How can you tell an anointed speaker?
How can you tell when a public speaker is anointed of God? That is a question that has visited most of us from time to time. Especially when listening to a message that is rather dry and un-entertaining. We question, “Is anyone getting anything from this? Am I wasting my time listening?” We wonder where is God and how does He look upon this message?
Personally, I have learned to be very very careful when criticizing God’s people. I too have fought my battles with criticism. A few years ago the Lord gave me a very sobering verse of scripture that spoke to me about this very issue, as He drew my attention to:
Proverbs 24:15 NLT Do not lie in wait like an outlaw at the home of the godly. And don’t raid the house where the godly live.
This was of course, a very personal message from My Lord to me and He was telling me that by my consistent criticism of His people I was in fact stealing their blessings and He considered me a thief. As you can image that sobered me up and put some needed fear of God in my heart to be very cautious when finding fault with his people. He is a merciful God and is not interesting in finding fault and neither should we.
Getting back to the question, How can you tell when a public speaker is anointed of God? First let me give you my opinion on what it is NOT.
When we think of an anointed speaker we usually think of the speaker’s delivery. But I think that is a huge mistake. I seriously doubt that Jesus had the type of delivery we usually associate with great speakers (of course there is no way knowing), but we do know that one of the most famous sermons in American history was from Jonathan Edwards – Sinners In The Hands Of An Angry God – and he read the sermon from a written manuscript. They say the message was so anointed that people in the congregation grabbed the back of pew in front of them as they felt themselves slipping into hell.
From the book: Sinners In The Hands Of An Angry God:
“As Edwards preached, strong men and women held onto the pews and cried out for mercy, pleading with the preacher, ‘Is there no way of escape?’ Hundreds were converted as they heard that sermon…”
To me the answer is rather simple, though it is not for me to judge, a speaker is anointed of God when two things occur.
- His words are not his own but coming from above.
- Jesus is walking among the listeners and speaking to their hearts.
P.S. In my opinion, I do think we are living way way way beneath our privilege in Christ. But is that because our preachers are failing us or because God is sending us preachers we deserve? or both? I am really not sure. What do you think?