What does it mean to “test the spirits”?
A man named Britton posted the following Scriptures without saying anything further:
1 John 4:1-6 NLT
(1) Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.
(2) This is how we know if they have the Spirit of God: If a person claiming to be a prophet acknowledges that Jesus Christ came in a real body, that person has the Spirit of God.
(3) But if someone claims to be a prophet and does not acknowledge the truth about Jesus, that person is not from God. Such a person has the spirit of the Antichrist, which you heard is coming into the world and indeed is already here.
(4) But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.
(5) Those people belong to this world, so they speak from the world’s viewpoint, and the world listens to them.
(6) But we belong to God, and those who know God listen to us. If they do not belong to God, they do not listen to us. That is how we know if someone has the Spirit of truth or the spirit of deception.
Britton, to these words, I give a hearty “AMEN!” Except that one must be careful about the words speaking of Jesus coming in a human body. The wording of this translation can mislead, suggesting that if one only believes Jesus Christ came in the flesh 2000 years ago or so, we should know that person has the Spirit of God.
If this is true, then Popes of Rome, Catholic, Orthodox and so many other nominal Christian churches have had the Spirit. One would have to acknowledge that the LDS (Mormons) have the Spirit, Benny Hinn, Billy Graham and so many other false ones have the Spirit. I know by the Lord this simply isn’t true.
I also believe God appeared in the flesh 2000 years ago, coming in the form of man – Jesus Christ/Yeshua HaMashiach. I know this to be perfectly true. If that is how you interpret John’s words, then you would have to acknowledge that I also have the Spirit of God, right? And if John was speaking of Christ coming in a human body 2000 years ago and you believed that was what he meant, I would have to acknowledge that you also have the Spirit of God.
But can that be what John meant? Obviously not. JOHN WAS SPEAKING OF A WITNESS OF THE SPIRIT. He was speaking of Jesus Christ dwelling and coming in a person, a believer, a true Christian. He was speaking of Jesus Christ being in members of His Body, of His followers, the saints, those in Christ that have believed ever since Jesus Christ came at Pentecost when He entered His saints and all believers to this day.
Christ is in me and those who can receive that witness and confess that Christ is in me are of God. Those who can heartily discern and acknowledge that Christ dwells in any person (if He does indeed do so), are of God. If Christ dwells in me and you deny it, you aren’t of God; if you know and confess that He lives in me, you are of God.
Can there be any question that what I say is what John meant?
From: Jared Sent: Wednesday, May 18, 2016 3:24 PM To: The Path of Truth Subject: Just a Hello for now I don't have much time at the moment, but wanted to say hello and let you know that I have been looking at the teachings and some of the exposing of false teachers, gospels etc, and am so happy I have found this site. God has been leading me into truth in quite a few areas over the last 6 months, and I now that I have to stand firm for truth in my own life without compromise, buy His grace. My life has taken some tough turns in the past year, all leading me to this point with my Heavenly Father. I have already received some persecution from family, wife, church for taking this stand but I still refuse to compromise. I just want to say it is encouraging to see others taking a hard start, and even greater that you are sharing this with others. I plan to continue reading and probably will have some future questions/correspondence if that is alright! Thank you, and may our Lord Jesus bless you. Thank you, Jared From: Victor Hafichuk Sent: Sunday, May 22, 2016 7:04 AM To: Jared Subject: Re: Just a Hello for now Good to hear from you, Jared. When you believe the Lord Jesus Christ and begin to walk in the light with Him, then it’s an absolute certainty you’ll be opposed by the world, particularly the religious, whose power isn’t from Him, but is in themselves, under the prince of this world. That’s the way it is. “Yea, and all that will live g...
From: Israel To: The Path of Truth Sent: Thursday, September 22, 2016 8:15 AM Subject: false prophets Hello my name is israel.I am not a pastor, prophet or any type of other titled christian. I am simply a man who believes and loves our Lord Jesus Christ and God the Father and because of this I serve him faithfully and eagerly await his coming. How do you know some of those pastors mentioned in false prophets are really guilty of the charges leveled against them? When all men equally are sinful and all fall short of the glory of God no matter how much we may try? Yes I understand other scriptures say that we are constantly being developed by the Holy Spirit but none will be perfected until Christ returns,until then it is mercy and grace that upholds us. I am not naive to the fact that there is many wolves amongst the sheep,I readily acknowledge that and that we should be aware under constant vigilance. But brother do we not worship a God that is all knowing and all powerful? If we are truly his we will recognize his voice. The sheep will know there shepherd. I do not know you and neither do you know me but if the same spirit is in both of us there will be an understanding to try and help in love. I just ask you to consider deeply what you proclaim and be sure you are not misguided in your judgement ,because all will be held accountable for every idle word they proclaim. Our greatest weapon in this war we are engaged in is not our words but constant prayer! ...
Someone professing Christ comes to us with doubts about the doctrine of “once saved, always saved.” He thought he was saved, but wonders how that can be after years of slavery to the sin of adultery. Indeed! Was this a fall from grace, or was he never saved to begin with? One can’t lose what one doesn’t have. This writing defines the terms of our salvation and how they are applied in daily life, shedding light on the path for all true pilgrims in Christ and for all those snared in sin who have yet to know true repentance and the power of God in a new life.