The Witness of the Spirit - Needed Now.

The Dove, our symbol of the HOLY SPIRIT.

By David Wilkerson


Author of   'The Cross & The Switchblade'

&  Founder of Global Christian Rehabilitation Centre  'Teen Challenge'




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And it is the Spirit that bares witness,  because the Spirit is truth”  (1 John 5:6)


Several years ago people had been raving about a ‘successful crusade’  being held in a suburban church, by two young male evangelists.  Invited I finally went, unaware I was about to endure a terrible experience!  Called a ‘powerful evangelistic team’,  one preached and the other sang and played the organ.  But as I watched, something inside me began to twitch.  I felt a strange uneasiness.  Before the young preacher began his message, he hyped up the audience.  He had a beautiful set of boxed gifts he gave out each night to the person who brought the most visitors.  His preaching was nothing but one exciting story after another. The crowd loved it – but I got nauseated! Now the uneasiness inside me spoke loud and clear: “This is not of God – It’s all flesh!  There is something evil going on. The Holy Spirit is not here. Those two young evangelists are gay – and they’re fooling everyone!”


I was sick that night, grieved beyond all words – all because the witness of the Spirit was working in me. The Pastor was so excited about the big crowds that he’s shaken off all discernment.  The people loved this flesh – show because they had blinded themselves spiritually – they were simply following the pastor!

Later I saw those two evangelists at an airport.  This time the Spirit’s witness told me to confront them. After greetings – with no malice- I said, ‘I know what you two boys are – you’re homosexuals.  Please quit mocking the Lord! Get another job. God won’t let you get away with this charade. I don’t want to have to expose you!’  They were unconcerned.


A few years passed; I was in northern Canada for a crusade.  Late after a service one night I was hungry, so my host drove me to a remote restaurant. As we walked in, who did we see at a table, entertaining two very effeminate men?  It was the two evangelists! How shocked the were. They knew they’d been caught! Soon they were exposed and left the ministry. The Holy Spirit confirmed what he had shown me years earlier!  Yet what frightened me most about the ordeal was that all the pastors of large churches that had invited these young men to speak never discerned what they were. Not one had the witness of the Spirit to expose it all!


A so-called ‘powerful evangelist’  was holding his sixth week of meetings at a large Pentecostal church in a Southern City.  This time my wife Gwen and I slipped into the balcony unnoticed – and what a show we saw! The evangelist came out like a nightclub performer, wearing a red -plaid, sequinned jacket.  The crowd applauded when he was introduced.  Startled I immediately turned to Gwen and said “Honey, that’s the biggest phoney who ever stepped into a pulpit!”


Initially he merely pranced about the stage, joking and flattering the crowd.  Then down amongst the audience he kissed a few women, imploring their husbands not to be jealous. I thought “He’s a showman, he doesn’t know God at all!”


His preaching, too,  consisted of one incredible story after another- and the crowd was awestruck.  He said    “I was sitting in a barber shop when the vice president came in and sat in the seat next to mine. Surprised he knew my name he said to me ‘Brother Billy Bob, the President and I have heard all about your great meetings. Please stop in next time you’re in the capital.’   I said to Gwen,  “Honey, he’s telling great big

 fibs!”  But everyone was clapping and going crazy!  The grey-haired pastor was eating it all up and the big crowd was feasting on the outrageous lies!


 Gwen and I left and all the way to the car I had to hold my stomach. It was not a physical pain, rather it was a deep, inner groaning, an unexplainable hurt.  It was the witness of the Spirit again – showing me the difference between the Holy and the profane.


God had given that pastor what he coveted;  a packed house and big crowds. But it had cost him the Witness of the Spirit!  He was blinded – he’d lost  all discernment!  Every Spirit-filled person who lived a holy life in that church recognised the scam in the first five minutes – and walked out!  With the inner witness of the Spirit,  they could not stand to be in that mans presence.



Sometimes the Holy Ghost won’t let you sit still!



There are times when the Holy Ghost’s inner witness will not allow me to keep quiet.  The Spirit rises within me and I have to speak up, loudly exposing the flesh and the Devil!


A Christian rock group begged me to attend their outdoor concert.  I went and most of what I heard was merely okay – all loud drums and unintelligible music.  Then towards the end, the smoke machines went on and the lights began to flash – and the crowd went into a frenzy!  Looking up I saw hoards of demons flying off the stage and hovering above the whole congregation. At that point I fell backwards to the ground, literally stricken by the Holy Spirit. The witness within me was saying:

‘This is Ichobod!  The glory of the Lord has departed.’  Suddenly the Holy Ghost took over my voice.  I got up and ran throughout the whole place, knocking over chairs and crying out ‘Ichobod stop it – It’s the devil’  but nobody cared!


When I got home I fell on the living room floor,  doubled up, groaning and weeping!

That night into the wee hours I cried  ‘Oh God, for all those preachers, staffers, parents, teenagers – and none of them could see it was flesh, that Satan was manifesting!  Oh Lord, am I the crazy one?  Why was I so stirred? Why did I run through the crown like a fool?  It was the Holy Ghost in me - bearing witness to truth!  “Even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot see, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him, but you know him; for he dwelleth with you and shall be in you”  John 14 17.


The Holy Spirit abides in us to reveal to us what is true and what is false.  He speaks with a still small voice, deep within the heart.  Many of our holy forefathers believed in this operation of the Spirit in believers. They preached much about ‘having the witness’.  But I don’t hear this truth being preached anymore.  In fact ‘the witness of the Spirit’ is virtually unheard of in most churches today!


Yet the fact is, believers need the Spirit’s witness as never before – and more and more as the day of the Lord draws near! Satan has come brazenly as an angel of light to deceive,  if it were possible the very elect of God.  His evil seductions will flourish; false doctrines, false teachers, false gospels.  Even now, multitudes are being swept away by false gospels – captivated by wicked false prophets and corrupt teachers!


But you can have the Holy Ghost’s witness in you – to help you know whether what you are hearing is right or wrong, truth or lies! With his witness at work in your heart, you can listen to any teaching tape, go to any meeting, read any book – and know without a shadow of a doubt what’s pure and what’s unholy.  You can walk in the assurance that you will not be deceived by any wickedness!

You see the Spirit’s inner witness operates on the principle of peace.  The peace of God is the greatest thing you can have. If it is disturbed, you can be sure the Holy Ghost is speaking to you!  When there is a troubling in your spirit, a shaking and a turmoil deep inside – God is telling you something is false.  You will feel his embarrassment – his grief and anger!  You may say I already have the Holy Spirit living in me, but I want His witness in my heart. How can I get it?



  1. The Holy Ghost Witness can operate only in a humble, pure vessel in which the peace of God reigns!


“And let the peace of God rule in your heart”  (Col 3:15)  Sin brings turmoil to the heart. And any hidden sin will rob a believer of his precious peace!  His heart will be torn by guilt, condemnation and fear – and the Spirit will speak only two words to him, “ Repent Flea!”

Yes, the Spirit will speak to you to correct you;  he will deal with you about sin, righteousness and judgement.  But when it comes to giving you direction – that is ‘the still small voice’  which tells you what to do and where to go – He will not operate in an unclean vessel!


If you persist in sin – if you do not confess it or deal with it – your heart will feed you a steady stream of lies.  You’ll hear teachings that make you at ease in your sin,  You’ll think  

“My problem couldn’t be that bad, I don’t feel convicted”  But you will be totally led astray! Isaiah speaks of people claiming to desire the full counsel of God.  “Let Him make speed and hasten His work;  and let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw nigh and come,  that we may know it!  (Isiah 5:19)


But these people had deceit in their hearts – and they ended up perverted in all their counsel! Sin had perverted their judgement! As a result, they weren’t able to discern evil.  And the things that were holy and pure they called unrighteous.  Isaiah said of them,  “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil: that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter” (verse 20)


A minister acquaintance warned me not to listen to a certain Bible preacher.  “That man is preaching the worst false doctrine!  Stay away or it will destroy you.  He’s dangerous!”

This man raged against that teacher, but when I heard the teacher on tape, my heart leaped within me.  Peace flooded my soul!  I kept waiting for the dangerous part – but the message was all about walking in holiness and having a pure heart.  Each tape I got was sweeter than the one before!  I thought,  how could anybody say this is dangerous or evil?”


That minister had really believed his accusations.  I believe a voice had spoken to him – not God’s voice but the voice of his own flesh,  because he was being convicted of his own sins!  Messages on holiness and purity had touched something deep within him and made him angry.  He totally misjudged! Why?  Because sin had blinded him!  He had compromised somehow, and the spirit of the world had crept into him.  Jesus said those who are of this world cannot hear the voice of the Spirit,  “whom the world cannot receive,  because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him”


Don’t choose to be influenced by someone-else’s ‘witness’  Whenever I’m told something evil or reproachful about another,  I want to meet the accused.  Often it is that person’s pure devotion to God that provokes the sinners heart!

2  There can be no inner voice of the Spirit in a Proud Believer!

Let me distinguish clearly between pride and humility.  A humble person is not one that thinks little of himself, hangs his head and says, “I’m nothing”.  Rather, he is one who depends wholly on the Lord for everything,  in every circumstance.  He knows the Lord has to direct him, empower him – and that he’s dead without that!  He says “I won’t do anything until I get the mind of God.  I will not act until he commands!”


A proud person,  on the other hand, is one who may love God in a fashion,  but he acts and thinks on his own.  At it’s root,  pride is simply independence from God.  The proud person makes decisions based on his own reasoning, skill and abilities.  He says “God gave me a good mind and he expects me to use it.  It’s silly to ask him for direction in every detail of life.”  This person is unteachable because he already ‘knows it all’.  He might listen to someone higher in authority or better known than himself – but not someone he thinks inferior.  I know this to be true;  at one time it described me!

I was a high-flying young evangelist, known all over the world.   I could have listened to some well-known man of God, but seldom to an unknown, uneducated person!  Any young preacher coming into my office to tell me something got 5 minutes of my time before he was escorted out. I reckoned,  I’ve got all this experience.  I’ve been through such deep waters.  Unless  equally experienced, they have nothing to say to me”


In recent years I’ve thought God had dealt a death-blow to this attitude.  Then something happened recently that made me see I may still have some of it!

Sent a teaching tape by a man I’d never heard of,  I took it home and listened for about fifteen minutes.  I realised this unknown man was speaking the truth.  The witness of the spirit told me I was listening to a truly holy, humble man.  Then the speaker spoke of having no education, of studying no books; only the Spirit had taught him.  The only book he’d studied for the last fifteen years was his Bible.  “This man”  I thought,  “Can’t teach me anything.  I’m an avid reader – I’ve read entire volumes of the Puritans and all the great missionaries’ lives.  But he’s never read a book!”  So I shut off the tape.  Then the Spirit’s witness spoke to me clearly  “Turn it back on.  He has much to teach you!”   Now I’ve ordered six more of his tapes and his book – and I’ve been greatly blessed! Yet my blinding pride would have robbed me of something God had meant for my growth!


You can easily know a proud person by his Fruits


Not one word a proud person receives is of God!  He cannot judge righteous judgement – he cannot speak God’s mind – because the Holy Spirit is not present in him to bear witness to truth.  “There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.  (Proverbs 14:12).


You may wonder, “How can a person who is filled with the Holy Ghost hear strange voices instead of the Spirits,   Consider King Saul – a prime example of pride,  who insisted on doing things his own ways!

God also had commanded Saul to slay the Amalekites.  But again Saul did things his way.  When the battle was over he spared King Agag.  Samuel rebuked Saul for this,  asking ‘Why did you not obey God and kill him?”  Saul answered,  “Because I feared the people”  Again human wisdom!


The bible says,  “But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him. And Saul’s servants  said unto him.  “Behold now an evil spirit from the Lord troubleth thee (1 Sam 16  14-15)   Saul was troubled – he had no peace!  Everybody could see it in him.  He had a troubled look,  an angry spirit. Another spirit had began speaking to his inner man – and it was a witness from Hell!  Saul constantly heard voices imitating God.  They told him to kill David.  They said his own son was a traitor;  his own bodyguards were plotting against him too. ‘No one loves you, everybody is against you’  Saul became full of envy, hatred, anxiety, fear!


Can a Holy Ghost-empowered person lose the Spirit, be given over to an evil spirit, and yet continue preaching and prophesying?  Yes.  Saul had been Spirit empowered:  ‘..And the Spirit of the Lord came upon Saul..” (1 Sam 11:6) .  Then we read that ‘..The Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul...’ (16:14)  And in the end “.. It came to pass that the evil spirit from God came upon Saul and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played... (18:10)

Saul was still prophesying – even though there was an evil spirit in him!  You can be sure that what came out was not of God.  It may have sounded right – but everything he spoke was another Gospel! Even though this man at one time had been chosen of God and anointed of the Holy Ghost, he was speaking straight from the flesh!


Right now,  thousands of Christians are exchanging tapes and books – but much of it is full of poison!  You might not recognise the error at first;  but if you have the witness of the Spirit,  just keep listening awhile, and He will expose it. The proud teacher or preacher – under the direction of an evil spirit- eventually will say something that makes you uneasy.  You may hear an entire hour of good – sounding gospel before you hear the five minutes of gross error.  But only the witness of the Spirit can reveal it to you.


2.One Night During a Prayer Meeting, God Told me something about our church I was not expecting to hear!

The Lord whispered to me ‘This church needs shock treatment! Too many have grown satisfied and complacent.  You feel safe and secure from all the winds and waves of false doctrine sweeping over the land – but you are not prepared for what is coming!”


Beloved,  this message of having the Spirit’s witness functioning in you is not a request – it is a matter of life and death!  If you don’t have the witness of the Holy Ghost in these last days,  you  are not going to make it. You’ll give in to the coming spirit of the Antichrist!

Here is an example:  In President Clinton’s health plan,  there is a provision for a national health identification  card – and eventually, a state- of -the- art tamper-proof  numbering system.  This probably means an implantation device in the head, arm or somewhere in the body.  No one will get heath cover without a number.


We also are headed for a cashless society – first by credit card ,  and later by a laser implantation beneath the skin. The European Union has already planned for this.  We may be on the very brink of the MARK OF THE BEAST..


Without discernment, you’ll become an accessory to a murderous government system that takes your dollars for abortion!  Tragically some Christians are not going to recognise these Antichrist setups! That is why you need the Holy Spirit witness every day – on your job,  at work, in school.  You’ll need to rightly judge politicians and leaders so you’ll not be sucked into the Antichrist system.


Wake up beloved!  This is what Jesus was trying to tell us about.  The foolish virgins who ran out of oil for their lamps! They had a supply of the Holy Ghost – but they didn’t have His Witness in the final moment.  If you haven’t made provision to have a functioning Holy Ghost witness in these last days, you’ll run out of oil in the last hour!  Don’t end up a foolish virgin!


If you are running out of oil,  trusting your church or your pastor to keep your soul – then repent! Humble yourself and search your heart.  Cry out to God to rid your soul of all anger and bitterness.  Confess your sins and get forgiveness.  And depend on God once again for everything!


Get the PEACE OF GOD in your heart,  so you can have a Holy Ghost witness.  And ask the Father for a greater ourpouring  of the Spirit.  Invite him to be your guide and your witness in everything..  You don’t have to be afraid in these days.  He is anxious to become your witness. 


- the end-         


























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