The King and His Kingdom – Part Six A


Our Role in His Kingdom.

The King and His Kingdom Video

Session 6a

In previous sessions we’ve looked at the Kingdom of God and how it is that as we obey God’s principles, (or His Government), we are blessed by Him (Psa.1:1-4). We also saw that as we drift out of His principles in our day, God is not able to bless us – this is because His Government is indisputable, irreversible, and final. We see in the books of Zechariah and Daniel, that His government, or another expression for His word or law, is beyond debate or question, whether we agree with it or not! (Zech.14:9; Daniel 2:44).

God desires to bless you and me on a daily basis, but if we don’t adhere to His principles, His own government prevents Him from doing so. If He were to bless someone who is acting outside of His Government, then He would be obliged to even bless the accuser of the believers, the devil – a situation He cannot have!

If God’s principles are close to our hearts, then we will be more aware of them during the course of our day. In this session, we are going to look at some of His principles that can apply specifically to our behavior in the workplace.

Please remember, there are many more principles in His word than what we are looking at in this session. Let’s try and prayerfully sit with the Lord on a regular basis, asking Him to reveal more principles to us, so that we become more aware and more blessed.

Eph 6:5  Slaves, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in the sincerity of your heart, as to Christ;

How obedient are we to those in authority over us? Do we carry out our tasks with a sincere heart, as if we were doing the work for the Lord?

Eph 6:6  not by way of eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart.

Eph 6:7  With good will render service, as to the Lord, and not to men,

We should be working as though we are working for the Lord – not trying to please mankind but to please the Lord.

Eph 6:8  knowing that whatever good thing each one does, this he will receive back from the Lord, whether slave or free.

As we work diligently as if for the Lord, His promise is that we will receive blessing back from Him.

1Ti 6:1  All who are under the yoke as slaves are to regard their own masters as worthy of all honor so that the name of God and our doctrine will not be spoken against.

Are we able to treat those in authority over us with honor? This, so that the name of the Lord is not scoffed at.

1Ti 6:2  Those who have believers as their masters must not be disrespectful to them because they are brethren but must serve them all the more because those who partake of the benefit are believers and beloved. Teach and preach these principles.

Are we blessed to have an authority figure over us who believes in the Lord? The scripture says they are brothers or sisters in the Lord and therefore we should serve them. We should encourage this behavior in our workplace – not criticize it.

1Pe 2:18  Servants, you must obey your masters and always show respect to them. Do this, not only to those who are kind and thoughtful but also to those who are cruel.

It can be very easy to show respect to those who treat us well, but the scripture says we also need to show respect to those who are not kind to us as well.

1Pe 2:19  God will bless you, even if others treat you unfairly for being loyal to him.

As we respect others in the workplace we adhere to this Godly principle and therefore the Lord will bless us.

1Pe 2:20  You don’t gain anything by being punished for some wrong you have done. But God will bless you if you have to suffer for doing something good.

Have we been wrongfully accused of doing something – God says He will bless us if we are persecuted for wrongs we did not do.

1Pe 2:21  After all, God chose you to suffer as you follow in the footsteps of Christ, who set an example by suffering for you.

The Lord allows situations of suffering to come to us in order that we will change. If we had perfect lives – there would be no need for us to know or seek God.

1Pe 2:22 Christ did not sin or ever tell a lie.

Have a time of reflection about our day today. How many times did we lie or be deceitful? In our old sinful nature, we will continue to be deceitful but in our new Christ-like nature, His character will flow through us.

1Pe 2:23  Although he was abused, he never tried to get even. And when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he had faith in God, who judges fairly.

We need to trust in God more throughout our day. If wrongs have been done to us, God knows about it and it is His place to judge and bring vengeance – not ours.

In this last section let’s read out some scripture together as we did previously in part 2a. At the end of the section, pause and discuss for 10min what you have read together.

However, VERY IMPORTANTLY – please note here:

We have put in brackets some words in the following scriptures for the purpose of highlighting them for employees and employers. We are not trying to change God’s word.

EMPLOYERS

Col 4:1  Masters, (EMPLOYERS) grant to your slaves (EMPLOYEES) justice and fairness, knowing that you too have a Master in heaven.

Eph 6:9  And masters (EMPLOYERS), do the same things to them, and give up threatening, knowing that both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no partiality with Him.

Col 3:25  For he who does wrong will receive the consequences of the wrong which he has done, and that without partiality.

1Pe 3:7  You husbands (EMPLOYERS) in the same way live with your wives (EMPLOYEES) in an understanding way, as with someone weaker…….. and show her (THEM) honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.

1Pe 3:8  To sum up, all of you be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit;

1Pe 3:9  not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead; for you were called for the very purpose that you might inherit a blessing.

EMPLOYEES –

1Pe 3:1  In the same way, you wives (EMPLOYEES), be submissive to your own husbands (EMPLOYERS) so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives (EMPLOYEES),

1Pe 3:2  as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior.

1Pe 3:3  Your adornment must not be merely external–braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses;

1Pe 3:4  but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.

Remember – as we adhere to these principles daily, we will be blessed. I pray that the Lord has ministered some ‘pearls of wisdom in this session. These Godly principles for our daily lives are very difficult to adhere to if we try in our own strength. Let’s call on the Lord daily, to help us with the power of His Holy Spirit.

As we enter into the Kingdom of God here and now, we have acknowledged that our old sinful nature (the engine that drives us to sin), has died and been buried with Jesus. Let’s begin to walk in the new resurrected nature that God has given us.  This is the nature that is able to walk daily in God’s principles.

Please join me next week, for PART 7, where we will be looking at Christian businesses, to see how God would like them managed. Be blessed during this coming week – I look forward to being with you soon.

If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others. Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers. Often, when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’ Button.)

The King and His Kingdom – Part Four.


The King and His Kingdom Video

Session 4

Welcome to session 4 of the King and His Kingdom which we’ve entitled the Role of the Wife.

In the last session we said the following:

  1. Knowledge of God – Never before in history has there been such a need for examples of Godly marriages, as now. To truly understand what God expects from us in our marriages, we need to have a knowledge of His character.
  2. God’s Government (The Kingdom of God) – God’s government or His word or law, is beyond debate or question and is final and irreversible. It is a separate system under which God does that which pleases Him. God himself is powerless to reverse His own Government. Anyone who obeys the will of God (or His government) is blessed.   Anyone who does not walk according to His principles, will struggle through life, yet still, God’s infinite mercy provides us with ‘grace’ – the power to obey Him.
  3. Clearly defined area – The role of the Husband, like the role of the Wife and that of the church, is specific and VERY CLEARLY detailed in the word of God. If husbands have a heart’s desire to be the type of Husband God intends them to be, they will be blessed among all people. If they do not have this desire, they need to pray for it, because without it, they will struggle much in this life, and may even drag others into their situations.
  4. Suitable Partner – God decided that it was not good for man to be alone.  He needed a ‘helper’.  Someone to help him in his needs: spiritual, emotional and physical. To be an assistant to him and him alone. Not a slave, following behind him – or ahead of him in a position of authority. Husband and wife are inseparably linked by their spirits – a team working with, and for, each other.
  5. Understand your wife – To live with one’s wife in an understanding way is to accept by faith that which the scriptures say of her, praying for a Christ like attitude toward her and the way she has been created – the husband putting himself in her shoes.
  6. Honour and love your wife – To honour one’s Wife according to the scripture is to esteem her in the HIGHEST degree – to maintain her dignity. She is honoured because she is critically part of man and because she is a gift from God. Husbands should love their wives and not bear any unforgiveness (bitterness) towards them – neither for past or present circumstances. Husbands should be providers for their wife and family. This not only materially, but spiritually and emotionally. The wife’s role calls for sensitivity, but it can leave her vulnerable and therefore she needs understanding and protection, but NEVER is she inferior in terms of her ultimate reward of eternal life.
  7. God’s Line of Authority – According to God’s government, the husband is the spiritual authority of the wife.  He is to instruct her in the ways of the Lord, by word and by example. The scripture says that Husband and wife are one. The husband cannot fulfil his role as a Christian unless he is fulfilling his role as a husband. He has a very essential partner as assistant, spiritual, physical and emotional support, in his wife. Husband and wife should never be out of step in their roles, the stronger even carrying the weaker at different times.  The individual roles should never be taken over or changed.
  8. Our Role Models – Tragically today the family model is being poorly moulded. In some communities today ‘Fathers’ are scarcely even seen, never mind fulfilling their roles – sometimes having left home to find employment in other areas. The only lasting and workable solution for the marriage model is the word of God.  We as Christians need to take a firm stand in this last hour.  The best place to begin is in the family.  Husbands, as the spiritual authority, must be the initiators.
  9. Next Step… – The beginning for the husband is to go earnestly before God and pray for the desire to change, whatever the cost.  The effort of the husband to fulfil his role will amount to nothing, if it is not borne out of his relationship with God.  Only in this way will he be the type of husband God wants him to be.

In this week’s session, many of the principles applying to the role of the husband mentioned the last session will apply.

God designed marriage as the cornerstone of our society. So as mentioned, when we “go and make disciples” as instructed by Jesus in Matt 28 (Matt.28:19-20), if we are married, we need the testimony of a solid marriage because we can only disciple others to the level we ourselves are with God.

Never before in history has there been such a need for examples of Godly marriages, as now. Therefore – what does God expect from us in our marriages?

Until we have some knowledge of the character of God, it is difficult to understand what He expects of us.  Next, it is important to understand what He desires from us in the long term, eternally speaking, before we will be able to perform according to His will.

God’s Government (The Kingdom of God)

We shared before the fact that God is sovereign.  He is supreme and not accountable to anyone except Himself. We see in the books of Zech and Daniel that His government, another expression for His word or law, is beyond debate or question and is final and irreversible (Zech.14:9; Daniel 2:44). His Kingdom (or His government) is a separate system under which God does that which pleases Him. We see this in the scriptures of Plasms and 1 Timothy (Psa.135:6; 1. Tim.6:15).  God himself is powerless to reverse His own Government (Is.40:8). Pray for a revelation to understand this fact to gain meaningful change in our lives. 

Anyone who obeys God’s principles is blessed.   Anyone who does not walk according to His Government or principles will struggle through life (Psa.1:1-3).  God is powerless to help the one who wilfully disobeys Him (Heb.10:26), yet His infinite mercy provides us with ‘grace’ – the power to obey Him.

His government is precise and exacting and has far-reaching and often devastating consequences for those who will not follow in it.

Clearly defined area

The role of the Wife, like the role of the Husband and that of the church, is specific and VERY CLEARLY detailed in the word of God.  There are NO grey areas, no aspects of uncertainty.  If wives have a heart’s desire to be the type of Wife God intends them to be, they shall be blessed among all people.  If they do not have this desire, they need to pray for it because without it they will struggle much in this life.  Not only will they suffer, but they may drag others into their situations.

Both the role of the Husband and the role of the Wife, are Godly principles

(See Part 2—The King and His Kingdom)

Suitable Partner

We also saw previously that God decided that it was not good for man to be alone (Gen 2:18).  He needed a ‘helper’.  Someone to help him with his needs: spiritual, emotional, and physical. The animals were paraded before man and whilst he named them all, NONE WERE FOUND AS A SUITABLE HELP FOR HIM, as was a woman (Gen.2:19-20).

God put Adam to sleep and created a ‘helpmeet’ for him, from his own body … from a rib taken out of Adam.   The woman was “brought unto the man” and was given to him as his possession, and it was him that named her ‘woman’ (Gen.2:21-23).

She came from his rib, out of his side. This is symbolic that God intended her to always be at his side, to be an assistant to him and him alone.   Not a slave, following behind him – or ahead of him in a position of authority. Husband and Wife are inseparably linked by their spirits – a team working with, and for, each other. (Gen.2:24).

All of this is the government of God (God’s Kingdom) – Undisputable, irreversible, and final.

God’s Line of Authority

In 1.Cor.11, we are told that a woman is under a DIVINE authority order (1.Cor.11:3).  Her husband is her head, his head is Jesus, whose head is God. The scripture goes on to say that women were created for men, NOT the other way around (1.Cor.11:8-9).  However, as previously mentioned, this is not as a slave, but as a partner or assistant so that THEY together, can jointly achieve God’s divine purpose. Please take some time out in the next few days to prayerfully look at these scriptures (1.Cor.3:12; 1.Pet.3: 7; Mal.2: 15)

Wife’s Obedience

The wife is under the authority of her husband according to the book of Titus. Paul says this must be so, in order that the word of God is not dishonored (Titus 2:4-5).  As a wife, no earthly career should be above obeying her husband, loving him and their children, and caring for their home.  She can work to support the family’s needs, with her husband’s blessing, or perhaps to work with her husband, to support the work of the Lord. Please find time in the next few days to read the following scriptures to support this statement (Prov.31:10-31) ( Acts 16: 14-15, 40; Acts 18:2-4).

Submission – A Great Blessing

Submission, which is the role of the wife, is perfectly portrayed in the scripture of 1 Peter 3: 1-6.  This is a lovely scripture for wives to take quietly before the Lord. In obeying this scripture, the wife honors God through submitting to her Husband and brings blessings to her home, household and all those she comes into contact with.  She honors God through her submission because anyone who obeys Godly principles, honors Him. In this way also, she prepares herself, her husband and children, for God’s ultimate and eternal plan – HIS BRIDE.

Our Role Models

We are products of role models or templates: Firstly, those which our parents were responsible for giving us, and subsequently that which the world shows us via television, magazines, and other media.  Therefore, we will continue our lives according to the role models we see around us. Worldly models for marriage are limited in their power. Paul confirms this in 1 Cor (1.Cor.1:18). Only adhering to Godly principles will give us the correct role models.

God will bring Wives to a place where they submit to their husbands on an unconditional basis, (which is really the only basis for submission).  Wives submit to OBEY GOD not because they expect to see the fruit of their labors.  Submission is doing all things as unto the Lord for the benefit of others.  The lives of those around the wives change, especially their husbands, because they submit and serve.  They submit whether their husbands receive it or not. (1. Peter 3: 1).

If wives feel the need to correct their husbands, it should be done according to the scripture of 1 Tim., where Paul talks of ‘Exhorting’ or ‘encouraging’ them (1 Tim.5:1). Wives should try not to repeatedly approach negative topics verbally with their husbands, but instead seek the Lord, praying for her husband and also for God’s will to be done in that particular circumstance. This is an exercise of trusting God for the wives.

The Government of God is not difficult to follow … it is impossible in our own human strength!  By His grace alone can this be accomplished – let’s ask Him to help us follow – always.

Next Step…

Wives begin by praying to God for change and to receive the mind of Christ, which 1Cor tells us, is given to us, through the scriptures.  (1Cor2: 16).  As wives pray this in all earnestness and sincerity, DAILY, they will begin to experience change.  They will become the wise woman that builds her house, and not the foolish one that tears it down. (Prov14: 1).

Right… let’s recap what we’ve shared this week:

  1. Knowledge of God – Never before in history has there been such a need for examples of Godly marriages, as now. To truly understand what God expects from us in our marriages, we need to have a knowledge of His character.
  2. God’s Government (The Kingdom of God) – God’s government or His word or law, is beyond debate or question and is final and irreversible. It is a separate system under which God does that which pleases Him. God himself is powerless to reverse His own Government. Anyone who obeys God’s principles is blessed.  Anyone who does not walk according to His Government or principles, will struggle through life (Psa.1:1-3).
  3. Clearly defined area – The role of the Husband, like the role of the Wife and that of the church, is specific and VERY CLEARLY detailed in the word of God. If wives have a heart’s desire to be the type of wife God intends, they shall be blessed among all people. If they do not have this desire, they need to pray for it because without it, they will struggle in this life, and may even drag others into their situations.
  4. Suitable Partner – God decided that it was not good for man to be alone.  He needed a ‘helper’.  Someone to help him in his needs: spiritual, emotional and physical. Not a slave, following behind him – or ahead of him in a position of authority. Husband and wife are inseparably linked by their spirits – a team working with, and for, each other.
  5. Wife’s Obedience – The wife needs to respect her husband’s authority (Titus 2:4-5).  This is in line with God’s authority spoken of in 1 Cor.11. As a wife, no earthly career should be above obeying her husband, loving him, their children and caring for their home.
  6. Submission – A great blessing – In obeying the scriptures about submission, the wife honours God through submitting to her Husband and brings blessings upon her home, household and all those she comes into contact with.  She honours God through her submission because anyone who obeys Godly principles, honours Him. In this way also, she prepares herself, her husband and children, for God’s ultimate and eternal plan – TO BE THE BRIDE OF JESUS.
  7. Our Role Models – We are products of models: Firstly, that which our parents were responsible for giving us, and subsequently what the world shows us via television, magazines and other media. Only adhering to Godly principles works. God will bring wives to a place where they submit to their husbands on an unconditional basis. Wives submit to OBEY GOD not because they expect to see the fruit of their labours.  Submission is doing all things as unto the Lord for the benefit of others.  The lives of those around the wife change, especially her husband, because she submits and serves.  Wives should ‘exhort’ and encourage their husbands, being a partner in the marriage unit. This is an exercise of trusting God for the wives.
  8. Next Step… – Wives should begin by praying for change in their lives, asking for the mind of Christ, which is given to us through the scriptures. As this is prayed in all earnestness and sincerity DAILY, change will be experienced.  Wives will become the wise woman that build their homes, and not the foolish ones that tear it down.

Please join me soon for PART 5, where we will explore some more principles of the Kingdom of God. Be blessed during this coming week – I look forward to being with you soon.

If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others. Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers. Often, when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’ Button.)

Let’s Look at Prayer -4


Let’s look at Prayer Video

Session 4

Welcome to session 4 of Let’s look at Prayer

How about a quick recap on what we said in last week’s session on Warfare prayers?

  1. Pray God’s Will – Warfare prayers are a matter of seeking God’s will. It is never man’s place to make a decision on behalf of God.
  2. What is warfare prayer? – Warfare prayer is asking God to come up against powers of darkness and spiritual wickedness, that we may witness in our day
  3. What are spiritual weapons? – Spiritual weapons are the unseen weapons of the spiritual world – through God
  4. When to pray ‘forbid or Permit’ prayers – The more we are one with God, the more we hear Him directing us when to pray
  5. How to pray ‘forbid and permit’ prayers – God will give us the wording for each burden that he gives us to pray for
  6. How not to pray ‘forbid and permit’ prayers – ‘Binding and Loosing’ prayers should never be prayed in our own strength or out of an emotional frenzy
  7. Where is our Authority? – The only authority that we have on this earth is “…through God…”

And lastly

  • How do we lay hold of this authority? – Our authority lies ‘In Christ’ only. The more our old nature is laid down, the deeper ‘in Christ’ we move and the more His authority is released through us

In this week’s session we’ll look at some important questions about prayer.

WHAT SHOULD MY ATTITUDE BE WHEN I PRAY?

In Luke 18, Jesus explains to us what our attitude should be when we pray.  He is saying that it is persistent prayer, inspired by faith and intensity, from a heart that is humble and repentant, that receives a response from the throne of God .

It’s not that God gets some kind of pleasure at seeing us begging and grovelling before Him day after day, but rather that the persistent prayer of a righteous believer will break down the evil forces that try to prevent the answers to our prayers reaching us as confirmed by these scriptures (Eph. 6:12; Jas. 5:16; 1Thess.5:17). Later, we’ll look more closely at the example of Daniel’s prayer in Daniel chapter 9.

Believing and trusting God (in other words Faith) when we pray, puts the emphasis on God Himself. It is all about Him and His faithfulness. Jesus did not teach us to rely on prayer alone – He taught us to rely on, and trust Him. Only when we can fully trust Him, can we fully pray believing. We are to believe Him first, and then express that belief in prayer. Trust must be in the heart before prayer comes out of the mouth. In Luke 18, we see how strong the beggar’s faith was. He trusted God to heal him.

Another example of prayer attitude is once again seen in Luke 18 where Jesus says that the Tax gatherer’s seeking God, was one of humility. We also see in Daniel chapter 9 how Daniel prayed from a heart that was humble and repentant, longing to understand God’s will. Please, if you have time this week, read through this chapter and let the Lord show you the state of Daniel’s heart.

CAN WE PRAY LIKE THE GREAT MEN OF GOD?

Let’s have a look at two examples of how great men of God prayed. In 1 Kings 18, we enter the story at the point where Elijah tells King Ahab that it is going to rain (and that’s after three and a half years of drought!).  Although he tells Ahab, what he is really doing is prophesying.

Elijah immediately then got onto his knees and prayed until what he had prophesied had come to pass.

Daniel, in chapter 9, said this: “So I gave my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth and ashes…” (Dan.9:3).

Daniel’s seeking the Lord was very serious – not a light hearted approach.

We must desire to pray the way Elijah and Daniel prayed because these types of prayers produce results.  Not only this, but they are within the reach of every believer.

We need however to take note of a very important factor here:-

Both these men prayed in God’s will. 

Elijah heard from God before he prophesied to Ahab that there would be no rain.

And

Daniel read about the prophecies of Jeremiah before he began to pray .

PRAY IN GOD’S WILL, PRAY BELIEVING

The next important issue is that they both firmly believed that their prayers would be heard by God.  This was visible by their behaviour.  Elijah went to Ahab and told him what was going to happen, then prayed without moving from his place until his servant reported a cloud.

Daniel never moved from his place for three whole weeks, neither eating, drinking nor bathing!!

HUMILITY AND BROKENESS IS WHAT WE NEED IN PRAYER

If we go back to Luke 18, Jesus describes two attitudes in prayer:

Firstly, the scribe who is proud of his achievements and legalistic in his manner of praying. 

Secondly, and very different, is the attitude of the tax-gatherer.  He goes to God with a heart that is looking for mercy.

Let’s try and remember these prayer attitudes, as we next seek God.

CAN I ONLY PRAY THE WILL OF GOD?

Praying in the will of God is really a way of life. In other words, people who have utterly surrendered their lives to God, don’t have much difficulty praying God’s will, because they KNOW Him – not just know ABOUT Him. Let’s just repeat that… they KNOW him – not just know ABOUT Him.

But for those of us still growing to that place, we need firstly to desire to pray in God’s will, and then ask Him to cause our prayers to be prayed in His will.  But we are certainly free to ask God for the things that we want, then ask Him to make it subject to His will.

WHY DOES GOD WANT US TO DO THE PRAYING?

God’s ways are unique to Him and they work in spite of what we do or don’t do. He does require us to pray and preach to fulfill His purpose on earth, but even where we are disobedient, He will find others that are willing, so He always accomplishes His will. The scripture of Romans 10 shows us this.

In Luke 18, Jesus gives us some idea as to why God wants us to pray:

In this instance, the judge can be likened to the position God holds over the earth.  He is in total charge.

The widow (who is a symbol of defencelessness and a particular focus of God’s deep compassion), is likened to a person who cries out for deliverance from their adversary.

The adversary is Satan who constantly seeks to bind people in slavery to his will.

The widow remained persistent, and it was because of this that the judge agreed to deliver her, “…lest by her continuous requesting, she wear me out…” (vs. 5).  Jesus says that God too, will deliver, when His children pray to Him, “…crying to Him day and night…” (vs. 7).

Jesus guarantees, in fact, that God will deliver speedily (vs. 8)!

WHY PERSISTENCE IN PRAYER?

Why would God insist that we persist in prayer, is He like a judge waiting to be wearied?  Never!  God is just and has a very good reason for us persisting in prayer. 

We see in Daniel 9, how and what Daniel prayed.  The answer to his prayer comes in chapter 10 when a messenger from God tells Daniel that his prayer was answered the first time he prayed, but it took twenty-one days for the answer to reach him.  Why?  Because it was hindered by the Prince of Persia (which we can understand to be a demonic strong-hold over the area – vs. 13).

Daniel fasted and never gave up on his praying.  His prayers were persistent and in deep sincerity.

In 1 John 3, we read that Jesus defeated Satan, yet Satan is still the god of this world as we see in 2 Cor.2.  How?  By illegal means, he does this.  He tempts man to sin and those that do not have the power to overcome, become slaves to him.  Therefore, he rules!

However, as the saints persist in prayer, many shall be freed from his evil clutches. In Heb.10, we see that through perseverance and the will of God, we will receive what He promises us (Heb.10:36).

SOME LAST POINTS TO CONSIDER…

In essence then, this is what Jesus is teaching us:

When we pray, first look for what GOD wants.

Ask God to empty us as we begin to pray and show us what’s on His heart.

Pray according to the will of God.

BELIEVE that God will not only hear our prayer, but will answer them as well.

Persist in prayer – don’t give up!

Lastly, when all this has been done, ask God to give you peace about that which you have prayed.

OK… let’s quickly recap what have we seen this week:

  1. What should my attitude be when I pray? – It is persistent prayer, inspired by faith and intensity, from a heart that is humble and repentant, that receives a response from the throne of God
  2. Can we pray like the great men of God? – Praying is well within the reach of everybody and is encouraged by God – there are many biblical examples of praying people.
  3. Pray in God’s Will, pray believing – All great praying people totally believed God would answer their requests
  4. Humility and Brokenness in prayer – God looks for humble hearts seeking mercy rather than arrogant prideful attitudes in prayer
  5. Can I only pray the will of God? – God’s will in our prayers will come naturally as we get to know Him – but we are free to ask for the things we want according to His will
  6. Why does God want us to do the praying? – God uses us to further His Kingdom here on earth – through prayer and His will
  7. Why persistence in prayer? – We need to persevere in prayer because answers are sometimes delayed in the heavenlies and through perseverance and the will of God, we will receive answers.

And lastly, when we pray:

  • Look for what God wants – ask God to empty our hearts as we begin to pray – pray the will of God – believe God will hear our prayer and trust Him for the answer – persist and don’t give up – and then ask Him to give us peace about what we have prayed.

Let’s end off this last session by praying together in your group. Hopefully by now we are all used to praying with each other and we’ve begun to hear God sharing His heart with us in the prayer time.

Remember – we hold a very powerful tool in our hands when we pray, not by our power – but by His. Talk to God all day long – get to know Him intimately and tell Him you love Him. Marvel as we see situations around us change by the power of our prayers, subject to God’s will.

Thanks so much for joining me as we’ve had a look together at the topic prayer over the last few weeks. I pray the Lord has used these sessions in some way, to bring us all that bit closer to Him.

May our Father in Heaven Bless you all.

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The Holy Spirit – Part Six.


Join Our Pastor Ray as he shares on the power of The Holy Spirit

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The Holy Spirit – Part Two


Join our Pastor Ray as he shares the dynamic power of The Holy Spirit

Welcome to Number 2 of The Holy Spirit sessions

Last week we were introduced to the Holy Spirit and we saw the following:

  1. Who is the Holy Spirit? – The Holy Spirit is a member of the Godly Trinity
  2. How are we made up? – Human kind is made up of Body, Soul, and Spirit
  3. The Holy Spirit: our promise of help – Jesus said He had to leave the earth in order for the Holy Spirit to come to us
  4. He convicts us of sin and God’s forgiveness – The Holy Spirit will be our teacher
  5. Sight is not enough; we must enter – The Holy Spirit will convince us of our sinful condition and need for change
  6. How does this happen? – We need to have revelation that our old sinful nature has gone and daily be led by the Holy Spirit
  7. He gives us gifts – The Holy Spirit is a gift from God and He himself brings gifts to us – the fruit of the Spirit (singular) and gifts of the spirit (plural)
  8. How many gifts can I have? – We can use as many of the gifts as we desire
  9. What will hinder my use of the gifts? – Unforgiveness, being afraid and unbelief will hinder our use of the gifts

This week, we will go a bit deeper and explore when it is that we receive the Holy Spirit, as well as answer some questions that may have concerned us about the Holy Spirit in the past.

Continue reading “The Holy Spirit – Part Two”

Seven Promises in Him


Join Our Pastor Ray as he shares on the Seven Promises

7 Promises ‘In Christ’…

You know one of the most amazing things I find is the way that God talks to us. If we dwell on the fact that He is all powerful and everlasting… then it’s even more incredible that He would take time to talk to you and I.

One of the ways He shares His heart with us, is through His word.

Look at this scripture in the book of Ephesians: …and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus…. One of the incredible things here is that the scripture speaks in the past tense – isn’t that amazing…. We have already been raised up into heavenly places with Christ!!!

Have you ever come across the expression “In Christ” or “in Him”?  So… what does “In Christ” or “in Him” mean?   It simply means how we behave as Christians here on Earth.  In other words, the way we walk our Christian path on a daily basis. As we obey God (or His Godly principles), we are walking “In Christ” or “In Him”. The more we walk in His principles – the more we are ‘in Him’.  When we miss the mark with Him in our walk, we are no longer “In Christ” or “In Him”.

I’d like you to do something positive for yourself in the next few days and spend a bit of quiet time on the following encouraging 7 promises:

No Condemnation

“Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus”. Are we feeling condemned over any issue? – no need – as we walk in Christ there is no condemnation.

Free from our sinful nature

“…Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death”. There is no longer any need for us to do things the way we do them – we have a new nature – in Christ.

Our new nature is in Christ

“For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive”. Our new nature (which desires to follow God) is in Christ.

Never separated from God

“…nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”. What a wonderful promise – we are safely in His hands!

No partiality

“… for you are all one in Christ Jesus”. The Lord sees all His children as equal.

We will walk in good works planned by God for us

“…created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them”. We may have many plans but God has already ordained our steps.

His promises to us are guaranteed

“For as many as are the promises of God, in Him they are yes; therefore, also through Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us”.

Notice here that each of these 7 promises applies if we are ‘in Him’ or ‘In Christ’. Trying to imagine what ‘In Him’ means could be very difficult and complicated for you and I. However, as we’ve shared before, God’s word is never complicated when He opens it up to us, by the power of His Spirit.

God needs to control our walk here on Earth, until Jesus returns. As we walk ‘In Him’ (or according to His principles), He is able to bless us. Let’s see confirmation of this in the Psalms: “How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, But they are like chaff which the wind drives away.

Lastly, if we’re are finding it difficult to stay ‘in Him’ on a daily basis, remember that it’s God’s doing that we find ourselves ‘in Him’ – not any work of our own. We can strive to be good Christians daily, but we will fail at some point, until we learn that it is Christ in us, who gives us the strength to change.

Thanks for this blessed time together – may the Master richly bless your week ahead – until we meet again – blessings

From: “…time with the Master…”

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Wanted; Dead or Alive


Weekly encouraging messages from our Pastor Ray…..enjoy and be uplifted.

Wanted Dead or Alive?

We’ve heard it said that Jesus paid the ultimate sacrifice for us, but I wonder if we have really applied deep thought into what actually took place on the Cross at Calvary. Normally when thinking about Jesus’s death, we are inclined to focus on His physical death, the pain suffered, how His body was disfigured and how much it was damaged. Now I certainly don’t wish to take anything away from the seriousness of His physical death, it must have been horrendous to say the least, but is His physical death what the Lord wants us to focus on?

Continue reading “Wanted; Dead or Alive”

A Son’s Love


A man, who in his life and by nature of his chosen vocation, had buried many souls, including his parents and brothers, stood alongside the woman he loved.

She had lost a son of 47 years and her pain was great. He felt her pain, little realizing that the day would come when he would be chosen to feel the real pain of her loss when his own son of some fifty years died of cancer.

It was only then, he understood the pain the woman he loved was experiencing.

Ernest K Gann, aviator extrodinaire, movie maker, prolific author, wrote, on hearing of his son’s death, “That day, I knew how the God of Israel felt” (when His Son Jesus cried out to him “……..why have you forsaken me” – my addition.)

Months later the man came across a e-mail, sent to him on Father’s Day, by his son and his reply:

“My Beloved Father, Best Friend and Spiritual Mentor,

Happy Father’s Day.

You may have regrets, possibly deep sorrow that my life, under your leadership (my father) could have been guided and inspired, disciplined where necessary toward a more meaningful vocation, a lifestyle of choices that may have proved more fruitful, a blessing to our family and the world.

Yet with legitimate regrets, my life journey has been one fraught with many trials, the consequence of deep inner struggles that proved too vulnerable to many bad decisions that has cost you, Mom, my siblings and the precious wife and children God blessed me with, in no small way a burden to most.

Yet, when I survey my life through the lens of Calvary I am confronted with this immutable truth, Christ has from before my conception orchestrated the elements of my journey in such a way that I would desperately need His atoning power much more and in greater measure than most.

In this place Daddy, I have come to know and love His Father in ways and dimensions that few, very, very few would ever come to know Him.

Because of this, I not only thank Him for His gift of healing and deliverance I actually find myself grateful for the circumstances that have led up to this great revelation.

Yet this one irrevocable fact stands head & shoulders above all things…..I am fruit of your Spiritual loins, I OWE my life in Yehashua to your faithfulness in Christ and for this I am so dearly indebted to you…. you failed, if you in actual fact did fail me, you failed me forward into the Arms of our loving Savior. Amen.”

The words you write My Son, are not only written with Godly anointing, but they are the fruit of pure silver that comes from the massive heat of the smith’s furnace.

It is only with Our Father’s grace that we have journeyed thus far, much of the time apart from one another, some precious moments, together, but always one in His Spirit.

We have cried together in the pain of loss and suffering, in the loneliness of deep regret, but always we have believed, together, that our Father would embrace our trembling souls and bring peace to our weary hearts.

I have come to understand, in my life, that there is no right or wrong, no good or bad, no success or failure, there is just us and our Daddy, the only one true and high God, whose eyes never cease to look upon us as HIS SONS, sons that He loves to gaze upon in shear wonderment of His most perfect creation.

Love and Shalom

Your Daddy. xxxxxxxx

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You Are So Special…


 

And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a Living Soul.

As usual in my walk with the Lord, I have often read scriptures and not really thought very deeply about them. It’s amazing how we can read a verse a few times and nothing ‘jumps’ out at us, and then one day we read it again and it comes to life! Such is the greatness of our heavenly Father – such is His great love for us. His hand is upon our lives day in and day out, carefully steering us on the path of life which He has planned for us.

“…let us make man in our image, after our likeness…. How wonderful that the Father, Son and Holy Ghost decided they should create a being which was different to all creation on earth up to that point. Somebody special, whom God desired to have fellowship with. Not only would God be able to see and talk with Adam but also, He would bless him with the whole earth to have as his own. And so, mankind was originally created in the image and after the likeness of God.

“…God formed man out of the dust of the ground…” As I ponder these words, I try to imagine what it might have been like at the time that Adam was ‘formed’. Was the dust that God used to form Adam the same as the dust that we know today? God had not yet cursed the ground from which Adam had been formed, so it could have been a veryAdam, dust of the Earth different substance from what we know. Adam was surely very different compared to humankind today. He not only had face-to-face fellowship with God, but God brought all the living creatures to him so that he could name them. How many animals can you and I name right now off the top of our heads?

“…and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life…” God placed His own breath into Adam – Adam became a living soul. God had breathed Adam’s spirit into life. He was no longer just ‘dust’, but now became a living soul with his own spirit and own body. There was breath in the bodies of all the animals and other creatures on earth, but God had not breathed into them. Adam was created a very special and unique being. A being God had formed for His own joy.

We know that all this changed when Adam and Eve disobeyed God. Therefore, as God promised, Adam and Eve died spiritually and were condemned to a place of solitude from Him. Spiritual death meant that humankind would no longer have communion with God. After Adam had reached 130 years old, he had children in his own image and after his own likeness  – our direct line of hereditary.

I thank the Lord that He sent His son Jesus to restore the situation back to what it was originally in the Garden of Eden. Jesus gives this opportunity to every human being, regardless of culture or nation.

He “… breathed into his nostrils the breath of life..”. As we come to know Jesus and Him crucified, we receive the breath of life from God. This is no ordinary breath. Not a breath that has been mass-produced or thoughtlessly brought into life. No, this is HIS breath – the breath of the almighty Lord of Hosts – the breath of true life, and we are heirs of this wonderful breath as we acknowledge Him.

Each one of us is a unique creation – made greater than any other being on this earth because God desires to have Uniquenessfellowship with us. God ‘formed’ each one of us – not thoughtlessly mass-produced, but individually crafted. We are HIS workmanship created for good works in Christ (Good works where? – IN CHRIST!).

Don’t let the world tell you that you are just like everyone else. You are not like anyone else! When you became reconciled with Him, you were given your own unique spirit, breathed into you by God Himself. You were uniquely ‘formed’ by the Master tradesman to be used by Him and have the fellowship He so desires to have with you.

Hold your head high and know that you are very special to the one who breathed life into you, irrespective of how many times you feel you have disappointed Him or those around you. Know HIS breath of life is in you now… and…forever more!

From: “…time with the Master…”

Published Bi-Monthly

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Mission Malawi – Chapter 23


September 1996
We now find ourselves preparing to go back to Joburg to see what the Lord will have for us. In the natural, we have nothing to go back to. No place to live, no work and once we arrive back in Johannesburg, we will have no money. Well, one thing we have learnt is that we can now trust the Lord to take care of all these concerns. Perhaps in a couple of years’ time we will be writing another diary of what happened after this!

Kathy, I and our youngsters, are very sorry to have left the little mission base, as we know a part of each of our lives is there. We witnessed the hand of God, first hand in our lives many, many times. There were plenty of days that were very difficult and a few times we wanted to run away, but now that the Lord has brought it to an end, we are very blessed and mightily encouraged. We truly saw everything that we had learned, being outworked in real life.

I asked Kathy if there was anything she would have changed were we given the time over again and she said, “No, every detail happened because God allowed it and our lives wouldn’t be the same today if He had not planned it that way”.

Titus will continue to run the mission base and the little business to support the work, so they may not be a burden to anyone. Andy and Sue will go back to England to share with others all they have learned in Africa over the past two and a half years.Young disciples at the mission

During our two years and seven months there, the gospel was preached, to many. Many heard the word. A large number committed their lives to the Lord. Others came and were taught for a short time – but only two (in the end), were willing to be discipled and lay their lives down totally for the Lord, so that they might go out and do the same thing.

“Behold, the sower went out to sow and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. And others fell upon the rocky places, where they did not have much soil and immediately, they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil. But when the sun had risen, they were scorched and because they had no root, they withered away. And others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out. And others fell on the good soil, and yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty and some thirty. He who has ears, let him hear.”

Jesus was right when He said, “For many are called, but few are chosen.”

Establishing that mission base, called “Church at Lilongwe”, has taken so many wonderful people and Kathy and I don’t know how to thank you all. For those who have prayed for us and the work, your faithfulness has been Building on the mission base in Area 49, Lilongwerewarded, as we conclude our purpose for being there. For those who have written, your contributions have helped to encourage us through the not so good times. For those who contributed materially so that our physical needs were met, the Lord will bless you, ten-fold as that work now multiplies.

On the fourth of January 1994, the Lord said to Hein and me ….
“…And the things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, these entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also. Suffer hardship with Me as a good soldier of Christ Jesus…”

By His grace and power alone, we can say this command has been fulfilled for now, and we look forward to that which He has planned for us in the future.

We thank the Lord for keeping us safe during this time and for the many lovely people we have met from all over the world, not to mention the great amount He has taught us. We thought we were going to Malawi to teach others, which we did, but we were the ones that were really being taught, and for that, we will be eternally grateful.

Thank you, FatherSharing the Gospel with young men

Epilogue
It is really our hearts desire that something in these chapters has somehow brought you closer to God. We thank God each and every day for the few experiences He has allowed us to go through so far in our walk – only the tip of the iceberg has been scratched. God is real and He really does provide. The question is: Are we able to allow Him to provide for us?

Paul says that we should work out our salvation in fear and trembling.

Each day we draw a little closer to God if we listen to that which He is teaching us, if we are not too busy with ‘things’ which block out our Holy Spirit ‘frequency’. If we follow the path of seeking and speaking to Him daily, we will come to trust Him more and more. As we show faith in the small things, so He will grant us favor in the larger things, not only in this world, but in the Kingdom to come.

Bless You All.

Characters

Raymond and Kathy – Children: Theresa-Anne, Wayne, Simon, Bethany and Daniel
Worked in Johannesburg, South Africa and decided to sell all and live a season of time being led by the Lord. Their last son, Daniel was born during the time of this journey.

Today they are living in Vereeniging in South Africa where they now have three lovely grandchildren. They own their own business, which is used to generate funds for the furthering of the Gospel. They share the Gospel and disciple others in small home groups.

Hein and Erica – Children: Joshua
Worked in Cape Town, South Africa and decided to forsake their jobs as medical Nurses and live a season of time being led by the Lord.

Today they live in Alberton, South Africa and have three children. Hein works in a company where he is able to share the Lord and disciple others. Erica is teaching at a Christian School.

David and Zelifa
Lived in Malawi and were the hosts for the beginning of this work. They had five children.
They remained in Malawi where sadly David passed away and there is no updated news of Zelifa.

Frank
A Pastor with a Charismatic Church in Malawi. He was married with five children.
They remained in Malawi but there is no updated news of them.

Timothy and Joseph
Malawian brothers who had gone to South Africa to find employment and a better future. They were based at the Mission in Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa. There is no updated news of either of them.

Chris and Sally – Children: Heath, Matthew and Leigh-Megan
Worked in Durban, South Africa for a large corporate food company and decided to sell all and live a season of time being led by the Lord.

Today they live in the Nottingham/Derby area in England. Chris is self-employed and shares Jesus wherever his work takes him. Sally is teaching at a Christian School. They have two lovely grandchildren.

Arthur
Worked in Johannesburg, South Africa for a large corporate company in the field of Electrical Engineering. He decided to sell all and live a season of time being led by the Lord.

Today he is married with 3 children and one fostered child. They live in Thohoyandou, South Africa where they are actively involved on an outreach Mission base serving the community.

Titus
Was found at the African Market in Area 49, Lilongwe, Malawi where his small business had come to an end. Wayne brought him home to meet us and his discipling season began.

Today he is married with 5 children and works at the headquarters of an international aid organization. He continues to share the Gospel in Malawi wherever he goes.

This is the last in the series of Mission Malawi, if you have not participated in the richness of the story of young missionaries in the warm heart of Africa – Malawi go to the beginning and read about an amazing experience.

“…time withe Master…” is an on-going series of teachings, about lifestyle in the Church and is published bi-monthly.
If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others, Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers and very often when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

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button).

Mission Malawi