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Your interpretation of catching and falling from a Biblical perspective?

 
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Post Your interpretation of catching and falling from a Biblical perspective? Preacher777
Roughrider made some great points in his post about catchers and being slain in the Spirit. Rather than switch the subject of his comments I decided to ask this question in a new post.

Is there any Biblical example of people under the overwhelming presence of God falling backwards? It seems that every Biblical example of people going down under the power of God records them being face first with God. The soldiers who came to take Jesus away fell backwards but that isn't an example I would want to follow.

I ask this question because we have a couple of ladies in our church I would refer to as self taught Bible readers. I say that in a complimentary way because they spend hours on a daily basis studying the Bible. We discuss Sunday's message at Wednesday night Bible study and they keep me sharp by bringing out other insights. One Wednesday night one mentioned the fact that people always fell face forward and the other woman said, "I studied that before and agree with you."


I must admit I never studied every occurrence of falling down under the power but in looking at the examples I see with the prophets when mentioned going down it was face first and not backwards. Do you know of any occurrences where people fell backwards instead of falling or just laying down face first in the presence of God? I am open because I cannot say with confidence that I have read every Biblical on the face or backwards occurrence but cannot think of one where the person fell backwards.
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1/7/19 9:39 am


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Post Re: Your interpretation of catching and falling from a Biblical perspective? roughridercog
Preacher777 wrote:
Roughrider made some great points in his post about catchers and being slain in the Spirit. Rather than switch the subject of his comments I decided to ask this question in a new post.

Is there any Biblical example of people under the overwhelming presence of God falling backwards? It seems that every Biblical example of people going down under the power of God records them being face first with God. The soldiers who came to take Jesus away fell backwards but that isn't an example I would want to follow.

I ask this question because we have a couple of ladies in our church I would refer to as self taught Bible readers. I say that in a complimentary way because they spend hours on a daily basis studying the Bible. We discuss Sunday's message at Wednesday night Bible study and they keep me sharp by bringing out other insights. One Wednesday night one mentioned the fact that people always fell face forward and the other woman said, "I studied that before and agree with you."


I must admit I never studied every occurrence of falling down under the power but in looking at the examples I see with the prophets when mentioned going down it was face first and not backwards. Do you know of any occurrences where people fell backwards instead of falling or just laying down face first in the presence of God? I am open because I cannot say with confidence that I have read every Biblical on the face or backwards occurrence but cannot think of one where the person fell backwards.


I have read falling on the face, falling as a dead man, etc.
In my studies of revival through history, there have been people who have fallen.
Let me ask another tough question: With Pentecostal and charismatic services very commonplace on television, has being slain or falling out become a fad among Pentcostals in an even greater fashion than ever before?
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1/7/19 9:57 am


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Post Preacher777
Roughrider, I agree with you that throughout history people have fallen under the power. My question concerns the Biblical precedent, not revivals. I do think that television offers people the thought that he or she can fall under the power to get a touch from God. Friendly Face
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1/7/19 10:10 am


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Post Dave Dorsey
For the last 15 months, I have been going to a continuationist (meaning they believe in miracles today including speaking in tongues) but non-Pentecostal church. I still see lives radically transformed in the altar and/or during times of prayer, but not falling/shaking/loud screaming or moaning or any of the other things that I have experienced in Pentecostal churches. Now 67% friendlier!
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1/7/19 10:17 am


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Post roughridercog
Dave Dorsey wrote:
For the last 15 months, I have been going to a continuationist (meaning they believe in miracles today including speaking in tongues) but non-Pentecostal church. I still see lives radically transformed in the altar and/or during times of prayer, but not falling/shaking/loud screaming or moaning or any of the other things that I have experienced in Pentecostal churches.


In your opinion, are the demonstrations of falling/shaking/loud screaming you mentioned the results of the southern roots of Pentecostalism in the church today?

Just asking hard questions. Laughing
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1/7/19 12:09 pm


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Post Dave Dorsey
roughridercog wrote:
In your opinion, are the demonstrations of falling/shaking/loud screaming you mentioned the results of the southern roots of Pentecostalism in the church today?

Just asking hard questions. Laughing

I don't know enough about the history of Pentecostal practice to answer that question, to be honest. But I do know it's very common in neo-charismatic movements like Bethel as well. In fact, I would say it's more common and more extreme in places like that than in any of the COGs I have ever been to.

That doesn't mean it's not still the result of the roots you're talking about, though. Those folks could have started in more typical Pentecostal circles (and Bill Johnson, for example, did start in the AOG) and then migrated out to more extreme "manifestations".
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1/7/19 12:20 pm


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Post Cojak
roughridercog wrote:
Dave Dorsey wrote:
For the last 15 months, I have been going to a continuationist (meaning they believe in miracles today including speaking in tongues) but non-Pentecostal church. I still see lives radically transformed in the altar and/or during times of prayer, but not falling/shaking/loud screaming or moaning or any of the other things that I have experienced in Pentecostal churches.


In your opinion, are the demonstrations of falling/shaking/loud screaming you mentioned the results of the southern roots of Pentecostalism in the church today?

Just asking hard questions. Laughing


There is a lot in that question. It is not to me, but one has to look back at the culture and people of southern roots. I knew people in my childhood who were ostracized, ridiculed and made fun of in public because they attended a COG. My sister was publically shamed because she was not allowed to 'dress out' for physical ed. The teacher 'tagged' with the name, "Little Church of God Girl". In the 7th grade in Valdese, NC, I was called into the principal's office and asked if I was the new Holiness Preacher's boy. "yes." I was told to keep my nose clean and I would do okay.

These early people felt so blessed when in the company of their peers, they physically released the feelings. (IMHO). We stayed in or at church until midnight many nights just for the fellowship.

That doesn't mean much to someone now, and there is no way you can understand your friends turning their backs once you associated with a 'Pennycostal, Holiness or Holy Roller bunch.'

I just in the last few weeks after mentioning that my dad had been a COG preacher, I had a lady say, "Those COG girls in stockings, long sleeves, long dresses and long hair scared me in school." You gotta put yourself there! Embarassed

So yes IMHO much of the shaking, shouting, rolling in the floor was many early 20,30,40,50's Holiness found physical release in a way. It wasn't fake, it was real. The Holy Ghost doing it? Not sure every time. Embarassed Embarassed
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Last edited by Cojak on 1/8/19 11:56 am; edited 1 time in total
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1/7/19 12:27 pm


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Post Quiet Wyatt
There are reports mentioned of people falling out and even fainting in the post Reformation times amongst revivalistic sects, and during the historic Great Awakenings, and in the Holiness and Revival movements of the 1800s, long before ‘official’ Pentecostalism came around in 1901. In most all of these pre-Pentecostal instances I have read about, however, the falling down was spontaneous, often during the preaching, and did not involve people coming up to the front for the laying on of hands with prayer. Acts-perienced Poster
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1/7/19 1:37 pm


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Post Dave Dorsey
Quiet Wyatt wrote:
There are reports mentioned of people falling out and even fainting in the post Reformation times amongst revivalistic sects, and during the historic Great Awakenings, and in the Holiness and Revival movements of the 1800s, long before ‘official’ Pentecostalism came around in 1901. In most all of these pre-Pentecostal instances I have read about, however, the falling down was spontaneous, often during the preaching, and did not involve people coming up to the front for the laying on of hands with prayer.

I wonder if this was literal fainting, perhaps as a result of becoming aware of the depth of one's sin and need of salvation.
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1/7/19 1:47 pm


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Post Quiet Wyatt
Dave,

From what I recall reading, the falling out or fainting during those times was usually associated with personal conviction of sin and great anxiety about one’s fate. Even the ones who didn’t lose consciousness (faint), but still fell down, were often described as pleading for God’s mercy, usually for long periods, sometimes for hours. How I would love to see that kind of thing happening in our day!
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1/7/19 2:21 pm


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Post Dave... Aaron Scott
Dave Dorsey wrote:
For the last 15 months, I have been going to a continuationist (meaning they believe in miracles today including speaking in tongues) but non-Pentecostal church. I still see lives radically transformed in the altar and/or during times of prayer, but not falling/shaking/loud screaming or moaning or any of the other things that I have experienced in Pentecostal churches.


If they believe in those things, how are they NOT Pentecostal? I'm not asking that facetiously, but rather because those seem to be the distinctives of Pentecostals. Can you enlighten me on that?

I think that our "southern-fried" Pentecostal style is a regional/cultural form of worship. Just as the African-American church has a distinctive form of worship, preaching, etc. (at least enough that we can tend to recognize "black shouting" as opposed to c. 1970s Florida-style Church of God shouting).

People "learn" how to worship and shout. Today, if you got to some churches and the music is popping, you have a lot of people hopping/jumping. In older style Churches of God, if the worship is really going, you might see someone running the aisles, waving a handkerchief, raising their hands, etc.

We all learned how to "respond" to the Spirit by seeing how others responded. It may not be JUST like they did it, but it is in the same ballpark, you might say, I guess.

I DO feel strongly that true Pentecostal worship, whether in the Northwest, Northeast, Southwest, or, here in Jesus' preferred country, the Southeast, will cause a response from our entire being, since the Spirit touches our entire being. There will be a physical response (tears, shouting, lifting of hands, something!)...a response from our mind/emotions/soul...and (although I am not sure just what the distinction is) from our spirit, too.
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1/7/19 3:45 pm


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Post Re: Dave... Dave Dorsey
Aaron Scott wrote:
If they believe in those things, how are they NOT Pentecostal? I'm not asking that facetiously, but rather because those seem to be the distinctives of Pentecostals. Can you enlighten me on that?

The two Pentecostal distinctives are the baptism/infilling of the Holy Spirit as a distinct event subsequent to salvation, and the evidence of such as speaking in tongues. As you know, Pentecostals hold that this experience and evidence are promised to every believer. Non-Pentecostal continuationist churches typically believe the baptism/infilling of the Holy Spirit occurs in all believers at the time of salvation, and that tongues is a biblical gift that does function today but is not necessarily promised as an experience for every believer.

Here is the paragraph on the baptism in the Holy Spirit from the beliefs page on the website of the church I attend:

Quote:
The Holy Spirit indwells, sanctifies, and empowers believers for Christian witness and service. The Baptism in the Holy Spirit is the receiving of the Person of the Holy Spirit at the moment of salvation and includes both the indwelling and filling of the Spirit. A believer's being filled with the Spirit, and any number of manifestations of the same, may also occur at various times subsequent to salvation. Speaking in tongues, prophesying, and the manifestation of other spiritual gifts may accompany both initial and subsequent fillings of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit desires to fill each believer and provide power to witness, and imparts His supernatural gifts for the edification of the Body and the work of ministry in the world. All the gifts of the Holy Spirit at work in the church of the first century are available today and are earnestly to be desired and expected.
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1/7/19 5:03 pm


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Post Link
If those people in the Bible had had some of our modern heavy handed head pushers lay hands on them, they might have fallen backwards, too.
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1/7/19 9:57 pm


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Post Carolyn Smith
I haven't studied it in depth, but from the research I have done, it seems "falling under the power" or "being slain the Spirit" became more popular during the Charasmatic revival in the early 70s. I think I remember seeing it as a child in my home church, but I don't remember a lot of it. I do remember a lot of shouting & "being Pentecostal."

Looking back at my childhood experiences, perhaps some of the shouting was more emotional than spiritual, but I don't think there was a lot of teaching about that back then. People felt the presence of God on them, and they "cut loose." Whether or not that was of the Lord is between them & the Lord.
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1/7/19 10:54 pm


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Post Cojak
I like Aaron, DD and Carolyn's comments on this subject. I try not to belittle the reaction of a Christian in their 'expressions' of worship. And YES,YES we do learn to 'worship' from our parents and church experience as children.

I truly enjoy seeing a person come to the Lord who never had the nurturing of SS and learning the inspiring Bible stories common to most church going children. Seeing them simply stand and CRY tears of joy in WORSHIP of our Lord blesses my soul.

I have seen this lately at churches that attract another culture. I have heard 'older dyed in the wool' COG members belittle some youth because they did not know how to be Christians. That bothers my soul. Crying or Very sad

Humans all have a lot to learn on both sides of the 'SAVED' line that makes us Christian. Embarassed
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1/8/19 11:51 am


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Post Dave Dorsey
Cojak wrote:
I try not to belittle the reaction of a Christian in their 'expressions' of worship.

I agree. I can't think of a reason why there would be anything wrong with expressive, highly emotional worship so long as it was offered by a genuine and humble heart. And being as we can't see each other's hearts most of the time, I think it's best to assume we are all offering genuine and humble worship unless there is evidence to the contrary.

I do think Pentecostals have a tendency to believe that this sort of highly expressive worship is the only sort that's actually valid -- that those are the only true worshipers, so to speak, and that more "reserved" worshipers are not giving God the worship he deserves. I think that viewpoint is toxic and needs to die. My travels since leaving Pentecostalism have shown me that less expressive worshipers can be fully yielding themselves to God in worship and adoration, and can experience Him and His presence as deeply as I ever saw anyone experience Him in Pentecostalism. When I started attending my current church, I thought the congregation around me were not very good worshipers. I was just judging them based on what I knew. But as the months went on, I learned that they have deep, life-changing relationships with God and that their worship was just different than what I knew. Less expressive, more contemplative. Just different. Many of them have a knowledge of God and His word that exceeds mine. Their character represents and reflects His image. They are deep, genuine, worshipful believers.

That said, it's also toxic for more reserved worshipers to judge those who worship expressively. At church on Sunday, there was a woman I hadn't met before who was laying on the ground almost the whole time we were singing, waving her arms and being very expressive in her worship. I have no way of knowing whether her expression was genuine or not, so of course I assumed that it was. To be honest, my only thought about her was that she had strong arm muscles, because she was basically planking while holding her arms in the air. Haha. I was pretty impressed by that.
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1/8/19 12:33 pm


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Post Da Sheik
I’m really an anomaly in the COG. I’m 2nd-generation Pentecostal, but I have a lot of Reformed leanings. One of the things I love about the Reformed churches are the sacredness of their meetings. To some, they reflect dead, dry formalism. Surely this is true of some. But I enjoy the occasional liturgy, stillness, and silence before God. Some COG’s are nothing but noise. I’ve been in some COG services that were more like a 3-ring circus.

To the initial intent of this post- I think you’ll find very little biblical support for some of our highly esteemed practices. For this reason, we don’t have catchers at our church.
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1/8/19 4:54 pm


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Post DA Sheik said Cojak
.... But I enjoy the occasional liturgy, stillness, and silence before God...

A couple times in ports in Italy and Greece I attended a local church. I did not understand one word (maybe Hallelujah) But even in a lost state, I could tell the feeling of respect for GOD was there.

That said we attended a church in Rondout Valley, NY and had the same feelings as a Real Christian and it was refreshing. Two years later we visited and the 'Modern way' had arrived. Loud music and a dancing praise group.

I think we all appreciate EXACTLY what you are saying, Yes there should be times in everyone's life when they realize you cannot honestly imagine the size and power of GOD. When you forget some folk call him the 'Dude Upstairs or 'The Man' and realize that His Grace ALLOWS, gives you permission to mentally step into the Holy Presence.. Shocked
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1/8/19 9:05 pm


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Post Nobody caught Eutychus... Aaron Scott
If they wouldn't do it while he was ASLEEP, then it is for sure we shouldn't do it if someone acts like they are falling under the power of God.

Just announce to EVERYONE (maybe even post it on the wall or project it on the wall) "We do NOT provide catchers if you fall. So be sure you are falling under the Spirit, because otherwise you are responsible for the matter, including getting yourself to the hospital (we will be happy, however, to call 9-1-1 for you, if you cannot get yourself to the hospital).

There. Fixed it.
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1/9/19 11:22 am


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Post Re: Nobody caught Eutychus... Cojak
Aaron Scott wrote:
If they wouldn't do it while he was ASLEEP, then it is for sure we shouldn't do it if someone acts like they are falling under the power of God.

Just announce to EVERYONE (maybe even post it on the wall or project it on the wall) "We do NOT provide catchers if you fall. So be sure you are falling under the Spirit, because otherwise you are responsible for the matter, including getting yourself to the hospital (we will be happy, however, to call 9-1-1 for you, if you cannot get yourself to the hospital).

There. Fixed it.

Smile Cool
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1/9/19 11:29 am


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