Them that believe…

Mark 16:17-18 (KJV)

17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

Mark 16:17-18 (AMP)

17 And these attesting signs will accompany those who believe: in My name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new languages;
18 They will pick up serpents; and [even] if they drink anything deadly, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will get well.

Mark 16:17-18 (DARBY)

17 And these signs shall follow those that have believed: in my name they shall cast out demons; they shall speak with new tongues;
18 they shall take up serpents; and if they should drink any deadly thing it shall not injure them; they shall lay hands upon the infirm, and they shall be well.

 WHAT IS A SIGN???
When I am driving down the road, I look for signs to point me in the direction I need to go as well as guide me to safety.

  Are we seeing these SIGNS in the church today?  OR are we witnessing a drawing near to the man of God/ woman of God rather than to Jesus, with a “wishin’ and a hopin'” rather than praying and fasting? We don’t believe because we see, we see because we believe…according to the Scripture.

The authority comes from Him.  We are given the privilege of using His Name and we have full access and privileges to withdraw from His accounts. Everything that He has done, we will do and more.  But we cannot represent God if we are not SUBMITTED and OBEDIENT. There is no way in heaven that you would give a disobedient and rebellious child access to your ATM card, credit card, or bank account.  You would in no way give an inconsistent, late, and absent employee the privilege of speaking on your behalf and using your name to secure new prospects.  You would never in a millenium offer a thief, a liar, or a murderer access to your home and children.  Yet, we see these errs all over…there is no mention of sin, only “issues”; no call for repentance, only “counseling”; and no accountability, only “fellowship”…wanting authority with no accountability, wanting privileges with no obedience, wanting power with no connection. If the sign does not point to Jesus then it is not a sign from God.  If we believe that a person who is gifted in deliverance is someone to be praised, then we are missing it.  If we come to see the man heal, but disregard the Healer, then we are idolators. All glory and honor and praise goes to the Lord!

The Scripture says these signs shall follow them that believe…
Christ did it.  The disciples did it.  All disciples are commanded to do it and believers are promised the POWER to do it.  These signs will NOT follow the doubter and unbeliever.  
FEAR NOT…

2 Timothy 1:7 (KJV)

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

I pray for signs, miracles and wonders.  But I do not celebrate the miracle, I worship the LORD and give glory to Him who is worthy of all honor and praise!  Too many services and gatherings are focused on the sign [i.e. healing, deliverance, etc.] rather than on the person of Jesus Christ.  And still others are focused on “helping” the Christian rather than calling on the Helper and honoring the Helper [the Holy Spirit] that He would manifest.  

ALL OF THIS is predicated by this one VERY important command:

Mark 16:15-16 (NKJV)

15 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.

The command was followed by this:

And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. 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 1:4-8

So the disciples were not sent out [whereby signs, miracles and wonders would follow] UNTIL they were baptized in the Holy Ghost [the POWER].  

I propose this:
What many are “believing” today is NOT the Gospel.  Yes, they believe He came.  Yes, they believe He died.  BUT, many do not believe in the resurrection and the work of the Holy Ghost.  The purpose of His death was the resurrection:  Love lives in us in the Holy Ghost!  Without His death, there could be no authority on the earth.  Flesh had to die so that the Spirit can live on!

See, if our authority comes from God, then revelation will be the proof…revelation of who He is and not who I am! We make assumptions about the “qualifying factors” of those in authority: strong will and determination, clever ideas and eloquent speeches; none of these stand for authority but they stand for the flesh.  A gift from God will not be received properly through a wounded vessel. Many of us are wounded, but not dead.  We are still fighting to hold on. Only those who have passed through death and been resurrected are recognized by God and given authority.  

Chew on this:

Hebrews 9:16-17 (NKJV)

16 For where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. 17 For a testament is in force after men are dead, since it has no power at all while the testator lives.

Pamela
pam@jordanranch.org
 







 

Advertisements

Positioning Yourself for Greatness

When I was in high school, I honestly did not have an aspiration or a dream…I didn’t consider “what I would be when I grow up” because I wasn’t sure I would make it to tomorrow.  My desire was to get out of the den of danger, fear, and web of anxiety.

I was never a dreamer.  My imagination did not run wild…I was under the impression that even if I tried to dream someone would come along and kill it.  My mode was survival.  I had no other gear except 4 wheel drive…maximum torque transfer. 

I am reading an awesome book right now called “Spiritual Authority” by Watchman Nee.  I want to expound on something he relays in his discussion of Philippians 2:5-11. Watchman Nee writes:

Let us remove our shoes and stand on holy ground as we review this Scripture.  It seems as though at the beginning a council was held within the Godhead.  God conceived a plan to create the universe.  In that plan the Godhead agreed to have authority represented by the Father. But authority cannot be established in the universe without obedience, since it cannot exist alone.  God must therefore find obedience in the universe.  Two living beings were created: angels (spirits) and men (living souls).  According to His foreknowledge God foresaw the rebellion of the angels and the fall of men; hence He was unable to establish His authority in angels or in the Adamic race.  Consequently, within the Godhead perfect accord was reached that authority would be answered by obedience in the Son. 


Man sinned and rebelled, so the authority of God must be built on man’s obedience.  Here comes JESUS!!!


In order to establish His authority and dominion on earth over ALL things [without the slightest hint of rebellion], Jesus came as a man and walked step by step in obedience to the Father…AS A HUMAN…just like us. In this way, He was made LORD over all and established God’s authority.  

Now, GOD could have forced His way and reclaimed authority over all with annihilation and brute power, but then where would our example of obedience lie?  See, Jesus could have been the sacrifice without the obedience, but would it have meant as much…




 IS GREATER 
THAN

 When I read the passage in Philippians, I am humbled greatly.  This LORD of ours emptied Himself and BECAUSE of His obedience, God filled Him up.  

I have sacrificed without obedience.  I have served without order.  I have given of myself yet been in complete rebellion.  When I read this passage of Scripture, it pangs me…Jesus emptied Himself of Glory to be positioned for greatness…in order to be exalted and affirmed by the Father in Heaven, He obeyed.

My example today is Jesus.  My desire is to empty myself to be affirmed by my heavenly Father.  Yes, I want to be Love and Light to all but ultimately my allegiance is with my Lord and what He has to say about me is more important.  Obedience to Christ costs us something and the first thing it costs us is our PRIDE.

Let’s look at what Jesus did and model that:
1.  He knew who He was, but it did not puff Him up. His status was not His platform
2.  He gave up His rights.
3.  He humbled himself, He did not wait for God to humiliate Him
4.  He obeyed God fully
5.  In this, He was exalted:  that He obeyed and suffered for the cause: to establish God’s authority over ALL things.
6.  If the church is to build the Kingdom and His Kingdom is to come, we must first become obedient in ALL things with no hint of rebellion. 

“A true Christian, living an obedient life, is a constant rebuke to those who accept the moral standards of this world.” ~ Billy Graham


My prayer today is to be void of my selfishness and vanity and foolish ambitions, giving myself completely to Him, making Him my Master Craftsman, molding me into His image.  I want to be refined as silver so that He knows I am ready when He can see His reflection in me.  Help me, Lord!

Modern day Witchcraft: REBELLION

We think we can recognize rebellion…it seems obvious, right??? 

The kids who kick and scream in the grocery store

The adolescent who slams her door and turns up the music

The teen who gets drunk, smokes, and dresses provocatively


Or puts up the hand and rolls her eyes, disregarding your directives


What about the wife who spends without consulting her husband or manipulates her husband with sex/favors in order to get what she wants [aka Jezebel…]

 Is this you???

1. “Leaky faucet”—complaining and nagging until he gives you what you want. [There’s a Proverb for that!]
2. “Trial Lawyer”—out-talking him and shutting him down with your verbal skills [with your 25,000 words a day].
3. “Blame game”—making your husband feel like he is responsible for your unhappiness, anger, or sadness: “If only you were home more, had a better job, didn’t treat me like you do….”
4. “Clue”—expecting him to read your mind but giving little in the way of clues: Sighing, pouting, giving one word answers but when he asks what’s wrong, you answer “nothing.”
5. “Smoke signals”—banging pots and pans around in the kitchen to make a point that you’re doing the dishes, without actually coming out and asking for help.
6. “Water works”—most men don’t like to see a woman crying so even when he thinks he’s right, he’ll usually soften to stop the crying.
7. “Angling”—[AKA “fishing” with bait or lures] withholding sex or using sex to get what you want.
8. “Guilt trip”—laying guilt on him; telling him how disappointed you are in him or bringing up past hurts.
9. “Performance trap”—making him feel inadequate: “We’re the only ones I know who don’t have a new car, etc.”

1 Samuel 15:23, “For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft…”

Witchcraft…not bubbling pots, frogs, and warts.  Rebellion…

A rebel is someone who seeks to be in authority but has not been under authority.  A rebel wants power without accountability.  A rebel wants popularity but not conformity.  A rebel is someone who craves attention and glory.  A rebel is a witch.  A rebel is manipulative and intimidating.  A rebel is seductive in order to get what she wants. A REBEL SAYS:

The passage of Scripture in Ezekiel 3 [Click here] is a sovereign warning about rebellion.  “But when I give you a message, I will loosen your tongue and let you speak. Then you will say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says!’ Those who choose to listen will listen, but those who refuse will refuse, for they are rebels.” ~ Ezekiel 3:27

 “As surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, I will cut you off completely. I will show you no pity at all because you have defiled my Temple with your vile images and detestable sins.” ~ Ezekiel 5:11

You may be reading this and thinking, “I thank God that He has delivered me from rebellion!  Woe to her who is still bound!”

Let me share another story with you:

We have heard recently of this book “Strange Fire” by John MacArthur and it brought much controversy and discussion…even a rebuttal from some pastors/theologians with follow up books.  

[Check these articles out for further reference: Charisma News: Dr. Michael Brown speaks out concerning MacArthur’s “Strange Fire” 
Christian Post: John Piper speaks out about Strange Fire]

Now,  do you know that “strange fire” is in the Bible?  YES!  There are accounts of strange fire, or sacrifice without order, in the Word.  

To serve without order or to serve without obedience to authority is the definition of strange fire.

Nadab and Abihu were Aaron’s sons and were under his authority. Aaron was an anointed and appointed priest and his sons helped him with offerings and sacrifices.  They moved on Aaron’s order and under his authority.  Aaron was accountable to God and for his sons.  But, his sons ventured to offer without Aaron’s order.
“Then Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it, put incense on it, and offered profane fire before the Lord, which He had not commanded them. So fire went out from the Lord and devoured them, and they died before the Lord.” ~ Leviticus 10:1-2

They saw Aaron do it and assumed they could do the same, yet had no reverence at all [fear of the Lord]…they worked apart from Aaron [the priest, anointed and appointed]. They worked or served independently.

Whoever tries to serve without first meeting authority is offering strange fire. Many people today are trying to serve God independently…uncovered and in rebellion. They have never been under authority and they sin against God’s authority. 

Many people see themselves as being obedient to God but know nothing of being subject to God’s DELEGATED authority [those anointed and appointed…at home, at work, in church, and in every circumstance].

This rebellious spirit becomes obvious when one maintains one attitude towards God and another toward his delegated authority [pastors, leaders, parents, employers, policemen, government officials]. We cannot reject his delegated authority [murmur/complain] on one hand and receive God with the other hand. To be in subjection to God, we must subject ourselves and be humbled to serve under His delegated authority…UNCONDITIONALLY. 



Obey your spiritual leaders, and do what they say. Their work is to watch over your souls, and they are accountable to God. Give them reason to do this with joy and not with sorrow. That would certainly not be for your benefit. Repent now where there has been rebellion and let us get right and in order with the Lord. ~ Hebrews 13:17

Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God. ~ Romans 13:1


Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do. ~ Ephesians 6:1

Obey your earthly masters in everything you do. Try to please them all the time, not just when they are watching you. Serve them sincerely because of your reverent fear of the Lord. ~ Colossians 3:22


Repent now where there has been rebellion and let us get right and in order with the Lord.  


Please consider this resource to build your prayer life in binding the spirits/spiritual warfare:
Red Prayer Book page 139


Much Love and Grace to you all,
Pamela