Finney is undisputedly the foremost preacher, teacher and revivalist in American history. He is undoubtedly numbered among the few Saints this nation has produced. Many believers in America call themselves Saints and use other words suggesting they are Saints, calling themselves Apostles, Prophets, Pastor/Teachers, and disciples. Many say they walk in the Spirit while others boast of being prayer warriers and many other multitudes of believers say they have certain gifts of the Spirit, but Finney like the Apostles and Prophets we read about in the Holy Book wastes no time presuming to be something when we are nothing, nor does he boast of any gifts of the Spirit.
The Lord said we would know them "BY THEIR FRUITS." We know Charles Finney by his spiritual fruits. Whereever he preached, there were phenomenal revivals. And his teachings are of such humble clarity as to show us the way if we really want to BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT.
It appears the Church in America had not yet gotten into the false doctrine of saying every believer becomes Spirit filled with the baptism of the Holy Ghost, so Finney does not mention it. His lectures follow categorical outlines and rather than reproduce his LECTURE VII here, what is provided for your spiritual growth is the basic outline quoted directly out of his wonderful book along with comments intended to make it all the more clear in the Light of Christian doctrines today:
His teachings are just applicable now as they were when the venerable teacher was alive,
and where he is quoted directly; you will
find quotation marks:
Finney is not talking about the baptism of the holy Ghost when he says "God has promised to give His Spirit to those that ask. "IF YOU THEN, BEING EVIL, NOW HOW TO GIVE GOOD GIFTS UNTO YOUR CHILDREN: HOW MUCH MORE SHALL YOUR HEAVENLY FATHER GIVE THE HOLY SPIRIT TO THEM THAT ASK HIM?" (Luke 11:13) The verse Finney quoted from the Lord applies not only to new believers obtaining the baptism in the Holy Spirit but also to believers baptized in the Spirit BEING FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT fresh and new.
Finney says God commanded us to: "BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT." This is profound in today's churches where the law of God is preached against so much so the rebellion of the flesh of believers everywhere is inclined to do nothing, because after all; they are not under the law or to be blunt; they do not have to do anything God commands them to do. In fact, Christians today who do read their Bible which is a rarity, do not see any commands in it. This is one of the reasons "THE FOUNDATIONS HAVE BEEN DESTROYED."
Finney says, "When God commands us to do a thing, it is the highest possible evidence that we can do it." God would
not command us to do something we could not do. And because God has commanded it, Finney says, "It is your duty to
be filled with the Spirit."
"It may be that you live a hypocritical life. Your prayers are not earnest and sincere." Finney tells us.
In my experience as a wayfaring man, it came as a surprise to me while being led continually by the holy Spirit who filled me; to be led away from prayer meetings.
I remember protesting, "But Lord there is a prayer meeting in there." On a few occasions I went in anyway just to see why the Holy Spirit was guiding me away and was stunned to find no Spirit of prayer in the place where Christians were supposedly meeting for prayer.
Through the decades now since the Lord first showed me as a believer that I could become Spirit filled in Him, I have seen Christians putting on theatrical displays of prayer to be seen of others present rather than to reach in the realm of the Spirit. This is the hypocrisy Finney spoke of when he said: "Your prayers are not earnest and sincere."
Finney says, "Others have so much levity that the Spirit will not dwell with them." This levity in Christians seems to be manufactured by the lack of accountability in the churches everywhere in America; so Christians quickly become accustomed to doing whatever pleases their flesh in the name of spirituality. It becomes a game with them, a kind of church theatre with the best actors and actresses considered the most spiritual. The church system in America is degenerative. It is getting worse as we draw near to THE FALLING AWAY.
Finney says, "Others are so proud that they cannot have the Spirit." Christians today all seem to have something they are proud of. Their church is hot and on fire for God. Their pastor is super spiritual. Their entire congregation is Spirit filled. They themselves have the gifts of the Spirit. And so on.
Finney says, Some are so worldly-minded, love property so well, and are trying so hard to get ich, that they cannot have the Spirit." There we find Charles Finney describing perfectly THE PROSPERITY MINDED CHURCH IN AMERICA before the Hagins' and Copelands' infiltrated the Church in America with their materialistic preaching. Give your money to God and he'll give back to you pressed down, and shaken to overflowing. Is it any wonder there is no understanding in the churches in America as to how to BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT?
Finney says, "Others do not fully confess and forsake their sins, and so cannot enjoy the Spirit's Presence." He quotes the Word of God saying, "HE THAT COVERS HIS SINS SHALL NOT PROSPER: BUT WHOSO CONFESSES AND FORSAKES THEM SHALL HAVE MERCY." (Proverbs 28:13) Isn't it interesting we find Finney quoting from the sacred King James Bible that I was shown to use after my first year as a believer. I also found my way into the supernatural realm of the Spirit using the authorized King James 1611 Bible. I know what it means to be Spirit filled so I not only felt the Spirit's Presence exteriorly, but was filled with the Spirit's Presence in the Kingdom within.
In the churches in America, there is much said of the Spirit's Presence where two or more are gathered. That is attainable in a few minutes of worship, praise, prayer. It is so common for Christians to feel the Lord's Presence in services, it makes one wonder why anything is said of it. Yet ministers will make a big deal of it saying, "Ohhhh, can you feel the Presence of the Lord people of God? He is here to do great things among us." Really? The Lord is simply present to receive the little bit of lukewarm praise offered him in the churches. He does not come to do great things because no-one has "HUNGERED OR THIRSTED AFTER RIGHTEOUSNESS TO BE FILLED" by him. Do not be deceived anymore by ministers boasting as though they have the anointing of God because the Presence of the Lord is felt in a gathering.
The problem with ministers and anyone else who wishes to see God work marvelously is explained by Finney when he says: "And you may set yourself to pray earnestly for it, and to pray for a revival of religon. But, on the whole, you are unwilling it should come. YOu have much to do that you cannot attend to it."
It is not clear how it was in the days Finney preached his great spiritual revivals turning town after town upsidedown for God; but in today's church world in America, every pastor has a time set to dismiss the congregation. The pastor obviously does not have time to attend to a revival were the Spirit of God to manifest in his congregation. The watch the pastor is wearing has become a substitute holy Spirit he obeys.
To sum it all up thus far. Many receive Christ as their Saviour and many more go on to become baptized in the holy Spirit; but growth
stops there in the churches in America because the churches are not intent in doctrine nor in practice to become filled with the
Spirit; and so the work that goes on in the name of God among believers in America is in the flesh and not in the Spirit.
Finney says, "Your guilt is just as great as the authoity of God is great, which commands you: "BE FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT. God commands it, and it is just as much a disobedience of God's commands, as it would be to swear profanely, or steal, or commit adultery, or break the Sabbath. Think of that."
Charles Finney goes on to say, "Your guilt is equal to all the good you might do if you were possessed by the Spirit of God in as great a measure as it is your duty to be, and as you might be."
He says, "Your guilt is further measured by all the evil which you do in consequence of not having the Spirit."
This kind of profound reasoning is what is waiting for you as a Christian at the Judgment Seat of Christ
where the ungodly will not stand before the Lord once the realization is manifest that there is GREAT GUILT.
So many Christians insist they know Jesus, but what you ought to be saying as a Christian is: "You know of
Jesus." You have tasted of the Lord and you know he is good, but you do not yet know him, nor have you been
obedient to the command to be filled by his Spirit.
"I never knew a person who was filled with the Spirit that was not called eccentric," Finney tells us. "They act under different influences, take different views, are moved by different movtives, led by a different spirit. You are to expect such remarks." Now don't get Finney wrong here. Phil Spector is an eccentric who has just been convicted of murder. Your being an eccentric does not prove you are filled with the Spirit, but if you are filled with the Spirit; you will be perceived as an eccentric.
Finney goes on to say, "We judge men to be deranged when they act differently from what we think to be accoding to prudence and common sense, and when they come to conclusions, for which we can see no good reasons." Saint Paul was told by Festus before the Roman judgment seat that "MUCH LEARNING HAD MADE HIM MAD." "Festus and the rest were entirely in the dark in respect to the motive by which he was actuated."
Finney also says, "If you have the Spirit of God, you must expect to feel great distress in view of the condition of the Church and of the world." Jesus said, "OH WICKED AND PERVERSE GENERATION, HOW LONG WILL I BE WITH YOU?" It is distressful to see believers and sinners alike deceiving themselves as to why they are doing what they do. There are so few in this world who are pure hearted. "THE HEART IS DECEITFUL AND DESPERATELY WICKED, WHO CAN KNOW IT?" In the fullness of the Spirit, the Lord's anointed disciple on up the spiritual chain of command sees through the singleness of the eye of Christ according to their level and intensity of enlightenment just how disillusioned the human race is, and how far they are from godliness and God.
Finney says to those rare individuals who do become filled with the Spirit, "You will be often grieved with the state of the ministry." As you grow into the Light of Christ in the anointing, it will become more and more apparent the churches are out of touch with the reality of the things of the Spirit and are functioning in the flesh. I watched and listened to Internet videos of the General Superintendent of the Assemblies of God whose church I attended briefly in 1972. Here we are 37 years later and he is an old man quick of energy addressing the graduating class of his alma mater and there was hardly any mention of the Word of God. Instead he spoke with "ENTICING WORDS OF MEN'S WISDOM" of how pot was something his Mother cooked in when he graduated from that Bible college, how grass was something they mowed back then, how gay meant happy then what it means now, and so on. Is it any wonder that graduating class is going to be worldly with such leadership as is graduating them? Backslidden churches are producing backslidden pastors in preparation for THE FALLING WAY spoken of by Saint Paul in his second holy epistle to the Thessalonians.
"WHAT CAN THE RIGHTEOUS DO WHEN THE FOUNDATIONS HAVE BEEN DESTROYED?" You can become filled with the Spirit and you will have at least fulfilled your potential for the day. Get up the next day and do it again and do not turn to the left or the right from walking where the Spirit of the Lord guides you through singleness of eye in him, and you will be shown something profitable to do for the Lord even though you might not be able to turn the church in American around to the things of the Spirit.
Finney says, "If you have much of the Spirit of God, you must make up your mind to have much opposition, both in the Church and the world." I was surprised early in 1981 when as a wayfaring man new to being filled with the Spirit to find the police everywhere opposing the preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I was suffering at first from the delusion most Americans are still suffering from to this day, that the police in their community are here to serve the public good. There has developed a much greater opposition in America than existed in Finney's time when he mentioned we should expect opposition. Ever since Madalyn O'hare succeeded in ousting prayer from the schools in America, the sinners in every government institution across this great nation have taken the position that the God of the Bible is no longer legal in the government of the United States. This attitude of opposition against the gospel of Jesus Christ permeates the mindset of every police department in America. If anyone lives godly, he will suffer persecution. (2 Timothy 3:12)
It was around the year 1981 when I was first succeeding in becoming filled with the Spirit through fastings and prayers and the preaching of the written Word of God, and found myself approached by a police officer getting out of his patrol car to oppose me just outside of the fence of a large school.
He came over asking, "You have to get a license to preach the gospel." I withstood him in the Spirit of the Lord saying, "No, I don't!" "Yes, you do!" he insisted. "No, I don't!" "Yes, you do!" he insisted. "No, I don't!" "Okay then," he asked obviously disturbed. "By what right are you preaching the gospel?" I immediately spoke what came to me. "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature!" I said as he grabbed his chest as though he were in pain and retreated to his squad car. It took me a while to comprehend what God had done, but I soon realized I had spoken the sword of the Spirit in the Word and that man opposing the gospel of Jesus Christ had been struck in the heart with it. I'm sure I was just as amazed as he was amazed, and hope it turned to his salvation. That was around the year 1981 and soon thereafter I actually saw the sword of the Spirit in other ways seeing into the unseen. We will have opposition, but we will also have the company of the holy Spirit within and without working the works of God to combat the opposition.
Finney says, "Satan has very little trouble with those Christians who are not spiritual, but lukewarm, and
slothful, and worldlyminded. And such do not understand what is said about spiritual conflicts. Perhaps they will smile
when such things are mentioned. And so the devil lets them alone. They do not disturb him, nor he them. But
spiritual Christians, he understands very well, are doing him a vast injury, and therefore he sets himself
against them. Such Christians often have terrible conflicts."
Finney says, "You will often doubt, in such a case, and reasonably so, whether you are a Christian. You will have doubts, and you ought to have them, for the sons of God are led by the Spirit of God, and if you are not led by the Spirit, what reason have you to think that you are a son." The truth is dear Christian, if you are not filled with the Spirit of God by constant seeking; you are not a Son of God, but in fact are still a child of God. That is why Moses continually referred to the flock he led in the wilderness as "THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL." They were spiritual children while Joshua and the other disciples of Moses were Sons of God by classification. Those classifications apply in the New Testament times to this day as well. God is "THE SAME, YESTERDAY, TODAY AND FOREVER." He knows who is grown up in the Spirit and who is not "WHOLLY SANCTIFIED."
Finney goes on to say regarding your not being filled with the Spirit, that "You will always be unsettled in your views about the prayer of faith." How can you understand praying in the Spirit when you have never labored to full of the Word which is Spirit, nor have you yet spent all day or all night seeking the Lord to fill you with his Spirit.
Finney goes on to say, "If you have not the Spirit, you will be very apt to stumble at those who have." He goes on to say those who do not have the Spirit are inclinded to censure those who do so they themselves can feel justified. Just as the flesh is contrary to the Spirit in us, so the flesh of the church is contrary to those of us in the Lord's church who have the Spirit.
Finney points out how easily such that are in the flesh agree with all others who are in the flesh.
He also says those who do not have the fullness of the Spirit will be troubled with "fears about fanaticism."
And the reason those who are in the flesh are fearful of fanaticism is easy enough to understand. They do not
know how to get into the Spirit, and therefore oppose those who do; as though they would force them into
something they do not understand. There is no reason to be afraid of the fullness of the Spirit dear Christian.
It is not fanaticism to obey God your Creator. That is normal for those who do it, and abnormal for those of
you who do not choose to labor "TO PARTAKE OF THE DIVINE NATURE." One of the reasons I think God's servants
never use the word supernatural in the Bible is due to the fact it is normal for them to partake of the Spirit
of God. Holy men and women know no other way of Life once they have become filled with the Spirit the first
time. God is the Spirit of Life and life outside of the Spirit of God is just existence.
Anyone who is filled with the Spirit of the Lord today to walk in the Spirit is going to wake up perceiving the glory of this present natural world to have faded away, so wonderful it is to be one with God. And they are going to yearn to be one with God again even if it is only for a few hours; and they will do whatever God requires of them to be one with Him. Thus Saint Paul said, "I DIE DAILY."
That is why the theme verse for this ministry is: "LIFE IS HID WITH CHRIST IN GOD." (Colossians 3:3b) Just as the teachings of Charles Finney point you to the fullness of the Spirit, so the teachings throughout the library of this website point you to the fullness of the Spirit that you might truly walk in Christ, pray in his Spirit, preach in his Spirit, do good works in his Spirit, hear his voice in the Spirit, see into the unseen in his Spirit, and even be still and know that he is God in the Spirit. But those who are not filled with the Spirit are left with acting out the things of the Spirit to justify themselves, and this is the tragic state of things in the churches throughout America.
Finney warns against the idea of "waiting for His Spirit, while using no means to procure His presence." I remember the first time I went into the garage when I was President of Operation Rock of Ages, Inc. in the late 1970's. I sat against the wall of the closed garage wondering what to do to procure the fullness of the Spirit of the Lord, and obviously knew nothing of becoming filled with Him. I said a few prayers and went away empty and discouraged, though God was working in my life. My doctrines were what the churches taught in those days. I had not yet graduated to the receiving of revelations.
You must "STUDY TO SHOW YOURSELF APPROVED OF GOD" dear Christian and his holy Word will become Spirit for you when you have eaten the good Book into your consciousness by the hard work of studying long hours to understand and evidence every Word of continuing revelations into your behaviour until you become the Living Word.
The churches are not the way, the truth and the Light. Study the Word that is God and live it. When you hear churchmen admonishing you to become rooted and grounded in the Church, remind them you are to become "ROOTED AND GROUNDED IN CHRIST." There is a difference.
May God bless you mightily to "GROW UP INTO CHRIST"
where you might become Spirit filled daily, having put
on the mind of Christ to suffer in the flesh; so
you too might achieve martyrdom in
the Lord's power. It is the highest spiritual attainment
there is in this world.
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The author tends to paraphrase Scriptures from memory. If a verse does not seem to be quoted accurately, he is attempting to give you the sense of it. He also changes the thee's thou's and other obsolete language from the sacred King James Bible to make quotes easier to understand. Please be patient and pray for this work, that it having begun in the Spirit, might be completed in the Spirit, and be preserved even after the author has gone to be with the Lord, for the messages regarding the mysteries of godliness will prove to be priceless forever to those seeking the LORD with all their heart, soul mind and strength.