Month: April 2015

April 26: The Power of the Tongue – Our Confession Rules Us

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Proverbs 18:21 tells us:

Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and they who indulge in it shall eat the fruit of it [for death or life]. (Amplified)

The tongue is very powerful, yet, because it is so small, it can be considered insignificant. However, what we say, with our mouths governs the way we think and can determine the road that we either choose, or are forced to travel, all based on the words we have spoken; or in some cases, refused to speak.

MiracleofthefigtreeThis proverb is not the only passage that we can find in the bible that demonstrates the influence and the effect that the tongue and thereby words have over our very existence.

Christianity has often been referred to as “The Great Confession.” Romans 10:8-10 demonstrates the importance of confessing, or actually, of professing the faith that has been established in your heart. With our mouths we profess our salvation.

Likewise, we profess the state that we have found ourselves in, as a result of that salvation. The very action of speaking it enables our auditory senses to be satisfied and helps to reinforce that thing that we profess deeper within our psyche, after having first been developed within our Spirits. This is the essence of the word meditate; meaning to ruminate, to mutter, to chew something over and over in the same way a Cow chews its cud; an essential part of our self-talk.

“We will Never rise above the level of Our Confession” FF. Bosworth: Christ The Healer  p153.

It was Zig Ziglar who said:

The man who says he Can and the man who says he Can’t are BOTH Right.” (See You At The Top)

You can convince yourself that you are a failure, and you can speak negatively about your life and always be complaining. As long as your mouth produces negative fruit, that’s all you’ll ever have to eat.

You can alternatively choose to speak words that paint a positive picture oncol your life. You should never lie to yourself. But, you can actually draw positive fruit from the well that is your heart. Your whole outlook on life can be enhanced and that, in turn, can begin to produce better outcomes and will create physical changes in your life and your sense of wellbeing and that’s even without applying any of the additional promises that God has for us as followers of Christ; In Him.

As children we were given the memory verse:

“Sticks and stones may break my bones. But Words will never hurt you.” (Origin unknown)

However, I can personally attest to the fact that this is a lie from the very pit of Hell itself. It has been allowed to fabricate a false sense of security in the minds of vulnerable children in an attempt to silence their complaints about what another person, child or adult, has said to them, in their attempt to Pebble Heartattain superiority over this child. It devalues the destructive nature of verbal bullying that can devastate a child and has been found to have ramifications in their adult life.

The truth is, as we have discovered, over recent weeks, that words are vessels that carry power. They have the capacity to construct images, within our minds and to convey meaning. Writers use this capacity to construct images of characters and faraway places in the minds of their readers.

Or, they can use words to describe and construct processes and diagrams through the application of technical and industry specific terminology. They key to knowing what kind of writing is before you is dependent upon the cypher you have, in your possession, that gives you access and assists you to make meaning.

The Written word is referred to as the Logos in the greek language and theSword Word Spoken word is called the Rhema.The spoken word of God is imagined as:

For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart.” (Heb 4:12 Amplified)

When we use and speak the word of God its very life force is able to both build up and strengthen or it can also be found to be a weapon; cutting down and rending and laced with judgement. That is why we, as Christians, are charged to become skilful in its use 2Tim 2:15.

Are you a good tree, producing good fruit? Or, are you an evil tree, producing evil, unsavoury, inedible, or poisonous fruit?

It’s entirely up to you? You choose!

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To download this important Spirit-Filled message click on the following link and save the linked file to a directory of your choice on your computer. Otherwise your browser will open up with a player to simply listen online. All of these messages are provided free of charge.

Audio     Our Confession Rules Us

Video     Our Confession Rules Us

April 19: The Power of the Tongue – The Fruit of Our Lips

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The words that come out of our mouths in times of stress or trouble, which will inevitably come our way, give a clear indication of the treasure that is built up in your heart. They are a pretty clear indication of where your word level is and they will also give an insight as to the outcome you are bothtreasure_chest_1 expecting and will receive; unless you do something to repent those words.

Matt 12:34; Luke 6:45 and Prov 4:23 all speak about the contents of our hearts: “For out of the fullness (the overflow, the superabundance) of the heart the mouth speaks.” Are you aware of the words that automatically spring from your lips if you hit your thumb, instead of the nail? What about when you stub your toe in the dark of your bedroom in the middle of the night? Remember Jesus said: “But I tell you, on the day of judgment men will have to give account for every idle (inoperative, nonworking) word they speak. For by your words you will be justified and acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned and sentenced.” Matt 12:36-37 AMP

Now, I don’t, for the slightest moment suggest that you become obsessive regarding this in your life. But, more importantly, it is NOT your job to police the words of those people around you, Christian, or non; no-one else is accountable to you.

However, we are told to keep guard over our hearts, because the issues;  the very forces of life itself flow from your Spirit being; your heart.

Just a quick reminder that as human beings we exist on three dimensions:

You are a:

Spirit = Heart, Core; the REAL you

you have a:

Soul = The Mind

           The Will

           The Emotions

and you Live in a:

Body = Physical Body; The Flesh; The Senses

body-soul-spiritOne of the Major Spiritual forces of the recreated Human Spirit is the Force of Faith. Heb 11:1 tells us that: “Faith is the SUBSTANCE of things hoped for; the EVIDENCE of things not seen.” (AV) Faith takes the place of the thing asked for, until it is manifest in the sensory realm; sometimes referred to as “the Flesh; the physical.” We are also reminded that the things that are seen were made from things that were not seen: “By faith we understand that the worlds [during the successive ages] were framed (fashioned, put in order, and equipped for their intended purpose) by the word of God, so that what we see was not made out of things which are visible.” Heb 11:3 AMP The suggestion that the things that are in the realm of the spirit are in fact ‘MORE REAL’ than the things we can perceive with our senses.

It is for this reason that it is important that we understand the potential that our words have to create the world around us. Hebrews 11 goes on to describe that God created the universe and the world by Faith and as we go through Genesis chapter 1 and 2 we discover that words were the key tools400-creation-135157891 that God used to form and carry his Faith into place.

The realisation that Humans are the only creature on this planet that has the ability to choose and speak words (not just mimic them) and that we are made in the image of God; it is incumbent upon us to be aware of the power that our words have. Not only in our own lives. But in the lives of those around us.

Our health, prosperity and our salvation all hinge on the words of our mouths. Relationships can be formed, or broken by words. Covenants depend upon words; both blessing and curses.

Our Word level, the amount of the word of God and in particular the promises that God has made to us regarding the various areas in our lives will determine the level of Faith that we have to be able to use, in our time of need. Romans 10:17 “faith comes by hearing and a constant re-hearing of the Word of God.” by contrast Fear comes by listening to and hearing and re-hearing the word of Satan; the evil report; much like the Giants and Grasshoppers report in the story of Joshua and Caleb (the only two to bring Crystal-clear flowing watera good report to Moses).

Paul suggests that we need to renew our minds by the washing of the water of the Word of God so that we can develop the strength and the reservoir of Faith to hold us in good stead in the evil day. Rom 12:1-2

As a demonstration of just how important the words of your mouth are to your life you can download here a copy of 100 verses that refer to the Words of your mouth and how they affect you.

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To download this important Spirit-Filled message click on the following link and save the linked file to a directory of your choice on your computer. Otherwise your browser will open up with a player to simply listen online. All of these messages are provided free of charge.

Audio     The Fruit Of Our Lips

Video     The Fruit Of Our Lips

April 12: The Power of the Tongue – You Can Have What You Say

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Two days after Jesus’ Triumphal entry into Jerusalem and the day after Jesus cleared the money-changers and market-place out of the Temple and Jesus had returned once again to the House of Lazarus, Mary and Martha, in Bethany; Jesus and his disciples are once again heading for the Temple in Jerusalem:

“In the morning, when they were passing along, they noticed that the fig tree was withered [completely] away to its roots. And Peter remembered and said to Him, Master, look! The fig tree dead-fig-treewhich You doomed has withered away! And Jesus, replying, said to them, Have faith in God [constantly]. Truly I tell you, whoever says to this mountain, Be lifted up and thrown into the sea! and does not doubt at all in his heart but believes that what he says will take place, it will be done for him. For this reason I am telling you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe (trust and be confident) that it is granted to you, and you will [get it.” (Mark 11:22-24 AMP)

The words that we allow out of our mouths will either bind us. Or, they will release the good things that God has provided, for us, into our lives. Words are containers that carry great power and energy.

Have you ever given a thought to the way you imagine, or frame thoughts that go through your mind? It is interesting to note that we do not think in words, but rather we think in pictures; images. However, to convey ourWordimages thoughts to others we have to take those pictures and try our best to communicate those pictures as words.

Words can make, or break relationships;depending on the way they are conveyed and very often, if our shared language is limited, in any way, the message can be skewed, and the wrong impression given. It is for this reason that a person is considered a good or a bad writer are they able to convey the picture they have, in their mind, to you, the reader.

Jesus was an amazing communicator. his use of parables, accessing familiar images from the lives of the people he was speaking with, has enabled those timeless messages to maintain, both their clarity and their relevance today.

In this example, from Mark’s Gospel, Jesus uses a fig tree (an unproductive tree) to teach a very powerful object lesson to his disciples; “You can have what you Say!”

There is sooooooo much that can be said about this one topic alone. I’ve been reading this verse of scripture now for 33 years and still, to this day, it reveals something new. Added to that is the fact that we can attempt to read too much into some parts of scripture; when sometimes it simply means what it says.

This verse is about Faith and how to apply and release the force of Faith in your life and the world around you. Key to this is to take your time with each verse; sadly it is too easy to skip over essential verses like Mark 11:22. In most modern translations from the Greek this verse reads “Have Faith in God.” However, when we go back to the Aramaic text, the language that Jesus spoke, we discover that the verse reads as:

“Yeshua answered and he said to them, “May the faith of God be in you.” Mark 11:22 (ABPE)

To put it into perspective, Jesus was telling his disciples to take ahold of and use the “God KIND of Faith.” He had used the God quality of Faith and Moving-Mountains3 cropwanted them to understand that they could use it as well. The fact that it is included in the New Testament reveals to us that this wasn’t limited to the apostles of the Lamb (as the orignal 12 are referred to). But, that it was deemed important enough for All of those who would believe to learn as well.

The book of Hebrews 11:3 tells us that God used Faith to create the Universe and all that is in it. If we go to Genesis Chapter 1 we discover that each time God created something he spoke it into existence. This is further back up by Romans 10:8-13 where the great confession, or profession that brings about our salvation  is outlined.

Understanding this relationship between Faith, one of the major forces of the Human, recreated spirit, and the confession, or profession of our lips can provide insight into why and how our lives are currently going. But, at the same time gives us a clue as to how to also do something about it if we need and want to make a change.

IN Mark 11:23 and 24 the keys to operating by Faith is revealed to us, by Jesus himself. They are:

1. Speak the Answer to the problem form God’s Word

2. Don’t Doubt that It will come to pass

3. Believe You receive it BY FAITH.

4. Thank God for the Answer

5. Keep praising God for the Answer until you see it manifest.

Kenneth Copeland says it this way:

“You and I have the responsibility of getting our hearts and mouths in gear, speaking and acting as though we’ve already received the fulfillment of our desire. We believe we receive when we pray. From the moment we release our faith, we must talk and act as though it is done.” (Framing Your World with Faith. 2012)

Both the Old and New Testament give us plenty of examples to attempt to get us to learn this powerful lesson. James 3:6 and Proverbs18:21 both inform us that Life and Death are in the power of the Tongue. In Matthew 12:37 we are told by Jesus that “the words of your mouth will either justify you, or condemn you.” He also reminds us that it is not what goes into our mouths that defiles us. Rather, it is what comes out of our mouths that willLive is Christ defile us; shame us and that we will be held accountable for every frivolous, or idle word spoken.

As we continue this important series on “The Power of the Tongue” we will discover just how much of what happens to us, in this life, is framed by, or created by the very words we speak. We will learn just how important it is to control the things we say and what we need to do to make the necessary changes to be able to have more control over the outcomes in our lives.

We will discover that it’s not so much a matter of “Que sera sera”, as it is “You can Have What You Say.”

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To download this important Spirit-Filled message click on the following link and save the linked file to a directory of your choice on your computer. Otherwise your browser will open up with a player to simply listen online. All of these messages are provided free of charge.

Audio     You Can Have What You Say

Video     You Can Have What You Say

ABPE refers to the Aramaic Bible in Plain English

As promised you will find the Healing Confessions sheet by clicking on the following link. Use the same instructions for downloading as for the recording file:

Confessions For Healing

April 5: Resurrection Sunday : Covenant of Blood – Jesus – Covenant Guarantor and Advocate

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“Hear the Bells ringing, their singing, Christis Risen from the dead!” Jimmy and Carol Owens choral piece from the musical “The Witness, a favourite in churches around the world in the 1970s and 80s.

The morning of the first day of the week after the passover celebrations in Jerusalem and the disciples of Jesus were scattered. Despondent, disheartened, depressed and desperate (How’s that for alliteration?) threePassover-Lamb days before they had seen their master, after being arrested the night before by the High Priest’s guards, held for trial, like a common criminal, on trumped up charges, before the Roman procurator, who wanted, desperately, to let him go free.

They had watched as his body had been torn to shreds by the scourge; his emaciated body forced to carry the timber cross, the tool of his execution; weighing less than the shame and guilt and sin and pain that had been placed upon him as the scapegoat. Yet, he still had a word for the women of Jerusalem, not so much a rebuke, as a sign of the sadness in his heart for their rejection of hope.

Those who could, stayed around and watched him crucified, cry out to the Father and finally give up the life, all of them unaware of what was happening before their eyes, even though he had striven to help them understand what was about to happen. Unlike Abraham, who had maintained his vision of the promise, who had hoped against hope, this motly crew had abandoned all hope and were at a loss as to what they were supposed to do next.

In the realm of the spirit a whole different scenario was being played out. Every principality and power, every dominion in the heavenlies were in Limbo web saferapturous celebration. They had won. They were ecstatic. For 3 long arduous years they had battled, fought, tempted and inevitably lost, at every turn, as they had come against this man Jesus. In point of fact, although they knew that he was “The Son of God” they had not actually clued into the fact that he was in fact God in the flesh. A prophet, they acknowledged; a powerful and well informed prophet, they knew. But, God himself, no. All that Satan could see was his next step. He had defeated God’s best shot and he was about to succeed in achieving his original goal to ascend the heights and to place his own throne above the throne of God himself.

In the very depths of Hell itself; in the midst of the darkness; in the very place of experiencing the pains and torture of Hell, where they had dragged this prized trophy, The Lights went on. In 1Cor 2:8 Paul outlines the hindsight view that Hell probably holds: “Had the princes and powers of this world known, They wouold NOT have crucified the Lord of Glory!” You bet!

Jesus certainly had taken upon himself the sins of the whole world. He had allowed himself, by a very act of his will, to become seperated from the Father. The pains of all sickness and disease, for all of eternity and ALL ofCrucifixion horrific Juan Manuel Minarro humanity had been laid upon his back with the application of each and every one of those stripes from the scourge. But, commit sin? No! Jesus Christ was sinless in thought, word and deed. The punishment that he had allowed himself to endure had been totally unjust. Hell had taken possession of the one thing they had no right to; a perfect, sinless man, the last Adam.

Unlike his disciples, Jesus, in Gethsemane, had set his vision and applied his Faith in the same way as Abraham had done with his son Isaac. He had “set his face like flint” to fulfil ALL that the Law and the Prophets had proscribed. The one thing he did not desire to do, was to be seperated from the Father. Yet “like a lamb before his shearers is dumb, he opened not his mouth.”

If you want to get a greater insight into what happened over this important period get ahold of E.W Kenyon’s book “What happened from The Cross to the Throne.”

All of this, the entire process involved in the Life, Ministry, the Death and the Resurrection of Jesus. As well as the subsequent Ascension  all took Empty-Tomb-Picture-15place to fulfill the requirements of the Covenant that God originally made with Adam, Abraham, refined with Moses and culminated in Jesus, to establish his “New and Better Covenant, Built on Better Promises.”

The Believer, the follower, the disciple of Christ who does not know all of these things regarding their covenant with God and its origins is ill equipped to live the abundant life that Christ spoke of in John 10:10. In truth, they will scorn and speak out against any who do. But, as I said at the begining of this journey; once you do get to know and understand, what you really have , in this life as a result of the covenant  with God, through Christ:

YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME AGAIN!

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To download this important Spirit-Filled message click on the following link and save the linked file to a directory of your choice on your computer. Otherwise your browser will open up with a player to simply listen online. All of these messages are provided free of charge.

Audio       Jesus – Covenant Guarantor and Advocate

Video       Jesus – Covenant Guarantor And Advocate

SPECIAL NOTE:

This is the final message in this current series: Covenant of Blood. The complete series will be available soon on CD for purchase. Watch this space for more details.

April 03: Good Friday: Covenant of Blood – Redeemed – From the Curse

Good Friday, The penultimate moment in the church calendar. The key that unlocks the very purpose behind the entry, of God himself through the legitimate path; taking upon himself human flesh; a vulnerable child. Fully human; with the ability to be afflicted with pain, emotions and all of the natural temptations that can afflect us in every day life.  Yet, at the same the-crown-of-divine-grace1time, Wholly divine; entirely God and man as one; theologians refer to it as hypostasis.

This is the day we remember one of the most horrific acts of violence ever committed upon a human being. Jesus of Nazareth, an innocent man, brought before the Roman Procurator in Jerusalem by the High Priest and the leaders of the Temple on a range of trumped up charges; all because Jesus challenged thew fact that they had reduced the covenant of AbrahamCrucifixion horrific Juan Manuel Minarro and the Law of Moses to dead religion.

So, if that is the facts behind the memory of Good Friday, why do we call it good? Surely it should be Sad, or Bad, or something similar?

When I was going through Bible college in the 80s I remember a particular sermon that we all became familiar with. “It’s Friday! But, Sunday’s a Commin’!” is the catchcry that has helped many a beleagured minister press on. It is that reminder that Good Friday does not stand alone. That, although immensely significant, without Resurrection Sunday it would b e nothing more than a memorial day to a dead prophet, by a dead religion. It is Resurrection Sunday that cements the significance of Good Friday into the psyche of Christendom.

I finally got to meet the man behind the sermon, Dr Tony Campolo, the weekend before we started Open Arms Fellowship and it was a pleasure to spend some quality time with both Tony and his equally talented wife Peggy, as we talked about the wonderful thing that the Lord was doing in establishing this ministry. It was a vote of confidence and encouragement that I appreciate the Lord sending me. I feel extremely privilleged to have been able to maintain correspondence with them since then.

The marriage of Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday, as important as it is, does not fulfill the search for an answer to the reason for referring to it as “Good.” But a reminder that with the death of Jesus Christ on Calvary came the end of the hold, the terror that Death itself held over those who choose to follow Christ. I have heard it described as “The day that Death died.”

Good Friday provides us with an opportunity to look at what was really happening on that tree atop Golgotha 2000 years ago. In Galatians Paul emphasises the relationship of the crucifixion to the prophecies concerning the need for a Messiah. In particular he talks about the Redepmtion of humanity from the Curse of the Law; which no human being could, with theirBronze Serpent1 ‘sin nature’, keep, in its entirety and thereby failing the whole Law. He emphasises that the Curses outlined in Deuteronomy 28:14-68 were threefold: Poverty, Sickness and Spiritual Death; all of which the action of Christ’s sacrifice remitted through the power of his blood. The purpose of which is to make the promised blessings to Abraham available to all.

The promise to the “Seed of Abraham” Gal 3:14 was and is prosperity at all levels of our existence. The total Salvation (Soteria), provided to free ALL humanity from the sting of death is prosperity of the highest order. It provides a New Birth from the clutches of Spiritual Death.

In 3John 1:2 The disciple John, the beloved disciple prays, by inspiration of the Holy Spirit that: “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in every way and [that your body] may keep well, even as [I know] your soul keeps well and prospers.” If anyone would know whether Jesus taught a message of poverty, rather than the Gospel of true prosperity, I believe  that it would be this disciple.

In fact, by studying this verse the context of the prosperity message is outlined clearly. The Key is that he desires that we prosper “EVEN AS” or, in direct proportion to, the prosperity of our soul (the mind, the will and the emotions). This can ONLY occur as our minds are renewed, as Paul tells us, by the washing of the water of the “Word of God.” Ephesians 4:23.

All of the promises to both Abraham, and clarified in the list prepared by Moses, outline the prosperity of the Body; the ability to walk in divine health as the third dimension. This runs contrary to the notion that God can get glory out of sickness and disease. Interestingly, the same people who proclaim this on a Sunday are usually the first in line to see the doctor on Monday morning.

Sadly, the greatest critics of “The Prosperity Gospel,” as it is often venomously referred to are those who either believe they are poor, financially. Or, are very aware of their own “Love of Money,” or lust thereof. Often combined with this is a ‘religious’ education based around a belief and misguided teaching that Jesus was poor and that he taught that his followers should be poor. This then gets distilled into a belief that the servants of God should be poor; should only ever be satisfied with second-best; or should settle for whatever scraps that might be left over.

I once spent time living in a monastery with a group of very impressionable young men who had been taught this message to the point where they were happy to receive and eat mouldy potatoes. They would scavenge the sliced meat thrown into the bins behind the supermarkets; as well as milk that had gone well past its use by date and very often off. All of this was because they believed it gave people a sign that they were ‘Holy’, that they were pious. Needless to say, they weren’t very well.

Yes, there can be and sometimes are abuses of the principles behind God’s form of prosperity for his people. But, more often than not the criticism is down to a sense of jealousy born from the self-righteousness and pride (lust) that deep-down wishes that their brand of religious theology (something I refer to as ‘Religiosity’) would allow them to be allowed to experience.

Covenant SealedThe fifth dimension of this prosperity provided by the inheritance of Abraham’s blessings is the Social prosperity that the “Covenant of Strong Friendship” provides. Those who are truly members of the Body of Christ realise that as ‘members, one of another’ their relationship is closer to their family “In Christ” than that of their biological families.

The day death died; the price for Adam’s disobedience was paid. The redemption of humanity had begun. The process of Christ’s journey, from the Cross to the Throne had started. Jesus exclamation “It is Finished!” was the moment of realisation that he had been separated from the Father, He was spiritually dead and with that he gave up his spirit and died, physically.

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To download this important Spirit-Filled message click on the following link and save the linked file to a directory of your choice on your computer. Otherwise your browser will open up with a player to simply listen online. All of these messages are provided free of charge.

Redeemed – From The Curse