Glen and Marc talk about Sonship
It has been over two thousand years since Jesus commanded His followers to go and make disciples of all men. (Matthew 28:18-20) And two thousand years later instead of having completed our mission, we seem to be further away then when we started. Instead of gaining ground, we appear to be loosing ground with people walking away from Christianity at an alarming rate. Although many different reasons can be sited, I believe one of the greatest reasons is a lack of understanding of what Jesus did on the cross, paired with apathy and fear. We have allowed our experiences to define our beliefs instead of the Word of God, causing us to doubt God. By allowing our experiences to define our beliefs we form a wrong view of God’s nature and an incorrect understanding of scripture; both which will bring frustration, apathy, and fear. Apathy will keep you from seeking truth while fear will keep you from acting on any truth you may know. Eventually you have what Christianity has become today, a group of people that either don’t care to seek after the truth for themselves or if they do are too afraid to act on that truth. This has led Christianity to appear to be a religion of theory and beliefs but with very little practical life application.
I believe Paul learned this very early on in his ministry. Paul, like most religious leaders of that time, was very adept at debating his point concerning his beliefs; he continued this practice early on in his ministry. Acts 17:17 says that Paul reasoned in the synagogue and marketplace daily. He attempted by way of debate to convince both Jew and Gentile that Jesus was Lord. Then later on we read in 1 Corinthians:
And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. 2 For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.
Paul had given up on trying to just debate people into the kingdom, instead relying on the power of the Holy Spirit. He gained the understanding that he could not rely on his understanding of scripture and his own knowledge alone, as great as that was, but needed to demonstrate the reality that Jesus was Lord. In Philippians he later stated that everything he had done and been in the past was garbage compared to knowing Jesus and having the reality of Jesus’ resurrected life manifested in his own life.
In the same way as Paul did at first, we have relied on our ability to effectively argue and articulate our beliefs, trusting in our own knowledge, all along neglecting the power that resided in us; the same power that raised Christ Jesus from the dead. We must get back to the place where we not only declare that Jesus is Lord, but also prove it. This is what Jesus meant when He commanded us to obey all that He commanded His followers to do. Not just tell them He died to save them, but to demonstrate it in a very real and personal way. Healing is the proof that Jesus forgave us of our sins.
1 Tim 2:2-4
3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.(NIV)
As we clearly showed in the previous chapters that Jesus paid the price for all sin. Not just the sin of the believers or those that He know would make Him Lord of their lives, but the sins of the whole world. God left nobody out when Jesus died on the cross, it is His will that all would be saved. Answer these questions about salvation.
Next, try to answer the same questions again but instead replace “salvation” with “healing.”
Where all your answers about salvation the same as it was for healing? If not, you need to pay very close attention to the next section. If it can be proven to you from scripture that healing is provided in the atonement, then you can’t in good conscience differentiate between God’s will for salvation and God’s will for healing ever again. They are the same, always and forever.
4 Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. (NKJV)
In Deuteronomy 7:15 we read where the Lord will take away from you all sickness (Kholee). In Job 33:19 we read where the word “Makob” is translated “pain”. So from these scriptures it is very evident that Isaiah 53:4 should read, “Surley He has borne our sicknesses and carried our pains.” In Leviticus 5:1 we read that if a soul sins then he shall bear (nasa) his iniquity. In Isaiah 53:12 we read that Jesus was numbered with the transgressors and bare (nasa) the sins of many. It is unquestionably clear that God is telling us that in the same way Jesus bore (nasa) the payment for our sins, He bore (nasa) our sickness and disease and took it away.
The Holy Spirit also declares this to be true when He inspired Matthew to quote the passage in Isaiah 53 showing that He was talking about bodily sickness and disease.
16 When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick, 17 that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “He Himself took our infirmities And bore our sicknesses.”
Here we are told that Jesus cast out spirits and healed ALL who were sick, fulfilling the prophesy of Isaiah 53 and clearly indicating that Isaiah was talking about physical sickness and disease. Some may say, “you see, it says that Jesus fulfilled that prophesy through His ministry of healing and not through what He did on the cross. Doesn’t that mean healing and deliverance are not for today? That’s a legitimate question so let’s look into what it means when it says that it was fulfilled.
The word fulfilled is the word “plerothe” which is the aorist passive, subjunctive, 3rd person singular of the word “pleroo”. In normal language that means that it was an action that was completed once, and by that one time action the results continue forever. By the mouth of two or three witness every word is established, so let’s look at a few more verses.
But when Jesus knew it, He withdrew from there. And great multitudes followed Him, and He healed them all. 16 Yet He warned them not to make Him known, 17 that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “Behold! My Servant whom I uphold, My Elect One in whom My soul delights! I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the Gentiles.2 He will not cry out, nor raise His voice, Nor cause His voice to be heard in the street.3 A bruised reed He will not break, And smoking flax He will not quench; He will bring forth justice for truth.4 He will not fail nor be discouraged, Till He has established justice in the earth; And the coastlands shall wait for His law.”
The word for fulfilled used in Matthew 8:17 is the same word “plerothe” used in Matthew 12:17. And just like the way Matthew 8 is quoting Isaiah 53, Matthew 12 is quoting Isaiah 42.
“Behold! My Servant whom I uphold, My Elect One in whom My soul delights! I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the Gentiles.2 He will not cry out, nor raise His voice, Nor cause His voice to be heard in the street.3 A bruised reed He will not break, And smoking flax He will not quench; He will bring forth justice for truth.4 He will not fail nor be discouraged, Till He has established justice in the earth; And the coastlands shall wait for His law.”
If you say that healing was fulfilled and not part of the atonement, then you have to say He is no longer bringing justice to the Gentiles. That is saying that the Gentiles cannot be saved. Obviously, Jesus is still preaching the gospel to the Gentiles through those who believe in Him and He is also still healing the sick through those that believe in Him!
1 Peter 2:24
He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. (NIV)
Like Matthew, Peter is also quoting the passage in Isaiah 53. But unlike the prophet Isaiah, Peter stated it in past tense. “…By His wounds (stripes) you have been healed. Now Holy Spirit doesn’t make mistakes so why would he have Peter misquote the passage? It is because something very important happened between the two verses; Jesus paid the price! That’s right, in the same way Jesus has already forgiven you of all your sins, He has also already healed you of all your diseases, hurts, pains, and mental anguishes. And in the same way you receive His forgiveness of your sins, you receive His healing of your disease.
Recently I have noticed a dramatic increase in the number of people who seem to be dissatisfied with their walk with the Lord, and lately many have been coming to me stating their desire to be further equipped as a son of God. Many are frustrated, not feeling as if they are being properly equipped; feeling like they are losing ground and that time is running out. Now I understand the frustration, it can overtake us all if we are not careful, but let’s not allow frustration to cause us to focus our discontentment in the wrong direction or towards the wrong person. If we are not being properly equipped, where does the fault lie?
Ephesians 4 states that Jesus gave the five-fold ministry gifts (four fold if that makes you a little more comfortable) for the equipping of the saints. So it is clear that it is the responsibility of the apostle, prophet, evangelist, preacher, and teacher to each perform their roles in helping the individual come into the fullness of which he/she was created to be and the body as a whole come into the knowledge of the son of God and whole measure of the fullness of Christ. It is their job to equip you, but is it their responsibility to make sure you are equipped? Let me say it this way.
Disclaimer: I want to stop here and say the reason I’m writing this at 4a.m. is because I have struggled with not wanting to write about this knowing that many will make assumptions that I talking about their situation or their church, or even the church I attend. Let me say this IS NOT targeted at any one situation or place. I talk to people all around the world and this is a response to the general discontentment, not any specific case or place! Now back to the show.
The ones who have come to me as of late are frustrated with those who they view are responsible to ensure they are equipped. They feel they are not getting what they need. This frustration turns into accusations against the leadership they feel is responsible to equip them. I understand they are frustrated but is it their leaderships fault? We must understand that the 5-fold is there to help you as you seek to become all you were created to be. They are there to help you, but it is your responsibility to get equipped. They are not to force any doctrine or truth on you, you are to pull it out of them. They are there to help you and to encourage you, not to push you. You are to see Christ in them and then put a demand on that area you need developed in your life. It is the placing of a demand that opens you up to Holy Spirit using them to equip you and transform you. If they try to come to you and push a teaching on you, especially if your are not ready, it will generally be met with resistance and be no benefit. As someone who has been used to help equip people, I can tell you when the demand is put on me it is easy and what the individual needs just flows out. When however, the demand is not there it is taxing and you feel like you’re pushing against a brick wall. When I teach and people are there just because they are curious but there is no demand, they may gain head knowledge but that’s all it is. However, when there is a demand from individuals it’s like deep calling unto deep and lives are transformed.
Now, I know some of you are putting a demand on leadership and still aren’t seeing any equipping. Don’t lose hope, don’t get frustrated, and don’t start judging those you feel are falling short. Take time and look around. Maybe God wants to use someone else for that particular aspect of your growth. 1 Corinthians 3 tells us that one plants and another waters but it is God who makes it grow. That doesn’t necessarily mean God is causing you to leave your fellowship, just that with this portion He will work through another individual. Look for Christ in others and then put that demand on Him, He will meet your need!
So there you have it. Take responsibility for your own growth. Allow Holy Spirit to use whoever He desires to help equip you. Allow Him to use you to help equip others!
In the times in which we are living; a time with the world’s economy falling apart and with wars and uprisings on just about every continent, it’s no wonder so many people are living in fear. I really believe that fear and the stress that comes with it is one of the leading causes, if not the leading cause of sickness and disease today. Scripture even says in Luke 21:26 that men’s hearts will fail them for fear, and for looking toward those things, which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven will be shaken. Job 3:25 says what I always feared has happened to me. What I dreaded has come true. In both of these instances things happened to people because they were afraid. In the one instance people’s hearts failed, and in the other instance, well, we all know what happened with Job. He lost his kids, livestock, pretty much everything except his life, oh yea, and his wife. But even she was trying to convince him to curse God and die. Anyway, fear was a major issue back then, and is even more of an issue now. Because fear and anxiety seem to be playing such an important role in the lives of men and women today, even Christians, it is imperative that we gain understanding as to what fear is, how we as Christians are to address it, and how to overcome it.
Fear is an unpleasant emotion like dread, fright, and apprehension that manifests as an expression of ones belief (or faith) that someone or something else has a greater ability to influence their circumstance than God.
Once while teaching on fear in a conference the Lord gave me a vision of how fear influences people. I saw all the people as puppets with strings attached at one end to the peoples feet, legs, arms and hands, while the other ends of the strings were attached to the word ‘FEAR’ that was suspended above their heads. Fear was pulling the strings attached to the individuals and by doing so controlled their actions. One way this is demonstrated in the natural is in the fight or flight response. When you are confronted with a fearful event your body will react by either fighting to rid yourself of the threat or by running away, that is what is meant by fight or flight. This is shown spiritually when you are presented with the opportunity to pray for someone who is injured or sick on the street or in the store. Fear will grip you and cause doubt to enter your mind. It will say something like, “If you go over there and pray for them nothing will happen and you’ll look like a fool!” At that point you have two choices. One is to go and pray for the sick (fight), the other is to walk away (flight). If you pray for them you are declaring that God’s word, which says we will lay hands on the sick and they will recover, is true and greater than fear. If you walk away you’re saying that fear and the lies it tells are truer than the Word of God. By walking away and giving into fear, you have just made fear the potter in your life instead of the only One who is to be the potter, God. That may sound a little harsh but sometimes the truth is harsh, even when spoken in love. In cases where the threat is not imminent like being attacked physically, or praying for the sick, but more like being fearful of losing a job or getting sick, your body will react by becoming anxious or stressed. Many times this stress and anxiety will cause you to make irrational or unwise decisions in order to get free of the perceived threat. As Christians however, we are not called to live in fear or even allow fear to have a say in our lives; we are called to live in His love, since He is love, and to become love. As He is so are we in this world. (1 John 4:17)
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear: because fear has to do with punishment. He that fears is not made perfect in love. (1John 4:18)
Like we mentioned above, God is love and when we have a revelation of His perfect, unconditional love, we understand that there is no way He will let us down. There is no way He won’t do whatever it takes to meet our needs, if we will just allow Him. We will believe Him above anything else because we gained an understanding of His true nature, we know who He really is.
Many years ago, in my youthful exuberance and raw passionate love for God, I set out to change the world for God. I preached the love of God and healed the sick everywhere I went. There were no grey areas in my life; everything was black or white, right or wrong. I knew the nature of God, He was revealing it to me through supernatural experiences; unfortunately, I can’t say I always demonstrated it.
During this time I sought a church to call home; one that would “understand my passions”. Needless to say, I wasn’t received everywhere I went. Sometimes it was my fault, sometimes not, but regardless of the reason, I took offense and the hurts started to build.
Funny thing about hurts, if not dealt with, they will influence every part of your life and ministry, especially your relationship with God and others. Those hurts will start dictating how you view others, and if you are ministering, you will minister out of those hurts instead of love.
Anyway, my hurts against “the church” built causing me to become more and more separated from all Christians except for those I was ministering to. Gradually my message changed from God’s unconditional love to one that was centered on going against the popular doctrines that I saw were unscriptural. I slowly went from loving all, to seeing the faults in the lives and beliefs of others. Now, I realize some may say, “ Aren’t you supposed to expose false teachings?” Yes and no. We are called to expose false doctrine but the way we go about it is as important as the exposing of it. If you look at the life of Jesus, He taught the truth. He didn’t teach against anything unless he was addressing the teachers of the Law. Even then, He never sought them out, they came to Him and addressed Him; He was just responding. So yes, we expose the false but we do it by teaching the truth. Light will expel darkness if you just let it shine.
So, my hurts continued to build and I became more and more isolated from other Christians until finally one night, sitting in a restaurant in Malawi Africa, I walked away from ministry. I still loved God tremendously; I had just allowed the hurts to build until my discontent with the condition of the church caused me to want no part of it or even to minister to it. The not-so-funny thing about isolation is that the enemy knows that as long as he can keep you from the fellowship with other believers, you will never be healed from the hurts.
I stayed away from any organized Christian service for four years; even then it took my wife telling me it’s time for us to start going to church again and prodding me for me to go. I knew this was from God and I knew where He was telling me to go, I was just reluctant to go. I had never been to the church He was telling me to go to, but I had seen the pastor and had seen his heart. I knew he had a heart in love with God and with love for the people.
We’ve been going to Christian Center Shreveport for 3 years now and God has used the people there to heal my heart. He has once again restored my love for people and the desire to see them become all God has created them to be. I could not have been healed of hurts from the church unless I started going to and started being around the church again. (I realize we the people are the church and the place isn’t but give me some grace here 🙂 ) We cannot be all we were created to be apart from the rest of the body. I’ve learned through all this that it’s not about being in 100% agreement on every issue, it’s not about people understanding you or recognizing your “anointing”. It is about loving people, serving people, and laying your life down so they can be who Jesus has created them to be. I’ve learned that it’s about having a family that when you are down, they are there to stand with you and help support you. I’ve learned that it’s all about love and for that I’m very thankful to my Christian Center Family. I love them and even when I’m not able to be with them physically, I’m there in spirit.
To all of you that have isolated yourself from others because of hurts or because they don’t believe the way you believe, get back in the fellowship. Don’t worry about them or what they do or say, love them, serve them, and watch the wounds heal.
The Gospel of the Kingdom is the power of God for salvation. The word used here for power is the Greek word “dunamis”, the word we get dynamite from; and the Greek word for salvation is “soteria” which means welfare, prosperity, deliverance, preservation, salvation, and safety. The Gospel is the explosive power of God to keep you safe, prosper you, deliver you, protect you, and save you. Unfortunately for many, the Gospel has been reduced to a debate as to why you should say a prayer to go to Heaven.
I was out in the city one day with a friend teaching him how I minister healing to people on the street and shooting video for teaching purposes. A young couple sitting and talking on a bench caught my eye so I went over and introduced myself. We started talking about Jesus and it came up that people say that Jesus is Lord because the Bible says so, but what makes the Bible more reliable than other books such as the Koran. To them, just saying the Bible says so is a useless argument. I agreed with them and then said, “but if I could prove Jesus is Lord then that would be different.” They agreed. I then pointed to the guy and said, “you have back problems, and so if I can heal that problem in Jesus’ name and all the pain left, then that would prove Jesus is who the Bible said He was”. They both agreed. I then commanded his back to be healed; he said he felt movement in his back and immediately all the pain left.
The interesting thing is that both said they had prayed the salvation prayer at one time in their life. Someone had convinced them earlier in their lives that Jesus was Lord, but neither had ever personally encountered the Living God. Without this encounter, the decision to say the prayer is based on an intellectual argument, one that leads an individual to question the reality of their beliefs when confronted with another seemingly viable argument. But that day Jesus became real to them, no longer just a theological debate. That moment He became their living savior.