The aim of this study is to see the father’s heart toward all who are lost, our responsibility and our...Read More
Welcome to My Weekly Milk where one can be fed with the milk of the word of God, be stirred up in the spirit and filled with spiritual strength to face the challenges we might encounter during the week and come out victorious.
We should forward this “My weekly milk” to as many people as we think it might bless.
Remember the Bible has the final authority, therefore brethren, whatever you read in this letter, be like the Christians of Berea who went back and checked in the scriptures if it was so.
These Bible studies are written and recorded for everyone who wants to learn the true Word of God in order to build themselves up in faith, enabling them to stand and not fall when the storms of life come their way. You will be taught what you receive when you become born again by Jesus’ death burial and resurrection and the authority you have been given to fulfil the will of God on earth. And as you learn this, you will realise what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power. You will be a true disciple by the time you have finished them.
We all read and hear the same promises of God contained in the Bible. But the manifestations or fulfilment of them in our life is based on our obedience to the conditions attached to each one of those promises. Unfortunately, some Christians are disobedient and only think they can “claim it and grab it” and they end up frustrated.
Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it. Since therefore it remains that some must enter it, and those to whom it was first preached did not enter because of disobedience.
Hebrews 4:1- 2, 6
Truth be told, God can veto your unbelief, provided you obey the conditions attached to the manifestation or fulfilment of that particular promise.
For what if some did not believe (including myself, yet I obey God’s commands in spite of my unbelief)? Will their unbelief make the faithfulness of God without effect? Certainly not! Indeed, let God be true but every man a liar. Romans 3:3-4.
If we are faithless or unbelieving, (provided we obey what God commanded us to do) He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself. 2 Timothy 2:13
Some Christians think they can twist God’s arm with their sacrifices: long fasts, long prayers on their knees, generous and sacrificial giving of money. All those we ought to do, yet as long as we are disobedient concerning the conditions attached to the fulfilment of that particular promise, our sacrifices are in vain.
So 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 heed 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 also has rejected you from being king.” I Samuel 15:22-23
In the entire Old Testament, the word FAITH is only mentioned TWICE.
–The first time is in Deuteronomy 32:20
And He said: ‘I will hide My face from them, I will see what their end will be, For they are a perverse generation, Children in whom is No FAITH.
Here God was referring to the fact that He gave them commands to follow through Moses, and the moment Moses went up onto the mountain, to them it seemed like God had hidden His face, for they could not see Moses physically, so they made a golden calf, thus breaking God’s commands. And the moment they had hardship in their wilderness life, they sinned sexually against God, and raised other leaders instead of Moses. God had to send those leaders Dathan, Korah and Abiram to hell in Numbers 16 and 18.
According to Moses, a Child of God has NO FAITH in a particular promise of God, whenever they disobey the commands or instructions of God attached to the fulfilment of that particular promise.
— The second time is in Habakkuk:
I will stand my watch and set myself on the rampart, and watch to see what He will say to me, and what I will answer when I am CORRECTED. Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry. “Behold the proud, His soul is not upright in him; but the JUST shall live by his FAITH. Habakkuk 2:1-4
Habakkuk was expecting God to give him instructions or commands, and to correct him in his ways and thoughts, as written in Isaiah 55:9-11, so that as he blindly followed those instructions or commands written down, he would see the manifestation or fulfilment of the God given vision.
Therefore according to Habakkuk the just or the righteous has FAITH, or lives by FAITH, whenever they simply obey the commanded instructions and corrections the Lord prescribed, in order to see the fulfilment of that particular promise contained in that vision.
Apart from those two times, no mention of faith is made again in the Old Testament, for they understood that it is simply to do God’s word obediently.
That is why Moses told us the secret of having all those blessed promises in our life, saying: – “Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the Lord your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, because you obey the voice of the Lord your God: Deuteronomy 28:1-2
Your confession of the word of God is worth nothing, until you deliberately decide to act on what you have been confessing. You can show God and men that you have faith by what you are doing, not merely by what you are saying.
But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. James 2:18
We show God and people our faith by our works or obedience to the word of God.
Faith is not a feeling or an emotion. In fact you can be crying, trembling and fearful as you are obeying that particular command or instruction from God that conditioned the manifestation of that promise. That’s why throughout the Bible God says 366 times – fear not, do not be afraid: for each day of the year God says to you – trust Me, I am not a liar, fear not – only obey and I the Lord will be faithful to watch over My word and perform it Jeremiah 1:12.
FAITH is simple, it has to do with obeying God’s word concerning a particular promise. As you read the Bible and the thousands of promises contained in it, you will start noticing a small word: IF- Either before the promise or just after the promise that is the condition to fulfil. Go and obey it and God will do the same thing in your life, stop deceiving yourself, claiming the promise when you do not obey the conditions, nor intend to obey them at any time.
You will also start noticing a second small word : WHEN. You will discover that as far as God is concerned those blessings are already yours, all His promises in Christ Jesus He has already said yes and so be it in your life.
God is not trying to make up His mind to give them to you, He already gave them to you. They will be manifested or fulfilled on earth in your life, when you start obeying God’s word, to meet the requirements attached to each one of those promises.
That is the purpose of the My Weekly Milk Bible studies, we tell you your part to play to see the manifestation of the promises of God in your life, so that you stop living a frustrated Christian life, thinking that God has some favourite children. No, He has no favourite according to Acts 10:34-35.
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where one can be fed with the milk of the word of God, be stirred up in the spirit and endued with spiritual strength to face the challenges one might encounter during the week and come out victorious.
The reason for this study is to refresh our knowledge concerning the bases or foundations of prayer. Prayer cannot be taught, but at the same time must be taught. Our mind-sets must be changed or renewed when it comes to prayer. It is just a conversation that one has with his Heavenly Father, with his elder brother Jesus and with his Helper the Holy Spirit. It is a time of communion or fellowship with the Godhead. The fellowship that we have with the Godhead, we want everybody to have; it is not peculiar to a few but available to all (1John 1:3).
Abecedary is what is formed by the letters of the alphabet, or the A, B, C of anything, like we have the A,B,C of cooking, of driving, or football, of rugby, of swimming, it simply means the foundation blocks upon which something is built. If we for instance talk about the Abecedary of numeracy, we have our ten digits from zero to nine, with those ten digits we can form any number in the world, we have the addition, the multiplication, division and subtraction and with those operators we can make any calculus. If we take the abecedary of literacy, we have our twenty-six letters of the alphabet and with those consonants and vowels, we can create any word, verb and adjective and form a sentence to communicate any thought.
Just like we needed to be taught the foundation blocks of numeracy and literacy, so that we will be able to relate with the world around us and be independent, not needing anybody to talk for us because we cannot express our thoughts, or to do the shopping and sign contracts for us, because we cannot count or do simple arithmetic operations. Likewise we also need to be taught the foundation blocks of prayer, so that we will be able to relate with our Heavenly Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit without any intermediary or middleman.
The foundation blocks or bricks that one uses to build a house, are very important, but before one can start using those foundation blocks or bricks to erect any wall; one must first lay The Foundation. Paul tells us: for any other foundation can no one lay than the one being laid, who is Jesus Christ (1Corinthians 3:11). My brothers and sisters, if a person has not received Jesus Christ as His God and personal Lord and Saviour, he or she does not have The Foundation in his or her life. People may say, but when I pray my prayers are answered. Yes God answers even the prayers of unbelievers, because He is good. He answers the prayers of unbelievers so that when they see His goodness they will repent of their sins, because they know they do not deserve that blessing of the Lord, and give their life to Christ Jesus. Unfortunately some people think because God has answered their prayers, it means He has approved of their sinful life, they actually despise the riches of His kindness of the Lord (Romans 2:4).
We can see in the Old Testament and the New Testament people who were not in the covenant of God getting healed or cleansed of their leprosy, because they came to the house of God and made their prayers there or came to a man of God and the man of God prayed for them. The first case recorded in the bible is Abimelech and his household who were plagued with barrenness, because Abimelech had taken Sarah the wife of Abraham, and when he had restored Sarah to Abraham, Abraham prayed for Abimelech and his household, then barrenness was removed from Abimelech’s household (Genesis 20). We also have the case of Naaman the Syrian who had leprosy and came to the man of God named Elisha and he was cleansed of his leprosy (2kings 5). We have the roman centurion who came to Jesus to heal his slave and Jesus healed the centurion’s slave (Luke 7).
When Solomon dedicated the temple of the Lord He prayed a prayer for people who did not have a covenant with God, all those heathen nations, that when they come to the temple of God to make prayer, God will answer them and God said to Solomon, He will do that for the heathen nations that come to His temple. Solomon said to God: concerning a stranger who is not of Your people Israel, but who comes out of a far country for Your name’s sake; for they shall hear of Your great name and of Your strong hand and of Your stretched-out arm; and if he shall come and pray toward this house, hear in Heaven Your dwelling-place, and do according to all that the stranger calls to You for, so that all the peoples of the earth may know Your name, to fear You, as Your people Israel do , and that they may know that this house which I have built is called by Your name (1Kings 8:41-43).
Now you understand that God even answers the prayer of pagans who come to church, so that they may repent because of His goodness and start worshiping the only true God through Jesus Christ. The fact that God answered their prayer, does not mean that God has approved of their sinful life or their lewd conduct. I have prayed for many unsaved people and God has healed them or prospered their business because I know that it is the goodness of God that leads us to repentance, so that we may bow our knee to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
For you and me to have that foundation in our life, we need to be born again, for it is only when we are born again that we received Christ Jesus into our life as The foundation. It has nothing to do with how many years we have been in church or how many times we have read the bible and have been trained in religion, or are even behind the pulpit. Nicodemus was one of the rulers of the synagogue, the Jewish house of prayer, he was versed in all the law of Moses and the books of the prophets; yet Jesus was not impressed by all that and said to him: do not marvel that I said to you, You must be born again (John 3:7). People tell me, do you think I am not born again, I have been in church for twenty years, I have heard all the sermons of many preachers and I am even a preacher myself.
Paul faced the same problem with the Corinthian church, they were carnal and he told them: such ones are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. Did not even Satan marvellously transform himself into an angel of light? Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves as ministers of righteousness, whose end shall be according to their works (2Corinthians 11:13-15). And Peter backs up the writings of Paul and says: there were also false prophets among the people in the Old Testament, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them–bringing swift destruction on themselves (2Peter 2:1).
We must all go back to the teaching of Jesus who told us how to know if a person is truly born again. He told us: by their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit (Matthew 7:16-17). Now some born again Christians may fall into sin and we need to be forgiving. When a born again Christian falls into sin he cries out to the Lord for help and his heart is broken, he even weeps for his sins. Why? Because when he or she was born again, God gave him or her a heart of flesh and removed that stony heart that was in him or her. As it is written: I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 36:26).
It is that new spirit in you, even the Holy Spirit that convicts you of your sins, and compels you to turn away from them. If a person who calls himself a born again Christian is practicing sin and enjoying it, that person is not born again, even if he is a minister of the gospel or an apostle like Paul and Peter explained to us. When people are born again and they backslide, they are not happy, there is no peace in them. Many times they want to come back to God but we judge them harshly and they run away. Paul tells us: brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted (Galatians 6:1). Jesus told us to pray to God: lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (Luke 11:4). We are to do it gently, not harshly, for we must always speak the truth to people around us, but in love.
Some people especially when they are newly born again, they do not know yet what to do in the kingdom of God, their mind is still not renewed, even though they have received a new heart. So we need to be gentle with them and tell them the truth of the word of God. Jesus was blunt with religious leaders of the Jews: scribes, priests, Levites, Pharisees and Sadducees because they knew the scriptures, but were not doers of those scriptures, but when He related to the people who did not know any better, He was gentle, even when they were caught in the very act of adultery like in John 8. He convicted them of their sins and as they repented, He told them to go and sin no more (John 8:11). He did not tell them to go and commit some more adultery or fornication and come back next week, and I will forgive you. We must mature and not remain in spiritual infancy. Paul tells us: we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching, and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ (Ephesians 4:14-15).
John tells us: the person who lives a sinful life belongs to the devil, because the devil has been committing sin since the beginning. The reason that the Son of God appeared, was to destroy what the devil does (1John 3:8 GW). When we are born again Jesus comes into our life first of all to destroy sin, then sickness, disease and premature death and to transform us into His image, so that as He is, so are we in this world (1John 4:17). So when a person is practicing sin, or living a sinful life, John tells us that person belongs to the devil not to God, even if that person preaches the gospel or has been in church for centuries. We need to agree with the report of the Lord and only then the power to overcome the devil and destroy his evil works, will be manifested to us (Isaiah 53:1). If we walk with God we must agree with what He says in His written word, for two cannot walk together except they be agreed (Amos 3:3). Jesus says to us born again Christians, that just like He is the light of the world, each one of us has also become the light of the world (John 9:5; John 12:35-36). So if we are in the light and have become the light of the world, since Jesus who is the light of the world dwells in you, why should we continue to walk in darkness and as children of darkness?
Paul tells us today, just like he told the Corinthian church that was walking in darkness and practicing sin: Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God (1Corinthians 6:9-10). In some churches, The foundation has been destroyed, we need to lay a new foundation, teach the people again who Christ Jesus is in them. David said: When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do (Psalm 11:3)? The answer of Paul to that question of David is: we will lay a new foundation, not many foundations, but only one foundation and that foundation is Christ Jesus, for no other foundation can anyone lay except that which has been laid which is Christ Jesus (1Corinthians 3;11).
I remember a dear brother who is born again and was dating a sister, who said she was born again. The brother did not inquire of the Lord about the sister. David also did not inquire of the Lord in the case of Bathsheba and he ended up committing a sexual immorality. But God was merciful to that dear brother. One night the Lord showed that brother a vision, and in that vision there was a sheep that was getting too close to him. When he tried to take that sheep with his two hands, the sheep was flayed or stripped of its skin and the skin in the hands of that brother was that of a dog, and that dog skin was trying to run away from the brother, so the brother took an axe and hacked that dog skin in the name of Jesus.
The next day, the sister said to the brother that she wanted to have some fun, but the brother told her, as born again Christians they could not do any of those fun activities she was suggesting, because it is only for married people and the bible tells us that: Marriage should be honoured by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral (Hebrews 13:4 NIV). So the sister said to the brother, she was no longer interested in dating the brother for the brother was too serious and not fun. The brother was saddened by that decision, but when he recalled the vision he had, he understood that God had saved him from a David/Bathsheba situation. So He rejoiced in the Lord and thanked the sister for everything, but He will not compromise his stand with the Lord, for He who sins belongs to the devil, and he no longer belongs to the devil but to God.
I recall another instance I was discussing with a dearest sister who is born again. She said to me: Gery, I am not a cheap lady! A man that I am dating must take me at least three to ten times into a nice restaurant before I sleep with him! I do not do one night stands. She thought in her mind that she was better than other ladies, because at least she was making men wait before sleeping with them. That she was classy since men have to take her on a romantic date to restaurants many times before any sexual activity can happen between them. She said that’s how she tested men to know if they were serious. And yet she told me of many men she had been with, who had dumped her after they got what they wanted: sex. I had compassion on that sister and wanted to tell her that as a born again Christian, she only needs to sleep with a man after they are married.
As I was thinking about what to tell her, the Holy Spirit spoke to me and said to me: Paul addressed this situation in his writings. I said where Lord! And the Holy Spirit brought to my remembrance the scripture which says: Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person (a profane person is one who has no respect for what is sacred or holy, and God says your body is now sacred, since it is the temple of the Holy Ghost, God literally dwells in you and walks in you), as Esau, who for one morsel of food sold his birth-right (in our case it is not a morsel of food but nice romantic meals in restaurants, and we know that the birth-right is symbolic of being born again, since Jesus who is the firstborn among many brethren dwells in us. He imputed unto us the birth-right of the first born). For you know that afterward, when he, Esau would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears (Hebrews 12:16-17).
If you want to have the manifestations of the blessings of God in your life, you should not fall into the category of fornicators, adulterers, profane people, and all the people listed in 1Corinthians 6:9-10, what happened to Esau might happen to you, you will weep in prayer, but God will not change His mind because you have been rejected like Esau was rejected. God has respect for the person, before having respect for their prayers or offering. That is what we see in Genesis 4, the bible says: the Lord respected Abel and his offering but He did not respect Cain and his offering (Genesis 4:4-5). When we read in the bible: God is no respecter of persons or does not show any favouritism in Acts 10:34, we must have the right understanding of it. It does not mean that you can live anyhow and expect God to answer you! God will not answer, because it will look like he is condoning your sinful life; He is a Holy God and a righteous God. God said to Cain: I have respected the person of Abel and his offering or prayer or worship, but I have not respected your person and your prayer or worship or offering, because what you are doing is not right in My eyes.
You do not have to be angry at Abel or at God, or have a fallen countenance. I, the Lord do not show favouritism or am a respecter of persons, but if you do well, meaning you repent of your evil deed and do the works befitting repentance, even practice righteousness, will you not be accepted? Of the truth, I the Lord am not lying to you: you will be accepted in the beloved, Jesus, the first born among many brethren. I will have respect for you, your prayer, your worship and your offerings as I have respect for the prayer, the worship and the offering of My son Jesus. But if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it, do not allow sin to have dominion over you, for I through the Holy Ghost have given you power over all the works of the devil, to destroy them and nothing shall by any means hurt you (Genesis 4:4-7).
Now you understand what Peter said: “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favouritism or is no respecter of persons, but accepts from every nation the one who fears Him and does what is right or practices righteousness (Acts 10:34-35). For the fear of the Lord is to depart from evil (Proverbs 16:6). The offerings Cain and Abel presented to God were their prayers, worships and sacrifices for we worship God also with our substance (Proverbs 3:9). Holiness or practicing righteousness is the key for God to always answer your prayers which line up with His written word. As far as God is concerned, whether it is a one night stand, or you sleep with the person after ten romantic dinners, or you are a prostitute; God sees it the same way. It is the spirit of harlotry or prostitution according to Hosea 5:4, which has its roots in idolatry like we have explained in the bible study of the Application of the Perfect Redemption Plan, under the works of the flesh. Now I, Gery, am not better than anybody else, I was a chief sinner myself as I have exposed in the bible study of David’s sexual sin exposed. God had mercy on me and delivered me from that spirit of prostitution when I received the knowledge of the Lord. My prayer is that everyone will receive the knowledge of the Lord so that that spirit of prostitution will stop having dominion over them (Hosea 5:4).
Paul tells us: Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said: “Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me; with burnt offerings and sin offerings you were not pleased. “THEN I SAID, ‘BEHOLD, I HAVE COME (IN THE SCROLL OF THE BOOK IT IS WRITTEN OF ME) TO DO YOUR WILL, O GOD (Hebrews10:4-7).’
Paul was quoting the Psalm 40 that David wrote, after he had committed that sexual immorality with Bathsheba and killed Uriah her husband, in an attempt to cover up his evil deeds. Jesus Christ has not just come into the world, but better than that, He has come into your life the very day you were born again. David tried to offer sacrifices and offering to the Lord, but He realized that God did not desire them. Some Christians will fast for weeks, they will give their tithes, their offerings, they will spend hours on their knees praying to God, until their knees pain them too much, so that they cannot even feel the pain. They will do what the catholic church calls penance, which is the suffering, labour or pain to which a person voluntarily subjects himself, or which is imposed on him by an authority, as a punishment for his faults, or as an expression of penitence; such as fasting, flagellation, wearing chains, etc.
David realized that God did not desire any of that, He is not after our money or anything else except our body. David realized that in burnt offerings and offerings for sin, God did not have pleasure in them either. Just like in the Old Testament, God gave them a provision to atone for their sins, by bringing an animal to offer as a burnt offering for their sin and to reconcile them to God, thus making peace with God. But what pleased God more, was that they did not sin, so that they would not have to bring any burnt offering for sin and to reconcile them with God. Jesus said in John 8:11 Go and sin no more, not go and sin some more and come back next week to confess the same sin. You and I know when we have sinned any sin Paul listed in 1Corinthians 6:9-10, these are the sins that lead to death and those who practice them will not inherit the kingdom of God.
God wants us to stop sinning even in the Old Testament, Samuel said to Saul: does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the LORD? (We know the answer is no, according to David in Psalm 40 and Paul in Hebrews 10).To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams (1Samuel 15:22). What God wanted David to do, is not to have done that sexual immorality with Bathsheba, so that he would not have to confess anything since he would not have sinned. And even after he had sinned, God was not interested in him bringing sacrifices for sin, but he wanted David to purpose in his heart that He would no longer do that sin, and as we read the rest of the story of David he never did it again. So for us in the New Covenant it is the same thing. Sin is a choice and though John tells us that we have the blood of Jesus to cleanse us from all unrighteousness, when we confess our sin, he also tells us that sin is a choice. If we say that we have fellowship with God and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1john 1:6, 7 and 9).
Our body is now the temple of the Holy Ghost, God dwells in us and walks in us; He has prepared our body for Himself and wants us to stop sinning because whenever we sin, we defile His temple, especially the sins listed in 1Corinthians 6:9-10, they should not even be named among us. Paul tells us: therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God–this is your true and proper worship or prayer (Romans 12:1 NIV). So it is not just about having the imputed righteousness of God but practicing righteousness. This is the true foundation of prayer. Jesus says: Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth (John 4:23-24).”
God is not interested in religion, like Jesus was explaining to the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4. Religion told them to go to Jerusalem to bring their lamb for the atonement of their sins and after they went back home, some of them continued sinning more, because they knew that they would go again to Jerusalem next time with their lamb, for the forgiveness of the same sins. Jesus is saying, God is not pleased with religion, that is not the kind of worshiper He is seeking. People who pray to him and yet do not want to stop sinning; they come over and over to ask the forgiveness of the same sin. Paul tells us that the way we must see things is that: in the New Covenant we do not keep giving the same sacrifice for the same sin. Otherwise Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But He has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself (Hebrews 9:26).
Jesus died once for all to do away with sin, let us also purpose in our heart to die once and for all to sin and be alive to God through Christ Jesus, for sin has no more dominion over us as born again Christians. Even if we sin, once we have confessed it and we know that God has forgiven us, let us purpose in our heart to go and sin no more, for these are the kind of worshipers or people who pray to God that He seeks. God was fed up of the Jewish religion, that’s why Jesus came in the volume of the Book to do the will of God. If we keep practicing sin when we profess to be born again, God is not pleased with our worship or prayer, though he always hears our prayer, since He has imputed His righteousness unto us.
Let us worship God with our body, He wants our body, not our money, or our sacrifices or our constant repentance for the same sins. My prayer is that you and I will serve the Lord in Spirit and Truth, we will not be in religion, for Christianity is not religion, but the way of life, the way of thinking and the way of behaving, even a relationship with the Godhead who is Holy. We also ought to be Holy because our God is Holy (1Peter 1:16). In the book of Acts Christianity was called The Way (Acts 9:2). Jesus tells us: I am The Way, the truth and the life (John 14:6). We must get back to the understanding that as born again believers we need to do everything the way Jesus did in the bible.
Practicing righteousness is The Key for an effective prayer life and relationship with the Godhead. We must hate sin and love righteousness like our elder brother Jesus does. As it is written: You loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness more than Your companions (Hebrews 1:9). We must hate what Jesus hates and love what Jesus loves, God will promote you in His kingdom and personal life more than other Christians, who even were before you in Christianity because you love practicing righteousness and hate lawlessness. By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother or sister (1John 3:10 ESV). My prayer for you and me is that we will agree with the report of the Lord, so that we can walk with the Lord and experience His transforming power in our life. Brothers and sisters always pray for me as well, that after I have preached and instructed others I myself might not be disqualified.
One may ask how can I effortlessly be transformed by the renewing of my mind, by the washing of the water, by the word of God and no longer be conformed to this fallen world (Romans 12:2), since I have been translated from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of the Son of God’s love? James tells us: anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it–not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do (James 1:23-25). The written word of God is the perfect Law of liberty, when we are born again God gives us a new heart and a new spirit even His Holy Spirit. The problem is in our mind and it is our responsibility to read the bible and renew our mind.
When a person looks into a mirror he sees his own reflection. When you are a born again Christian, whenever you read the bible, you are seeing your own image. What you are actually seeing is Jesus in the bible, who He is and what He can do, and this is actually who you are and what you can do, because as Jesus is, so are you in the world, because He dwells in you (1John 4:17). You are now a new creation, old things are passed away and behold all things are new and all things are of God in you (2Corinthians 5:17-18). So the first thing to do is to read the word of God, and the series of the perfect redemption plan of God, and the application of the perfect redemption plan of God, they will lead you on a fast track to knowing who you are in Christ Jesus, and what you can do through Christ Jesus. Basically you can do all things through Christ Jesus who strengthens you, the works that Jesus did in the bible you will do them and greater works than what is contained in the bible will you do, because Jesus now dwells in you, and is the one doing the works through you (Philippians 4:13, John 14:12-14).
The second step to your transformation into the image of Christ that you see in the mirror of the word of God, is to say the same thing the word of God says about you. Paul tells us: It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak (2Corinthians 4:13). The bible study on “The Power of Confession” will help you understand what God means by confession. Many times I just listen to what comes out of the mouth of some Christians, and I know that they do not believe what Jesus said about them. Jesus says: out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks (Matthew 12:34). Sometimes when people have prepared their sermon, they have all the words just right, but talk to them in private or when they are facing a challenge and you will truly know what they believe, for when they are going through the valley of the shadow of death, they will start speaking what is different to what the bible says.
The third step and the most important one is the doing part, becoming a doer of the word of God. You have read it; you have believed it in your heart, you have confessed it with your mouth, according to Romans 10:9-10, now you need to act on it, to do something about it. And sometimes you do not need to tell people that you are a born again Christian, they have watched your life and they will come to you and tell you: we know that you are a Christian. An apple tree does not need to say that it is an apple tree, the moment people will see the apples on its branches, if there were any doubt as to what kind of tree it was, the fruits will clear any doubt. You will know them by their fruit Jesus said.
In order for the word of God, that you have read, believed in your heart and confessed with your mouth, to be able to transform you into the image of the Jesus you read in the bible, and to sever you from being conformed to the world, you need to act on it, to become a doer of it. That way you will not be a forgetful hearer that James talks about. In my own personal experience the moment I acted twice or three times on the word of God, concerning a particular situation, I was transformed and that scripture became part of me. That’s when it dawned on me what Moses and Paul said: I am coming to you this third time. In the mouth of two or three witnesses every word shall be established (2Corinthians 13:1).
And sometimes when I acted on the word of God, I was hurt at that same time, because my flesh wanted to react like the people of the world would react, but I remembered what the word of God says: Lord who may abide in Your tabernacle? And may dwell in your holy hill? He who walks uprightly, and works righteousness, and speaks the truth in his heart; he does not backbite with his tongue, nor does evil to his neighbour, nor takes up a reproach against his neighbour; in whose eyes the reprobate is despised, but he honours those who fear Jehovah; he has sworn to his hurt, and does not change it; he has not put out his money at interest, nor has he taken a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things shall not be moved forever (Psalm 15). And many times I have decided to obey the word of God and I was hurt in my feelings, in my flesh, but I refused to change what came out of my mouth, for in the New Covenant we are not to swear but our yes is yes and our no is no. So when I said yes I meant yes even to my own hurt a couple of times.
The answer is not that simple yes or no. We can answer no. Why? Just like a newborn babe does not need to be taught how to communicate with her mother, likewise when we are born again, no one needs to teach us to talk to our heavenly Father. It is a natural bond that is developed between the baby and the mother, hence a spiritual bond is developed between the born again believer and the Godhead. Even when the baby does not understand yet what the mother is saying, it does not prevent the mother from talking and singing to the baby. In the same manner God is talking to us and singing over us, though we are not yet able to understand what He is saying.
No one needs to be taught how to pray a thanksgiving prayer, it flows from our heart, God has been good to us: He has blessed us with a spouse, a house, a car, a job, a business etc. when God has been good to us, our prayers and singings flow naturally because we are grateful to God for what He has done. The disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray, as it is written: it happened as Jesus was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, one of His disciples said to Him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught His disciples (Luke 11:1).
A baby, as long as he cannot talk, the only ways he communicates with his mother will be by crying or smiling or frowning. The mother has to guess what the baby means. But when the baby is taught how to speak and has understanding of the little words he is using; the communication with his mother is tremendously improved. The mother does not have to guess any more. As he says the word, the mother is able to meet the need of the baby immediately. In the same manner God wants us to have understanding of the language He speaks, in order to tremendously improve our communication with Him and for Him to meet our needs speedily.
We have already established the fact that prayer is just a communication between God and His children. We must remind ourselves that it is a dialogue and not a monologue. Many times we speak and speak and speak some more and do not allow God to speak back even a word. We must always remind ourselves that two parties are involved in prayer and allow God to speak as well.
How will one feel, if his telephone is ringing, he picks it up and the person on the other end starts speaking non stop, and then hangs up the telephone. That is not a good telephone communication. He did not even have the opportunity to say hello! When we have said what we wanted we must also wait for God to speak back to us.
From the creation of the world God gave its dominion to mankind, and Adam turned it over to Satan when he partook of the fruit of the forbidden tree. God constrained Himself that he will not do a single thing without partnering with mankind. When he was on His way to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, He paid a visit to Abraham first, to consult with him about the fate of those two cities (Genesis 18, Genesis 19).
Just like God refused to hide anything from Abraham, but disclosed everything (Genesis 18:17); He is not trying to hide anything from us, but has revealed to us his will and wants us to pray according to his will. When Jesus was teaching his disciples how to pray, He told them to pray that the will of the Father be done on earth as it is in heaven (Luke 11:2). Everything we need here on earth has already been provided by our Father, He has given us everything that pertains to life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3).
Everything that we will ever need, God has already created. He wants us to pray, so that it will be manifested on earth. There is a blue print in heaven of everything we want to build on earth: marriage, health, houses, family etc. Moses was given the blue print of the tabernacle of meeting, the blue print was already in heaven and Moses received it from the Lord and built it on earth. David also received the blue print of the temple, and Solomon built it. So why can’t we find out what God’s blue prints concerning use are, and everything that pertains to us? And then pray them into existence, that the will of our Father in heaven be done on earth. If my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. (2Chronicles 7:14)
One must never think that he is being bothersome to God. God loves us and wants to spend time dialoguing with us, because we have loved Jesus and believed that He came forth from God. Jesus does not have to make an earnest petition to the Father to listen to what we have to say (John 16:26-27). Furthermore God decided to permanently house our body through the Holy Spirit whom He sent.
He is now saying to each one of us, that He hears the prayer of the righteous, since the righteousness of His Son was imputed to us when we became born again (Proverbs 15:29). He delights in the prayer of the Just or upright (Proverbs 15:8). The eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers (1 Peter 3:12). And it shall come to pass, that before we call, God will answer; and while we are yet speaking, God will hear (Isaiah 65:24).
The- effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Elijah was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it did not rain on the earth by the space of three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit. (James 5:16-18). Hence God is beckoning each one of us saying: Call unto me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know (Jeremiah 33:3). Full of these assurances let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:16).
If we have a short transitory view or glimpse of how things are working in the heavenly realm, it might help us to better understand how to present our petitions. We must imagine ourselves in a legal tribunal, standing before the Judge, our advocate is seated at the right hand of the Judge. We are standing beside our assistant attorney, or Helper and on the other side is the prosecutor or Accuser. Let us define the roles and functions of the parties involved in this legal tribunal.
God is the Judge; he has the power to put down one and to set up or to exalt another (Psalm75:7).He is the one who sentences or acquits a person. Jesus Christ is the advocate with the Father (1 John2:1). Our advocate is, with regard to the Father who hired Him, to plead our case, in other words, He is attending to us because our case affects the interest of our Father and His Son and their happiness.
The dice are loaded in that heavenly tribunal, because the Judge is our Father; the Advocate is His son and our elder brother. The Holy Spirit is our Helper or comforter; He comes to strengthen us, to comfort us and bring to our remembrance, the things which our Father and Jesus told us; He is sent to us by the Father, to dwell in us permanently and teach us how to present our case before the Lord (John 14:16; John 14:26). That is why we can be confident when we stand before the Judge, for all this judicial system is in our favour.
Satan is the accuser of the brethren, who spends his time in nothing else but accusing us to God, the Judge, day and night (Revelation 12:10). He is the prosecutor going to and fro on the earth, and walking back and forth on it. Looking for opportunities to come and accuse us before our God the judge, like he did Job (Job 1:6-12). No matter how well we serve the Lord like Job did, Satan being a professional accuser, will always accuse us either rightly or wrongly before our God the Judge. But thanks be to God that He built the judicial system in our favour.
God has angels that carry out the word of God. They are servant spirits or ministering spirits, sent forth by God, to minister or serve those who will inherit salvation; God has made them His ministers, a flame of fire (Hebrews 1:7, Hebrews 1:14). They have been assigned to us by God; it is not for us to ask God to change our angels. We are not to pray to angels or worship angels; any angel that demands a worship or prayer is a demon (Colossians 2:18).
Any revelation, doctrine or teaching that one might receive through an angel, must agree with the written word of God; if it does not, it is from a demon and not an angel of God (Galatians 1:8). Just like we are not to worship any angel or human being that is alive, or those who fell asleep in the hope of resurrection, including Mary the mother of Jesus; we must worship and pray to the Godhead only, and God alone we must serve (Matthew 4:9-10). Any worship or prayer made to anyone else but the Godhead is to Satan and his demons. Even if one thinks he is praying to Mary or angel Michael or Gabriel it is actually to a demon.
The angel of the LORD encamps around about them that fear him, and delivers them (Psalm 34:7). Just like in the days of king Hezekiah, the angel of the LORD went forth, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians, a hundred and fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses (Isaiah 37:36). Also in the days of Elisha when he and his servant were physically encircled by the enemy; He knew that God’s angles were already with him to deliver him.
Therefore for the sake of his servant who did not have that revelation he said: Fear not; for they that are with us, are more than those who are with them. And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray, open the eyes of my servant, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire around about Elisha. And when they came down to him, Elisha prayed unto the LORD, and said, smite this people, I pray, with blindness. And he smote them with blindness according to the word of Elisha (2 Kings 6:16-18).
Elisha did not pray to the host of angels but to God. God is the same yesterday today and forever; the same angelic protection that He assigned to Job, Elisha and the saints of old, is the same he has assigned to you, and I thought we might not see them with our physical eyes like the servant of Elisha. But rest assured that they are always around us to deliver us.
Though they excel in strength, they only do God’s commandments or orders issued by God, hearkening unto the voice of the word that came out of the mouth of God (Psalm 103:20).
As born again believers we must let this revelation sink into our spirit; in the heavenly legal tribunal, there is only one legal code up there: the word of God. God through his Holy Spirit wrote it, He inspired prophets of old and moved upon His spokesmen and spokeswomen to write the bible. They did not do it by their own imagination or private interpretation, but as it were the Spirit of the father moved them to write whatever they did (2 Timothy 3:16, Ezekiel 1:3, Jeremiah 36:2, 2 Peter 1:20-21).
God through His Holy Spirit was dictating what should be in the Book. He has then exalted or magnified His word contained in the Book, above His own name (Psalm 138:2). Thus everybody must abide by the word of the book and what is contained inside cannot be broken, Jesus being our Advocate told us the scripture cannot be broken (John 10:35). God has to abide to that word, Jesus, the angels, Satan and his cohorts and us; everybody must abide by what is contained in the Book.
Satan being the accuser or the prosecutor knows what is contained in the book, and uses that to prosecute us before God the Judge.
Jesus our advocate at the right hand of the Father told us in John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come. And then He said in John14:26 But the Comforter or Helper, who 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.
Brethren the Holy Spirit is here to help us pray, but if we do not know what is written in the Book, how will He bring it to our remembrance. In order for us to remember something, we must have either heard it or read it somewhere. The words of Jesus and the words of God through the hand of the Holy Spirit, are all recorded in the Book. That is why we read the Book and study it; so that when we come before the Lord we can present our case.
Jesus when He was on earth was fully man, and set a pattern for us to defeat Satan. After being baptised by John the Baptist He was filled with the Holy Spirit the Helper, and was led in the wilderness to be tempted by Satan.
Matthew 4:2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward hungry.
Matthew 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If you are the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.
Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth (Deuteronomy 8:3).
Matthew 4:5 Then the devil took him up into the holy city, and set him on a pinnacle of the temple,
Matthew 4:6 And said unto him, If you are the Son of God, cast yourself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning you: and in their hands they shall bear you up, lest at any time you dash your foot against a stone (Psalm 91:11-12).
Matthew 4:7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, you shall not tempt the Lord your God (Deuteronomy 6:16).
Matthew 4:8 Again, the devil took him up into an exceeding high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world, and their glory;
Matthew 4:9 And said unto him, All these things will I give you, if you will fall down and worship me.
Matthew 4:10 Then Jesus said unto him, get behind me, Satan: for it is written, you shall worship the Lord your God and him only you shall serve.
Matthew 4:11 Then the devil left him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
As we can see Satan being the prosecutor did his job very well, he quoted scriptures to try to deceive Jesus, but Jesus also quoted back scriptures. For the three temptations of Satan; Jesus said it is written. Jesus had learned the scriptures and studied them from childhood, hence had the understanding of them and in the day of his temptation, the Holy Spirit was able to bring back to His remembrance what He read (Luke 2:42-52).
The bible talks about the word of God being the sword of the Spirit in Ephesians 6:17, hence out of the mouth of Jesus, went a sharp two-edged sword to strike Satan and his demons as mentioned in Revelation 1:16. The angels of the Lord who are encamping round about us, are now empowered by the word of God, that has gone out of our mouth, because they have been waiting for that instruction to act on our behalf.
The Godhead wants to help us and deliver us and they have assigned those angelic hosts to carry out the word of God. Not our word but the spoken word of God that is either recorded in the bible or received by revelation; but still that revelation has to line up with what is in the bible, in order for them to move on our behalf. Think of this example. A person bought a mobile phone, Iphone from Apple and is now having problems with it, and calls the customer service of Iphone. They ask him to read the manual of instruction of the Iphone, but instead he is reading the Alcatel mobile phone manual. The Iphone customer service cannot help him unless he gets the iphone manual, because they, on the other end, have the iphone manual; they work for the Iphone manufacturer not for Alcatel.
It is wrong but that is what we do to God many times, everybody in the heavenly realm has this book of the bible, including Satan. The Godhead abides by it and the angels who work for the Godhead abide by it too. No matter how much we love the writings of a man of God, or of a philosopher, their words, though encouraging and uplifting, are not in heaven and the Godhead including the angels do not abide by them. Even the “My weekly Milk” is not in heaven.
That is the reason why we must be like the Christians of Berea, who searched the scripture to know what was written. To see whether what Paul was telling them were Jewish fables, man- made religion or philosophy. If it did not line up with the word of God, the Book that is in Heaven, they discarded what Paul said. Beware lest any man spoil or cheat you of your reward through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ who is the Word of God, for in him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily (Colossians 2:8-9, Revelation 19:13).
The reason why we call the bible the Old and the New Testament, is because someone died and left a will or testament. Even in the Old Testament, they had that understanding that for them to claim the promises contained in the book, someone has to die. Because the testament has no power at all as long as the testator is still alive, but when he dies then it is in force. I have to remind us again, that according to the Jewish tradition, the inheritance is only passed on to children not to strangers, thus if you are not born again, which means a blood relative of Jesus who died and left us an inheritance, you have no share in His inheritance. That is why Jesus tells everybody on earth: you must be born again!
Therefore in the Old Testament, since Jesus the testator had not been made manifest in the flesh yet, and died, they prophetically sacrificed an animal without blemish. The animal without blemish was a shadow of Jesus the testator who will die; they will sprinkle the book or tablets with the blood of the animal, to signify that the animal or the testator has now died, His will contained in the Book or on the tablets are in force.
They will also sprinkle the blood of that animal on the people, signifying that the people were heirs of the promises contained in the Book, because they are blood relatives with the deceased (Hebrews 9:16-22). The Jews do not give their inheritance to strangers or people who are not their blood relatives. Even if during his life-time, the testator gave a property to his hired servant when he is deceased that property goes back to the blood relative.
Likewise when Christ Jesus, our Pascal lamb was slain, the two testaments, both the Old and the New are now in force, because He, being the testator, has died. He put his blood on the Mercy seat in heaven and on the Book that is in heaven, to let us know that the testament is now in force and all the promises contained in it are yes and amen (2 Corinthians 1:20). Jesus has purchased us with his own blood (Acts 20:28). We have become heirs and joint heirs with Christ Jesus, for the blood of Jesus has been sprinkled on us (1 Peter 1:2). Now that we know the testament is in force, we must read it to find out what our inheritance is and claim it.
It is like new born baby: long before he was born his elder brother died and left a testament. An evil ruler of that country took hold of his inheritance, and furthermore he enslaved him, afflicted him and did all kinds of evil to him. But one day, he was told that there is a will which his elder brother left him, it has been his all along, but because of his lack of knowledge: he was perishing not knowing all things were his. Neighbours told him about his inheritance, that he just had to read the content of the will found in the book, and go before the judge to claim what was his (Hosea 4:6, 1 Corinthians 3:21).
When we were unsaved, we were slaves to Satan and slaves of sin. Satan was our master and enjoyed having dominion over us and keeping what our elder brother Jesus left for us in his will. Now that we are born again by the blood of the Lamb, through the eternal Spirit of God, the promises are ours. We rule over sin, it has no more dominion over us (Romans 6:14). We are no longer slaves of Satan and all his cohorts, but have received power from Jesus to have dominion over all of them for He said to us in Luke 10: 19 Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.
Still some born again believers reject the promises of God concerning them, they do not take the matter to God, but others, once they realize that all things are theirs, they find out in the testament what God is saying concerning their specific issue. They read those promises and go before the judge, our God, to present their case.
Now that we have that little understanding of how things operate in the heavenly realm; God our Judge, is beckoning unto us saying: come let us reason together (Isaiah 1:18). Present your case, says the Lord, bring your strong reasoning, says the King of Jacob (Isaiah 41:21). The Lord is saying: now that you have read the content of the will and know what your inheritance is. Put me in remembrance of my promises: let us contend together; state your case, that you may be acquitted and take back your inheritance, which Satan has been keeping back illegally all those years (Isaiah 43:26).
Please let us find out what is written concerning our life in the book.
When God is asking us to bring our strong reasoning, you and I have only one strong reasoning which is: Jesus paid for it in full by His death, burial and resurrection. Paul tells us: Truly He, God, who did not spare His own Son Jesus, but delivered Him up for us all to die on the cross, how shall He, God, not with Him, Jesus, also freely give us all things (Romans 8:32)? All our victories and answers to prayer are because of that death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, which entitled us to all the promises in the bible. We overcame by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony or written word of God (Revelation 12:11).
When you read the epistles, you realize that all the promises are now in the past tense, or in past participle, which is a tense that indicates that something has just happened, and we can see the result of it now in the present. For instance I come into my friend’s house and I see him washing dishes then he tells me: I have just finished eating. The reason why he says I have just finished eating instead of I finished eating is because I can see him washing dishes and maybe there are still some dirty plates on the table. It is the same thing that you will notice when you read the epistles; the disciples have in mind the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, that has just taken place and know that now all the promises are theirs and ours; thus they use the past tense or the past participle to talk about the promises of God. Please read the series on The Perfect Redemption Plan and The Application of The Perfect Redemption plan, to understand what took place at the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus.
For instance Isaiah says: by the stripes of Jesus we are healed (Isaiah 53:5). Jesus had not yet come and borne the stripes for our healing, so all the healings from the healing of Abimelech and his household, when Abraham prayed for him in Genesis 20, to the healing of the right ear of Malchus, that Peter cut off with his sword when they came to arrest Jesus in John 18, were all based on the fact that one day Jesus would bear the stripes for the healing. So it is like they were on credit. The Webster dictionary defines credit as faith, reliance or resting of the mind on the truth of something said or done. Thus credit used to be called good faith. People would say: I give you the bag of rice on good faith, or I give you a bag of wheat flour on good faith, which meant on credit. You did not have the money with you right then, but I had faith that you would come up with the money to pay for it within the time agreed upon. I had peace of mind that you were a reliable person, who was not a liar, but a person of truth who would do what he had said.
So faith is credit, that is why Habakkuk tells us the just shall live by faith (Habakkuk 2:4). The death of Jesus must be seen as a down payment for our salvation package, as explained in the perfect redemption plan series. God ransomed us fully by the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. So now when we are born again, it is as if we have money in the bank account and we do not need to buy anything on credit but by debit. So we do not have a credit card but a debit card, because the money is in the bank account. Let’s say you have one million pounds in your bank account and you are asked to write a cheque of ten pounds. You will not even hesitate for a moment because you know that there is enough money in your account. You do not need to use any credit at all!
When you read the gospels, all the promises that Jesus told them that they will receive after He is risen from the dead, you need to put them in the present tense or in the past participle if your are born again. Full of the knowledge of what took place at Calvary, Peter says: by the stripes of Jesus we were healed (1Peter 2:24). Paul tells us that he is no longer chasing blessings because we are blessed, with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:3). There are things that have been freely given to us, when we become born again and the Spirit of God moved in us, we need to know them, so that we will not be using vain repetitions in our prayers, praying for things that God has already freely given to us (Colossians 2:12; Matthew 6:7). Faith is the person of Jesus Himself, who through His death, burial and resurrection paid in full for all the promises contained in our salvation package. Paul tells us: therefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. For you are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:24-26).
When we realize that many things have already been given to us freely: our prayers will be more of thanksgiving and less of begging. When we understand who we are and what has taken place at Calvary we pray differently; for we know that God loves us as much as He loves Jesus, and He always hears our prayers, and He always answers our prayers as long as they line up with His written word, which is His will for our life. Some people will ask me: what if I discover what God has already done for me through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus and it is not yet manifest in my life, what shall I do? First you need to agree with God when He says that He has already given you that thing, and you need to thank Him. And you need to ask Him to make it manifest in your physical life, and you need to speak to that thing and command it to line up with what the written word of God says. You need to speak to your problem about God and what the word of God says about your problem. And command your problem to do what the word of God says.
Jesus is the one who taught us this saying: Have faith in God. For truly I say to you, that whoever shall say to this mountain, Be moved and be cast into the sea, and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that what he said shall occur, he shall have whatever he said. Therefore I say to you, All things, whatever you ask, praying, believe that you shall receive them, and it will be to you (Mark 11:22-24). Do not speak to God about your mountain, for God will tell you: it is written like Jesus did in Matthew 4. That is why you need to read your bible; God will not read it for you! You need to thank God for what He said about your mountain, how He has given you the victory through the cross of Jesus. And then you need to speak to your mountain about what God has said about it, and command it to be removed. Who are you, O great mountain? Before Gery you shall become a plain; and he shall bring forth the top stone with shoutings, Grace! Grace to it (Zechariah 4:7)! Be removed right now from my life in the name of Jesus! You need to have that awareness of your authority, dominion and power through Christ Jesus.
When Jesus was on earth His disciples banked on Him to pray and God would answer for they believed that no matter how bad the problem was, or how great the mountain was: whatever Jesus asked of the Father God, God will give Him (John 11:22). But Jesus told them it is true, but after My death, burial and resurrection, when you are born again and baptized in the Holy Ghost, it will be the same thing for you; because I will be indwelling you. Therefore He told us: most assuredly, I say to you he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also and greater works than these he will do because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it (John 14:12-14).
Our strong reasoning for God to answer our prayers and perform the same miracles Jesus did through us, and even greater miracles than what Jesus did, is not because we read our bible every day, though we ought to read our bible every day (Joshua 1:8); it is not because we pray every day, though we ought to pray every day, and not lose heart or faint (Luke 18:1); it is not because we fast, though we ought to fast (Luke 5:33-35); it is not because we obey the commandments of the Lord, though we ought to diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord and observe His commandments, so that His blessings will come upon us and even overtake us (Deuteronomy 28:1-2). But our strong reasoning is because Jesus went to the Father, and before going to the Father, He had to die on the cross, be buried, and on the third day He rose from the dead. Then He ascended into heaven and sent us back the Holy Spirit. My friends in your prayer, no matter how you have diligently hearkened to the voice of the Lord and observed His commandment, in a particular aspect you want the manifestation of His promise. Always remember the cross of Jesus.
There will be people who pray more hours than you; there will be people who read more bible scriptures than you; there will be people who fast more than you; there will be people who give financially more than you. There will always be people who outdo your obedience and your diligence. And what will happen is that the enemy will start using it to accuse you, for he is the accuser of the brethren. He will tell you: you do not fast as much as brother so and so, that is why you cannot have power, you do not read as many scriptures as brother so and so. I am not giving you excuses not to read your bible, not to pray, not to fast, and not to be diligent when God speaks to you. But I am telling you present the finished work of Jesus on the cross. Embrace the perfect redemption plan of God, and rest in Christ Jesus’ finished work.
Jesus tells us: until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask and you will receive, so that your joy will be full (John 16:24). We must be careful not to become like the Pharisees who delighted in prayer as a discipline, instead of delighting in the answers to prayers. Some people pride themselves in the fact that they are so-called “prayer warriors”, I do not want to be a prayer warrior but I prayer victor. I am not telling you not to pray, but I am telling you to pray with that objective in mind, so that you will receive what you have asked of God, so that your joy will be full. So when people start bragging in the fact that they pray five hours every days, they pray five times a day, they need to watch their heart; for they are in danger of falling into the trap of the Pharisees, who delighted in the discipline of prayer and not in the answers to their prayers.
We must be result oriented not merely disciplined, for God also delights when we have our prayers answered. All these bible studies are meant to let us know what the will of God is, concerning many areas of our lives, so that we can be effective in our prayer lives. Jesus tells us: Ask and it shall be given to you; seek and you shall find; knock and it shall be opened to you. For each one who asks receives; and he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, it shall be opened (Matthew 7:7-8). He wants you to have all your prayers answered as long as they line up with the written word of God, He wants to see you joyful when He grants your petitions. Never lose that in your mind because one can so easily fall into the routine and discipline of prayer, and have no expectation that God will actually answer those prayers. God wants you to be effective in prayer; it brings glory to His name and expands His kingdom.
Again Jesus says: until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask and you will receive that your joy may be full (John 16:24). When Jesus was with His disciples on earth they would come to Him, asking: Jesus ask the Father to give us this thing, Jesus ask the Father to prosper us, Jesus come and cast out this demon, Jesus come and heal this person, Jesus come and raise this person from the dead, etc. But Jesus was telling them and is now telling us, He has gone to the Father and has sent the Holy Spirit to us, who has given us access to the Father. Though Jesus is making intersession for us 24/7, we should assume who we are: sons and daughters of God, kings and queens, priests and priestesses to our God through Christ Jesus the King of Kings and our High Priest according to the order of Melchisedec. We can now come boldly before the throne of grace so that we may obtain mercy and find grace (unmerited favour and divine empowerment) to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:16).
We should embrace who we are now in Christ Jesus and in our prayer, we should ask God in the name of Jesus. We should not ask Jesus or God for things they have already provided freely for us, through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. Instead we should thank them, it is our responsibility to read our bible and discover those things that have been freely given to us. And the series of the perfect redemption plan and the application of the perfect redemption plan, helps us toward achieving that goal. And we should not ask God to do what he has already said He has done. That is simply being ignorant of God’s perfect redemption plan.
We should also not ask God or Jesus to do what He commanded us to do. Jesus told us that after His death burial and resurrection, things will change for us. Our approach in prayer will change, saying: in that day you will ask in My name, and I do not say to you that I shall pray or beg or entreat the Father for you; because the Father Himself loves you because you have loved Me and have believed that I came forth from God (John 16:26-27). Yes, God loves every born again Christian as much as He loves Jesus. He answers their prayer as He would answer the prayer of Jesus and Jesus does not have to beg Him to do so; because He Himself wants to do so, because you have received Jesus His Son. We can directly ask God to do it in the name of Jesus and He will do it. As far as God is concerned; when we go and pray for people or we pray for ourselves, it is as if it was Jesus who prayed. We must believe it to see the same manifestations. Jesus Himself tells us: he who hears you, hears Me (Luke 10:16); he who receives you receives Me Jesus, and he who receives Me receives Him, the Father who sent Me (Matthew 10:40).
When you were born again and the Holy Spirit came to indwell you, it gave you the authority to become a son or daughter of God, a priest or priestess to Your God and a king or queen to your God. So you need to start acting in that authority like your elder brother Jesus The Son of God, The High Priest according to the order of Melchisedec and the King of kings. The series on the perfect redemption plan tells each one of us who we are in Christ, our authority as a born again believer. And because you were anointed son, king and priest to your God or daughter, queen and priestess to your God, He sent forth His Holy Spirit upon you to baptize you with the Holy Ghost and fire, for power. When you received the baptism of the Holy Ghost with evidence of speaking in tongues, it was for power to be effective in your witnessing: to preach the gospel of the kingdom by the Spirit of God (1Peter 1:12), so that when you open your mouth to share the love of Jesus around you; it is not you who speaks but the Spirit of the Father who speaks in you (Matthew 10:20). You received power to heal the sick, cast out devils, cleanse lepers and raise the dead (Matthew 10:7-8).
Jesus tells us: behold I give you authority to trample on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy and nothing shall by any means hurt you (Luke 10:19). Jesus will not lay hands on a person to be healed, but He sends you to go and lay your hands, He sends you to cast out those demons, He sends you to go and cleanse those lepers and He sends you to go and raise the dead; saying: as My Father sent Me I also send you (John 20:21). Freely you have received that power and the use the name of Jesus; freely give it for the salvation of the souls, for the healing of the bodies and for the deliverance of the demon possessed; do not pick and choose with human eyes, who is worthy to be saved, healed, delivered or raised from the dead, nobody is good enough or too bad, Jesus died for them all. Be moved with compassion like Jesus and heal the sick, cleanse lepers, cast out demons and raise the dead. Do not ask Jesus or God to do what He told you to do, but rather embrace your authority and power and go, preach the gospel, heal all manner of sickness, all manner of disease, cast out devils and raise the dead; for it is the will of God to make them perfectly whole (Matthew 14:36).
You must believe that nothing shall by any means hurt you. If you are afraid that when you walk into a hospital, or lay your hand on a leper or a contagious disease you will catch it, then you will never lay your hand on the sick for fear of getting it. You need to believe that nothing shall by any means hurt you. If you are afraid that if you cast out devil they will come after you and hurt you, you will never cast out devils, but you need to believe that nothing shall by any means hurt you. if you are afraid that if you raise the dead that spirit of death will came after you to kill you, then you will never raise any dead person but you must believe that nothing shall by any means hurt you. I was preaching the gospel, healing the sick and casting out devils in the name of Jesus. When the devil showed me a vision in which he attacked one of my loved ones and they were hurt so he told me to stop doing what I was doing. So when I came out of that vision I said: you are a liar devil!
It is written: Behold, I give to you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the authority of the enemy. And nothing shall by any means hurt you (Luke 10:19). And the shield of faith that I have lifted quenches all the missiles you throw at me (Ephesians 6:16). And none of your weapons fashioned against me shall prosper, and your tongue that you are rising against me I condemn it, for I have inherited that authority and Power as a son of God through Jesus The Son of God (Isaiah 54:17). You cannot touch me at all, for I am in Christ and Christ is in me, He is greater than you and all your works of darkness in the world: sin, sickness, and premature death (1John 4:4). My life is hidden with Christ in God: I am in Christ and Christ is in God, for you to get to me you need to defeat God the Father, then defeat Jesus and only then you can get to me (Colossians 3:3). And you cannot touch my loved ones: for it is written Rahab was saved and all her father’s household (Joshua 6:25). She was the one who believed and received the spies and yet all her father’s household was saved and did not perish. So it does not matter if my folks do not believe or are even not saved, I believe in God like Rahab did and for that reason my relatives are safe. So in the name of Jesus I cast you out of my house and my relatives, I trample all your powers in the name of Jesus, because I have that authority and power and you cannot hurt me, nor any of my loved ones. God has not given me a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind (2Timothy 1:7).
The devil will try to intimidate you to stop preaching the gospel, or to stop healing the sick, casting out devils, cleansing lepers and raising the dead. He banks on your ignorance of the perfect redemption plan of God and the application of the perfect redemption plan of God. You need to know it and embrace it. You as a born again believer must get to a point where you do not see God as a remedy for sickness and disease, but as a prevention from sickness and disease. You need to believe that nothing shall by any means hurt you. You shall serve the Lord your God, and He shall bless your bread and your water. And I will take sickness away from the midst of you (Exodus 23:25). And the Lord will take away from you all sickness, and will put none of the evil diseases of Egypt, which you know upon you. But He will lay them upon all who hate you (Deuteronomy 7:15). Do not serve God with fear that the enemy will hurt you, he will try to hurt you, but he will by no means hurt you. Please study the perfect redemption plan of God and its application. You should not even tolerate any sickness or disease for God promises to take away from you all sickness and all disease; command them to leave your body at once in the name of Jesus and command your body to be made perfectly whole in the name of Jesus (Matthew 14:36).
Let us see some examples of prayers that God does not like, nor hear.
Luke 18:9 And He, Jesus, spoke this parable unto certain who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:
Luke 18:10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican or tax collector.
Luke 18:11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank you, that I am not as other men are, extortions, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.
Luke 18:12 I fast twice in a week, I give tithes of all that I possess.
Luke 18:13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.
Luke 18:14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified or rendered innocent of his sins rather than the other: for every one that exalts himself shall be abased; and he that humbles himself shall be exalted.
God who is the Judge does not like self-righteous prayers and accusatory prayers. The Pharisee was justifying himself and believing his deeds made him acceptable before God, but all our righteousness are like filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). Only the righteousness of His son Jesus that is imputed to us is acceptable before God.
The Pharisee because he despised the tax collector, was accusing him before God of being a sinner; Satan is the accuser of the brethren why would anyone want to help Satan do his job? We all once upon a time used to pray such prayers; we saw a sister or brother whom God was blessing financially or with a new spouse and any other kind of blessing. But because that brother or sister is not as committed to the faith as we are; we go before God and accuse them that they did not fast when the church was fasting, they did not pay their tithes, and they did not come to the prayer meeting and so on. But God said the accusatory prayer of the Pharisee was not heard. Praise the Lord!
We are supposed to rejoice with those who rejoice and to weep with those who weep (Romans 12:15). So even if the brother or sister is not fully obeying God, we rejoice with them when God has blessed them financially like the tax collector, or with any other kind of blessing. And if they are not faithful in one area of their walk with Christ, we ask that God should be merciful and gracious to them. We should extend more grace, which is by definition a divine influence upon the heart and its reflection in the individual’s life. That God will through the power of the Holy Ghost work on their heart to change them. That is what Jesus is doing at the right hand of God interceding for us (Hebrews 7:25). And the Holy Spirit that is in us is also making intercession for us (Romans 8:27, 34).
Intercession is an interposition between parties at variance or in disagreement. God and His word are one, when we are disobedient we become in disagreement with God according to His word. The role of the mediator or intercessor is to come between the two parties and ask the one who has been wronged, in this case God, to extend his grace and mercy. If the Spirit and Jesus are both interceding and we know that they are doing so in the will of the Father for they are always in agreement and are one (1 John 5:7-8). Why would anyone want to accuse God’s children?
Samuel and Moses are considered to be great intercessors by God, they knew how to call on the name of the Lord and God answered them (Psalm 99:6, Jeremiah15:1). We must learn from them since God commended them. When the people sinned and God wanted to destroy them; Moses did not say “yes God kill them all”. But he stood in the gap and pleaded with God that he should forgive them and if he wanted to kill them then he should start with him.
Moses knew that God does not take any pleasure in the death of the wicked but He wants them to turn from their wicked ways (Ezekiel 33:11). Samuel did the same thing, when the people sinned against God by asking a king to be like the gentile nations. He was angry but he prayed for them, he did the same thing when Saul sinned against God and was rejected by God, he wept for Saul until God had to tell him to stop, for He has found a man after His own heart, David.
Dear brethren there are countless examples in the bible of people who presented their cases before God and put Him in remembrance of His words. We can name Jacob in Genesis 32:22-32; the Greek woman in Mark 7:26-29 who came to Jesus because her daughter was demon possessed, etc. Time will fail us to detail how they respectively presented their cases before God our Judge and had their petition granted. But remember, this is just the Abecedary of prayer, may God teach us how to present our problems to him, no matter what we have done or what we want to receive from Him.
Jesus teaches us: if your brother shall trespass or sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. But if he will not hear you, take one or two more with you, so that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he neglects to hear the church, let him be to you as a heathen and a tax-collector. Truly I say to you, Whatever you shall bind on earth shall occur, having been bound in Heaven; and whatever you shall loose on earth shall occur, having been loosed in Heaven. Again I say to you that if two of you shall agree on earth as regarding anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them by My Father in Heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there I am in their midst (Matthew 18:15-20).
We like binding and loosing things in our prayers without doing the first things first: forgiveness and repentance! God hates it when brothers and sisters in Christ fight (Amos 1:11). Unfortunately in some churches and some families people are praying together but they are fighting with each other, they have some unforgiveness in their heart. I, Gery, was guilty of unforgiveness towards my Christian brothers and sisters until I agreed with the report of the Lord Jesus, for two cannot walk together except they be agreed (Amos 3:3). If I want to enjoy fellowship with Jesus I need to forgive my brothers and sisters as Christ forgave me. People will say: you do not know what they did to me! Now Jesus will tell you also: you do not know what they did to Me! They crucified Me, whipped My back! Who wants to compare scars with Jesus?
Jesus tells us that when we pray to our Father in heaven we need to ask Him to forgive us our sins, debts and trespasses because we also forgive everyone who is endebted to us (Luke 11:4). It is sowing and reaping: give and it shall be given unto you! Have you forgiven other people their sins and trespasses they have done against you? Have you forgiven the debts of people who owed you first, before you want God to forgive your debts? Let us talk about forgiving people their debts, so that God will also forgive you all your debts. Jesus said: if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back. But love your enemies, do good and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great and you will be the sons and daughters of the Most high, for He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful. Judge not and you shall not be judged, condemn not and you shall not be condemned, forgive and you will be forgiven. Give and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be put into your bosom. Because with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you (Luke 6:34-38).
People used the verse thirty eight of Luke six when it comes to money, but when we look at it in the context, Jesus is saying if you forgive people you will also receive forgiveness, if you cancel people’s debts, yours will also be cancelled, if you do not judge and do not condemn people, you also will receive no judgment and no condemnation. It is not just about money! If you are merciful, you also will receive mercy. For he who has shown no mercy, shall have judgment without mercy, and mercy exults or triumphs, or prevails over judgment (James 2:13). God will forgive your debts, your sins, your transgressions because you have done the same according to the words of Jesus in Luke 11:4. God will not judge you, nor condemn you, and will be merciful to you, because you have done the same to your fellow humans according to Luke 11:4.
And that is what Jesus was explaining to His disciples and to you and me today. Some times in the church there is partiality going on, some people are better treated than others, because of their income, their social status, their ethnicity, their skin colour : God hates it! We honour everybody and respect them for their achievement, but in the eyes of God they are the same, so we should see with the eyes of God. My brothers do not have the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of Glory, with respecter of faces or partiality. For if there comes a gold-fingered man in fancy clothing into your assembly, and if there also comes in a poor man in shabby clothing, if you have respect for him who has the fancy clothing and say to him, You sit here in a good place, and say to the poor, you stand there, or sit under my footstool; Did you not make a difference among yourselves, and became judges with evil thoughts (James 2:1-4)? Yet God is not partial to princes, nor does He regard the rich more than the poor; for they are all the work of His hands (Job 34:19).
It saddens my heart when I see such partiality in churches. I walked into a church and the first thing the person who was the head of the prayer group told me was: what do you do in life? I said nothing! And he said to me: in our church, if you are a doctor or have a PhD, in a year’s time you can become assistant pastor; because we believe that we need highly educated people to preach the gospel, successful people, and people of influence in society. I said to him, what is wrong with the fishermen and the carpenters? Jesus chose them to be His disciples! He said: no, those days are over, we need to compete with the world. Let me tell you the truth: the eyes of those church leaders are on the income of those people, that is why they make them leaders quickly, to secure their tithe and offering. People wonder: why are other people being partial to me in my place of work? They should ask themselves: have I been partial toward any brother or sister? It is sowing and reaping! In the place of prayer, God will only forgive us because we have forgiven our fellow human. People tell me, I do not understand why people are always criticising my actions, even when I only make a small mistake? It looks like they show me no mercy! Brethren I get away with many things, I know that I made a mistake or I used the wrong word, but people overlook them, because I also overlooked other people’s mistakes and showed them mercy.
Peter thought that there should be a cap or limit to the number of times you can forgive the same person, because otherwise people will abuse his forgiveness and think maybe he is a weak person that cannot defend himself, that is why he keeps on forgiving the same offender. And many of us when our mind is not renewed, think that when we are forgiving people we are weak, we should have said to that person: this is your last chance if you do it again I will no longer forgive you! Thank God for Brother Peter for asking a question that you and I dare not ask. So Peter said: Lord, how often should my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times (Matthew 18:21)? Peter said seven times, because for the Jews, seven is the number of perfection, and on the seventh day God rested of all His works; so at least if I have forgiven him seven times then that was it! I was done forgiving the same dude!
But Jesus said to him and to you and me today: I do not say to you, Gery, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven; which is 490 times; so in a day if you do not sleep for 24 hours you will have to forgive that same person every 2 minutes 56 seconds, in other words: always forgive! I used to deal with a friend of mine, we were not living in the same town, so I would travel to go see that friend so that we could pray and study the bible. That friend was a tremendous blessing to my life in prayers and in prophecies. I acted on the prophecies that friend gave me even the prophecy of Revelation 11. But that friend started to cancel some of our meetings; many times it was at the last minute when I was already in that town. So I said within myself: I have wasted my money by coming here, and it did not happen just once but several times. And every time I forgave that friend and said to myself: Jesus never forced anybody to pray or study the bible; so Gery, I command you to walk like Jesus walked!
But it started to become frequent instead of it being sporadic, and deep inside myself I was saying: next time when that friend tells me to come so that we can study the bible and pray, I will tell that friend: no thanks, I am not bothered anymore! I was hurt in my ego. Having an ego simply means that I am not dead to self in that area that is all; I need to crucify my flesh. That was my decision in my heart. And that friend called me again to come and pray. I wanted to open my mouth and vent my feeling but only a fool vents all his feelings or utters all his mind; so I agreed to crucify my ego and go again to pray with that friend (Proverbs 29:11).
I am telling you this so that you will know that I am but a human and have feelings but when they do not line up with the word of God I am behaving like a fool. Therefore I must bring those thoughts and feelings even my ego into captivity, to the obedience of Christ for they exalt themselves against the knowledge of the word of God (2Corinthians 10:5). So I went and prayed with that friend and the next day we were to meet again but that friend cancelled again. So I said that’s it, I am done! And the Lord spoke to me how Samuel felt when the people rejected him and asked for a king. Samuel said, I have only been good to those people, never taken their money to minister the word of God to them, prayed for them and still they have chosen to have a king over them and they are ready, to give not just ten percent to the temple, but also ten percent of their income to the king. I never used their sons as my servants, but the king will take their sons and make some of them his servants. What have I done to these people that they have rejected me? So Samuel said to the people: here I am. Witness against me before the Lord and before His anointed (Jesus): whose ox have I taken, or whom have I cheated? Whom have I oppressed, or from whose hand have I received any bribe with which to blind my eyes? I will restore it to you. And the people said: you have not cheated us or oppressed us, nor have you taken anything from any body’s hand (1Samuel 12:3-4).
I realized that I felt like Samuel: caring for the people and pouring my life into them, and now my services were no longer required. I wanted to know what I had done wrong, for I truly cherished that time of fellowship with my friend. Paul also felt the same way with the Corinthian church, he said: now for the third time I am coming to you. And I will not be burdensome to you; for I do not seek what belongs to you but you (your spirit, soul and body). For the children ought not to lay up treasure for the parents but the parents for the children. And I will gladly spend (for my journey fares, my accommodation and my sustenance while I will be among you) and be spent for your souls (in the time I teach you the word, pray with you and pray and fast for you); though the more abundantly I love you, the less I am loved (I feel like it is a one way love, you have not responded accordingly to the love I have shown toward you). But be that as it may, I did not burden you. Nevertheless, being crafty, I caught you by cunning! Did I take advantage of you by those whom I sent to you (2Corinthians 12:14-17)? I robbed other churches, taking wages from them to minister to you (2Corinthians 11:8). They paid for my journey fares, my accommodation and my sustenance, some of the churches that gave to me were poorer churches than you, like the Macedonian church, it broke my heart to take their money and come to minister to you free of charge, I felt like they were robbed.
So after God gave me the examples of Samuel and Paul: how they felt in a similar situation. The Lord told me to do the same thing Samuel did and said to the people. I purposed in my heart that even if I do not know the reasons behind my friend’s actions, and though I was hurt in my ego, I refused to stop praying even fasting for my friend in my closet, I will keep standing in the gap to intercede for my friend. So I texted that friend of mine, saying: the Lord will not forsake you because you are part of His people, for His great name’s sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make you His people. Moreover, as for me, your Brother Gery, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you (1Samuel 12:22-23). We should always be praying for one another, no matter what, and sometimes we do not know the reasons why our friends have stopped relating with us, or have stop texting us, or calling us? We should always pray for them. I beg everyone who reads these bible studies to keep praying for Gery, for I too pray and fast for every bible study the Lord asks me to write, so that I have sown that seed of prayer and fasting in the life of everybody who reads these bible studies. That God will meet them at their point of need and transform their life like He did mine.
And a week later as I was travelling to another town to preach, the Lord spoke to me. The people chose other gods over Me in the Old Testament throughout the book of Judges. They only came back to me when they were in trouble and in bondage to their enemies, that was when they remembered Me and called upon Me for Me to deliver them. I also was not happy; I wanted them to be with Me also when everything was good in their life, when they were prosperous. Why should I always have them when they are broken, famished, impoverished, oppressed and distressed?
The people sinned so many times against Me by choosing other gods over them and when they were in trouble they came back to me asking forgiveness so that I will deliver them. So I did forgive them and deliver them, but after they have used that trick over Me many times I felt like they were not genuine in their love and repentance toward Me. So the day came when they were again in trouble and greatly distressed. So the children of Israel cried out to Me the Lord, saying: we have sinned against You, because we have both forsaken You our God and served the Baals (Judges 10:10). So I the Lord, reminded them how I delivered them from the Egyptians, and from the Amorites and from the people of Ammon and from Philistines, from the Sidonians, from the Amalekites and from the Midianites who oppressed them when they cried out to Me. Yet every time I delivered them they forsook Me and served other gods. Therefore I the Lord will deliver them no more (why should I forgive them and then deliver them, they are not genuine they have pulled the same trick on Me every time; I am not falling for that anymore). Go and cry out to your gods which you have chosen; let them deliver you in your time of distress (Judges 10:12-14).
I understood now what God felt when he said those words in Judges. God will never ask us to do something that He has never done Himself. God is love, He does not have love but He is love, and the same love of God has been shed abroad in our heart when we received the Holy Ghost (Romans 5:5). Love covers a multitude of sins, it does not matter how many times people have sinned against you: love will compel you to have mercy on them and cover their sin once again and pray for them. God who is love took the risk of being hurt and forsaken another time, the risk of His people choosing other gods after He has done all the job of delivering them and prospering them. As we read in Judges 11, God delivered His people again through the hands of Jephthah. So you too forgive people, pray and even fast for your friends when they are in distress and sick, even if some reward you evil for good, or even if after they are delivered, they decide not to restore their fellowship with you, be a man or woman after God’s own heart like David in Psalm 35:12-13:” They rewarded me evil for good; bereaving my soul. But when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth; I humbled my soul with fastings; and my prayer returned into my own bosom.”
But some months later my friend in question realised that I was no longer calling as much as I used to do. So that friend decided to talk to me. And that is when I explained to my friend what I felt and my friend explained to me, that sometimes the reason a person cancels a meeting is because one does not have money for transportation and does not want to ask. I said to my friend: I told you long time ago that money is not an issue; I can cover your transportation. But my friend told me: sometimes one does not want to be a burden to anybody especially financially. And we talked in length; for many wrong ideas about what I thought about that friend have polluted my friend’s mind likewise, many thoughts about what my friend thought about me have also polluted my mind. The devil who is the accuser of the brethren had done his Job well: accusing us to God, to ourselves and to each other. And after we have talked for about an hour we realised that none of what each other thought in his mind was the truth, but the accusation of the devil. So we apologised for treating each other that way and that was it!
Sometimes you just need to talk to people and tell them in love what is in your mind. God spoke to me about Samuel and Paul but did not tell me that the problem of my friend was transportation money! And I assumed that my friend knows that I am a man of my word: if I say I will pay for your transportation, I do not need to say it twice! Paul tells us: Finally, my brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honest, whatever things are right, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there is any virtue and if there is any praise, think on these things (Philippians 4:8). I failed to do that, I rushed into conclusions that my friend did not want to have anything to do with me. I was wrong, you have heard me: I was wrong!
God always forgives people, we also should always forgive people, pray for them, even fast for them, love them like God and Jesus loves them. We may not know the reasons for their actions but we need to choose to forgive. When that revelation dawned on me, I said: Lord I am sorry for all the times I only cried out to you because I was in distress and the moment you delivered me I stopped fellowshipping with you. I want us to have a new relationship because now I know how you feel in Your heart when we act like that toward you. Help me Lord Jesus to fellowship with you in the good times and in the times of my prosperity not just when I am in trouble. Let me become a true friend who stays with you in the bad times and in the good times! Thus Jesus tells us to forgive always, and God will forgive us because we also forgive our fellow humans who are indebted to us (Luke11:4). For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses (Matthew 6:14-15).
I remember working with some brothers in a church work some years ago, and they agreed that some of us would be actively involved in that work and that they would also support financially the church work. I was not in the meeting and I was not in charge of the church work, I was there only to help. So after sometime I found I was left alone doing the church work and all those who said they would do it, were nowhere to be found! I asked one of them, and that person told me: I am no longer interested in that church work! And others decided not to honour their written and signed financial agreements to the work. I said to myself: did they not count the cost of that church work before starting it like the bible says? Why will they leave the work unfinished (Luke 14:28-30)? Why will they lay their hands on the plough and then look back, this is the way of those who are not fit for the kingdom (Luke 9:62)? Thank God that some of the people kept at least their financial commitment.
So as I was doing that work, there were times that I had to sleep in the streets, for that work to carry on, there were times I had to go on a prolonged forced fast to be able to save some money, so that I could pay for the hotel accommodation where the work was based, so that I did not have to sleep in the street, especially in winter time! And because of all those things that were hard on me and my body, I became angry and bitter (having sharp words) toward some of the people who made the written and signed commitment for the church work. When some of them were calling me on the phone, it was not to ask how I as a person was doing, but to know about the church work, which made me bitter toward them again. Whenever I talked I was gentle and kind but in my heart there was that anger and bitterness. I would say with my mouth: I have forgiven them but inside me there was that anger and bitterness.
And one day as I was reading my bible, the Lord spoke to me: Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and tumult and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you (Ephesians 4:31-32). That is when I said: Lord help me forgive these people as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven me. And Jesus told me: it is the way you have been seeing things from the beginning that is wrong! You think you are working for men, or for a church, or it is a church that sent you to do that work, that is why your eyes are on them, and when they are not faithful to their written and signed commitment, you are angry and bitter toward them. Paul went through a similar experience for the preaching of the Gospel as he said: I know how to be abased and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:12-13). Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, “For Your sake we are killed all the day long. We are counted as sheep of slaughter.” But in all these things we are more than conquerers through Him who loved us (Romans 8:35-37).
Paul’s secret was that he did everything as unto the Lord Jesus, never as unto men, as men pleasers, as an eye service to men, or any church. He tells us: whatever you do, do it heartily as to the Lord not as to men (Colossians 3:23). And Jesus says: where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. The light of the body is the eye: if therefore your eye be single, your whole body shall be full of light (Matthew 6:21-22). The problem is that my treasures or source of money for the church work, was in the written and signed commitment those people had given, so my heart was also there, that is why my eyes were always on them, to open their treasures and drop a coin, so that I could pay some of the expenses of the church work. Then those who said they will do the work will actually do it! You cannot have eyes looking in two different directions, it will not work! You will need corrective glasses. David says: I lift up my eyes to the hills, from whence comes my help; my help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth (Psalm 121:1-2). The One who said: silver is Mine and gold is Mine (Haggai 2:8). Your treasure should be in God, so that your heart will also be in God, and your eye will be solely looking only unto God for your provision. Then your help for the work will come from God alone and He decides who He wants to send your way to help with the work.
Now God may decide to use men or other means, but your eyes and treasure should never be on men or any church, or any organisation but God alone. Jesus said: as the Father sent Me, I also send you (John 20:21). The church did not send you, but Jesus did. Let your treasures, your heart and your eye, be solely on Jesus and on Jesus alone, and you will have light to see where the provision for the work that He has asked you to do is. Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God (Philippians 4:6). You do not need to tell everybody about your financial needs, or to beg people to help you in the work of God, if you tell them and they do not want to help you, you do not have to beg them; but make it known to God alone, since He is the one who sent you! When I got that revelation, I changed my confessions, I started saying: God sent me! So some of the people who were working with me started to tell me: do not say that God sent you, but the church sent you! I refused, because if I say that it is the church that sent me, they will be the one providing for me, but if it is God, He will provide for His son Gery. When I renewed my mind, God started to provide for me to do the work of the ministry.
Those who gave and those who did not give, I treated them equally in my heart; I prayed and fasted for them with the same love. Some people, when they give to the work of ministry, they want you to be zealous for them and they want to exclude you. If they have a problem with a brother, they want you also to have a problem with that same brother. You should not play their game! Paul says: Have I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth? They zealously affect or court you or have warm feelings toward you, but not well, for good or honestly; yes, they want to exclude you or shut you out, so that you might affect them or to be zealous for them. But it is good to be zealously affected always in a good thing, and not only when I am present with you. My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you (Galatians 4:17-19). So in a church some people can be fighting each other and they want you to take sides, never do that, they want to shut you out of the fellowship with a brother or sister because they have a problem with that brother. When you refuse to play their game, they think that you are also their enemy, no you be at peace with everybody.
So when people give you money for the work of ministry you are doing, let them know that it is unto the Lord that they are giving it, not to you. You will only be zealous for what is good and for things that create peace, not division between the brethren. So if they know that they are giving to the Lord and not to you, you will not have to try to please them to receive their financial support, or their physical help; but you will always have to please God by doing what He commands in the bible, to live at peace with everybody. So if people stop supporting the work of God you are doing, because you refused to pick sides, but decided to treat everybody the same, then do not worry; God will provide for His work. I remembered God speaking to me and telling me to go and see one of the people who had signed that written commitment, and not fulfilled it both financially and in the physical help they were to provide; I went and gave him a gift, and we talked and prayed. The Lord told me the second time to go again and offer him a gift, so I did. And that bitterness and anger that was in me just lifted off. We overcome evil with good indeed (Romans 12:21).
Jesus told us: Woe to the world because of offenses! For it is necessary that offenses come; but woe to that man by whom the offense comes (Matthew 18:7)! So when you work with people closely, offense is bound to happen sooner or later; learn to forgive and not be angry or bitter. The secret is to fall in love with the word of God and do everything according to the word of God. As it is written: Great peace have those who love Your law or written word: and nothing shall offend them and cause them to stumble (Psalm 119:165).
Jesus who knows the feeling of our weaknesses went through the same experience: And Jesus said to them, All of you will be offended because of Me this night. For it is written, “I will smite the Shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered (Mark 14:27).” Behold, the hour comes, yes, has now come, that you will be scattered, each man to his own things, and you will leave Me alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me. I have spoken these things to you so that you might have peace in Me. In the world you shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer. I have overcome the world (John 16:32-33). So you too are not alone even if everyone’s been scattered from you, Jesus who sent you is always with you (Matthew 28:20) and the Father who sent Jesus is with Him, plus the Holy Ghost is also with Him, you are never alone. Paul went through a similar experience when people deserted him in the work of the ministry; but he said: in my first defence no one stood with me, but all forsook me. May it not be charged against them; but the Lord stood with me so that the message might be preached fully through me and that all the gentiles might hear. Also I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen (2Timothy 4:16-17)!
So it is crucial for us to learn to forgive, Jesus forgave His disciples who forsook Him and were scattered from Him. And restored them and they worked for Him after His resurrection. Paul also had a problem with John Mark the relative of Barnabas, who forsook them when they went to do the work of the ministry. He was angry with John Mark, and it even caused their team with Barnabas to split (Acts 15). But the wounds of Paul healed and he was able to forgive John Mark for forsaking him, and pray to God that it will not be charged against John Mark, and he was able to work again with him and he asked Timothy, saying: get John Mark and bring him with you, for he is useful to me for ministry (2Timothy 4:11). Even Paul, who taught us about the work of the flesh, had a sharp contention with Barnabas concerning Mark who deserted them. You can forgive and still be angry and bitter toward a person because of how they treated you. But when you look unto Jesus who is the author and finisher of our faith, how He not only forgave His disciples who deserted Him, when He needed them most, but also was not angry and bitter towards them; we also will be able to do the same towards people who have wronged us and forsaken us.
So I say to all of us again: if your brother shall trespass or sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. But if he will not hear you, take one or two more with you, so that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he neglects to hear the church, let him be to you as a heathen and a tax-collector (Matthew 18:15-17). This is the Golden rule that Jesus gave us to deal with issues between brothers and sisters; but unfortunately many do not follow this rule. In many churches we have traditions of men that have made the word of God of no effect (Mark 7:13). Some of the traditions of men forbid young men or young women to tell an older person that they have done them wrong. Timothy was a young man and yet Paul appointed Him in the church to set things in order and appoint elders, bishops, deacons and to teach the word of God, to admonish (to notify a fault, to reprove with mildness) and correct wrong doctrines.
Paul said to Timothy who was a young man: do not rebuke (to chide or to reprove severely) an older man, but exhort (entice by words, advise) him as a father, younger men as brothers; older women as mothers, younger women as sisters with all purity (1Timothy 5:1-2). In Christianity there is respect and honour, we honour people and respect people; we do not treat them as dirt bags or door mats. We are kindly affectionate one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another (Romans 12:10). So it does not mean that because you are an apostle, or a prophet or an evangelist or a teacher or a pastor, that office does not give you the right to speak to people anyhow! Timothy was an evangelist yet Paul commanded him to respect and honour everybody (2Timothy 4:5). Respect people’s age! And you should not also treat younger people than you anyhow. Remember the golden rule of Agape love: Therefore all things, whatever you desire that men should do to you, do even so to them; for this is the Law and the Prophets (Matthew 7:12). Put yourself in other people’s shoes and think: if you were them how would you feel if people treated you that way? But if a man or woman who was older than Timothy was practicing sin or teaching errors, it was Timothy’s duty to admonish or mildly reprove that person, to repent or stop teaching that error, by demonstrating from the scriptures the error of the person, young or old but always with the spirit of gentleness.
If your brother shall trespass or sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. But if he will not hear you, take one or two more with you, so that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he neglects to hear the church, let him be to you as a heathen and a tax-collector (Matthew 18:15-17). Thus when someone sins or trespasses against you, the first step is to go see that person face to face, or call that person on the phone and tell him his fault between you and him alone. Why? Because love covers a multitude of sins (Proverbs 10:12). And He who covers a transgression seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates friends (Proverbs 17: 9). So since you love your brother, you do not want to tell the wrong he has done against you to anybody before letting him know first. Lest he say you are not a good friend, you want me to look bad in the eyes of everybody. Why did you not tell me what I did wrong? I would have apologized and repented. But you started to gossip (which is to run from house to house, tattling and telling news) and to slander my name all over the place (which is to spread false tales or reports, maliciously uttered, and tending to injure the reputation of another, by lessening him in the esteem of his fellow citizens of the kingdom of God).
The bible tells us: A gossip (one who runs from house to house, tattling and telling news; an idle tattler) is a revealer of secrets; so do not mix with him who flatters with his lips (Proverbs 20:19). One going with slander is a revealer of secrets, but the faithful of spirit keeps the matter hidden (Proverbs 11:13). So when someone comes to you with a gossip or slander, Jesus advises us to stop that person and ask him or her: have you first of all told that person his or her fault between you and him or her? If the answer is yes, then you should ask what had the person done about it? If the answer is no, then tell that person first of all, go and tell him his fault, or if the person is afraid to go and talk to him face to face, you go with him to tell the person. Gossipers and slanderers most of the time do that to flatter you, and exclude you, so that you will be zealous for them. But flattery is the spirit of divination, you should not have anything to do with gossipers and slanderers, do not mix with them!
If gossipers and slanderers know, that every time they come to you to tell you a secret about what so and so did, you will always pick up the phone in their presence, call the person in question, tell them what has been reported to you about them and the name of the person who has reported it to you: gossipers and slanderers will not come to your house again, because you expose their works of darkness. Now if the brother or sister tells you he has told the brother or sister his fault between the two of them alone; but the brother or sister did not apologize or repent of his sin, then hear the matter and judge it in line with the written Word of God: what does the word of God say about it? Once you have determined what the word of God says about it. The two of you go, or take a third person, to see the person in question who has done the alleged fault.
When you get there, listen to the version of the matter of that person first before judging the matter. If one answers a matter before he hears, it is folly and shame to him (Proverbs 18:13). People when they come to report an incident that involves them, they only tell you what the other person did wrong; they do not tell you what they did that might incriminate them. Why? Because they want you on their side. But you, when you are called to go and settle a quarrel or a transgression, you must be on nobody’s side but the Lord’s and being on the Lord’s side, means standing on nothing else but what the written word of God says. Joshua, when he saw the Angel of the Lord, who is Jesus, who stood opposite him with His sword drawn in His hand (the sword of the Spirit is the word of God according to Ephesians 6:17). Joshua went to Him and said to Him: are You for us or for our adversaries? So He said: no, but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped and said to Him: what does my Lord say to His servant (Joshua 5:13-14)?
Jesus is on your side, if you are on the Lord’s side, meaning if you are standing on the written word of God. So that is why you need to hear the other side of the story, lest you look foolish and be ashamed, having given your rushed decision and discover that the person who called you to settle the matter was the one at fault. Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all your getting get understanding (Proverbs 4:7). People sometimes call you because they know you are their friend and by calling you to come and settle the quarrel, they hope you will favour them. Feelings and friendship have no place there, when you go to settle a quarrel or bring a brother or sister to order. You only stand on the written word of God, your friend the next time might think twice before calling you to settle his quarrels; but at least you will be respected for your wise and impartial counsels and judgments, for God does not show any partiality, neither should you!
God was not against the people of the land of Canaan per se, but was against their wickedness, which was violating His written word and that is why He evicted them from the land, and gave it to the Israelites. Though the Israelites were His people; but when they sinned against Him by breaking His word at Jericho, because of the accursed thing which Achan stole there, they were defeated by their enemies at Ai (Joshua 7). And when also the Israelites started to act like the Canaanites, who used to live in that land that God removed them from, by worshiping idols; God also removed Israel and sent them into captivity in Babylon.
The Lord already warned them, even before they entered the land saying: For Jehovah your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God. When you father, or beget sons and sons of sons, and when you shall have remained long in the land and have dealt corruptly, by making a graven image, the likeness of anything, and shall do evil in the sight of Jehovah your God, to provoke Him to anger, I call Heaven and earth to witness against you this day, that you shall soon utterly perish from off the land which you are crossing over Jordan to possess. You shall not prolong your days upon it, but shall utterly be destroyed. And Jehovah shall scatter you among the nations, and you shall be left few in number among the nations where Jehovah shall drive you (Deuteronomy 4:24-27). Some Christians think because they are children of God they can act like heathens and God will still be pleased with them. No, that is a wrong understanding of God; God is pleased with you and me when we do things that line up with His written word. Jesus says to everybody in the church: Repent! But if not, I will come to you quickly, and will fight with them by the sword of My mouth (Revelation 2:16).
Some of my friends come and tell me: come and talk to my wife, your sister, for she is mad at me and has not been talking to me for a month now. So when I get there the wife is already not happy; because she thinks I will side with my friend and there will be favouritism. So when I ask the sister to tell me her side of the story. I realize that my friend was not as innocent as he told me. And when I give them the counsel of written word of God, most of the time it is my friend who called me who is not happy with me; for he says: the word of the Lord in my mouth has favoured the wife too much. And most of the time my friend tells me: my wife always hears what you have to say; I do not know why? It is simple! She has seen that I was not partial in my judgments, when she was right according to the scriptures; I said to her husband that she was right; and when her husband was wrong according to the scriptures I said to him he was wrong, even if he is the head of the home. If the written word of God is not our final authority to settle quarrels and faults, then they will never be settled; because everybody will act according to the dictate of their own imagination and thoughts that exalt themselves against the knowledge of the word of God.
And now if the brother or sister at fault refuses to apologize or repent of his or her trespass, after you have gone there with one or two other brothers or sisters: tell the matter to the church leaders. The church leaders will call the two parties and demonstrate from the scriptures why they know with certainty that the brother or sister is at fault. Now if the brother or sister at fault refuses to repent or apologize. Jesus says: consider that person as a heathen or tax collector. For if he was truly a born again Christian he will accept the counsel of the written word of God, which is our final authority. Your testimonies or written word are my delight and my advisers or counsellors (Psalm 119:24). Jesus is the Word of God, if someone rejects the counsel of the word of God; it is not you that he has rejected but Jesus. Still love that brother or sister but consider him or her as a heathen or a tax collector.
Now if that brother or sister is committing one of the sins leading to death which Paul lists saying: 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 (gamblers), nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God (1Corinthians 6:9-10). And they have refused even to repent after the matter has been brought to the church, consider them like heathens or tax collectors for it shows that they are not born again. But still love them and pray for them that God will help them to repent and be born again. John tells the church that, that kind of person does not love the Lord, for if one loves the Lord Jesus, he or she also keeps His commandments (1John 5:2).
I remember a couple of years ago a friend of mine said to me: Gery, I believe that God, when He comes for the rapture, He will not just come for strong Christians; but also for the weak; for I am a father also, and I would not want to leave my children behind, just because they made some mistakes. I could not answer him at that time, because I had not studied the full counsel of the Lord through the scriptures. We do not walk by sight (all the five physical senses and emotions) but by faith (2Corinthians 5:7). And faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17). We Christians, when our mind is renewed by the word of God, have no opinion, but we have a position; because we are representatives or ambassadors of King Jesus, and our position is what the counsel of the written word of God says. If an ambassador says something that His King did not say, he is no longer speaking for his king!
Another sister after she had read the bible study on: “Come Home”; asked me: since the bible says that when we are born again we received eternal life; therefore what we do after we are born again does not matter, we are already saved! The real question in the minds of people is this: once saved, always saved, is it true or false? The Lord woke me up on August 16th, 2013 at 6 a.m. and told me to read the letter of Jude to the saints, to answer that question: once saved, always saved, is it true or false? And the Lord started to explain things to me. All those sins that lead to death, listed by Paul in 1Corinthians 6:9-10, have their root in idol worship. When we practice them we are actually worshiping a demon and not God. When we practice them, what we are spiritually doing is, we are turning, running away from the house of God, to go to the house of demons, even Satan the ruler of all demons; we have chosen Satan over God.
Jesus tells us: most assuredly I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but the son or daughter abides forever (John 8:34-35). As long as you are practicing those sins leading to death, you are slave of the demon who is behind that sin, you are in bondage. And Jesus is saying if you are a slave of Satan and his demons you will not abide in the House of God forever, but you will be kicked out of it. Jesus does not want anybody who calls himself a Christian, to be a slave of Satan and be cast out into hell. He wants to set, not just the unsaved free, but also born again Christians who are struggling with those sins leading to death. Thus Jesus says: therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed (John 8:36). And today if you are bound by any of those demons, you will be made free indeed, in the name of Jesus the Son of God! So that you may abide in the house of God and not be cast out like the heathen into hell.
Behind homosexuality, bestiality, fornication, abusers (rapists, paedophiles) and adultery is the spirit of harlotry or spirit of prostitution (Hosea 4:12). When people went into the temple of an idol, they would sleep with an animal or children or the priest or priestess of that idol to obtain oracle or power from that idol, which is but a demon. So if you are bound by that demon of prostitution, just repent of your sin toward God now, and put your faith in Jesus who shed His blood for the cleansing of all your sins; for He is faithful and just to forgive you and cleanse you of all unrighteousness (1John 1:9). Then say this with me: Jesus I thank you for forgiving me and cleansing me, and I know you want to make me free and be free indeed from that demon of prostitution. Create in me, O God, a clean heart, not a lustful heart or a reveler’s heart anymore; and renew the right spirit within me, even the Holy Ghost; not the spirit of prostitution anymore (Psalm 51:10). Therefore in the name of Jesus Christ, I command you demon of prostitution to come out of my body now, and never return again! I am no longer your slave, I have been redeemed with the blood of Jesus and I have overcome you by the blood of Jesus the Lamb of God, and the written word of God which is our testimony (Revelation 12:11). In Jesus’ name, Amen!
Behind drunkenness, drug addiction, smoking and substance abuse and wild parties, night clubs (revelry) is the demon named Bacchus, a pagan deity of wine and revelry. Idolater worship of demons; for all those idols or gods of the pagans are but demons, as Paul tells us: I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice to their idols, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that you should have fellowship with devils (1Corinthains 10:20). Jesus wants to set you free of that demon Bacchus. Repent of your sins and put your faith in Jesus who shed His blood for your sins; for He is faithful and just to forgive you and cleanse you from all unrighteousness and purpose not to do it again (1John 1:9). Then say with me: Jesus, I thank you for making me free and allowing me to abide in the House of God. I speak to you demon Bacchus, drug addiction, smoking, wild party; you foul demon, I command you to leave my body immediately and never return again. Jesus has made me free and I am free indeed. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
Behind thieves, robbers, extortioners and murderers (even abortion) is Satan himself; for he comes but to steal, kill and destroy, Satan was a murderer from the beginning and whenever you practice those things you are worshiping Satan and according to Jesus: it shows that you are the son of Satan for you are doing his desires (John 10:10, John 8:44). If you have been practicing it you just need to repent toward God and put your faith in the blood of Jesus, for he promised to acquit us even of the guilt of bloodshed (Joel 3:21). There is no sin that is too big that God cannot forgive if you confess it. Then say this with me: Jesus I thank you for forgiving me and cleansing me of my sin, you want to set me free from being a son or daughter of the devil to become a son or daughter of God. Satan get behind me in the name of Jesus, I command you to leave my body right now, theft, robbery, extortion, murder, abortion you have no more place in my life, I have overcome you by the blood of the Lamb of God and the written word of God which is my testimony (Revelation 12:11). I am free indeed, in the name of Jesus, Amen!
Behind revilers is the spirit of rebellion against the knowledge of God and God Himself. And Samuel tells us: 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 15:23). A reviler refuses to change his ways, even if they have been demonstrated from the scriptures to him, that what he is doing is against God and His word. He refuses to submit to God but becomes stubborn in his evil ways. People who are influenced by the antichrist spirit, are also revilers because they elect another leader over them, other than Jesus who is God. Like the Korah rebelled against the leadership of Moses, a type of Jesus, and wanted to choose another leader over them. In the bible study named Application of The Perfect Redemption Plan, we have explained the antichrist Spirit. Revilers who are influenced by the antichrist spirit, will say that Jesus is a mere prophet, these are the Muslims. They will say that Jesus is not God, but the archangel Michael; these are the Jehovah’s witnesses. They will say they have another prophet who has brought a better revelation of God than Jesus did, and they exalt the book of their prophet above the written word of God, these are the Mormons. All these will burn in hell, unless they repent and believe Jesus who is fully God, fully human. Jesus said to him, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father but by Me (John 14:6).
Witchcraft, idolatry and even the antichrist spirit are behind revilers. Saul who rebelled against the word of God that came through the mouth of Samuel very soon went to consult a witchdoctor (medium) to tell him his fortune (1Samuel 28). Some born again Christians when they face crises: sickness, barrenness, bankruptcy, etc, they go to consult a witchdoctor, or a fortune teller. If they do not repent of their evil, they will suffer the same fate Saul did. God says to us: There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter to pass through the fire (“abortion or human sacrifice”), or that uses divination, an observer of the clouds (astrology and zodiac signs), or a fortune-teller (palm reading), or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or one who calls to the dead (necromancer). For all that do these things are an abomination to the Lord. And because of these abominations the Lord your God drives them out from before you (Deuteronomy 18:10-12).
Revilers do not want to hear the counsel of the word of God, that is why they try to find their counsel and help elsewhere, in all those places listed in Deuteronomy 18:10-12, like Saul did. Moses was a prophet a type of Jesus, The Prophet. So when Korah rebelled against the leadership of Moses; he was rebelling against Jesus and he was sent to hell alive (Numbers 16). Thus if you have been doing any of the things listed in Deuteronomy 18:10-12 you have no part in the kingdom of God but will go to hell like Korah and the people who followed him in his rebellion. You need to repent. Just like the barren daughters of Israel who went to consult the goddess Tammuz of fertility to be able to conceive a child instead of going to God who is the source of life; today also in our churches there are some born again Christians who go to demons to have babies or healing and they still come to the church and pray to God. They think that God did not see them when they went to that demon. As it is written: Then God brought Ezekiel to the door of the gate of the LORD’S house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz (Ezekiel 8:14).
Hannah the mother of Samuel did not weep for Tammuz to conceive Samuel, but she wept for the Lord and the Lord gave her Samuel (1Samuel 1). We have demonstrated, in the perfect redemption plan bible study, that when people do not believe that God heals and raises the dead, it is because they are being influenced by the spirit of antichrist. It is funny they think that God cannot heal or raise the dead and yet they are running to witchdoctors and demons like Tammuz, to receive their healing or babies. It is Satan himself that is behind that antichrist spirit, as we calculated the number of the beast 666 in that bible study. If you have been rebelling against the Lord, you need to genuinely repent of your sin of rebellion towards God, and ask Jesus to cleanse you of your sins, and purpose not to go back there anymore. And say this with me: Father God I repent of my sin of rebellion towards you, I ask you with all my heart to forgive me, cleanse me and wash me in the blood of Jesus and I shall be whiter than snow (Psalm 51:7). Create in me a clean heart, not a rebellious heart anymore; and renew the right spirit within me, even the Holy Ghost; remove that witchcraft spirit and antichrist spirit in me (Psalm 51:10). I command you witchcraft spirit and antichrist spirit leave my heart now and never return, Christ has made me free and I am free indeed, in the name of Jesus, Amen!
We are not talking about rebelling against traditions of men and customs; for some men or women of God will use that scripture to accuse members of rebellion and witchcraft; because they refused to obey them. Obey a man or woman of God if he or she tells you to do something that lines up with the word of God; but if it has to do with his or her tradition or customs, it is not a sin if it is not convenient for you to obey his traditions and customs. And if his tradition and customs violate the written word of God, do not even obey it for a second; because you will be violating the word of God too. The Pharisees were very Zealous about the Jewish traditions, that they would rather sin against God than violate their tradition. Jesus told them: Why do you also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition (Matthew 15:3)? For you lay aside the commandment of God, and you chose to hold the tradition of men (Mark 7:8). Full well you reject the commandment of God, so that you may keep your own tradition (Mark 7:9). Thus making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which you have delivered: and many such like things you do (Mark 7:13). Jesus refused to obey the traditions of the Jews when it violated the word of God, do the same, you will not be rebelling, Jesus is our example.
Still talking about the sins that lead to death listed in 1Corinthians 6:9-10, behind covetousness is idolatry even the spirit of mammon or greed. Paul tells us: Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness (which is idolatry) (Colossians 3:5). Jesus says: no one can serve two masters. For either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon (Matthew 6:24). Mammon is a god of wealth, riches and greed. When you are covetous (very eager to obtain wealth and riches) unwittingly you are worshiping that mammon spirit. All those who gamble are covetous people and they shall not enter the kingdom of God. Thus there is no such a thing as a born again Christian who plays lottery, who goes to the bookies, or who goes to casinos you are an idolater and no idolater shall enter the kingdom of God!
I remember when we were back home in the Republic of Congo, before we were born again; we used to bet on horse racing. The whole family was betting. We would spend about three times the amount of the national minimum wage every month on horse racing. And a so called Christian brother who was living in our house, was the one who introduced us to horse racing bets. He was the expert and had all the statistics on which horse might win! He spent half of his salary on horse racing since he had no rent to pay, he was living at ours! But the moment we were born again. Overnight we all stopped betting! That so called Christian Brother was the only one betting in the house, he would try to convince us to bet but we were no longer interested. Funny enough our Brother Jean Francois Ngemba who begot us in the Lord did not even address that subject of gambling. But when we were born again Jesus made us free of that spirit of mammon!
When I backslid and came to United Kingdom, I started to gamble. I would bet on football matches, I would play casinos online. I would play national lottery, Euro Million lottery. In the beginning I thought I had control over what I spent, but I was wrong! I started by playing only for 1% of my income every week and I became addicted, that demon was even giving me dreams of the numbers to play or on which team to bet. And it was always wrong I was losing money; but I could not stop myself. I found myself spending up to 40% of my weekly income on gambling. I was miserable, but I could not stop myself! I tell you: you can be in your house and behind your computer or mobile phone and gamble your money away!
But the moment I gave back my life to Christ, God healed my backsliding and loved me freely (Hosea 14:4); I had no more desire to gamble. I was free for the Son had made me free. I did not even know what had happened spiritually, only later when I started to read the bible I realized that I was a slave of the demon Mammon, and Christ Jesus had made me free when I returned to My Father’s home. Somebody praise the Lord with Brother Gery, praise the Lord! If you are still gambling my friend you have a demon called mammon and Jesus wants to make you free and free indeed today! You need to repent of your sin and ask Jesus to wash and cleanse you of all your sins in His precious blood, so that you will be whiter than snow. Invite Jesus into your life to be Lord and Saviour of your life. The most important part is to purpose in your heart not to do it again. And then say this with me: Jesus I thank you that you have cleansed me of all my unrighteousness and cleansed my conscious of the dead works of gambling by your blood so that I may serve the living God and not the demon mammon anymore (Hebrews 9:14). You have made me free today of the gambling demon mammon and I am free indeed. I command you gambling demon, mammon demon to come out of my body immediately and never return, in the name of Jesus. The Lord has created in me a clean heart, not a covetous one and has renewed a right spirit within me even the Holy Ghost (Psalm 51:10). In Jesus’ name, Amen!
Avoid the company of friends who say they are Christians and practice those sins leading to death. If a friend, or your family member is doing a party, and that party is taking place in a pub or in a night club, do not set your foot in that place. Give a gift to your friend at his house and tell him that you cannot make it to his party. If a friend or a family member does a party or celebration in a mosque, in a Jehovah’s Witness kingdom hall, or in a Mormon temple, or any other idol worship temple: do not go with them for these are demons temples. Give them a gift and go to the reception if it is held at home or in another venue that is not a pub or a night club or an idol temple. If you have friends and they invite you to go to the bookies, or to a casino or to a witchdoctor or fortune teller, astrologer, etc: do not go with them, even if it is just to accompany your friend or family members, you are going into the temple of a demon. Today in the 21st century there are some churches who do church in the pub, so they go into a pub on the days they are not busy and they play some Christian songs and share a word of “god”. Some other Christians go into mosques and preach there and minister healing in the mosque.
God loves people and He wants to heal sick people. The fact that God has healed a person in a mosque or in a pub does not mean that God has approved of the means used. Moses struck the Rock the second time and water came out of it; but God was not pleased with him and he did not enter the promised land because of that sin. God will perform a miracle because He cares for the people. But you, who have performed the miracle in the name of the Lord, will give an account like Moses did because you know the ways and the acts of God and you know that this is not the way you were instructed to preach the kingdom by Jesus (Psalm 103:7; Numbers 20). Paul tells us: I did not receive it from man, nor was I taught it except by a revelation of Jesus Christ (Galatians 1:12). I, Paul, am the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you nations, if you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given to me toward you, that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I wrote before in few words, by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) (Ephesians 3:1-4).
I, Paul, say to you: if any man see you, who has knowledge, sit at meat in the idol’s temple, shall not the conscience of him who is weak be emboldened to eat those things which are offered to idols; And through your knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died (1Corinthians 8:11)? So think twice! Although you have the knowledge that God is above all the other gods of the pagans, which are but demons, but for the sake of other brothers and especially for the sake of the unsaved people. If they see you in that place: pub, night club, casinos, bookies, mosque, Hindu temple, fortune teller house, new age temple, Jehovah’s Witness kingdom hall, or any other idol’s temple; what will happen, is that some Christians who do not have the knowledge of what the word of God says about those places, will think we are serving the same God, which is not true, they are serving demons not God. They will think that Jesus is not the only way, not the only truth, and it is okay for us to gamble, to drink, to commit fornication; and unsaved people will say: oh we do not need to receive that Jesus we can stay idol worshipers and that Jesus will still heal us, we can live in sin and that Jesus does not matter. We were saved from our sin, not in our sins, so we need to stop sinning and stop worshipping idols!
If you were really sent there by God: you would have only one message: “repent and be born again for the kingdom of God is at hand. If you do not forsake your idols which are but demons and the spirit of antichrist you will all go and burn in hell. There is only one way, one truth and one life and it is Jesus Christ. Even if you are a Jew and practice Judaism but if you do not receive Jesus as your saviour you will go to hell! Do not deceive yourself, 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 but they will burn in hell, therefore I beseech you by the mercy of God to repent toward God, put your faith in Christ Jesus alone and be born again so that you may receive eternal life”.
In Acts 14, Paul and Barnabas were in Lystra preaching the gospel not in an idol’s temple, but in the street and Paul healed a lame man in the name of Jesus. The priests of the temple of Jupiter came where Paul and Barnabas were and tried to worship them the way they worship their demon Jupiter. It is written: they called Barnabas Jupiter, and Paul Mercury, because he was the chief speaker. And the priest of Jupiter, being before their city, brought oxen and garlands to the gates, wishing to sacrifice with the crowds. But hearing this, the apostles Barnabas and Paul tore their clothes and ran in among the people, crying out and saying, Men, why do you do these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preaching the gospel to you to turn you from these worthless idols and useless things to the living God, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and all things in them (Acts 14;12-15). And Jews from Antioch and Iconium came there, who, having persuaded the people, and having stoned Paul, they drew him out of the city, supposing him to have died (Acts 14:19).
Look at what those idol worshipers did to Paul for telling them the truth that their idols were worthless idols and useless things; and they should not serve them anymore, but turn to the living God through Jesus, who is the only way, the only truth and the only life. They stoned Paul and left him for dead. But those people do not preach that message of repentance, otherwise they will be kicked out of those idol’s temples, even beaten or stoned! They compromise the message of the kingdom of God. The Message of John the Baptist, the message of Jesus and the message of the disciples of Jesus is the same: Repent for the kingdom of God is at hand! Paul tells us: 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 idols)? Or what part does a believer have with an unbeliever? And what agreement does a temple of God have with idols (mosques, Jehovah’s Witness kingdom halls, Hindu temples, new age, or other idol’s temples)? 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. Therefore come out from among them and be separated, says the Lord, and do not touch the unclean thing. And I will receive you and I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty (1Corinthains 6:14-18).”
If you read the bible, nowhere in the four gospels did Jesus go into an idol’s temple, to preach the kingdom of God or heal the sick. But the idol worshipers came where Jesus was preaching, or waited for Him in the market place. When you read the book of Acts, none of the apostles went to any of the idol’s temples to preach or heal the sick; but the idol worshipers came to them, wherever they were preaching, either in the temple or in the market place. When you read the bible none of the prophets of God went to the temple of the idols to preach to them or heal them; but they went into the house of God or onto the streets of the city to preach and the idol worshipers came to them, to repent like in the book of Jonah. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life; if Jesus did not go to preach and heal in the temple of an idol, you should not do it. Go to the high ways and the byways, and wait for the gamblers, the drunkards, the prostitutes, the sick, and the diseased there! I would rather imitate Jesus, Paul and the other apostles who turned the world upside down in their generation, than people of this century who want to twist the ways of Jesus (Acts 17:6).
In the church also some ministers of the gospel are covetous. Paul tells Timothy: there are some Christians, who have a corrupt mind, and they are destitute of the truth, they suppose that godliness is a means for gain or a fast track to personal enrichment by ripping off gullible believers, from such covetous Christians withdraw yourself; but godliness with contentment is great gain (1Timothy 6:5-6). Such was the case of Simon who used to be a sorcerer in Acts 8:9-25. In Christianity the gifts of the Spirit are free, but in sorcery and idol worship nothing is free, you rip people off. So Simon thought that now that he was saved, if Peter laid hands on him to receive the power of God to make people speak in tongues and heal the sick, he would be making a great fortune. So he offered money to Peter so that he would give him the power.
Peter said to Simon: May your money perish with you, because you have thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for your heart is not right in the sight of God. Therefore repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray God if perhaps the thought of your heart may be forgiven you (Acts 8:20-22). Yes, you are covetous and idolater of the god called mammon that you are serving, you have no part in the kingdom of God. Any minister of the gospel who requests money from you to minister healing or prophesy to you is influenced by the spirit of witchcraft or sorcery. Those preachers are influenced by that spirit of witchcraft or sorcery, like the born again Simon who used to be a sorcerer. People who ask you for money to give you a prophecy, are under the Balaam spirit. And Balaam was a prophet of Baal, and God asked the children of Israel to kill Balaam so they did. That is why when Paul gives the qualification of a minister of God he says: he must be without reproach, husband of one wife, temperate, sensible, well-ordered, hospitable, apt at teaching, not a drunkard, not contentious, not greedy of ill gain, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous, ruling his own house well, having children in subjection with all honour (1Timothy 3:2-4). The same criteria apply for a woman of God.
So if you are a born again Christian and are still practicing those sins leading to death, you are actually worshiping the devil unwittingly, that is why, if you do not repent of those sins you will go to hell. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1John 1:9). Paul tells the Corinthian saints who were practicing those sins leading to death, the example of the children of Israel in 1Corinthians 10 that once saved it does not mean always saved, we have to stop practicing the sins that lead to death.
He writes: brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be ignorant that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea. And all were baptized to Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank of the spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ. But with many of them God was not well pleased, for they were scattered in the wilderness. And these things were our examples, that we should not be lusters after evil, as they also lusted. Nor should we be idolaters, even as some of them, as it is written: “The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.” Nor let us commit fornication, as some of them fornicated, and twenty-three thousand fell in one day. Nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted Him and were destroyed by serpents. Nor murmur as some of them also murmured and were destroyed by the destroyer. And all these things happened to them as examples; and it is written for our warning on whom the ends of the world have come. So let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall (1Corinthians 10:1-12).
Their coming out of Egypt, the house of bondage is a picture of us being born again, being delivered from the power of darkness and the kingdom of darkness and translated into the Kingdom of the Son of God’s love (Colossians 1:13). The blood of a lamb was applied on their sins when they came out of Egypt (Exodus 12); the blood of Jesus, the Lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world, was applied on our sins when we were born again. When they crossed the Red Sea it is a picture of us being water baptized: we died with Christ, were buried with Him and rose with Him, when they came out of the Red Sea and when we come out of the water. They were baptized into Moses, who was a type of Jesus, The Prophet in the cloud and in the Sea. You and I were baptized into Christ; we received the water baptism which is a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins and the putting away of the filth of the flesh (Mark 1:4; 1Peter 3:21). They were baptized into Moses in the cloud, which is a picture of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, for the cloud symbolized the Holy Spirit. You and I were baptized into Christ in the Holy Ghost with evidence of speaking in tongues (Acts 2, Acts 10).
They all ate the same spiritual food that manna sent from heaven; likewise all born again Christians ate the bread of life Jesus, the true bread that comes from heaven (John 6:31-58). They all drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them and that Rock was Jesus; likewise all born again Christians drink the blood of Jesus to receive His eternal life in us (John 6:53-55). Water was coming out of the Rock who is Christ; in the same way you and I who are born again Jesus the Rock who now dwells in every born again believer told us: He who believes on Me, as the Scripture has said, “Out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water (John 7:38).”
But just like, with those among them, who practiced the sins that lead to death, God was not pleased, and sent them to hell; likewise today, with born again Christians who are water baptized, baptized in the Holy Ghost, with evidence of speaking in tongues, and who even have rivers of living water flowing out of their belly: if they practice the same sins leading to death, they will also go to hell. The letter of Paul to the Corinthians was not enough to convince some believers, that once they have been saved, they must keep practicing righteousness and good works. Faithful is the Word, and as to these things, I desire that you strongly affirm that those believing God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable to men (Titus 3:8). So Jude also tells the born again believers the same thing.
Jude 1:3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that you should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.
Jude 1:4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.
Jude 1:5 I will therefore put you in remembrance, though you once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who believed not.
Jude 1:6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.
Jude 1:7 Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
Jude 1:8 Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.
Jude 1:9 Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not or did not dare bring against him a railing or reviling accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke you.
Jude 1:10 But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves.
Jude 1:11 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain (who murdered Abel his brother), and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying or rebellion of Korah.
Jude 1:12 These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withers, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots (Jesus said: Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up, they also shall be up rooted from the kingdom of God (Matthew 15:13));
Jude 1:13 Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.
Jude 1:14 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,
Jude 1:15 To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.
Jude 1:16 These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaks great swelling words, having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.
Jude 1:17 But, beloved, you remember the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ (Paul and Peter);
Jude 1:18 How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts (for Paul said: now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils (1Timothy 4:1); and Peter says: First, knowing this, that there will come in the last days scoffers walking according to their own lusts and saying, Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation (2Peter 3:3-4)).
Jude 1:19 These are those who separate themselves, sensual persons who cause division, having not the Spirit.
Paul, Peter and Jude were not writing those letters to unsaved people but to saved people; they called them saints (Jude 1:1; 1Corinthians 1:2).Therefore Paul tells us: If any man or woman does not love the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be accursed or Anathema, which means excommunicated or put away from among yourselves, by the decision of the church authorities, after they have seen that wicked person is not repenting of the sins leading to death, even if it is brother Gery who has become wicked and refuses to repent of his wickedness that leads to death: excommunicate him too. But when that person who was practicing those sins leading to death, repents of his or her evil ways, restore that person into the fellowship. Whatever Jesus says to one He says to all, there are no double standards with Jesus.
So Paul says: I wrote to you in the letter, not to associate intimately with fornicators; yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous (gamblers), or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then you must go out of the world. But now I have written to you, not to associate intimately, if any man called a brother and is either a fornicator, or covetous (gambler), or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such a one not to eat. For what is it to me to also judge those who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? But God judges those who are outside. Therefore put out from you the evil one (1Corinthians 5:9-13). But if that wicked person repents and forsakes his wickedness that leads to death restore him into the fellowship and show him your love (2Corinthians 2). Maranatha which means: our Lord come! The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen (1Corinthians 16:22-24)!
But if you are born again and are not practicing any of the sins leading to death that Paul listed in 1Corinthians 6:9-10; you do not have to worry about anything. You are saved, and you will be saved. You should not be afraid of the coming of Jesus. Because you have a good conscience that you are not practicing sins leading to death. Peter talks of another baptism that we are supposed to receive, when we receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost and fire. It is not a baptism of the putting away of the filth of the flesh, since we already did it when we received the water baptism for the remission of sins, but it is the answer of a good conscience toward God, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ (1Peter 3:21). Yes we should walk in this newness of life even the resurrection life that is now in us. When we do what Paul tells us: But you brothers and sisters, who are walking in this newness of life, are not in darkness, so that this Day (the Day of the Lord when He comes for the rapture) should overtake you as a thief. Why? Because you are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness (1Thessalonians 5:4-5). The day of the Lord only comes as a thief to unsaved people and to saved people who are practicing those sins leading to death, who are not doing the will of Jesus; they are the ones in darkness, walking in darkness and are children of the night (Matthew 24:42-51).
Let us learn to forgive one another in prayer no matter what they have done. In Matthew 18:23-35, Jesus gives a parable of the Kingdom of heaven to explain better to Peter, why we should always forgive our fellow humans from the heart. God has forgiven us so much by redeeming us with the blood of His only begotten Son Jesus. We can never repay that debt, it is priceless; the least we can do to show our gratitude, is to forgive the trespasses of our fellow humans, which they have done against us.
Matthew 18:23 Therefore the kingdom of Heaven has been compared to a certain king who desired to make an accounting with his servants.
Matthew 18:24 And when he had begun to count, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents.
Matthew 18:25 But as he had nothing to pay, his lord commanded that he, and his wife and children, and all that he had, be sold, and payment be made.
Matthew 18:26 Then the servant fell down and worshiped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me and I will pay you all.
Matthew 18:27 Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion and released him and forgave him the debt.
Matthew 18:28 But the same servant went out and found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii. And he laid hands on him and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me what you owe.
Matthew 18:29 And his fellow servant fell down at his feet and begged him, saying, Have patience with me and I will pay you all.
Matthew 18:30 And he would not, but went and cast him into prison until he should pay the debt.
Matthew 18:31 So when his fellow servants saw what was done, they were very sorry. And they came and told their lord all that was done.
Matthew 18:32 Then his lord, after he had called him, said to him, O wicked servant, I forgave you all that debt because you begged me.
Matthew 18:33 Should you not also have pitied your fellow servant, even as I had pity on you?
Matthew 18:34 And his lord was angry, and delivered him to the tormentors until he should pay all that was due to him.
Matthew 18:35 So likewise shall My heavenly Father do also to you, unless each one of you from your hearts forgives his brother their trespasses.
So we all like to quote this part of Matthew 18 in which Jesus says: Truly I say to you, Whatever you shall bind on earth shall occur, having been bound in Heaven; and whatever you shall loose on earth shall occur, having been loosed in Heaven. Again I say to you that if two of you shall agree on earth as regarding anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them by My Father in Heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there I am in their midst (Matthew 18:15-20). But we purposely omit the verses before and the verses after which talk about repentance, forgiveness from the heart and offenses that will come. Why do we omit to talk about them when we teach on prayer? It is because nobody wants to forgive, it is not easy. When you forgive people, it shows how much you have denied yourself, or died to self and picked up your cross and followed Jesus; how you have decreased so that Jesus may be increased in you; how you have died to your ego and humbled yourself under the mighty hand of God, so that He can exalt you.
In the prayer that the Lord Jesus taught us, it is not truly that we have to recite it, for recitation is not prayer. So the Catholics with their rosaries, are not praying but merely reciting things. Jesus says when you pray, do not use vain repetition like the heathen do. When you pray, do not use vain repetition, as the heathen. For they think that in their much speaking they shall be heard (Matthew 6:7). You do not have to number how many times you have said: “our Father in heaven…” and you certainly do not have to pray to Mary, she is a human like you. She is not God. Although God used her mightily to bring His Son Jesus; but she is not God, worship only God. Mary died and was buried, Paul died and was buried, and Samuel died and was buried. If you pray to any dead person including Mary: it is necromancy and from the devil. Saul went to a medium to call the spirit of the dead Samuel, and because of that God killed him (1Samuel 28). In Deuteronomy 18, God asked the Israelites to kill everybody who prayed to the dead or practiced necromancy.
Deuteronomy 18:10 There shall not be found among you any one who makes his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or who uses divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,
Deuteronomy 18:11 Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer (One who pretends to foretell future events, by holding converse with departed spirits; a conjurer).
Deuteronomy 18:12 For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD your God drives them out from before you.
We also do not pray or worship angels. When John wanted to worship the angel who spoke with him; he explained to us what happened, saying: I fell at the angel’s feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See that you do not do this: I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren, that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy (Revelation 19:10). We do not worship angels or pray to angels; they are servants of our Father God and they are assigned by God to serve us born again Christians. When we are born again, we are sons and daughters of our Father God who are serving in His vineyard; but angels are servants. All these things about who we are in Christ Jesus are explained in the series of The Perfect Redemption Plan. Paul tells us: angels are ministering spirits or servant spirits, sent forth by God to minister or to serve those, who have inherited or who will inherit salvation (Hebrews 1:14). Even Moses said about angels: God has given His angels charge over you to keep you in all your ways; in their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone (Psalm 91:11-12).
And David says: Bless the LORD, you his angels that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto (listen to and carrying out) the voice of His word (Psalm 103:20). So the question is: who will voice the word of God, so that the angels will hearken unto it? The answer is: you are the one who will voice that word of God, so that angels will perform it. God says: I have put My words in your mouth, and I have covered you in the shadow of My hand, so that I may plant the heavens, and lay the foundations of the earth, and say unto Zion, you are My people (Isaiah 51:16). So God puts His words in your mouth, even His written word, so that as you pray that His kingdom come, and His will for His people that is in heaven, be done or planted on earth. The bible study on The Power of Confession explains to us how powerful the words that proceed out of our mouths are. God said to Moses: you shall speak unto Aaron, and put words in his mouth: and I will be with your mouth, and with his mouth, and will teach you what you shall do (Exodus 4:15).
God is with your mouth, as long as you say what lines up with the written word of God. Thus the purpose of all these bible studies is to teach us, what to do according to the written word of God, in every situation; so that God will always be with our mouth, and none of the words that come out of our mouth will fall to the ground. As it was said of Samuel: Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and did let none of his words fall to the ground (1Samuel 3:19). For it is God’s will for us to be as effective in prayer and ministration, as the people in the bible were; because He is also with us, just like He was with them in those days. He says: I am the Lord and I do not change (Malachi 3:6). Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8).
So Jesus tells us: When you pray, say, Our Father who are in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, as in heaven, so in earth (Luke 11:2). Jesus did not tell us: when you pray say: hail Mary full of grace the Lord is with you and Jesus the fruit of your womb is blessed…, no Jesus did not tell us to pray that way. Also, Jesus did not tell us to pray saying: hail Samuel who are in heaven, or hail Elijah who are in heaven, or hail saint Peter who are in heaven, or hail saint John who are in heaven, or hail saint Paul who are in heaven, or hail archangel Michael who are in heaven, or hail archangel Gabriel who are in heaven; but He said when you pray say: our Father who are in heaven. John tells us: that which we have seen and heard we declare unto you, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ (1John 1:3). Yes, in the place of prayer, we only seek the fellowship of the Godhead: God the Father, God the Son, Jesus and God the Holy Ghost. I have had angelic visitations in dreams, visions, angels came to give me messages from the Lord and we talked. But we should not seek the fellowship of angels. If God sends them to bring us a message, praise God! But they are servants, we are sons and daughters.
Many times, when people start seeking the fellowship of angels so badly, it is a demon that appears to them and starts telling them so-called revelations, that do not even line up with the written word of God, and those demons will draw attention to themselves, and never point you to Jesus. Think of it this way: let us say your Father is the King and he has one biological son who is his heir, and has many other servants in his royal palace and his kingdom. But the King wanted to have other children, who will also become joint heirs with His only biological son. So He decided to adopt many other children and that is how you became his son or daughter. Now that you are his adopted son or daughter, the king made you joint heir with his only biological son, all that the king has belongs to you, just as it belongs to his only biological son. You now dwell in his royal palace and have all His servants ministering to you.
Now instead of trying to establish a fellowship with your Father and your new elder brother, his biological son, you spend all your time trying to establish a fellowship with his servants. You tell everybody in the kingdom, how privileged you are that one of the servants of your Father the King talked to you, and came into your room. You spend your time describing how well dressed the servants of your Father are. You spent your time telling everybody in the kingdom how you long for one of the servants of your father, to come again into your room and talk to you, and tell you what you should do. Sooner or later, the inhabitants of the kingdom will tell you: why do you not try to have fellowship with your elder brother, the biological son of your Father? Why do you not try to have fellowship with your Father? You dwell with them under the same roof, why do you long for the servants to talk to you and visit you in your room, instead of longing for your Father and your elder brother to talk to you and come into your room? Why do you not read the sixty six love letters that your Father and your elder brother wrote to you: to tell you who you are now in the family, and how much they love you? Boy what’s wrong with you, you do not know who you are and where you belong! You have an identity crisis!
That is how some born again Christians act, they do not know who they are in Christ. In the bible study of The Perfect Redemption Plan we have explained the adoption. Stop longing for the fellowship with angels, who are servants and long for the fellowship of the Father, the Son Jesus and the Holy Ghost. Seek to develop fellowship with the Godhead, that is what the disciples of Jesus had and they also want us to have the same fellowship with the Godhead. Read the sixty six love letters of your Father and Jesus contained in the bible. Stop hunting angelic visitation, or visions of angels, those things do not make you more “spiritual”. Paul had many revelations and angelic visitations; but he was not moved by those angels. If what those angels said, did not line up with the written word of God, the love letters of his Father God and his Elder Brother Jesus and the Holy Spirit wrote to him, Paul rejected that message from the angel. He knew that that angel was not an angel of God but a demon; for an angel of God will always bring a message that lines up with the written word of God. So Paul tells us: even if we or an angel from Heaven preach a gospel to you beside what we preached to you, let him be accursed (excommunicated or banned or kicked out) (Galatians 1:8).
It is because Paul understood who he was in Christ Jesus, that is why he could even correct angels. When they were wrong in their messages, he would cast them out of his presence in the name of Jesus. Why? Because any angel that comes from the presence of the Lord and works for the Lord, will always speak in line with the written word of God. It is the written word of God that we use to judge everything, even the message brought by angels. The moment, I judge according to the written word of God, that that gospel brought by that angel is not from God, I cast him out because he is a demon. Paul tells us: Do you not know that we shall judge angels, not to mention the things of this life (1Corinthians 6:3)? People who do not know who they are in Christ and have no understanding of what The Perfect Redemption Plan of God is, will always be moved by angels and be easily deceived by demons, who are angels working for Satan.
And sometimes in a church setting; someone says, I have seen a vision of an angel and he spoke to me. People are already impressed, so that they do not even judge what that angel says: whether it lines up with the written word of God or not? If what that angel says, does not line up with the written word of God, you know it is a demon: so you say: get behind me Satan, you are an offence to me, in the name of Jesus I command you to leave this place right now! The written word of God is the final authority by which we judge every message and test every spirit: whether it be from the Lord or from the devil; for angels are servant spirits, we need to test their messages too. It is the same principle we use to judge trances; a person can be in a trance and be taken into heaven, or be shown revelations. When he comes out of that trance and tells us what he has seen and heard; we judge it in the light of the written word of God too.
A trance is a state in which the soul seems to have passed out of the body into celestial regions, or to be rapt into visions; Peter had a trance in Acts 10 and God explained it to him in line with the written word of God. Paul had a trance in Acts 22:17-21 in which Jesus told him to depart from Jerusalem and go to preach to the gentiles. When you are in a trance you do not know if your soul is still in your body or it has left your body; it is hard to know. And sometimes you really feel like you are in that location physically. Paul tells us about the experience of a trance that he had, he said: I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord. I know a man in Christ fourteen years before (whether in the body, I do not know; or outside of the body, I do not know; God knows) such a one was caught up to the third Heaven. And I know such a man (whether in the body, or outside of the body, I do not know; God knows), that he was caught up into Paradise and heard unspeakable words, which it is not allowed for a man to utter (2Corinthians 12:1-4).
People can have trances of heaven, or of hell, or of another location; and it is so real, that they even wonder whether their physical body was also taken into that location; because all the sensations are so real: the pains and torments, the sounds. In the early 20th century during some Christian tent meetings, some people had trances of them being taken to hell, and when they came out of that trance they screamed: pull me out of this fire! Others saw visions of the ground under their feet split open and they were falling alive into hell, like what happened to Korah and his followers in Numbers 16:31-35. So when they came out of those trances, they ran to the altar to be born again! My prayer is that in our Christian gatherings, God will give trances again like that, to unsaved people and to born again Christians, who are practicing sins leading to death, so that they will run for their life and be reconciled with God, in Jesus’ name! Lord I ask you in the name of Jesus to open the spiritual eyes of everyone, saved or unsaved, who are reading these bible studies, or who hear me and those whom I disciple, and the disciple of my disciples, so that they may see how the lost and backsliding souls will be tormented, and sent to burn in hell fire, so that they can run for their life and to be reconciled with God, and have passion to win souls (2Kings 6:17).
I had couple of trances while praying on my knees or in my bed and I thought I had passed out for only five minutes; but when I looked at my watch I was gone for about an hour! But the first thing I do when I come out of that trance, I say: where is it written in the bible, Lord? And the Holy Spirit brings to my remembrance, scriptures that explain what I have seen and heard while in that trance. The Comforter, who 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 14:26). Now do not get me wrong, I have nothing against angels, I have many revelations that God sends to me, through their means; but Jesus is the star, I long for His fellowship, for the fellowship of the Father and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost.
On August 23rd, 2013 around 5 A.M I was in a trance. And I saw a woman who was walking on the street; she was well dressed. But when my spiritual eyes were opened, I saw her soul burning and she was tormented by those flames as she was walking, she was screaming for help. Her body did not know that her soul was tormented by the flames of hell fire. And that woman walked into the house of a man with whom she was committing adultery. And after they have come together carnally, I looked at the man and he was physically normal, but when God showed me his soul, it was also catching the flames of hell fire and he was trying to extinguish those flames; but they were getting bigger and bigger like the flames that were on the woman. The guy was born again but by committing that adultery, he backslid. And the Holy Spirit started to tell me: I had great plans in my kingdom for this man, but he is forfeiting them. Sexual immoralities are rooted in idol worship, by practicing them you choose to worship the demon of prostitution over God. And I asked the Holy Spirit: the woman I know she is not saved, that is why she is going to hell, and will burn with tormenting flames, unless she repents and becomes born again; but why is that man catching hell fire too, he just backslid?
And the Holy Ghost brought scriptures to my remembrance saying: for the commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life; to keep you from the evil woman, from the flattery of the tongue of a strange woman. Do not lust after her beauty in your heart; nor let her take you with her eyelids. For by means of a harlot (the spirit of prostitution that is behind fornication, adultery, homosexuality, paedophilia, incest, rape, and bestiality) a man comes to a piece of bread; and another man’s wife will hunt for the precious life. Can a man take fire in his bosom, and his clothes not be burned? Can one go upon hot coals, and his feet not be burned? So is he who goes in to his neighbor’s wife; whoever touches her shall not be innocent (Proverbs 6:23-29). This applies also for saved woman who are practicing sexual immoralities.
So the man thought that it was only the woman, who was unsaved that was going to burn in hell fire, but if you who call yourself a born again Christian, practice the same sins leading to death, that that unsaved woman is doing: you are playing with hell fire in your bosom, your clothes, even your soul will also be burned. The path you have chosen is like one who walks upon hot coals, your feel will be burned also, as you will be thrown into hell. Whoever practices those sins leading to death, even if he was born again, will go to hell, unless you repent and rededicate your life to Christ, and God will heal you of your backsliding and love you freely (Hosea 14:4). That trance was so vivid that when I came out of it, my heart was racing and I feared for that backsliding brother and for that unsaved woman; because I could feel the torment of their souls. I prayed that they will repent!
Having cleared these questions that have to do with: whom we pray to, and whom we should long to have fellowship with, out of the way: Jesus tells us what is the hierarchy of priorities He wants us to have in our prayer life saying: When you pray, say, Our Father who are in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, as in heaven, so in earth (Luke 11:2). The first priority He wants us to have in our life is Holiness to the Lord (Exodus 28:36), having a sanctified life. Hollowed or Holy is Your name or Your name is set apart. God is Holy and He wants those who serve him to be holy. Peter reminds us: it is written: be Holy for I am Holy (1Peter 1:16). Being holy or sanctified or being set apart from the world to serve the Lord. The ways and acts of the Lord are different from the ways and acts of the gods of the heathen, which are but demons. The first thing we should pray about, is that there would be a greater separation between us and the heathen, in the way we live and in the way we act. Jesus says: I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes unto the Father, but by Me (John 14:6).
People want to be born again and still do things the way the world does them, still live the way the heathen live, and still believe the way heathen believe. We ought to do everything the way Jesus did, to believe the way Jesus believed, and to live the way Jesus lived. I am not talking about dressing like Jesus dressed, or keeping a long beard like Jesus kept as a Jew, for none of that have to do with holiness, but with Jewish customs and dressing code of their days. Jesus prayed for all of us who will believe, that we will be also holy and that God will make us holy and will separate us from the world by His written word. He prayed: I pray not that You, Father, should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify (separate) them through Your truth: Your word is truth. As You have sent Me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word (John 17:15-20). People are sanctified by the word of God and prayer, in other words they need to know the truth of the word of God and pray that truth into their life (1Timothy 4:5).
Jesus came to make disciples, and He commanded every born again believer to also make disciples. All authority and power has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18-19). In order to make disciples: people need to follow you, observe your life and then imitate you the way you are doing things unto God, according to the written word of God. That is why Jesus told everybody who believes in Him: follow Me (John 21:19)! Paul also understood that the call of Jesus to every born again believer is to make disciples; so Paul says: be followers of me as I also am of Jesus (1Corinthians 11:1). Without discipleship the church will be weak and there will be no real impact in the world. Paul understood that when you disciple people, you not only impart words but your life as well. They observe your life, how you deal with things. We were willing to have imparted to you, not only the gospel of God, but also our own souls, because you have become beloved to us (1Thessalonians 2:8). The church needs to get its priority right. Jesus did not die for buildings, but for humans. Jesus sent us to make disciples, not to build churches. He says: I say also unto you … I will build My church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it (Matthew 16:18). It is the job of Jesus to build His church our job is to go and make disciples.
Today people are afraid to say to anybody, be a follower of me as I am also of Jesus. Why? Because they are afraid of being accused of drawing disciples to themselves! That is only because the church is not mature, and we have the tendency of putting people on a pedestal, and worshiping them. But a true discipler will always point you to Jesus whom we must all follow. The other reason people are afraid of saying: follow me as I follow Christ, is because they do not want to live a Christian life worth imitating, they want to be born again and yet still be living like heathen. They know that discipleship will put their life under a microscope, and people will realize that they are but human, and yet God is still using them. Some ministers of the gospel want the church members to think of them as super humans, people who have no problems with having faith, people who never made mistakes, people who never need anybody’s prayer or exhortation. But it is a lie, that is why they do not want to disciple anybody; because the person will discover that they are also having the same problems.
But brother G is a normal born again like you, and goes through the same challenges, and tells you how God helped him when he was weak and ready to quit. Brother G, tells you his sins, and how God set him free, so that those sins no longer have dominion over him, so that when you see God using Brother G in signs, wonders, revelations and mighty miracles, you know definitely it has nothing to do with brother G, but it has everything to do with Jesus, who dwells in him. Jesus said in His prayer: And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. He was telling us as a discipler you need to live by example; you no longer live for yourself, but for the sake of the people you are discipling; you will have to sanctify yourself through the word of God. You will read the word of God and become a doer of the word, that is what sanctifies you, and only then people whom you disciple will also want to imitate your sanctification. A discipler is not a coach who tells everybody how to play, but he himself does not know how to play. No, a discipler is himself also a doer of what he teaches.
So our prayer is: God sanctify me through your truth, your word is the truth. I want to be holy because You are holy. Not for my sake only but for the sake of those you have committed to my trust. Let me not shy away from my responsibility of making disciples; for you commanded us to make disciples, you did not suggest it (Matthew 28:18-19). Help me Jesus, to be willing to be Your disciple, and to disciple other believers to be your disciple as I am. I know of my own, I cannot do anything but I have You in my life now, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Help me to abide in Your word, so that Your word will abide in me in all wisdom, for Your word is the truth. Turn my life so radically that people who used to know me before I was saved, will no longer recognize me, set me on fire for You Jesus, and let everybody see the burning fire of the Holy Ghost in me and upon me, for your glory, Amen!
Jesus said: When you pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, as in heaven, so in earth (Luke 11:2). The second priority in our prayer is that the kingdom of God should come and His will be done on earth as it is in heaven. The kingdom is two words king and dom; dom is used as a termination, denotes jurisdiction, or property and jurisdiction. The kingdom is the territory or country subject to a king; an undivided territory under the dominion of a king or a monarch. So in a kingdom we have a king and his domain of influence, or his jurisdiction, and subjects of that king. So when we pray for the kingdom of God to come wherever we are; what we are saying is, we are enthroning Jesus as king in that place, we are subjecting everything in that place to His authority and power, we are bringing the influence of our king into that environment.
For instance, when you enter a house that is not yours, or when you are in a meeting, when you are in a hotel room. Since Jesus the King of kings dwells in you, and wherever you go He goes. You can declare: I take authority over this room or this house, and I subject it to the kingship of Jesus for it is written: Every place that the sole of my foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses (Joshua 1:3). When you arrive in a country or in a city, take authority over that city or country in the name of Jesus, for Jesus has come there with you. When you are in a meeting, either a Christian meeting or even a secular one: take authority over that meeting, that all decisions that will be made in that meeting, will line up with the written word of God and exalt righteousness certainly not lawlessness for it is written: all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me, Jesus, therefore go in My name (Matthew 28:18-19). You have come into that meeting in the name of Jesus, not in your own name; because you are Jesus’ representative or ambassador (Ephesians 6:20).
Your life is hidden with Christ in God (Colossians 3:3). You are in Christ since the day you were born again, and Christ has entered the true holy place into heaven to always appear in the presence of God for you and me who are born again (Hebrews 9:24). So in heaven there you are hidden in Christ, and Christ is doing an excellent job of representing you in the presence of the Father, and all the hosts of heaven. But here on earth Christ who is the hope of glory is in you (Colossians 1:27) and He wants you to also do an excellent job of representing Him to the world around you. You are His representative or ambassador here on earth (Ephesians 6:20). All these bible studies are meant to make us excellent representatives of Jesus Christ who dwells in us. David understood it, he said to Goliath: You come to me with a sword and with a spear and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord of Hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied (1Samuel 17:45). So it might be a secular activity, secular contest, but wherever you go you always go in the name of the Lord.
So wherever you are you can take authority over the atmosphere and the outcome of the meeting or activity because you are there in the name of the Lord Jesus. Therefore Jesus tells us: Verily I say unto you, whatsoever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say unto you, that if two of you shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them (Matthew 18:18-20). People might gather there in another name, but you have come there in the name of Jesus and Jesus who sent you to be His representative, has come there with you.
Now a king who has no subjects in his kingdom, has no influence at all. Solomon who was an earthly king, understood that it is actually the people who make a king and his kingdom great. He said: In the multitude of people is the king’s honour; but in the want or lack of people is the destruction or ruin of the prince (Proverbs 14:28). If there is no citizen of the kingdom of God, the reign of Jesus the prince of peace will be ruined. Who wants to reign as king without subjects? But in the multitude of people, is the King Jesus’ honour. So we need to pray that more souls will be won for the kingdom of God to bring honour to your King Jesus, and put action to our prayers. We do not just go out there to make converts, but disciples of our King Jesus. Therefore Jesus tells us: All power and authority is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go therefore, and make disciples of 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).
Jesus did not suggest to us: go make disciples, but He commanded us to go, make disciples of all nations. He wants multitudes of people to be saved and become His disciples, even the whole earth; for in it is His honour as the King of kings. He commands us: to pray that the kingdom of God come; and that the will of God be done on earth as it is in heaven. What is that will of God? The will of God that is in heaven, is to get the whole world saved from their sins, to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease and to raise the dead. So He tells us: as you go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely you have received, freely give (Matthew 10:7-8). We are commanded to preach the gospel. The preaching of the gospel has to do with the salvation of the soul of the people around us, starting with our family, as it is written: as for me and my house we will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:15).
For everyone, “whoever shall call on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without preaching? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace and bring glad tidings of good things (Romans 10:13-15)!” Every born again Christian is called to preach the gospel, preaching has nothing to do with standing behind a pulpit in front of a crowd, but sharing with people around us, what Jesus has done in your personal life and for them by His death burial and resurrection, so that they will not have to go to hell; but become citizens of the kingdom of God and have eternal life.
The reason why Christianity grew so rapidly in the first century is because they were disciples and were making disciples not mere converts. A disciple preaches the gospel. You have family members, friends and colleagues, they might never invite a pastor into their house or go to a Christian meeting; but they will invite you into their house and they work with you, school with you. Use every opportunity that presents itself to share the gospel with them and get them saved. That is what Paul commands us, saying: Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine (2Timothy 4:2).
We need to pray that the sharing of our gospel will not only be in words; but in the demonstration of the power of God, to give the people around us a taste of what the benefits of being a citizen of the kingdom of God are. As David said: Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities; who heals all your diseases; Who redeems your life from destruction; who crowns you with loving-kindness and tender mercies; Who satisfies your mouth with good things; so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s (Psalm 103:2-5). So Jesus commands us to go and show them some of those benefits of being in the kingdom of God: Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely you have received, freely give. Pray for the Lord to confirm your preaching with signs and wonders. Pray like the disciples did: Lord look at the threat we face for preaching your gospel and grant to your sons and daughters who are serving in your vineyard, that with all boldness they may speak Your word; by stretching out Your hand to heal and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your Son Jesus (Acts 4:29-30).
Jesus told us: The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray therefore the Lord of the harvest, that He would send forth labourers into His harvest (Luke 10:2). So we need to pray that God will send people to preach the gospel, heal the sick, cast out devils, raise the dead and cleanse the lepers; and then make disciples of those converts. We need to be specific in our prayer of the area we want God to send forth labourers. We must be the first ones to volunteer to go and work in the harvest of our Lord like Isaiah did. As it is written: Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me (Isaiah 6:8). You and I are ministers of reconciliation, having the word of reconciliation for the dying world around us (2Corinthians 5:18-19). Paul says: Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified, even as it is with you: And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men: for all men have not faith. But the Lord is faithful, who shall establish you, and keep you from evil. And we have confidence in the Lord touching you, that you both do, and will do the things which we command you (2Thessalonians 3:1-4).
The series of The Perfect Redemption Plan and the Application of the Perfect Redemption Plan are designed to help us know more accurately who we are in Christ, and how to minister effectively like Jesus ministered. In praying for the kingdom of God to come and the will of God to be done on earth as it is in heaven; you should of course start with your immediate family, then your friends like Cornelius did in Acts 10, when he invited them to come and hear the gospel. Then you must pray for your God to save your nation. God says: Ask of Me, and I shall give the nations for Your inheritance; and the uttermost parts of the earth for Your possession (Psalm 2:8). That is why the vision of God is to save the whole world starting with you and your family, your town, your region, your nation, nations close to your nation and the ends of the world. That is what He told His disciples who were Jews: But you shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and you shall be witnesses unto Me, both in Jerusalem (their city), and in all Judaea (their region), and in Samaria (the region close to theirs), and unto the uttermost part of the earth (Acts 1:8). This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come (Matthew 24:14).
We must prioritize the kingdom of God and its righteousness in our prayer life. Jesus says: your heavenly Father knows that you have need of all these earthly things; But you seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you (Matthew 6:32-33). People think if they spend most of their time praying for the kingdom of God to come, and His will which is: to get people souls saved, make disciples of all nations and to heal the sick, cast out devils, cleanse the lepers and raise the dead; that they will not gain anything personal out of it. So they would rather spend all their time in prayer to ask God their daily bread or personal needs. Jesus tells us: God already knows all our personal needs, yes we should let him know about them but let us prioritize the kingdom of God in our prayer life. In some churches when they pray, they spend 90% of the prayer times on their daily bread or personal needs. But why can we not trust God, who said all that we need, even want for ourselves, will be added unto us not subtracted unto us, as we put the kingdom of God and His righteousness first.
Job understood that secret so he prayed for his friend. The bible says: the LORD turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before (Job 42:10). When in your personal prayer life you spend more time praying about the kingdom of God and His righteousness, it tells God that your mind is renewed and you have become a man or woman after God’s own heart. If you spend your time praying about other people to be saved, to be healed, to be raised from the dead, to be delivered, to be prospered, to stop sinning and practice righteousness; you are praying for the kingdom of God and His righteousness. Sometimes I refuse to pray for my problems, and I stand on Job 42:10 and Matthew 6:32-33 and trust God will take care of me. I choose to sow my prayer for someone else; it is a sowing and reaping. When you sow an apple seed you do not just reap one apple but you have an apple tree that will produce thousands of apples over the years.
Decide to sow your prayer into other people’s lives and you will see what God will do for you in return! My prayer is that the church prayer life will change to put the kingdom of God first and His righteousness. For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered (even in the word of God, in prayer and fasting) to the saints, and do minister (even in the word of God, in prayer and fasting). And we desire that each one of you show the same eagerness to the full assurance of hope to the end, that you be not slothful, but imitators of those who through faith and patience, inherit the promises (Hebrews 6:10-12).
The third priority in our prayer is our daily bread of personal requests. Jesus tells us to pray for our daily bread or personal needs or personal wants or our personal requests, saying. Give us day by day our daily bread (Luke 11:3). David says: The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures: He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul: He leads me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for You are with me; Your rod and your staff they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies: You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever (Psalm 23). David says: Let them shout for joy, and be glad, who favour my righteous cause: yes, let them say continually, Let the LORD be magnified, who has pleasure in the prosperity of His servant (Psalm 35:27). John says: Beloved, I wish above all things that you may prosper and be in health, even as your soul prospers (3John 1:2).
Yes, it is God’s will and good pleasure for you to prosper and be in health, just as your soul prospers. You see God’s first concern is our soul and the souls of people around us; for what is a man profited if he gains the whole world and loses himself (even his soul), or is cast away (even into hell) (Luke 9:25)? May you prosper in your finances according to the bible study on biblical prosperity, may you prosper in your family, in your marriage, with your children, in your place of work, in your education, and in all you lay your hands to. The LORD your God shall bless you in all your increase, and in all the works of your hands, therefore you shall surely rejoice (Deuteronomy 16:15); for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore unto Your fathers, as it is this day (Deuteronomy 8:18). May God give you the desires of your heart; as it is written: delight yourself in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4). Therefore I say unto you, whatsoever things you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them (Mark 11:24).
The fourth priority is to ask for the forgiveness, if we have committed any sin or trespass and to ask for deliverance. Jesus tells us to pray: forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil (Luke 11:4). We have already expounded on the forgiveness part, so we will not repeat it. Sin is a choice that is why John tells us: My little children, these things write I unto you, so that you sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous (1John 2:1). If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1John 1:9).
But what is amazing is that Jesus does not start by telling us first to repent, when He teaches us on prayer: he tells us about the Father, how Holy the name of the Father is, about the coming of the kingdom of God, about the will of the Father being done on earth as it is in heaven, and about our day by day bread, then about forgiveness. It is because he does not want us to come to God sin conscious, even if we have sinned, but righteous conscious, because we are now the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. If we are sin conscious we will not even come close to the God who is the Father of all born again believers, because our heart will be condemning us, though the Holy Spirit is only convicting us (see the bible study on neither do I condemn you). Jesus is assuming that He is talking to real born again believers who are not practicing the sins leading to death, who have a good conscience toward God, even to His friends. Many times it is only when I read my bible, that I realize that the way I responded to a certain situation, was not the best way Jesus would have responded and I just say: I am sorry Jesus, help me to remember and do it the right way next time.
We should pray for the Lord’s guidance so that we will not fall into temptation, though we might be tempted by our enemy. We must pray to God to deliver us from evil and evil people. Not everybody likes us, and sometimes because of our faith people hate us, and lie in wait for our life, our business, our job, our marriage. We must pray to God to deliver us from those evils and those evil people. David said: The LORD is near those who are of a broken heart; and saves such as be of a contrite spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivers him out of them all (Psalm 34:18-19). Paul also said to Timothy: you have fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, long-suffering, love, patience, persecutions, afflictions, such as happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra. What persecutions I endured! But the Lord delivered me out of all. Yea, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted (2Timothy 3:10-12). So pray that the Lord will deliver you too from all evil and all evil people.
Luke 18:1 And Jesus spoke a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
Luke 18:2 Saying, There was in a city, a judge, who did not fear God, neither regard man:
Luke 18:3 And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of my adversary.
Luke 18:4 And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man;
Luke 18:5 Yet because this widow troubles me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.
Luke 18:6 And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge said.
Luke 18:7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, who cry day and night unto him, though He bear long with them?
Luke 18:8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man comes, shall he find faith on the earth?
Being persistent in botany is continuing without withering, something that remains on a plant till the fruit is ripe, or till after summer is over, and the ripe fruits have all been harvested, as a persistent leaf. That widow was persistent: she was not discouraged by all the negative answers she received from the unjust judge, she was still full of energy and had purposed in her heart that she will keep going to that unjust judge, asking him the same petition until she gets what she wants. If there is someone who must give in, it will not be her, but the unjust judge. Such was the case of Moses: he kept on going to Pharaoh the unjust king and judge of Egypt, asking the same petition: let my people go that they may go serve the Lord (Exodus 5:1)! Moses never changed his request, Pharaoh denied him his petition many times, but Moses kept going back; asking the same thing. And at the end Pharaoh Let the people of God go!
I remember a day I was crying and I decided to stop praying for a particular problem that I was facing. I thought God will come and comfort me, saying: “you have prayed for two years about that problem and have seen no result so just stop”. But early in the Morning the Lord woke me up and said to me: if you draw back, My soul has no pleasure in that action, you are the just and you shall live by faith (Hebrew 10:38). If you faint in the day of trial or adversity, it means that your strength is small (Proverbs 24:10). David the man after My own heart almost gave up, but he did not! That is why he said: I would have fainted unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living (Psalm 27:13). So I tell you: men always ought to pray and not lose heart (Luke 18:1). I, the Lord, say unto you wait upon Me. Have you not known? Have you not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD (who dwells in you), the Creator of the ends of the earth, does not faint, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He gives power to the faint; and to those who have no might, He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But those who wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint (Isaiah 40:28-31).
When I woke up I was angry with God, I said: I thought You will encourage me to quit praying for that problem, but instead You gave me a slap on the back of my head, telling me to continue. For how long? I am not interested in continuing! And some tears ran down my eyes. I sat down on my bed and prayed again about that problem. I did not feel like praying again for that problem, but we do not walk by sight (all the five physical senses, feelings and emotions) but we walk by faith (2Corinthians 5:7). And walking by faith is doing what the written word of God says, that’s all! The problem with some Christians, they change their confession or petition when they see nothing is happening in the physical realm. God calls the things which do not exist as though they do exist (Romans 4:17). For By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear (Hebrews 11:3).
When you are facing a prolonged problem there are times that all your physical senses, emotions and feelings will tell you: God has forsaken you! If you have never been in such a position, then you will not understand what I am talking about. The world around you seems to fall apart and all your dreams look like they are destroyed. My God, My God; Why have you forsaken Me (Matthew 27:46)? Jesus was the one who quoted that. People think that He was only quoting that to fulfil the Psalm 22 which David wrote concerning the Christ. Of course, when Jesus was on the cross all the sins of the world, past, present and future were put onto Him, He became sin, and sin separated Him from God, so that you and I, no matter what our sins are, can still come to God to receive forgiveness. But at that time when Jesus was on the cross, He also felt that God had forsaken Him. Jesus was fully human when He was here on earth; so that whatever we are going through, He can sympathize with our feelings. We do not have a high priest Christ Jesus, who cannot be touched with the feelings of our infirmities or weaknesses, but was in all points tempted just as we are, yet without sin (Hebrews 4:15).
When David wrote that Psalm 22, it was not just prophetic but he was going through some tough situations in his life and rightly thought that God had forsaken him. David knew that God would save him and deliver him from all who sought to kill him; but when he was going through those attacks he felt like God forsook him. And Jesus also, who knew that God would raise Him from the dead on the third day, yet when He was hanging on that cross, He felt like God had forsaken him. And there have been moments in my life, when I have felt like God has forsaken me, though I knew it is never the case; for it is written: I will never leave you nor forsake you so that you may boldly say: the Lord is my helper and I will not fear, what can man do to me (Hebrews 13:5-6)? There are things that we go through for the furtherance of the Kingdom of God that none of us want to go through, even though we know that God will be with us, as we walk through that valley of the shadows of death. Even Jesus prayed three times to God, even with tears in His eyes, saying: O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me: nevertheless not as I will, but as You will (Matthew 26:39; Hebrews 5:7).
Jesus truly knows how we feel and many times our spirit is willing to go through things for the Lord, for the furtherance of the kingdom of God but our flesh is weak, and we just want to quit praying for that problem. But Jesus who was also in that same position we are now, tells us: Watch and pray, that you enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak (Matthew 26:41). We need to submit our will to God and pray that He will make us willing to be willing! My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me, your son Gery? Whenever I feel that way, I know it is only the pressure of the situation that makes me say it, and I have my tears running down my cheeks. Then I say to myself: Gery, you need to walk like Jesus walked when He was on the cross, and felt that God had forsaken Him. But what did Jesus do? Well, there were two thieves crucified with Him, one on His left and the other on His right. One was reviling Him, but the other repented of his sins and Jesus ministered salvation to him. He said to Jesus: Lord, remember me when You come into your kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto you, Today you shall be with Me in paradise (Luke 23:39-43).
So even when Jesus was feeling that God had forsaken Him, He still ministered salvation to people and prayed for people, even if He felt that God was not answering His own prayer, but He knew that God would answer His prayer for another person. So I stand up and I go to visit a family or a friend to share the word of God with them, to pray for them, to heal the sick, to cast out demons; for that is what Jesus would have done, no matter how much pain He was personally experiencing. And we see even in Psalm 22, the Lord answered David and delivered David, then David had a testimony to share in the house of God. We also see Jesus on the third day, God raised Him from the dead, and He came to declare what God had done for Him to His disciples, and showed them the nail prints in His hands and feet. People read Psalm 23 of David, but they do not know that David went through Psalm 22, in which he felt like God had forsaken him. People read of the resurrection of Jesus, but they forget the cross where Jesus felt that God had forsaken him. The same God, who delivered David and raised Jesus from the dead, is also your God and He will never leave you nor forsake you, regardless of your feelings and your circumstances. You have overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of your testimony (Revelation 12:11).
So do not change your confession, because the word of God that is coming out of your mouth, is shaping your situation to line up with what the written word of God says. Once you have found out what the word of God says about a particular situation, start confessing it and do not change your confession, no matter what! Stick to the word of God and do not move; for God promised to work all things in your life, according to the counsel of His own will, which is His written word (Ephesians 1:11). The Psalmist understood it, so he prayed to God, saying: Let my prayer come before You; deliver me according to Your Word (Psalm 119:170). Jesus tells us: Have faith in God. For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be removed, and be cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he says shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he says. Therefore I say unto you, whatever things you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and ye shall have them (Mark 11:22-24).
Do not change your confession because of doubt in your heart, and even if everything in you screams: it is not true; open the bible and read those promises upon which you are standing out loud. Many times people call me and to ask me: what does God say about my situation? I give them the counsel of the written word of God and I pray with them according to the counsel of the written word of God because God promised to work everything according to the counsel of His own will. So after a couple of weeks they call me back, asking me the same question; and I give them the same answer. They are looking for another answer but I refuse to change my confessions, it has gone out of my mouth I do not take it back and I have faith in God who wrote those words that it will come to pass.
Brothers and sisters we need to believe the scriptures which say: I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live but Christ lives in me and the life that I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me (Galatians 2;20). For it is not you who speak but the Spirit of your Father God who speaks in you (Matthew 10:20). And whenever you have a thought of compassion or a thought that lines up with the written word of God, or a scripture coming to your remembrance: it is not you thinking that, but the Holy Ghost in you bringing to your remembrance those thoughts and compassions, that line up with the written word of God (John 14:26). And whenever you speak in line with the written word of God they are no longer mere words but they are Spirit and Life (John 6:63). And the Spirit that is coming out of your mouth casts out demons, heals the sick, cleanses the lepers and raises the dead (Matthew 12:28).
There are things you will only experience after you have started discipling people. God will tell you things about them and you will tell them the prophecy of the Lord concerning their life, marriage, finances, career, children, housing, studies, etc. When they have a problem and seek your counsel; you will always give them the counsel of the written word of God; because you have learned to think not beyond what is written in the bible. Amos says: The lion has roared; who will not fear? The Lord Jehovah has spoken; who will not prophesy (Amos 3:8)? But the devil will put pressure on the people you are discipling, or the people you have prayed for, so that they will blame you for their calamity. They will say: it is because we believed the report of that man of God, or of the woman of God. What they do not understand is that it is the devil resisting them. We all need to go to the devil with the sword of the spirit which is the word of God and he will flee from us.
They will come to you and vent all their frustration, even anger upon you. Please do not take offence, understand it is just the pressure of what they are going through. They love you and know that you genuinely care for them, that is why they come to vent those things to you. You are their friend and they know you love them at all times and will stick with them closer than a biological brother (Proverbs 18:24). But at that time the devil will back you into a corner, so that you will have pity instead of compassion. So you will deny the word of God and give them human reasoning and human ideas. You need even at that time, that they are angry and even want to kill you, to still tell them in love, what God and His word says, because it is the only thing that will truly deliver them of all their destruction and heal them (Psalm 107:20).
We have in 2Kings 6:24-33, the kingdom of Israel being besieged by Ben-Hadad the king of Syria. So the Army of Syria had besieged Samaria and there was a great famine, the siege lasted a long time that in Samaria goods were so expensive and rare. People were even boiling their children and eating them. Yet the king and the people of Israel knew that it was a small problem for God, to deliver them, even without them having to fight a single battle against the Syrians, for in 2Kings 6:13-23, when the King of Syria sent his army to arrest Elisha, that He blinded the entire Syrian army, and led them to Samaria as prisoners. So why was Elisha not doing anything against that Syrian army at this time? People came to the king for help, but even the king could not help himself, let alone talk of helping someone else. So the king said to the people: if the Lord does not help you, where can I find help for you (2Kings 6:27)?
But after the king heard that some women had eaten a boiled child of one of them, and were planning to eat the boiled child of the other, because of the severe famine. The King was so mad, not at the women, but at the man of God Elisha, whom he knew could do something about that famine. It happened when the king of Israel heard the words of the woman, he tore his clothes. And he passed by on the wall, and the people looked, and, behold, he had sackcloth inside on his flesh. And he said, May God do so, and more also, to me, if the head of Elisha the son of Shaphat shall stand on him this day. But Elisha sat in his house, and the elders sat with him. And he sent a man from before him. But before the messenger came to him, he said to the elders, Do you see how this son of a murderer has sent to take away my head? Look, when the messenger comes, shut the door and hold him fast at the door. Is not the sound of his master’s feet behind him? While he still talked with them, behold, the messenger came down to him. And he said, Behold, this evil is from Jehovah. Why should I wait for Jehovah any longer (2Kings 6:30-33)?
So you see, the people wanted to even behead Elisha; for they thought it was his fault, and he could do something, but it seemed like he was not willing to. So why wait longer let us kill that Elisha; for the enemy will also kill us. Perhaps when the enemy has broken through our walls, they will kill us but when they come to kill him; he will blind them again like he did the last time and escape. So if we have to die, let us also kill him first! Love the people, and understand it is just the pressure of the enemy on them that is causing them to act that way. Elisha did not call down fire on that messenger or on the king of Israel. But instead Elisha gave again the word of God. Elisha had to decide, do I give them again the word of God or do I keep my mouth shut? The devil wanted Elisha to keep his mouth shut, that is why indirectly he threatened to behead him. Because out of the mouth of Elisha comes fire, a hammer and a double-edged sword, whenever he speaks words that line up with the written word of God, to destroy all the works of the devil (Jeremiah 23:29, Ephesians 6:17).
So Elisha opened his mouth to speak again the word of God: Hear the Word of the Lord! Thus says the Lord, Tomorrow about this time a measure of fine flour will be sold at a shekel, and two measures of barley at a shekel, in the gate of Samaria. And the third officer on whose hand the king leaned, answered the man of God, and said, Behold, if Jehovah would make windows in heaven, could this thing be? And Elisha said: in fact you shall see it with your eyes (2Kings 7:1-2)? Unbelief of the people who come to you for counsel does not affect what God will do through the words that come out of your mouth, as long as they line up with His written Word. Do not expect the people to have faith when they come to you in their calamity; have compassion on them and have faith for them. Paul tells us: if we do not believe, God remains faithful, He cannot deny Himself (2Timothy 2:13). But God is banking on you to voice His word, so that His angels who excel in strength and do His command, will hearken to the voice of His word in your mouth (Psalm 103:20).
And we see the result of it in 2Kings 7:3-20. Four lepers decided to go to the Syrian camp to get some food at the risk of being killed. But the Lord had caused the army of the Syrians to hear the noise of chariots and the noise of horses; the noise of the great army; so they said to one another: look the king of Israel has hired against us the kings of the Hitites and kings of the Egyptians to attack us! Therefore they arose and fled at twilight, and the camp was left intact: their tents, their horses, and their donkeys, and they fled for their lives (2Kings 7:6-7). You see, God caused them to hear the noise of angels riding on horses and chariots that is why they fled for their lives. Of the truth the bible says: The wicked flee when no man pursues: but the righteous are as bold as a lion (Proverbs 28:1). Those wicked Syrians fled for their lives when no earthly army was pursuing them, but an angelic army, but those four lepers were bold as lions to march into the Syrian camp! The famine was over just like Elisha prophesied. Even when the enemy threatens to behead you, through the hand of the people whom you love and care for, do not change your confession, keep saying what the written word of God says!
Be it in healing, in prosperity, in deliverance, in dead raising, etc; I refuse to change my confessions. Faithful is God who called you, who also will do it (1Thessalonians 5:24). He said unto me: these sayings or words are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to show unto his servants the things which must shortly be done. Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he who keeps the sayings or words of the prophecy of this book (Revelation 22:6-7).
Now you and I have only one adversary, who is Satan the devil, for Satan means adversary. He may use people and circumstances around us, but it is always him behind all our troubles. Our Judge is God, who is a just judge, our advocate hired by the Father to defend us, is Jesus and the Holy Spirit is our helper. We are not coming in prayer before an unjust judge, like the widow in the parable Jesus gave, but to our Father who loves us, cares for us and takes care of us (1Peter 5:7, Psalm 8:4). When Satan, who is our true Adversary, is using men to make our life bitter, like he did for the Hebrews by the hands of the Egyptians; God may bear along with our human adversaries; because He is giving them time to repent, for He does not delight even in the death of the wicked (Ezekiel 18:23). He gave the Egyptians many opportunities to repent and let His people go so that they may serve Him. Because they were stubborn, God increased the plagues on the land, until He had no other choice, but to destroy them, in order for them to let His people go!
So whatever your problem is: find out what the written word of God says about it, and go and present your case before the Lord, who is the Judge of the universe; tell Him to avenge you of your adversary according to His written word. You are God’s elect and He promised to avenge you. As it is written: thus says the Lord: Behold, I will plead your cause and take vengeance for you; and I will dry up her sea and make her springs dry (Jeremiah 51:36). For The Lord is our judge, The Lord is our lawgiver, The Lord is our king; He will save us (Isaiah 33:22). If it is possible, as far as is in you, being in peace with all men; not avenging yourselves, beloved, but giving place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay, says the Lord (Romans 12:18-19).”
Jesus who is Your advocate with the Father tells you it is His job to avenge you, saying: The Spirit of the Lord Jehovah is on Me; because The Lord has anointed Me to preach the Gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to preach the acceptable year of the Lord and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn; to appoint to those who mourn in Zion, to give to them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the mantle of praise for the spirit of heaviness; so that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of The Lord, that He might be glorified (Isaiah 61:1-3).
So do not fear; be persistent in your prayer, not changing your confession, I tell you that your Father God who is the Judge will avenge you speedily; for He is not slack or slow concerning His promises, as some count slackness or slowness (2Peter 3:9). The question is: will the Lord Jesus, the Son of Man who has been anointed by God to avenge you, find faith in you when He comes on the day of vengeance of our God to avenge you of your adversary, or will you have changed your confessions, because it seemed like things were delaying (Luke 18:7)? For though He is all powerful, dwells in you; He can only do things in your life and in the world around you, exceedingly and abundantly according to what you are asking Him and what you are thinking (Ephesians 3:20).
Do not stop asking the same thing and do not stop thinking that He will do it for you according to the counsel of His own will contained in the written word of God. Please read the bible study on The Power of Confession. And though it looks like the Day of the vengeance of our God is delaying, God tells us: Write the vision or the promise of the Lord, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run who reads it. For the vision or the promise of the Lord is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry. The Just shall live by faith (Habakkuk 2:2-4).
All the heroes of faith listed in Hebrews 11, did not change their confession. They believed and called the things that do not exist as though they do exist. Paul tells us: having done all to stand, stand therefore having girded your waist with the truth (Ephesians 6:13-14). Do not move or change your confessions, the word of God is the truth and sooner or later your situation will line up with what the written word of God says! The word of God is forever settled in heaven; you need to settle it in your heart, that your prayer will be answered according to the written word of God, because Jesus told us to pray that the will of God be done on earth as it is in heaven (Psalm 119:89, Luke 11:2). God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent or relent over His word: has He said, and shall he not do it? Or has He spoken, and shall He not make it good (Numbers 23:19)? Of course, He will do what He said and make good what He spoke! Therefore the things which I see right now are temporary, they are all subject to change, but the things which I do not see yet, but by faith you are calling them to exist as though they do exist, will surely be materialized (2Corinthians 4;18).
Therefore do not lose heart in prayer; keep being persistent over the same problem, until you are avenged of your adversary by God. God will do something in your life that: Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for those who love Him, and you are numbered among those who love Him. But God has revealed them unto us by His Spirit: for the Spirit searches all things, yes, even the deep things of God (1Corinthians 2:9-10). Those who will hear, how the Lord has avenged you, their ears will tingle (Jeremiah 19:3). They will be utterly astounded as they look among the nations to see if such a testimony like yours has ever happened before, they will not believe you, though you tell them what has happened; for their mind will not be able to fathom it (Habakkuk 1:5). They will all be overcome with great amazement (Mark 5:42). For the Lord promised, saying: do not remember the former things (all your past failures and your past refusals and rejections), neither consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert (Isaiah 43:18-19). So shall it be in your life in the name of Jesus, Amen!
God does not want us to be only persistent in prayer for our own problems; but He expects us also to be persistent in prayer for other people’s problems. Christianity is always about helping people, not only about helping ourselves. That is why discipleship is very important because we not only share the word of God, but we pray for one another, and if you are strong and persistent in prayer for your own problem, be also strong and persistent in prayer for the people you are discipling or for your discipler. Their victory is your victory and their failure is your failure to some extent, because we are all part of the body of Christ. Just like in a human body when the little toe hurts it is the entire body that is suffering and affected. When the eye has grains of sand in it, it is the whole body that is affected. In the same manner we need to start genuinely caring for one another, including in prayer. Sometimes I have given up praying for a problem in my life but because I am discipled and I have disciples, my disciples and my disciplers continue to lift me up in prayer.
Paul tells us: for in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any strength or avails anything, but faith working through love or by love (Galatians 5:6). Of course we know as Christians the Agape Love of God was shed abroad in our heart when we became born again (Romans 5:5). We are not talking about a friendship love, or a family love; if it were the case, no child would be sick, or die of sickness, for they have parents who love them. The faith that works by love or through love, that love is the agape love of God. Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13). as we have already explained that our strong reasoning to receive the answer to our prayers is, because Jesus paid for it in full by His death, burial and resurrection, that is why we, who are in Christ, are now entitled to the all the promises contained in the bible, they are now yes and Amen (2Corinthians 1:20)!
It is the Agape love of God that causes our faith to work, not our friendly love, nor our family love; we have described the different kinds of loves in the bible study of the Application of Perfect redemption plan, in the section of the fruit of the Spirit. When you go to a total stranger to pray for him or his child when they are sick, you go there because you are commanded to heal the sick by Jesus; you go there based on the Agape Love of God that is not partial, a love that does not discriminate. And when you stand there in prayer: you only stand on the written word of God, on what Jesus provided through His death, burial and resurrection. Our problem is, when we pray for family members or for ourselves or for our friends, we move from that Agape love to a friendly love or family love. And we start saying things like: God heal this person because he is my son, or heal this person because he is my friend, God heal this person because he attends my church, God heal this person because I know he gives his tithe and offering he has been a blessing to my ministry, God heal this person because he gives to the poor and widows.
We should have stayed in that Agape Love and say: God heal this person because by the stripes of Jesus he or she was healed. Learn to pray standing on the word of God and on the finished work of Christ on the cross for yourself, for your family, for your friends and for total strangers. Sometimes we are too close to the problem to stand on the word of God and we start telling God all kinds of things but using the word of God in prayer which is the sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17). That is why we need people around us who will be able to keep standing on the written word of God for our problem, even if we have given up and our prayers have become complaints and murmuring. I had to discipline myself that even when I have tears in my eyes, because of how difficult and challenging my problem is, I stand on the written word of God and remind God what was done at Calvary for my problem. We need one another in prayer, so that you pray for me according to the scriptures when I have given up praying for myself according to the scriptures, and I do the same for you.
Jesus when He was teaching us to pray in Luke 11 tells us: Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves; For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give you. I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needs (Luke 11:5-8). We see here, Jesus is using that illustration of a friend going to see another friend to lend him three loaves, not for himself but for another friend of his who has come to him from a journey. Jesus started first of all to teach them to ask for their daily bread in prayer, which is their own personal needs and heart desires, saying: give us day by day our daily bread (Luke 11:3). Now Jesus is telling us, let not all your prayers be about you and your family, but ask also for God to grant the need and heart desires of someone else, at least start with your friends, it will not be difficult for you to pray for them, and then ask also for total strangers’ heart desires to be granted by God according to the scriptures.
In those days of Jesus, villages were small communities and everybody knew who was who in those communities. They knew who was rich and who was poor. There was that man in that village everybody knew, that he always had bread in abundance even his servants had bread enough and to spare (Luke 15:17)! So let’s call that friend who was rich Bill, now Jimmy who is the friend of Bill had another friend of his, Gery, who came to him at midnight from a journey to Glasgow. Gery was tired and hungry from that long journey as the Megabus coach arrived at midnight in Manchester. Jimmy wanted to show Gery some hospitality, but he had nothing at home to set before Gery. So Jimmy remembered that Bill has always bread in abundance and even his servants have bread enough and to spare! So Jimmy goes to Bill’s at that late hour, because he is His friend. And Jimmy started shouting from down stairs: Bill, Bill! Bill said – who is it at this late hour? And Jimmy answered: It’s Jimmy! Bill said to Jimmy: what do you want at this late hour of the night? And Jimmy said: Friend, lend me three loaves; For a friend of mine, Gery, in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him?
Then Bill answered: for God’s sake Jimmy, do you know what time it is? It is midnight! You know we Jews in the first century only have one big room which has one door and one window. During the day we use it as a living room and dining room, and then during the night we use it as bedroom. We put mats on the floor from the door to the window; and we sleep as a family on those mats, the father sleeps by the window so that if the thief comes at night by the window, he will meet the father first, the mother sleeps by the door, which is more secure than the window, much harder for thieves to break in through the door, and the children sleep between the father who is by the window and the mother who is by the door. So you Jimmy asking me to wake up at midnight to give you three loaves, I will have to step over the children, over my wife to open the door and give you those loaves. It will wake my entire family up. Please come back tomorrow Jimmy, when everybody in my house is awakened. Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give you.
But Jimmy had purposed in his heart that he would not leave Bill’s place until he had gotten his three loaves, and he kept asking from down stairs the same thing over and over. And very soon the children and the wife, who were with him in bed, were also awakened; because Jimmy kept on asking for three loaves downstairs. Initially Bill thought, because he told Jimmy no, that Jimmy would understand and come back at a decent hour of the day. But Jimmy had a pressing solicitation or urgent request which is the definition of importunity according to the Webster dictionary, so he decided to stand there until Bill opened his door to give him bread. Bill did not rise and give him loaves because Jimmy was his friend, but because Jimmy pressed him to give him bread, and at the end it made him uncomfortable and he gave him as many loaves as he needed, because he did not want Jimmy to come back in the middle of the night and say it was not enough, give me some more. Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needs.
People could relate to that story in the first century. Many times people have come to me in great distress, with tears in their eyes asking for my help. It is not truly my help they seek, but they know I can pray to God, who is my friend on their behalf. People have urgent requests and they come to us and we need to also go to God in prayer, with their urgent request. Sometimes it is God who wakes me up at midnight or two in the morning to urgently pray for a person I know, or for a person I do not even know. Although it is inconvenient for me to wake up in the middle of the night, I do wake up and pray for them because that is what Jesus commands us to do, in this example of prayer. I had to learn to pray without opening my eyes or sitting on my bed, or opening my bible. I pray on my bed with my eyes closed for 15 minutes or sometimes one hour or three hours, depending on how many things God shows me about different people. But even when I have prayed for three hours during the night when I wake up, I am not tired, I have all my energy. God who wakes you up to pray, will also supernaturally rest your body!
Contrary to Bill, God does not sleep nor slumber. As David says: I will lift up my eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. The LORD is your keeper: the LORD is your shade upon your right hand. The sun shall not smite you by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD shall preserve you from all evil: he shall preserve your soul. The LORD shall preserve your going out and your coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore (Psalm 121:1-8). I remember we always used to confess that Psalm 121 when my parents were travelling, and I pray it also for all my friends that go on a journey or come to me from a journey. Our God is not troubled when we come to him with our pressing solicitation or urgent request; He does not tell us come tomorrow at a decent hour!
He Jesus is our friend and He tells us: Come unto Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28). He did not say come only at decent hours of the day, because I need to sleep or eat or go to the toilet. Only dungy idols of the gentiles slumber, sleep, eat and go to toilet like Elijah was making fun of the prophets of Baal when their god was not answering their prayers, even at noon, to send fire. As it is written: they, the prophets of Baal, took the bullock which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped upon the altar which was made. And it came to pass at noon, that Elijah mocked them, and said, Cry aloud: for he is a god; either he is talking (meditating, babbling), or he is pursuing (he has withdrawn into a private place, he has gone to the toilet), or he is in a journey, or peradventure he sleeps, and must be awakened (1Kings 18:26-27). The God of Elijah whom we serve, does not go on a journey, he does not need holidays: He is Omnipresent. He does not need to go to the toilet, for He is Spirit, and He does not sleep either. So you can always come to Him with your pressing solicitations or urgent requests, or other people’s pressing solicitations or urgent requests, and He will answer by fire!
Then Jesus continues and tells us: I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one who asks receives; and he who seeks finds; and to he who knocks it shall be opened (Luke 11:9-10). Do not just ask for your personal needs or heart desires; but also for other people’s personal needs and heart desires. Do not just seek solutions for your own problems; but also for other people’s urgent and pressing problems. Do not just knock that doors of opportunities will be opened for you; but also to other people who have been knocking at those same doors that they will be opened for them too. It is the secret of Agape love: Therefore all things whatsoever you would that men should do to you, you do even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets (Matthew 7:12). Even in prayer pray for other people’s problems the way you would want them to pray for you, if you were to face similar problems. God who sees in secret will raise people who will pray for you too. It is the principle of sowing and reaping. If you pray for one person, God will not raise only one person to pray for you, but many people.
When I was reading many of the testimonies of the saints of old; during Azusa Street Revival and other revivals of the 20th century; they always talked about “praying through”. For many years I was asking God to reveal to me, what those saints of old meant by “praying through”. The problem with Christians is, sometimes we have our jargon that only Christians of that generation understand; so when that generation has passed away, the new generation does not understand what their fathers meant when they used those words. We must always endeavour to say spiritual things with words that everybody can understand; because we are to pass on the understanding we have received to our children and children’s children.
So what does it mean to “pray through”? What was the understanding of those Christians of old when they asked Pentecostal believers: have you prayed through today? Or what did they mean when they said that born again Christians ought to pray through every day? I, Gery, cried out to the Lord to reveal to me what the meaning of praying through was; because I refuse to come behind anyone in any manifestation of the Holy Spirit. If those saints of old “prayed through” every day; I, Gery, ought to find out what it means to “pray through” so that I can “pray through” every day too!
“Praying through” simply means praying until you have received the manifestation of what you have requested from the Lord, praying until you have a witness in your spirit that God has granted your request, praying until you have the personal victory over your carnal mind and fleshly desires, and praying until you have the victory over demonic oppression and possession. We know that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God spoken directly to you for your specific request (Romans 10:17). God will speak to you directly that He has answered that particular request. To learn the basics of how God speaks please read the bible study on “Divine Guidance”.
John G Lake and his associate were to go from USA to South Africa to be missionaries there with their respective families. They needed $2,000 of those days for their boat fares for the whole company. They had prayed for months for that money; but they did not have the manifestation of it. Now one day when they were close to the departure day, John G Lake said to his associate that they should pray again; but this time they should “pray through”. So they knelt down and they prayed for God to provide those $2,000. And then John G Lake had a witness in his spirit that God has answered their prayer. So he said to his associate that they should stop praying for God has answered. The next week, someone posted four money drafts of $500 each to John G Lake. They bought their tickets on that ocean liner and sailed for South Africa.
A true man or woman of faith does not need to beg for money. David says: I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread (Psalm 37:25). Paul tells us: Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:4-7). John G. Lake made his request known to Mark, his associate and the two of them prayed for God to supply their need. Moses, when God instructed him to build the tabernacle of meeting, talked to the congregation about what was needed for the work, and the people willingly gave. Paul also taught that the brethren should learn to meet urgent needs in the church. Let everything be done in a scriptural way when it comes to collecting money for the work of the Lord as we explained in biblical prosperity. If that vision is from the Lord; the Lord will provide for His vision. Paul says: who goes to warfare any time at his own expense (1Corinthians 9:7)? The army that sent you to warfare provides for you; thus when God gives a vision He also gives a provision!
There were times I was to go to preach the gospel from Manchester, England to Glasgow, Scotland and I did not have the money for the hotel accommodation. After all it is written: Jesus called the Twelve and began to send them out by two and two. And He gave them authority over unclean spirits, and commanded them that they take nothing in the way, except only a staff; no bag, no bread, no copper [money] in the belt, but tying on sandals, and not to put on two tunics (Mark 6:7-9). So I went and “prayed through” and God spoke to me in a vision that I will be given £200 that same day. So I went about preaching the gospel and never made mention of money to anyone. And at the end of the day I was given £50 by a couple and £150 by a family. I remember another occasion I was to go to a healing conference in Wales, I had already bought my train fare; but I said to God that I wanted to bless the people who are hosting me and I do not want them to sell any refreshment but give it freely to the people. So the Sunday before going to Wales a sister came five minutes before the end of the church service when we were sharing the grace and she gave me a brown envelop. And inside was £100, two £50 notes, the exact amount of money I had asked God for in prayer, to bless the people in Wales.
Jesus advises us to ” pray through” everyday so that we may have a personal victory over our flesh and carnal mind. We have the account of Jesus and His disciples in the garden before His passion. Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane. And He said to the disciples, Sit here while I go and pray there. And He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee with Him, and He began to be sorrowful and very heavy. Then He said to them, My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Wait here and watch with Me. And He went a little further and fell on His face, and prayed, saying, O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me. Yet not as I will, but as You will. And He came to the disciples and found them asleep. And He said to Peter, What! Could you not watch with Me one hour? Watch and pray that you enter not into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. He went away again the second time and prayed, saying, My Father, if this cup may not pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done. And He came and found them asleep again, for their eyes were heavy. And He left them and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words. Then He came to His disciples and said to them, Sleep on now and take your rest. Behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Rise, let us be going; behold, he who is betraying Me is at hand (Matthew 26:36-46).
When you are in great distress, sorrowful, depressed and having ideas of death; it is not time for you to sleep, or throw a pity party, but instead read your bible, and pray for at least one hour to have a personal victory, over your flesh and carnal mind that the enemy is using. Here those disciples could not even pray for one hour. My brother and my sister, during the day you will go through challenging situations and things will not go as planned; temptation will come your way. So spend time in reading your bible and in prayer at least an hour before you leave your house. So that when those challenging situations and temptations come your way during that day, you will be spiritually equipped to act in the spirit, which means to act in line with the written word of God, and not in the flesh which means to act according to your feelings and emotions.
If Jesus did not pray to have a personal victory over His flesh, He would not have gone through the cross, thus you and I would not be saved today. For like He tells us the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak! Paul also tells us: for in my inner being [in my spirit] I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me (Romans 7:22-23). I remember when the Lord healed my backsliding, I read my bible and prayed every day for a minimum of three hours; I did not understand why at that time; but I did it and though during the day my flesh was fighting me, I could act according to the written word of God. My beloved brothers and sisters; No temptation has taken you but what is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted above what you are able, but with the temptation also will make a way to escape, so that you may be able to bear it.(1Corinthians 10:13).
Paul tells us: they who are according to the flesh mind the things of flesh, but they who are according to the Spirit the things of the Spirit [meaning the things that are in line with the written word of God]. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded [vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text][or to think in line with the written word of God] 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 it be. So then they who are in the flesh cannot please God. But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone has not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His. And if Christ is in you, indeed the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of the One who raised up Jesus from the dead dwells in you, the One who raised up Christ from the dead shall also make your mortal bodies alive by His Spirit who dwells in you (Romans 8:5-11).
Had Jesus not obtained a personal victory over His flesh before His passion, he would have commanded fire to come down from heaven and kill those who came to arrest Him, like Elijah did in 2Kings 1. When they slapped Him, he would have slapped them back and cursed them, so that they would all dry up and die like when He cursed the fig tree in Mark 11. Meekness is power under control! Meekness is not weakness! And when you read the My Weekly Milk bible studies, you will see that there were times I, Gery, was humiliated, was wronged and had opportunities to act according to the flesh or repay those people evil for evil; but I repaid them good for evil! It was because I spent that quality time in the word of God and prayer every day! David said: though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I fear no evil because, Lord, You are with me; Your rod and your staff comfort me (Psalm 23:4). There were situations we went through that were impossible for men, for we could not see any way out, we felt like we even wanted to kill ourselves; for the pressure of the enemy was too much, or the pressure of the ministry was too much.
We felt like we were walking in the valley of shadows of death! Men and women of God, apostles and prophets also go through personal challenges and ministerial challenges even 100 times bigger than the normal Christian. Moses, when the congregation was pressing him too much and blaming him for their problem, said to God: Have I conceived all this people? Did I bring them forth, that You should say to me, Bear them in your bosom like a nursing father carries the sucking child, to the land which You swore to their fathers? From where should I get flesh to give to all this people? For they weep to me, saying, Give us flesh that we may eat. I am not able to bear all this people alone, because it is too heavy for me. And if You are going to part this way with me, I beg You to kill me at once, if I have found favour in Your sight, and let me not see my misery (Numbers 11:12-15). The mighty man of God Moses who subdued the kingdom of Egypt and parted the Red Sea is begging God to kill him because of the pressure of ministry!
Prophets and apostles, but also normal Christians, are attacked by the Jezebel spirit who wants to kill them. They become depressed and have suicidal thoughts. Here we have the great prophet Elijah who had just called down fire on Mount Carmel, in the contest with the prophets of Baal and put them to the sword. Jezebel pronounced a threat over his life and he fled for his life. The account goes like this: And Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and how he killed all the prophets with the sword. And Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah saying, So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I do not make your life like the life of one of them by tomorrow about this time. And he saw, he rose and went for his life, and came to Beer-sheba of Judah, and left his servant there. And he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a broom tree. And Elijah begged for his life, that he might die. And he said, It is enough. O Jehovah, take away my life. For I am no better than my fathers (1Kings 19:1-4).
Sometimes when we are disappointed in life or ministry we also are angry with God and have thoughts of dying like Jonah. The account tells us: it was a great calamity in Jonah’s sight, and it kindled anger in him. And he prayed to Jehovah and said, Please, O Jehovah, was this not my saying when I was still in my land? On account of this I fled before to Tarshish. For I knew that You are a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and One who repents over calamity. And now, O Jehovah, I beseech You, take my life from me. For better is my death than my life (Jonah 4:1-3). Jesus says: blessed is whosoever is not offended because of Me (Matthew 11:6).
Paul also had challenging situations; he had enemies outside the Christian community and inside the Christian community. He said: Five times from the Jews I received forty stripes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked. I have spent a night and a day in the deep. I have been in travels often; in dangers from waters; in dangers from robbers; in dangers from my race; in dangers from the heathen; in dangers in the city; in dangers in the wilderness; in dangers on the sea; in dangers among false brothers. I have been in hardship and toil; often in watchings; in hunger and thirst; often in fastings; in cold and nakedness; besides the things outside conspiring against me daily, the care of all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is caused to stumble, and I do not burn (2Corinthians 11:24-29)? And when he was in prison he said: For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour. Yet I do not know what I shall choose. For I am pressed together by the two: having a desire to depart and to be with Christ, which is far better. But to remain in the flesh is more needful for you (Philippians 1:21-24).
Had Paul not equipped himself with the comfort of the scriptures, watched and prayed like Jesus commanded us and fasted, he would not have been able to go through all that hardship of ministry (Matthew 26:36-46 Mark 13:37, Romans 15:4). That is why the apostles said to the other believers: It is not pleasing to us, leaving the Word of God, to serve tables. Therefore, brothers, look out among you seven men being witnessed to, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this duty. But we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the Word (Acts 6:2-4). Do not be so busy that you say you cannot find time in your busy schedule to pray at least one hour every day. Make time everyday for the word of God and prayer in your life. Jesus entered into a certain village. And a certain woman named Martha received Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she came to Him and said, Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me. And Jesus answered and said to her, Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things. But one thing is needful, and Mary has chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her (Luke 10:38-42).
Jesus has no problem with you doing house work, having a job, bringing the children to school and to sport activities, watching television or going to the movies as a family. The problem with Martha was, she was distracted with much serving, not with serving but with much serving. I go to some people’s houses and the wife will spend three hours in the kitchen and I will only see her for one hour and will be only talking to the husband. So she did not benefit from the word of God I shared. It always grieves my heart because she could have put a frozen pizza into the oven and in 15 minutes it was done, or cook all her fancy food before I came into their house. I come to share the word of God and pray. If she did not hear the word of God, the prayer would not have much transformation in her life; for faith comes by hearing the word of God and she did not hear a thing I shared about the promises of God! Sometimes we spend too much unnecessary time before the television watching TV programs or movies; or the children have too many after school activities that when they come home, they are so tired and it is too late; so they just take their bath, eat and go to bed. One thing that is needful in our day is, to sit at the feet of Jesus individually and as a family to hear His word and pray!
Smith Wigglesworth shared a testimony of him and some believers tarrying in prayer to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. They prayed for a couple of hours in the church building and it was too late; they had to close the church. So one of the couples asked Wigglesworth: will you come home with us so that we can continue in prayer till we are baptized in the Holy Ghost? He accepted. But when he arrived in their house; the wife of the man went to the kitchen and started to put something on the fire for them to eat. Wigglesworth understood what it meant: after they have eaten, then it will be bed time! He said to them: I did not follow you to your house to come and eat dinner with you; I thought you wanted to pray through until you are baptized in the Holy Ghost. So they prayed and at 1 AM the woman was baptized in the Holy Ghost and the husband was baptized in the Holy Ghost at 3AM. Then they went to bed!
Brothers and sisters, sometimes when our mind is not yet renewed to the written word of God and to the ways of God, we can be offended because of what Jesus is doing for other people around us. How Jesus is blessing the newly born again Christian and the backsliding Christian that has just come back home. The elder brother in Luke 15 was angry at the father, who welcomed the prodigal son and threw a party for him and restored all his inheritance. The elder brother was offended and angry like Jonah was. We also have people who have just joined the faith for a short time and God has financially blessed them, more than us who have been in the faith for years. In Matthew 20:1-16, Jesus tells us of the people, who worked for God for the whole twelve hour shift, were offended and angry at God because those who only worked for one hour received the same salary. God said to them: Is it not lawful for me to do what I want with my own? Is your eye evil because I am good (Matthew 20:15)?
Paul says: rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep (Romans 12:15). Some Christians can weep with you; but they cannot rejoice with you for what God has done in your life or in your ministry; they are offended and angry because they have been praying for the same thing and they have not seen the manifestation of it in their own life. Let not your eye be evil because God is good! In Matthew 11:1-6, John the Baptist was in prison. And we know that John the Baptist performed no miracles (John 10:41). So John the Baptist sent his disciples to ask Jesus if He was the one to come or do they have to wait for another person. Jesus demonstrated in that same hour that He was the one to come and they do not have to wait for another. He raised the dead, healed all manners of sickness and diseases and preached the gospel for the salvation of the soul. And He says: blessed is whosoever is not offended because of Me (Matthew 11:6). I have experienced it in ministry; when God started to use me in dead raising, healing and preaching the gospel; many preachers did not rejoice with me but were offended and jealous! They called me proud, that it will not last.
You do not need to be offended because of what Jesus is doing in another person’s life. Learn what that person did according to the scriptures and you will have the same manifestations. God said to Cain who murdered his brother Abel. The account goes like this: And Adam knew Eve his wife. And she conceived and bore Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from Jehovah. And she bore again, his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. And in the end of days, it happened, Cain brought to Jehovah an offering of the fruit of the ground. And Abel also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat of it. And Jehovah had respect to Abel and to his offering, but He did not have respect to Cain and to his offering. And Cain glowed with anger, and his face fell. And Jehovah said to Cain, Why have you angrily glowed? And why did your face fall? If you do well, shall you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin crouches at the door; and its desire is for you, and you shall rule over it. And Cain talked with his brother Abel. And it happened when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him (Genesis 4:1-8).
I, Gery, did not hide anything from you; I have delivered to you, in “My Weekly Milk” bible studies, all that was foundational to my walk with Christ Jesus. Joseph rejoiced with the butler; that he will be released, though he himself was still to spend two extra years in that prison before his release (Genesis 40). If you are not offended and angry when God performs miracles and deliverances in other people’s lives; your own deliverance will be more spectacular and greater than that of those who have been released through your prayers. I have encouraged and prayed for many people and God delivered them and I greatly rejoiced with them though at that time I was still bound like Joseph; but I believed that God’s deliverance for me would be greater and more spectacular than that of the people I prayed for, and encouraged in my preaching. As it is written: Jehovah turned the captivity of Job when he prayed for his friends. Also Jehovah added to Job, all that had been his, to double (Job 42:10).
That is why we need to spend time in the word of God and in prayer; we pray through until the joy of the Lord becomes our strength for the day. I was talking to my dearest sister Louise, the prophetess of the Lord, and I never discussed about praying through with her at that time. Yet she told me she realized a difference in her life when she only prayed for one hour a day and when she prayed for two to three hours a day. She said the situation that she was facing had not changed yet physically; but the joy of the Lord filled her heart and strengthened her for that day! I was also talking to my younger brother Nell Malanda, the prophet of the Lord Jesus. And he told me: “before I used to say to myself: what will I be saying to God for one hour? But now I find myself praying for three hours every day!” At that time he was sharing with me, his circumstance had not yet changed physically; but the joy of the Lord filled his heart and strengthened him to go through that valley of the shadow of death and fear no evil! Nell and Louise discovered that there was no comfort in their situation, but the comfort that comes from the scriptures (Romans 15:4).
You will discover that God talks back to you in prayer! You will come with your list, and God will come with his list too. The reason why people find it difficult to spend even one hour in prayer is, because all their prayers are monologues; they are doing all the talking and it is only about what they want God to do for them! As Sister Louise explains it; it is like with her children when they were babies, it was all about them and what they wanted their mother Louise to do for them; but as they are growing, now they stop and ask: mum what do you want, and what do you want me to do? As long as we are spiritually babes, our prayers will only be about us, what we want and earthly things. But as we mature, we will stop and tell God: Abba Father, what do you want, and what do you want me to do for you? We will set our affection on the things above and not on things on the earth (Colossians 3:2). We will seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all the earthly things that the unsaved people seek after, will be added unto us (Matthew 6:33).
God says: I sought for a man or woman among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before Me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none (Ezekiel 22:30). This is still true! That is why when God finds someone who wants to spend time with Him in His word and prayer; God will hide nothing from him or her. God will bring His list of prayer points, and that man or woman will be standing in the gap for other people, for nations, for kingdoms. The LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do (Genesis 18:17). God will tell you the secrets of His heart and His battle plans to save souls and deliver people, nations and kingdoms. As it is written: Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he reveals His secret unto His servants the prophets (Amos 3:7). Christ Jesus who is The Prophet dwells in every born again believer and the testimony of Jesus Christ is the spirit of prophecy (Revelation 19:10, Deuteronomy 18:15). How do you think Brother Gery got the revelation of the scriptures that He wrote in those “My Weekly Milk”? It was by sitting at the feet of Jesus in reading and studying the bible, praying and fasting!
Christians think that everything will just fall into their laps or they will have instant deliverance and instant miracles for every situation. It is not true! There are things we will have to walk through! And you will need the comfort of the scriptures everyday, and praying through every day; so that you will be victorious over your situation (Psalm 23, Romans 15:4). Jesus says: Abba, Father, all things are possible unto You; take away this cup of suffering from Me: nevertheless not what I will, but what You will (Mark 14:36). He went through the cross; for Him to be victorious he needed to be equipped with the word of God, prayer and fasting. You and I, born again Christians also have a cross and a burden to carry. Jesus says: If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me (Luke 9:23). Every day we have a cross to take up and every day we have to deny ourselves so that we do not act in the flesh but in the spirit. Let us learn to pray through!
Christians ought to have a spiritual discipline; a disciple is a disciplined follower of Jesus. Jesus told us: All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go therefore, and teach all nations or make disciples of nations and disciple 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). There cannot be discipleship if there is no teaching and observance of all the things Jesus commanded us! The church, for a long time, has been full of converts but very few disciples; but things are changing now! The church used to be full of people who received Jesus as their Saviour; but now it shall be full of people who receive Jesus as their Lord too. Jesus says: why do you call Me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say (Luke 6:46)? To be disciples of Jesus we need to receive Him as Lord and Saviour and be taught His way, His truth and His life!
In the account of the wedding of Cana of Galilee in John 2, where Jesus turned the water into wine, we can learn a spiritual principle of how water can be turned into wine or spirit! Mary told the servants for them 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 the servants to fill each of the water-pots 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 on 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, 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 everyday; 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 a 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, 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 Christians 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 to fast and pray! Some people will say I will fast for 21 days three times a year; they do it once and give up! Start with the 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 the 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 ought to take upon them and learn from Jesus. See the bible Study on the “Return Journey Gilgal- Jordan East”. Yes some people in Christiandom, especially those in the five-fold 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 the 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 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 the 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 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 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 has also 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 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 you 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 stake. 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 dishonoured 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 shall he do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you may 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.
The word of God is the sword of the spirit or spirit realm (Ephesians 6:17). It not only cuts the enemy it also cuts you or prunes you! Jesus says: I am the True Vine, and My Father is the Vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away. And every one that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bring forth more fruit (John 15:1-2). Paul says: 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 the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart (Hebrews 4:12). God will expose your own heart to you, your evil desires and your hidden motives and intentions; then He will deal will them according to the word of God. When we study the bible, the bible studies us! Then we confess the word of God in prayer! Prayer and the word of God go hand in hand! My prayer is that we will all fall in love with the written word of God.
You and I need to spend quality time in studying the word of God, praying and fasting; if we want to have a successful and victorious Christian life. Jesus commanded us to pray at least one hour! As a principle we ask people to give 10% for everything to God: just like they give 10% of their increase to God as tithes, they ought to give 10% of their active day in prayer and 10% of their month as fasting. In Matthew 6 Jesus talks about when we pray and when we fast. In the bible study “Application of Perfect Redemption Plan” we expound on the different kinds of fasts. Jesus read His bible, prayed and fasted. As for fasting some people will decide to wait until the end of the month and consecrate the last three days of the month to pray and fast. Others will choose to fast a day every week; which means they will be fasting four times a month. In Matthew 6, when Jesus talked about when we pray and when we fast, He was not against praying and fasting; what He was addressing was the motives behind the praying and fasting of the Pharisees.
There is no effective minister of reconciliation, who does not live a disciplined life of systematically reading and studying the scriptures, praying and fasting! Jesus our example, read His bible, prayed and before starting his ministry, He went into the wilderness, to pray and fast for 40 days and 40 nights. He went filled with the Spirit into the wilderness, but when He came back from his fasting, he came in the power of the Spirit and began His ministry (Luke 4). You may think you are wasting your time because you do not see the immediate results. Paul tells us: now discipline always seems painful rather than pleasant at the time; but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness, to those who have been trained by it (Hebrews 12:11). Some Christians cannot spend time in the secret place quietly; they need to have a background noise of music! Be still, and know that I am God! I will be praised among the nations, I will be praised in the earth (Psalm 46:10).
We have a microwave and fast food – drive through generation. And we think that we can have a fast food – drive through the word of God, and a microwave prayer life! No wonder we are defeated. Jesus spent three and half years teaching His disciples aright: the word of God, prayer and fasting! People only see you when you are a finished product; they do not know your humble beginnings. William Seymour, who led the Azusa Street Revival, studied the bible, prayed and fasted. At times he would spend five to six hours a day studying the bible and praying before the revival started. He would spend all night in prayer! Smith Wigglesworth spent hours and hours studying the bible and praying. When you came to his house, you could not spend more than one hour without him interrupting your conversation, to read a portion of the bible and after he had read it, he tells you: let us pray! People only saw the miracles God performed through him on stage; they did not see his disciplined life of systematic reading and studying of the scriptures, prayer and fasting. He was not given to prolonged periods of fasting.
T.L Osborn before he was known as a healing evangelist; used to work with another senior minister, who used to hold revival meetings. T.L Osborn worked with him from the age of 16 to about 18 years old. And every day that minister would tell him, they had to pray through every day. They prayed through for three hours every day. Why three hours? Because in Matthew 26 Jesus prayed for three hours. That spiritual discipline of studying the word of God prayer and fasting, T.L Osborn received, later yielded the fruits. Sometimes people forget their days of little beginnings, and even worse they despise them; not knowing that those days were foundational to what God would use them to do in the future. Do not despise these small beginnings; for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin, to see the plumb line in Zerubabel’s hand with those seven; they are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth. (Zechariah 4:10). For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong or display His power, on behalf of them whose heart is perfect or loyal toward Him. Herein thou hast done foolishly (2Chronicles 16:9). The plumb line is to check the foundation, and if the foundation is not right or faulty, whatever will be built on it, will not last; it is foolishness to despise the foundational discipline God gives us. For if our foundation is right, whatever we build upon it will last for centuries!
People ask: why would William Seymour pray at times all night long? Why would he have a personal night vigil? If you read also the books of Smith Wigglesworth, you will see that sometimes when he went to pray for a sick person, and did not see the instant manifestation. When he came back home, he fasted and prayed that night, and slept late in the night, and then early in the morning, he went to the Salvation Army mission; because in those days, the Salvation Army had an early morning prayer meeting. And Wigglesworth would interrupt their prayer meeting and ask them to agree with him in prayer, for the healing of the particular person. And as they would be praying, Wigglesworth would have a witness in his spirit that he had got the victory. So at once, he would rise up and leave the Salvation Army early Morning Prayer meeting, go to the house of the sick person, lay his hands on them again and command the demon to come out of him, and the person was delivered and healed!
Many times when we pray for people for their issues, the prayer does not end there. When I get home, the Lord reveals to me, what is behind the problem, and I pray that night until I have the victory, and the person receives his miracle. Before the healing services, I pray and fast for some days; and God reveals what the main demonic forces oppressing the people are, who are coming. He gives me words of knowledge and words of wisdom, concerning some of the people who will be there. So when I speak, I speak with authority and power; because I know the Lord, who told me those things, cannot lie and He will back me up. Faith comes by hearing directly from the mouth of God!
The bible says: it came to pass in those days, that Jesus went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles; Simon, (whom he also named Peter,) and Andrew his brother, James and John, Philip and Bartholomew, Matthew and Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon called Zelotes, And Judas the brother of James, and Judas Iscariot, which also was the traitor (Luke 6:12-16). So Jesus had a night vigil by himself, to choose his disciples. He prayed for twelve hours by Himself!
One may ask: why would Jesus pray for twelve hours straight to choose these twelve disciples? So He prayed at least one hour for each of them! Jesus “prayed through” it was not only for the twelve that He prayed, but also for Himself so that He would not choose them after the flesh. As it is written: Jehovah said to Samuel, Do not look on his face, nor on his height, because I have refused him. For He does not see as man sees. For man looks on the outward appearance, but Jehovah looks on the heart (1Samuel 16:7). Paul tells us: For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man has, and not according to that he does not have (2Corinthians 8:12). Among the twelve, eleven had a good heart, and a willing mind to be a disciple, even though one of them was the devil from the beginning. And Jesus had to love, teach and treat Judas Iscariot the same way He did the eleven others. Some of them were hot-headed, violent, who believed they could go about killing people in the name of the Lord, like Simon called Zelotes. My friend that is ministry! God will send you people of all walks of life, all characters and all backgrounds; all social status: rich, poor, good people, evil people; among them God will tell you those who will stab you in the back, and those who will just use you to get their miracles, and once they have their miracles they will leave you. He will tell you the hypocrites among them, those who are your disciples and those to whom you are just a teacher. And Yet God wants to give them all the same opportunity, the same teaching, according to the scriptures. He prayed for twelve hours not just for the twelve but also for Himself.
Many times I know who my disciples are, and those to whom I am just a teacher. Yet I never make them feel that I do not love them, or I do not want to teach them. Many times I also know those who just want to use me in the ministry, or to get their miracles and once they have their miracles they will leave. The bible says: Jesus was in Jerusalem at the Passover, at the feast, many believed in His name when they saw the miracles which He did. But Jesus did not commit Himself to them, because He knew all people and did not need that anyone should testify of man. For He knew what was in man (John 2:23-25). When you walk with God, He tells you the motives and intentions of the people around you. Yet He wants you to treat them as Jesus would treat them. Your carnal mind says: no way! That is way it is at enmity with God! So you need to “pray through” to have a personal victory!
There are people who were in a deep mess, I prayed for them all night and in two days they got their miracles and told me they were now leaving me! Thank God that I “prayed through”; because I could have been angry and said carnal words to them; but I did not even tell them that I had prayed for twelve hours for them to be delivered! That is why Paul tells the church: obey those who rule over you and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you (Hebrews 13:17). Samuel was grieved when the people rejected him. He did not take anything from them; he did not manipulate them financially, or control them, yet they rejected him. The LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto you: for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them (1Samuel 8:7).
Yet Samuel was a man after God’s own heart and said to the people who rejected him. Wherever you go, continue to obey the written word of God, you have my blessings to leave me and go to be under another shepherd. As it is written: Samuel said unto the people, Fear not: you have done all this wickedness: yet turn not aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart; And do not turn aside: for then you should go after vain things, which cannot profit nor deliver; for they are vain. For the LORD will not forsake his people for his great name’s sake: because it has pleased the LORD to make you his people. Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way. Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things He has done for you (1Samuel 12:23-24). My pastor who begot me in the Lord prays and fasts for me. I, Gery, also pray and fast for everybody who reads these bible studies so that these words may become flesh in you.
I remember when we were newly born again when our pastor was visiting us for six months; every month we would use the last Friday of the month to have a night vigil from 10PM Friday to 5AM Saturday. I was always saying to myself: why do we have night vigils? Until I realized Jesus had a night vigil of twelve hours to choose his twelve disciples (Luke 6:12-16). And then I read again in Matthew of another night vigil of Jesus on His own, as it is written: Jesus constrained His disciples to get into a boat and to go before Him to the other side, while He sent the crowds away. And when He had sent the crowds away, He went up into a mountain apart to pray. And when evening had come, He was there alone. But the boat was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves; for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a phantom! And they cried out for fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, Be of good cheer, I AM! Do not fear (Matthew 14:22-27).
The Jews divided the night into three watches of four hours each. The first Jewish watch of the night started in the beginning of the evening from 6PM to 10PM as seen in Lamentations: Arise, cry out in the night. At the beginning of the watches, pour out your heart like water before the face of Jehovah. Lift up your hands towards Him for the life of your children who are faint for hunger in the head of every street (Lamentation 2:19). The second Jewish watch of the night started from 10PM to 2AM, as seen in Judges: So Gideon and the hundred men with him, came to the edge of the camp in the beginning of the middle watch. And they had but newly set the watch. And they blew the ram’s horns and broke the pitchers that were in their hands (Judges 7:19). The third watch of the night started from 2AM to 6AM as seen in Exodus: And it came to pass, that in the morning watch the LORD looked unto the host of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and of the cloud, and troubled the host of the Egyptians (Exodus 14:24). Whereas the Romans divided the night into four watches, three hours each. The first Roman watch of the night started in the evening from 6PM to 9PM, the second watch was from 9PM to 12 midnight, the third watch of the night was from 12 midnight to 3AM and the fourth watch of the night was from 3AM to 6AM.
Thus in Matthew 14:22-27, Matthew is using the Roman watch of the night. So Jesus went alone for a night vigil in the evening until the fourth watch of the night, approximately from 6PM to 3AM, so He prayed alone for about 9 hours in the night. Did Jesus have a night vigil alone of twelve hours like in Luke 6:12-16 or of nine hours like in Matthew 14:22-27 every day or every week? The answer is no! It is not humanly do-able! Some people also in religion ask their church members to wake up every night and pray in the second Jewish watch of the night, meaning from 10PM to 2AM. You cannot do that every day! Sometimes when you are in ministry, the only time you have for yourself is early in the morning and late at night. That is why as you read the four gospels you see Jesus isolating Himself, to pray early in the morning and late at night!
The bible says: praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord who minister by night in the house of the Lord. Lift up your hands in the sanctuary, and bless the LORD. The LORD who made heaven and earth bless thee out of Zion (Psalm 134:1-3). In the temple there were singers, sons of Levite, who were working day and night, praising God (1Chronicles 9:33, 1Chronicles 6:31-32). Moreover David and the captains of the host separated to the service of the sons of Asaph, and of Heman, and of Jeduthun, who should prophesy with harps, with psalteries, and with cymbals: and the number of the workmen according to their service was 288 (1Chronicles 25:7). As you read the bible, the service of those Levites was not every month, David divided them into twelve groups, so that every group would be in charge of one month of the year, and within that group your lot would only fall once in that month to minister before the Lord.
We see that with Zacharias. It came to pass, that while he executed the priest’s office before God, in the order of his course, according to the custom of the priest’s office, his lot was to burn incense when he went into the temple of the Lord (Luke 1:8-9). And the day had twelve hours of three Jewish watches, and the night has twelve hours of three Jewish watches. So though your lot fell, but it could be any of the watches of the day or of the night! Zacharias’ lot was not of the night but of the day! There had been months where God asked me to pray alone all night for 12 hours straight. There are months I had a night vigil alone of 9 hours straight. There are days I get home and the Lord tells me to pray through that night for three to four hours and I do so. That is why some churches hold night vigils once every month. They choose one Friday in the month to do it; because on Saturday people can rest and come for the Sunday service.
Do no despise their night vigils if in your church you do not have night vigils; for they are following the pattern of the temple of David. And they also have seen in the scriptures, Jesus having night vigils alone! When you are in ministry there are times you will have to pray alone all night like Jesus did; but do not turn it into religion. Sometimes when I have people going through challenging situations, God calls me to pray through all night long and on Sunday morning I tell them: God will do a miracle for you this week or in two days. Because I had won the victory in prayer and received the answer for them!
Solomon says: Unless Jehovah builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; unless Jehovah keeps the city, the watchman stays awake in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows; for so He gives His beloved sleep (Psalm 127:1-2). God wants our body rested. Do not fall into that religious trap of waking up every day before midnight to pray. God wants you to enjoy your sleep. Yes there are times where you will continue in prayer all night but it is not every day. Some preachers will say to their congregation: you need to wake up at 12 midnight and pray until 1AM because it is at that hour that the witches and wizards make their incantations, curse people and cast their spells. First of all God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind (2Timothy 1:7). Their problem with that fearful thinking is that we have 24 time zones on the earth so it is always midnight somewhere on the earth! So you will have to pray 24 hours every day! You need to learn to trust God that you cannot keep yourself; but He can keep you. it is called: have faith in God and go to bed!
There had been times, at the command of the Lord, I prayed from 12 noon to 2PM for a prolonged period. And then God told me to stop doing that for the purpose for which He commanded me to do that was fulfilled! There had been times when God woke me up at 3AM every day for about a week to pray for a particular thing. And when it was answered, He did not continue to wake me up at 3AM. I enjoy my sleep, and I sleep early most of the time; because I wake up by 5AM most of the time. So by 10PM I am in my bed sleeping. Unless it is an urgent matter I do not pick up my mobile phone after 10PM. Some people sleep late and they want to impose their lifestyle on me, by calling me at late hours or wanting me to stay at their home late at night until 12 midnight or 1AM; no wonder I only visit them once a month! Even when God wakes me up at 3AM I do my praying in bed! It is so easy to fall into religion and put a yoke around your neck and a heavy burden upon your shoulders in the area of prayer and fasting, that God did not put on you!
Although all the promises of God in Christ Jesus are yes and Amen unto the glory of God by us, according to 2Corinthians 1:20; yet unless someone prays them through, nothing will be materialized! That is why Jesus when He taught us to pray said: pray for the will of God to be done on earth as it is in heaven (Luke 11:2). God says to Ezekiel: I sought for a man or a woman among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before Me for the land, so that I should not destroy it: but I found none (Ezekiel 22:30). We are co-labourers together with God that is how God ordained it; we have a part to play in the manifestation of the promises of God on earth (1Corinthians 3:9).
These three things go hand in hand to see the manifestations of the promises of God on earth: first the written word of God, which contains all the promises of God; second prayer in line with the right understanding of the written word of God; and third fasting! Let us take some examples of how these three things were applied in the bible. Let us first of all take the example of the birth of Jesus Christ. Isaiah prophesied, saying: therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel (Isaiah 7:14). Someone might think: since the Lord Himself will do it, we can rest on our pillows; we have nothing to do about it, it will automatically come to pass. The answer is no! God will involve us to pray it through when the time has come for the fulfilment of that promise.
So before the fullness of the time of that prophecy to be fulfilled; God took hold of Anna and Simeon. The bible tells us: behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon; and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel: and the Holy Ghost was upon him. And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord’s Christ (Luke 2:25-26). And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity; And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. And she coming in that instant, gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spoke of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem (Luke 2:36-38).
Anna and Simeon “prayed through” that prophecy of Isaiah for decades. So you see here Anna, was not just praying but also fasting; for that prophecy to come to pass. And then in the fullness of the time, God sent the Angel Gabriel to Mary, who accepted to be the carrier of the baby Jesus. Some Christians will be making fun of Christians who are like Anna or Simeon, thinking that they are religious! It is said that Simeon was told by the Holy Ghost that he would not see death until he had seen the baby Jesus. God will not call a large group of people to fast for such a long period! He will speak to one or two people and they will be able to fast and pray through for years, until God tells them that the purpose for which He asked them to pray and fast has been fulfilled. And when God tells a person to do that He will also give him or her the grace to finish what they have started. If you try to copy someone else’s instruction of the Holy Spirit, you will be frustrated and fail; because you will not receive the grace to do it!
Let us also take the prophecy of Jeremiah concerning the deliverance of Israel from their captivity in Babylon after 70 years. And this whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment; and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. And it shall come to pass, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king of Babylon, and that nation, says the LORD, for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans, and will make it perpetual desolations. And I will bring upon that land all my words which I have pronounced against it, even all that is written in this book, which Jeremiah hath prophesied against all the nations (Jeremiah 25:11-13). For thus says the LORD, That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place. For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Then shall you 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 you shall search for Me with all your heart. And I will be found of you, says the LORD: and I will turn away your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I have driven you, says the LORD; and I will bring you again into the place whence I caused you to be carried away captive (Jeremiah 29:10-14).
So when the time for the fulfilment of that promise was near, God sought a man or a woman that would pray it through; and He found Daniel. In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans; In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem. And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes (Daniel 9:1-3). If you do not read your bible, you will not discover what the promises of God concerning your life are. Read the bible study on “Divine Guidance” to discover the basics of how God speaks to us in line with His written word. Daniel did not think that that prophecy would automatically come to pass, since it was prophesied by a mighty prophet like Jeremiah. That is the mistake many Christians make! Now He played his part as a co-labourer with God, and humbled himself in prayer and fasting.
Daniel tells us: yes, while I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, touched me in my severe exhaustion, about the time of the evening sacrifice. And he enlightened me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I have now come out to give you skill and understanding. At the beginning of your prayers the commandment came out, and I have come to explain. For you are greatly beloved; therefore understand the matter, and attend to the vision (Daniel 9:21-23). So the very time Daniel humbled himself in prayer and fasting to “pray through” that promise of God; God commanded His angel to bring the answer. Sometimes the enemy is resisting us, so that we will not have the manifestation of the promise of God.
In Daniel 10, we see Daniel fasting and praying through for 21 days and on the 24th day he got the answer. And the Angel Gabriel explains to him what was going on in the spiritual realm. Gabriel said to me, O Daniel, a man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak to you, and stand upright. For to you I am now sent. And when he had spoken this word to me, I stood trembling. Then he said to me, Do not fear, Daniel; for from the first day that you set your heart to understand and to chasten yourself before your God, your words were heard. And I have come for your words. But the ruler of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days. But lo, Michael, one of the chief rulers, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia. Now I have come to make you understand what shall happen to your people in the latter days. For the vision is yet for many days (Daniel 10:11-14).
So God already sent the answer the very day Daniel started to pray and fast, but Daniel felt in his spirit that he had to continue to fast and pray and he did so for 21 days. What he did not know is, that for those 21 days, there was a spiritual battle going on between angel Gabriel and the principality over Persia; God had to dispatch angel Michael to come and help Gabriel. The spiritual battle ended on the 21st day of the fast of Daniel and the manifestation of the answer came 3 days later on the 24th day. We are co-labourers together with God, always remember it! Had Daniel stopped praying and fasting before the 21st day, the answer might not have come. Daniel prayed it through. As you read series of the Perfect Redemption Plan and the Application of the Perfect Redemption Plan; you will see many visions of spiritual warfare going on, how some of the evil beasts are captured by angels and bound up. No wonder Jesus tells us: This kind [of demons and demonic resistance] can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting (Mark 9:29).
Some Christians, who do not know how to rightly divide the scriptures, have tried to remove this verse from the bible; may God be merciful unto them and not deal with them, according to their ignorance of the ways of God, by removing their portion from the scripture! As it is written: if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book (Revelation 22:19). All the things I command you, be careful to do it. You shall not add to it, nor take away from it (Deuteronomy 12:32). Paul tells us: study to show yourself approved unto God, a workman who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (2Timothy 2:15). It is not just dividing the word of truth we are talking about here; but rightly dividing the word of truth according to the general counsel of God from Genesis to Revelation, guided by the principle that says, the thing must be at least written twice or three times in scriptures to be established as always being the will of God (Genesis 41:32, Deuteronomy 19:15, Matthew 18:16, 2Corinthians 13:1).
When we read the book of Joel on restoration of the years wasted in chapter two, people forget that in chapter one of Joel, they repented of their sins, renewed their mind according to the scriptures, and then prayed and fasted. Do not just read and claim chapter two of Joel without doing chapter one of the same book. The same thing for the promise of revival in the book of Amos and Ezra; they started by repenting of their sins, renewing their mind and then praying and fasting for God to revive their land. God said to Solomon after he dedicated the temple, that when the people had forsaken the Lord in the land, and gone after strange Gods and had even been in captivity, if you want Me to turn their captivity around and revive them, this is what you need to do: If My people, who are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land (2Chronicles 7:14).
That is why Daniel repented, renewed his mind, and prayed and fasted. The Hebrews understood that to humble yourself before the Lord talks about fasting. You will see in the book of Joel and Jonah how the people repented and humbled themselves before the Lord in fasting, sackcloth and ashes. David also tells us how he humbled himself before the Lord; saying: as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth: I humbled my soul with fasting; and my prayer returned into mine own bosom (Psalm 35:13). And just like David understood that you need to fast and pray to get some sicknesses healed; Isaiah also confirms it in Isaiah 58; telling us that as we fast our healing will spring forth speedily. Please read the Perfect Redemption Plan series and the Application of the Perfect Redemption Plan to get a full understanding of healing and fasting. There is nobody who is mightily used in healing and deliverance, who does not pray and fast or lives a kind of fasted life.
Salvation of souls is also a spiritual battle; because there are principalities over nations, regions, cities, towns, villages and areas that hold the people captive, so that they will be spiritually blind and deaf to the gospel of Jesus Christ. That is why ministries like that of Reinhard Bonnke, who conduct mass evangelical crusades of millions of people. Spend months in prayer and fasting before the crusades. That is why also David Yonggi Cho’s Church and Enoch Adeboye’s Church, grow by the preaching of the word and prayer and fasting. They understood according to the scriptures, that they need to bind the strong man that is holding the people captive first, so that the people who hear the gospel are no longer under the influence of any satanic power, so they can make a willing decision to receive Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. Many people only see the salvation of souls and mighty miracles those ministries are experiencing; but they do not know the price they were willing to pay to get them. Some ministries only recycle believers; and most of the time they are the ones against prayer and fasting! Paul talks about some believers whose god is their stomach (Philippians 3:19). They cannot even fast for a day for their own deliverance; let alone for the deliverance of someone else like David, Daniel and the saints of old did.
Elijah also “prayed through” for the rain to come down. After the contest at Mount Carmel, as it is written: Elijah said to Ahab, Go up, eat and drink, because of the sound of plenty of rain. So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel. And he threw himself down on the earth and put his face between his knees. And he said to his servant, Go up now, look toward the sea. And he went up and looked and said, Nothing. And he said, Go again seven times. And it happened at the seventh time, he said, Behold, there arises a little cloud out of the sea, like a man’s hand. And he said, Go up and say to Ahab, Bind up and go down, so that the rain does not stop you. And it happened in the meantime the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain. And Ahab rose and went to Jezreel. And the hand of Jehovah was on Elijah. And he girded up his loins and ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel (1Kings 18:41-46).
You see Elijah gave a word to the King Ahab, that he should go up to his palace, stop worrying but eat and drink; for the Lord would send plenty of rain; the drought was over! Yet when Elijah prayed the first time and sent His servant to check if there was any sign of rain; there was nothing on the horizon! Elijah prayed seven times and each times he sent his servant to go and check for a sign of rain. Now the bible does not tell us how long he prayed each time! Isaiah tells us: the Lord confirms the word of His servant and performs the counsel of His messenger (Isaiah 44:26). Yet, the Lord will not do it on His own; but He will work together with you, His servant and messenger, to confirm that word and perform that counsel through the accompanying signs (Mark 16:20). We are co-labourers together with God; never forget it (1Corinthians 3:9). Elijah, who gave the word to king Ahab, had to pray it through! He prayed seven times before it came to pass!
James tells us: Elijah was a man of like passion as we are. And he prayed earnestly that it might not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for the time of three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth caused its fruit to sprout (James 5:17-18). Elijah had to pray again for the rain to come seven times! The same way Elijah “prayed through” you and I are also expected to “pray through” for the promise of God or the prophecies we give people to come to pass. I remember during the cross over night 2013-2014. The Lord asked me: “Gery, what do you want the people to have?” I said: “I want them to write three impossible things that they want God to do for them in 2014. I do not even need to know what they write down; for Eli did not even know what was the impossible situation of Hannah; but he said to her: go in peace and the God of Israel grant your petition which you have asked of Him” (1Samuel 1:12-17). So God said to me: “deal!” Thus I said to the people: “write three impossible things that you want God to do this year 2014 and God will grant them to you”.
What I did not know was that God would ask me to pray them through until they came to pass! So some nights God called me and I would pray for 12 hours and the people would have some of their impossible things answered that week. Sometimes God asked me to pray for 9 hours and that same week God would grant some of the impossible things to the people. Some people did not play fair; for when God answered their three impossible things they added three new impossible things and added again and added again and whatsoever they added God granted them all; even on the 31st of December 2014 God performed miracles. I prayed them through by the grace of God! Now I am careful with my words, for Jesus says: I say unto you, That every idle word [argos rhema: spoken word not acted upon, barren word, spoken word void of fulfilment and useless word] that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof on the day of judgment (Matthew 12:36). When I give a prophecy or say something to someone, God might ask me sometimes to team up with that person for the manifestation of that promise. So I am accountable to God and to the people for the words that come out of my mouth.
Solomon tells us: Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falls; for he has not another to help him up. Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevails against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly or easily broken (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12). We have this threefold cord system like a rectangular triangle depicted in figure 1. The way God designed it to work; it is not an equilateral triangle but a rectangular triangle. Why? For had it been an equilateral triangle then the disciple and the discipler had to do the same labour in the word of God, in prayer and in fasting to have the manifestation of the promise of God. But God bestowed a heavier load on those who are in the fivefold ministry: apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. The apostles understood it and said to the congregation: we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word (Acts 6:4).
figure 1: threefold cord
God is at
the summit of our rectangular triangle. You and I are at base of that rectangular triangle. The discipler is not better than the disciple. Jesus told us: The disciple is not above his master or discipler: but everyone who is perfectly trained or perfectly discipled shall be as his master or discipler (Luke 6:40). In fact the disciple has a straight line to God because we are agreeing in prayer concerning his impossible situation to men. The relationship disciple-discipler is like the relationship between a parent and a child. The parent does most of the work; but the child had to do his part too. Think of a mother and a baby. The mother can have all the milk in her breasts and put the nipple in the mouth of the baby. But unless the baby decides to suck the milk from the breast he will die of hunger. So though the baby has a minimal role to play; yet if he does not play his role he will not enjoy the provision made available to him! But the baby will grow up and learn everything from the parent and be able to do the same things. So we are discipling you or training you so that you can go do the same thing for someone else!
You, as a disciple, will have to read your bible, pray and fast too. Ezra said: I proclaimed a fast there, at the river of Ahava, that we might afflict ourselves before our God, to seek of him a right way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance (Ezra 8:21). What you are doing is not for the church or the ministry but for what pertains to your life and godliness; your family and works of your hands! The bible tells us: One man of you shall chase a thousand. For Jehovah your God is He who fights for you, as He has promised you (Joshua 23:10). And again it says: How shall one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, unless their Rock had sold them and Jehovah had shut them up (Deuteronomy 32:30)? That is why two are better than one for we will defeat more enemies if each one of us does his part. But if I do my thing and you do your own; you will defeat your thousand and I will defeat my thousand; yet we will still have eight thousand enemies on the loose! Jesus tells us: Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of My Father who is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, there I am in the midst of them (Matthew 18:19-20).
In the beginning of our Christian walk, we do not get it straightaway, that prayer is a conversation or dialogue between you and the Godhead. Most of our prayers in the beginning are monologues. We do all the talking and we go away. Imagine you called a friend on the phone, and you did all the talking and after that hung up, the other person did not even have time to say a word. That is why God, Jesus or the Holy Spirit many times, came to me early in the morning and started a conversation with me and they talked for hours, sometimes they gave me bible lectures for almost an hour or two, because during the day my prayers with the Godhead were monologues not dialogues.
God said: I love those who love me; and those who seek me early shall find me (Proverbs 8:17). The reason why it is so easy to hear from God early in the morning when we wake up, is because we are not yet caught up with the stresses of the day. God even initiates the dialogue and talks for a long period of time. He shows you visions, explains scriptures to you, and you ask questions and He answers them. When I pray in the afternoon, I have the tendency to be in a hurry and not wait for God to speak back, but it is still good, and sometimes as I go through my daily activities, God speaks to me and gives me the answer I wanted from Him, or days after when I read my bible God speaks to me and I have my answer from the scriptures.
When you pray early in the morning or in the evening, after you have made your request known to God, remain silent in the presence of the Lord, or speak in tongues quietly in your heart, so that you can hear His still small voice. Sometimes after I have made my request known to God, I pray in tongues under my breath for an hour to wait on the Lord to speak to me. Sometimes after that hour of praying in tongues under my breath, even if God has not spoken to me, I go to bed and in the night or early in the morning or another day, God will give me the answer of what I asked him. When you read the bible from Genesis to revelation, you will see saints praying about something and sometimes God will give them the answer immediately, and other times it will come another day. Do not be frustrated when God does not answer you about a particular thing that very hour or very day.
I used to be frustrated, when I would ask God a question in prayer and He would talk to me for hours, about many things, except what I had asked him, and sometimes, after a month when I read my bible, the answer was already written in the bible. The more of the word of God we have abiding in us richly in all wisdom, the easier it is for us to hear from God, because the Holy Spirit will bring to our remembrance what the written word of God says. So learn to wait on the Lord in prayer, whether you decide to do it in the morning or in the night, it is up to you. Develop your spiritual hearing. Jesus said to Peter: what! Could you not watch with Me in prayer one hour (Matthew 26:40)? Jesus says the same thing to us: what I say to you, I say to all. Watch (Mark 13:37). Therefore, make time for Jesus for one hour, either in the morning or in the evening, whatever suits you. I do that most of the time in the morning. The truth is the more you have a relationship with God, the more time you will spend in prayer, because it is not boring you are conversing with the Godhead.
Prayer of agreement is when you ask someone or people to come and pray with you, concerning a particular subject. Again I say to you that if two of you shall agree on earth (as touching) as regarding anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them by My Father in Heaven (Matthew 18:19). Truly I say to you, Whatever you shall bind on earth shall occur, having been bound in Heaven; and whatever you shall loose on earth shall occur, having been loosed in Heaven (Matthew 18:18). Prayer of agreement has nothing to do with holding each other’s hands, or with the number of people you call to pray with you, two is enough! And it has nothing to do with the religious title of the person you are praying with: pastor, evangelist, prophet, teacher or apostle. It has to do with agreeing in the heart.
The greatest level of agreement you will ever have, is in your home: between husband and wife, between parents and children. That is why you must pray as a family every day, parents must pray with their children in the morning when they wake up, and in the evening before going to bed. Husband and wife must pray together apart from the prayer they pray with the children, they ought to pray and share the scriptures with each other day and night if possible. In some cases one of the spouses works night shifts or morning shifts, so when he or she gets home the other spouse is at work and vice versa, but they need to find time to pray with each other, and share the scriptures with each other. A family that prays together stays together, a couple that prays together stays together. It is the devil’s strategy to stop prayer in homes and to cause people to pray alone, each one in a corner at home, for he knows if the family comes together to pray, nothing will be able to stop them for they are one.
The whole earth was of one language and of one speech. And it happened, as they travelled from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar. And they lived there. And they said to one another, Come, let us make bricks and burn them thoroughly. And they had brick for stone, and they had asphalt for mortar. And they said, Come, let us build us a city and a tower, and its top in the heavens. And let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered upon the face of the whole earth. And Jehovah came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of Adam had built. And Jehovah said, Behold! The people is one and they all have one language. And this they begin to do. And now nothing which they have imagined to do will be restrained from them (Genesis 11:1-6).
The inhabitants of Babel were building their tower for the wrong motive, they did not have God in their midst, but wanted to exalt themselves up to heaven. You as a Christian, you do not exalt yourself, God exalts you and makes your name great (Genesis 12:1-3; Psalm 75:5-6). But still the principle applies to your family, when you are in agreement and speak the same thing in your house and pray together you will build your house, your business, your career and whatever you ask in prayer in your family, God will do it because you are in agreement. When I was growing up in my parents’ house, we prayed every morning from 5:30 to 6:00 and sometimes to 6:30 and every evening we prayed and shared the scriptures from 20:30 to 21:30. Everybody around that family table prayed one at a time. I tell you God answered all the prayers: my parents’ careers, our healings, our studies, our finances.
When you pray in agreement everybody must pray one at a time. When one is praying the others are listening to what he or she is saying, faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17). You can speak in tongues under your breath when the other is praying but you need to listen to what he or she is saying in prayer, the Lord will bring more scriptures to your remembrance as you listen to the other person praying, and when you pray, you will pray with more assurance and confidence. The moment a child can speak, he must participate in the prayer of agreement with the family. Jesus said: Yes, have you never read, “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings, You have perfected praise (Matthew 21:16)? God will speak to those children, they will prophesy and they will see dreams and visions, they will heal the sick. That is what I was doing at home when I was living with my parents.
Now when you are in a church service, or in a prayer meeting in the church, or with your friends in the house, and there are more than 3 to pray a prayer of agreement, the same principle still applies. When you take a subject, let two or the most three persons pray for that subject, one after the other, while the others are listening and praying in tongues under their breath. When you take another subject, let two or three pray one after the other, while the others are listening to them and praying in tongues under their breath, but let it not be the same two or three who prayed for the previous subject. Everybody must participate in a prayer meeting, for God is no respecter of persons. Nobody came to accompany others to the prayer meeting. And once you have taken all the subjects in prayer, let everybody pray in tongues under his or her breath or be silent and wait for God to give you a direction, on what to pray, or give you an answer for one of the subjects you have raised in the prayer.
Use the same principle Paul gave the church when it came to prophesy, saying: When you come together, each one of you has a psalm, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, and has an interpretation. Let all things be for building up. If one speaks in a language, let it be by two, or at the most three, and in succession. And let one interpret. But if there is no interpreter, let him be silent in a church; and let him speak to himself and to God. And if there are two or three prophets, let them speak, and let the others judge. If a revelation is revealed to another sitting by, let the first be silent. For you may all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all may be comforted (1Corinthians 14:26-31).
I was in a bus in Glasgow, Scotland on Saturday 17th November 2012, doing my prayer for the city, when I saw an open vision, I saw myself praying with one of the sisters in the church. We were kneeling down and praying but the way we were praying did not please God. And the Holy Spirit told me: you pray and she prays about the same subject, you keep silent while she is praying and pray in tongues under your breath and let her do the same thing when you are praying. Then you take another subject and at the end, when you have taken the entire subject, wait for me to speak to you, so the two of you pray in tongues either under your breath or not so loud, so that you can hear my still small voice. And then you can round up the prayer.
I was not happy, for I had been praying that way for a long time in public, yes at home when I pray on my own I pray and then I wait on the Lord to speak to me and then I round up my prayer. But in public with other people, they will not have the patience to wait like I wait for sometimes one hour. So what will I say to justify what I am asking them to do? So the Holy Spirit told me, you can use the same principle Paul taught the church for prophesying in 1Corinthians 14:26-31. And He started to tell me, explaining to me like I have explained above. When I went that afternoon to see that sister for the prayer meeting, I explained to her what God had said and we both knelt down and prayed the way God wanted us to pray, and at the end when we had brought all the subjects to God in prayer, we prayed in tongues not loud for at least an hour, waiting to hear the still small voice of the Holy Spirit, and after that we both rounded up the prayer. I was so happy that she accepted to wait on the Lord with me.
I was talking on the phone with Sister Esther on July 30th, 2013 around 1PM, when God dropped this revelation into my heart, and I rejoiced with Sister Esther for that revelation of the mystery of God to simple people like us, for He has kept them from the wise and prudent but has decided to reveal them unto us, what a great honour and privilege He has bestowed upon us!
God said through Amos: Behold, the days come, says the Lord Jehovah, that I will send a famine in the land; not a famine of bread nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the Words of the Lord Jehovah (Amos 8:11). The problem among Christians is the lack of the word of God richly abiding in them in all wisdom. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17). Some people have received the baptism of the Holy Spirit with evidence of speaking in tongues, but they do not have the miraculous power that the early disciples had, when they received their baptism of the Holy Ghost with evidence of speaking in tongues in Acts 2. Jesus told us: you shall receive power, after the Holy Spirit has come upon you. And you shall be witnesses to Me, even become martyrs for Me, both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and to the end of the earth (Acts 1:8).
Jesus did not say:”you shall speak in tongues after the Holy Spirit has come upon you”. The problem with some Christians is that their emphasis for the baptism of the Holy Ghost has been tongues and not the power to effectively represent Jesus to the world around us, in His words, in the demonstration of His power and in the manifestations of His Spirit. Now do not get me wrong, I speak in tongues and one of the evidences of being baptized in the Spirit is speaking in tongues; but the other is the boldness that now resides in you to share the gospel of Jesus and the power to heal the sick, cast out devils and raise the dead. And this is supposed to be done by every disciple of Jesus Christ.
The message of Pentecost in Acts 2 was not tongues, though they spoke in tongues, but the message of Pentecost was Jesus Christ. The church today wants to have the power and the manifestations of the Spirit in which the early disciples of Jesus walked. The answer of God to that desire is, that they should eat the word; they should treasure the word of God more than their necessary food, as we have explained in the bible study on the power of confession. Paul tells us: I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation (healing, deliverance, prosperity) to everyone who believes; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek (Romans 1:16). The problem is, that some are ashamed of the Gospel of Christ and all those amazing promises, they water them down and add traditions of men, that makes the word of God of no effect (Mark 7:13).
Paul says also: the preaching of the cross is to them that perish, foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God (1Corinthians 1:18). One needs to know what was freely given to the world through the death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and that they can freely inherit it by becoming born again. The series of bible studies on The Perfect Redemption Plan and the Application of The Perfect Redemption Plan, are meant for that sole purpose. The new birth is the greatest gift God gave to the world, for God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16). But the baptism of the Holy Spirit is the greatest gift God ever gave to His church, for now that you are born again you shall receive power after the Holy Ghost has come upon you to be My witnesses even My martyrs (Acts 1:8).
Elijah is a type of Jesus in the Old Testament; let us look at what happened in his days. The bible tells us in 1Kings 17, that there was a famine in the land of Israel and that famine lasted for three years and six months. There was no rain in the land for those three and half years. Now Amos has told us of the spiritual parallel of the natural famine which is the famine of hearing the word of God (Amos 8:11). So because the people of the kingdom of Israel were no longer hearing the word of the Lord, but were now hearing the words of their idols of Bethel, the spiritual famine became a natural famine. So it did not matter how much they prayed or how long they prayed, they were not being answered by God, for they did not have His word in them. The heaven withheld its rain for three years and half, because the people were spiritually in famine of hearing the word of God.
But at the same time there was a man by the name of Elijah, the prophet of the Lord, who for those three years and half was not in spiritual famine, but was constantly even continually hearing the word of God; for God commanded him and today commands all born again Christians saying: This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth; but you shall meditate therein day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then you shall make thy way prosperous, and then you shall have good success (Joshua 1:8). We also see the ministry of Jesus, He started when He was thirty years old and it lasted three and half years. So for three and half years Jesus taught His disciples the word of God and how to pray according to the will of God. So while the rest of the world was in famine of hearing the word of God for three and half years, the disciples of Jesus were hearing the word of God for three and half years. In 1Kings 18 we see the fire of God coming down on Mount Carmel after three years and half of famine, when Elijah prayed, which is a parallel of Acts 2 when tongues of fire fell on every head of the disciples in the upper room after they had been with Jesus for three and half years.
In the book of Revelation we also see the two witnesses who will prophesy. As it is written: I, God, will give power to My two witnesses and they will prophesy one thousand two hundred and sixty days, clothed in sackcloth (Revelation 11:3). Now wearing sackcloth talks of repentance and fasting for repentance; as you read the book of Jonah you see how the whole city of Nineveh repented in fasting and sackcloth, from the king to the lowest of his subjects. We also see the same thing in the book of Joel, where God asked the whole nation to repent in fasting and sackcloth. Now one thousand two hundred and sixty days is about three years and six months. The Message of all the prophets are the same, we need to repent of our sinful ways and forsake them and be born again that is the starting point of an effective life of prayer.
The message of John the Baptist was repentance, as it is written: In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, and saying, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand (Matthew 3:1-2). The Message of Jesus for about three years and six months was repentance, as it is written: from that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand (Matthew 4:17). The message of the disciples of Jesus while they were with Him and after the day of Pentecost was still repentance, and the message of brother G today is still repentance; as it is written: Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:38). Repent therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord (Acts 3:19). People want to experience the fiery power of the Holy Ghost and time of refreshing from the Lord, without doing the first thing first: repent and be converted, stop practicing sin!
Jesus tells us the way we identify born again Christians, saying: you shall know them by their fruits (Matthew 7:20). He does not tell us: you shall know them by their church attendance, though we should not forsake the assembling of ourselves together (Hebrews 10:25). He does not say you shall know them by their prophecy or manifestations of the gifts of the spirit but by their fruits! Balaam in Numbers 23 was not a prophet of God but of Baal, yet God used him to prophesy good over Israel. In Numbers 22, the donkey on which Balaam was riding saw the vision of the Angel of the Lord who is Jesus and the donkey also spoke to Balaam. But in Numbers 31:8-16 the Israelites slew Balaam at the instruction of the Lord because he taught the children of Israel to commit sexual immoralities. And we also see in Judges 7, God gave a dream to a Midianite and its interpretation to another Midianite in the same camp, yet Gideon slew all the Midianites including the two who had the dream and the interpretation from the Lord.
The Lord says: it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out My Spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions (Joel 2:28). God said all flesh, not just human flesh, as we see that the donkey of Balaam, saw a vision from the Lord and prophesied to Balaam; not just saved people, but even unsaved people, who are going to hell like Balaam. I have received many prophecies, dreams and visions from unsaved people, and they are from the Lord, though the people themselves are going to hell. Do not be moved by prophecies, dreams or visions but by the fruits of those people. Unsaved people can even work miracles, in the name of Jesus, but it does not mean, because Jesus is using them to work miracles in His name, that they are born again.
Jesus says: Then shall you begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in your presence, and You have taught in our streets. But He shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence you are; depart from Me, all you workers of iniquity (Luke 13:26-27). Therefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not everyone who says unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name? and in Your name have cast out devils? and in Your name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, you that work iniquity (Matthew 7:20-23). That is why Paul tells you and me: examine yourselves, whether you are in the faith, prove your own selves. Do you not know your own selves that Jesus Christ is in you, unless you are reprobates (2Corinthians 13:5)? 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 (those who play the lottery, casino, gamblers), nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God (1Corinthians 6:9-10).
In the same book of Revelation we see the woman who gave birth to the Child, Jesus, fleeing into the wilderness, as it is written: then the woman fled into the wilderness where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days (Revelation 12:6). Here the woman is the picture of the church as a whole and also every born again Christian for their body has become the temple of the Holy Ghost. The wilderness here talks about the second step of repentance, which is renewing the mind by the washing of the water by the word of God, to build a triumphant army of the Lord in which every enlisted soldier overcame Satan, by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony (Revelation 12:11). Our Christian experience is parallel to the journey of the Hebrews in the Old Testament, as we will explain in The Perfect Redemption Plan series.
When the Hebrews came out of Egypt the house of bondage, they killed the lamb and put the blood on the doorposts and lintels. So that was a parallel of us being born again, when they went through the Red Sea, that is our parallel of baptism: the removing of the filth of the world. Now they were in the wilderness with Moses, and it is in the wilderness that Moses received the Ten Commandments from the Lord, it is in the wilderness that they were taught what it means to be children of the Most High God, it is in the wilderness that God renewed their minds with the teachings of Moses, and trained them for war, so that they would go and possess the promised land. Yes, for about three years and six months Jesus taught His disciples, renewed their minds to see themselves the way God sees them, and to love themselves and one another, the way God loves them, even as He loves His Son Jesus. We see after those three years and six months, of the mind renewal program the disciples went through, they turned the world upside down, they were a threat to the kingdom of darkness, everywhere the sole of their feet trod (Acts 17:6). And even today we are still reading about them. Mind renewal is the biggest and most crucial part of the Christian walk, if we want to always triumph over our enemies as God promises (2Corinthians 2:14). And all these “My Weekly Milk” bible studies are designed to renew your mind and my mind.
So if the disciples did not have the word of God abiding in them richly in all wisdom after Jesus had taught them for three and half years, all they would have received from that baptism of the Holy Ghost would have been speaking in tongues, and they would not have been bold to witness to people about the Jesus whom they serve, to heal the sick, to cast out demons, raise the dead and defeat the forces of darkness. Now you understand why the only evidence of the baptism in the Spirit, that some Christians have is speaking in tongues, but they have no boldness, they never witness to anybody about the love of Jesus, they never heal the sick, nor cast out devils nor raise the dead.
So let us examine what Elijah did in 1Kings 18 before the fire came down from heaven. Elijah called the people to come near him and he repaired the altar of the Lord that was destroyed using the twelve stones according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, to whom the word of the Lord had come, saying: Israel shall be your name (1Kings 18:30-31). So this is the parallel with Jesus, He took twelve disciples whom He called apostles and built the foundation of His church. Paul says: Now therefore you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God, and are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, in whom every building having been fitly framed together, grows into a holy sanctuary in the Lord; in whom you are also built together for a dwelling place of God through the Spirit (Ephesians 2:19-22). Elijah had to repair the altar because it was broken down, Jesus needed also to repair the foundation of prayer life in his disciples, because, though they had the word of God, it was mixed with traditions of men and customs of Jews, which made it of no effect. Thus the purpose of these bible studies is, to repair the altar of prayer, which traditions of men and customs, have made ineffective.
As we have seen, the foundation of our prayer life, of which the altar represents that prayer life, is Jesus, the chief cornerstone. And Jesus who said: I, Jesus, will build My church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it, decided to erect that house of prayer, in which we are using the apostles and prophets (Matthew 16:18). Just like Elijah said that the word of the Lord came to the twelve sons of Jacob, the twelve apostles of Jesus also received the word of God. In the Old Testament God used prophets a lot to deliver His message. In the New Testament, Jesus chose Apostles to deliver His message. So both the writings of the prophets of old, to whom the word of God came, and the apostles of Jesus, in the New Testament, to whom also the word of God came, both their writings and personal life are used as building blocks, to erect that altar of our prayer life.
In the Old Testament when God instructed people to build an altar, they made it of stone on which no human instrument has been used to shape it, but just as God put it in nature. As it is written: if you will make Me an altar of stone, you shall not build it of cut stone. For if you lift up your tool upon it, you have defiled it (Exodus 20:25). In other words: do not remove or add to the word of the Lord that came to the prophets and the apostles, to try to make them fit into your world and lifestyle; but you make your lifestyle, and your world line up with the words of God, whom the prophets and the apostles received from the Lord. If you try to change the word of God to fit your life, that word is already defiled.
That is why Moses the prophet of God told them: You shall not add to the Word which I command you, neither shall you take away from it, so that you may keep the commands of Jehovah your God which I command you (Deuteronomy 4:2). And John the apostle tells us: I testify together to everyone who hears the Words of the prophecy of this Book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add on him the plagues that have been written in this Book. And if anyone takes away from the Words of the Book of this prophecy, God will take away his part out of the Book of Life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which have been written in this Book (Revelation 22:18-19). So do not cut those stones used to build the altar or try to polish them. That is the problem of the church today, they are ashamed to teach or preach on certain parts of the bible because they think it is not politically correct, or because they want to be accepted by public opinion. They try to polish the word of God by using philosophy or psychology for it is accepted by the public opinion.
If you want to experience the same power in your prayer life you will have to do it God’s way, walking in the same footsteps of the prophets and the apostles, for they are the foundation that Jesus uses to build His temple and your altar of prayer life. And whatever we read or see in the life of the prophets and the apostles, we must filter it in the light of Jesus who is The Prophet that Moses said would come after him, saying: the Lord your God will raise up to you a Prophet from the midst of you, of your brothers, One like me. To Him you shall listen, according to all that you desired of Jehovah your God in Horeb, in the day of the assembly, saying: Let me not hear again the voice of Jehovah my God, neither let me see this great fire anymore, so that I do not die (Deuteronomy 18:15-16). And whatever we see in the life of the apostles we must always filter it in the light of Jesus, who is our chief Apostle as it is written: Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus, who was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses also was faithful in all his house (Hebrews 3:1-2).
After Elijah has erected the altar using the twelve stones, he put the dry wood in order, and cut the bull in pieces (1Kings 18:33). Now the wood talks about our humanity or human nature. You see, without Christ Jesus in our life, we are but dry wood. That human nature is also a sinful nature, that we have inherited from Adam. We need to put it on the altar so that the fire of God will burn that Adamic nature in us, so that we will no longer be bent into backsliding. Some people want to keep their sinful nature and sinful activities, but at the same time they expect the fire of God to come down. People have put sins that they want to keep, close to their bosom. God is saying: put it on the altar that I may consume it with My fire. In the bible study of The Power of Confession, we have explained why God does not want us to sin, and keep carrying that dead dry wood, which is that sinful nature and sinful activities, because it affects our confidence toward God, and hinders the answers to our prayers. Do not keep that dry dead wood, but put it on the altar of prayer, confess your sins and forsake them, and God is faithful and just to forgive you, and cleanse you from all unrighteousness (1John 1:9).
Malachi talks about the coming of Jesus in our life and says: who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire and like launderers’ soap. He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer to the Lord an offering in righteousness (Malachi 3:2-3). When you are truly baptized in the Holy Ghost, the fire of the Holy Ghost will purify you; there will be a greater desire to practice righteousness. Now silver talks of redemption, you and I have been redeemed by the blood of Jesus, God wants to baptize us with the Holy Ghost, so that He can purify His redeemed, and get sin out of our life, since He has imputed His righteousness to us. The Sons of Levi had received the priesthood of the Aaronic order, you and I, the day we were born again, we received a priesthood of a Judaic order, through Jesus the Lion of the tribe of Judah. Jesus made us priests and kings to our God (Revelation 1:6). So Jesus wants to purify you and me, whom He made priests, so that we will not be worthless priests like the sons of Eli (1Samuel 2).
Gold talks of deity, God now dwells in us when we are born again. And God wants our life to line up with the life of His Son Jesus, who is fully Man and fully God. It is written of Jesus: You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore God, Your God has anointed you with the oil of gladness more than your companion (Hebrews 1:9). You see the secret of Jesus our High Priest, according to the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 5:10), was not, just that He was righteous, but that He practiced righteousness and hated sin, which is lawlessness. That is why God anointed Him more than any human being, for Jesus, when He was on earth, functioned fully as a man, yet God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and power, and He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed of the devil, for God was with Him (Acts 10:38). Christ dwells in us, He is the gold in us. Paul says: we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us (2Corinthains 4:7). That treasure or gold, is Christ in us the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27). So God wants us, His priests and kings, to offer to Him offerings in righteousness not in lawlessness.
The dry wood also symbolizes the cross. Just like in Genesis 22 where Abraham and Isaac took a three day journey to Mount Moriah to offer a burnt offering to the Lord. Isaac carried the dry wood on his back, which was prophetic for Jesus the Seed of Abraham carrying His wooden cross on His back. We need to realize, that there is a cost to pay for following Jesus. Now that cross is not sickness nor disease nor poverty nor premature death, which are the works of the devil. For the devil who is the thief and robber comes but to steal kill and destroy, but Jesus when He comes into your life, is so that you may have life and have it more abundantly to the full, until it overflows (John 10:10). But as we carry our cross and follow Jesus, He also promised to reward us. He said to His disciples, and today to you and me: you are those who have continued with Me in My trials, and I bestow upon you or appoint to you a kingdom, just as My Father bestowed one upon Me (Luke 22:28-29).
Some people bail out on Jesus when persecution comes for the sake of the name of Jesus, many are ashamed of His word, because it sounds foolish to learned people, or to confess Him before men, because they do not want to be numbered among those weird Pentecostals, who believe in the healing power of Jesus, and that, Jesus raises the dead today. Jesus bestows a kingdom on those, who continue with Him in His trials, because if they have been found faithful in what is least, surely they will be faithful also in much (Luke 16:10). That is what makes the difference between Christians, if a person is not found faithful or just in what is least, he will not be faithful or just in what is much. And all the heroes of faith we read about, they all started like you and me today, they were faithful in what seems least in the eyes of men, and God saw it and entrusted them with much. Paul was entrusted with much, even the entire gentile world; because he was willing to continue with Christ in His trials, for the furtherance of the gospel, even to the point of chains, yet his gospel was not chained.
Paul says: I now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ for you, for the sake of His body, which is the church (Colossians 1:24). Now when you read the series of The Perfect Redemption Plan and the Application of The Perfect Redemption Plan, you will understand that there is nothing to add to the finished work of Jesus. But in every generation including ours, people will say: only Jesus could practice righteousness, only Jesus could work such miracles, only Jesus could endure such temptation and afflictions of the devil and of men; but we are just humans. So the disciples were examples that we could also do the will of God, like our elder brother Jesus did, we can stop practicing sin, we can do the same works Jesus did and even greater works (John 14:12-14). If I can see someone in my generation following Jesus according to the bible, going through affliction of the enemy, being imprisoned and his life being in danger, and yet refuses to compromise his faith; I will also be encouraged, that I do not need to compromise my faith either.
So when other born again believers saw the faith of Paul, and the sufferings he went through, and yet he did not deny the faith; they also were encouraged in their faith, and became bold in the sharing of their faith. They imitated Paul as he imitated Christ (1Corinthians 11:1). That is why I give trustworthy testimonies in these bible studies, so that you and I will be encouraged to deny yourself, take up your cross and follow Jesus. We only mature and grow spiritually when we are under pressure. That is the parable of Jesus: The kingdom of Heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal until the whole was leavened (Matthew 13:33). The woman will have to knead that dough (which is to work and press ingredients into a mass, usually with the hands). I think if the dough could speak, it would tell us, that we have made its life bitter by pressing it over and over. And that is what happened in Egypt, when the Hebrews lived there, they went there with only seventy five people (Acts 7:14); but the bible tells us: the Egyptians, the picture of Satan and his agents through whom he is working, afflicted the Hebrews with burdens; but the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were in dread of the children of Israel (Exodus 1:11-12). The children of Israel were fruitful and increased abundantly, multiplied and grew exceedingly mighty; and the land was filled with them (Exodus 1:7).
And that is the same thing that happened in the book of Acts; the more the chief priest afflicted the disciples, multitudes were being added to the church, when persecution arose at Jerusalem, when Saul was making havoc in the church, they scattered from Jerusalem and Christianity grew outside Jerusalem. After the conversion of Saul who became Paul, the more the people persecuted Paul, stoned him and imprisoned him, the more heroic his stories became, and his fame spread throughout the gentile world, and so did His writings. All the craftsmen were in dread of Paul, because their business of idol making was ruined by the preaching of Paul. Paul humbled himself under the mighty hand of God, by the things he suffered and God exalted him and increased his influence. Therefore, I endure all things, for the sake of the elect, (to give them an example of how we are to deny ourselves, pick up our cross and follow Jesus), that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory. For faithful is the Word, for if we died (died to self and to sin) with Jesus, we shall also live with Him. If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us (2Timothy 2:10-12).
People want to reign with Jesus without suffering with Him, it cannot happen! Everybody that God mightily uses for His glory, has a testimony of being relentless in their pursuit of the kingdom of God, and sometimes it has cost them dearly. Paul tells every born again Christian: for to you it has been granted or given on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake (Philippians 1:29). 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). People want to know the power of His resurrection, but do not want to have anything to do with the fellowship of His sufferings. The truth is, there is no resurrection before the cross and the death, if you want to experience the resurrection power, you will first of all have to die to sin and to self, then pick up your cross and follow Jesus. Peter confirms what Paul is saying: For it is better, if the will of God be so, that you suffer for well doing, than for evil doing. For Christ also has once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit (1Peter 3:17-18). Therefore let those who suffer according to the will of God, commit their souls in well-doing, as to a faithful Creator (1Peter 4:19).
Do not at all fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the Devil will cast some of you into prison, so that you may be tried. And you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful to death, and I will give you the crown of life (Revelation 2:10). Behold, Satan has desired you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I, Jesus, have prayed for you, that your faith fail not. And when you are converted or returned to Me, strengthen your brothers and sisters (Luke 22:31-32). Likewise the Spirit also helps your infirmities or weaknesses. For you do not know what you should pray for as you ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for you with groanings which cannot be uttered. And He, searching the hearts, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God (Romans 8:26-27). I, Jesus, have spoken these things to you so that you might have peace in Me. In the world you shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer. I have overcome the world (John 16:33). I write to you because the Word of God abides in you and you have overcome the evil one (1John 2:14). You are of God, little children, and you have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world (1John 4:4). And in all those afflictions and sufferings, you are more than conquerors through Jesus who loved you (Romans 8:37).
Therefore Jesus tells us: Come unto Me, all you who labor 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). For I have come to set a man against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a man’s foes shall be those of his own household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take up his cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life shall lose it. And he who loses his life for My sake shall find it (Matthew 10:35-39).
Jesus is not telling us to hate anybody literally, because he who hates his brother is still in darkness and certainly not in the light (1John 2:9). But what is Jesus saying? What He is saying is that sometimes when you decide to follow Jesus, your family, your children will turn against you, especially when they are in religion! Some people kill even their own children because they have left Islam or stopped being worshipers of Idols to serve Jesus. So if you in your heart say: My parents have been Muslims for generations or idol worshippers for generations, I do not want to be the first in my family to walk away from that heritage; then you are not worthy of Jesus. if you think in your heart: if I become Christian my husband might divorce me, because he hates Jesus or I might lose all my friends, therefore I will not give my life to Jesus; then you are not worthy of Jesus. I, Gery, lost almost all my old friends of the world, because for them I was now a radical Christian. But God gave me new friends, even brothers and sisters in Christ, praise the Lord!
Sometimes it is not people hating you that is the cross, but you obeying the will of God like father Abraham, who had to leave his country, like Paul who had to travel all over the world, even to go to Jerusalem and be arrested, because he was doing the will of God, that was the cross of Paul. Whatever God asks you to do, He will always empower you to finish what you have started, His grace will be sufficient to see you through, and in all those things you are and will always be more than conquerors through God who loves you dearly.
As for you and I who are disciplers, for every disciple of Jesus is commanded to make another disciple (Mathew 28:20). You will realize that sometimes your cross is the people God entrusted you with. Their problem will be your problems, their pains will be your pains, and their heartbreaks will be your heartbreaks, because you love them and care for them. You must quickly learn to cast the care upon Jesus and let Him do the caring, and take care of you and the people you are discipling, or else you will be overwhelmed. It does not mean that you do not care anymore, you need to give them the word of God and pray for and with them too, but you must cast the care upon Jesus. And sometimes you are discipling people who keep backsliding, stiff-necked and rebellious against God, you might even cry out to God like Moses did, as it is written: Moses said to Jehovah, Why have You afflicted Your servant? And why have I not found favor in Your sight, so that You lay the burden of all this people upon me? Have I conceived all these people? Did I bring them forth, that You should say to me, Bear them in your bosom like a nursing father carries the sucking child, to the land which You swore to their fathers (Numbers 11:11-12)?
The bull that Elijah put on the altar and cut into pieces, represents our life. As we have explained earlier in this bible study that God is not after what belongs to us, but after our spirit, soul and body. So Paul tells us: I beseech you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, pleasing to God, which is your reasonable service (Romans 12:1). The God of peace Himself sanctify you, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ (1Thessalonians 5:23). When a person is baptized in the Holy Spirit, there must be a greater evidence of sanctification or holiness in his or her life than before. The person must practice sin less and less; sin becomes an event in his or her life. You see the bull which represents your life and my life, was killed and cut into pieces and put on the altar.
The secret of Christianity is to die; you will not start living for Christ until you die to self. Paul says: I die daily (1Corinthians 15:31). As it is written: for Your, Jesus’, sake we are killed all day long; we are counted as sheep for the slaughter. Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us (Romans 8:36-37). So you see whenever you choose to act on the word of God, you have decided to die to self, that’s how simple it is! Because your flesh and carnal mind is enmity with God, but when you act on the word of God, concerning a particular thing you have decided to crucify that flesh. The secret of all those great men and women in the bible is, that they decided to die to self daily.
Jesus says: truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it abides alone; but if it dies, it brings forth much fruit. He who loves his life shall lose it. And he who hates his life in this world, shall keep it to life eternal. If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there also My servant shall be. If anyone serves Me, the Father will honour him (John 12:24-26). Decide to die to self and to sin, like Jesus did, and God will honour you. What we should tell people when they give their lives to Christ is, that they are dead to sin now as it is written: if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that when Christ was raised from the dead, He dies no more; death no longer has dominion over Him. For in that He died, He died to sin once; but in that He lives, He lives to God. Likewise count yourselves also to be truly dead to sin, but alive to God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. Do not yield your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but yield yourselves to God, as one alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under Law, but under grace (Romans 6:8-14).
People imitate the life of the apostles because they died to sin and to self, as a result of that they were acting more and more like Jesus in His love, compassion, power and manifestations of the Spirit. The secret is that we all need to die to self, we no longer live for ourselves, but for Christ, then we will no longer be the only followers of Jesus, but multitudes will follow Jesus, whom we serve because they have seen Him in us, and working the same signs and mighty wonders through us. For no one has greater love than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13). Jesus said to His disciples, if anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life shall lose it, and whoever desires to lose his life for My sake shall find it (Matthew 16:24-25).
The problem we have, is born again Christians want to live like the unsaved world, who are dead in sin and trespasses. They want to practice the same sin the unsaved people do, it cannot work with God. John says: Do not love the world, or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him, because all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passes away, and the lust of it, but he who does the will of God abides forever (1John 2:15-17). If a Christian does not die to those evil desires of the world, and lay them on the altar of prayer before God; his prayers will not be effective. James explains, saying: From where do wars and fightings among you come? Is it not from this, from your lusts which war in your members? You desire, and do not have. You murder, and are jealous, and cannot obtain. You fight and war, yet you have not because you ask not. You ask and receive not, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it upon your lusts. Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever desires to be a friend of the world is the enemy of God (James 4:1-4).
We need to die daily to sin and to self in order to become more and more like Jesus and walk in the same love, resurrection power and manifestations of the Spirit, He walked with. He promised to every follower of His, who denies himself and picks up his cross and follows Him: the works that I do, you will do also, and greater works than these shall you do, because I go to the Father and I will send the Holy Spirit upon you, to be My witnesses and walk in the same power I did (John 14:12, Acts 1:8). Being a witness of Jesus or a martyr of Jesus, for it is the same Greek word, means that sometimes your faith and the communication of your faith, will put your life in danger. And that is what the early church understood, and we need to understand it in our generation, but even in being martyred we win. As it is written: they, the believers, overcame him, the devil, because of the blood of the Lamb, and because of the word of their testimony. And they did not love their soul unto death (Revelation 12:11).
When you read church history you see many believers who were martyred or excommunicated, because they refused to recant, which is to contradict and retract their former declaration of faith. It is a lie to say to people come to Jesus and the whole world will love you and you will have no persecution. The truth is when you come to Christ, the world will hate you (1John 3:13-14), and want to kill you, especially if you are effective in the witness of Jesus. Your loved ones might run away from you, if they are not saved, and newspapers will slander your name. Because it is Satan who is the prince of this world, and he hates seeing people saved and delivered from his oppression. Read the book of acts and you will see what it cost Paul, Steven and all the other disciples for preaching the gospel. Hospitals will be emptied of their sick people so they will not be making money any more, pubs and night clubs and breweries will shut down, national lottery and casinos will shut down, fortune tellers, magicians and idol makers will be out of jobs, so all those people will not be happy and they will fight you.
What Elijah also did, is that he dug a trench around the altar, large enough to hold two seahs of seed, and he filled four water pots with water, and poured it on the burnt sacrifice and on the wood, and he did it three times, which means he poured twelve water pots filled with water on the burnt sacrifice and on the wood, and the water filled the trench (1Kings 18:32-35). Now the ground on which Elijah dug a trench, represents your heart and my heart. The water represents the water of the word of God as Paul says, that Christ wants to sanctify or make holy and cleanse you and me, by the washing of the water by the word of God, so that He might present us to Himself a glorious church, without spot or wrinkle or any such things; but that we should be holy and without blemish (Ephesians 5:26-27). What will happen, as we pour out that water of the word of God into our life as a living sacrifice, cut into pieces on that altar, and on that dry wood, which represents our sins, we will no longer be conformed to this sinful world, to walk in the same flood of dissipation like the unsaved people, but we will be transformed by the renewing of our mind, that we may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God (Romans 12:2).
You have to make a large room in your heart to receive the whole counsel of God, contained both in the Old and New Testament. Solomon tells us: the preparation of the heart belongs to man or woman, but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord (Proverbs 16:1). Therefore it is your and my responsibility, to settle the word of God in our hearts, so that whenever we open our mouths to speak, in line with the word of God, and never beyond what is written (1Corinthians 4:6); it will no longer be you and me speaking, but Jesus will give you and me a mouth and wisdom, which all our adversaries will not be able to contradict or resist (Luke 21:14-15). The word of God is forever settled in heaven, you and I need to settle it in our hearts; it is our responsibility, if we want to see the fire of God proceeding forth out of our mouths when we pray (Psalm 119:89).
Elijah dug a large trench, we have already said that twelve is the number of the twelve sons of Jacob, to whom the word of the Lord came, which represents the books of the Old Testament, where God used prophets and prophetesses, as spokesmen and spokeswomen. Twelve represents the number of the apostles Jesus had before His resurrection. This represents the New Testament and the foundation of the church that Jesus is building, with the prophets and the apostles; thus both the Old and the New testaments need to be in your heart. Jesus did not come to abolish or do away with the Old Testament, but to fulfil it and give it its right meaning in the light of the love of God. As Jesus said: do not think that I have come to destroy the Law or the Prophets (which constitute the Old Testament, for the law was given by Moses who was a prophet too, the law here is the five first books of Moses: Genesis to Deuteronomy, and the prophets are all the books from Joshua to Malachi). I have not come to destroy but to fulfil (Matthew 5:17).
Nobody must throw away the Old Testament but we must read it in the light of what was done on the cross, through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. That is the whole purpose of all these bible studies and especially the perfect redemption plan series. Paul’s whole ministry was to tell us how we should understand the Old Testament in the light of the cross, and he did his best to unveil all the mysteries, shadows and types contained in the Old Testament. Retain that water of the word of God in a large trench in your heart, if you keep that word in your heart and become a doer of that word, it will make you what it talks about, and there will be no limit as to what you can do in life, and ministry through Christ Jesus.
We must come to the point where we believe literally everything that is written in the bible. The power is in the word of the book. Isaiah prophesied: in that day the deaf shall hear the word of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity and out of darkness (Isaiah 29:18). What opens the blind eyes, and causes the deaf to hear, heals all manner of sickness and disease, raises the dead, and transforms lives, is the word of the book. Let that word of the book abide richly in all wisdom, in the large trench you have dug in your heart, let it come out your mouth, and you will see what God will do through your words. Jesus wants us to believe all that is written in the Old and New Testament, in the light of what took place on the cross. After His resurrection, He met some of His disciples who still did not believe the word of the book, and He was not happy with them, and rebuked them saying: O fools and slow of heart to believe all things that the prophets spoke (Luke 24:25)! At that time the apostles had not written anything yet, the people only had the Old Testament written by the prophets. I plead with you to believe in the word of the book. Let us not be described as fools by Jesus!
And then Elijah called upon the Lord to send fire and the fire came down from heaven and consumed the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and licked up the water that was in the large trench (1Kings 18:36-38). My prayer is that you and I will now devour the word of God, and follow the process God described in the Book; for His power to be effective in our life. I pray that our baptism of the Holy Ghost, will not be just to talk in tongues, but that we will truly receive power to be witnesses of Christ, heal the sick, cast out demons and raise the dead. God wants you to be the one through whom He will display His power, but you need to do it, like Jesus did it, for His disciples and like Elijah symbolically explained it to us in 1kings 17 and 1Kings 18. After the fire came down on the altar, Elijah seized all the prophets of Baal and killed them, and then He prayed for God to send a natural rain, that will physically bless the whole nation and end their famine (1kings 18:36-46). As you read the book of Acts after they received the power from on high, they destroyed the power of darkness: sorcerers gave their lives to Christ, people stopped worshipping idols, and people brought their magic books to be burned. God performed many miracles through the disciples.
God is not just the God of Elijah, or of Paul, or of Peter, but He is also your God and my God. He is no respecter of persons, if we do what those who went before us did; in our generation God will manifest Himself through us in the same ways. And it will not be merely speaking in tongues, but we shall indeed receive power, and the demonstrations of the Spirit of the Lord, after the Holy Ghost has come upon us to be His witnesses. For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong or mighty, on the behalf of those whose heart is perfect or loyal toward him (2Chronicles 16:9). You can volunteer today to be that man or that woman in this our generation, through whom God will display His power. Isaiah volunteered, as it is written: I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me (Isaiah 6:8). Today you and I have heard the same voice of the Lord, let us respond accordingly. The faithfulness of God endures to all generations, not just in the generations of the apostles who saw Jesus physically, but in our generation too (Psalm 119:90).
It is the will of God, that every born again Christian be an effective witness, and that is the purpose of all these bible studies, so that you will not just go to people with words, but in the demonstration of the power of God, and the manifestations of the Spirit of the Lord (1Corinthians 2:4). Therefore since we are also surrounded with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily besets us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right of the throne of God (Hebrews 12: 1-2). Jesus promised that He will never leave us nor forsake us, as we get out witnessing of His love and power, to this dying world, lo He is with us always, even until the end. Therefore He will confirm His word with signs and wonders; because He is the same today in our generation, as he was yesterday in the life of that generation who saw him physically, and he will remain the same for the generations that come after ours (Hebrews 13:5-8).
When this letter is read before you, cause that it be read also by everyone whom you disciple, and in every house, for as it is written the Lord says, your house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations, and that you also read all the other letters written thus far (Colossians 4:16). If any man or woman does not love the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be accursed or Anathema (which means excommunicated, or put away from among yourselves, by the decision of the church authorities, after they have seen that wicked person is not repenting of the sins leading to death, even if it is brother Gery who has become wicked, and refuses to repent of his wickedness that leads to death, excommunicate him too, until he or she repents of his evil ways, for whatever Jesus says to one, He says to all, there are no double standards with Jesus (1Corinthians 5:9-13 & 1Corinthians 6:9-10); but if that wicked person repents and forsakes his wickedness that leads to death, restore him or her into the fellowship, and show him or her your love (2Corinthians 2) Maranatha (which means: our Lord come!). The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen (1Corinthians 16:22-24). Surely goodness and mercy shall follow you and me all the days of my life and your life: and you and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever (Psalm 23:6).
Brothers and sisters, remember me in your prayers as I remember everybody who reads these bible studies in prayer and fasting, so that we may all experience the promises of God concerning our lives, and that none of us will be found wanting in the day that Jesus comes. May God keep you and bless you in Jesus’ name.
God Bless you,
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
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Jesus said to him,
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“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
Jesus said to him,
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
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