Question: Are “specialty anointings” or endowments real? For instance, a minister says, “God gave me a specialty anointing to heal eyes or cancer”. Have you ever seen fruit to this that glorifies the Lord ? My assumption is that if a minister truly had a special gift- it would stand out and not need promotion…
One of the things that I have learned in nearly 20 years of serving the Lord is that if something is of God, it will definitely bear fruit that glorifies God. Now, with that being said, we have to be careful at what we mean by bearing fruit.
First, let’s tackle what it means to bear fruit. Philippians 1:11 (NASB) says, “having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.” What, one could ask are the fruits of righteousness? Simply put, they are the same as the fruits of the Spirit found in Galatians 5:22-23. Some people think that righteous fruits would be seen in the size of the ministry, or the amount of money that one has, or the amount of following that one has. The Bible just never refers to fruit in this way. Let’s think about this honestly. Could this be the real way of judging? Consider groups like the Ku Klux Klan. They had quite a following at one time but were they righteous? Or how about Nazi Germany. For a time they really picked up steam, but were they righteous? Of course, the answer is no. Now, I am not equating ministries that have maybe gotten a little out of balance to Nazi Germany or the Ku Klux Klan but my point is this, that righteousness is not necessarily determined in all the things we see. It is however found in what God sees.
Because I am a context junkie I want to go back in Philippians to a few scriptures before and see this in context. When we do this, I think will see something pretty interesting. Philippians 1:9-10 (NASB) says, “And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ.” What is being asked to abound? Is it not love? Or, in other words, if something that people are doing does not first point to love for God and love for people, not themselves, then it is not fruit of righteousness. Also, men are not called to draw attention to themselves. Jesus actually fought against drawing people toward His miraculous actions. The Holy Spirit we are told will not speak of Himself either. I believe it is dangerous any and every time an “anointed” person draws attention to themselves or their ministry.
Moving on, notice it didn’t stop there. How does this love abound? It abounds in REAL knowledge AND discernment. How important are they! What I want you to see here is that the direction for real knowledge and discernment is not pointing to ministers. It is written to those who believe. If we are to be good Christians we have to learn to discern and we do that through embracing real knowledge as opposed to false knowledge. We, like the Berean’s of Acts 17, are called to search the scriptures daily, not swallow every revelation or announcement of man.
With that said, let me say something else. This is not giving us license to get up in arms and fight, because we are also called to peace (remember the fruits of the Spirit are required in us as well). We, as Philippians 1:10 states, are to remain sincere and blameless until Christ returns. If we are in opposition to what is being taught continually we have to decide whether or not we may have to move on. It doesn’t do us nor those we are supposed to be in fellowship with any good to be at constant odds with each other. Let me add, that this also is highly displeasing to God.
I believe we have a responsibility to either dwell in peace or move on, but we must stay in peace. As a pastor I am commanded to shepherd the flock that is among, not without. As sheep, people need to realize that they need shepherded. I don’t choose my flock, God does and people do. Where God has placed or does place you is where you will flourish. Don’t fight where He has you, but if where you are is a fight, perhaps you are misplaced.