In the ‘Sermon On The Mount’, Jesus stepped it up a notch when He taught that the requirements of the human heart from that time forward would exceed that which the Law required. He painted a very vivid picture that narrow is the way to Heaven and that there will be many false teachers along the journey, especially in the last days. He capped it off by saying this:
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (Matthew 7:21-23)
It all boils down to relationship, not experiences. In simple terms, it is not whether you claim to know Jesus and have had godly experiences. It is about Jesus knowing you and about an intimate two way relationship that exists between the both of you.
There are literally multitudes of ministers, especially most of those on TV and other media, that center their ministries around experiences. They have cultivated mass audiences who have itching ears that crave excitement and encouragement for worldly success. They pump out books and materials like Christian candy to satisfy the wayward sweet tooth’s. They are guilty of not teaching the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:26-27). To those who want to stay on the narrow path, this means that we must be very careful of all teachings that appear on the Christian scene. This is also true of music, since it appeals so much to the human emotions. Let me illustrate: There is a popular new song on the Christian radio stations that says this, “Holy Spirit, You are welcome here. Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere!” It is an experience oriented song that is doctrinally unsound because the Holy Spirit comes individually through each heart of those that are worshipping. When Christians worship corporately, the Holy Spirit does not come through a place or atmosphere, even though wind and shaking can be a by-product (1 Kings 19:11-13, Acts 2:1-2, Acts 4:31). The Holy Spirit comes and works through each human heart. Satan is the one who inhabits the atmosphere. Satan is called the “prince of the power of the air” in Ephesians 2:2. He is the “ruler of this world” in John 12:31. True Christians are not to be of this world (John 17:16).
So many Christians think, “If only I could tour the Holy Land and walk where Jesus walked, it would boost my spiritual walk so much.” What a misguided notion. Jesus is as close as we want Him to be no matter where we are physically located on this Earth. Touring the Holy Land may increase our biblical knowledge, but it certainly will not make us more spiritual.
There is no doubt that the Lord promised a latter rain outpouring in Joel 2 and Acts 2, especially just before the coming ‘Great and Terrible Day of the LORD’. I can firmly attest to that outpouring because I have been a recipient of it. But, be very careful my friends. There are so many false prophets and teachers out there that pedal a ‘strange rain’. They want you to believe that the Lord is doing more and more new things with new revelations just before His coming back, and they are a conduit of it. This is a lie from the enemy and is nowhere in the Word of God. I challenge any so called minister of the Lord to show me that being ‘slain in the spirit’ is a valid New Testament occurrence for Christians, especially with how commonplace it has become in certain circles. And please, don’t even try to use Saul (who was not a Christian at the time) being knocked to the ground as a defense. I see so many pastors and even denominations going astray because they think they are missing out if they don’t grasp a hold of this ‘strange rain’ thinking it is a work the Holy Spirit, which it isn’t. Please my friends, don’t stray from the written Word of God, which all prophecy and manifestations have to agree and be in-line with.
Experiences are a part of every human’s life, but true faith must never be based upon those experiences. It’s not about us. It’s about our Lord Jesus Christ and our Father in Heaven and how we can serve them. Not the other way around with them being our genies in a bottle.
Be aware of the new buzzword for experience which is ‘encounter’. You can have encounters with Jesus and you can receive blessings from Jesus. But do not be deceived. This does not mean you have a saving relationship with Jesus.
Now for the most important question there is: Can Jesus say to you, “I Know you. Well done! You are My good and faithful servant.”? Do not be one of the deceived that will cry out on judgment day, “But Lord…………!”