Sunday, 25 September 2016

The Believer's Authority [3] ~ Rabqa

We are still looking at the believers authority.

Isa 53.5 But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.

We learn from Isaiah 53:3-6 that if condemnation is filling our consciences, it is not from God. He sent Jesus to die to pay the price for our sins, we also find this teaching in many passages in the New Testament, Jesus bore our sins & the guilty condemnation that accompanies sin. We should get rid of the sin & not keep the guilt.

Once God breaks the yoke of sin from us, He removes the guilt too. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. 1 Jn 1:9

Condemnation differs from conviction by having forgiveness in our lives everyday. The Holy Spirit sets of alarm bells in our conscience so we can recognise sin, & gives us the power of the blood of Jesus to continuously cleanse us from sin & keeps us right before Him. This process is called conviction, & it is of the Lord, while condemnation is from the enemy.

Often when we are convicted of sin we become grumpy while God is dealing with us. until we admit our sin, & become ready to turn from it, & ask for forgiveness, we feel a pressure that squeezes the worst we have in us. As soon as we come into agreement with God, our peace returns & our behaviour improves.

The devil knows that condemnation & shame keeps us from approaching God in prayer, but when we do all our needs can be met & we can once again enjoy fellowship with God. Feeling bad about ourselves or thinking that God is angry with us separates us from His presence. God does not leave us, but we withdraw from Him through guilt or fear.

That is why it is so important to discern truth & know the difference between conviction & condemnation. Remember, if you heed conviction, it lifts you up & out of sin; condemnation only makes you feel bad about yourself.

When you pray for people to change, the Holy Spirit convicts them of their sin, & many times they will start acting worse than they did before.

But do not let that make you believe that your prayers are being ineffective. Their behaviour is actually a good sign that God is indeed working, convicting them of sin, & convicting them of their need to change. So keep on praying.

As you pray, regularly ask God to convict you of your own sin. realise that conviction is a blessing not a problem. If only perfect people could pray & receive answers, nobody would pray. We do not need to be perfect but we do need to cleansed of sin. As we begin our pray time it is good to ask our heavenly Father to cleanse us from all sin & unrighteousness. When we pray in Jesus' name, we are presenting to our Father all that Jesus is, not all that we are.

Experiencing conviction through the Holy Spirit's work in our lives is necessary for a vital walk with God. Remember that conviction is a gift from God because it leads us to hear from Him. Do not make the mistake of letting it condemn you, let it lift you up to a new level in God. do not resist it; but receive it.

Jesus came to earth & gave Himself as a sacrifice for sin in order to buy back for you everything that Adam lost. He came to destroy all the works of the devil...sickness & disease included. Once you receive Him as your Lord & saviour, all the rights privileges God intended you to have like the right to fellowship with God, health & prosperity in all area's in your life restored. But it is up to you to exercise those rights.

The devil is an outlaw & even though Jesus has taken away his authority in the earth, even though he has no right to steal from God's children, he'll do it anyway, as long as you let him get away with it.

You must enforce the Word of God by speaking the Word in faith. Act on His Word now. Demand that sickness & disease leave you in the name of Jesus. Then refuse to back of that demand. resist the devil with all you have, he might fight you for a while, but sooner or later He will have to flee from you (James 4:7)

We see in Matthew 8:13 that Jesus told the centurion that the healing he requested would be done as he believed. The centurion had a positive believing attitude & Jesus did what he asked Him to do.

Positive minds produce positive lives. Negative minds produce negative lives. Positive minds are full of faith & hope. Negative thoughts are always full of fear & doubt.

Some people are afraid to hope because they have been hurt so much in their lives. They experience so many disappointments that they do not think that they can face the pain of another one. Therefore they refuse to hope so that they will not be disappointed in case things don't work out as they hoped.

Disappointment hurts! But this type of behaviour sets up a negative lifestyle. Prov 23:7 says For as He thinks in his heart so is he...

Many years ago I had a really negative outlook on everything. Since my thoughts were negative, so were my my words & therefore my life.

But when I began to study God's Word & to trust Him to restore me, I soon realised that negativism had to go. I began to see the truth of Matthew 8:13—that it will be done for me as I believed.

Now I do not mean to imply that we can get
anything we want just by thinking about it. God has a perfect plan for each one of us & we cannot control Him with our thoughts or words. But we must speak in agreement with His will & plan for us.

If at this stage you don't know what God's will is for you, at least begin by thinking, "I may not know God's plan for me, but I know He loves me. Whatever He does will be good, & I will be blessed.

Begin to think positively about your life: practice being positive in every situation. Even what whatever is taking place in your life at the moment is not good, expect God to bring good out of it, as He has promised in His Word.

2 Cor 3:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

Spend time in God presence. Expect the Spirit to transform you into the image of His glorious Son.

Liberty: If you could put the will of God into one word. That would be the word. God Wants His people free from sin, sickness, poverty, oppression & every other curse.

That freedom is what Jesus came to provide. He said in Luke 4:18 “The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, Because He 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 recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed."

That is what He trained His disciples to do & if you are a born again spirit filled believer that is what He wants you to do too!

Some might say "Well I don't know about that, it might not be God's will for today." But the Bible says that God never changes. He hasn't changed His will for the earth, He doesn’t do one thing for a while then something else for a while. Jesus life was a perfect picture two thousand years ago - & it still is! That is why He left instructions for us to go & do the work that He did. That is why He sent the Holy Spirit to empower us to do them.

Jesus still wants to do the will of the father here on earth—but He does it through us. He has to work with us till we are willing to put aside our traditions & let Him do His thing. That is what the early Church did. They started out with a bang because they did what Jesus taught them. everywhere they went people were set free.

We need to pray for the Church today to deliver the liberty of God to the world. We must stop questioning the will of God & start to carry it out instead. He said...even greater works then these will you do...(Jn 14:12). it is time to take up where Jesus left of & set the captives free.

In Luke 4:18 Jesus stood up in the temple to read the prophetic passage of Isaiah 61:1, & after doing so He said "This Scripture has been fulfilled (Luke 4:21). One of the things said in Isaiah 61:1 is that Jesus has come to open the prison doors & set the captives free. I believe this refers to the prison of sin, guilt & condemnation. Jesus died so that our sins could be forgiven & completely removed along with any sense of guilt or condemnation.

Jesus can heal us everywhere we hurt! He wants to help us mentally & emotionally, as well as spiritually & physically. If you are not aware of this it can cause you not to deal adequately with life, but then you discover that Jesus wants to give you beauty for ashes (Isa 61:3) that depicts
the festive joy of the Messiah's reign.

When we accept Jesus as our Lord & Saviour, a great exchange takes place in the Spirit realm. He gives us everything He has & everything He is - & we are supposed to give Him not only everything we are but even what we are not. He takes our weakness & gives us His strength. He takes our sickness & gives us His health & healing. We give Him our sin & He gives us His righteousness. He will give us beauty for ashes, but we must be willing to give up our ashes. We cannot live in the past & press into the future at the same time. Let go of what lies behind & start to enjoy the new life that Jesus has for you.

When we accept Jesus our sin—filled, miserable, hopeless lives are swallowed up in His goodness, mercy & grace. If you have problems you are just the person Jesus died for. He came for the sick & needy, not for those who don't need anything. It is not a shame to be needy. The greatest need people have is to admit they have a need!

It is time for you to enjoy God's favour, that means He will bless you even though you don't deserve it, if you place faith in Him God wants you to enjoy yourself & your life. He wants to heal you everywhere you hurt! He wants to heal you spiritually, mentally, emotionally, physically financially & socially. Do not close off any part of your life to His healing touch. Invite Jesus into every area of your life.

If we consistently believe God's Word, He will turn our circumstances from negative to positive—from ashes to beauty—in His perfect timing.

A lot of negative things have happened to me, & satan has used them to sour my attitude towards life & people. I was trapped in a past & did not believe I had a future or if I did it would full of more of the same. But as soon as I believed in Jesus I was released from a past & began making progress toward the good things God had for me. Now it did not come to me immediately in manifested form, but believing in God gave me renewed hope that kept me going from day to day. Slowly but surely I began to see the changes take place in my life, & each change encouraged me to believe God more & more.

Believing in God is the key to receive from Him. No matter what has happened to you in the past,if you believe, you can receive beauty for ashes too. You can begin to enjoy the good future that is set aside for you in Christ Jesus. Who came to do the will of His Father in heaven.

There is a full gospel tradition that says God gets the glory from the wonderful way His children bear pain & agony & that the world is impressed by that. But that is a lie; it is simply a tool of the devil to keep God's children in bondage.

People of the world already have the pain & agony they want. They aren't looking for a way into it. They are looking for a way out. They don't care what is preached. It's the religious people that get worried about that. The world, the sinners, are smarter then that. All they care about are the results.

That is why they will go to a church where people are getting healed, delivered & set free from suffering. That is what they are looking for. & that is what God wants them to receive.

The Bible says that God gets the glory when they see the lame walk & the blind see. In Matthew 15:31 The crowd was amazed! Those who hadn’t been able to speak were talking, the crippled
were made well, the lame were walking, and the blind could see again! And they praised the God of Israel.

Jn 15:8 Jesus said When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.

That fruit is lives being restored & healed by the power of God.

Kenneth Copeland tells there was a man who went to one of his healing services who was so far gone with cancer he had almost no energy or life about him. He didn't even know the Lord but he came expecting a miracle. During the service the Lord told Ken someone was being healed of cancer, in the glands, in the throat & in the chest. When the man came up & receive his healing he said that he had left the hospital that morning with cancer & now I'm healed. He went back to the hospital that afternoon the doctors cheeked him out & dismissed him all cancer had gone. As a result of this the man received Jesus as His Lord & Saviour, & later that same day he was restored to his wife from whom he had been separated. He was born again, healed & his marriage put together all in one day.

Now that is fruit! That brings God glory. When we minister healing & deliverance like Jesus did on earth that brings God glory. We need to do away with religious tradition & do what the Word says. Lets impress the world with Jesus & give God the glory.

God wants us to depend entirely on Him. He wants us to lean, trust & rely on Him. That is part of the definition of faith. We are partners with God & that means we have a responsibility. But first we must lean on Him in order to do the things that are our part. He will then anoint us to do what we need to do, but we still have to trust Him & remember how much we need Him at all times.

Sometimes we may think that we don't need Him for things that we have done successfully over & over again. It is dangerous to become too self reliant. The book of proverbs speaks frequently of the self-confident fool. People who think they are self sufficient & can take care of themselves are being foolish & eventually will be proved to everyone including themselves.

An independent attitude is part of the baby stage of Christianity.

 A mature Christian knows that he can do nothing of any real value apart from Jesus. Of course we can do things but that does not mean they will be done right or that we will enjoy them or that they will produce any real lasting fruit.

When the Lord says we can do nothing apart from Him, He means things will not work out properly unless we invite Him into everything. His presence can eliminate much of our struggle we experience in life. It makes impossible things possible, hard things easy & frustrating things peaceful. Do not ever be afraid to say HELP LORD I can't do this without you & not only that it gives Him the glory He deserves.

Acknowledgements Kenneth Copeland.

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