By David Wilkerson
[May 19, 1931 – April 27, 2011]
The driving force behind David’s church was total dependence on the Holy
Spirit. Here is what distinguished David:
“Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his
brothers; and the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward” (1
When David was on his deathbed, he said to his son Solomon: “I want to tell you
why God has blessed me. I want you to know the secret of my ministry.” Listen to
David’s last words to his son: “The Spirit of the Lord spoke by me, and His
word was on my tongue” (2 Samuel 23:2).
David was saying, “I didn’t trust in my knowledge and wisdom. I didn’t trust
in any part of my flesh. I was a weak man—but I depended on the Holy Spirit!
Every word I spoke was under His unction and anointing. His words filled my
When we opened the ministry doors at Teen Challenge here in New York City, our
motto was, “The Holy Ghost is in charge here!” It wasn’t “how to cope”
preaching that saved gang members. They didn’t fall on their knees because we
preached concise, pithy sermons. They weren’t convicted by pointed
illustrations and nature stories. No! These former drug addicts testified to
their friends, “I once was on the street, like you. But look at me now! The
Spirit of God changed me!”
Solomon spoke of trees, hyssop, beasts, fish, creeping things. But David spoke
of intimacy with the Lord, of brokenness and contriteness. David was convicted
and changed by his own preaching. He so valued the presence of the Holy Spirit
in his life, he asked the Lord never to take His Spirit from him. David knew he
was nothing without the Holy Spirit!
Paul said, “And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of
human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith
should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God” (1 Corinthians
“We also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy
Spirit teaches . . . But the natural man does not receive the things of the
Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him.