DREAM OF UNPRECEDENTED FAVOR + THE RAMAPOUGH TRIBE 3/5
In a dream last night, God spoke to me about a wave of unprecedented favor being released over his people. In the dream, the Lord came up behind my shoulder and spoke to me as He did to Moses and said, I’m going to show you myself and the manifestation of my favor. As I turned around, expecting to glimpse God, He was no longer there. Confused, I waited. Suddenly, I saw an aircraft. As the aircraft passed by, a latch in the bottom of the aircraft opened, and I watched as God’s blessings poured out of the aircraft. God said, “this is my favor. I’m ready to release it.”
This is the scripture that came to me in the dream:
“I will bless my people and their homes around my holy hill. And in the proper season I will send the showers they need. There will be showers of blessing.” Ezekiel 34:26
God sets His people apart by displaying His favor for them; it is the way that He marks a person or people. In Exodus 33:16-17, Moses asks God to display His favor and go with them. He asks, “How will How else will we be distinguished from all the other people on the face of the earth?” In other words, how do I know that we are special to you, that we are set apart? God replies to Moses, “This very thing that you have spoken I will do, for you have found favor in my sight, and I know you by name.”
Basically, Moses had earned favor with God. He knew Moses by name; they had relationship. They had mutual trust. Favor can open doors that no man can open! Favor with God can do things for you that no amount of influence, money, social status, or special skills can do for you. God’s favor will shut the mouth of every enemy! Favor with God will take you all the way into your promise!
I decree a season of unprecedented favor over you; let every demonic hindrance be shattered by the word of the Lord and every held back blessing be released in the name of Jesus! Let the blessings of God rain down; release your showers of blessing over your body!
FAVOR FOR THE RAMAPOUGH
In this same dream, the Lord spoke to me about a tribe of Native Americans in New Jersey. Specifically, the name Ramapough was spoken. In the dream I asked, “What or who is Ramapough?” And the voice responded, “They are a tribe of Native Americans in New Jersey.” I had not heard of this tribe before. I believe that there is a connection between favor and this tribe.
This is what the spirit of the Lord would say to this tribe:
God will release His favor on the Ramapough (Lenape) people - there will be physical demonstrations of favor for this people: favor with man, and favor with government. There is a gift that he is extending to this tribe: recognition with government and restoration of years of tension, disappointment, and struggle. He will exchange your tears of mourning for tears of joy. Fruitfulness and increase will be poured out over the land. You will receive the petitions you have brought forth, which have been rejected for decades; justice will be released for you and your lineage will be villified, and the future of your people will be secured. God would say to you: “Watch and see what I will do for you!” The love of God will be displayed on behalf of this people and will enact healing for the tribe.
It’s interesting that the Lord gave me the scripture on the earlier portion of the dream (Ezekiel 34:26) because many of the Ramapough people originally come from and reside near the Ramapo mountain in New Jersey. I believe the Lord is saying that He will bless this tribe, their homes, and their mountain! He will release His showers of blessing!
In addition to this outpouring of blessings, there will be an invitation to this tribe to encounter the love of God and a beckoning to ascend the mountain of the Lord. The fire of the Holy Spirit will be made manifest to this nation! I decree a release of favor and blessing upon this tribe, that God would manifest His justice, and encounter them with His fiery love!
God has chosen this people as a sign and a wonder! He desires to uplift the Lenape people; to consume them with the fire of His love.
Brothers and sisters, pray this word through with me! Declare with me that the Ramapough tribe would be officially recognized by our nation’s government as a first nations tribe!
"What is my purpose?"
This is a question that we find ourselves asking often! Believers and unbelievers alike ask themselves this question: What is my God-given purpose? That's because each one of us is looking for our reason for existing. There is a desire within all of us, a longing, a need, not to to discover "a" purpose, but "our" purpose! We were hard-wired with that desire when we were created by God! We all want to believe that God has specifically designed us for a reason, for a mission that only we can accomplish!
Identity = Purpose
"Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you, And before you were born, I consecrated you; I have appointed you a prophet to the nations." Jeremiah 1:5
Before you were even born, before you had any physical substance at all, God knew you! He knew you because you were a thought of God's; He knew you because He created you! Because our spirits were formed out of a thought of God, created out of His spirit, we are hard-wired to react to Him! Your spirit, your traits, your attributes, and your purpose were set forth by God in the beginning. Not only that, but you were created and formed in the image of God!
"For I know the plans that I have or you," declares the Lord, "plans for welfare and not for calamity, to give you a future and a hope." Jeremiah 29:11
God has good plans for your life, not plans for tragedy, hopelessness, fear, or hurt! God has plans to prosper you, to accelerate you, to give you peace and happiness, to guide you into fulfillment and wholeness! When we discover who we are in Christ, we begin to find our purpose and design, our fulfillment. Not only were you created by God, but you were created for a purpose; there is a reason for your existence! That reason is to encounter the love of God; to worship Him, to fellowship with Him... and to administrate His specific design for your life here on earth.
"The nations will see your righteousness, And all kings your glory; And you will be called by a new name Which the mouth of the LORD will designate."
Many times in the Bible, God would re-name someone in accordance with their purpose. When we aren't walking in the fulness of our identity and calling, God wants to rename us to remind us who we truly are, to launch us into a new season! God renamed Abraham and Sarah. He renamed Simon and called him Peter! He wanted Peter to know what he was truly called to do: to build the church, to be a solid rock! Jesus was saying: "Peter, you are a pillar of strength! You are going to be a father to many! You aren't unwavering, you aren't weak; you are stronger than you think!" Jesus gave him that word to sustain him in the future.
You Have a Scroll - Your Destiny is Written in Heaven!
I've heard the term "history maker" used quite often. Many of us desire to leave a legacy on earth, to make history here on earth. But in reality, we are history makers in heaven! Every action, every word we speak, every accomplishment and deed is written in heaven. Not only that, but our destiny is recorded on a scroll in heaven - before we ever accomplish what we were sent here for!
"You have seen my unformed substance, and in your book (scroll) were all written the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them. How precious are your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them!" Psalm 139: 16-17
Think about that - God has a scroll of your life, in which all your days were ordained with intent, with an objective! God thinks about your life with care, with precision, and with hopefulness! God is love, and scripture says, "Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things." (1 Corinthians 13:7) God is hopeful for you and for your future! When it really dawns on us how loving God is, and how much he has planned for us, that is when we really begin to believe those things about ourselves! When we understand God's love and plan, we break through into our purpose with full force, confident in the support God's spirit gives us!
For Such a Time as This
I've heard people say, "I should have been born in this time period, or this decade." But did you know that God designed you for this very hour? You were chemically engineered and designed for a purpose in this era that only you can execute! Every day of your life has purpose - God is setting up divine appointments, kairos moments, and timely opportunities for you in each season of your life! The question is: Are we in tune with His spirit, so that we can recognize and discern those times and appointments?
"But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness..." 2 Peter 3: 8-9a
Some may feel as if they have missed their purpose. Maybe you even feel as if there are years that have been wasted, or dreams that have gone unfulfilled and are unable to be retrieved. What I love about God is that he loves to supernaturally restore years, dreams, health, and time! To God, a thousand years is as a day! I've seen God supernaturally heal years worth of pain, in mere moments! There is no essence of time in heaven, not the kind of time we have here on earth!
"I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten..." Joel 2:25
God can and will restore all the lost years that the enemy tried to vanquish you! He tried to annihilate you (the enemy comes to kill, steal, and destroy) - but he could not stop you! God's spirit gives life - he can restore the purpose that you feel that you missed! Today is the day of salvation - and today is the day of destiny for you!
What do you see written on your destiny scroll? Have some of those things already been fulfilled? And what things still have yet to be accomplished?
"Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have laid hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize of God’s heavenly calling in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:13-14
Make these decrees with me:
We are living in an hour where we have seen so many great and mighty men and women of power go home to be with the Lord. That has left us with a great need in the body of Christ and for a lost and dying world! I believe with all my heart that the Lord is raising up a new generation to raise the banner of the gospel high, to draw in a great harvest! There has been much said about a new breed and a new move of God! I wanted to share some prophetic insight on what this emerging new breed will look like and this next move of God that we are entering into.
Many of the revivalists of the first and second great awakenings were circuit riders, such as John Wesley, George Whitfield, Charles Finney, etc. The Lord has been speaking to me about the coming circuit riders; the Lord told me that he is raising up prophets of Glory, those that would move in kingdom power and authority. They will be those that not only move out of gifting, but those that would minister out of the manifest glory of God! The desire of this generation is to be mantled with the very presence and glory of God as Enoch was! What we are seeing is a merging of generations just like Joshua and Caleb, those that will come together to take territory for the kingdom of God! God is building a new wineskin through the older and younger; these generations are coming together in unity to see His kingdom come and His will be done!
This company of prophets, these circus riders that the lord is equipping in this hour, will be those that God uses to birth a movement and release something fresh and something new!
"Don't Miss the Wave"
I truly feel that we are on the verge of seeing a fresh wind from heaven! It almost reminds me of how a surfer catches a wave; they are observing, anticipating the right wave, ready to take off! I want to compare this next move to a mighty wave. It will be great and it will be mighty! Every wave that God releases is different and unique. Even as every generation has their own move or wave! If we are looking for the same wave to come, we will not be prepared nor ready for what is released and like a wave, in just moments, it can pass us by! Am I saying to wait for revival or awakening to come before we act? Absolutely not. Our mandate remains the same: to enforce God's kingdom on the earth and see transformation! Our focus remains on the harvest and the purpose of the great commission. Yet, there are times of refreshing that come from the presence of the Lord (Acts 3:20).
There are revivals and movements of the Spirit that God breathes on, even for just a season, to revive and awaken us for the purpose of harvest! Many years ago, I released a word on the Elijah List about a great awakening in America, where I saw stadiums filled with thousands of people! There was a great corporate anointing, and signs, wonders and miracles happened out of the atmosphere! God will use many in this next move; it will not just be one man or one woman, but God will use many. I feel in this hour that God is preparing these circuit riders to be used by His Glory! I want to compare these coming prophets to Moses, Elijah and Elisha they where high-ranking prophets. They will bring restoration to the utterance gifts, power gifts and the Lord's manifest presence in greater measure than we have seen even in past moves! God is looking and recruiting this next breed for a great awakening to take place in America just as the first and second great awakening! God is sending forth those who will have an ear to the ground, those that learn to hear His voice in secret and declare what they hear publicly with great power! Those whose voices have been found in the cave, not on the platform! Those who not only know how to minister upon platforms, but know how to minister to the Lord! Our prayer should be, "Lord raise us up, and prepare us for the harvest!"
God is always moving in a new way. He is always working a new miracle, because each generation is different and each day brings new hope and a fresh blueprint for destiny. Because each year brings new challenges for human-kind, the world needs a fresh touch, a fresh wind, a fresh move of the spirit of God.
The kingdom of God is linear, not circular. This means that God’s kingdom is always advancing forward, building on, but not returning to past experiences or formulas. God’s kingdom doesn’t operate in circular patterns, but moves forward in newness and freshness, as the glory of God saturates the earth more and more.
The Lord has been speaking to me about vision in the last month, and today he showed me that not only is it important to have vision, but to have “present vision,” meaning, to always be looking for God to move in a fresh way, to always be plumbing the depths of God’s nature and personality. Our vision should always be expanding as we establish the King’s territory more and more. If we are still locked into the patterns God led us with in the past, are we still moving with the wind of his spirit?
"Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.”
Ask God to deliver you into the newness of his plans for this hour - let his spirit refresh your course and purpose.
In John chapter 5, a crippled man was laid at the pool of Bethesda for nearly forty years. He was waiting to be able to access the pool, where an angel would stir the water and bring healing to the first who stepped into its pool.
When Jesus asked him, “Do you want to be made well?” The man simply complained that nobody was there to help him into the pool. Even though the son of God stood before him, the healer of the nations, ready to help and encounter him, the man was merely focused on the way that God had moved in the past. He still expected the angel to stir the waters, not realizing that God was right in front of him, ready to release a greater blessing upon him, a new blessing!
Ask the Lord to reveal to you his plans; ask him to enlarge your vision, to show you the new way that he is moving among his people. God will always show you, because he reveals his secrets and sacred things to his friends (John 15:15). As God to reveal to you “present vision,” the ever-changing blueprint and pattern of the kingdom.
I was in prayer recently and I slipped into a vision. The Lord showed me in this vision a heart inside of a body. I instantly knew the Lord was showing me the heart of the body of Christ. As I looked at the heart I saw something wrong. There was a dark root in the heart, and the Lord reminded me of a scripture in Hebrews.
"See, to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled" (Hebrews 12:15 NASB).
The Lord spoke to me and said, "My love is the antidote for the root of bitterness."
God is releasing his love to wash away hurt, frustration, and bitterness in this season! The enemy has tried to rob your joy, peace, and love. We must remind ourselves to walk in love and forgiveness; this will enable us to overcome and be the greatest example of Christ to the world!
"Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life" Proverbs 4:23 (AVS).
This verse has been continually stirring in my spirit! It so important that we walk in wisdom and guard our hearts. What we allow to take root in our hearts will effect others whom we interact with, whether for good or for bad. It iss wisdom to watch over our hearts; one translation of the Bible says guard. When we fail to guard our hearts, we are vulnerable to the attaches of the enemy. We let down our guard and he then shoots fiery darts, and we can then easily become wounded.
I want to encourage you: no matter what darts the enemy has shot at you, allow the love of God to wash over and heal your heart! I truly feel the enemy wants to shut down the prophetic voice; he has tried to stop the flow of glory, as the glory flows from the inner man, which is the heart! Yet, the enemy cannot stop what God has ordained! Let the rivers of peace and joy flow in your life! God has a call and a destiny that he wants you to step fully into. This is your hour and your time! God is gathering the Davids in from the field and calling forth the Esthers, to release a new sound! A fresh sound! I feel that there are many that God wants to heal and refresh in the heart in this hour! I sense a fresh anointing pouring forth of the revelation of the love of the Father. God will raise up prophetic voices that not only release the demonstration to heal the sick, but also those that carry the very heart of their father to heal the broken-hearted! They will not deliver a message, but will minister from the heart, the river of God's love!
I want to release a word of encouragement to you: Don't allow the wounds of this past season to flow into the next season. God is releasing the balm of Gilead to heal the wounded soul! No matter what has come against you in this past season, God is saying, "I will remove it, this feeling of hurt. I will replace it with my love and a new joy will come to you!"
The psalmist declared, "Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy cometh in the morning (Psalms 30:5 ASV). Get ready for a new joy to spring up in your heart! I pray that you would be overshadowed and filled by God's love!
"That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, to the end that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be strong to apprehend with all saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge, that he may be filled unto all the fullness of God" ( Ephesians 3:17-19 AVS).
When we experience the love of God, it is an experiential knowledge that passes our understanding. We literally experience tangibly, the fire of God's love! My prayer is that God would release a fresh baptism of the love of God upon the church! As I have sought the Lord over this vision, I believe the Lord has given me some insight. Let's remind ourselves that Jesus loves the Bride! Jesus loves the Bride just as I love my bride and my bride loves me. Just as marriage is a spiritual covenant that a man and a woman enter into, it is a covenant that we have entered into with Christ. The Bride and Christ are one!
"For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is great but I speak in regard of Christ and of the church" (Ephesians 5:31-32 ASV).
There is a revelation that we find in marriage, as Paul compares a man and woman's union together as the bride and Christ entering into a covenant! The bride and Christ are one, just as a man and woman become one! We are just as much the body of Christ as we are the bride. Returning back to the foundation of love, how we minister to the Bride matters to the Lord. We should minister out of love and patience towards not only the Bride, but also the Word! If we are not careful, our impatience will become frustration, which can lead us to bitterness. Let's remind ourselves that love is our greatest strength! That is not to say that there are not imperfections in the Bride. Yet, the fruit of the spirit is love.
"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify it, having cleansed it by the washing of the water of the word, that he might present the church to himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish" (Ephesians 5:28 ASV).
As we minister the truth of the Word out of Love and patience, we will see the fruits of maturity bloom and increase in the Bride of Christ, as she grows in her identity more and more!
The Coming Harvest Glory
The Lord reminded me of His patience and how patience is a fruit of the Spirit. "Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and has long patience for it, until he receive the early and later rain" (James 5:7 KJV).
The fruit of the earth is symbolic of lost souls, this is why the Bible calls us "first fruits." The Lord is patient for the precious fruit, the lost, the harvest. Nothing is more precious to the Father than the lost coming into the kingdom, even the lost prodigals coming home and embracing Him! The word of God declares that God will cause it to rain upon the just and the unjust (Matthew 5:45). God releases His showers, His glory, for the purpose of harvest! God, in this hour, is releasing prophetic mantles for those that will carry His harvest glory! They will be those that open their mouths and release the sound of heaven.. Get ready for the sound of God's love that draws the harvest!
Friends, let this be the year that you step in your divine turnaround! Let this be the year that the enemy regrets ever messing with you! I believe this year, God will turn your setback into a divine set up! Where the enemy tried to bring destruction, God will repair and and bring restoration!
"We know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose" ( Romans 8:28 KJV). The word of God promises us that what the enemy has meant for harm, God can turn it around for good. God will bring restoration to you and your household! Remember my friends, God is in the restoration business! God can restore us physically, emotionally, and financially! I pray that restoration would come to your household this year, in Jesus' mighty name!
"When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him" (Isaiah 59:19). God has a standard that he lifts up, and it's His word! The word of God contain His precious promises! This is the standard that God has raised! His word is a strong foundation that protects us, and enables us to stand during every storm of life!
Taking Your Mountain and Possessing Your Promise
We all have a promise connected with our destiny, and we all have obstacles in our way, or mountains. Many times, I've found that the strongest resistance comes when God is setting me up for my biggest breakthrough. It's time to speak to your mountains, and posses your God-given promise!
"Whosoever shall say unto this mountain, be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith" (Mark 11:23 KJV).
Whatever mountain that is in your way, I want to encourage you to speak to it, commanding it to be uprooted and removed from interfering with your destiny! You can see mountains of impossibility move through the power of your words! I want to encourage you, no matter what you have been through this year, no matter what the enemy has thrown at you... God has a way to turn it around! Put your trust in a trustworthy God! I declare that every hindrance be removed from you and that you would enter fully into God's promises over your life, in Jesus' name!
I feel that many have experienced an onslaught of discouragement in this season. I wanted to give you some keys that the Lord has given me for overcoming whatever disappointment you may be facing.
1) Shake off Distractions
It's the enemy's plan to disarm you with distractions, in order to to shut down your motivation, in order to keep you from moving forward with the vision that God has placed in your heart. It may seem in the natural that you are not moving forward to the promise that he has spoken over your life, but God is working on your behalf to make a way for your destiny and your individual purpose!
2) Allow God's Word to Saturate your Heart!
As we read God's word, it encourages and strengthens our spirits. When you are full of God's word, you have the strength necessary to move on and accomplish what the Father has called us to accomplish. Jesus said, "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes out of the mouth of God" (Matthew 4:4 AMP).
3) Build Yourself Up Through Prayer!
"Ye, beloved building up yourselves on your most holy faith praying in the Holy Ghost" (Jude 1:20). When we praying in the Spirit, we edify ourselves and build up our spirit with power and supernatural energy. We become encouraged to continue to run the race for God! We can then run toward the vision!
4) Put on the Garment of Praise that Releases Breakthrough!
The word of God promises us "beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness" (Isaiah 63:1). As we lift up praise to the Lord in the midst of everything going on around us, we are then putting on the garment of praise, which breaks the spirit of heaviness! We become clothed in the glory of God, clothed in light and power! There is something so powerful about offering up to the Lord the sacrifice of praise (Hebrews 13:15).Sometimes praise can be a joy to do and other times it is a sacrifice, because we don't feel like praising. Yet, praise is what causes the glory to cover us and manifest around us, no matter what we are faced with in the natural! I want to encourage you today to never give up and to run toward your call and the vision that he has placed in your heart!
There is much confusion surrounding the ministry of John the Baptist. This is not to say that we shouldn't live a lifestyle of turning away from sin, but our goal should not be to model our ministries after old covenant prophets. Our goal should always be to bring out the victory we have received because of the cross. That being said, John wasn't a baptist nor was Jesus a Pentecostal. Let's take a look at the holy scriptures and learn about the importance of this great prophet and his ministry.
Who was John? According to scripture, John was the son of Zechariah. The angel said, "Fear not, Zechariah; for thy prayer is heard and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John" (Luke1:13). The angel then told Zechariah about John's ministry: "And he shall go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord" (Luke 1:17). Before Christ came, John was sent to prepare the way. He was a prophet with a timely message for his generation.
Malachi prophesied about John the Baptist: "Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord; and he shall turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers" (Malachi 4:6). John was the fulfillment of this prophecy. He was to be a voice in the wilderness, preparing the way for Christ to come. It would be accurate to say that his message was for that specific time and season. "As it is written in the Prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee. The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare the way of the Lord, make His paths straight" (Malachi 1:1-3).
Jesus recognized John as the messenger, the voice sent before Him. "And His disciples asked Him, saying, why then say the scribes that Elijah must come? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elijah truly shall come and restore all things. But I say unto you, that Elijah is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed (wanted). Likewise shall the Son of man suffer of them. Then the disciples understood that He spake unto them of John the Baptist" (Matthew17:11-13).
Jesus recognized John as the fulfillment of this prophecy spoken by Malachi. When John saw Jesus, he said, "Behold the lamb of God, which taketh away the sins of the world" (John 1:29). John saw Jesus and instantly knew that he was the messiah. Jesus was the very one that John had prophesied about. Once John discovered Jesus as the messiah, he then said "He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30). John wasn't talking about himself, or his personal walk with God. I have often heard this scripture taken out of context. John was talking about his ministry; John's followers were now to follow Christ. John's ministry was to decrease more and more, as Jesus' ministry was to increase.
Even though John was a prophet in the New Testament, he was not under the new covenant, because the new covenant had not yet been established. The New Testament does not necessarily mean "new covenant." There was a transitioning happening from the old to the new. John is not a prophet that we should model after, nor is his ministry continuing today. He was a prophet of the old covenant, with the unique purpose of preaching repentance, to prepare the way for the messiah. Now, the transition has already taking place, through the cross and blood of Christ, from old to new. John was, however, a voice, helping to prepare the way for Christ to come and establish a better covenant.
Listen to what Jesus spoke about John. "Verily I say unto you, amount them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist; notwithstanding he that is lest in the kingdom is greater than he" (Matthew 11:11). Jesus spoke this about John as John was in prison awaiting his execution. Its clear to see that Jesus had great respect for John, and much compassion for him. He was giving honor to John for his ministry and sacrifice. Jesus said that John was a prophet and even more than a prophet (Matthew 11:9). Jesus was saying that John was the greatest born among women. Why? Because he was the greatest of Old Testament Prophets, the only prophet to prophesy about Christ's coming and to live to see the fulfillment of what he prophesied. Yet, The least in the kingdom is greater than John? John did not have Christ within him, and any believer that has Christ abiding in him is greater than John. Why are we greater than John? Because we have a better covenant with better promises (Hebrews 8:6). "For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if you will receive it, this is Elijah, which was for to come" (Matthew 11:12-14). It is clear for us to see that Jesus was talking about John as the one that would come in the spirit and power of Elijah. It is important for us to know that John was an old covenant prophet. John's ministry has been fulfilled is and is no longer continuing today. Jesus came with a greater baptism than John. We have a greater covenant and a greater glory than Moses and Elijah, and even John! (2 Corinthians 3:7-11). We have entered into a new dispensation! The Bible says that the prophet's prophesied about a great grace that would come, and longed for it to come! (1 Peter 1:11). My friends, we have it so much better on this side of the cross!
In His Love,
Freedom from the Law
"As sure as you are in the law, you are in judgement, and judge everybody. Law is always judgement, and no one is right except those people who are keeping the law.They are full of judgement. But we have passed from death, from judgement, from criticism, from harshness, and from hardness of heart.''
- Smith Wigglesworth -
"Stand fast therefore in the liberty where with Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage" (Galatians 5:1).
If you read what Paul is saying in context, you will find that Paul wasn't talking about sin as bondage, but the law as bondage. That's right; the law is bondage. Now we know that sin is bondage, but so is the law. That's why Jesus made a way for us to be free from both. Why, after we have converted to Christ, do we still feel that we must practice the Law? If you really take the time to study out the book of Galatians, you will find that Paul was combatting a spirit of legalism within the church of Galatia. Those that taught the law taught that it wasn't enough for them to receive Christ by faith. According to Paul, the church was doing well before this happened.
"You did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth" (Galatians 5:7).
What is legalism? It is a mindset that says, I am righteous because of what I have done. It is a false humility that stems from pride and self-righteousness. God will never be pleased with it. It is a spirit that brings a mindset upon people that isn't composed of simple faith. The simplest way to define legalism is this: unbelief. What makes the gospel so amazing is that none of us deserved it and couldn't do enough to earn it, but Jesus gave it to us freely.
"Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees" (Matthew 16:6).
What is the leaven of the Pharisees? It's unbelief. Jesus was warning his disciples not to be subject to their mindset. The Pharisees saw many of the miracles, signs, and wonders that Jesus performed, but never came to the conclusion that he was the Messiah. They couldn't enter into faith because of their unbelief. This is what polluted the church in Galatia.
What was the purpose of the Law?
Paul said that the Law was good (Romans 7:12). Why is the Law good? The law came to point the way to Christ .
"Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith" ( Galatians 3:24 NASB.)
The Law was given to expose a sinful nature in man, and reveal to man a need for a savior. The Law was entirely based upon man's performance to try to be righteous and holy through works. Yet, man cannot do it. The New Covenant is based upon our faith in what Christ accomplished on our behalf. "...not by works lest any man should boast" (Ephesians 2:9) By grace, through faith, we receive it.
"Therefore being justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord jesus Christ" (Romans 5:1).
Though it is clear that righteousness can only be received by faith alone, this legalistic mindset that we must work our way into righteousness is still at work in the church today. Somehow we have bought into the lie that we need to mix our salvation with law.
"Christ is the end of the Law" (Romans 10:4).
Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice for your sin and mine. All your self-effort and sacrifice to become holy could never measure up to the price that Christ paid. Righteousness is a free gift that we have the privilege of accepting by faith. When we repent and come to Christ, we are made free from the works of the Law, free from it's bondage.
"My righteousness is just as good as Jesus' righteousness, because it is Jesus' righteousness." - E.W. Kenyon
I love this quote by E.W. Kenyon because it is so true; we are partakers of Christ righteousness. This is how the father sees us: justified before him, or just as if we have never sinned. The Bible says that, "He hath made him to be sin for us who knew know sin that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him" (2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV).
Isaiah said our righteousness is as filthy rages. Yes, if you are claiming your righteousness based on what you have done, then it's self-righteousness that equals nothing. But we are not claiming our own righteousness, we are claiming Christ's righteousness.
Walking in Righteousness
Am I saying that since we are saved, we should live however we want to live? Absolutely not. Am I saying that the Lord won't ask you to repent of certain things? Absolutely, he will. Yet, the answer isn't following after the law. The answer isn't, let's live however we want, because there is an abundance of grace. The answer is in the cross. Peter said that we are ''partakers of the divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4). The moment that you received Christ, he placed his word on the inside of you, his nature, his power. His nature inside of you empowers you to overcome this world, it empowers you to walk without sin, to resist every temptation. God expects the believer to develop faith in the righteousness that has freely been given, so that you and I can walk in righteousness.
The Ministry of Death and Condemnation
"For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory. for even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excelleth. For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious" (2 Corinthians 3:9-11KJV).
The Law was a ministry of death and condemnation. Its glory was to be done away with. The New Covenant is a ministry that is more glorious, because it is a ministry of righteousness. It is a ministry of mercy, rather than judgement.
Read this quote below by church father and general, Smith Wigglesworth,
"The Lord has brought in a new covenant, putting his law in our minds and writing it in our hearts (Jeremiah 31:33) - this new law of the spirit of life. As the holy spirit comes in, he fills us with love and liberty, and we shout for joy, "Done away! Done away!"
There is a new cry in our hearts: 'I delight to do your will, O my God'" (Psalms 40:8).
"He takes away the first that he may establish the second" (Hebrews 10:9).
In other words, he takes away "the ministry of death, written and engraved on stones" (2 Corinthians 3:7), so that he may establish "the ministry of righteousness." You ask, does a man who is filled with the Spirit cease to keep the commandments? I simply repeat what the Spirit of God has told us here, that this "ministry of death, written and engraved on stones" (and you know that the ten commandments were written in stones) is "done away (with)" (v.11 KJV). However, the man who becomes a living epistle of Christ, written by the Spirit of the living God, has ceased to be an adulterer, or a murder, or a covetous man: the will of God is his delight. I love to do the will of God; there is no irksomeness to it. It is no trial to pray, no trouble to read the Word of God."
- Smith Wigglesworth -
"This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more" (Hebrews 10:17 KJV).
The Old Testament law is not what is written upon the believer's heart. It is a new nature!
"Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered to by us, written not with ink, but the Spirit of the living God; not in tablets of stone, but in fleshly tablets of the heart" (2 Corinthians 3:3 KJV).
Christ is the word of God; he moved inside of you and brought his nature with him.
"Therefore seeing we have received this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not; but have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God" (2 Corinthians 4:1 KJV).
Paul is talking here about how we are ministers of the new covenant, not of the old covenant. The old covenant is the "letter that kills." The law was a letter that was impossible to perform; it brought judgement and condemnation. The new covenant is "the spirit that gives life." We are ministers of the new covenant, which is a ministry of the spirit which brings life. I have often heard people say, you cannot have too much word because it kills. No, the word of God imparts life and power to you. The word of God is not a letter that kills! Jesus said, "the words I speak unto you, they are spirit and life" (John 6:63 KJV).
"God want you in a new order. It is "the law of the Spirit" (Romans 8:2). It is a law of life. It is not a law of death and bondage."
- Smith Wigglesworth
I want to share this dream, because I believe that it speaks to so many of us in this particular time. I truly feel that this is a fresh word this season for many of you! I pray that this encourages you and imparts strength to you in this season! I had a dream that I was walking in Eden. I knew that it was Eden because of how peaceful it felt, filled with the glory of God. I wasn't in heaven, but it was heaven on earth. It was in this place that I felt no warfare, no distractions. I felt only rest. Then I saw others that where coming to this place to receive refreshing and strength to endure, because it was in this place that you could abide in the peace that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7).
This was a place where you could rest because you were focused upon the glory of God and not upon the demonic realm. It is the enemy's strategy for us to get our minds focused on him and off of the Lord's presence. When we do this, we lose our peace and we are then overwhelmed in our minds with the problems and circumstances that we are currently facing.
"Set your affection (mind) on things above not on things on the earth" (Col 3:2)
Paul was telling us to set our minds upon the Lord and to constantly remind yourself that you are seated in heaven above the enemy, above every demonic harassment (Eph 2:5-6; Col 3:3). Paul also taught the church that what we think upon is very important. "Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any praise, think on these things" (Phil 4:8). We know that the enemy is a defeated foe. We know that he was stripped of all power at the cross (Col 2:15). It is always a wrong mindset to think we must fight the enemy to get victory. We truly have the victory because Jesus supplied it at Calvary.
I have never found it to be helpful when Christians over-emphasize on warfare or focus on power of the devil. Are there times when we must take authority over things and speak to trespassing spirits, absolutely, yet it's an unbiblical mindset to overly focus on the enemy and the demonic realm. It places our minds on the enemy and not upon Christ's victory. This is what Paul so often addressed, teaching us that the battle is in the mind. I want to encourage you to renew your mind to God's word, begin to thank the Lord for what he's doing in your life! Begin to praise the Lord and worship the Lord! As I was in this place, which I believed to be Eden, such peace and glory surrounded me. Then I saw a flowing river. I stopped to gaze upon this beautiful river and the Lord spoke to me in the dream, giving me the scripture Isaiah 43:19. I awoke from the dream and looked up the scripture. This was not a portion of scripture that I knew by heart or was overly familiar with, but as I read it, a new strength came to me.
"Behold, I do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert" (Isaiah 43:19).
I believe that God is releasing something fresh upon us as we take Him at His word above everything else! Where there has been no provision in the past, there will be provision! Where there has been lack, God will bring abundance! It is His refreshing river coming to strengthen you, revive you, and refresh you! If God can release a river in a dry wilderness, then he can provide for your needs, no matter how impossible they may seem! Now it shall spring forth!