HOLY SPIRIT POWER

“The Spirit of a man is the lamp of the Lord, searching all the inner depths of his heart.” Proverbs 20:27

A lamp requires oil to function. The Holy Spirit is the oil. You must be born again with the Holy Spirit to be holy, to function as God intended.

Man’s Spirit was always meant to be the vessel for the Holy Spirit, to produce the fruit of the Spirit in man; love, joy, peace patience, faithfulness, goodness, gentleness, kindness and self control.

Listen to Dave Wilkerson talk on Getting to Know the Power of the Holy Spirit.

THE VOICE OF TRUTH WILL NOT BE SILENCED

Be bold and truthful says Pastor Shane Idleman. The world wants to silence preachers of God’s Word. Sadly much of the church has abandoned God’s Word, denying its inerrancy, its inspiration by the Holy Spirit.

Fortunately, Jesus told us in Matthew 24:14 that “the major sign of His coming and the close of the age” will be:

“And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then the end will come” Matthew 24:14

The climax of the age will not be brought about by the actions of secular government or military power, nor by the floods of satanic deception and lawlessness. The final decisive activity will be the preaching of the gospel of the Kingdom accomplished by the church of Jesus Christ.

Quoting from Derek Prince in “Shaping history through prayer and fasting”

Scripture is very precise about the message that will be preached in the last days. It is to be the gospel of the Kingdom. It sets forth Christ in His kingly victory and power. It will be true and effective witness to all nations.

“Where the word of a king is, there is power.” Ecclesiastes 8:4

“For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.” 1 Corinthians 4:20

The kingdom gospel is supernaturally attested “with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit ,,, Hebrews 2:4

The “last days church” will be like the church described in the Book of Acts. “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Acts 1:8

God will bring together the various resources that are needed: the human resources of Spirit filled people of all ages but particularly young people, and the material resources of wealth and technology.

 

DOES GOD SPEAK TO US AUDIBLY TODAY?

J.D. Greear, the new president of the Southern Baptist Convention, said God and the Holy Spirit can still audibly speak to believers today and are not limited to speaking through Scripture. His remarks came during a video interview with The Gospel Coalition.

Greear seems to moderate his comments later in the video, noting “we shouldn’t expect that we’re going to hear from God the way the Apostles did” and cautioning against the dangers of proclaiming “God just told me.” Yet though he affirms the primacy of the Bible, he acknowledges the Bible is ambiguous about the ways God can speak to us and says he would never place God in a box about what He could do today.

This is encouraging to know the leader of a major church denomination acknowledges the role of the Holy Spirit in the church today as it was in the early Book of Acts church.

HOW ARE YOU LIVING YOUR LIFE?

Do you live by human wisdom and worldly power?

Jesus Christ did not leave us to live out this human existence in our own wisdom and power. Jesus made it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the Holy Spirit to indwell all believers. This is what it means to be born again and enables us to walk in true power beyond human reasoning.

Paul in 1 Corinthians 2: 1-2, 5 confesses to the Corinthians that he knew lofty words or brilliant ideas would not convince anyone of the truth of Christ. Rather, he focused solely on the cross of Christ with simple words and language. Everything else was up to the power of the Holy Spirit. Paul knew it was futile to trust in human wisdom. Yet much of church culture—has lost that heart of dependence on God alone. We build our programs and train our leaders to cater to the consumer mentality of attracting people through creativity or entertainment. We forget that our human wisdom is so limited and naive. Jesus Christ is the way the truth and the life. By His work on the Cross, our Heavenly Father has sent the Holy Spirit to be our Counsellor, Teacher and Comforter. He will guide our steps, produce the fruit of the Spirit in our lives: love, joy peace, faithfulness, kindness, gentleness, goodness and self control. He will also provide all nine gifts of the Spirit for ministry as we need them.

Jesus wants to live His life through us by the power of the Holy Spirit. Will you submit to the Holy Spirit’s leading in your life or will you quench His work and grieve Him?

Pray accordingly for yourself, family and the church.

 

GOD HONOURS PRAYER & FASTING

Be encouraged by this 13 minute video of what has happened in Bourke (remote town in the”outback” of Australia)  largely with the indigenous people as a result of prayer and fasting and being involved in the 40 Days of Prayer and Fasting Movement in 2017. Check out their website http://www.nationaldayofprayer.org.au 

Now 12 Months later good things are still happening in Bourke. The churches are working together in new ways and are experiencing renewed favour in the community. The broader community is working together as never before. Crime rates are the lowest they have been for ten years. 

When did you and your church last participate with other churches in prayer and fasting for your community and the nation? It’s time.

GET EQUIPPED FOR CHURCH IN THE LAST DAYS

Be encouraged by what God is doing through the Last Reformation movement. Church as described in the Book of Acts is what will survive and stay strong in the face of tribulation. Young people need to see the reality of God as described here. All of the gifts of the Holy Spirit will be operating in the “last days” church.

A MESSAGE FOR CHRISTIAN SENIORS.

Fruitful Seniors

“And now, here I am this day, eighty-five years old. As yet I am as strong this day as on the day that Moses sent me; just as my strength was then, so now is my strength for war, both for going out and for coming in.”
Joshua 14:10-11

Like Joshua, Caleb was such a senior. The Bible says in his 85th year he was as strong as he was 45 years earlier when Moses sent him, along with Joshua and 10 other men, to spy out the land of Canaan (Numbers 13). All the men were likely fit at age 40—after all, they had just walked from Egypt through the wilderness to Kadesh. But how many were just as fit 45 years later?

Joshua and Caleb

Perhaps Caleb was inspired by Moses who died at 120 years: “His eyes were not dim nor his natural vigour diminished” (Deuteronomy 34:7).

Our senior years should be as fruitful and productive as our younger years.

Be a good steward of your health. Plan on being able to serve God faithfully, until He calls you home. Retirement is not Biblical.

God will empower you to do the work, He calls you to do. Christians; you already have the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit received when you were born again. Jesus paid the price to redeem you, so your Heavenly Father could send the Holy Spirit to produce the “fruit of the Spirit” in your life, and to give you the gifts of the Holy Spirit as needed for ministry. You are the temple of the Holy Spirit. Is He directing your path, your steps? Notice all three persons of the Trinity were involved in your redemption.

At 81, I know in my own strength I can do nothing of eternal value. You need to come to that place of total dependence on Him then God can use you. I guess it is easier at 81, to not be concerned with worldly agendas, but it is amazing how easy it is for the enemy to get you side tracked with things that look good, even ministry focused, but not God’s call. “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:17

 

CHURCH AS GOD INTENDED IT TO BE

Cornerstone Church in Simi Valley, California, was drawing around 5,000 people and growing in 2010. But Francis Chan felt the megachurch he founded was not as God intended it to be.

Francis Chan, a bestselling author who heads We Are Church, speaks at the Facebook headquarters in California, June 22, 2017.

“I got frustrated at a point, just biblically, Chan said. “According to the Bible, every single person in the church has a supernatural gift that’s meant to be used for the body. And I’m like 5,000 people show up every week to hear my gift, see my gift. That’s a lot of waste. Then I started thinking how much does it cost to run this thing? Millions of dollars!”

“So I’m wasting the human resource of these people that according to Scripture have a miraculous gift that they could contribute to the body but they’re just sitting there quietly. … [T]hey just sit there and listen to me.”

Moreover, he felt the church wasn’t following God’s command to love one another — attendees would simply greet each other for 30 seconds and mainly hang out in cliques once a week.

“I was like, ‘God, you wanted a church that was known for their love. You wanted a group of people where everyone was expressing their gifts. … We’re a body. I’m one member, maybe I’m the mouth. But if the mouth is the only thing that’s working and … I’m trying to drag the rest of the body along, chewing on the carpet …”

His decision in 2010 to leave Cornerstone — which he started in his living room — came as a shock to many, including fellow evangelical pastors. In his announcement to the congregation at that time, he said he had been feeling a restlessness and stirring to let go of the megachurch and take on a new adventure.

He also indicated that he was wary of being “comfortable.”

In his talk at Facebook last week, he offered more details about why he made that decision to leave, including a desire to get away from the pride he began to feel as his book, Crazy Love, became a bestseller and as he became a popular sought-after speaker.

“I freaked out during that time in my life,” Chan recalled. “The pride … [going to] a conference and seeing my face on a magazine … and hearing whispers … and walking in the room and actually liking it.”

At one point, Chan felt convicted and realized he became everything he didn’t want to be. “Everything you (God) said you hated, that’s me right now,” he realized. “I gotta get out of here. I’m losing my soul.”

Chan stressed to the Facebook group that God hates pride and that one can easily lose humility.

Today, Chan leads a house church movement in San Francisco called We Are Church. There are currently 14 to 15 house churches, he said, and 30 pastors (two pastors per church) — all of whom do it for free. Each church is designed to be small so it’s more like family where members can actually get to know one another, love one another and make use of their gifts.

“We’ve got a few hundred people now and it costs nothing,” Chan explained. “And everyone’s growing and everyone’s having to read this book (Bible) for themselves and people actually caring for one another. I don’t even preach. They just meet in their homes, they study, they pray, they care for one another. They’re becoming the church and I’m just loving it and realising that these 30 guys [are] leading this and the women as well.”

The people who join include “guys coming off the streets, out of prison to doctors and people that work here (Facebook) or Google,” he said.

He’s hoping to double the number of house churches every year so that in 10 years, there would be 1.2 million people in We Are Church. And, he reiterated, it’s all free.

How would he compare the megachurch he once led to the current house church movement?

“This one guy put it like this: It’s like being adopted rather than being in an orphanage,” Chan said. “Church the way I was doing was like an orphanage. Here’s just a bunch of kids with one leader. And rather than saying ‘No, you know what, we’re going to put you in a home and these guys are going to actually know you and love you and care for you.’

“It’s just like family.”

Recalling a sober moment he had while at Cornerstone Church, Chan said he baptized a kid from a gang but that kid later left though he was quite involved in the church.

“One of my friends asked him, ‘Hey, how come you’re not at Cornerstone anymore?’ He said ‘I didn’t understand church. When I was baptised, I thought that was going to be being jumped into the gang where it’s like 24/7 they’re my family, because I didn’t know it was just somewhere we attend on Sundays.”

When Chan heard that, he said it made him sick.

“That makes me so sick that the gangs are a better picture of family than the church of Jesus Christ. I can’t live with that. … We’re going to do something different.”

While Chan said he loves what he’s doing now, he admitted that it wasn’t easy and that his former gig at the megachurch was easier in some aspects.

“Some days I think it was a lot easier when I could just preach, go back and drive off in my car and leave all of them like I will today,” he said to laughter among the Facebook employees. “I don’t have to care for your issues, you know? … I’ll never see you again.

“This is easy. But you have this circle here and you’re in each other’s lives and no offence, it’s not this Facebook — I can just put up what I want about myself. That’s kind of like the way church was. It’s like let me just show you this one side on Sunday morning and let me just show you the best pictures of me and my greatest accomplishments.

“But when it’s family, it gets messy. And you start finding out people’s dirt. Just like you know about your brother and sister every Thanksgiving. It’s messy because it’s family. That’s what Christ wanted. And so we fight for it. And it’s been a blast.”

As for what he does with all the money he earns through his bestselling books, Chan said he gives it all away.

He had prayed to God years ago, saying he was frustrated with the rich people in church who only give 5 to 10 percent of their money to church while living off millions. He prayed that God would either raise up a new generation of rich people who would actually live for eternity and give all their money away or make him rich.

“I’ll give it all away to show that you’re better than all of that,” Chan remembered praying. So when he surprisingly made a million dollars the next year through his book and continued to make more over the following years, he signed it all over to a charitable gift fund “so that I can’t even touch it. I can’t even buy lunch with the money … I can only give to charity.

“It’s been the best thing. Now I spend my days going and looking where are the needs around the world and how can I contribute to it?”