Posts Tagged ‘Everlasting Father’

For Unto Us…

My Defender

“A father of the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy habitation. God sets the solitary in families; He brings out those who are bound into prosperity; but the rebellious dwell in a dry land.” (Ps 68:5-6)

How incredibly strong and wonderful is the Lord of Hosts… My Defender and Friend!

He alone is the Wonderful Counselor, Almighty God, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace. His canopy has been my Tower of defense against the onslaught of my enemies. His name shall always be upon my lips, “Jesus, the Christ; Son of the Living God”. As an eagle spreads forth its wings to cover and shade her young so has God lifted His strength to offer me protection. With a voice that shakes the heavens and stills the nations of the Earth; He speaks my name and calms my fears. By His own strong arm and His mighty hand kingdoms have been toppled and rulers dethroned- for there is no king like this King. Yet in His Majesty is the compassion and grace to father the fatherless and defend the widow. He sets the solitary in a family and brings out the bound into their freedom and prosperity.

What am I… and what have I to offer this King of Glory?

He has captured my heart with His favor and listened for my pleasures to arise. He has been good to me and shone me the paths of safety by going before me and mapping out my steps through the wilderness. I have been moved by His Manifest Presence along the way.

My Defender is the King of Glory… of whom then shall I fear; whom shall I fear?

I Am Sent Me!

Prophetic Commissioning

Limuli, Uganda

Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?” God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I Am has sent me to you.’ God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord, the God of your fathers-the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob-has sent me to you.’ This is My Name forever, the Name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation. (Ex. 3:13-15)

This is what you say, when they ask you – “Who has sent you? Say I Am sent me!”

We see Moses, who had been residing on the backside of the desert for 40 years living in the shadow of the biggest failure of his life. Now he has a personal confrontation with God, who asks him to take on a task that seems way beyond his confidence and abilities. First Moses comes up with excuses and then he asks the question, as if realizing that getting out of this task is a loosing battle. “Suppose I go… what if they ask… who shall I say sent me?”

What a Question:

Asking God who He is? Remember, up to this point, Moses really didn’t know the God of his fathers. He had been raised in the Egyptian Palace and walked in the courts of the Pharaoh. It was like he said, “God I’ll go, but I’ve got to know that You are backing me up here. I’ve got to be able to tell them who told me to do this. Who are You?” Note that the Lord does not rebuke the question, but instead He gives Moses an answer. The answer, that answers all the questions he would ever have again.

What an Answer: “I Am!”

“I AM” …not I was or I will be, but I Am! These two words proclaimed, are more effective than any other two words ever spoken. I AM indicates that God is in the present carrying the authority, right now at this very moment holding all the power in the palm of His hand. “Whatever you need Moses. At the moment you need it – I AM… will be with you!”

An Awesome Promise:

When shacken or rattled by life’s greatest barriers, I Am becomes your answer! God will be with you whenever and for whatever… at the moment we need His helping hand. The God of the Universe, the Everlasting Father, will be exactly what you need when you need Him.

When I feel pressed beyond my ability to endure! When I wonder off track and come to my senses!  When I stand wanting a word in due season! Then I proclaim – “I Am has sent me!” God is here and all is not lost. This very moment I Am is ready with the resources to be everything I require for fruitfulness and success.

God has Sent Me:

So devil, I put you on alert… no weapon formed can prosper. Problems, I will not cast away my confidence. Sin and frailty, you are not my destiny. I Am has sent me and He has become my identity! It is God who works in me both to will and to do His good pleasure. So, I will not tremble nor step back from the assignments of my life… I Am has sent me!

Grace Platforms

The Ministry of Christ is a ministry of grace! His message was the Good News of a Kingdom of grace flowing from Heaven into Earth. It would bring forgiveness, peace and freedom from sin. Yet the deliverance and freedom experienced in the life of a disciple can only be attained and measured by the transformed mind. Real Kingdom mysteries require us to change the way we think about everything pertaining to God, Church and life on this planet (Mt. 4:17). Jesus has stepped into our natural reality and He brought His world with Him!

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His Kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.” (Isa. 9:6-7)

Ministry on Christ’s Shoulder:

The five-fold ministry gifts are examples of how “grace has been given” as Christ distributes (Eph. 4:7). All ministry is simply the manifestation of Christ expressed through the believer by the anointing of the Holy Spirit. Jesus, as the “Christ” is our Apostle (Heb. 3:1), Prophet (Lk. 24:19), Evangelist (Mt. 9:35), Pastor (1 Pet. 5:2-4) and Teacher (Jn. 3:2). He emulated these offices and distributes the mantles for individuals to function in them, so that the Church carries His anointing for ministry (Jn. 14:12).

“…the Holy Spirit said, ‘Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.’ So…they placed their hands on them and sent them off.” (Acts 13:2-3)

Selected and Sent:

The five-fold leaders are not self-appointed, nor are they simply pastors of a local church. They are clearly defined ministries that have an impact on the Church as a whole and its witness in the world. By nature, their scope of ministry is wider than the local church. They are grace ministries of Christ to the Church at large. Whether its from inner city pulpits or in the bush lands of Africa, the heartbeat of 5-fold ministry is the discipling of the nations… its our Great Commission! (Mt. 28:18-20).

Two things are required for a five-fold ministry gift to come into its own: 1) Recognition by the wider Body of Christ and 2) Functional Ministry to the wider Body of Christ. Jesus said that the fruit of a person’s life is the best way to recognize their identity, character and anointing. Prior to these two conditions being met, someone may potentially have a five-fold ministry gift, but will not yet be moving in the scope and authority of that gift. Jesus gives the grace for each gift to be released into the Church.

“…God’s household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself as the Chief Cornerstone” (Eph. 2:19-20).

Foundations:

The foundation of the Church is Jesus… the revelation of “Christ – the Son of the Living God” (Mt. 16:16). And yet there is this unique platform of the apostle and the prophet team (Eph. 3:4-5). This platform carries the role of unveiling the mysteries hidden down through the ages, yet revealed in Christ and by the Holy Spirit to the sons and daughters of men. I believe these two mantle gifts still serve that ministry role (Eph. 4:12-13), so it is vital for us to understand how this works in leading the Body of Christ. We must remember that proper buildings are held up by proper foundations. I would propose; that when grace flows into ministry and functions properly, under the headship of Christ and the leadership of the Holy Spirit, it will result in the growth and supernatural health of the Church worldwide. It is the will of God to set this in order and accomplish it through His apostle and prophet teams (Isa. 9:7)… by grace.

The Key of Humility:

The Apostle James and the Apostle Peter wrote specifically about how to receive grace (Jms. 4:6 & 1 Pet. 5:5-6). The humble person receives grace and more grace even as they maintain their humility in the midst of difficult circumstances. Jesus said “Blessed is the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven” (Mt. 5:3). The humble person; who lives selflessly in ministry, will receive a flow of resource from heaven according to the gift Christ has given them. Their anointing will be in proportion to their faith, assignment and their need.

The Apostle Paul said, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13). The ministry teams made up of Apostle and Prophets like Paul, Barnabas, Silas and Timothy served to accomplish great things in advancing the Kingdom of God. They were set apart by the Holy Spirit (Acts 13:2), helped in the midnight hour (Acts 16:25-26) and anointed to do incredible miraculous signs that accompanied the preaching of the Word of God (Acts 19:11-12).

Restoration is needed: In order for the Church to see what God is after today, our impact must set the captives free! We must rely upon the flow of ministry grace… like the dry ground soaks up the rain.

An Apostolic Company

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His Kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.” (Isaiah 9:6-7)

It is vital that God’s Kingdom Government gets established in the Earth today. That which was laid upon the shoulders of the Son of God must find its expression in the Children of God under Christ’s authority. The Church is a living organism, with a government established and advanced by the activity of God’s “brooding” Holy Spirit. When an Apostolic Company of believers; like Christ’s disciples, wait upon the Holy Spirit in an upper room, something amazing gets birthed in the natural… a dwelling place for God! The Church finds its birth and government in the Spirit and gets established upon a people who are willing to let God lay foundations. The history of the Bible continues to declare this one truth, wherever He is welcome, God will have a habitation among us in the spiritual realm (Eph. 2:22).

Jesus testified of the impact on the “gates of hell” when His Church finds its footing and its identity (Mt. 16:18).

The Called Out Ones:

This is the “ecclesia” (the called out ones) that God is after and will use in these last days, both spiritually and prophetically. It is the priority of Christ to establish the Church on this rock of revelation – “Christ, the Son of the Living God”. We are His offspring, the living stones huned from the original Rock and Chief Cornerstone (1 Pet. 2:4-5).

Foundation Stones:

We must begin by embracing the pattern God gives for establishing spiritual foundations. He has given gifts to the Church by “grace” (Eph. 4:7) and imparted a release of favor to chosen individuals. These divinely chosen roles or ”mantles” are identified by the Apostle Paul as the 5-fold ministry. The first mantles, in rank and order that are called to this duty are the apostle and prophet. God’s goal is to establish His government upon an Apostolic Company. This “company” simply represents a group of people, of any size that recognize the spiritual impact of their willing yieldedness to God’s divine order. An Apostolic Company is a network of individuals, who allow the free flow of God’s governing to rest upon them. They must be full of the Holy Spirit and graced by God to set the platform for the Kingdom of Heaven to rule among them.

Ordering the Living Stones:

God orders His Living Stones in line with His grace given to men (Eph. 2:19-22). This might seem unusual and difficult at first; but as a team begins to let God’s voice emerge, it will come. He will lead by His Holy Spirit. Living Stones are set into the foundation as we listen to the spirit of revelation flowing forth. It is important to remind ourselves that the anointing Jesus carried emerged out of a work of the Holy Spirit and released the authority to do the miraculous things we see Jesus doing (Lk. 4:19). Signs and wonders were not the achievements of man, but the evidence of God’s anointing (Acts 10:38). Jesus was the ”Messiah”, the “Christ” or “Anointed One”… and the “Christian” is to become “little anointed ones”, because of the government of Heaven in their midst.

Wait On God:

We must not become concerned if it is a little difficult at first to see the Apostolic Company emerge. God is working and He will do it! These times must be part of an overall waiting process and discovery of the Glory of God manifesting itself among a people. Seeking His purpose in our midst and allowing Him to inhabit our praise and worship times, will release an atmosphere of divine order. Pray and even fast for this emerging atmosphere. These are the most important moments in the birthing of God’s spiritual government. Yet its reward will be in the revelation of His heart and vision among the company.

New Testament Paradigm:

When the 120 believers in the upper room experienced the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, there was such a massive wave of God’s power that hit the Earth that the little company of followers were transformed into revolutionaries. The region was infiltrated, shaken and completely turned upside down by the Holy Spirit. This event represents the first apostolic revolution and at the end of the day 3,000 souls were saved and a New Church was birthed that looked nothing like the religion of the day. A unity of Spirit and community of faith were now shaping the future of how the world would see God (Acts 2:40-47). The Church would be supernatural and authentic, yet committed to one another and the teaching of the Apostles.

An Apostolic People:

An Apostolic People are a sent people and a sending people, knit from the same fabric as their Leader - Jesus. “As the Father has sent (apostello) Me into the world, I also have sent (apostello) them into the world” (Jn 17:18). Today, as in the days following Pentecost, there is an outpouring of the Holy Spirit that is making its way across the nations and reviving the apostolic mandate. The echo is felt in the heart of every apostle,  “therefore go and make disciples of all the nations” (Mt 28:19).

Vision & Unity:

It is very important to know that the vision is not primarily ”church building”, but Kingdom Advancement. Its more about the Glory of God, than the institution of man. Jesus will build His Church, but Apostolic Companies are driven by the call to disciple nations (Mt. 28:18-20). People are very tired of the competition that comes from our church growth activities. God wants to pull down religious perceptions and misguided agendas that work contrary to unity in the company.

Focus On the Glory of God!

Take ownership of the atmosphere of congregational gatherings and leadership meetings in an effort to release the power and purpose of God, as exibited in Psalm 133:1-3. Notice: Ps. 133:3 says – “There the Lord commanded the Blessing!” That is what you are after!!! Its the anointing oil that flowed as a Priestly Company is established in the Holy Spirit. Now you will get accostomed to the heaviness of God’s Glory… it is supposed to be this way. It is the atmosphere of God walking in the “cool” of the day with Adam. The word for “Cool” is Ruach, which means “Spirit” and is the expression of the Glory that was present in the Garden of Eden. Adam was naked and was not ashamed, because he was clothed in the Glory of God at Creation (Ps. 8:5). The word for crowned here is the same word for clothed. It is also noted as the goal in Colossians 1:27 – “Christ in you the hope of Glory”. Recognize that walking in the Glory will establish the training in righteousness and the authority of the Apostolic Company.

We are moving from Glory to Glory as by the Spirit of the Lord (2 Cor 3:18). God will do it!

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