The Anointing of God
By David Cox
This is a workbook which I will add to it from time to time, and accumulate studies on what is the anointing of God.
1. Definition of “the anointing of God”
- 1. Definition of “the anointing of God”
- 2. The Error of Claiming to be “the Anointed of God”
- 3. Teachings of False Prophets on the Anointing
The Messiah or Christ is “the Anointed One”
Isaiah 11:1 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: 2 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD; 3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:
Luke 4:18 The Spirit of the Lord [is] upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, 19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
In a very real sense, the anointed one refers to the Christ of God, the special one who is designated to be the Saviour. When preachers presumed to be “the anointed one” or “the anointed of God”, we must immediately be careful, because whatever calling or authority given to us doesn’t approach that special work Jesus the CIn this workbookhrist has.
The concept behind anointing is a little difficult to pin down for most people. It has to do with an official ceremony by which a representative of God (again “anointed”) is given the task to officially and publicly “give” or “officially announce” that a certain person has a certain ministry before God, and because of this, has officially given authority with his “commission” to execute officially that ministry.
Anointing, therefore, is most clearly seen in the Old Testament when God anointed men to be kings over Israel or prophets before God. These are officially “given” ministries which God lays upon men (there is a willingness to accept the official “job” or ministry on the part of the person receiving the anointing).
What does it matter if someone is anointed by God or not?
Perhaps many people would take the attitude, “What does it matter if a person in anointed by God or not before he ministers?” This basically is a consequence of our modern culture in which there is a great disdain and disrespect of all authority, which came come very strongly in 1960”s hippies rebellion. As such, people began rejecting any authority over their own lives. The church has not been immune to this cultural phenomena, and the movements against officially established NT precedents like a formal or traditional church building, services, environment, etc, has been wholesale rejected. Likewise, the officially called, prepared, and installed ministers of God is now “out of vogue”, and we consider the everybody can do anything concept as the most biblical. Even the concepts of Pastor and deacons are being challenged.
But God does not approve of anybody doing anything. When the ark of the covenant was lost and then Israel recaptured it, we see what happened when the common people start gazing into the holy things of God, and they dropped dead. Although there may be a lot to be said for the universal priesthood of all believers, there is still the principles and precedents of God which we see in the Bible, that God wants an official recognition and calling given and accepted before a person can ministry in an official and correct way before God. This is totally the explanation of Jesus’ water baptism by John at the beginning of his ministry, and that parallels our own water baptism before ministering before God, and it is the concept behind a minister’s ordination, when hands are laid upon a person new to a particular calling, function, or ministry.
While many will minimize the need for these things today, they are part of the precedent which Scriptures lay as the form for correct ministry before God, and it should not be passed over lightly. Satan desires that there is no such “officialness” to be done before a minister begins ministering, and basically the concept of everybody does what is right in his own eyes is exactly what Satan wants accepted as the norm so that he can slip his own wolves in sheep’s clothing into the work of God.
Therefore we should understand that an anointing is basically founded in a minister’s ordination. This is where a group of ordained ministers (already recognized in their doctrine and practice as biblical) examines the doctrine and life of a minister before he officially enters into his God called ministry.
All the Redeemed are Anointed, especially God’s Ministers
If we understand that only those official appointed by God (ministers anointed to minister before Him) are allowed in God’s presence, then we come to understand the importance of “the anointing”. Without an officially recognized (by God) anointing, then one is a rebel, and his presence before God will be accepted. Therefore God has placed the ministry of mediators into the mix, and in the Old Testament, only an officially anointed priest could intercede before God and man. This was a picture or preliminary situation until the one, single Great mediator and high priest could be accepted and placed in that role.
The great mediator and high priest is of course Jesus Christ, but even in His case, being God, this position and ministry was not official until he died on the cross, and God’s official recognition of his worthiness and calling and location by the Trinity into this Great Anointing, (literally, this is what “Christ” or “Messiah” means, the anointed one) did not happen until the resurrection of Christ from the dead.
Now, with Christ as our high priest, we (all the redeemed) too have the anointing of Christ and can serve God in a similar type of priesthood as they did in the Old Testament.
So in a certain sense, all the redeemed are the anointed of God (Rev 1:6; 5:10), and this is reflected in the “boldness” with which we can enter into the presence of God both as His beloved children (result of an adoption because of Christ’s work), and because of our priesthood (Heb 4:14-16). The concept of “anointed one” is one that is specially called out for a special service, as well as carrying an endowment of special authority from God to authoritatively “DO THAT MINISTRY.” Here we should understand the work of the Lord as being focused on (1) salvation-evangelism-anouncing the gospel, and (2) edification of the saints through spirit-filled principled teaching. This is the ministry God’s anointed does.
The “Election” of God
What Calvinism has brought to this matter is that Calvinists teach that election is exclusively for salvation. Election comes from the same meaning of “to select” or selection, and it means a choosing by God in some matter. While Calvinism well defines the being chosen (election or predestination) and the not being chosen (election to perdition, or simply perdition), they have muddied the waters of God’s teaching by excluding any non-salvation element from the Bibe concept of election. God also elects (between his redeemed) some to some kinds of service, and others to other kinds of service, and God himself uses the idea of a body (which are members are part of the body), and some are chosen from more usefulness than others (a hand versus a foot), and some to more prominence that others (a nose or a face is more visual and “beautiful” to the eye than a knee).
To understand the definition of “anointing” then, we need to understand that anointing means a setting aside or consecration of a thing for a special use. This assigning of a use or task (a ministry) by God is officially done and started by a ceremony whereby the person being called into that ministry is anointed with oil, and this is a pouring or smearing of oil for the purpose. Even this oil is “holy” oil, which means it was specially prepared (Exod 30:22-25) and guarded after its creation for just this use. The Israelites were prohibited from even owning these elements used in the holy oil, except for the priests who made it and kept it. Any “common” or “profane” use of this oil was strictly disciplined, because this disrepect of the consecrated by God was an abomination before God (Exod 30:32-33; Levi 10:7, 21:11-12; Eze 23:41). (See Steve Van Nattan’s article for more).