Archive for June, 2016

He is the Life!

I AM …the bread of life. (John 6:35)

…the light of the world. (John 8:12)

…the good shepherd. (John 10:11)

…the way, the truth, and the life. (John 14:6)

…the true vine. (John 15:5)

Just in case you find yourself hungry, lost or confused…

Remind yourself of who Jesus really is! The Bible is clear, He is the Christ – the Son of the Living God (Mt. 16:13-17). He is the life… to know Him is to have a quality of life that nothing else offers (Jn. 17:3). No matter who or what is standing in your way, simply believing… creates breakthrough into the promise of who He is – as the “Great I Am” (1 Jn. 5:12-13). He is Healer, Deliverer, Provider and Restorer… because He knows, He hears, He cares and He loves. Make no mistake, you are not forgotten, forsaken or abandon…

You are His Prize… You are His Desire… You are His Delight!

Believing Church

“For indeed the Gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.” (Heb. 4:2)

God won’t move in unbelief! Therefore, we must activate faith in His Word, faith in His activity and faith in His prophetic purpose.

Don’t wait… Activate!

Jesus appeared to the eleven as they sat at the table and He rebuked their unbelief and hardness of heart (Mk. 16:14). He did this because they did not believe those who had seen Him after He had risen. Unbelief and hardness of heart are at the center of ineffective ministry and powerless Christianity.

Without Belief there is no Faith! (Mk. 6:3-6)

According to God’s Word without faith, the Gospel will not profit you. After seeing His ministry in action; hearing His prophetic voice and experiencing three years of signs, wonders and miracles, the eleven apostles sat in unbelief and hardness of heart. Why? Because they found nothing inside of them to energize their vision! All they could see was their plight.

Activating Faith is a Choice to Believe Something!

The idea of belief must be taken seriously, because it is what engages our hearts to move in faith (Heb. 11:1). Though their Friend and Master had died, He had spoken of a plan in the midst of this moment (Jn. 14:3). Fear had them paralyzed! They were wanted by the authorities and scared for their lives; yet, they should have been able to step into the promises Jesus had left with them (Jn. 14:29). They needed to bring to their memory the words that encouraged them so many times before. But once again, we see them huddled around the table discussing their plight.

Hardness of Heart:

Suddenly Jesus appeared and rebuked them for their hardness of heart. And why? Because they needed to make a choice… they could have engaged their faith by believing what Jesus had said and seen God’s prophetic purpose. Hardness of heart is the inability to move on what you know!

Did you catch that… “Hardness of heart is the paralysis of analysis!”

The Capacity to See:

Believing awakens our capacity to see what Jesus sees. Instead of lecturing His disciples and beating them over the head with Scripture, Jesus calls them up higher. Its as if Jesus was telling them to just take the leap and obey… make the choice! His purpose of reaching the nations was about to become their lifelong quest (Mk. 16:15-16) and He needed them to break free from distractions. He needed them to awaken their capacity to see, and embrace what He could see. What could we see - if we were truly free from distractions?

If we would just lay aside our fears, our agendas and our desire to please one another, the world would feel the impact of an energized vision and Jesus would soon return for a glorious Believing Church.

Revived and Rejoicing

“Will You not revive us again, that Your people may rejoice in You?” (Psa. 85:6)

Revival in Hebrew is Chayay {khaw-yah’-ee}. It means to be quickened, to be made alive, to be restored to life or health, from sickness, from discouragement, from faintness, from death! It refers to a spiritual reawakening from a state of dormancy or stagnation in the life of a believer. In other words, revival in the heart of a believer is to be awakened from spiritual slumber or even revived and raised from spiritual death! It awakens greater love and passion for a Holy and Righteous God than we have ever experienced. Revival moves beyond the heart of nominal, complacent Christianity and is usually marked by a life that rejoices in holiness because He is Holy.

Initiated by the Holy Spirit:

True revival is always initiated by a prompting of the Holy Spirit! It creates an awareness of something missing or wrong in the person’s life that can only be transformed by a Holy God. In turn, the person must respond from the heart, acknowledging his or her need. Then, in a powerful way the Holy Spirit draws back the veil the enemy has cast over the truth, allowing that person to fully see themselves in comparison to God’s glory, majesty and holiness. Obviously, such comparisons bring great humility and repentance, but also bring an awareness and awe of God in relation to His great love for them personally and His truly amazing grace. For the believer, unlike the conversion experience that births the new relationship to God; revival represents a restoration of fellowship with God. It always takes them to a new place, a new level, a new depth of intimacy and love with God. After salvation, the first tactic of the enemy is to distract you with the cares of this life or busyness of new ministry or even a religious lifestyle. We can become weighed down with the cares of life, rituals of religion, even ministry, and we soon find ourselves just going through the motions… thereby losing our first love. It’s then that we no longer experience the joy of serving Christ. True revival initiated by the Holy Spirit helps restore that first love, passion and intimacy towards Christ.

What it Produces:

Revival stimulates an aggressive hunger and passion for His Word and a desire to be with those of like precious faith. It is a convicting awareness of personal and corporate sin, a spirit of humility, and a desire for repentance and growth in righteousness. Revival invigorates and always deepens a believer’s faith, opening his or her eyes to spiritual truth. It marks a new beginning of a life lived in obedience to God through intense worship, prayer, fasting, repentance and the reading of God’s Word. Revival breaks the fascination, deception and power of the world in which we live, which blinds the eyes and hearts of men. (Isa. 44:18)(2 Cor. 4:4).

True revival from the Holy Spirit generates both the will and power to rejoice…

As agents of transformation… to be in the world but not of the world.

Hold Nothing Back

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (Rom. 12:1-2)

Worship is the logical response of the created… toward the Creator! Scripture invites us, as the lovers of God to worship Him with all we are… expressive and without reservation (Mt. 22:37)(Jn. 4:23-24). We find ourselves accepting His invitation to “come up…” and see the worship taking place in Heaven (Rev. 4:1-2). Holding nothing back is the atmosphere around God’s Throne.

The worshiper exists for a purpose… to be a demonstration of “on earth as it is in Heaven…” (Mt. 6:10).

  • Worship is for us a longing and release of the beauty of Heaven through creative flow.
  • Worship is the sounds of Heaven through music and the movement of Heaven through dance.
  • Worship is the harp and the bowl… the tears and the joy of connecting to the Father’s Heart.

It has often been said that the “signature experience” at heavenly gates is the joy of God’s Manifest Presence.

When you come to any spiritual gate, you may notice that worship is different. The Holy Spirit ushers us into new and intimate place under an open Heaven. This is where we are learning to express deep passion to God that He is worthy to receive.

We seek the heavenly experience: to be lead by the Holy Spirit and flow as One with Him in spontaneous motion and sounds.

Our focus in worship is to prefer the Lord, rather than personal needs, desires or musical preferences. Holy Spirit is teaching all of us how to minister to the Lord, as we choose within our hearts to look into the face of Jesus, gazing on the beauty of who He is to each of us. We believe that as we learn to do this, the Lord will release more and more of His Glory on us corporately. As each one of us becomes radically extravagant in our worship, He will become more extravagant in our living. We want to worship as ones who could never give back to God the Glory He deserves.

Exhaust yourself on Him, holding nothing back… reserving no reputation for yourself.

We must choose the worshiper’s identity… becoming known as people who are desperate for God.

Savage Wolves

“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles?” (Mt. 7:15-16)

The Devil has always tried to use people to bring division into the Congregation of the Saints. There is nothing new about this problem. In fact, James addresses the issues of wrong attitudes and a “spirit of strife” (Jms. 3:14). From the earliest inception of the New Testament Church, we hear the Apostle Paul warn about savage wolves who would be raised up even among the flock… Paul says, “savage wolves will come in among you” (Acts 20:28-31). It is going to happen… so we must not be taken by surprise.

Watch for the Spirit of Strife!

Be on guard for spirits of strife, argumentative people and division. Church leaders have always had to correct people who acted under the deceiving grip of evil intent. This is what we commonly define as a “spirit”… its often motivated by fear or offense and demonic in nature. Unfortunately the fruit of such a spirit is destructive beyond measure. It is the source of much division and strife in the Church today.

In respect to people being used by the Devil to bring division, James says, “But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking (strife) in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth” (Jms. 3:14). The phrase “bitter envy” is very important. It is the Greek word zelos, which refers to a fierce desire to promote our own idea to the exclusion of others. The words, self-seeking or “strife”- eritheia which in the Greek means rivalry or ambition, can be translated as a party spirit or a divisive spirit. In verse 15 we see James expound upon the motivation for such a divisive heart toward leadership as he tells us, the wisdom that is creating strife is “…earthly, sensual (and) demonic. Note that this is not “wisdom” at all, but a deceptive perversion of wisdom that comes from an evil intent. These are the devil’s schemes and resources… and they come from the kingdom of darkness.

Stay Free!

Jesus said “the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me” (Jn. 14:30).

Of course, we know Jesus was speaking here of His betrayal and excruciating death at the cross… but the principle is real and true! We must learn to keep our hearts free from all strife and offense, because it causes us to miss the will of God for our lives. The Apostle Paul said, “avoid foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they generate strife. And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth” (2 Tim. 2:23-25). If our hearts stay free of strife and offense, the door stays closed to the Devil so he cannot disrupt our relationships. We need to know that when we allow a spirit of strife to operate inside ourselves, our home, business or church; it won’t be too long until people who used to love each other are standing in opposition to each other. That is the way the spirit of strife operates, and that is the fruit it produces. In the end it produces death to relationships and bitterness beyond the walls of our fellowships.

What To Do:

So the key question is – “What are we willing to do?” Because it takes a certain amount of initiative and boldness to be a peace maker! Just read this difficult admonition:

“Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple”. (Rom. 16:17-18)

I want to point out that Paul says, these are people with smooth words and flattering speech! His command is to mark them… to avoid them and to give no opportunity for them to have a voice in the congregation. Is there hope for restoration? Perhaps, but not without true discipline and integrity among our leadership. Only then, will we see the spirit of strife removed from our fellowships.

An offense is a demonic trap – Be careful that you do not fall into it!

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