Pastor Brian Houston head pastor of Hillsong- no anointing or affinity with the Blessed Holy Spirit


In part 2 of this series on Hillsong I outlined five things that Pastor Brian Houston head pastor of Hillsong did at Christian Life Centre Sydney when he took over from his father Frank in the year 2000 and renamed it Hillsong. It was simply a renaming of an old entity which his father Frank Houston had founded in Sydney, Australia in 1977.

These five actions illustrate the shortcomings of Hillsong.

The first action of Pastor Brian Houston was to shut down the Sunday night Holy Spirit soaker service.

Hillsong is like the Coles or Woolworths of Christianity where everything is sanitised, branded, compartmentalised and the same.

Pastor Brian has an aversion to anything spontaneous or that he can’t control. This is partly to do with the large size of these churches where each service has 2000 plus people in the congregation. Each service has a run sheet with time allocations to the minute. There is simply no room for variance or spontaneity.

This is no real excuse as Pastor Phil Pringle on Sydney’s Northern Beaches used to have Holy Spirit seeker services and great public prayer meetings even though Christian City Church or C3 is very large when I attended there in the late 1990s.

In 2000 at Christian Life Centre Sydney under, Pastor Jeff Beecham, and later other pastors like Pastors Robert Fergusson and Jonathan Wilson, there was a long-standing Holy Spirit soaker service where people could stay longer after the evening service and soak in the Presence of God for an hour or two. These after service Holy Spirit soaker services had started after visits from Holy Spirit ministries.

The approach was very gentle and laid back. Sometimes people would get filled with the Holy Spirit and fall to the carpet. Sometimes people shook under God’s power. These manifestations have been going on since the day of Pentecost 2000 years ago and longer. They are very refreshing spiritually. Physical healings often occur during them. There are numerous accounts of wonderful Holy Spirit outpourings and manifestations in the Old Testament.

For Pastor Brian Houston this kind of Holy Spirit manifestation is too messy and too hard. My impression of Pastor Brian is that he never has been a true Pentecostal. If you think of the great pentecostal preachers and miracle workers like John G Lake, Smith Wigglesworth and Katherine Kulmann and then compare these to Pastor Brian and Hillsong, it is really like chalk and cheese.

If you go further and compare Pastor Brian Houston and Hillsong to the early church and the ministry and teachings of Jesus there is no resemblance. The Hillsong message is ‘another gospel’. It is sad that the Holy Spirit has been squeezed out and put in a box. That box is worship and Hillsong gets a tick here.

If you want to experience the gifts of the Holy Spirit, the freedom of the Holy Spirit, Holy Spirit soaker meetings and Holy Spirit manifestations then Hillsong is not the place to go.