Our main scripture is taken from John 2:1-10. Please let us take few minutes to go through these verses.
John 2:1 On the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there:
John 2:2 and both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to the marriage.
John 2:3 and when they wanted wine (ran out of wine), the mother of Jesus said to him, they have no wine.
John 2:4 Jesus said to her, Woman, what does your concern have to do with me? My hour has not yet come.
John 2:5 His mother said unto the servants, whatever he says to you, do it.
John 2:6 and there were set there six water pots of stone, after the manner of the purifying of the Jews, containing two or three firkins apiece.
John 2:7 Jesus said to them, Fill the water pots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.
John 2:8 and he said to them, Draw out now, and take it to the governor of the feast. And they took it.
John 2:9 when the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants who drew the water knew 😉 the governor of the feast called the bridegroom,
John 2:10 And said to him, Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse or inferior: but you have kept the good wine until now.
John 2:11 This beginning of miracles Jesus did in Cana of Galilee. And it revealed His glory. And His disciples believed on Him.
Many of us, including myself, plan our lives outside God’s counsel; we invite everybody but Jesus and His disciples. Be it a wedding, a career, a business or anything else; one can apply this scripture in his particular case and extract the principles behind the text. Just like in the days of John the apostle when he narrated this event, he knew the mindset of the people. We invite people into our life, because we believe that they can help us and make everything go as planned. We take counsel form them, and they make us laugh, thus we think we really do not need Jesus right now. For the master or the governor of the feast, was the person who had the upper seat at the wedding, he was the one making everybody laugh, he was making sure that the party was going on well, and everybody was merry. As long as everything was going on as planned, Jesus and his disciples were shelved; this leads us to our first point.
1 Invite Jesus and his disciples in whatever you do
As seen in John2:2 though they had everything planned: the food, the wine, the musicians, the dancers etc; they also invited Jesus and His disciples. One may ask himself these legitimate questions:
Why I should invite Jesus?
I have it all together, I am it, I made it, I am in control of everything, I am successful in my career, in my business; so why, do I need to invite Jesus? You see, there is a way that seems right to a person, but the end of it are the ways of death (Proverbs 14:12). Only Jesus, because He is God, knows the end from the beginning; He knows how things will turn out, He knows when that economical downturn will start happening, He knows when the market will not be good, when it will be time to sell your shares or when to buy some more. Though we may have all the qualifications and all the human wisdom; the Lord is constantly reminding us to trust in Him with all our heart, and not to lean on our own understanding. But in all our ways we should acknowledge Him and he shall direct our paths, make them smooth if they ever were crooked, and make them straight if they were zigzagged (Proverbs 3:5-6). These are just few reasons why we should invite Jesus into our predicaments.
Why, should I invite His disciples?
By disciples we mean ministers of His, the term minister only means servant, those servants of Jesus might not necessarily wear clerical collars, or be officially ordained in an established church, but they are people who are living epistles of Christ, being read by all men(2 Corinthians 3:2-3). Their fruits will tell you that they have been with Jesus (Matthew 7:20), and the word of their master Jesus is so rich in them, because they spent time in His word (John 8:31). If you are being discipled, go first of all to your discipler or disciplers. They will be able to provide one a Godly counsel to prevent one from falling, and there is actually safety in the multitude of those counsellors (Proverbs 11:14). If one decides to ignore the Godly counsel, his purposes might be disappointed; but by receiving it he might actually establish them (Proverbs 15:22).
These disciples or servants or ministers of Jesus, whatever one wants to call them, are not to speak the dictates or imaginations of their heart, but the counsel of the Lord, it is not what they think, but what the word of the Lord says. And the one who seeks counsel from them, must be like the Christians of Berea in Acts 17, who went back to search the scriptures to see whether what Paul the Apostle told them was lining up with the word of God. He said: Therefore having obtained help from God, I stand until this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying no other things than those which the prophets [Joshua to Malachi] and Moses [Genesis to Deuteronomy] said was going to happen (Acts 26:22). And Luke, when he wrote the account in the book of Acts, refers to those Christians of Berea, as more noble or fair-minded than those of Thessalonica. Paul was not offended, neither did he think that the Christians of Berea were belittling his authority and office of apostle, but he commended them.
What is the advantage of inviting the disciples?
Many Christian would say, I have Jesus, therefore I do not need His disciples; the Spirit of the Lord is in me hence I know all things. It is a dangerous path to take and many have suffered shipwreck because of that, the same Jesus who said that He will be now in you through His Spirit and His Spirit will teach us all things. Is the same who, when He ascended, gave the fivefold ministry to the church (Ephesians 4:11-12) in order to perfect the believers and to build them up. One may have many plans or devices in his heart; nevertheless it is the counsel of the Lord, that will stand (Proverbs19:21).
The ministers, by reason of spending time with Jesus, in His word, and in prayer, waiting upon Him (Acts 6:4); will be able to give one, the counsel of the Lord. For sometimes the counsel of the Lord is like deep water; but the minister, because he has the understanding of the ways and the acts of God, will be able to draw it out (Proverbs 20:5). For out of the heart of the minister of Jesus, flow rivers of living water to quench the thirst of your soul (John7:38). The search of one’s soul for the Lord and His counsel can be likened to the deer panting or longing for water brooks (Psalm 42:1). So why not take a short cut and come to the ministers who have the rivers of living water flowing out of their hearts. They will help you find the water brooks you have been searching for.
We talked about inviting Jesus and His disciples into whatever we do, to give us the Godly counsel whenever needed. But why do I surround myself with Jesus and the counsel of His disciples as a safety net? This leads us to our second point.
2 Counsel of Jesus and His disciples before you get married or re-married
The Choice of a spouse.
God is our Father and He only has our best interest at heart; whatever He advises us is in our best interest. The only criterion that is very dear to the heart of God, is that your spouse must be a genuinely born again Christian. Do not marvel that I said to you, You must be born again (John 3:7). As a born again Christian, your spouse to be must be genuinely born again! Paul says: Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers; for what fellowship does righteousness have with lawlessness? And what partnership does light have with darkness? And what agreement does Christ have with Belial? Or what part does a believer have with an unbeliever? And what agreement does a temple of God have with idols? For you are the temple of the living God, as God has said, “I will dwell in them and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people (2Corinthians 6:14-16).”
Your future spouse must be able to say to you: Do not beg me to leave you, to return from following after you. For where you go, I will go. Where you stay, I will stay. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God (Ruth 1:16). There are only two people groups on earth: the people of God or born again Christians, and the people of the devil. There is no such a thing as a neutral group; atheism is the religion of the devil, for a fool is the one who says there is no God (Psalm 14:1). You are the light of the world through Christ Jesus, since you have accepted Jesus as your Lord and Saviour (Matthew 5:14-16, John 9:5); but they are in darkness and we cannot have fellowship with darkness! Marriage is the highest and longest kind of fellowship two people can have on earth; for it is until death do you part!
The ideal is that your future spouse be born again before you meet him. I am talking to born again Christians who are not married yet, or who want to remarry. And I say again, the ideal is that your future spouse be born again before you meet and start dating him or her. I am not saying that he or she must necessarily be born into a Christian family; I am saying that he or she must be born again before you meet him or start dating him. Let us look at the story of Ruth and Boaz as found in the book of Ruth. Ruth did not decide to follow the God of Israel because she had planned to marry Boaz. Long before she met Boaz and had any idea of remarriage; she had already made that quality decision of receiving the God of Israel into her life. She said to Naomi: your people shall be my people and your God my God (Ruth 1:16). Ruth chose willingly to become part of the people of God, for us it means to become born again Christians, and to forsake her gods of Moab, to only worship the God of Israel.
When Ruth made that quality decision to become part of the people of God, for us born again, and to forsake her idols of Moab, to only serve the God of Israel, she did not do that with a hidden agenda, that one day she might marry one of the people of God. In fact there was no hope for her to even remarry, if she followed Naomi. Naomi explained it to Ruth and Orpah. Let us see what the bible says about that account.
Ruth 1:8 And Naomi said unto her two daughters in law, Go, return each to her mother’s house: the LORD deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead, and with me.
Ruth 1:9 The LORD grant you that ye may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband. Then she kissed them; and they lifted up their voice, and wept.
Ruth 1:10 And they said unto her, Surely we will return with you unto your people.
Ruth 1:11 And Naomi said, Turn again, my daughters: why will you go with me? are there yet any more sons in my womb, that they may be your husbands?
Ruth 1:12 Turn again, my daughters, go your way; for I am too old to have a husband. If I should say, I have hope, if I should have a husband also to night, and should also bear sons;
Ruth 1:13 Would you wait for them till they were grown? would you stay for them from having husbands? no, my daughters; for it grieves me much for your sakes that the hand of the LORD is gone out against me.
Ruth 1:14 And they lifted up their voice, and wept again: and Orpah kissed her mother in law; but Ruth clave unto her.
Ruth 1:15 And she said, Behold, thy sister in law is gone back unto her people, and unto her gods: return thou after your sister in law.
Ruth 1:16 And Ruth said, entreat me not to leave you, or to return from following after you: for whither you go, I will go; and where you lodge, I will lodge: your people shall be my people, and your God my God:
Ruth 1:17 Where you die, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part you and me.
Ruth 1:18 When she saw that she was steadfastly minded or determined to go with her, then she left speaking unto her.
Ruth 1:19 So they two went until they came to Bethlehem. And it came to pass, when they were come to Bethlehem, that all the city was moved about them, and they said, Is this Naomi?
So it is clear that Ruth had settled in her mind the matter of her conversion. Orpah returned to her heathen people of Moab and their gods and could remarry. On the other hand Ruth forsook her heathen gods of Moab, to be numbered among the people of God and worship only the God of Israel. She knew that her decision would cost her dearly, as Naomi clearly explained it to her. She forfeited her chances to remarry by following Naomi. She was determined to be part of the people of God and worship only the God of Israel. She was steadfastly minded in her faith in the God of Israel. Ruth’s faith in God and conversion was genuine, nobody could question it.
When they arrived in Bethlehem and Ruth found a gleaning job in the field of Boaz, she never thought about marrying Boaz. It was even Naomi who suggested that idea to her (Ruth 3). Boaz also heard of the genuineness of the faith and conversion of Ruth, even before he started dating her and planning their marriage. As it is written: Boaz answered and said to Ruth, “it has been fully reported to me, all that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband, and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth and have come to a people whom you did not know before” (Ruth 2:11). There was no doubt about the faith and conversion of Ruth. Boaz did not have to ask himself: did she convert to our faith because she just wants to marry me? No, she was converted before even meeting him. Her faith was genuine and unquestionable.
This is the kind of marriage God has for you! It is the ideal of God. Your spouse will be genuinely born again, steadfast in his or her faith before even meeting and dating you. You do not need to go get an unbeliever and nag him or her to be born again so that you can get married. You are wasting your time; and even if she or he converts to Christianity; you will always have questions in your mind whether he or she is steadfastly minded about his faith, or did he or she just say, I received Jesus, to get married to you. You will have to force that spouse to serve the Lord, to read his or her bible, to pray and to act on the word of God. Why not avoid yourself such hardship in marriage and decide to do things God’s way? You will always be questioning the eternal destiny of your spouse, whether he is going to hell or to heaven; because you cannot see the genuineness of his or her faith. Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers, you are wasting your time with them and your precious time trying to convert them (2Corinthians 6:14). God has someone better for you that is genuinely born again and worshiping the God of Israel in spirit and in truth with a steadfast mind; for such is the ideal of God (John 4:23).
One person might say: in my church there are not enough men, the men in my church are not my type of men. So I will go and find an unbeliever, start dating him and I hope I will convert him. The same things for men in church, they say: the sisters in church are not my type of women; I will go and find myself an unbeliever and date her and convert her. It is a dangerous thing to do, again Paul says do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers in 2Corinthians 6:14. Most of the time, it is the unbeliever who ends up causing you to backslide or to lower your standard of the gospel. God does not force you to marry one of your church members; there are many churches in your city, in your country and around the world; and there are many born again Christians of all kind of trades, all kinds of educational backgrounds, all kinds of nationalities, all kinds of races, and all kinds of mixed races. Read Genesis 24 and pray according to that chapter and God will also give you a spouse.
Arranged marriage according to the Oxford dictionary is a marriage planned and agreed by the families or guardians of the couple concerned. Unfortunately in the 21st century, arranged marriage is often perceived as forced marriage. That the woman has nothing to say about it, all the decision were made for her. Nobody, man or woman should be forced to marry someone. When we get born again, we are married to Christ Jesus. Nobody forced us to become born again, it was a willing decision each one of us made. They introduced us to the Man, named Christ Jesus, and we willingly decided to be married to Him, even born again. Nobody put a gun to our head telling us: if you do not convert to Christianity, we will kill you! God gave us the right example of marriage in the marriage of the Lamb. So should it be for our earthly marriages. It must be a willing decision, even though we were introduced to our future spouse.
When we read Genesis 24, Abraham said to his servant to go, take a wife for Isaac in his country and in his family. The woman in question of the country and family of Abraham, was not under any obligation to accept that marriage proposal. Abraham’s servant said to him: perhaps the woman will not be willing to follow me to this land. Must I take your son back to the land from which you came? But Abraham said to him: beware that you do not take my son back there (Genesis 24:4-6). You do not have to drag the woman against her will to follow you here either. If the woman is not willing to follow you, then you will be released from this oath; only do not take my son back there (Genesis 24:8).
What we are talking about here, is an introduced marriage, not an arranged marriage. The servant of Abraham prayed and God answered his prayer. Rebecca was not forced to follow Abraham’s servant to go and marry Isaac. She willingly chose to follow him. The account states: the servant of Abraham said to the family of Rebekah, Do not hinder me, since Jehovah has prospered my way. Send me away, that I may go away to my master. And they said, We will call the young woman and inquire at her mouth. And they called Rebekah, and said to her, Will you go with this man? And she said, I will go. And they sent Rebekah their sister away, and her nurse, and Abraham’s servant, and his men. And they blessed Rebekah, and said to her, Our sister, be the mother of thousands of millions, and let your seed possess the gate of those who hate them (Genesis 24:56-60).
I was invited to come and settle some marital issues in Huddersfield, England. When I arrived in the community in Huddersfield, almost the whole small estate was owned by that same family. Grandparents were living there with their children, grandchildren and now great grandchildren. In that particular culture in Asia, they have introduced marriages, and also, to keep the inheritance in the family, cousins marry each other. They are all born again Christians and zealous for the Lord Jesus Christ. Some of the daughters and granddaughters who were born in the United Kingdom and grew up in the United Kingdom; were the ones who asked their parents to introduce them to some of their cousins in Asia for marriage. At least three of the daughters did that.
Some of the sons also had an introduced marriage with a daughter of their parents’ friends or with a cousin. I was very curious, especially for the daughters, who asked their parents to introduce them to a relative for marriage, with a first cousin in the United Kingdom or in Asia. I thought maybe they were forced to do so by their parents and grandparents, thus it would be an arranged marriage, not an introduced marriage like in Genesis 24. So I asked the parents to go into the other room, so that I could talk to the daughter face to face. Always remember, women should never be forced into a marriage. When you read Genesis 24, Rebecca’s parents asked her if she wanted to follow Abraham’s servant to go and marry Isaac. They did not take that decision for her or force her to do so. And even Abraham said to the servant that if the woman did not want to follow him, he should leave her alone.
When I talked with one of the daughters, she told me she is the one who suggested the introduced marriage to her parents. So when all the connections were made, and she talked for some time with her cousin and agreed with him; she flew to Asia and married her cousin, the son of her father’s brother. As long as our cultures are not violating the written word of God; we can still follow them if we wish to. Many times when the gospel has been preached people have also brought their culture with that gospel. The western cultures are not the culture of the word of God, the African cultures are not the culture of the word of God, the Asian
When we preach the word of God we must be very careful not to impose our culture on people. Every culture must be screened through the finished work of the cross of Jesus. And if there are things in that culture that are sinful we address them; but if they are not sinful we leave them. We are not to replace people’s cultures with our culture; but present the truth of the gospel of Jesus plainly to people. In the days of Abraham, who was a Syrian according to Deuteronomy 26:5, his culture allowed a person to marry a close relative. Abraham married Sarah his sister, the daughter of his father by another woman (Genesis 20:12). Their Syrian culture of that time also did not allow the younger daughter to be married before the elder daughter. Abraham had left that culture long ago and now his grandson Jacob was going back to that Syrian culture to marry one of his great cousins. Abraham was no longer alive, and Isaac has not grown into that culture for Rebecca, his cousin whom he married came to live with him in the land of Canaan.
Laban banked on the ignorance of Jacob to trick him. He did the wedding ceremony for Rachel; but in the morning he had a rude awakening when he discovered that he had slept with Leah instead of Rachel (Genesis 29). They explained the culture to Jacob: it must not be done so in our country, to give the younger Rachel before the firstborn Leah. Fulfil Leah’s week, and we will give you Rachel also for the service which you will serve with me, still another seven years (Genesis 29:26-27). Had Jacob known the culture, he would have waited for someone else to marry Leah first. I can only imagine how Jacob felt that morning when he woke up with Leah instead of Rachel. Everybody in town came and celebrated with him for the wedding with Rachel. They all knew that Jacob was getting Leah not Rachel! Yet nobody told him anything, he looked like a fool at his own wedding feast! My advice to you is to know the basics of the culture of your spouse to be; lest you look like a fool at your own wedding feast like Jacob did!
Whenever I read the story of Jacob, and the rivalry between Leah, Rachel and their children; it reminds me of my own family. I remember it as if it was yesterday. I was twelve years old. I was playing behind the house at 12 noon, when I saw a lady who looked like my mother walking through the main gate of the compound. I was so excited to see her. My mother came home every day from work at 13:00 to have lunch with us as a family and go back to work. So I was so happy because I would have one extra hour with my mother. I started running to jump into her embrace shouting: mother, mother, mother! When I got 20 feet away from that lady, she turned towards me and looked at me.
She looked like a twin sister of my mother, the same height, same face, same weight, slightly darker than my mother; but the voice definitely was not my mother’s. I was frightened and took off in the opposite direction as fast as my little legs could carry me. I stayed away from that lady. Then at 12:30 my mother came home. I knew this was my mother, but who was the other woman that looked like my mother’s twin sister? I knew that my mother was not a twin. That woman talked with my mother and ate with us that day and then left. In the evening my mother explained to us who that woman was.
My grandmother was a twin, she was the little sister. My grandfather wanted to marry her; but her father said to my grandfather you must marry the eldest twin first, and then I will give you the younger twin sister as well. So my grandfather ended up marrying the twin sisters. The lady I saw, was one of my grandfather’s daughters he had had with my grandmother’s twin sister. No wonder she looked like my mother’s twin sister! My grandfather loved my grandmother; just like Jacob loved Rachel. He was always in my grandmother’s house, and always cherished her children, more than the children of the other twin sister; like Jacob cherished Joseph and Benjamin the sons of Rachel. The twin sister of my grandmother, hated my grandmother to death, because she felt that my grandmother stole her husband.
As it is written: Reuben went out in the days of the wheat harvest, and found mandrakes in the field, and brought them unto his mother Leah. Then Rachel said to Leah, please give me some of your son’s mandrakes. And she said unto her: Is it a small matter that you have taken my husband? and would you take away my son’s mandrakes also? And Rachel said, Therefore he shall lie with you tonight for your son’s mandrakes. And Jacob came out of the field in the evening, and Leah went out to meet him, and said: you must come in unto me; for surely I have hired you with my son’s mandrakes. And he lay with her that night (Genesis 30:14-16). Even at the death of my grandmother, her twin sister did not come to her funeral. Now it is easy to blame Leah or my grandmother’s twin for the way they behaved. I used to think that the twin sister of my grandmother was a bad person; but as I got to know from the scriptures the story of Rachel and Leah, I now have compassion for her and pray that God will heal her heart.
The royal families in Europe are all cousins and great cousins who married each other. Queen Elizabeth of Great Britain married her third cousin Philip Mountbatten, formerly prince of Greece and Denmark, on November 20, 1947. So cousins and great cousins still marry today, even among royalties in Europe in this 21 century. From Channel 4 news on Thursday 28 April 2011, Kate Middleton and William are related. The press concentrated a lot on her coalminers and tradesmen family tree; but left out her royal link. Kate Middleton and Prince William are fourteenth cousins. Prince Charles and the late princess Diana, the mother of prince William, were also great cousins. Worldwide an estimate of 20% of marriages, are between first cousins. It is not against the law of the United Kingdom or Europe, or anywhere in the world to marry a first cousin. God has to correct some of the traditions of the people. Incest is sin against God. The Webster dictionary defines incest as being the crime of cohabitation or sexual intercourse, between persons related within the degrees, wherein marriage is prohibited by the law of a country.
God said to Moses in Leviticus 18:6-18: None of you shall approach to any who are near of kin to him, to uncover their nakedness. I am Jehovah. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father or the nakedness of your mother. She is your mother; you shall not uncover her nakedness. [So what Lot’s daughter did in Genesis 19:30-36 by sleeping with him to get pregnant is a sin against God. You cannot marry your daughter, and women, you cannot marry your son. It is against God’s word and against the law of the Land.] You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s wife. It is your father’s nakedness. [What Reuben did in Genesis 35:22 by sleeping with Bilhah the concubine of his father Jacob is sin against God. Cursed be anyone who lies with his mother-in-law. And all the people shall say, Amen (Deuteronomy 27:23). This applies also to anyone who lies with his father-in-law like Tamar did in Genesis 38. The Corinthian believers were still acting like Reuben.
If you were born of such a relationship rooted in incest; Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, being made a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone having been hanged on a tree”); so that the blessing of Abraham might be to the nations in Jesus Christ, and that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith (Galatians 3:13-14). When you read the genealogy of Jesus in Matthew 1, Tamar and her children are mentioned there. What then, should we continue in sin? God forbid!
Paul writes to them and to us today in 1Corinthians 5:1-8, saying: On the whole it is reported that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not even named among the nations, so as one to have his father’s wife. And you are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, so that he who has done this deed may be taken from your midst. For as being absent in body but present in spirit, I indeed have judged already as though I were present concerning him who worked out this thing; in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you are gathered together, with my spirit; also, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ; to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? Therefore purge out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened. For also Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us. Therefore let us keep the feast; not with the old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
You shall not uncover the nakedness of your sister, the daughter of your father or the daughter of your mother, born at home or born away. Their nakedness you shall not uncover. [So what Father Abraham did by marrying Sarah the daughter of his father not of his mother is sin! You, as a born again Christian, cannot marry your half-sister. We have restructured homes, where people, who were divorced with children, now remarry. The children of your step father are your brothers and sisters and vice versa; you cannot marry any of them. Cursed be anyone who lies with his sister, whether the daughter of his father or the daughter of his mother. And all the people shall say, Amen (Deuteronomy 27:22).
God forgave father Abraham, and through Christ Jesus, redeemed him from the curse of the Law; yet this does not mean we should continue in the sin; God forbid! One of my uncles, who studied in the former USSR, married a woman from there and brought her with him to Africa. That aunty of mine had a daughter with a Russian man before meeting my uncle. She gave the daughter to her parents to bring her up. So when she met my uncle and moved with him to Africa, her daughter stayed with her parents in the USSR. She had children with my uncle. But when she was about 16 years old, her grandparent, in what is now Russia, became ill, so they could no longer take care of her because of their health. My uncle went to Russia to bring her to Africa, and my father told me, your cousin has come! I thought it was my mixed race cousin. He said no, this one is not mixed race. She is white. Everybody welcomed her home and treated her like a cousin; for she was our cousin. I remember all my aunties were always saying, we will plan an African wedding for her, when she comes of age to marry. That is how family is supposed to be! Even if that child of your mother or your father is born away, he is still your child and you must treat him or her that Godly way]
The nakedness of your son’s daughter, or of your daughter’s daughter, you shall not uncover their nakedness. For theirs is your own nakedness. You shall not uncover the nakedness of the daughter of your father’s wife, begotten of your father. She is your sister. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s sister. She is your father’s near kinswoman. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your mother’s sister, for she is your mother’s near kinswoman. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s brother. You shall not approach his wife. She is your aunt. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your daughter-in-law. She is your son’s wife. You shall not uncover her nakedness. You shall not uncover the nakedness of your brother’s wife. It is your brother’s nakedness. [In the Jewish tradition they had the kinsman redeemer. If the brother died and left no heir; his brother could take his wife to lie with her to give him an heir, as the Sadducees reminded Jesus of what Moses instructed them in Matthew 22:23-28. John the Baptist also rebuked Herod, for he had taken the wife of his brother Philip while he was still alive (Matthew 14:3-4). In the New Covenant, Jesus is our kinsman redeemer, polygamy is not allowed. So even if your brother dies and has no heir, you should not lie with his wife or take her as a second wife].
Paul says: Do not let a widow be enrolled, having become less than sixty years old, the wife of one man, well reported of for good works: if she brought up children, if she lodged strangers, if she washed the feet of saints, if she relieved the afflicted, if she followed after every good work. But refuse younger widows, for whenever they grow lustful against Christ, they desire to marry; having guilt because they have cast off the first faith. And with it all, they also learn to be idle, going around the houses; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things they ought not. Therefore I want the younger ones to marry, bear children, guide the house, giving no occasion to the adversary because of reproach. For some have already turned aside after Satan (1Timothy 5:9-15). Paul wants the young widows to remarry and bear children. Paul especially advises the widow under sixty years old, to remarry and have children. In the early church some of the believers were killed. He is also telling their widows: please remarry if you are under sixty years old. You are not betraying your husband by remarrying after his death.
Paul tells you, you are free to remarry after the death of your husband, this applies also to men. Paul says: Or are you ignorant, brothers; for I speak to those who know the Law; that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives? For the married woman was bound by law to the living husband. But if the husband is dead, she is set free from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband lives, she is married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress. But if the husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is no adulteress by becoming another man’s wife (Romans 7:1-3). You are free to remarry if you are a widow or widower; you are not sinning against God. Paul even tells Timothy not to enroll in the church list, widows who are under sixty years old; he is trying to discourage them, from false humility and self imposed religion. Paul is telling them: God did not place the burden of remaining alone and we the apostle certainly have not placed it on you, we even have discouraged you by refusing to write your names down among the widows. We want you to remarry, bear children, raise children. It is easier to remarry for women, when you are under sixty years old, than when you are above it. The days of a man or woman shall be 120 years according to Genesis 6:3. Why do you want to live it alone? Especially when you are full of strength and life. Please widows and widowers under sixty years old, remarry at least for companionship.
You shall not uncover the nakedness of a woman and her daughter, neither shall you undertake to uncover her son’s daughter, or her daughter’s daughter. They are her near kinswomen; it is wickedness. And you shall not take a wife to her sister, to vex her, to uncover her nakedness, beside the other in her life (Leviticus 18:17-18). So what Jacob did by marrying Leah and Rachel because of the tradition of the Syrian, God forbade it. God saw how Leah was vexed all her life. And I can tell you how vexed and full of hatred the twin sister of my grandmother has been all her life. And for you and I in the New Testament there is no polygamy.
Now that you have the counsel of the scriptures concerning what is allowed and what is not allowed, you will do well if you obey it. God has his ideal and you and I should always want to please our God. Sometimes born again Christians, who are carnal, fall into sexual sin, even fornication while dating. Paul tells us: Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled, but fornicators and adulterers God will judge (Hebrews 13:4). God is not pleased with Christians who are fornicating while dating. Paul tells us: Now concerning what you wrote to me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. But, because of the fornications, let each have his own wife, and let each have her own husband (1Corinthians 7:1-2). But if they do not have self-control [while they are dating], let them marry; for it is better to marry than to burn (1Corinthians 7:9).
Moses told us: And if a man lures a virgin who is not promised, and lies with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife. If her father utterly refuses to give her to him, he shall pay money, according to the dowry of virgins (Exodus 22:16-17). This is not the ideal of God; but so that they will not continue in sin, God tells them to get married. I remember a friend of mine, his in-laws did not want to give him the hand of their daughter in marriage. They waited seven-years. The parents thought that she would meet someone else from their country. The daughter went ahead and married her husband; her parents never attended the wedding. The husband, during the wedding ceremony, recorded a lovely message to his in-laws. Now that they have three children, the in-laws come to see the grandchildren. My friend, if you do not have the grace to wait for a woman or a man for seven years like Jacob did; marry! In some cultures you have to give a dowry before they give you the hand of their daughter, or the hand of their son. God has no problem with our cultures, as long as they do not violate the word of God. The Newspaper The Telegraph, in September 2, 2013, reported by Dean Nelson in New Delhi that a woman is killed over dowry every hour in India.
In India it is the family of the wife that gives the dowry to the family of the husband. One of the ladies, who was burned alive in her bed with her child by her in-laws in 2012, was because the family could not speed up the payment of the agreed dowry of £15,000 and a Honda City car for their son-in-law’s parents. The in-laws had suddenly demanded that the family of the wife buy them an apartment as well. Some poor families in India, when they discover that they are pregnant with a baby girl they abort it or kill the new born baby girl; for they already see that when she wants to get married, they will be impoverished by paying her dowry.
In most of the cultures around the world, it is the family of the man that gives the dowry to the family of the wife. Initially the dowry was just to show the family of your in-laws how hospitable you were; how well you would treat their daughter or their son; how you appreciated the good work that the parents of your wife did by raising up your wife. The family of your wife will also organize a great party for you and your relatives. But over the years greed has filled the hearts of the people. Dowry is no longer just a symbolic thing but a means for gain; people even murder over non-payment of dowries. That is not love; that is not marriage.
I remember my cousin getting married and my father told me that my cousin gave his in-laws the equivalent of £5,000 for the dowry, when the national minimum wage is £20 a month. Even though my cousin was earning about £200 per month, £5,000 is still far too much. That is why people either compromise their faith and live in fornication, and have children out of wedlock, until they have gathered enough money for the dowry. A friend of mine who went to high school with me, married a girl from high school. They are both from born again families. For the dowry the father of the wife only asked for £30. And they organized a party. He wanted them to live in sanctification. I was so pleased that some born again Christians are not falling for the mammon spirit, even greed.
Even cultures that no longer have dowries, there are still some spirits of greed that have infiltrated weddings. An Italian missionary rang me in 2014, wanting advice about relationships according to the scriptures. He was dating an American missionary in the USA, while he was in the UK. He was not making much money at his work place, and was even considering leaving that job to be a full time missionary in the UK. She said she was a humble and modest person; she told him what kind of engagement ring she wanted. When he looked at it; the price was £14,000. He did not even make that money annually, even if he worked full time. She sent him links on how he could get that engagement ring by instalments, so that he could spread the payment over 5 years. He started to think: if I already get into debt for the engagement ring, how much will the wedding ring and the wedding ceremony cost?
Paul tells us: godliness with contentment is great gain (1Timothy 6:6). In the same way also, I desire that women adorn themselves in decent clothing, with modesty and sensibleness, not adorned with braiding, or gold, or pearls, or costly clothing, but with good works, which becomes women professing godliness (1Timothy 2:9-10). Modesty is the key here; God is not against you wearing jewels, wearing good garments, good shoes. Silver is His and gold is His. If you can afford that £14,000 engagement ring, then go for it; but if you have to get into debt for five years and even more, just for an engagement ring or a dowry or a wedding ceremony; you are acting like the world.
Now therefore perform the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to will, so there may be a performance also, out of that which you have. For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what a man has, and not according to what he has not (2Corinthians 8:11-12). The man or the woman is eager and willing to get married, that is what matters; it is according to what he or she has. He or she should not be in debt because of marriage. Are we trying to impress people or God with our dowries, engagement ring and wedding ceremonies? Some of the American preachers of the gospel who had wedding ceremonies that cost $1 million, divorced just a few years after their wedding; they did not even last 5 years. If you have $1 million to spend on your wedding, good for you! But if I, Gery, only have $1 to spend, God is pleased with my wedding.
There will still be introduced marriages, like that of Rebecca and Isaac in Genesis 24; like that of Jacob and the daughters of Laban; for his mother Rebecca told him to go to the house of his uncle and marry there (Genesis 28:1-5). Isaac never saw Rebecca before his marriage and never had a picture of Rebecca. Today there are also other kinds of introduced marriages; at least the introductions were carefully planned, one way or the other. Sometimes in churches they have a sister or a brother who loves the Lord and is zealous for God. And the pastor or church leaders also know another sister or brother, in another church who loves the Lord and is zealous for the things of God. So they talked to their church member about that particular sister or brother, and they plan for them to meet. And they even tell you that the parents of the girl or of the man, have told them that they would be very happy to have you as their in-law.
Or what churches are now doing, is they have groups of single men and women within the church. They give them the venue of the church to meet and organize social activities, and discuss topics that are relevant to their life. They have nights out to the cinema, or bowling, or pizza nights, or monopoly nights. In a way the church is creating a venue for them to meet born again Christians within the church. Churches now come together for singles conferences and singles activities. Today also with social media and Christian internet dating people meet each other. You will not be able to stop social media, but we must equip people with the knowledge of the word of God.
Some ministers of the gospel will say they do not believe that one should meet people on facebook, skype, whatsapp, wechat, twitter, or on Christian dating websites. They are entitled to their opinions, and we should respect their opinions. Some will even say: I think it is for creepy people; for lame people, non spiritual people and losers! Well they are entitled to their opinion. I just want to ask you a question: does everybody who comes to your church, do so because God spoke to them directly while they were praying in their house, and gave them the address of your church, and the time of your service, like God did to Cornelius in Acts 10?
The answer is no, less than 1% of the people who came to your church, came because they were praying in their house and God gave them the name and address of your church and your time of worship. The majority came, because someone invited them and introduced them to your church, or because they heard your program on TV or on the internet. When they come and start attending the church and working in your church; do you say God sent them or not? Of course you say God sent them! The means God used was different, but God sent them. Some pastor will say, when it comes to meeting people for marriage; social media and Christian internet dating is not the way of the Lord. I will ask you, when it comes to salvation of souls, preaching of the gospel, healing the sick, raising funds for church mission; are the media and internet the means God uses? I bet your answer is yes!
Once people are online, they will not just use the media, social media and internet; they will not just use it to listen to your teaching, and donate to your ministry; but they will also use it to meet people. You would rather help your congregation to navigate through that jungle of media, social media and internet; lest they become victims. When something is new, people are always afraid, and easily label it evil or not spiritual enough. If we all came to Christ like Cornelius came to Christ in Acts 10, by the appearance of an angel who gave us the name of the preacher or the church, the address of the preacher or of the church, that would be awesome! But less than 1% of the people in the church had that Cornelius experience. I, Gery, came back to Christ after a work colleague invited me to the church she attended.
Sometimes the Lord wakes me up and tells me a title of a sermon and the name of the preacher who preached it. I come out of that vision and turn on my computer, and type the title of the sermon, and the name of the preacher and there it is on YouTube! Some pastors and elders in the church say: one married man in our church left his wife for a sister he met on facebook, or other social media. I, Gery, also know sisters and brothers who left their spouse because of someone they met on social media. The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it? I Jehovah search the heart, I try the reins, even to give to each man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings (Jeremiah 17:9-10).
My friend there is nothing wrong with a knife, it is just a tool; it is the heart of the holder of the knife, that is the problem. One can use the knife to chop onions and cut meat; prepare a nice meal for his friend. Another can use the same knife to kill his friend. Dynamite was initially invented to help miners; but the military saw it as a great means to blow the enemy into pieces. The same thing for media, social media and the internet; it is just a means; we need to teach our people the right usage. That brother or sister, who left his or her spouse for a person they met online, would have left sooner or later; social media or no social media; for that was the intention of their heart.
I also know of brothers who go from church to church fornicating with sisters; or dating three different sisters at the same time. They did not need the help of any social media to do that. The truth is, there are many Christians on social media, even on Christian dating websites. I, Gery, was one of them. When I backslid, I went to some social websites, even chat forums. And that is where I met the lady I lived in fornication with. It was my heart that was wicked, I had already purposed to sin against the Lord. For I used to go to night clubs and pubs and I had already met and fallen in sexual sin with a person I met in a night club. God says: My people are bent on backsliding from Me. Though they called them to the Most High, none at all would exalt Him (Hosea 11:7). When a person has purposed to sin sexually against the Lord; he can use any means to do so. He can meet people at work, at university, at the supermarket, in the park, in the library, on the bus, on the train, etc. When a person has decided to date three women or four women at the same time, he does not need social media to do so; even within the same city he can do so! For I know a so-called prayer warrior, who was dating three women in the different churches within Manchester. He did not need the help of social media or Christian dating websites.
The young generation has discovered that they can talk for hours on social media. What we should tell them is, that when it comes to dating: we should apply the same criteria, whether for social media or Christian dating websites. The person must be genuinely born again. And the marriage bed should not be defiled; for God will judge fornicators. And you need to inform your pastor or leader; let there be transparency. A dear sister called me and told me that the person she is dating, wants to see me and talk with me. I asked her: did you meet him on facebook? She denied it. But I had a witness in my spirit that she did.
When the guy called me, I asked him, did you meet her on facebook? He said yes. Initially I was angry at the sister for saying no, when I had asked her. So I had a discussion with the brother for about an hour over the phone. He was a very serious born again Christian, like the sister was. People lie for fear of men, because they do not want to be judged, especially by other Christians. Do not let your marriage be based on lies; if your marriage were introduced, do not be ashamed of it; for even Isaac had an introduced marriage. Yet the servant of Abraham prayed; and though it was an introduced marriage, if Rebecca had not fulfilled the request he had asked God for, he would not have brought her to Isaac. If you meet your spouse on social media or by internet dating; you do not have to lie about it either. If you also married your first cousin, second cousin, third cousin; you do not have to be ashamed of it either. I was truly impressed by the transparency of that Pakistani family in Huddersfield, England. Queen Elizabeth is not ashamed of being married to her third cousin Prince Philip! They are not breaking God’s law; it is not incest as we have explained from Leviticus 18:6-18.
You should be proud of how you met your spouse. You do not have to invent a story and lie about that, because you are afraid of people’s opinion. I, Gery, used to have strong opinions: I discovered that my opinion had no scriptural foundation. I am not recommending any means of meeting your future spouse. I am just explaining from the scriptures what is wrong, and what is men’s opinion and culture. Irrespective of the means used to meet the spouse to be, he or she must be genuinely born again: no longer conformed to the world that lies under the influence of the devil (Romans 12:1-2, 1John 5:19); but conformed to the image of Christ (Romans 8:29). The bible says: And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed (Genesis 2:21-25).
Your spouse is not just the flesh of your flesh, meaning someone that you are attracted to physically, and have the same earthly centre of interest. Christians who go and find unsaved spouses and try to convert them, or go to night clubs and pubs, to meet their spouses are carnal Christians; they are still conformed to the world which is influenced by the devil, instead of being conformed to the image of Jesus Christ as God predestined (Romans 12:1-2, 1John 5:19, Romans 8:29). Carnal means pertaining to the flesh; thus those Christians are now only looking for the flesh of their flesh in a spouse. Deep inside them they believe God is evil; that if they ask Him for a fish He will give them a serpent, if they ask for an egg He will give them a scorpion and if they ask for bread, He will give them a stone (Luke 11:11-13). They say: I will try my own thing and then ask God to bless it. I will have my own Ishmael and ask God to bless it.
Abraham tried it with God. And God said unto Abraham, As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall her name be. And I will bless her, and give you a son also of her: yes, I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of people shall be of her. Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear? And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before You! And God said, Sarah your wife shall bear you a son indeed; and you shall call his name Isaac: and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him (Genesis 17:15-19).
Abraham laughed because he did not believe God could answer his prayer; so he answered his own prayer by having Ishmael; and then just wanted God to bless his Ishmael. My prayer is that you and I will not be carnal Christians, who only go for the flesh of our flesh; but let us also go for the bone of our bone. Whichever means you use to meet your future spouse, that does not violate the Holy Scriptures, make sure that you go beyond the flesh of the flesh. Now the bone of your bone means a spouse, that will help you fulfil your God-given destiny, for the covenant of God to be established on earth through you. As it is written: the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet [fit; suitable; proper; qualified; convenient; adapted, as to a use or purpose] for him (Genesis 2:18). I read the bible for years and did not understand what the Lord meant by the bone of your bone and the flesh of your flesh, until in the beginning of 2015 Nell Malanda, a prophet of the Lord, gave me the revelation of what it means.
If you trust God to help you find your spouse according to the full counsel of the written word of God, He will not only give you the flesh of your flesh; but also the bone of your bone. God is the only one who can give you the bone of your bone. Adam could not create the bone of his bone; God did it. God took one of his ribs and created Eve. You can find for yourself the flesh of your flesh; but only God can give you the bone of your bone, for He is the one who supernaturally matched you for His divine purpose. The flesh of Eve was not made from the flesh of Adam; but from the dirt or dust of the ground like God formed Adam’s flesh, from the dust of the ground (Genesis 2:7). So, God will give you the spouse in whom the earthly things you love are, and their earthly origins and earthly background, are not necessarily the same earthly origin and background as yours. Yet the person God will give you, who is the bone of your bone, will be a person predestined from heaven to help you fulfil your God-given destiny, in order to establish the covenant of God on earth through you. My prayer is that you will find that person predestined by God to be your spouse, and obtain favour from the Lord. As it is written: whosoever finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favour from the Lord (Proverbs 18:22).
Sarah was the flesh of the flesh of Abraham. The bible tells us: it happened, when Abram had come near to enter into Egypt, he said to Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that you are a beautiful woman to look upon. And it will be when the Egyptians see you, they shall say, This is his wife. And they will kill me, but they will save you alive. I pray you, say that you are my sister, so that it may be well with me for your sake. And my soul shall live because of you (Genesis 12:11-13). So Sarah was not only beautiful in the eyes of Abraham, but also in the eyes of all who looked upon her; people would kill to have her as a wife, that is how beautiful she was. So was Rebecca. As it is written: Isaac lived in Gerar. And the men of the place asked about his wife. And he said, She is my sister. For he feared to say, My wife; lest the men of the place should kill me for Rebekah, because she was beautiful of form (Genesis 26:6-7). Ezekiel’s wife was also the flesh of his flesh, for the Lord says she was the desire of Ezekiel’s eyes (Ezekiel 24:15-27).
So it is the devil putting fear into your heart, that if you rely on God and the full counsel of His written word; He will give you a spouse that is not beautiful in your eyes, even the flesh of your flesh. On top of being the flesh of the flesh of Abraham and of Isaac; both Sarah and Rebecca were the bone of the bone of their spouses. They were the help meet that will help their spouse fulfil their God-given destiny, and establish the covenant of God on earth, even by bringing Christ Jesus the Seed of Abraham; through whom all the families of the earth are now blessed. Again I am talking to born again Christians who are not yet married or who had a divorce and are planning to remarry. The bible says of Adam and Eve, who were bone of the bone and flesh of the flesh of each other; they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed (Genesis 2:25).
Those who are after the flesh, do mind the things of the flesh; [that is why you must not merely stop at the flesh of your flesh in the spouse you are looking for;] but those who are after the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then those who are in the flesh cannot please God. But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man has not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his (Romans 8:5-9). Born again Christians are in the Spirit 24/7 and not in the flesh. Paul is even questioning the salvation of so-called born again Christians, who, though they are in the Spirit, are walking in the flesh and not in the Spirit. He says: I say then, Walk in the Spirit and you shall not fulfil the lusts of the flesh (Galatians 5:16). If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit (Galatians 5:25). Walking in the Spirit simply means, doing what the counsel of the written word of God says about a particular aspect of things, that pertains to our life and godliness. God is not pleased with Christians who are carnal, even though He loves them.
It saddens His heart that His children are at enmity against Him; because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. As long as we are still carnally minded, God says: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him return to Jehovah, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon. For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor your ways My ways, says the Lord (Isaiah 55:7-8). Therefore submit yourselves to God [by subjecting yourself to the full counsel of the written word of God]. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, sinners; and purify your hearts, double-minded ones (James 4:7-8).
Technology will continue to advance in our generation, including social media; what matters is the use we make of the social media, will it be a godly or ungodly use? It is up to each one of us. My prayer is that our generation will not birth an Ichabod church or inglorious church (1Samuel 4:21-22). Jesus says: I am the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6). Let us not have our own ways but the way of God, and the thought of God. There is a way, which seems right to a man, but the end of it is the ways of death (Proverbs 14:12). For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace (Romans 8:6). If you trust God and His way for the bone of your bone and the flesh of your flesh; that marriage will be full of life and peace. Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not unto your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Be not wise in your own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil. It shall be health to your navel, and marrow to your bones (Proverbs 3:5-8).
God’s word is a lamp unto your feet, and a light unto your path (Psalm 119:105). The Lord promised, saying: I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you shall go: I will guide thee with My eye [so that you will see things the way I, God, see them and agree with Me; for I want to walk with you (Amos 3:3)].Do not be as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding: whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto you (Psalm 32:8-9). On the contrary for you, the entrance of My words gives light; it gives understanding unto the simple (Psalm 119:130). I have to thank Sister Lisa Tse because the Lord gave her many revelations by dreams, which were prophetic revelations. And most of the interpretations of her dreams, are what I have written in this section of the bible study. God speaks through every one of His children, not just to brother Gery and I am always careful to acknowledge and learn from what He said to others. Nobody can monopolize or have the exclusivity of the revelation of God. The Church is a body, and we need all the members to make it work (1Corinthians 12:12-31). I expect God to speak through each one of you more and more; so that I also can be taught according to the full counsel of the written word of God.
Samson had a great destiny ahead of him, he was anointed by God to be the judge and deliverer of Israel; his birth was supernaturally announced by the Angel of the Lord. He cut short the great destiny of God for him and also for all Israel; because he loved women who were not of the people of God. His father told him there were women in his tribe whom he could marry; or if they were not his type of women: there were women in other tribes of Israel, he did not have to go and marry a woman who was not in the covenant with God (Judges 14). The more Samson dated the people who were not in the covenant of Israel, the more he compromised his faith; he did not even bother about marrying them anymore, before bedding them! He sank so low in his faith, that he was now going to a prostitute at Gaza (Judges 16).
God said to Moses: Jehovah your God shall deliver them before you, you shall crush them, completely destroy them. You shall make no covenant with them, nor show mercy to them. Nor shall you make marriages with them. You shall not give your daughter to his son, nor shall you take his daughter to your son. For they will turn away your son from following Me, so that they may serve other gods. So the anger of Jehovah will be kindled against you and will destroy you suddenly (Deuteronomy 7:2-4). Samson was gradually practicing fornication like the unsaved people. God says: Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled, but fornicators and adulterers, God will judge (Hebrews 13:4). God’s plan for Israel through Samson was, that they would enjoy peace for a long period, through the deliverance God would bring, by the hand of Samson. Though Samson killed more philistines at his death than in his whole life; that was not the plan of God! God wanted him to live long, subdue all the enemies of Israel, and bring peace to Israel, for a long period of time! Brothers and sisters, if you thought that marriage was just about you, think again! The person you marry will either be a help meet for you, to fulfil your destiny in God, or be a stumbling block, to cause you to forfeit your destiny in God!
God who created Adam said: It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a help meet for him (Genesis 2:18). If there is no born again brother or sister that is your type in your church, or in your city; you can even go to the end of the world to find your born again spouse. There were no covenant people in the land of Canaan where Abraham was living; so he sent his servant back into His country of origin, to find a covenant woman for Isaac (Genesis 24). Jacob also had to make the journey to a far land, to take a wife of the covenant; for his parents forbade him to do like his brother Esau, who took the women of the land of Canaan who were not of the Covenant (Genesis 28). My brother, even if you have to travel abroad, to find that genuine born again sister of the household of Abraham, like Jacob did; or my sister, even if you have to leave your country, to join that genuine born again Christian of the household of Abraham in another country, like Rebecca did, do it; but do not marry an unbeliever, for they have not the blessing of Abraham, and do not belong to the household of God!
Do not forfeit or cut short the great destiny God has for you, by marrying an unbeliever! I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you a future and an expected end. Then you shall call upon Me, and you shall go and pray unto Me, and I will hearken unto you. And you shall seek Me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart (Jeremiah 29:11-13). It is because God has thoughts of peace toward you, that He wants you to marry a genuine born again Christian. Whoever finds a wife finds a good thing and gets favour from Jehovah (Proverbs 18:22). Samson, by going after women who were not of the covenant, lost his favour from the Lord; for those women caused him to sin against God; and the day came when the enemy prevailed over him, and put out his eyes and jailed him!
What many Christians do not understand, is that the promises of God are conditional. When you read the bible, you will see all the ifs God puts before stating a promise to us. God promised to the high priest Eli that his house and his father’s house would walk before the Lord forever, but it was conditional, the next generation had to serve God the same way Eli did, for that promise to continue forever! Wherefore the LORD God of Israel says, I said indeed that your house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me forever: but now the LORD says, Be it far from Me; for those who honour Me I will honour, and those who despise Me shall be lightly esteemed (1Samuel 2:30).
The sons of Eli forfeited that promise of God, because they did not keep their part of the deal, they lived in sexual sin and they were destroyed. God also made a wonderful promise to David and his house, but it was conditional. God reminded Solomon, that the promise made to David was conditional, saying: if you will walk before Me as David your father walked, in integrity of heart and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded you; and if you will keep My statutes and My judgments, then I will establish the throne of your kingdom on Israel forever, as I promised to David your father, saying, There shall not be cut off to you a man on the throne of Israel (1Kings 9:4-5). David warned Solomon, saying: you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve Him with a perfect heart, and with a willing mind. For Jehovah searches all hearts and understands all the imaginations of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will be found by you. But if you forsake Him, He will cast you off forever (1Chronicles 28:9). Solomon did not keep his part of the deal; but he went after women, who were not of the covenant, and they progressively changed his ways, and he ended up worshiping the idols of his foreign wives.
Although Solomon came back to the Lord in his old age; he forfeited the promise of God for his house. God divided the kingdom of Israel into two, and the son of Solomon only received two tribes out of twelve to rule over (1Kings 12)! This instruction about marriage for the children of God is to all generations. Nehemiah reminded the people of God who had just come back from captivity in Babylon. I contended with them, and cursed them, and struck certain of them, and plucked off their hair. And I made them swear by the name of God, saying, You shall not give your daughters to their sons, or take their daughters to your sons, or for yourselves. Did not Solomon king of Israel sin by these things? Yet among many nations there was no king like him, who was beloved by his God, and God made him king over all Israel. But women from other lands caused even him to sin. Shall we then listen to you, to do all this great evil, to sin against our God in living with foreign women (Nehemiah 13:25-27)?
The bible also tells us the story of the kings of Judah, the descendants of King David. Jehoram slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David. And Ahaziah his son reigned in his place. In the twelfth year of Jehoram the son of Ahab, king of Israel, Ahaziah the son of Jehoram, king of Judah, began to reign. Ahaziah was twenty-two years old when he began to reign, and he reigned one year in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Athaliah, the daughter of Omri king of Israel. And he walked in the way of the house of Ahab, and did evil in the sight of Jehovah, as the house of Ahab, for he was the son-in-law of the house of Ahab (2Kings 8:24-27). So King Ahaziah of Judah, by marrying a daughter of the house of King Ahab of the house of Israel, learnt the ways of the house of Ahab, and Baal worship and all the other abominations that the house of Ahab was doing.
We who are already born again yet not married; let us not sin against the Lord by marrying unsaved people like Solomon and Samson did! A sister in Wigan, England, her born again daughter was dating an unbeliever, said to me: “but what about love? God loves even unbelievers, I do not see anything wrong with marrying them. My daughter and I also smoke and we think that smoking is not a sin! My daughter and her unsaved boyfriends, go also to pubs and nightclubs; because they like dancing, and I do not think it is sin to dance! God so loved the world that He gave Jesus to die for them in John 3:16”. Many Christians have received Jesus as their Saviour; but they have not received Him as their Lord! Jesus says: why do you call Me Lord, Lord, and do not do what I say (Luke 6:46)?
What that sister and her daughter did not realise, is that the unsaved people they have yoked themselves to, have caused them to compromise their faith in God, and if they are not careful, they will go to hell. Paul tells us plainly: Do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor abusers, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God (1Corinthians 6:9-10). Now the works of the flesh are clearly revealed, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lustfulness, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, fightings, jealousies, angers, rivalries, divisions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkennesses, reveling [wild parties: pubbing, clubbing, smoking and using drugs], and things like these; of which I tell you before, as I also said before, that they who do such things, shall not inherit the kingdom of God (Galatians 5:19-21).
Another Christian lady, who is a leader in a particular ministry said: “God” told me to marry this unsaved man! People say those things to justify themselves before men! All those arbitraries: “God” said to me, must be checked with the written word of God! It takes great humility to admit, when you are a leader in a church, that you made a mistake; because you are seeking the honour that comes from men and women! Jesus says: I do not receive honour from men. But I know you, that you do not have the love of God in you. I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me. If another shall come in his own name, him you will receive. How can you believe, you who receive honour from one another, and do not seek the honour that comes from God only (John 5:41-44)? If brother Gery gave you his personal opinion, you would have received him gladly, but because he gave you the written word of God, you did not receive him favourably! Honouring God is so simple; you just have to do what He said in His written word! Loving God is so simple; you just have to do what He commands in His written word (John 14:15). My prayer is that I, Gery, and everybody I disciple, will not receive honour from men or women, but seek the honour that comes from God, only by being doers of His written Word!
He who covers his sins shall not be blessed, and shall not prosper; but whoever confesses and leaves them, shall have mercy. Blessed is the man dreading God, but he who hardens his heart, shall fall into mischief, harm, hurt, damage, injury and evil whether intended or not (Proverbs 28:13-14). Solomon, who wrote the book of Proverbs from personal experience, and Samson, hardened their hearts to the counsel of the written word of God, and followed the imagination or stubbornness of their hearts, by taking women who were not of the people of God, fell into mischief!
Do you think that the Scripture says in vain, The Holy Spirit that dwells in us yearns to jealousy? But He gives more grace. Therefore He says, God resists the proud [the proud is the one who does not act on the counsel of the scriptures], but He gives grace to the humble [the humble is the one who acts on the counsel of the scriptures]. Therefore submit yourselves to God [nobody should force you to submit to God by acting on the counsel of the scriptures, you ought to do it willingly]. Resist the devil [you resist the devil by standing on the word of God and refusing to act contrary to the counsel of the scriptures], and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, sinners; and purify your hearts, double-minded ones (James 4:5-8).
God will not say to a person who is born again, go and marry an unsaved person! God said, it is the imagination of their own heart or the stubbornness of their own heart. Jehovah says, Because they have forsaken My Law which I set before them, and have not obeyed My voice, and have not walked in it, but they have walked after the stubbornness or imagination of their own heart, and after the Baals, which their fathers taught them (Jeremiah 9:13-14). I earnestly testified to your fathers in the day I brought them up out of the land of Egypt, even to this day, rising early and testifying, saying, Obey My voice. Yet they did not obey nor bow down their ear, but walked each one in the stubbornness or imagination of his evil heart. So I will bring on them all the Words of this covenant, which I commanded them to do; but they did not do them (Jeremiah 11:7-8).
God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints (1Corinthians 14:33). For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work (James 3:16). God could not have said, that in the church of Moses in the wilderness, it was not His will, that His people should marry, or be married, to a person who was not in His covenant with His people; He repeated the same thing to David and Solomon who built the temple, He repeated the same thing to Nehemiah, after the return from the captivity of Babylon, and He repeated the same thing to Paul, the apostle of Jesus Christ. Paul did not tell us anything new, but what God had already said through Moses, David, Solomon, Nehemiah and many other prophets in the Old Testament. So if a born again believer, tells you that God told him or her to marry an unsaved person, it is not true! But someone will say: what if the Lord gave me a vision with a booming voice showing me this sister or this man I must marry, and yet this man or sister is not born again!
What the disciple of Jesus will tell you, is that, if it is of God, then that
man or woman, must first of all be born again, and then you can marry
him or her! Because God is not the author of confusion; forever His
written word is settled in heaven (Psalm 119:89). Our generation has
come and will pass away, and many other generations will come and
pass away; heaven and earth will pass away, but His written Word will
not pass away, it will continue to be fulfilled (Matthew 24:34-35) God will
not break His covenant, nor alter the words that came out of His lips,
and were recorded in the same written Word, for anyone, no matter how
much he loves us, like he so loved Solomon (Psalm 89:34).
I am Jehovah the Lord, I change not. Because of this you sons of Jacob are not destroyed (Malachi 3:6). You and I are the ones who need to change our ways and thoughts, to embrace the ways and the thoughts of God (Isaiah 55:9-11). It is for our own good that God does not change, for if He starts changing, the enemy will destroy us. Let us not allow the enemy to destroy us, because we rejected the knowledge of the scriptures that was freely delivered to us, and decided to walk in the imagination or the stubbornness of our heart; for God says: My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. [The second set of God’s people who are destroyed is] Because they have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you from being priest to Me. Since they have forgotten the Law of their God, I will also forget their sons, even I (Hosea 4:6). And we see how later Samson was rejected: God was no longer working with him to defeat the philistines, and they prevailed over him. We see also how God rejected Eli’s sons, and refused to give the twelve tribes of Israel to the son of Solomon.
Most of the time when we say to that born again person, who said that God told him or her to marry an unsaved person, to wait until the person gives His life to Christ; he or she is not willing to do so! He or she runs away, and goes to get married at the registry. As Christians we need to invite Jesus to our wedding, not just as one of the guests but as the master or Lord of the wedding feast! And if He is truly the master or Lord of our wedding feast, then we will do everything according to His written word; for Jesus Christ and His word are one; He is the Word of God (John 1;1, Revelation 19:13). My prayer is, that you, as a born again Christian, will not invite Jesus to your wedding feast as one of the guests, but as the master or Lord of the wedding feast. That couple in John 2 had Jesus as one of the guests, not as the master or Lord of the wedding feast.
Invite Jesus as the master or Lord of your wedding feast
The master or lord of the wedding feast, according to the Jewish traditional wedding feast, was, most of the time a chaplain or clergyman who was invited to the wedding feast, to join the couple in holy matrimony, and pronounce the seven blessings over the couple. Sheva Brachot is the Hebrew word for The seven blessings! The master or lord of the wedding feast, or clergyman, must first of all bless and drink the wine before it is served to all the other guests! That is why Jesus told the servants: Fill the water pots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. And He said to them, Now draw out and carry it to the master of the feast. And they carried it (John 2:7-8). The lord or master of the wedding feast, who is the clergyman blessed the wine, and tasted it first, and then blessed the meal for the guests to eat and start the celebration.
The master or lord of the wedding feast, who is the clergyman, must pronounce the Sheva Brachot or the Seven Blessings over the married couple. Seven is the number of perfection, so the idea was to pronounce seven blessings that pertain to life and godliness over the couple, joined in holy matrimony, for Peter tells us: Grace and peace be multiplied to you, through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, according as His divine power has given to us, all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who has called us to glory and virtue, through which He has given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, so that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (2Peter 1:2-4).
I, Gery from the bottom of my heart, pronounce these seven blessings over your couple.
- May the Lord Jesus bless your wine! Be glad then, son and daughter of Zion, and rejoice in Jehovah your God. For He has given you the former rain according to righteousness, and He will cause the rain to come down for you, the former rain and the latter rain in the first month. And the floors shall be full of wheat, and the vats shall overflow with wine and oil (Joel 2:23-24). May God give you beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the mantle of praise for the spirit of heaviness; so that you as a couple might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of Jehovah, that He might be glorified in you and in your marriage. And you will build the old wastes, you will raise up the ruins of former times. And you will repair the waste cities, the ruins of many generations (Isaiah 61:3-4).
- God bless your marital bed. And God says to you, Be fruitful, and multiply and fill the earth, and subdue it. And have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the heavens, and all the animals that move upon the earth (Genesis 1:28). Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is His reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. Happy are you as a couple because the Lord makes your quiver full of them: you shall not be ashamed, but you shall speak with the enemies in the gate (Psalm 127:3-5). Be blessed above all people. There shall not be male or female barren among you or among your cattle. And Jehovah will take away from you all sickness, and will allow none of the evil diseases known to mankind to come upon you (Deuteronomy 7:14-15). Nothing shall cast their young or suffer miscarriage, nor be barren in your land. The number of your days I will fulfil (Exodus 23:26).
- All your children shall be taught of Jehovah; and great shall be the peace of your children. In righteousness you shall be established; you shall be far from oppression; for you shall not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come near you (Isaiah 54:13-14). You shall call on The Lord, and He will answer you; He will be with you in trouble; He will deliver you, and honour you. With long life He will satisfy you, and show you His salvation (Psalm 91:15-16). The numbers of your days shall be one hundred and twenty years (Genesis 6:3). You shall be blessed with sons and daughters, may you be pleasing to his brothers and sisters, and may you dip your foot in oil. Your shoes shall be iron and bronze. And as your days, so shall your strength be (Deuteronomy 33:24-25).
- May there be peace and love between you and your in-laws; as Ruth said to Naomi: Do not beg me to leave you, to return from following after you. For where you go, I will go. Where you stay, I will stay. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God (Ruth 1:16). May there be intimacy and transparency in your coupling in everything that pertains to life and godliness as it is written about Adam and Eve: they were both naked, the man and his wife; and they were not ashamed (Genesis 2:25). May you prosper in all things that pertain to life and godliness and be in health just as your souls prosper (3John 1:2).
- May you train up your children in the Lord Jesus, so that when they grow, they will not depart from the Lord Jesus (Proverbs 22:6). May Christ Jesus, who is the light of the world, abide in each one of you, and may He shine through you so that your light will be seen by all men (Matthew 5:14-15). May the foundation of your marriage be on Christ Jesus the Rock, and on being doers of His written word, in everything that pertains to life and godliness (Luke 6:46-49). Husband, receive the grace of God, to so love your wife as Christ Jesus loves the church, and gave Himself for her, and may you dwell with her with understanding (Ephesians 5:23, 1Peter 3:7). Wife receive the grace to be subject to your husband, as long as what he is asking is in accordance to the written word of God, as the church is subject to Christ, honour and respect him according to the word of God (Ephesians 5:24, 1Peter 3:5-6). Receive the grace, in honour preferring one another, and to speak truth to one another in love (Romans 12:10, Ephesians 4:15).
- May you become rich; for you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, for your sakes He became poor, in order that you might be made rich through His poverty (2Corinthians 8:9). The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine, says Jehovah of Hosts. The glory of this latter house shall be greater than that of the former, says Jehovah of Hosts. And in this place I will give peace, says Jehovah of Hosts (Haggai 2:8-9). Jehovah your God blesses you as He promised you. And you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow. And you shall reign over many nations, but they shall not reign over you (Deuteronomy 15:6). May the Lord your God give you great and good cities which you did not build, and houses full of every good thing which you did not fill, and wells which are dug, but which you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant, and you shall eat and be full (Deuteronomy 6:10-11).
- May you, your children and your children’s children serve the Lord Jesus Christ with singleness of heart, all the days of your life and be His disciples. May you and your household be like David, the man after God’s heart who said: One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple (Psalm 27:4). Now may The LORD bless you, and keep you: The LORD make His face shine upon you, and be gracious unto you: The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace. In the mighty name of Jesus, Amen (Numbers 6:24-26)!
When you choose the person, who will be the master, or lord of your wedding feast, please choose a minister of the gospel, that will not allow the imagination, or the stubbornness of your heart, to push you to disobey the written Word of God, and go ahead marrying an unsaved person. The minister of the gospel, presiding over your wedding ceremony, only represents Jesus if he or she stands on the written word of God. Jesus is so gentle, that He will come to your wedding even though He is not the Master or Lord of the wedding feast. But just like for this couple in John 2, when they were in trouble, their master of the feast could do nothing to help them; they had to call Jesus. Sometimes people are so ashamed of their wrong decisions, that they even send a middle man or middle women to talk to Jesus, on their behalf. But Jesus is compassionate and still helps them. My prayer is that Jesus will not be a mere guest at your wedding ceremony; but the Master or Lord of the wedding feast. So that when something goes wrong, you can boldly go to Him, and not use a middle man or middle woman; because you know you did not honour Jesus, by making Him Lord or Master of your wedding feast.
Therefore, if a born again Christian says God told him or her to marry an unsaved person, we will tell him or her: if it is truly God, then you should pray that that person will become born again. And when that person becomes born again, He needs to be discipled at the same time as the marriage counselling goes on! Some churches will ask that the couple should go for marriage counselling, for six months before they join them in holy matrimony. It is to teach them what they need to know about the will of God for marriage! But that period of counselling, is also used to determine, whether the people are truly born again Christians, and straighten some of their beliefs and understanding of salvation. Sometimes it is not possible to have marriage counselling for six months, because the people live in different cities or different countries. But the minister of God must meet that person, even if it is just for a month, and talk and pray with that person to determine if he or she is truly born again.
At the end of the day, it is the choice of the minister of the gospel, to either accept or refuse to join the people in holy matrimony, if he thinks that one of them is not born again! The minister of the gospel should not refuse to join the people in holy matrimony, because of his personal prejudices about a group of people, or because he is influenced by the parents of the bride or the groom, not to join them; but only if he has the testimony in his spirit, and according to written word of God, that one of them is not born again! Some pastors will side with the parents of the bride or the groom, who are his church members, to discourage and refuse to join the people in holy matrimony! As a minister of the gospel, you should not be manipulated by anyone, and above all you should not twist and break the word of God, to please your church members!
Paul tells us: Let love be without dissimulation or hypocrisy. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good (Romans 12:9). When the minister of the gospel, doing the marriage counselling discovers or the Holy Spirit tells him, that one of the parties is just using the other, and does not truly love, he can cancel the wedding too. Not everybody in church is genuinely born again; some people have evil motives when they want to marry a person. In the Western world we have the problem of immigration. God is not against people marrying, even if they do not have immigration status in that country. In some churches we married illegal immigrants and blessed them. Why should children of God, who genuinely love each other, live in sexual sin, because they do not have a status in the land? We blessed them in holy matrimony, and when God delivered them from their immigration issues, they registered their marriage with the authorities.
But there are also people who are so wicked, they do not love the person at all, but they just want to use the person to get a status in the land, and the moment they have their status they divorce! A brother with immigration issues, was hunting desperate women promising them marriage; so in the church he attended, the pastor wanted to marry them in three months. God has nothing against that wedding if the man genuinely loves the woman. But as the story developed, it was discovered that the man was dating three women at the same time. He did not truly love that lady, he was just after a status in the land, and any gullible woman would do, and any spiritually blind minister of the gospel would join them!
He was sleeping with them, which genuine born again Christians do not do, according to the scriptures (1Corinthians 6:9-10, Hebrews 13:4). The person who marries you, must be able to answer this question: Am I, He or she, that should come into your life, or, do you still look for another (Luke 7:19)? If a person is dating many other women or men at the same time, do not waste your time. When He or she is sure, that you are the only one for them, then you can consider wedding. When people already have an alternative plan, in case you did not say yes to them, then it is not worth it; when they have made up their mind, and made utter riddance of their alternative plans, then you can consider marrying them. You are not the fifth wheel of the car; you are fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of God, and the works of God’s hand are perfect. Do not look down on yourself, God has someone for you, in whose eyes you are the one to come, and he is no longer looking for another (Psalm 139:14, Luke 7:19).
I would rather tell you the full counsel of the written word of God in love, than break it to please you. You might hate me for not breaking the word of God, and making the exception for you; but Paul says: For now do I persuade men, or God? [I am trying to persuade you by demonstrating the counsel of the Lord from the written Word of God.] Or do I seek to please men? [I am not being rude or harsh in my words by not accepting the imagination or the stubbornness of your heart; but I am telling the truth of the written Word of God in love; for by so doing I please the Godhead who sent me] For if I yet pleased men, I would not be a servant of Christ. And, brothers, I make known to you, the gospel which was preached by me, that it is not according to man. For I did not receive it from man, nor was I taught it except by a revelation of Jesus Christ (Galatians 1:10-12).
A dear sister who backslid, got impregnated by a Muslim man; she had a beautiful daughter. She came back to the Lord, and she understood that she should not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. The pastor told her, that if she wanted, she could marry someone else who was born again. And many genuine born again Christians approached her. But she said no; she believed God would convert her ex-boyfriend. She waited almost eight years for him to give his life to Christ. They fell in love again and two years later they got married. She had had a child with the guy, as she did not want to have children with different men. So she cried out to the Lord to save her ex-boyfriend. She was free to marry someone else who was a believer; but she chose to wait!
Sometimes when Christians have backslidden, and as a result of the work of their flesh, a baby is now involved; we need to consider the child! One needs to pray and ask direction from the Lord. If that man does not object to the Christian faith of the sister; we say to the sister after praying: do you want to marry this man and raise up your child or children together? If the sister says yes, then we call the man and tell him that he ought to marry the sister for the sake of the child or children they have together. But if you backslide and have no child or children with that person, as a result of the work of your flesh, when you come to the Lord; find a person that is born again! Some Christians have backslidden on purpose to marry; to force the hand of their pastor. For they knew, if they had brought that unsaved man or woman to church for marriage, the pastor would have objected to joining them in holy matrimony. So they went ahead and married in the registry without telling their pastor, or they travelled to their country of origin and married and then came back to church six months later.
They think they are wiser than the minister of God and wiser than God! You have made your bed; you will have to lie in it! I know a sister who did it in her church; she backslid on purpose and went to marry a man in her country, and came back to church six month later. When she was now in trouble, she ran to the pastors to help her fix the marriage, or help her to divorce. The pastors told her to stay in that marriage, for the unsaved husband she got, was not forbidding her to practice Christianity. So she backslid on purpose again, and divorced that man; that marriage did not even last one year! She was so ashamed that she stopped attending church; to this day, I do not know if she has come back to the Lord Jesus! Do not play God, by disobeying Him on purpose; you will destroy your own life.
In some traditions, marriage is very expensive; so genuine born again Christians, sometimes fall into sexual sin, while waiting for years to gather the money for the dowry. Many times we just even do a blessing in the house of the couple with the minister of the gospel, two witnesses, the bride and the groom; and of course they sign the registry at the town hall. It is not about the number of guests who attend, or about the fancy wedding gown and suit, or the expensive wedding rings; it is about receiving the blessing of your Father in Heaven, for your holy matrimony! So if you are two born again Christians, and desire to get married; but do not have the money for all the pageantries; get married in your house or the pastor’s office, by the minister of the gospel, and sign the registry; but do not live in sin; for fornicators and adulterers God will Judge; and we know that they have no part in the kingdom of God (Hebrews 13:4, 1Corinthians 6:9-10).
If you, who are already a believer, decide against the counsel of the scriptures, to marry an unbeliever, you might end up compromising your faith. I said to a born again sister who was dating an unsaved person: the past twenty years, how many men has your heart fallen in love with? And she did not answer me! Before you were a born again Christian, or if you backslid like brother Gery, you might have liked or loved a couple of people. And if you are divorced, you loved that man or that wife when you married her or him. Yet you ended up divorcing! The love that the world knows, is mainly based on emotions, feelings, senses; but you and I, born again Christians, God calls us not to walk by those emotions, feelings and sight, but by faith (2Corinthians 5:7); not that Christians do not have emotions, feelings and sights; but they are not the only criteria for our decision making.
We Christians have those emotions, those feelings and those sights too, but the main criterion for our decision making, is faith and our faith is based on the counsel of the scriptures, for faith only comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17). And our faith works through love, even the Love that God shed abroad in our heart, when we received Jesus as our Lord and Saviour (Romans 5:5, Galatians 5:6). It is the lie of the devil that makes you think, that if you trust God to find a born again Christian for you; he or she will not be the desire of your heart and of your eyes! Sarah and Rebecca were so beautiful that Abraham and Isaac had to lie, and say they were not their wives, for fear that they would be killed and their wives taken (Genesis 12, Genesis 20 and Genesis 26). Isaac whole heartedly believed God for his wife! He never saw Rebecca before the wedding day, and he never saw her picture. Read Genesis 24 about the wedding of Isaac and Rebecca and pray also for God to guide you in your choice of spouse.
God says to each one of us: The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it (Jeremiah 17:9)? God is the only one who knows the heart of men and women; for He created mankind. As long as you act on the counsel of the written word of God, you will not fall into the hands of a wicked man or wicked woman as your spouse; for the Word of God is living and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing apart of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight, but all things are naked and opened to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do (Hebrews 4:12-13).
And in the area of Marriage, God has for you a man or a woman that is after His own heart. He tells us: Jehovah has sought Him a man or a woman after His own heart (1Samuel 13:14). I have found him or her to be a man or a woman after My own heart, who shall fulfil all My will (Acts 13:22). If you decide to choose for yourself a person who is not born again, you might find the flesh of your flesh, meaning someone that you fancy, good looking, etc. But God, on top of giving you someone you fancy and good looking; He wants to give you also the bone of your bone, meaning someone that was ordained by God before the foundation of the world, to help you fulfil your God given destiny.
Adam gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field. But there was not found a suitable helper for Adam. And Jehovah God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept. And He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh underneath. And Jehovah God made the rib (which He had taken from the man) into a woman. And He brought her to the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh. She shall be called Woman because she was taken out of man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and they shall be one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife; and they were not ashamed (Genesis 2:20-25).
God seeks godly offspring through your marriage
Marriage is not just about you, it is also about the children. God says: And this is a second thing you have done, covering the altar of Jehovah with tears, weeping, and groaning, yet not facing toward the food offering, and taking it with delight from your hand. Yet you say, Why? Because Jehovah has been witness between you and the wife of your youth, against whom you have dealt treacherously; yet she is your companion and your covenant wife. And did He not make you one? Yet the vestige of the Spirit is in him. And what of the one? He was seeking a godly seed. Then guard your spirit, and do not act treacherously with the wife of your youth (Malachi 2:13-14).
When you are not married to a born again Christian; the way you decide to bring up children becomes an issue. The husband, if he is the one not saved in the couple, can say to you: “I do not object that you continue to be a Christian; but I do not want my children to have anything to do with your Christianity”. Or he can say: “I am a Muslim and none of my children will be a Christian”. I met a wonderful sister; her mother, who was a Christian, married a Muslim against her pastor’s advice. The man refused that his children should be taught the bible, or go to church; so all his children were ordered to go to the mosque. The mother said to her children: “I cannot disobey your father, but I trust God and I am praying for you, that when you come out of this house, you will become Christian like me”. God is a family God; Joshua said: And if it seems evil to you to serve Jehovah, choose this day, whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served Beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you live. But as for me and my house, we will serve Jehovah (Joshua 24:15).
When Jesus Christ visited Abraham with two other angels, before the destruction of Sodom, He said to the two other angels with Him: “shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? Because I have known him in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice, that the Lord may bring to Abraham what He has spoken (Genesis 18:17-19).” So God is clear: He knew Abraham, and in order for him to disciple all his children and children’s children, God refers to Himself to Moses, as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (Exodus 3:6).
God is interested in making disciples of your children, and your grandchildren, and for every house to become a house of prayer for all nations (Isaiah 56:7). He is after the three generations: parents, children and grandchildren. Moses from his encounter with the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, understood that he should not make the mistake of leaving the children in bondage in Egypt, and only be content with the freedom of the adults to go and worship God. After the Lord had plagued Egypt, Pharaoh was still trying to negotiate with Moses. Pharaoh called unto Moses and said: Go serve the LORD; only let your flocks and your herds be stayed: let your little ones also go with you. And Moses said: you must give us also sacrifices and burnt offerings, that we may sacrifice unto the LORD our God. Our cattle also shall go with us; there shall not a hoof be left behind; for thereof must we take to serve the LORD our God; and we know not, with what we must serve the LORD, until we come thither (Exodus 10:24-26).
So Moses fought until He also got the release of their little ones! Unfortunately some Christians would spend more time fasting and praying for their finances and business, than for the salvation of their children. Jesus says: For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul (Mark 8:36)? Yes, we pray for our children to succeed in their academics, in their careers and to do well financially; these things can be likened to the herds and cattle of the Hebrews in Egypt. And God knows you and your children have need of those things, for our life here on earth.
Yet our children can have all those worldly things, but lose their soul! God wants our children and grandchildren to serve him as well. Moses made sure that the little ones were freed too, before fighting for the worldly possessions: cattle and herds. Jesus tells us: Therefore take no thought, saying: what shall we eat? Or: what shall we drink? Or: Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these [worldly] things do the Gentiles seek🙂 for your heavenly Father knows that you have need of all these things. You who are born again do not be like the unsaved, but seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for tomorrow: for tomorrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof (Matthew 6:31-34).
My prayer is, that our priorities will be set right in our life and in the life of our children and grandchildren. God is interested in whom we marry, and whom our children and grandchildren marry. For just like Jesus explained to the two other angels in Genesis 18:17-19, if our children and grandchildren do not serve Him the way we served the Lord, some of the promises God spoke to us, will not come to pass. For some of the promises of God, are generational. Esau who was the first born, despised his birth-right and sold it. He forfeited the blessing of Abraham in his life, and His brother Jacob took it. The sons of Eli also did not walk before the Lord like their father Eli did, so they were removed from the priesthood (1Samuel 2 and 1Samuel 4). Samuel’s sons also did not walk in the ways of their father Samuel, so they were removed from judging Israel, and God in His anger gave a king to Israel (1Samuel 8).
When we are talking about children, we are also talking about disciples; for they are spiritual children. If you want God to entrust you with many disciples, and perform the same miracles He does through you: you must command your disciples, or spiritual children, to observe all that God commanded you, according to the written word of God. For God does not just want to do those mighty works through you, He wants to do them through your disciples too. Someone will say: the word command is too strong! Well, take it up with Jesus not with Gery; for He said of Abraham: I have known him in order that he may command his children [in our case disciples who are children in the faith according to 1Timothy 1:2, 2Timothy 1:2 and 1Corinthians 4:15] and his household after him, that they keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice, that the Lord may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him (Genesis 18:19).
When Jesus sent us to make disciples, who are children in the faith, He tells us a similar thing, saying: All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go therefore, and teach or make disciples [children in the faith] all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen (Matthew 28:18-20). In the bible Jesus commanded us to do some things; we must also teach the same commands to our disciples. We must always be able to show it from the scriptures; if we are not able to do so, then the disciple should wait until we can demonstrate it, by the testimony of two or three scriptures (Genesis 41:32, Deuteronomy 19:15, Matthew 18:16 and 2Corinthians 13:1).
Of course people are free moral agents; they have the choice to obey or disobey the command of our Lord Jesus. The Sons of Eli offered sacrifices and burnt incenses in the temple, so did the sons of Samuel. Samuel said, Has the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, He has also rejected thee from being king (1Samuel 15:22-23). The Lord explains to Hosea, saying: for I desired mercy and loyalty to My precept [a precept is a command or a mandate in writing] and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings (Hosea 6:6).
Ephraim [one of My people] is oppressed and broken in judgment; because he willingly walked by human precept, instead of walking by God’s precept, and remaining loyal to it (Hosea 5:11). It is the same thing today: Christians want to be conformed to the world, that lies under the influence of the devil, instead of being conformed to the image of Christ Jesus as God predestined (Romans 12:1-12, 1John 5:19, Romans 8:29). That is why God says: My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being priest for Me (Hosea 4:5). Yes, God rejected king Saul from being king over Israel, He rejected the sons of Eli from being priests and He rejected the sons of Samuel from being Judges over Israel. God said: they, the people, do not direct their deeds toward turning to their God, for the spirit of harlotry is in their midst, and they do not know the Lord (Hosea 5:4). For John tells us: this is how we know that we have come to know the Lord if we keep His commands (1John 2:3). Knowing the Lord has nothing to do with being able to quote the whole bible like a parrot; but keeping the Lord’s commands or precepts. And God promised Daniel saying: the people who know the Lord their God [meaning the people who keep the command of the Lord their God] shall be strong and carry out mighty exploits (Daniel 11:32).
The blessings of God are for your family, not just for you; but for your children and your grandchildren. God called Abraham and blessed him, but He also called Isaac his son, and Jacob his grandson. God commands us, saying: Only take heed to yourself and keep your soul carefully, lest you forget the things which your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. But teach them to your sons, and your sons’ sons (Deuteronomy 4:9). Hear, O, Israel. Jehovah our God is one Jehovah. And you shall love Jehovah your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. And these words which I command you this day, shall be in your heart. And you shall carefully teach them to your sons, and shall talk of them, when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise up. And you shall bind them for a sign upon your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. And you shall write them upon the posts of your house, and on your gates (Deuteronomy 6:4-9).
God tells us: Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it (Proverbs 22:6). It is not the will of God for you to let your children go to the temple of an idol, or not to be introduced to the Lord in their early age; and waiting until they are an adult, and have left the house, to find the Lord for themselves! Your house, which is now the house of God, is supposed to be a house of prayer for all nations (Isaiah 56:7). Jesus tells us: And why do you call Me Lord, Lord, and do not do what I say? Whoever comes to Me and hears My Words, and does them, I will show you to whom he is like. He is like a wise man, who built a house and dug deep and laid the foundation on a rock; and a flood occurring, the stream burst against that house and could not shake it; for it was founded on a rock. But he who hears and does not perform, is like a fool who built a house on the earth without a foundation, on which the stream burst, and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great (Luke 6:46-49).
You want to build your house; you will need the Rock as a foundation. Christ Jesus is that Rock, even the Rock of our salvation (1Corinthians 10:4, Psalm 95:1, Deuteronomy 32:15, Psalm 89:26); that Christ Jesus who is the Rock, dwells in all born again Christians and He is the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27). When Moses struck the Rock, water came out of that Rock; the waters are the water of the word of God, and of the Holy Spirit, that flow out of the belly of every born again Christian (John 6:63, John 7:37-39). Jesus who is the Rock is one with His word (John 1:1, Revelation 19:13). So if you are truly building your house of Jesus who is the Rock, you will not only need to receive Jesus as your Saviour, but also as your Lord, so that you will do what He says in His written word, concerning everything that pertains to your life and your godliness, and the life and the godliness of your children and children to come. On both houses, the stream burst against it: so unsaved couples and saved couples go through the same challenges of marriage: finances, education of children, health, in-laws, career, faith, etc.
The only reason the first house does not fall, is because it is built on the foundation that is Christ Jesus the Rock: the couple who received Christ Jesus, not just as their Saviour, to be born again and have eternal life; but also as their Lord, so that they are doers of the word of God and not hearers only deceiving themselves (James 1:22). The reason that some born again couples divorce, is because one or the two decides to act contrary to the written word of God; so they have Jesus as their Saviour, but they do not have Him as their Lord. So why do you want to make your life miserable, by marrying an unsaved person? you are building your house on the sand! Whatever Jesus tells us to do, it is because He knows best and has our best interest at heart; thus henceforth, trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not unto your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Be not wise in your own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil (Proverbs 3:5-7). For truly His word is a lamp unto your feet, and a light unto your path (Psalm 119:105). Through His word He wants to instruct you and teach you in the way which you shall go: He will guide you with His eye (Psalm 32:8).
In February 2015, Sister Louise sent me a text message, asking me to explain a scripture she read.
Exodus 4:24 And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the LORD met him [Moses], and sought to kill him.
Exodus 4:25 Then Zipporah [Moses’ wife] took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely you are husband of blood to me.
Exodus 4:26 So He [God] let him [Moses] go: then she said, you are a husband of blood; because of the circumcision.
Sister Louise asked: why was God trying to kill Moses? He had just sent him to deliver His people, as it is written: The Lord said to Moses, When you go to return into Egypt, see that you do all those wonders which I have put in your hand before Pharaoh; but I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go. And you shall say to Pharaoh, Thus says the Lord: Israel is My son, My first-born. And I say to you, Let My son go, that he may serve Me. And if you refuse to let him go, behold, I am going to kill your son, your first-born (Exodus 4:21-23).
I know many of you have read that passage of the scripture and did not understand why would God try to kill Moses? Why not kill his uncircumcised son? Now we know that circumcision is of the heart, by the Spirit of the Lord, and not of the flesh and letters; the fleshly circumcision is just a sign of what has happened spiritually (Romans 2:29). Even Moses understood what the spiritual significance of the physical circumcision was, saying: the Lord your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants [children], [why?] so that you may love Him with all your heart and with all your soul and live (Deuteronomy 30:6). The true circumcision is not of the flesh; for it is we, born again Christians, who are the circumcision, we who serve God by the Spirit, who boast in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh (Philippians 3:3). For in Christ Jesus you and I, born again Christians, were also circumcised with the circumcision not performed by human hands. Our whole self, ruled by the flesh was put off when we were circumcised by Christ (Colossians 2:11).
So Moses had the understanding that receiving the physical circumcision was a prophetic sign, that a person received Christ Jesus in his or her heart. And God was not merely interested in the parents being circumcised, but He wanted their children to be circumcised also. (Genesis 17:11-13, Deuteronomy 30:6, Acts 7:8). Moses had neglected to circumcise his own son. God held Moses responsible for not circumcising his son, and wanted to kill Moses. How many people preach the gospel to other people, but neglect the salvation of their own children. Moses was of that category. He talked with his wife Zipporah about the ways of His God; yet he neglected to see to it, that his own son was saved, even circumcised. When God wanted to kill Moses, Zipporah knew exactly what the reason was, and what she was to do. She took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son. Moses was in the covenant of God, but he neglected to make sure that His son was in the covenant too. She said, You are a husband of blood, because of the circumcision.
Why is God so concerned about our children being born again, which is the circumcision of the heart? Why He is so concerned that though they are born again, we should also command them to observe the same things he commanded us? Why is God so concerned about born again Christians, not marrying unsaved people? Moses married a Midianite wife, who was not part of the Covenant of Abraham. He was unequally yoked with unsaved people. And most of the time, when you marry an unbeliever, you compromise your walk of faith.
Moses had two sons: Gershom and Eliezer (Exodus 2:21-25, 1Chronicles 23:15). Zipporah was a daughter of Jethro or Reuel, a priest of Midian. Jethro was not a priest of God, but of the idols of Midian. When you marry unbelievers, you can compromise your faith, and divide the children, among the different idols of the house. You will say: Gershom since he is my firstborn, I will circumcise him, and he will serve God like me. Eliezer my second born, I will not circumcise him; for peace sake in the home, so that my wife is pleased. He will serve the gods of Midian of my wife, and when he is grown up, he can choose for himself to be saved. Notice in that Exodus 4:24-26, Zipporah had only one son who was uncircumcised. God says: Behold, all souls are Mine. As the soul of the father, also the soul of the son, they are Mine (Ezekiel 18:4). So Moses, I do not just want you to be circumcised, I also want all your descendants to be circumcised in heart, even born again! I do not want to share any of your children’s souls with the devil; I want them to be in the same blood covenant with Me, as you are!
The first time God destroyed the world with the flood; it all started, when the children of God were marrying the people who were not in the covenant with God. Moses who wrote the book of Genesis, tells us how it all started before the flood in the days of Noah. And it happened, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and when daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were good. And they took wives for themselves from all whom they chose. And the Lord said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, in his erring; he is flesh. Yet his days shall be a hundred and twenty years. There were giants in the earth in those days. And also after that, when the sons of God came into the daughters of men, and they bore to them, they were mighty men who existed of old, men of renown. And the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the Lord repented that He had made man on the earth, and He was angry to His heart. And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created, from the face of the earth, both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air. For I repent that I have made them (Genesis 6:1-7).
Now the sons of God here, do not refer to angels of God or fallen angels, which are but demons; for angels do not procreate between themselves or with humans. Jesus explains it and says: Do you not err because of this, not knowing the Scriptures, nor the power of God? For when they shall rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but they are as the angels in Heaven. And as regards the dead, that they rise, have you not read in the book of Moses how God spoke to him in the Bush, saying, “I am the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob?” He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living. Therefore you greatly err (Mark 12:24-27). Angels and demons are spirits and spirits do not procreate (Hebrews 1:13-14, Matthew 22:30).
Even when we have the satanic phenomenon of the husband or wife of the night, as explained in the bible study: “David’s sexual sin exposed”; it is a demonic oppression and possession of that person. The baby is conceived naturally when a man and a woman come together and know each other; and a demon who is a spirit enters the baby from the womb to demonize him. But the demon did not make the woman pregnant; the man did! So the sons of God, can also extend to the daughters of God, and are human beings, who are in covenant with God, even the lineage of Seth, the son of Adam, whom God gave to replace Abel, whom Cain murdered (Genesis 4).The sons of men, and we can extend it to the daughters of men, are humans who are not in the covenant with God, those are of the lineage of Cain. In Luke 3 when they put the genealogy of Jesus, they trace it back to Seth the son of Adam, the son of God (Luke 3:38).
The sons of God started to be unequally yoked with the daughters of men; the daughters of God also started to be unequally yoked with the sons of men. The bible tells us: do not be deceived, evil company corrupts good habits (1Corinthians 15:33). The sons and daughters of God learned the wicked ways of men. The first thing God thought of, was to shorten their life span; for prior to that, people were living sometimes up to 950 years (Genesis 5). God said: My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, for he is indeed flesh; yet his days shall be one hundred and twenty years (Genesis 6:3). Yet it did not change a lot of things: they went from bad to worse. And Jehovah saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And Jehovah repented that He had made man on the earth, and He was angry to His heart. And Jehovah said, I will destroy man whom I have created, from the face of the earth, both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air. For I repent that I have made them (Genesis 6:5-7).
My brother and sister do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. If you are already married to an unbeliever do not divorce him or her; read 1Corinthians 7 and apply it in your marriage. Teach your children the ways of the Lord, and let them not make the mistakes you have made. God is interested in our children, He wants all souls to serve Him. Joshua could say to the congregation he led to the promised land, saying: Now, then, fear the Lord, and serve Him in sincerity and truth. And put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt, and serve Jehovah. And if it seems evil to you to serve Jehovah, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served Beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you live. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:14-15).
When we read the account in the book of Job, where the children of God
were assembled with God, and Satan came into their midst as it is written
( Job 1:6-12)
Job 1:6 And a day came when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord. And Satan also came among them.
Job 1:7 And the Lord said to Satan, From where do you come? Then Satan answered the Lord and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
Job 1:8 And the Lord said to Satan, Have you set your heart against My servant Job, because there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and upright man, one who fears God and turns away from evil?
Job 1:9 And Satan answered the Lord and said, does Job fear God for nothing?
Job 1:10 Have You not made a hedge around him, and around his house, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his livestock have increased in the land.
Job 1:11 But put forth Your hand now, and touch all that he has, and he will curse You to Your face.
Job 1:12 And the Lord said to Satan, Behold, all that he has is in your power. Only do not lay your hand upon him. And Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord.
The sons of God here, are the righteous men and women, just like the genealogy of Jesus was traced back to Seth, the son of Adam, and Adam the son of God in Luke 3:38. Angels are not sons of God, but servant spirits or ministering spirits, sent forth to minister to the sons of God, we have become through Christ Jesus (Heb 1:13-14)
Heb 1:13 But to which of the angels, did He say at any time, “Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies Your footstool?”
Heb 1:14 Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation?
and Revelation 19:9-10)
Rev 19:9 Then he said to me, Write, Blessed are those who have been called to the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he said to me, These are the true sayings of God.
Rev 19:10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said to me, See, that you do not do it! I am your fellow servant, and of your brothers who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God, for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
Angels do not sit in the presence of God, but stand, for they are servants. We are sons of God, we sit in the presence of God at His right hand, with our elder brother Jesus Christ. As Paul taught us in Ephesians.
Eph 2:5 even when we were dead in sins, has made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),
Eph 2:6 and has raised us up together and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
A sister asked me, saying: how can the Satan come into the place where God is meeting with His sons? I had already explained to her according to the Scriptures that the sons of God are the righteous, not angels. I said to her let us read Luke 4:1-13
Luk 4:1 Then Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness
Luk 4:2 being tempted for forty days by the devil. And in those days He ate nothing, and afterward when they had ended He was hungry.
Luk 4:3 And the devil said to Him, If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.
Luk 4:4 But Jesus answered him, saying, It is written “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word of God.”
Luk 4:5 Then the devil, leading Him up on a high mountain, showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time.
Luk 4:6 And the devil said to Him, All this authority I will give you, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.
Luk 4:7 Therefore if you will worship before me, all shall be yours.
Luk 4:8 And Jesus answered and said to him, Get behind me, Satan! For it is written, “You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve.”
Luk 4:9 then he brought Him to Jerusalem, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to Him, If you are the Son of God, cast yourself down from here.
Luk 4:10 For it is written, “He shall give His angels charge over You, to keep You;
Luk 4:11 and in their hands they shall bear You up, lest You dash Your foot against a stone.”
Luk 4:12 And Jesus answered and said to him, It has been said, “You shall not tempt the Lord your God.”
Luk 4:13 Now when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from Him until an opportune time.
Here Jesus Christ the Son of God, the Righteous one, was led by the Holy God to wait on the Lord God in prayer and fasting, for forty days and forty nights, and look who invited himself? Satan! Satan often invites himself into the gathering of the sons of God, or stands beside them to whisper evil counsels; to accuse us toward God, like he accused Job, to accuse us to ourselves, so that we will walk in guilt and condemnation, and that we have not done enough for God. Or he will accuse other people in our eyes, so that we might hate them and pass judgment on them, and then he stands beside us to resist us, so that the will of God for our life and the people who have been entrusted to us, will not be fulfilled. As it is written in Zechariah 3:1-5.
Zec 3:1 And He showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the Angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to oppose him.
Zec 3:2 And the Lord said to Satan, the Lord rebuke you, Satan! The Lord who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked out of the fire?
Zec 3:3 Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the Angel.
Zec 3:4 Then He answered and spoke to those who stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And to him He said, I have removed your iniquity from you, and I will clothe you with rich robes.
Zec 3:5 And I said, Let them put a clean turban on his head. And they put a clean turban on his head and they put clothes on him. And the Angel of the Lord stood by.
There are times I have been in prayer and communing with God, and the devil invites himself and starts speaking to me even quoting Scriptures like he did with Jesus, and he brings his accusations. I immediately identify that that is not the Holy Ghost nor Jesus, speaking to me but the devil. That is why Jesus tells us: My sheep hear My voice, I know them and they follow Me (John 10:27). I am their shepherd they follow Me, because they know My voice. They will not follow a stranger, even when the devil speaks to them and even quotes Scriptures, they will run from him, because they do not know the voice of strangers John 10:4-5. Please read the bible study on Divine guidance to learn the basics on hearing from the Godhead.
My brothers and sisters, you and I are Protestant Christians, our Bible has only sixty six books. We rejected all the apocryphal and deuterocanonical books for they are not Holy Scriptures. People who teach that the sons of God in the book of Job are angels, cannot demonstrate it from the sixty six books, they take it from the apocryphal and deuterocanonical books, and other books of Jewish mysticism. In the Bible, God only told us the names of three angels: Michael , Gabriel and Lucifer . Lucifer was fired from heaven, as explained in the perfect redemption plan series. Any preacher who gives you the name of other angels, has been reading other books other than the Bible, and it is a demon speaking to him.
I remember talking with my younger brother Nell Malanda over the phone in December 2014. He told me, a couple of years ago, my mother told him that as she was praying to God for her three sons; God spoke to her saying:” they are not your sons, I just gave them to you to train them and bring them up in My ways; they are My sons!” Only God has the right to speak to a parent like that; no man on earth can usurp the authority of parents over their children: no apostle, no prophet, no teacher, no evangelist and no pastor, can dare usurp that authority; but the authority of God over children, is greater than the authority of parents over their own children. Now, was it the voice of God that my mother heard or some strange voice? If it is the voice of God, it will line up with the written word of God; for God always speaks in line with the counsel of the scriptures; that is how we test the spirit and prophecies!
As it is written: Lo, children are the inheritance of The Lord; the fruit of the womb is a reward. As arrows in the hand of a mighty man, so are the sons of the young. Blessed is the man who has his quiver full of them; they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate (Psalm 127:3-5). So children are the inheritance of the Lord, and God rewards us, as parents, if we train them up in the way they should go [which is the way of the Lord]: so that when they are old, they will not depart from it (Proverbs 22:6). God said to Moses: you shall say to Pharaoh, Thus says the Lord: Israel is My son, My first-born (Exodus 4:22). Now Israel is the name God gave to Jacob the son of Isaac (Genesis 32:28). Notice God did not say to Moses: thus says the Lord, Israel is the son of Isaac; but Israel is My son! And the Jews understood it; they reminded Jesus, saying: we have one Father, even God (John 8:41). And in the New covenant, Paul tells every born again Christian: because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father (Galatians 4:6); For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption by which we cry, Abba, Father (Romans 8:15)!
Jesus Christ was born of a virgin woman; so God could have used any single virgin woman in Israel. But to show us the importance God places on family; He made sure that this virgin was betrothed to a righteous man, named Joseph, who feared the Lord and obeyed the Lord’s commands! People truly supposed that Jesus was the son of Joseph (Luke 3:23). But Mary and Joseph were just entrusted by God with the baby Jesus Christ, to train Him up in the way of the Lord! The bible says: Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour your father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise) That it may be well with you, and you may live long on the earth (Ephesians 6:1-3). And this is very true even for the child Jesus; God will not violate His Word; for He has magnified it above His own name (Psalm 138:2).
Therefore the bible tells us:” when Jesus was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem after the custom of the feast. And when they had fulfilled the days, as they returned, the child Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem; and Joseph and his mother knew not of it. But they, supposing him to have been in the company, went a day’s journey; and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance. And when they found him not, they turned back again to Jerusalem, seeking him. And it came to pass, that after three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers. And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why have you thus dealt with us? Behold, your father and I have sought thee sorrowing. And He said unto them, How is it that you sought Me? Do you not know that I must be about My Father’s business? And they understood not the saying which he spoke unto them. And He went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them: but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man” (Luke 2:42-52).
Yes, Mary and Joseph knew what the destiny of Jesus Christ was; but as long as He was still growing up, He had to obey His earthly parents; though God was His Father and had a plan for Him. Joseph and Mary gave Jesus the best training they could, in all things that pertain to life and godliness. Joseph trained Jesus as a carpenter. So God has given you those children to train them, in all things pertaining to life and godliness. Even if you know from your womb, that your son or daughter is called for one of the fivefold ministry gifts; still train him or her in all things that pertain to life and godliness, and he or she must obey you in the Lord, meaning as long as what you are asking him or her to do, is not violating the word of God, he or she must obey you! Jesus obeyed Mary and Joseph. Preaching the word of God is the will of God and the call of Jesus; yet He was only twelve years old; He should not be out there in full time ministry! He could wait for the Sabbath, and share about God on the Sabbath, or during the weekly services.
But when Jesus became of age, He could now go and fully obey the call of His heavenly Father. This is where we have a conflict between our heavenly Father and our earthly parents. For 18 to sometimes 30 years in the case of Jesus, or of brother Gery; our parents trained us up, not just in the ways of the Lord, but also in what pertained to life. And over the years they have lost sight of the fact that those children were first God’s before being theirs; and Joseph and Mary already saw Jesus as a successful carpenter, who would take over the workshop of His father Joseph! Now God was calling His Son to the ministry! When you read the four gospels, you see God always speaking to Joseph about what to do with Mary and Jesus; and you also see God speaking to Mary about Jesus; whether through angels or prophets, God spoke to Mary and Joseph about their union and the life of their son Jesus.
It is such a blessing to have born again parents; it makes it easy for children to obey the call of God in their life; because even if at first, the parents have no peace about it, God will speak to their hearts like He spoke to the heart of Joseph and Mary. Please read the bible study on “Abecedary of Prayer” and pray with your family, and study the scriptures with your family day and night; because God will speak to you as a parent, about the destiny of those children, and sometimes they are too young to handle it. But God will tell you. God revealed to my parents many things about us, and just like Mary pondered many of the prophecies in her heart, so did my parents (Luke 2:19).
Joseph said to Pharaoh: It is not in me: God shall give Pharaoh an answer of peace (Genesis 41:16). When the time comes for children to obey the call of their heavenly Father, over the carpentry training they received from their parents; nobody on earth can convince the parents that they should let their children embark into that adventure with God! No matter how much the children quote scriptures to their parents, to justify their call from God, God will put peace into the hearts of their parents. So it is not you, or any person in the fivefold ministry’s gifts; but God Himself shall give your parents an answer of peace! For many years I always prayed that prayer that, God would speak directly to my parents, especially to my mother. One of the prophecies, that was spoken over Jesus and His parents, is many times over looked by Christians! The bible says: Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (Yes, a sword or spear shall pierce through your own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed (Luke 2:34-35).
Whatever Jesus went through in ministry, His parents indirectly went through it too. With signs and wonders comes persecution and jealousy, even from other believers. You will have enemies among unbelievers and enemies among jealous believers, as we explained in the “Application of the Perfect Redemption Plan”. People will write and tell all sorts of lies about you and against you in papers, on television and on social media. People will believe false rumours about you, even before verifying them, and all your mistakes will be in the public domain for the whole world to comment on. We need to praise Mary and Joseph for their heart for God; they released their son Jesus for ministry; and what kind of ministry! To die for the whole world. He died among thieves, like the worst criminal on earth: hanging naked on a cross. Who on earth wants his or her son to go through that kind of suffering and humiliation, for the sake of the kingdom?
I praise every father and every mother who have released their children for the work of the kingdom of God; because they not only share just in the success of their children in ministry, but also in the pains, shames and humiliations that the world and jealous believers, inflict on their children, for standing on the true gospel, which is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes (Romans 1:16). Yes, the spear that pierced the side of Jesus on that cross and water and blood came out of Him; also pierced the soul of Mary (Luke 2:35, John 19:34). I remember my brother Nell Malanda, telling me in November 2014, that God showed a vision to my mother of her three sons, she told our pastor Jean François Ngemba.
In that vision her three sons were climbing up a mountain, like Moses went on Mount Sinai. One of the sons was carrying a cross that was very big; much higher than his height. He had climbed up almost to the top of the mountain, like Moses went to the top of Mount Sinai to talk face to face with God. That wooden cross her son was carrying, had precious stones on it. That son’s name means: mighty king ruling with a spear of iron (Psalm 2:8-9, Revelation 2:26-27). Truly as a man’s name is so is he (1Samuel 25:25).
The other son was climbing half way up that mountain, like Joshua was following Moses on the mountain. When Moses was on the top of Mount Sinai, Joshua was half way on that mountain (Exodus 24:12-18). He climbed up that mountain carrying a wooden cross the size of his height. That wooden cross also had precious stones on it. The third one was also climbing up the mountain behind the other two. The wooden cross he was carrying, was a small cross that he could even place in his pocket. I will not tell you who received which cross; My brothers and I understood exactly what each cross bestowed on us meant, and what the ministerial meaning was.
Is that vision scriptural? We see the example of Moses and His assistant Joshua climbing Mount Sinai. The Lord said to Moses, Come up to Me in the mountain, and be there. And I will give you tablets of stone, and the Law, and commandments which I have written, so that you may teach them. And Moses rose up, and his attendant Joshua. And Moses went up into the mountain of God. And he said to the elders, you stay here for us until we come again to you. And behold, Aaron and Hur are with you. If any man has any matters to do, let him come to them. And Moses went up into the mountain, and a cloud covered the mountain. And the glory of the Lord abode upon Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days. And the seventh day He called to Moses out of the midst of the cloud. And the sight of the glory of the Lord was like devouring fire on top of the mountain, in the eyes of the sons of Israel. And Moses went into the midst of the cloud, and went up into the mountain. And Moses was in the mountain forty days and forty nights (Exodus 24:12-18).
What about the precious stones on each cross, are they scriptural? Precious stones talk about glory, sharing in the glory of our King Jesus and reigning with Him. Paul tells us: If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us (2Timothy 2:12). That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable to His death; if by any means I might attain to the resurrection of the dead (Philippians 3:10-11). He makes our name great because we followed Him in good times and in bad times, we denied ourselves, we humbled ourselves under the mighty hand of God, and became even of no reputation, so God exalted us (1Peter 5:6).
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Himself the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men. And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God has highly exalted Him, and has given Him a name which is above every name (Philippians 2:5-9). If you choose to willingly walk in the steps of Jesus, like father Abraham and the disciples of Jesus did, God says to you: I will make you a great nation. And I will bless you and make your name great. And you shall be a blessing. And I will bless those that bless you, and curse the one who curses you. And in you shall all families of the earth be blessed (Genesis 12:2-3).
On the breastplate of the high priest, there were twelve precious stones and each stone represented a tribe of Israel. The name of the tribe was engraved on that precious stone (Exodus 28:13-30). The first row of gem stones on that breastplate had the following tribes engraved: sardius or ruby for the tribe of Judah, topaz for the tribe of Issachar and emerald for the tribe of Zebulun. The second row of gem stones on the breastplate: turquoise for Reuben, sapphire for Simeon and diamond for Gad. The third row of gem stones on the breastplate: jacinth or amber for Ephraim, agate for Manasseh and amethyst for Benjamin. And the fourth row of gem stones on the breastplate: beryl for Dan, onyx for Asher and jasper for Naphtali.
So we are precious in the eyes of our God. Peter tells us: you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for possession, so that you might speak of the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness, into His marvelous light (1Peter 2:9). Read the prophecies over each tribe in Genesis 49, Genesis 33 and throughout the bible and you will have the understanding of what God means when He shows you some gem stones or says to you that you are a particular gem stone in His eyes. Truly we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the excellence of the power may be of God, and not of us (2Corinthians 4:4-7).
Jesus said unto His disciples: If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it (Matthew 16:24-25). Paul says: I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me (Galatians 2:20).
Is it scriptural that Jesus will put a bigger cross upon some people, or in other words: entrust some people with much? Jesus says: For the kingdom of heaven is as a Man [Jesus who ascended into heaven and is coming back for the rapture of the church] travelling into a far country, who called His own servants, and delivered unto them His goods. And unto one He gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey [vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text][or He ascended into heaven] (Matthew 25:14-15). Unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more (Luke 12:48).
Moses went higher on Mount Sinai because God bestowed upon him the whole nation of Israel, to deliver them and give them the revelation of the knowledge of God, and the understanding of the ways of God (Exodus 24:12-18). God will require more from people in the office of Apostle and Prophet than those in other offices: Evangelist, pastor and teacher. The apostles and the prophets are the foundation of the church, with Christ Jesus Himself being the chief cornerstone (Ephesians 2:20). The gift of God to the whole world, is His Son Jesus. For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16). The gift of God the Father and Jesus Christ, to the born again, is the Holy Spirit within and upon you. Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father (Galatians 4:6). And behold, I, Jesus, send the promise of My father upon you. But you sit in the city of Jerusalem until you are clothed with power from on high (Luke 24:49).
The gift of Jesus to the Church, which is the body of Christ, is the fivefold ministry gifts. Therefore He says, “When He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive and gave gifts to men.” (Now that He ascended, what is it but that He also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He who descended is the same also as He who ascended up far above all heavens, that He might fill all things.) And truly He gave some to be apostles, and some to be prophets, and some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ. And this until we all come into the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a full-grown man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; so that we no longer may be infants, tossed to and fro, and carried about by every wind of doctrine, in the dishonesty of men, in cunning craftiness, to the wiles of deceit (Ephesians 4:8-14).
Just like Moses went higher on that mountain, to receive a revelation of the word of God, in order to make disciples of all the nations of Israel. So those called into the fivefold ministry gifts, need to have a higher walk of faith, because God wants to reveal His knowledge of Him and His word to them, so that they would pass it on to their disciples. If you want to keep those revelations to yourself, God will not reveal more to you; but if you pass them on, God will reveal more to you. God made His ways known unto Moses but His acts to the children of Israel (Psalm 103:7). For the Lord God will do nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets (Amos 3:7). Not just to prophets but to all in the fivefold ministry gifts; and to any born again who seeks the Lord with all his heart.
And the Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham the thing which I do, And Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the persons of the earth shall be blessed in him? For I know him, that he will command his sons and his house after him, and they shall keep the way of Jehovah, to do justice and judgment, that Jehovah may bring upon Abraham that which He has spoken of him (Genesis 18:17-19). It was Jesus who came to Abraham as He explained to the Jews. Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and He saw and was glad. Then the Jews said to Him, You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham? Jesus said to them, truly, truly, I say to you, Before Abraham came into being, I AM (John 8:56-58)!
Jesus wanted to reveal things to Abraham, because he trusted him to disciple his children and his household after him, to walk in the same steps of Abraham. If you have no intention of making disciples, you will not be having more revelations of the word of God. The same Jesus tells each one of us His disciples, saying: All authority is given to Me in Heaven and in earth. Therefore go and teach all nations, make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things, whatever I commanded you. And, behold, I am with you all the days until the end of the world. Amen (Matthew 28:18-20). Moses explains to us that we are to pass on the revelation of God we have, saying: The secret things belong to Jehovah our God, but the revealed things belong to us and to our sons forever, so that we may do all the words of this Law (Deuteronomy 29:29).
Joshua ran with the revelation of the word of God Moses gave him. Pass on the knowledge of the word of God you have received through these “My Weekly Milk” bible studies. And you will receive more revelation of the word of God. Purpose in your heart to practice the revelation you have received, so that the word will become flesh in you, not just a head knowledge. The next generation, or your disciples, will build upon your revelation of the word of God. And what you did not understand they will seek the face of the Lord and receive the revelation. It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter (Proverbs 25:2). And the Lord God promises through Christ Jesus, saying: Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for everyone who asks receives; and he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks it shall be opened (Matthew 7:7).
Be persistent and whole heartedly desire to find what you seek, receive what you ask and have that door opened. Then you shall call on Me, and you shall go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you shall seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart (Jeremiah 29:12-13). Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and inscrutable things which you do not know (Jeremiah 33:3). As it is written, “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,” nor has it entered into the heart of man, “the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us by His Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God (1Corinthians 2:9-10).
The problem in Christianity is that, the next generation always wants to reinvent the wheel. The wheel was invented 3500 BC; it has been around for about 5500 years. No sane person will try to invent a square wheel or a triangular wheel; for all those other shapes had been tried and found that they did not work. A wheel must be a circle. The devil hates holiness and righteousness. And in every generation he tries to deceive the new generation, telling them: you can enjoy God’s blessing, walking in the power of God, see the glory of God in your life and in your ministrations, without living a holy life.
That is a lie from the pit of hell! It was holiness unto the Lord from Genesis to Revelation; it is still holiness unto the Lord for us in this century, and for the generations to come (Exodus 28:36, Zechariah 14:20). Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14). For it is written: be holy, because I am holy (1Peter 1:16). For I am the Lord and I do not change (Malachi 3:6). Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). He prays for each one of us to the Father, saying: they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them through Your truth. Your Word is truth. As You have sent Me into the world, even so, I have sent them into the world. And I sanctify Myself for their sakes, so that they also might be sanctified in truth (John 17:16-19).
Now think of yourself as being a car. You can be alone in that car or you can carry passengers in your car. If the wheels of your car have a square shape or a triangular shape; no matter how much horse power your engine can produce, your car is going nowhere. The first thing God said to Moses when He appeared to him was: Do not come near here. Pull off your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you stand is holy ground (Exodus 3:5). And whenever Moses was to go upon Mount Sinai to talk with God, or whenever God wanted to come into the midst of the people to talk to Israel, they were to sanctify themselves (Exodus 19, Exodus 24). If a person wants to enjoy fellowship with God he or she will have to willingly choose to live a sanctified life, even practice righteousness.
Again Jesus prays for each one of us to the Father, saying: they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them through Your truth. Your Word is truth. As You have sent Me into the world, even so I have sent them into the world. And I sanctify Myself for their sakes, so that they also might be sanctified in truth (John 17:16-19). Of Jesus it is written: You have loved righteousness and hated iniquity, therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness above Your fellows (Hebrews 1:9).” If you do not willingly choose to hate sin and love righteousness, even holiness; you will not flow in the anointing of the Holy Spirit either. God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, and He went about doing good, and healing all those who were oppressed by the Devil, for God was with Him. And we are witnesses of all things which He did, both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem (Acts 10:38-39).
Isaiah prophesied, saying: Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it (Isaiah 40:4-5). Let us explain it. When you drive from Manchester, England to Glasgow Scotland on the motorway; you will be privileged to admire the beautiful and breathtaking landscape. There are mountains, hills and valleys. On highways or motorways cars drive at a higher speed than in cities. In the city, a car can make a U-turn; you are not allowed to make a U-turn on the motorway; in fact there are railings separating cars coming from the opposite direction. They are there to prevent foolish drivers, who might be tempted to make a U-turn on the motorway, to endanger their life and the life of others.
In Christianity you are no longer living for yourself. You are that car, and you are always spiritually carrying other people along. They are imitating you as you are imitating Christ. That is why for the sake of the people watching around you, you ought to sanctify yourself like Jesus did it, for our sake to give us an example (John 17:16-19). Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit in you, whom you have of God? And you are not your own, for you are bought with a price. Therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s (1Corinthians 6:19-20). Therefore the one teaching another, do you not teach yourself? The one preaching not to steal, do you steal? The one saying not to commit adultery, do you commit adultery? The one detesting idols, do you rob temples? You who boast in Law [in the knowledge of the Holy Scriptures], do you dishonour God through breaking the Law [of the Holy Scriptures]? For the name of God is blasphemed among the nations because of you (Romans 2:21-24).
If you make a U-turn on the motorway it will be deadly, because of the speed at which you are driving. So for your own safety they install railings to prevent you from acting as a fool. What Christians do not understand is, that the commandments God put into the Holy Scriptures, were meant to keep you and people around you safe, to protect us from harm and from harming those who are with us and around us. And the true heart behind the commandments is love. The purpose behind the traffic signs is the same. Now if you act foolishly you will wreck your life and the life of others; even if you do not care about your own life; for the sake of those around you, obey the Holy Scriptures; for you are the only Jesus the world will see.
You are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read by all men, it having been made plain that you are the epistle of Christ, ministered by us, not having been written with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not on tablets of stone, but in fleshly tablets of the heart. And we have such trust through Christ toward God (2Corinthians 3:2-4). Let not my or your lifestyle, be the reason someone is offended and rejects Jesus Christ and blasphemes His name. Whoever shall offend one of these little ones who believes in Me, it would be better for him that an ass’s millstone were hung around his neck, and he be sunk in the depth of the sea (Matthew 18:6). Let us sanctify ourselves for the sake of the people around us, both saved and unsaved people.
What is a spiritual U-turn? It is to backslide. Jesus tells us about the prodigal son who backslid, saying: for this my son was dead and is alive again, he was lost and is found. And they began to be merry (Luke 15:24). Peter says: 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. 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 (2Peter 2:21-22). Paul says: Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draws back, My soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of those who draw back unto perdition; but of those who believe to the saving of the soul (Hebrews 10:38-39).
In the city you can make a 90 degree turn to the left or to the right. But on the motorway, even the Highway of holiness, you are not allowed to make a 90 degree turn either to the left or to the right. Because of the high speed at which you are driving, your car will somersault and you will kill yourself. God told us: only be strong and very courageous, so that you may be careful to do according to all the Law, which My servant Moses commanded you. Do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may act wisely wherever you go. This book of the Law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it by day and by night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall act wisely (Joshua 1:7-8).
And on the motorway, when the road has a sharp turn, though it is not a 90 degree turn to the left or to the right, they know that if you carry on driving at the same high speed, the centrifugal force will take your car off the road, and it will somersault and you might end up injuring yourself, or worse killing yourself and those with you in the car. So they place a traffic sign, indicating that you must slow your speed down. And the other traffic sign they place, is a black and white chevron sign, to indicate a sharp deviation of the route to the left or to the right. The reason they put it in black and white, is to draw your attention to the fact that it is a matter of death and life, good and evil; you need to be very careful and obey what you are being advised to do.
For us spiritually, Moses tells us: Behold! I have set before you today life and good, and death and evil, in that I command you today to love The Lord your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commandments, His statutes and His judgments, so that you may live and multiply. And the Lord your God shall bless you in the land where you go to possess it. But if you turn away your heart, so that you will not hear, but shall be drawn away and worship other gods and serve them, I declare to you today, that you shall surely perish; you shall not prolong your days on the land where you pass over the Jordan to go to possess it. I call Heaven and earth to record today against you. I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing. Therefore, choose life, so that both you and your seed may live, so that you may love the Lord your God, and that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him. For He is your life and the length of your days, so that you may dwell in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give it to them (Deuteronomy 30:15-20).
Paul warns the Christians who are taking sharp deviations to the left or to the right from the Highway of Holiness, that they will die spiritually if they do not stop. Do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor abusers, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God (1Corinthians 6:9-10). John tells us: the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, will have their part in the Lake burning with fire and brimstone, which is the second death (Revelation 21:8).
In the city there are roads in valleys and on hills. On the motorway they fill up that portion of the valley, in which they want the motorway to pass through, or they build a bridge in that valley. They level a hill on which they want the motorway to pass, or they dig a tunnel into the mountain, to make the motorway pass through the mountain. If they do not do that, the cars will jump in the air entering that valley, and coming out of that valley; because of the high speed at which people drive on the motorway; this will result in accidents. The same thing will happen when driving on the mountain or hill; that is why they level it or dig a tunnel through it. No wonder Isaiah said: every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low (Isaiah 40:4).
Now spiritually, those valleys that need filling up or exalting, and those mountains and hills that need to be brought low, are obvious sin in the life of a person, even the sins listed by Paul in 1Corinthians 6:9-10, which are sins leading to death, because they are rooted in idol worship (1John 5:16-21). Paul says: some men’s sins are open beforehand, going before to judgment (1Timothy 5:24). Sexual immoralities are spiritual pits or ditches, even valleys. When you fall into them, you are trapped and become filthy, both spiritually and physically. Flee sexual immoralities. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits fornication, sins against his own body (1Corinthians 6:18). Solomon who fell into them says: the mouth of strange women is a deep pit or a deep ditch; those despised or abhorred by the Lord, shall fall there (Proverbs 22:14). My son, give Me your heart, and let your eyes watch My ways. For a harlot is a deep ditch, and a strange woman is a narrow pit, even a well (Proverbs 23:26-27).
Does the Lord God abhor or despise any person? The answer is no! For God so loved the world [even the wicked and unsaved people] that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him, should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16). Do I actually delight in the death of the wicked? says the Lord Jehovah. Is it not that he should turn from his ways and live (Ezekiel 18:23)? Say to them: As I live, says the Lord Jehovah, I have no delight in the death of the wicked, except in the turning of the wicked from his way, and so to live. Turn, turn from your evil ways; for why will you die, O house of Israel (Ezekiel 33:11)? God demonstrates His love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us (Romans 5:8).
So what does Solomon mean by the Lord God abhors or despises a person? We have the example of Eli the high priest and his sons. They knew the word of God; yet they deliberately disobeyed it, by taking much offerings which is Balaam spirit, and they practiced sexual immoralities with the women who came into the temple to worship (1Samuel 2:12-27). The bible says that those sons of Eli, who were priests, abhorred or despised the offering of the Lord (1Samuel 2:17). By acting the way they did they abhorred not just the offering of the Lord by the Lord Himself. God said through a prophet about those sons of Eli: Jehovah the God of Israel says, I said indeed, Eli’s house and the house of your father should walk before Me forever. But now Jehovah says, Be it far from Me! For those who honour Me I will honour, and those that think little of Me, or those who despise or abhor Me, shall be lightly regarded or lightly esteemed, or despised or abhorred (1Samuel 2:30). Do not act like the sons of Eli and you will be safe!
By strange women, Solomon means women who are not in the covenant of Israel; and for us born again Christians, it means women who are not born again. At that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world (Ephesians 2:12). Solomon’s problem was, that he married women who were not in the covenant of Israel, as we have already explained, and that was his downfall. Samson also had the same problem, not just that he married a philistine woman, but he also visited prostitutes and that was his down fall. This also applies to men and women, who are not born again Christians; who are spiritually strange women and men, even strangers to the covenant of promise.
Solomon says a strange woman is a narrow pit or a well (Proverbs 23:27). What is in his mind is, that when you fall into a well or narrow pit, you bruise yourself in a terrible manner, by beating from side to side; and out of which you cannot extricate yourself. If you read 1Corinthians 7, you are not to divorce the unbeliever if he or she is willing to stay with you. So if you disregarded the word of God and acted according to the dictate of your own heart, by marrying an unbeliever; you have to stay with him or her. Do not blame God; you deliberately disobeyed God, especially after you have read this bible study and the one on “David’s sexual sin exposed”. It already shows your heart towards God. If for a crucial matter like marriage, that binds you for life to a person, you are willing to deliberately disobey God, after you have received the knowledge of His ways; you will have the tendency of disobeying Him in other things, that pertain to life and godliness.
In the city there are humps on roads and some roads even have potholes. You cannot have humps and potholes on the motorway, accidents will happen because of them. That is why Isaiah says: Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain (Isaiah 40:4). Some people’s sins are not that obvious. Paul tells us: some men’s sins are open beforehand, going before to judgment; and some men they follow after. Likewise also the good works of some are manifest beforehand; and they that are otherwise cannot be hid (1Timothy 5:24-25). We want to smooth the rough places of our life by even abstaining from the appearance of evil; so that our good will never be spoken evil of. Paul says: prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil (1Thessalonians 5:21-22). Then do not let your good be spoken evil of, for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:16-17).
We want to make the crooked ways of our life straight, to line up with the way, truth and life of Jesus; for our ways are not His ways or our thoughts His thoughts (John 14:6, Isaiah 55:8). And we want to remove the humps of our spiritual life, which are but stumbling blocks on our way, and fill up all spiritual potholes which ensnare us. Paul says: therefore, seeing we also are compassed about, with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race, that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is sat down at the right hand of the throne of God (Hebrews 12:1-2).
You and I have come in the same Spirit of Elijah, John the Baptist came in, even to turn the heart of the children to their Father in heaven (Malachi 4:5-6, 1Kings 18). In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, Repent, for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand. For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying, “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord, make His paths straight (Matthew 3:1-3).” If we willingly choose to sanctify ourselves, we will see the glory of the Lord in our life, and the ministry of reconciliation God has entrusted us with. When we talk about seeing the glory of God in the New Testament, it is related to salvation of souls, transformations of lives from a worldly life, to a sanctified life, healing, deliverance, casting out of demons, dead raising, prosperity and everything else contained in our salvation package.
Isaiah prophesied, saying: Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD has spoken it (Isaiah 40:4-5). And a highway [even a motorway] shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called, The Highway of Holiness. The unclean shall not pass over it. But He shall be with them; the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err in it (Isaiah 35:8). So my advice to each one of us is to walk, even drive, on that Highway of Holiness, so that the glory of the Lord will be seen in us, and in the lives of the people we minister to.
When we have prepared the way of the Lord in our life, we will be able to run, even drive faster, to our God given destination in life and ministry. So then I run, not as if I were uncertain. And so I fight, not as one who beats the air (1Corinthians 9:26). Holding forth the Word of Life, so that I may rejoice with you in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain nor laboured in vain (Philippians 2:16). Jesus built that Highway of Holiness for us, He drove on that Highway of Holiness. His disciples also drove on that Highway of Holiness, prophets of old drove on that same Highway of Holiness. They did not suffer shipwreck. Paul told us, that we must hold faith and a good conscience, which some have put away and made shipwreck as to faith (1Timothy 1:19). If we follow in their footsteps, or drive on the same Highway of Holiness, we will also see the glory of God in our generation; pursue peace and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord God (Hebrews 12:14).
Every born again Christian has received a talent or a cross, yet it might be small in your eyes, and you can put that cross in your pocket or put that talent in a handkerchief; but God expects you to grow into more responsibilities, or carry a bigger cross. For as you read Matthew 25, the one who had received two talents, doubled his talents, and the one who had received five talents, doubled his talents; the master expected the one who had received one talent to double his talent too.
King Saul can be likened to a man, who started with five talents, whereas David can be likened to a man, who started with one talent. For King Saul started with the whole nation of Israel and its armies, given to him on a silver platter. Whereas King David started his journey, by being shepherd over the little flock of his father Jesse, fighting the lion, the bear and then Goliath; and building up an army of people, who were outcasts and down-casts of society. King Saul buried his five talents and was removed from being King over Israel. David multiplied his talent and the day came when he was entrusted with five talents, even being king of Israel. You can grow in responsibility in the kingdom of God. Paul was the kind of apostle who received one talent from the Lord; but he multiplied his talent and was now compared with the apostles, who studied at the feet of Jesus.
Paul said: “brothers, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you have received, and in which you stand; by which you also are being kept safe, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all, that which I also received, that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day, according to the Scriptures; and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the Twelve. Afterward He was seen by over five hundred brothers at once, of whom the greater part remain until this present day, but also some fell asleep. Afterward He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. And last of all He was seen by me also, as one born out of time. For I am the least of the apostles and am not sufficient to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace which was toward me, has not been without fruit, but I laboured more abundantly than all of them; yet not I, but the grace of God with me. Therefore whether it was I or they, so we preach, and so you believed (1Corinthians 15:1-11).
If you have been reading the “My Weekly Milk” bible studies, by now you know that Gery has not always been walking in the ways of the Lord, and was even a backslider. I had brought disgrace to the name of Jesus, and put Him in an open shame with my backsliding (Hebrews 6:6)! Having one talent that you can put into your handkerchief, or a cross so small, that you can put into your pocket, is not the issue; but what you do with it is what matters. Paul, by the grace of God, refused to come behind anyone in any spiritual thing. He worked more abundantly than all those who received the five talents or the big cross. And God entrusted him with much too, and he became the apostle to the gentiles, with the same manifestations of the Holy Spirit and demonstrations of the power of God, than the most eminent apostles like Peter, John and James!
Only God can speak to a parent, an answer of peace concerning the kind of cross or responsibilities in the kingdom, He has bestowed upon his or her children, like He bestowed one on Jesus (Luke 22:29). Mary and Joseph were the two people who always prayed for Jesus and His ministry. They stood with him, in the moments of fame and of shame; in His moments of glory and of disgrace! They stood with Him, when the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest (Matthew 21:9). But they also stood with Him when the multitude cried out: crucify Him (Mark 15:13). Your children will be robbed of such support in their God given destiny; if you choose to marry an unsaved man or unsaved woman. That is why God is interested in your marriage! Those of us who are not married yet; let us make the right choice of spouse, according to the scriptures: he or she must be born again!
And for parents like Mary and Joseph I pray: may the Lord God give you an answer of peace concerning the destiny of your children in the kingdom of God (Genesis 41:16). And when you hear His voice; may the peace of God which surpasses all [human] understanding keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:7). The God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen (Romans 16:20).
3 Plans do not always go the way we imagined them, they go awry sometimes.
Back to our main text, we can see in John 2:3 that they ran out of wine. They planned everything, but they did not anticipate the fact, that they might run out of wine. Even the best of us, with all our qualifications and expertise, sometimes we do not know how could we have missed it? They have all the experts running the economy of our nations, but why are we in such an economical mess? Simply because God was not consulted at first, His counsel was not sought, no one deemed it necessary seeing we have all our experts, so Jesus and His disciples were not remembered, until they were facing a predicament. May it never be our case in Jesus name!
The book tells us in proverbs 15:23, that without (godly) counsel plans go awry. In our text they ran out of wine. To what can we equate this event? In Joel 1:12 the writer says that joy has withered away from the sons of men. Therefore wine can be equated to joy, running out of wine, to joy withering away from us. But what can we do, when facing such predicament? Should we try to sort ourselves out? Should we rely on the arm of flesh? We have seen from our little experience that the arm of flesh will fail us. This leads us to our fourth point.
4 Come to Jesus with your problems
As depicted in John 2:3, the mother of Jesus did not go elsewhere for the solution, she knew Jesus was the problem solver. She told Him what the problem was:”they have no wine”. Likewise we should come to Jesus with our problem, no matter if we are the origin of our problem; neighbours or guests might rebuke us saying: “there is no organization in this, it’s a disgrace at this level of organization, there is lack of professionalism, and you should fire the planning committee.” But Mary knew better, why should I lose my peace over this? Has God not said “He will keep me in perfect peace, because I trust in Him (Isaiah 26:3)?” Furthermore Jesus Himself gave us that open invitation saying: come unto me, not some, but all of us, who labour and are heavy laden and He will give us rest (Matthew 11:28). One may have some doubts, reasonable doubts; will Jesus receive me if I respond to His invitation? Of course He will! For He said: the person who comes to Him, He will by no means cast out (John 6:37).
Keep not the matter to yourself.
Many times we think it is best if we just try to sort ourselves first, before coming to Jesus, We try to reason: we put ourselves in this mess therefore we need to fix it. Not only Jesus is inviting us to come to Him the way we are, He is even asking us to cast or roll all our care upon Him for He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7). We may think that our problem is not a spiritual thing, so Jesus might not be willing to help us. That’s wrong! For He even said “roll or commit your works to the Lord, and your thoughts will be established” (Proverbs 16:3).
We do not need to carry that heavy load, no we don’t!
Whatever has been a heavy burden on our shoulder or a yoke around our neck, Jesus wants to give us His rest. He says to us, take My yoke, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart and you shall find rest unto your soul (Matthew 11:29). He is meek or gentle; He will not drive us hard, but take care of us and consider our weaknesses. For He understands the feeling of our infirmities, He sympathizes with us (Hebrews 4:15).
Furthermore Jesus wants to relieve us of our burdens and yokes
He gave us this wonderful promise, that the burden will be taken away from our shoulder; and the yoke from our neck, and the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing oil (Isaiah10:27). Jesus is our Messiah, the Anointed one; He has the power not only, to take away the burden and yoke, but to even destroy the yoke. Here is the picture of a cow who by reason of ploughing in the field under that burden and yoke around its neck; develops muscles and fat, the neck is so fat that it breaks the wooden yoke.
Likewise, as we decide to take the burden and the yoke of Jesus; we plough in the word of God, eat the solid food, know how to rightly divide the word of truth, and have discernment to exercise our spiritual senses (Hebrews 5:14). We would know the truth and the truth will make us free (John 8:32). For the more the truth of God’s word is in us, the more our spiritual neck is fat (the fat represents the anointing) and develops spiritual muscles to break all the yokes the enemy placed around our neck. God does not want just to remove the burden and leave us with the enemy’s yoke. For as soon as we depart from the presence of God, or the minister of God who has ministered deliverance to us, Satan finds us, and places his heavy burden back onto us, and we still go in the way of the gentiles, because we still have that yoke. Ministers will lay hands on us and minister deliverance, hence the burden will be taken away, but some will still be yoked and pulling an empty cart, and the enemy will come and put a burden on them again, but as we know the truth, we grow in the anointing ; we are made free and free indeed. We are no longer entangled with the yoke of bondage (Galatians 5:1).
It is all about knowing the truth, what our heavenly Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit said about us in Their will. This leads us to our fifth point.
5 What does our concern have to do with Jesus? Are Jesus and God concerned about our situation?
Back to our main scripture reading, we can see in John 2:4 Jesus asking Mary: what does her concern have to do with Him? The answer is absolutely everything! Has he not told us to come to Him with all our problems? He is the one who told us to come to Him in the first instance, so it is his concern.
We know that Jesus loves us, and the Father also loves us as He loved Jesus (John 17:23). So we are coming to a God who loves us and cares about us, who will by no means cast us out, we are welcome here. God made some outrageous promises to us that are mind-blowing, He told us that He did not spare His own Son, Jesus, but delivered Him up to die on the cross for us all, so how shall God, not with Jesus also freely give us all things (Romans 8:32)? There are no tricks in His promises, He said “freely”! Sometimes when we go to the shopping mall, they will tell us that if we spend at least £40 or $40, then we would get something free. That’s not free, they want us to spend our money first, but God is not trying to deceive any of us, He said freely, He meant it, not just to some but to all of us He made that promise in Christ Jesus. To Give us all things, no matter what our problem is, it is included is that “all things”. Our Father in heaven wants to give us richly all things to enjoy (1 Timothy 6:17). Have we noticed that? His is not a stingy Father; He said “richly” all things to enjoy! Much more He told us that as we delight in Him; He will give us the desires of our heart (Psalm 37:4).
One may say to himself, does God really mean what He said, or was it just a hyperbolical speech? It is a legitimate question, God himself answers it by declaring “He is not a man that He should lie, nor a son of man that He should repent or change His mind” (Numbers 23:19). We can rest assure that the words that have gone out of His mouth will not return to Him void, but it will accomplish what He purposes and pleases(Isaiah 55:11). Astounded by all these amazing promises of our Father, what ought we to do to have them fulfilled in our lives?
6 Whatever Jesus tells us to do, do it.
God’s ways are not our ways, and sometimes they are foolishness to the carnal mind. But Mary knew better, she told the servants: “whatever He tells you to do, do it (John 2:5).” As servants of God, sometimes we do not understand what is going on, or do not know what the master is doing, or the motivations of the master, but because we perceive He knows better than we, we obey. After all, He created it all! No matter how close we get to Jesus, and He even calls us friends, therefore we know the inner motivations of the master; but what He said to the servants is the same thing, He says to the friends: “whatever He says, do it (John 15:14).” We are talking about whatever God says to us, not a second hand revelation, no, but as servants or friends we are privileged and are supposed to know the voice of our master. We have a deep concern: can one’s background obstruct God to move on my behalf?
7 One’s background or past life is not a hindrance?
One can read in John 2:6 of the water pots, the Jews used those water pots for purification. In their customs they had to wash in a specific manner before partaking of a meal. If they did not do it the way the fathers handed it down to them, though they had washed, they would still be considered as eating with defiled hands, hence the Jews found fault with the disciples of Jesus for not washing in that specific way(Mark 7:2-3). They had to wash their hands up to the elbows, and wash their feet too. So these water pots of purification were not vessels of honour but dishonour. They used to have water pots made of cow dung or scales of fish, these two were used by men to wash their feet and hands.
The water pots of stone were reserved for the bride, the bride’s friends and the virgins. Why spend time detailing the customs and the water pots? Can we derive some applications in our modern days?
The answer is yes! Many times people will judge us because of our past, and conclude that we will never amount to anything, that nothing good will ever come out of these vessels that we are. We once were vessels of dishonour, nobody ever drank out of us. As far as they are concerned we are done! No hope whatsoever for a change or a bright future. The only thing they see in the vessels that we are, is the cow dung and its stench, or the scales of fish and how it stinks, even when we are made of stone, individuals still wash their smelly feet in us and dirty hands. No one would ever dare to drink out of us, water pots of purification.
There is a hope in Christ, let us discard at once the way men sees us, knowing, for we are accepted in the Beloved (Ephesians 1:6), men can reject us because once we used to be vessels of dishonour, but our past is not a hindrance, Jesus our beloved accepts us just as we are, praise the Lord! For our God is the only one who sees the treasure in us. He told us, that we have this treasure in earthen vessels that the Excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us (2 Corinthians 4:7).
People look at our outward appearance, therefore they will always get it wrong about us. Now that we are in Christ there is a treasure in us, men may not realise it but our God in due time will bring that treasure out, then people may give the glory to God for we all know of our own we would not have been able to bring it out. When we come to Jesus we become a new creature old things have passed away and behold all things have become new (2 Corinthians 5:17). So outwardly we might still look the same, and there is no significant change, but inside we are a totally new person. Our Heavenly Father is the Potter and we are the clay (Isaiah 64:8), He committed Himself to making us vessels of Honour unto Him, and will bring out the treasure. Because we are the work of His hands, or His fabric, or His workmanship; created in Christ Jesus unto good works (Ephesians 2:10). When people only see the dirt that is covering us, God is seeing the hidden treasure in us, and it was worth selling all His possessions, in order to purchase that piece of land full of dirt that we once were (Matthew 13:44).
Thank God that He saw that hidden treasure! No one else could have seen it, not even ourselves. For once upon a time we believed the report of the enemy. Let them keep saying :”can anything good come out of Nazareth, a city of Galilee of the gentiles (John 1:46)”. As for us we will believe the report of the Lord and His arm of His salvation, deliverance, health, wealth, safety and rescue will be revealed unto us (Isaiah 53:1). Whether one, as a water pot, is in Cana of Galilee (John2:1) of the gentiles, or anywhere else men may despise, it does not matter to us any longer, let them despise our origins (Galilee of the gentiles), for as far as they are concerned; gentiles are like dogs who return to their vomit (Proverbs 26:11). We will not try to convince them of the new person we now are in Christ. The old person we were, has been crucified with Jesus. I am a new creature, a different person. We are a new species born of the Spirit of God and washed in the blood of Jesus. This is the report of the Lord concerning me, and I will believe that. Our city of birth is the heavenly Jerusalem, from whence we have our citizenship. Our citizenship is in heaven, and here on earth we are Christ ambassadors. We are in the world, but not of the world. Hallelujah!
8 Jesus will not rest until has sorted out your problem.
In John 2:6, mention was made of six water pots, the number six is very important in this text, it is not just the number of man; but six represents more than that, and the Jews had that understanding. When Boaz gave six measures (ephahs) of barley to Ruth to take back home to her mother-in-law Naomi; Ruth, being from the people of Moab, did not understand the meaning of it. Boaz has no need to say a word, but Naomi being a Jew understood what Boaz, a type of Jesus, meant by these six measures. She explained to Ruth: sit still, for Boaz (the antitype of Jesus) will not rest until He has concluded the matter this day (Ruth 3:17-18). The Lord has made this promise to you, that He will not leave you until He has done what He has spoken to you (Genesis 28:15). For just like the Lord created everything in six days and rested on the seventh day (exodus 20:11). He did not rest for six days until He created everything that was needed for Adam and Eve to live on earth, likewise He will not rest until He has made the provision for us and He will not rest until He has sorted out our predicament. God has a plan for us.
9 Our latter days will be greater than our former days.
In john 2:10 the master of the feast is surprised that the good wine has been kept until now, that’s not what people do! They usually set out the good wine at the beginning and wait until guests are well drunk and then give them the inferior one. People will tell us that things will never get better, let us not put our hopes so high. Let us be content with whatever we have now for things will always decay and degenerate: relationships, business, career; they will never get better but worse we just have to accept things the way they are.
But Jesus is telling us that our best is yet to come! That in Galilee of the Gentiles, the people who walked in darkness, have seen a great light. Those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them a light has shined and risen (Isaiah 9:1-2). He promised us that the glory of this latter temple or house, both spiritual and physical house, shall be greater than the glory of the former (Haggai 2:9). Our beginning can be small, but do not despise the days of our small beginning. For though our beginning was small, yet our latter end shall be greatly increased (Job 8:7). We know that the thoughts that God has toward us are of peace and not evil, to give us an expected end (Jeremiah 29:11). Therefore we do not lose heart nor sit with our arms folded up, but act on God’s bidding, to arise and shine for our light has come and the glory of the lord is risen upon us (Isaiah 60:1).
Furthermore, the wedding took place on the third day (John 2:1). On the third day when Jesus rose from the grave He married born again believers (Romans 7:4). Just like Ruth found rest when she became married to Boaz (Ruth 1:9, Ruth 3:1, Ruth 4:13), likewise we have found our rest in Jesus, by being married to Him. There have been so many types of the rest in the past; Moses did not give the people that rest, though Joshua gave people the rest, but David spoke of another rest that can only be found in Jesus (Hebrews 4:1-10). Jesus did not rest until He made sure that all that we will ever need, has been provided for, and He told us on that cross: “It is finished (John 19:30).” Let us enter into His rest, for He has made the provision, so that now we are in Christ, our latter days can only be greater than our former days when we were in the kingdom of darkness. For everything we will ever need is found in Christ.
10 How can water be turned into wine in every born again Christian’s life?
Or how can the words that come out of the mouth of every born again Christian become Spirit and life?
John tells us, turning water into wine was the first miracle Jesus performed in His ministry (John 2:11). Jesus wants to perform this first miracle of water being transformed into wine, or words coming out of the mouth of a born again Christian, becoming spirit and life. How can that be performed? Mary told the servants, in order to have that miracle, they need to do whatever Jesus tells them to do; even if it does not make any sense to their carnal mind; but it makes faith (John 2:5). The bible says that there were six water pots of stone. Now the number six for the Hebrews signifies, that God will not rest until He has completed the creative miracle you need for your life and godliness; for God created the world in six days in the account of Genesis 1, and rested on the seventh day. And When Boaz gave six ephahs of barley to Ruth, Naomi explained to her what it meant, saying: sit still my daughter, until you know how the matter will turn out; for the man, [even Jesus], will not rest until he has concluded the matter this day (Ruth 3:17-18).
We are co-labourers or co-workers with Christ in His creative miracles: God has His part to play and we have our part to play (1Corinthians 3:9)! All the promises of God in Christ are yes and Amen; yet someone needs to pray them through, so that it will be made manifest on earth as it is in heaven (2Corinthians 1:20, Luke 11: 2)! Now the water-pots of stone represent the life of every born again Christian. Paul says: we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the excellency of the power may be of God and not of us (2Corinthians 4:7). And again Paul says: in a great house [the house of God] there are not only vessels of gold and silver; but also vessels of wood and of earthenware , and some to honour and some to dishonour (2Timothy 2:20). Thus you and I, born again Christians in the context of John 2, are the water-pots of stone!
Jesus asked servants to fill each water-pot with water. For the six water-pots to be filled to the brim, it takes between 100 and 150 gallons so between 450 litres and 675 litres. In those days they did not have water taps like we have, so that they could plug a pipe onto the tap and fill the water-pots to the brim effortlessly. They did not have pumps either, so that they could just pump water to the surface and fill those water-pots. They had to walk to the well like the Samaritan woman who came to the well of Jacob in John 4 to fetch water. The well was deep and you needed a bucket tied on a long rope to draw water from that well. Now the water talks about the word of God in Ephesians 5:26. The well where you draw the deep water of the word of God, is the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, even the sixty-six love letters of God. The well is also Jesus Christ; because He is the Word of God (Revelation 19:13, John 1:1). Jesus Christ is the well of Jacob, His word gives life, and as you read the bible you will see Jesus.
Jesus says: you study and search the scriptures [from Genesis to Revelation] diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very scriptures that testify about Me (John 5:39). You can only draw a bucket at a time. I remember when I visited some of our relatives in Pointe-Noire, in Republic of Congo when I was in primary school. They did not have running water; so they had a well in the middle of their compound. They used a small bucket of 5 litres, tied to a long rope to draw water from that deep well. The well was about 20 meters deep. I asked once: why do you not tie up a bigger bucket to the rope; so that you will be able to fill your basins and water-pots faster? So they tied up a 10 litre bucket at the end of that rope, and asked me to draw water for that day for the whole family. It was a big family so you needed about 200 litres to 300 litres for every day; for everybody to shower, cook and wash dishes and when they did their laundry you needed about 500 litres that day!
With my fast brain, I said that with that 10 litre bucket attached to the rope instead of the 5 litre bucket, I would be able to fill up the basins and water-pots in just 20 to 30 draws instead of 40 to 60 draws. So I started to draw water; I only drew five buckets and I was already tired, sweaty and had pain in my biceps! And they made fun of me. Of course I only drew half of the water needed that day and gave up! But the next morning they attached the 5 litre bucket onto that rope, and I drew water for everybody to shower; about 200 litres. And when I had finished I was not as tired, as sweaty and in pain in my biceps as the previous morning. Someone may ask: what is the point of that story? It is simple: some Christian also set unrealistic goals in reading their bible, praying in line with the word of God, and fasting which is drawing water from the well. So they say I will read ten chapters of the bible every day! And they do it for five days and give up! Some say they will read fifty chapters every day, they will do it for a week and then give up! They say I will pray for five hours every day, they do that for one week and give up; start with one hour, Jesus commanded every born again Christian! Some people will say I will fast for 21 days three times a year; they do it once and give up! Start with 10% of the month; just fast for three days every month!
The reason why they attached that small bucket of 5 litres to the rope instead of the 10 litre bucket, is because they wanted it to be almost effortless for everybody in the house: light and easy even for children! Jesus says: Come unto Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and you shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and my burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30). There is a yoke and a burden in Christianity that every born again believer ought to take upon themselves and learn from Jesus. See the bible Study on the “Return Journey Gilgal- Jordan East”. Yes some people in Christendom, especially those in the fivefold ministry, will be asked by God to do more; because they are like spiritual parents to the body of Christ. But every born again Christian, ought to do the minimum Christ Jesus requires from us.
In the house of my relatives, even children of 7 years old could fetch their own water to shower! So in the morning, parents did not have to fetch water for their children, the children did it. When we set realistic goals for reading the word of God, praying and fasting we can keep them. Yes, it might take you longer to fill your water-pot to the brim; but you will fill it. Whereas if you set unrealistic goals for reading the word of God, praying and fasting, you might give up, because you cannot keep it up and will never fill your water-pot to the brim. Have a realistic plan to read these bible studies and your bible! Those servants at the wedding of Cana of Galilee, kept on going back to the well to draw water in order to fill the water-pots to the brim. You and I will have to go back to the written word of God, over and over to be filled to the brim or to saturation with revelation of the word of God.
Paul says: Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord (Colossians 3:16). Jesus says: If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you shall ask what you will or desire, and it shall be done unto you (John 15:7). Prayer and the revelation of the knowledge of God and His word, go hand in hand! Those servants had to go and fetch water from the well and fill the water-pots to the brim; Jesus will not do that for you. You and I will have to read our bible and bible studies Jesus will not do it for us! The preparations of the heart belong to man, or are the responsibilities of man, and the answer of the tongue is from the LORD (Proverbs 16:1). So after they have filled the water-pots to the brim, or after the revelation of the word of God abides in you; Jesus asked those servants to draw out some water from those water-pots and pour it into the cup of the master of the feast (John 2:7-8).
Until then, it was still water not wine! Jesus says: These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you (John 14:25-26). The job of the Holy Ghost is to teach you all things, as you study the bible and to bring to your remembrance, what is written in the bible when you face a situation. The Holy Spirit will not read the bible nor study the bible for you; so if the water-pots are empty, you cannot draw out any water from them to pour out into the cup of the master of the feast! Speak only in line with the written word of God, that you have read and studied. Paul says: now brothers and sisters, I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, so that you may learn from us, the meaning of saying: “do not go or think beyond what is written in the scriptures” (1Corinthians 4:6).
Many times people want to think and speak outside this bible; the Holy Spirit is not going to confirm that. John the Baptist tells us: he whom God has sent, speaks the words of God: then [no doubt or that is why] God gives him the Spirit without measure (John 3:34). In that John 2, had the servants refused to draw out that water from the water-pots they had filled to the brim, to pour it out into the cup of the master of the feast, because it was still water, they would never have had the miracle! It was when the water was poured into the cup of the master of the feast, that it was turned into wine. Never say that it is just the written word of God, in other words it is just mere water! Believe it will be turned into wine when you draw it out of you, and pour it into someone else’s vessel!
I went to visit friends of mine, Pastor Jean and his wife Pastor Nina; she was like Martha, busy with much serving instead of fellowshipping with us. After three hours in the kitchen, when she finally came into the living room to join us, I only had half an hour to talk to her and pray. I said to her: what do you want God to do for you? She told me her heart desires. And I said to her: open your bible and read the scriptures I will give you. She read four scriptures I gave her, and started to praise God, saying: “O, Lord I thank you because you have spoken to me once more concerning my worries and heart desires through the mouth of your servant!”You see she was the empty cup of the master of the feast, and I drew out water from my water-pot to pour it into her empty cup; but when that water was poured into her cup the miracle happened, it was now wine or Spirit!
God says to you and me: I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt: open your mouth wide, and I will fill it (Psalm 81:10); for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks in you (Matthew 10:20). It is the spirit that quickens or makes alive; the flesh profits nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life (John 6:63). I just spoke words in line with the written word of God, and they became spirit and life to the one in need! On the crossover night of 2014 to 2015, we just shared the Holy Communion and I explained how Jesus came to heal the broken hearted in Luke 4:18. One of the sisters that night after the night vigil was over, could not sleep, she wept for a long time because of that Luke 4:18. I just took the water of the word of God that was in me and poured it into her vessel, and it became wine or spirit, to heal her broken heartedness.
Notice when you read in John 2, Jesus did not tell the servants: draw water from the well and bring it directly to the master of the feast! Had they done that, it would still be water when it was poured into the cup of the master of the feast! God covenanted to work with us and through us! We are co-labourers with Christ (1Corinthians 3:9)! Many people take their bible and read chapters to people; but what they read does not impart life to the hearers. Paul says: Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think anything as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God; Who also has made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter kills, but the spirit gives life (2Corinthians 3:5-6). God will work through you the minister of reconciliation; you are His water-pot! If you are empty you will have no living water to draw out to quench the spiritual thirst of the people! You will be a noise in the wilderness instead of being a voice in the wilderness (Matthew 3:3).
The word of God must become flesh in you first of all, before it can impart life to the hearers, otherwise it will just be letters and noise. Some people will say: why is there a difference between two ministers of reconciliation; they both read the bible to us; how is it the same scriptures coming out from the mouth of the first are void of life; but the one coming out the mouth of the second are spirit and life? The thing is the first minister is trying to draw out water from the well and bring it to the people instead of filling first his water-pot and drawing out of his own water-pot. If the word of God means so little in your own personal life; the power of God will also be little in your life. If Jesus is our Lord and Saviour, we will embrace His way, truth and life, and not choose what we like in His life and reject what we do not like.
Jehovah, the God of Israel says, I said indeed, Your [Eli’s] house and the house of your father should walk before Me forever. But now Jehovah says, Be it far from Me! For those who honour Me I will honour, and those that think little of Me or despise Me shall be lightly regarded or esteemed (1Samuel 2:30). This He said about the sons of Eli who were not living in holiness. And about David a man after His own heart, when he committed adultery and murdered Uriah, God said: I gave your master’s house and your master’s wives into your bosom, and gave you the house of Israel and of Judah. And if that was too little, I would have given to you such and such things besides. Why have you despised the Word of Jehovah, to do evil in His sight? You have stricken Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the sons of Ammon (2Samuel 12:8-9).
I remember when the Lord healed my backsliding; but I was still struggling with my sexual desire. I was tempted to sin by a non Christian girl. But I have disciplined myself to read my bible and pray in the morning. Then the Holy Spirit brought to my remembrance 2Samuel 12:8-9. And He said to me: “My son, do not sin against Me; for there are many nations at stakes. I have bestowed nations and kingdoms upon you. If you want any type of woman to marry, of any height, any skin colour, any nationality, younger than you or older than you. I, the Lord Holy Spirit, will find that born again sister that is the desire of your heart and of your eyes, like I did for Isaac in finding Rebecca for him in Genesis 24; but do not sin against Me by despising the commandment of the Lord!” Thank God I had started to discipline myself spiritually by reading my bible, praying and fasting, though I did not understand why I had to discipline myself spiritually like that.
The bible says of Jesus: Therefore in all things it behoved him to be made like His brothers, that He might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of His people. For in that He Himself has suffered, having been tempted, He is able to rescue those who are being tempted (Hebrews 2:17-18). Since then we have a great High Priest who has passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities, but was in all points tempted just as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us come boldly to the throne of grace, so that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:14-16). Jesus was tempted by all sins, but He did not sin; so He knows how to deliver me from those temptations. He will teach me how to keep myself and show me evil friends that I need to get rid of in my life! Gery has no shame confessing his sins and sinful thoughts, or shouting on the roof top what God said to him when he was rebuked; for the person who covers his sins, shall not prosper nor be blessed; but whosoever confesses and forsakes them shall have mercy (Proverbs 28:13).
You and I are the vessels or the water-pots God wants to use. Yes, we might have been for dishonour in our past life before we came to Christ, and people may always remember us for that dishonourable use; but now we need to cleanse ourselves and live in holiness; if we want to be vessels of honour unto our God; so that He can use the words coming out of our mouth, to impart spirit and life to the hearers. Paul says: in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. Therefore if anyone purges himself from these, he shall be a vessel to honour, sanctified and useful to the Master, prepared for every good work (2Timothy 2:20-21). Truly, truly, I say to you, He who believes on Me, the works that I do he shall do also, and greater works than these he shall do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it (John 14:12-14). Brothers and sisters, diligently pray for me, Gery, that I will never despise God and His commandments, by being like the sons of Eli or David in the incident of Bathsheba! May I start well and finish well! There are three areas the enemy attacks ministers of the gospel: sexual immoralities and divorce, financial manipulations and heresies or major doctrinal errors. Always pray for brother Gery all the days of his life, he will not fall into any of these three attacks of the enemy.
11 Your marriage to Jesus or to your spouse is not bondage
Let us for instance take the case of marriage. I was listening to a preacher whom I respect a lot, and he said: marriage is bondage, once you get into it there is no way out, but it is a good bondage! The Webster dictionary defines bondage as being: Slavery or involuntary servitude; captivity; imprisonment; restraint of a person’s liberty by compulsion. Tell me from this definition is there any sort of good bondage? Ask the Hebrews who were in bondage in Egypt, they will tell you that it was not a good bondage. Ask the Jews who were carried captive in Babylon if their captivity was a good bondage. The bible never defines marriage as bondage: we must learn not to think above what is written in the word of God (1Corinthians 4:6). In ancient English Law bondage means villenage, which is a judgment that casts reproach on the guilty person. So were we at fault because we decided to be married and the only thing that keeps us together is a set of laws: do’s and don’ts? And this set of laws is not in our favour but is always condemning us?
I understand why people are tempted to give that analogy of marriage being bondage; it is because in our society, divorce is exponentially increasing even among born again believers. We know that God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16); His will is, that people remain together for the rest of their life. From the beginning of creation God made them male and female. For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother and shall cleave to his wife. And the two of them shall be one flesh. So then they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man put apart (Mark 10:6-9). So some preachers believe that they need to use stronger words, to forbid people to divorce, but it sometimes gives people the wrong message.
Paul explains to us that marriage is likened to the relationship between Jesus, who is the bridegroom and the church which is the bride (Ephesians 5:22-33). When we read the bible from Genesis to revelation and see how God relates to Israel, it is the ways husbands and wives must relate, for God is the husband of Israel and Israel is His wife (Jeremiah 3:20; Jeremiah 31:32). So the secret of a great marriage is reading the bible, and see how God relates with Israel and how Israel relates with God, how Jesus relates with the church and how the church relates with Jesus. The books of Proverbs and Songs of Solomon are keys for a peaceful and prosperous house and a romantic relationship. The foundation of every marriage must be Jesus and the written word of God.
God brought out Israel from the house of bondage and married Israel. He did not bring them in bondage but set them free and married them. Jesus delivered us from the bondage of sin, and Satan and made us free and then married us. He did not put us into bondage again. We decided to remain married to Christ, because we love Him, not because of a set of laws that was obliging us to stay with Him. The love of Christ constrains us, judging this, that if one died for all, then all died (2Corinthians 5:14). Yes not the rules and regulations of the Law, but the love of Christ. It is love that keeps us together with our spouse, we need to know about the Love of God, what it cost Him and apply it in our marriage. We need to know the perfect redemption plan of God and the application of the perfect redemption plan of God. The banner that God places over us is the banner of love (Songs 2:4).
It is written: I am full of words; the Spirit within me constrains me (Job 32:18). So it is the Spirit of the Lord that he placed within you, that constrains you to love your spouse; because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit given to us (Romans 5:5). He or she, who does not love, does not know God; for God is love (1John 4:8). In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation concerning our sins (1John 4;10). No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwells in us, and His love is perfected in us (1John 4:12). Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God, and everyone who loves has been born of God, and knows God (1John 4:7). And we have known and believed the love that God has in us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him (1John 4:16). Jesus our husband only gives us one commandment, saying: A new commandment I give unto you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this shall all men know that you are My disciples, if you have love one to another (John 13:34-35).
Both in the Christian walk and in our marriage, if we do not have the revelation of the love of God for us, the Love of Jesus for us, and how they demonstrated that for us, we will have sets of rules and regulations of the law to try to keep us in that Christian walk, or in our marriage. Please read the bible a lot and become a doer of the bible; those sixty-six books in the bible talk about the love of God for us and how he demonstrated it. People who do not understand, do not have that revelation of the love of God for us, think that Christianity is bondage and they also think that their marriage is bondage. And they will try to bring everybody else into bondage.
Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (2Corinthians 3:17). There will be false brethren and sisters who will be brought into your midst unaware, who will come in privily or secretly to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage; To whom we should give place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you and also in us. (Galatians 2:4-5). But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours, becomes a stumbling block to those who are weak (1Corinthians 8:9). As we read the perfect redemption plan of God and its application we will understand succinctly what God has provided for us, and how we are to respond to His unconditional love. My friend there is freedom in Christ Jesus not bondage.
I was listening to another preacher and he said: do not expect marriage to be sweet as the day you got married. When you get married, you go for your honey moon, everything is sweet, and you enjoy the honey until the bees that brought the honey come out and start stinging you. So I went to the Lord and I told Him: Lord what about the bees that brought the honey? And the Lord gave me some scriptures: they surrounded me like bees, they were all quenched like fire of thorns; because in the name of the Lord I will destroy them (Psalm 118:12). So I already had the promise that all those bees, even killer bees, I will destroy them in the name of the Lord Jesus, I will burn them alive with the fire of the word of God that comes out of my mouth. So I asked God, but what about the stings of those bees Lord, and their venoms? For bees, like killer bees, have strong venom and it kills anybody they sting instantly, what if they sting me before I destroy them?
Then the word of the Lord came again to me, saying: O death, where is your sting? O grave, where is your victory?” The sting of death is sin and the strength of sin is the Law. But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1Corinthians 15:55-57). Praise the Lord! Now you understand why Jesus came to fulfil the law for us, and its handwritings that were against us, He nailed them onto the cross, so that the strength of the venom of those killer bees was neutralized (Colossians 2:14). Even when we sin against God or against our spouse, which is the sting of those killer bees, Jesus gave us a remedy for that saying: if we confess our sins to God and to our spouse, God is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1John 1:9); and our spouse also would be able to forgive us because God will work in him or her both to be willing to forgive us, and to do that act of forgiveness, for the good pleasure of God (Philippians 2;13).
Then I said to God, thank you for telling me how to destroy the bees and how to neutralize the deadly venom of those killer bees; but you know, I have been stung before by bees and I know that it hurts, is there not a way to even stop all of those bees from even stinging me once? Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: Above all, take the shield of faith, with which you shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked (Ephesians 6:16). In our Psalm 118:12 it said: they surrounded me like bees, they were all quenched like fire (aysh: burning, fiery, fire, flaming, hot) of thorns; because in the name of the Lord I will destroy them. A thorn is a tree or shrub armed with spines or sharp ligneous shoots according to the Webster Dictionary. A dart is a short pointed lance, a missile weapon, it pierces and wounds, according to Webster Dictionary. Hence the Psalmist is telling us that those bees that are surrounding us, are armed with a weapon; he likens the sting of bees to fiery thorns or fiery darts. Not just it pierces and wounds but it also causes swelling and burns and it leads to death like the fiery serpents that bit the people in the wilderness (Numbers 21:6).
Thank God all those fiery thorns, burning thorns, or fire of thorns, that represents the stings of bees, were quenched. And Paul tells you, above all take the shield of faith, and you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked, in other words all the fiery thorns that represent the stings of the bees. The bees that surround you are the wicked. So do not fear, keep the shield of your faith up, and it shall be well with your relationship with Jesus, and with your relationship with your spouse.
The truth is, that you are seeing the bees, but the person who is sending them is Satan. Therefore be sensible and vigilant, because your adversary the Devil, walks about like a roaring lion, seeking someone he may devour; whom firmly resist in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions in the world are being completed in your brotherhood (1Peter 5:8-9). Not only you will slay that roaring lion that is trying to destroy your relationship with God and your relationship with your spouse, but you will also destroy all the bees he sent against you, and out of that slain lion you will draw honey. As it is written: behold, a young lion roared to meet Samson (Judges 14:5). And the Spirit of Jehovah came mightily upon him, and he tore it as he would have torn a kid; and nothing was in his hand (Judges 14:6). And after a time Samson returned to take his wife, and he turned aside to see the dead body of the lion. And behold! A swarm of bees and honey was in the dead body of the lion. And he took some of it in his hands, and went on eating, and came to his father and mother. And he gave to them, and they ate. But he did not tell them that he had taken the honey out of the dead body of the lion (Judges 14:8-9).
Out of the eater came forth food, and out of the strong came forth sweetness (Judges 14:14). Yes you see the enemy thought evil against you and your relationship with God, and with your spouse but God meant it for good to bring to pass as it is today, to save much people (Genesis 50:20). That roaring lion you will slay, its bees you will destroy in the name of Jesus, and you will quench all their fiery darts by your faith in Jesus, which comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17). Not only will you enjoy the honey, but you will also bring that honey to people around you, to your parents, to your friends and to everybody who asks you for that honey. And you will tell everybody what you did to have that honey, and have it more abundantly, so that you have enough to share.
Whatever your situation is right now in your relationship with God, and in your relationship with your spouse, I have come to tell you: the Lord your God has come to deliver you out of the hand of your captors and the house of bondage, to bring you out of that bondage situation, to a good land, a large land, to a land flowing with milk and honey (Exodus 3:8). The Lord will feed you also with the finest of the wheat; and with honey out of the rock He will satisfy you (Psalm 81:16). The Lord has promised that in your marriage, you will be able to say to each other: Your lips, My spouse, drip like the honeycomb; honey and milk are under your tongue; and the smell of your garments is like the smell of Lebanon (Songs 4:11). Butter and honey you shall eat until you know to refuse the evil and choose the good (Isaiah 7:15). And it will be, from the plentiful supply of milk, they (the young cow and the sheep) shall give, you shall eat butter; for butter and honey shall everyone eat who is left in the land (Isaiah 7:22). So be it in your relationship with the God head, and with your spouse, in Jesus’ name, Amen!
Dear brothers and sisters it is our time to shine, God wants to perform this first miracle in our lives, just like it was the beginning of the signs Jesus did (John 2:11). He wants to show Himself strong on our behalf because our heart longs for Him (2 Chronicles 16:9). He has kept the best wine for the end; your best is yet to come. The path of the just is as the shining light, that shines more and more, or brighter and brighter unto the perfect day (Proverbs 4:18). May the Glory of Jesus be made manifest in our lives from this day forward. The Lord bless you and keep you, The Lord make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you. The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.