Q04 for Bryan: The Extent of Abuse

If it is possible to abuse the sign gifts, using a broad brush, how would we size up the global adherents of the sign gifts? Asked another way, if you and I agree that some people today abuse this doctrine and others are faithful to it, what's the ratio of orthodox to unorthodox practitioners in the world today? How would we measure that?

So, how many, on the earth, who practice the gifts, abuse them? And, how many don't? How would I go about measuring that?

Other than to say I think everyone--whether those who practice them long enough and step out and take "risks", or those who despise them (unfaithful?), all abuse/misuse them on some level, I really have no idea. I can barely use a tape measure. And I occasionally count with my fingers and then look around to see if anyone noticed. Even with a broad brush wouldn't this number change depending on what is considered to be abusive and unorthodox? For sure there are degrees of abuse here, some obviously more severe than others.    

Any "sizing up" and "measuring" would imply that we have something that can be measured. If "unorthodox" and "faithful" and "abusive" are not adequately defined, I don't see how this is really possible to determine. But if "orthodox" means perfect practice with no misuse, I'm afraid no-one will ever qualify for that definition.    

Even if we can agree that a working definition of unorthodoxy on this issue at least includes: 

1. Charismatics who believe in and preach the prosperity gospel, practice immature blasphemous charismaticism (attribute to the Holy Spirit words He did not say and works He did not produce)


2. Hard cessationism that neglects and despises the gifts, attributes genuine works of the Holy Spirit to Satan, and recruits others to do the same, 

I'd still have no idea what the ratio is of those groups and those that have best managed to avoid those two errors, or how to measure it. 

I can speak more confidently with what I've observed in the churches I've been a part of and what I have observed in my own heart as I've sought to hear from the Lord and practice the gifts. And I can probably couldn't count on both hands the number of times I feel like I've made "misteaks" in my
"practice" of the gifts and/or realized how far I have to go in growing in to the mature love and godliness that the gifts should piggyback on.