Posts Tagged ‘Old Testament’

Bringing Heaven & Disarming Hell

When we posture ourselves correctly before God, we bring Heaven to Earth & disarm hell’s influence.

In the Old Testament whenever worship is mentioned it had a connection to posture as much or more than activity. The word ”worship” actually means to fall prostrate before the one we esteem. Jesus wants our praise to be the fruitful overflow of a full heart, not a discouraged sacrifice of a wounded soldier. Praise and worship should open the Heavenly Realm and release fresh revelation of Truth. Notice these Psalms…

  • Oh come, let us worship and bow down. Let us kneel before the Lord our Maker (Ps 95:6).
  • My voice You shall hear in the morning, oh Lord. In the morning I will direct it to You and I will look up (Ps 5:3).
  • The Lord is my Strength and my Shield. My heart trusted in Him and I am helped; therefore my heart greatly rejoices and with my song I will praise Him (Ps 28:7).
  • They looked to Him (God) and were radiant and their faces were not ashamed (Ps 34:5).

These praise moments were accomplished through a proper posture that bring Heaven to Earth. When we posture ourselves with humility and honor before God a spontaneous flow of rejoicing, thanksgiving and prayer is released from our inner man (1 Thess 5:16-19). The Apostle Paul tells us to never quench the Spirit. I believe this is because in those moments; when we reflect joy, we actually weaken the Enemy’s grasp on our lives.

Satan loses his power and the forces of darkness are disarmed.

Jesus Christ is truly the Victorious King!

When Heaven is releasing its resources into our hearts; and we are being filled with power from on high, then we walk different and carry unique authority. Jesus is “Our King” and the awareness of His victory is earth shaking and life altering. Faith begins to rise where Truth is embedded. The heart that takes the appropriate posture receives grace (James 4:6), obtains mercy (Heb 4:16) and walks in power (Lk 24:49) from heaven (Acts 2:2). This is the Kingdom stuff that brings heaven to earth and disarms hell’s influence on our lives.

At His Footstool

Ominous Sunset

Let the Heavens Open Wide

Psalm 110 is the most frequently quoted Old Testament passage in the New Testament. In this Psalm we get a picture of God as the Authoritative Father (Jehovah) speaking to His Son Jesus with crisp prophetic resolve…

“Come have a seat My Son, while the plans We worked out together before the creation of the world, reach their fulfillment”.

You might ask… why, out of all the ancient promises, did the first disciples turn to this text time and time again? The answer comes out of the fact that this Scripture gave them their purpose. This one text spoke more clearly than any other about how they understood themselves. They saw God at work in them… His Church – “Zion”. They embraced their assignment as God’s “rod of strength”; sent with a task and an anointing of power… “till I make Your (Jesus’) enemies Your footstool”.

Psalm 110 pinpoints the single greatest reality unfolding around us today…

the Kingdom of Heaven is forcefully advancing and men of violence are laying hold of its treasure (Mt 11:12).

Its drama helps us interpret both the front page of our newspapers as well as the frontlines of our battle. It reinforces the idea that people and events everywhere are being woven into the Kingdom plans for planet Earth… whether they know it or not. No matter how far from the center of God’s heart we may seem to be, Christ’s influence has its grip on every human domain. History is not moving in a vacuum; because God has a purpose in these last days to release an army of Saints to call out in the streets.

At “His footstool” we can watch history pursuing one increasing priority; not to have more church buildings or religious meetings… but to see God’s Son “rule in the midst of His enemies!” The enemies of Christ will fall, they will become the footstool beneath His feet and life upon this planet will change.

The Apostle John wrote, “…the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever” (Rev 11:15).

Seeing Like God

Now the Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and go; I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons.” And Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears it, he will kill me.” (1 Sam. 16:1-2)

God’s greatest challenge is always to get us to see what He is seeing!

There is a key phrase in the above situation that unlocks some wisdom for us… God says “Samuel, you have to get over your feelings for Saul… if you want to see what I am doing.” When Samuel was able to obey God, “fill his horn with oil and go to Bethlehem”; an amazing plan would become visible. It was actually going to unfold before his very eyes… and go beyond his human perception. In fact, natural sight would limit Samuel’s vision! God had a king of His own choosing, to rule over Israel!

God’s guidance is usually not as discernible in the moment as it is in hindsight. We may not sense what God is doing in our midst of our situations or how God is leading us. Even the great “Prophetic Gift” did not unlock what God was doing. Yet, God did have a plan… a purpose that would gradually become more clear, more discernible and more acceptable to Samuel’s human understanding. That is the story of every Christian Believer… it is a walk of faith, not sight! Thus we must be willing to train ourselves let go of our “perceptions” in order to see what God sees.

Seeing the Big Picture:

“I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons.”

This story, as with so much of the Old Testament; demonstrates that God’s “providence” operates beyond the realities in which our seeing operates. But even so… we remain within reach of God… so we can have a participation in the process. Note that God’s “Big Picture” is on the flock and not just the individual sparrow. We have to remember that we are co-laborers… to His plans and purposes. In our “do it myself” age, we tend to individualize so many of the messages of the Bible. Here, it is important to note that it is the community, the people of faith that is under God’s care. Neither Samuel nor Jesse’s household would have understood the way in which God was providing for Israel, but God’s eyes were on the people as a whole and not merely the individuals.

Samuel might have questioned the direction God was sending him… Jesse might have questioned the choices Samuel was making as he turned away all of the older boys… But God was providing for His people, a king of His own criteria! He had seen something, known something and was doing something that was way beyond the limitations of human choice.

We must remember this when we decide to attack our own problems with our wisdom and limited experience. God sees the Big Picture and has a plan and purpose in His directives that go far beyond our imagination and skill level. The only way to see like God is to begin with surrendering your sight to the Holy Spirit. You might ask “How?”… and I would tell you that you will never do it by ignoring what you see!

The way to do it is by focusing on the right goal… by looking into the riches of God’s Glory (2 Cor. 4:6)(Heb. 12:1-2).

Look Into the Glory:

As you look into the Glory of God you begin to see what God sees. Inside the human heart is the capacity to see things that are images and visions placed there from the Holy Spirit. What the heart sees is better than what the mind sees, because it has the ability to evaluate and discern where it is leading. God is never seeing life in terms of “snap-shots” or “snippets”, as we see and perceive. His vision is all about spiritual purpose and His awareness is complete with all understanding. He sees the end from the beginning, with a fore-knowledge of the next moment, year or decade.

He sees from a view of Eternity… and that is what He offers those who ask in faith!

Drinking at the Well

These are days of discovery where a generation is experiencing the joy and abundance of living lives full of the Holy Spirit. I have never seen a time so permeated with great opportunities to hear God’s message and fellowship with people who have become radically effected by the Wells of Salvation.

Isaiah 12:1-3 “And in that day you will say; Oh Lord, I will praise You; though You were angry with me Your anger is turned away and You comfort me. Behold God is my Salvation, I will trust and not be afraid. For YAH, (Yahweh) the Lord is my Strength and my Song, He also has become my Salvation! Therefore with joy you will draw water from the Wells of Salvation.”

The Old Testament Prophet Isaiah said it would be like this… that a day would come where a people would draw out the living water from the wells of salvation; that a resource of joy would be released within their lives. They would drink deeply of the spiritual life and they would overflow as a bubbling expression of freedom.

Free from fear and free from wrath; God’s people are made to drink deeply from these wells. (1 Cor 12:13)

  1. This life giving water becomes our Strength!
  2. This joy that we experience becomes our Song!
  3. This heaven sent grace has become our Salvation!

The New Testament writer Paul encourages us to live filled with the Holy Spirit (Eph 5:18). He tells us to keep being filled, keep drinking of this living water everyday and as you receive and flow out into the world around you, there will be an evidence of God’s impact upon others. You are God’s delight and His invitation still remains. So come drink deeply with joy, draw out of His resources within you and know the One who fills your heart with life.

The Glory

What if I told you that there is a place beyond the Presence of God… would you call me a heretic, lunatic or mystic?

Let me speak to the issue of the Glory of God! It is both a Secret Place, where God speaks to us face to face and a Spiritual Realm, where supernatural authority is established within our lives. It is a Place where we begin to truly see… and manifest the riches of the invisible stuff of heaven into our natural reality on Earth. We as Christ’s followers, are called to a “walk” that is able to please God and release the inheritance of spiritual resource into our daily life. But do we understand the Glory of God or just take life as it is presented to us everyday. I want to enlarge your thinking, because the day has come; whereby God is wanting to increase the “knowledge of the Glory of God”… to a level that would be as recognizable as the way the “water covers the sea”.

“For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.” (Habakkuk 2:14)

The Apostle Paul spoke about the Glory in terms of an ongoing ministry that began in the Old Testament and advanced into the New Testament. He said that the Ministry of Moses had a Glory that was so strong that the people would cover the face of Moses, because it would shine with the Glory that rested upon him as he ministered face to face before God in the Wilderness Tabernacle. Yet Paul said that the Glory of the Ministry of the Holy Spirit was even greater and more precious to behold (2 Cor. 3:7-18). His message was that our lives are transformed by the Glory as we behold Christ more and more… as we fellowship with the Father and experience the working of the Holy Spirit. He used illustrations from the Old Testament like the Glory Cloud that followed the Hebrew People in the wilderness or the Ark of the Covenant as the fire rested upon the Mercy seat… these images were to encourage us to recognize that our lives are changing as we learn to walk in the Glory of God and behold Jesus as the Glory of the Father (Heb 1:1-4). Notice verse 3 speaks of Jesus as the brightness or manifestation of the beauty of the Fathers Glory and the express image of His person.

Spiritual Atmosphere Heavenly in Nature:

Interesting that the Apostle Paul also speaks of the Glory as a Realm of God’s spiritual atmosphere… an atmosphere that is heavenly in nature. It was in the Garden of Eden as God walked with Adam in the “cool” (ruach/spirit/glory realm) of the day (Gen. 3:8). In other words God was sharing His Glory with Adam before the fall… as they walked together and shared fellowship and communion. This Glory made Adam feel loved, accepted and comfortable without clothes, for he was naked and unashamed until after the fall – after sin came into the Garden experience. Notice that Adam was not alone, yet the woman that accompanied Adam was not named until after the fall: because they were living together naked and unashamed. They lived in harmony, as one in the Glory with the Father, but after sin comes shame and guilt become the overwhelming atmosphere. It was in the fallen state that Adam names the Woman Eve, because he was now very aware of their differences rather than comfortable in their unity with the Father.

As the Glory Lifted:

Now this happens because the Glory had lifted… note that God comes into the Garden to find that man is hiding himself and that he was covering himself with leaves… man was meeting his own need, and hiding in disobedience and shame.

  • Psalm 8:5 tells us that God had “crowned” or clothed man in Glory at creation.
  • Luke 24:49, Acts 1:8 & Ephesians 5:17-18 tells us He wants to do it again in the Holy Spirit as we are filled to overflowing with His Power.
  • Isaiah 43:1-7 tells us that God created man for His Glory… it speaks of “man” as Jacob and that God had formed man in His Glory, redeemed man by His Glory and called man to His Glory… so that man could live as he was created to live – in the Glory of God.

Riches in the Glory Realm:

The Apostle Paul says (Phil. 4:19) that all of his needs were met according to the riches in the Glory in Christ. This is an amazing revelation to know that we can have our needs met as we learn to walk in the Glory Realms with God as Adam experienced before the fall. Indeed Jesus has restored access to the Garden of Eden… by becoming a curse for us (Gal. 3:13) so that we could become the righteousness of God in Christ (2 Cor. 5:21). We can live with all of our needs met and teach as Jesus taught (Jn. 14:12-14)… to walk as Children of His Glory (Jn. 17:22-24).

The Church is to be a Glorious Bride – fully clothed in Glory, the apparel of Loving Fellowship!

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