Jesus Christ Is Lord

That every knee should bow and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father!

Posts Tagged ‘Anthony Williams’

On Needing That Anointing Christianity

Posted by Job on April 14, 2008

Three years ago, I was in dire straits. My family, my health (mental and physical) and my career were all very much at risk. Divorce and unemployment were tangible possibilities. My medication no longer controlled my asthma, but I had a strong emotional and physical dependency on it so I was consuming large quantities of it anyway. I was not addicted to the medication, but I was headed that way. But I WAS, however, addicted to pornography. Further, my kidneys were failing (drug overuse tends to cause that). And I was being continually tormented by terrifying dreams at night as well as fears and mental images during the day that I could not control. I was literally on the road to being one of the many poor homeless fellows with worsening mental and physical problems. And the worst part of it all was that I had no answers!

One of my coping mechanisms during this time: the music of one Anthony Williams Jr., also known as Tonex (among various other aliases). It was not so much that he was an extremely talented singer, musician, producer, and preacher, or that I personally identified with his lyrics and biography, though that was certainly true. It was that I was convinced that this fellow had a powerful anointing about him. I was certain that when I played his music, the power of the Holy Spirit was filling me and whatever space the music was playing in. Whenever the anger, rage, fear, hopelessness, depression, stress, etc. began to overcome me, I would pop in either “Out Tha Box” (disc 1 or 2) or “O2”. (Pronounced Toe – Nay was for “praise and worship time.”) I would contemplate the lyrics – although honestly not nearly so much as the music, ESPECIALLY the beats! – and pretty soon I would be speaking in tongues (then again maybe not), receiving all sorts of prophetic words from the Lord on how to take control of my situation (which were actually rather hit or miss) and pretty soon as a result of the powerful anointing felt recharged, renewed, rededicated pressed down shaken together running overflow ye are gods children of the most high. For a few hours, that is. But no matter, I had plenty of other similar CDs, as well as my array of pastors and teachers on TBN, the Word Network, and similar, to pick me up again. But Tonex’s music was “the heavy artillery” which I resorted to when things got really bad, in times of crisis and emergency. Why? Didn’t want to cheapen, degrade, or devalue “the anointing.” Let me just say that the Yolanda Adams intro of “Out Tha Box” where she introduces the fellow as “the most anointed man in this city, in this country, in this world!” did not offend me in the least. After all, it wasn’t THAT FAR OFF, so why quibble? And the fact that he had a woman whose lifestyle and career choices did not reflect Tonex’s holiness or hell doctrines to begin with? Hey, Tonex had a powerful anointing, so that didn’t matter.

And neither did the scandals, doctrinal errors, failed prophecies, etc. of any of the other people that I was following (or at least defending their works and their anointing): the Crouch family, TD Jakes (never a favorite of mine but I supported him because of so many of my fellow travelers did, so it was important to have UNITY), Paula White, Eddie Long, Creflo Dollar (who professes an anointing so great that regular folks are no allowed to touch him), Kenneth Copeland, Paul Morton, Juanita Bynum, Jesse DuPlantis (whose anointing stopped Hurricane Katrina from flooding his part of the city and redirected it to Paul Morton’s instead), Charles Capps (whose anointed reading of scripture revealed to him the fact that there were not one but TWO creations!), Shepherd’s Chapel, Pat Robertson (whose anointing predicted that such a hurricane would strike America because of abortion and gay rights), John Hagee (who predicted a war with Iran by 2007 with Jesus Christ coming back a few months after), Kenneth Hagin, Angie Ray, John Eckhardt, Keith Butler, Dr. Shine, Rod Parsley, Fred Price, Jamal Harrison – Bryant (I cheered the day that Harrison – Bryant announced that his Empowerment Temple was the first African Methodist Episcopal church to be prominently featured on TBN!) and so on. And other preachers that did not appear to me to have much anointing like Joel Osteen and Joyce Meyer I found encouraging and reassuring. So yes, I was exposed to constant anointings and reassurings during this troubled time.

Now the problems that I was going through were so severe that I missed quite a bit of work. Which was a good thing, because it gave me a chance to see two particularly anointed preachers around lunchtime on The Church Channel (although to tell you the truth I watched them plenty at work because I had downloaded the TBN viewer applet onto my desktop, and also watched them on The Word Network’s website, and there was also StreamingFaith.com!) Word of Faith preacher Andrew Wommack and Benny Hinn trainee Zachery Tims (the latter for entertainment, the former for doctrine). It so happened that on Wommack’s show, he made the case that what Jesus Christ did on the cross was finished and could not be added to by man. I did not believe it, because it contradicted my “faith plus works to justify you and maintain your salvation” holiness or hell doctrine that I had been brought up in and seemed perfectly logical to my human intellect, but HE HAD SCRIPTURES! Also, I had a lot of time and trust invested in this fellow (not to mention money, having bought several of his books). So, I believed, and that was the beginning of the end of my financial, family, emotional, and health problems. (The tithing, fasting, hit or miss prophesying, frequent church attendance followed by watching Christian television and listening to Christian radio, sowing seeds into anointed ministries, the emergency calls to the Pat Robertson and Paul Crouch prayer lines, the frequent emails to Jesse DuPlantis, the books, DVDs, tapes … well they did not actually work.)

Now not long before this, I had found out that T.D. Jakes was a oneness pentecostal. Again, though never a huge T.D. Jakes fan, it gave me pause, because LOTS of people were affiliated with the guy, including George W. and Jeb Bush, of whom I was HUGE FANS! Hey, the guy had an anointing and had done some mighty things, so God would straighten him out. But after believing in sola fide, faith alone, instead of faith plus works, well hey, doctrinal error now seemed to MATTER, and so did people who hung around them. So, that reduced my huge array of pastors and teachers that I was following, because LOTS of them were connected to Jakes by few degrees of separation! And yes, LOTS of folks were preaching the same thing that he did. But they had such powerful anointing and had done so many great things! Yes, but I had to follow my Trinitarian God rather than men, so that meant also rejecting the pastors who lacked the scruples required to reject the false doctrine purveyors, or to warn people against them. I knew that not all these pastors had been blessed with a great anointing, but the lack of a great anointing was no excuse for having a little principle and courage and doing what was right.

The result: this left me with a lot of spare time on my hands. Had to seek out other ministries. One was Bill Keller, whom I initially persecuted with frequent emails defending the prosperity doctrine that I still believed in. Prosperity, after all, was the sign of having an anointing! Keller failed to dissuade me, but radio preacher Bob George – who runs a call in show – did. Now I had read 1 Timothy 6 many a time, but never understood that IT SPECIFICALLY REJECTS THE PROSPERITY DOCTRINE until he explained it to me. Why did I listen to George and not Keller? Maybe it had something to do with George and the caller catching my attention just prior by pointing out that Fred Price claimed that Jesus Christ had to be born again. The caller wanted to know if it was OK to still listen to Price anyway on the account of the other great truths that Price gave. George acknowledged Price’s great oratorical skills, but stated that people who preach his doctrines had reprobate minds. Any truth that you can get from those that had reprobate minds can be gained elsewhere. So, crossing off the reprobate mind prosperity/Word of Faith folk – and those who would not separate from them – left still more time on my hands, and left me conflicted and confused about the legitimacy of my salvation. After all, I had learned of Christ by virtue of having been raised Pentecostal Holiness, and had believed on Christ’s work because a Word of Faith preacher had told me about it.

Result? TONEX TIME! If I ever needed a pick – me – up, it was now! After all, it had been awhile since I had spoken in tongues or heard a prophecy or revelation from God, so I needed to “get tightened up.” It had been a very long time, so long that I had actually misplaced the “Out Tha Box” concert DVD, so I put in “O2”, and started waiting for the anointing so that I could do the old “goose myself spiritually” thing and start speaking in tongues. (The ability to initiate speaking in tongues was a special gift that I had, a product of my anointing, that I had found quite useful many a time.) But something wasn’t right. I didn’t really FEEL it. And whereas before, my unknown tongues gift flowed freely and purely, even at times producing words that I was CERTAIN was Hebrew, this time it was choppy, broken, intermittent, and sounded rather like a clucking chicken. Also, I couldn’t really get into Tonex’s lyrics. Didn’t line up with what I was reading in the Bible at the time. Now my inability to speak in tongues anymore was really frightening me. It was my secret internal proof that I was actually saved! I guess I had no choice left other than to just believe Romans 10 and let it go.

And no more revelation, no more words from the Lord? Now I had actually been hearing so many revelations – it was a gift what can I say – that I had come to the conclusion that I didn’t really NEED to read my Bible anymore. I mean, the Bible was OK. So long as it was the King James Version. But it was for other, lesser, weaker Christians that lacked by strong faith and great anointing. I could go straight to God Himself and receive direct instructions. Whenever I needed to make a personal, family/marital, financial, spiritual decision, I would just pray, hear my revelation, and go with it. I also was up on future events and what was REALLY going on in the spirit realm, so that was great. But now, goodness, how was I going to make a decision? No choice but to trust God. If good happened? Thank you God. If bad happened, thank you for that too God. The Psalms and Proverbs said to have that attitude anyway. There are more Psalms than ones that promised old covenant Israelites health and wealth after all.

So, I began to throw away the books, CDs, DVDs, etc. that I had, shocked at all the money that I had spent on people that paid complete and total disregard to the basic information that could be found in any beginner’s theology book (which I found can be had very cheaply in the Christian bookstores, very often on clearance in the section obscured by all the best sellers) or even on some theology and apologetics websites. With those gone and plenty of time on my hands (I hate secular television because of the low quality of the writing), that created time for more books: church histories, Bible commentaries, novels, you name it. Not all of them were good. Unless, that is, they were being compared to the stuff that I had been throwing away. But there were a few things that I saved. I have not yet seen fit to get rid of my Derek Prince or Frank Hammond materials, probably because of my bias towards books and because they do not call themselves prophets or apostles. And I also kept my 3 Tonex CDs, even though I no longer felt motivated to buy his subsequent releases or replace the mysteriously vanished concert DVD.

That is, until the other day. I was not angry, depressed, fearful, or tormented by uncontrolled thoughts and images. Those problems are long gone. Following a tip in a devotional sent to me by Word of Faith preacher Keith Butler (whose prophecy that he would win a U.S. Senate seat fell far short) put the Book of Revelation on my Ipod and would listen to it through my headphones all night. (I wasn’t getting any sleep due to the nightmares anyway!) A few weeks later, I canceled my daily devotional from Butler upon reading him assert in it that all Christians should be able to speak in tongues. That idea that he passed on to me ended years of sleepless nights and torment, but hey, I have to follow God rather than man! Besides, Keith Butler is down with Kenneth Copeland anyway.

I just wanted to hear some uptempo music with a beat while driving around. So I got my long – neglected copy of “O2.” Man, I used to LOVE that album, the music was GENIUS! Intro … who cares. First track … boring. Second track … boring. Third track … well, I never really liked it to begin with. I know … I will just go straight to my favorite … track 15, the one that I would go to when I absolutely positively NEEDED to start speaking in tongues … TUMBLIN’! It was not as good as I remembered, but it was getting the job done. UNTIL I got to the point where Tonex states “Want the anointing gotta go through something.” This was after “Name it claim it.”

By this time, I was aware that the “anointing” that I had been so zealously seeking and pledging my loyalty to ministers based on their possessing it? Well first of all, “to anoint” means (roughly) “to choose.” Jesus Christ? Christ comes from “Christos” in Greek (though some transliterate it differently) which means “the Anointed One.” Or “the Chosen One.” So … the way that this Christian scene had been trading around this term, as if it was some special spiritual quality whose possession was so powerful and rare that it compensated for their false doctrines and practices, extramarital affairs, criminal acts, FAILED PROPHECIES, etc. was clearly exploiting people who were unaware of how the Bible actually generally used the word (there is only one usage that can justify how it is commonly used today), and such exploited people generally did not check the concordance that appears helpfully appended to the back of many Bibles to find out for themselves (as I did not).

Also, “anointing” was being used as a shorthand for “gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit.” So why not just say “gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit?” Because

1. the Bible makes it clear that gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit cannot be bought with money, as Peter told Simon the magician in Acts. Which also means that it cannot be EARNED through works, which includes tithing, “sowing seed offerings”, etc.

2. gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit are given to all believers according to the Holy Spirit’s discretion. So no Christian has special status based on which gifts he has. To the limited extent to which a Christian has over which gift he receives, he is to “earnestly seek the best gifts”, which are NOT the ones that the current Christian environment esteems.

3. Fruits of the Holy Spirit (i.e. charity) are more important than the gifts of the Holy Spirit. One of the things that I threw away was a DVD by Jesse DuPlantis on fruits of the Holy Spirit that CONTAINED NO ACTUAL INFORMATION AT ALL. Maturity, power, and effectiveness of service in a Christian come by virtue of the fruits, not the gifts, and particularly not the sign gifts.

4. There are no “special anointings”, “double and triple portions”, or special “spirits” (i.e. a warrior spirit or an Esther anointing or a Mary spirit). There is only the Holy Spirit. One Lord. One Faith. One Baptism. At the very most, you can claim to have similar gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit as another believer, and even there one must have sound consistent Biblical and doctrinal basis – and exhibit evidence that can be confirmed by the witness of two or more believers in good standing – before claiming such.

5. The Holy Spirit is a permanent indwelling of every single believer. There are no “temporary anointings” which the people that dance out of their clothes, overturn chairs and pews, steamroll small children, and kick and elbow people trying to restrain them purport to need in order to receive their healing, their deliverance, their breakthrough, their blessing, or (as I was taught in the church that I grew up in) to provide evidence that your saying the sinner’s prayer “actually worked.” Yes, some people had to go to the altar call several times on successive weeks, say the sinner’s prayer each time, shout and dance each time, speak in tongues each time, etc. before the pastor declared their salvation experience to be legitimate.

6. the Bible declares that those who purport to possess the Holy Spirit must show evidence by continuously living a Godly lifestyle of humility and obedience, including preachers (and hip/hop gospel singers) whose sermon lyrics are reflected in their character and lives. Obviously possessing “anointings” is not encumbered with this same requirement.

7. The Holy Spirit is God, which brings discipline and order. Pastors with “great anointings”, however, tend to have great confusion not only in their church services, but also in their financial dealings and personal lives.

8. Related to 6. and the most important, it is LOVE that covers a multitude of transgressions (not to be mistaken for a continuous sinful lifestyle or willful rejection of Bible doctrines), not an “anointing.” Please note that what is often taken for “anointing” are things like skillful preaching ability, amazing church growth, tongues, casting out devils, healing, etc. are associated with the gifts of the Holy Spirit (and not the edifying gifts, or “the best gifts” that we should earnestly seek at that … people with the gift of giving or the gift of helps are rarely considered to have a powerful anointing and call on their lives!). Love, meanwhile, is a fruit of the Holy Spirit.

So, I removed Anthony “Tonex” Williams’ from my radio, and will probably throw it out in the garbage when I get home. Speaking of Tonex, for your viewing pleasure, he will illustrate what I have just told you – including information about my past that is 100% true – in the video clip below where he discusses the nature of “the anointing.” He states that one does not have to be a believer in Jesus Christ to understand it or benefit from it, and compares the anointing of Michael Jackson (for whom he is a paid music producer) to the anointing of Benny Hinn.

In closing, notice all of the things related to spiritual warfare, casting out demons, that I feature prominently. One of the reasons why I was so loyal to Tonex was that it was very effective to play his music while casting out evil spirits. Nevertheless, his music must be cast aside by me, because the video below makes explicit why we have to follow God rather than men.

Update from AndyB: He identified for me the source of all of this charismatic “anointing” confusion. It is a sole passage: 1 John 2:20-27, which employs the Greek word “chrisma”, which is sometimes translated as “unction.” (I suppose that when I would “goose myself” to speak in tongues, I was providing my own “unction”?) Here is the link to what the word ACTUALLY MEANS in the online BlueLetterBible Concordance. And here is AndyB’s context of the word: “And here I thought the anointing (”unction”) we received in the form of the Holy Spirit was the ability to discern God’s truth from the world’s cheap imitations. 1 John 2:20-21

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