What exactly is the "power" that many Charismatics or Pentecostals experience and even seem to radiate?

There is an undeniable emotional/spiritual power that some Charismatics possess and, especially in their worship services, even non-Charismatics and non-believers are influenced by it. People are convicted through it and they come to Christ because of it. 

Charismatics revel in this power, and often consider other churches "dead" because they lack this very real spiritual/emotional influence. (Although other Protestant churches will talk about the "Spirit moving" during a worship service.)

Honestly, I've always been a little afraid of this very real influence/power,  however, because to me it feels the same as that exercised by many secular leaders and orators.  Yet I don't want to deny a true work of the Holy Spirit. 

Is this "charisma" (this natural speaking ability and power to sway an audience) simply a natural gift, or in the case of one well-known televangelist, a learned skill based on voice tone and rhythm, or is it ever a true manifestation of the Holy Spirit?  In some cases, when we don't know the speaker, it can be hard to discern or test the spirits.   

(Note: I'm not talking here about cessationism or whether the Sign Gifts are still operating today, but more about the tangible "power" felt during some Charismatic services and exuded by some Charismatic leaders.) 

Clarify Share Report Asked September 28 2013 Mini Anonymous

For follow-up discussion and general commentary on the topic. Comments are sorted chronologically.

Mini Larry Truelove

I have spoken with Charismatics who claim "power" which nothing more than feeling. When pressed for something objective that should stand up to critical evaluation I was told I would never see it because I did not believe their claims.

This is in contrast to what the Scribes and Pharisees saw in Acts: "We have seen a notable miracle and we cannot deny it."

March 20 2014 Report

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