Whisper it softly. I have some cessationist friends!
I don't mind cessationists, really I don't. Many of them are my brethren in Christ. I used to be one myself, until I studied the relevant Scripture passages for myself. They have misunderstood Scripture, that is true – but a lot of us have done that. I probably still do, on some issues.
But too many of the cessationists commenting on Facebook at the moment are not really cessationists – they are anti-charismatics. Their whole raison d'être is negatively to criticize any tiny or perceived fault they can find in any charismatic or pentecostal, however well respected. I don't know about you, but all my human heroes have feet of clay. But as soon as a charismatic is noted to do something that an anti-charismatic does not like, the anti-charismatics jump up and down with glee, using adjectives like “crazy”, “bonkers” and describing the same as “wolves in sheep's clothing”.
The double-standards are breathtaking. For example, the most prominent cessationist theologian of the moment is John MacArthur. MacArthur holds to the very common eschatological view known as dispensationalism, which usually includes a belief in a pre-tribulation rapture. This is a view held by a large number of cessationists. Yet the theology only came about in the 19th Century, and was introduced via a “prophetic word” given in a rather dubious charismatic fellowship in Scotland. The irony of cessationists holding to pre-tribulationism is staggering! But pre-tribulationists are my brothers. You will not hear me describing them as crazy or bonkers.
In my view, the Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and blogosphere baiting of charismatics by these anti-charismatics, since the notorious Strange Fire conference, is beyond a joke. It is time for leading cessationists of character to call on their brethren to say that enough is enough, and to start disciplining the loud-mouthed bullies of the anti-charismatic world. For my part, I am tired of trying to treat anti-charismatics as brethren. While I am sure many of them are simply immature people, who have failed to grow in spiritual maturity, I see no reason why I should continue in fellowship with them, until they repent, not of their cessationism (that will come through honest Bible study), but of their sheer bad manners.