"Where the word of a king is, there is power; and who may say to him, "What are you doing?" (Ecclesiastes 8:4).
The apostle Paul supplies testimony in the New Testament which shows that God's use of supernatural phenomena as a means of guidance was not exclusive to the days of old. He wrote to the Christians in Corinth and told them of unusual visions and revelations he himself had received from the Lord.
"I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know - God knows. And I know that this man - whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows - was caught up to paradise. He heard inexpressible things, things that man is not permitted to tell" (2 Corinthians 12:1-4).
We know that Paul is speaking about himself in this cryptic passage because he later says, "To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me" (vs.7).
His personal testimony supplies us with wisdom when it comes to discussing these kinds of spiritually mysterious things today. First, notice the simultaneous clarity and perplexity of a supernatural experience. "I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven." That much is clear to him, but then he adds: "Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know - God knows." There's the perplexity. He knows that it happened, he just can't figure out how it happened.
Another lesson we learn from Paul is the importance of exercising great discretion when talking about spiritual matters of this sort. He says that this "man who he knew fourteen years ago heard inexpressible things, things that man is not permitted to tell." Though Paul is speaking of himself, he veils it in language that does not draw attention to himself but leads us to think it was someone else. Also, he doesn't give much detail of what he saw when he was "caught up to the third heaven." He simply says that it happened, and leaves it at that. Paul's experience was undeniable and mysterious, and he handled it with wisdom.
That’s the best policy for anybody who encounters God in some supernatural way. It’s best to simply keep it to yourself unless the Lord clearly directs you to do otherwise. The prudence in this is obvious, and it also keeps you from unwittingly camping yourself with those who actually make up such fantasies and publish them for no other reason than having others stand in wonder over their otherwise dull and meaningless lives.
When it comes to testifying about supernatural experiences and the like, the bottom line is this – who gets the glory when you tell the story? If the answer is not Jesus alone – then it’s best to keep quiet.
By the way, someone once asked me if I had ever seen an angel. I answered, “You bet! I even asked her to marry me, and she said, “YES!”