Monday, 18 June 2012
Retiring The Religious Spirit
My article in this month's issue of Israel's Restoration has attracted quite a lot of comment. You can read the whole article and some of the comments so far here, but it includes this text:
I frequently hear these sorts of comments, especially in charismatic circles. These statements are part of the "in language" of a Christian sub-culture that re-defines the ordinary meaning of words. What do they mean?
The claim that an individual or group has a religious spirit is usually applied to people who like liturgical worship and ritual. It is used for people who are not comfortable with very exuberant worship expression or strange manifestations, or for people who prefer the more dignified traditional denominational expressions either in the churches or the synagogues.
Sometimes groups promote bizarre kinds of expressions because they believe such activity will "get rid of religious spirits". I am not referring to prophecy, or tongues and interpretation, as well as other gifts of the Spirit. I am referring to such things as wild dancing, falling down, exuberant laughing and many more things that can take place in some charismatic gatherings. This sort of behavior only serves to offend more conservative believers who are simply not open to such expressions.
What do you think - it would be good to hear your opinion. Why not comment using the link below ...