Posts Tagged ‘thoughts’

Prophetic Preaching

Jesus answered, “My teaching is not my own. It comes from the One who sent Me.” (John 7:16)

Jesus consistently preached under the anointing of God, as we see in the above verse. Yet the key to being prophetic is that Jesus’ message carried the weight of supernatural creativity, breakthrough and fulfillment.  A prophetic preacher may use the gifts of teaching, exhortation and prophecy in a variety of ways; but the power of the message itself, will shift the atmosphere (Rom. 1:16-17). That is what makes it prophetic!

“And take the … sword of the Spirit, which is the word [rhema] of God” (Eph 6:17)

Prophetic Preaching contains a ‘Now’ Word:

The prophetic gift is employed to make known the thoughts, purpose and intent of God. Prophetic preaching has a sense of immediacy. In the New Testament, the Greek word ‘rhema’ primarily refers to the spoken word that carries power in its ‘utterance’, whereas ‘logos’ primarily refers to the written word, the logic of God or His thought process. Prophetic teaching and preaching releases the rhema of God’s “Spirit-breathed”, current Word. It is designed to reveal the Father’s “Now Word”, making known something that if believed would come forth. It answers the question, ‘What is God’s Word to us in this season?’

Example: The Apostle Paul said, “the word is near you even in your mouth and in your heart, that is the word of faith that we preach” (Rom. 10:8). He goes on to say that if you act on it by confessing and believing, you will be saved… You will be transformed!

What happens in prophetic preaching is that we are drawn into an experience by the conviction of the Holy Spirit as well as the will to believe and step into its power. It sets a Kairos moment… the opportune time for change and transformation. Prophetic preaching opens doorways into heavenly blessing, revelation and assignments.

“This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words.” (1 Cor 2:13)

Based on Spiritual Revelation:

Prophetic preaching is inspired by the Holy Spirit through the means of revelation. The word ‘revelation’ in the New Testament Greek, apokalupsis, means an ‘uncovering’ or ‘disclosure’. In other words, God is revealing something by His Spirit that is not known by natural means… its a mystery. There is often a call to action or a need to respond and activate the Word received by the hearer. This is why we place a high priority on seasons of prayer or altar times, to allow the Holy Spirit to speak to our hearts when the atmosphere has been shifted in a room or auditorium. This may be to align one’s heart or actions, to pay attention to a timely warning or submit to guidance. When we do not position ourselves for God’s present or future plans, we often miss our opportunity. The consistent results of the prophetic instructions of God are for transformation and breakthrough.

Notice these two examples:

  1. “The children of Issachar, who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel should do… and all their brethren were at their command” (1 Chron. 12:32)
  2. “When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at His teaching, because He taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.” (Mt. 7:28-29)

Prophetic Preaching Carries Authority:

This authority is not based upon the preacher’s gift, but on the basis of being entrusted with a message from God Himself. Throughout Scripture, the instruction given through a prophet brought breakthrough for God’s people. This included strategic guidance in a time of warfare (2 Chron. 20:14-17), a word of action in crisis (Gen 41:25-46) or a specific declaration of breakthrough (2 Kings 7:1-2). Prophetic preaching is of great value when a shift is needed to bring the Kingdom of God and push back against the darkness that floods our vision.

Empowering the Church:

“Judas and Silas, who themselves were prophets, said much to encourage and strengthen the believers.”  (Acts 15:32)

The outcome of prophetic preaching, just as with all prophetic ministry, is that the Church and its leadership is built up, strengthened and empowered. (1 Cor 14:3-4)

Lifting the Broken

Praying for the sick in Kenya“The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” (Ps. 34:18)

I find myself at times feeling very sorry for the pain I see people go through… both physically and emotionally. Times of stress or struggle can overwhelm the best of us and our character is often tested even when we are in the very center of God’s will. Somewhere in the midst of suffering there is a powerful resource for our future success.

The “Sifted” Need Lifted:

At times it becomes obvious when a person needs the lifting power of God’s grace. Jesus responded to Peter when he was sifted by the Devil (Lk 22:31-32) and we must respond to those around us (Gal 6:2). We must become equipped with the Truth of God’s Word for the downcast and troubled. When we give God our pain, He does replace it with joy. It’s so subtle that after our own personal seasons of heartache, we often forget how the comforting Presence of God lifted us out of dispair and brokenness.

Finding Hope Anchors the Soul (Heb 6:19):

We can find hope in God’s Word, because it serves as the platform for God’s thoughts and purposes for His family, the Church. God says to Solomon, “Ask for whatever you want Me to give you” (2 Chron. 1:7). The Good News is that He says that to all His children in order to move them into joyful hope.

Jesus tells his disciples, “Ask and you will receive, that your joy may be full” (Jn 16:24) and He prays, “that they may have the full measure of My (His) joy within them” (Jn 17:13). Isn’t that powerful? Those who have experienced this joy know how amazing it is. It goes beyond our mental comprehension and it lifts the broken out of their painful perceptions… even before it delivers them from their painful circumstances. Its the power of hope!

How do we attain this joy?

Jesus tells us that it is hinged to abiding in His love. “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.” (Jn 15:10-11) Love moves us into joy, because it releases hope inside our hearts.

God truly wants to lift the broken:

Here are some more verses that can boost our hope and free us to rejoice in our good Heavenly Father:

  • Prov. 10:24 “What the righteous desire will be granted.”
  • Ex. 33:17 “And the LORD said to Moses, I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.”
  • Zeph. 3:17 “The LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save.”
  • Ps. 22:5 “…in You they trusted and were NOT disappointed.”
  • Isa. 49:23 “Those who hope in Me will not be disappointed.”
  • Ps. 21:2 “You have granted him the desire of his heart and have not withheld the request of his lips.”
  • Ps. 145:19 “He fulfills the desires of those who fear Him; He hears their cry and saves them.”
  • Ps. 6:9 “The LORD has heard my cry for mercy; the LORD accepts my prayer.”
  • 1 John 5:14-15 “This is the assurance we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us –whatever we ask– we know that we have what we asked of Him.”
  • Eph. 3:20 “Now unto Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us…”

The Lord is so tender to those who are of a broken and contrite heart and desires to be near them. When the humble cry out for help, He is quick to respond even in the midst of the confusion that often blinds us of His Presence. He is kind, merciful and wants to lavish love on His children (Rom 5:5). The discipline is only for a moment, “weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” (Ps. 30:5)

Becoming Mighty In Spirit!

To be mighty in Spirit is to know God intimately and to experience the power of His grace daily over pain, fears and struggle. It is a process of establishing more than how a person feels, because it is based upon the fruit that is released when the sifting occurs. It is being sensitive to the purposes of God that aim to advance His Kingdom even in those seasons when mystery is more evident than revelation. Our trials are putting courage into our bones and transforming us to become mighty in Spirit! (2 Cor. 4:16-17) There will always be trouble, but the grace to arise is more than equal to the task of lifting the broken. To be mighty in spirit… is to understand what it means to be “renewed daily”!

To be mighty in Spirit… comes as we know God intimately and experience the power of His grace daily over pain, fears and struggle.

Stirred Up

“So the Lord stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua the son Jehozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of the remnant of the people; and they came and worked on the house of the Lord of hosts, their God…” (Haggai 1:14)

The phrase “stirred up” in this verse carries the meaning: “to rouse, awaken, excite, raise up; to incite; to arouse to action; to open one’s eyes.” This same Hebrew word is used 81 times in the Old Testament. It is used to describe how an eagle stirs up its nest (Deut. 32:11) and also how a musical instrument is awakened or warmed up before it is played (Ps. 108:2). It’s used twice as the Lord awakens the prophet each morning… He awakens his ear to hear God’s message (Isa. 50:4).

Stirring in the Spirit:

The Lord is arousing many in the Body of Christ these days! I hear it all around me, that “God is up to something”… He is moving in power and stirring the hearts of His people. I believe He is specifically calling out to His Sons and Daughters.

The greatest gift the Father wants to give us is a responsive relationship with Him. Yet this requires spiritual communication and hearing His voice. Remember, as believers, we have the Holy Spirit living inside of us. Scripture tells us that the Spirit searches all things (1 Cor. 2:9-16), even the deep things of God… He searches in order to awaken the “mind of Christ” inside our spirit. Consequently, because of the Holy Spirit in me, anywhere I am, at any moment, I have access to the thoughts and the stirrings of God’s heart and emotions. I can access the deep things of God through the spirit in me receiving revelation… its the bubbling up of the Holy Spirit searching out all things.

These inner stirrings are wonderful expressions of the Father’s heart toward His children. They represent love, faithfulness and protection in the midst of any storm or battle. They represent more than feelings… and more than pleasure. They are often compelling motivation for obedience, intercession or ministry. In the above verse we see clearly that the stirring of the spirit can motivate the servant of God to co-labor in the building of something that God has on His heart… to work on the House of the Lord.

Stop for a moment and ask yourself… “Are you becoming more sensitive to the stirrings in your spirit?”

New Things

“Behold, I will do a new thing, Now it shall spring forth; Shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” (Isa 43:19)

The things of God seem to start in small ways; and even though they might spring forth, we must recognize “spring forth” can mean less than what we typically expect. God is careful with the new thing. He causes it to emerge slowly and suggests that we seek it out… make ourselves aware of it. When Jesus speaks of new things becoming manifest, our ears must prepare for change. He desires to keep His secrets within the context of relationship (Jn 15:15). Recognizing the “road in the wilderness” and the “rivers in the desert” always requires more than just simple observation.

Example:

At Bethsaida the people brought a blind man to Jesus for healing. He took him by the hand, led him out of the town and when He had spit on his eyes, He put His hands upon him, He asked the man if he saw anything. The man, looking up and said, “I see men as trees walking”. The second time Jesus put His hands upon his eyes and told him to look. This time the man’s sight was completely restored. He could see clearly! Notice how Jesus speaks to the formerly blind man. Jesus sends him home saying, “Don’t go into the town, nor tell it to any in the town” (Mark 8:26).

Preserving the New Thing:

New things emerge in a variety of ways, but they must connect to the heart in order for the impact to last. God’s goal is to get us to create testimony so that life is seen in the context of His involvement with us… in relationship. Sometimes when we try to tell others about the new thing God is doing, the devil will use doubts in our mind or cynicism in those we tell, to undermine our testimony. There are times when Jesus has forbidden me to bear witness of a healing or miracle in my body, until my faith is strong enough to stand the testing of thoughts and words that mock my experience. God knows the enemy will try anything to steal our peace, rob us of our joy and discredit the new thing that is emerging in our lives.

Holy Spirit is Speaking:

“Shall you not know it?”

The Holy Spirit speaks to our spirit, to our spiritual perception. ”It’s already here” He says, “but its small right now, really just a seed. Don’t try to interpret it, don’t try to make it more than it is, don’t blow the trumpets. Just consider it. Allow Me to introduce you to it. Allow Me to explain it. Allow Me to reveal what its all about and where embracing it will take you. It’s going to require a shift in your seeing. Are you ready to leave what you know and launch out into the deeper waters of what you don’t know? I’m offering you some mystery… My secrets. I’m offering you, a road in your wilderness and rivers in your desert.”

Discover New Things:

If you are desiring to discover the new thing that God is doing, (in your life, your ministry, in the Church, nation, world etc.) determine to become a seeker, begin to search out the small. Quiet your heart to hear the faint whisperings of the Holy Spirit. Become still and wait for the gentle breeze of God to blow upon your face and then look to where God is directing your gaze. Above all get ready to leave the comfort zone of what you know and allow God to carry you into secret places… places where friends go.

Develop Hearing

“Go and lie down, and if He calls you, say, ‘Speak, Lord, for Your servant is listening.’” (1 Sam. 3:9)

The story of how young Samuel first heard God’s voice, and how his prophetic ministry was launched; provides some important keys for us. Three times the young boy Samuel heard a voice calling his name and each time he ran to the Priest Eli in response. Don’t fret we all start somewhere. Finally Eli realized that it was God calling the boy. He gave Samuel some simple instructions: 1st Go lie down… 2nd Be willing to hear… 3rd Let what God says – sink in! Hearing is really all about our posture… mentally and spiritually!

Develop Your Awareness: God is Speaking …and wants to talk with You!

When God first began speaking to Samuel, the boy did not know that God was the source of the voice. We need to awaken our hearts! God is speaking… and in order to hear from Him, we must be expecting to hear from Him. We read, “In those days the word of the Lord was rare” (1 Sam. 3:1). Very few people were getting anything from God… revelation was weak because their faith and characters were weak. That is not the case today. You have the Holy Spirit within you, leading, convicting and communicating what is on the Father’s heart. God delights in sharing His thoughts and intentions with you. Perhaps God is communicating more than you have previously been aware of. What is He saying? Only you will know, as He speaks to all of His Children individually and uniquely. Listening is what will stir up faith to receive more! Remember what the Apostle Paul said, “faith comes from hearing… hearing the word (or voice) of God” (Rom. 10:17).

Wrap your mind around this picture…

“How precious (or amazing) to me are your thoughts (concerning me), God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand.” (Ps. 139:17-18)

The picture is one of a constant stream of personal thoughts toward you… from God. God is consistently thinking about you! David seems convinced that all of those thoughts were good, encouraging and countless… and he was hearing them! David was hearing some of the most wonderful things about himself from the very mouth of God! It could be likened to ‘live streaming’ on the Internet… a constant flow of communication. Many people have a mindset that believes God is silent… that He is done speaking to us and has nothing more to say. Its not the truth – but when it comes to hearing God’s voice, we must set our heart to hear. We must develop our hearing. You cannot develop your hearing without a belief that God is speaking to you and that He wants you to hear what He is saying.

Jesus understood that the Father speaks to us as sons and daughters for one key reason… because He loves us!

“For the Father loves the Son and shows Him all that He does.” (Jn. 5:20)

  • Jesus said “My sheep hear My voice!” (Jn. 10:27)

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