First things first. Let’s define our terms.
What is Forensics? At its root, it simply means an argumentative exercise. The plural ‘forensics’ is the art or study of argumentative discourse. Don’t be put off by the negative connotation of the word ‘argumentative,’ because in forensics the outcome is usually for the better. The examination of evidence, the solving of a crime, or the exposing of a false claim, can bring reconciliation, peace, and hold people accountable for their actions. The discourse in forensics is not one based on emotions like anger or envy, but focused on a conversation with the evidence, and it’s usually corporate; meaning that there are numbers of people involved in the process who perform different functions and are committed as a unit to finding out the truth.
What is pneumatology? Well, for people of faith, it is the study of the Holy Spirit, His attributes, nature, character, and actions.
If we were to bring them together, ‘Forensic Pneumatology’ would be the art of healthy discourse that examines the teachings about, and the manifestations of the Holy Spirit to determine if they are indeed from God. Before you think that examining the evidence with regard the things Holy Spirit is preposterous or prideful, you must ask if a biblical precedent has been set.
I think that there can be little doubt that Christian believers must ‘test the spirits.’
“Beloved, do not believe all spirits, but be distinguishing between the spirits whether they are from God, because many false Prophets have gone out into the world.” (1 John 4:1) Aramaic Bible in Plain English
We are to ‘try’ (put on trial) the spirits or supposed movements and actions of the Holy Spirit. We are to forensically, mutually, and corporately determine whether or not manifestations or movements are of God or not. We are to use the parameters revealed in the Scriptures. Whether you like it or not, the Holy Spirit will never act in a manner which contradicts His divinely breathed revelation about himself.
There are forensic pathologists, those who work with evidence to determine causes of death, there are forensic criminologists, folks who can identify and predict psychological, sociological, and economic characteristics that may lead people to commit crimes, there are forensic scientists that work with ‘trace evidences’ left behind after a variety of physical events, and myriad of other forensic specialists. So why not forensic pneumatologists or those that faithfully examine ‘trace evidences’ of spiritual events?
There’s so much BS in supposed moves and manifestations of the Spirit today that it is impossible to keep up with them all, but that doesn’t mean that we can sit idly by in our own spheres of influence and not challenge the crap. Contrary to popular belief, the Spirit doesn’t need a spectacle or show to ‘show up.’ He doesn’t need a little ‘fudging of the evidence’ to get people worked up so that He can manifest His glory. The list could go on…
Isn’t it past time that those who call themselves the church systematically examine, prove, question, doubt, call to account, and examine spiritual trace evidence (fruit) with more intensity and honesty?
Isn’t it time to call BS on the majority of things that people claim to be moves of the Spirit where there is no lasting fruit and NO DISCIPLES MADE?
Where are the Forensic Pneumatologists of our day?