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Special Speaker: Rev. Mark McCoy!

By on November 29, 2016

I began a series of teachings on Understanding Spiritual Warfare. We began with some verses that help God’s people understand what goes on behind the scenes – how spiritual forces operate and bring pain, grief and havoc into our lives. Also, we’re looking at how God tells us we can over- come these negative forces and be victorious and blessed in life.

This week, we have to be out of town, to be at the General Conference of the Southern Methodist Church. So, I went to prayer, to get God’s direction on who He would have come and bring the Word to you.

God opened the door for my friend and close brother in the Lord, Rev. Mark McCoy. Mark is a minister at Save the Seed Ministry in White Plains, MD. He works full time with men and women who have been brought to the bottom through addictions, drunkenness and other illicit lifestyles.

Some of these people have been the lowest of the low: down and outters. Others have been the highest of the high (literally!) the up and outters. Then, there’s those who have just been the in and outters; people who sometimes do really well, and other times get caught in the snare of the enemy.

One thing each one of them has in common is that Jesus saw them, reached down and saved them. That’s the first part of winning in life – asking Jesus to be your Lord and Savior. The closest thing to the heart of God is saving lost men, women, boys and girls.

The next step is learning to grow and be a disciple. That’s what Mark specializes in. A major part of his ministry is teaching his people how to not fall into the same old traps, and how not to make the same old mistakes. This is where learning to resist the devil and waging successful spiritual warfare begins. ”

Inner conversations. You’ll learn how to direct the inner conversations in your heart and head. You know what they are. They’re the voices, drives, old patterns and habits that try to get you to “act out,” and to act like the world.

You say, “Well, l’ve been a Christian for a long time, and l’ve never done drugs or alcohol or any of that.” Thank God! Thank God you have never given the enemy a foothold in any of those areas! But, that doesn’t mean he’s going to leave you alone!

No, the enemy loves to work on your mind, to trouble your heart and stir up your emotions and get you miserable, hurt and angry. He loves to bring up your past, to remind you of all the times life has been unfair to you, and to get you to go backwards instead of forwards.

Mark will use parts of his life story to tell you how he learned to use Ephesians 4:25, “Be ye renewed in the spirit of your mind,” to turn his life around. He had allowed the enemy to twist his thinking and get him in a pattern of self-destruction, to the point that his life was falling apart.

Mark McCoy wasn’t some ghetto kid who barely made it through school and then hung out on the streets. He spent nine years in the U.S. Air Force. While he was in the Air Force he gave his heart to the Lord, in 1978. His life was working, and he was on his way to the top.

But, when the enemy started working on him, Mark fell prey to temptation. He had never been taught about his authority in Jesus Christ. No one had told him there would be a battle going on for his mind. He had no idea how to resist the devil.

He caved in to the pressures of life and to the temptations that began to offer themselves – even though he was already a Christian! He ended up getting kicked out of the Air Force in 1983. Ultimately, he went on a 10 1/2 year backslide. He lived in darkness and frustration for more than a decade. Even though he had known Jesus and had served Him for two full years!

I don’t want that to ever happen to you! Nobody should have to know the misery of being lost, found and then going back out in darkness again! I’m telling you, nobody HAS to! Thank God, He’s given us everything we need so we can be successful in life and victorious in Jesus Christ!

That’s why l want you to be here to learn what Mark had never learned, until it was too late. lt does not have to happen to you, or your family like it did to him.

See, when Mark was out there angry, hurting and empty, God saw him, and had compassion on him. ln May 1990, Mark began to let Jesus be the Lord of his whole life, his heart, mind, soul and body. Mark came to Save the Seed Ministry, where he studied under Rev. Freeman every day for more than a year.

God showed Mark how to “be transformed by the renewing of his mind” like it says in Romans 12:2. Through filling his spirit with the Word of God, he overcame the enemy and his old patterns by faith. He graduated from Save the Seed Ministry and got a good job with the Veterans Administration.

As Mark kept drawing closer and closer to God, the Holy Spirit kept putting it in his heart to serve the Lord in full time ministry. God gave him a burning desire to serve God’s people. He knew he had to help them like he’d been helped. In December 1994, he left his job at the V.A. to serve full time with Save the Seed Ministry, where there are more than 200 people in the Residential Discipleship Ministry.

You’ll be thrilled, challenged and blessed when you hear the words Mark’s going to bring you from God. I receive all I can from God, but I don’t hear everything all the time! So, from time to time, the Lord will send someone here to bring you a nugget of truth or a word from God that will fill you with faith.

Bless You,
Pastor Steve

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IF GOD IS OUR FATHER…

By on November 22, 2016

If God is Our Father, where is the Respect that He should as a Father? Too many of His children treat Him like a pal or a playmate – and not a very close one, at that!
By Steve Davis

I became a believer several years ago and have been causing problems for the church crowd ever since. See, not knowing any better, when I prayed that prayer asking Jesus to come into my life, I believed He would really come in and make some very real changes. I absolutely meant it when I prayed…with every fiber of my being. And, Jesus really did come in; in a mighty way, flooding my being with His presence and His power. It wasn’t the wimped out, watered down, anemic little Jesus of the religious crowd – it was the Jesus of the Bible Jesus! The Bible Jesus! The Jesus who saves and keeps and fills people with joy, power and real life!

Jesus exploded such radical changes in my life that I couldn’t wait to meet other people who knew Him. People who were excited – people who were as turned on to Jesus as I was. People who wanted to avoid sinning and wanted to live positive and empowered lives.

Soon, I got involved with people who’d been hanging around the churches a lot longer than I had, and got to know what they were really like. That’s when I discovered that there were a whole bunch of people in the churches who truly didn’t give two hoots about how they made GOD feel. All they were interested in was cashing in on all the benefits and going to Heaven when they died.

Then I began to notice a strange and spooky phenomenon: People who were actively proclaiming themselves to be Christians (and equally actively proclaiming other people as “lost”) would easily and without good reason skip church whenever the notion took them. They’d cuss if they thought it would impress their unchurched friends. They’d steal from their employer if they felt they were underpaid. In other words, they’d do the same kinds of things that all the “lost” people were doing. And then some!

They could commit all kinds of sins as long as they thought nobody in the church would find out. (THAT is STILL going on!) and, if a person who TRULY loved Jesus would mention their inconsistencies, all of a sudden you’d hear all kinds of lamebrained excuses. Most of them having to do with nature of God’s graciousness, and His mercy.

Odd, but I rarely heard one of these people talk very much about God’s holiness. Or His righteousness. Or His justice. Always His forgiveness, mercy and grace.

I always wondered why it would take the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ to produce people who play religious games. Because the Jesus that I had met set people FREE from religious games and self-deception.

Then, I learned that so many people had actually been taught to believe they could con God. The preachers and the priests had taught them that you could promise God anything, and if you didn’t follow through, it was ok, “God will understand.”

In the Bible, God says there are people who have put themselves in the company of Believers, and that we aren’t even aware that they’ve slithered in. they crashed the party quietly and came in unannounced. They’re real big on teaching about the grace of God; the mercy of God; His longsuffering and forgiveness. But the way they teach it causes people to not live holy and godly lives. You can tell when a person has been taken in by this kind of teaching.

People who have given over to this kind of teaching have very specific and obvious characteristics. They enjoy the songs. They love bible teaching. They believe all the right things. They LOVE hanging around with other people who say they love the Lord. When they’re having a time of trouble, they don’t hesitate to ask for prayer, and they even make great promises, no matter how simple their promises was. It could be in the area of tithing. Or cleaning up their act. Or church attendance. Once God has done HIS part, they forget all about the commitment they made to Him. That’s ONE mark of this kind of person.

People who have opened themselves up to this kind of teaching CHANGE what they believe, as they drift further from God. Where they USED to believe that certain things would grieve the Holy Spirit, now they DO the same things without a twinge of conscience. Things they used to come against in other people, now are regular and accepted parts of their own lives.

There are things that we USED to know that we don’t seem to know anymore. We’ve been taught other doctrines – fun doctrines, and they’ve robbed us of our will power.

Now God says, “I need to remind you of how things really work. I don’t put up with a bunch of uncleanness and foolishness. Remember the angels that sinned? I wasn’t about to allow that kind of goings on in my kingdom. Well, I didn’t allow it then and I don’t allow it now. I don’t play and I don’t wink at sin. Never have and I never will…”

The problem is what we’ve been listening to and what our flesh has WANTED to believe. We figure that God’s a nice guy, a nineties sort of guy and HE knows that we can’t take EVERYTHING He says seriously. So we do what we want and figure that God is just going to have to understand. The truth is, that when God says something, He means it; and WE are the ones who are just going to have to understand!

Remember when He delivered the children of Israel from Egypt? Well, after awhile, they got the foolish idea that they could just live any old way they’d like and still get into the promised land. Just like a lot of people today erroneously deceive themselves into thinking. But they’re deluding themselves.

As long as the children of Israel believed God, they were ok. But when they stopped believing, their unbelief caused them to be wiped out. Completely. That’s why so many “Christians” lives are a mess, and getting worse by the week. They’ve stopped believing the truth about God and how He deals with us.

That’s why God wants us to remember these things that we KNOW in our hearts are true. Most of the “religious” people I know (not those who really and truly love Jesus) actually LAUGH at how they USED to “limit” themselves. Back when they wouldn’t drink, and wouldn’t cuss and didn’t cheat. But now they have a “bigger god.” (Little “g” on purpose!) No, they have a different god. Now their god is the god of their feelings.

These “liberated” religious people get antsy whenever you bring up the subject of the judgement day or even the fact that there IS a law of paybacks in life. (Watch ‘em sputter and snort when you mention HELL! It’s almost like a comedy routine, if it wasn’t so serious.) See, they want to be able to do anything they feel like and still pretend to have the blessing of God on their lives.

They don’t want to EVER feel guilt. For any reason. In church, all they want is a “praise experience” during the music part of the service and a “bless me” type of sermon – and it had better be a SHORT one!

FALSE guilt IS something we all want to avoid. But we SHOULD feel guilty when we ARE guilty! I want to help people to avoid feeling guilty when they’re NOT guilty. And, even stronger than that is my drive to help people to not BE guilty in the FIRST place.

Believe me, preaching the Word like I do doesn’t win me a lot of friends among the church gang. I endure a lot of rejection for the sake of preaching the Bible Gospel. But I’m not out here to play the church growth “numbers” games. I stopped playing the numbers when I gave my heart to Jesus!

Where there’s only the teaching about the grace of God, people end up losing their sense of balance and their fear of God. And, that’s where the spirit of uncleanness enters in…and they end up being worse off in the end than they were in the beginning. You CAN get just enough religion to totally mess you up for the rest of your life!

People can end up worshipping the “nice guy” God denying the real Lord. And they pervert the character of the Lord Jesus Christ. They start believing in some kind of lily-white goody-two –shoes country-club style Jesus. One who never hurts anybody’s feelings, rarely mentions specific sins and only says pleasant things that make people feel good.

The Jesus of the Bible said a whole lot of things that rubbed the religious crowd the wrong way. That’s why they crucified Him. What he said offended them. When you start talking like the Jesus of the Bible, the religious types will avoid you like AIDS. And it’ll hurt. But people who aren’t afraid of a little truth, and people who have had enough of pretending will be glad to receive you.

We’re not here to gather a big crowd of religious people. God never called me to do that. He called me to fish on the other side of the boat and to take those people whom the traditional churches think are too wild and too hard to get to conform. That’s who I’m called to. And this handful of “called out” ones hear the Word gladly.

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WHY DID JESUS ACT UP ON PALM SUNDAY?

By on November 15, 2016

We all know the story of Palm Sunday: lt’s in Matthew 21:2-15.

Here’s how it started: Jesus told the disciples to go into town where they would find a donkey and its colt. They brought back the donkey and colt, and laid their garments on the donkeys back for Jesus to sit on. A crowd lined the road as Jesus rode into Jerusalem. Most of the multitude spread their garments in the road, and others cut palm branches and laid them in front of Jesus, making an impromptu royal carpet.

Hundreds of people went ahead of Jesus, cheering! Those who followed behind Him cried out, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!”

Then Jesus entered Jerusalem, and all the city was excited! The crowd got bigger! Other people were saying, “Who is this?” The multitudes would answer, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee!”

The crowd followed Jesus right up to the Temple steps, where He got off the donkey and started acting up!

Why would Jesus be acting up? What were the crowds there for? The crowds were there because the Passover was coming up, which was a huge religious holiday for the Jews. But why did Jesus act up? And, why were the people so excited? Well, first off, they knew Jesus! That’s enough to make Me excited, knowing Jesus.

He had healed some of them, restored sight to others, cleansed others of leprosy and other diseases. Then, there were those who had been fed by Jesus when they were hungry and had nothing. Others were there because Jesus had forgiven them of great sins, and had shown them the mercy of God.

He had demonstrated to them that God is a good God, and that good things come from God. He had shown them that God is approachable, and has mercy to those who will call upon Him.

But, do you know why else they were excited? Because the Scribes and Pharisees, the religious people of their day had basically shut them out of the temple! The Temple had become place for the rich people, the snobs, and the country club set- while the poor were looked down on, and kept out.

These people, just like people today, had a hunger for God, and all the religious rules and rituals and customs kept them out. And, not a one of them could do anything about it!

Then, all of a sudden, Jesus comes in! Riding a donkey! Usually He walked, but today was different! What was He doing? He was fulfilling a prophecy from the Prophet Zechariah: “Behold, thy King comes to thee, meek, riding a donkey, with a colt.” God was answering their prayers!

Jesus was coming in as their King! To open the doors of the Temple to them, so they could come into the presence of God! No wonder they were cheering!

Just imagine Jesus on the donkey, with its little colt tied behind it. The crowds are pressing around Him. The poor, the tired, the lonely, the old, and the crippled. They throng around Jesus – Jesus who loved them, and who introduced them to the Heavenly Father who had a heart of mercy and compassion for them.

And, even though the crowds are touching Him and calling out to Him, His eyes are fixed on the temple. See the multitudes, casting down their garments and palm branches, thrilled to honor their Lord and Savior.

Hear the shouting get louder as the crowd grows: “Hosanna! Hosanna to our King! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!”

As He enters the city, visitors join the crowd, asking, “Who is this Man?” And the crowds answer: “He’s the miracle worker! He’s the One who raised Lazarus from the dead! He opens blind eyes and deaf ears! He makes the lame walk! He Ioosens the mouths of the mutes! With just a word, or even a mere touch, miracles happen and people are healed!”

But, Jesus isn’t working miracles right now. He isn’t stopping to talk to people. He doesn’t stop to touch a blind eye or a deaf ear! When the sick reach out to touch Him, He doesn’t release healing power! He doesn’t even reach out to the children He loves so much! He doesn’t offer encouraging words to the poor who are so near to His heart!

Jesus is on a mission! He doesn’t look to the right or left. He’s focused! He is headed straight for His Father’s house! He stops the donkey at the temple steps and dismounts. He walks through the crowd without stopping and talking to anyone.

The fire that’s in His heart blazes in His eyes -the holy zeal of a jealous God is upon Him! “For the Lord your God is a consuming fire; He is a jealous God,” Deuteronomy 4:24 says. The Pharisees have shut out the common people, and making God’s house a place of merchandise!

As Jesus makes His way into the temple, and something rises up on the inside of Him! Sure, there were crowds inside, and activities. There was a great program of singers, musicians and great speakers. The people with money were crowding around the tables, buying souvenirs, trinkets, gifts.

The money boxes were overflowing with money; the ministers of the temple were thrilled! Money was flowing and the best of society was coming to the services!

Jesus stops behind some empty boxes and picks up some cords that were laying loose. He stands there by the column, weaving those cords into a whip. Then, without warning Jesus charges to the tables, swinging the whip in his hand! He turns over the tables, spills the money and lets the sheep and doves loose!

Both the buyers and the sellers pull back and run in fear! Jesus must be crazy! Doesn’t he realize he’s destroying a lot of good merchandise? Doesn’t he care that some of these people have been waiting all year to buy souvenirs of the temple and doves and pigeons for sacrifices? What’s His problem, anyway?

He keeps shouting, “it is written, my house shall be called the house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves!”

Jesus was quoting a passage from Isaiah 56. God was saying that even people who had bad back- grounds, who had sinned, who had not been part of the people of God- all these are welcomed in His house.

ln Isaiah 56:7, God says, “even them will I bring into My holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer. Their sacrifices shall be accepted… because My house shall be called a House of Prayer for all nations.”

Jesus opened the way for ALL people to come to God for forgiveness, healing and help! Think of the multitudes outside, cheering their Champion on!

Matthew 21:14 says that when Jesus cleansed the temple, He openly received those who needed vision! He made room for the ones who had a hard time walking in life!

Maybe that’s you. You’ve felt your vision fading, and your sight going dim. You need a fresh touch from Jesus.

He also touched the lames ones. Those who were having a hard time walking right- and those who seemed to do more falling than walking. Jesus can heal you, too.

Be here this Palm Sunday, to proclaim Jesus as your Lord, and to receive a fresh touch in your soul and spirit.

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Knowing God: Who God Isn’t

By on November 8, 2016

God says in Daniel 11:32, “The people who do know their God shall be strong and do exploits.” That means, of course, that the people who do NOT know God will be weak, and not do anything that takes strength.

This verse explains why so many people, even some who’ve been hanging around churches for years are weak, defeated and failing in life. A lot of people go to church and never know their God.

The full verse says, “And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall be corrupt by flatteries but the people who do know their God shall be strong and do exploits.”

People who aren’t doing right flatter themselves that they can keep doing wrong and there won’t be any consequences. Knowing God, really knowing God brings strength and great abilities. We want people in this church to know our God and to do exploits in life.

People have all kind of strange ideas about God. We have to know who God is, and we have to know who He is not.

The Bible tells us in Psalm 116:5 that God is gracious, righteous and merciful. He is good, holy, and forgives when we turn to Him.

Some people take one or more of these traits and focus on just that one or two. In other words, they might concentrate on His goodness and mercy, and forget that He is righteous and holy.

Being righteous and holy means that God is opposed to sin in all its forms. He comes against anything and everything that is not right. Why? Because He loves you and doesn’t want you to have to suffer the consequences of continuing in sin. Sin brings you pain, emptiness, defeat, weakness, and can ultimately bring you under the judgement of God. Not only for what you did, but for the effect your sins had on those people around you. So, God is NOT the good old boy who looks away and lets you get by with cheating. He is not the “Excuser” of sin!

No, He’s the Deliverer FROM sin! Bring your sins to Him and ask Him to make them disgusting and repugnant to you.

Being a good God, we can think that He only allows good things in our lives. That’s true. But, sometimes what WE call good is different than what really IS good. God isn’t an indulgent Father who destroys His children’ by what He allows.

My kids might think marshmallow pie with chocolate sauce would be good to have for supper every night… but Dad won’t let them have it. Why? Because it wouldn’t be good for them. That’s why.

This brings us to His mercy. You can be deceived into thinking that, because God is merciful that you’ve got permission to abuse Him, that He is bound by his word to just sit back and take it. Wrong! He shows mercy to those who turn from their sins and turn to Him, but he is also quite capable of wrath! So, He’s not a pushover or a chump.

If you don’t know Him, you’ll fall into one of these errors, and become weak, or even destroy yourself through indulging your flesh!

Another caricature of God is that He is the mean, angry Judge who sends you all your problems. God is not the One who sends your troubles NO, He is the One who delivers you from your problems.

God is not the trouble maker. He is not the source of all of our problems and trials. See, there is a God and there is also a devil. God is not the source of your pain and suffering. You have an enemy. The Bible says, “Be sober, be vigilant, your adversary, the devil walks about as a roaring lion.” You have to treat the devil like an enemy, and not some long lost friend!

A guy walked into the American Legion waving a, list of names around. One of the other guys said, “What’s that a list of?” The man said, “it’s a list of everybody I can beat up in this town!” So, the other guy says, “Let me see that” And he grabbed it. “Hey what’s MY name doing on that list? Do, you think you can whoop me? Let’ step outside and find out” So the little man with the list says, “No, that’s alright! I’ll just take your name off the list” If you’ll take a stand against the forces that are trying to destroy you, they’ll take your name off of that list! But most people say, “Well, my name’s on the list! I must be destined to fail!” NO! You’re not defeated until you decide you’re defeated.

You’ve got to quit blaming others for your choices and decisions! Stop blaming God. Some people actually blame God! They say He programmed them to sin, or wired them to fail, like they had no choice! That’s just a cop out for responsibility.

If God tells you to be holy, and then programs you to sin, then HE is the Author of your sins! And, if He threatens you with eternal punishment in Hell for your sins that you have no choice in, He is not God, He is a tyrant! So, don’t blame God for your sins and foibles!

Stop blaming the wife or blaming the husband. Don’t blame the kids, the economy or President Clinton! Blaming everybody else for all your trouble will keep you weak and away from God.

The Bible says we have power in the name of Jesus to resist the devil. You need to stand up. You need to do some talking to the devil as well as to God.

God is a God of mercy and strength to live godly in this life. He is not the author of the sin or sickness. Jesus came to take off what the devil put on. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever!

There are four things you need to know if you‘re going to get your life working like it should:

1. You need to give your life to the Lord Jesus Christ and not be ashamed to live right. Ask Him to come into your life. Then, don’t act like He didn’t.

2. You need to know that when you come to know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, that all your past has been erased. God said, “their sins and iniquities I will not remember.” You need to realize your past is gone.

3. If you’re going to resist the devil, you’re going to have to be sure that any sins you have committed after you’ve been saved have been made right with God.

Repent of them, ask for forgiveness. If you have sin in your life right now, you need to ask for strength and help turn away from it. You can’t go two directions at the same time.

You can’t face the devil and chase him out as long as you’re living like the devil himself.

God wants a people who are not immoral, who are not lying, who are not stealing, who will pay their debts, who will live right. And if you’ve been guilty of any of that, you need to turn from it now. That is, if you’re going to call yourself a Christian. The Bible says, “Submit yourself to God and then resist the devil. ”

4. You need to know that you have a right to use the name of Jesus. There’s power in that name. Use it as your tool of victory and success in life.

You need to take a stand. There are forces that want to destroy you and your family. You need to have backbone and say, No! I’m not backing down, I’m not giving up, I’m not going backwards! I’m moving ahead, onward, upward and Heavenward!

You know, I’m so glad to preach the Word of God to you. I’m so glad to share with you how you can have victory in life. You know, God is a good God. He’s not your trouble-maker. He’s not the one who sent all the storms in your life. God loves you. And God wants you to be free and well and strong.

I told you the four things we need to do. You need to do the first one right now. You know the greatest thing you could ever do is make Jesus the Lord of your life. Why don’t you just pray this prayer right now.

“God, here I am, with all my messes and stresses. You’re not the cause of my problems. You are the answer I ask you to fill my heart with your Spirit. Forgive my many sins; You alone have the answer I need. Jesus, be my Lord and Savior Take away the lure of that sin that gets me so easily. And put my name on Your list of those who are headed toward Heaven! In Jesus ’ Name, Amen!

Bless You,
Pastor Steve

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FEEDING ON HEAVEN’S FOOD SO YOU CAN HAVE HEAVEN’S STRENGTH

By on November 1, 2016

Walking in the Spirit isn’t just a matter of learning to see certain things. It’s also a matter of learning NOT to see certain things.

The Bible is a miracle book. The words you read in your Bible aren’t words that came from man, but they are words sent by God from Heaven (Heb. 1:1-2). Throughout history whenever people came along and fed on these words from Heaven, they found that miracles began to happen. That’s what Hebrews 11 is all about: the kinds of miracles accomplished by faith that came from feeding on God’s words from Heaven. “The eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers… (1 Peter 3:12).” God is watching you, to see if you’ll trust him to work in your life and to bring His Word to pass in it. 2 Chronicles 20:22 says, “Believe in the Lord your God so shall ye be established; believe His prophets, so shall ye prosper.” When you believe in what our God says, you’ll be put in a stable condition, a place of God’s favor a place where God is ruling your circumstances.

Not only is Heaven watching and waiting for us to rise up and walk by faith, but the rest of “…creation waiteth for the revealing of the sons of God.” (Romans 8:19) “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God.” (1 John 3:1). The whole creation is waiting for us to take our place in God and to be what God has called us to be! The world knows what the church ought to be better than the church does!

As you begin to acknowledge God’s spiritual laws in the Bible, God begins to move more and more on your behalf. You learn that it’s not what you see that affects you so much as what you learn NOT to see. Like it says in 2 Corinthians 4:18 “We look NOT at the things that are seen, but the things which are not seen.” lf we’re going to walk in the Spirit, we have to learn through God’s Word what NOT to look at. Walking in the Spirit isn’t just a matter of seeing certain things. It’s also a matter of learning Not to see certain things. We don’t look at things as they appear but as God says they really are, in His Word.

See, it’s not the people who are wise according to this world who receive the things of God; it’s those people who will take what God says, believe it and ACT on it. So many of the people who think they’re so smart and sophisticated – people who think they have all the answers don’t receive anything by faith.

“God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise. God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty.” (1 Corinthians 1:27) He chose clay and spittle, for Jesus to use to give sight to a blind man. God chose the laying on of hands to impart healing, spiritual gifts and anointing’s. He chose prayer cloths, olive oil and the words of your mouth to work miracles.

The things that God chose to use and to bless with don’t make sense to the natural man. The Bible says that the natural man receives not the things of Walking in the Spirit isn’t just a matter of the spirit of God. Those walking in the natural, or according to their natural ways of thinking and doing can’t even know the things of the Spirit of God.

Jesus said in Matthew 11:25 God reveals His wisdom and His ways to babes and hides them from the wise and prudent of this world. Most people think the truths of the Bible are beneath them. But the foolishness of God is wiser than the loftiest thoughts of man (1 Corinthians 1:25).

Proverbs 18:20 says that death and life are in the power of the tongue. That’s why God puts so much importance on the words that you and I speak. He even chose to save peoples’ eternal souls through the speaking of His words. “It pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.” (1 Corinthians 1:21)

Hebrews 13 :8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today, and forever.” I still believe this. I haven’t torn this page out of my Bible. Some people teach that the age of miracles is past. lt lS past for those who don’t believe. The day of miracles stops when people stop believing God and began to walk in doubts and unbelief.

But guess what? The day you choose to believe totally what God says in your Bible, that’s the day of miracles. It is the day that you begin to have access to the miracle working power of God. “This is the day that the Lord has made. . . “ (Psalm 118:24) It’s the day of faith, the day of belief, the day of miracles from the God of miracles. It comes when you believe what God said in the Bible.

Romans 12:3 says “… God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.” This means that you have the measure of faith, or the ability from God to speak and things begin to happen. Jesus said in Mark 11:24, “Whatsoever things you desire when you pray, believe that ye shall receive them.” He didn’t say you’d get whatever you want, but that you would get what you desire when you pray or what you BELIEVE you’ll receive. Believe it and then you’ll see it come to pass.

When you act on the faith that
you get from your Bible, it
brings the things you hoped for
into your life.

Faith is the creative seed of life. “Faith is the substance of things hoped for….” (Hebrews 11:1) When you act on the faith that you get from your Bible, it brings the things you hoped for into your life. Jesus said to believe and receive. lt’s a matter of believing what God’s Word says.

Jesus said, “Whatever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in Heaven. And, whatever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in Heaven.” (Matthew 18:18).He is giving you the authority to bring the things into your life that God has prepared for those that love Him and to STOP the things from coming into your life that are contrary to Gods Word. Jesus says you can remove things out of your life, or you can bring them in.

God gave mankind authority on the earth, but many people are spiritually dead. Others are blinded in their minds as to how to operate by Gods spiritual laws of faith. God’s saying to a hurting, defeated, blinded, wounded people, “This is the stuff to believe -the Bible! It will bring you into a new dimension in life!” God’s book is true! Believe it!

God’s Word isn’t something that works for some people but won‘t work for others. lt’s impartial. “There is no respect of persons with God.” (Romans 2:11). God’s Word will work for anyone who will believe it. You’ve GOT to believe it! A person who doesn’t believe in operating by faith and having a renewed mind will have a hard time with me. ln the natural, you won’t get much out of these messages. “The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God… ” But those who believe, those who are in the Spirit RECEIVE the things of God. That’s why you’ve got to start believing!

You have the keys. Jesus said so. The choice is yours. Life or death, blessing or cursing. You can’t just sit there the rest of your life, mad at everybody else, resenting everybody else who has made it- acting as though it wouldn’t work for you! You’ve GOT what it takes if you’ll believe the Bible and act on what it says.

God has a message that He wants to communicate to you. He wants to communicate His Word to you, so you’ll believe Him. When you truly believe Him, that He is a Rewarder of those that do diligently seek Him, you’ll keep hearing this word, you’ll keep getting faith, your prayers will be answered and YOU will glorify God!

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John Anderson asks, “What is Really Important?”

By on October 25, 2016

This Sunday morning and evening, author – minister John Anderson will be bringing us an important message from the heart of God.

John never intended to be a minister who speaks around the world. He never dreamed God would give him a message that Christians everywhere needed to hear. Matter of fact, he and his wife, Esther were quite happy in the pastoral ministry at a good sized Assemblies of God church on the west coast. They were happy, comfortable and well loved by their people.

But then, in the mid-eighties, God began to move through a series of messages John was bringing to his people. He was urged to bring these messages to other churches, and other meetings. Then, invitations from across the U.S. began to come in, because what he had to share touched the hearts of God’s people so deeply. Finally, John and Esther had to resign from their church in order to fulfill the ministry that God was laying before them. Since that time, they have ministered in Jerusalem, throughout be Europe, New Zealand, Australia, Hawaii and other parts of the globe.

If you’re like me, when you hear about people like John and Esther Anderson you figure, “Ok so here are a couple of smooth talking bubbly, beautiful extroverts who’ve learned to charm Gods people!”

You might even figure that hearing them will only depress you because you don’t exactly fit that description! Maybe you don’t look like Barbie. Or even Ken! You might not be the kind of person that YOU would use, if you were God!

Well, guess what? John doesn’t look like a Ken doll! Esther doesn’t look like a Barbie doll! They don’t have a slick, well-oiled presentation. No hype. No big-blow-dried hair that looks like an oversized helmet, and no phony smiles. No corny jokes or snappy preacher’s stories!

Nope. John and Esther are just two very nice, down to earth people who have a heart for God, and love the people of God. They want so badly for you to be able to have that close and intimate walk with God, and to know that God’s hand is on your life.

John knows how easy it is to get discouraged with yourself, your situation and even with your church. He knows how you can just lose heart after being disappointed over and over again.

He told me, “The reason some people have no ambition is because… they have no ambition!” They’ve lost their vision. Lost their joy. Lost their drive, their sense of uniqueness and mission in life.

John’s going to explore with us how to be a person with a useful and satisfying life. He’ll show us what the Apostle Paul, King David, Moses, John Wesley and others had in common, and why God drew so close to them.

You’ll be touched by what Jesus said was the most important thing in life, based on Matthew 22:34-40. This is the passage where the religious people came to Jesus and asked Him what the most important commandment was…

Jesus told them the most important one was “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul and with all thy mind.”

Then, Jesus said that the next most important thing is very similar to loving God. lt is to love thy neighbor as thyself ” Jesus said that everything else in life hung on these two commands. How do these commands work? What do they really mean? John will share his prayerful insights- and what you hear will trans- form your life.

David said in Psalm 42:1-2, “As the deer panteth for the Water; so panteth my soul after Thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?” Don’t you get hungry for God? Just for God Himself? You’ll also be nourished by what the Spirit of God will bring you this Sunday morning and evening.

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Spiritual Warfare and Rewards of Faithfulness

By on October 18, 2016

When you’re saved and walking by faith, your battles are over, right? Wrong! Here in Genesis, Abraham is walking by faith, and the forces of the enemy attack his family. Genesis 14:12 says, “And they took Lot Abrams brothers son, who dwelt in Sodom, and his goods, and departed.”

The enemy came, attacked Abe’s nephew, making him a captive, taking everything he owned. He not only stole Lot’s wealth and material goods, but he stole his wife and children.

When God calls you as a child of Abraham, it’s not only so God can bless and strengthen you, but also so you can be a blessing and source of strength and protection to those around you.

Genesis 14:14-15 says, “And when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his trained servants, born in his own house… and pursued them. . . [15] And he divided himself against them, he and his servants, by night, and smote them, and pursued them…”

When you hear that the enemy is attacking your family, you’re not supposed to just sit there crying, slobbering and wringing your hands. No, that’s not what you do. A loved one with a problem is God’s opportunity for you to move forward with the anointing and power of the Holy Spirit.

Abraham armed his trained servants. Faith is your servant. These servants were born in Abraham’s house. Your servants, born in YOUR house come when you hear the Word of God. “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing the Word of God.” Remember when the Centurion’s servant was sick? He told Jesus, “Speak the word and my servant shall be healed.”
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Abraham armed his servants. The weapons of our warfare are not carnal, the Bible says, but mighty, to the pulling down of strongholds.

Genesis 14:16 says, “And he brought back all the goods, and also brought again his brother Lot and his goods, and the women also, and the people.”

It wasn’t Abraham’s nature to be a warrior, but through faith, prayer and action, he became conqueror, instead of a victim. His faith was strong, activated and armed with the Word of God. And, thank God, he brought back the material goods the enemy had stolen, his relative who had been taken captive and the wives and daughters the enemy had stolen!

When Abraham found out that the enemy had stolen his nephew’s wife and daughters, he stepped out in faith right away, not allowing the devil to “steal, kill and destroy” even one of them.

Now look what happens: The enemy had attacked and stolen. Abraham moved out in faith to l recover what the enemy stole, and he was victorious. That’s when you can expect Jesus to come on the scene! Herein Genesis 14:18-15:1, the Bible says: “And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God. [19] And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of Heaven and earth: [20] And blessed be the most high Go, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And Abraham gave Melchizidek tithes of all.”

Melchizidek represents Jesus in the Book of Genesis. Here’s why: First, he was a King and a Priest, just like Jesus is. Second, he was greater than Abraham, just like Jesus said in John 8:55-59. He’s called the King of Righteousness (Hebrews 7:2; 1:8); He is the King of Peace (Salem means “peace.”)

Acting on you faith brings Jesus on the scene, to glorify God and to bless you, to bring you assurance of God’s approval. Also He comes to encourage you that God is using you for His glory.

Notice, that Abraham TITHED! When he saw Jesus, when he was in victory, he tithed! He gave 10% back to God! WHY? You might ask? Because Abraham is the father of faith, and people who walk in faith KNOW that giving always glories God! Only doubters are afraid that if they tithe they won’t be able to make it!

Somebody said, “Tithing is just Old Testament, it’s the law of Moses.” No, tithing is faith! Abraham tithed here BEFORE the Law of Moses: Actually, it was practiced at least 430 years before the law ever came!

Now, after hearing from the King of Peace, and paying his tithes, something else happens, that will let you know how God deals with Abraham. You need to know it, because the blessing of Abraham comes upon YOU, the child of God who is walking by faith!

Genesis 14:21: “And the king of Sodom said unto Abram, Give me the persons, and take the goods to thyself [22] And Abram said to the king of Sodom, I have lifted up mine hand unto the Lord the most high God the, possessor of Heaven and earth, [23] That I will not take from a thread even to a shoelatchet and that I will not take anything that is thine, lest thou shouldest say, I have made Abram rich:”

Remember in Luke 6:36, where Jesus said, “Give and it shall be given unto you, pressed down, shaken together, running over shall men pour unto your bosom’?” Here you have it! Abraham FIRST paid his tithes, and THEN, God sent the king of Sodom over to bless and prosper Abraham!

Abraham COULD have received ALL the treasure, ALL the wealth of the King of Sodom and his people! Why DIDN’T he? Because Abraham had already promised to God that he wouldn’t receive anything from the King of Sodom, because God was Abraham’s Source. Abraham had learned by this point, that his FAITH could get him all the blessings and prosperity, wealth and security he would ever need – so why would he want to carry around all this stuff from the king of Sodom? When Abe had a need, his supply would come at just the right time! “My God shall supply ALL my need according to His riches in Glory (Hea ven) by Christ Jesus!”

Now, we see the full cycle of God’s blessing of Abraham in spiritual warfare and intercession! Abraham had the blessing of God, the opportunity to “cash in” now, or “eat his seed,” or to continue moving ahead in faith! Abraham chose not to eat his seed, but to sow it back into the lives of people!

Here’s the neat part! By faith, Abraham had recognized that God was his Source, and by his refusal to depend on worldly wealth (EVEN wealth gotten by giving), he attracted Heaven’s attention!

Go to Genesis 15:1. “After these things the word of the Lord came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not Abram: I am thy shield and thy exceeding great reward.”

Abraham had operated successfully by faith in his intercession, his actions of faith, his training his faith to function solely on the word of God, and in his relying on God alone! Now, God tells Abraham he made the right choice!

Why did God have to tell Abraham to “fear not?” Think about it! Here he has the opportunity to NEVER have to work or worry again, with the wealth of a whole city offered to him! And he turns it down! Now, he’s walking home with no money in his pocket, a wife to face, and to tell that he turned down a life on easy street, because he “had so much faith!” Who wouldn’t be a little scared?!!!

So, God tells Abraham the same thing He tells YOU when you turn down worldly wealth, position or promotion because you don’t want it to injure your testimony. “Fear not, My Child! l, the Lord our God will protect you and bring you great rewards, the reward of faith, the exceeding great rewards of walking by faith with the Lord of Heaven and Earth! The reward of being tested and found faithful! The reward of knowing everywhere the sole of your foot shall trod, is given you by faith, vision and action – enjoying the blessing of Abraham!

Here’s a prayer for you: “Heavenly Father I thank you for blessing me not just for myself, but for the blessing and help I can be to others! Thank you for faith, given to me as a servant, to help me win back what the enemy has stolen! And, Father, I thank You for the blessings both materially and spiritually for walking with You in obedience and power! Thank You that the blessing of Abraham is on me by faith, and because I believe, I can give You a tenth of all You bless me with! In Jesus’ Name, Amen!”

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Fruitfulness, Prosperity and…Kingship?!!!

By on October 11, 2016

We’re talking about the blessings of Abraham that come upon the believer, because of God’s covenant, or promise to Abraham. Last week, we talked about the fact that God’s blessings come on you as an inheritance, or as “riches that you did not work for or earn, but some because of your relationship to the owner.”

Now, we’re looking at Genesis 17:6, where God says: “And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and will make nations of thee, and kings shall come out of thee.”

In this blessing God gave to Abraham, and his descendants (that’s us) He promises that He will make us exceeding fruitful. The Hebrew word used for “exceeding” means “with strength, might, force or abundance.

ln other words, the fruitfulness God has promised to you has its own strength, or power. Like Jesus said, in Matthew 6:33, “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall BE ADDED to you.”

The things that you seek will come to you, when God’s blessing is upon you!

Then, He says He will make you exceeding fruitful. With strength, might, force and abundance, God will bring results to your works, prayers, efforts, actions and the seeds that you sow or plant. What’s a common trait of fruit? We talk about this a lot: lt’s SWEET! Much sweetness in life will come to you. I believe God’s people have suffered too much fruitlessness in their lives. There has been too little sweetness. Life is bitter for too many of God’s people. And it’s NOT God’s will for you to live a bitter life.

His will is for you to be fruitful, to increase, to grow, to have good results, and to have abundance. God wants for you to have enough to meet your own needs and the needs of others as well; to be able to pay your own bills and to help someone else out, too. That’s God’s will for you, as a Believer.

Traditional religions have wrongly taught that God wants you to just barely get by, to have just a little bit, and to scrape by, living from hand to mouth. That might sound religious, but it’s not the will of God! How can you obey Jesus and give to the poor, if you don’t have anything yourself?

Psalms 1:2, 3 describes the state of the blessed person, the one who is walking in the blessing of Abraham. lt says: “But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in His law (the Bible) does he meditate day and night. [3] And he shall be like a tree planted by rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.”

With the blessing of Abraham on your life, you’re like a tree planted. What God means by that is, you’re not a wild tree that just “happened” to be where you are: you’re a tree bought from a nursery, or landscaper. A tree that a price has been paid for. A tree that has been chosen, and put in a choice place, where the conditions are ripe for it to flourish.

You’re in the best of soil, and well taken care of. As a tree that’s PLANTED as opposed to being carried around like a potted plant, it also means you are stabilized. You’re in a position in life where you will grow, bring forth fruit and multiply. Why? Because that’s why the owner chose you and paid the price for you in the first place!

Since He purchased you to bring forth fruit, He’s going to make sure you’re given everything you need to be able to bring forth the most fruit possible. He isn’t going to allow you to go dry, even in times of drought, times that kill off trees that are growing up out in the wild. Your leaf will not wither.

And, “whatsoever he (that’s you) doeth shall prosper.” Being blessed includes being prospered in the material realm. You say, “That doesn’t sound spiritual!” Well, it IS spiritual, because “man looketh at the outward appearance but God looketh at the heart… ”

What that means is, people around you can’t see what’s in your heart. They can only see what’s happening on the outside. The only way they can tell what’s going on inside of you is by what’s happening on the outside. So, God has a special interest in blessing the outside of your life as well as blessing the inside.

You NEED to get these truths deep inside your inner spirit, so they can start producing in your life. As long as you’re afraid God doesn’t want to bless you or prosper you, as long as you’re afraid that it isn’t spiritual to be blessed, as long as you’re afraid you’ll be carnal if you have a little prosperity, you’ll never be able to receive the fullness of God’s blessing in your life.

Remember, part of being blessed is so YOU can BE a blessing, so YOU will be in a position to bring some relief to the poor and hurting of this world.

Then, God said, “I will make nations of thee…” Nations=people, groups of people; people of different types who will come together, whose lives will begin working, as a result of your walking in the blessing of Abraham. People will be attracted to what God is doing and what is happening in your life.

That’s why blessing the Believer is part of God’s plan on reaching the lost of this world. Also, if the church, if the Believer isn’t blessed, the world won’t be reached with the Gospel! See, if God wanted us to reach the world and then didn’t provide us with the means of reaching it, there’d be something wrong with Him!

lt’s as simple as this: lf the Children of Abraham aren’t blessed, the nations won’t come forth like God promised Abraham all those thousands of years ago!

Last, “… and the kings shall come out of thee.” What is a king? One who has authority. One who decrees the law. One who rules. One who has INHERITED (there’s that word again!) His position of ruling and authority. You don’t become a king by earning it, by buying it or by any means other than be inheriting it. The Bible says that WE (Believers, children of Abraham) are “kings and priests unto our God!”

We are kings, we have authority, we decree God’s spiritual laws, we rule by faith, we have inherited our position, and we’ve gotten it all from the King of kings, King Jesus! And, if it bothers you to be called a king, if you feel it’s not humble enough for you, let me ask you this? Is Jesus YOUR King? If He IS, then you MUST be a king, because Jesus is the King of Kings!

You’re blessed because Abraham was blessed. You have inherited the blessings of Abraham that are purchased for you by Jesus on the cross. You’re blessed because God is a good God and it’s the way He has chosen to reach out to suffering, poor and hurting world, that they can be saved and go to Heaven forever with Jesus, instead of being lost and going to hell with the devil and his followers. Thank God for His wisdom, power and goodness!

“Dear God, I THANK YOU that you blessed faithful Abraham, and when You blessed him, you blessed not only him but also his seed. I am a Believer and that means I am the seed of Abraham. I am blessed. I am exceeding fruitful! Because I am blessed, many people will be drawn into the kingdom of God! Because You have blessed me, MANY people will be reached and learn how to be ruled by King Jesus and be able to rule in this life by the Word of God! Thank You God for Your blessing and mercy in my life! I give YOU my heart and my all, in Jesus’ Name, Amen!”

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The Kind of Heart God is Looking for and How to Have It

By on October 4, 2016

When times get crazy like they are now God When always has a plan. If you remember anything at all from your high school history classes, you know that history is like a pendulum. It swings one way and then it swings to the opposite extreme.

When things are running smoothly you can be sure that within a couple of generations, they’re going to get crazy again. The positive side to this is that, when things get as out of hand as they are today you can count on God working in peoples’ lives to make things swing back to some kind of sanity.

How does God do this? He does it through a person. He looks for a person who will be obedient and who will care more about doing the right thing than about what people might think.

God isn’t looking for the smartest person, or the best looking. He’s not even looking for the most religious person. What He IS looking for is a person who has a heart for God. 1 Samuel 13:14 says, “the Lord has sought Him a man after His own heart…”

ln 1 Samuel 16, verses 1 through 13, God was in the process of choosing David for the person He was going to use to bring Israel back to a condition of law order and right living.

God told Samuel, the prophet to go to Jesse’s house, in Bethlehem. God said that one of Jesse’s sons would be the person that God was going to use. So, when Samuel got there, he met with each of Jesse’s sons. They were all strong, good looking and bright. But, God told Samuel not to go by their outward appearance.

God said to Samuel: “Look not on his countenance, of on the height of his stature; because I have refused him. “For the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for a man looketh at the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.”(1 Samuel 16:7)

As Samuel met with each of Jesse’s seven sons, God told him that none of them were _the one He was looking for So, Samuel asked Jesse if he had any more children. Jesse said, “Well, there’s my youngest boy He’s out keeping the sheep.”

ln other words, David wasn’t someone that his family thought would amount to very much. He didn’t even get a chance to meet with Samuel. But, when Samuel sent for David, God said, “This is he. Anoint him.” Samuel anointed David with oil “and the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward.” That’s in 1 Samuel 16:12-13

God is still looking for people like David. People who have a heart after God. Without a heart for God, you’ll never make it through the tough times and the trials and problems that you’ll face in life. Having total devotion to God is the thing that will give you the power you need to stand firm when you’re attacked by those forces that want you to back down and give up.

Maybe you don’t feel like you’re the kind of person God could use very much. Well, nobody thought David was going to be used by God, either See, it’s not what you are on the outside, it’s what you are on the inside, in your heart that counts with God.

David was the youngest. He lacked the education, the strength, the refinement, the maturity, the social skills that his brothers had. That’s why his dad didn’t even think about inviting David A to meet with the man of God 1 Samuel 16:11).

The nation had already had a king who seemed good outwardly. King Saul was tall, smart, good looking, energetic, everything a king ought to be. Except he didn’t have a heart for God. On the inside he wasn’t about very much.

Since Samuel knew how kings should look, he figured God was going to use one of David’s big, strong brothers. But, he was wrong. God chose little David. The boy who was only thought worthy of watching some dumb sheep.

Are you like that? Maybe in your family, you’re the odd man out. You might’ve been the one that mom and dad liked least. Maybe other kids made fun-of you and put you down. And, it could be, it just COULD BE, that all those trials and problems caused you to draw closer to God and to be more sensitive to other people.

What counted to God is the way David had a heart for Him. See, David had a history within God that nobody else knew about. Out there watching the sheep, David had developed a faith and a trust in God that touched God’s heart.

One time a lion had come out and took one of the sheep that David was watching for his father another time a bear came and tried to kill one of the sheep. David used his faith and took courage. He killed both the lion and the bear (1 Samuel 17:34-3 6). David had already learned that it’s “not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit saith the Lord.”(Zechariah 4:6)

When God chooses you, it’s based on what He’s seen in your heart, and how much you want to know Him and please Him. Have you bothered to get to know Him and to seek His face, just because you loved Him? A lot of us pray when we have a need. God is looking for people who pray because they love God.

The third thing that God is looking for is your response to the Holy Spirit. I’m not talking about whether or not you speak in tongues or raise your hands when you worship. What God is looking for is a place in your heart where the Holy Spirit can find a resting place. It says in 1 Samuel 16:13 that “the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward.”

The Holy Spirit gave David the focus, the compassion, the power that began to set him apart from other people. It gave him a boldness and a confidence that wasn’t in himself, but in God. The Holy Spirit gave David the sweetness in his disposition that he needed as well as the power to do what God had set before him to do.

Most people who profess to be Christians don’t have very much power in their lives. When you describe someone as being a Christian today, most people don’t immediately think of a person who is sweet, kind, caring, strong and radiant. Instead, when they hear someone is a “Christian,” they first think of the person as being hard, cold, critical, and not very pleasant to be around.

Notice what happens after David is anointed and has the presence of the Holy Spirit in his life: King Saul came against him and wanted to destroy him! Immediately after being anointed by the Holy Spirit, he became the target of the forces of the enemy.

That’s just the way it still is. Even though you may be nice and sweet and easy to get along with, it doesn’t mean that you’ll be well liked by everyone who crosses your path. Like David you might actually like the person who has come against you, but they still have it in for you.

Saul was moody and unpredictable. David kept Saul soothed by playing his harp for Saul. But one day, for no apparent reason, Saul threw a javelin at David, trying to kill him! David fled for his life that night!

Do you know what I’m talking about? Maybe you’re playing your little spiritual harp, and trying to keep that person soothed, but then, out of the blue, they try to destroy you! Don’t feel like a failure. The truth is that no matter how hard you try, you can’t make a person happy who is dead set on being miserable!

When a person is angry, bitter jealous or just plain bent on making themselves upset, there’s really nothing you can do about it. It’s something THEY have to deal with. All you can do is pray for them and be sweet.

Will they still come against you? Probably like Saul, they’ll sling their javelins at you. But, like David, you’ll discover that the place of rejection by people can be the place of acceptance by God!

Now do you see the hand of God in life? His various dealings and the events of your life have been ways that He’s shaping you into the person you’re becoming.

That’s the important thing: What are you becoming? It’s what gives meaning to all the things you’ve been through. David went through a lot of rejection and people pushing him around and disrespecting him. But what was he becoming? A king!

He could’ve allowed himself to become angry, or bitter and cynical. Instead, he turned to God, and developed his spiritual life. What he became on the inside is what enabled him to become a king on the outside. First, he reigned over his own spirit. Then, he was able to reign over people, as a king. What are you becoming?

Some people receiving this message are challenged by it, but others are comforted. You might’ve felt like you didn’t matter much to anyone. But, you’ve found that God has been taking note of your life and your heart toward Him. Today’s message has ignited a hunger to get to know Jesus better and better.

Next, is to yield to God, letting Him make you strong and full of purpose. Your failings and shortcomings have left you cowardly afraid, putting on a false front to people. Spiritually you might not even know where you stand. But, God is wanting to meet with you, to touch your heart, to anoint you with His Holy Spirit and to make you to be someone who is after Gods own heart!

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Revival: What It Is and Isn’t

By on September 27, 2016

Revival: What do you think of when you hear that word? lf you’re like me, you might think of an old circus tent, with folding chairs and a poorly dressed evangelist running back and forth across the stage shouting and hollering. Other people might think of a series of meetings held at a church, with a guest speaker. Or maybe a week of meetings held at the Holiday lnn, where several churches join up and listen to a guest speaker.

Guess what? None of these things are revival. What IS revival? We’re going to spend some time exploring this area of the things of God.

I guess l was about 18 when l first ran across a book called, “Revival Lectures.” lt was written in the mid 1800’s by Charles Finney, Mr. Finney had been an attorney, and he gave his heart to the Lord, when he was 27. Within days, the Lord called him into the ministry, and he began speaking. Not in the churches, because they wouldn’t have him. He spoke in homes, schools, town halls, factories and anywhere else he could get a group of people together.

Under Charles Finney’s speaking and preaching, frequently entire towns would come to the Lord. I want to share with you some of the truths that he shared that brought such moves of God. He begins with helping us to understand what a revival is, and isn’t.

“O Lord, revive Thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy.” (Habbakuk 3:2). Habbakuk was crying out to God to spare his nation from the judgments that were speedily coming down on his nation.

The prophet was asking God to influence His people, to move on the hearts of the people, so that they would obey God. He knew that people on their own wouldn’t obey God fully, and needed the influence of the Holy Spirit if they were ever going to obey Gods commands.

The word “revive,” means “to bring life back to; to restore to a lively condition; to energize or stir up. So, revival, by definition means there’s been a backing down from your earlier life with God, a losing of your lively condition and you need to be energized or stirred up. lt means that at some point you were closer to God than you are now. You need reviving. You’re in an inactive state that resembles death!

People are so spiritually sluggish, and there are so many things that take their minds off of the things of God, that He needs to intervene from time to time. Then the obstacles to true spirituality are swept away and people begin to obey God once again.

People need to FEEL, before they are willing to OBEY. This is why so many people who know they ought to be serving God fervently don’t. They’re afraid they’ll be laughed at by their friends. Many are married to their possessions; others put off repenting until they’ve secured some worldly measure of success. People like this will never give up their false shame or give up their personal agendas until they FEEL the senses of danger their soul is in and can’t hold back any longer.

First off, spiritual revival always includes the church realizing it isn’t doing its job. lt begins with a spiritual housecleaning among God’s people. They feel the seriousness of their own sins and find it impossible to keep living the life of a phony. People who have grown cold in their devotion recommit themselves to the Lord.

Secondly, Christians have their faith renewed in a time of real revival. When you’re slipping away from God, your heart gets hard as marble. The truths of the Bible seem like fantasies. You admit that it’s all true, but the burning realities of eternity don’t move you.

When God begins to move in your heart, you no longer “see men as trees walking,” but you see things in that strong light that renews the love of God in your heart. You’ll begin to FEEL for other people, and want them to be able to love Jesus like you do. You’ll be longing for your friends, your relatives and even your enemies to give their hearts to God.

You won’t just be speaking to them about their souls, but you’ll find yourself praying for them sincerely and earnestly, asking God to move on their hearts.

Third, real revival breaks the power of those sins and habits that have gotten hold of you and drag you down, destroying your hopes for future happiness. It brings you to such a high ground in God that you feel a fresh impulse towards Heaven. You have a new sense of belonging to the Kingdom of Heaven and you get new desires to be in communion with God. This is how the pull of the world is broken and the power of the enemy is broken in your life.

What God Uses to Bring Revival. Mr. Finney mentions three things God uses to bring true revival The first is simply the way God moves in the events in a person`s life.

God arranges things to happen that bring your mind into contact with the truth. He brings you to where the truth reaches your eyes, ears and thoughts. God might use the weather, the political situation, social ills or anything else that might turn your attention towards Him. Then, He sends along a minister or other Christian just at the right time. And, that person will bring out a specific truth just at the time you’re ready to hear it.

Knowing your mind, your heart, feelings and your whole personal history, God will use the right truth in the way that’s best adapted to your particular case. He gives it such strength, vividness and power that it causes you to stop in your tracks and turn to the Lord.

See, if people were inclined to obey God, they would get all the truth they need from the Bible. But, because people are totally disinclined to obey the truth, God makes it clear through their minds and pours it onto their souls in a blaze of light that they can’t withstand. That’s what causes people to yield to the truth, obey God and be saved.

Next, God uses other people to reach you. People aren’t mere instruments in the hands of God. Instruments have no choice. People have a choice whether or not they will be used by God. What instrument does God use? He uses the truth. People are agents that God uses.

You’re probably aware that people can read your state of mind by looking into your eyes. lf your eyes are full of silliness, fear, anxiety or hypocrisy, anyone can read it. lf your eyes are full of the Spirit of God, they read that, too. Just the look on your face can be enough to bring a person to face their spiritual condition.

lf you have a deep feeling towards the things of God, you’ll produce deep feelings wherever you go. And, if you’re cold, or frivolous, or trifling, you’ll inevitably destroy all deep feeling, even in people who are concerned about their souls`.

We want to spend some time together learning about how God revives His people. The purpose isn’t to spend our time and strength just receiving instructions, or to give you something to talk about. lt’s not so you can say, “We’ve learned all about how God revives His people,” while you do nothing.

At the end of his first Revival Lecture, Mr. Finney asks, “Will you follow the instructions I shall give you from the Word of God, and put them into practice in your own lives? Will you bring them to bear upon your families, your acquaintances, neighbors, and through the city? Or will you spend your time learning about revivals, and do nothing FOR them?

“l want you as fast as you learn anything on the subject of revival to put it into practice, and go to work… you ought to decide NOW whether you will do this or not.”

You know we call people to decide on the spot whether THEY will obey the Gospel. And we have no more authority to let YOU take the time to think about whether you will obey God, than we do to let lost people “think about it.”

We call on you to make a promise to God that you will do your duty as fast as you learn what it is, and to pray that He will pour out His Spirit upon this church and this city.”

When the churches are awakened out of their sleep by God, changed lives will follow. Peoples’ hearts will be broken down and changed. Even the “worst” people in society, the crack addicts, prostitutes, drunkards and atheists will be awakened and converted. The worst of human beings will be softened and reclaimed, and transformed into beautiful and renewed citizens of Heaven!

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