Monday, 31 October 2016

Guest Speaker ~ Missionary to Chile.

 Elizabeth is one of 3 missionaries we support as a church. She has worked in Chile for the past 5 years ministering to disadvantaged children who, for one reason or another, find themselves in the care of the State: the 5% taken out of poverty, the 18% suffering from parental neglect, the 32% at risk of physical or psychological abuse and the 45% who have been sexually abused. 
 The work includes getting access to the Children's Homes [Residencies of Protection] & implementing their RUBI program. RUBI is an acronym for Resturacion [restoration], Uncion [anointing], Brillar [shine], Identidad [identity] found in Jesus Christ.

Chile has a rigid class system.  Children in care are considered the least of the least.  They have little hope & few diversions.  The RUBI team works to help them understand Jesus is always there for them, loves them & wishes to help them in their trouble.  As part of their mission they build relationships through music, crafts, cooking, play & Prayer.

 We were blessed to hear Elizabeth speak passionately & eloquently about her work & to investigate the *Chile Station* she set up.  Many thanks Elizabeth.  It is an honour & a privilege to support your work.

Friday, 21 October 2016

The Holy Spirit & Salvation. ~ Ganeida

When Jesus was preparing to return to the Father, He made a promise to his disciples that He would not
 abandon them as orphans~ He would come to them. [John 14:18] That promise has been kept in the person of the Holy Spirit & it is of the Holy Spirit I wish to speak to you today.

The Holy Spirit is the identifying mark of the Christian.  Ephesians 4:30 says And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, by whom you are sealed unto the day of redemption.  It is a very comforting verse to many Christians.  We think it is about us.  It is not.  It is about Jesus. Here is why:

In 1 Corinthians 6:9 Paul tells us we are not our own ~ we have been bought with a price.  Sphragizō, is to seal, or to brand.  It is a mark of ownership. A seal was how you might mark those goods that belonged to you on a trading ship or authenticate a letter; a brand was how you marked your slaves.  The NLT puts it like this: And do not bring sorrow to God's Holy Spirit by the way you live. Remember, he has identified you as his own, guaranteeing that you will be saved on the day of redemption.

So when Paul says we have been sealed it is his way of telling us it is Jesus way of marking His possessions ~ a bit like putting a name tag on a jacket. People read the tag & go, Oh, that belongs to so & so… Romans 8:9 makes it very clear: And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to him at all… Jesus looks for the Holy Spirit in you because that is His mark of ownership.  No Holy Spirit, not His.

Jesus said: My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. [John 10:27]

Only those who have Christ’s Holy Spirit living in them belong to Him.  Only those who have the Holy Spirit are truly capable of hearing Christ’s voice & obeying His instructions.  It does not matter how often you go to church [though that is a good thing] or how many good things you do in this life, if you do not have God’s Spirit within you, you do not belong to Him & you are not saved.

If you have God’s Spirit you will do those things that He requires of you ~ & make no mistake; He requires plenty of us! But the doing is not a guarantee of salvation.
Without the Holy Spirit’s guidance & power it is actually impossible to be a Christian. Romans 8:5 tells us The mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace,… It is the Holy Spirit who brings the New Life, the New Creation, the ability to understand spiritual truths, the ability & power to actually do those good works that God Himself has prepared for us to do.

Actually, it is impossible to even be saved without the Holy Spirit because one of His jobs is to convict the world of its sin: John 16:7/8 But I tell you the truth, it is for your benefit that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world of its sin, and of God's righteousness, and of the coming judgment.

 A person who is convinced they are not in error will not change unless convicted otherwise. The very first step for salvation is the convicting work of the Holy Spirit who convinces us that there is such a thing as sin & we live it! Only then can God move to bring us into a state of repentance & reconciliation.

 Have you ever heard someone say, Well, I’ve read the bible & it’s just been written by a bunch of old men… They don’t understand it.  They can’t.  The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.[ 1 Cor 2:14].  

With no Holy Spirit within them to make things clear & bring revelation real understanding eludes them because one of the names of the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth.  In this capacity He helps us discern what is true from what is false in Spiritual matters.  He helps us understand how spiritual things work.  He helps us discern heresy from sound doctrine. He helps us know if our government is righteous or leading the people into sin. John 14:26 says: But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and remind you of everything that I have told you.

You see there are 2 worlds.  There is this world that you can see all about you but there is the other, unseen world that seeks to overthrow the authority of God.  We are involved in a war & in any war it is necessary to know who is on which side, who your enemies are & to be on the lookout for spies who may have infiltrated your camp.  The Holy Spirit is how the Spiritual, the angel & demon forces, tell which side you are on.  They actually have a much better idea of our spiritual standing than we do!

1Cor 2:14
Nevertheless, God's firm foundation stands, bearing this seal: "The Lord knows those who are His," and, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord must turn away from iniquity."

I John 3:9 says it this way: No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. The Greek word used for sin here is hamartanō, meaning to miss the mark or be in error.  So those who are born of the Spirit do not continue in error.

The Spirit of God & the Word of God will always agree & this agreement is one way we can discern truth from error.  The word will never say one thing & God’s Spirit another. Jesus understood that a house divided against itself cannot stand [Mark 3:25] because there is a biblical principle that every matter must be established by two or three witnesses [2Corinthians 3:1] & [Deuteronomy 19:15].  So the Word & Spirit will be 2 witnesses in agreement.  This prevents *flaky Christianity*. You need never listen to someone who is running around saying… God said…if that something is not supported by scripture.

Salvation is easy. Romans 10:9~10 says  if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with your heart you believe and are justified, and with your mouth you confess and are saved.…

Salvation is through the shed blood Jesus Christ as atonement for our sin but sanctification is through the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Again the worth for believe is pisteuō ~ Faith in what one cannot see, a conviction that what is promised by scripture has been accomplished in your life.

The test of salvation is the manifestation of the work of the Holy Spirit in your life.  The Holy Spirit brings repentance.  He will convict you of sin.  You will have an aversion to the sinful things that once attracted you & you enjoyed because now the Holy Spirit of God lives in you & wants to lead you in holiness & righteousness that is pleasing unto God.  He does not condemn you.  That is the work of satan wanting to drag up your past & hold you in bondage to it. No!  The Holy Spirit sets you free from your past & wants to set you free to walk according to God’s law of love.

Then the Holy Spirit will manifest Himself to you in 2 ways. 1 Corinthians 12:4 ~6 says He gives gifts: There are different kinds of gifts. But they are all given to believers by the same Spirit. There are different ways to serve. But they all come from the same Lord. There are different ways the Spirit works. But the same God is working in all these ways and in all people.

Then He will also produce fruit in your life: Galatians5:22/23~
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no Law.

However there is a warning;  Isaiah 57:16 says: For I will not fight against you forever; I will not always be angry. If I were, all people would pass away~all the souls I have made. There is a limit to the opportunity God provides.

1 John 2:17 tells us: The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever. 

A day will come when there will be an end.  There will be no further opportunity given for coming into God’s kingdom. Some will die.  Some will be here when Christ returns.  Either way,  No further opportunity will be offered to know God the Father, His son, Jesus Christ, or to be sealed with the Holy Spirit. Jesus gives the strongest possible warning in Matthew 12:32:

Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the one to come.
The Holy Spirit’s primary job is to point to Jesus Christ & his work of salvation.  To slander Him is to attribute His work, His miracles, His person to the demonic.  It is to completely reject the atoning work of Christ that the Holy Spirit strives to draw men’s attention to. Broadly it is to consistently love evil in preference to good & to choose wickedness over righteousness. This is to put oneself beyond any possibility of salvation & it grieves the Holy Spirit.  It grieves him because God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. This is a well known & beloved verse ~ so well known & so loved we rarely move beyond it but Jesus said something more.
God loved us enough to sacrifice His son in the most terrible of ways just so we could fellowship with Him forever. Verse17 goes on to say: God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.
18 There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son.
There’s the crunch.  Rejection of Christ brings one under judgement & condemnation ~ the very thing Christ died to prevent & the Holy Spirit works to highlight.
 19And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. 20 All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. 21 But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.”
To love our sin more than God’s holiness is to reject all that the Holy Spirit offers us. Is fear of exposure keeping you from God? He already knows it all.  Is the Holy Spirit calling your name today?  Is He inviting you to get to know Him as the very Spirit of God eager to make you His sanctuary & show you how to be washed in the blood of Jesus & sealed unto the day of Redemption?

Hebrews 3:15
Remember what it says: "Today when you hear his voice, don't harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled."  Rather heed His call & enter into the Love of God where there is no more condemnation but the promise of full restoration for your spirit, body & mind.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

The Authority of the Believer [Final] ~ Rabqa

Today brings us to the last in the series of the authority of the
believer, I am going to end this with mostly, which have helped me, but not only that they have changed my life.

1 Thes 5:23 Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again.

You say: I am a spirit, I live in a body & I have a soul. (which is the area of the mind).

Many people do not understand that we are a tri-part being: spirit, soul & body. To go over what I have said before - we are a spirit, we have a soul composed of our mind will & emotions & we live in a body.

Our new birth begins in our spirit, it is carried out through our soul, & finally visible to other people through a demonstration of God's glory in our physical lives.

Many Christians make the mistake of thinking that God only cares about the spirit, but He wants us to be whole in body & soul too.

2Cor 4:16 That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day.

You say: Though my outward man is perishing, yet my inward man is being renewed day by day.

Do not loose heart because of faith in the future resurrection & because of the present experience of God's renewing power.

Rom 10:17 (one of my favourite verses) So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

You say: My words are life & health to me because they are God's words, my words are faith & victory.

When the word is heard faith is imparted to hear it. Once we have heard the Word & believe it we should continue believing. God invites us to live from faith to faith. As believers one of our most important jobs is simply to believe. Jesus said, "Believe & rely on Me, & you will see the glory of God". (JN 11:40).

Phil 4:13 For I can do everything through Christ,
who gives me strength.

You say: I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.

This verse is frequently quoted, but often taken out of context. It does not mean that I can do anything I want to do, nor does it mean I can do anything that someone else does. But it means that I can do anything that God assigns me.

This understanding has helped me a great deal in my personal life to deal with difficulties & still remain positive, & it helps in my ministry it teaches me to do remain within the boundaries of what the Lord has called & equipped me to do & not to try to undertake things that are not within my God-given abilities & talents. This attitude takes the pressure off & will do the same for you.

Pro 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit

You say: I am bold, I am courageous, I am more than a conqueror & an overcomer.

This verse teaches us that words are containers for power; they carry either a life giving force or a
destruction force.

We have heard the phrase " you are going to have to eat your words". This proverb confirms this truth. The words we speak have power to influence our lives. In fact you may be eating your words right now, & that may be why you are not happy with your life. Your mouth may be getting you into trouble with yourself.

Rom 8:2 And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.

You say: I am free from the law of sin & death. Jesus has made me free.

The Holy Spirit carries out in our life the breaking of dominion of the old law or principle of sin & death.

Ps 91:16 I will reward them with a long life and give them my salvation.”

You say: I have long life & God's salvation.

Isa 26:3 You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you.

You say: My mind is stayed on the Word & is in perfect peace.

This verse promises that God will keep us in perfect & constant peace when our minds are fixed on Him. If you are anxious or worried today, then turn your thoughts to towards Him so you will experience His perfect peace.

1Corn 2:16 Who can know the LORD’s thoughts? Who knows enough to teach him? But we understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ.

You say: I have the mind of Christ.

Recognise that the natural mind cannot understand or receive from the Holy spirit. Know that only the spiritual alive can discern spiritual wisdom.

Rom 12:2 Don’t copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

You say: I am transformed by the renewing of my

This verse informs us that God has plan in mind for us. His will is good & acceptable & perfect, but we must completely renew our minds before we experience the good things that God has planned. We renew our minds, new attitudes & new ideals by studying God's Word. His Word is truth (Jn 17:7)

Phil 4:8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honourable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.

You say: I think on true things, pure things, holy things, things that are honourable, I think on God's Word. His promises are mine.

Do you ever think about what you are thinking about? If you are not careful your thought life can lead you into problems. It is important to think before you act. & if you think of things that are true, worthy of reverence & honourable, just, pure, lovely & admirable your actions will reflect god's heart.

Jn 1:12-13 But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God

You say: I am born of God.

The new birth does not come through physical descent, human effort or human volition, but by the power of God.

2 Corn 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

You say: I am a new creation in Christ. My past is wiped out. It's gone. Jesus has taken it.

As a new creation, you do not have to allow the old things that happened to you in the past affect your new life in Christ. You are a new creature with a new life in Christ.

You can have your mind renewed according to the Word of God. Good things will happen to you. Rejoice! It's a new day.

1Jn 4:4 You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.

You say He who is in me is greater than He who is in the world.

Be assured that victory is already yours in Christ.

Ps 103:3 Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

You say: I satisfy my mouth with good things so that my youth is renewed like the eagle's.

Eagles have a long life they cast of their old feathers & receive new ones. We need to cast off our old habits & thoughts & receive anew from God's Word. The old will die & the new life will come.

Gal 2:20 My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

You Say: It's not I that live, but Christ lives in me. He sees me as valuable & precious.

The believer is united by faith to Christ in His death, & has died to the old life & has risen to a new life.

Ps 46:1 God is our refuge and strength,
always ready to help in times of trouble.

You say: God you are an ever present help in the midst of trouble.

Present help means a help that has been found to be reliable, or proven to be a reliable stronghold in the past, so that any future calamity is no reason to fear.

Phil 4:19 And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.

You say: My God shall supply all my needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

Prov 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.

You say: I trust in the Lord with all & lean not on my own understanding.

Study God's Word & listen to the Holy Spirit. Believe God's prophets. Understand that theses are true sources of godly knowledge.

1Pet 5:7 casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.

You say: I cast all my care upon Him for He cares for me.

When you cast all your care upon the Lord, you do not have to worry about anything because staying peaceful is actually proof that you have humbled yourself & that you trust God to do what needs to be done.

James 1:22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.

You say: I am a doer of the word, not a hearer only.

Salvation leads to service. It is self-deception to believers that God's goal for church attendance is merely to hear the Word, instead of experiencing a transformation of life that results in ministry.

Prov 4:22 For they [God's words] are life to those who find them, And healing and health to all their flesh.

The Word of God is life to me & health to all my flesh.

Remember that God is your healer He said in Exodus 15:26 I am the Lord God who heals you. He never changes He is the same yesterday today & forever.

Psalm 107: 20 He sent out his word and healed them, snatching them from the door of death.

You Say He sent His Word & healed me, & delivered me from deaths door healing belongs to me. Don't forget to thank Him that you are healed, for Your word says I am healed.

This verse implies that if we call upon the Lord with a contrite heart crying for deliverance to be healed both spiritually & physically.

Isa 55:5 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.

You say: He was wounded for my rebellion, He was crushed for my sins, He was beaten so I could be whole, by His stripes I am healed.

Choose to believe that God's word is the most powerful word in the universe & act accordingly.

Matt 8:17 “He took our sicknesses and removed our diseases.

You say: He took my sicknesses. Jesus took my sickness 2000 years ago for me to walk in divine health.

This fulfilled the word of the Lord through the prophet Isaiah,

Mk 11:23 (Another favourite) For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he

You say: Sickness is the mountain. call it by name-flue, cancer, growth, back trouble or whatever it is & tell it to be removed in Jesus name!

A mountain is a symbolic problem, hindrance, or insurmountable problem. Faith is the key that releases the resources of heaven into your situation.

1Pet 2:24 ...By his wounds you are healed

You say: Sickness, you have no place in my body. The life of God is in me,His healing power is flowing through me. God's word says I am healed, so I am healed.

Peter is quoting Isaiah 53:5 to show that personal wholeness, mental psychological, spiritual & physical are yours in Jesus name.

These verses are a great help in various situations, the have helped me & countless others, & they will help you too. There are many more verses of Scripture I encourage you to seek & find them for yourself.

Friday, 7 October 2016

Speaking to Our Mountains ~ Ganeida

Many people read their bible & are no wiser
than before they started. They do not understand what they read.  This is true of Christians & non~Christians alike.  One reason for this is that Christianity has been the dominant religion of the Western world for many centuries leading many people to believe that the bible is a western book.  It is not.  It is a middle~eastern manuscript written with a middle~eastern mindset.  This should be obvious but mostly it is not.

In the same manner people will say things like:  You should only read the KJV bible. This mindset is dangerous because it leads to error.  What needs to be done is what the Bereans did: study. Why?  Because often the original language does not say what our translations say ~ regardless of which translation you use.  This is not the translators fault.  They are attempting to convey the whole meaning of the text as clearly & concisely as possible so that the whole remains readable. Then we misunderstand passages because we think like westerners.  This is not our fault.  We are what we are.  It is our fault if we are too lazy to do some basic research & correct our errors.
This is our starting point for today’s study on Speaking to our Mountains.

Our text is Mark 11:23 which says: I tell you the truth, you can say to this mountain, 'May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,' and it will happen. But you must really believe it will happen and have no doubt in your heart.

Our theme is still healing though the scriptural principles can be applied to other areas of our lives.

Firstly we need to put this short passage into context.  Mark was writing to the Romans, a gentile people with little understanding of Jewish religion but a military mindset. Thus one of the consistent themes in Mark is Jesus authority & Rabqa has given us a scriptural overview of Christ’s authority & how that has been imparted to us through belief in Jesus.
 Now Jesus has come into Jerusalem for the Passover.  He has cursed a fig tree & cleansed the temple & shortly He will be arrested & crucified for the sins of the world. As they pass by the fig tree the next morning Peter comments on the fact it has indeed withered just as Jesus said.
Now watch how Jesus responds.  His first words are, “Have faith in God.”

Here is where study becomes so important.  The Greek word Jesus’ uses for faith is pisteuō. This is the exact same word Paul uses when he defines faith for us in Hebrews 11:1  Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see.  

Jesus knows that the disciples are going have to believe in something they don’t understand & can’t see until the moment the Holy Spirit is imparted unto them bringing revelation. In fact Jesus reinforces the importance of that belief. The word He uses for Truth in V 23 is Amen.  We are familiar with this word as an ending to our prayers but it literally means, So be it. Faith is our So be it.

If you say to this mountain… now Jesus cannot be talking about literal mountains here because if we all went around casting mountains into the sea because they inconvenienced us we would create untold havoc: tsunamis, earthquakes, death & destruction.  In the immediate sense Jesus may have been referring to the Temple Mount, specifically the Temple itself & certainly within 70 years that Temple was no more, cast down as if it had never been. 

In the prophetic, ongoing sense, it is referring to the mountains in our lives.  None of us are immune to these mountains.  Jesus warned that in this world we would have trouble [John 16:33] As believers we have been given specific tasks to overcome that are incredibly difficult: to crucify our flesh; to deny ourselves; to take up our cross & follow Christ. These are indeed mountains for most of us & a daily exercise in putting our faith in God & the inward working of His Holy Spirit to help us move those mountains from in our    lives.

However there are other mountains most of us face on a daily basis:  money troubles; relationship difficulties; sickness. Jesus tells us in this passage to *lift them up & cast them into the sea.*

The first principle is to have faith in God but you cannot have faith unless you actually know God; know His character; know His attitude towards you; know how He thinks & acts.  How do we get this faith? Romans 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. The bible tells us everything we need to know about God & Jesus was the Word of God made flesh in order to reveal the nature of God to us.

The 2nd principle is we are to speak but what are we to speak?  We are to speak the word of God because these are some of the things God says about his word:
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.

Psalm138:2 I bow before your holy Temple as I worship. I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness; for your promises are backed by all the honour of your name.

Jeremiah 1:12 Then Yahweh said to me, "You have seen well; for I watch over my word to perform it."

Isaiah 55:11 It is the same with my word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it.

You see God & His word are one.  When you line up the words of your mouth with God’s words you know you are praying out God’s perfect will & He will honour His word because He says He will & God is not a man that He should lie! There are promises in scripture that all believers can claim.  They belong to us.  They were given for us. 

Now don’t get muddled up.  You cannot go around declaring that it is God’s will for you to be a millionaire.  Nowhere in scripture are you going to find such nonsense. What you will find is a third principle:
Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.

Before you can access the promises of God you must belong to Him even though in His lovingkindness & mercy He causes the rain to fall alike on the just & the unjust ~ meaning simply that there are certain blessings that are imparted indiscriminately just because God is God & He is a good God.  

Well, you might say, if God is good He wouldn’t allow
& these days people have got lots of horrible things to choose from: paedophilia in the church, tsunamis, hurricanes, earthquakes, child abuse, domestic violence, car crashes, terrorism…. On & on it goes but I will be really clear.  God is not responsible for any of it! When people first chose to go their own way they abnegated their responsibility as guardians & protectors of God’s world & gave the rulership of this world to satan & scripture says it is satan who is the ruler of this world [John 12:31] & it is he who brings death, destruction, theft John 10:10 The thief comes only that he might steal and might kill and might destroy.  Wherever you see death & destruction you see the work of satan. 

Our world is no longer functioning in the perfect orderly way that God created it to function & you & I, each one of us both individually & corporately, bear some responsibility for that.  You cannot blame the whole shemozzle on Adam & Eve because the very first thing God gave human beings was free will. You are free to choose.  You can choose God or you can choose to believe satan’s lies & blame God for the whole sorry mess. What’s more that brings you into agreement with satan.

Which brings us to a third principle: the reign of God is within you.' Luke 17:21

Some people put their faith in Jesus to save them but they do not allow Him to reign as King in their lives. They do not understand that to continue to be as they once were is to actually be a disobedient servant rather than a son or daughter of the living God.  Sons & daughters walk by the Spirit of God. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. Romans 8:14

The Holy Spirit has a number of different functions

·       He seals us unto the day of redemption.  His presence in us is the one sure way that we are identified spiritually as belonging to Jesus Christ.  Romans 8:9 says And remember that those who do not have the Spirit of Christ living in them do not belong to Him at all.

·      1 Corinthians 2:10 But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God's deep secrets. We need the Holy Spirit to lead us into all Truth [John 16:13] It is the Holy Spirit who empowers us to deal with our mountains, whether they are to pick up our cross, crucify our flesh, renew our minds, or walk in faith.

Now when it comes to healing we have to understand that God is our healer.  We have to have faith that not only is He able to heal but that He is willing to heal; that He actually desires to heal us.

Exodus 15:26 He said, "If you will listen carefully to the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in his sight, obeying his commands and keeping all his decrees, then I will not make you suffer any of the diseases I sent on the Egyptians; for I am the LORD who heals you."

When Jesus came into the world He declared that:
Luke 4:8 "The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free.. As you read through the gospels you see 3 things consistently.  Jesus teaches.  He preaches. He Heals
And later He says that His followers will do likewise.
John 14:12 "I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father.

Lastly it is not difficult to ask God for healing. In Acts 3:6 we see how it works. Peter passes a lame man begging for alms & says simply:, "I don't have any silver or gold for you. But I'll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, get up and walk!"

Now Peter didn’t heal this man.  It was the power of the Holy Spirit working in him & that same Spirit works in every believer but notice 2 things.  Peter was very specific in his prayer. He commanded that the man walk ~ & he invoked the name of Jesus.  There is power in the name of Jesus but there is also the promise that whatever we ask for in His name will be given to us.

Perhaps you have need for Jesus’ healing power in your   life today but you don’t know Him.  I invite you to speak to someone here & we will pray for you but I am also going to pray now for those who are too shy to come forward because Jesus always honours His word & His word brings life to those who find them, and healing to their whole body. Proverbs 4:22

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Not A Magic Formula.~ Rabqa

Today we will be looking at why communion is not a magical

Matt 26:28 for this is my blood, which confirms the covenant between God and his people. It is poured out as a sacrifice to forgive the sins of many.

The bread & the wine are symbols to remind Christ followers through the ages of His redemptive sacrifice.

We cannot receive healing just because we take communion, everyday, you must have faith, it's just the same if we want to loose weight in ten easy steps then give up after step two because we haven't lost ten kilos. Once you have the teaching it must move into the depth of your spirit to become a quickened revelation that illuminates your spirit & cause great excitement in your soul.

Communion is not some quick fix or some sort of magical formula. If a person believes for God to restore his or her health they must read through the healing miracles of Jesus, beause in everyone He performed, the faith of the individual was linked to the manifestation of the miracle. If I read a promise from Scripture saying I can be born again, but I do not believe it, then that promise is automatically void in my life. The same is true if I read about End-Time outpouring of the Holy spirit, but don't believe it is for our day & time. The Lord does not force His blessings on anyone. Therefore my unbelief can make void the promises of God for me personally.(Matt 13:58) If an individual reads of promises of healing through the atoning work of Christ & does not believe it, then he will not receive it, This is what the Bible tells us.

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

Without faith it is impossible to please God; therefore, no matter how many good works you offer, God will not be pleased if they were done to earn His favour.

This verse says that God is a rewarder to those who diligently seek Him. I rejoiced when I finally realised this! I know I have made many mistakes in the past, but I also know that I have diligently sought the Lord with all of my heart. That means I qualify for those rewards. I decided a long time
ago that even though I did not deserve them I would receive the blessings that God wanted to give me. I hope that you will do the same also.

During a healing service many will go forward for prayer, sometimes you get to types of people, those who truly expect to be healed, The other type just come forward waiting to see what will happen when prayer is offered. Almost every time those how have a high expectancy are the ones who leave with the blessings. Those who go through the routine of prayer without much feeling, revelation of the Spirit or anticipation of expected result seldom leave or receive a breakthrough at that moment.

When receiving Communion with the emphasis of releasing God's healing anointing into our spirit, body & soul, we should never go through the physical motions with the attitude of, "Lets see if this works". We need to understand Communion in terms of God's covenant with man since redemption & the cross are keys to unlocking the promise of the new covenant.

The English translation of the Bible is divided into two sections called the Old & New Testaments. The English word testament alludes to last will & testament, which reveals the benefits left to a family after the death of the one who made the will.

Another term is old covenant & new covenant. Since some Christians consider the Old Testament to be out dated & done away with, it is probably best to call them the first & second covenant, the first being the Old Testament, & the second being the one initiated with Christ. the sixty six books of the Bible are a summary of God's covenant with mankind.

The Covenant The promise the covenant

Noachian covenant The earth would never be destroyed by water again.

Abrahamic covenant Abraham’s son would produce a nation & rule the nations.

Davidic covenant David would rule from Jerusalem as king forever.

New covenant We can receive eternal life through Christ.

In some way every covenant was sealed in blood. In the days after the flood, Noah burned sacrifices on the alter & God made an agreement that the earth would never again be destroyed by water. In the Abrahamic covenant, the physical act of circumcision was a sign that a Jewish male had "cut the covenant" with God. On the eighth day every male child was circumcised as a token of the Hebrew covenant with God. This was a physical sign that the male child would be raised to believe in the God of Abraham & that he would be raised in a covenant relationship (Gen17:11-12).

After the resurrection of Christ it was no longer necessary for a believer to be physically circumcised. Paul taught that true circumcision was when God removed the hardness of a persons heart after he had accepted Christ & the new covenant. Under the new covenant, water baptism replaced the physical act of circumcision.

Col 2:11-12 When you came to Christ, you were “circumcised,” but not by a physical procedure. Christ performed a spiritual circumcision—the cutting away of your sinful nature. For you were buried with Christ when you were baptised. And with him you were raised to new life because you trusted the mighty power of God, who raised Christ from the dead.

Understand that your life is based on the work done in you through Christ's death & resurrection.

Many believers are slowed in their spiritual
growth for lack of wisdom. Sometimes teaching that stunts spiritual growth is enthusiastically endorsed because believers do not know the Scriptures. We should heed Paul's warning against listening to people who pander to the flesh, rather then edifying in the truth.

Under the old covenant, if a Jewish male child was not circumcised on the eighth day after his birth, he was not in covenant, & as an adult he could be cut off from among the people. (Gen 17:4). Water baptism is so important to the salvation process that Christ taught that people should repent of their sins & be baptised In Acts 2:38 Peter linked repentance & water baptism to the act of salvation.

Water baptism identifies you publicly as a believer in Christ. It is a picture of you being buried with Christ & coming up out of the water with a new life. In the early church, baptism immediately followed a persons conversion to Christ (Acts 2:38; 8:12, 38; 9:18; 10:48; 16:15; 18:8; 19:5; 22:16) Water baptism is so important when a person comes to Christ.

When you begin to understand the spiritual truth behind the power of communion, one of the important areas of illumination is the power of communion as it relates to faith & healing.

There are many methods of healing found in Scripture. There is the healing by speaking the Word, healing through manifestation of the Spirit, healing through the gifts of the Spirit, & healing through the prayer of faith. In James 5:15 we are told that: The prayer of faith will save the sick & the Lord will raise them up...

During the prayer of faith the lack of faith can become a hindrance to the prayer being answered. There are many times when a persons faith may be stronger then at other times, & we often judge the power of our prayers on the circumstances or feelings surrounding the request. An example of this is that we might think that a migraine headache is no problem for God to heal, but terminal cancer is another thing all together. In many methods of healing, the manifestation comes as a result of the person's faith.

The same is true with communion. A person must believe in the healing power of Christ's body & blood, & that the redemptive anointing of Christ is working in his or her body to produce healing & strength. Faith is the path that all spiritual blessings follow. Communion is powerful because it is based on God's covenant with us. When we receive communion we should have a feeling of relief knowing that we are not leaning on another person's prayers or faith, but simply trusting in God's covenant!

In the 1950s & 1960s, there were many ministers who operated in the gifts of healing & miracles which 1 Corinthians 12:7-10 speaks off. Multitudes would attend these meetings, & many were healed of sickness & disease. People would say if I could just get to the tent of Brother so & so I would be healed. Many times they were because they released their faith, not in the man but in the anointing present when he prayed.

In those days there might be thousands of people attending the service each night. The ministers often sat in chairs & prayed for hours on end for individuals in the prayer line. The ministers would become weary & if a person was missed in the prayer line, he or she left disappointed. Today there are people who leave disappointed because the minister didn't call them out or the Lord didn't seem to have His eye on them.

The secular unbeliever often mocks these
meetings & considers them a sham or a show. This causes stress on the ministers who walk in this calling, because the sincere ones have a burden for people & are often accused of being a fraud because someone was prayed for who wasn't healed.

God does use people to minister to others, & He does bring special miracles through the anointing of the Holy Spirit.(Acts 9:11). But I think the most perfect way of receiving anything from the Lord is through your own personal faith in the Word. That is why Communion is so powerful. God is true to His covenant. He is true to His Word. He has magnified His Word above His name (Ps 138:2). God is so true to His covenant then when He threatened to destroy the Hebrews for worshipping the golden calf, Moses simply reminded God of His covenant with Abraham. With that reminder the Lord repented of His decision to destroy Israel.

Receiving Communion is both an act of faith & an act of obedience. God is moved towards us when He sees us act in our faith in His Word & believe the words of His covenant. Jesus said it this way in John 15:7 But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything
you want, and it will be granted.

AS you come to communion believe in the healing power of Christ's body & blood, & that the redemptive anointing of Christ is working in your body to produce healing & strength.

Acknowledgement Perry Stone.