Summary: understanding the true purpose of the anointing of the Holy Spirit in ministry
Intro: one of the most intriguing people in scripture is Samson. His story is amazing in many ways. He was a miracle baby to a barren mother. An angel appeared to Samson’s parents to announce him as a deliverer of Israel. Samson failed miserably, but we learn some valuable lessons about how the anointing is obtained, how the anointing is misused, how the flesh and spirit fight against each other, how signs and wonders must be backed by purpose and truth, and what it takes for a true deliverance. Our story comes from Judges 13:1-16:31
The Purpose of Anointing
God is sick of all the so-called anointing in America. It is the most over-used word in our society. Some Samson like anointed ones are parading through our nation with wholesale anointing that doesn’t accomplish anything and has no lasting results. I have the right to preach this, I have been in the Pentecostal church all my life, I have pastured Assembly of God churches for 20 years, and most of what goes on in the Pentecostal/ Charismatic/ Full Gospel/ Independent churches in America is nothing more than a Samson anointing. It doesn’t matter how many outward signs are seen in a church service, results matter to God, true deliverance must take place or everything is superficial. Most churches that claim anointing have never even paid the initial price of the Nazarite code of obedience, separation, denial of flesh and sacrifice to God. Today, I will take 47 years of Pentecostal experience, and in a nutshell give you what a true anointing in someone’s life is suppose to accomplish.
Flesh and Spirit
Signs and Wonders must be backed by purpose and truth
I. Anointing Obtained—one of the misnomers of the anointing is that you just come to a Pentecostal service, someone lays hands on your life, and immediately you become an anointed one. If that is true, I am going to go to a mechanic, let him touch me, and immediately I am going to be the mechanical one. It just doesn’t happen like this. God’s anointing is too precious to be given out in such a superficial way. Samson had to fulfill the Nazarite code to obtain anointing, and today these principles still apply.
a. couldn’t cut his hair—his long hair was a sign or symbol of obedience to the Word of God. It is still true today, that God will never divorce Spirit and Truth. He will not place His anointing on someone that doesn’t walk in the Truth of God’s word.
b. Separated from the world—Samson lived a life of separation, he was set aside from the world. For someone to obtain a true anointing they must spend time alone with God. The anointing isn’t something caught in an emotionally pitched service, it is something given by special time with God.
c. Denial of the flesh—here is another missing element in today’s anointing. Some of the most showy, carnal, worldly type of people are promoted as having the anointing. Anointing is humility, anointing is Spirit not flesh. It is almost amusing that every good singer that hits a high note, every preacher who can run or shout, every teacher who can give a deep teaching is called anointed. Lack of true discernment among the Pentecostal church has allowed many people of low character to be promoted as having a great anointing.
d. Called to be a deliverer—here is one of the greatest mistakes that goes on in Charismatic circles, the anointing is so people can be blessed, feel good, get a Holy Ghost tingle, fall out, shake or dance, but no one leaves out delivered. Samson wasn’t given the anointing to get Israel happy, he was given the anointing to deliver them out of captivity.
II. Anointing Misused—Samson would fit in to modern Pentecostal services today because he could come in, misuse the Spirit of God, and everyone would celebrate the anointing. The anointing isn’t for killing lions, starting fox fires, or beating people to death with the jawbone of an ass, even though these things may seem glorious, none of them had any purpose for the people of God. Today, if someone has a few people fall out under the anointing, if someone gives special words over peoples lives, then it doesn’t matter that no one was saved, no true deliverance takes place, people leave out saying, boy that was an anointed service.
· Samson used the anointing to impress people---Judges 14:8—you could miss this if you weren’t looking for it, but he went to show off his lion kill to his new bride. I guess that is what Samson anointing is all about, it doesn’t accomplish much but it looks real impressive. This may seem hard to swallow for some, I believe many people want the anointing, not to be a deliverer, not to see people get saved, but to have a feeling of superiority in ministry over those who don’t have as much anointing. Is this a sick concept or what? But it is the Samson anointing.