“You all are addicted to feelings! It’s all emotionalism with you Pentecostals!” “Well, phooey on you too, you jerk faces!” – is what I said in my head. But not out loud, because that would have played in to their point (I was thinkin’ – haha). Those kinds of accusationsmake you think – should we FEEL GOD!?! Areemotions wrong in faith and spirituality!?! The answer is yes (we should feel God) and no (emotions are NOT wrong in faith). Here’s why . . .
The Bible is FULL OF EMOTIONS and emotional responses to God! The word “heart”lev (601x’s in Hebrew OT) and kardia (156x’s in Greek NT) are emotional words. There’s lots of dancing in Scripture, shouting, crying out, falling on knees and face, liftinghands, clapping, laughing, crying, etc. Read Psalms and see if you can get through 3 verses without emotional language. Read prophecies (about 1/3 of the Bible) and see if they don’t quickly tug on your heart. Jesus’ teaching focused on heart language first before doctrine. In fact, it’s fairly obvious that the Bible is full of more emotions than it is doctrine – that sounds controversial, but it’s really not. Take an honest inventory.
Here’s the bottom line – I would charge that people who DON’T seek to feel God are following their lack of emotionsrather than the Word of God. The Bible is an emotional book, BECAUSE we are emotional beings. The Bible comes to the mind through way of the heart. Jesus healed or prophesied BEFORE he taught in most cases, and so did the apostles. I’m not saying that we should be addicted to emotions. I’m not saying that we just need to go from one Holy Spirit fixto the next, like Holy Spirit junkies. The Word of God can stabilize us in times where the feelingis not there. However, if my experience doesn’t line up with the Word of God, then it’s my experience that’s wrong, not the Bible. The Bible is overwhelmingly full of emotional responses to God and His works – we’re allowed to seek to bemore like God in this way . . .
Here’s how – ask God right now, “God, is there an area of my emotions I’ve been holding back from you? God, I open myself up to you, to work in EVERY part of me right now, in Jesus name. Amen.” Then stayin God’s presence . . . just . . . stay.
The message that I spoke Sunday from Romans 13:1-7 has been in my heart for more than a year! Why? Because I’ve heard this Scripture abused over and over ad nauseum by Christians and non-Christians alike, by anyone who will parrot it. I wanted to add balance to the discussion. My prayer is that through this teaching our people will be delivered from a NEED to comply, AND from a NEED to NOT comply. Ultimately, we have to follow Jesus first! If you need any prayer or discernment for your particular situation, our staff and prayer team would love to partner with you on that. Catch the message replay here.
I’ve also attached the handout from Sunday’s message with my (much requested) translation of Romans 13. A couple thoughts about my translation . . .
Yes, I am qualified to translate from the Greek & Hebrew (M.A. in Advanced Biblical Languages & an earned Doctorate).
This is my take on the translation, I amNOT infallible or inerrant (God’s Word in the original languages is infallible & inerrant).
The translators 99.95% of the time do an amazing job! They are men and women of God who believe the Bible is infallible & inerrant and are doing their best before God to communicate God’s Word as accurately and helpfully as possible. I know some of those who worked on the translation teams personally. Bottom line – you can trust that God’s Word will speak to you and give you life every time you pick the Bible!
No, I am not able to translate the entire Bible personally. I’m called to Pastor first, and that takes the majority of my time – I need to stay in my lane of calling – haha.
I love and bless you all in Jesus name! Be strengthened and encouraged! Jesus is coming soon!
“Say apple spider, Jolena” “Noooo, it’s apple cider” “[sing-songy] apple spider” “NO, apple cider” “[disappointed] ahhhhh.” My older kids were desperately trying to get their baby sister to mispronounce “cider” in the way that she used to when she was 3. But 5 year old Jolena wasn’t having it, to the great disappointment of her siblings. Because as amusing and cute as her little mistake was, Jolena knew that there comes a time to grow up. She’s fully capable of doing it right, and thus refuses to fall back into the old habit.
Spiritually, there comes a time for us to grow up too. When we see the truths of God’s Word clearly, we can’t fall back. For instance, salvation is 100% by grace through faith. So then, you never have a place for spiritual pride again. Also, God loves you and likes you, He smiles when He thinks about you. Once you know that, you never have to dwell in rejection again. Or, God still does supernatural wonders through humans. Once you know that, you can’t go back.
What truth from God do you need to own and live in today? Take a moment right now. Ask God, “What truth do I need to own and live in today?”