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Archive for the ‘The Covenant’ Category

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Scripture reading: John 3:3-8, Matthew 3:11

Have you ever thought of what baptism really is? Baptism is a covenant that the believer makes with God. It is permanent. It is a death, a burial, and a resurrection. The thing that dies is not the thing that rises. The thing that rises is a Christ thing. The man’s heart, his mind, his soul, and his behavior must change radically. It is not “Oh, I got changed yesterday.” No sir, it is a continuous change, a gradual change. The ugly caterpillar goes into a chrysalis and changes, changes, changes, until he undergoes his metamorphosis and becomes a beautiful butterfly. Until that day, the change is yet continuing, or should continue.

However, this change is arrested, retarded, or stopped by some of the church doctrines that we have. The believer is no longer functioning under God, for he has not made CHRIST HIS LORD. Jesus is my Saviour, oh yes. I did not have to do anything. All I needed to be saved by Jesus was to be a sinner which I did not do; I was born that way. Born a sinner, Jesus saves you, and now you must turn around and make a covenant with Him that you will follow Him all the way. That is baptism. Outside of this, there is no baptism. You could be wet with water until you continuously drip. You will not be baptized unless that consciousness has come to you.

Some of you have been baptized and feel if you go down in the name of Jesus (someone said “Jesus” over you) and come up again, you are made perfect. You are mistaken. Those of you who believe that you are baptized to become a member of a church and get the right hand of fellowship when you are baptized, YOU ARE NOT BAPTIZED. You must make the covenant with God and then go down in the water. That is baptism and you must know what you are doing. Baptism has the following three steps: Water, Holy Spirit, and Christ. Man baptizes you in water, Jesus baptizes you in the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit baptizes you into Christ. That brings you into the holy place.

There is the outer court, the holy place, and then you are still going on further. You are going into the holy of holies where the overshadowing of God will deliver you from all harm. Psalm 91:1 says, “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” You will go into the ark of the covenant, where you become a permanent part of God.

(Excerpt from The Book of Revelation, Volume 2, pg. 4-5)

Thought for today: Baptism is a covenant that requires continual change until our metamorphosis is complete and we are fully changed into the image and likeness of God.

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Scripture reading: Acts 16:19-34

“…Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”  (Acts 16:31)

“AND THY HOUSE.” The jailer had only asked for salvation for himself, but Paul offered him also for his whole household. Upon what authority was this offer made and was it biblical? It was upon the authority of Exodus 28. Of all the apostles of the Lamb, Paul was more versed in the typology of the Law and its meaning in Christ than any other. In verse 33, he baptized the whole family. This was no exception—this was the rule.

The jailer was the priest of his family, just as it was in the whole Jewish society that the head of the family was considered the priest of that family and he was spiritually accountable before God for his family. Upon the authority of this word therefore, Paul and Silas baptized the jailer and his whole family.

When the jailer knelt before God, the Lord saw his whole family represented and the curse of sin was removed from the family at that moment. The spiritual principle underlying this is that we are a covenant people. God has established His covenant with us through His Son as our High Priest so that all those with whom we have covenant, He recognizes them as covenanting with Him by proxy. When the devil takes a family, he has power over the third and fourth generation of those who are disobedient. The blood covenant of Jesus Christ with us makes our families blood-covenanted to Christ by proxy. As it was in the old Levitical covenant, the priest would go into the Holy of Holies once every year with the blood of the lamb and when his sins were forgiven all of Israel’s were also forgiven.

In our experience, we see God moving among our families. When one gets saved, then there is a domino effect and God begins to move in the whole family, especially and first among those who are obedient and willing, but even the unwilling are moved by the mercies of God. In the case of my own family, God saved me first, then my brother, then my sister and their families, then another brother’s family, then another brother, then my father and my mother. In my wife’s family the same thing is occurring and also in our children and their families, and the process still continues. There are some basic reasons for this, but it must be made clear that before God a covenant is a very serious matter.

The covenant must be exercised; it cannot be assumed that it will work without exercising it. I am sure most of us have stories of how God moves in our families. This is no coincidence. For those who do not have these stories of salvation of their families, then be assured they are in the making for God will honor his word.

(Excerpt from The Omega Message, October 1990, pg. 6-8)

Thought for today: Remember that the promise of salvation is not only to you but also to your house. Do not get discouraged by what you see today with your natural eyes. Exercise this family covenant and take God at His Word. You will NOT be disappointed.

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Scripture reading: Exodus 12:1-14

God moves in His people through the families. He ordained the family structure for His own purpose. It is the will of God that we do not go to heaven alone, but that we should take our families with us; and He makes it a responsibility of each born-again family member. In Exodus 12:3, we read:

“Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house.”

The word “a lamb for an house” tells us that God expected the head of each family to be responsible for the saving of the life of his own household, because the death angel would be passing through that night, and any household that did not have the blood on the door, their firstborn would be slain. It is important for us to understand that in a spiritual sense God holds every head of a household responsible for his family. Therefore, when we appear before the Lord we cannot say as the murderous Cain did, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” because God is saying to us, “Yes! You are your brother’s keeper!” and we had better know it and recognize it before it is too late.

In reading this chapter in Exodus, we see that the lamb is to be chosen on the tenth day and slain on the fifteenth. The type and shadow of the Word of God says that this lamb did not choose himself or volunteer for the position, but even as God chose Israel, He is now choosing a lamb for each household. We now stand in the breach for the family, then we will be called to stand in the breach for the Body of Christ (spiritual family), and then we will be called, chosen, and made worthy to stand in the breach for the world.

(Excerpt from The Omega Message, October 1990, pg. 1)

Thought for today: If you have been washed by the Blood of Jesus Christ, you have become a lamb for your family. Stand in the breach so that they, too, may find their Savior. And as you are faithful in this matter, He will surely make you worthy to stand in the breach for the world.

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Scripture reading: Psalm 23:1-5

God is a provider. There is provision in Him to cover all our weaknesses and to heal all our diseases.

Some who read these lines may be in grave physical danger as war and revolution sweep the earth; but remember, David faced danger every day of his life, and the Holy Spirit spoke through him more than any recorded writer, of the deliverance of God from the enemy.

Psalm 23:1-5, “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want: He maketh me to lie down in green pastures; He leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul; He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me; Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of my enemies: Thou anointest my head with oil; My cup runneth over.”

This and more represents the response of overshadowing which God gives to the church, as she moves in the Spirit. The embroidery covering in the structure of the Tabernacle of Moses is symbolic of all this.

(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 87)

Thought for today: We have provision in God to cover all our weaknesses and to heal all our diseases.

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Scripture reading: Matthew 3:11 & 1 Corinthians 12:13

Water Baptism is an act of Covenant, just as a Marriage Ceremony. When we accepted Jesus Christ as our Saviour, there was no cost accrual to us. Our salvation was bought and paid for by The Blood of Jesus Christ. Now that we are Christians, God is asking us to reciprocate. If we want to be a part of the Body of Christ, our first act would be to make a covenant with the Body of Christ, or in other words, declare our loyalty and love by some act of our will. We, therefore, must renounce the former things, and declare our stand for Christ, thus becoming dead to sin and alive unto God.

  1. Natural – Matthew 3:11
    Baptism in water
    Baptizer is man
  2. Spirit – Matthew 3:11
    Baptism in Holy Ghost
    Baptizer is Jesus
  3. Fullness – 1st Corinthians 12:13
    Baptism into Christ
    Baptizer is Holy Ghost

As the chart shows, let us look at the three dimensions which God has ordained for us to operate.

(1) NATURAL – The First dimension is always the natural. Every principle of God is first given to us in the natural. If we allow our understanding to remain in the natural, then it has no real meaning, since the natural will pass away, and at best is temporary. THE NATURAL BAPTISM, THEN, IS IN WATER, AND PERFORMED BY A HUMAN PERSON.

(2) SPIRITUAL – The Second dimension is always spiritual. The spiritual, therefore, is the real purpose for the natural, and it is upon a higher plane. The spiritual baptism is called the Baptism of the Holy Ghost. This is the entering in of the Holy Spirit into the spirit of the individual. In this baptism, instead of being covered over with water, one is covered over with the Holy Spirit, inside and outside. The pattern, however, was laid by the water baptism. Just as the water covered the believer, so also the Holy Spirit covers him, and the Baptizer is Christ Himself.

(3) FULLNESS – The Third dimension is the absolute fulfillment of both natural and spiritual. If we then understand the water baptism, then we will easily understand what the fullness of baptism will be. In this baptism, we are immersed into Christ by the Holy Spirit. Hebrews 6:2 speaks of “baptisms, while Ephesians 4:5 tells us that there is only “one baptism. These are reconciled when we understand that in the one there are three. Matthew 3:11 tells us that John the Baptist baptized with water, but Jesus would baptize with the Holy Ghost and fire. That gives us the scripture for the first two. The third is found in 1st Corinthians 12:13, where it states that the Holy Spirit baptizes us into Christ.

An example would be in order at this point. There was a natural man named Israel, and he produced a people named Israel. If this was the end of the story, then it would be a sad one indeed, but the natural Israel produced a man named Jesus Christ, who became the Saviour and Lord of a spiritual nation, and then some of the promises which it was impossible for natural Israel to walk in, the spiritual Israel are walking in. However, this spiritual Israel is just as unsatisfactory before God as the natural Israel. God, therefore, must bring another Israel to be made out of both, which He calls Zion (The Body of Christ), which will be the perfection of Beauty.

(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 56-57)

Thought for today: We, therefore, must renounce the former things, and declare our stand for Christ, thus becoming dead to sin and alive unto God.

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