Every believer needs to be discipled. Each one of us needs someone to encourage us, teach us, share our life with us, hold us accountable, lead us, and generally help us to grow and mature and become all that God wants us to be and then do all that He wants us to do for Him. Read more
Jesus born in a crib was “born King” as the Wise Men had discovered. They came to the ruler of that area of the Roman Empire and asked “Where is he who was born king of the Jews?” So, we must not separate His crib from the cross and from the crown that He received as King of kings. Read more
To understand the birth of Christ and its eternal repercussions and benefits we must connect the crib to the cross. The birth of Jesus who is “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14) makes little sense and has no earth-shattering and eternity-altering meaning unless we connect His birth to His death. God came and was born as a babe in Bethlehem and became one of us (a human being) so He could then die for us as the one and only perfect human to have ever lived. Because He was a spotless and perfect sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins His death on the cross brought and bought forgiveness and cleansing of all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9) for all who believe and receive Him (John 3:16). Read more
We are now on the home stretch to the celebration of the birth of Christ or what theologians call the Incarnation – God becoming a human being and becoming one with us. It is an amazing season of revelation in the Church calendar as we look at the gift of God – His Son – and the meaning of His birth so long ago in Bethlehem. Definitely an event of earth-shaking proportions that continues to have major repercussions today. Read more
The church was never conceived by God to be driven by duty. It was designed to be driven by desire. We are to be motivated by a sincere desire to please the Head of the Church who is Jesus. This will, of course, include a desire to fulfill His last command and to complete the work that He came to accomplish – seek and save the lost. Our walk with Him is one of love. We obey because we love Him. We are rooted and grounded in His love as disciples. Faith works by love and, of course, love covers a multitude of sin. Love is the soil in which a healthy church grows and moves forward. Our life as disciples should never be driven by duty and should always be moving forward because of His love. Read more
In many places in many nations I ask sincere born again Christians to come to the front and share the Gospel in such a way that a non-believer can understand the message of the Church and the need to be born again. Every time – and I mean every time – the Gospel is presented in such a way that it really makes no sense to a non-Christian and is even confusing to the believer. In several cases I was not sure the person was saved. In one case I questioned my own salvation due to the frustration and other feelings I was experiencing at the end of the sharing. Most Christians can’t do it! They cannot share the Gospel in a manner that allows the Gospel to be understood by others – Christian or non-Christian. These people are born again. Read more
Today the Lord is looking for people whose hearts are sold out to Him and whose lifestyle indicate that they are serious about following Him regardless of where He might lead them or what it will cost them in time, effort or money. These are people who love the Lord with their whole hearts; people who have taken the time to build a good relationship with Him and who know their God so that they are now able to move out and do mighty exploits (see Daniel 11:32). Read more
1. How to maintain apostolic authority yet allowing local government to operate?
2. How and when to intervene in local churches in the midst of difficulty?
3. What does “set first” mean? I Corinthians 12:28
4. What does hierarchy mean as compared to headship?
There are so many things today that define us – some of them you can buy in a store or on-line while others just kinda happen to you where you live. The car you drive, the jeans you wear, the music you listen to, the church you attend, the holidays plans you make, the friends you hang with. I see it in nation after nation – believers, even disciples, being defined by their environment (culture and society) or their church and its leaders. Afterall, the way we dress, present ourselves, live and worship (outside expressions) are truly an expression of who we believe we are (inside).
Everywhere I go I see this – teenager guys in every nation wear their jeans around their knees revealing their underwear; certain brand names are in while others are not; a certain look (like Metro man) is in with worship and youth leaders; you are really relevant if you drink (and even like) Starbucks coffee; the current Christian fad determines the music we play on Sunday… It does not make a difference, it seems, which nation you live in – the world is becoming one and people are allowing so many different things to define who they are.
As I have begun to think about and sort through thoughts and impressions the last apostolic trip overseas and my ministry in 5 Russian cities I have been thinking about this and it has bothered me somewhat. We, as disciples, must come to the point where THE GOSPEL IS WHAT DEFINES US! and not the world, the flesh or the devil. Then we can truly be different (a good different – not weird or wacko) and relevant.
But here is the problem! A lot of disciples really do not know what the Gospel is. They have a seriously inadequate understanding of the Gospel. And, not knowing the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth has allowed them to form a soul gospel. A soul gospel is made up of ideas and beliefs from our culture, peers, trends in society, what we are taught by the educational system, the latest bandwagon in the church we attend; it includes what we think, what we feel and even what we want. Our personal opinion and approach to life also determines what this soul gospel will look and sound like.
Then we say that we believe the Gospel when really we are following our own gospel and thus a god that we have created in our own image. And we wonder why God is not answering our prayers; why no one wants to listen when we witness; and why few are getting saved through us. I don’t wonder – I know! We need to allow the Gospel (the real Gospel) define who we are and thus how we live life and what we share with others.
It is time, therefore, to pull down strongholds that we have allowed our minds to build up (2 Corinthians 10:4-6), to rediscover the real Gospel and let it define who we are and thus how we live. It is time!
God has given us power – His power when the Holy Spirit came upon us and we were baptized in the Holy Spirit and received the gifts of private tongues and prophecy; power to do as He calls us to do – reach out to those who are in need and touch them supernaturally and powerfully.
Never forget, this power is to enable us to seek and save the lost. God will heal and deliver those who are unbelievers and skeptics because He wants to demonstrate that Jesus is alive and that Jesus cares. He does this through each of us – if we will let Him.
We have the power; all we need to do now is release it and let it flow. Jesus said that “rivers of living waters would flow from our inner person or our spirit” (John 7) and I say, ‘Let the river flow, Lord!’ And He will when we let Him know we are sincerely interesting in being used powerfully to heal and deliver those who are oppressed of the Devil just as He did (Acts 10:38) and still wants to do through us – His Church today.
So, step out in faith. Ask people if you can pray for them. Believe that when you do supernatural things will happen and people will be impacted, touched, healed, delivered, and permanently changed – changed forever. Every day ask God to use you. Every day release the power and say, ‘Holy Spirit, flow through me and use me today.’ And be prepared to see miracles, signs and wonders. God will not disappoint.