Saturday, May 31, 2014

Do Pentecostals Have Room for Prophets?

You may think that I have mistakenly framed the question since it is well-known that Pentecostals believe in prophets and many among their ranks have claimed to be prophets or to be exercising a prophetic ministry. But I am not mistaken because the many good things in Pentecostalism have shades of grey and those who have been long enough among Pentecostal circles will perhaps think that there is a dark side to the movement.
First, the lack of discernment is palpable. I recall some years ago that two big names came to town and most of the city's pastors (especially the Pentecostals and independents) rushed to welcome these big wigs. But in less than a year after their visits, they were found to be frauds. One even claimed to have 3 PhDs, and the other claimed to have angelic encounters and healing power but living immorally with his own staff worker and later divorced his wife. When I sounded caution, I was castigated for not showing unity or support for my fellow pastors! Why is there no criticism or self-examination among pastors when some big-name pastors veer into extreme prosperity teaching as if Jesus is for sale or God is Father Christmas? Why the acceptance of extreme grace veering into a licence to sin and licentiousness? Many strange doctrines have arisen due to one's own interpretation instead of abiding in the apostolic teaching of the New Testament. Do Pentecostals have room for prophets?

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