Posts Tagged ‘IHOP’

How Black Lives Matter in the Kingdom of God – From IHOP-KC

I had to share this article here below, its long but worth reading the whole thing. The anger and condescension that I am seeing from Christians and disrespect towards other races cannot be pleasing to the Lord I don’t think.  Liberal-bashing is not a Christian practice.  Neither is Trump-supporter bashing.

I believe the Lord is doing something in America with politics.  He is shaking us and testing our foundation, our stability, our heart connect.  He is using the current climate to see which Kingdom we are of, and testing our compassion.  There are attitudes Americans have about race that he wants to bring into alignment with His attitudes.  We know there are places where liberal politics are not aligned with Christianity.  And yes the Lord is highlighting that are actually places where conservative politics are not aligned with Christianity.  The issues of Race, refugees, Muslims, and black lives matter are being used to test us around compassion.  How susceptible have we been to the Republican gospel in the fault lines where it did align with what the Lord was saying?  How often did we ask?

Some say we would have had Black lives matter a long time ago if we had camera phones back then.  That said many police officers risk their lives and are quite noble and unprejudiced.

We must move from Republican minded to Kingdom minded and turn off the memes and news stories and articles that rile us up and begin to hear the Lord around the heart of compassion.  It’s going to get a lot worse, it’s the hour for the Church to Shine in the Darkness!!

How Black Lives Matter in the Kingdom of God – From IHOP-KC

by David Sliker

This is not an easy article for me to write.

It should be easy, shouldn’t it? Really, the facts of the matter are plain. The passion of Christ for black lives is not difficult to discern in the scriptures. The blood of a Jewish Man was spilt for everyone in every tribe, tongue, and nation on the earth, in every generation. He paid so much—a deeply personal cost—for the privilege of fellowshipping with black men and women in unity and joy for all eternity. If this is about the worth Continue reading

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Christian Response to the News and Social Media in 2017

15But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another!        (Gal. 5:15)

  • Walking in humility impacts the quality of one’s marriage and family culture as well as how their children will approach conflict and carry their hearts in their future.
  • As peacemakers, we are to seek to bring peace and not stoke the flames of fiery arguments. We must put biblical conviction above our political opinions and arguments.

9Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. (Mt. 5:9)

  1. As believers, we must preserve the bond of peace in spirit of unity. We must be able to disagree with a spirit of grace that respects and values the dignity of people who have different views.
  2. If we respond with anger, then our relationships will be injured, causing us unnecessary pain.
    How we respond when we are mistreated or when we disagree is foundational to our spiritual life.

A clip from “Beautified by Humility in an Age of Anger”

 

1I beseech you to walk worthy of the calling…2with all lowliness and gentleness3endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. (Eph. 4:1-3)

Outline of the Gospels

The book of Matthew is not as Chronological as one might think.  I hope you can use this outline to study and meditate on Christ’s life so it becomes real to you by the aid of the Holy Spirit.  Its important to note that Jesus wasn’t randomly traveling but there was a purpose of His ministry seeking the lost sheep of Israel and revealing and even sometimes hardening the hearts of Jews, revealing the Father to all that they may turn repent and be saved.
Early Galilean Ministry

  1. Rejection in Nazareth & Transition to Capernaum (Luke 4:16-31; Matthew 4:13)
  2. Feast of the Jews (John 5:1-47)
  3. Calling of the Disciples & Miraculous Catch of Fish (Matthew 4:18-22; Mk 1:16-20, Lk 5:1-11)
  1. First Sabbath in Capernaum (Matthew 8:14-17; Mark 1:21-34; Luke 4:31-41)
  2. Second Circuit Through the Cities of Galilee (Mark 1:39; Luke 4:43-44) & Healing of Leper (Matthew 8:1-4; Mark 1:40-45; Luke 5:12-16)
  3. Return to Capernaum & Healing of Paralytic (Matthew 9:1-8; Mark 2:1-12; Luke 5:17- 26)
  4. Calling of Matthew & Feast (Matthew 9:9-13; Mark 2:13-17; Luke 5:27-31)
  5. Bridegroom Fast (Matthew 9:14-17; Mark 2:18-22; Luke 5:33-39)
  6. Second Sabbath – Grainfields (Matthew 12:1-8; Mark 2:23-28; Luke 6:1-5)
  7. Withered Hand (Matthew 12:9-14; Mark 3:1-6; Luke 6:6-11)
  8. Prayer and Calling of Twelve (Mark 3:13-19; Luke 6:6-12)

GALILEAN PUBLIC MINISTRY

A. Healing of Multitudes (Mark 3:7-12; Luke 6:17-19)

B.Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:1-7:29; Luke 6:20-49)

C. Faith of Centurion in Capernaum (Matthew 8:5-13; Luke 7:1-10)

D. Calming of the Storm (Matthew 8:23-27; Mark 4:35-41; Luke 8:22-25)

E. Gadarene Deliverance (Matthew 8:28-34; Mark 5:1- 20; Luke 8:26-39

F. Jairus’ Daughter and Woman with Issue of Blood (Matthew 9:18-26; Mark 5:21-34; Luke 8:40- 56)

G. Second Rejection at Nazareth (Matthew 13:53-58; Mark 6:1-6) M. Sending of Twelve (Matthew 10:1-15; Mark 6:7-13; Luke 9:1-6)

H. Raising of the Widow’s Son in Nain (Luke 7:11-17)

I. Jesus & John the Baptist (Matthew 11:1-19; Luke 7:18-35)

J. Woman at Jesus’ Feet (Luke 7:36-50)

K. Encounter with Mother & Brothers (Mark 3:31-35; Luke 8:19-21)

L. Parable of the Sower, Explanation, and Parables (Matthew 13:1-52; Mark 4:1- 34; Luke 8:4-18)

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The End-Time War on the Spirit of Jezebel

I. INTRODUCTION

  1. Often when a woman in church has a leadership gift or a control spirit, people oppose her saying she has a “Jezebel Spirit.”  I do not believe that is what a Jezebel Spirit is.  We must let the Bible define our terminology.  There are two different women in the Bible named Jezebel. The first one was in the OT in context of Elijah (approx. 850 BC; 1 Kg. 16-21; 2 Kgs. 9) and the other is the NT in context to the church of Thyatira (Rev. 2:18-29).
  2. I am convinced that we gain insight into the End-Time drama by understanding the intensity of “OT Jezebel’s” persecution of Elijah and the prophets of Israel and the nature of “NT Jezebel’s” seduction of the church in Thyatira. The spiritual principles seen in “both Jezebels” will be fully manifest in the End-Times. Both contribute to understanding of “End-Time Jezebel’s” persecution (murder and theft) and seduction (immorality and sorcery) as a face of the spirit of Babylon.
  3. The four primary spiritual strongholds across the earth in the End-Times are murder, sorcery, immorality and theft (Rev. 9:21). Immorality stimulates the physical body outside of God’s will as sorcery stimulates the spirit. Sorcery often works in context to mind altering substances (drugs, alcohol. etc).

    21 They did not repent of their murders or sorceries or sexual immorality or thefts. (Rev. 9:21)

  4. There is a progression in Satan’s End-Time strategy. First, he uses immorality to dull the spirit and harden the conscience. This opens the way for people to embrace sorcery which emboldens murder and theft as will be seen in persecution of the Church and Israel.

    1 The Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, 2…having their conscience seared… (1 Tim. 4:1-2)

  5. Immorality dulls the spirit which causes the Church to stop reaching to operate in the power of God. It causes guilt which produces hopelessness so people quit pursuing the deep things of God.
  6. The church of Thyatira is affirmed for growing in their ministries, endurance in persecution and love. Yet, they lacked zeal to confront believers engaged in Jezebel’s immorality and idolatry.

    18 These things says the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet like fine brass: 19 I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first. 20 Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allow (tolerate) that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols…22 Indeed I will cast her into a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds. 23 I will kill her children with death …. (Rev. 2:19-23)

  7. Those who sacrificed to idols did it to gain the power of demons and to interact with them.

    18 Are not those who eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar? 19 What am I saying then? That an idol is anything, or what is offered to idols is anything? 20 Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons. 21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord’s table and of the table of demons. (1 Cor. 10:18-21)

II. OT JEZEBEL: HER IDOLATRY (SORCERY) AND IMMORALITY

  1. Jezebel was a queen of Israel and a witch or priestess of the Baal and Asherah (Phoenician gods) who seduced Israel into immorality, idolatry (witchcraft or sorcery) and murder.
  2. She was raised in Sidon, a prosperous seaport city of Phoenicia on the Mediterranean Sea about 20 miles north of Tyre. As a foreign princess, her father Ethbaal, king of Sidon (in Tyre) gave her in marriage to Ahab to create an alliance with Sidon and Israel (about 870 BC).
  3. As the new queen of Israel, she moved to Jezreel and established a center of Baal worship there.

    31 He (Ahab)…took as wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians; and he went and served Baal and worshiped him. (1 Kgs. 16:31-32)

  4. Jezebel had influence through her position as queen and her strong personality. She promoted immorality and sorcery throughout Israel and stirred Ahab up to do great wickedness.

    25 But there was no one like Ahab who sold himself to do wickedness in the sight of the LORD, because Jezebel his wife stirred him up. (1 Kgs. 21:25)

  5. Jezebel’s position of influence was in being the queen. However, the passion of her heart was to operate in the occult realm of the spirit. She joined occult religion with the State government resulting in a “demonic theocracy” that will also be seen in the Antichrist’s empire.

    22 The harlotries of your mother Jezebel and her witchcraft… (2 Kgs. 9:22)

  6. She used the powers of the state to established Phoenician idol worship on a grand scale in the king’s court in Jezreel. She financed 450 prophets of Baal and 400 of Asherah with state money.

    19 450 prophets of Baal, and 400 prophets of Asherah…eat at Jezebel’s table. (1 Kgs. 18:19)

  7. The conflict at the end-of-the-age will be between two Houses of Prayer (two global worship movements). The Antichrist will raise up a state-financed false worship worldwide movement (Rev. 13:4, 8, 12, 15). The Holy Spirit is raising up the most powerful worship movement in history (Rev. 22:17; 5:8; 8:4; Lk. 18:7-8; Isa. 62:6-7; 24:14-16; 26:8-9; 30:18-19; 42:10-13; etc.). He will finance it. This will be the most power, passionate and dangerous time in world history.

    8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him (Antichrist), whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. (Rev. 13:8)

  8. The False Prophet will function as a “Jezebel like partner” to the Antichrist in his global empire.
  9. Ahab and Jezebel named their three children after the Lord (Ahaziah, Jehoram, Athaliah). Ahab consulted the prophets of Israel (1 Kings 22:6). They embraced the “respectability of religion”.

III. OT JEZEBEL AND HER PERSECUTION OF ELIJAH AND THE PROPHETS OF ISRAEL

A. Jezebel murdered and hunted down God’s prophets who opposed her. Some End-Time saints will lose their life even as John the Baptist did for confronting the spirit of Jezebel.

7 I may avenge the blood of My servants the prophets…at the hand of Jezebel. (2 Kgs. 9:7)

  1. Jezebel hunted for the prophets to destroy them. They hid in caves from. Spiritually, when God’s people yield Jezebel’s immorality, they retreat in shame and spiritual dullness to “hide in cave.”

    4 Jezebel massacred the prophets…Obadiah had taken 100 prophets and hidden them, fifty to a cave…10 There is no nation…(Ahab) has not sent…to hunt for you (Elijah)… (1 Kgs. 18:4, 10)

  2. Ahab, as the head of State engaged in a “propaganda” war that blamed Elijah as the one who troubled Israel because he prayed to release a national judgment of drought that lasted for 31⁄2 years due. Elijah put the responsibility on him. After Israel repented he prayed to release rain.

    17 It happened, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said to him, “Is that you, O troubler of Israel?” 18 And he answered, “I have not troubled Israel, but you and your father’s house have, in that you have forsaken the commandments of the LORD…” (1 Kgs. 18:17-18)

    17 Elijah…prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. 18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain…. (Jas 5:17-18)

  3. Elijah called for a showdown between the “prayer movement” of Baal’s prophets and the Lord.

    19 Gather all Israel to me on Mount Carmel, the 450 prophets of Baal, and the 400 prophets of Asherah…21 Elijah came to all the people, and said, “How long will you falter between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” …22 Elijah said to the people…23 Let them give us two bulls… 24 You call on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the LORD; and the God who answers by fire, He is God.”…26 So they…called on the name of Baal…36 Elijah…said, O LORD, hear me, that this people may know that You are the LORD God, and that You have turned their hearts back to You again.” 38 Then the fire of the LORD fell…39 When all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said, “The LORD, He is God!”…40 Elijah said, “Seize the prophets of Baal! Do not let one of them escape!” …Elijah…executed them there…42 Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; he bowed down…45 There was a heavy rain. (1 Kgs. 18:19-45)

    13 When I shut up heaven and there is no rain…or send pestilence among My people, 14 if My people called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven…and heal their land…. (2 Chr. 7:13-14)

  4. Elijah was raised up like John the Baptist to turn Israel back to God. Both Elijah and John the Baptist fulfilled God’s purpose in only turning a small number of people back to God.

    15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord…16 And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God. 17 He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” (Lk. 1:15-17)

  1. Elijah killed all of Jezebel’s 850 prophets at Mt. Carmel with his sword. (1 Kgs. 18:40; 19:1). As God granted a great victorious through Elijah so also the End-Time will see great victories by releasing Jesus’ judgments through the sword of the Spirit (Eph. 6:17)

    6 Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand, 7 to execute vengeance on the nations, and punishments on the peoples…9 to execute on them the written judgment– This honor have all His saints. (Ps. 149:6-9)

  2. After Elijah killed Jezebel’s prophets at Mt. Carmel, she swore an oath to her gods (demons) to kill Elijah. He was intimidated by this and ran for his life to Beersheba of Judah (1 Kgs. 19:1-3).

    1 Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, also how he had executed all the prophets with the sword. 2 Then Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah, saying, “So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I do not make your life as the life of one of them by tomorrow…” 3 When he saw that, he arose and ran for his life, and went to Beersheba… (1 Kgs. 19:1-3)

    17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours… (Jas 5:17)

  3. The contest between Elijah and Jezebel will be replayed yet with a higher measure of power.

    13 He (False Prophet) performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. (Rev. 13:13)

    5 If anyone wants to harm them (Two Witnesses), fire proceeds from their mouth and devours their enemies. (Rev. 11:5)

  4. Jezebel’s theft is seen when Naboth refused to sell his vineyard to Ahab. Jezebel murdered him to take his property (1 Kgs. 21:1-16). She wrote a letter to the elders of Jezreel bribing them to have Naboth killed for blasphemy against God. She provided the initiative to do this evil.
  5. Jezebel lived 14 years after Ahab’s death as the queen-mother and continued to rule in Israel through her two sons (King Ahaziah and King Joram) and to promote evil through her daughter who was married to the King Jehoram of Judah (2 Chron 21:6). Jezebel’s daughter Athaliah married Judah’s King Jehoram, (Jehoshaphat’s son). She had the same spirit of wickedness as her mother (2 Kgs 11). Thus Jezebel also seduced Judah with her evil.
  6. Elijah prophesied that Ahab and Jezebel’s children would be killed by God’s judgment

    20 Because you have sold yourself to do evil…21 Behold, I will bring calamity on you. I will take away your posterity, and will cut off from Ahab every male in Israel…23 and concerning Jezebel…the dogs shall eat Jezebel by the wall of Jezreel. (1 Kgs 21:20-23)

    22 I will cast her (Jezebel) into a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds. 23 I will kill her children… (Rev. 2:22-23)

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Victory in the Midst of the Battle (Rom. 7:25)

I. THREE IMPORTANT TRUTHS

  1. On September 10, 2013 (3-5am), Mike Bickle had a prophetic dream calling Ihop Kansas City to focus on Romans 7:25. Aspects of the distorted grace message are rooted in doctrines of demons. It is not a neutral error without consequence. Mighty demons are involved in this distortion as it is being proclaimed across the nations. This doctrine of demons will be part of the end-time falling away.  Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons,  speaking lies [about the gospel] in hypocrisy… (1 Tim. 4:1–3)
  2. Three truths became immediately evident from this passage (Rom. 7:25). These three truths are essential in our journey to walk in victory in the midst of a raging battle with sin.    Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?   v25 I thank God— through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin. (Rom. 7:24–25)
  3. Truth #1: We find victory or deliverance through Jesus (v. 25a)—by knowing what Jesus did for us on on the cross and by receiving it as we interact with Him on a regular basis by the Spirit. Paul’s declaration that we have become a new creation in Christ, with all things becoming new, has vast implications. The “he” that is a new creation is our spirit man. All things pertaining to our spirit become new.  The “real you” is your spirit man, which is alive in Christ.  If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away…all things have become new… that we [our spirit] might become the righteousness of God. (2 Cor. 5:17-21)
    1. Old things passed away—We were under condemnation and powerless with regard to sin (at the heart level). All things have become new—We are accepted and enjoyed by God and have the indwelling Spirit, who enables us to resist sin, sickness, and Satan.  There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ… (Rom. 8:1)
    2. Legal position: This speaks of how God sees us and relates to us, and of all the blessings and benefits that He has made freely available to us because of what Christ did for us on the cross and what the Spirit did in our spirit. In our legal position we have the fullness of grace in our spirit and full access to God’s presence.
    3. Living condition: This speaks of how we see ourselves in Christ, how we relate to God, and how much grace we experience as our mind and emotions are renewed by interacting with the indwelling Spirit. The Spirit lives in our spirit, and He renews our mind and emotions as we engage with Him. We can have the fullness of grace in our legal position, and yet live in defeat in our living condition (mind and emotions).
    4. What Jesus freely and instantly worked for us on the cross is what He progressively works in us as we relate to the Spirit’s leadership—by abiding in Christ (Jn. 15:5).
  1. Truth #2: We “serve” or honor the moral law of God with our minds (v. 25b)—by seeking to obey God’s moral law or His kingdom lifestyle. This speaks of a sincere commitment to live in agreement with God’s heart. This speaks of one who sets his heart to live in obedience to Jesus.  “If you love Me, keep My commandments. (Jn 14:15)
  2. Truth #3: We see the seriousness of indwelling sin (v. 25c)—sin will not diminish by itself simply because we live in a Christian context. Sin is a fierce power in the heart. The only way to overcome it is by receiving what He did for us and interacting with Him by the indwelling Spirit.  For the good that I will [I desire] to do, I do not do; but the evil I will [desire] not to do, that I practice… I find then a law [principle], that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man.  But I see another law [principle] in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin… O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? (Rom. 7:19–24)
    1. Paul described one who seeks to obey without interacting with the Spirit (Rom. 7:14-24).
    2. Many do not take seriously how powerful the law of sin is, so they seek to live at the edge of obedience. They do not diligently seek to maintain a deep interaction with Jesus. Not connecting with God is a serious issue that involves more than losing a vibrant heart.
  3. The law (principle) of the Spirit of life has set me free from the law (principle) of sin (Rom. 8:2). The analogy of the law of aerodynamics—the engines in an airplane allow the plane to fly and overcome the law of gravity. As long as the engines are on, the plane can fly even as the law gravity seeks to pull it down. The law of gravity never ceases to operate as the plane flies.We “keep the engine on” by receiving freely and interacting with Jesus through the Spirit.  There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus… For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. (Rom. 8:1–2)
  4. There are two common errors related to Romans 3-8 and the gospel of grace seen in Romans 7.  The first is living under condemnation that lacks confidence in receiving the gift of righteousness.  The second is neglecting to abide in Christ and minimizing the value of good works (bearing fruit).  -Good works (loving words and deeds) do not earn God’s love, but they are the way to express it in our life.   You also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you may be married to another—to Him who was raised from the dead, that we should bear fruit to God… (Rom. 7:4)
  5. See Mike Bickle teach this here, on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JxYKJDie2Tg

Forerunners with a Holy Violent Love

The Fasted Lifestyle
In this post, we will be studying Matthew chapter 11. This topic is so incredibly challenging and yet, to me, critical for this time in history. I have taken this material from a teaching tape series by Mike Bickle entitled, “Forerunners with a Holy Violent Love.”

This teaching helped me to understand some things God has done and is currently doing in my own life and I believe it will challenge you to make some important and necessary choices. This is a very heavy subject. But it is like fire shut up in my bones. It turned me inside out and it cannot be ignored. If it doesn‟t sink in after you’ve read it, that‟s OK. God will bring it back around when it‟s time. We‟re all at different places in the journey and God will grace you to walk in this when it‟s time.

We‟re going to go through this line by line, building the whole subject around verse 12 which says, “From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it.” This scripture addresses the topic of “whole-heartedness”, which the Scriptures refer to as “spiritual violence.”

Offenses (Verse 6)
First of all, in verse 3, when John‟s disciples approached Jesus with the question that John sent them to ask, “Are You the one or should we wait for another?”, Jesus responds in essence telling them to go tell John that prophecy is being fulfilled. He outlines the fulfillment of Isaiah 35 and Isaiah 61 which told that the Messiah would heal the sick, restore sight to the blind, etc. Every good Jewish boy knew these prophecies. They knew it and Jesus knew John would know it. Then He exhorted them in verse six saying, “Blessed is he who is not offended because of Me” (Matthew 11:6). The point here is that we cannot grow in maturity and whole-heartedness while offended towards the Lord, having a closed spirit.

The Crowd Defined (Verses 7-10)
“As John‟s disciples were leaving, Jesus began to speak to the crowd about John: „What did you go out into the desert to see? A reed swayed by the wind? If not, what did you go out to see? A man dressed in fine clothes? No, those who wear fine clothes are in kings‟ palaces. Then what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a proph22et. This is the one about whom it is written: „I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare the way before you‟” (Matthew 11:7- 10).
Jesus turns to address the crowd after speaking with John‟s disciples. He asks them three questions:
    .    1)  What did you go out to see in the desert? A reed swaying in the wind? (verse 7).
    .    2)  If not, what did you go out to see? A man dressed in fine clothes? No, those who 
wear fine clothes are in king‟s palaces (verse 8)
    .    3)  Then what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you and more than a prophet 
(verse 9). 
Jesus is addressing a crowd of people who actually went out to see John the  Baptist in the wilderness. Now these people didn‟t make just a little effort to go and see John. To get to John was a five-day journey one way. So they walked five days there and five days back home in the hot sun. These people were sincere. They made a determined response to go see John and it was politically incorrect to go see John. John was causing tremendous trouble in the political arena of Rome by challenging Herod and also the religious arena of the Sanhedrin. It was costly to go see John.
But notice how Jesus asks them three times, “What did you go out to see?” He must have struck a nerve in them when He implied that they went out to “gawk” at the religious sensation of John with no understanding that He [Jesus], the Miracle Worker with Messianic prophecies, and John, the forerunner with the Spirit of Elijah had come together in the same nation at the same time. They didn‟t put two and two together and understand that cataclysmic things were about to break in on the human race in the natural and in the spirit.

A Prophetic Generation (Verse 10)
“This is the one about whom it is written: „I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you” (Matthew 11:10).
We know it was the mission of the forerunner to prepare the way for Jesus to come to a prophetic generation. There are three prophetic generations mentioned in scripture that stand above and beyond all the other generations of human history. All three prophetic generations had the same common factors:

    .    1)  They were transitional generations. This is where the purpose of God made significant and dynamic changes in the way that the redeemed would live before God. The people related to God differently and experienced Him differently.
    .    2)  They see the manifestations of the power of God.
    .    3)  It was required of them to have an unusual dedication to God commensurate 
with the value and importance of it in God’s redemptive history.

The three prophetic generations were the following:
    .    1)  The Generation of Moses (Exodus). Most of the people of God witnessed the power of God on a nearly regular basis. It‟s the only generation in Old Testament history that did. It was a transitional generation. They were brought out of Egypt and into the wilderness to cross over to a new land. The fire of God came on Mt. Sinai bringing the entire nation into a covenant with signs and wonders. The power of God was manifest among them for an entire generation.
    .    2)  The Generation of the Apostles (Acts). The first century church is the second prophetic generation to experience a covenant God made with man. Now every single one of the redeemed would have the indwelling Holy Spirit. This communion with God was not limited to prophets, priests and kings. Anyone who desired could enter into the life of the Spirit.
    .    3)  The Generation of the Lord’s Return (I believe that’s us). Think about to what this generation is transitioning. The last days, the Bible says, the sky will be filled with fire. One or two billion people will eventually be suspended in mid-air, the new heavens and new earth will descend down into a renewed earth (see Revelation). This last phase of history will be a serious transition. We don‟t just have the indwelling Holy Spirit, but face to face dialogue, the presence of angels (which is on the increase), etc. We‟re talking major transition!

John the Baptist Defined (Verse 11)
“I tell you the truth: Among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he” (Matthew 11:11).
What is the Lord saying here? He is talking about greater privilege. John was the very last of the Old Testament prophets. Jesus was saying that the one who is least in the New Covenant has more privilege in God than the greatest one of the former dispensation: which was John the Baptist under the old covenant. He is announcing that there are radical changes getting ready to burst on the scene. There is a new dispensation about to begin and the least in the new dispensation has more privilege and more access to Holy Spirit experiences and Holy Spirit ministry than the greatest ones under the Old Covenant.

Now the multitudes were more than likely taken back a bit by this announcement and so Jesus continued with the introduction of the principle of whole-heartedness or spiritual violence. Spiritual violence is a radical pursuit, a refusal to be denied, a refusal to come up with anything less than God‟s best for our lives. Jesus introduces it in a strategic way.

Spiritual Violence Introduced (Verse 12)
“From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing (another translation says, “suffers violence”) and forceful men lay hold of it” (Matthew 11:12).
In other words, the new dispensation that is breaking upon you, permits, rewards and honors spiritual violence. As a matter of fact, the spiritually violent lover of God will literally seize and take things by force that would have been withheld from them if they would have been passive.

Response: The Dance and the Dirge (Verses 13-17)
“For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John. And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come. He who has ears, let him hear. To what can I compare this generation? They are like children sitting In the marketplaces and calling out to others: “We played the flute for you, and you did not dance, we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn‟” (Matthew 11:13-17).
Jesus tells the crowd that if they were willing to accept it, John was “the Elijah” who was to come. The Spirit of Elijah rested on John in their generation which was a partial fulfillment of prophecy. Then Jesus compared them to children in a marketplace calling out, “We played the flute for you , and you did not dance; we sang a dirge [a funeral song] and you did not mourn.”
Jesus is saying that the wedding flute didn‟t produce the response of celebration and the funeral dirge did not produce the response of mourning or lamentation. The wedding flute represents the celebration of response to the presence of God. The funeral dirge represents our acknowledgment of the reality of sin in our world and its consequences being dealt with. The redeemed deal with the consequences of sin through self-denial. The unredeemed come under the judgements of God.

So Jesus is rebuking them, saying that they neither rejoiced at the coming of a new dispensation nor did they mourn or appropriately deal with the presence and consequences of sin in their generation or personal lives. They were unresponsive. They were passively indifferent. Neither approach awakened them. The celebration nor the warning of the funeral, neither provoked a response.
This celebration/funeral dirge combination is a divine paradox because this love- sickness of whole-heartedness has in it celebration in response to the presence of God and the anguish or mourning over sin. It is two-dimensional. Verse 12 (spiritual violence) is manifested in both the wedding song and the funeral dirge.
Jesus is drawing special attention to His generation. He chose His lineage and His generation therefore making it a prophetic generation or as Paul called it in Galatians 4, “The fullness of time.” The generation of Jesus was a very strategic and prophetic generation. Jesus picked it and therefore sanctified it as one of the most strategic generations of all of natural history.

Jesus is using John as the focal point to wake up His hearers to the fact that they were a prophetic, transitional generation. Their generation saw the fulfillment of two prophecies about the forerunner and the miracle-working Messiah. Jesus was essentially saying, “Can‟t you see that something massive is right in front of you?” What happens when the power of God is being manifested in the person of Jesus Christ in the flesh and the Spirit of Elijah is on the forerunner, John the Baptist? They couldn‟t see it. They didn‟t know.
It was a sign of a significant transition in God‟s economy. Jesus‟ point is that in a transitional generation where God is relating to His people in a different way than at any other time in human historyan accelerated way, a way with higher privileges where His power is released in greater manifestationsuch a prophetic hour requires an unusual dedication to meet the opposition that rises against the transition.

Jesus was trying to warn them that opposition was about to break forth in the natural and in the spiritual realm and God‟s power was going to be loosed to meet the opposition. But unusual dedication is the only answer; it‟s the cause to which God calls His people. Is there not a cause today? Is there any more noble cause then to stand as God‟s servants in the hour of transition of human history?
The spiritual obstacles that come in a time of transition we find in Revelation 12. War breaks out in the heavens. Like then, demonic and occult activity against the people of God in this Continue reading

Elijah and the Forerunner Ministry

INTRODUCTION

You may be familiar with Elijah and 1 Kings 18. I want to talk about the life of Elijah as a picture of the forerunner ministry at
the end of the age, and the spirit of Elijah, the anointing and the purpose of Elijah being released upon the
 people of God in this hour.
OPERATING IN THE MANIFESTATION OF SPIRITUAL AUTHORITY

Beloved, we need more than networking right now; we need authority. I’m not against networking; I like
networking. But so much of the energy and emphasis in the last couple of decades has been on networking and getting more people together in a room, whether it’s a conference or a church or a Bible school: networking people and getting them into containers. But
we need spiritual authority. In one sentence, we need to operate in the manifestation of spiritual authority.
I know we have authority by faith. That’s not the kind of authority I’m talking about. I’m talking about spiritual
authority where, when we speak on the earth, angels move, demons move, and human hearts are unlocked. We
 need authority.
DOES HELL KNOW YOUR NAME?

In Acts 19:15, these men were casting out demons, and the demons spoke up and said, “Who are you guys?”
And they beat them up. The demons beat them up and tore off their clothes and threw them out. But here’s what
the demons said: they said, “Jesus we know; we’re absolutely terrified of Him. Paul we know, but who are you”
(Acts 19:15, paraphrased)?
I remember hearing a sermon years ago by a man who deeply impacted my life, Leonard Ravenhill. Actually it
was just a paragraph or two in the sermon; it wasn’t even the whole sermon, but it deeply moved me. He talked
about how he wanted to be known in hell, and he used that passage. Beloved, we need men and women who are
known in the realm of the spirit. If you’re known in hell, you’re known in heaven by the angels as well.
“BECAUSE OF YOUR WORDS I HAVE COME”

”
We want the kind of authority that, when we speak, angels move. In Daniel 10, the angel appeared and told
Daniel, “When I heard your words, I came.” Here’s this Jewish boy, taken captive in Babylon, trained in the
schools for a life of devotion and abandonment to Yahweh. And this Jewish slave, in a foreign land, with no
authority of his own, spoke words on the earth and the angel said, “I came when I heard your words” (Dan.
10:12, paraphrased). When Elijah spoke, angels came. We want to speak words in worship, we want to speak
words in preaching, we want to speak words in ministry with one another. When we speak weak words from
our weak hearts, there’s an authority and an unction that looses the angels, that drives out the demons, and
unlocks human hearts.
We’re gathering in this conference because we have many things in common, but one of the things that we have
in common—and I know this is true, or you wouldn’t have come to this website—is that we’re people who
are hungry to operate in genuine spiritual authority. Not the fake stuff: not getting everyone in a line and
conditioning them to do things. There’s so much going on in the Body of Christ where we condition them so
that when they come to the ministry line they act a certain way, so we walk away thinking that we have power.
But the people have just been preconditioned to act. I’m not terribly against that; I don’t really pay that much
attention to it. But I’m not satisfied with it. I don’t want conditioned response in charismatic conferences. I want
real demons to leave, real angels to show up, and real hearts to change.
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS INVITING WEAK AND BROKEN PEOPLE ON A JOURNEY IN THE SPIRIT


We’re not interested in getting internet presence, or big conference; we’re interested in being known in hell. We want to be known
in the spirit. This is real. Because the kind of people who do this are nobodys in the world: they’re weak, they
have nothing to offer, and heaven pays attention to them. Heaven releases the mantle and the mandate and
authority, and that’s the only reason such people are ever known in history. They were nothing in and of
themselves. My point is this: you and I qualify. You and I qualify. I mean this soberly. I’m not interested in
having a pep rally; I’m not just cheerleading, I’m not trying to get everyone to shout and scream. I don’t care if
you do that here and there, but it’s not my point. My point is to convince you that the Holy Spirit is inviting
weak and broken people like you and me to go on a journey in the Spirit that ends with authority that makes a
difference on the planet before the second coming of Christ. That’s why we’re here; that’s why you’re here. I
don’t want to get really spooky and super-mystical. I don’t want to put on a charismatic show of mysticism. I
want people like you and me to have this confidence that we can do this thing because it’s in the heart of God.
That’s why we can do it.
ELIJAH WAS A MAN WITH PROPENSITIES AND WEAKNESSES LIKE OURS

Elijah was such a man. Now we kind of know him as the ultimate mystical man. We imagine him as being wild
and bizarre. But he started off as a young boy in a poor little village on a mountain. James the apostle in James
5:16 said, “Just in case you’re confused, Elijah was a man with a Continue reading

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