What is the difference between the Holy Spirit that strongly worked
at the time of the early church and the One who performs miracles
today? Is not God always the same yesterday, today and forever?
There is no real difference between
the Holy Spirit who worked at the time of the early church and the
One who works today. The only difference is whether the people who
perform miracles at this time believe in the gospel of the water
and the Spirit. The reason for this is that even though the Spirit
of God is always the same regardless of time, the difference is
whether one has accurate knowledge of the way to receive the Holy
Many people nowadays perform wonders
without having accurate biblical knowledge to receive the Holy Spirit.
The Bible shows us in Acts 2:38, 1 John 5:2-8, and 1 Peter 3:21
that the only way to receive the Holy Spirit is to believe in the
gospel of the water and the Spirit. "There is also an antitype
which now saves us - baptism."
Of course, the Holy Spirit did things
like healing diseases and casting out demons while dwelling within
the Apostles at the time of the early church. However, they didn't
receive money or cause uproar while using their spiritual gifts
like some people nowadays tend to do. The Apostles demonstrated
their abilities only as a means of delivering the gospel. Furthermore,
healing disease and casting out demons were not all of the works
of the Holy Spirit at the time of the early church. They were only
a small part of it.
Therefore, it is very dangerous to
think that all the wonders such as healing disease, casting out
demons and speaking in tongues in today's Christianity are surely
the works of the Holy Spirit. We should believe that all the peculiar
phenomena we see with our eyes in Christianity today are not caused
by the power of the Holy Spirit. Instead, we should discern the
true servants of God who have received the indwelling of the Holy
Spirit from the fraudulent servants who are possessed by evil spirits.
Even if a person can cast out demons, heal disease and speak in
tongues, if he has sin in his heart and does not believe in the
true gospel, he is surely possessed by demons.
Jesus also said in Matthew 7:20-23,
"Therefore by their fruits you will know them. Not everyone
who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven,
but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to
Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesies in Your name,
cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?'
And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from
Me, you who practice lawlessness!"
We should not think that just because
one performs miracles, he is doing it through the work of the Holy
Spirit. Instead we should examine closely if he preaches the gospel
of the water and the Spirit or if he is righteous by having received
complete forgiveness for his sins. The Holy Spirit never dwells
in a person who has sin in his heart. The Holy Spirit cannot be
along with sin.
The forgiveness of sin at the time
of the early church was the proof of the coming of the Holy Spirit
and He was God's gift to those who were forgiven for all their sins.
However, many people still think that
healing disease, speaking in tongues and casting out demons in Jesus'
name is unconditionally the work of the Holy Spirit. This is a wrong
and dangerous belief. We should be able to clearly tell if they
are truly performing wonders. Even if a person is able to perform
many wonders in Jesus' name, but if he doesn't know or believe in
the true gospel of the water and the Spirit, then he must be a false
teacher. Such people kill the souls of many people and demand money
in order to satisfy their worldly greed.
Therefore, the work of the person who
has sin in his heart is not truly the work of the Holy Spirit, but
the work of demons. The Holy Spirit who worked at the time of the
early church and the One working now is the same. However, there
is a clear difference between the work of the Holy Spirit that appears
to people who have really received the Holy Spirit and that of demons
who appear through false prophets.