All posts filed under: Spiritual Gifts

Deion Sanders shares how he called out to God during a medical crisis

Former NFL star, Deion Sanders, shared how he called out to God for help, which included speaking in tongues, during a serious medical crisis in 2021, the Christian Post reports. Saunders, 55, who is now the head coach of the Jackson State University football team, had to go to the hospital last year after experiencing blood clots in his legs that resulted in the amputation of two toes. Fearing the loss of his leg and possibly his life, Deion shared his experience in an interviewed with Chris Neely of “Thee Pregame Show,. In her article for the Christian Post, Jeannie Ortega Law provides more details: “It was a blessing. Because I could have lost my life very easily. It was there. It was a thought process of losing my leg from the knee down. It was almost there,” the legendary cornerback continued. “So when I look up and say thank you, Jesus, it’s because I know the quiet cries at night that were in that hospital.” […] “I know all the speaking in tongues, and the …

When the Holy Spirit falls upon people: Ex-gay Hollywood designer explains how this helped lead him to Jesus

We read throughout the Bible of times that the Holy Spirit fell upon people and each time something unusual happened as there were outward manifestations: As we move into the New Testament, there is a shift because of Christ’s perfect redemption the Holy Spirit is now able to permanently reside inside us (1 Corinthians 6:19). But there were still instances of the Holy Spirit falling upon people, as took place on the Day of Pentecost. The same thing happened to a group of gentiles at the home of Cornelius as Peter was preaching. The Holy Spirit also fell on them, and they began speaking in tongues: 15 As I [Peter] began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them just as on us at the beginning. (Acts 11:15 ESV). When the Holy Spirit falls upon people, something invariably happens, and a similar event laid the groundwork for Becket Cook, a Hollywood designer, to become a Christian, Faithwire reports. Becket was an influential designer in Hollywood, and had worked for major stars such as Oprah, Paris Hilton …

When is the last time you spoke in tongues?

When is the last time you spoke in tongues? I am directing this question to myself, as much as I am to anyone else, because based on a recent survey I know at least a quarter of us have spoken in tongues. But are still continuing this spiritual practice today? A recent study conducted by Infinity Concepts and Grey Matter Research (ICGMR) in early August 2022 found that 25% of American Christians have spoken in tongues. Included in this percentage were people who did not consider themselves charismatic or did not attend a Pentecostal church. The survey entitled, “The Renewalists: Pentecostal and Charismatic Evangelicals,” also found that 13% of those surveyed attended a Pentecostal/Charismatic church and of those who did 55% had spoken in tongues, which means 45% had not. So, back to my original question, if you have received this gift of the Holy Spirit, when was the last time you used this gift? I ask this because, despite the controversy, the gift of Tongues is an important part of our walk with God. …

Ten stories from this week

Here are a ten news stories, that caught my attention, this past week. Prophetic word about draft, fulfilled in the very last pick in 2021 NFL draft Grant Stuard was an all-conference linebacker while playing for the University of Houston. His dad was in prison several times and his drug-addict mother worked strip clubs to feed her habit, leaving Grant to raise his four siblings. There had been hints he would be drafted in the 2021 NFL draft, and a friend even gave a prophetic word, that this would happen. But Grant was losing hope by the time the seventh and final round of the draft started. But Grant was picked by the NFL Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the very last pick of the draft. READ: NFL’s Last Draft Pick Sees His Blessing Movie director encourages Chris Pratt to ‘keep standing for Jesus’ Andrew Erwin, who has directed films such as American Underdog and Moms’ Night Out, took to Instagram to support Hollywood actor, Chris Pratt, after he was criticized for sharing that his faith …

A Friendly Word to My ‘Cautiously Charismatic’ Colleagues

By Dr. Michael L. Brown In recent years, I have heard Christian leaders describe themselves as “open but cautious” when it comes to the gifts and power of the Spirit for today, including tongues and prophecy and healing. Others have described themselves as “charismatics with seatbelts.” But is that really a biblical position to hold? Is it a healthy spiritual perspective? To speak directly to my “cautiously charismatic” colleagues, are you “open but cautious” when it comes to following Jesus? Or believing God’s Word? Or giving yourself to the Great Commission? Or loving God? Why, then, when it comes to the gifts and power of the Spirit for today are you “open but cautious”? When it comes to your overall devotion to the Lord, do you wear those same seatbelts? Or do you wear them when you get alone with God in prayer? Or when you engage in corporate worship? Or when you share the gospel with the lost? Why put those seatbelts on only when it comes to the things of the Spirit? I …

Becoming drunk in the Holy Spirit?

There are a few passages in the Bible that speak of one of the more unusual manifestations of the Holy Spirit. It talks about people being so overcome by the Holy Spirit, that they appear drunk to outsiders. And I was reminded of this in a recent story on CBN by Vernell Windsor, a regular columnist, who along with a friend had decided to attend a church service in North Carolina. During the service, Vernell writes that she was so overcome by the presence of God, that she became drunk in the Holy Spirit: “The presence of the Lord was in that place. During worship, I forgot all about my friend and realized I could no longer stand. I was weeping and got all snotty-nosed,” Vernell said. “Strangely, I was also laughing because the joy of the Lord was flowing all through me. My friend was trying to protect me from getting trampled upon as people were headed to and from the altar and dancing around, but I was oblivious to any danger,” Vernell added. …

Hold Fast to That Which Is Good

By Rick Renner

Years ago I was invited to have lunch with a man who said he wanted to talk. As I sat with him, he began to tell me the many reasons why he had abandoned believing in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. At first, I thought maybe he just needed someone to talk to about his doubts, but soon I realized this man was deeply bitter. I finally understood he had asked me to lunch in an attempt to dissuade me, and whoever else would listen, from believing in the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

How actor Michael Sheen’s great-grandfather went from town drunk to street preacher

Welsh actor Michael Sheen is best known for playing roles of famous people during his acting career, including British Prime Minister Tony Blair, in The Deal. He also played the role of journalist David Frost in Frost/Nixon, a movie about Frost’s 1977 interview with US President Richard Nixon. Though I am uncertain of Sheen’s faith, in April 2011, the actor led a modern retelling of The Passion in Port Talbot, Wales, the home of his great-grandfather. The play performed outside over three days involved the dramatic retelling of Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection. On the first day of the play, which started at 5:30 am on Good Friday morning, it drew a crowd of a few hundred people. By Easter Sunday, the crowd had grown to an estimated 13,000. But Port Talbot also serves as the backdrop to the remarkable spiritual transformation of Sheen’s great-grandfather. His great-grandfather was basically the town drunk, but Sheen says that all changed when one night, after being thrown out of the local pub, he was lying on his back in …

How God helped a US Congresswoman’s unborn baby survive a condition, that none survived before

An amazing story has emerged on the remarkable healing of Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler’s (R-Wa) baby. Faithwire reports shortly after announcing that she was expecting, doctor’s informed Beutler that her 22-week-old unborn baby would die because she was suffering from a lack of amniotic fluid and as well had no kidneys. It is a very rare condition called Potter’s Syndrome, and one that no baby had ever survived. “[The doctors] said … ‘Your baby has no kidneys, which means there’s no amniotic fluid in there, which means your baby is going to die. There is no chance your baby will live. No baby has ever survived this,’” Beutler told Faithwire. “There is nothing to describe getting news like that.” The doctors recommended an abortion. But abortion was not an option for Beutler and her husband, David, who are Christians, and they turned to prayer. A day after her diagnosis, Beutler received an email devotional discussing healing, and at that moment she felt God wanted her to ‘contend’ for their unborn child. Beutler sensed the Holy …

God gave Cooper Kupp a ‘vision’ of his MVP award and team’s Super Bowl win

A strange story has emerged out of this year’s Super Bowl game won by the Los Angeles Rams, who defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20. After the game, the Rams’ outstanding wide-receiver, Cooper Kupp, was named the game’s most valuable player, after catching eight passes for 92 yards, and two touchdowns, including the game-winner. Cooper, who is an outspoken Christian, had also won the NFL’s most valuable player award earlier this year, as he broke the previous NFL receiving record with 145 catches, 1,947 yards, and 16 touchdowns. Cooper is, so far, the only player in NFL history to win both awards in the same year. But there is more to this story. Sports Spectrum reports that Kupp shared how God told him three years earlier, that not only would his team win the Super Bowl, but when it did, Kupp would also be named the game’s MVP. But just as mysterious was the way God revealed this prophetic word to the wide receiver. Kupp received this revelation through a ‘vision’ he had while his team …

Kathie Lee Gifford says westerners are too terrified of the ‘gifts of the Holy Spirit’

In an interview with Sheila Walsh, who hosts “Life Today,” Kathie Lee Gifford said that Americans are way too ‘terrified’ of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. She added that we need to see how these gifts are operating in believers around the world to fully appreciate them. Gifford, who formerly hosted “Live! With Regis and Kathie Lee” suggested that while some Christians believe that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are not for today, this is not what the Bible teaches. “We’re all supposed to have gifts of the Spirit,” Gifford said. “They’re supposed to be different, used like different parts of the body for one good work, but we’re all supposed to use them. And people go, ‘Oh, Jesus doesn’t do that anymore, God doesn’t do that anymore.’ Really?” She pointed to a passage in the Gospel of John, where Jesus said that everyone who believes in Him will be able to perform the same miracles as the Lord did. “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works …

God helped Haitian missionaries flee their captors in a daring night escape

I had reported earlier on the release of the final 12 missionaries and their families who the 400 Mawozo gang had kidnapped in Haiti on Oct 16, 2021. The gang had released five earlier due to health issues. I had previously written that the gang had released the 12, but Christian Aid Ministries is now reporting that the group that included a baby and children had in fact escaped their captors.

Does the Holy Spirit still speak to people today? Tim Halfin thinks He does!

On Wednesday, Oct 6, 2021, three-year-old Christopher Ramirez was outside playing with a neighbourhood puppy. It is uncertain exactly what happened next, but it is believed the pup wandered off and the toddler followed the dog disappearing into a large wooded area near the family home in Grimes County, Texas. Over the next couple of days, members of the family, police, and community volunteers launched a major search effort for the toddler but were unable to find him. Then a strange thing happened at a Bible study, held twice a month, at a neighbourhood church. Tim Halfin was attending the Friday evening study when someone brought up the missing boy and asked for prayer. According to the Western Journal, Halfin, who had not heard about the disappearance, immediately sensed the Holy Spirit prompting him to join the search for Christopher. Halfin had felt similar promptings in the past and knew that God was speaking to him and decided to search for Christopher the following Saturday morning. Though he had no idea where to look, Halfin …

Despite increasing persecution, Christianity growing in Indonesia

It defies logic, but according to a report by the Indonesian government, the Christian population in that Muslim-dominated country has grown by 1% over the past decade. With just over 86% of Indonesia’s population (272.2 million) identifying as Muslim, the country has the largest muslim population (236 million) of any country in the world. But the growth of Christianity is interesting considering the emergence of several Muslim extremist groups in recent years, that have been ramping up their persecution of Christians. This past spring, the government was forced to increase security for churches during Easter services after two militants, a husband and wife, who had pledged allegiance to the Islamic extremist group, ISIS, blew themselves up outside a church the previous Palm Sunday, injuring 20. Yet, despite this growing persecution, International Concern reports that as of June 2021, the government reported that 10.58% of its population is Christian (comprised of 20.4 million protests and 8.4 million Catholics). This is up from 9.87% of its population reporting as Christian in 2010. In real numbers, the Christian …

Did a gift of faith provide the gift of life?

As cultural wars rage for the unborn, Mike and Jessica Tomy were awaiting the birth of their third child when they received some tragic news. Jessica was in her second trimester when an ultrasound revealed that the baby’s size was not only four weeks behind, but Jessica also had very low levels of amniotic fluid which is a protective layer that surrounds a baby while in the womb. The fluid not only cushions the baby, but also provides water, nutrients and biochemicals necessary to sustain life. The doctor told the couple that their baby was not going to survive. And then dropped the bombshell, that when the baby’s heartbeat finally stopped, he would have to induce the birth of their dead child. After hearing the tragic news, Jessica and Mike stopped work on the baby’s room and instead prepared for a funeral. They asked family and friend to pray for them during this difficult time. But there was one moment when everything changed. Jessica was reading an article how a woman had been miraculously healed …

Denzel Washington shares that God has been telling him to ‘Feed My Sheep”

Hollywood actor, Denzel Washington, spoke at a christian men’s conference, “The Better Man Event,” hosted by First Baptist Orlando, on September 18, 2021. In a half hour sit-down interview with A.R. Bernard, the senior pastor of Brooklyn’s Christian Cultural Center, Denzel told the audience that every time he starts praying God has a word for him to ‘feed My sheep’: “In every prayer, all I hear is: ‘Feed my sheep.’ That’s what God wants me to do.” But it was a bit confusing, because as a Hollywood actor he wasn’t sure what that meant, but eventually he realized that there are different kinds of sheep, and God had people for Denzel to minister too: “What I found out in the last couple of years is there are all kinds of sheep. So that’s why I talk to experienced shepherds to help guide me.” But that calling to feed My sheep has been on Denzel for several decades. In an interview with Parade Magazine in 1999, Denzel stated that at times he’s wondered if he should …

Why Do People Sometimes Collapse in the Presence of God?

By Rick Renner And when I [John] saw him [Christ], I fell at his feet as dead…— Revelation 1:17 Over my years of serving God, I have noticed that often when people have encounters with God, they physically fall. Sometimes they fall forward, and at other times they fall backward. Still at other times, they simply collapse onto the ground. I have seen this in many meetings — and I experienced it as a young man. I can tell you, the experience was real. My experience occurred the first time I ventured out from my Baptist church and attended a Pentecostal type of service. Just prior to that, I had been released from the hospital where I had been diagnosed with a kidney condition — one that I was born with — that was very serious. It was so serious that to try to correct it required surgery that was considered life-threatening. When the man praying for the sick in this Pentecostal meeting invited the sick to come forward, I went to the front to …

The Importance of Finding Your Calling

By Dr. Michael L. Brown Can you imagine walking everywhere standing on your hands? Or writing a book using your toes? Or typing out text messages with your forehead? The fact is that our body was designed by God with great beauty and precision, with each part of the body having an important and unique role. It’s exactly the same with the Body of Christ. Every believer has an important and unique role. And that means if you are a believer, you have a calling and a mission. Not only so, but rightly understood, every believer has an indispensable role, since the Body can only function at its full capacity if every member of the Body is functioning properly. Do you see yourself in this way – as someone called and graced by God – or do you consider yourself of no spiritual or practical value? “After all,” you might think to yourself, “I’m just a businessman.” Or, “I’m just a home-schooling mom.” Or, “I’m just a young person in college. What can I do?” …

Canada’s earliest Christian prophets were Indigenous

In the midst of the stories of churches being burnt down and vandalized across Canada in response to the recent discoveries of unmarked graves at three Indian Residential Schools, another story is emerging out of Canada’s religious past. It provides an interesting history on the spread of Christianity amongst indigenous tribes in British Columbia, one that I had never heard of before. It makes me wonder if God is taking this bad and working it together for good as promised in Romans 8:28, because it is bringing to light how Canada’s earliest Christian prophets were in fact found among indigenous peoples. They were prophesying before the Azusa Street Revival, that broke out in 1906 in Los Angeles, which is credited as the break out of the Holy Spirit and the spiritual gifts in North America. They had also developed the office of the prophet that would not be fully functional in the church until the revival in North Battleford, Saskachewan, Canada in 1948. In a fascinating story in the National Post by Terry Gavin stated …

Actor Kristoffer Polaha shares his life changing ‘but God’ moment

In a recent interview on Pureflix, Hollywood actor Kristoffer Polaha shared the amazing experience that turned his life back to God. He has appeared in several TV shows since he broke into acting in 2001 including CSI Miami, Bones, Hawaii five-0, and Castle and as well several Hallmark Mystery 101 TV movies where he plays the role of Travis Burke. He has also had several movie roles, including his most recent, “Wonder Woman 1984”. Kristoffer is also co-starring in “Jurassic World Dominion” that is scheduled for release in 2022. Born in 1977, Kristoffer grew up in a Christian family, but as he entered high school, he decided to take a break from his faith, but God’s miraculous intervention while he was in his second year of college caused him to renew his faith. He and a friend were walking down a street in New York City. Kristoffer, who was on the side nearest the traffic, suddenly got a strange feeling that he should be walking on the other side. He switched places, telling her, “I …

Did a personal prophecy play a role in actor Stephen Baldwin becoming a Christian?

With all the mockery Christians have received on the dozens of false prophecies given over the past couple of years, that then President Donald Trump would win a second term as US president, it is nice to see that legitimate prophecies have impacted people’s lives. Because it appears that a prophetic word played a key role in the salvation of actor Stephen Baldwin and his wife, Kenya, a Brazilian graphic designer. Their daughter, Hailey, also a believer, is married to mega pop star Justin Bieber. Stephen is also brother to actors Alec Baldwin and William Baldwin. Though, Stephen became a Christian shortly after the September 11, 2001 attack in New York City, in an interview with CBN, Stephen stated that the real transformation started before that tragic day, after they hired a young Brazilian woman, Augusta, as a nanny for their children. Within a week of her arrival, Augusta was singing songs about Jesus in Portuguese to the Baldwin children. Stephen said: “So we hired this lady from Brazil named Augusta, and the whole first …

The counterintuitive church

It is one of those good news, bad news scenarios. No Christian likes persecution, and increasingly believers are being targeted for their beliefs in Western Democracies and as counterintuitive as it sounds, this may actually be good news for the church. According to a study by Nilay Saiya and Stuti Manchanda, published in Society of Religion, an academic journal, there is a strange anomaly in Christianity where it does better in places where it’s not the favoured religion and even faces active persecution, than in countries where it is embraced. The authors came to this conclusion after studying the growth and acceptance of Christianity in 166 nations between 2010 and 2020. The authors noted that of the ten countries with the fastest growing Christian populations today, seven of them involve nations that have low acceptance or even resistance to the Christian faith: Malawi, Uganda,  Rwanda,  Madagascar,  Liberia, DR Congo, and  Angola. Only three nations, where Christianity was politically and culturally accepted, made it in to the top ten: Tanzania, Zambia, and Kenya. Saiya and Manchand added …

A call for accountability in the prophetic ministry

After dozens of major Christian ministries wrongly prophesied that Trump would win re-election as US president in November 2020, to say that the prophetic ministry has been left in tatters would be an understatement. But a new organization, Prophetic Standards, has been set up to call for accountability in the prophetic ministry. Because, despite this failing on the national stage, major prophetic networks are pumping out prophecies on a daily basis as if nothing happened. There is nothing wrong with that necessarily, but in my opinion each of those prophetic words should be tagged with a small notification on whether the individual wrongly prophesied that Trump would be reelected. People need to know how much they can trust these particular ministries. These individuals may still have bona fide ministry, but prophecy may not be one of them. Just because you have an internet connection and a YouTube channel does not automatically make you a prophet. But it seems these prophetic networks are more concerned about protecting the prophetic ministries than protecting the people they are …

When in ‘doubt’ pray in ‘tongues’

In an article on Charisma News, Ruth Zschomler shared the amazing story on how the gift of tongues saved a woman’s life. On August 9, 2011, Kathi and David Byker were abruptly awakened from their sleep in Grandville, Michigan by two men wearing hoods and brandishing knives. The pair quickly bound Kathi with duct tape on her ankles and wrists and demanded that David pay a ransom for her release. One of the assailants put a knife to Kathi’s throat saying she would be killed if David didn’t provide the money. After blindfolding Kathi and gagging her mouth with duct tape, Kathi was dragged into the family’s SUV and driven away. David was then given a cell phone number to call once he had gotten the money. The message was clear without payment, Kathi would die. As she was lying in the back of the SUV and being driven away, Kathi was terrified as the driver repeatedly warned her he would kill her if she tried to sit up. Terrified, Kathi stated she wanted to …

Prophecies Are Not Simply Newspaper Headlines in Advance

By Dr. Michael L. Brown Now that the New York Times, Politico, and other, major secular outlets have covered the failed presidential prophecies, why don’t we make this a teachable moment and ask a basic question about prophecy? Specifically, when prophecy is predictive (and therefore foretelling rather than forthtelling), is it equivalent to headline news in advance? The reason I ask this question is because the recent presidential prophecies were presented like news headlines in advance, informing us of specific dates and details, none of which came to pass. Yet millions of Christians were urged to believe these specific words and were rebuked when they saw fit to question them. But is prophecy normally that specific, especially in terms of dates? Is this the biblical pattern? To be sure, many events are predicted in the Bible with specificity, and on rare occasion, there are specific times and dates put on the prophecies. But that is certainly not the norm. Instead, future prophecies are frequently spoken in such a way that there is some level of …

Do Not Despise Prophecy

By Dr. Michael L. Brown Did you ever wonder why Paul wrote, “Do not despise prophecies,” or as the New International Version translates, “Do not treat prophecies with contempt” (1 Thess. 5:20)? Why would any Christian be tempted to despise prophetic words? The answer is that prophecy can be obscure. Or confusing. Or complex. Or it can appear to be inaccurate, only to come to pass differently than we expected or have a different application than we understood. Or it can make us uncomfortable, revealing areas we would rather leave covered over. And in the case of New Testament prophecy, when every believer can potentially prophesy, it often needs correction and guidance. It is sometimes flatly wrong, with people claiming inspiration without really having it. That’s why Paul’s full exhortation included these injunctions: “Do not quench the Spirit. Do not treat prophecies with contempt but test them all; hold on to what is good” (1 Thess. 5:19-21). Today, when the failed Trump prophecies have gained much notoriety and when prophecy itself is getting a bad …

A Strong Appeal to Those Who Prophesied Trump’s Reelection

By Dr. Michael L. Brown Jan. 20 is past, and Joe Biden, not Donald Trump, is the president of the United States. To all those who prophesied that Trump would serve a second consecutive term and assured us that he would be inaugurated on Jan. 20, I appeal to you in the strongest possible terms: Admit your error, take full responsibility and do not, under any circumstances, continue to put a false hope into the hearts of God’s people. What you prophesied did not come to pass. There is not an alternative, spiritual reality in which Trump is still functioning as president. Nothing is going to change in a month or a year. It’s over. Even if there was massive electoral fraud, the results of this election will not be overturned. Donald Trump will not serve a second, consecutive term. Face the facts, be accountable before God and man, take the hits that will be coming and humble yourself before the Lord and His people. This is not the time for excuses. This is not …