The terrible events in Manchester and London. Have highlighted the need for prayer. There are so many needs that have come about as a result of these things. People who have lost loved ones who have been suddenly taken out of their lives. Leaving a vacuum that can not be filled and the shock that goes with it. The anger that follows and the thought that where is your God now.
Counsellors do a great job, but when that finishes, there is the thought that where do I go now. Churches were meant to be a place where you could go for guidance and comfort. and of course to find God at the divine appointed time. There is a time that was just right for all of us. We need to recognise that love is the first priority. People that have been through such trauma need love. Not religion and not man made rules.
This is the challenge that is facing the people of God today. how to show the same love and compassion that Jesus showed. The answer is more simple than we think. We need to empty ourselves of self, and let Christ come in. Then they will meet the real Jesus not a man made one. You see Jesus berated the Laodicea church for being lukewarm . With the comment, i will spew you out of my mouth. Translation ( you make me sick)!
That is one area that we do not need to be in. Hence the need for much prayer.
In the start of Revelations we see John being given the message to the seven churches. Each of them is told, that I know your works and then to be told. listen to what the spirit is saying to the church. We would do well to heed that command and do more listening than doing.
We can so easily fall into the trap of being to busy to listen. And if we find that difficult, then spend time with God and read his word. We will then become familiar with the voice of the Holy Spirit. Then we will go the divine way, not mans way. In these end times the Holy Spirit is looking for righteous and obedient churches so God can work in them.
Still do not feel you can does this?, then down on your knees and say. Lord Jesus I turn every aspect of my life over to you. whatever it takes to make me into the person you want me to be. Just do it! I often do this, and it works. Bit by bit line upon precept and I am changing, join me?.
Meekness is a sign of weakness by this world today. We are encouraged to build strength in most areas of our lives. Meekness is a sign of a strong character in the Lord Jesus. When we are meek we can forgive in a way that it becomes second nature to us. When we do this when we would naturally be offended, we are displaying the character of our Lord Jesus.
Mathew 9. verse 18. We see a ruler of the synagogue coming to Jesus and be bowed down to him. That would take some doing, they were very proud and sometimes arrogant. But he had a very real need, one that religion could not do. His daughter had died and he had heard or seen the miracles that Jesus had performed.
So in his meekness he asked Jesus to come and lay hands on her and she would live. When Jesus got to the mans house the funeral songs had already begun. Jesus said to them that the girl had not died she was a sleep. They laughed and derided him and Jesus cast them out of there. Laid hands on the girl and she lived.
This man would have been taken away from his position and thrown out of the synagogue. But he would not have cared, he had seen the power of God at first hand. His daughter was well and he would say to one and all. Come see how some meekness on my part, was a testimony about Jesus.
Sometimes we have to be meek to see and know the power of God. Jesus said in Mathew chapter 11. verses 29-30. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me. For I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your soul.
30. My yoke is easy and my burden is light.
Wise words about meekness, now if that was good enough for Jesus. it should be the same for us. Notice Jesus said in HEART, that is where it all begins. The mind would lead us astray, but when a matter is settled in the heart. now that is meekness.
When Jesus said learn of me, what scriptures was he referring to?
Galatian’s chapter 5 verses 17-24
17 For the flesh sets its desires against the Spirit and the spirit against the flesh. For they are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things you please.
18. But if you are led by the Spirit you are not under the law.
19. Now the deeds of the flesh are evident which are immorality, impurity, sensuality.
20. Idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outburst of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions.
21. Envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these of which I forewarn you. Just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the Kingdom of God.
22. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace and patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness.
23. Gentleness, self control, against such things there is no law.
24. Now those who belong to Christ have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires
Jesus was referring to the fruits of the Spirit. Which if you look at them they are his character. These are what he wants to learn us, when you look at them they take some doing. That is why the Holy Spirit is called a comforter.
Sometimes when you know that God is moving you somewhere else and we are more than liking where we are. when he does move us, then we need a comforter to settle us down. How do I know? been there and worn the tee shirt!
A good example of meekness is Moses. He turned his back on all the power and position that he had in Pharos court to become a servant of God. He went back to his roots. He would have invoked the anger of this Egyptian ruler and his own people were not impressed by him either. He went 40 yrs in the wilderness as a herdsman and he learnt meekness while he was there. God was preparing him for what was to come.
Luke 14 verse 27. And whoever does not bear his cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. Now the word cannot is very stern in respect of our carrying our own cross. Do not lose heart, ask the Holy Spirit to lay the cross upon your life.
I have found that when he does that, when we ask him to. It is often said that we must lose self in order to gain Christ. Well this is the way to go, the Holy Spirit will start to show us. What needs to go out of our lives and what of Gods Kingdom needs to come in. This is a lovely walk, a bit scary when we are taken out of our comfort zone. But this comforter will see us through to a point when the world will not understand. How we can have Christ shining through us and still we look the same.
Now that is the part that is used to spread the Gospel. You see most people would be afraid if they saw Jesus in all his majesty. But they will talk with you and I. Brilliant is it not, our God is a game changer and he uses the whosever to share the Gospel. What little old me you say! I thought that at one time. I have pastored churches and I still preach the word and it is a true and blood washed word. No compromise and no popular gospel. If he can use me like that, a real background person. He can do it for you, a step at a time and as I have said, a lovely walk, and scary but you see he takes away the fear.
James chapter 2. verse 14-29.
Reminds us that faith without works are very much like a person that enters a race. Then waits for the starting gun, if it is not heard then they stay at the start. Then they never move and everybody else has gone
We can all do this sometimes when the Lord is moving us out of our comfort zones. You know the one, this is for somebody else!. Well God would not let Elijah alone. Nor would Elisha let Elijah put him off.
I think Elijah knew from his own experience that the life of a prophet could be very hard. but Elisha had heard that voice and he knew he had to do something.
We ask God to use us in mighty way, could be that God is wanting us to smite the waters of the river of abuse that comes against Christians. Food for thought and that includes me. Notice that the command is to smite the waters. To smite is to do it with all of our might. If we want that double portion, then we need to go all the way. There is a river that flows from the throne of grace, so go ahead and smite it!.
When we do that God will never sell us short. He is prepared to use us as much as we want. Just hold on because it is quite a ride!.
There is a revival of the prophetic word happening in the Church today. It is not confined to the Evangelical or Pentecostal. Which is where it often comes, the mainstream traditional churches are seeing this happen.
Of course wherever this happening you will get
opposition from the usual Pharisees.. Who will try to stop anything that moves them away from their comfort zone. But the word of God can not be stopped, delayed yes . This is an exciting time for the church. We have young people and old who are hungry for the truth.
We have the Holy Spirit who will teach us all things in spirit and in truth in Chapter 1. of Thessalonians verse 19. We at told Do not quench the spirit of God. That is a very stern warning and we would do well to heed it. People who do that and continue to do it. Will have to account for this when they get before the Throne of Grace and then the judgement seat.
That is why we have to pray for ourselves in this area and for those who quench the Holy Spirit. We do not want to lose anybody, or a Church. So it is our responsibility to pray for them. The Holy Spirit will pass by such churches and people. That is something none of us want, some of us are blessed with the Holy Spirits presence. That does not mean we are not to share our knowledge around.
Somebody showed us the way and we are to do the same. Because we are accountable for our actions. There have been and now are increasing, prophesy’s that are saying that the wind of the Holy spirit is increasing. This is in such a way that young and old are sitting up and taking notice. There is no doubt that we are living in very exciting times.
This is a time when we shall seek the real Jesus. Not just knowing about him, but knowing him in a real and personal way. Now if that will not make us excited nothing will.
That I will pray to the Father and he shall give you another comforter. That he may abide with you forever, even the Spirit of truth. Who the world can not receive because it sees him not. Neither knows him, but you know him for he dwells within you. And shall be in you
That is a promise that will never be broken. But listen to this promise. ” he will be with you forever” Wow what a promise from heaven. He is described as the Spirit of truth, which he is. He will only ever give us words that are in line with the word of God.
The world can not receive him because they see him not. The Holy Spirit can be seen interwoven in the word of God and he speaks to us if we will listen. The world does not believe in him and you can not receive something you do not believe in.
And the lovely bit he lives inside of us. He will speak whether it be in the word of God or a voice that speaks to our mind. Now how good is that? and who”s spirit is this?. The Spirit of Jesus the greatest teacher of them all. He is there for us forever! and will come closer than a lover. Now that is close, we need to get into the word of God and the more we do it. Our faith is increased, for what?
To claim this scripture as ours. Read John 14: 16-17. That puts us right inline with the word of God. You know what! then nothing is impossible for our God.
We all have choices to make. Adam was not deceived by the Devil. But he loved Eve so much, he chose her over God. The consequences for this world were earth shattering. God had made Adam a perfect companion, she was more than that. Eve was the love of Adam’s heart and he did not want to lose her.
That is why the Devil chose Eve, how could any man afford to lose such a beautiful woman who was perfect in every way. But this was a man who had walked and talked with God in the garden. Which means that he knew God and yet the beauty of Eve won over his Lord and maker.
In Genesis chapter 39 verse 7. We see Joseph being tempted by Potiphar’s wife. In verse 8 Joseph declined her offer. To be a wife of such a high ranking official. She must have been very attractive and beautiful. But Joseph chose his God over her. A choice that would put him in prison for two years. Until he was remembered by the Kings cup bearer who knew Joseph could interpret dreams.
So Joseph was restored and blessed even more than he was before. You see he made the right choice and God favoured him. What is our God? television, sports, business, internet. What ever it is that we are choosing over God will be a wrong one. Put God first in every area of our lives and we will find his favour. And yes there is nothing wrong with a woman, providing we thank our maker for her. We were made to enjoy each other.
One thing that should be seen in Christians is joy. After all we have been brought into the presence of God.
That should be enough to give us an insight. Into the full value of praise, that leads us into joy. We have a trinity that according to the word of God, lives within us. Our God is not miserable he is full of joy.
A joy that this unsaved world can not understand. A joy that will bubble up inside of us and when we let it, will show such a big smile on our face. If the promise of an entrance to the New Jerusalem, does not do it, then nothing will.
After all we shall be walking on streets paved with gold. And mansions to live in, and Jesus to praise with. No more sickness, no more death. And we shall hear singing in the streets of that city. We can bring a bit of heaven down on this earth. How? by praising and having joy that people will notice. Amen.
One of the things that we notice in the scriptures. Is that when Jesus was accused of something. The accusers were the very people who had this in themselves. The priests from the temple were usually in the forefront of this. A prime example of this is in Mathew chapter 12. verse 24. In this verse the pharisees stated that Jesus was casting out demons by Beelzebub. The ruler of demons, they were demonic enough to have Jesus killed.
In Romans 12. verse 16. We are told to Be of the same mind toward one another: do not be haughty in mind. But associate with the lowly and do no be wise in your own estimation.
Mathew 11. verse. 29. Take my yoke upon you and “LEARN FROM ME” for i am gentle and humble in “HEART” and you will find rest for you souls.
30. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.
Look at the circumstances in which Jesus was born, it was a lowly stable and he had lowly parents. Go through the scriptures and learn how God used such people. The Angel Gabriel coming to Mary and telling this virgin that she was going to conceive. Notice also that she pondered, she did not argue she just said how can this be. In other words gave it much thought and then was obedient.
Joseph finds his future bride is pregnant and then to be told by an Angel. To take her as his bride. His first thoughts must have been, ” oh no” i must put her away. Can you imagine both of them telling their respective parents. About Angelic visits? their reaction would be, can you not have a better excuse than that!.
Two lowly people in obedience to words from God. The stable a lowly place, now that should tell us something. That we must learn to be meek and lowly. That is what Jesus meant when he said in Mathew 11. 29. “LEARN OF ME”