Dr S H Tow
Taken from notes given in Tabernacle BPC’s Church Camp 2006
(With editions)

What It Is Not

The Charismatic experience of “Holy Spirit Renewal” is commonly marked by a
life filled with thrills, euphoria, excitement, and personal happiness. There is much
stress on freedom from earthly troubles, sickness and material want. Great emphasis
is placed on “slayings, healings, signs and wonders, tongues and miracles”. By and
large, there is little serious study of God’s Word (with exceptions) and submissions
to the truth. Lifestyles remain largely unchanged. Preservation of pure doctrine is
of small account. Charismatic meetings commonly bring together believers with
unbelievers, evangelicals with Roman Catholics, Bible-believing Christians with
Bible-denying Christ-dishonouring liberals and modernists. These come together
and acclaim, “Hallelujah! We are one in Christ!” Great impetus is given by the
Charismatics to the Ecumenical Movement. The whole scenario is marked by
confusion and perversion of the truth. It is not of the Holy Spirit.

The Biblical Pattern

The Biblical pattern of the Spirit-filled life is well-defined, leaving no room for
speculation. We see this pattern exemplified in seven areas:

Holy Living and Fruit Bearing

This is marked by sorrow for sin, hunger and thirst for righteousness, a renewed and
Christ-honouring lifestyle of sanctification and separation from sin and the world.
Appetite for spiritual things. Regular quiet time. Fruit-bearing for Christ is evident
(Gal. 5:22-23).

Fervent Service for God

This is no burden but a blessed privilege. There is new zeal and fervour in worship,
keeping the Lord’s Day holy, attendance at Prayer Meeting, and fellowshipping
with God’s people. God’s Kingdom takes priority in life. Toiling for Jesus becomes
a joy.

Heavenly Attitude to Things

The material world and its attractions lose their grip. The Spirit-filled person
has transferred his affection from things on earth to things above (Col. 3:2).
He views the world and its material wealth with an eye of detachment for he
desires a better country (Heb. 11:6).

Burden for the Lost

The vision of lost souls rushing to Christless eternity in hell stirs in him a holy
zeal to win souls for the Kingdom. He is fired with evangelistic fervour. Woe is
unto me if I preach not the Gospel (1 Cor. 9:16), for I am a debtor (Rom. 1:14).

Steadfast Christian Life

Love of truth takes priority over all other considerations (e.g. popularity, selfish
benefits, friendships, expediency). The Spirit-filled believer is not afraid to
declare all the counsel of God (Acts 20:27), to warn against doctrinal error (Acts
20:28-31), to rebuke false teaching (2 Tim. 4:2-4) and to separate from apostasy
(2 Cor. 6:14-18). He gives maximum importance to the purity of doctrine (1 Tim.
4:13-16). He earnestly contends for the faith (Jude 3). Therefore, he will not
fellowship and be part with the Charismatic or Ecumenical Movement (2 Cor.
6:14; Eph. 5:11). Remember: The Holy Spirit is the SPIRIT OF TRUTH (Jn.
14:17; 15:26; 16:13).

Looking For That Blessed Hope

For our citizenship is in heaven from whence also we look for the Saviour (Phil.
3:20). Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God
and our Saviour Jesus Christ (Tit. 2:13).

Question: Are you filled with the SPIRIT OF GOD or the spirit of the world?


“And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the
Spirit;” (Eph. 5:18)

This passage is often used to argue that it is fine to drink in moderation so long as
it is not in “excess”. However, the term translated “excess” here is translated
from the Greek term asotia. It refers to a lifestyle that is wasteful, profligate,
riotous and full of debauchery. This same term is used to describe the prodigal
son in Luke 15:13 who wasted his life away.

This passage is thus a warning of what can happen when one is drunk with wine.
It can lead one to be riotous in his conduct, engaging in much sin and
debauchery. Instead of filling oneself with the wine spirit, a Christian should
instead be filled with the Holy Spirit. It should not be used to justify drinking in

“Be Godly: Single or Married”

As young people grow, they will naturally be interested in finding a life partner. However, if
one does not understand the theology of marriage, he or she can easily fall into sin. The
pressure of staying single instead of waiting on the Lord’s timing can easily lead one to rush
head-on into a marriage which leads to tons of regret when consummated. One may even be
involved in an unequally yoked marriage which is prohibited by the Lord (2 Cor. 6:14).
On the other hand, the Lord may have called some to singlehood. However, the pressures of
society seem to form a thinking that being single for too long is bad. Those who remain
single may also not be aware of the purpose of the Lord for calling them to singlehood.
It is with these issues in mind that I heartily recommend members, parents and young
people, to hear the ongoing series of messages of the Sunset Gospel Hour of Calvary Pandan
Bible-Presbyterian Church online. It is not possible for us to attend the SGH due to the
timing of our worship services. However, technology has made it possible for us to hear
these messages in the comfort of our homes. May we know the biblical teaching on these
issues well, that we may not fall into the pitfall of the devil.

I have reproduced the write-up of the series by Calvary Pandan BPC as an encouragement
for all to learn concerning this theme.

“Society seems to think that it is not good to be single. Getting married appears to be the
general norm. If one is not married, he feels the silent pressure to find a life partner.
Websites and other avenues of finding a spouse are 21st-century approaches to solving the
singlehood problem. They promote the blessings of marriage that include having
companionship and a family; problems are halved; joys are doubled; the richness of family
life is amazing; one has to be married to experience it.

“But we know that the reality is not so idyllic. Divorce is on the rise, and Christians are not
immune to the plague of divorce. Marriage brings many problems that a single person does
not have. Some who are married might wish they are single again, even as the single wish to
be married. A single person will also have blessings and problems in life. One of the
problems is loneliness. One of the blessings is the freedom to do what he likes without the
consideration of married life responsibilities.

“The issue of being single or married is always a concern. “The grass is greener on the
other side” perspective controls the heart at times.”

“A biblical perspective on this crucial issue is long overdue. It is my prayer for all
believers, whether you are single or married, that you will seek to be godly which will help
you to live holy lives for Christ, especially in these last days.”

Yours affectionately,
Pastor Clement Chew