So I have been posting alot to my facebook lately on the Mystical variant of Christianity. The people who seek to experience God and His power, and Love, and Jesus and His works. And inevitably, every time, I get the person who doesn’t understand, and refuses to understand, regardless of how I explain it, that it is in fact Biblical. Usually, I get a bunch of nonsense as to why they disagree with it, including the usual garbage about what it is.. When it isn’t. Most recently, they posted a total of 1/3 of a Bible verse, and even managed to do so badly. I have decided that this requires a full answer. I did answer it in the facebook comments, but I will now give a full one.
“As it says in 1 Corinthians 4:6 “… Do not go beyond what is written…” . The touchy feely religion of mystics certainly goes beyond what is written. They talk of experiencing God. God is not something to be experienced but Deity to be believed in and worshipped. ~DK
I’m going to dissect the entirety of this argument now. The first part, the partial verse: He was pulling from the NIV, and the American Standard Verson, both of which are riddled with errors in translation. So first off, I will show you the differences between those two and the KJV, and then I will continue to dissect why even using his translation, his argument is invalid.
6 Now, brothers and sisters, I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, so that you may learn from us the meaning of the saying, “Do not go beyond what is written.” Then you will not be puffed up in being a follower of one of us over against the other. NIV
Now for the KJV:
And these things, bretheren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that ye might learn in us not to think of men above that which is written, that no one of you be puffed up for one against another.
One of these says do not go beyond what is written. The other says not to think of men beyond what is written. Roughly, do not exalt men beyond what God has already done for Himself. A rough understanding of it, and rather crude, but either way it goes, it doesn’t translate to “go not beyond what is written.”
Now then, admittedly, it is a good bit of advice, not to stray from the scriptures in your walk with God. And you know what else? That very statement by DK contradicts the entirety of the rest of his argument. And I’m going to show you why. Scriptures have covered the topic extensively, and an in depth, comprehensive study, clearly leads us to seek to experience God Himself. I’ve often noticed that the people arguing against this are the people who are afraid of this very thing. The only reason to be afraid of the Presence of the Lord, is because of knowledgeable and willful sin. Choosing sin over Holiness, and unrepentant hearts are always something that the Lord is against, in all His power and Holiness. Like David, let our cry be this: The Lord reigns, let the people tremble. The Lord is great in Tsion, let the earth be moved. Let us praise His great and terrible name, for He is Holy. The people who choose sin always argue against this falling of the Holy Ghost, this Mystical life of God for them as His sons and daughters.
Now then, using the NIV translation from above, let us look at why I am right and then cover why rest of DK’s idea gets the failing grade.
“Do not go beyond what is written.”
It is written: Taste and See that the Lord is good. Psalm 34:8.
It is written: Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. John 3:5.
It is written: You will receive power after the Holy Ghost has come upon you. Acts 1:8
It is written: They were all baptized with the Holy Spirit and cloven tongues like fire sat upon each of their heads, and they spoke with other tongues as the spirit gave utterance. And everyone that gathered heard the words of God in their own tongues. Acts 2:1-12
It is written: The Lord says “in the last days, I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh..” and it goes on for several verses to explain what that looks like. Acts 2:17-21/ Joel 2:27-29
Need I go on..? All of these things that God says? These are experiences of God. Taste and See? using your senses to experience Him. Born again? the conversion experience of Christianity. Receive power? Look at the acts account of that. A HUGE experience. Look at the Joel account as well.
The very foundations of Christianity are based in experience, and not in intellect. Another thing to examine is that by going exactly by what is written, the Scriptures you claim are impossible to understand without going to the Greek or Hebrew languages? Those very scriptures say that you’re in error here. Plain as day. IF I had used merely one example to disprove your point, one could continue to make that claim. But 4? And those are just the four I chose to use. All through the Bible, the stories can be found where people are experiencing God for themselves. You just have to actually read it and accept it as truth. None of this cessation nonsense, for which there is no scripture to back it up.
Next portion of the argument? Mystic Religion is touchy feely? Where in blazes did you get that bit of nonsense from? I would bet most anything that you don’t actually know anything about Christian Mysticism and are just making assumptions based upon your own preconceptions and ideas. Yes, Jesus was in fact a Mystic. Look at the way He talks about God. Look at the way He lived upon this earth. There is no way possible to describe it other than a supernatural, mystical experience. Even pagans all over believe in Him, just not as we do. They tell you He was another extremely powerful witch of sorts. More powerful than this world has seen in a long time. Even they recognized that He was a man with power. They just believe He wasn’t the Son of God.
And now for the last portion: They talk of experiencing God. God is not something to be experienced but Deity to be believed in and worshipped.
You’re right, He is Deity to be believed in and worshipped. But you know what? You’re wrong. He is indeed someone to be experienced as well.
So. Using the evidence of the scriptures the conclusion of this post is this: Your entire argument is one huge self contradiction. You have taken the traditional misinformed stance of many people on mysticism, and the stance of most Bible colleges that have cut out the spiritual side of Christianity.
Yes. God’s power is still for us, for today. I myself have experienced it in many ways, including but not limited to: Complete and total healing of my heart, Chains of witchcraft shattered, visions from God, prophesies from God, and direct tangible answers to prayer following a prayer.
In other words, it isn’t possible to be a Christian without at least one experience of God in our lives. These experiences are, however, tied to praise and worship. Many do not experience God often because they skip out on praise and worship in their personal lives, as well as in church life.