At the end of March 2020 we received a report about what happened following a meeting of pastors and leaders in Bandung, the third largest city in Indonesia which is the world’s fourth most populous country. After this gathering nineteen of the servants of God in attendance came down with the coronavirus and subsequently all nineteen passed away. Some of them were pastors of large churches. The natural question is of course why this shocking turn of events was allowed by the Lord.
We do not know the details, but we were told that during the meeting among other things the servants of God were anointed with oil in various ways—in order to receive the Lord’s “anointing” to minister to others in supernatural ways. In charismatic streams of the Church today, “the anointing” is highly sought after. Once we have received the “anointing” from the Holy Spirit, various miracles will take place in our ministries as we minister to God’s people—sometimes eye-popping miracles. These miracles will of course draw the attention of people to us, and our ministries will grow. This has in fact been fulfilled in the ministries of quite a few servants of God in the Church today.
However, this “special anointing” given to certain servants of God to minister to others in supernatural ways is not at all taught in New Testament scripture. A careful study of the New Testament leads to the conclusion that only our Lord Jesus Christ had such an anointing—that is, to minister to others supernaturally.
Yes, every believer is in fact anointed—but not to minister to others. The only two anointings for believers taught in the New Testament are the anointing which teaches us about all things so that we all know the truth (1 John 2:27), and the anointing as a seal of God’s ownership over us to guarantee our heavenly inheritance (2 Corinthians 1:21-22). Therefore this anointing, given actually to the entire Church, actually ministers to us. All other supernatural anointings of the Holy Spirit found in the New Testament were reserved for our Lord Jesus Christ who came to save, to heal, to deliver, to restore, and to make whole—that is, to minister to others supernaturally. Only Jesus can save. Such an anointing is reserved for Deity alone—the Son of God.
“The anointing” as taught in some charismatic circles lacks support from scripture and goes beyond the word of God in the New Testament. Could that be why the nineteen Indonesian servants of God were allowed to die from the virus? We do not know the definitive answer, but it is a question we must consider seriously in view of what happened.
Leviticus 10:1 Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihu took their censers, put fire in them and added incense; and they offered unauthorized fire before the Lord, contrary to his command. 2 So fire came out from the presence of the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord.
Here we see that even the sons of Aaron the brother of Moses died before their Lord when they offered “unauthorized fire” before the Lord, contrary to his command and his word. We New Testament believers must also be careful to follow closely the commands and the word of the Lord. Only the Lord knows why his nineteen servants were allowed to die right after that March 2020 gathering in Indonesia. But nevertheless it would behoove us during these critical Last Days to fear the Lord, to rightly divide his word, and to follow his commands closely. Let us New Testament believers do exactly what the Lord commands us to do in New Testament scripture—no more, and no less.
We have studied the anointing in the Old Testament as well, and our overall conclusions from both New and Old Testaments can be found in “The Anointing” Revisited.
New Testament Scripture instead teaches that believers have been given supernatural power and authority—which are separate and distinct from “the anointing”—to heal the sick and cast out demons when proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom of God.
N. B. We are not saying that every servant of God who somewhere in the world passes away due to the virus believes in “the anointing.”
The tragic story of Ezekiel, an “anointed” servant of God