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Most Christians would identify with Paul’s dilemma in Romans 7. He realised that there was the power of sin within him that prevented him from doing the good that he wanted to do. Even worse than that he found himself doing those things that he did not want to do.It is a sad conclusion that so many Christians accept this `no progress’ dilemma as a way of life even until the grave. Some even enjoy their sin and ask forgiveness each day and believe that this is their destiny until `Jesus returns’.
A NEW MINDSET
Paul very clearly teaches that we can reach our fulfilment right now in God’s plan and have total victory over sin, sickness and death. Paul said, `Let this mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus’. Our journey into God’s Kingdom means the absolute death of self.
GOD USES SIN, SICKNESS AND DEATH
Jesus has already forgiven all our sins, past, present and future. He uses sin to train His followers and bring them to perfection. He even uses sickness to draw us to surrender and the death bed to win souls at `knock off time’ (parable of the hired servant).
JESUS THE ONLY WAY
Jesus said `I am the way, the truth and the life. No man cometh unto the Father but by Me’. Who the Son sets free is free indeed’. Jesus is the only way.Coming unto the Father means coming into an everlasting constant agape’ love relationship with Him. God’s Kingdom is all about that agape’ love relationship with Him which is total security in this life and life to come. If you want to get free indeed in this life just get more and more involved with Jesus every day. These are God’s stepping stones in our life. Each step requires a miracle by the grace of God. None of our striving can get us there.
STEP 1: TOTAL FORSAKING SURRENDER
The main problem with Christian churches, including Pentecostal, charismatic and evangelicals, is that very few have experienced their `Pentecost’. The baptism of fire is missing and that includes total forsaking surrender which invites the full power of the Holy Spirit and agape’ love which casts out all fear. It is fear which holds people captive to sin and also blinds them to the fact that they are captive. Only agape’ love can cast down fear and a quick conversion follows.Today because of the lack of agape’ love we have long draggedout conversions and often accept sin as an ongoing daily battle.
The old hymn `Rock of Ages’ says `Nothing in my hands I bring’. Every soul who breaths on this earth will have to realise on their death beds that all the securities of this world mean nothing. Total surrender is easier on your death bed.I believe our Father God wins many souls that way and they all get the same pay. God’s perfect will is that we surrender now and enter His Kingdom now and be part of His glorious Bride which will make disciples of every nation.
THE SECRET OF SUCCESS
The secret of surrender is to first meditate upon the cost. Charles Finney probably understood this secret best of anyone. After the great revivals in the USA in the 1840’s ten years later 85% of converts were still full of the zeal of God. We use the old prophetic hymn (or chorus) to teach about surrender.
`Turn your eyes upon Jesus Look full in His wonderful face
And the things of this world will grow strangely dim In the light of His glory and grace’.
WORDS FROM THE HEART
As we look into His face with eye to eye contact we become totally transparent. He sees right down into our heart. An impartation of agape’ love takes place. Fear is cast away and we can say to Him `Whatever the cost;whatever the persecution and suffering for Your sake; wherever you send me even if it costs me my life; Lord I surrender all knowing that I will be stripped to nothing to enter Your Kingdom.
Meditate on this cost until you know that you have the revelation. Do not reason and consult your fleshly nature. Ask Jesus to help you overcome all fear. Don’t wait until your death bed. God needs workers now to gather in the harvest. He plans to use you to make disciples of every nation.
A great evangelist of the past, Lionel Fletcher, who preached to the troops as they left from England in World War 1, made this beautiful assurance:- `As you give your life to God, without reserve, He will pour out His Holy Spirit through you, without reserve’.
STEP 2: BORN OF GOD
Following your total surrender, if you have not already received the miracle of the transformation of Romans 12:2 you have a right to ask for that instant blessing. Wesley called it the holiness blessing. Finney called it `entering into the spirit of prayer’. It is an instantaneous blessing where by the grace of God, the bloodline of fallen Adam (the power of sin) is cut off once and for all and forever. It is when you complete your born again process. As God cuts off the power of sin He simultaneously connects you into His blood line and you bear His nature and character. Your mind is no longer a battlefield. The enemy and the flesh no longer have access. The spirit man is now totally in charge. It is the mind of Christ that Paul says is for all believers. It is for everyone who chooses to be a disciple of Jesus. Fear, doubts, unbelief, unreality worry etc. are shut out forever. It is God’s normal plan for all believers. It is the promise of God. It is all part of the full armour. An unshakable belief in the promises of God is the immediate response without the interference of doubts and unbelief.
STEP 3: MOPPING UP THE RESIDUE LEFT BY SIN
Now that the spirit man (or woman) is in charge the next part of the journey is to clean up the residue of that old nature. The old hymn says `and the things of this world will go strangely dim’. When you pull out the plug on you lap top computer the power supply is cut off but you have a backup that lasts for a short time of some hours. There are other ways besides the conscious mind where the enemy will try to hold us captive.
1. Temptation through that which we see, hear, smell, feel and taste. These are overcome as promised in the Lord’s Prayer. One translation says `Shield me from temptation’.
2. Old fantasies and dreams and memories. 1 Cor. 10:5 says to cast down imaginations and every thought that exalts itself against the knowledge of God.
3. Hatred of sin. Those who had a real battering from sin (e.g.crime) will naturally find it easier to hate their sin. Jesus said the sinners and prostitutes and tax collectors will enter the Kingdom first. Many sins such as pride and mammon worship that are accepted in our cultures can be difficult to hate. I heard of one pastor who said he had pastored a congregation for nine years. He operated in the gifts but claimed he wasnot yet born again. He and two others fasted and agonised before Godfor three days until He gave the blessing. We must hate our sin to enter God’s Kingdom.
All these three blessings are works of grace that we must ask God for. We may have to agonise and wrestle before God as Jacob did at Jabbok. There is no way of bypassing total forsaking surrender. There are no armchair rides or easy roads into God’s Kingdom. Paul warns in Galatians 5 that if we practice any of the sins of the flesh that we will not inherit the Kingdom He says we must walk in the spirit at all times and pray without ceasing.
IF PAUL CAN SO CAN WE
If Paul can reach that walk then so can we. Hundreds of thousands of our forefathers reached that walk in the great revivals only 150- 200 years ago. We have their testimonies to encourage us. The church must return to our first love if we are to rescue our nations from the terrible darkness around.
JESUS CAME TO OPEN THE PRISON DOORS AND BRING LIBERTY TO THE CAPTIVES
Jesus has already conquered sin, sickness and death yet Christians can sit in the pews of the easy gospel churches for a lifetime without realising that we are still captives to each of those bondages.
Peter was still captive to sin when the rooster crowed three times. The prison doors were opened when he repented. Paul was still captive to sin as he described the `no win’ dilemma of Romans 7 (`the things that I want to do I do not do’ etc. He found the victory in Galatians 2:20 when he said `It is no longer I who liveth but Christ who liveth in me! Ephesians 6 talks of total victory over the evil one.
A MISERABLE SINNER
I have heard some people say `I will be a miserable sinner until Jesus returns. We often accept captivity to sin without knowing it. 1 John 3:9 says that whoever is born of God does not sin and he cannot sin because His seed remaineth in Him. In the past revivals victory over sin was both taught and experienced.
If we accept sickness it certainly does not help in our recovery. Too often we accept a diagnosis from a doctor and are then captive to that sickness. We are captive to Babylon’s drug lords plus the chemical food chain.
REBUKE THE ENEMY
We have proven time and again how the enemy tries to get us to accept old sickness symptoms of many years ago. We rebuke him in Jesus’ name. Eventually he stops trying his old tricks. God can also use sickness to draw us on our journey to His Kingdom. He definitely used 4 ½ years of dementia to win my sister’s soul. The healing can be delayed according to God’s timing. In themeantime His grace is sufficient.
Jesus came to bring life abundant. Satan brings death abundant. The degradation that our society is falling into speaks of a spirit of death gone rampant. Abortion is so easily arranged, which is murder in the womb. God speaks of severe judgement for child sacrifice in the Bible. Gay marriage cannot populate a nation – preventing life. Euthanasia takes life at the precious mature years. We are in the midst of an escalating attack of death on our nation.
DEATH HAS BEEN CONQUERED
Those in Christ or in the Kingdom pass from this body on earth into life eternal and have overcome death. They are just as alive as they were down here except without a body for a season. Jesus assured Peter, who had already forsaken all his worldly security; that he will be rewarded a hundred fold in this life and the life to come. The spirit man (or woman) does not cease in prayer and intercession when they have left their bodies.
JESUS IS ALIVE
We sing that Jesus is alive. He is our example in every aspect of His life. We should sing and rejoice that we have also overcome death and our spirit being is already eternally alive. Death has no dominion over us. God desires that we have a long life in the body. We should aim at 120 years if we ate, drank and exercised as did Shadrack, Meshack and Abednigo.
OPEN THE EYES OF THE BLIND
Jesus wants us to walk out of all those prison doors and into His Kingdom and on to His throne room. We are His kings and priests being changed into His exact likeness. May God open our eyes to His calling.
GOD’S GREAT COMPASSION FOR THE DECEIVED
In the letter to the lukewarm church of Laodicea, Jesus makes it very clear how He hateslukewarmness. He would rather we be even cold than lukewarm. He has a special compassion for the deceived lukewarmers. He says, `To those I love I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent’. One translation calls it `the comfortable church’. I tend to call it `the easy gospel church’. It is not the gospel that Jesus taught.
Many Pentecostal-Charismatic churches have a very subtle deception to handle. They have not only forgotten about the old revival hymns which taught about the cost of surrender, but have put all their emphasis on the gifts and baptism of the Holy Spirit without the fire. The fire as experienced at Pentecost and in the great revivals included total forsaking surrender as Jesus required of His disciples. It was the secret behind the remarkable success of the Finney revivals in the USA. The devil will do anything possible to keep us away from true surrender. He will even allow the gifts to operate-even the dead raised. Jesus warned in Matthew 7 that they shall perform many mighty works in My Name but miss the Kingdom. Crowds will follow the spectacular as in Jesus’ day on earth but that does not make many disciples.
LITTLE BABES LED ASTRAY
How many babes have been taught that they are saved and in the Kingdom upon a few syllables of tongues. That is sad as the fall away is frightening. Jesus is well aware of all these deceptions. He readily forgives even the pastor and does not condemn but has a great compassion to rescue the victims.Those in evangelical churches to are more likely to surrender to Jesus for whom He is and not for what He does but they also can be deceived by an easy gospel.
RIGHTEOUSNESS EXALTS A NATION
God’s plan is to make disciples of every nation. The effective fervent prayers of the righteous from His bride without spot or blemish will bring about that plan. To exalt is to lift up to the highest place. It is like the word repent — `re’ means return and `pent’ means God’s top plan for your life.
FIND FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD
Jesus said, `Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. This is our priority above anything else on our Christian journey. He would not say `seek’ if it were not possible to find His righteousness. It has nothing to do with our righteousness which is filthy rags in comparison. We must understand that we must first be entirely emptied of all our past worldly achievements and securities.` He that forsaketh not all that he has cannot be My disciples’ (Luke 14:33). We take on God’s righteousness only after death of self when we enter God’s Kingdom.
The effective fervent prayers of the righteous is the only power that can bring down the ancient principality powers that hold nations or cities captive. It only needs a remnant of righteous believers to establish an `open heaven’ over your locality. The uncontrollable fire of the Holy Spirit will then spread across your land and righteous conversions will take place like after Pentecost. They will be baptised with the Holy Spirit and with fire and thousands will be added to the kingdom of God daily.
2 CHRONICLES 7:14
Nehemiah was a righteous man of God – when he humbled himself and prayed. The ancient principalities and powers over the land were cast down. Nehemiah knew he had the victory and so the temple, walls and doorways were restored. Nehemiah asked forgiveness for the sins of his forefathers and wept for many days before God. It was the fulfilment of 2 Chronicles 7:14.
THOUSANDS OF RIGHTEOUS IN PRAYER
In the eras of the great revivals (110-200 years ago) the nations of England and the USA had many thousands of righteous prayer warriors who cast down the ancient principality powers and brought some of the greatest revivals since Pentecost. The history of those nations was changed and God blessed them with wealth. They sought God’s Kingdom and H is righteousness. All their worldly needs were met . They gave abundantly –they lived on the tithe and gave 90%. British Commonwealth countries were blessed with that great heritage but the past one hundred years have seen us degenerate through mammon worship (money. When God through His love for the `easy gospel church’ takes away our money god there will be a great return to seek first the Kingdom
THE BOAT PEOPLE DILEMMA
All floods begin with a trickle. On world standards our boat people members are only a trickle. The USA has not been able to stop millions of Mexicans and Cubans from arriving. Boat people is a big problem for the Mediterranean countries which are already overcrowded. Our tiny population and vast area leave us with no excuses. The truth is that we do not want to share our comfort zone.
WE REAP WHAT WE SOW IN HISTORY
Our racist history highlighted by the `white Australia’ policy is still in God’s memory. I believe He will allow a literal flood of Asians from Indonesia in the future. It is a nation where the majority of wealth is owned by a small minority of Chinese business men. When world finances collapse cultures usually target the rich and mass euphoria results in burning their assets and shedding of blood.
HAVE COMPASSION FOR NORTHERN NEIGHBOURS
Just think of a million Chinese heading for the nearest haven (Australia) in anything that floats. That railway from Darwin to Adelaide will be very busy carrying them south. So will hundreds of buses from the Kimberleys to Perth and Katherine. They will be genuine refugees. They will be fine workers and good citizens. Singapore is too small to help. Malaysia will have its own problems.
AT THE DOORSTEP OF ECONOMIC CHAOS
The near default of the USA last October had the nations in fear and trembling. Since then we have China in an unpredictable decline and now Mr. Putin’s 1938 style ambitions threaten the costly response of economic sanctions. Even now Russia looks like losing their credit rating. The Euro scene is so delicately dependent on Russia for energy that anything could trigger off there.Years ago an economic commentator wrote that countries that have McDonalds will not usually go to war with each other. Wars in recent years have proven that bombs and bullets achieve nothing. Economic is the way to go. This could bring not only the downfall of Russia but of the Euro,and the rest of the Western world. Those wealthy merchants of Babylon which we see as the hedging fund groups and all their investment havens will lose their money in an hour.
It has been a year of great testing for Brenton and me. It is sixteen months since I had the stroke. We would like to see a faster recovery for me but count our blessings day by day. We do not accept this `ball and chain’ so, continue to look forward to a complete healing and meanwhile we carry on life as normal as possible. Brenton had several quick trips without me to check on water, etc. We planned to come up three weeks early to prepare for apricot picking but we praise God we came when we did as the apricots were colouring. We realised Brenton could not cope with picking plus sending the five tonne crop out so we decided to take some loads to a health shop in Alice Springs. A friend in Alice Springs started taking apricotsto aboriginal communities. He then sold to the public for $3 kg by the bucket at their house. It started well (Woolworth were selling for$12 kg). Then someone put it on Facebook and by the time we got home he was out of fruit. We did three trips in ten days and were pleased we and did not have as much waste as we feared with birds etc. The profits from stone fruit financed the free gift of grapes to the APY lands.
Soon after the harvest had finished we had a visit from two police officers who wanted to buy some fruit .They asked about the orchard & we shared our desire to get fruit to aboriginal people, particularly the children and the aged, at an affordable price. One said`I would love to help with that’.. We found she is Supt. of the APY Police The police from across the Lands meet at Umuwa (about 50 km away) every Thursday.
We have had a tremendous crop of Red Globe grapes which last well and carry well. Some vines have up to 65kg. For the last ten Thursdays we have taken a load of grapes to Umuwa and people as far as the WA border received gifts. The police have enjoyed this outreach. Our friend Don Perry came over from Ernabella on Saturdays and helped pick and saturated Ernabella each week with grapes for every family..We have just received a report from Don that `runny noses’ which was a symptom of malnutrition in children is now almost a thing of the past. A bunch of grapes a day for two months for every child in Ernabella hasproven this. Our desire is for fruit to be supplied all the year round.
Greetings from Brenton & Margaret Pope Phone 08-89558301 (Kenmore)P.O. Box 1, Spalding-South Australia 5454 08-88458045 (Spalding)
Email: email@example.com www.trumpetcalling.org
I was amazed to hear a recent statement over the ABC (media) that ‘It is estimated that about 30 trillion dollars is invested in numerous investment havens around the world. The wealthy merchants were alarmed when a few billions were lost by the banks in Cyprus. They would be aware of the danger of a worldwide domino collapse of the banking system. They have enjoyed letting the nations such as Greece, Spain and Italy reach the brink of collapse and at the eleventh hour come forth with a bail out rescue. They desire to appear as the `good boys’ who are there to rescue nations before collapse. God has allowed their gradualism tactic for some years now. Read the full postApril, 2013
Jesus’ prophetic words in the Lord’s Prayer are full of promises for each one of us. They were fulfilled
at the Cross and Resurrection for us all. Most would readily agree with the victory but live from day
today with a captivity mindset of sinning – forgiveness cycles. We accept a continuing battle between the flesh and the spirit until our last breath. To seek first God’s Kingdom and His
righteousness in all things and at all times seems an impossible goal.July, 2012
When Peter heard Jesus tell the rich young ruler to go and sell all that he had and given it to the poor he reasoned in his mind when he said, `Who then Lord can be saved? To Peter it seemed impossible to believe that even a poor or middle class person would be able to give everything away. Jesus said, `With man it is impossible but with God all things are possible’.
Peter had experienced total forsaking surrender. He was Kingdom bound but had never known of a great revival when through the baptism of the Holy Spirit and with fire, God does the impossible. As Peter left his nets he was called by the draw of agape’ love from Jesus to surrender his life to Jesus. He became a disciple at that point and even though he still had to battle with a wicked self-nature which was to be through death at Pentecost. Read the full post
Here was Peter who had forsaken the securities of the world to follow Jesus. He was honoured by God to be an apostle. He had been discipled by Jesus for 3½ years and yet as Jesus said, was cleansed by His word but not yet entirely clean. Filio love (friendship love) enabled Peter to say the words in Matthew 26:35 `Even if I have to die with You I will not deny you’. Then Peter denied Christ three times and the rooster crowed. He wept bitterly in tears of repentance. Peter would have known that he was forgiven and soon after experienced a greater love (agape’ love-God’s love).This love enabled him to obey Jesus’ commands as shown in the boldness of his sermon after Pentecost. Read the full postJanuary, 2012
In the creation story in Genesis, we read how God created Adam in His very own image. He was without spot or blemish. Adam was given complete dominion over all the earth. That included dominion over principalities, powers and demons provided that he did not yield to temptation and sin.
When Adam and Eve sinned and fell from grace all people born from his bloodline had to contend with the power of sin but had the choice to obey and worship their God Jehovah, or the god of this world. God was always sovereign despite Adam’s fall. Satan had to ask God’s permission to cause suffering upon Job. Read the full postMay, 2011
As we approach the great latter rain outpouring of the Holy Spirit we are seeing an escalation of false teachings. The lukewarm church of the western world is very vulnerable to these teachings. Jesus gave us a simple warning, ‘You will know them by their fruits’. The fruits are winning souls for His kingdom or making disciples. Jesus said, ‘A good tree cannot bear bad fruit’. Deceptions cannot come from a good tree. He said, ‘Even the elect if it were possible would be deceived’. The subtle deceptions are often a mixture with say 8o%truth. If we are mature enough `we can eat the meat and spit out the bones’. We must be careful not to pass on the deception to immature Christians. Operating in the gifts of the Holy Spirit is not the fruit that Jesus referred to. He said ‘they will perform many mighty works in My name and yet miss the Kingdom (Matthew 7:22-23). lf someone were to raise the dead in your town he would soon draw a crowd most of whom would accept his teachings. Read the full postOctober, 2010
Jesus was saying to Nicodemus, `You must be born of God’ That means we must be born just the same way that He was’. He is our example for every step we take. Jesus was born of the Seed of the Father God. It was a miracle of God that some call the `immaculate conception’. That is the same miracle that we must desperately seek for in our lives. An important part of that miracle is the actual cutting off of our earthly bloodline coming down our fathers from fallen Adam. This is called the power of sin (Gen. 4:7) which must be cut off (unplugged) in the same miracle as being born of God (1 John 3:9).July, 2010
Some of the most incredible promises that God has given to His people are contained in Psalm 91. Entering the `secret place’ is one of many expressions in the scriptures about entering God’s Kingdom. It is a place hidden in Jesus that the world and much of the visible church cannot see. It is a place waiting for each one of us who choose the pathway of forsaking surrender to be a disciple of Jesus. It is a place where we are in a constant agape’ love relationship with God our Father through Jesus His Son. Read the full postMarch, 2010
Nations are only a multiplicity of people. Just like different people have a different testimony of brokenness in coming under the Lordship of Jesus Christ so it will be with our nations.
The global meltdown means brokenness for the developing and Western nations. The poor Third World hardly knew mammon security. They are like the poor Jews who were left in Jerusalem to work the vineyards. They did not need to be taken captive to Babylon. Read the full post