Soaking in the Presence of God

Recently I was sent a video of counterfeit manifestations that are happening within the body of Christ. There were scenes of people going through fire tunnels and people laying hands on each other which caused the people to fall about in drunkenness, shaking and trances.  There was also a mention of counterfeit soaking in the presence of God.  Soaking in the presence of God is something I do, so I decided to learn more about this to see if I was entering into something that was not Biblical.  My version of soaking is simply reading the word, putting on worship music and inviting Jesus to share His heart with me.  I tell Him that I am being like Mary sitting at His feet so we can spend time together, and that I am ready to listen to His words and experience His manifest presence.  In these times sometimes nothing happens, other times I get words or visions and other times I feel His manifest presence which is usually a manifestation of His love toward me.

What does the word soak mean?  An act of immersing someone or something in liquid for a period of time.  I decided to do a google search to see if the practice of soaking was Biblical.  What I found was that there are different practices of soaking. One type of soaking prayer involves a trance like meditative or contemplative state in which the person is encouraged to empty their mind so they can enter into an altered state of consciousness.  This type of practice is not Biblical. Stillness of the mind means to meditate in an attempt to achieve altered consciousness, which can allow you to have new insights. The Bible says to guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus and to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ. Casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5, NKJV). Under control means to be submitted to Christ. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8, NKJV).  Bringing your mind into a passive mental state of consciousness and emptying it of all thoughts means that your mind is unprotected. Only with a blank mind can new age practitioners begin to influence you to their religious ideas and belief systems.  It is no coincidence that satan wants you to be relaxed and in a different state of consciousness (i.e., not sober-minded), as it is the same technique that psychiatrists and psychologists use to try to hypnotize someone!  The Bible warns us to be sober-minded, not in an altered or super-relaxed state of consciousness. Godly meditation is focusing on Jesus and His glory; focusing on His laws and commands, and praising Him.  The term meditate in Scripture in Hebrew is Hagah and means to meditate, mourn, speak, imagine, study, mutter, utter. In Greek it is Meletao and means premeditate, imagine, meditate. 1) To care for, attend to carefully, practise. Biblical meditation is having our minds actively engaged and focused on God's word. Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you (James 4:7, NKJV). Resistance is key to staying sober in mind. To do this one needs to be aware of their surroundings and thinking.

I could clearly see that this form of soaking was not Biblical but what about what I was doing? I could see that many were teaching against all forms of soaking but Jesus had often encouraged me to soak in His presence. If soak is to immerse in something for a period of time then surely immersing ourselves in the presence of Jesus is good?  Some of those who were speaking against this practice would say that Jesus is in us, and this is a faith walk so we don’t need to actively seek out or experience His manifest presence.  I asked God about this and this is what I believe I heard the Holy Spirit speak; “To immerse yourself in Jesus is all about communion with Him.  The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? (1 Corinthians 10:16, KJV). The word communion in this passage is Koinonia in Greek and means fellowship, communion, communication, distribution, contribution, to communicate. 1) fellowship, association, community, communion, joint participation, intercourse 1a) the share which one has in anything, participation 1b) intercourse, fellowship, intimacy 1b1) the right hand as a sign and pledge of fellowship (in fulfilling the apostolic office) 1c) a gift jointly contributed, a collection, a contribution, as exhibiting an embodiment and proof of fellowship.

He continued, “Although Christianity is a faith walk believers need to constantly be in the presence of Jesus. There is a difference between having Jesus in the form of the Holy Spirit within you and ‘being in His presence’.  How do you activate His presence?  You commune with Him. Make yourself available to Him and spend time with Him. You worship Him and you praise Him. Don’t take your eyes of Him and make your focus all about Him. The world and all its worries can make you take your eyes of Him.  Setting aside time to focus, meditate, commune and experience His presence is both Biblical and refreshing.  It is all about entering into fellowship with Him. Jesus would take Himself away and commune with the Father.  We are to mirror His ways. The disciples would spend time fellowshipping in His presence and He even commended Mary for sitting at His feet so she could listen to what He was saying. If one does not sit in His presence and put aside time just for Him it can stunt or hinder your spiritual growth.  There are many practices that teach ‘soaking’ that is based on new age meditative practices. Avoid these! Other practices may teach or display how to enter in and experience His manifest presence. In this scenario ‘feeling Him’ and being caught up in physical manifestations is the goal. Seeking out His manifest presence should not be the focus or the goal.  This focus or desire is seeking to please the flesh rather than seeking to know His heart. If the goal is to obtain a supernatural experience rather than a fellowship experience this can open the door for deceiving spirits to enter. God can and does cause you to experience His manifest presence but it is in His timing and in His way. Seeking God for these purposes is wrong.  God is not in the entertainment business but the devil is only too happy to oblige. Another example of this is the movement where you see groups of people seeking manifestations of drunkenness, holy laughter, shaking and trances. God can and does cause Godly manifestations but it is for a purpose and not when the desire is to seek a sign and a wonder for entertainment purposes.” Pause and wonder! Blind yourselves and be blind! They are drunk, but not with wine; They stagger, but not with intoxicating drink. For the LORD has poured out on you the spirit of deep sleep, And has closed your eyes, namely, the prophets; And He has covered your heads, namely, the seers (Isaiah 29:9-10, NKJV).

We see by this Scripture that those who are after these things with a wrong heart motive are given a deceptive spirit (a spirit of deep sleep) which can pave the way for more deception to enter.

(PRAYER) – “Father, Son and Holy Spirit I love You and I love experiencing Your supernatural presence.  I repent for the times that I have put wanting to see, hear and feel You ahead of just knowing You and developing a friendship with You.  I am sorry also that I have sought You for fleshly reasons that were about me and not about You and Your heart.  I repent for entering into counterfeit practices that were about seeking signs, wonders, miracles and Your manifest presence. If I have received demonic spirits through seeking these practices I repent and command them to leave me immediately in Jesus name.  Please show me always when counterfeit practices and fleshly desires are operating so I can turn away from them. Help me to cultivate a loving relationship with You in a correct and Godly manner.  Help me to stay grounded and not to get overly focused and carried away in Your signs, wonders, miracles and displays of Your manifest presence. Keep me focused on what is important, You, Your heart, our friendship, loving others and the call of God over my life. I speak to the spirit of deep sleep and command you to go in Jesus name.  Thank You Lord Jesus, Amen.”

By Tania Francis


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