2. You put more trust in experiences than in the word of God.
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This is a particularly sticky area, because different denominations tend to place more emphasis on charismatic elements than others, but that doesn’t automatically mean they don’t believe in the inerrancy and authority of the Word and should be discarded. Be careful what you condemn and write off, just as you should be careful what you take in and believe. Experiencing God is a crucial element of our faith journey. There’s a connection and a relationship we have with God that assures our hearts of our salvation.
“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, ;provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.” (Romans 8:16-17)
Our walk with God isn’t information only. After all, the Word says that even the demons believe and tremble (James 2:19). They have head knowledge, and head knowledge clearly doesn’t save one’s soul. We experience God every time we read His Word, every time we pray. And sometimes, God does miracles in our hearts and in the lives of others. Some of these miracles are tangible, some are internal. The act of salvation itself in every depraved sinner’s heart is a miracle! We experience God!
However, when we start to trust someone’s experience over what the Word says, we get in trouble quick. If a pastor or teacher claims to have heard from the Lord, be careful what you believe. Test it. And if that pastor or teacher claims the Lord told them something that is contrary to the Bible, you can be certain it is false.
“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.” (1 John 4:1-3)
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