Here is my response: Hello and thank you for your email about the ‘slain in the spirit’ phenomenon.
The two scriptures you cite about the glory of God filling the temple have nothing to do with the things going on now in some circles. That was a pretty special day in the history of the world! It is completely unconnected to the strange happenings today.
They call it ‘slain in the spirit’ – but the Bible tells us to test the spirits, so what spirit is doing this?
Also, the people who operate like this are suspect in my experience. They are usually after your money, so they have to put on a show.
One point is that the Lord’s enemies fall backwards, knocked down, struck down, as in the Garden of Gethsemane. I think that God’s friends, if they fall at all, fall forwards, face down, in awestruck worship. I don’t think the Holy Spirit knocks us about like a boxer in a ring!
The act itself, doing something, whether it is touching someone, waving a jacket at them etc, and that action causing someone to fall backwards – is occult, supernatural.
But there is a good supernatural from God, and a bad supernatural from Satan. The Bible warns us that Satan can appear as an angel of light, so we really have to be on guard!
Some gurus in India do the same thing, obviously by the power of the dark supernatural. I think they call it ‘shakti’ – touching someone with a feather and they are knocked down.
Here is my benchmark. Do I see Peter, Paul and John doing this, knocking people down? No. Then I do not want to be around it.
Also, you get a lot of fakery. Some people fall down because they are expected to and they don’t want to disappoint the leader. I know this happens.
There have been lawsuits over the years when people fell on other people etc. So it is all just plain bad.
Many people want excitement at their churches, things happening. But the Lord Jesus said it was an evil generation which looks for a sign. Yet today so many are looking for signs.
Bible study, worship, prayer and serving others? Boring! Let’s have the first four rows all fall down when some dope on the platform waves his coat!
There is also an element of hypnotism in this, mesmerism. Some people are vulnerable to hypnotists and will fall down very easily, while others are virtually impossible to hypnotize.
The Holy Spirit gives us a sound mind, but many today influenced by eastern religion would have us blank out our thoughts and leave our minds dangerously vacant. How stupid. Peter tells us instead to ‘gird up the loins of your mind’!
The Bible also tells us to meditate, to think on things that are true and good – not to just blank out, as a yoga teacher told a class I once attended. I was a new Christian then, and thank God I found a pastor to ask and he told me yoga was eastern religion and demonic. I believed him and never went back to the class and never again tried to blank out my mind.
Eastern meditation is letting your mind go blank or repeating something endlessly. Biblical meditation is sound thinking - analyzing, judging, discerning, using your critical faculties to arrive at the truth of a matter.
Thank the Lord, by His great mercy and grace we have left a lot of bad stuff behind, including wacky churches where ‘slain in the spirit’ was practised.
If you want good teaching, look up Dr Arnold Fruchtenbaum, Ariel Ministries. Unlike the many charlatans on TV, he actually knows what he is talking about.
The Lord warned us: ‘Take heed that no one deceives you.’ Matt 24:4 Now the deceivers are on TV, getting big audiences.
People should be heading for the exits, but instead they reach for their checkbooks and finance the wolves in sheep’s clothing.
I hope this answers your question.
May the Lord bless all readers with wisdom on this and many other subjects,
- Alan adds: Pat and I wrote our book Cults and Isms: True or False? to shed light on the false teaching and dark practices that abound in all cults and much of what passes for Christianity today - the wacky churches, the money preachers and much more.
- It is available from our web shop on this site and we encourage readers to buy copies to spread among your friends. These are times of deception - but Biblical knowledge is the antidote to falsehood!