1-Its-A-New-Dawn-Its-A-New-Day-Its-A-New-Year...-Im-Feeling-Fine...A new day has dawned in Christ.

“Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us. To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.”

The morning light from heaven has broken the darkness of our lives.

God acts with tender mercies for broken hearts wounded from the pain and consequence of sin and raw from repentance need the nail scarred tender hand of Jesus comforting them with acceptance love and forgiveness.

There is “the tender mercy of our God…” (Luke 1:78).

Spurgeon points out that the original phrase is, “The mercy of the heart of our God.”

It means the mercy of God’s very soul. Mercy is vitally connected with God’s own existence-his heart. God’s “mercy heart” shows that he will forgive those who ask for for forgiveness, because he is faithful and just to forgive their sins and cleanse them for all unrighteousness.

How is this forgiveness experienced?

God calming us down after screaming aloud until hoarse?
With the uttering of a repeat-after-me prayer?
Or is it a divine psychology that says, “That’s OK no ones perfect?”
NO!!!
It is like the sun slowly rising in the east bathing the shore in endless light and warmth. As the sun slowly but steadily takes over the night realm and rises as the dawn- so is God’s tender mercy and love seen.  His forgiveness and acceptance will be like the sun warming your face. It is God’s smile upon you dispelling the shadows of guilt and the dense darkness of shame upon you and brings before your the eyes of your heart an endless horizon that shows only God’s love and favor. The sun rising with healing in its wings dislodges any doubt and removes the very thought, words and acts of your transgressions.Then Luke (1:77-79) speaks of the the mercy heart of God and the dawn of Christ’s  life and love as having VISITED us.A visit is when someone temporarily spends some time with us. That is not far from the meaning of this word.

The word visit is “episkeptomai” in the original language shows us a person who cares about us come to look after, inspect and examine someone who is sick or in need. This person does not just come to show sympathy.

He comes with benefits in his hands. He comes with provision and healing.

Years ago, right into the mid to late twentieth century. Doctors used to carried a black bag and make house calls.

I knew Doctor Patten, I will never forget his hospitality and love. We could always come see him and his three wonderful daughters Wendy, Julia and Cynthia and his son John.  He was a Pastor in Maine and a MD. with a cool british accent. I will never forget him running into our bible college into the institute building with his black bag to visit a sick student. I can still see it in my mind. Strange how you remember some things.

It is the same way when Christ makes a house call. But in a way that is incredible. He is a sun and shield giving grace and glory not withholding anything good.

Jesus comes and we always experience God’s mercy heart and the smile of the dawn of grace, mercy and forgiveness in our lives.

Christ visits us.

When we sin, when we are hurt, broken, whatever the need- it will not be long until Christ rings the door bell and knocks. He turns the knob and walks in. He needs not ask. He does not need to be invited. Our home is his home. Our problems are his problems. His answers our now our answers.

The Great Physician with his great mercy heart and his smile that is like the dawn coming and visiting us. Even now he is at the door, knocking and opening-you can hear his voice, see the light of his presence and he has just what you need.

gift_of_the_holy_spiritThis is for Pentecostals and people who believe in the operations of the gifts of the Spirit today.

The Holy Spirit wants to move in church meetings. Instead of Paul stopping everything in Corinth he instructed them on how to operate in the gifts of the Spirit.

There is no reason for us with proper instruction and biblical parameters to not see the Holy Spirit in the gifts in the midst of the church meeting.

Just because there are abuses doesn’t mean that the gifts are not in operation anymore. Just because there is divorce doesn’t mean that marriage is a bad institution. what is mind-boggling is that we really would not know a lot of the specifics about the gifts of the spirit if the Corinthian people were not making mistakes with them! God is not intimidated by our problems and that is why he’s given us good teachers to keep people in check with the Scripture. we wouldn’t know what a word of wisdom is from a word of knowledge-if Paul would not have said, “Concerning spiritual gifts brethren I would not have you ignorant.” (1 Cor 12: 1).  In fact, in summarizing the spiritual gifts he points out the fact that all true spiritual gifts point to one thing – Jesus is Lord. Then his body, the church is edified by the proper and biblical operation of the gifts of the spirit.

But I can hardly see the Holy Spirit and the gifts moving in the church meeting when the worship team and the Pastors jump from song to song and they never stop to take time to worship and to wait on God.  It betrays an unholy anxiety and fear – I would say that it is clearly unbelief to not allow the Holy Spirit to move-to quench the Spirit and grieve the Spirit in such a manner.

It is true there are many false prophets and prophecy – but that doesn’t mean there aren’t real genuine people speaking in confirmation of the word of the Lord. Don’t despise genuine prophecy that forth tells the Scripture in an elevated discourse.

Why? The Holy Spirit can do more in a few minutes, I say in a few seconds then anything we can do.

Do not quench the Spirit Paul says. Don’t put the Spirit’s fire out! Where the spirit of the Lord is there is liberty. What freedom? – a face-to-face encounter with Christ through his word, the ordinances and real fellowship. How can we offer in benediction the words the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ the love of God and the communion of the Holy Spirit – what we don’t believe or allow for communion of the Holy Spirit. where is that communion is not limited to just the church service – but what a great place, in church as we worship together to learn about the communion of the Holy Spirit.

Do we want people to encounter God or not? Or do we want them to learn some better behavior modification and be completely unaware of God’s presence and reality. That is what were going to end up with-that is what we have right now.

Many people tell me what we have the prayer meeting. Then people can operate in the gifts. Who do you think you are? It is sad to think that you may be resisting God and you are limiting the holy One.  do you think that the God who is taken back by people’s rejection of his grace would not feel the same way about rejecting his gifts? Can you really take that chance?

Are you telling the Lord that he can do this here but not there?

Oh well, we do not want to scare visitors away. Are you even Pentecostal? It would seem that you have lost your fire. could it be that you are not preaching the whole counsel of God as you claim to? The Holy Spirit loves to move where the Bible is preached. It could be the problem is not people operating in the gifts of the Spirit but your refusal to preach all that God says in his Word!

Have you lost your way? Are you not afraid of  dishonoring God?

Did not Jesus say that my house shall be called a house of prayer? Does this not even tell you that our main goal in the church is to address God and not man.

Does this not also indicate that God will speak to people through his Word and the operations of the gifts of the Spirit? This also may indicate that we are under a biblical mandate to allow the gifts of the Spirit to move in our church because that’s the way a church is supposed to be. Wow what a novel idea:  modeling our churches after what Scripture teaches.

© 2014 Soul Health Care Ministries. Give credit where credit is due.

FredericksDream2Now for the “rest of the story”, which is not widely known.

The executioners undressed Hus and tied his hands behind his back with ropes, and his neck with a chain to a stake around which wood and straw had been piled up so that it covered him to the neck. Still at the last moment, the imperial marshal, Von Pappenheim, in the presence of the Count Palatine, asked him to save his life by a recantation, but Hus declined with the words “God is my witness that I have never taught that of which I have been accused by false witnesses. In the truth of the Gospel which I have written, taught, and preached I will die to-day with gladness.”  There upon the fire was kindled with John Wycliffe’s own manuscripts used as kindling for the fire. With uplifted voice Hus sang, “Christ, thou Son of the living God, have mercy upon me.” Among his dying words he proclaimed, “In 100 years, God will raise up a man whose calls for reform cannot be suppressed.” His ashes were gathered and cast into the nearby Rhine River.

On the morning of 31 Oct 1517, the very day on which Luther would nail his 95 Theses to the church door, Frederick of Saxony had a dream.

He told it to his brother, and fortunately it was recorded by many of the chroniclers of the time.

Here it is in Frederick’s own words: Having gone to bed last night, fatigued and out of spirits, I fell asleep shortly after my prayer, and slept calmly for about two hours and a half; I then awoke, and continued awake to midnight, all sorts of thoughts passing through my mind. Among other things, I thought how I was to observe the Feast of All Saints. I prayed for the poor souls in purgatory; and supplicated God to guide me, my counsels, and my people according to truth.

I again fell asleep, and then dreamed that Almighty God sent me a monk, who was a true son of the Apostle Paul. All the saints accompanied him by order of God, in order to bear testimony before me, and to declare that he did not come to contrive any plot, but that all that he did was according to the will of God.

They asked me to have the goodness graciously to permit him to write something on the door of the church of the Castle of Wittenberg. This I granted through my chancellor. Thereupon the monk went to the church, and began to write in such large characters that I could read the writing at Schweinitz. The pen which he used was so large that its end reached as far as Rome, where it pierced the ears of a lion that was crouching there, and caused the triple crown upon the head of the pope to shake. All the cardinals and princes, running hastily up, tried to prevent it from falling. You and I, brother, wished also to assist, and I stretched out my arm; — but at this moment I awoke, with my arm in the air, quite amazed, and very much enraged at the monk, for not managing his pen better. I recollected myself a little; it was only a dream.

I was still half asleep, and once more closed my eyes. The dream returned. The lion, still annoyed by the pen, began to roar with all his might, so much so that the whole city of Rome, and all the States of the Holy Empire, ran to see what the matter was. The pope requested them to oppose this monk, and applied particularly to me, on account of his being in my country. I again awoke, repeated the Lord’s prayer, entreated God to preserve his Holiness, and once more fell asleep.

Then I dreamed that all the princes of the Empire, and we among them, hastened to Rome, and strove, one after another, to break the pen; but the more we tried the stiffer it became, sounding as if it had been made of iron. We at length desisted.

I then asked the monk (for I was sometimes at Rome, and sometimes at Wittenberg) where he got this pen, and why it was so strong.

“The pen,” replied he, “belonged to an old goose of Bohemia, a hundred years old. I got it from one of my old schoolmasters.  As to its strength, it is owing to the impossibility of depriving it of its pith or marrow; and I am quite astonished at it myself.”  Suddenly I heard a loud noise — a large number of other pens had sprung out of the long pen of the monk. I awoke a third time; it was daylight.

That inspired dream was given to Prince Frederick before the 95 Theses were even tacked to the church door. At first he would have had no idea what it meant, but the meaning would become clear soon enough. It must have had a profound influence on him to help defend Luther against the pope and the emperor. Note the amazingly clever reference to John Huss in the last paragraph of the dream (in bold face type).

What was a “pen” in those days? It was not a ball-point pen nor even a fountain pen. It referred to a goose-quill pen. So in the dream, when Frederick was told that the amazing pen came from an old goose, that would not be surprising. Of course it came from a goose, like all pens. But the “old goose of Bohemia, a hundred years old” is an unmistakable reference to John Huss. And the pen is an excellent way to symbolize the truth of Huss’s writings, for it was his writings that stirred Luther to action. Moreover, the dream ties directly to the “hundred year prophecy” of Huss, referring to Martin Luther, which also used the goose symbolism for Huss. It is not clear whether Frederick ever figured out that the goose was Huss, but he certainly would learn that the monk was Martin Luther. This dream may even reveal why Huss had the name “Goose” at all, for the pen is mightier than the sword.

From The History of Protestantism, I:263,265 , quoted in Ogden Kraut, 95 Theses (Genola, UT: Pioneer Publishers, 1975 ), pp. 154-156.

HoldOnGodKnowsWhatsHesDoing“In my desperation I prayed, and the LORD listened; he saved me from all my troubles.” (Psalm 34:6).

When you pray remember you serve the All Powerful God! God is a God of miracles. Does anyone doubt that? I don’t think so. The struggle is not that God can do anything but that he will answer our prayer (Ps. 17:6)

I realize we don’t live from miracle to miracle. But we make a lot of mistakes, act stupidly and we know it. But our frailties do not hinder God. As he answers our prayer he teaches us. But we are a blessed people, loved by God (Eph. 1:1-6).

God the Father did not withhold his Son from us so he might secure our salvation. He sets the standard of answered prayer by that act. He will withhold nothing from us. He hears and answers our prayers because He promised He would and he is our generous Father (Rom 8:32).

You may doubt or waver when you pray at first because of emotion, shock and even past trauma you may have a hard time believing. The life of faith is not automatic, it takes time but over time, “your faith will grow strong in the truth.” (Col 2:7NLT).

“Doubt is not unbelief. But it can become unbelief…Doubt is like an attention-seeking child. The more attention you pay to it, the more attention it demands. By worrying about your doubts, you get locked into a vicious cycle of uncertainty.” (Alister McGrath).

Deal with your doubts and move on. Unbelief is a serious thing it charges God with lying. Confess that to God! Ask his forgiveness and his help to believe and whether you feel like it or not begin to use the Psalms and scriptures to thank God for his desire and ability to answer prayer. I challenge to you tell God why you think he can’t or won’t help you. Go ahead see his response in your heart and the scriptures he will show you. You will have an attitude change for sure.

I am not big on the “confess it possess it” mentality but there is no use in saying lies when God word says differently. You keep saying God is against you? You thinking God has abandoned you? That is a UGLY LIE Satan that big fat liar is pounding you with and he is trying to plant seeds of distrust in your mind (Rom 8:31-19). Evict his lies IMMEDIATELY! (Luke 10:19). He is misrepresenting your God.

You may feel abandoned, anxious, fearful, lonely, discouraged and depressed. It is an emotional roller coaster, I know. Don’t deny it. Tell God! Pour out your heart to him. He does not mind, he knows it already. You don’t have to fake prayer with your all knowing Father. Don’t pretend everything is OK but go to God and just be honest with him (Isaiah 1:18).

His heart is moved when he hears your cry and pray. He is full of mercy and he pays attention to your tears, broken heart and crushed spirit. The High and Holy God promised to sit down with you and refresh you! (Isaiah 57:15). 

gospel_unleashed“Wherefore we would have come unto you, even I Paul, once and again; but Satan hindered us.” (1 Thess 2:18).

In this verse you see the apostle Paul himself was hindered from being able to minister to the the saints for a period of time. He literally says that Satan cut in front of him impeding the ministry of the gospel. Satan will stop at nothing when it comes to hindering the message of the gospel. Satan blinds the minds of unbelievers (2 Cor. 4:3-4) and he takes them captive at his will (2 Tim. 2:26).  Only the gospel of Jesus Christ can break open the prison cells of those captive to sin and remove the darkness of their hearts by its all-powerful light. The gospel has power in and of itself; Paul calls it, “the power of God unto salvation.” (Romans 1: 16).

Satan is an enemy of Jesus Christ and anyone who serves him and many Christians today are being hindered by the devil especially those in ministry. The obstacles for unbelievers is one thing but hindrance of believers in Jesus is a much longer list. Today, divisions in churches, distractions of this world and depression of the emotions block the furtherance of the gospel. I also believe the gospel is being hindered because people are getting “spiritual” feeding from false ministers who have distorted the gospel rather than the personal study of the Bible under the illumination of the Holy Spirit (Gal 1). The gospel is an awesome power against the forces of darkness. Many people look at the armor of God in Ephesians 6:10-18 as something for personal protection but they forget that the armor has shoes that are called “the gospel of peace.” (Eph. 6:15). So what we stand upon; what we move in, what we walk in, what we run in-is the gospel.  This understanding gives great clarity to our mission. Everything we live for is Christ and his gospel. As I’ve said before to others it’s time for us to use the weaponized version of the Bible (Heb. 4:12). This means to unleash the gospel in all its force and full strength by speaking clearly and forcefully the truths of the gospel and letting the Holy Spirit have his way.

I believe that The Lord whispered in my heart a few weeks back something to the effect that if we are going to stop the tide of evil that is sweeping across this land we are going to have to have the attitude “All for the gospel. All for Christ.” Only those that have surrendered to the gospel can call for the surrender of others to the gospel. And no doubt the gospel is an unconditional surrender of the sinner to the demands of the gospel.

Our strength, our fortunes, our very lives must be offered as a sweet smelling savor in sacrifice in order for the gospel to take its full affect. There is no other way. You don’t have to read the Bible for long to see that the men and women of the first century church were deeply and radically committed to Christ. The apostle Paul had a motto, “to live is Christ and to die is gain.”  (Phil 1:21).  And I say, it is impossible for the gospel to be spread without a complete and total willingness to give everything for the gospel by every individual who calls himself a Christian.

The gospel is not just an idea but it is the idea of God. It is the genius of God that seems like foolishness to the world (1 Cor.  1:18, 25). There is nothing that can be compared to the gospel. The reason for the rise of Islam in the world today is because of the reasons that I’ve stated above. If the plain gospel is not preached it is giving Satan liberty and license by both spiritual and natural enemies to terrorize the world.  Satan is a master at religion.

The Bible says he has his own ministers he even has his own churches. They appear to be Christian but they are not (2 Cor. 11:13-14). One man said years ago the one thing that’s worse than a world without the knowledge of God is a world with a perverted knowledge of God. We cannot defeat the foes of the gospel through the methodologies of man. It is ridiculous at best and satanic at worst! When Peter thought like men think he was called Satan (Mt 16:23). Jesus would say no less of those who garble and mangle the preaching of scripture and the gospel. This world system dominated by sin and Satan are much too powerful and only the Son of God could defeat them when he died on the cross and rose from the grave.  We cannot lay claim to his promise, “I have overcome the world.” if we do not preach the gospel (John 16:33).  We will be hindered and miserably defeated. May God help us today.

danger11I disagree with John MacArthur’s view on people being able to repent and be saved after taking the mark of the beast in the tribulation.

The Bible talks about the seal of God Ezekiel 9; Rev. 7:3, 9:4. It teaches that the seal of God is irremovable. You will also see the example of Exodus 12 with the Mark of the blood on the door posts. Those people were protected. Those people who did not have it were not protected.

I guess it’s worth the word study on the idea of the seal since we all are sealed unto the day of redemption by the Holy Spirit who know Christ as Savior. (Eph. 4:30).

The whole point of this is that “God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” (2 Thess. 2:12)

That mark of the beast is a terrible and awful thing. it is a sign of judgment from God. It is not just mainly a satanic thing. It is a sentence upon the people that are described in the book of Revelation are those who refuse to “receive love for the truth” and thus taking the Mark of the Beast in their rebellion. They are also described as being coerced as it says in Revelation 13:16 that he forces them to take it as a sign and pledge of their worship of the beast.

Anyone who does not take it is killed. It is better to be killed then take the Mark of the Beast. It also will be part of the testimony of the tribulation believers, “…And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years.” (Rev. 20:4).

You will notice the wording given in the book of Revelation concerning the people who take it, “And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” (Rev 13:8).

They are under a spirit of irreversible delusion, “With these signs he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped its image.” (Rev 19:20).

The kicker is found in Revelation 14:9-12. “If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand. The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.”

WE CONCLUDE that anyone who takes the Mark of this satanic animal, the BEAST is damned irreversibly.

© 2014 Soul Health Care Ministries. Give credit where credit is due.

elijahravens“Next to the bestowment of His Word and the Holy Spirit… the most valuable gift He grants any people is the sending of His own qualified servants among them,

And that the greatest possible calamity which can befall any land is God’s withdrawal of those whom He appoints to minister unto the soul.

The removal of the ministers of His truth is a sure sign of God’s displeasure, a token that He is dealing in judgment with a people who have provoked Him to anger.

Ah, my reader, little as it may be realized in our day, there is no surer and more solemn proof that God is hiding His face from a people or nation than for Him to deprive them of the inestimable blessings of those who faithfully minister His Holy Word to them, for as far as heavenly mercies excel earthly so much more dreadful are spiritual calamities than material ones.

Through Moses the Lord had declared, “My doctrine shall drop as the rain, my speech shall distil as the dew, as the small rain upon the tender herb, and as the showers upon the grass,” (Deut. 32:2).

And now all dew and rain was to be withheld from Ahab’s land, not only literally so, but spiritually so as well. Those who ministered His Word were removed from the scene of public action, (cf. 1 Kings 18:4).

If further proof of the Scripturalness of our interpretation of 1 Kings 17:3 be required, we refer the reader to: “And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity, and the water of affliction, yet shall not thy teachers be removed into a corner any more, but thine eyes shall see thy teachers,” (Isa. 30:20).

What could be plainer than that?

For the Lord to remove His teachers into a corner was the sorest loss His people could suffer, for here He tells them that His wrath shall be tempered with mercy, that though He gave them the bread of adversity and the water of affliction yet He would not again deprive them of those who ministered unto their souls.

Finally, we would remind the reader of Christ’s statement that there was “great famine” in the land in Elijah’s time, Luke 4:25, and link up with the same: “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord: and they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it. (Amos 8:11, 12).” (Arthur Pink)

psa-2-8-web-watermarkedThis is a prayer from various scriptures for world wide missions and evangelism that I wrote and I plead you would pray with me.

Lord Jesus, we long for you to ask your Father to give you the nations as your inheritance, the whole earth as your possession!

And the entire earth will belong to you. All kings will bow before you, and all nations will serve you!

King Jesus, You are the ever living One able to intervene and save the lost masses of this planet for all time and eternity!

They will come to God through You alone and in the day of Your power, Lord Jesus,You shall have multitudes of willing, loyal subjects, among all peoples, kindred’s, tribes, nations and languages.

Oh LORD demonstrate your holy power before the eyes of all the nations. Let all the ends of the earth will see the salvation of our God.

Now show them your power; show them your might. At last they will know and understand that You are the LORD!

Your realm will stretch from sea to sea and from the ends of the earth and your people will live undisturbed, for you will be highly honored around the world and you will bring salvation to the farthest corners of the earth!

Brother Stephen S. Gibney

imagesThen I said, ‘I will not make mention of him, nor speak any more in his name.” But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay.” (Jer. 20:9). 

A fire has been burning deep within the earth and anthracite coal fields of what used to be a small community called Centralia, Pennsylvania since May 27, 1962.  The temperature exceeds 1000°F and emits poisonous gas. There has been no success in extinguishing the fire and eventually the whole town was evacuated in 2012. At this rate the fire will burn in the earth for another 250 years. This is quite a phenomena.

It is like what we see in this passage.  Jeremiah does not want to preach anymore. He feels like a failure and no one is listening. One man said that Jeremiah is suffering, acute “prophetitus” because not only are there no results in his ministry but people are getting worse.  God seems to be giving him no words of encouragement at all.  Jeremiah said that he wanted to forget about preaching God’s words but there underneath the earth of his being there was a fire in his belly, a burning in his bones and he had to speak.

God told Jeremiah early in his ministry, ” I will make my words in thy mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them.” (Jer 5:14). God also describes the characteristic of his word, “Is not my word like as a fire? saith the Lord; and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?” (Jer 23:29).  The word was like fire and there was not some dichotomy, some separation from what was in his mouth and what was in his heart.  The Word was a fire and He was on fire with the Word. The word in his heart was heaven birthed and nurtured and God deployed it from this man. He was made to do this. The more he held back- the pressure of the divine furnace in his bones began to force its way out of him.  He was worn out from holding back what was in his heart-he had to speak it!

Pentecostals believe that a Christian, especially a preacher should be a person on fire for God. This does not refer to melodramatic public speaking but they are men who have been touched by the Holy Spirit’s fire. A Christian is deeply affected by the permanent work of the Holy Spirit in the new birth and being made right with God by faith alone.  Also, a person is deeply impacted by the baptism of the Holy Spirit as it comes with its life-giving wind and purifying fire.  But there comes a time for some when they realize the call of God to gospel ministry and preaching is God’s will for them.  There is nothing like it in the world. There is no vocation like it. You cannot think about doing anything else.

Those who have the call of God in their life to preach are precious and few. A man of God should be like a burning and shining light (John 5:35). When the Holy Spirit speaks through them after prayer and as they deliver the message their heart burns (Luke 24:32). The scripture is illuminated to them (Ps. 119:130), the anointing comes upon them (Isa. 10:27)  and Christ speaks through them and elevates their words (Luke 21:15). They become soul doctor’s to the needy and weapons against the forces of the devil. Satan and his emissaries will cease at nothing to hinder these agents of the gospel and discouragement and depression are his most powerful tools against them (1 Thess. 2:18). Thus he must use the sword of the Spirit to battle against those forces personally (Eph. 6:17; Heb 4:12).

A gospel preacher is very serious about what he says in the Lord’s name and he expects others to take it serious. If the man behind the pulpit believes that what he says is only a sermon and he does not believe that he should let God speak through him he obviously has not taken his responsibility as a messenger of God seriously (1 Peter 4:11). They need to get on their knees in prayer and ask God for his mercy to reveal his message through them (Dan 2:18). God says, And I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you will be speechless and unable to rebuke them, for they are rebels. But when I give you a message, I will loosen your tongue and let you speak. Then you will say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says!…” (Ezek. 3:26-27NLT).

© 2014 Soul Health Care Ministries. Give credit where credit is due.

 ALTAR“Adonijah was afraid of Solomon, so he rushed to the sacred tent and grabbed on to the horns of the altar.” (1 Kings 1:50NLT). 

In the Old Testament there is a piece of furniture referred to as the bronze altar. On it were four bronze “horns.” (Ezek. 43:15). It seems that all worshipers had access to the altar and fugitives seeking asylum might cling to the horns of the altar (Exodus  21:13-14).

The verse above come from a time where rightful King of Israel was Solomon. But one of his brothers Adonijah got it in his mind that he was to be King. Once David found out he proclaims Solomon as King and Adonijah was afraid that Solomon might kill him. His immediate reaction was to run the place of worship and grab the horns of the altar and ask for mercy. He received it that day.

For the Pentecostal the altar has two meanings: the first meaning was that the altar symbolized the cross of Christ (Heb 13:10) and the second is that the altar symbolized fiery prayer (Lev. 6:13). One man said that, “Altars were places where the divine and human worlds interacted. Altars were places of exchange, communication, and influence. God responded actively to altar activity.”

Simply put, when we use the term “grab hold of the horns of the altar” that means we go to God with all of our hearts and cry out for mercy based on the result of what Jesus did when he died on the cross. We plead our need before God until we receive it! How we in this day need to learn how to grab hold of that horns of the altar of prayer!  This is the place where God interacts with people on the basis of what Jesus has done not their misguided efforts. God the Father receives, shows favor and grants access to that praying person as he would his own Son Jesus into the throne room (Heb 4:16).  A person grabs the horns of the altar he consciously mentally and spiritually grabs hold of the sacrifice of Christ! He or she says “Heavenly Father because of Jesus and what he did on the cross I need you to answer my prayer.” That is why we always in Jesus’ name.

I realize that among many of my Reformed and denominational brethren loathe the altar call and think that those who practice it have replaced it with true salvation. Not so.  If anyone wants the reality of salvation seen among them it is the Pentecostal. People in the Pentecostal movement, know that Jesus Christ is their altar. He is their mercy seat. He is their high priest. He is the slain Lamb. He is the tabernacle of God. Jesus is everything to the Pentecostal.  The altar call is not to come to a certain part of the church that is holy. It is not a forward motion or kneeling up front that is holy. But what is holy is the act of faith in prayer. The altar call is a time of prayer for the Pentecostal church. It is a time when we call for people to respond to the gospel. Where people can come and be prayed for as they lay hold of God for healing, deliverance and the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  No Pentecostal prays to be seen by man but public or private, the right kind of  prayer is where people do business with God! Grabbing the horns of the altar is where a transaction takes place between heaven and earth! God and his sons and daughters commune together in sweet fellowship.

The true Pentecostal does not want to pray so somehow they are sedated or they just feel better or perform some religious exercise that is like therapy rather than communicating with God! But rather they want to grab the horns of the altar! They offer the kind of prayer that gets an answer from God. They seek to pray in the Spirit! To have prayers ignited by the Spirit. The Bible says, “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much! (James 5:16).  James says that the person who gets an answer to prayer has a sense of urgency. Their prayer has the intensity of a cry for help. That is why a person who grabs hold on the horns of the altar does it energetically. The prayer they speak is from the heart and it is red hot, it burns like the unyielding fire on the bronze altar. It is heated by the fire of the Holy Spirit upon the altar of the heart not manufactured by emotion.  James says that this produces powerful results. It accomplishes MUCH.  Whether in private or in public when we come to the altar of prayer we lay hold upon the God of Jacob and will not let go until we get a blessing.  We go to the altar for our lost loved ones. We fear that they will die and go to hell and we beseech the God of heaven as we grab the horns of the altar until they are saved. We see the sick the diseased healed as we grab a hold of the horns of the altar.  The kind of prayer is grabbing hold of the horns of the altar!

© 2014 Soul Health Care Ministries. Give credit where credit is due.

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