Belief in The Holy Spirit today

My name is Maria, I am concerned because the Pastor of my church said that she does not believe in people saying that they are touched by The Holy Spirit and start dancing and jumping and speaking in tongues. She showed me a scripture in 1 Corinthians 14:14-15. I really believe in The Holy Spirit because He helped me change what I couldn’t change, without The Holy Spirit i would of been years trying to change my old habits and leave behind a life of sin, He transformed me and made me a new person. I feel His presence even in the little things of life and when I pray He make me feel what others are going through even with visions. So I am surprised to think that anyone would not believe in Him. I understand that there are many people who claim they feel the presence of The Holy Spirit and exagérate things and even probably fake as someone explained but I really feel that He is real, without His presence anyone can confuse me or tell me God doesn’t exist but with His presence there is no way that I would feel that. He is the most wonderful counselor and helper there could ever be.

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Hello, @Maria. My heart was uplifted to read about your relationship with the Holy Spirit! I go to a tamer pentecostal church (I was raised Lutheran) where, though we believe in the Holy Spirit and his power and that his gifts still are given and function in believers today, we also believe that our God is a God of order. So in a sense, I can understand where your pastor is coming from. From what you have said, she didn’t say she doesn’t believe in the Holy Spirit but doesn’t think he works in the way she has perhaps seen in pentecostal circles. For our edification here, the Scripture she brought up needs to have verse 13 included as well, and that passage needs to be understood within the greater context of the letter. In 1 Corinthians, Paul was addressing very immature believers who were seeking gifts for their own promotion and boasting and glory. Notice in 14:12, Paul makes a point to say, “Even so, since you are zealous for spiritual gifts, let it be for the edification of the church that you seek to excel” (New King James Version). Again, in verses 18-19, Paul says, “I thank my God I speak in tongues more than you all; yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue.” Paul was teaching them that the gifts should only ever function for the good of the other–not for self-interest.

You could ask your pastor what she means by not believing people are touched by the Holy Spirit to the extent that they speak in tongues and jump and dance. It sounds like she just doesn’t believe in the effects of His touch people claim. But take heart, because from what you have said here, it does not sound like she is saying she doesn’t believe in Him. I, too, do feel the Lord’s presence in the Spirit, sometimes stronger than others, but since others cannot share in my personal experience of that, I look to join arms with them in the gospel and the Word, choosing to pour out the same grace in this as the the Lord has so lovingly and mercifully poured into me.

I hope this helps in some small way, but I also look forward to others hopping in and giving you their responses and insights.

In the love of Christ,

Lindsay

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Thank you for sharing your experience and opinion. I’ve seen in the church that she never asks people to come to the front or lays hands on them, she seems to be afraid to lose members, I am not sure because once I shared a video on her whatsap group, I admit it was not adequate to share that video because it was about a deliverance, but she called me aside and said that I shouldn’t share these types of videos and that the group was just for information and that there are a lot of Catholics on the group. So I decided to not share anything in the group no matter what I saw happening In the group. But I have prayed for The annointing of The Holy Spirit in the church and when I prayed I saw a difference, she would call people up front and lay hands on them praying, I thought wow that is beautiful but then for another period of time this would happen again, then I pray and again I would see a change. Then her husband the Pastor preached the other day and I felt The Holy Spirit. I said wow but then I see the Pastor’s wife, she would change again. She one day said to me that she sees a lot of talent in me but there is something that needs to change in me. Then she asked me to come with her to visit homes, and when we are there I feel the Holy Spirit tell me to pray for them but she doesn’t seem to like it because when I ask her she evades my question as to if I can pray for them. So I fell The Holy Spirit being quenched. This seems to be awkward. As much as I want to be submissive to my Pastor I really feel I am not in the right place.

Hi, @Lali. I understand where you are coming from. These situations are always hard when we start to feel that the church we are attending isn’t seeming to line up with where we are coming from.

It is hard to try to respond to a situation such as this that has so many intricate details and because I am only able to see one side of things.

It seems like your pastor’s wife is trying to prevent divisiveness in the church. There are certain times we should challenge authority in a respectful manner in private and in the proper biblical way or redirect a church when it seems to have gotten off the right path, like when we see a different gospel or Jesus being preached. But the laying on of hands, along with the types of services in which there are seen to be possible deliverance, is not something that distorts the gospel if it is not done and isn’t a primary thing to seek, so it shouldn’t be done if it would threaten to divide the church. Pastors and their staff need to be watchful over anything that might divide the church because they need to encourage unity in the gospel. The main thing is that people know the truth about who Jesus is and what he has done and that they are pursuing the heart of God by seeking to walk in the new life Christ has provided for them. Pastoral care is all about maintaining the proper teaching and application of God’s Word, guarding unity in the gospel, and tending to the spiritual growth and maturing of the congregation members.

Here is a helpful resource on levels of doctrine one of our members has posted:

https://connect.rzim.org/t/levels-of-doctrine/6764

Feeling like you are not in the right place is hard. I feel for you, because as we speak I am struggling with that same thing. My advice is to first see if perhaps you can get together with your pastor’s wife for a coffee or tea and prayerfully seek where she is coming from. It sounds like there is more to be learned about what she believes, and it could be helpful for you both if you could try to understand her better. It might also be a good idea to ask her what she means when she says something in you needs to change. I can understand your concern over that. But if you ask, be open to what she has to say and be prayerful and discerning about what follows.

Outside of this, I would pray about the situation at hand and ask God if this is where He wants you. It sounds like you struggle with being submissive to the authority of the pastor, and if that is the case, it may be time to look to go somewhere else. On the other hand, it may be that after a time of prayer, God leads you to stay. We are always going to have times when we find ourselves under someone of authority that we don’t completely agree with. However, that doesn’t mean we cannot learn from them, and sometimes there is something that God wants us to learn in that. I have learned that though I have my own experiences with the Holy Spirit, that not even my own experiences are about me. Walking with people in their spiritual journeys means meeting them where they are and walking with them from there–not demanding they come to where we are. That’s ministry. That being said, while you pray and seek God in regard to whether you are in the right place, if you are seeing your prayers having an effect, perhaps that is confirmation of what God wants you to do: stay and simply pray and let Him take care of the rest.

Hopefully this helps somewhat. I’m afraid this is the best I have to give and am hoping some other fellow believers I know are wiser than I will see this and speak up here :slight_smile:

Praying all the best for you in Christ,

Lindsay

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Wow Lindsay, thank you so much for your help, you are definitely right, I have asked God why I am in this church, if He wants me to do something, I am so careful not to go against her church or create division, I sometimes talk about my testimonies with great joy but then I wonder if I said something wrong and this is maybe something she may feel is probably shaking people’s concern, or be in the eye of members in the church. I definitely feel there is murmuring in The church and I can feel that some of these things point at me, I am not the type of person that stays after church to talk to people, when church service ends I leave. Actually she is the Pastor that preaches all the time at out church and the Pastor only preaches sometimes, I think it is because they have another church in another place but anyway I understand what you are saying. Thank you, I will follow your advice because it is very wise, also because she has chosen me to take her on Thursday to these visiting servicies. I feel compromised. I will go for coffee with her and seek to understand her, after prayer.
Thank you once again, I feel that you have a good heart and it is what God saw in you and is why He is using you in a mighty way because it is a lot what you do but nobody knows, you have a similar life as I do, that love for God that Only you can feel in your heart. Somehow I feel a real unity in the Spirit, a wonderful peace in your heart. Thank God for people with a heart like yours.

Blessings.

María

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Aw, I’m glad I could help, @Lali. God is good to provide wisdom when we ask. Praying over this situation with you as you talk with your pastor to get to understand her better.