Posts Tagged ‘ihopkc’

Highlights from Onething 2017

Mike Bickle

There isn’t a better way forward than the plan of Jesus.

“I don’t want to get seduced into a humanistic view of justice & end up offended at God when He doesn’t do it like I thought He would.”

“Jesus restores an impossible, broken life. He heals it.”

“Isaiah 42 is the great justice chapter in the Bible.”

“The Father Himself has given His plan to bring justice to the ends of the earth to His Son.”

“Even though the power of the Spirit is moving globally, injustice is going to intensify.”

 

Benji Nunez

Now we have the privilege of standing with Israel as God has stood for us”

I want to be a mature Christian, one who is in pain when God is in pain & who rejoices when God rejoices”

Dana Candler
“The Lord wants to wreck us with His love.”

“I believe the most unshakable people alive are the people who’ve been most wrecked by the love of Christ.”

“The Lord wants to match the trembling of trouble with the sweetness of His love.”

“The Lord chose marriage as a picture of our relationship with Him. Marriage is a 100% love relationship that gives all. He is ours. We are His. It’s time to give more than 98% to Him as His bride. It’s time to give ALL to Him.”

Marriage is invasive.

“When our treasure is Christ, our heart is steadfast.”

“When we understand the revelation of the Bridegroom, we being to understand that He has deep passion for weak and broken people.”

“Do you believe that your words move the heart of God? When we realize that the Lord is moved by our words, we will open our mouth. We will pour out our heart to Him — a God who cherishes out tears and hears our prayers.” – Dana Candler

“There is no such thing as our God being stoic and indifferent—He’s moved by His people.”

You don’t ever have to lose your first love … there is a grace to remain steadfast!

“Forever and ever we will look at the Lamb slain and say, oh how He loved me.”

 

David Sliker

Don’t confuse people’s reactions to your immature, insecure, ungodly zeal with persecution… but truly reflecting the beauty of Jesus will bring real persecution.

The day that all nations take the Church seriously enough to hate us for His sake (Matt 24:9) is a glorious day for the Church because it means we’re doing something right and demonstrating real power that threatens the powers of this age.

The Joel 2 outpouring is about way more than the indwelling Holy Spirit being available to all. We’re talking massive global REVIVAL with mass supernatural repentance unto salvation, signs & wonders, ALL the Church anointed and engaged in the harvest.

A true revivalist will pay the price in prayer to prepare for revival, and will pay the price for revival when it comes. It’s a popular term right now, which is great, but it’s not a trivial thing.
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The Revelation of Weakness: The Way to Greatness, Power and Liberty

THE REVELATION OF GODLY VOLUNTARY WEAKNESS

Paul received the revelation that “godly weakness” was the way to experience more of God’s power. Jesus promised Paul that he would experience “strength made perfect” if he embraced weakness. Paul was not referring to moral weakness, but weakness coming from godly choices, a lifestyle of embracing spiritual disciplines to experience more of God.

This is essential for the days we are in and the days to come!

7 Lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. 8 Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. 9 He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in (voluntary) weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my (voluntary) infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest on me. (2 Cor. 12:7-9)

Paul describes two types of godly weaknesses. First, those which are voluntary, including prayer, fasting, living simply, serving and blessing those who offend us (Mt. 6:1-20). Second, those which are involuntary, including his thorn in the flesh, persecution and reproach. When Paul boasts of his weakness (2 Cor. 12:9), he is referring to both the involuntary weakness of various types of persecution and the voluntary weakness of what we call “the fasted lifestyle” (2 Cor. 11:23-28).

We seek to grow in our revelation and resolve to embrace godly weakness as the way to position ourselves to experience more of God’s power internally (in our hearts) and externally (in our personal ministry to family and friends). This is God’s way for us to confront the unperceived pride in our spirit.

FIVE EXPRESSIONS OF GODLY VOLUNTARY WEAKNESS (THE FASTED LIFESTYLE)

God chose godly voluntary weakness as the way to run His Kingdom. Jesus embraced it, thus providing us with our entry into the Kingdom. We embrace it as the lifestyle of the Kingdom.

27 God has chosen the (so-called) foolish things of the world to put to shame the (so-called) wise, and God has chosen the (so-called) weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are (so-called) mighty…29 that no flesh should glory in His presence… 31 that, as it is written, “He who glories, let him glory in the LORD.” (1 Cor. 1:27-31)

The fasted lifestyle is a call to embrace voluntary weakness to experience more of God’s power. What is the fasted lifestyle? There are 5 types of “fasting” described in Mt. 6:1-20.

We fast food, time, energy, money and words(restraining our speech) and by giving, serving, praying (with the Word), blessing those who offend us and fasting food as we develop the 8 beatitudes (Matt. 5:3-12).

Each of these is a form of fasting, in that we are voluntarily embracing weakness by submitting our strengths into God’s hands and trusting Him to answer us His way and in His time.

In our regular giving, we fast our money (financial strength). In serving and prayer, we are fasting our time and energy, investing it in others and in prayer. In blessing those who offend us, we fast words and reputation. Fasting from food is not primarily a call to hunger but to physical weakness. We must embrace “the fasted lifestyle” long term. No one graduates from this lifestyle, it’s a posture of receiving we keep returning to.

 

WE NATURALLY DESIRE TO “FEEL STRONG” IN OUR DEVOTION AND SERVICE

Pride injures our relationship with God. Therefore, God has ordained voluntary godly weakness in this age as the way to protect the closeness of our relationship Jesus.

We naturally desire to feel strong in these two areas,  devotion and service. However, we often feel weak in these areas.

We want to “feel strong” about our devotion and service – we want to “feel strong” when we give our devotion to God and in the preparation and offering of our service to others. There is a vast difference in “feeling strong” in the process and the operation of our skills and in “feeling confident” that God values them.

We want to “look strong” in our service to others – we want to “look strong” when we offer our service to others. There is a vast difference in “looking strong” to the people that we minister to and in “feeling confident” that God was pleased with us.

Many agree to pursue the fasted lifestyle falsely assuming that they would usually feel strong while walking out the five types of fasting. It is common to not feel God’s power while in the act of our devotion, obedience or service.  We sometimes do not feel powerful when we seek or serve the Lord. Our prayers are often “offered in weakness” but they ascend before God in power because of Jesus’ work on the cross. God has strategic time delays and locations in answering our prayers.

We can feel strong in the sense of having faith or confidence (often without feeling) that the fasted lifestyle is God’s way forward. The fasted lifestyle is so weak that anyone can do it, but it is so weak that few choose to.

 

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Great Ihopkc Worship Set: Thurlow

ThurlowThurlow.jpg

Bringing Heaven and Earth Together

CENTERPIECE OF GOD’S PURPOSE: BRINGING HEAVEN AND EARTH TOGETHER

9 Having made known to us the mystery (hidden plan) of His will…10 that He might gather together in one ALL things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth–in Him. (Eph. 1:9-10)

This is a huge verse which gives incredible insight into God’s Kingdom and how it connects to Heaven and the Age to Come.  This is a game changer for understanding God’s plans.
The centerpiece of God’s eternal purpose is for Jesus to come back to fully establish His Kingdom rule over all the earth as He joins the heavenly and earthly realms together. God’s purpose has always been for God and His people to live together in this way. This is the interpretive key to understanding the End-Times.
Heaven speaks of the supernatural spirit realm where God’s power and presence are openly manifest. It includes the realm of angels and is the place believers go for the last 2,000 year (cross to Second Coming) “temporary holding pattern” as disembodied spirits. The saints do not have a resurrected body in heaven because they do not need one to relate to the environment of heaven. When the New Jerusalem comes to earth, it is referred to as heaven. When the Scripture says our reward is in heaven it speaks of the New Jerusalem as heaven on earth.
Earth: speaks of the material physical realm as the place where human process and human emotions and physical sensation reach their fullest expression. The materiality of the Millennial earth, then the New Earth will consist of concrete reality. The earthly realm requires a resurrected body. On the earth, saints will need a resurrected body to fully relate to it.
As Gentile believers, we most naturally think of worshipping Jesus as God in the supernatural conditions of heaven. We emphasize Jesus’ deity as the Son of God. Whereas the Jewish paradigm thinks of reigning with the Messianic King as a man in the natural conditions of the earth. They emphasize the Messiah’s humanity as the Son of David. Continue reading

The Forerunner Message in Isaiah 2 Pt 2

Isaiah 40: “Every valley shall be exalted. Every mountain and hill will be brought low.”

This is what Zechariah talked about. It is going to be a plain. It is going to be leveled and elevated. The glory of the Lord will be revealed. We know this is not just a one-time revival because it is the glory revealed when the entire human race sees it so it is clearly connected to the second coming. So as related to the second coming, it is not correct to read this verse just figuratively, like the valleys in our life, the low spots, are going to be brought into balance, though it really does mean that. There is a personal, figurative application, but there is a literal one about the glory of Jerusalem where all of the valleys are going to be leveled out and all the mountains and hills are going to be brought low, because the Lord is creating a setting. It is so important to Him! He puts it in the prophet’s mouth thousands of years ahead of time, because it means that much to Him, this forty-mile kind-of-diameter area that this plain is going to be happening in.

Some see this prophecy of the “mountain of the Lord’s house” as being completely fulfilled by the Church preaching God’s word to every sphere of society and God’s kingdom gaining full authority over all society in this age (before Jesus returns), or being established “on the top of the mountains.” They only see “mountains” as a figure of speech symbolizing the spheres of society, and the instruments such as swords, plowshares, spears, and pruning hooks (2:4) are seen only as symbols.

I appreciate this interpretation, but I do not want to limit this glorious passage to this interpretation.

Literal Interpretation
The very popular way to read this passage is that people see the mountain of the Lord figuratively as the Church, and the way that the mountain of the Lord is on top of everything is they are preaching and we have influence over the spheres of society. So we are over them. I have no doubt that the Holy Spirit uses this passage for that, but that is only a little bit of what this passage is about. This passage is about the glory of the New Jerusalem in the age to come.
They see the mountains only as a figure of speech. When you read the rest of the passage, there are these instruments: swords, and plowshares, and spears. They see those just as symbols. All kind of different groups give different interpretations. They say, for example, “It is really the gospel being preached over the mountain of media and the mountain of education and the mountain of this, and the mountain of that.”
Again, I appreciate that because the Lord wants the Church to go forward. However, the full meaning of this passage, the grand meaning of this passage, is, as the Lord might say, “My mountain house is what I am talking about ultimately.” I mean you could feel free to use that passage that way. I mean, I think the Holy Spirit uses it in that way, but you do not want to limit this most magnificent passage only to Christian ministry in this age. It is something far bigger. Because if it is just Christian ministry in this age, well, a lot of people are involved in that. They get discouraged, they get bitter, they get in strife, and they get burned out. When I see the city and the Man behind it and that He planned it for me, that my inheritance is there and that He has thought of every detail, I see His extravagance, then commitment seems doable. I do not want to lose that by only seeing Christian ministry. Because if Christian ministry is all this verse means, then there you go, Body of Christ, Christian ministry does not keep people steady. They get discouraged, they quit, they fall into sin, and they are bitter. All kinds of negative things happen.
This is an anchor point of which Abraham was gripped. Isaiah was gripped by it. Jesus said, “That is the city of the Great King. It is My city. That is what I am locked into this city.” So I want you to catch that because, again, if you lose this, then the end-time storyline is doom and gloom and it is negative. No, no! There is a city being prepared, and it is going to fill the earth or a part of it. It is worth it. So this is critical that we lock into this reality.
The Church is to make a measure of impact upon society in this age as salt and light (Mt. 5:13-16). 
The kings of the earth will be at war against Jesus in the end times (Rev. 17:2; 19:19; Ps. 2:2-3). Continue reading

The Yoke of Meekness

“COME TO ME, ALL YOU WHO LABOR AND ARE HEAVY LADEN”

-We really want to get the revelation on this verse. Matthew 11:28 really is the clearest teaching on how to have a vibrant spirit, a happy heart. Jesus says, “Come to Me” (Mt. 11:28). He says, “I’m the source of the instruction, but I’m also the power source. Come to Me. Connect with Me and I’ll teach you about meekness; and I’ll empower you to walk it out.” It’s the all-important, “Come to Me.” He uses that invitation several times through the Gospels.

He says, “Come to Me, all that labor and are heavy laden” (Mt. 11:28, paraphrased). And of course it’s the whole human race. To be heavily laden means you have a heavy spirit. You’re weighed down in your emotions. You’re weighed down with things. He says, “I will give you rest” (v. 28b, NKJV). Now rest is a term that involves many things. He’s talking about our emotions. He’s talking about giving us the power of a vibrant spirit, a free spirit. He’s talking about a joyous, happy spirit. And He said, “Now I will tell you how to enter into rest. I’ll tell you how to get free from the heavy spirit.” And there are many different expressions of a heavy spirit. We all know them. I mean, we’ve all experienced a heavy spirit many times throughout our life.

“TAKE MY YOKE UPON YOU AND LEARN OF ME, FOR I AM MEEK AND LOWLY”

But Jesus says in verse 29, “Here’s the way to freedom. You have to take My yoke. You have to yoke yourself to Me. And you have to learn from Me because I’m gentle and lowly in heart” (Mt. 11:29, paraphrased). “Lowly in heart” is translated in other Bible translations as humble or meek. It’s lowly of heart. And He says, “If you do this, you will find rest for your souls” (ibid). He repeats the promise that you’ll enter into rest. You’ll have a vibrant spirit. The spirit of heaviness will lift off of you over time.

HIS YOKE IS EASY, HIS BURDEN IS LIGHT

Then He goes on in verse 30 and He gives an encouragement: “Stay with the process, because if you stay with it, you’ll find out that My yoke is easy” (Mt. 11:30, paraphrased). Now the illustration of a yoke is very, very important. It’s central to this teaching of how to live in freedom and liberty. In the ancient world, as today, the farmer would put a pair of oxen or another pair of animals inside a yoke. And sometimes there would be two and sometimes there would be many oxen yoked together with a wooden yoke. And the yoke would be around their neck—both the lead oxen and the newer oxen that was just being broken in and trained in how to plow the fields. They would be yoked to an experienced ox, and that ox would lead the yoke.

We’re the new; and when we put that yoke on our neck, that yokes to Him. In the agricultural world, the “beginner ox” would tend to go either to the right or to the left. But they couldn’t get off the path because they were yoked in this wooden yoke next to the experienced ox that remained on the path. Jesus said, “Put that yoke on you,” because we’re chaining ourselves, we’re yoking ourselves to His pathway of meekness.

He says, “I’ll walk the path. Yoke yourself to Me. And when you want to go right and left, the yoke will keep you in the center. And that yoke is your commitment to learn from Me and to walk with Me in this pathway.”

Now it’s the yoke of meekness. And no one will put that yoke on you. God won’t put it on you; we have to put it on ourselves. We put it on ourselves by making a commitment to learn from Jesus in the realm of meekness and to follow it through with Him. And so we put that yoke on us and we begin the process of learning from Him.

Now the challenge of being yoked is this: in the earlier days of being yoked, the beginning stages of being yoked, the new ox feels the sores and the blisters of this new yoke. And it’s uncomfortable; it’s awkward. The new ox wants to get off the path and resist it, and so he kind of bucks the system and doesn’t like it at first. But over time, he gets into a rhythm. And the new ox adjusts to this new pathway, this new way of life. And so it’s a process. It takes time. There’s a resistance. It’s awkward at first. But Jesus is telling us in verse 30, “My yoke is easy” (Mt. 11:30). In other words, “If you stay with it: if you’ll stay yoked to Me in this pathway of meekness, eventually your heart will find rest. You’ll carry your heart in a new way.”

EXCELLING IN HUMILITY SHOULD BE ONE OF OUR HIGHEST AMBITIONS

Now here’s what the process of being yoked to the Lord is about. We start off being aware that humility is an important virtue. But our natural response to humility is to dodge it, to find ways to escape the yoke of humility. We’ll use Bible verses or the grace of God or social maneuvering to get out of having to face the issue of humbling ourself in relationships with people. We don’t like that yoke. But once we decide to take it on and wrestle, then over time, it becomes a primary life goal. I mean, it’s not just something we’re enduring; it’s not something we’re trying to escape. It’s actually something we settle in on. Our life goal isn’t just comfort or more blessing or more honor; our life goal is to excel in humility. And when that happens, the yoke becomes easy and we carry our heart in a different way.

THE MEEKEST MAN EVER TO WALK THE EARTH

Something happens on the inside when one of our primary life goals takes hold of meekness. Because it’s not natural to any of us to make that a primary goal in our life, but it’s the Lord’s agenda for our life. He’s the meekest Man that ever walked the earth, but He also had the freest and the happiest spirit of any man that ever walked the earth. And the two are related to one another.

Now this is the only characteristic Jesus ever proclaimed about Himself. He gave Himself titles; but He never, ever described a character trait about Himself, except here in verse 29. He said, “I’m meek,” or, “I’m humble,” or, “I’m lowly.” Use whatever word you want. The Lord commits Himself to training us in meekness if we will go with Him. He says, “Take the yoke; sign up for the class.” He won’t make you take this yoke. And again, putting on that yoke means we’re training ourselves or binding ourselves to a life of meekness according to His terms. That is what it means to take the yoke. Taking the yoke doesn’t just mean we ask the Lord to forgive us for our sins; we’re born again and we’re taking the yoke! No, that’s only the beginning of the beginning. The yoke of meekness is the call to discipleship.

As a matter of fact, in this very chapter, Matthew 11, earlier in verse 12, Jesus talked about spiritual violence: this radical abandonment to God. This is actually the yoke of meekness that He’s talking about. He described it just a few verses earlier referring to John the Baptist. He’s laying out the spiritual violence of the forerunner ministry. It’s living the yoke of meekness: not the occasional expression of humility, but humility defined as one of the primary goals of what we want to attain in this life. It’s violent, but once we settle that, it becomes easy. This doesn’t mean that the life externally is easy. But our heart comes to peace. There’s an enjoyment of God. There’s a vibrant spirit in coming to peace with this new alignment of our life, when our goal is to walk in the meekness and the yoke of humility that Jesus walks in.

THE GRAVITATIONAL PULL OF OUR HEARTS IS TOWARDS PRIDE

Well, we never graduate from this class. Sign up for the class, the yoke of meekness. And it’s a seminary course. It’s an internship that you’ll be in all your days. We need to assume that pride is strong in our being. Some folks have the opposite opinion. When someone suggests they’re proud, they’re scandalized. It’s exactly the opposite. Of course we’re proud. Continue reading

Antichrist’s Political Aggression

First Seal: The Antichrist’s Political Aggression

Preface: The first seal is quite an interesting study.  Now I have been drawing strongly here from Mike Bickle’s Study of the Seals Trumpets and Bowls. A strictly scholastic approach won’t work here, that usually ends with people making it mean something less offensive or symbolizing it away. I want to lean on the teachers of the body throughout the centuries, but also seek His guidance. The Lord will give revelation and understanding to those who ask for it, especially as we get nearer to His Return. There are many interpretations of the book of Revelation, but only one Holy Spirit. I have sought to ask Jesus what His plans are, more than read into the book a denominational view. Even as you read this, you want to keep asking for the Spirit of Truth to guide you into truth, even beyond the page here.

First Seal: The Antichrist’s Political Aggression

  1. And I looked, and behold, a white horse. He who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer. (Rev. 6:2)

The first seal is unique because it signals the beginning of the final three and a half years. This is after the first 3 1/2 years of false peace. After the time of false peace there are the 7 Seals, the 7 Trumpets, the Rapture and then the 7 bowls.

The first seal is the release of the Antichrist as a political leader on the worldwide stage with authority. The Antichrist begins as a regional, political leader who is not taken seriously by many other leaders around the world. They do not know who he is. He knows who he is, but they do not. He is a regional leader.

He puts together a series of covenants and peace treaties among the nations creating false peace. That is one of the key events that thrust him onto the world stage. It is more than that, but that is the beginning of the events that put him on the world stage.

When he comes on the world stage at the first seal, then it signals the final three and a half years before Jesus appears in the sky to rapture the Church, establish His throne in Jerusalem, and take over all the nations. When the first seal is released and the Antichrist takes a world stage, it signifies the last three and a half years. It is forty-two months, the Bible says, until the Lord’s appearing in the sky, landing on the earth to take over the earth.

A CHANGE IN PRAYER TYPE

The prayer life of the Church changes focus starting with the first Seal. Right now the way that we pray is, we see sin in the nations, and we ask God to shine His light on the sin and change it.

It is a positive prayer. We say, “Lord, stop the sin. Shine Your light. Change the situation. Send revival.” That prayer for the release of light and glory releases light and glory (but side note, it also usually releases judgment on darkness).

We do not pray that way; we pray for light to touch where darkness is, and judgment is the byproduct of it. When there is a final decision for darkness, when the hearts are reprobate (that is a fancy word for when they have made a decision for darkness), there is no turning back. That is the key issue. This begins at the final three and a half years, at the first seal.

PARTNERING WITH THE LORD IN RELEASING HIS JUDGMENTS

From the first seal to the second coming, people take the mark of the beast and they make decisions of which they cannot reverse. Their conscience is fully seared. The mark is complete agreement with the man of sin and is a statement of worshiping him as God. Our prayers then go from, “Lord send light,” to “Lord, release your judgment on the reprobate.” Because this empire will be oppressing all who resist it. And because they will be in places in the government where it is clear that there is no possible repentance for them. We do pray specifically for judgments in very rare situations today if the Lord revealed it and confirmed it by a prophetic word.

But I do not know of many prophetic words that I would have confidence in today if someone said, “Hey, the Lord told me to pray for judgment against this or that.” There are not too many situations I would have confidence in. Jeremiah, Ezekiel, the prophets of old, the Lord actually visited them for that kind of thing. It is rare. It is unique, but it is a Biblical reality.

That is not the rule of how we pray today. We do not pray for the release of judgments today. We pray for the release of light that causes judgment, but it is in God’s hands with the judgments. We do not know. We are not asking for the judgment in specific ways. From the time of the first seal to the second coming, we have clarity and confidence to pray for judgment. Moses had confidence to call down judgment on Pharaoh, the church will have confidence in the face of horrible oppression of the Antichrist’s world empire.

THE FIRST JUDGMENT IS THE RELEASE OF THE ANTICHRIST

It is interesting. The first judgment that is released is the release of the Antichrist. It is the Antichrist judging the Harlot Babylon of Revelation 17 who has been murdering the saints for some years before this point. This is actually a positive thing, in a way. The release of the Antichrist is actually in part a fruit of the prayers of the saints against Babylon. God raises up an evil force to judge Babylon and all the nations that are aligned with her.

Then, our prayer focus shifts after that to praying against the Antichrist himself. That is a point of introduction to make the point that from the first seal to the second coming—the final three and a half years — the prayer focus of the Church shifts in a dramatic way.   We know that when light is released, it does bring judgment to darkness. But as a rule, the Church does not have the details, even prophetically, of how that is going to happen.

THE STRUCTURE OF THE SEALS, TRUMPETS, AND BOWLS

A. The structure of the seven seals, seven trumpets, the seven bowls. That is called the three judgment series. It is three series that brings judgment with seven seals, seven trumpets, and seven bowls. These three judgment series, they are structured in a similar way, all three of them.

The first four events belong together. Then the next two go together. Then the final event stands alone. Knowing this helps us understand the interpretation of the judgment events.

DISTINCTION ON SEALS

B. The first four seals are distinct from the next two, which are separate from the last one. The similarities are a horse with a distinct color (white, red, black, pale).

The four horses parallel the color of the horses (red, black, white, dappled) seen by Zechariah (Zech. 1:8-11; 6:1-8).

As we look at the seals here in Revelation 6, the first four seals are clearly distinct from the next two, which are very distinct from the final one. The first four seals, they have a similarity—quite a few similarities. Number one: there is a horse with a distinct color. There is a rider on the horse, and that rider is released by a decree from one of the living creatures. The result is judgment. All four of them have those similarities. Which is very different than the next two seals, the fifth and the sixth ones.

GOD LIFTING HIS RESTRAINING HAND OFF EVIL MEN

The judgment of the seals is actually God lifting His restraining hand off of evil people. There is much blessing happening in the earth today because God is restraining the evil in people’s lives, hearts, and governments. There is a lot of evil happening, but God is restraining much evil.

The great judgment of the seals is God letting human beings have what they want. They want sin. He says, “I will take My hand off, and I will let you have that which you are pursuing and you will find it, it will judge you.”

He takes His hands off of human beings in a certain way. He is still in control, but He lets sinful people let their fill of sinful people. Then they find what they do is they destroy each other.

In the seals God takes His restraint off the human realm. In the trumpets, He takes His restraint off the demonic realm. In the bowls, He takes His restraint off His judgments. His judgments are fully released in the bowls.

In the seals, humans are released fully to do their will. In the trumpets, demons are released fully. In the bowls, God’s wrath is fully released upon the earth.

There is an element of restraint being lifted in each one of these judgment series. Again, I am making the point of how the first four go together. I am going to apply that point below (the first four seals).

FIRST FOUR SEAL JUDGMENTS INVOLVE NATURAL ACTIONS ON EARTH
They all involve natural actions of events that occur on the earth. Whereas the fifth, sixth, and seventh seals involve supernatural actions with events occurring in the heavens, or in the sky, or in the heavenly realm—whether the sky or around the throne, etc.

The seal judgments are actually the raising up of the Antichrist. It is a judgment against the harlot Babylon religion that will have existed for some years.

We do not know how long the harlot Babylon exists in a formal way that has power to kill the saints. The harlot Babylon will not only be a religious system; it will actually have the political ability to kill the saints.

That is what it states in Revelation 17:6. It states the harlot Babylon (this religion) will be drunk with the blood of the saints. They will have the political, legislative ability to kill saints who they see as a threat to world peace.

The activity of the harlot Babylon religion is the first big thing that is going to happen before the Antichrist appears. This world religion will require that religions of the world will join it.

The Harlot will be an actual, official organization which will be much more in-depth than the world council of churches. I have heard people over the years say that, that is it or that the Catholic Church is it. “A Woman rides the Beast” is a popular book on that. No, it is far bigger than that. It is far bigger than the Catholic Church. It is far bigger than apostate Protestantism. It is far bigger than anything. It is an entity that has never existed in this magnitude. That is what it emerging in the earth right now.

That will occur before the Antichrist. As a matter of fact, the Antichrist is used by God to judge this evil system. Then God judges the Antichrist afterwards.

GOD USES EVIL MEN AS HIS INSTRUMENTS TO JUDGE EVIL MEN

It is a fact of Scripture; it is always surprising to our natural mind that God will use evil men as His instruments to judge evil men. That happens all through the Bible. But when we encounter it, it often surprises us. If we take a step back, look at the Scripture, it is a principle of Scripture that God uses evil men, even evil nations. He actually empowers them and allows them to have resources in an unusual way to judge other evil men or other evil nations. Then God judges the one He used to judge the other. That is a pattern of Scripture.

THE SEAL JUDGMENTS TARGET NATIONS THAT ALIGN WITH HARLOT BABYLON


The seal judgments will target the nations that align themselves with this harlot Babylon religion. Many nations, many kings will line up and align themselves in a very practical and real way—not just in a casual way, at a distance with endorsements. They will be involved in a real way. Biblically, we do not fully know the details, but they will be. Religion is going to take the center stage on a global level. People are saying the nations are going to become more secular. Actually the truth is the nations are going to become more immoral but more spiritual. Instead of becoming more secular, the Bible makes it clear that the nations are actually going to become more spiritual, meaning spiritually aware, sensitive, but in a dark way. It will actually

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