Contemplative Prayer

Q. I have a brother who has been saved and Spirit Filled for over twenty years and who has led an active life serving the Lord. He has recently become interested in contemplative prayer. He is trying to achieve a deeper, more intimate relationship with the Lord.

My question is, Do you think that a person who is Spirit Filled needs to be concerned about venturing into the spirit realm or is he protected by the indwelling Holy Spirit?

A. Contemplative prayer is the newest experiential fad sweeping through the church. It originated in Eastern Mysticism and appears to have come into Christianity through Catholicism. It seems that those whose worship of God is built around supernatural manifestations, speaking in tongues, singing in the Spirit, holy laughter, and such, are always chasing some new experience in an effort to get closer to God.

Without disparaging the Gifts of the Spirit, I’ve never understood the need to always have new and different experiences to keep our relationship with God vital. After all God’s right there inside us, and he’ll talk with us for hours at the drop of a hat. How close do we need Him to be?

Believers can’t be indwelt by other spirits, since Jesus doesn’t share His home with demons. But venturing into the spirit realm in search of Him is not only unbiblical it’s also forbidden (Deut. 18:9-13). Much better to get into His word, picking a topic of interest and following it through the Bible, praying for insight and understanding as you go. That’s where one becomes closest to God.

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