ihopu-student-awakening

“The following is a biographical sketch of the awakening that touched the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, Missouri. This was a move of the Spirit that was specifically significant for me in a personal way since I had the privilege of being involved from its beginning. As my season at IHOPU comes to a close I believe it would be appropriate to revisit some of those stories to stir my faith and the faith of those reading to believe for the Lord to do it in other regions of the earth to which certain ones in the body of Christ are being sent. I am convinced that we whom the Lord was pleased to give this move are called to release it into the nations. I think about the coming days when revival is in full stride on a global scale and the ones facilitating it are the very ones I locked arms with for four years and laid on the ground next to as the Holy Spirit was simultaneously reconstructing our hearts. Not everything about this awakening was perfect but its results are undeniable; hearts were set on fire for the gospel, physical healings were commonplace, and they will never be taken away. Many people will look back on that period of ten months and be able to say that their lives never were the same after then. Looking back myself I am overwhelmed with the honor I had in praying for certain ones, which resulted in them being transformed on the spot. Though I cannot remember who they were I can remember the random people who would come up to me a year or so after the awakening ended and would tell me that I had prayed for them at an awakening meeting and they met God. Above all it is a humbling experience to hear things like this. I hope once again to have my faith and the faith of those I come in contact with stirred to believe for another wave of the Spirit that will surpass the last. I believe that the awakening was just the beginning of a new season of revival that the Lord is going to release on the earth. The stories to follow are real accounts of what the Lord did in a period of ten months and are no limit to what He will do again.

On November 4, 2009, only a few months after the ten-year anniversary of the International House of Prayer in Kansas City (IHOPKC), the International House of Prayer University (IHOPU) was having their normal chapel service as they did on the first Wednesday of every month. It was at this time that the senior class had ended a forty-day fast asking for the Lord to come visit IHOPU with a move of His Spirit. The chapel service continued as normal and Allen Hood, the president of IHOPU, called for a time of testimonies. A girl by the name of Mai Aiello (now Mai Fink) took the microphone and began to tell of how the Lord had set her free from self-hatred. She told her story of how she had nearly been raped when she was younger and as a result had deep wounds of shame in her heart that had manifested physically in a digestive tract disorder. She had been in Montana at a healing service a few weeks before where a leader of the church had prayed for her digestive condition to be healed. It was later revealed that the root of this disorder was the brokenness of her heart that had developed a stronghold of shame and despair on her life. This same leader prayed for freedom from self-hatred and shame that had taken hold of her because of a past experience where a boy about her same age had attempted to rape her. When he prayed for her she was instantly set free of all shame and bitterness toward herself that had taken a hold of her heart and her digestive tract was restored instantly. After sharing this story she prayed for everyone in the room who wanted to be free from this stronghold of self-hatred. Many students that night experienced the same freedom that Mai had been given and thus the fire of the awakening had begun to spread.

I remember one particular night before November 11 when I was in the prayer room as a part of a requirement for my internship and there was a group of first-year IHOPU students in a side room who were being particularly noisy. Everyone’s curiosity was a bit stirred by this, which caused the pacing lane in front of the door to the side room to become fairly crowded. Curiosity got the best of me and I eventually ventured into the side room to see what all the commotion was. The door closed behind me and I was instantly met with hands being laid all over my torso. I immediately felt the presence of the Holy Spirit in the room and on my body. There really was a sense of overwhelming peace that came over me. I wasn’t really sure what was happening but it was evident that the Lord was moving.

A week after the chapel service classes at IHOPU resumed as normal and on November 11, 2009 Wes Hall prepared to teach on Israel in the first-year class called Forerunner Curriculum. Nobody had any inkling as to what would happen on this day. At nine in the morning when class began Wes felt prompted by the Lord to wait on the Holy Spirit. This resulted in students being massively touched by the Lord and finding their identity in Him. “Some were lying on the floor, others were weeping, and some were laughing,” said Hall, who led the class with Allen Hood, president of the ministry school.[1] Wes Hall who was a lawyer from England and was normally very reserved was on this day described as “walking like a chicken”[2] and being weighed down by the presence of the Lord. Wes described the event saying he was hanging on to the pulpit and kneeling because he could not stand. He even said that if the pulpit had not been there he would have been prostrate on the floor of the stage. News of this outpouring spread rapidly to the rest of the missions base and soon hundreds of people were joining the class late in the afternoon that was scheduled to dismiss at noon. This meeting would last for over fifteen hours with testimonies of physical and emotional healings happening constantly.

News spread to the entire IHOPKC community that something unusual was happening at the Forerunner Christian Fellowship (FCF) auditorium Just about 2 miles down the road from the main Global Prayer Room (GPR). It was early afternoon and the One Thing Internship (OTI) that I was a part of was in our normal core class. This is where I first learned about the meeting that was taking place down the road and I was not a little curious about what exactly was going on. That night the GPR went on as normal and the 24/7 prayer meeting continued. A group of interns and myself begged our intern director, Ron Downing, to allow us to go to FCF instead of our prayer room commitment. He declined our request and stressed the importance of keeping our sacred commitment to be in the prayer room. All of us decided however to hold our own prayer meetings in side rooms where we experienced the joy and delight of the Lord. The ushers – whose duty it was to keep the prayer room quiet in order to maintain a sacred atmosphere of prayer – didn’t know what to do with us. Some demanded that we keep quiet while others came into the side rooms and were overwhelmed with the joy of the Lord and thus unable to continue ushering. Ashley Prior was leading worship at 8pm that night and she and her team became overwhelmed by the power of the Spirit. It was evident that the outpouring they were experiencing at FCF was not contained by those four walls but had spread to anyone who was hungry for it.

We were all pleased to learn that at 10pm that night the leadership of IHOPKC had planned to relocate the GPR to the FCF building for the remainder of the night. Our curfew for our internship was normally 12:15am but for this particular night Ron allowed us to be at the meeting until 4am. I remember the first night being like nothing I had ever seen before. People everywhere were laid out on the floor completely lost in the presence of the Holy Spirit, others had the appearance of being intoxicated (often referred to as “drunk in the Spirit”), and some were shaking uncontrollably. There was also another group of people who felt nothing and even were laughing at and making fun of those who were being touched physically. It was an unusual night to say the least but was filled with power and freedom. I remember the entire back row section where the bleachers are being one long “fire tunnel” where anyone who was passing through was immediately apprehended by a dozen intercessors releasing the fire of the Spirit on them.

The next day signs were posted on the doors of the prayer room, which read something like this, “Due to the unusual move of the Spirit the prayer room will move to the FCF auditorium tonight at 6pm.” That day my internship had our normal “Burn Class” with Corey Russell, one of the senior leaders at IHOPKC and attributed with his fiery personality and passion for the knowledge of God. Instead of teaching he called for a time of ministry. I went forward with many others with a desire to know God as my Father. A young man laid his hand on me and I instantly fell on the floor and was overwhelmed with the love of my Father and began crying out loudly and testifying, “I am a son of God! I am a son of God” That same day some interns gathered around me and prayed for my legs to grow longer (I have always wanted to be taller) and that day I grew an entire inch! It is hard to explain what actually happened in me but I remember laying my head down to sleep that night and being overwhelmed with a sense of security. The only way I know how to explain it is that I felt as though I had been an orphan my entire life, had just been adopted, and was spending my first night in my new parents’ home.

The following week – all IHOPU classes being cancelled – the leadership of IHOPKC decided to hold nightly meetings from 6pm-12am and introduced the name they were giving the movement as the “IHOPU Student Awakening.” IHOPKC soon released the following statement on their website: “The Lord began an awakening amongst our students on November 11, 2009. Since that time, we have been holding extended meetings as the Lord continues to pour out His presence. Before November 11, the Holy Spirit began moving in the hearts of the students to prepare them for this move of God. The students passed through a season of confessing sins, repenting, and engaging in several twenty-one-day, student-led fasts.”[3] They began with a two-week trial run of meetings from Wednesday-Saturday from 6-12 and then made the decision to continue these meetings until the Lord told them to stop.

Wes Hall and Allen Hood were placed in main leadership of the movement and were the facilitators of the meetings. During the awakening a new department was introduced called the Testimonies department. There was a section closed off during the meetings with stacks of paper on clipboards available to anyone who had a testimony of healing or deliverance to write down and it was documented in IHOPKC’s records. Most of the testimonies that came out of the awakening were a result of people who were in the congregation praying for those who raised their hand to receive prayer. Wes and Allen prayed for a few people but mostly the Lord was working through His entire body. As these testimonies began being shared it became evident that the Holy Spirit was not only moving in the small community of IHOPKC but was visiting the city of Kansas City.

On one occasion there was a man who worked at a casino in downtown Kansas City who had begun backsliding from the Lord. He also had issues with his wrist and was in constant pain. One night he was considering how he should return to the Lord and saw a shuttle bus from IHOPKC and decided to follow it. The shuttle led him to the FCF auditorium where the awakening service was being held as normal. He walked into the service and was a little surprised by what he saw to say the least. People gathered around him and began praying for him, which resulted in his wrist being healed instantly. He rededicated his life to the Lord and, after sharing his testimony, Wes Hall prayed for him, he fell to the floor, and was laying on the stage for about an hour under the power of the Holy Spirit.

There was another girl named Ashley who was a part of the One Thing Internship that took place after my internship had ended. The entire internship after mine was a quite interesting one actually in that many salvations and much deliverance took place among its members. Ashley had come to IHOPKC from Texas drunk or high and wanted nothing to do with Jesus. She had been raped about a month prior to coming to do the One Thing Internship and had developed a deep sense of self-hatred, which caused her to give herself over to a lifestyle of drugs and alcohol. She had done this to rid herself of all the bad memories of her past that were constantly oppressing her. When she arrived at IHOPKC against her will she was not happy with what she encountered. She was convinced that the place was a cult and began contacting her sister who had forced her to come and begged her to get her out. She eventually came around and thought she would try this thing out, so she had her core leader, Rachel Weyman, pray for her. As soon as Rachel prayed for her the memories she had of her past were completely gone. She would try to think of a negative memory from the past and was unable to do so. All she could see was what she described as whiteness. Before she was set free Ashley said that she had a vision of Jesus standing before her with His arms open telling her all she had to do was run to Him. In the vision she was literally unable to move though she wanted to run to Him. After being set free she was presented with the same vision but this time she ran to Him and embraced Him. After this, she and Jesus began break-dancing together. The last part sounds unusual but it was a testimony to Ashley that Jesus actually cares about things she cares about and loves her for who she is. I do not have time nor space to tell of the rest of the testimonies that took place within the One Thing Internship alone. It may be safe to say that the entire internship got saved though.

The main message that was released in the awakening was that Jesus doesn’t only love His people; He likes us. Allen Hood began trumpeting the message of Isaiah 62 where the Lord speaks to Israel saying, “…You shall be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord will name. You shall also be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God. You shall no longer be termed Forsaken, nor shall your land any more be termed Desolate; but you shall be called Hephzibah, and your land Beulah; for the Lord delights in you, [4] After this message was given people everywhere began writing on their bathroom mirrors the word “Hephzibah” to remind themselves of the way Jesus sees them. This was the reason for all the miracles that were taking place. Jesus was healing thousands of people physically and emotionally not because we were begging Him to – we weren’t – but it was rather because He genuinely delights in us and wants His people walking in wholeness. This was the message preached almost every night but it never got old. It wasn’t just words being articulated by a gifted preacher, but it was a real message that was being confirmed by the power of the Holy Spirit.

The leadership of the movement did well to give the Holy Spirit room to move from what I saw. Wes Hall gives his own take on his experience as a leader in an interview on March, 9, 2013. “I think the biggest challenge as a leader is you want to take your responsibility seriously as part of an organization but you want to let the Holy Spirit move as freely as He can. And sometimes it’s walking that tension where the Holy Spirit wants to move and you take the microphone. [You have to trust] the Holy Spirit to do what He loves to do; that’s the hardest thing to do. I think sometimes the Holy Spirit [wanted] to do things and I took the microphone too soon to be honest. I think when you’re the leader you can end up taking yourself too seriously and end up jealously guarding something that you feel passionate about, not even realizing that the Lord is jealously guarding it more than you are. [The biggest temptation is to] adopt behavior styles and ways of acting that you did spontaneously under the anointing of the Holy Spirit without thinking about it. And you want to get back to that place so somehow it’s in your subconscious that ‘If I do these things, if I move this way, if I speak these phrases the Holy Spirit will move in the same way.’ It becomes a ritual. It becomes like a religious spirit [and we think] if we do these things the Holy Spirit will move in this way. If we stand and say ‘Come Holy Spirit’ the Holy Spirit will move. It’s not rooted out of malice, it’s rooted in hunger to see the Lord move more. But the reality is when God wants to move He’s going to move. I can’t manipulate God, I can’t make God do something He is not doing. The biggest thing is recognizing when the season is birthed and recognizing when it’s over and moving with the Lamb.”[5]

Opposition arose to the movement from certain ones accusing IHOPKC of being a cult and brainwashing their students. Some were saying that the spirit that was being poured out was a demonic outpouring and warnings went out on the Internet to anyone who would read them to stay away from the Awakening. More research reveals that those speaking out against the movement had a problem with the ministry of Mike Bickle to begin with. Thus their views were biased at best. The biggest opposition however was not that the outpouring was demonic but that there was no outpouring at all and was simply man-made hype. Mike Bickle answered this accusation by admitting that some people would act in the flesh but concluded that this fact does not annul this move of God. Regardless of these oppositions the awakening continued to strengthen and its influence increased. Testimonies began coming in via the Internet of people who were watching on the live Webstream or on GodTV. Some testimonies of people being raised from the dead were given in this way.

On October 9, 2010 the leadership of IHOPKC ended the nightly awakening meetings after many of the senior leaders heard from the Lord each individually that it was time to bring them to a close. The awakening meetings were discontinued in order to take a step back and prepare for the next greater wave. Mike Bickle released this statement at the end of the meetings: “The awakening leadership received a word from the Lord from several people, leading them to the conclusion that it was time to discontinue the awakening services for a season. At that time, the nightly meetings were full of life and full of people, yet Wes Hall, Allen Hood, and the awakening leadership team responded in obedience to the word from the Lord. It is very unusual for leaders to stop such meetings when they are full and successful by every human standard. The fruit from laboring for eleven months in this time of awakening (November 2009 to October 2010) is very good. We received over 6,000 testimonies of emotional and physical healing from all over the world and we have had the privilege of baptizing over 1,700 people. I am very proud of the excellent leadership of Wes Hall and Allen Hood and their team. The IHOP–KC family is in a much better place because of their labors.” Unlike other movements in the past the awakening ended at the choice of the leadership and no scandal was involved. So now, nearly three years after the end of the awakening things have returned to normal, but the expectation for another move is always on the minds of IHOPKC staff and students. Though the meetings have ended the awakening still continues and we wait for the Lord to move again.”

 


[2] I have heard Wes describe himself in this way many times

[4] The New King James Version. 1982 (Is 62:2–4). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[5] Wes Hall quoted on March 9, 2013

 

Spiritual Discernment according to the Bible while Keeping the Unity of the Believers

As Christians, we are called to love one another and build one another up in the faith. Jesus prayed concerning all believers: “May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.” (John 17: 23)

Unfortunately, as I research what God is doing in our day I come across too many Christians sitting around criticizing and condemning their brothers and sisters in Christ instead of building them up. This saddens me and I pray that the body of believers will come to love one another as Jesus desired. Only then will the world truly see Jesus in us.

There is a deep division in the body of Christ. Jesus warned that a house divided against itself cannot stand. I believe that there is room for disagreement and alternate perspectives within the body of Christ; but what worries me is when portions of the body begin attacking other portions of the body. These attacks come from deep-rooted misunderstanding of what the other members of the body stand for and confusion regarding how we are to discern whether a movement or a miracle is from God or not. My hope is that this article can bring understanding and ultimately unity to the body of Christ.

Two Perspectives

At issue here are two perspectives within Christianity:

On the one hand, there are the charismatic-leaning Christians who believe that supernatural giftings [Greek: khárisma] of the Holy Spirit as described in I Corinthians 12 and other places are still an important and valid part of the Christian life today . The charismatics believe that God is still speaking to his children and that God has empowered us to supernaturally do his work in the earth.

On the other hand, there are the cessationist-leaning Christians who tend to believe that after the canon of scripture was sealed God no longer needed to endow his church with miraculous supernatural giftings — that those giftings of the Holy Spirit have ceased to be a part of Christian life today. These brothers and sisters in Christ explain that those giftings were only meant to confirm the word of God as preached by the apostles and now that we have the full canon of scriptures there is no need for revelation of God’s truth and there is no need to confirm the revelation of God’s truth with signs and wonders.

seeing

Many cessationists are dedicated to protecting the Bible’s authority in the Christian’s life and are anxious to keep people from being misled by miracle working teachers who might lead people into false doctrine. They fear that people may trust the miracles as evidence of the teacher’s authority instead of relying on the Bible for that authority in a Christian’s life.

Some cessationists spend much time trying to cast doubt on miracles and when the miracles are convincing they argue that the source of the miracle-working power is demonic. They also like to discredit charismatic Christian men and women whose ministries are supernaturally empowered. They consider these Christian men and women to be dangerous to the faith.

I know that these people – who consider themselves to be apologists for the faith – sincerely believe that the charismatic Christians are in error. I pray that this article will help bring a better understanding of who the charismatics are and why they value the supernatural, miraculous power of God in their lives.  I also pray that all Christians – whether cessationist-leaning or charismatic-leaning – will give themselves over to the great command of Jesus to love one another.

Condemning and criticizing brothers and sisters in the faith does not display God’s love in our lives. We should love all of our brothers and sisters whether we agree with their theology or not. That means that charismatics should love even the brothers and sisters in Christ who criticize and attack our spiritual brothers and sisters. That means that cessationists should love the men and women who rely on the Holy Spirit’s power to share God’s good news with the hurting people of the world.

Furthermore, loving one another means that when any of our brothers or sisters – even one of our pastors or leaders of the faith – are caught in a sin we should not cast stones but we should seek true restoration for that person (Galations 6:1). We should follow Jesus’ example. He has never turned his back on us even though we have often let him down and fallen into sins. He has always been eager to embrace us and restore us and build us up.

Understanding These Two Perspectives

Having said that, let me shed some light on these two dominant perspectives found in Christianity. Let us seek understanding and come to love the hearts of our brothers and sisters – whether we agree with them or not.

perspective

Both charismatics and cessationists believe the Bible reliably reveals God, God’s love, and God’s way of salvation. Charismatics and cessationists trust the Bible to be our invaluable source of sound doctrine.

The cessationist might complain that charismatics allow for additional revelations besides the Bible. But to be fair we should point out that, although charismatics allow for the Holy Spirit to reveal truth and give guidance, they believe that any true revelation from God will not contradict what God has already revealed in scripture. In fact, charismatics teach that any true revelation from God will be supported and confirmed by scripture and will be consistent with what has already been revealed in scripture.

There is a fundamental difference in the way charismatics and cessationists approach the Bible. Charismatics notice that throughout the Bible people are having direct encounters with God. They see frequent miracles throughout the Old and New Testaments, they see personal guidance given to God’s people by God himself (for example see Acts 18:9 where the Lord spoke encouraging words to Paul in a vision), and they see verses seeming to indicate that all believers should function in the supernatural (see the last words of Jesus recorded in the Gospel According to Mark where he says believers will drive out demons, speak in new tongues, heal the sick by laying on of hands and so forth and see Jesus’ words recorded in John 14 where he says anyone who has faith in him will do what he has been doing and even greater things). Charismatics also see that Paul set a pattern for sharing the Gospel that worked very well for him: “My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.” These words are found in I Corinthians 2. And again in Romans 15 he said “I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done – by the power of signs and miracles, through the power of the Spirit.” (also see I Corinthians 4:20 and I Thessalonians 1:4-5 for similar statements from Paul).

Charismatics see the Bible as a window into what Christians are to be like. They see people who experience God’s love in a personal and real way (Jesus said, “He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him” John 14:21). These people in the Bible experience God’s love and healing and are set free from Satan’s kingdom of darkness. They are empowered to share Jesus’ love and grace with the world.

For charismatics it is not enough to know the stories and the truths of the Bible – they want to also live like the heroes of the faith, whom they see as biblical examples of what our relationship with God can be like.

Meanwhile some Christians (especially cessationists) treat the Bible as more of a history book that documents some unchanging truths. These Christians focus on believing the truths of the Bible but have trouble letting the supernatural experiences of the Bible off the pages into their own lives.

The 72 disciples found in the Bible who went out and healed people and cast out demons in Jesus’ name are not seen by cessationists as a model for today’s Christians. Instead, they are seen as a one-time, special-case, historical event. These Christians prefer to focus on theological truths regarding the process of salvation. They shy away from modern-day Christians with gifts of healing and prophecy for fear that these modern-day events and practices might get more attention than the historical events and teachings found in the Bible.

Some even go so far as to take scriptures out of context in an attempt to prove that these modern-day practicing Christians are illegitimate. An example of this is when they quote I Corinthians 13:8 – “Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.” – and say that this shows that prophecy and tongues were meant to cease in the church. They sidestep the problem that if this verse means what they say it does then knowledge should have also ceased in the church. Knowledge is of course very important to them. Meanwhile, knowledge joined with practice and experience are important to the charismatics.

To put things into perspective, consider two students of biology. They have both thoroughly studied the chapter of their textbook on animal dissection. One of the students does not get to have the experience of dissecting an animal but the other does. The student who dissects the pig finds it to be a messy, fascinating experience. He finds the experience much different than he had imagined it to be while he was studying the textbook. Not to say that the textbook was in error in any way. He simply found that the study joined with the experience led to the fullest and most meaningful education. One student can parrot the explanation from the textbook and has a very pristine and orderly view of dissection. The other student benefits from the raw experience of actually dissecting a pig according to the instructions found in the textbook.

How Big is that Box?

Whether cessationist-leaning OR charismatic-leaning Christians, believers nearly always have God inside a box. Some allow for bigger boxes for God than others but they have him in a box all the same. Many Christians feel like they know about God and they have him figured out. They feel qualified to determine if a message or a miracle came from God or not because they know what kinds of things God does and what he says.

Interestingly, these Christians usually do not have such a box for Satan. So, when something happens outside of their God-box, they say it couldn’t have been God and must have been the Devil.

boxes

One of the boxes that Christians have God in is no bigger than their pocket-sized Bibles. They have decided that God only does the things that were specifically recorded in the Bible.

For example, these Christians see people miraculously receiving gold fillings in their teeth and say that it couldn’t have been from God since that particular miracle was never recorded in the Bible.

Ironically this idea that God can only do the things that were written about in the canon of scripture is not taught anywhere in the Bible. God never put such a restraint on himself.

The scriptures were never intended to exhaustively reveal everything that our all-powerful, eternal God has done and will do. In fact, the Gospel of John concludes with this statement: “Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.”

This verse of scripture clearly indicates that the Bible is not intended to tell us everything that God has done. Furthermore, like I said before, there is no scripture that says that God will not do a new thing or that he is limited by what has been included in the canon of scriptures.

In fact, Psalm 115:3 puts it bluntly: “Our God is in heaven; He does whatever pleases Him.”

Also, notice that in John 14:12 Jesus says that his followers will do even greater things than he ever did during his ministry. So, Christians are not limited by what Jesus did. What he did was meant to be a foundation for us to build upon through our faith and reliance on God’s power and the Holy Spirit imparted to us.

Sadly, many Christians are experts in Biblical scholarship and know all the things in the Bible but when God does something in their lives they miss it because it doesn’t fit into their framework. To such people Jesus spoke this warning in John 5:39: “You diligently study the scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the scriptures that testify about me.”

The religious leaders of Jesus’ day were very well studied scholars of scripture but they misunderstood what God was doing in their own day. They missed out on Jesus. They condemned him and accused him of doing miracles by Satan’s power because what Jesus was doing didn’t fit into their understanding of the scriptures. They had a chance to be intimately familiar with God in the flesh but they totally misunderstood him and plotted his destruction.

Let us discern correctly the moves of God in our day and be careful to not miss out on what God is doing now. God is active and anyone who has eyes to see and ears to hear and understands what God is doing has the opportunity to join God in the mighty work he is doing in our generation!

Discerning the Genuine from the Counterfeit

We are commanded in scripture to be on guard against false teachings and are warned that just because miracles are performed does not necessarily mean the teacher is from God or is speaking the truth. In fact, we are told that the beast’s false prophet will perform great miraculous signs including calling down fire from heaven (Revelation 13:13 and 19:20). Jesus also warned that false messiahs and false prophets will come who will perform great signs and miracles to deceive God’s chosen people (Matthew 24:24).

So, what are we to do? Should we reject every wondrous sign and miracle and assume that all such things are from the enemy? Should we bury our heads in the pages of the Bible where we know the miracles and teachings are safe and reliable?

counterfeit

But don’t those very same pages in the Bible tell us that anyone who believes in Jesus will do the miracles that Jesus did and even greater ones? (John 14:12) Doesn’t Paul the Apostle instruct the believers to eagerly desire spiritual gifts? (1 Corinthians 14:1)

Is it right to ignore the parts of scripture that don’t match our personal experiences? Should we discourage Christians who are walking out spiritual truths that we are uncomfortable with? Should we reject anything supernatural for fear that it may come from evil spirits instead of the Holy Spirit and God’s holy angels?

In their eagerness to avoid being misled, some Christians tend to label every supernatural miracle as being a counterfeit miracle. And, in fact, there may very well be counterfeit miracles as scripture clearly warns us: ‘The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.’ (2 Thessalonians 2:9-10)

But, please keep in mind that for there to be a counterfeit there must also be the real thing that the counterfeit is modeled after. God is the creator; not Satan.

God is the creator. God specializes in creating. That is what comes naturally to him.

Satan, on the other hand, can steal what God created, he can kill what God created, and he can destroy what God created (John 10:10). He can even counterfeit God’s creations. But let’s not give Satan credit for creating a new miracle. God is the creator. Satan is the thief.

God created every kind of miracle and supernatural wonder. Satan is not creative at all. He can only produce weak forgeries of the true wonders of God. Name any supernatural work that devils do and I can point to the real thing in Jesus. Psychic readings? Those are cheap counterfeits of true prophecy. The beast’s false prophet calling fire down from heaven? That is just a copy of what God already did numerous times in the Old Testament. Levitating a few feet of the ground by demonic power? That is wimpy compared to Jesus walking on water and ascending all the way up into the clouds to return to heaven. Every counterfeit miracle and sign and wonder demonically produced has a very real counterpart with its origins in God’s power.

Let’s also consider that only truly valuable things are counterfeited. For example, do we have a problem with forgeries of pennies? No! We have forgeries of $100 bills. Do we have counterfeits of brown paper bags? No! We have forgeries of masterpiece paintings. If it is truly valuable then you can expect someone to try to counterfeit it. The fact that signs and wonders are counterfeited tells me that the real thing is valuable. And of course it is valuable because the real thing points to the power and presence of God in the lives of people on earth. Now, because there is forged money out there, will I reject all money? Of course not! Instead, if I don’t want to be deceived, I will learn how to discern if the money is real or counterfeit.

The Biblical Discernment Test

Now, in regards to discerning the current moves of God, the Bible gives us some clear instructions.

Jesus tells us in Matthew 7 that we can judge whether a tree is good or bad by its fruit. So, true teachers and miracles from God should cause people to have positively changed lives given over to the fruit of the Holy Spirit: Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).

Furthermore, in I John 4 we are told that we can know if a spirit (and incidentally a prophet) is from God or not by whether the spirit honors Jesus for who he really is or not.

Also remember what Jesus said when he was accused of doing miracles by the power of demons. He explained in Mark 3 that there are two kingdoms at war and that we can know which kingdom is sponsoring a move by determining which kingdom is being attacked. So, in the case of Jesus driving out demons, it is evident that the kingdom being attacked is Satan’s kingdom which would indicate that God’s kingdom is sponsoring the attack.

From this teaching we can learn if a movement is from God or from Satan by determining which side is taking a hit from the movement.

Jesus also warns us in this passage not to blaspheme the movement of God’s Spirit by giving Satan credit for what God is doing.

Often I hear my brothers and sisters giving credit to Satan’s minions for signs and wonders that are causing thousands of people to wholeheartedly give their lives to Jesus. Can I just point out that if demons are doing those miracles that they must be the stupidest demons ever?!? Why would a demon do a miracle that will cause people to stand in awe of God Almighty and to give praise to God Almighty and to commit their lives to God Almighty and to have increased faith in God Almighty?

Demons do not work to glorify God and lift up the name of Jesus Christ. But the Holy Spirit and God’s angels ARE working to glorify Jesus.

So, after looking at these scriptures, we can see that we can clearly discern the source of a spiritual movement or a miracle by asking a series of questions:

What is the fruit like? (Matthew 7:15-23)

Is Jesus honored for all that he is? (1 John 4:1-3)

Is Satan’s kingdom losing ground? (Mark 3:22-30)

Is Jesus’ kingdom gaining ground? (Mark 3:22-30)

And as we have already discussed, we can discern whether a teaching or revelation is from God by going back to scripture to check if the teaching or revelation is consistent with scripture. So, we will add one more question:

Is it consistent with scripture? (2 Timothy 3:16)

Now, let’s take a look at a particular Student Awakening that occurred on a campus several years ago. The primary theme of the Student Awakening was hearts being healed and discovering the love of Jesus in a very personal, real way. There were physical healings and students were set free from addictions. The net result was students falling in love with Jesus.

Now let’s apply the Bible’s discernment test…

Fruit of the Tree Good: YES

Jesus Honored for All  that He Is: YES

Satan’s Kingdom Losing Ground:  YES

Jesus’ Kingdom Gaining Ground: YES

Consistent with what is Revealed in Scripture: YES
(In scripture, God is revealed as a Healer who Loves Us)

That was fun. Now, let’s use our discernment test on a supernatural phenomenon occurring in modern times.

We will take a look at the manifestation of gold fillings as well as gold crowns. These are signs and wonders putting God’s mark on people in a way that can only be explained by the supernatural. These are very personal manifestations that tell the people to whom they occur that God is real and that God cares about them. In this way, God becomes a very real, powerful being in the lives of these people instead of an abstract idea somewhere up there in heaven. People are giving their lives over to God as they realize that He is extremely real and cares about them. Each time they look in the mirror and see the gold filling they remember that God does miracles in their life and they worship him and give Him all their worries.

Now let’s apply the Bible’s discernment test to these miracles…

Fruit of the Tree Good: YES

Jesus Honored for All  that He Is: YES

Satan’s Kingdom Losing Ground:  YES

Jesus’ Kingdom Gaining Ground: YES

Consistent with what is Revealed in Scripture: YES
(In scripture, God is revealed as a Healer who Cares about Each of Us)

Now, let’s look at one more spiritual movement.

There is a man in Florida named Jose Luis de Jesus Miranda who claims to be the modern-day manifestation of Jesus Christ. He also claims the title of Antichrist. He discourages anyone from worshiping the Jesus that most Christians worship since he believes that he is Jesus’ replacement and claims to be even better than Jesus. Furthermore, he teaches that there is no devil, no hell, and no sin – even murder is not a sin according to this man’s teaching. He encourages his followers to put away all feelings of guilt and to enjoy every pleasure that life has to offer including gluttony, satisfying all sexual appetites, and so on. He also teaches that there is no point in praying to God. His followers are encouraged to demonstrate against Christian churches and whole Christian denominations because they are classified by him as false religions.

Now, let’s apply the Bible’s discernment test to this movement:

Fruit of the Tree Good: NO

Jesus Honored for All  that He Is: NO

Satan’s Kingdom Losing Ground:  NO

Jesus’ Kingdom Gaining Ground: NO

Consistent with what is Revealed in Scripture: NO
(In scripture, there is only one Jesus Christ and his true followers live lives of love and holiness)

This test can be easily applied to any supernatural or prophetic movement. Just be careful to look at the evidence without your personal theology and biases coloring your perspective.

Examine scripture to see if a movement or a message clearly contradicts the teachings of Jesus Christ and the early apostles or not. While you are studying the scriptures, remember to be open to seeing the scriptures in a fresh light and be careful to comprehend the point of what the writer of the scripture was really trying to say.

Jose Miranda, mentioned above, tries to confuse people by quoting from Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians where it says “everything is permissible.” He takes these words out of context to scripturally support his teaching that there is no sin. He conveniently ignores that Paul is actually quoting other people in that verse and he ignores the many verses warning against immoral living — even in the same chapter.

We can also see that Jose’s claims directly contradict Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 24: “At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect—if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time. So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the desert,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.”

 Can You Recognize the Children of God?

Our biases and personal experiences often cause us to make wrong judgments. For example, imagine you are worshiping in your usual spot in your church one Sunday morning when you see a man fall to his knees and begin shaking and crying and then laughing. We can only see in the natural realm and too often we make spiritual judgments based on our five natural senses. We might even throw in some scripture to justify our judgments. We might think to ourselves, “That man is not being self-controlled and he is not worshiping in an orderly fashion.” In this way, we stand in judgment over that man based on our superficial understanding of what is happening. We can only see what is happening on the outside in the realm of nature. What we don’t know is that this man is having a supernatural encounter with Jesus. If we saw Jesus like this man was seeing him and if we were being radically set free from the wounds of past trauma like this man, we would understand how appropriate it is to be on our knees shaking with strong emotions before the feet of the Living God who created the universe and has poured out his life on the cross to rescue us into his heavenly kingdom.

Please beware of nitpicking a true work of God. Don’t miss out on supporting a genuine move of God in our day.

The Bible encourages us to discern, but we need to be able to discern correctly. We should follow the biblical discernment test outlined above so we don’t fall into the trap of the Pharisees who called the true work of God in their day the work of Satan and became guilty of blaspheming the Holy Spirit.

Furthermore, they rejected Jesus Christ the Son of God. How many children of God have we rejected and criticized because we were judging them by our personal standards instead of following the Bible’s discernment test?

I love all of my brothers and sisters in Christ and plead with each one of you to be slow to condemn the men and women who are trying to serve God. No one except Jesus is perfect. But isn’t the Good News that we are loved and accepted by God through Christ’s finished work on the cross despite our imperfections? Isn’t it wonderful that God has chosen to use imperfect jars of clay to carry his treasures? (2 Corinthians 4:7)

children

Let us carry in our lives the attitude of Christ who looked down from the cross to those mocking him and said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”

I am so glad that we serve a merciful God who is eager to forgive us of all our sins. He knows our hearts and understands our motives, but he wants to give us his heart and he wants his goals to be what drives us. Let’s put away our divisive attitudes and truly love and lift one another up in the spirit of humility and grace.

The standard for our unity is the unity between the Son and the Father in the holy trinity. Hear Jesus’ words: “I pray also for those who will believe in me through their [the apostle’s] message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17:20-21) Now, Jesus and God the Father enjoy complete harmony and unity and share a single purpose. Jesus desires that we all get along with one another and support one another just as Jesus and the Father are completely unified. Furthermore, we are meant to be completely unified with Jesus and the Father. All of us – Jesus, the Father, you, and me – share the same Spirit and should be completely unified. When this happens, the world will truly see the body of Christ in the earth.

Miracle Healings at A.A. Allen’s Meetings

aaallenA.A. Allen began setting up his nine-pole tent seating 22,000 people in the 1950’s and amazing healing miracles were seen night after night under that tent.

Blind eyes were opened, cancer was destroyed, lame legs were restored, deaf ears were opened, and many other blessings were received by people in great need of a touch from God.

As you watch the following montage of healing miracles, pay special attention to the sermon at the beginning of the video and you will get a better understanding of the great revelation that gave A.A. Allen the faith to see God’s power move through him so mightily.

Video Montage of Miracles at A.A. Allen’s Meetings

 

 

Bay Revival Healings

The Bay of the Holy Spirit Revival began July 23, 2010 in Alabama and continues to this day in Alabama and in the cities that the Bay Revival ministry team visits.

The leadership team made the wise choice to make the revival as accessible as possible by having their ministry team visit various cities to minister. God has graciously ministered healing and salvation in each of those cities.

I say that this was a wise choice because the work of the Holy Spirit can be compared to the wind or to a river. Both the wind and the river flow and move and cannot be kept to one’s self. The church that tries to build a dam and keep the River to themselves will end up with a stale, stinking, stagnant swamp. The River of God’s Revival will not be locked up by a group of Christians trying to selfishly keep God’s blessings to themselves.

God allows his blessings to flow through us and the quicker we pass those blessings on to others the more speedily and mightily will God’s blessings flow through that person. The one who is faithful with little will then be entrusted with the opportunity to share more.

To learn more about the Bay Revival, visit the official website where you will find a schedule of cities to be visited, videos, and more. You can also see archived videos at God.tv where the revival continues to be broadcast live. Many wonderful testimonies of healing miracles can also be found on YouTube.com

Visions and Miracles Out of the Land of Egypt – 2010 Documentary

Here is a documentary showing footage of wonderful miracles including oil mysteriously flowing from objects and a woman’s hands, apparitions and lights, healings, and more.

First, watch the one minute trailer to get an overview of the treat you are about to enjoy:

Now, here is the video.

The audio track is out of sync but I did not find that to be much of a problem in this film. For a better version of the video, you can always get the DVD.

Film may take a moment to begin.

School of the Supernatural with Ryan Wyatt

Ryan Wyatt is not only an excellent teacher of how to live a supernatural lifestyle but also walks the talk.

May you be blessed by this interview he recently did with Sid Roth’s TV show It’s Supernatural as well as the additional resources below.

If the above video has whet your appetite, you can download his School of the Supernatural in eBook  or Paperback formats.

Moreover, you can see him teaching at his video channel on XPmedia. That is how I first discovered him and really found his teaching to be extremely helpful.

Saint Patrick’s Miraculous Ministry in Ireland

Saint Patrick by Boris Anrep
Saint Patrick lights the paschal fire on the Hill of Slain in celebration of Easter — leading to a confrontation with the powers controlling Ireland

I was recently blessed to obtain a copy of Celtic Flames by Kathie Walters. The book details the miraculous lives of seven apostles to the Celtic world from the 4th to 6th centuries A.D: Patrick – The Celtic Lion, Kieran – First Bishop of Saiger, Brendan of Clonfert, Brigid – First Abbess of Kildare, Comgall – Abbot of Bangor, Columba of Iona, and Cuthbert of Landisfarne

Kathie Walters knows firsthand that angels and miracles are quite real so she is not shy about telling about the frequent angelic visitations and miracles in the lives of the spiritual giants found in her book. She has written a number of other inspiring books covering both ancient and modern Celtic revivals.

In April she will lead a group on a trip to Ireland and Scotland where each participant will certainly be changed forever as they encounter God while visiting ancient wells of Celtic revival. Disappointed to see that the deadline for signing up for this trip has already passed, I have arranged with her to extend her deadline to March 21, 2011 for readers of The Rising Light so that any of you who feels excited by this opportunity of a lifetime can get signed up.

For those of you who don’t feel led to go on this two week trip yourself, I would encourage you to be a blessing to the family of God and help make it possible for one of our brothers or sisters to go by making a contribution towards the cost of this lifechanging visit to these Celtic lands of revival.

Since St. Patrick’s Day is now approaching, I would like to share with you some of the wonderful miracles that God did through Saint Patrick’s obedience. Kathie Walters has kindly given me permission to share several portions from her chapter covering the miracles in the life of Saint Patrick as recorded in Celtic Flames. I trust that you will be quite blessed and encouraged as you realize that the same power at work in the life of Saint Patrick is also available to each one of us since we are baptized into the same Spirit.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
~ Saint Paul in Ephesians 3:20-21

Excerpts from Celtic Flames chapter 5 “Patrick – The Celtic Lion A.D. 389 – A.D. 471”:

Patrick, and The King Of Tara and His Druidic Wizards.

Celtic FlamesFinally God provided a way for Patrick to return to Ireland in 432 A.D. So the ministry to the Irish began, not without opposition from the Druids and wizards who tried desperately to keep Patrick away from the kings, for they had prophesied of his coming. Patrick believed that if the kings could be won for God, then the people would follow. One of the first spiritual battles between Patrick and the Druids was fought at the Hill of Tara in 433 A.D.

The High King, Laeghaire (Leary), son of the renowned Niall of the Nine Hostages, had invited the sub-kings and nobles and bards to a lavish festival. It was to start with great bonfires, but until those fires were lit by the Druids, it was forbidden for other fires to be seen. King Laeghaire, in his efforts to hold his power over the lower kings had given himself to the power of the wizards, and skillful magicians and Druidic priests along with their idols.

Lochru, and Lucat-Mael, were his chief wizards, and being false prophets they had foretold that “An evil teacher would come from over the sea to their land: That a multitude would receive him, and that he would find love and reverence from the men of Ireland. He would cast out from their realms the evil kings and lords, and would destroy all the idols; the worship established by him, would abide in the land for ever.” No doubt the Druids knew of the progress of Christianity in Britain and Europe. Their brethren abroad had been discredited and they were afraid of the same fate. They were very much afraid of losing their influence and authority.

Patrick leaving the friendly hospitality of Dichu, sailed southward and arrived at Inver Colptha, the mouth of the river Boyne. They followed the course of the stream, for about 12 miles until they came to the hill of Slane, where Patrick proposed to celebrate Easter.

While they rested there on the hill, they saw the magnificent view beneath of the river Boyne; to the north, far away were the purple mountains of Mourne, and to the south lay the beautiful hills of Wicklow. Against this background, about 10 miles away, stood the royal hill of Tara. The roofs of the palaces shining in the setting sun. When the sun had set, Patrick began to prepare to celebrate the Resurrection of Christ. It was the first time the paschal fire was lit, never to be extinguished in the land.

Hardly were the Christian torches seen to blaze, when the attention of the High King was drawn to the progidy. The whole of Mag Breg, (the Beautiful Plain), was illuminated by the fires, while Tara was still in darkness.

Angrily the King called his attendants and told them to find out who had dared to light the fires, and break the law he had made for the occasion of the festivals of Beltane and Samhain.

The Druids told King Laeghaire that there was no need to send messengers to Slane for they knew what the fires were. “We see the fire,” they said, “And we know that unless it is quenched on the night in which it is made, it will not be quenched for ever. The man who kindled it, will vanquish the kings and lords of Ireland, unless he is stopped.” “This shall not be!” cried the king, “but we will go down and kill this man who made the fires.” The horses were hastily made ready.

Meanwhile on the hill of Slane, Patrick had begun with the others the celebration of the Easter festival, singing and worshiping God. Demons hovered over Tara, while the Angelic host kept guard over Slane. Patrick, with Victorious, (the Angel who was the guardian of Ireland)*, had no need to fear for the result of the contest. It was late when nine chariots, bearing the king and queen with two chief Druids, and a number of nobles came thundering toward Slane. The wizards began to fear that the king might fail by taking a hasty action. As they drew toward the Christians, the Druid wizards spoke to King Laeghaire, “You should be careful,” they cautioned the king, “Not to go down to the place where the fire was made, and give any respect to the man who kindled the fire. Stay outside and have him brought out to you, so that he will know that you are the king, and he is the subject.” The king was flattered and agreed.

They drove to the place called, “The Graves of Fiacc’s Men,” and they un-yoked the horses. The king and his nobles sat in solemn state, and the warriors stood with their shields erect in front of them. In the light of the fires they looked very fierce. The king forbade anyone to rise to greet Patrick or any of his company, (contrary to the custom of the Irish). A messenger was sent to fetch Patrick.

Soon a bright procession appeared descending the hill. As Patrick advanced, all eyes were fixed on him. Calmly he sang as he approached the king, “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; but we will call upon the Name of the Lord our God,” (don’t you love this?). As Patricks clear strong voice resounded, a feeling of awe filed the minds of the warriors. One man. Erc, the son of Deg, rose to greet Patrick. By grace, in a moment, he believed in God; and Patrick blessed him. Later on he was baptized and eventually became the first bishop of Slane. And Patrick prophesied to him, “Your city on earth will be high and noble.”

After a “formal” greeting between Laeghaire and Patrick, the wizard Lochru attacked him angrily with contention and shouting. He became malicious and hostile, and even violent, blaspheming the Holy Trinity. Patricks anger was roused and he called upon God, “O Lord, Who can do all things. And on Whose power everything depends, You have sent us here to preach Your Name to the heathen. Now let this ungodly man, who blasphemes your Name, be lifted up and let him die.” When Patrick had finished speaking, a supernatural force raised the wizard in the air. He fell heavily down, his head striking a stone. And so he died in the presence of those assembled. The heathen seeing their own subdued, and realizing that Patrick had more power than the Druids, were greatly affected. But the king was enraged at the fate of Lochru, on whom he had greatly depended. He then wanted to take the life of Patrick. “Slay this man,” he cried to his guards.

But Patrick stood firmly in his place. With flashing eyes and resonant voice he said, “Let God arise and His enemies be scattered; and let them that hate Him, flee from before His face! As smoke vanishes, so let them vanish away: as wax melts before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.” By this time the sun had begun to rise and the morning splendor bathed the earth. But at the words of Patrick, darkness crept back over the sky and the ground shook with an earthquake. The swords and spears of the warriors clashed against their shields and it seemed to them that sky was falling down, and there was no hope of escape from impending destruction. The frightened horses galloped away in wild confusion, and the wind blew so fiercely that the chariots were moved.

Because of the confusion and fear, the warriors began to fight among themselves, and some were killed. Realizing their mistake, they fled, leaving only three people with King Laeghaire and Queen Angas. The king remained sullen and silent but the queen rose and approached Patrick. She spoke to him with respect. “Just and mighty man,” she said, “Do not destroy the king. He shall come to you and he will do your will and he will kneel and believe in your God,” Her influence prevailed and because the events of the past few hours had shaken him, the king kneeled before Patrick, offering peace. It was a false gesture, designed to allow him to avoid the present situation. Laehaire designed a plan in his mind to try and kill Patrick on the way to his castle. “Follow after me, to my castle, Cleric,” said the wily king, “And at Tara I may believe in your God in the presence of the men of Ireland.”

Patrick consented and Laeghire gave orders to his servants that an ambush should be set on several paths between Slane to Tara. The chariots were yoked once more by the attendant who had now returned, and the royal party set out back to the palace. They were very weary and discouraged after their disastrous night with Patrick and his company continued the interrupted Easter Day celebration with hearts full of gratitude to the risen Lord, who was so wonderful to them. Then Patrick selected his companions and blessed them before setting out for Tara. There were eight young clerics, including Patrick, and the boy, Benignus, who never left Patricks side. They had ten miles to walk, “but God covered them with cloak of darkness” so that they could not be seen, for God had revealed to Patrick the evil design on the king.

Nevertheless the heathen as they watched saw only eight deer and a fawn (Benignus). It was after this that Patrick wrote his famous hymn, “The Deer’s Cry,” in which he gave God praise and expressed his firm belief in the Resurrection, the Incarnation and, Death and Ascension of Christ. He united with the citizens of heaven, declaring glory to Him who is his defense against the wiles of the devil and against all forms of superstition and idolatry; ending with an appeal to Christ to be with him always and speak to him through every creature.

Meanwhile King Laeghaire was sitting in grief and shame in the banqueting hall of Tara, together with the nobles, bards and wizards who had escaped from the events of the previous night. The thought that in his terror he had knelt in front of Patrick overwhelmed him with humiliation. He waited anxiously of news that his snares had been successful and that the disturber of his peace, (Patrick) was no more! As it was a day of high festival, and however angry he was, he still had to show hospitality to his invited guests. The hall was decked with festive banners and the noble company sat down to the tables with their minds full of the strange events of the previous night, and no other conversation was broached. “I will go to Tara,” Patrick had replied to the king, when Laeghaire offered the invitation, “In order to manifest my readiness to the men of Ireland.”

A Quick Way To Evangelize A City or How St. Patrick Won Dublin (Patrick A.D. 389-461)

As Patrick came near to Dublin, at that time a small village, he prophesied, “That village which is now very small shall hereafter become very eminent. it shall be enlarged in riches and dignity.” Neither shall it cease to grow until it has become the principal seat of all the kingdom.”

When the people of Dublin, having heard of the great signs and miracles that were done through Patrick, and when they saw that he was coming to that village, they went out to meet him.

At this time, Alphinus was the king over Dublin. He and all the citizens were in great sorrow, for the death of the kings two children. The kings only son, called Eochadh had died a natural death, in his bedroom. The king’s daughter, and a sister to the young prince, had just been drowned, in the adjoining river, now known as the Liffey.

She had ventured into the deep part, for the purpose of bathing. Her name was Dublinia, and from her Dublin is thought to have derived its name. (Joceylyn note) The young lady’s body was drawn out of the waters after some considerable search, and laid by her brother’s corpse, in order that their funeral rites might be solemnized together.

According to the superstition of the pagans, the tombs were prepared. In the meantime, news was spread over all the city, that “St. Patrick, the potent reviver of many dead persons”, (What a reputation !!) had been seen in the town. For He, who burst asunder the gates of death and of hell, smoothed the path for his servant.

The king and the people, who before had said to the Lord, “depart from us, we will not the knowledge any of thy ways,” were so cast down, saddened with grief, that all of their rebellion and all their barbarous rudeness, and all the pride of their idolatry, were utterly subdued.

The king, hearing of St. Patrick’s arrival, greatly rejoiced, and caused him to come in, where his two children lay dead. He then promised, with all those present, if God restored his children to life, that he and all the citizens would become Christians. Seeing such a gain of souls, in the sight of the king, his nobles, and all the common people, Patrick raised from death to life those princely children, whose bodily resurrection co-operated much towards the spiritual resurrection of their father, with the rest of his people. The king and all his subjects, being astonished at this great miracle, turned away from the worship of idols, and they were baptized in the well (spring). From that day the King and all the people worshiped God and gave liberally to Patrick, so that he was able to give to the poor in that place and other places and have enough to build churches.

(Ref. Lives of the Irish Saints -O’Hanlon. Ecclesiatical History of Ireland, Rev. Dr. Lanigan. Sexta Vita S. Patricii, Joycelin notes.)

Patrick and The Kings Daughters

Patrick and his companions arrived in the early morning at Tulsk, in the county of Roscommon. As they sat down near the fountain known as Clibach they were approached by the two daughters of King Leogaire, who were intending to bathe in the fountain. Seeing the young clerics with their books in front of them, the young women wondered at the strange sight so early in the morning.

The two women, Eithne and Feidelm, inquired of Patrick as to what race he was from and where he had come presently come from. “Are you some kind of gods?” asked Eithne. “It is better for you to ask about our God than to inquire as to our race,” said Patrick. “Where is God to be found, is He under the earth? or in the streams? Or in the hills and valleys?’ asked Eithne. “Is He beautiful and to be loved? How is He to be found?” she continued.

Patrick, full of the Holy Spirit replied, “Our God is the God over all, of heaven and earth: the God of the seas and rivers: the God of the sun and moon and stars: the God of the high mountains and lowly valleys; He quickens all things, He gives the light to the sun and moon, He created the waters in dry land, He places islands in the middle of the sea, and placed the stars in the heavens.” Patrick went on tell of God’s son – Jesus. The two sisters being of one heart cried out and said, “Our only desire to see Him face to face.” Patrick baptized both women and loved Christ with all their hearts – for they had sought the true God for a long time.

Shortly after both sisters died. Two druids, Mael and Caplait entered into a great conflict with Patrick over this, as the youngest daughter was the foster-daughter of Caplait. Patrick preached the gospel to Caplait and he became a believer to the great anger of the other druid, Mael. “I will win him back to our gods and cause him to leave you,” he said to Patrick. Patrick with great patience preached and reasoned with him until he also gave his heart to God.

Patrick continued to travel and preach to every town and village with many miracles and signs and wonders.

Patrick’s Fast and Petitions For Ireland

Patrick went to a high mountain in the range of Mayo in order to seek God and to fast and pray. For 40 days he fasted with watching and prayers and travail. Toward the end of the fast, the mountain was surrounded by many demons in the form of large black birds, screaming and giving off a foul smell. Patrick continued singing Psalms and hymns to no avail. Finally Patrick threw his bell at the birds and commanded the to leave. They left and immediately he was surrounded by an angelic choir. Also the angel who was always Patricks companion, Victor, came and said, “Everything you select shall be yours, every land – both hills and valleys, glens and woods. Every petition shall be granted.”

Patricks first petition was that every Irish man, woman and child would have opportunity to hear the Gospel and secondly, that barbarian invaders should not prevail against the Irish people. Victor commanded Patrick to get down from the mountain, but Patrick refused until every petition he asked was granted. Patrick contnued to ask for many blessings for Ireland.

Spiritual Shifts Over Cities, Regions, and Nations

About ten years ago I watched a documentary with amazement as I saw four communities transformed from darkness to light as spiritual people united in seeking God’s intervention in their cities.

Later I heard rumors that a follow-up documentary was produced to tell the story of additional places changed by the power of the Spirit of God.

Today, I am sharing both of these documentaries for your inspiration. May your heart be awakened to what is possible when spiritual people are concerned about their communities.

Transformations 1

To watch the second documentary, first you will have to install Veoh.com’s free video play software.

Transformations 2: The Glory Spreads

You can get both of these documenaries on DVD from the Videos area of our new book store.

Disney’s Magic Kingdom gets a visit from God’s Heavenly Kingdom

Short 2 minute clip from full 30 minute video (scroll down to see full video)

Three friends (Hannah Ford, Jason Tax, and Jason Chin) were given a set of Disneyland tickets from a woman at the church they were attending that night.

When they entered Disneyland the next day they were carrying the presence of God inside them. Thus God’s power entered Disneyland and over a hundred people had a direct encounter with the power of God that day.

Hannah Ford’s brother explains how the three friends got the opportunity to share God’s power to heal and change lives with over 100 people in just one day at Disneyland.

Taken from his YouTube post:

This is amazing! God is so great!!! My sister, Hannah Ford, (music ministry website- www.hannahford.com) was at Disneyland with some friends. She and her 2 friends, Jason Chin and Jason Tax, had been praying for revival to break out. They were standing in line for a ride, and one of them began talking with a teenager. She had some physical ailment and they offered to pray for her. She was healed on the spot. It blew the girl’s mind! Hannah prayed that God would move exponentially, and before long, they found themselves praying for another kid, an 8th grade boy, a star basketball player, and the son of a medical doctor. He had injured his shoulder and could not raise it at all, and had been out for the season. They prayed for him, and he was healed! He got so excited he called his father, and then he started texting his fellow 8th graders from his charter school, who were also at Disneyland. Kids starting coming from everywhere. They were actually leaving their places in line at various rides so they could come and find out what was going on. Wave after wave of kids from this charter school came and were prayed for and told the good news of salvation through Jesus. There were numerous healings and 30-40 put their faith in Jesus Christ. Kids were crying and laughing and saying they felt lighter. There was never one massive gathering, but groups of kids would come for awhile and then move on. But in all, my sister says that they prayed for and shared Jesus with 60-100 kids. They led them in prayer openly to receive Christ at Disneyland of all places.

There is a lot more video footage which will be posted later. My sister didn’t have time to get the rest out before leaving on a ministry trip to Mexico.

This all happened on Thursday, June 11, 2009.

Here are four videos that document some of what happened during that day with more information to follow after the videos.

Jesus Goes to Disneyland! (part 1 of 4)

Jesus Goes to Disneyland! (part 2 of 4)

Jesus Goes to Disneyland! (part 3 of 4)

Jesus Goes to Disneyland! (part 4 of 4)

Jason Chin (one of the three friends) shared his testimony of what happened at Bethel Church’s testimony website:

I went down to see my best friend, Jason Tax, in Los Angeles, just to visit for a week and hang out-and who knows what adventure the Holy Spirit might lead us into. Jay and I love to do street evangelism together. On the way down, I saw a Disneyland sign, and I remembered the times of lying on my bed dreaming with the Holy Spirit of revival inside the theme park. I thought, “Wow that would be cool if that ever happened for real.”

I had the privilege of speaking at my friend’s church on Wednesday night, and after the service, a lady asked me if I wanted a free ticket to Disneyland the following day. Yippie, Jesus. I thought, Wow! Those tickets are $94!

Jason Tax, Hannah Ford and I went to Disneyland to have a great day in the sun with the Son-and God set us up through one key miracle of a young man’s shoulder that was in a sling. We approached him and asked if we could pray for healing. Jesus instantly completely healed his shoulder and he removed his sling and began to test it out. He started crying from God’s goodness, and he told us how he could not raise it at all because of a fresh torn rotator cuff injury. He then started raising his arm over his head and moving it as freely as the other one. His friends explained how he is the star football player at their school and he would have had to take the entire year off from football after his scheduled surgery, so we explained the gospel of Jesus Christ and the miracles to the group of eight or so, and they all got saved and filled with the Holy Spirit, and two of them got healed-one of scoliosis. The other had Jesus grow out his leg as his friends all looked on.

They all started freaking out, and the heavenly momentum hit and it erupted into an all-out Holy Spirit healing miracle service in the Disneyland food court for four and a half hours as groups of young people got their friends and brought them back to us for healing. They would come to us and say, “Can you heal this?” as they would point to a lump on their knee or a bad ankle. We would answer something like, “We can not heal anything but Jesus can heal everything and that same Jesus is in you now, so everyone put your hand on this person and say, “Be healed in Jesus’ name! Now test it out.'” Really, that’s how we prayed: “Be healed! Now test it out.” Almost every healing was instant as the looks of shock appeared on the faces, then praise and cheers to Jesus would erupt from the crowd of youth!

Flat feet were healed as arches formed in front of everyone to witness. One girl was so scared as her friends dragged her up to us. She was almost crying from fear. We told her, “Hon, you have nothing to be afraid of. This is Jesus and He loves you very much.” She had extreme scoliosis and a dislocated thumb that was in a hand brace. She was still very much afraid so we told her, “We won’t even need to touch you because the glory is here. Just remove your brace and move your thumb around.” She did and her thumb was instantly healed. We asked her to touch her toes and then check her back out. She did and her friends lifted up the back of her shirt to check out her spine. They all screamed because it was now perfectly straight. Jesus! We asked her if she knew Jesus, and she said no. We told her it was Jesus who just healed her and asked her if she would like to know that Jesus? She said yes, so she got saved and then we explained to her about being filled with the Holy Spirit and she said she wanted Him, too! So we asked her to put her hands out in front of her and say, “Holy Spirit, come and fill me up. I give my life to you.” She started shaking under the power of God. God is soooo good!

We witnessed bone knots dissolve from knees, asthma healed, crooked knees straightened out, and eyes healed. Some protruding ribs were pulled back into the chest. Even gold dust showed up on many and three youths experienced supernatural weight loss as their once tight pants got looser and looser. Screams erupted as one man grew an inch taller while everyone looked on.

A super cool thing was how each kid got saved and then we prayed for them to be filled with the Holy Spirit and almost every kid felt a strong manifestation of the Holy Spirit like electricity, heat, tingling all over their bodies or a heavy, weighty presence.

They would then ask us questions like, “Can you make the sadness I feel leave the inside of me?” All their friends would say, “I feel that way, too,” so we started praying in large groups, commanding depression to leave them and joy to come. Kids were crying, laughing, yelling “Jesus,” saying things like, “I can’t believe this! This is way better than any ride here!” Those kids were getting set free. We prayed for healing for the first few kids only. Then we taught the youth that the same Spirit dwells in each of them, and then we watched Jesus heal through their hands! We witnessed around 120-140 healings, most of them instant and about 100 or so decisions for Christ, of which 50 or so were first-time decisions, asking Jesus to forgive them of their sins. Yea, Jesus! One young man came up to me and said, “I never knew that Jesus died for me,” and he yelled at the top of his lungs: “Jesus!”

Stories of Supernatural Healing and Restoration from the IHOPU Student Awakening

Lives continue to be transformed by the power of God flowing through the student body at IHOPU.

Bodies are being healed. Hearts are being mended. Spirits are being transformed!

Amazing testimonies of people getting free are pouring in from all over the world as people get on the internet, watch the awakening meetings, and tune into the Holy Spirit.

You can also see amazing stories from students at the awakening meetings by watching the stories recorded live at the meetings. (on the gray bar, click on ‘testimonies’)

I have been watching these testimonies and want to share just a few here to wet your appetite to watch more of these stories or, better yet, tune into these awakening meetings to have an experience of your own!

 

This first testimony is just one of many testimonies of God healing his children of physical problems–listen as Christina shares on how God touched her body and healed scoliosis that afflicted her for 29 years.

Christina’s Testimony

 

Here is a wonderful experience of how a young woman was freed from shame that she learned as a result of being abused sexually and raped as a child, and then from the resulting addiction to sexual encounters. Freedom from shame has been a common experience as these students encounter the love of God.

Summer’s Testimony

 

Here are two students who are being freed from addictions to cigarettes, drugs, media, pornography and all kinds of other substitutes for the love of God.

Luke’s Testimony

 

Monty’s Testimony

 

The experiences happening at IHOPU are not contained to the students who go to the school.  Visitors are coming and getting touched by the power of God.  God is interested in doing things that transcend our understanding of what is possible.  This young woman, Jamison, got healed after hearing of someone else’s testimony of healing.  Watch and let your faith rise!

Jamison’s Testimony

 

People have gotten healed over the webstream!  Listen to Bobbi’s story of healing–both in the past and present!

Bobbi’s Testimony

 

The experiences these students are having are not at all contained to these meetings. Students are going home and seeing their families transformed by God’s love and healing power. They are going about their daily business and seeing God leap onto their friends and even strangers to transform those people’s hearts and lives. Here is a great story about a guy who went into Walgreen’s to buy some ice cream and ended up seeing four strangers have a supernatural encounter with God’s life-transforming love and power!

Neil’s Testimony

 

 

One of the most common and powerful healings God is doing is healing people from self-hatred.  Watch the following two testimonies of people who have gotten healed from self-hatred–one even got physically healed as well!

Jennifer’s Testimony

 

 

God is not content to live at a distance from his children. People have put up an imaginary line across the sky and have thought that God should be confined in the heavens. But he will not be confined. Especially when a generation of young people are no longer content to have mere theoretical ideas about God. We are a generation of people who want the real deal. We want to experience him, know him, and love him. God has heard his children’s heart-cries. He is responding in a big way. He doesn’t want to live only in heaven. He wants to live in our hearts!