Biblical criticism on soaking prayer: heresy exposed





Soaking prayer is a new trend within the communities. The bottom line is that we as a sponge can be filled with the healing power of the Holy Spirit.

Soaking is a time of rest under soft worship music. The emphasis is on relaxing. It is not a time of struggle and prayer. Soft and intimate worship music will help to calm your soul and bring you closer to God

You go into an easy posture or lie down, put your heart and your thoughts on Jesus and give all your cares and burdens to Him. The more you soak, the quicker you can experience God's presence.

Soaking can help you to hear God's voice clearly, your mind revive, relieve pain, help to find the way, refresh you, relieving your burden, giving you new sources of grace, patience and love, it can bring you deeper into him.

The great danger of this soaking is the origin. This also comes from the Toronto church where the Toronto Blessing was named after.

John and Carol Arnott, in 2005 launched a new movement: The Soaking Prayer Centre over the world are hundreds of Soaking Prayer Centers in over 70 countries. 

Each Soaking Prayer Center, which opened somewhere, must have an official certificate from Toronto. To obtain such a certificate, there are special SPC training courses, a long weekend or a week in Toronto, established. A  special Soaking kit can be ordered, consisting of two DVDs and study on this subject.

The principle of self emptying is often taught in the New Age and Eastern religions. (including Yoga) There is so much influence from the New Age churches brought by "big" names in the evangelical world, it is so intertwined with our Christian teaching that so many have lost the overview. This soaking  we must also gear to the Bible.

The word soaking is not  in the Bible. According to the site  the activity of the soaking and their effects are. Below a number of texts used to justify soaking  and our opinion about it.

-The biblical promise is how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him? 11:13 b

Every believer receives the Holy Spirit at his conversion, but this has nothing to do with soaking.


-The biblical advice to Christians: Be filled with the Spirit Ephesians 5:18

When we read the entire sentence then it says that we should not be full of wine, but be filled by the Holy Spirit. That is, lead a life full of the Spirit and not according to our old desires. This is also evident in the preceding sentences.


-Our inner attitude is:  My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him. Psalm 62:5

What is this text about? Well David was threatened and thus expresses his confidence in God, his Rock.


-And Gods acting:  He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. 3 He restoreth my soul Psalm 23:2-3a  

 This psalm is about God as our Shepherd. As Jesus Himself as the Good Shepherd, David said in this Psalm we see God in everything and leads right through everything, like a shepherd leads his sheep.


Yet a number of examples from the Bible cited:

-But now bring me a minstrel. And it came to pass, when the minstrel played, that the hand of the LORD came upon him.2 Kings 3:15

And what did the Lord's hand? He let Elisa prophesying, not soaking in His presence.

- And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word Luke 10:39

Why did she listen to Jesus, not to soak, but to learn from his teaching. Jesus also says to Martha that Mary had the best part and that it will not be taken away, namely what she's learned. The lesson is: Do not run and fly, but make time to study and pray. listen to the Lord.

- Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved John 13:23.

This happened during the dinner celebration. John was leaning on the bosom of Jesus In other words, he sat very close beside him at table. Also this has nothing to do with soaking, because then John sat in silence next to Jesus  eating the meal.

29 And as he prayed, the fashion of his countenance was altered, and his raiment was white and glistering. 30 And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias: 31 Who appeared in glory, and spake of his decease which he should accomplish at Jerusalem. 32 But Peter and they that were with him were heavy with sleep: and when they were awake, they saw his glory, and the two men that stood with him. Luke 9:29-32

The soaking elements are: in the silences, with God, prayer, listening, and God's blessing reaction. (according to their website)

In this passage, Jesus speaks with Moses and Elijah about His coming suffering and death and He is confirmed by God. This has nothing to do with soaking, but rather a boost for the way he should go. Nowhere in the Bible we see that Jesus soaks. He prays, he fought in Gethsemane that is what we see.

I think the biblical foundation that’s cited is very weak. In order to justify the soaking, many texts are taken out of context, or simply gleaned together  to be able to demonstrate that soaking is biblical. Often  biblical texts are half or misused without looking at the context.

We must remain vigilant and not everything that seems good immediately accept it as well.  If you want a Bible topic and you have to justify them apart from the Bible, it is not biblical but human.

There is nothing wrong with a good music program that includes the Lord is magnified and there to relax and listen, because you might cheer up. Soaking in my opinion is simply a form of Eastern meditation.

Sources consulted: