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Having God sized eyes

This is a follow up to my post on God loves the mediocre or average person.  There are so many negative influences in our lives.  I believe everyone has a purpose, and some people don’t have dreams, but unless you never talk to anyone all day long everyday  of your life, each person has something somewhere that God wants to accomplish and you just don’t what your life means to someone somewhere.  Every life has purpose.

When God looks at a person – does He see the pit they are in?  Does He see the dismay and the despair?  No He sees the beauty and the amazement and the awe and the wonder that each person He has bestowed upon their life.  Yes it is true that some people go to work, come home, eat, and watch television and think that that’s all there is.  But do you know just by you being alive and being there that you have affected someone somewhere.  You have made an impact on a person somewhere in their life, that they can look back and say – if it weren’t for them I wouldn’t have been where I am today.  Each person has value.

If you don’t believe me read these parts of Psalm 139 –

O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
You know my sitting down and my rising up;
You understand my thought afar off.
You comprehend my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways.
For there is not a word on my tongue,
But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.
You have hedged me behind and before,
And laid Your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is high, I cannot attain it.

For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;[b]
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
And in Your book they all were written,
The days fashioned for me,
When as yet there were none of them.

How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!
How great is the sum of them!
18 If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand;
When I awake, I am still with You.

The problem is that we don’t believe these things about ourselves.  We believe all these lies and negativity all around us from everywhere that we don’t see that God has something wonderful in store for each of us.  He has given us a gift of being born into this world.

Jesus said “So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.”  Matthew 17:20

Do you know how much faith is a mustard seed?  It’s very small.  It doesn’t require much faith.

So if faith is not the missing link, then what is?  It is the vision.  Proverbs 29:18 – 18 Where there is no vision, the people perish.

You cannot go searching for a vision, but God will give it to you at the right time.  The Wright Brothers had a vision to build an airplane.  If you look at the heroes of faith, they all had a vision, and their vision was a promise of an eternal city, but they also had been given promises in their life.

By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks.

By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found, because God had taken him”; [a] for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God. But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.

By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he dwelt in the land of promise as in a foreign country, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise; 10 for he waited for the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God.

11 By faith Sarah herself also received strength to conceive seed, and she bore a child[b] when she was past the age, because she judged Him faithful who had promised. 12 Therefore from one man, and him as good as dead, were born as many as the stars of the sky in multitude—innumerable as the sand which is by the seashore.

The Heavenly Hope

13 These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them,[c] embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. 14 For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland. 15 And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.

The Faith of the Patriarchs

17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, 18 of whom it was said, “In Isaac your seed shall be called,”[d] 19 concluding that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead, from which he also received him in a figurative sense.

20 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come.

21 By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, and worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff.

22 By faith Joseph, when he was dying, made mention of the departure of the children of Israel, and gave instructions concerning his bones.

The Faith of Moses

23 By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s command.

24 By faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, 25 choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, 26 esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in[e] Egypt; for he looked to the reward.

27 By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured as seeing Him who is invisible. 28 By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, lest he who destroyed the firstborn should touch them.

29 By faith they passed through the Red Sea as by dry land, whereas the Egyptians, attempting to do so, were drowned.

By Faith They Overcame

30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days. 31 By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace.

32 And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets: 33 who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. 35 Women received their dead raised to life again.

Even though we have a Heavenly Hope, which is in Christ Jesus does not mean, that should live life on earth as if we were worthless and not worth anything.  Each person is worth something and God has a plan for each of them.

Because of the drastic negative outlook of people around us, believers, preachers, unbelievers, around us, we all see through dark colored glasses not seeing the immensity of greatness that God sees around us.  He sees the amazement.  Everything was created by Him and for Him and for His good pleasure, and in knowing that we must know that God has something special planned for each one of us, but a certain force has blinded our eyes to see the truth.  As if it depends on us to do something.  A lot of money doesn’t mean much, neither does distances traveled.  You can have tremendous impact on someone’s life just sitting at home and being on your computer.  It’s the power of a word.  It’s what word, though, do we speak?  Do we speak words, that make others look at their lives and think pitiful thoughts about themselves?  Or do we speak life?  Do we speak the Word of Jesus?  Or do we speak man made conjecture?  Do we add faith to faith or do we add doubt with faith?  Do we make people realize how limited they are in the natural?  Or do we say that we walk by faith and not by “sight”?  Vision is an amazing thing – it shows us how we are, and it is by faith in God that this vision is operated.

Do we have God sized eyes, do we see ourselves as someone born with a purpose?  Or do we see ourselves as someone who is just mediocre, because either someone has told us that, or because we believe that about ourselves?  We are not mediocre!!!  There is no such thing as mediocrity.

It is because we don’t have faith in the God of the Bible, and vision, and the ability to see ourselves the way that God sees us and in a sense have lost our identity.  Whose eyes are you looking through, dear friends?

Mark 10:27 With men it may be impossible, but with God all things are possible!!!  Even the miraculous!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Good Fight of Faith

Good Fight of Faith Pt. 1

Good Fight of Faith Pt. 2

Good Fight of Faith Pt. 3

 

These are Ramson Mumba’s teachings on the Good of Fight of Faith.  During these times we need to be praying even more and more so we need an outpouring of anointing for prayer that will release the Presence of God among the people.

Heavenly Father,

I seal this post with the Blood of Jesus and ask You to convict every heart that still needs to change in the character of God, and lead them to a more Godly character, taking on the fruit of the Spirit.  I lift up all Your precious saints, and ask You to anoint them, and all of Your followers to be anointed on high with a fire and a zeal for prayer, so that they may be able to pray like never before.  Let us put on the whole Armor of God, and be able to stand in the last days.  Anoint our mouths, hands, and hearts, to be able to pray and seek Your face like never before.  Let us not become Lukewarm as it says in Revelation.  Let us be consumed with the passion of Your love everywhere we go and especially as we pray and seek Your face.  Let a revival be poured out among the nations.  Let a revival be poured out.  Touch every heart and lead them to seek after You and to do Your will.  Affect our lives with increasing the measure of faith, the fruit of faith, and the gift of faith.  Heavenly Father, we know that You can read and write, and Your Word says that if we delight in the Lord You will give us the desires of our heart.  As we delight in You give us more and more of You.  Your Kingdom is limitless and unshakable.  To You be the glory forever and ever.

In Jesus Mighty Name I pray,

Amen.

 

Benefits of the Law to a society, Justification by Grace and Faith to a believer- Revised

I am going to do some teaching and I’m sorry if it makes your head hurt, but this I have to share because it has really been put on my heart.

Before I start off I am going to define what a Covenant is.

A Covenant is an agreement between God and another party which cannot be broken based on the conditions of the Covenant.

The Old Covenant, and this particular Covenant of Moses was made by God and Moses and it could not be broken.

The New Covenant is made between God and Himself – that’s why the Bible says that because He could not find anyone greater, He swore by Himself – Hebrews 6:13, and that is the Blood Covenant that He had with His Son.

I’m going to start off by saying that we are in no way bound by the Law or Torah, or the curses in it because Jesus paid the price for the curse and we are now under a New Covenant which is much better than the Old Covenant.  It is the Holy Spirit that leads us through the conscience with the law written upon our hearts, which is part of the New Covenant, a much better covenant and we are justified by grace and faith alone!!

Now the Law, which is not the same as the Old Covenant was not all bad either, and many people Christians and non-Christians alike still follow the law for whether consciously or unconsciously.  There were reasons for eating animals that chewed the cud, and with divided hoofs, and reasons for that were mostly sanitary and hygienic.  Most of the laws were guidelines for being sanitary and hygienic during those times because the society was not as developed with technology as we are now, so they had to find a way to take care of their lives and obey the laws.  For example, I want to ask a question to you – Take a typical 5 year old girl….would she want to eat a lizard?  Yet the lizard is considered unclean.  If you ask her she would say, “Yucky”.  If you asked a 9 year old girl she would probably say, “that’s disgusting.”  I’m trying to find the right age group to pose this scenario with, but in reality a typical girl would say no.  You have animal rights groups protecting the rights of the eagle, and other animals, and I am sure they include some of the animals mentioned in Leviticus 11.  Also there is a law that says if that if an insect has landed into your bowl you are to break it and not to use it.  Would you want to eat out of a bowl with a fly in it?  Probably not, so these laws are already ingrained in human nature and are by most cases common sense.  So that’s where it came from and the principles of how to live are there. So that shows the benefit of the law and maybe hints at the reason why it was there.  It was there to ingrain into the society the proper way to live, and whenever they strayed away from the Law there was destruction.

 

Now we are no longer bound under the Law anymore, we are under Grace, which is unmerited favor.  That means that you don’t have to do anything to earn the favor of God.

Here is the definition of the word charis for favor –

1) grace

a) that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness: grace of speech

2) good will, loving-kindness, favour

a) of the merciful kindness by which God, exerting his holy influence upon souls, turns them to Christ, keeps, strengthens, increases them in Christian faith, knowledge, affection, and kindles them to the exercise of the Christian virtues

3) what is due to grace

a) the spiritual condition of one governed by the power of divine grace

b) the token or proof of grace, benefit

1) a gift of grace

2) benefit, bounty

4) thanks, (for benefits, services, favours), recompense, reward”

Blue Letter Bible. “Dictionary and Word Search for charis (Strong’s 5485)“. Blue Letter Bible. 1996-2012. 27 Mar 2012. < http:// www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?
Strongs=G5485&t=NASB >

Paul brings in clarification between sin, law, and grace –

Romans 2:12-16

12 For as many as have sinned without law will also perish without law, and as many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the law 13 (for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified; 14 for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, 15 who show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them) 16 in the day when God will judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ, according to my gospel.

Same verses in the Easy to Read Version –

12 People who have the law and those who have never heard of the law are all the same when they sin. People who don’t have the law and are sinners will be lost. And, in the same way, those who have the law and are sinners will be judged by the law. 13Hearing the law does not make people right with God. They will be right before him only if they always do what the law says.

14 Those who are not Jews don’t have the law. But when they naturally do what the law commands without even knowing the law, then they are their own law. This is true even though they don’t have the written law. 15 They show that in their hearts they know what is right and wrong, the same as the law commands, and their consciences agree. Sometimes their thoughts tell them that they have done wrong, and this makes them guilty. And sometimes their thoughts tell them that they have done right, and this makes them not guilty.

16 All this will happen on the day when God will judge people’s secret thoughts through Jesus Christ. This is part of the Good News that I tell everyone.

Same verses in the Message Bible –

12-13If you sin without knowing what you’re doing, God takes that into account. But if you sin knowing full well what you’re doing, that’s a different story entirely. Merely hearing God’s law is a waste of your time if you don’t do what he commands. Doing, not hearing, is what makes the difference with God.

14-16When outsiders who have never heard of God’s law follow it more or less by instinct, they confirm its truth by their obedience. They show that God’s law is not something alien, imposed on us from without, but woven into the very fabric of our creation. There is something deep within them that echoes God’s yes and no, right and wrong. Their response to God’s yes and no will become public knowledge on the day God makes his final decision about every man and woman. The Message from God that I proclaim through Jesus Christ takes into account all these differences.

Before I go into this, I want to point out there are things that all people have in common regardless of whether they believe in Jesus.  For example, everyone has a spirit.  The believer’s spirit is subject to the Holy Spirit, and the unbeliever’s spirit is subject to the kingdom of darkness.  So even though Gentiles or Jews who are unbelievers, when they naturally obey the Law, they still have a conscience that proves them guilty or not guilty, and since they do not have Jesus they either write off their conscience as saying that, “I do not have to seem guilty for anything” or they say “I really feel bad for what I did because I know it was wrong.”  The believer has this hope that Jesus Christ will forgive them for their sins and cleanse their transgressions as far as the east is from the west, but the unbeliever does not have this hope because they do not have this hope.  The New Covenant replaced this overbearing burden of following the religious Laws that were becoming a burden, with replacing them with a Law of Love or Agape, and now under this new Law, it does not matter whether you break the Mosaic Law (but God still wants you to follow the ethical guidelines in the Law especially the Ten Commandments), as long as you act out of a unconditional self-sacrificing love that comes only through Jesus Christ, and with a desire to become more like Him.  Granted we are not all perfect, and still a work in progress, but the Lord is merciful and patient with us to make sure we develop the fruit of the Holy Spirit that He has put in as seeds, which will grow and bear fruit.  But if you are weighed down with feeling unclean, or burdened by all the Laws in Leviticus don’t be because God knows your heart, and He is testing you to see how much you will follow and obey Him.  Sometimes people, especially unbelievers, end up with a seared conscience when they have done something wrong so many times that they don’t think there’s anything wrong with it, and that really effects the society.

The thing that really helped me is knowing and having that vision that we are already in Heaven, those that sincerely and with a pure heart believe on the name of Jesus, and the life here on earth is just temporary, and like the Bible says, “but a vapor”.  We have to be eternity minded.  On the big scheme of things is it really going to matter whether you had a ham sandwich, or ate that piece of shrimp.  Probably not, but if you want to live and make the most out of the body you have been given here on earth then you should probably not eat that.

The Message has a pretty good explanation of what happens to a society after they don’t obey God, and are not motivated by a pure and sincere heart to believe Jesus of the Bible and love Jesus of the Bible and to do whatever He tells them to do, –

Ignoring God Leads to a Downward Spiral

18-23But God’s angry displeasure erupts as acts of human mistrust and wrongdoing and lying accumulate, as people try to put a shroud over truth. But the basic reality of God is plain enough. Open your eyes and there it is! By taking a long and thoughtful look at what God has created, people have always been able to see what their eyes as such can’t see: eternal power, for instance, and the mystery of his divine being. So nobody has a good excuse. What happened was this: People knew God perfectly well, but when they didn’t treat him like God, refusing to worship him, they trivialized themselves into silliness and confusion so that there was neither sense nor direction left in their lives. They pretended to know it all, but were illiterate regarding life. They traded the glory of God who holds the whole world in his hands for cheap figurines you can buy at any roadside stand.

24-25So God said, in effect, “If that’s what you want, that’s what you get.” It wasn’t long before they were living in a pigpen [imagine hoarders buried alive- but in this sense made their lives a mess], smeared with filth, filthy inside and out. And all this because they traded the true God for a fake god, and worshiped the god they made instead of the God who made them—the God we bless, the God who blesses us. Oh, yes!

26-27Worse followed. Refusing to know God, they soon didn’t know how to be human either—women didn’t know how to be women, men didn’t know how to be men. Sexually confused, they abused and defiled one another, women with women, men with men—all lust, no love. And then they paid for it, oh, how they paid for it—emptied of God and love, godless and loveless wretches.

28-32Since they didn’t bother to acknowledge God, God quit bothering them and let them run loose. And then all hell broke loose: rampant evil, grabbing and grasping, vicious backstabbing. They made life hell on earth with their envy, wanton killing, bickering, and cheating. Look at them: mean-spirited, venomous, fork-tongued God-bashers. Bullies, swaggerers, insufferable windbags! They keep inventing new ways of wrecking lives. They ditch their parents when they get in the way. Stupid, slimy, cruel, cold-blooded. And it’s not as if they don’t know better. They know perfectly well they’re spitting in God’s face. And they don’t care—worse, they hand out prizes to those who do the worst things best!

So now before I get a bucket of slime poured out over my head, I just want to say that this was a historical trend throughout civilizations, time and time again, what happened when people took their eyes off of God and did what was right in their own eyes.

Romans 2 again – The Message Bible –

God Is Kind, but Not Soft

1-2Those people are on a dark spiral downward. But if you think that leaves you on the high ground where you can point your finger at others, think again. Every time you criticize someone, you condemn yourself. It takes one to know one. Judgmental criticism of others is a well-known way of escaping detection in your own crimes and misdemeanors. But God isn’t so easily diverted. He sees right through all such smoke screens and holds you to what you’ve done.

3-4You didn’t think, did you, that just by pointing your finger at others you would distract God from seeing all your misdoings and from coming down on you hard? Or did you think that because he’s such a nice God, he’d let you off the hook? Better think this one through from the beginning. God is kind, but he’s not soft. In kindness he takes us firmly by the hand and leads us into a radical life-change.

5-8You’re not getting by with anything. Every refusal and avoidance of God adds fuel to the fire. The day is coming when it’s going to blaze hot and high, God’s fiery and righteous judgment. Make no mistake: In the end you get what’s coming to you—Real Life for those who work on God’s side, but to those who insist on getting their own way and take the path of least resistance, Fire!

9-11If you go against the grain, you get splinters, regardless of which neighborhood you’re from, what your parents taught you, what schools you attended. But if you embrace the way God does things, there are wonderful payoffs, again without regard to where you are from or how you were brought up. Being a Jew won’t give you an automatic stamp of approval. God pays no attention to what others say (or what you think) about you. He makes up his own mind.

In the NASB – Romans 2 –

4 Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? 5 But [d]because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, 6 who WILL RENDER TO EACH PERSON ACCORDING TO HIS DEEDS: 7 to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; 8 but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation. 9 There will be tribulation and distress [e]for every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek, 10 but glory and honor and peace to everyone who does good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 11 For there is no partiality with God.

2 Timothy 3:2-6 says:

2For people will be lovers of self and [utterly] self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate [greedy] desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. They will be abusive (blasphemous, scoffing), disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy and profane.

3[They will be] without natural [human] affection (callous and inhuman), relentless (admitting of no truce or appeasement); [they will be] slanderers (false accusers, troublemakers), intemperate and loose in morals and conduct, uncontrolled and fierce, haters of good.

4[They will be] treacherous [betrayers], rash, [and] inflated with self-conceit. [They will be] lovers of sensual pleasures and vain amusements more than and rather than lovers of God.

5For [although] they hold a form of piety (true religion), they deny and reject and are strangers to the power of it [their conduct belies the genuineness of their profession]. Avoid [all] such people [turn away from them].

6For among them are those who worm their way into homes and captivate silly and weak-natured and spiritually dwarfed women, loaded down with [the burden of their] sins [and easily] swayed and led away by various evil desires and seductive impulses.

 

Some people especially unbelievers think God is softhearted, and He is not going to take into consideration all the wickedness that is done, that He is not going to do anything about all the stuff going on right now – you see it, it’s on the news, but believe me, the day is coming when He will no longer overlook, but for those by perseverance {precondition believing on Jesus} in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, and eternal life.  But those that don’t do what is right are storing up for themselves a time of wrath.  Point being that if you’re an unbeliever seek God first through His Son Jesus Christ, and if you are a believer, then don’t Judge because the greatest law there is in this world, is the Law of Agape or love through His Son Jesus Christ.  This kind of love builds on relationships you have with people, and makes you want to help people out.  And you may see people who are not Christians that might seem to have more of this unconditional self-sacrificing love – it literally means affection, goodwill, love, and benevolence, or brotherly love or loving one’s neighbor, and since we are all created in the image of God, we all have potential for this kind of love, but for the potential to be maximized, the only way is through Jesus Christ.  Because despite being just a nice or good person you are not perfect and your sin still has to be redeemed and that is through the Blood of Jesus Christ.  The safer side for a Christian with a pure sincere heart is to be on the side of Grace, because Jesus is the Personification of Grace…and if you want God’s favor you will need Grace, but if you make mistakes and you honestly feel bad about it and you don’t want to do it, and if you have accepted Jesus then you have nothing to fear as long as you keep up with it, don’t give up and don’t lose faith!!!

God raises the dead and dry bones

Ezekiel 37 says:

The hand of the Lord came upon me and brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord, and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. Then He caused me to pass by them all around, and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and indeed they were very dry. And He said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?”

So I answered, “O Lord God, You know.”

Again He said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, ‘O dry bones, hear the word of theLord! Thus says the Lord God to these bones: “Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live. I will put sinews on you and bring flesh upon you, cover you with skin and put breath in you; and you shall live. Then you shall know that I am the Lord.”’”

So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and suddenly a rattling; and the bones came together, bone to bone. Indeed, as I looked, the sinews and the flesh came upon them, and the skin covered them over; but there was no breath in them.

Also He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.”’” 10 So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceedingly great army.

11 Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They indeed say, ‘Our bones are dry, our hope is lost, and we ourselves are cut off!’ 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. 13 Then you shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up from your graves. 14 I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken it and performed it,” says the Lord.’”

Many of our lives are in grave conditions and they are so dead.  There are so many dead Christians walking around that are dead inside.  They think they are walking right with God, but on the inside there is something that that is missing.  What is missing is the power and Presence of the Holy Spirit operating in their lives.  They are just walking around with no life and they are caught up in the sins of this world.  When the enemy comes upon them, they don’t know how to fight because they are so caught up in themselves and their own lives.  They are caught up in their own burdens, but they don’t know what God’s burden is.  I was listening to some of the praise and worship songs, that I have selected on youtube, and I find that the ones that bring me into the presence are all about me, and today the Lord was speaking to me, that there is something wrong with this picture.  We know it’s all about Him, but how can we can realize the implication of that statement.  It takes the Holy Spirit.  It’s not just the Holy Spirit hovering upon you, but we have to abide in the Presence of God Almighty through the Holy Spirit.  That is what will get us to what is missing in our lives.  Sometimes we are so concerned with finances, jobs, getting fit, and other distractions, that we refuse to take time to pray and really seek God and His presence so that His presence is made among us.  I mean, this is the God who is more immense than the universe, and He wants to spend time with us.  So in this passage of Scripture, it says, that the Lord will bring the people of Israel out of their graves, and He will put His Spirit in them, and He will place them in their own land.  All throughout the Book of Ezekiel, you see the Lord emphasizing, “Then they will know that I am the Lord.”  All He wanted was for them to realize that He was the Lord.  We know that Jesus is Lord, and that was the same thing that He experienced when He came and He was in the town of Bethany, when He was going to raise Lazarus from the dead.

Jesus speaks to Martha:

25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. 26 And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25)

And then again to Mary:

32 Then, when Mary came where Jesus was, and saw Him, she fell down at His feet, saying to Him, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.”

33 Therefore, when Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her weeping, He groaned in the spirit and was troubled. 34 And He said, “Where have you laid him?”

They said to Him, “Lord, come and see.”

35 Jesus wept. 36 Then the Jews said, “See how He loved him!”

37 And some of them said, “Could not this Man, who opened the eyes of the blind, also have kept this man from dying?”

Then there is the miracle:

40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying.[d] And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. 42 And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me.” 43 Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” 44 And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.”

Both times in Ezekiel and the Book of John, God was trying to in essence prove that He was God, but they were stubborn to believe.  God has actually been proven so many times in the Bible and even in the world today, but people refuse to belief.  They have to an act of faith and it is something that you cannot comprehend with the mind or with logic, but it is something beyond that.  It is something that the Spirit of God has to remind you.

Doubt is a very dangerous thing.  Skepticism is a very dangerous thing.  We don’t want to be like Thomas who saw then believed, but we want to be the ones like Abraham, when all things seemed impossible, He still be believed.  Jesus said that if we believed we would see the glory of God.  We like to get into the presence of God and then we follow the tabernacle example to get into the presence of God, but if we simply don’t believe, if we don’t act out in simple faith and trust God, then the Presence or glory of God, will not be upon our lives. The Bible has warnings for us in the last days, that says that many people will fall away.  Even in books like Ezekiel and Isaiah, they say that only a remnant, or a chosen few will be left, so few that a child can count them.  It is a warning for us all.  If I’m not preaching to anyone else, I’m preaching to myself, that we need to not let anything stop us from believing that Jesus is God, despite what our emotions say, or what our circumstances are.  We have to be led by the Holy Spirit, and we must seek Him, until we find Him because we don’t want to be cast away from the One who loves us beyond measure.  We have to endure to the end and overcome all the trials and tribulations, because if we don’t there is a threat lingering for us.  Sometimes we have become so casual with God, that we lose the awe and reverence of our King.  One of the things that God hates the most is pride.  It is pride and idolatry, so if we have anything in our hearts that is exalting ourselves or anyone else before God then we need to come to the place of surrendering that idol or that self-exaltation and laying it down before the feet of our King.

Heavenly Father,

We trust and know that You are our King, and that You are exalted above the throne and that no one else is like You Lord God.  Let Your Spirit be upon us and take us to that next level of Your holiness, and repentance, and a closer walk of faith and believe that You are the very one who can raise the very dead souls who are in the graves, and let them come forth like Lazarus did, and that You have put Your breath and Your Spirit in us and upon us.  Restore us to what we were created for and not to the bondage of curses that have been applied to our lives because of sin.  Help us to glorify You in all that we do and not to seek our own fame.  Help us to surrender our lives to You each and everyday, and help us to have the God kind of faith that pleases You.  Help us to strengthen the feeble knees and the hands that hang down, but help us to walk upright and boldly to conquer every obstacle in our way that keeps us from fulfulling Your plan and purpose of our lives.  Help us to be walking breathing living testimonies of Your living power in our lives.  Touch our lives right now Lord God, and let Your presence be known among us Lord God.  Please protect those that are going under persecution and the Body of Christ in these last days that we are in.  I apply this prayer with the precious blood of Jesus.

In Jesus Mighty Name I pray,

Amen.

 

The Tests of Life

Many students take tests in school and life, and many people learn and get educated in the real world, but how many of them realize that there is a God testing them through tests that they have to go through in life? James 1 says, ”
2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”

Sometimes in life we go through physical ailments, and different problems and we’re wondering why?  Why are we going through all these trials?  James, or in the original Hebrew, Yacov, says to count it all joy when you fall into trials.  You ask how can you experience joy when you fall into trials?  It is because the testing of your faith produces patience.  God is building up fruit in your life of patience.  Waiting for your physical healing, waiting for your financial breakthrough, waiting for everything to work out.

There is a reason for suffering.  Part of that is to partake of the sufferings of Christ.  When we have been fully tested, and we can confidently say that we trust in God, then God will be able to remove the disease, or we will have a lasting crown when we get to heaven.  God is a God of justice and a God of vengeance, and He wants our faith and trust in Him, and in Him alone, but in this society we have fallen away from trusting Him alone for everything.  We have man-made solutions for everything.  We know that God cannot work without man sometimes because He does not have hands and has to use people through His Holy Spirit, but sometimes we forget the power, might, majesty of the Holy God, that we don’t realize what He can do for us.

It seems like ever since I’ve been born again, it’s always been one thing or another.  One area of testing or another, and for me it was mostly physical.  When I wasn’t suffering physically, I was backsliding, and sometimes I had grace windows.  God has done so many things for me.  I am just amazed at how many times He has saved my life on the road when driving.  I’ve had so many near hits and collisions.  I just thank God for the miracles He has done in my life.  He is doing a refining work in our lives making us be prepared to meet Him, seeing that our faith never fails us.  Sometimes, familiarity comes in, when we have seen how many times God comes through, that we don’t take reverence of what He can do in our lives.  We begin to take it for granted.

I remember when I was first born again, there were these ferocious  dogs coming toward me, and some faith leaped out from my inner man saying, “IN the name of JESUS I COMMAND YOU TO LEAVE!!!”  I said it four times to those four dogs and they left.  They went cowering in the other direction.  Everytime after that for a while it worked and I didn’t see dogs like that and I had the faith and confidence to know I had a weapon.  But as time grew by I’d say even years, when I didn’t see dogs in my neighborhood or anything like that, and I faced other trials one even life threatening, that God had to rebuild my walk of faith.  This time it was a lot more difficult especially because I had to relearn how to walk again, and I was only 26 but it changed my walk.  God kept testing me on faith and bringing me from glory to glory.  When I was first born again, I was still pretty much a carnal Christian, but I slowly started to remove the carnality from my life with the help of the Holy Spirit.  I used to not have obedience and discipline not to read the Word of God everyday, and then I finished it once in 3 years and then I started to read it daily until I finished it again in six months.  Importance hear is not in time or how much I read, but in that I was dedicated to reading my Bible and soaking in the Word of God.  I have had times when the Word of God just came to my spirit, when I didn’t even recall reading that, but the Holy Spirit brought it to my remembrance.  We can get to a dangerous place, where the name of JESUS has lost it’s power for us, and when we get to that place it can keep things from happening.  The name of JESUS is very powerful.  Every name has to bow down to the name of JESUS.

In the Old Testament, like in books like Isaiah, and Jeremiah, the people of Israel were often tested and rebuked when they didn’t pass the test.  They would bow down to idols and let them take over their lives instead of serving the One and Only Living God.  They refused to believe.  So God poured out His wrath to them, and some of it is going to happen in the future because God is like a husband who loves His wife and He doesn’t want anything to happen to keep her away from Him.  He had given the people leniency time after time, telling them through prophets that these idols have no power, no authority.  With Elijah He even told Elijah to put these idols to the test.  Elijah tested the idol worshippers if they can cause the fire, and their gods could not do anything, but Elijah put God to the test, and God was able to produce the fire.  “And Elijah came to all the people, and said, ‘How long will you falter between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.'” 1 Kings 18:20

God is often testing us to see if we will truly follow Him, or follow after idols in life.  We may or may not have statues or images of carved things in our homes and lives, but God wants us to see if we will truly seek Him.  Many times I am sitting here looking at my laptop and sometimes even my television thinking, have these things become idols for me?  I still struggle with the issue of food from time to time and I have to come to realize that these are all areas that God is testing me.

A key link to testing is obedience, if you are obedient with a little God will give you more.  If you are faithful with just a little God will give you more.  You’ll notice that you’ll be tested more severely in your weak areas, which are the areas where there is more potential for faith.  Some of my weak areas would be with food and discipline with what I eat, so for that sometimes I end up with things coming upon strictly from what I ate.  One time I ate from Jack in the Box, and I’m not saying anything bad about Jack in the Box, but when I had clear instructions from the Lord not to eat those things and all I had is 1/4 a burger and 1/2 a taco, but then I felt the punishment for disobedient because I learned that I have to treat the body like it is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and sometimes I have to take verses like “Do not worry about what to eat”, and “Whether you eat or drink, do everything for the glory of God”, in second place to God’s clear instruction to my spirit.  In that case the best verse would be “The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak”.   This is a weakness, but I have also learned that if you “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness all will be added unto you”.

Often it’s all about the waiting.  God’s timing is perfect.  When you are trusting in God’s timing then things work out in your favor.  He’s never late and if you learn to just trust in Him and wait upon Him.  The problem with the Jews was when they were studying the Scriptures when Jesus came, they read about that God’s Servant was supposed to come in a certain way, but they didn’t read the parts that followed that if they wait upon Him, then they will see Him coming.  That’s probably why Jesus hasn’t come yet because He is testing man’s patience to see how long and how far they can trust Him.  Will they be willing to wait until the eleventh hour for Him to come to the rescue or will they want Him to come immediately?  The Bible does mention the hastening of His coming.

Wouldn’t it be nice after all these testings to see that you have made it to the end without anything wavering that you have completed your destiny and your purpose, that you have obeyed the will of God?  There is a secular expression that says, “Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”  God has plans not to harm you, but to give you a future and a hope and for this reason He is letting you go through the testings of life so that your patience may be perfected.  So the more patient you become the less you will be tested.  That process shapes actually the whole fruit of the Spirit, so that a person grows through spiritual maturity and more and more into the likeness of God knowing that the Holy Spirit given by Jesus Christ abides in the person.  The more you have been tested and the more you have overcome and not by your own power but by the Spirit of God abiding in you, the more righteous a crown you will receive in the eternal life.  So let us be conquerors in Christ knowing that He has given us victory over the evil and we will be able to stand in the last knowing that we have done the will and purpose of the Mighty God.