Archive for the ‘Doctrine of God’ Category

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Scripture reading: Hebrews 5:12-14

Let me ask you a question today: Have you been baptized in water? You see, when you get the baptism in water and are determined in your heart to serve God unto death, and the Holy Ghost sees a heart that is wide open then He rushes in. When the Holy Ghost comes into your heart and into your life, there is a definite change. You undergo a change when you accept Jesus Christ as your Savior, and then when you go into the baptism you undergo another change, and then when you go into the Holy Ghost baptism you undergo yet another change. But you are still in the Outer Court. Baptism in the Holy Ghost does not automatically take you into the Holy Place. Baptism in the Holy Ghost is meant to take you into the Holy Place. Am I talking riddles? In other words, because you are baptized in the Holy Ghost and you blabber in tongues and so and so and so, you feel that you are all right. You are not all right, until you begin to walk in the Holy Ghost. Amen.

In my old age, I find something terrible; there are little things that you miss. My wife and I are sitting at the table, we are going to eat and so we start to pray; I close my eyes and bend down to pray and I see the rice falling to the floor like rain. Hear me now. This is foolishness, right? Old man having hallucinations. Well, if the old man was smart, he would have said, “Sister, don’t eat that rice.” Because I was seeing what God sees. What happens is that I have a message now to say to her, “That rice is going to hurt you.” It is as simple as that.

When God looked at Adam and said, “It is good,” even though He saw all the trouble that Adam would go through, He knew that He was looking at the end of the matter – He was looking at YOU!

I am not talking about one instance. It is every day, every step of the way. If you say, “Howdy do” to somebody, and you see something flash there, you need to learn to obey it and walk in it. The Holy Ghost life is an entirely different life from the life of a natural person. Slight little things and thoughts flash to you in the spirit and you need to work on it, and the moment you move on it you have a victory. But instead you say, “Oh, it is my mind,” and the devil robs you of the moment. You are not a fit man. Yes, if you call the Holy Ghost your mind, you are not fit, because we need to be sharp in the spirit. We need to be able to discern between good and evil (Hebrews 5:14). Yes, right and wrong, good and evil, little things, and I mean, that is simple. Remember now, He said this is A-B-C. He didn’t say this is big. You haven’t gone to college yet. You are still down there in elementary school.

The same mind that the kid takes to learn in elementary school is the same mind that is going to be up there in the college. If he becomes a scientist, it is the same mind and the same principles of thinking that he is subjected to that are going to lead him right up there. Hear me now. I am not talking to you about spiritual things yet. No, no, no, we are down there in the Outer Court. It is the obedience of the child of God in the Outer Court that makes you a son of God, that takes you through the door into the Holy Place. If we have not learned how to obey the Holy Ghost, then we are still in trouble, you can still lose your life and go to hell. What? What am I saying? I am saying that if you don’t learn how to walk in the Holy Ghost, you can still go to hell.

(Excerpt from Keeping in Touch, December 2007, pg. 6-7)

Thought for today: It is the obedience of the child of God in the Outer Court that makes you a son of God, that takes you through the door into the Holy Place.

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Scripture reading: Hebrews 6:1-2

Let us look at the doctrine of baptisms today as described in Hebrews 6:2. For context, however, we are going to read from verse 1.

“Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God. 2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.”

How many baptisms have you had? Well, I know somebody who was baptized in water seven times. Every baptism there was held, he wanted to go to get a dip. That is not baptisms, that is still one baptism, and he had never had it the first time. Amen.

Let’s take the basic. Baptism is a covenant, and the Bible says Jesus Christ came by water and by blood (1 John 5:6). Baptism is a blood covenant. It is a covenant unto death. So, if you were baptized in water and you never made that covenant in your soul, you were not really baptized. Remember now, Jesus is coming nearer to you, to the church. Whether you want it to be or not, it is not going to stop Him. Jesus has been creeping towards the church for 2,000 years. Amen.

I think of a man who they dropped in a deep, dark hole. They dug a deep hole and called it a dungeon. They dropped him down into that hole and the man was in that dungeon for three years. The man still lived and still praised God! We think of Paul being in a dungeon. What do you think these dungeons were like? They put them down there, and there was no restroom. Can you imagine a restroom in a dungeon? The dungeon is the restroom. So, every prisoner they had there would defecate and do everything there in the dungeon. Then they would drop another prisoner down there. I think of the worms and everything. The men were in there, standing up. In some of the dungeons, they couldn’t sleep on the floor; they had to lean against the wall to sleep. For food they would let down a piece of bread and a little water. There was no way of getting a change of clothes. There was no way of getting a bath. There was no way of having any kind of life down there and yet men lived in that for years, survived and praised God. Have you ever thought of it?

One time, I went into a restroom in London and it was in a part of the house that was set off from where everybody else was. When I tried to leave, the door wouldn’t open. I was locked up in the restroom, and I felt so awful. I said, “My God, suppose it was a dungeon that I was in?” You know what I mean. You knock, knock, knock, and nobody hears.

God is calling us to a higher level. He said, “Let us put aside all these foundations.” It was Paul’s way of saying, “Well, you need to have these foundations, or else you can’t go on to higher things. BUT, let us put aside these foundations and let us go on to higher things.” Praise be to God.

So, we have baptism in water, baptism in the Holy Ghost, and baptism into Christ. Have you looked at your baptism, and have you seen the thing accomplished? Because if you are baptized in water and you are not baptized in the Holy Ghost, you were not really baptized in water. That sounds bad, doesn’t it? You can go down in water and you can be wet, and come up wet. Dry Christian goes down. Wet Christian comes up, but you are not yet baptized. WHY? Because if baptism in water is without a commitment, without a contract with God unto death, then you haven’t yet been baptized. That contract, that covenant is what makes the baptism a baptism. Hallelujah! The proof of that baptism is that you are baptized in the Holy Ghost. But guess what? Some people are baptized in the Holy Ghost but because they got the inward baptism of the Holy Ghost and they weren’t baptized in the water, they think God will let them off the hook. They say, “Okay, I’ve got it! If baptism in water leads me to baptism in the Holy Ghost, and I’ve got the baptism of the Holy Ghost, then I don’t need baptism in water any more.” No. No. God comes to you and He says, “Go get baptized in water.” WHY? You must make the covenant. You must learn your lesson. You must have His writing on the tables of your heart, written in blood before you can go any further. Amen.

(Excerpt from Keeping in Touch, December 2007, pg. 5-6)

Thought for today: We need to have the foundations, or else we cannot go on to higher things. BUT, let us put aside these foundations and let us go on to higher things.

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Scripture reading: 1 Timothy 2:7

A congregation can appoint a teacher, but it cannot give him/her a ministry. God alone sets ministries in the body. The ministry of the teacher must come directly from God. From my own experience, when God tells me what to tell His people, He tells me how to tell it. I teach sometimes with a chalkboard, and the drawings I put on the board are those things which I see in the Spirit.

There are, however, many, many different administrations of the Spirit. Although God deals with me in this way, He may deal with someone else in an entirely different way, BUT with the same result – His people will get the message, and it will be directed by Him.

There are ministries with the same name as gifts of the Spirit, but the ministry is different from the gift. The gift is the manifestation of the Holy Ghost within the believer, working whatever gift God sees fit to bring forth through the individual.

On the other hand, the ministry is a special and more powerful endowment to the church. The minister, therefore, is the gift of God to the church. His endowment is not his own. He cannot preach where he wills, do what he wants, but as an important part of God’s machinery, he must move when and where God wants him to move or go.

Every human being is capable of some gift of the Spirit if he or she surrenders to God, but not everyone is an anointed preacher of Christ. It must be remembered that every believer, as part of a body, is a ministering, functioning part. In a sense, everyone who is born of God is expected to work with the ministry in one capacity or another. Without these sinews of the body, the ministries could not function effectively.

These are the five bars of the tabernacle.

We should not forget one important observation. The golden rings which hold the bars are attached to the gold on the boards, thus signifying that the nature of God in the body is that which holds the ministry, and not the ministry or minister holding the congregation.

(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 80-81)

Thought for today: The nature of God in the body is that which holds the ministry, and not the ministry or minister holding the congregation.

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Scripture reading: Ephesians 4:11

The word “shepherd,” translated “pastor,” does not give any minister absolute charge over any congregation. It gives him the responsible position of being answerable to the “Chief Shepherd” for the ministry to care for the sheep given to him. Therefore, while he is caring for sheep in the congregation, there are others who would be caring for lambs, and others neither sheep nor lambs, but sons – little sons and big sons. Therefore, in God’s Order, we FIND A PLURAL MINISTRY OF ELDERS WORKING TOGETHER.

It is very easy to discern the true God-appointed shepherds, as different from the man-appointed ones or the self-appointed ones. In Ephesians 4:11, we notice that the Word says that “He gave some, Apostles, etc.”

A man-made apostle is an alien creature in God’s business, yet all the churches appoint their own trainees to positions. Divine Order is totally rejected in the modern church as recorded in 2 Thessalonians 2:3.

“Let no man deceive you by any means: For that day shall not come, except there come a falling away (rebellion) first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.”

History is repeating itself. Just as Israel turned away from God to the dumb idols of the nations, even so, 90% of the church has turned from God to worship buildings, and pews, money and status – rebelling against God. Jesus Christ, our Lord, said that this would happen before His return. He gave a parable of the wheat and the tares in Matthew 13:24-30. Then from 37-43, He gave the meaning of this parable of the Kingdom of Heaven.

Matthew 13:37-43, “He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather OUT OF HIS KINGDOM all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear let him hear.”

The above passage outlines the condition of the church before Christ comes. It clearly shows that there is at this time a rebellion in the church, against the Master of the Vineyard, and that He is waiting for the time of His judgment to separate the wheat from the tares. From what I can observe, the tares have taken up the chief corners of the streets of our cities with magnificent edifices. They occupy the major positions of authority in the vast majority of the congregations of the world. They are the richest institutions on earth, but we understand that the time of harvest is very near, even at the door.

The true shepherd seeks the glory of the Lord. The false shepherd seeks the glory of his denomination, or group, or nondenominational denomination, or something else beside Jesus. The question here arises, what is meant by seeking the glory? The question brings us back to the teaching of the “firstfruits.” Whatever is the focal point of our operation and programs is the thing that is first in order of priority. Are we more interested in holding our members than in their spiritual growth? If we are more interested in their spiritual growth, even if we lose them, then Christ is first. Are the shepherds God-trained, God-appointed men, or man-appointed pastors, herdsmen, cowboys, man-appointed, Seminary-trained after the order of man, Romish? As God-appointed shepherds, they would be laying down their lives and not looking after their own enrichment or status. Then that is putting Christ first. Is the shepherd striving to do the will of the Father, rather than to please his congregation and the other church leaders around? Then he is Christ centered. Is the shepherd making plans for bringing in money in the church? Then he is NOT Christ centered but otherwise centered. Is Christ the whole motivation of the church? If so, then they are putting Christ in His rightful place – first. A shepherd, therefore, is not a hireling. He cannot be bought or fired, because he is working with God Himself who trained and sent him, and he will teach every sheep to follow Jesus Christ. Every God-appointed shepherd knows that the word shepherd is not a title like the “Names of Blasphemy” – Reverend, Pastor, Father, Holy Father, Pope etc. (Revelation 17:5) – but that it is a spiritual endowment, a deep compassion in the heart for God’s children everywhere. It is a gift of the Spirit, and we should only be under-shepherds with Jesus Christ.

(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 77-79)

Thought for today: Remember: A shepherd, therefore, is not a hireling. He cannot be bought or fired, because he is working with God Himself who trained and sent him, and he will teach every sheep to follow Jesus Christ.

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Scripture reading: Acts 1:8

The ministry of the evangelist is that which takes to the church the revealed word of God. In doing this, the evangelist must be equipped not only with the power of the Holy Ghost, but with the gifts of the Spirit, sufficient to vindicate the Gospel in the wide range of circumstances into which he will fall.

The ministry of the evangelist is by far above the ordinary, evangelistic outreach of the local church. This ministry must be one of extraordinary power to cope with the hurdles which the enemy will set in its way. Jesus, in speaking to the apostles just before His resurrection, gave them some idea of the preparation which precedes an evangelist going into “all the world.”

Acts 1:8, “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judeae, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

Jamaica is my Jerusalem, but for you, some of my readers, it might be your Judea, Samaria, or the uttermost part of the earth.

There is a deep revelation in this, which is the reason behind this instruction.

Where you are born is your Jerusalem (where you grew up). The people of your town, county and country who know not God submit to that prince of devils which rules over that part of the world. For you to preach the Gospel effectively in your own hometown, state or country, you must first overcome this devil to a marked degree. After this is done, God will lead you to the area of a neighboring spirit (not necessarily geographically), one allied to the type of sin that overcomes your people.

When you have overcome this Judean spirit, then God will lead you on to also battle and overcome the Samaritan spirit, the spirit of witchcraft.

After you have gained these three notches in your gun, the Lord will lead you into all the World.

Whenever this process of training is not accomplished in the life of the evangelist – that is, he went without being directly sent of God – then he generally makes shipwreck, and sometimes causes a lot of heartache and confusion in the body.

(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 75-76)

Thought for today: For you to preach the Gospel effectively in your own hometown, state or country, you must first overcome the prince of devils which rules over that part of the world to a marked degree.

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