Monday, June 19, 2006

Power sources...Authentic Power & Charlatans

[The following are excerpts from the book Shifting Shadows of Supernatural Power.]

Discerning the Source of Supernatural Power

Discerning the source, or origin, of supernatural displays of power is not difficult. Anyone moving in revelatory, supernatural power will become like the one they behold. The more surrendered a person becomes to the source of the power, the more purely it reveals itself. …

There are specific marks that characterize the origins or source of supernatural power expressed through individuals. Richard Foster, details seven marks of God’s authentic power in his book The Challenge of the Disciplined Life. They include: love, humility, restraint, joy, vulnerability, submission, and freedom from control.

Power that Originates in the Soul

The problem with power that originates in the soul—tainted with undealt with emotions, memories, and traumas—is that it gets in the way of hearing the true voice of the Lord. John Sandford speaks about this jamming of our wavelengths in the Elijah Task: “God will never speak falsely but because of who we are we will hear wrongly…both flesh and satan attack one who draws near to God. Few of us enjoy the honeymoon of God’s love long before the flesh and the enemy begins to jam our wavelengths.”

Releasing God’s Authentic Power

Our challenge and responsibility is not to move in power but to move in the presence of God…to walk in intimate relationship with the one who releases His anointing through us. We become like the one we behold and worship. By seeking to draw closer to the God of power we become increasingly more like Him. The marks of power that come from God are also reflections of His nature. The more we seek the God of authentic power, the purer His anointing will flow through us. The more we seek the god of self and occult power, the more fragmented our personalities and lives are destined to become.

Abuses of Power

According to Bill Johnson, author and pastor of Bethel Church, too many people are embarrassed over the abuses of power rather than the lack of power moving through their own lives to build the Kingdom of God. He believes that critics are often justifying their own lack of pursuing the gifts of the Spirit and obeying Jesus’ command to heal the sick, raise the dead, and make disciples of all nations in the process of speaking forth the Word of God with accompanying signs of the power of God.

Johnson writes in his book, When Heaven Invades Earth: “When I see others who have pursued great things in God but have failed, I get motivated to pick up where they left off. The abuses of one person never justify the neglect of another. Many of those who are embarrassed over the abuses of power, and the subsequent blemishes on the Church, are seldom offended over the absence of signs and wonders. The eyes of the critics quickly move to the ones who tried and failed overlooking the countless millions who confess salvation in Jesus, but never pursue the gifts as commanded. But the eyes of Jesus quickly look to see if there is faith on the earth—When I return will I find faith on the earth? For every charlatan there are a thousand good citizens who accomplish little or nothing for the Kingdom.”

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