The Judgements of God

 The Judgements of God

2Pe 2:4  For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; 

2Pe 2:5  And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly; 2Pe 2:6  And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly 2Pe 2:9  The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished: 

Hardly a day goes by without some disaster being reported on earth somewhere. In fact, many disasters happen so frequently while increasingly in number each day that, we have to conclude that the world is out of order. We as Christians conclude that the reasons behind such disasters arise from our understanding that humans are provoking God and affecting His sensitivity. Yes, God is sensitive about certain issues. Therefore, He decrees judgements that are carried out in one form or another. Besides this, humans judge and decree certain things to happen between themselves which in turn causes God to judge matters. These judgements are coming from choosing wrongly. This two fold nature of God’s judgements are hardly noticed by the majority of people on earth because they are insensitive to God and His feelings.

The Secret Life of a Christian

The Secret Life of a Christian

The secret life of a Christian belongs in intimacy. Intimacy that is developed between a Christian and God. This is a life that is not easy to be understood just by observation of another’s faith through the other’s speech, thought or deed. Daniels’ secret life with God was not understood by his enemies. This revelation has often caused me to wonder as to what makes a Christian. When I first started my walk with God, I had many opinions about who a Christian should be even though I did not necessarily portray or demand that same expectation of Christianity in my own life. I aspired to become perfect and Christlike based on the convictions of my conscience, prayer, what I had heard preached, understood through my own study of the Bible and by observing what other Christians did. I realised then and do so even now that I was on a path that was not exactly what I expected when I was confronted with ongoing revelations of who a true Christian is. The changing dynamic of Christian life was like a see- saw for me when I observed what Christianity in modern days really portrayed. For example; one day I thought a person that I was observing was a true Christian, till I discovered some flaw in that person that was so un-Christian like. Then again, on other occasions, I would observe Christianity in persons who would least qualify for that title.

 

I began to realise the problems all these posed for unbelievers when observing Christians. Their first question was; “Why are there so many differences between people who call themselves Christians”? The second question was; “Why do they sin and expect us unbelievers not to sin”? The questions increased even as their observations increased about Christians. The same questions arose inside the so called Church and many started to leave and form their own groups and opinions. This of course caused even more confusion for everyone as to who a Christian really was because each one portrayed their own brand of Christianity. The dilemma for the ordinary person was growing. I decided, I could not try and understand Christianity based on what I observed in people without first aligning myself to Christ’s opinion of who a Christian is. So, this began a journey of study and understanding that brought much to light sobering me up somewhat greatly. I began to realise, to be a Christian, required my relationship with God through Christ to be constant in His will without blemish. When blemish was discovered, it required me to confess my sin, repent and correct my ways. These corrections were to take place not by my effort but by the conviction of the Spirit of Truth and the word. The Spirit knows what a Christian should think, behave and look like. I realised quickly that I could not decide for myself what God had already decided for all mankind. Apostle Peter found that out in respect of salvation to the Gentiles Act 10:15 And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common. 

 

The uniqueness of each individual did not preclude him or her from the requirements of God to be Christ like. We observe characters in both the Old and New Testaments who vacillated between sin and righteousness to extremes and yet were accepted of God. However, the acceptance was not without correction. It is in this correction that we discover the compassion and love of God along with His grace toward a pitiable human being who considers himself somewhat proud to be who they think they are. King David was such a man who vacillated between sin and righteousness and yet, God considered him a man after His own heart. Strange as this may seem, what is even stranger is the non acceptance of sinners by God who have committed sins in like manner to King David, be it, they did not even come close to such enormity of sin as murder, adultery and lies all in the one go. In the New Testament, it is recorded that committing one sin is equal to committing all sin. Jas 2:10  For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. Jas 2:11  For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law.  

 

This makes me think that a Christian is whom God makes that Christian to be according to His application of His word to that person. There are common themes in the Bible that  is applicable to all of us as to what a Christian should be like. Like, being born again and walking in the Spirit. Yet, the nature of one’s Christianity and faith can vary causing one to judge another wrongfully. The potential Christian is what we must see. God expects us to take the beam out of our own eye before we seek to pull the sliver out another’s. This means, we could be with sin and near to judgement and yet be thinking another is sinful or not a Christian. We are called to judge and know who is of God and who is not of God at any given time. This is not an easy task as we can easily be found to be judges of condemnation rather than judges of righteousness. By this I mean, instead of assessing correctly and dealing with the situation according to God’s word, we could be taking on our own method of judgement which may include the respecting of persons. This happened when the Pharisees brought the woman taken in adultery to Jesus to be judged according to the law. He did not judge her nor did He condone her actions. Instead He forgave her and corrected her. After this, it was up to her to continue in righteousness or face a worse end.

 

I am persuaded that the patience of God is separating the sheep from the goats. From the beginning of time, God has been judging mankind in so many ways that it would be impossible to conclude from that as to who can be saved. I do believe Peter asked this question of Jesus. Jesus replied; “with God, nothing is impossible”. The Old Testament had so many characters in it who were unsaved because of their behaviour and yet others were saved by faith in God without Jesus. They had a foreknowledge of the Messiah but it was only faith that drove them to God and the keeping of His commandments in fear. After Jesus, we see that faith has not lost its flavour regarding salvation. Without faith it is impossible to please God. This brings me to the many Churches with many so called Christians who are far from being Christians because they do not exemplify the Christian life. To many of them it is a religion to be kept that way.

 

The difficulty for each individual is in working out their salvation with fear and trembling. They really have no collective support in deciding their salvation. For example; they cannot belong to a Church or a denomination and be saved. They cannot do good works and be saved. They have to be born again and walk with Jesus and have their lives examined by the Holy Spirit to assure themselves that they are saved. It is very obvious to see many unsaved people calling themselves Christians but are not because of what they do, is just not of Christ. The more subtle offenders are harder to discern because they hide under so many doctrines and theological persuasiveness that they do not make sense to the saved but still exist among them. Then there are the wolves in sheep’s clothing to consider. That is why we are constantly warned to walk in discernment and test the spirits of man. At the end of the day, each individual will be required to know that they are saved for themselves. This makes up for the secret life of the Christian. I believe it is a beautiful life when one understands the simplicity of the faith and enters into the rest of God. Added to this, if we realise that our journey is not to condemn but love and save souls from darkness and sin, then, we would have done what was needed. Which one of us can say we knew we needed to be saved?  Jesus died for us while we were yet sinners. Salvation belongs to the Lord. The preparations of the heart are that of a progressive nature. One cannot afford to sit back and say they are saved and then live riotous sinful lives. It is in the progressive journey of salvation that we see the preserving hand of God, keeping us on the journey by His own will. Pro 20:28  Mercy and truth preserve the king: and his throne is upholden by mercy.  The secret life of a Christian is most evident in the peace and wisdom of the presence of the Lord upon that person. This could even be when a person is very busy doing things. The presence makes the difference. Then we can conclude they are walking in salvation.

 

I have seen people die in my ministry who went in peace. They had been tremendously troubled by evil, sickness and disease but when their time came, they went in peace. In the secret place of their heart and mind, they had come into salvation with God. Pure observation alone is not going to determine who a Christian is, though it may help from time to time. I think we will be surprised as to who gets into heaven and who does not. The astounding statement of Jesus to the Samaritan woman is sobering. Joh 4:20  Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship. Joh 4:21  Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. Joh 4:22  Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. Here was a whole sect of people who had been worshipping erroneously without understanding. When Jesus spoke to the people of Sychar afterwards, they heard Him for themselves and were saved. I believe many so called Christians are worshipping erroneously. Even, so called good Christians do not seek God for who He is. They seek Him who is a Spirit in the flesh.

 

I believe my ministry is to the Church. This has been proven to me so many times over. It is for this reason I spend my time preparing hearts. It is my job to lead them into the truth that God has given us as a people. Faith will decide who goes in and who stays out. The five foolish virgins realised at the last minute that they were left out. God bless you.

Lots of love

Pastor Noble

18/03/18

 Respecter of Persons

 Respecter of Persons

Rom_2:11  For there is no respect of persons with God. 

It is a very hard thing for anyone not to fall for the trap of showing respect to persons. Honour where honour is due is an entirely different matter. Honour with respect as spoken of in the Bible is what God alludes to when He wants us to honour our elders and leaders. When we throw in the word ‘reverence’ into the pot, it speaks of esteeming another in awe This kind of reverence in awe is the kind of reverence we must have toward God along with Godly fear. When we understand whom God has made us to be and what we truly are, there will be awe associated with both the Creator and the creation. Apostle Paul gives instructions to the married in this manner. Eph_5:33  Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.

 

Unfortunately, society over the generations has broken down Godly principles to mean what they want it to mean and so, today, people do not fear one another in Godly awe. Instead, they carry a fear of man within themselves which causes them to respect persons who are associated with their lives. The fear of man has a way of captivating a person, binding them and keeping them in fear like a captive in prison. In the same manner, respect of persons takes on another dangerous flavour in flattery. Flattery is lifting up of a person where no commendation, honour or respect is due. Flattery is so dangerous that it has the power to lift the person who is flattered to heights unknown only to drop them unceremoniously into a pile of rubbish like a sack of potatoes not long after. When the truth of the lie of flattery is discovered, people realise they have been taken for a ride. Fashion of this world is designed to flatter a person. Some practise flattery as a form of encouragement.  Often time, the latest fashions, social status, clothes, education and success in life can decide who one would associate with. They think encouraging a person by hiding their faults and mistakes and not mentioning shortcomings or faults at all is encouragement. This kind of encouragement is designed by the devil to blind a person into believing untruths about themselves. Correction in love is never a wrong thing and one does not need to curry favour by telling lies about another.

 

Showing respect also covers the areas of who you would accept into your Church and your inner circles of friendship. Birds of a feather flock together is a phrase used to describe people who tend to stick with one another. Such people rarely influence areas of greatest need. Whilst there is a respect of persons one has to watch out for, one has to watch out for disrespect of another as well. 

 

There are some sobering verses that we need to consider in James that will help us to walk humbly with one another irrespective of status. Jas 2:1  My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons. Jas 2:2  For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment; Jas 2:3  And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool: Jas 2:4  Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts? Jas 2:5  Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him? Jas 2:6  But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats? Jas 2:7  Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called? Jas 2:8  If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well: Jas 2:9  But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors. 

 

It seems faith and respect of persons do not go together. This is very clearly stated by James at the start of verse 1. It displeases God that we reverence Him but not our fellow man. This hurts Him deeply. He instituted two laws that are very close to His heart and His requirement in these laws is to love Him and love His people. Whether one is saved or not, people are still number one in God’s heart. This does not mean He is asking us to condone ungodly actions. This is where the problem is. How do you deal with a person who in fact is living an openly sinful life? Do you condone or close your eyes to their sin. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. This means, everyone gets corrupted by this one person in the group even though everyone else is not committing the same sin. This is deep impact knowledge that one must understand concerning righteousness.

 

Herod was lifted up by the Jews and died a miserable death. Act 12:21  And upon a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat upon his throne, and made an oration unto them. Act 12:22  And the people gave a shout, saying, It is the voice of a god, and not of a man. Act 12:23  And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost.                           

 

I personally believe that Herod developed a disease and was eaten from within by worms. He must have died a slow horrible death. This raises the question about the connection between flattery, respect and pride. When one is exalted by another out of flattery, it is always designed to lift that person to heights that do not belong to them.

 

I am always amazed at why people baulk at my correction of their behaviour when it is not Godly. They think they should be respected in spite of their open and deliberate sin. When the woman who was taken in adultery was brought to Jesus to judge by the Pharisees, they wanted to see if He would compromise the law. He astounded them with His wisdom and judgement when He asked them to stone her if they had no sin in them. He then proceeded to instruct the woman that she was forgiven and that she was not to sin anymore. This meant, He did not give her leeway to keep sinning just like He did with the man who was bedridden at the pool of Bethesda. He said; go and sin no more, lest something worse befalls you. He did not take pity on this man’s 38 year condition but admonished him with a very clear instruction and warning.

 

When Jesus spoke on the Mount of Olives and blessed the people, He told them who would inherit heaven and earth. Mat 5:3  Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Mat 5:5  Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. It is very clear that people who have much money and gay clothing or who are aggressive achievers on earth are going to find it hard to inherit the earth and heaven. It is those who are walking in meekness and love and who understand that God is not a respecter of persons. A famous preacher was taken to heaven and asked by Jesus, who was going to inherit this magnificent mansion He was building. The famous preacher thought it might be for him because he had saved many and had a church in the hundreds of thousands. It was then that Jesus showed him a vision of a woman in his church who was on her knees cleaning the toilet with a rag. He realised then, God was not a respecter of persons but required something that was far greater and richer in His sight than anything that this world could produce. God requires a condition of the heart that would please Him.  Mic 6:8  He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?  The days are upon us when we have to ask ourselves if we are walking free of respect of persons. 1Pe_1:17  And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear: 

 

Peter had to make a choice about the Gentiles when God said to him not to call what God had cleansed as unclean. God is not asking us to be arrogant but understanding of who is who and how to treat them. One never knows who a person really is till they experience that person’s heart themselves. We cannot carry sins or sorrows but neither are we to push it aside in lieu of a person’s status in life whether they are rich or poor. Souls are all treated in the same manner no matter what social standing they come from. I have seen God treat the poor in India the same way He has treated the rich. One may think because another is successful in one way or another that they somehow deserve more respect and honour than others. This is wrong thinking. 

 

As a man of God, I am constantly challenged in the area of respect. In like manner, as a secular worker, I was constantly challenged to show respect which was really a fear of man. When I did not do this, I suffered immensely and was often sacked or mistreated because of this. The same thing happened in my itinerant ministry as I visited churches in 17 countries. God was showing me something about the state of the Church. By adhering to God’s principles of not honouring one over another, I crossed the boundaries of man’s expectation and so paid a price.

 

I believe that when we walk in truth and in love at the same time, what we say and do will always have honour without disrespect or dishonour. It is not easy to keep an undivided mind on people but it takes a disciplined person to achieve this. Jesus treated everyone the same but anointed some over another for the purpose of making them servants just like Himself. This status was bestowed with intention and purpose, not to make one greater than another. We are all servants no matter what our position in life is. We are all made equal irrespective of colour or status in life. Amen.

Lots of love, Pastor Noble, 11/03/18

Arks of Covenant

Arks of Covenant

Heb 11:7  By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith. 

The word ark has two applications in the Bible that are significant. The first is the ark that God asked Noah to build in order to save his family. The second is the Ark of the Covenant that confirms the covenant between God and His people to save them. Both arks are significant in our reasoning because they represent covenant. Both covenants carry the blood as a sign of God’s purpose for the redemption of man. Both carry with them the grace of God in preserving His people alive even though sin abounds. Both represent the mercy of God.

 Repentance

 Repentance

 

Rom_2:4  Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?

 

Repentance is an ugly word to most people. They find it hard to swallow the application of this word in their own lives but see the need for it in other people’s lives. Luk 6:41   “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 42 How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

 

God is the one who convicts us of sin not another. Though another may discern the need for repentance in another person, they cannot make another to repent or convict them of sin. However, they can lead a person to repentance through the word of God which speaks the truth into a person’s life causing them to be convicted of sin because the Spirit of the word speaks to their spirit. This happens when the deliverer of the message and the receiver of the message are both operating by the Spirit of God. If the deliverer of the message delivers the word without the Spirit’s motivation, it may still convict another of sin but it will not be because the deliverer of the message was operating in the Spirit. It will be because of the Spirit and life of the word which will have effect. If the receiver of the message does not receive the Spirit of the message, they will not be convicted even though the deliverer of the message is operating in the Spirit. This is where we see the importance of understanding the parable of the Sower. In this parable, seed was sown on four types of soil but only one received it in good soil and thereby prospered by God’s hand. This parable if understood will be the guideline in sowing seed and reaping a harvest. Disappointment and discouragement can be avoided by the Sower because he now understands the dynamic of seed sowing.

 

The value of repentance cannot be discounted in anyway. It has the power to save, heal and deliver a person from the grip of satan. It translates a person from the kingdom of darkness into the Kingdom of Light. It restores relationships and makes a person come into prosperity and long life. It prepares a person to receive revelation and a new life. It thwarts death and causes a person to come into fullness of joy of the Lord.

 

Repentance has been given to us by the goodness of God and is extended to us over long periods of time through His grace. God is patient and will wait for a person to come to the full realisation of their sin before He brings punishment or judgement on their lives. Though a person is convicted of sin, they may not repent. The may continue to live in guilt and over a period of time even cover that guilt up completely that they don’t feel the need to repent. The goodness of God is so great that He sent His only Son Jesus to die for us so that all who repent and turn from their wicked ways can be saved. Those who do not repent or do not feel the need to do so end up in death. The wages of sin is death.

 

After having come to Christ, one is not exempt from operating in repentance in exactly the same way as before coming to Christ even though God still shows His goodness toward His children through grace. He now does it lovingly from within a person bringing conviction to His children. It is like having a thorn in the flesh that one cannot seem to locate or be rid of till they repent. The thorn is one’s conscience that does not rest till repentance is made. Knowing that sin exists in a person’s life should cause them to repent but many do not do so immediately and so the thorn remains. This is God’s way of taking away the joy and pleasure of sin in His child’s life. Should the child persist with sin, the wages of sin is death. God is good and patient but He too has His limitations because of righteousness and wrath. By this, I mean, God is not going to allow His righteousness to be compromised nor can He hold back His wrath from the sinner eternally. He must judge it. That is why He judged sin in His Son so that He would not have to judge it on His people. This however is not a license for us to sin. It means, there is no more sacrifice for sin and so only repentance can save a person. Heb 10:26  For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, Heb 10:27  But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. 

 

The unsaved person too has a conscience that does not rest till some form of repentance is made. Since they do not know to whom this repentance is required, they try to attempt it between themselves. This works for a limited time and then it explodes again. That is because the root of the problem of confession has not been removed by confession to God and then repenting. A Godless people do not see the need for such kind of repentance. They take it upon themselves instead to be judges.

    

Christians on the other hand have an Advocate in Jesus; who has been made our righteousness for eternity through His sacrifice for sin. Therefore, we can go to Him for our confession and repentance. We do not need man as a mediator like some religions preach. Though we operate under the imputed righteousness of Christ and not our own, we are expected to walk righteously before God. That means, we must endeavour to remove anything that would cause us to sin though we still live in the flesh. It is impossible not to sin because of the flesh, and so when we go to Him and repent, we obtain forgiveness. If we do not, repent, we do not have forgiveness and are in danger of hell fire. 

 

Many do not agree with this concept because they believe in a forgiving God who will turn a blind eye to their sin. Therefore, they continue to sin and live a life of sin knowingly. Then there is the concept of unknown (hidden) sin that one must be very careful of because it is hidden. It takes the Lord to show us this. King David’s conscience did not even flinch even though he had committed adultery, murder and covetousness all in one go when he took his neighbour’s wife for himself. After he had committed this heinous crime, he sat back on his throne as though nothing had happened. God sent a prophet to him and convicted him of sin. It was in this knowledge that he prayed a prayer in the following manner. This is an extremely important prayer for all of us and is a great safeguard against secret sin. Psa 139:23  Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: Psa 139:24  And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. King David’s judgement was according to the cleanness of his hands. Psa 18:20  The LORD rewarded me according to my righteousness; according to the cleanness of my hands hath he recompensed me. 

 

Repentance at communion is the key to restoration in one’s life. However, one does not need to wait till communion to achieve this. I remember ministering to a woman who had a death sentence of cirrhosis of the liver through much bitterness that had come upon her life. She had been beaten and broken by her first love over many years and subsequently fallen in deeper sin through the despair of her life. When I met her, she was in desperate trouble. I asked her to repent and forgive. She did this with some difficulty. The next day she went to the Doctor and was examined and told that she no longer had cirrhosis of the liver. This is the power of God to deliver a person through repentance and forgiveness. Communion has been instituted by Christ for the reason of remembering what He did for us on the cross. He took the punishment of our sin so that we could escape past, present and future sins. Past sins were dealt with on the cross while present and future sins are dealt through repentance and forgiveness. Let us be wise about this because, if we do not confess our sins and repent we will face many difficult consequences in life and the wages of sin is death. I believe many Christians do not enjoy the joy, blessings and peace of the Lord because they carry upon themselves the yoke of unreleased sin, both known and hidden. This is a common problem because Christians are still living in the flesh. The Bible exhorts us to crucify the flesh and walk in the Spirit. However, many Christians find this difficult to do and so many do not bother after some time. Furthermore, the evil one is always around to tempt Christians with sin so many fall for both the raw and subtle ways of the devil. This not only plunges them into sin but captivates them and keeps them in sin and bondage. Snare of the fowler

 

Keeping a pure heart requires discipline. It is something that is gained through the practices that Jesus instituted for us. Confession, Repentance, Forgiveness, Walking in the Spirit, Fellowship with like minded Christians, Regular attendance at Church, Prayer, Reading of the Word and meditating on the scriptures are essential disciplines of a Christian to maintain a peaceful and fruitful life. These disciplines keep us from deliberate sin while building in us a hope for the future. This is so essential for good Christian health and growth. Many do not understand these aspects of discipline after repentance. This causes them to fall straight back into sin. The other dilemma Christians have is giving up bad character and habits from the old life. While many are convinced of the need to change others do not understand the need to deal with these issues immediately and as a result suffer needlessly. Others languish in trying to deal with it.

 

Is there an easy solution to sin? There is a definite answer to sin which is appropriated by faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus. The person of God in Christ in us makes us stronger than we can be and so it is possible to change and live a strong Christian example of righteousness. We are not perfect but being perfected and hence repentance is a major tool in securing the first leg of the journey towards being perfected. It is a continuous process that will be with us till the day we die. I pray that God will show us the value of repentance.

Lots of love

Pastor Noble

25/02/18

 Be true to your calling

 Be true to your calling

1Pe_2:9  But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: 

The light that ensues from God is the playing field of the person that is called. 1Jn_1:7  But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. Darkness on the other hand, is the playing field of the devil. The two cannot mix and light is superior to darkness. In order for your calling to be light, you must be rid of darkness. That is, darkness of the mind, soul and spirit. Because you are chosen and called, faithfulness to the call is imperative in handling the call while remaining in the midst of darkness on earth. Darkness will increase upon the earth but so must light, within ourselves though it does not like it.

Levels of anointing

Levels of anointing

Eze 47:3  And when the man that had the line in his hand went forth eastward, he measured a thousand cubits, and he brought me through the waters; the waters were to the ankles. Eze 47:4  Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through the waters; the waters were to the knees. Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through; the waters were to the loins. Eze 47:5  Afterward he measured a thousand; and it was a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen, waters to swim in, a river that could not be passed over. 

 

I believe there are several levels of anointing that the Bible speaks of. Not all are obvious but they are certainly there. To know what the anointing is, one must first look at what the substance of the anointing is. It is very clear that the word anointing means, “To smear”. The question is, smear what? The Lord commands Moses to make a very particular oil that can be used only for its designated reason and then is asked to smear that oil on the chosen high priest. Exo 29:7  Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour it upon his head, and anoint him.

 

Once the high priest is smeared or anointed, he is allowed into the presence of God. In other words, without that oil on him he is a dead man if he goes into the inner most sanctum of God though he is a high priest. This denotes that a person no matter what they are ranked as in the Kingdom of God, must be anointed (set apart). This kind of sanctification can only take place through the anointing (smearing of blood). So, for the remaining part after blood sanctification, the anointing can be explained as; a holy instrument of God (in this case oil) used to set apart a person or something to be used by God for a particular purpose. Not everyone is chosen even though everyone is called to come to God. There is a very big difference in these concepts. When we bring this same concept of being chosen and anointed into the New Testament context, we see that under the leadership of our High Priest Jesus, all requirements of the law were fulfilled once for all time. This allowed Him to receive the Holy Spirit, the anointing agent to be poured out upon us to be anointed, to be in the presence of God forever. The blood of Jesus acted as a cleansing agent for our sins to give us the Holy Spirit to become the anointing that gives us access to God. Eph 2:13  But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. Eph 2:18  For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. That is why we are encouraged to enter in boldly. This is the first level of anointing; which is, to be set apart.

 

The second level is to receive the Holy Spirit as an anointing to do works. This anointing was evident in the life of Christ and is stated in the following verses. Luk 4:18  The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, Luk 4:19  To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.  This in effect was passed onto us by Jesus when He baptized us in the Holy Spirit. The expectation therefore of God through Jesus is, we will do exactly what  Jesus did. Joh_14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father

 

The third level of anointing is for intimacy. To get closer to Jesus in order to understand God through the teaching of His word. This forms and strengthens the relationship between God and His creation through Jesus and by the Holy Spirit. Without the word and Spirit, it is impossible to form intimacy with God as there is no basis for intimacy without the Spirit. 1Co_6:17  But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit. As long as people refuse Jesus and God and do not accept His ongoing conditions of salvation, there can be no intimacy. Instead, there is a fearful looking toward judgement. Salvation is a gate that gives us access to God for eternity. We will be with Him forever and forever learning and becoming intimate with Him.

 

There are many portions of anointing within one level of anointing that one can gain which relates to double and without measure portions of the same anointing. Elisha asked Elijah for a double portion of his anointing. However, what it does is, bring you to a greater involvement on one of these levels not necessarily all levels. Many come to initial salvation but do not go on to be baptized in the Holy Spirit for power and works or bother to understand God through His word. They remain as babies or become legalistic (word only). God is always seeking to get closer to us and expecting us to get closer to Him. However, this can be daunting at best when we are in the flesh because flesh cannot take the presence of God when He manifests. Many disdain manifestations of the Holy Spirit out of lack of understanding, fear and legalism. It is people who think like this that can never grow and find themselves limited because they do not move in the Spirit.     The Bible often speaks of people who were full of the Holy Ghost. This means, they had to abandon themselves completely to the anointing on every level. Their function now was to flow out of that fullness and perform the tasks God had given them. The fullness is the fourth level of anointing. That is why Jesus said; “out of your belly shall flow rivers of living water”. The fullness brings many rivers flowing out of an individual.

 

In Ezekiel 47, we are given a picture of the different levels of anointing that can be released by God from His throne. Ezekiel depicts a picture of water issuing out of the throne room and forming a river that flows out. Ezekiel gets into the river at ankle depth and then proceeds downriver to knee level and then onto waist level before being fully submerged in the river causing him to swim in it. These four water levels depict the four levels of anointing. We are told later on in the chapter what this river does. He is told that this river is for the healing of many and also the salvation of many. 

 

When we are operating at the ankle level of anointing there isn’t much one can achieve. Many have stayed with the knowledge of the word and have sought that, rather than the life of the word. This has led to their death spiritually because the letter kills. Then, there are others who go to the knee level and stay there on their knees instead of getting up and doing something with their prayer life. James says; “what is the use of praying without acting upon it”? Then we have the waist high anointing that speaks of character. Character is good if it is empowered in us to grow. Mere thoughts of kindness and meekness etc. cannot achieve anything. One must act out their character. Finally comes the abandonment anointing. This anointing is where one is fully baptized in the Spirit and goes where the Spirit takes them. Joh 3:8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit. 

 

To be born of the Spirit is not everyone’s choice as explained earlier. To be born of the Spirit means to be born again and abandoned unto God through Jesus. One must become a bondservant to Jesus. Then, the Spirit will rest upon a person because they are sold out for Jesus. Religion is liked by many but few practice it. Church is a good concept but it is a hiding place for many. Many think they are anointed but in actual fact are just working things out through their intellect. They are good at it. Others start in the Spirit and end up in the flesh. It is easy to recognize a Spirit filled person who carries an anointing because it is taking them from glory to glory. The results are spectacular.

 

Unless one seeks these levels of anointing, they cannot attain to them. It is not automatic on becoming a Christian. In fact, you will find many who will disdain anything to do with the Holy Spirit and actually dissuade others from seeking the Holy Spirit and even blaspheme. Mar 3:22  And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils. Luk_11:20  But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you Mar 3:29  But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation: 

 

Others, will take on the baptism of the Holy Ghost and corrupt the power for reasons of personal gain and power. The anointing also has a way of corrupting a person making them think it is them who is doing things. One must be always careful to give the glory to God. The higher you get in the anointing, the greater the risk and need for humility. Many a Minister of God has fallen to the wayside over corruption of the soul and spirit through the mishandling of the anointing. This is fair warning to all who not only seek the anointing but want to go higher. Many have prophesied falsely, mimicked the anointing at meetings when there is none present. These are dangerous people. They usually become false prophets and teachers and gainsayers whose end is destruction and hell. In the last days, discernment, waiting on God and clearly hearing His voice will make you understand His will for your journey in the anointing.

 

The true believer seeks all levels of the anointing for the purpose of fulfilling God’s plan for humanity. They use the power not for self gain but for the gain of others. They do not operate on the basis of money but love. Such anointed people use money gained from their ministries to support the weak and needy. These are the truly anointed ones. They go about seeking to do good like their Master. Acts 10:38  How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him. Let us be found anointed and doing good works out of the anointing. Then, our reward is sure in heaven.

 

Lots of love

Pastor Noble

11/02/18

 

 

 

The Pride of Ministry

The Pride of Ministry

Mat 10:24  The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. Mat 10:25  It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household? 

Who is Lord and who is Master? They are one and the same in Jesus but as an extension as the gifts to the Church that Jesus has given, they are also those who are above you in ministry and life. These people are placed there for a reason, to function in their capacity as ones who themselves are submitted to their Lord and Master. They hold no office of their own power but as it is given to them. Therefore, in conducting their ministry they must be ready to take on the humility of ministry rather than the pride of ministry.

Turning your negatives into positives

Turning your negatives into positives

Mat 14:26  And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear. Mat 14:27  But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid. Mat 14:28  And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. Mat 14:29  And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. 

For a brief moment Peter turned his negative into a positive by trusting Jesus. Later on in life, he was told by Jesus how his life would end (to hang upside down on the cross). He had walked long enough with Jesus by then to realise that his life did not matter as much as the life that Jesus had placed in him through faith. His faith had failed him many times when walking with Jesus on earth but now he was prepared to face life even in the face of death because he had come to know who his God is. The turning of a negative into the positive was by his faith.

To turn a negative into a positive and keep it that way, one must come to a mindset about who Jesus is. This takes time sometimes. Therefore, temporary gains in the faith do not amount to much because the fear returns to torment many who have not sold their souls out to Jesus. Apostle Paul was able to say he no longer lived but Jesus in him. This made him dead to the world and alive to another world in Jesus; an eternal world with eternal blessings and life. This made his life in the flesh very bearable though he went through many trials in life and ultimately paid the martyr’s price. He had come to this conclusion early in his walk with Jesus after coming to Christ through his encounter on the road to Damascus. He too had turned his negative (old life in the law of self righteousness) into a positive through that encounter but subsequently maintained it by faith in the face a many trials and persecutions.

How can we apply this principle to our daily living? Having faith is dormant till the trust factor in Christ is activated through trials and tribulations. When satan comes to attack, when family lets us down, when circumstances in life go beyond our ability to control it even though we are good Christians, we have to turn to the source of our lives who is Jesus. Others may see us go through hell and wonder how we still survive the onslaughts that would have destroyed someone else. The answer is our trust and faith in Jesus. People are often brought to the end of their rope so that, another rope of the three fold kind in Jesus can operate. Ecc 4:9  Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. Ecc 4:10  For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. Ecc 4:11  Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? Ecc 4:12  And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken

The principle of agreement is between two and more. Therefore, when we employ the three fold agreement, we cannot be easily broken. When we add to that agreement in numbers, it will impossible to break us. The increase of trials on our lives should only serve to strengthen us not break us. Many crumble against the multitude of trials because they have not learnt to trust God in their journey of life and hence find the negatives in life tend to overcome them. To rise out of the ashes and become a victor and overcomer where previously one was a victim requires understanding the ways of the Lord, the weapons and forces He has made available to us and who lives in us.

This may take some time but if one continues in the faith and faints not, you will stand by the power of God. "But now we have been given a brief moment of grace, for the LORD our God has allowed a few of us to survive as a remnant. He has given us security in this holy place. Our God has brightened our eyes and granted us some relief from our slavery. Who can say that they have survived by their own effort? When the enemy came as a flood, God raised a standard that destroyed the enemy in our lives. 

When circumstances and people including the devil broke us, Jesus saved us at the end and did not condemn us to break us further. 

Mat_12:20  A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he send forth judgment unto victory. As a minister I have seen many bruised reeds and smoking flax in my time. Having been one myself on many occasions, I have learned to have compassion on others but to a limit. I realise that anything more that or any longer than that the self pity goes on, it spells disaster. So, I have learned to teach and activated trust and faith in the word of God for myself and others that each one of us may stand and withstand by the power of God’s word who is Jesus. It is only when we build our faith in the word can we truly know how to walk as overcomers. 

The times we live in demand that we be overcomers and be able to impart this faith to others who are sinking because they have been weakened in their faith or facing unusual situations in life that they themselves have no understanding off.   Turning someone else’s darkness into light requires ourselves to be walking in the light before we minister, or else, we can become victims ourselves. Gal_6:1  Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. 

Many have attempted stronger ministry without the right faith and lifestyle in place in their own lives only to be overcome by the devil. Act 19:13  Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth. Act 19:14  And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so. Act 19:15  And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye? Act 19:16  And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. 

Since the negatives in the world are increasing as God prophesied in Isaiah, He has also given us a commission to arise and shine as lights who have been given a commission to establish His kingdom on earth without fear of loss of anything in our lives. The negatives in a person’s life and life itself is real. Let us first understand that and then we can minister with real power of the truth as we receive this truth into our lives and ministry. Jesus is the answer to all negativity. Accepting His incredible work of death and resurrection gives us real insight into what is Godly and true and that which works in our natural environment though it is invisible and in many people’s minds only a theory. That is why Apostle Paul insisted on preaching the gospel with the demonstration of power, so that, people may see the power of God and trust in that. which did so. Act 19:15  And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye? Act 19:16  And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. Act 19:17  And this was known to all the Jews and Greeks also dwelling at Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified. Act 19:18  And many that believed came, and confessed, and shewed their deeds. Act 19:19  Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver. 

Apostle Paul was able to change the lives of many people who had been in bondage to the devil and set them free for life. That is the true turning of the heart of a person from the negative to the positive; it must be for life. Many preach a ticklish gospel that tickles the ear and speaks of flattery and encouragement into a person’s life when they are going through their darkest moment. Otherwise they say; just wait on the Lord. People don’t need nice words, they need answers and they need them now, not in eternity. Eternity is already set and we must make that decision now on behalf of many.

Many Christians have listened to evil or bad preaching and been told to depend on others rather than on Christ and his word through the Spirit. They have not been brought onto the platform of Christ by teaching, rebukes and chastening because the preachers and counsellors do not want to offend. Let me tell you, the blood of those people who have not been told the truth will be upon those preachers and counsellors. We are required to say the truth and practise it all the time. No compromise or leaning to our own understanding.

The final hour is upon us and many lives will be lost because the darkest hour of human existence is upon us and increasing. Untold numbers of lives are being affected. We need to help people peel back the darkness to see the light as in the picture at the start of this teaching. 

My prayer to God is: God, please open our eyes that we may see your glory and receive what is of heaven in a dark and evil generation. Cause the Church to arise and take its position and stop being sissies. Strengthen us and make us who you called us to be; which is, true ministers of God in power and love. Thank you and Amen.

Lots of love

Pastor Noble

28/01/18

 

 

 

 Bondage

 Bondage

Gal_5:1  Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. 

The word bondage basically means enslavement. The application of spiritual bondage is on several levels. It can range from physical and spiritual enslavement by the devil like the slaves in America who were brought from Africa or enslavement to a habit or thought pattern and even enslavement to a person who controls you. 2Pe_2:19  While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage

 

The gospel of Jesus always and only speaks of liberty; never of bondage. We are not even slaves to Christ but brothers and friends even though He is Lord over us all. Joh 15:14  Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Joh 15:15  Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. Jesus came to set us free from all manners of enslavement but we often seek the world to enslave ourselves with man or with something that the devil puts in our path, especially fear. Furthermore, man in his greed for power seeks to enslave others and bring them into subjugation. The reason for many of today’s wars is for that particular reason. 

 

On the level of spiritual bondage, it is the ear mark of the rule of satan. We were all once under the total control of satan and we were in bondage to his whims and fancies in this world. Eph 2:2  Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Eph 2:3  Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. 

 

God who is rich in mercy came by and set us free and showed us the true state of our being before releasing us from the grip of satan. This infuriated satan so much that he devised ways that he could bring mankind; especially Christians, into a deeper bondage than ever before. 2Co 2:11  Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices. Eph_6:11  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 

 

The warnings that come to us about bondage are really about the devices of the devil to bring us into captivity once again to the things we once escaped from. 2Pe 2:18  For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. 2Pe 2:19  While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. 2Pe 2:20  For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. 2Pe 2:21  For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. 2Pe 2:22  But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire. The returning to the past sins is true bondage.

 

Jesus on the other hand seeks to bring us into a glorious relationship with Himself and releases us into liberty that brings blessings and new things that are Godly. To this end He has given us the Spirit of liberty. 2Co 3:15  But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. 2Co 3:16  Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away. 2Co 3:17  Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. The veil is spiritual bondage on a legalistic level that God totally destroyed but till today many Jews in Israel are behind that veil.

 

We must also have knowledge of a kind of bondage that comes about through enslavement of man. It sometimes happens because there is a destiny plan in God that must be fulfilled. Joseph was in bondage for the purposes of the destiny of Israel and himself. Psa 105:17  He sent a man before them, even Joseph, who was sold for a servant: Psa 105:18  Whose feet they hurt with fetters: he was laid in iron: 

 

He became a forerunner for Israel into Egypt to form a nation in bondage (slavery). What worked against him by the evil intent of his brothers, God turned for good. Yet, somehow, I know that God allows these things to happen. Not all bondage is by the devil for destruction because like in the case of Joseph, God uses it. 

 

People place themselves in bondage too. They come to a place in their lives when they can no longer forgive and place themselves in a prison, so to speak. The Bible says that Jesus came to set the captives free and open the prison doors. Yet, no one can walk out of bondage unless they choose the freedom Jesus offers. Otherwise, they go from one bondage to another. This is critical to understand as many today offer freedom from bondage in sin and debt (which is a form of bondage) but cannot actually deliver such a person because they choose to remain where they are (in bondage). They prefer the familiar surroundings of a prison cell that they have become used to over many years. Un-forgiveness is like that and so is bondage of any kind, as it leads a person into other forms of bondage that will ultimately kill them. When Joseph had an opportunity to exact revenge on his brothers, he chose the path of forgiveness rather than revenge. He had lost many years of his life and the comfort and love of his father and home because of the evil intent of his brothers. Yet, God had showed him what would happen but only showed him the end and not the journey.

 

You may be suffering right now to walk a righteous path and not give in to worldly pleasures that lead to bondage but know this; afterwards it will bring the peaceable fruit of righteousness. Heb_12:11  Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. 1Pe_5:10  But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. These two verses are quite intriguing. There are many Christian preachers who preach that once you come to Christ life is a bed of roses. They do this to gain the confidence of people and not frighten them about suffering. The ways of the Lord are past finding out and I am always wary of preachers who offer golden handshakes without suffering.  To truly understand suffering, when one is bound in the Spirit, there is no escaping suffering. That is part and parcel of being bound in the Spirit. 

We are living in a world that loves the fact that they can indulge themselves in anything based on worldly freedom because they believe no one has a right to tell them anything. This has led countless numbers into bondage and fear. Drugs, alcohol, sex and violence are all part of what is ruling people these days and people are in bondage to these things. We know the perpetrator of these things to be the devil. His whole plan is bondage for the purpose of killing. He will eventually kill the person who is in bondage. When Jesus came to the Gadarene, he was in chains and out of his mind cutting himself. Jesus knew this man had no chance and that he would eventually be killed. Jesus set him free and the Bible records he was sitting in his right mind. This is freedom from bondage; coming into a right mind and free of oppression.

 

To truly break bondages, one must accept what the word of God says. There is no other way. Even casting out demons can have its repercussions because a person does not truly understand their freedom once delivered. It must be the word that sets a person free so that no demon can come back and occupy its old premises. Joh 8:36  If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. The Son is the word of God. Without Him in your corner, you have no chance of getting free and staying free.

 

The constant harassing of the devil is called attrition. Attrition is defined as “the process of reducing something's strength or effectiveness through sustained attack or pressure”. When we are reduced by constant pressure, we will eventually succumb to that pressure and let it rule over us. I suffered from nerves but did not know because I was smoking marijuana. When Jesus saved me, the nerves started again. Through the word, I overcame nerves. Attrition can be in any form of the flesh or mind. Once bound by that evil force, our weaknesses grow till bondage is a matter of being in chains till someone sets us free. Luk_8:29  (For he had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For oftentimes it had caught him: and he was kept bound with chains and in fetters; and he brake the bands, and was driven of the devil into the wilderness.) 

 

Seek to find the freedom in Christ on the level that never once are you subject to bondage or fear of bondage. 

Lots of love

Pastor Noble

21/01/18

 

 

Spiritual Wrestling

Spiritual Wrestling

Gen 32:24  And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day. 

Eph 6:12  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 

There are two forms of wrestling mentioned in the Bible. One is with God and the other is with the devil and his forces. The form of wrestling undertaken in both is different from each other as chalk is to cheese. The wrestling with God is a fight one can never win; whereas, wrestling with the devil is certainly a fight one could win. 

 Spirit of God

 Spirit of God

When God opened the heavens and looked down on man, He saw the pitiable state of man. He decided then, He would give man His Spirit on a permanent basis. However, it was to be a process by which man was to attain to this lofty position of becoming a container of the Spirit of God. Added to this, man was due for a fullness of his inheritance in heaven which would come after his natural death. In order for man to attain either two, the deposit of his inheritance and the fullness of his inheritance, he had to die in the flesh. No flesh can exist in the Spirit because never the twain shall mix. This is a mystery because Spirit dwells in flesh but flesh cannot dwell in Spirit.

 Political or Spiritual correctness

 Political or Spiritual correctness

The aim of any speech is freedom. Freedom from constrained thoughts suppressed inside a heart till the mouth gives it release through the tongue. Why is the cooperation of organs important? What one believes in his heart and confesses with his mouth brings him salvation. Salvation from death and bondage that holds a human being captive till free speech of what one believes in their heart is released. This is an amazing concept. Once released, these words have the effect of breaking the stronghold of captivity and setting a person free. It takes the expression of speech to do this. If you only think something and do not express it, it is bound in captivity like a mind without a way out of a coma patient. 

 

So, freedom of speech is an essential right of a human being but often enough it is suppressed by law. The law of the land and the law of religiosity depend on political correctness which is bondage. Both of these practices make out that they are righteous and good for man but in actual fact they keep a person bound to a regime of thinking and an amputation of expression. When this happens, the poison of suppressed speech turns to emotional misbehaviour and depression. Have you come across a person who can never have a say? You will find this person to be quite a dangerous person or a depressed one. Suppressed speech actually is a poison to the soul and then to the body. Bitterness and revenge have their roots in the lack of freedom of speech or speech that another organ, the ear, has received which goes in to the heart of the listener and poisons it. Too many have suffered the lack of unrestrained speech that has led to disaster of a serious kind. People have taken to actions because speech has broken down. A common example is the failure of dialogue to resolve conflicts. Speech is finally made silent by the sound of gunfire and exploding bombs. In personal life, when speech has stopped, silence breaks out, punching begins and every other form of evil is let loose. 

 

There is a form of speech that is so restrained that it equates to the captivity of people as well. It is called “political correctness”. When this form of speech restraint is employed, people become so careful about what they have to say that it makes no sense in the end as to what they are saying. I am amazed at the people who actually coin this political correctness because they consider themselves intelligent. Then there is the spiritual correctness that rivals political correctness. This form of restraint on speech is full of hypocrisy and meaningless jabber. They go round in circles to say what they mean but the listener never gets to understand what is being said or the meaning and intent of what is being said.

 

Then there are all sorts of other speech which are expressed as flattery, foul language and rude speech to name a few. Boasting and half truths and outright lies are just a few more examples of bondage through speech.

 

The Bible actually has a lot to say about speaking and words. In fact, without speaking and words, the world would not have been made by God who spoke it into being. His words actually brought freedom to light to express itself in darkness. There was meaning suddenly to darkness and what seemed barren and desolate received life. Speech is made up of words and so they need to be put together properly so as to make sense, bring life and the effect of freedom. The fact that a person has words within them does not mean they have to express them without restraint. They need to measure their words correctly as a person is judged on what they say. Mat_12:36  But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. 

 

When a person speaks, they need to be wise about what they are saying as the tongue has power over life and death. Many have expressed wrong statements and have ended up suffering the consequences of such statements. For example; they have said things like; ‘I wish I was dead’ or they have spoken over someone words of condemnation. These expressions have brought both physical and emotional death to the listener. Words do not go into thin air and vanish. They seek a residence in someone. If no one is around, they will find a harbour in the person who spoke it. People have spoken to plants and have seen them do well when they have spoken well to the plants.

 

Since words do originate in the heart, the work internally in a person even when they are not expressed. So, it is important to have conversations with oneself that are meaningful and praiseworthy. If you express a negativity in the words that you speak to yourself, they will have a negative effect. Words can be sent long distances and so one must be careful what they hear as well. So, in this sense, correct speech is important. Most people express themselves well except when there have been speech suppression in their lives through something that went bad or when they have had no opportunity to express themselves. That is why lonely people will talk a lot when they meet someone.

 

It is a journey that one undertakes when they seek God for a controlled tongue and mouth. The following verse is a blessing when you know and receive what it says. Luk 21:15  For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist. It is a comforting thought that wisdom can be expressed and not just thought. Once wisdom is expressed, it settles things to the extent that there is no gainsaying. It can divide correctly the truth and bring all concerned to the table of reconciliation, healing and restoration. It always shows the way, resolves problems and even builds and establishes what is needed. I am always fascinated by the power of wisdom over many other faculties even of God. Wisdom is highly regarded in the Bible and one would be wise to read about it in Proverbs. The man who wrote it was the wisest man in the world; King Solomon.

 

The true author of wisdom however is God. God, who made the worlds through wisdom and then established it for centuries through wisdom. It says in the Bible that God’s wisdom is past finding out. Rom_11:33  O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! We must seek out true speech that changes lives and situations.

 

Preaching has been given for this purpose of bringing people to God in a way that makes sense of who God is and what He expects. Teaching solidifies and established correctness in the ways of God. All of the above disciplines have their origins in speech and words. It is words that are going to make a person or break a person. They have the power to heal and deliver a person or wound and destroy a person. When words are turned to speech, we must be careful how we speak. The day of speech is a day of incredible power. When the baby first cries it does not know how to articulate its emotions. In time words begin to formulate but not clearly as the baby grows. Even though it is able to understand speech, it cannot express speech. Eventually, through learning and interaction with others who speak to it, the child is formed by words in the inner man just as food shapes the body and makes it grow.

 

It is my hope that I will speak less and hear more. Then, when I do come to speak, I would only have said what is needed to be said and still have the peace of knowing I have been unrestrained in my speech. The human capacity to store information is great. However, I have found many people to be like sieves. They are the gossipers who can hold no words and express themselves at every turn with meaningless and harmful blabber. Their sound is like a canker (sores inside the mouth). It only causes grief and destruction if left unattended. Whereas, a person who stores harmonious and good words, expresses themselves in a manner that brings joy and life to the hearer. Col_4:6  Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man. 

Lots of love

Pastor Noble

17/12/17

 

 

 

 Life is not over yet

 Life is not over yet

Mat 12:18  Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles. Mat 12:19  He shall not strive, nor cry; neither shall any man hear his voice in the streets. Mat 12:20  A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he send forth judgment unto victory. 

Imagine a never ending life on earth that in spite of all its sorrow and difficulty, people still want to live in it forever as it is. They cling to this life as though the future of their lives depend on it. It is because they do not know what comes after death in most cases. Few prepare for it and the majority just go about their lives, greedily living this earthly life, taking what they can get. The majority of people just don’t know how to respond to this earthly life. Even those who have become Christians find it hard to adjust to an earthly life while trying to live a Godly life at the same time. It seems that there is no settling on this matter of life and death for many of them. 

I am convinced that life was meant to be, for those of us who have been given life on this earth. It is not without purpose and reason even though babies who are born have no idea of what they are being born into. The cries of a baby and the tears of an adult bear no difference because of the lack of understanding of what life is all about till Jesus comes into the picture. Inventing life as we go along is a favourite way of living life for many and it has become the fashion to live life the way we see fit. Anything to do with God would be an abomination to most who consider themselves to be free thinkers. 

Life can be made up by small groups of people or a majority or even by an individual to mean exactly what they want it to be, irrespective of what the truth is. A person’s reality can be self made based on a perceived reality that emanates from the senses and its needs. Society is based on a loose set of rules that changes from country to country and even segments of society. The rush to satisfy everyone’s needs is the way governments run their business but with hidden agendas of achieving their own ends. All this makes for a very difficult life on earth for many who do not know that this life on earth is the beginning of a greater and better life with God in a place called heaven. The alternative is not pleasant to say the least. It is clear for those who are Christians that hell is real and a place that no one should go to because once in, there is no way out.

So, as long as there is life in a person on this earth, there is hope for a person to come into eternal life through the acknowledging of Jesus as Lord and Saviour and by living a Godly life after that. If the pursuit is anything else in life, then one must consider the dangers of hell. If they choose to ignore it, then only their demise will reveal it to them. There are others who have died to this life (given up) through many sorrows. Their lives are at best a misery with nothing to look forward to. For them life is over. This attitude ranges from the very old and infirmed to the ones who are lost in the despair of depression and tragedy in life that has come unexpectedly to them. The loss of life is so great to them that they just stop living life. This too is a great tragedy. The good news is, “life is not over yet” and so Jesus said; He will not break a bruised reed or quench a smoking flax.

Many who have come to that final phase in their lives, when nothing looks good and it is all dark and dreary around them with no hope, have found God at this stage. Nothing could have helped them except that touch from Jesus. We need that now more than ever.  Society is imploding over drugs, alcohol, violence and sexual misconduct that defies the imagination. Our God is watching all this and yet speaking into the situation of each one’s life but many are not listening. Hope is a premium product just now.

When a large portion of the Church has turned its back on true faith and have settled for a false faith based on loose teachings will suffer the consequences of such a faith. Who is to determine this? I believe God determines it  by beginning judgement in the house of God first. 1Pe 4:17  For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? 1Pe 4:18  And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? No individual who is saved or unsaved escapes the searing of heat of God’s judgment. This judgement is to the one who is saved and walking righteously an approval of his state of being through trials and tribulations. To the other, conviction and destruction when there is no repentance. Do not be fooled. Jud 1:5  I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. Jud 1:6  And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

As I said, no one escapes this judgment, not flesh or spirit. That is why we need to accept the mercy and grace of God and repent of our deeds. If we have come to the end of our tether, it maybe, it is because of our sin state that we have not yet recognised. If it is not our sin state, it maybe, we our being tested by God to see if we will love Him and obey Him in the most difficult of situations. This is hard to understand at best of times, yet very important to do so. The ways of the Lord are beyond understanding without trust. Trust is the key to our relationship as much as faith is. Faith may help us go along with many of His instructions and waiting on Him but trust will help us to accept the ways of God. Jesus had to trust His God when He was hanging on the cross. Who can understand the cross? It is beyond man’s wisdom but very much within God’s ways and wisdom.

When Jesus came to the earth, He said and did many things that were beyond understanding even by the religious zealots of the time. Even scriptures could not bring to light for them the knowledge and wisdom of God. They had to believe and trust Him for what He said and did. This proved extremely difficult because it was challenging their knowledge of the scriptures and of God. They had come to the very end of their tether (tolerance) and went the other way, which was to crucify the Son of God. This too was in God’s plan. Again, very difficult to understand especially when He wanted to portray His love to mankind. This is the difficult part that even today is difficult to understand based on those who are being lost everyday or being demonised or being left unhealed only to die in spite of many prayers.

To truly trust God and His word, we must submit to His sovereign rule and decision making processes. Many instances explaining this concept of bringing a person or even a nation to its last bit of strength has been given in the Bible for our edification. Shadrach, Mesach and Abed-Nego, along with Daniel in the lion’s den, Israel at the Red Sea with nowhere to go, the death of Lazarus, the journeys of Apostle Paul that ended in shipwreck and the list goes on. It isn’t over till God says it is over. Take heart, God is in the house.

No one it seems has escaped this way of God to bring a person to their knees before saving them. Those who did not bend their knees died miserably like Pharaoh and the Jews in the wilderness. Nations that opposed God and many people who mistook and partook of communion or lied to the Holy Ghost died in similar fashion.

I squirm at the idea that we worship a God who is so without anger or judgement that we dare to tell people that He loves them without condition. I see nowhere in the Bible that He loves unconditionally. If He did, why is there a hell for those who disobey and rebel against God? Surely we are not that foolish to believe that a holy God will tolerate sinners without judgement. Let us not just preach one side of the gospel but let us preach the whole gospel. Truth hurts but it is the truth. Even we as human beings do not tolerate fools gladly, so why do we expect God to? Surely, if we are made in His image, we have His mind as well and that means we should expect to behave in a manner that He did.

By sending Jesus to reveal His motivation of love, He separates for us the side of Him that is wrath and covers us under the blood of Jesus so that He can show us His love though it is with the condition of repentance. John the Baptist came to prepare the way of repentance for Jesus and when he died, Jesus took up the message of repentance. Being at death’s door or even passing from life to death does not stop God from wanting to save us. In His sovereign will God chooses what He does and no one can question Him. Rom 9:15  For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. Rom 9:16  So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy. Rom 9:17  For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth. Rom 9:18  Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth. Rom 9:20  Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? Rom 9:21  Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? Rom 9:22  What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: Rom 9:23  And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory

Lots of love

Pastor Noble

10/12/17