Larry Ray Hafley
In the 1970's and 80's, some of our liberal brethren, influenced by
charismatic claims of direct, personal "leading of the Spirit," said that God
miraculously led them to financial gain and even to a parking place in a crowded
parking lot! Well, if that were true, how would they answer the following
article by a Jewish Rabbi?
"Last Passover the following took place: I was visiting a friend at the
retirement home, bringing him matzo for Passover....On my visit to the
retirement home I go lost and entered the wrong wing of the center....I asked
directions to see my friend....I met the old man, who told me that he was very
sick and that he...had been praying to God for someone to come and take care of
his last request: that he be buried as a Jew. Needless to say, I was in total
shock. Here I was, lost in a large retirement home not knowing where I was going
and an old Jewish man tells me that God had sent me to say the necessary prayers
so he could die as a Jew. 'You must be the angel that God has sent.'
"The man's faith in God was outstanding. He expected a miracle and received
it!" (From the editorial page of the Arkansas Democrat Gazette, April 2,
Will brethren who claim that God miraculously leads them to certain
beneficial situations say that God led this Jewish Rabbi to that man so that he
could "die as a Jew"? (1) If they say, "no," upon what basis do they deny it?
"Spirit led" men say they are guided as this Rabbi was. They, too, expect
miracles, and they say they have "received" them. Their "evidence" is just as
conclusive as this Rabbi's. The Rabbi's case is as strong as theirs. (2) If they
say, "yes," do they believe that God wants a man to "die as a Jew"? Does God
want a man "to die as Jew," a denier of Jesus as the Son of God (Jn. 8:21, 24;
Rom. 10:1-3; 1 Jn. 2:22, 23)? If they say, "yes, God led this 'angel' to this
man so he could 'die as a Jew,'" then they are saying that God desires that a
man die as an unbeliever! In view of John 3:16, 18, 36, who can believe it?!
Conclusion: Miraculous leading of the Spirit occurred in the New Testament
(Lk. 2:27; Acts 8:26, 29; 16:9, 10). However, such miraculous guidance was
always, without exception, consistent with God's revealed will and purposes. No
such miraculous guidance occurs today (1 Cor. 13:8-10). "Beloved, believe not
every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false
prophets are gone out into the world" (1 Jn. 4:1).