Fatherly Talk 8.09 – Mysteries of Predestination Part 1

Many Christians have wrestled with the doctrine of pre-existence before earth and our predestinations determined from before our life on earth. Traditional Christianity has always believed that we came into existence spirit, soul and body when the male sperm and the female egg came together and created a new human being. Although not taught and silence prevails, this is the traditional assumption. Since Christianity has its roots in Jewish laws, including the use of the Old Testament as foundations to the New Testament, we want to consider first the concept of life from the Jewish perspective first. This does not mean that we agree with it (in fact Christianity views life and ‘humanness’ exists from the first day of conception) but it is a good basis for discussions on the evolving Christian view of when life begins for a human being. Remember that I do not fully agree with the Jewish view so don’t panic when read about them, which I will put in coloured italics as a quote from other sources. Following quotes from Wikipedia:

While the Talmud gives the full status of humanness to a child at birth, the rabbinical writings have partially extended the acquisition of humanness to the 13th postnatal day of life for full-term infants. The Babylonian Talmud Yevamot 69b states that: “the embryo is considered to be mere water until the fortieth day.” Afterwards, it is considered subhuman until it is born. The issues of abortion, embryo research, multifetal reduction and cloning will be discussed according to Jewish Law perspectives.

The first detailed description of the creation of a human being by God points to the moment when human life begins. “Yahveh God formed the man from the dust of the earth and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and the man became a living nefesh” (the first breath). Life began for human being when God breathed breath into him (Genesis 2.7).

Additional Statements in the Torah demonstrate that breath is understood to be essential to life; and that when the breathing stops, life ends. “And all flesh that moved on the earth perished, birds, cattle, wild animals all swarming creatures that swarm upon the earth and all human beings. Everything which had the nishmat (breath) of life in its nostrils, all that were on dry land died” (Genesis 7.21–22).

The Bible does not make any other direct references regarding the beginning of human life. The conclusion as to when human life begins can be obtained from the Torah’s stated position on the issue of abortion.

And if men strive together, and hurt a woman with a child, so that her fruit depart (if she miscarries) and yet no harm follow, he shall be surely fined, according as the woman’s husband shall lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. But if any harm follow, then shalt thou give life for life… (Exodus 21: 22–23)

According to the Jewish interpretation,” if no harm follow the hurt to the woman resulting in the loss of her fruit refers to the survival of the woman following her miscarriage; in that case there is no capital guilt involved, and the attacker is merely liable to pay compensation for the loss of her unborn child. “But if any harm follow,” i.e., the woman is fatally injured, then the man responsible for her death has to give “life for life”. In that event the capital charge of murder exempts him from any monetary liability for the aborted fruit [2]. From the interpretation of this passage it can be inferred that the killing of an unborn child is not considered murder punishable by death in Jewish law. What is explicitly stated in the Jewish law is that murder is an offense that is punishable by death: “He that smiteth a man, so that he dieth, shall surely be put to death” (Exodus 21:12).

The Responsa literature reached from these two passages the conclusion that the capital charge of murder should be used for death of “a man, but not a fetus”. It means that complete human life does not begin at the embryonic or fetal stage of development.

The Septuagint—the translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek by 72 Jewish Scholars, 270 BC—renders the word ason not as ‘casualty’ or ‘serious injury’ but as ‘form.’ This gives a completely different meaning to the passage. The first verse, in which there is a liability, compensation, refers to the miscarriage of an ‘unformed’ fetus. The second, which speaks of a capital crime, refers to a ‘formed’ fetus, in other words one sufficiently developed to have a recognizably human shape. [This, is the source of the teaching of the Church, from Tertullian who was ignorant of Hebrew onwards through later church fathers, that at a certain stage the fetus is a person and that abortion is a form of homicide.]

This position was further reinforced by the belief that the “animation” (entry of the soul) of a fetus occurred on the fortieth or eightieth day after conception for males and females respectively, an idea first expressed by Aristotle and by the doctrine, firmly enunciated by Saint Augustine and other early Christian authorities, that the unborn child was included among those condemned to eternal perdition if he died un-baptized. Some even regarded the death or murder of an unborn child as a greater calamity than that of a baptized person.

Eventually the distinction between animate and inanimate fetuses was lost; and since 1588, the Catholic Church has considered as murder the killing of any human fetus from the moment of conception.

This position is maintained to the present day. It assumes that potential life, even in the earliest stages of gestation, enjoys the same value as any existing adult life. Hence, the Catholic Church never tolerates any direct abortion, even when, by allowing the pregnancy to continue, both mother and child will perish; following the principle two deaths are better than one murder].

The above differentiates the Christian view that all human life begins at conception (even one cell zygotes) whilst Jewish views differ on laws of abortion. Personally, I hold to the Christian view of human life as beginning from the first conception of sperm and egg. However, I do not view that as the first creation of the human spirit. There are no Bible verses that support the view that the spirit was created at the time of conception of sperm and egg, although traditional Christian view takes that viewpoint silently without apologetics. Apologetics from the Bible seem to show that the spirit of man (all our spirits) were created in God before the foundation of the earth:

  • We were blessed in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:3-4)
  • We exist before our physical bodies were formed or had substance (Psalm 139:16)
  • God knew (relationship level of knowing) Jeremiah before he existed in the womb (Jeremiah 1:5)
  • Predestinations, sometimes with earthly names given hundreds of years before human existence like Josiah and Cyrus, were determined before our existence on earth (1 Kings 13:2; Isaiah 44:28; 45:1; Matthew 20:23; Mark 10:40; Romans 9:11-13; Ephesians 1:5, 11)
  • All positions and blessings have been prepared before the foundation of the world (Matthew 20:23; 25:34; Revelation 13:8).

Many questions arise when we take the view of spirit pre-existence before human existence on earth. What were we doing? How were positions determined in predestinations before earthly choice is made? Definitely, God does not play favouritism and He has to have a means by which He determines each person’s predestination. Before earthly human existence, we had a spirit and soul (manifest in a spiritual-type body) and upon entrance into earthly human existence, we have a spirit, soul and a physical body. There must be a qualification of Jacob and Esau BEFORE they came into earthly existence otherwise it looks unfair from our human perspective (Romans 9:12). In visions and time spent in heaven, I saw that God is just and fair. We must look at all our existence in God, in pre-existence, then life on earth and then life in eternity to realise how just and fair our God has been.

Our Existence in the Spirit Before Earth Human Existence:

We were like the angels and existed in spirit form with souls in a spiritual-type body (1 Corinthians 15:40). During the time of the Pristine Age of Angels (before Lucifer fell), we were hidden in God and observers, learning from God and His interaction with angels (Ephesians 1:9-10; Colossians 1:26). While hidden in God, we all grew as we observed and absorbed the wisdom and knowledge of God, each according to their special individualities bestowed by God’s creative impartations individually. It was the predestination of God that we all come to be made spirit beings with individualities that reflect different aspects of God’s nature and characteristics (the spiritual nature part imparted through Spiritual DNA). Then in our observation and learning process during the Pristine Age of the Angels, we all were able to grow and increase in the knowledge and wisdom of God through observing the Angels in their Pristine works in God. None of us were allowed to intervene or interfere in the affairs of angels just like angels are not allowed to intervene during the Millennium Age of Mankind. This observation period included being present in many of the Pristine Angelic activities. The Pristine Age of Angels lasted like billions of years of Pristine Earth Time (Pristine Earth Time is different from Fallen Earth Time. One day of Pristine Earth Time is equal to about 1000 years of Fallen Earth Time. Time slowly changed over the period of Adam’s fall to post-Noah time, our present measurement of time and so the change is not immediate and exact for calculation; the days grew in quantum leaps shorter and shorter). This is the period of us nurturing and growing according to our inbuilt spiritual DNA given by God (the Spiritual Nature Stage of Growth).

Then during the Good vs Fallen Angel Period (after Lucifer fell and became Satan) that lasted nearly a million years of Pristine Earth Time (nearly 360 billion years of Fallen Earth Time), we were allowed to participate in the work with the Good Angels of God against the Evil Fallen Angels. The roles that each of us were given were assigned by God based on our Future Predestination in Christ and based on our Spiritual Nature Growth Stage during the Pristine Age of the Angels. Our working together with the Good Angels against the Fallen Angels during this period supplied us with the Spiritual Nurture Growth Stage. Our involvement in this period of the Good vs Fallen Angel Period is like the good angels of God being involved in our Adamic Fallen world now. Angels of God are seconded into roles that was for perfected mankind. One day when humans have matured and progressed in God, they will take up all the roles that angels played today in our present world and govern all aspects of earth and its creation for the human race’s role as priests and kings in Christ. Based on our various growth in working with the Good Angels against the Fallen ones, we continue to grow in wisdom, knowledge and in the works of God before coming to the earth. Not all were chosen or allowed to come to the earth, those chosen have to go through another third process of Growth in Christ the Word of God, the manifest Second Person of the Godhead.

Earth Existence After Three Stages of Growth:

After these three stages of growth: the Spiritual Nature Stage of Growth, the Spiritual Nurture Stage of Growth and the third stage of Growth in Christ the Word of God, we were made ready to come to the earth. There is a place in heaven, where we were all stripped like Christ or emptied like Christ was (Philippians 2:7) before coming to the earth, and then our essence was ready to come into our physical bodies in the womb of our mothers. Our essence is like the spirits of little children all-ready to be born to the earth. Our full Original ‘Essence or Self’ remains in a place hidden in God in a similar way in which the Word was made flesh and yet the Word was still sitting on the Throne throughout the lifetime of our Lord Jesus Christ on earth. During our childlike essence period, we continued to receive training for the earth existence and were sometimes allowed to visit our future parents. Usually about five sets of potential parents with various strengths and weaknesses to be inherited were given to us. Through the counsel of the Holy Spirit and our Lord Jesus Christ, we were prepared to be born on earth to our parents. In this process we were not allowed to retain our heavenly memories but some ‘mile-stone’ memories and some giftings useful for our earth predestination are given to us. When we progress spiritually in growing in God, like Christ some of us were allowed to re-call some of our roles in heaven pre-existence (John 8:58; 17:5).

God is a Just and Fair God, who has assigned and given us all different roles to live out in this life. It is a blessing of God to discover your predestination. Continue to grow in God to discover who you really are and the special assignment work which God has for you. We are all to live out the lives that God has written for us in His book and to walk in the works that God our Father has prepared for us (Psalm 139:16; Ephesians 2:10). Amen.

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Fatherly Talk 8.08 The Third Temple

For many years since the destruction of the Second Temple in AD 70, biblical scholars have been looking and praying for the physical rebuilding of the third temple in Jerusalem as a sign of the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus. The siege of Jerusalem on 14 April AD 70, was three days before the beginning of the Passover in that year. It lasted for four months and ended in August of that same year.  The Romans, led by General Titus (during the second year of Emperor Vespasian), who later became Emperor Titus, completely sacked and destroyed Jerusalem approximately by 8th September AD 70. This major event, predicted by our Lord Jesus lead to the dispersion of the Jewish people from their homeland for nearly two thousand years (Matthew 23:37-39; 24:1-2; Mark 13:1-2). The judgment and destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 was caused by their rejection of Jesus when He manifest to Israel (from roughly 4 BC to AD 30). Jesus pronounced the total destruction of both the city of Jerusalem and the Second Temple, crying and weeping over it on His last and final journey into Jerusalem for His crucifixion and later resurrection (Luke 19:41-44). Israel and Jerusalem DID NOT KNOW the time of their visitation (Luke 19:44). The Word dwelt amongst them and He came to His own, and His own DID NOT receive Him (John 1:11, 14). This rejection by God and judgment upon Israel and the Jewish people was also prophesied by Hosea, with the two days of rejection representing approximately 2000 years (Hosea 6:1-2). Although the Jews had various periods of dispersion took place, including that which occurred in the conquest by the Assyrians of Northern Israel, representing the ten tribes of Israel given to Jeroboam after Solomon’s death, the final and total destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 brought about the largest Diaspora of the Jews in human history. When the Jews returned to Israel in 1948, fulfilling several prophecies of the return of the Jews to their homeland, they had even lost their mother tongue, Hebrew, and most were speaking in Yiddish. The revival of modern Hebrew, a dead language by that time, was itself another miracle of God.

According to Josephus, a Jewish historian, General Titus had originally wanted to spare the temple but the Jewish rebels against the Roman Empire started a fire in the temple against the approaching soldiers and the ultimately the combination of the fury against the rebellion plus the use of fire by the Jewish people, resulted in the order from Caesar to demolish the entire city and the Temple. Josephus claims that nearly 1.1 million people were killed and 97,000 enslaved during the Jewish-Roman war. This first Jewish-Roman war ended in AD 73 with the fall of Masada. The present site of the former Temple was discovered to have once been the site of an elaborate Byzantine church, whose remains were discovered in the 1930s by the British Mandate-Antiquities Department. Around AD 682, the site was designated as a holy site by the Muslims and the construction of the mosque, Dome of the Rock was completed in early 690s. The al-Aqsa mosque was built at the southern end of the mount around the 8th century. The present site is venerated as a holy site by Jews, Muslims and Christians. The First Temple was built by Solomon around 1000 BC and was destroyed in 586 BC. The Second Temple was built around 516 BC by Zerubbabel after the re-establishment of Jerusalem under Cyrus the Great around 559 BC. A massive expansion of the Temple Mount and re-construction of the Temple was done under Herod around 20 B to 10 BC. Throughout the history of the Second Temple, which is the same one that Jesus visited, the Ark of the Covenant made under Moses for the Tabernacle of Moses, was missing, being buried by Jeremiah the prophet in a secret place.

Ever since these historical events, a number of classical Christian theology interpretation of Daniel, Ezekiel and Haggai looked forward to the rebuilding of the Third Temple which would herald the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus. Haggai himself prophesied during the time of the rebuilding of the Second Temple around 520 BC. When he prophesied of the glory of the latter temple and its glory surpassing the former temple, the prophecy can refer to the glory of Christ manifested as He preached and ministered in the Second Temple or to the final Third Temple which will be existing at the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus (Haggai 2:6-9).

Some Bible Scriptures that predict the Third Temple are:

Ezekiel 40:1-48:35 The glory of God entering through the way of the East. The voice of the Lord sounded like mighty waters and the earth shone with His glory (Ezekiel 43:1-3). The Lord declared it as a place the place of His throne and the place of the soles of His feet, where He dwells in the midst of the children of Israel forever (Ezekiel 43:7). In Ezekiel’s temple, there is no dividing line or wall between Jew and Gentile of men and women. Neither is there a laver, table of shewbread, lampstand or Menorah, golden altar of incense nor any ark of covenant. There is only one sacrificial altar approached by a ramp from the East where previous altars were all approached from the South. Ezekiel’s temple is also massive compared to all previous temples.

Additionally, Ezekiel’s temple has a great stream of water which issues from beneath the Southern wall of the Temple and divides into two branches and flows westward and eastward refreshing all the land and is plentiful with fishes (Ezekiel 47:1-12). The circumference of the city where the temple is will be 18,000 cubits. And the name of the city from that time on shall be called ‘The Lord is There’ (Ezekiel 48:35).

Daniel 9:24-27; 11:31; 12:11 Seventy weeks are decreed for Israel and the holy city to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for iniquity and to bring everlasting righteousness and anoint a most holy place. From the going forth of the command to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of the anointed one, will be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again in troubled times and after the sixty-two weeks, an anointed one will be cut off. A people of the prince will come to destroy the city and the sanctuary and its end shall come with a flood. And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half a week, he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering. Forces from him shall appear and profane the temple and fortress and shall take away the regular burnt offering and shall set up the abomination that makes desolate.

Amos 9:11 God will raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen and repair its breaches, and raise up its ruins and rebuild it as in the days of old.

Haggai 2:6-9 Yet once more, the Lord will shake the heavens and the earth. God will shake all nations and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations (Jesus) and He will fill the temple with glory. All silver is the Lord’s and all gold is the Lord’s and the glory of the latter temple will be greater than the former. In this place the Lord will give peace.

Zechariah 6:12-13 Behold the man whose name is the Branch (Jesus) shall branch out from His place and shall build the temple of the Lord. It is He who shall build the temple of the Lord and shall bear royal honour and sit and rule on His throne.

Matthew 24:15 The abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel will stand in the holy place.

2 Thessalonians 2:3-4 The day will not come first until the apostasy takes place and then the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes God and exalts himself against every god and object of worship, as he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God.

Revelation 11:1-19 John was given a measuring rod like a staff and was told to measure the temple of God and the altar but not to measure the court outside the temple which is given over to the nations. They will trample the holy city for forty-two months and the two witnesses will prophesy for 1,260 days in sackcloth.

From the sample of Scriptures above, we can see that the Third temple is very different from the first and the second. Today many scholars keep looking for a physical third temple to be built but the true and real Third Temple is the Body of Christ. Jesus’ own physical body was considered a temple in which He laid it down and rebuilt in three days (John 2:19). We, today, are the Body of Christ. We are the living stones which are being built into a holy temple, a spiritual house of God (1 Peter 2:4-11). Jesus is our Chief Cornerstone, with the apostles and prophets as the foundation, the whole church is like a building, fitted together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord, a dwelling place of God in the Spirit (Ephesians 2:19-22). There is no mistake, we the church are the Third Temple of God!! Moreover, God has also shown in visions that in the year 2055, AntiChrist will be invited into Israel and he will commence to build a temple at the Temple Mount, and the building will be called the Twin Domes of Peace, completed in 2060. This physical third building will NOT be the Third Temple. The church of Jesus Christ, the body and the Bride of Christ, is the true Third Temple filled with the glory and the presence of God!! Amen.

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Fatherly Talk 8.07 Our spiritual land of Goshen

Throughout all the ten plagues that God through Moses released upon the land of Egypt, the people of God were protected and shielded from all these plagues in the section of land called the land of Goshen in Egypt (Exodus 8:22; 9:26). Even from the first entrance of the Israelites as a people into Egypt, God led Joseph to keep them within the confines of the land of Goshen (Genesis 45:9-11). As this modern period of the seven-year famine begins (2020-2027), God will also be leading His people today during the first two years of the famine into their land of Goshen (Genesis 45:11). Everyone in our modern time will be led by the Holy Spirit into their land of Goshen. The modern land of Goshen for everyone in the famine that is coming and in the great shaking of 2029 (place of refuge for each one) will be scattered throughout the whole world (the symbolic Egypt today – Revelation 11:8). Things will grow worse throughout the first two years of this seven-year famine and then the full famine will hit around the third year. It is important that everyone who hears the voice of the Holy Spirit be led by God into their own land of Goshen. For others who cannot make it on their own, they will be moved during the great modern Exodus which will occur throughout the rest of the years of famine.

The land of Goshen represents:

  • the best of the agricultural land in Egypt (Genesis 47:6).
  • a place where the Israelites in Egypt can pasture their flock (Genesis 47:4).
  • a place of separation from Egypt where being a shepherd is an abomination (Genesis 46:34).
  • a place where they can be near Joseph, who is in control of all Egypt and who spiritual is a type of Christ (Genesis 45:10).
  • a place where Joseph could provide for Israel and where they will never experience poverty (Genesis 45:11).

Our modern Goshen, scattered throughout all the earth represents:

  • a fertile place where God will help us plant and harvest food during the time of the famine and during the years of war and other things to come.
  • a land of great prosperity where food, clothing and shelter is in abundance, like the land of Canaan.
  • a refuge and pristine zone, where light is separate from darkness and God’s presence is manifest to His people.
  • a place of spiritual presence, teaching and training where God’s people go forth and proclaim the gospel throughout the world.
  • a place of heavenly presence as the kingdom of God manifests on earth physically.

The word ‘Goshen’ means ‘drawing near.’ It is the Will of God and also prophetically foretold in the Bible that God will manifest His presence on earth. From the time of Isaiah, God has revealed that He intends to make His glory and light shine upon His people while great darkness covers the earth (Isaiah 60:1-3). The third physical temple will never be built as a place for God but instead will be physically built by the Anti-Christ as a ‘Twin Dome of Peace.’ The true third temple of God, where God inhabits and puts His presence is His people, a living and breathing temple made of the bricks of men’s spirit, soul and body. The church is the body of Jesus, the fullness of God who fills all in all (Ephesians 1:22-23). The church is a spiritual building, with Jesus as the Chief Cornerstone, in which the whole building grows into a holy temple in God, a dwelling place of God in the Spirit (Ephesians 2:20-22). Jesus considers His own physical body the temple of God (John 2:19). And we are the body of Jesus and the temple of the Holy Spirit both individually and corporately (1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 6:19; 2 Corinthians 6:16; Revelation 3:12). We are living stones being built up into a spiritual house, a holy priesthood offering up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God (1 Peter 2:5). The coming great shaking of 2029 is for the purpose of God filling His temple (the body of Christ) with His glory (Haggai 2:5-7). And the Bible predicts that the glory that God is going to bring into this temple (His church, the body of Christ) will far surpass His glory in all the former temple (Solomon’s temple and the Tabernacle of Moses) (Haggai 2:9).

God also revealed that this special and super glory that He brings into His church is also liken to the kingdom of God being received by us (Hebrews 12:28-29). Both the event of the great shaking (2029) tied to the filling of the fullness of the glory of God into His temple (His church) and the event of the saints receiving the kingdom of God are the same event! (Hebrews 12:26-29; Haggai 2:6-9). And the event of the kingdom of God being set up on the earth in the days of the ten toes is linked to the saints receiving or possessing the kingdom of God (Daniel 2:44; 7:18). Note that the event of the saints receiving and possessing the kingdom of God is after the Son of Man (Jesus in Daniel’s vision)  was given dominion, which is linked to Jesus’ resurrection when all power and authority is given unto Him (Daniel 7:13-14; Hebrews 2:9-12; Matthew 28:18-20; Philippians 2:8-11). And the event of the saints receiving and possessing the kingdom of God is linked to the Ancient of Days giving a judgment in favour of the saints of the Most High and the time for the saints to possess the kingdom (Daniel 7:22). And furthermore, the event of the kingdom of God being received and possessed by the saints is also linked to the kingdom of God coming in presence in power as per Jesus’ transfiguration demonstration (Mark 9:1-3). On top of that, the kingdom of God coming on the earth is linked to the resurrection of Jesus where He bring many sons into glory, which is linked to the manifestation of the sons of God (Hebrews 2:10; Romans 8:19).

All these events are “One and the Same Event!!!” described differently from different perspectives:

  • the setting up of the kingdom of God in the days of the ten toes (Daniel 2:44)
  • the saints possessing the kingdom of God (Daniel 7:18)
  • the Ancient of Days making a judgment in favour of the saints and the time came for the saints to possess the kingdom (Daniel 7:22)
  • the great shaking of the earth and the filling of the temple with the glory of God, greater than the former temple (Haggai2:6-9)
  • the great shaking of the earth and the saints receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken (Hebrews 12:26-29)
  • the bringing of many sons into glory through the power of Jesus’ resurrection (Hebrews 2:10-11)
  • the manifestation of the sons of God (Romans 8:19)
  • the kingdom of God present in power and the Transfiguration of Jesus (Mark 9:1-3)
  • the coming of Jesus in His kingdom and the Transfiguration of Jesus (Matthew 16:28; 17:1-2)
  • Jesus manifesting to us, Jesus and the Father coming to make Their Home in us resulting in us doing the works of Jesus and the greater works of Jesus (John 14:12, 22-24)
  • the glory of God risen upon God’s people (Isaiah 60:1-3).
  • the church fully grown into a holy temple in God, a dwelling place of God being filled with the fullness of God (Ephesians 1:22; 2:20-22)
  • all things being put under His (Jesus) feet (Ephesians 1:22-23; Hebrews 2:8-12)

There is a three-part second coming: Jesus coming in His kingdom (into us making us His and His Father’s Home – John 14:22-24; Matthew 16:28), Jesus coming as our Gathering together to Him (Rapture – 2 Thessalonians 2:1) and Jesus coming with His saints landing on Mount of Olives (Jude 14-15; Zechariah 14:1-4). The Coming of Jesus in His kingdom is linked to the setting up of the kingdom of God in the days of the ten toes (Daniel 2:44). It is linked to the fullness of the glory of God coming into His church, His temple, and the glory being seen by all the world (Isaiah 60:1-4). It is then that God shows forth that He has made His Home in us and the Father and the Son dwells in fullness within us (John 14:22-24). We will then go forth and do the works of Jesus and the greater works of Jesus (John 14:12). All these begin when we are born again and enter into the kingdom of God. Now Jesus is preparing to come into us, as His temple and as His body, which has been built into a habitation of God (Ephesians 20-22). The first part second coming is when Jesus comes into His church, His temple and body and brings all the fullness of God’s glory transforming and transfiguring us. This establishing of His glory is manifest through us as sons of God for a time on the earth, culminating in the Rapture in which we are taken into the marriage supper of the Lamb, as the church would have reached its full maturity as a bride without blemish, spot or wrinkle. The second part is the celebration of the marriage supper of the Lamb, while the earth continues into the last seven years of Daniel. Then at the end of the seven years, our Lord Jesus comes together with all the saints and lands on the Mount of Olives. All three parts are synchronised as the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus as one part leads into another.

Having seen the overall plan of God in the coming years, we need to appreciate that while on earth, God still has His plans to establish a separation of His people into the light and the rest of the world in darkness (Isaiah 60:1-3). The land of Goshen is liken onto the pristine sections of the earth where the kingdom of God, set up in the days of the ten toes, rule and reign until all the earth has seen and heard the gospel of the kingdom of God (Daniel 2:44; Matthew 24:14). The washing of the Bride of Christ by Jesus through His word is taking place since the Holy Spirit came on the day of Pentecost and will go on until the Bride matures into the fullness of Christ and is ready for the marriage supper of the Lamb (Ephesians 4:11-16). The final and last part of this washing of the Bride takes place from the first part Second Coming, when the kingdom of God is set up, and this process removes every spot, wrinkle and blemish from the Bride (Ephesians 5:26-32). When the Bride is all ready, then the second part Second Comin takes place and the Bride is Raptured into the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. Upon completion of the Marriage Supper, where the saints are rewarded, the final third part Second Coming takes place and we return with Jesus and it synchronizes with the end of Daniel’s last week. The three part Second Coming is indeed one whole, all having to do with Jesus bringing every power and authority under His feet.

The land of Goshen are the places where God chooses in these end time to demonstrate the rule and reign of our Lord Jesus in growing like a mighty stone subduing every other kingdom that has ever existed on the earth (Daniel 2:34-35). The stone, which represents Jesus in His kingdom, grows until not a trace of the other kingdoms is left and the stone became a great mountain and filled the earth (Daniel 2:36). For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk 2:14). And no one shall hurt or destroy in all of God’s Holy Mountain, for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord (Isaiah 11:9). We have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and this is allowed to manifest in the refuge zones, the Goshen of modern times, where God will manifest the glory of His kingdom to all the earth. Be led by God to the place where God wants you to be and let the light of His glory within you rise until you become a manifestation of God walking on earth. For Christ in you is the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27). And this mystery has been hidden from the ages and from generations, but now has been revealed to us, His saints, to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is the fullness of Christ within us, His Bride and church (Colossians 1:26-27). The Lord bless you and sanctify you, spirit, soul and body, unto His glorious Coming. Amen.

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Fatherly Talk 8.06 Never let your Love grow cold

Our Lord Jesus spoke of the endtime in Matthew chapter twenty-four. Among the many things covered, He spoke of the love of many growing cold (Matthew 24:12). The Greek word ‘cold’ is the word ‘psycho’ which is a derivation from the word for ‘soul’ (psyche). This warning is in line with the Lord’s observation of the Laodicean church as neither hot (zestos – a word related to zeal) nor cold (psychros – cold as in sluggish) (Revelation 3:15). In the context, I believe that the Lord wants us all to be passionate, full of fire and zeal (Greek ‘zelos). His preference for cold or hot is an expression of His not being satisfied with being lukewarm.

There are enough bible verses that support the view that God wants His people to be filled with zeal or ‘hotness.’ The zeal of Phinehas was rewarded with a covenant of peace (Numbers 25:11). Elijah achieved much because he had a very great zeal for God (1 Kings 19:10). He regards his love for the Lord as being very zealous towards God (1 Kings 19:14). When Jehu was anointed by God to be king, he immediately carried out his assignment with great zeal by killing all who remained of Ahab (2 Kings 10:16). Even though he got rid of Baal worship, he did not completely get rid of the worship of the golden calf introduced by Jeroboam (2 Kings 10:29). Yet God blessed him and allowed his sins to sit on the throne for four generations (2 Kings 10:30). David always sang about his zeal towards God and how much it consumed him (Psalm 69:9; 119:139). God Himself demonstrates great zeal for His people (Zechariah 1:14; 8:2). Jesus Himself showed great zeal for our Heavenly Father (John 2:17). The apostle Paul considered himself more zealous than all his contemporaries in the things of God (Galatians 1:14). Jesus Himself in the message to the Laodiceans exhorts us to be zealous (Revelation 3:19).

Zeal can be a bad thing if it is channelled towards things that has nothing to do with God or Jesus.  Saul’s zeal to win recognition and adulation from the people of Israel resulted in him breaking the covenant with the Gibeonites and murdering them, causing the famine in David’s time (2 Samuel 21:2). Solomon’s zeal for God diminished as his heart turned to pleasing his many wives building temples to false gods for them. He used his skills and talents that had been demonstrated towards the building of the Temple of God for the construction of temples for false gods of his many wives (1 Kings 11:5-8). It is typical of man to turn the talents which God has given and use it for the devil. The apostle Paul faced people who were zealous for the law (Acts 21:20). This might not have been a bad thing if they do not use that same zeal to persecute the message of salvation by grace which Paul preached. Paul admitted that he himself was zealous towards God, even persecuting Christians, thinking they were in the wrong end of theology (Acts 22:3). Paul obtained mercy because he did it ignorantly in unbelief, and in his heart, thought that he was serving God (1 Timothy 1:13). Paul considers it good to be zealous in a good thing (Galatians 4:18)

One can have zeal without knowledge and do completely the wrong thing with good intention but pure ignorance (Romans 10:2-3). The Corinthians have a zeal for spiritual gifts but they ended up with confusion and strife in their church (1 Corinthians 14:12). They did not do things in an orderly manner resulting in confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33). Without consulting the written word, David and his people built a new cart to transport the Ark of Covenant, which resulted in the death of Uzzah (2 Samuel 6:3, 6-8). No matter how upset David himself was, he had only himself to blame for the lack of knowledge of how to bring the Ark to its resting place.

God has never been opposed to good zeal and thus God would have all of us to be ‘hot’ on fire for Him. It is only being cold or lukewarm that God is displeased with. Out of three conditions that are mentioned – hot, cold, lukewarm – God definitely would want us to be hot on fire for Him. And of the other two conditions – cold and lukewarm – God would rather we be cold than lukewarm. It is lukewarm that God vomits out of His mouth (Revelation 3:16). Cold is bad but not as bad as lukewarm. Why is lukewarm worse than cold? The following are some reasons:

  • one may assume that one is hot when one is not (Revelation 3:17).
  • one thinks one can mix both worlds but spiritual things are contrary to natural things (1 Corinthians 2:14-15).
  • one has a little knowledge which is more dangerous than being innocently ignorant (Hebrews 5:2; 9:7). One has to either thoroughly know; rather than to know a little bit to endanger oneself but insufficient knowledge for it to be helpful. It is just like a person knowing enough bible to misquote and misuse but not having a thorough biblical knowledge to form sound theology.
  • it is like having enough of the law to condemn oneself but not enough to renew oneself (Romans 7:5; 8:9-12; 12:1-2).
  • A little knowledge is knowledge without love, which leads to pride (1 Corinthians 8:1-3). True knowledge and wisdom is pure, peaceable, gentle, willing to yield (James 3:15-17).
  • Those who are cold know that they are cold, and may lead them to repentance; but lukewarm is a pretence and hypocritical (Matthew 23:28; Luke 18:9-12).

What is the cause of people becoming lukewarm? In Laodicea, it was a superimposition of the natural wealth upon spiritual wealth, deceiving themselves that they were OK, rich, wealthy and needing nothing when they were actually wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked (Revelation 3:17). They were also spiritually blind and needed eye salve from Jesus that they may see clearly their spiritual condition (Revelation 3:18). Their value system is such that they did not put value on spiritual things, thus Jesus exhortation to buy/exchange ‘spiritual’ gold from Him that they may truly be spiritually rich (Revelation 3:18). Jesus told them to be zealous (Greek – zeloo) and repent and open their doors to Him (Revelation 3:19-20). The main crux seems to be the inability to see their true spiritual needs because of their natural ‘blessings.’ Only those who hunger and thirst for righteousness can truly be filled (Matthew 5:6). One must be desirous for spiritual food, and have a pure heart to truly see God (Matthew 5:8; 1 Peter 2:2). We all need to be constantly reminded that we must build our foundation upon spiritual precious stones and spiritual gold which can stand the fires of testing (1 Corinthians 3:11-16). We must set our minds on things in heaven and not on earthly things (Colossians 3:1-2).

How do we know if we have become lukewarm? When we lose our zeal for God and are no longer having first love towards God (Revelation 2:4-6). When our love grows cold and we no longer spent time with God like we use to (Matthew 24:12). The Lord Jesus warns us against becoming cold in the end times. The Bible warns that in the end times:

  • Men will have itching ears, choosing to listen to superficial fables rather than to solid sound doctrine (2 Timothy 4:3).
  • Some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrine of demons (1 Timothy 4:1).
  • Some have consciences that no longer function, seared with a hot iron (1 Timothy 4:2).
  • Forbidding marriage and abstaining from foods to become ‘more holy’ (1 Timothy 4:2-3).
  • Many will be offended during persecution and betray one another and hate one another (Matthew 24:9-11).
  • the love of many will grow cold (Matthew 24:12).

In the light of all these challenges in the end times, what can we do to immunise ourselves from becoming like the world?

  1. We must always have first love in everything we do and continue to love God passionately twenty-four hours every day (Revelation 2:4).
  2. We must move on to solid food and grow into perfection in Christ (Hebrews 5:13-14; 6:1) .
  3. We must have our minds renewed so that we see through a heavenly mind (Romans 12:1-2; Colossians 3:1-2).

What does it mean to have first love? Every day our hearts and minds are drawn towards Jesus and God our Father. We see Jesus and God in everything that we encounter, constantly evaluating everything and seeking to know what God sees. A song in our heart bursts out regularly as we magnify and glorify God throughout the day. We sing, we praise, we worship constantly in our hearts doing everything in the name of our Lord Jesus (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). We also see the hand of our God in all of life and recognize His works every where we go. We love God and love all who belong to God, seeking to further the work of God in this life. There is the innocence and purity of love that flows constantly in our heart, never allowing the world and its way of thinking corrupt us.

What does it mean to partake of solid food and grow into perfection? We know the difference between milk and solid food. Milk being pre-digested food for infants and solid food being bread supplied directly by God into our lives (Hebrews 5:13; Matthew 4:4). Milk is hearing from God through someone else who can hear God. Solid food is the ability to hear God for ourselves. Milk is the inability to know and discern what is right or wrong, what is good or evil, what is white or black. Solid food is senses trained to discern right or wrong, good or evil, discerning righteousness and God’s Will in every situation (Hebrews 5:14; Romans 12:1-2).

What does it mean to see things from a heavenly mind? We always position ourselves with Christ in heaven and see no value in earthly things except as they are used on earth to fulfill God’s purpose (Ephesians 2:4-7). We value spiritual things above natural things and desire after spiritual things (1 Corinthians 14:1). We see things from God’s perspective and not from human perspective. We are immune to the attractions of this earth and only respond to the call of heaven.

Watch and pray and never let your love for God grow cold. Always be on fire for God and let the Holy Spirit be upon you, and Christ within you to do all the works of God on earth. Be blessed. Amen.

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Fatherly Talk 8.05 Improving the Accuracy of Dreams and Visions

As mentioned in the previous Fatherly Talk 8.04, it is important that we have a heart that is pure in order to receive with 100% purity and accuracy the spoken word of God through dreams, visions or other means. Since only the pure in heart can truly see God, it is important to understand more this purity of heart. The heart involves our spirit and our soul. For out of the heart proceeds all manner of evil (mark 7:20-23). The spirit of all those in Christ are pure, holy and undefiled as it is born again and old things are passed away (2 Corinthians 5:17). The soul, on the other hand, has a lot of renewal and transformation to go through. Everyone who sees in the spirit and receives downloads will require both the operation of the Holy Spirit and angels upon the spirit and soul. Just a slight difference or diversion of soul, through bias, or other human emotions, wrong understanding or teaching, or wrong wilful intention not necessarily evil but with other subconscious agenda, would straightaway pollute the stream of reception in the Spirit.

God can speak clearly into our lives only in proportion to:

  • the strength of our spirit man
  • the renewal of our mind
  • the purity of God’s perfect love flowing through us

1. The Strength of our Spirit Man

When we were born again, our spirits are like new-born babes which need to grow through the milk of the word (1 Peter 2:2). The rate of growth is not measured by physical time but rather by how much time we spend with God and with godly spiritual fellowship in the church. We are all like plants that need to be nourished and nurtured. Everyone will have to go through the challenges of the four types of ground of the sower and the seed (Mark 4:13-20). And we also need to meditate on the word daily until we are like the tree planted by the rivers of water (Psalm 1:1-3). God’s tangible presence in our lives is directly proportional to the growth of our spirit man. Paul prayed that Christ would dwell in fullness in the Ephesus Christians through their inner man being strengthened through the Spirit (Ephesians 3:16-19). The tangible presence of God and Jesus is in our spirits (2 Timothy 4:22). A strong spirit man is a container for the greater degree of Jesus’ tangible presence in our lives. Even our Lord Jesus Christ had to grow and become strong in Spirit for the greater and greater manifestation of God’s tangible presence in His life (Luke 2:40). This concept of degrees of God’s presence in our lives is beyond our normal understanding of time-space-energy for we cannot conceive of the fullness of God in Jesus life increasing since Jesus was as much the fullness of God at one month as He was at the age of thirty-three. Yet we do acknowledge that the tangible presence of God grew in His life and when He began His ministry at the age of thirty, when the Holy Spirit also came upon Him, to the time of His crucifixion and resurrection, that He was indeed demonstrating more and more of the fullness and power of God’s presence within Him.

I was once shown, how my spirit man needed to grow and it was not the same as the soul. In my soul, I had gained some intellectual capacity to study and do well in theology and the Bible but at the end of three years of theological training, God showed me that my spirit man was still weak and needed to grow and be strengthened. That was when God taught me how to meditate and grow my spirit man. There was a stage when I had spent eight to sixteen hours a day over a period of about a year meditating on God’s word, that I felt more and more the tangible presence of God in my life. Some of the gifts of God started operating. I wondered about these things and the Holy Spirit showed me that in a small way, we were like batteries and when there is not enough electricity, the gifts in its various form could not manifest, as it require a certain level of ‘anointing’ or God’s presence for the gifts to manifest and become tangibly present in our lives. The nine gifts of the Holy Spirit are considered manifestations given to each one for the profit of all (1 Corinthians 12:7-11). When they started manifesting, it was another step to understand their manifestations and apply them to do miracles and works of God energized by the Holy Spirit.

Thus in order to receive more accurate dreams, visions and download, our spirit man must be strong and daily feed on God’s word and breathe the oxygen of God’s love and presence. Through time we will graduate from the milk of God’s word and be able to partake of the meat of God’s Word (Hebrews 5:13-14). There is no limit as to the growth of our spirit man on earth nor do we have to leave earth and go to heaven to grow our spirit man. As Jesus lived on earth and grew His spirit man here, so can we do so. It is possible on earth to grow until we know the fullness of God and of God’s love, all of its width, length, depth and height, to know the love of Christ experientially which surpasses knowledge until we are filled with the fullness of God (Ephesians 3:17-19).

2. The Renewal of our Mind

All prophecy is in part and everything received is in part until the perfect comes (1 Corinthians 13:9-10). The perfect does not have to come only when we leave earth and go to heaven. The perfect can come if we renew our minds to prove what is the good, acceptable and perfect Will of God while on earth (Romans 12:1-2). Note that the permissive or the perfect Will of God has to be ‘proved.’ This requires several things to take place first:

  1. We must consecrate our bodies to God as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1)
  2. We must be freed from thinking like the world or being conformed to this world (Romans 12:2)
  3. We must be renewed in our mind to think spiritually like Jesus thinks (Romans 12:2; 1 Corinthians 2:14-16)
  4. Finally, we can prove what is the good, acceptable and perfect Will of God

The word ‘prove’ is from the Greek word ‘dokimazo’ which means ‘to test, to discern, to examine, to prove, to try, etc.’ Many people think that the perfect Will of God is given on a silver platter or in a special book that says ‘This is the Perfect Will of God.’ They forget that the perfect will has to be discovered by actual testing, examination, checking out the boundaries, trying it out, etc. Paul did not know where to go Jerusalem council, which settled the Gentile question for the church in general. So he visited the old places where he had preached the gospel and then in time went through the regions of Phrygia and Galatia but they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the word in Asia (Acts 16:6). After that they tried to go into Bithynia from Mysia and the Holy Spirit did not permit them (Acts 16:7). Not knowing where else to go, Paul and his team went to Troas, a seaside town, and there received the Macedonian call (Acts 16:9-10). He interpreted the vision as the perfect will of God to go and preached the gospel in Philippi, Macedonia. Note that he had to ‘try’ various places before he discovered God’s perfect Will. God could have just told him where to go but it is not the Will of God that He reduces us to mindless robots that do not think or make decisions for ourselves. Paul had to find out what was NOT God’s Will (Asia and Bithynia) before he found out what was God’s perfect Will (Macedonia). If he had stayed back in Antioch waiting, he would NOT have heard a single word or revelation.

Similarly, when one needs leading from God to buy a house or a car or to venture into a new business or go into a new job, one cannot just sit at home and twiddle one’s thumbs till God appears. It is important to go forth out there to ‘test, prove, examine’ what is God’s perfect Will. The prophet Samuel, despite his great ability to see visions (known as a seer) could not discern who was God’s perfect Will to be a king replacing Saul UNTIL he actually went to the house of Jesse to find the chosen man (1 Samuel 16:1). And when he was in Jesse’s house, his own mind thought that Eliab was the chosen one but God told him this was NOT the one (1 Samuel 16:6-7). And then God let him went through each of the seven sons so that Samuel would know that NONE of the first seven were chosen (1 Samuel 16:10). It was ONLY when David came right in front of him that Samuel knew and discerned that David was God’s perfect Will and choice for Israel (1 Samuel 12-13). Why waste time going through this whole process? Why not just tell Samuel the exact son and name? God expects us to be fully functional humans (not mindless robots) when we test and discover His perfect Will through a human process of exercising our free choice and evaluating with our minds. That is why BEFORE the opportunity for proving the perfect Will of God comes, we must have our minds RENEWED. Without the renewal of the mind, we will think in the natural or like the world and in the flesh and God’s perfect Will can be standing right in front of us and we miss it. We cannot recognise it because God’s ways are higher than our ways and God’s thoughts are higher than our thoughts. Also when God chooses a path of His perfect Will it always involve the path of the cross (followed by a resurrection) as this is the path that causes us to die to self and bring all the glory to Him. Without renewal of our minds, we will NEVER be able to discern God’s perfect Will for our lives. Who could imagine that it was God’s perfect Will for Joseph to meet the butler in a prison. The fact that God was with Joseph and that his gift of interpreting dreams was developed in prison reveals that it was God’s special and perfect Will for Joseph to be there for a time (Genesis 39:21; 41:12-13). Many people always look for the broad way to do God’s Will (eventually dying spiritually and losing everything like Lot) but it is the narrow and more difficult path that requires self-sacrifice that eventually proves to be God’s perfect Will (Luke 13:13-14).

You can see that even the most mature leaders of the New Testament church in Paul’s time struggle to discern God’s perfect Will for Paul to go to Jerusalem (Acts 21:12-14). Only when Paul said that he already knew what God had spoken to him about being bound, and that he was ready to die for Jesus to do God’s Will did all the others relented and said, “The will of the Lord be done” (Acts 21:14). Why couldn’t they see that it was God’s perfect Will? Because it involves suffering and potentially dying for Jesus? Their minds were still conditioned like many human minds, to escape the cross and suffering and take the easy path. It was a good thing that Paul was insistent on doing God’s perfect Will no matter what the sacrifice is, that they agreed. A renewed spiritual mind is the ONLY mind that can discern the perfect Will of God because it sees things from heaven and not from the earth’s perspective.

In order to be accurate in the reception of dreams, visions and downloads, we must have our minds renewed until it synchronizes with the mind of Christ. Then only are we able to receive, understand and interpret dreams, visions and downloads accurately. Don’t look at things carnally but rather have a spiritual mind, so that life and peace can flow freely and in this purity of heart and mind, one can see God clearly.

3. The Purity of God’s Perfect Love flowing through us

All the gifts of the Spirit are practically useless and worthless unless perfect love reigns in our heart and mind. Without love, prophecies, tongues, power, revelation and any other manifestations of the Holy Spirit are absolutely unprofitable and worth nothing (1 Corinthians 13:1-3). The problem is NOT how genuine the gifts are. The problem is its usage and power of edification and building up. A gift used wrongly is absolutely worthless without love. For without love, one is operating in darkness (1 John 2:9-11). And when the darkness is present in the absence of love, even the gifts of God become polluted and used by the devil to deliver his words of death, condemnation and destruction. For the devil cannot create, he can only take the gifts that God freely give to men and women and twist and turn them into evil and destructive use. For the thief comes to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10).

At the root of this darkness is fear. For only perfect love can cast out fear (1 John 4:18-19). He who fears has not been made perfect in love. A person who has hidden or subconscious fear in their live can NEVER operate the gifts of the Holy Spirit perfectly or accurately. Prophecies that come forth will be tainted by fear. Guardians angels are assigned to our lives because through pre-existence and training they have the most harmonious synchrony with our spiritual and mental resonance, which sometimes causes them to resemble us, like Peter’s angel mistaken for him (Acts 12:13-15). And most people who see or hear angels (especially through the realm of thoughts), think that an angel speak certain ‘words from God to them’ but it is actually the bouncing of their own thoughts to the angels and back to them because of the echo of synchronized thoughts. God took me to heaven and showed me this occurring in many people who think that they were speaking to angels, especially some ridiculous words and sentences that they report ‘hearing from angels’ (visible or invisible). They did not realise that it is their own soul and thoughts reflecting of the angels. It is my calling to teach people to be more accurate in interacting with the Spiritual realm, thus God continues to take me into many visits of heaven and showed me from heaven’s perspective what is truly happening.

You can feel and taste and smell the fear present in such prophecies for there is no perfection of love developed yet. Everyone of us is growing into the perfection of love and we need to allow God’s perfect love to flow through our lives. No human being can love like Jesus love, so we can only die to self and let Jesus live through us (Galatians 2:20). Allow Jesus to be Lord. Lord over our thoughts, our feelings and emotions, our whole lives. Don’t look at people through your own soul or through your own mind. We all were born with bias in our lives and we inherit it from the imperfections of sin nature present in this world. It takes time to look at each individual human through Jesus’ eyes. When Jesus looked at each and every human, His thoughts and His feelings say, “I love you unconditionally and I want to give you all the best that God your Father has created you to be and to have, of which I am prepared to die and give myself to you.” Can we feel and think like Jesus to each and every human; including those who are harder to love, and more unlikeable in people’s eyes, full of faults and weakness and imperfections? Only when you can love, think and feel like Jesus can you receive God’s word perfect and purely for them. Anything lesser would mean that your reception is faulty and thus contain some prejudice and bias tainting what you receive in the Spirit realm.

Let us all grow into the fullness of the emotions and the mind of Jesus. Only when we are exactly like Him can we operate and function exactly like Jesus. Then we will have the fullness of Jesus in us and do the works of Jesus and the greater works of Jesus (John 14:12). Amen.

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Father Talk 8.04 Blessed are the pure in heart

One of the most powerful verses in the Bible is Matthew 5:8, which says, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” The word ‘pure’ comes from the Greek word ‘katharos’ which has been translated as ‘pure’ (seventeen times), ‘clean’ (ten times) and ‘clear’ (one time). This purity or cleanness of heart is achieved through the logos word which Jesus spoke (John 15:3). The impact of purity of heart to ability to see God is directly related. Another way of putting this point across is that the purity of heart equals purity of vision – (pure heart = pure vision). The ability to see true and pure visions, dreams or hear impressions, thoughts that come from God and His angels is totally dependent on the purity of our hearts heart.

This immediately implies that if the heart is 80% pure, then only 80% of our visions are correct, true and pure; if it is 50% pure, then only half of our visions or dreams or impressions can be trusted. The slightest deviation in purity or cleanness will immediately affect our reception of things in the Spirit realm. Of course, many who see visions or dreams claim 100% purity but unless one is completely like Jesus and God, there is that percentage that is with human bias that affects reception. Thus, the Bible advises that in prophecy, we know in part and we prophesy in part (1 Corinthians 13:9). For this reason, all prophesy has to be judged and when one prophet prophesies, another is allowed to judge (1 Corinthians 14:29). There is no such thing as the infallibility of prophecy (which means that all prophecies delivered is perfect and not subject to correction from God’s Word, by biblical laws and rules, by our conscience and common sense of what is right or wrong); just as there is no such thing as the infallibility of the pope (making him greater than the bible) as all humans are subject to human bias and errors and mistakes. We are exhorted to not quench the Spirit (allow the Holy Spirit and His gifts to work through the body, including the gift of prophecy) and not to despise prophecies; but we must test ALL things and hold fast what is good, abstaining from every form of evil (1 Thessalonians 5:19-22).

In the early New Testament church, the revelation that salvation is by grace without the necessity of keeping Jewish laws was so controversial that the leaders of Jerusalem church had to meet, when the apostle Paul requested a stand on the issue after Antioch church was confused by some from Jerusalem (Acts 15:1-6). At the end of a long debate and fierce discussions, the whole Jerusalem council concluded with the fact that indeed salvation is by grace based on the atonement of Jesus. Their conclusion was based on three things: firstly, the testimony of Barnabas and Paul that God manifest His signs and wonders when the gospel was preached amongst the Gentiles (Acts 15:12); secondly, the agreement of this doctrine with the written word of God (Acts 15:15); and thirdly, confirmation of the rightness and goodness of this doctrine in their conscience (Acts 15:28). The three principles of living testimonies, the written word and being in line with good conscience is vital to the analysis and discernment of all claims of reception and hearing from God. Without this safeguards, the devil will lead people astray to weird and strange practices that are completely against the Bible and against the good common sense and conscience of people.

It is possible to be completely deceived through visions, dreams and impressions just as Old Testament false prophets have been deceived. Jeremiah warns against prophets who prophesy from false visions and divination in the name of God (Jeremiah 14:14). He states that the prophets who were against him had seen false and deceptive visions, thus misleading the people of Israel in what they should do during the Babylonian captivity (Lamentation 2:14). Even in Ezekiel’s time when Israel was at the end of its Old Testament glory, the princes governing her were after dishonesty gain (greed and covetous) and the prophets seeing false visions and receiving lies, claiming ‘Thus says the Lord’ (Ezekiel 22:27). In reality the people were being oppressed, robbed, mistreated and impoverished (Ezekiel 22:29). Even Moses, himself, instructed that if a dreamer of dreams arises or a prophet arises, and even if their prophesied sign or wonder comes to pass but they turn from the truth of God’s law and God’s word, that such should be put to death (Deuteronomy 13:1-5). The basic premise is that God has already given us His commandments and spoken though His Word and voice, and God does not contradict Himself in advising people to worship false gods or break His established commandments (Deuteronomy 13:4). God has given us His written word in the Bible, and He has given us a conscience to know what is right or wrong, and He has given us a common sense pf life testimony and experience to discern belief systems that line up with true reality and the practical things of this life.

It is possible to live in the realm of the Spirit and receive things from the Spirit, yet through lack of experience and discernment end up guiding and leading people in the wrong way and direction, probably because of imperfect reception and wrong interpretation. Paul was nearly misled, misdirected and misguided by people who had true real experiences in the Spirit. He was told by them through the Holy Spirit NOT to go up to Jerusalem (Acts 21:4). This contradicted Paul’s own personal guidance, conscience and visions which he had received from the Lord Himself (Acts 20:22-23, 35-37). When a true prophet called Agabus prophesied that Paul was going to be bound and imprisoned, even Paul’s own companions told him NOT to go to Jerusalem (Acts 21:10-12). Agabus did NOT tell Paul NOT to go to Jerusalem, he only told Paul what would happen there (Acts 21:11). Paul already knew what was going to happen to him and so the message was a confirmation to him (Acts 20:23). In the end, Paul was allowed to pursue what he had discerned from the Lord and it was God’s perfect Will for him to go and actually be imprison. For it was through his prison ministry that Paul had opportunity to testify before kings and governors, as it was revealed in the early days of his conversion (Acts 9:15-16; 23:11). The ways of God are not the ways of man and God’s thoughts are higher than our thoughts. It was God’s method and plan to have Paul testified in chains as a witness of the gospel and the truth of who Jesus is. Just as God was the One who planned for Joseph to meet the butler in prison before his promotion to be Prime Minister to Pharaoh (Genesis 39:21; 40:9-23; 41:9-45).

In the light of all these it is good to give good advice for both sides of the matter: to those receiving prophecy and to those giving prophecy.

To those receiving prophecy, it is good to

  • have an open heart and mind to hear all prophecies given, positive or negative, in case one misses hearing something that God wants to bring to one’s attention (1 Thessalonians 5:20)
  • not limit the reception of prophecy to any one person or group or any other bias, for God can speak through anyone, even a donkey who saved the life of a diminishing prophet (Numbers 22:28-33). Balaam later became an ex-prophet rejected by God because of his greed for money (Numbers 31:16; Deuteronomy 23:4; Jude 1:11)
  • examine all prophecies by the written word of God and by the spoken word of God. All prophecies will NOT contradict the Bible nor will it contradict God’s original spoken word and direction that He has already given to you. Just as the Written Word cannot contradict itself, the Spoke Word cannot contradict itself
  • understand that all prophecies are in part and delivered in part, thus one should never depend on prophecy to direct one’s own personal life but rather use it for confirmation of what one has already received from the Lord (1 Corinthians 14:3)
  • differentiate between the prophecy and its interpretation and application. For all prophecies can be misinterpreted and misapplied leading to the opposite direction of what God intends (Acts 21:4, 12)
  • know that every prophecy has its time for fulfilment and one must not ‘try’ to fulfill the prophecy through self-effort, resulting in an Ishmael which brings more trouble and disharmony (Genesis 16:2, 15-16; 17:18-19).
  • understand that at the end of a person’s life, each person is accountable for his or her own actions at the judgment seat of Christ (1 Corinthians 3:13-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10). We cannot blame anyone for the decisions we make in our own lives, which is why we cannot depend on any prophet even any man or woman of God to direct our lives and make the decision for us.

To those giving prophecy, it is good to

  • know that we are only instruments whom God used to help comfort, exhort and edify another person in their walk with God in this life (1 Corinthians 14:3). The purpose of all prophesy is to help and not to condemn or judge, especially to bring the recipient to grow closer to God and worship God (1 Corinthians 14:24-25)
  • deliver personal prophecy personally and not proclaimed it to everyone on the housetops. Nathan delivered the judgment of God to David personally (2 Samuel 12:1-15). The biblical pattern for correction, if evidential sin is present without doubt, is one to one, two or three to one, then only to the whole church (Matthew 18:15-17).
  • understand that the best prophecy is delivered without interpretation and application. The best interpretation, contextual wise, is done by the individual recipient for the prophecy is but one small part of an individual’s decision making, and only the individual knows how to add the true prophecy to his or her personal life decisions which they must answer to God for themselves at the judgment seat of Christ. Agabus, who is one of the foremost prophets of the New Testament, knew how NOT to interpret NOR apply the prophecy; he only delivered in exactly as God gave it, without addition or subtraction (Acts 21:10-11; 2 Peter 2:20-21).
  • know that in the New Testament, everyone has the Holy Spirit unlike the Old Testament; thus, New Testament prophets only confirm and do not direct (Acts 2:17; Hebrews 8:11; 1 John 2:20).
  • deliver a prophecy with the love of God present otherwise it does not profit either prophet or recipient (1 Corinthians 13:2; 14:1).
  • submit the prophecy to other prophets to judge and also to the thorough examination by the written Word of God (1 Corinthians 14:29; 2 Timothy 3:16-17).

Having considered all these points, the final question is how do we become more and more accurate (reached 100% of clarity and accuracy) in our hearing from God? It is obvious that there is a process of growing in prophecy as we grow in all other areas of our lives (1 Corinthians 14:29-33). Those who are prophets need to grow and learn together with other prophets in submitting to one another, knowing that others can hear God as clearly as one hears God, if one considers oneself a prophet. There is also such a thing as learning to prophesy (1 Corinthians 14:31). The word ‘the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets’ means that the reception and delivery of a prophecy by a prophet is subject to standard common respect and protocol within the control of the free will and free choice of the prophet’s spirit and soul. No prophecy should be used as authority over another person’s free will and free choice or of an organization established by God or man. Prophecy never tells another person what or what not to do, it only offers a small part of revelation to the recipient who then must digest and incorporate what is received into their lives in their own way.

The path to growing in the accuracy and purity of prophecy is clear-cut in the Bible:

  1. Growing in God’s love is the key to growing in clarity and accuracy of the prophetic word (1 Corinthians 13:1-2). One day we will reach 100% love exactly like our Lord Jesus has, then we will speak forth the prophetic Word in the purest form, such that our words can be exactly like our Lord Jesus, full of life and spirit (John 6:63).
  2. Growing in humility is a second key to receiving God’s spoken word accurately. True humility is being completely nothing and empty of all self, including self-serving, self-consciousness and self-promotion. Out of this emptying of our self and nothingness without Jesus, will arise the greatest manifestation of Christ into each of our consciousness until our words are like Jesus’ word, full of spirit and life (John 6:63).
  3. Growing in accountability is a part of learning to prophesy. The essence of ‘learning to prophesy’ requires that one submit one’s prophecy and hearing to another who is more experience and more accurate in the handling of God’s spoken and written word (1 Corinthians 14:31). There was respect for each other in the three-fold offices in the Old Testament, and the sons of Asaph, under the direction of Asaph, prophesied according to the order of King David (1 Chronicles 25:2). They were also submissive under their more experienced fathers Asaph, Heman, Jeduthun (1 Chonicles 25:. And Asaph, Heman and Jeduthun were in turn subjected to the authority of the king (1 Chronicles 25:6).
  4. Growing in the anointing releases greater and greater measures of the Holy Spirit for the benefit of all. The anointing doubled from Elijah to Elisha (2 Kings 2:9-10).

This present generation needs true prophets and apostles to arise and bold speak forth God’s Word. In the midst of many voices of men, the world needs the voice of God delivered by brave men and women to change and transform this age into the age of the Glorious Bride of Christ, rising as a Bride and Temple to be inhabited by the fullness of God’s presence with glory and might and mercy. Amen.

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Fatherly Talk 8.03 Receiving an Anointing and Appointment from God

Dearly Beloved,

The story of Elisha receiving and anointing from God is clearly recorded in the Bible and there are many lessons to draw upon in these last days of the end time. God is going to impart many gifts of His grace and it is up to the free will and free choice of potential vessels of God to receive them. Their obedience to God will determine their success in flowing into their predestination and consequently rewards from God in heaven. Rewards in heaven at the judgment seat of Christ are determined by our works and the quality of our works; both which would be affected by our attributes, character and the state of our heart in the sight of God. We will be judged whether we built upon precious stones, gold and silver or upon wood, hay and stubble which all burn away (1 Corinthians 3:11-15). Salvation is not the problem, as salvation is a gift of His grace, but rewards are determined by our faithfulness in bringing forth the perfect will of God in our life works, which is also done through the strength of His grace within us (1 Corinthians 3:15; 15:10).  Everyone must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad (2 Corinthians 5:9).

Step One – There is a fullness of time to receive the anointing of the Lord

Elisha was called by Elijah immediately after Elijah has gone through a period of discouragement in which he wanted to die and was told to meet God on Mount Horeb (1 Kings 19:4-8, 16). Elijah was lonely and thought that he was the only prophet left but God assured him that he had seven thousand more (1 Kings 19:10, 18). As is the style and method of God, God answered to his loneliness by telling him to go forth and select Elisha as a prophet to replace him and, at the same time, started the training of Elisha under Elijah to carry on His work. He met the needs of Elijah at the same time as the needs of Elisha. God is marvellous at divine economy and precision use of His power, might, wisdom and strength! Whatever Elisha had wrestled with in his life as a farmer, knowing that he was destined for something great, finally came to pass when Elijah threw the mantle upon him (1 Kings 19:19). Two prophecies of anointing Hazael and Jehu were carried out by Elisha and this must have been communicated by Elijah to Elisha, as part of the prophetic fulfilment in continuing the legacy of Elijah. Elisha must have been waiting to fulfil his calling while working as a farmer and finally the time came for him to serve Elijah fulltime.

No time is given between Elisha’s calling to serve Elijah and the impartation of the anointing upon him but the approximate time, based on the various kings ruling at that time, was about ten years of preparation and service to Elijah. Joshua served Moses for forty years, also being mentored and trained by him, and finally received the anointing from Moses (Deuteronomy 34:9). Elisha was known as the one who poured water on the hands of Elijah (2 Kings 3:11). This implies that he served Elijah, just like Joshua served Moses, sometimes in menial tasks. Everything was a preparation and qualifying him into receiving the anointing when the time came. There are no short cuts. A life of preparation, sacrifice and servitude is required before the fullness of time comes for the anointing of God. Our Lord Jesus Himself, learned obedience, throughout the first thirty years of His life (and also during His ministry) and pleased God before He was ready for anointing to be Messiah and Christ (Luke 2:51; 3:22). Jesus served His parents and was well known as a carpenter in His home town (Mark 6:3). Moses served Jethro, his father-in-law for forty years and lived as a herdsman taking care of all his responsibilities. Everyone must go through a life of sacrifice and preparation for the final anointing into God’s predestination. Even our Lord Jesus. And there are no exceptions.

Step Two – The tests before the anointing

When the time came for Elijah to complete his ministry and leave, all the prophets and sons of prophets knew that the time had come. In their journey through four different places of Gilgal, Bethel, Jericho and Jordan represented the passing of four criteria essential to receiving and anointing from God. Elisha had to show his determination to receive the anointing which God had reserved for him. The four places represent:

Gilgal means ‘rolling away’ and was the place where the new generation of Israel were circumcised, consecrated and covenanted to God (Joshua 5:8-12). It was where all of Egypt, representing worldliness and all attachment to this world is cut off. All sin, all weights that hold down from running the race must be given up for the upward call of Christ (Hebrews 12:1; Philippians 3:7-8, 13-14; Acts 5:32). It is also the place where one graduates from eating manna to eating of the fruit of the land of Canaan. Where one is not just receiving from God but where one is learning to be used by God to bring forth fruit in the land of promise.

Bethel means ‘house or habitation of God’ and it was where Jacob encountered God and His angels for the first time (Genesis 28:11-22). Everyone who seeks to serve God must have their own personal experience and encounter with God. God is not just knowledge and wisdom but He is also a person whom we can have a personal relationship with. This includes relating to His angels and whatever methodology God uses to conduct His relationship with us. This is also the place where one enters into a ‘tithe’ or covenant relationship with God, as did Jacob. Total dependence upon the invisible God, who manifests in His own time and way, is the life style now imposed upon anyone who desires to serve God.

Jericho was the place where the first battle began in the war of conquest over the land of Canaan (Joshua 6:1-5). It represents the place where one overcomes trials, temptations and all the enemy throws in our path in pursuit of the reward from God (James 1:2-3, 12). This is where one is being perfected inwardly and outwardly by God. Inwardly, in the development of the character of Christ and in one’s determination to bear a hundredfold fruit unto God. Outwardly, in learning to flow and work with God’s special methodology in one’s personal life just like Joshua had to follow strict instructions in order to conquer Jericho.

The river Jordan was full during the crossing over by Joshua and God devised a supernatural method for them to enter Canaan. As the priests carrying the Ark placed their feet into the waters of River Jordan, it parted like the Red Sea and Joshua and his armies cross over (Joshua 3:9-13). This is total dependence on the supernatural miracle of God to begin the works of God through one’s life. It is not by might nor by human power that one can do God’s work but rather by the power of the Holy Spirit (Zechariah 4:6). Here is where one learns not to rely on the arm of the flesh but upon God, nor on chariots and horses but in the name of the Lord (2 Chronicles 32:8; Psalm 20:6-7)

When one has actually passed these tests and truly pleased God, then and only then is one ready for the anointing of God in fulfilling one’s predestination destiny. There can be many strengthening anointings that God gives to enable one to pass various preparatory tests but the ultimate preparation is to get ready for the fullness of time and various steps that God ordains towards one’s destiny. David was anointed three times: one to be king, one as king in Judah, and finally as king over all Israel (1 Samuel 16:13; 2 Samuel 2:4; 5:3). The first anointing helped him to slay Goliath, the second forged him a national army, the third finally fulfilled his predestination destiny into which he was born to live. Each anointing has its own tests and rewards both before and after.

Step Three – The Final Test to surpass previous generations

When Elisha had passed the four tests through Gilgal, Bethel, Jericho and Jordan, Elijah finally asked him what he wanted (2 Kings 2:9). Elisha replied that he wanted double portion of Elijah’s anointing (2 Kings 2:9). Elijah replied that this was indeed a hard thing (2 Kings 2:10). It is never easy to surpass previous generations of spiritual exploits and rise seating on the shoulders of our forefathers into greater and higher achievements in our Lord. Yet it is possible and by rising to the same level of relationship that our spiritual forefathers had with God, we can do greater and more. Even our Lord Jesus expects us to do His works and greater works based on us growing into the same relationship He had with the Father (John 14:12).

The final test requires that Elisha pay full attention – with one breath – to what was going on in his walk with Elijah. It was either so or not so, depending on his ability to see when Elijah is taken away (2 Kings 2:10). This is now full concentration and measured by the minutes and seconds for Elijah can be taken away suddenly. A slight lack of attention, a slight nod and sleep, and Elijah could disappear before he had a chance. Sometimes the things of God in which one has prepared for in entire life measured in years or decades, comes down to the wire and is measured in minutes and seconds. All Elisha’s life preparation of being a prophet to replace Elijah would have gone to nought, if he did not pay one-breath-full-attention at this final point. He could, of course, become a prophet and fulfill his destiny as a prophet but to be able to operate at a higher level with double-portion anointing, he had to pay a higher price. This is where many people fail. They just become ordinary rather then becoming extraordinary. It takes a greater attribute, a greater aptitude and a greater price to achieve the best of the best of the best in the kingdom of God. When there is an opportunity to enter into a place to receive an anointing from God, many people take it lightly and do not realize that destinies are made or loss in those critical few seconds.

Who would have thought that when Jacob met God and His angels at Bethel, that whatever he said and whatever he did, was going to determine for the rest of his life how God and His angels will work with him? Who would have thought that the precious few moments before Jacob died, that Joseph’s sons’ destiny was going to be altered and enlarged by the last few words of the last breath of Jacob (Genesis 48:14-20). And God gave Joseph a special blessing from Jacob, being present at his last breath (Genesis 48:21-22). Who would have thought that the few seconds that Joash the king of Israel had to hit the ground with arrows given to him, would determine his future failure or success in the war against the Syrians (2 Kings 13:15-19). Now that Elisha had qualified himself to be with Elijah in his last few moments on earth, he also qualified him for his final blessing that no one can take from him. He returned from the Jordan with the mantle of Elijah (2 Kings 2:12-14).

Step Four – Do not delegate what is your own responsibility

Elisha was sick before he died even though the double portion anointing was upon him (2 Kings 13:14). When I sought the Lord understanding in how one can be sick when the anointing is so powerful, the Lord revealed only two things: firstly, the anger present in Elisha’s life and secondly, the habit of delegating what he should personally do. In the carrying out of the leftover prophecies that was inherited from Elijah, which must have been repeated and taught to him by Elijah (for Elijah received it from the Lord at the same time as the appointment of Elisha – 1 Kings 19:15-18), Elisha sent an assistant rather than going himself to anoint Jehu (2 Kings 9:1-10). Although he did personally deliver the word of prophecy to Hazael (2 Kings 8:7-13). We are not sure if Hazael did not come to see Elisha, whether he would have gone to Hazael or send a son of a prophet. Elisha also delegated Gehazi with his staff to raise the dead son of the Shunamite woman when she appealed to Elisha for him (2 Kings 4:31). It was only when Gehazi got back and said that it did not work that Elisha went himself, and also because the Shunamite woman will not leave him until the matter was resolved.

Although Elisha was justified in reacting to the youths who teased his baldness, only in heaven will we know whether he could have done a better job in controlling his temper (2 Kings 2:23-24). Whether it was a test of his patience, which he could have done better, or whether it was justified to kill the evil youth by a curse can only be seen better from heaven’s perspective. However, from the New Testament point of view, it was unjustifiable as it is required for all of us to bless those who revile us and thus rise higher into the character of Christ. After receiving the anointing of God, we are responsible to personally bring forth the works of God in our lives and not delegate them, where God wants it to flow through us personally. And we must always in the New Testament grace, have the fruit of the Spirit in fullness of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness and temperance (Galatians 5:22-23).

Many anointing of disobedient people of God, still need to be fulfilled on earth and many fresh new and powerful anointing are yet to be receive in this special end time period when God shows things which have not entered the heart of men nor ever been heard or seen, but has revealed them to those who love Him (1 Corinthians 2:9). Let us have the fullness of Christ’s character as that is the predestination of all of us and boldly, ask, seek, knock to receive and obtain things which God has reserved to be manifested in these end times. Call upon God, and He will answer and show great and mighty things which we have yet to know (Jeremiah 33:3). Amen.

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Fatherly Talk 8.02 Faith and Risk

Every step of faith by the men and women in the Bible has always involved a measure of risk. Those who are averse to risk will never venture forth and those who do not count the cost will lose everything. There is a balance between taking risk and minimising foolish ventures. There are steps to take even when one exercises faith. And the steps of calculating costs to minimise risk is not anti-faith but part of the faith process. Before any venture of faith through open doors which God give, we must take sequential steps. The first and foremost is to count the cost.

Step One – Count the Cost

In speaking about discipleship, our Lord Jesus teaches us to ‘Count the Cost’ before doing anything. In building a tower, one must sit down first and count the cost of building the tower and determine whether one can finish it (Luke 14:28-30). A king going out to war also must sit down first and consider whether he has enough men to fight the war and win it, otherwise the best course is to ask for conditions of peace (Luke 14:31-32). The main point of Jesus is the ability to finish what one has started or to go forth and win a war. Completion of what is started is at the crux of the whole matter. Never begin something you cannot finish, never start a journey which you cannot complete. There is nothing wrong nor anything against the exercise of faith to calculate the cost and see if one can complete a project. Jesus applied it to those who choose to follow Him and become His disciples, that one must follow Him to the end and pay any price it cost to keep following Jesus all the days of our lives.

Faith is not foolishness that does not know what is at stake nor is it leaping before hearing from God. Faith is not the lack of natural considerations nor the ignoring of our intellect and capabilities of working things out using natural means. Faith can sometimes surpass and go against natural calculations but they are taken upon considering the costs and with the understanding of what is at stake. Of course, it is not supposed to just rely on the arm of the flesh or the natural abilities that we have. It does take those into consideration. Neither is it just dependence on our natural mind and intellect for then we would not be expecting a miracle from the Lord or supernatural provision from God. The purpose of counting the cost is to obtain natural knowledge of what is required and then see if it is the best course of action. Faith is not blind. It sees in the spiritual what is not visible in the natural (Hebrews 11:3). Over calculation and dependence on pure natural methodology can hinder faith but it does not mean that one does not count the cost.

Since Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our faith, when we calculate what is possible with what is already given, then what is lacking can be provided supernaturally by God, as long as we understand and heard clearly that the path ahead is what God wants us to take. It is against all natural odds to cross the Red Sea, to cross the Jordan at its peak, to go against an enemy army that is far superior to what one had. God has always got His people to go against what is normally impossible in the natural. But the people going forth knew what they were doing and knew the risks involved. David as a lad, knew that if he did not slay Goliath, he would be dead. Joshua’s army was less equipped than the armies of Canaan but God used hailstones and hornets to aid their conquest (Exodus 23:28; Joshua 10:11). There were more who died by hailstones than by the sword. The calculation of costs is not so much to rely on the natural as to be a measurement of whether some things can be completed in the natural, and where they cannot and it is God’s Will, to know and appreciate how much of a miracle that God has wrought; thus bringing worship and thanksgiving to God for His gracious intervention.

Step Two – Always Grow Internally and Grow Externally

It is the law of life to grow and to increase. Only that which is dead, decays and reduces. In growing, plants scatter their seeds through many ways, some of them risky and some of them ingenious. Through offering fruits for consumption, plants ensure that animals and humans which consume them spread their species far and wide. Through many methods of spreading its seed, via wind or sea, plants take risk and ensure that their species continue to reproduce. Our Lord Jesus demands that we be fruitful and multiply; every branch that does not bear fruit is taken away (John 15:2). The method to bear more fruit is in abiding in Jesus and submitting to His pruning so that we can bear more fruit (John 15: 1-5). Without abiding in Jesus, the branch becomes withered and is cast out and burnt (John 15:6). Fruit as we understand it would be both the growth of Christlikeness in our lives and also disciples made through our lives. If we do not go out and teach, we will not be able to make disciples (Matthew 28:19-20). If we do not give up the weights of worldliness or sin that ensnares us, we will not be able to run the race of transformation in Jesus and heavenly rewards (Hebrews 12:1-2). If we do not crucify the flesh and its passions and desires, we will not be able to grow into Christlikeness in all the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-24). There are things to give up, things to let go, things to forsake and Godlike things to hold on to, to pursue to reach out into and receive. The performance of such will require risk taking and advancement in the walk of faith.

Living in Australia, I see a number of various types of eucalyptus trees. In one of the Canberra suburbs where I live, we went through a period of drought and you can see one of the special capabilities of some species of eucalyptus trees. When there is insufficient water, the gum tree chooses certain branches to be cut off the supply and you literally see a whole branch dried up on the tree, while the rest of the tree continues growing new branches and spreading forth its leaves. Overtime, the dried branch dies and drops of the tree. Sometimes out of fun, I would reach out to a low branch while walking my dog, and break off the dried branch and use it as a stick to walk or to play with. We all only have the same 24 hours per day in our lives, and have to make our choice as to what we do to grow and increase in our lives. This involves choice of reading, choice of friends, choice of prioritising of our time usage, etc. Over time, these choices will make us into who we become. Also involved is the choice of what we think and feel each day. Yes, our thoughts and feelings also consist of the spiritual warfare that is present in the world (2 Corinthians 10:4-6). While some look only at outward appearances, we should be concern also with inward appearances (2 Corinthians 4:18; 10:7). We can choose what we think, what we feel and what we do each and every day (Philippians 4:6-9).

In the parable of the talents, the one who had five talents doubled it to ten and the one who had two doubled it to four (Matthew 25:20-23). Both of them were regarded as being faithful over a few things and became ruler over many things, entering into the joy of the Lord (Matthew 25:21, 23). One of them had a wrong perception of the master, that the other two did not, seeing the master as hard, reaping what he did not sow (an impossible scenario as all things are base on sowing and reaping) and gathering where he did not scatter seed (Matthew 25:24). The main cause was that he actually had fear and hid his talent in the ground (Matthew 25:25). His master added the fact that actually, he was wicked and lazy (Matthew 25:26). We have the choice to trust the master’s words against the word of the one talent servant. Since the other two servants never view the master as bad as the one talent, two witnesses versus one, we interpret that the master’s point of view is true whilst the point of view of the one talent servant is incorrect. That means that the truth is that the one talent servant was lazy, wicked and fearful. At the minimum, the master required that the lazy, wicked and fearful servant would have deposited the talent with the bankers and he would have obtained interest upon his return (Matthew 25:27). In the end, the one and only talent that the lazy, wicked and fearful servant had was taken away and given to the one who now had ten talents (Matthew 25:28). The unprofitable servant was cast into outer darkness where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth. Definitely, not a place where those who are saved go.

The problem with the one talent servant, besides his laziness, wickedness and fear, is that he is not a risk taker and never bothered to grow and increase what he had. Remaining the same is not growth at all. We must increase both internally in our walk with God and externally in our works in God. Wrong beliefs produce wrong personalities and wrong decisions. That is why it is important to examine our belief system and ensure that it is in line with the Bible. We must adopt into our lives the principle of bearing fruit and growth. This is what our Lord Jesus desires of us (John 15:1-6). When we bear much fruit our Heavenly Father is glorified and we truly exemplify our discipleship in our Lord Jesus (John 15:8). Do not settle for a life that does not grow and increase. Of course, do not rely on your own strength, always rely on Jesus within us and increase in every way in our lives both internally and externally.

Step Three – Hear & Assimilate, Obey & Act on Every Word of God

Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4). All Christians know this verse but many do not practice it. Practicing this verse means:

  • Every day waiting on God to hear His voice
  • Without hearing His voice, one will die (just as one dies without food)
  • Daily digesting what God has said
  • Daily living our lives acting on what God has spoken

If we are not daily obtaining His word, then we are without food and dying of starvation. And our Lord Jesus said that His sheep hear His voice (John 10:27). And where we cannot hear God clearly, we still have the Bible which by reading one would find the daily nourishment of God’s principles and instructions which would guide our daily life. We should not be like the book of Judges where every man does what is right in his own eyes (Judges 17:5). This was what was done BEFORE they had the law given them (Deuteronomy 12:8). On top of this, we have an abundance of principles and teachings from our Lord Jesus in the New Testament that we can apply to our lives daily. And we have the assistance of the epistles which contain practical applications of Christ’s principles into our daily lives. Thus, whether we can or cannot hear God’s voice directly, we all have an abundance of Scriptures in which the voice of God still speaks through.

With that in mind, it should be obvious that every one who walks with God in every generation in every age, is required to obey God fully as much as we have assimilated God and His Scriptures into our lives. And out of the abundance of hearing God directly or indirectly, we are to take risks, after counting the cost, in order to expand, to grow, to increase, in every aspect of our internal and external life. It is still important to flow through the step of counting the cost, and understanding that to do nothing is fatal in itself; thus, we must arise and take risk after considering all things and go through whatever door God has set for us.

In a time of great famine in Israel as a result of being besiege, such that cannibalism was practiced, four lepers who were at the entrance of the city and also dying of starvation ask themselves the question, “Why are we sitting here until we die?” (2 Kings 6:28-30; 7:3). If they remain in the city, they would surely die of starvation, and if they go to the enemy camp, they risk being killed as Israelites (2 Kings 7:4). In the end, after evaluating their situation (counting the cost), they knew they had a hundred percent chance of dying of salvation by doing nothing but sitting around; but they had at least a slim chance of surviving the Syrian army, if they go there and beg for food. To their great surprise, when they reached the camp of the Syrian army, there was no one there but an abundance of clothes and food for God had caused the noise of a great army to caused them to flee in a hurry (2 Kings 7:6-7). The four lepers had an abundance of silver, gold, clothing and food (2 Kings 7:8). Finally, their conscience made them give the good news to the starving besieged city and the city was saved as according to the word of Elisha (2 Kings 7:1).

In this end time, doing nothing is like the lepers sitting at the city gate waiting to die. For death and destruction will surely come upon all the earth. Thus, God is calling His people to figuratively walk on water, AFTER hearing the command of the Lord to ‘Come!’ (Matthew 14:29). Whatever God has spoken to each of us, let us count the cost, then rely fully on the grace of God to enter boldly through the open door that God has prepared for us (Revelation 3:8). Boldly walk in the works that God has prepared for us before the foundation of the world, relying fully on His grace in us and upon us (Ephesians 2:8-10). Be bold, be strong, for the Lord our God is with us!

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Fatherly Talk 8.01 Principles for Open Doors

Dearly Beloved,

The message from the Angel of Philadelphia was that God has opened a door which no one can shut and what He shuts, no one can open (Revelation 3:7). Although the church of Philadelphia had little strength, they need to give their all to take upon themselves the opportunities that God has opened unto them. Many Christians have the idea that when God opens a door, everything is smooth sailing without any dangers or difficulties; like roses without thorns or like taking the land of Canaan without giants or battles. For these Christians multiple opportunities and open doors pass them in life without them lifting one finger or taking one step into the waters. They will be hopelessly waiting all their lives and die at the bus stop, still waiting for their bus number to show up. Such bus stops are filled with the graves of such who do not have the boldness or sacrifice to step out of their comfort zone to enter into the land which God has given to them. The land filled with milk and honey is also filled with Canaanites, Jebusites, giants and other difficulties. To the bold belong the spoils, to the faith-filled belong the victory.

Principle One – Discerning the times and seasons

There were four growth period in David’s army: the Adullam cave, the wilderness stronghold, Ziklag and at Hebron. David’s army started from about 400 men who came to him at Adullam cave. They were men who were discontented, distress and in debt growing to about four hundred in number (1 Samuel 12:2). Between the Adullam cave period to Ziklag, the number of David’s army grew to sic hundred men, which means that two hundred were added during the wilderness years (1 Samuel 12:9-10). At David’s lowest point in Ziklag, some Benjamites, Gadites and those from the tribe of Manasseh defected to David (1 Samuel 12:1-20). They helped David against the bands of raiders  and became like the army of God (1 Samuel 12:22). At Hebron where David became king over Judah, hundreds of thousands from various tribes joined David against Abner and the house of Saul (1 Chronicles 12:23-38). It is said of Issachar that that they had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do (1 Samuel 12:32). Everyone who came to David during those times knew that it was time to come under David and let him fulfil the prophecy of being king over Israel, even when Saul was still on the throne or one of the descendants of Saul (Ishbosheth). When Abner was murdered and Ishbosheth killed, the tribes of Israel came to David to make him king, saying that he was the one who led them while Saul was king and that the Lord had said to David that he will shepherd Israel and be ruler of Israel (2 Kings 5:2). They knew the word of the Lord but were not willing to flow along until there was no choice. Those who followed David early became the leaders of David who help him rule over all of Israel, becoming his mighty men and counsellors throughout his reign.

Anna the prophetess and Simeon knew the times and seasons of the Lord and was used by God to prophesy at Jesus’ circumcision (Luke 2:25-38). There are always those who had spent a considerable time fasting, praying and serving the Lord who will be able to discern and prophesy of the fullness of time that comes to pass in each season. Of course, some things are not for us to know which the Father has put in His own authority (Acts 1:7). For things pertaining to the Lord’s coming and the times and seasons leading to its fulfilment, we are exhorted to be knowledgeable of such (1 Thessalonians 5:1-2). We are told by Jesus to read the signs and things that happen like watching a fig tree putting forth leaves in summer and be ready (Matthew 24:32). Looking at the fig tree and all the trees when they are already budding, we are to see and know for ourselves that summer is near, likewise recognising when the coming of our Lord Jesus is near (Luke 21:29-31). It is only when we go about carousing in the things of this world, the cares of this life or in drunkenness that the Day of the Lord comes unexpectedly (Luke 21:34).

We must discern the times that we live in and watch and pray so that we are alert to prophecy taking place in front of our eyes in the world and in all that is happening. When we are able to discern the times and seasons, we will be able to flow with what God is doing on the planet earth during our lifetime and also flow into God’s perfect Will. Abner was not flowing in God’s perfect will when he tried to establish the kingdom of Saul under Ishbosheth, and the civil war that resulted caused him to kill Asahel, the brother of Joab. Joab’s vengeance for his brother caused the death of Abner in his prime. God’s permissive will result in the shortening of a person’s life including the forfeit of all the blessings the person might receive in their lifetime. The door was open for Abner to join David after the death of Saul but he decided not to flow into it, instead remaining a general in Saul’s army thinking he can now do what he wants. No one is truly free to do what they want, even after redemption we are slaves to righteousness (Romans 6:18). Sometimes we lead into a new door, at other times we follow those whom God has appointed into new doors of opportunity.

Principle Two – Courage and Boldness

Jesus allows us to count the cost of everything in which we need to do. Whether it be a king going out to war or a builder constructing a tower, it is permissible to count the cost of such endeavour to ensure capability to complete what is started (Luke 14:28-31). The context was not just about doing things on earth but it was about following Him and the cost of discipleship (Luke 14:33). He emphasized that it will cost everything to follow Him. Every man or woman in the Bible who followed God has to pay the one hundred percent price to fulfil God’s perfect Will. And the cost was not just to property or asset but of one’s own life! The bravery and boldness required to seize the opportunities that God has opened for us is always at the risk of one’s entire life when it comes to the things of God. David risked his life against all odds to kill Goliath. Abraham left family and home to go to the land of Canaan. Moses had nothing to live for but God once he accepted God’s calling. Joshua spent his entire life fighting and establishing the land of Canaan. Walking on water risks one’s entire life upon the word or command of God.

Boldness and courage is not foolish jumping into dangerous waters. It is a calculated risk of dependence upon the God whom one has trusted and experienced. David’s courage to face Goliath was based upon his faith and trust in the God of Israel and the covenant that he believed belong to Israel (1 Samuel 17:26). He had also seen the deliverance of God from the lion and the bear (1 Samuel 17:34-36). It is also reliance upon tried and tested methods like his slingshot versus sword and spears (1 Samuel 17:39-40). Usually, God would have already put the man and woman whom He wants to use through multiple tests which they passed before giving them the open door of opportunity. If one fails during any of God’s assigned tests, wouldn’t it be obvious that the same would fail when the open door comes? The lion and the bear that came to David while he was out shepherding the flock was a test of his courage and boldness. His success in passing the test ensured his success with Goliath. Too many Christians who have failed God’s various tests miserably complain too much when they missed their opportune door of blessing. They have only themselves to blame. The ten failures of the Israelites in the wilderness were what caused them to also fail to go into the promise land when the time came for them to do so (Numbers 14:22).

Boldness and courage is both a gift and an attribute of the soul which we must have. It is possible to pray to God for boldness as the Christians did in the book of Acts (Acts 4:29). It is also an attribute of the soul which God continues to encourage in Joshua before he entered the promise land. The word ‘be strong and of good courage’ was repeated redundantly so that we can clearly see it as an important attribute to have to enter into the promise land of our individual lives:

  • Moses told Joshua privately to ‘be strong and of good courage’ (Deuteronomy 31:6)
  • Moses told Joshua publicly to ‘be strong and of good courage’ in the sight of all Israel (Deuteronomy 31:7).
  • During the inauguration ceremony when Moses passed the leadership mantle to Joshua, Moses commanded Joshua to ‘be strong and of good courage’ (Deuteronomy 31:23).
  • God told Joshua twice to ‘be strong and of good courage’ (Joshua 1:7, 9).
  • The people pledged their obedience to Joshua, allowing him to kill the disobedient, and told him to ‘be strong and of good courage’ (Joshua 1:18).
  • After commanding the captains to put their foot on the five conquered kings’ heads, Joshua commanded them to ‘be strong and of good courage’ (Joshua 10:25).

How could anyone miss the fact that the key ingredient to possess the promise land is a heart and soul that is full of bravery and courage? In the day of open doors, the attribute of boldness and calculated risk taking must arise to enter into the doors that God has opened.

Principle Three – Open Doors Happen Once in a Lifetime (with few exceptions)

Discerning the seasons and times which God has set, one must prepare one’s entire life for the open door which God will give during one’s lifetime. Joseph had only one chance to stand before Pharaoh and God had prepared him many years for that opportunity. Daniel had only one chance to stand before the Babylonian emperor to be given the opportunity to interpret his dream. David had only one chance to slay Goliath. It is rare to have more than one chance to take the open door that God gives, and this is only on really good ground, for example like Abraham who had an earlier unrecorded call that precedes Genesis 12:1-2 (Acts 7:2). When Jesus called his twelve disciples, they only had one chance to respond. The rich young man did not have a second chance to be Jesus’ disciple (Mark 10:21-22). To those who follow Jesus, there is no turning back. Jesus said that those who turn back are not fit for the kingdom of God (Luke 9:62). They will be consumed with the judgment as was Lot’s wife (Genesis 19:26).

After a year of travelling through the wilderness and reaching Kadesh Barnea, the Israelites finally had a chance to enter the promise land and asked Moses to send in twelve spies (Deuteronomy 1:19-22). Ten spies agreed that the land was as God says it was, filled with milk and honey, but their fear of the giants in the land discouraged the people from crossing over (Numbers 13:26-29; Deuteronomy 1:24-28). Only Joshua and Caleb had the boldness and courage to cross over (Numbers 13:30; Numbers 14:6-9). Their one chance to enter the land of Canaan was offered to them but Israel refused to go in and the generation that refused all died in the wilderness (Numbers 14:29). Their fear of the giants was greater than their faith in the living God. Their failures resulted from the following:

  • Their imagination and vision were filled with giants in the land, causing great fear and emotional crying (Numbers 14:1).
  • They spoke wrong words against God and confessed that they would die in the wilderness, which God allowed it to be so, according to their own words (Numbers 14:2, 28-29).
  • They had seen the signs and wonders and the glory of the Lord yet they failed in all the ten tests God put them through (Numbers 22-23).

All the ten spies who spoke wrongly died by the plague (Numbers 14:37). And they had only one chance and one day to respond positively to enter the land. The next morning they changed their minds and wanted to go in but it was too later. Their opportunity had come and gone.

As we enter into a new cycle of seven years, having completed the first cycle, let us be sensitive to the opportunities and open doors God has set for us. Some major open doors only has a very, very short window for us to respond positively to. Other training tests and smaller preparatory blessings might have a few chances and cycles of opportunity as arranged by the angels sent by God. But in the main areas of predestination and the key open door that God has for our lives, we have only one chance to flow into it. For those obedient to the Lord, be prepared, be ready to enter into the door which God has opened. Your door of destiny, the perfect Will of God for your life. Amen.

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Fatherly Talk 7.24 Conceiving in Faith

Dearly Beloved,

The process of faith has four processes: Hearing, Conception, Formation, Birthing. Kenneth Hagin in his little booklet, ‘How to write your own ticket with God’ speaks of four processes: Say it, Do it, Receive it, Tell it. He received it from the story of the woman with the issue of blood who heard & speak to herself, reached out and touched Jesus, received her healing and finally confessed that she was the one who received her healing (Mark 5:25-34). He also mentioned these four points occurred in the story of David and Goliath, where David kept saying, “What shall be done for the man who kills Goliath and takes away the reproach from Israel?” (1 Samuel 17:26, 30). Then he went out and slayed Goliath and everyone told of his exploits. Hagin mentioned that he received these four points in a spiritual vision from Jesus. These four points contained the principles found in the four processes of faith.

In the process of hearing, we have Scriptures that speak about how true faith is authored by our Lord Jesus Christ (Hebrews 12:2). We received the beginning of our faith through hearing God’s spoken word (Romans 10:17). All acts of faith are not born of the human will or flesh but they are energized by the spoken word of God into our individual lives. Man must not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds out from the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4; Deuteronomy 8:3). It is the spoken word of God that energizes the life of faith that pleases God. In the healing of the lame man on the way to prayer, while everyone looked in wonder at the apostles for the notable miracle done on the lame man who had never walked before, Peter proclaimed that it was not their own power or godliness that made the man walked but rather it was faith in Jesus Name, the faith that comes through Him that has given the man perfect healing (Acts 3:12, 16). The first and most important thing in the walk of faith is the ability to hear God. Without hearing, there is no faith.

STEP ONE: The Hearing of Faith

For the woman with the issue of blood, her faith began when she heard about our Lord Jesus through the words of many people speaking of Him. She must have heard of His many miracles which He did (Mark 5:27). In her own life, she was also desperate for she had spent all her money for a cure and none of them were effective, and she grew worse (Mark 5:25-26). From this case we know that hearing is not necessarily hearing directly from God but it includes hearing of the works and acts of God upon others and believing that it is possible for our own lives, too. Although Jesus did say that My sheep hear My voice, it is obvious that there is a growth from lamb to sheep and lambs have to follow the sheep until they themselves can hear the shepherd’s voice (John 10:27). There will always be people on earth in every generation who hear God’s voice in their own way and who are obedient to what they hear. Those learning to hear God’s voice must learn from those who do and through time learn to hear God’s voice for themselves. There is a path of growth from baby lamb to adult sheep. That process include feeding upon the word of God (John 21:15; 1 Peter 2:2). Sometimes God speaks but it is not heard. God told Elijah that He had told a widow to feed him but the widow was ready to die of starvation and apparently never heard God (1 Kings 17:9). For the woman with the issue of blood, all the wonderful things she heard about Jesus must have awakened a desire to be healed by Jesus and perhaps somewhere in her spirit conscience, she felt that God was speaking to her heart that she was to be healed also by Jesus.

It is possible to hear and seemingly received but not enduring for the lack of roots. The seed planted by the wayside are those who hear but never believe (Luke 8:12). Those on the rock are those who hear and believe for a while but in a time of trial or temptation, fall away because they have no root (Luke 8:13). It is interesting that there are two groups of people who hear but never truly conceive in faith. The first group is easily recognised for they do not believe in the first place. Remember that this lack of faith or unbelief is caused by an individual free choice which they must be responsible for in the day of judgment. The lack of faith or unbelief can be their lack of faith in God’s direct speaking to them or their lack of faith in the words of faith proclaimed by the faithful messengers and witnesses of God. In His own home town, people who had known Jesus physically could not believe that He was the Messiah, the Anointed One (Mark 6:1-6). They could not believe because their natural eyes are opened but their heart is closed to what God was saying and doing in their midst. Isaiah and the apostle Paul faced this problem when they proclaimed the word of God to the Jews (Acts 28:26-28). The second group of people are also interesting for they “believe for a while.” All belief and faith have to be tested. Those who only believe because it is easy to believe or convenient to believe do not truly have faith. Even our Lord Jesus had to be tested in His own belief that He was and is the Son of God. In two sample recorded temptations, He was asked to proof that He was the Son of God. The devil implied that he might not be by the big word “IF” (Matthew 4:3, 6). At other times, people are afraid to believe because of the fear of being ostracised or rejection. The parents of the blind man who was healed knew that their son had received a miracle from Jesus but because they feared the Jews, they dare not openly confess their faith in Christ (John 9:22). Beware that it is possible to believe for a while and then fall away. It is truly those who endure in their belief until the end who receive the promises of God (James 5:10-11). It is faith with longsuffering that possesses the promises of God (Hebrews 6:12). The major thing lacking in the Hebrews was the lack of endurance which Paul sought to address (Hebrews 10:32-36).

STEP TWO: Conception of Faith

Once the word of God has been truly received and a measure of endurance occurred, it enters into the conception stage. At this stage, spiritual nourishment and the spiritual environment of faith are essential to the development of the substance of faith into physical manifestation. It is still possible to abort the process of faith through carelessness and worldliness. Like the seed that is sown amongst thorns, the cares of this life, riches, and pleasures of life causes no fruit at maturity (Luke 8:14). Many people had a good beginning but never received a good ending. Jeroboam’s kingdom of ten tribes was gifted through prophecy and established by God’s word, with a promise of a lasting dynasty (1 Kings 11:38).  Instead his disobedience killed of every single male heir in his line (1 Kings 14:10). Saul began well with humility but completely caused God to reject him for all his frequent disobedience (1 Samuel 10:1, 9; 15:11, 23).

Abraham conceived the promise of a child of his own for approximately twenty-five years before God finally gave him a child of his own through Sarah at the age of one hundred years (Genesis 15:6; 17:1; 21:5). He had always believed God from the start of the covenant relationship and in the process of time thought that it was fulfilled in Ishmael but when God spoke of a child with Sarah, he again believed although he had a brief moment of incredulous laughter (Genesis 17:17-18). At ninety-nine years of age, Abraham now needed two miracles, one for himself and one for Sarah, yet he held strong and did not waver that God was able to do this (Romans 4:19-22). Perhaps he had thought that Ishmael was the promise child for thirteen years but when God appeared and clarified that this was not so but rather that his promise son was to be through Sarah, though feeling incredulous for a moment, he immediately obeyed God and circumcised himself with all his household and look forward to a double miracle from God without wavering. The journey of faith through conception can be long and filled with our own thinking that God is working in a certain way but there needs to be a humility of faith so that at each point when God corrects our thinking, we immediately flow with the new understanding that God gives.

Ishmael was Sarah’s idea and Abraham accepted that this might have been God answering his prayers and keeping the promise given when God made a covenant with him (Genesis 15:4; 16:1-4). For twelve silent years, there was no record of conversations between God and Abraham, perhaps because Abraham thought that God had already answered his prayers through Ishmael. God always answers prayers not always be the method we choose and certainly not by the works of the flesh. There was no miracle in the birth of Ishmael, it was pure natural arrangement. God also had a fullness of time in bringing forth the fulfilment of His promise to Abraham. Abraham’s life seems to be in large cycles of twenty-five years and it was the completion of a cycle of faith walk (in the land of Canaan for twenty-five years) that God again appeared to him to get him ready for his blessing at the age of one hundred years old. There are also many side blessings of faith, for Abraham was sterile when he conceived Isaac miraculously and after that remained virile through the resurrection power of God, such that he remarried after the death of Sarah to Keturah and had six children with her (Genesis 25:1-2).

Conception involves continually doing all the commandments of God. Moses took one year to build a Tabernacle for God. He had to ensure that everything that was done was according to the visions that he had seen of the details of the tabernacle. Conception and the third step of formation are related as one is getting impregnated by the seed of faith and the other is being watchful through the pregnancy until it reaches full term.

STEP THREE: Formation in Faith

All things in the natural are formed and shaped by things in the Spirit (Hebrews 11:3). Faith is the substance (hupostasis) that comes from God’s Word, authored by our Lord Jesus (Hebrews 11:1; 12:2). Worlds were framed (formed) by the word of God (Hebrews 11:3). The word ‘frame’ comes from the Greek word ‘katartizo’ which means ‘to perfect, to fit or frame, to complete, to join together.’ This implies a process of time and a ‘layering process’ by which the spiritual mould is being cast to create something in the natural dimension. All natural dimensions exist based on the spiritual dimension for the spiritual is eternal while the natural is temporal (2 Corinthians 4:18). When we are impregnated by the seed of faith from our Lord Jesus, layer upon layer is being built in the spiritual dimension as we continue steadfast in faith through the corridors of time. Like a baby in the womb there is a fullness of time for the birth into the natural world of a spiritual creation.

Just like Moses took one year, with the help of all the anointed artisans and resources from the nation of Israel, to build the tabernacle, the process of faith needs a time process to form in the spiritual what is to be birth in the natural. Towards the end of Exodus, the redundancy of the phrase ‘as the Lord had commanded Moses’ serves as the song of faith for all who want to walk in faith (Exodus 40:1-33). From beginning to the end, the process of faith involves continually hearkening to the voice of God and obeying each detail command until God is pleased. It is only when God says it is finished that it is truly finished. How do we know the process is complete? It is when God is well-pleased! (Hebrews 11:2, 5, 6). We must continually be well-pleasing to our God. Our Lord Jesus lived thirty years on earth in a life well-pleasing to God, before God declared that He is well-pleased and obtained the anointing of the Holy Spirit as the Messiah sent by God (Matthew 3:17). Well-pleasing to God means that God takes pleasure in us. Jesus was God’s beloved in whom He is well-pleased (Matthew 12:18). God kept declaring how well-pleased He is with our Lord Jesus, even at the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:5).

Jesus declared that it is the Father’s good pleasure to give us His kingdom (Luke 12:32). The process of faith is to bring pleasure to God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ. It is not just merely creating things in the natural from spiritual substances. It is important to please God, and the soul that draws back from the walk of faith, will displease God (Hebrews 10:38). We must walk in the process of faith until we obtain a good testimony before our God (Hebrews 11:2). It is remarkable that we as God’s creation and tiny little creatures, could give such pleasure through our Lord Jesus to God our Father. The Father’s soul is filled with joy when we walk by faith and it is the ONLY way to please God (Hebrews 11:6). There needs to be diligence in the walk of faith in order to please God.

STEP FOUR: Birthing in Faith

The finale of the walk of faith is in the manifestation into the natural all that is done in the spiritual. We have many men and women of faith before us who have shown us the way. Elijah prayed for a long, long time until he pleased God so much that God agreed to stop the rain according to his prayers (James 5:17). He never gave up and never relent in his zeal for God. It took many, many years of fervent, dedicated, diligent prayers as he wept to see idolatry all over Israel. Finally, God gave him authority over the weather and he stood before Ahab and declared that there will be no rain, except at his word (1 Kings 17:1). ‘At Elijah’s word!’ What audacity, what boldness, what authority! The manifestation of Elijah’s word was so powerful that there was no rain nor dew for three years and six months. Oh there is great power when the manifestation of faith is finally birth! But long and lonely are the hours, days, weeks, months and years spent in prayer with God. Everyone rejoices in the manifestation but few want to pay the price of walking in faith, pleasing God for many, many years. Israel cried out that Yahweh is indeed the true God when Elijah confronted the false prophets with fire from God, but not many of them continued steadfast in God when they had the chance to reject idolatry and follow God with all their heart.

Nevertheless, it is the call to those who want to go all the way with God to be truly pioneers of the acts of faith from the spiritual world. For such will be those whom God raised in this end time of His bride and church, who will be well-pleasing to God and do mighty exploits.

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