WE SERVE A RISEN SAVIOUR
In 1933 a man named Alfred Henry Ackley wrote these words in a hymn:
“I serve a risen Saviour, He’s in the world today. I know that He is living, whatever men may say.
I see His hand of mercy; I hear His voice of cheer; and just the time I need Him He’s always near.
He lives, He lives, Christ Jesus lives today! He walks with me and talks with me along life’s narrow way.
He lives, He lives, salvation to impart! You ask me how I know He lives? He lives within my heart”.
This is a SITUATIONAL POSITION IN CHRIST that He wants all to understand. We serve a RISEN SAVIOUR; a RESURRECTED CHRIST; not a dead man in a tomb.
PRESUMPTION IS NOT OF THE LORD
The first words that the Lord gave me as I began to write this article were these: “Take time to be with the Lord my friends, take time to be with the Lord; that He may unfold His purposes and His plans. For I will come to you as you pray says the Lord, to move on your behalf. For I would have you seek a way that is not your own, that you may walk a new path. For the Lord would say; ‘This is the way, walk ye in it, but you would not.’ For I would show unto you a new way, says the Lord, a way you have not yet known that one will speak on My behalf. Herein is the entrance to praise! Thus, says the Lord of hosts!”
“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12).
- A GOD OF COMPASSION; RICH IN MERCY; RICH IN GRACE; RICH IN LOVE; WARNS US NOT TO FOLLOW OUR OWN WAY.
- HE WARNS US FOR OUR BENEFIT, HE WARNS US FOR OUR GOOD.
- THE LORD WANTS ALL MEN TO SEEK THE WAY OF HIS CHOOSING – THAT WILL BRING LIVING FRUIT AS A RESULT.
“There is a way that is known to man that is not My way, says the Lord. For MANY would deceive you and say: ‘Follow this way,’ but that way is not My own. You must seek My way, says the Lord; a way that is not your own. For MANY would say ‘Here is the Christ, Christ is this way!’ but they speak of an anti-christ spirit.”
“Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘Look, He is there!’ do not believe it. “For false christ’s and false prophets will rise and show signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect” (Mark 13:21 & 22).
“Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Anti-christ is coming, even now many anti-christs have come, by which we know that it is the last hour” (1 John 2:18).
- SEATED AND ENTHRONED IS A GOD WHO LOVES YOU, THOUGH HE DOES NOT LOVE YOUR WAY.
“For MANY would cry ‘as one crying in the wilderness’ saying; ‘prepare the way of the Lord’ but they do not prepare My way. For there was ONE chosen to go before Me. The Messiah He spoke of was not of His own. He spoke that which I gave Him; He did not speak of His own.”
“In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!’ For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying: ‘The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the LORD; Make His paths straight.’” (Matthew 3: 1-3).
THE EPI-CENTRE OF FAITH IS CHRIST
The epi-centre of faith is CHRIST! Jesus said: “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends” (John 15:13).
- HOPE THAT IS NOT FOUNDED ON THE CROSS IS NO HOPE AT ALL.
- THERE IS NO OTHER WAY THAN THE LIFE-GIVING POWER OF THE CROSS.
“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21).
Again, the Lord said to me while writing this article: “The measure of a man is not in the suit that he wears, but by the measure of FAITH in his heart – that he trusts in My way instead of his own. Abraham became the father of many nations through faith in Christ. That is why I gave him a new name – because he put his trust in Me.”
“No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you a father of many nations” (Genesis 17:5).
“Just as Abraham ‘believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness’. Therefore know that only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, ‘In you all the nations shall be blessed’” (Galatians 3: 6-8).
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek” (Romans 1:16).
- WITHOUT FAITH IN CHRIST, THE POWER OF THE CROSS AND THE PRECIOUS BLOOD OF THE LAMB THAT WAS SLAIN, THERE IS NO SALVATION AND NO REMISSION OF SINS, BUT AN ENDLESS STRIVING OF THE WORKS OF MAN.
“Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18 & 19).
THE POWER IS IN THE BLOOD
THE POWER OF THE WORD IS A TESTAMENT TO FAITH. Without faith in Christ and the precious blood of the Lamb, the Bible is just another history book devoid of power.
- THE POWER IS IN THE BLOOD!
Another famous hymn written in 1899 by Lewis E. Jones declares these words:
Would you be free from the burden of sin? There's power in the blood, power in the blood;
Would you o'er evil a victory win? There's wonderful power in the blood.
There is power, power, wonder-working power, In the blood of the Lamb.
There is power, power, wonder-working power, In the precious blood of the Lamb.
THE WAY OF REDEMPTION IS THROUGH THE CROSS
John the Baptist was one chosen by God to prepare the way of the Lord. Through His death on the Cross, CHRIST GAVE US THE WAY OF REDEMPTION! There is NO OTHER WAY of redemption than through the POWER of the Cross.
“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me’” (John 14:6).
“Then Jesus said to His disciples, ‘If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me’” (Matthew 16:24).
BINDING THE STRONG MAN
King David was given the heart of a warrior, but He did not choose his own way. Goliath was a STRONG MAN that fought for the Philistines; David was just a youth - not being of the age where he was allowed to go to war. Goliath was a GIANT in stature. David was a shepherd boy, who tended his father’s sheep.
“And Saul said to David, ‘You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are a youth, and he a man of war from his youth’” (1 Samuel 17:33).
But when David’s father sent him to take his brothers food, his brothers were near the battlefield. When David heard the words of the giant Goliath he was enraged by what he heard and saw. David said:
“Who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?” (1 Samuel 17:26).
Goliath was a STRONGMAN who belonged to the Philistines - a particular people group. It was through Goliath, that an alliance had been formed with the Philistines in the demonic realm. Demonic alliances in Biblical times, the same as they are today, were connected to GEOGRAPHICAL LOCATIONS and certain PEOPLE GROUPS.
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12).
- WHEN DAVID WENT OUT TO FACE GOLIATH, HE WENT OUT TO FACE A STRONGMAN, REPRESENTATIVE OF A DEMONIC PRINCIPALITY IN THE SPIRITUAL REALM.
- DAVID DID NOT GO OUT IN HIS OWN NAME TO FACE THE STRONGMAN; HE WENT OUT IN THE NAME OF THE LORD.
But the WORD OF THE LORD was MIGHTIER than any strongman! And the Word of the Lord was MIGHTIER than any demonic force! THE STRONGMAN WAS BOUND BY THE NAME OF THE LORD WHEN DAVID SPOKE IT OUT! - PRAISE THE LORD!!!
THE BLOOD OF THE LAMB IS SUFFICIENT
Jesus’ work on the Cross was made complete AT THE CROSS. There is no need for anything more. The blood of the Lamb (Jesus Christ) was and is sufficient for ALL that we face on this earth! But, like David, we need to be trained in the art of spiritual warfare. Just like us, David was trained through the everyday circumstances of life that he faced (he had already fought the lion and the bear), so that when he faced Goliath he had a proven tenure of faith in the Word of the Lord.
“But David said to Saul, ‘Your servant used to keep his father’s sheep, and when a lion or a bear came and took a lamb out of the flock, I went out after it and struck it, and delivered the lamb from its mouth; and when it arose against me, I caught it by its beard, and struck and killed it. Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.’ Moreover David said, ‘The LORD, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.’ And Saul said to David, ‘Go, and the LORD be with you!’” (1 Samuel 17:34-37).
When facing principalities and powers, the rulers of the darkness of this age and spiritual hosts of wickedness in heavenly places, we must follow the way of the Lord. We cannot go up against a ‘Goliath’ (or a principality) with what is a ‘good idea,’ because THAT GIANT HAS THE POWER TO DESTROY! We cannot go out in our own name and expect a good outcome as a result. Every time we step out of the will of the Lord, there are negative consequences as a result. The spirit of man (or a ‘good idea’) will appeal to the intellect, look good, sound good, and even appear ‘holy,’ but it is not the Word of the Lord. Jesus said:
“I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven” (Luke 10:18-20).
Christ has already given us the authority in His Name to cast out demons (snakes and scorpions are figurative of these) and over ALL the power of the enemy, but we must not presume to try to defeat them in our own way. The Christ of the Bible did not stand in the waterways, on hilltops or outside buildings commanding evil spirits to come out. Nor did He stand and command principalities and powers to come out of regions. Jesus PREACHED THE GOOD NEWS OF THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD - WITH SIGNS FOLLOWING. HE HEALED THE SICK, THE BLIND AND THE LAME; HE WORKED MIRACLES AND CAST DEMONS OUT OF PEOPLE. HE TAUGHT THE WORD OF THE LORD and HE SPOKE THE WORD OF THE LORD OUT LOUD (See Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness in Matthew 4, Mark 1 and Luke 4). As believers in Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit, we have also been given the POWERFUL gift of SPEAKING IN TONGUES. The gift of tongues is a formidable weapon in spiritual warfare.
PRAY THE WORD
As I was writing this article the Lord instructed me to plead the Blood of Jesus Christ over myself and my household. He also instructed me to “PRAY THE WORD!” It was AS I was praying the Word of God out loud that the Lord made me aware of the effect HIS SPOKEN Word was having in the demonic realm. Somehow in my spirit the Lord began to make me aware of the things that the demonic realm was saying:
“It disturbs me, to pray this way – champion the Word of the Lord!”
“I am defeated by your prayer!”
“I regret these things so much – the power of prayer!”
Of course, after having heard these words, I PRAYED THE WORD EVEN MORE!!
We must never under-estimate the power of pleading the Blood of Jesus Christ, praying the Word, praying in tongues and the redemptive power of praise when engaged in spiritual warfare. Using the Word of God as a sword in our mouths is our most effective weapon of warfare.
“And take …………… the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17).
“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death” (Revelation 12:11).
The Lord showed me that many are struggling because they are not speaking in agreement with His Word. We need to be CHAMPIONING the Word of the Lord. RIGHT WORDS HAVE INCREDIBLE POWER! EVERY RIGHT WORD WE SPEAK HAS A POWERFUL EFFECT IN THE SPIRITUAL REALM!
Right words matter! Make them count!
Agree with the Word of the Lord.
- WE SERVE A RISEN SAVIOUR
- THE EPI-CENTRE OF FAITH IS CHRIST
- THE POWER IS IN THE BLOOD
- THE WAY OF REDEMPTION IS THROUGH THE CROSS
- THE BLOOD OF THE LAMB IS SUFFICIENT
NOW BEGIN TO PRAY THE WORD!! - “Now I know that the LORD saves His anointed; He will answer him (me) from His holy heaven with the saving strength of His right hand. Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; but we (I) will remember the name of the LORD our (my) God” (Psalm 20: 6 & 7).
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