A wave of offense.
One of the true signs of the last days is that a wave of offense will hit the church like a huge Tsunami. Matthew 24:10, And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. And the only way to guard your spirit, and your relationships from this wave of destruction “Is to walk in a true spirit of love”.
Hard times fall on even the best of us just like John the Baptist when he was in prison. Satan tried to poison his mind through negative gossip concerning Jesus making him doubt the voice of God he heard. This is my own dear son (Matthew 11:2-6), the day Jesus was revealed to him. This can happen to any of us.
And when John had heard in prison about the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples and said to Him, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?”
Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”
So judge the fruit and not the gossip. Offense works through the mind to taint the spirit through allegations! Love works through the spirit to dissolve offenses in the mind, through forgiveness! True friendship is truly your greatest possession! So guard it!
The importance of good relationships
If you want to be successful in your mission in life, you have to make alliances with people that are successful in achieving their own life’s goals. It is no use preparing yourself to excel and then continue to submit your destiny to people who want to live in a realm of complacency. Developing soul ties to people that cause conflict in your life is one of Satan’s greatest strategies to bind up your true potential.
There are some people you can’t get out of your heart! However you must remove them from your life! So you can maintain the peace needed to succeed in your life’s mission. Deep calls unto deep, shallow calls unto shallow! Don’t lay down with dogs, and then complain when you wake up with fleas. Scripture says…He who walks with wise men will become wise. So it would be safe to say, he who fellowships with foolish people, will himself become foolish! And again Scripture says,…remove the contentious person from among you and trouble and strife will cease.
Only you can make the decision whether or not you want to walk around with World War Three going on in your head because you have given a contentious person authority within your life. Or you can remove them, so you can again start to think on heavenly things, that will prosper you in your life’s journey.
If Satan can get you to live in a battle zone you will never build the destiny God has for you. All your time, resources, and energy will be dedicated to fight the war. It is only in a time of peace we can focus on building our dreams. And isn’t that what the gospel of peace we are told to preach, should produce within our lives?
Mental assent is the greatest enemy of true faith!
I have sat in meetings and heard a lot of great expositors of Gods word talk on faith, and what they say is awesome. There is only one problem. They can’t live a lick of what they are preaching. I have also walked alongside many great people of faith that can or can’t explain faith very well. ” But live it with every breath of their life”. They have a faith that goes where many only dream of going. They stand against the impossible and make it possible. They say it can be done when others say it can’t! They do it! I love these men and women of faith. They are so majestic to watch! Friends don’t be one that speaks about faith! Become a man or woman of faith. Jesus said,” Will I find faith in operation when I return?” I truly believe He will! If we determine to live according to such scriptures as James 2:14-18 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
Awake from your slumber and be what Christ has called you to be.
It’s time for the true church of Jesus Christ to rise up out of their sleep. And with the same tenacity ” Win the lost at any cost.” And to do that we must preach a strong message of repentance drawing a true line between Light and Darkness so that those that hear us will be able to make a quality decision to follow Christ.
This is what The Lord said to Paul when He called him! Acts 26:14-18,
And when we all had fallen to the ground, I heard a voice speaking to me and saying in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ So I said, ‘Who are You, Lord?’ And He said, ‘I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. But rise and stand on your feet; for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to make you a minister and a witness both of the things which you have seen and of the things which I will yet reveal to you. I will deliver you from the Jewish people, as well as from the Gentiles, to whom I now send you, to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’
And I would dare to say the Lord has not dropped His standard! He still wants those He calls to open the eyes, to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith. We need another empowering like they had in the Acts 4!!! However, to get this we have to be ready to stand up for truth, and pay the price…That some won’t be happy with what we are preaching! But preach it anyway! Some are listening, and responding…
The pure message of Salvation
As I sat pondering the out working of the gospel many are holding to today, I become overwhelmed with a deep sorrow. This social gospel that does not challenge the hearts of mankind to pursue holiness. This gospel that condones the very things the Lord Himself condemns. Revelation 21:5-8, Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.” And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts. He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son. But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”
My prayer and heart’s desire daily, is that the wells of true salvation will be unblocked in those that proclaim the good news. So the pure rivers of life giving water will flow from the mouth of every believer, to bring salvation to all that hear them, rather than a toxic flow of a social gospel that promises spiritual life but can’t deliver it.
Paul said in 1 Corinthians 2:1-5,
And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. 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.
The power that Paul was talking of was the power of a Holy Life that produced the virtuous flow that flowed from Jesus when the woman with the issue of blood touched the hem of His garment. Or that flowed through Paul into the napkins he laid his hands on, that brought healing and deliverance to those that touched them. Or the shadow of Peter that fell on the afflicted and healed them!
If this were not true, then why did he make this statement 1 Corinthians 5:9-13?,
I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people. Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner—not even to eat with such a person.
For what have I to do with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? But those who are outside God judges. Therefore “put away from yourselves the evil person.”
Come on church lets get back to a gospel that will save them that hear it. And let us declare what Paul declares in Romans 1:16-18
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.” For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness.
Unity to vision.
Make sure the people in you boat are rowing with you, and not drilling holes in the bottom while you not looking. You will find in life’s journey, many rich become poor, and many poor become rich, many great people will fall, and many fallen people will become great. The true key to success, and the only way to silence, and leave in the wake of your journey. Those that negatively compete against you, or try to make you subordinate to their position in life, by undermining all that you stand for, or do. Is to prophetically aline yourself with those of like vision, and will live with the same zeal as you. Avoid those that walk in a mock submission. They agree with their words but their actions betray their true intentions.
It’s time to act
For many years people have studied the scriptures concerning end times, they have taught it, preached it, argued over it, and made movies concerning it. Now we are entering this time, and many that taught us these truths, are as blind as the so called scholars of 4000bc. That studied, taught, and preached on the coming of a saviour. And when He arrived they failed to see Him! Not only did they fail to see Him, they argued with Him, slandered Him, then judged Him, and then condemned Him.
Brethren if this truly is the beginnings of the unrest that leads up to the great tribulation. Don’t you think its time to take account of our own lives, and the lives of our family, and those close to us. Rather than argue over what the Jews, the Arabs, the Muslims, the Russians, or what the president is doing, or not doing. At least Noah’s whole family entered into the ark! So get a grip” listen to your heart and not your head. Stop arguing” and start praying, while there is still time to do something about those that are not saved!
It’s time to sober up.
First remove the beam from your own eye! Then you will see clearly to remove the speck from you brothers eye……A friend of mine once showed me an add in a newspaper that read….Truck driver wanted, no 18 year olds…with 25 years experience need apply. It’s amazing how many people want to speak into other peoples lives, with very little, or no real life experience. They pray, study the bible, and come up with a great untried revelation. That has about as much use to real life, as tits on a bull.
When the bible in 1 Timothy 3:6 declares that a minister of the gospel should not be a novice, lest being puffed up with pride he fall into the same condemnation as the devil. It simply means people with no life experience, (a novice) should get some real life experience, before they start speaking untried direction into others lives.
If you want to be one that prays the prayer of faith make sure faith is working in your own health , and provision. And if you want to speak prophetic revelation in to others make sure your spiritual vision can guide you, before you start messing with other peoples lives. Why? You could find yourself it trouble with the man upstairs.
Some good scripture to meditate on, and then apply it to your journey into maturity.
James 2:14-24 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble! But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” And he was called the friend of God. You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.
Our Financial Life
Money is important in the world we live—often inappropriately so. We need to learn what it means to worship and live for God in the realm of our fiancees Because we as human-beings need to comprehend, that worshiping God includes a progressive and joyful surrender of our financial life to God if we are to be true worshipers.
The first place worship is mentioned in the bible, is when Abraham was going to offer his son on the alter. Gen 22:5…And Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; the lad and I will go yonder and worship, and we will come back to you.” The Lord wanted Abraham to open up his hand and give Him the best he had! Why? So The Lord could open up His hand and give Abraham the best He had. As taught in….Gen 22:15-18…Then the Angel of the Lord called to Abraham a second time out of heaven, and said: “By Myself I have sworn, says the Lord, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son— blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies. In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”
The Bible teaches more about the issue of money than it does about many other topics. Having a healthy understanding of how to handle money, is very important if we are to live life in the way God is revealed to us through Jesus Christ. He taught us to believe we are called to a life of ever-increasing generosity. You can’t achieve this goal be giving what you think is fair. You achieve it by sacrifice, just as Abraham did.
Just do it.
There are two main groups of people in life, spectators, and participators. If you are a participator you will spend your life doing what the spectator will spend their life judging you for.
You can bring down your giant
Don’t be intimidated when the Holy Spirit leads you into a tough situations. Why? Because a problem is not a problem until you make it one! What others consider to be a problem, is your opportunity to shine. By demonstrating the problem solving power of the Holy Ghost! You could be opening the door to your destiny. Just as king David did when he defeated the giant Goliath.
Fight the good fight
If you set your heart to be a messenger of light to set your family, town, city, or nation free. You should not find it strange when all hell turns up on your door step to stop you. Elijah had Jezebel determined to take his life, Elisha had the King of Syria send an army to place him under siege. Daniel wound up in a lions den, his three friends wound up in the the furnace, king David was forced to live in a cave with a whole army trying to take his life. The Apostel Paul had this to say concerning his life as a dedicated christian in his address to his critics in 2 Corinthians 11:23-28….I am more:in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths often. From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fasting often, in cold and nakedness— besides the other things, what comes upon me daily:my deep concern for all the churches.
Is someone telling lies about you, or is no one is supporting your ministry, is your family attacking you for no reason, are your fighting a terrible sickness, or is someone picking on you at work for no reason. Get a grip! Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but The Lord will deliver you out of them all. Just as He did for David, Elijah, Daniel and his friends, and the Apostel Paul. And like them if you do not grow weary and give up, in due time you will receive the reward.
You shall receive power.
Today the current trend of teaching within the majority of Christianity through out the English speaking world, is producing a powerless church. The gospel preached by many in today’s church dilutes the sins of yesterday, so they are absorbed into the culture of the modern day church. This emerging church resembles the church of the book of Acts in a very few ways. I have stood back and listened to many try to justify their new outlook on such doctrines concerning a GRACE that embraces sexual immorality between genders, marriage has became just another religious ritual that need to be done away with, as more couples within the church find it better to just to live together as partners. The flow of fowl language has become very acceptable to many that choose to be known as Christians. Addictions we once used the power of God to set people free from, are now being openly accepted as the normal flow of the church.
Some think when we use the term powerless church, we are talking about a Holy Spirit tongue talking church, a Holy Ghost Joy church, a prophetic church, a healing and deliverance church, Not true! I can only speak for myself. But when I use the word powerless I mean a church that has lost the power to change an unfaithful spouse into a loyal spouse, a thief into a trustworthy soul, a liar into a truthful person, a prideful person into a humble person, a lazy person into a worker, a taker into a giver, a coward in to a person that will lay down their life for you, a violent person into a peace loving person. In other words a church that has the power to transform a persons life from the inside out, thought the power of balanced love!
The importance of strong covenant relationships.
Covenant is the strongest commitment anyone can make, we make covenant to strengthen ourselves. One will put a thousand to flight, and two will put ten thousand to flight. After reading this morning of the moral fall of another great leader in the body. A man that I greatly respected even though I never new him very well personally I had one brief accidental meeting. I was deeply saddened for him, his family, and the church body he loved and served. The first question that hit my spirit was, where were those godly brethren, he should have been in covenant with. The ones” that love you enough to hear from God when something is wrong in your life, and confront you in love. There the ones should have been his protection through the daily administration of Gods word, that bring reproof, rebuke, and encouragement to our daily walk!
The reason I asked myself that question was on hearing this! My mind went back to a time, in my own life. When a man of God sat in my office and made this statement concerning the leadership I surrounded myself with….These guys your running with Wayne, are so committed to you, they would steal wild horses with you!
After some thought, I said I guess they would! He looked me strait in the eye, and said, that will be your downfall. They should be committed to The Lord!
And friends” it was my down fall! Oh” there were ones that did say something to me. But they had so much compromise with in their own walk, it discredited any advice they gave. It is not enough to say it! To be a true friend we must live it. Why? Because we can all become addicted to the encouragement, and be lifted up in pride. And pride will cause us to shun the reproof, and rebuke of the word that should come to us daily through godly relationships.
There has to be those in your life, who through the right balance of these three different facets of the word of God operating within their walk, have achieved greatness and maintained it.
I have three life goals I made for myself! The first is to seek this type of covenant friendship out, and make covenant with them. As I again feel my life being pushed back into a front-line position. And the second is to be that type of a friend, to the people that have made covenant with me. The third is help those that have fallen, because they lacked this type of under-girding in their relationships, find their way back to stability. And I encourage any sincere disciple of Christ to do the same thing!
Confrontation: The Key to Revival
There has been a constant flow of heartfelt prayer flowing into the heavens for true revival. This flow of prayer has formed into spiritual clouds that contain the latter rain. These clouds represent the last great move of God before the return of Jesus for His bride. The only way to seed these spiritual clouds to release the latter rain upon the earth is to preach true repentance! This was the key Peter used on the day of Pentecost to release the former rain, as found in Acts 3:19 where he says “repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.”
That key will still work for us today! However, for this message to be preached it will take men and women of great courage. This kind of courage only comes by a genuine infilling of the Holy Spirit, such as Peter received on the day of Pentecost. Why? In order to bring true repentance, you have to deal with such sins as stealing, lying, jealousy, porn, adultery, drunkenness, fornication, and yes even homosexual behavior and abortion! Most bodies of believers today will not do this. Why? Because they have a fear of rejection and persecution! They have developed a non-confrontational message they call love. However, it is not the same sacrificial love of John 3:16 where God so loved the world that He gave His son, nor the love that caused riots and had the apostles and prophets beaten, jailed, and murdered when they preached the gospel. No, the counterfeit love they have gets all bent out of shape as soon as someone confronts them, tells lies about them, or threatens to not support them. It is not the type of love that lays down its life for the gospel. Brethren, we need a revival of true Holy Ghost preachers, that people will say of them as they said of the preachers of old: “The ones that have turned the world upside down, are coming here to preach as well.” Brethren, they had to turn it upside down to get it right side up. Glory; let the redeemed of The Lord say so!
Repentance: the Plow that Breaks Up the Fallow Ground
Some people should be praying for crop failure! Why? Because when the harvest comes in of the seeds they have sown, their lives and families will not stand under the weight of the negative harvest. During my years of counsel, I have discerned that many battling emotional or physical affliction are reaping the wages of yesterday’s sinful acts. The words and acts of betrayal said and done in secrecy were seeds sown, and are now producing a harvest of affliction.
I remember one lady sitting in my office crying in deep sorrow because her husband had betrayed her. She looked at me and said “what have I ever done to deserve this? I have been faithful to him, and now this is how he treats me.” As she was telling me this, The Lord showed a time earlier in her life when she was having an affair with a married man. When I confronted her over this act, she exploded and said “that doesn’t count it was before I even knew him!” After she calmed down, I explained the law of sowing and reaping. When she saw this, I was able to lead her to repentance. We then prayed the prayer of healing for her family, and she proceeded to go and explain my counsel to her husband. The both of them went through a time of repentance and healing which led to the total restoration of their family. Friends, crop failure can only come when we run the plow of repentance through the fields we have sown with negative seed, or believe me when I say it will produce a harvest within our lives, or even our children’s’ lives.
For thus says the Lord to the men of Judah and Jerusalem:
“Break up your fallow ground,
And do not sow among thorns.
Circumcise yourselves to the Lord,
And take away the foreskins of your hearts,
You men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem,
Lest My fury come forth like fire,
And burn so that no one can quench it,
Because of the evil of your doings.”
Faith Towards God
There are many good teachings on faith: God’s faith, our faith, the gift of faith, and the fruit of faith. There are also great teachings on the counterfeits of faith, such as faith versus mental ascent, or faith, foolishness, or presumption! However, I want to talk about the cornerstone of the faith message: faith towards God. Faith towards God is one of the six teachings that make up the foundational doctrine of Christ as found in Hebrews 6:1-2. Understanding this teaching is where our journey into the supernatural begins. This is because whoever comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. In other words, you can’t connect with him until you believe He exists! Romans 12:3 tells us that God has given to everyone of us the measure of faith. That simply means He has given us the ability to believe. Mankind has used this ability to develop great faith within them; we see this faith at work every day. Let me give you some examples: If you have ever planted a garden, you have exercised great faith. You dig up the ground, and buy seeds to plant there that in no way resemble the fruit or vegetable you are believing to harvest. You could cut the seed in half and put it under a microscope and you wouldn’t find anything resembling an apple, orange, carrot, tomato, or pumpkin in there anywhere, yet you plant them into the ground and water them expecting to get a harvest of fruits and vegetables. Magic? No, faith! Faith developed in the integrity of nature. Or think about the next time you catch a plane that will be flying at over 30,000 feet in the air, and traveling at speeds of up to 650 MPH. Again, magic? No, faith! Faith in the integrity of man’s ability to create. We use great faith everyday; what we lack is faith towards God, and His integrity! How do we develop faith towards God? Glad you asked! The next time you are feeling sick and it’s not life threatening, instead of releasing faith in your local doctor, do what the bible tells you to do; call the elders of your church and get them to pray the prayer of faith over you. When you do this you are beginning to exercise faith towards God. The next time you ask The Lord to watch over someone you love, and you start to worry about them, go stand in front of a mirror and say to the first person you see “Stop it, stop worrying; The lords got this!” Afterward, go about your daily duties. What you are doing when you practice these things is redirecting that measure of faith which The Lord invested into you back towards Him! And once you have achieved this you will be able to reinvest your faith into acquiring some of His faith. Then you will be able to change the natural world around you into a supernatural world!
So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.”
Trying to help someone up, be careful that they don’t pull you down!
When attempting to pull someone out of a negative situation, you will need to be supercharged with a whole lot of Holy Ghost power and have a lot of compassion towards those you are trying to rescue! Why? Because there will be times when you will not only have to deal aggressively with the spirit holding them captive; you will have to deal with them also. Why? Because of a codependency the spirit has built into them! This codependency will make them very confused as you challenge things they once believed to be truth. And as these so called ‘truths’ are undermined, they will seem to be fighting against you rather than with you at times. If you don’t have a strong compassion for them, you will be tempted to walk away and leave them in their situation.
So, in trying to rescue them, you will find yourself fighting them as well as the spirit which took them captive. His intention will be to try and latch hold of you, and pull you into the same negative place he has them; that is what he does. As a matter of fact, that is probably how he took them captive.
Scripture says in Galatians 6:1 KJV Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
The word there “meekness” is read “gentleness” in other translations, and this is not a good word to use in this situation. I would substitute the word submission! Why? Because the bible also teaches that the violent shall take heaven by force, and this verse is relevant in this situation. We don’t use violence towards God’s kingdom; only a fool would do that. However, we do use violence against the predators of Gods kingdom!
Who are these predators? They are Spiritual forces of wickedness. This is what scripture calls them when it says we don’t fight against flesh and blood, but against spiritual wickedness in high places. The high places are composed of the first, or even second heaven. And that is where we use a display of violent prayer to set the captive free. We never use violence concerning the third heaven where God dwells.
To understand this, let’s look at Moses. The bible calls Moses the meekest man on the whole earth, but he was also portrayed as the most authoritative man on earth. His meekness, or gentleness, was towards the third heaven! This is apparent when we study his interaction with The Lord and the heavenly host on the positive side. He is very submissive, or gentle, in his communication with them. True humility is when you become submissive to another person that you realize has more authority or wisdom than you do. However, when Moses is dealing with the negative side, or those that want to submit to the power of the negative side, we see him very authoritative in his dealings, even somewhat scary. This is also true with King David, Gideon, Abraham, Samson, and actually everyone that was used greatly by God!
Some translations refer to rescuers as being maturely spiritual, as opposed to just being spiritual. The mark of a mature person is the ability to control motivating passions, like love, hate, compassion, anger, sensual drive, or various appetites. For example, a soldier can use every bit of violence he can muster up against an enemy. Then within the blink of an eye, he can show extreme compassion to the person he is protecting. He is in control of his emotions.
In conclusion: Walk in humility with God, showing all reverence and submission to Him and His word, because both are one, and cannot be separated. But, at the same time, walk soberly in the presence of the evil one, being ready to move into war at his threat of attack towards you or those you protect. In saying all this I’m trying to build depth into the simple phrase ‘Love God, hate the devil!’
1 Peter 5:6-11
Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
Life in the Spirit
We are never any bigger than the mindset we live in. To enlarge our dwelling place we must enlarge our mindset. I have a friend who declares that most people are so narrow-minded, they can see through a keyhole with both eyes. I think that is a very true statement; especially when it comes to the knowledge of the spiritual realm. Once we become followers of Christ, the spirit realm should become our home. Why? Because God is Spirit, and those that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in truth. Nevertheless, so many people that call themselves Disciples of Christ are scared breathless of the spirit realm. To understand the writings of men like the apostle Paul, who was truly a spirit dominated being that received all of his revelation from the spirit realm, it is essential for the student of the new covenant to change his mindset from the carnal (or natural) realm, and become spiritually minded. The main thrust of our ministry over the next five years, will be not only to move in the spirit and demonstrate the power contained in that realm through crusades; but we will also show others how to live in the spirit realm, teaching a school of the spirit in every city we go to.
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
Harnessing the Tongue
I woke up this morning with an impression in my spirit of a person whispering into another’s ear. As he whispered, I watched the different effects of the conversation on the listener through his facial expressions. First there was amazement, then sorrow, then anger which grew into fury. I lay there amazed how something so small as a whisper could affect a person so greatly. Then I remembered this scripture in Isaiah 54:17: “No weapon formed against you shall prosper, And every tongue which rises against you in judgment You shall condemn.” The bible calls the tongue a weapon; a small weapon, yet a very dangerous one. In trying to develop a deeper realm of fellowship with The Lord, the thing I found that I had to do, in order to become more attractive to Him, was to harness my tongue. In studying relationships with The Lord, I discovered that out of the 70 He had the 12; out of the 12 He had the 3; and out of the 3 He had the 1. As I considered the life of Peter, one of the 3, I found that he displayed the greatest love towards The Lord; yet the one that laid his head in His bosom was John, and the one to whom He entrusted His mother at the cross, was John. It was not Peter’s commitment that separated him from intimacy with The Lord; it was his tongue! There are very few people that have ever wounded me greatly; the sad thing is they’ve always been the ones that I trusted enough to speak my heart with. As I’ve enhanced my relationship with The Lord, He’s been teaching me one thing: to guard my mouth! And I have developed a rule which I try to live by: Never say something behind someone’s back that you have not said to their face. You will soon find out who your true friends are, and to whom you can entrust your life. Rule your tongue and who you listen to; your life will be a lot less complicated!
My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment. For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body. Indeed, we put bits in horses’ mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body. Look also at ships:although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires. Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things.
See how great a forest a little fire kindles! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so. Does a spring send forth fresh water and bitter from the same opening? Can a fig tree, my brethren, bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Thus no spring yields both salt water and fresh.
Programming the Human Soul to Reflect the Spiritual Realm
When we are born, our soul is a huge blank hard-drive that needs to be programmed to interact with its creator. We will spend the rest of our lives recording and storing events, conversations, smells, tastes and feelings. This is done through our five senses: touch, taste, smell, hearing and seeing. This hard-drive then becomes our personal data bank from which we draw information to make the decisions that control our destiny. This vital data flows from two spiritual sources: one we call light, and the other darkness. The source of darkness is Lucifer: the god of this world system; and the source of light is Yahweh: the God of eternity. Our entire education was meant to come from the realm of light, maturing us so we could fellowship and converse with Yahweh: the all-knowing omnipotent, omnipresent God. He is our creator!
However, Lucifer is an arc-angel who was removed from fellowship with Yahweh. Why? Because his nature was contaminated by a corrupt communication called flattery. Flattery is a counterfeit of praise that produces a virus known as pride, with an outworking called rebellion; this is the source of all contention. Once Lucifer’s presence caused contention, this demanded his removal from heaven for the sake of peace. He now seeks to inject the same virus into our belief system that will also separate us from our creator.
The Apostle Paul spent most of his time teaching those that made a decision to reconcile their life to the Light. They did this by accepting Jesus as their doorway back to fellowship with Yahweh and forsaking the teachings of darkness. This is made clear when Paul gives his testimony before king Agrippa in Acts 26:12-18, “While thus occupied, as I journeyed to Damascus with authority and commission from the chief priests, at midday, O king, along the road I saw a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, shining around me and those who journeyed with me. And when we all had fallen to the ground, I heard a voice speaking to me and saying in the Hebrew language, ‘ Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads. ’ So I said, ‘Who are You, Lord? ’ And He said, ‘ I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. But rise and stand on your feet; for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to make you a minister and a witness both of the things which you have seen and of the things which I will yet reveal to you. I will deliver you from the Jewish people, as well as from the Gentiles, to whom I now send you, to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.”
This should be the purpose of every true minister of the gospel.
The Good Soldier of Jesus Christ
A fully trained professional soldier is well cared for with the basic things of life. The only way he can become extra wealthy in worldly assets is to compromise his profession, selling his talents to the highest bidder; then he is called a mercenary! His loyalty belongs to no individual; he fights for money, not to protect and serve! The Apostle Paul, speaking to his spiritual son Timothy, says this in 2 Timothy 2:3-4, “You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.”
When the bible speaks concerning the doctrine of Balaam it is referring to a ministry that sold himself out for gain. This doctrine was denounced by The Lord Jesus and the apostles; they stood firmly against it. Why? Because this doctrine is the cornerstone of what is commonly called ‘sloppy grace’. True grace can never be sloppy; it is revered by all those that have actually been forgiven by it. Grace only becomes sloppy when it is contaminated by those looking to merchandise it for self gain.
In saying this, I have nothing against the prosperity message. We need bread Fred, doe Joe, money honey, to do the works He has called us to do. God will prosper a genuine ministry! However, not everything that comes into the offering plate or every business opportunity should be considered personal income of the minister. I have known ministries that will work a few hours on Sunday and just a couple everyday for the rest of the week. They take a very generous wage and spend their remaining time doing business deals, playing golf, fishing, hunting and sleeping. They use their position to generate personal wealth, and not wealth for the kingdom. Jesus was so angered by this that He sat down, wove a whip, and then proceeded to drive all those that did this out of the temple!
The type of heart The Lord is looking for in the saints is revealed in Paul’s words when he says in Colossians 1:9-14, “For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.” Let’s live worthy of Him!
Hebrews 6:4-6 AMP
For it is impossible [to restore and bring again to repentance] those who have been once for all enlightened, who have consciously tasted the heavenly gift and have become sharers of the Holy Spirit, And have felt how good the Word of God is and the mighty powers of the age and world to come, If they then deviate from the faith and turn away from their allegiance–[it is impossible] to bring them back to repentance, for (because, while, as long as) they nail upon the cross the Son of God afresh [as far as they are concerned] and are holding [Him] up to contempt and shame and public disgrace.
A Voice and Not an Echo
I once had a friend who owned a cockatoo which used to live in his prayer room. This friend was an Intercessor, and would pray in the spirit quite often. The cockatoo learnt to mimic him praying in the spirit and worshiping the lord. One day I dropped in to see my friend and nobody answered when I knocked on the door. However, I could hear someone praying; I went around the back, let myself into the house, and made my way to his prayer room. There I found the cockatoo marching backward and forward on his perch, praying in the spirit and breaking occasionally to sing hallelujah; then he would jump right back into prayer. As I watched him, The Lord said to me, “He is not a voice; he is only an echo!” This cockatoo represents most believers in today’s church.
It’s not enough to be praying repetitively and speaking the word everyday, or trying to worship The Lord by singing a popular song. The word has to leave your mind and get into your heart! It has to minister to you before you can minister to others. It has to become flesh (your way of life) in order for the song that you are singing to minister to The Lord! I have met a lot of people that draw the word like a gunslinger draws his six gun; others use their beautiful voice, a gift meant to minister to The Lord and His people, to become a popular artist rather than an anointed psalmist. They sell their knowledge of the word and their gifts to the highest bidder to support their lascivious lifestyle. Don’t be an echo; be a voice! Make your life count!
Joshua 1:8 AMP
This Book of the Law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may observe and do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall deal wisely and have good success.
Denying Self: The Key to Becoming a Disciple
The road to true discipleship is called obedience. The vehicle one drives to become a disciple is called discipline. We know we have become mature disciples when we can say no to instant gratification. The hardest person for one to say no to in many areas, is himself! True Disciples of Christ know how to deny themselves! It is impossible to master your destiny until you have mastered your own desires. The bible declares that we should be able to ‘swear to our own hurt and change not.’
Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels.
Understanding the True Prophetic Word!
Some years ago a true prophet spoke a word over my life which confused me to no end. It was a good word, but seemed unrealistic to me. On my way home from the meeting, I asked The Lord if this was a true prophetic word or if this brother had erred in his calling. Why? Because, at that time, I had so many words over my life that I was still trying to work out, the last thing I needed was another word that seemed to demand a lot more faith than I was working under. It didn’t seem to be a realistic word from The Lord; after all, the word tells us He does not over-commit us, but gives to us according to our ability. This word was greater than any ability I had, or could see myself having in the future.
That is when He spoke to me concerning the purpose of prophecy! He told me that He had called me to be a voice behind many voices, meaning I would father many into ministry; the words that were being spoken over my life were creating a foundation of direction for those that would extend the ministry that I was called to, into several generations. When He spoke this to me, I clearly saw the purpose of prophecy being spoken over a leader’s life. Through my minds eye I saw Him speaking a word over Abraham, King David, and many others too numerous to mention; words that are still being worked out in our lives today.
I have a friend that has his roots fastened deep in the Christian faith. The foundation of faith extends over several generations within his family. His parents, grandparents and their friends sowed into his life the integrity and morality which compose the foundation of a true believer. Because of this, he leads a very consistent life in these areas. I have known him for over 25 years. If I was to hear a message he preached 25 years ago, it would not differ in any way from when he preaches it today! Whatever he builds goes from strength to strength! Why? Because of his single-minded lifestyle rooted deep in the true Christian life. One day I was talking to his father, prior to his crossing over, and he was sharing with me his disappointment in his own life. He told me of the things which The Lord had showed him he was to accomplish, and how he felt he had let The Lord down. Then he said to me, “at least my sons are doing it!” These words awoke the gift within me, and I put my hand on his shoulder and began to speak. I heard myself say “they are you, and you are them. You did what you had to do in building a godly foundation in their lives for the word spoken over you not to return void, but to accomplish what it was sent to perform.” The Lord said through me to him, “you have not failed; you’re right on course. It is the way I meant it to be!”
You may not be like my friend; you may be like me: a first-generation believer. Not only are we first-generation believers; we come from dysfunctional families. We have the task of building a foundation of Christian integrity and morality for our children (natural and spiritual) and their children to build upon. So don’t grow weary in well doing, nor disregard a prophetic word you have been given! He might be speaking to the unborn child still in your loins, or even in your children’s loins. Live your life in a godly way always remembering you are storing up an inheritance for your children’s children!
Contaminated Relationships with Authority
As a prophetic ministry I see the use of my gifting is to help those to whom I minister in realigning themselves with The Lord. The main problem I run into while trying to do this comes up when I confront them over a contaminated relationship they have developed with an authority figure. They will do anything for the authority figure, from mowing their lawn to carrying their Bible; they will even dress a certain way or give of their resources to please the authority figure. They’ll clean the church, lockup after everyone is gone, lead prayer meetings and serve at the altar. However, this does not make them a loyal follower of Christ; it makes them a loyal follower of the authority figure! Their commitment to The Lord is often times bankrupt! Their understanding of sound doctrine is usually whatever the authority figure says. They don’t understand what it means to be spirit-led in prayer, giving or ministry to others. They will defend the authority figure even if it means denying Christ’s teachings concerning honesty, morality, or integrity.
My experience is that when you try to wean them away from the authority figure, all hell breaks loose! Not only do they manifest and attack you, the authority figure comes after you with a vengeance. This is the main problem with church today! Contaminated relationships with authority are the source of carnality within the church.
Paul confronts this in 1 Corinthians 3:1-15, “And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal, as to babes in Christ. I fed you with milk and not with solid food; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able; for you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men? For when one says, “I am of Paul,” and another, “I am of Apollos,” are you not carnal? Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed, as the Lord gave to each one? I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase. Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor. For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building. According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.”