Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Salvation’

[Printable version]

Scripture reading: Matthew 5:48

Today, I would like us to talk about sin. Most of the sin comes with our relationships with one another. The manifestation is in how you think of other people; how you think of the other human beings; how you think of your brother and your sister. When you see Jesus concerning these things, when you come into His presence, you will realize that your thinking is not right.

In Joel 2:23 God said, “I will send you the latter rain and the former rain in the first month.” Oh, yes! “I will send it to you.” But, brethren, do you know that we are stopping God? We are stopping God from doing what He has to do. If our salvation, or our coming to church, or whatever we do, is not bringing us to the point of repentance, then we are working in vain. It is an exercise in futility. Believe me, it is an exercise in futility.

You come to church; you have a form of godliness; you praise God; you sing; you feel good; you go home. You come back to church; you praise again; you sing; you feel good. You do it again and again, year after year! There must be repentance. There must be a change. People must come forth and begin to do what God wants them to do!

If my car operated like how we operate as Christians, I would never get places! Some parts would say, “Well, I don’t like how the other part is working so I am not going to work with them.” What happens next is that I jam up on the road and have to call the wrecker! All because one little senseless part did not work. But God has given us the power to do and to work; and those who are not functioning should begin to function! It took us so many years to come to that point of understanding. Everybody wants to preach! But nobody listens. We need to begin to submit to the Spirit of God, but the FIRST thing we need is repentance! You say, “All right, I am ready to repent. Tell me what I must repent for?” The first thing that you repent for is being like you are.

I am not satisfied. You are not satisfied. God is not satisfied! It is too long a time that I have been what I am! God says, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect” (Matthew 5:48). I do not see perfection and I am not “happy.” I am happy for what God is doing. I praise God for His mercies; when I think of the goodness of Jesus, my soul cries out “hallelujah! Thank God for saving grace.” But when I think of me – “What have I done with what God has given me?” – I am not satisfied!

I am asking you, brethren, to get into a mind of repentance and to ask God, “Where have I failed You?” “Why am I not satisfied in myself that I am all that God wants me to be? How can I do more for God?” I am not talking about works. I am talking about something that is coming from inside to outside. “Where can I be more transparent so that the glory of God shines out of me?”

I was talking recently about Charles Finney. He was one of the great preachers that God blessed the Church with in the 1800’s, coming onto 1900’s. A man invited him to his factory. He was showing him the beautiful factory – the machines and everybody working. Finney started walking from the back and as he passed each machine, the operator fell to the floor. When he came out, the whole factory was on the floor repenting. He did not say a word.

There was another man who described his experience with Finney. He went to mock him. Several men got together and said, “Let us go out and see that foolish man. Let us have a good time of fun.” So they went out to have a good time of fun. They rode up on a hill and as they were coming down, they saw Finney in a pasture preaching to the people. The man said he saw the people carrying on, but because they were so far away, they could not hear what was going on. As they started to laugh at what they saw, this man felt himself slipping off his horse. He tried to keep himself up, but “Bam!” to the ground he fell. When his companions saw it, they spurred their horses, took off and got away. But Finney got this man and he became a great preacher himself.

We are talking about what is in your heart. A heart that is pure! A mind stayed on God (see Isaiah 26:3)! Every evil thought that comes to you, rebuke it! “Oh God, I do not want to think that about my brother. I do not want to see the bad things about him. I DO NOT WANT IT!” That way you will have your HEART STAYED ON GOD! Do you know what happens? God begins to manifest through you without you saying one word!

I remember the days when we used to do evangelistic work. Mavis and I would pray and say, “Lord God, we want six souls tonight.” When we went to the meeting, there were only three people present so we could not get six souls. But no sooner than we started praising God, people walked in right from the street and fell at the altar. Oh, yes! They would come in and fall at the altar. Every single night! We were having meetings every night and every single night people would come in and fall at the altar. You know, there is a church now in that place where we preached and it has over five thousand people. God blessed it and I do not know if the revival has ever stopped.

I heard a story about Wigglesworth. A woman was praying for her husband. He was as wild as a deer; he would not listen to God or anyone. Wigglesworth had stayed at the house for the night. When he was ready to leave the next day, the woman said, “But you have not prayed for my husband! He is still not saved.” Wigglesworth just replied, “The bed. The bed.” The woman did not understand what he meant, but when her husband went to lie down on the bed, he was tormented. He could not help himself and got saved! Do you know what happened? Wigglesworth had lain down on the bed and prayed to God Almighty that He would take hold of this man. God honored his word so much that when the man lay down on the bed, the Spirit of God got hold of him. Glory to God!

Be like that! You have the capacity. You have the ability. You have the Spirit of the Lord. Believe God and it will come to pass. But repent first. If you want this power of God, then repent. Amen.

(Excerpt from The Omega Message, December 1998, pg. 11-13)

Thought for today: “Lord God, give us a spirit to be able to come before the throne of grace and lay down our hearts. Loose us from the chains that bind us; chains that enmesh us like cobwebs and ensnare and even prevent us from repenting! Bring us to repentance, Lord God, we pray.” Let us cry to God and ask Him to take us – body, soul, and spirit – and quicken us and deliver us. “Lord God, bring us into the place that You want us to be in today. Amen.”

Read Full Post »

[Printable version]

Scripture reading: Judges 11:29-40

In the book of Judges, Jephthah, a judge of Israel, swore to God to give as an offering the first thing that met him on his return from a victorious battle. His beloved and only daughter met him and he had to give her to the Lord.

His character was under severe testing. He did not flinch or say. “Lord, I did not mean this.” He just turned her over to God, and since we know that God does not accept human sacrifice, then this scripture could only mean that she was given to God as a bond servant of the temple for the rest of her life.

Numbers 30:2, “If a man vow a vow unto the Lord, or swear an oath to bind his soul with a bond; he shall not break his word, he shall do according to all that proceedeth out of his mouth.”

When one reads a law as the above, the first thought which comes is, “What relationship does this have to us and our time?” The Scripture says that the law was a school-master to bring us unto Christ. When therefore we come to Christ, we do not destroy the Law. Through Christ in me I will not become a Covenant breaker. My vows at Baptism – that I will follow the Lord in death, burial and resurrection – are kept by the power of the Holy Ghost.

Paul describes “Covenant Breakers” as one of the signs of the end-time and in our time we have seen some of the greatest examples of Covenant Breakers – Hitler for instance, signed a non-aggression pact with Russia while he was preparing to attack them. More recently Russia signed a S.A.L.T. treaty with the West and has broken almost every line of it. Nearer to home – husbands and wives make matrimonial vows to one another and break them in record numbers all over the world today.

Let us return unto the Lord, to our vows of salvation, our vows of baptism, and our vows to follow the Lord wherever He goes. Let us recommit ourselves to our families and to the family of God.

(Excerpt from The Omega Message, October 1983)

Thought for today: Let us return unto the Lord and keep the covenants we have vowed unto Him.

Read Full Post »

[Printable version]

Scripture reading: 1 Peter 1:12

God could not allow any human being to go to hell without having rejected Jesus. When you preach to people you must have this consciousness and this understanding. When you preach to a man, he does not have to say, “Yes, I accept Jesus,” at that moment. But you are putting him in a position that between your time with him and his death he is going to meet Jesus face to face and will have to say, “Yes, I accept Him.” Do you know what happens? You, the preacher, come right before him at the moment of his death. The witness that you give to a human being will last with him forever until he reaches the end of life. That witness will come back to him just as powerful as you gave it. This is why we must obey the Spirit. Don’t look for results. What about Brother Noah? He more than likely thought that he had no results. But Noah must have been the greatest evangelist in the entire world. His witness saved millions of people for eternity! We will never know how many until we reach heaven and begin to look up the records. He thought his preaching was in vain, but God said, “Preach!” and he just kept preaching. He visibly saved eight souls and thought, “Well, Lord Jesus, when I get to heaven my crown will only have eight little stars.” Then he was surprised. You also are going to be very surprised. That is why it is so absolutely necessary to remain in the perfect will of God. I will tell you something about that.

You are working with spirits that are working in conjunction with you. There are certain things that you can do but spirits cannot. Spirits cannot preach the gospel. They don’t know as much as you in the gospel. In 1 Peter 1 it says that the angels are inquiring about the message that God is giving you, the Church. He speaks about the prophets having received this great message but having to preach in the dark because they did not know what they were preaching. Yet they were not preaching to the people who lived then, they were preaching to us, who were not yet born. Would you like a job like that? Having to preach to a congregation who isn’t yet born? But this is what is happening.

In 1 Peter 1:12 it says, “Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.”

The things of God are being revealed to the Church. The revelation of the Spirit is to the Church and not to the angels. The worse part about it – or the best part about it – is that we have the Church divided into two. One part of the Church is in the spirit, in the heavenlies with Jesus, and another part of the Church (the militant Church) must meet the devil and fight him face to face on earth as the heavenly people cannot fight the devil.

(Excerpt from The Omega Message, February 1978)

Thought for today: The witness that you give to a human being will last with him forever until he reaches the end of life and this is why we must obey the Spirit.

Read Full Post »

[Printable version]

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.

Read Full Post »

[Printable version]

Scripture reading: John 3:16-19

The responsibility of salvation is not upon humanity, but it is upon God to provide a means of escape from this awful condition into which we were born. The people in this age, since Jesus came, must hear of God. If they never hear of God, God cannot send them to hell. No man can go to hell if he has never heard of God, or never heard of salvation, or never heard of Jesus Christ. You say that there are so many heathen, so many people! God will preach salvation to these people and set them free wherever they are, even without a preacher. God will preach to the unborn babe, the child in the womb (Luke 1:41), to anyone. He will give life to those whom He knows will accept it, even before they can accept it.

In Psalm 139:13-16, David speaks to God concerning the time before he was born and how God had put His hand upon him in the womb. “For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.” This verse tells us of a prenatal operation of God. God operates on people even before they are born. Because God is God, He can do anything. He can preach to a child who we cannot even communicate with. He can speak to an unconscious person. He can speak to a person who to us is uncommunicative; yet to Him, He can have dialogue with that person.

God has His voice in dark corners of the earth. The Word is being preached and is going forth.

Men will be judged according to the light which they have received. God is not in the business of sending people to hell. He is in the business of salvation. “And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil,” John 3:19. Salvation is dependent upon the individual, because God is giving to each person. If ever a man lived and is about to die and has not received the knowledge of God, the responsibility rests upon Jesus Christ to stop him at the gates of death and to give him an opportunity of accepting life or accepting death.

The thief on the cross is the best example of this. He probably did not have an opportunity before, but then God opened his eyes just before he went into death, and he saw Jesus, and turned to Him and said, “Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.” Jesus said unto him, “To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.” “Paradise,” of course, meant down in hell where Jesus was going. The thief had an opportunity there of accepting Jesus. Jesus Christ “preached unto the spirits in prison,” and “led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men,” and the thief on the cross was one of the first who received that gift. (See 1 Peter 3:18-20 and Ephesians 4:8-9.)

(Excerpt from The Book of Revelation, Volume 2, pages 86-87)

Thought for today: We are just instruments in the hand of God. It is God’s responsibility to draw men unto Him.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »