What does it mean to be “slain in the spirit?”


I would like to some information in regards about slaying in the spirit from a biblical point of view.


“Slaying in the spirit” is normally the phrase associated with someone being touched by a preacher, and then immediately falling backwards. Because of a woman who fell backwards and hit her head in the process, “catchers” are now usually behind the people to gradually let them down to the floor. Also, because these people frequently move around on the floor after being “slain in the spirit,” ladies are often covered with something so that they are not immodest. In some services, whole pews full of people have went down like a row of “dominoes” as the preacher has walked by, or has touched a person on the end of the row. People have testified that they have tried to get up after being “slain in the spirit,” but could not. They describe it as feeling like “some force holding them down.”

The question is “What happened to people in the New Testament when they were touched by the Lord Jesus, or by preachers? Are there any instances in the Old Testament when people were touched, and what happened to them?”

The word “touch” appears 48 times in the Bible, and the word “touched” appears 49 times.

Matthew 8:1-3 says, “When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him. And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus put forth his hand, and TOUCHED him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.” What happened to the leper? Did he fall down? No. He was simply healed when Jesus touched him.

Matthew 8:14,15 says, “And when Jesus was come into Peter’s house, he saw his wife’s mother laid, and sick of a fever. And he TOUCHED her hand, and the fever left her: and SHE AROSE, and ministered unto them.” What happened to Peter’s mother-in-law when Jesus touched her? She did not thrash around on the floor, but she was immediately healed, and GOT UP and ministered unto them.

Matthew 9:19-22 says, “And Jesus arose, and followed him, and so did his disciples. And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and TOUCHED the hem of his garment: For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.” What happened to the woman with the issue who touched Jesus’ garment? Did it immediately knock her down on the ground? No. She was simply healed.

Matthew 14:33-36 says, “Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God. And when they were gone over, they came into the land of Gennesaret. And when the men of that place had knowledge of him, they sent out into all that country round about, and brought unto him all that were diseased; And besought him that they might only TOUCH the hem of his garment: and as many as touched were made perfectly whole.” There was no falling down on the ground when they touched Jesus’ garment. They were just healed.

Matthew 17:4-7 says, “Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias. While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him. And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their face, and were sore afraid. And Jesus came and TOUCHED them, and said, Arise, and be not afraid.” When the disciples heard the voice from heaven, they were afraid, and fell on their faces. What happened when Jesus touched them? Were they pinned to the ground by some unseen power? No. When Jesus touched them, THEY GOT UP.

Matthew 20:30-34 says, “And, behold, two blind men sitting by the way side, when they heard that Jesus passed by, cried out, saying, Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou son of David. And the multitude rebuked them, because they should hold their peace: but they cried the more, saying, Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou son of David. And Jesus stood still, and called them, and said, What will ye that I shall do unto you? They say unto him, Lord, that our eyes may be opened. So Jesus had compassion on them, and TOUCHED their eyes: and immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed him.” What happened when Jesus touched the blind men? Were they knocked down?  No. They were healed, and then followed Jesus.

Mark 7:32-35 says, “And they bring unto him one that was deaf, and had an impediment in his speech; and they beseech him to put his hand upon him.  And he took him aside from the multitude, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spit, and TOUCHED his tongue; And looking up to heaven, he sighed, and saith unto him, Ephphatha, that is, Be opened. And straightway his ears were opened, and the string of his tongue was loosed, and he spake plain.” Was this man knocked down when Jesus touched him? No. He was simply healed.

Mark 3:9-11 says, “And he spake to his disciples, that a small ship should wait on him because of the multitude, lest they should throng him. For he had healed many; insomuch that they pressed upon him for to TOUCH him, as many as had plagues. And unclean spirits, when they saw him, fell down before him, and cried, saying, Thou art the Son of God.” Who were the ones falling down when they saw Jesus? The UNCLEAN SPIRITS — NOT PEOPLE FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT.

When Holy Spirit-filled men touch people, those people are healed and/or get up. It is unclean spirits (demons), that cause people to fall down and act strange.

Matthew 17:14-18 says, “And when they were come to the multitude, there came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying, Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is a lunatic, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he FALLETH into the fire, and oft into the water. And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him. Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me. And JESUS REBUKED THE DEVIL; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour.” It was a devil that was making the son fall down and do strange things.

Luke 8:26-35 says, “And they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against Galilee. And when he went forth to land, there met him out of the city a certain man, which had devils long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs. When he saw Jesus, he cried out, AND FELL DOWN before him, and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God most high? I beseech thee, torment me not. (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.) And Jesus asked him, saying, What is thy name? And he said, Legion: because many devils were entered into him. And they besought him that he would not command them to go out into the deep. And there was there an herd of many swine feeding on the mountain: and they besought him that he would suffer them to enter into them. And he suffered them. Then went the devils out of the man, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the lake, and were choked. When they that fed them saw what was done, they fled, and went and told it in the city and in the country. Then they went out to see what was done; and came to Jesus, and found the man, out of whom the devils were departed, SITTING AT THE FEET OF JESUS, clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid.” When the devils were cast out of this man, he was found sitting at the feet of Jesus and in his right mind, not lying on the ground acting strangely.

John 18:3-6 says, “Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, cometh thither with lanterns and torches and weapons. Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon him, went forth, and said unto them, Whom seek ye? They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them. As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground.” Who were these people that “went backward, and fell to the ground”? We read in Luke 22:2,3, “And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill him; for they feared the people. THEN ENTERED SATAN INTO JUDAS surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve.” So it was at least one demon-possessed person, Judas, (and the rest were lost, and could have been demon-possessed, but we do not know for sure about them), that fell backward at Jesus’ words.

We can clearly see from these Scriptures, that THE MODERN DAY PRACTICE OF BEING “SLAIN IN THE SPIRIT,” IS NOTHING SHORT OF PLAYING WITH DEMONIC POWER. Demon-possesed people are cast down to the ground by the evil spirits.

God’s power does not cast people down. The Holy Spirit’s power raises people up. James 4:10 says, “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and HE SHALL LIFT YOU UP.” Ephesians 5:14 says, “Wherefore he saith, AWAKE thou that sleepest, and ARISE from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.”

Paul, first called Saul, fell down in fear when he was confronted with the bright light as he met the Lord on the Damascus Road. Acts 9:1-6 says, “And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest, And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem. And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: And HE FELL TO THE EARTH, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? AND THE LORD SAID UNTO HIM, ARISE, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.” Saul fell down at the glory of God, and the Lord told him to “arise.” God lifts people up. He does not hold them down by some unseen power.

Consider an Old Testament example of where a saved person was “touched.” Daniel 8:15-18 says, “And it came to pass, when I, even I Daniel, had seen the vision, and sought for the meaning, then, behold, there stood before me as the appearance of a man. And I heard a man’s voice between the banks of Ulai, which called, and said, GABRIEL, make this man to understand the vision. So he came near where I stood: and when he came, I WAS AFRAID, AND FELL UPON MY FACE: but he said unto me, Understand, O son of man: for at the time of the end shall be the vision. Now as he was speaking with me, I was in a deep sleep on my face toward the ground: but HE TOUCHED ME, AND SET ME UPRIGHT.” Daniel was afraid when he saw the angel Gabriel, and fell upon his face. What happened when God’s angel, Gabriel, touched Daniel? “HE TOUCHED ME, AND SET ME UPRIGHT.” God’s power raises people up.

Those who practice being “slain in the spirit,” try and make it as a display of the power of the Holy Spirit. They are deceivers. They are leading people to believe that the power of the devil and his demons is the power of God. They are false prophets. The Bible clearly warns us in Matthew 12:39,40 says, “But he answered and said unto them, AN EVIL AND ADULTEROUS GENERATION SEEKETH AFTER A SIGN; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” We are living in a generation that is seeking after “signs,” instead of truly after the “Savior.”

Matthew 7:15-23 perfectly describes the Charismatic movement, and its leaders. “BEWARE OF FALSE PROPHETS, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. MANY WILL SAY TO ME IN THAT DAY, LORD, LORD, have we not PROPHESIED in thy name? and in thy name have CAST OUT DEVILS? and in thy name DONE MANY WONDERFUL WORKS? And then will I profess unto them, I NEVER KNEW YOU: DEPART FROM ME, YE THAT WORK INIQUITY.”

“Slaying in the spirit,” is very clearly a work of the devil, not a work of God. It is “evil fruit” that is being portrayed as something from God. The Bible warns us that those who do such are “false prophets.” Notice how Matthew 7:22 perfectly describes the modern day Charismatic movement, “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not PROPHESIED in thy name? and in thy name have CAST OUT DEVILS? and in thy name DONE MANY WONDERFUL WORKS?” Those three things, prophesying, casting out demons, and wonderful works (miracles), make up the whole emphasis of the Charismatic movement. And this is what they will hear one day from Jesus, “And then will I profess unto them, I NEVER KNEW YOU: DEPART FROM ME, YE THAT WORK INIQUITY.” How could anyone do those three things and be lost for ever in the lake of fire? Because they were not truly trusting in Jesus, but in the signs that they were seeing performed.

That is exactly what Satan will do in the latter days — try to imitate the work of God to deceive people. Revelation 13:11-14 says, “And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns LIKE A LAMB, and he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And HE DOETH GREAT WONDERS, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, AND DECEIVETH THEM THAT DWELL ON THE EARTH BY THE MEANS OF THOSE MIRACLES WHICH HE HAD POWER TO DO in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.”

Make sure that you test everything by the Word of God. It does not matter how miraculous a sign may appear to be. If it contradicts the Scripture, then it is a work of the devil. The modern day practice of being “slain in the spirit,” according to the Bible, is a work of evil spirits, not of the blessed Holy Spirit of God.