Substitutes for the Real Thing: Mysticism and Experienced-Based Truth
God has laid out a clear plan in the Bible for our lives based on truth. This plan is a relationship with God based on faith in Jesus. We are taught and guided by the Bible and the Holy Spirit.
Mysticism, however, is creeping heavily into the church. Mysticism uses various methods, non-bible knowledge, and altered states to seek a deeper experience of “God’s Presence.” Mysticism is not taught in the Bible, nor is it part of God’s plan for growth or salvation. However, many other religions, such as parts of Catholicism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Kabbalah, and the New Age heavily encourage mysticism as a way to reach God. Mysticism is very dangerous. Although our relationship with God is very intimate and spiritual, mysticism is a very different and non-Christian way of reaching God. Mysticism must be clearly addressed and fought against within the Church.
Experienced-based truth must also be fought against within the Church. Experience-based truth compiles a variety of experiences and feelings that eventually build a core set of beliefs that guide a Christian’s life instead of the Bible. Experienced-based truth can blind a Christian to the real truth. It also hinders the gift of discernment that the Holy Spirit intends to give to many believers, replacing it with the method of “whatever feels good or seems right” must be from God. Experience-based truth can be a very deceptive philosophy. God intends to us to use our full cognitive and discerning capabilities and the foundation of disciplined study of the Word and our time with God.
Although God uses experiences to confirm and deepen our understanding of the Word of God, experience should never be the Teacher. Our teacher is the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, and other believers that the Holy Spirit sends for our benefit. We must discern whether experiences, no matter how life-changing or supernatural, are truly from God. Experienced-based truth must be clearly addressed and monitored within the Church.
Our goal is to bring glory to God by setting captives free. The Gospel and Discipleship are part of the Christian’s Calling. The Truth will Set You Free! God’s Freedom is Glorious!