Truth & Life Ministries
|Posted on January 9, 2020 at 5:05 PM|
To all those who call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ who sometimes find themselves in the land of questions, unsure of their walk and wrestling with their faith, I have great news for you. This is the year of spiritual breakthrough where any believer who so desires can step out of a life ruled by the natural elements of self and the world.
Spiritual breakthrough begins when a believer receives the revelation of the sovereignty of God in relation to creation and the source of all life. Knowing that God is sovereign is different than understanding the sovereignty of God. Being sovereign identifies God as the God of gods, Lord of lords, mighty God, creator of all, and supreme ruler of the universes. The sovereignty of God is all-inclusive in the execution and implementation of His authority, power, rule, dominion, and governance according to the counsel of His will. God is above all things and before all things for "He has made the earth by His power, He has established the world by His wisdom, and has stretched out the heavens at His discretion" (Jeremiah 10:12 NKJV). Breakthrough is a certainty when a believer abides is Christ and experiences the sovereignty of God at work in their life.
Once a believer recognizes and accepts the sovereignty of God, one has the foundation to exercise their belief and faith in order to experience a breakthrough for whatever one is believing for. Breakthrough is identified as a military term for moving forward and advancing through or beyond something or someone. Breakthrough occurs at the point of the strongest or greatest resistance when one is removing or surpassing an obstruction or restriction or overcoming a stalemate. Breakthrough also applies to a believer opening a door or taking on a challenge that has not previously been acknowledged and sees it through to a victorious conclusion. Any believer who has experienced a breakthrough and understands the process will continually and consistently overcome and press forward no matter what is set before them.
Spiritual breakthrough can only come from a life in Spirit for “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life” (John 6:63 NKJV). Those who live in the natural realm or in the flesh will be unable to break through the spirit realm of God utilizing natural or worldly means. “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14 NKJV). Life in Spirit begins with one accepting Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, then receiving Holy Spirit, and walking and living under the leading of Holy Spirit.
As stated above this is the year of spiritual breakthrough where any believer who so desires can step out of a life ruled by the natural elements of self and the world. So step forward in Holy Spirit and experience a spiritual breakthrough.
|Posted on January 2, 2020 at 5:00 PM|
God’s view and perspective for this new year for each believer of Jesus and the body of Christ (the ekklesia) far exceeds the desires, thoughts, and plans of mankind. “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21 NKJV). For those who abide in Christ the possibilities are endless and abound through the releasing of God’s Word, presence, promises, and anointing upon His people. With the culture, atmosphere, and environment that exist in this current age, conditions are right for a fresh awakening, a fresh move of Holy Spirit, and revival resulting in the activation of the body of Christ and gathering of an abundant harvest. John 4:35b NKJV declares, “Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!”
Entering a new year as a believer can be exciting and offers a fresh look at the future with hope. How one enters a new year sets the belief, faith, and expectation which will determine the level of accomplishment and victory. Each believer should enter the Lord’s gates this year with thanksgiving (Psalms 100:4), have ears to hear (Mark 4:9), seek things above (Colossians 3:1), receive God’s kingdom (Hebrews 12:28), put on the new man (Ephesians 4:24), and live and walk in Spirit (Galatians 5:25). This prepares each believer to approach the new year with a right spirit, a willing heart, a determined mindset, and an understanding that every year is the Lord's and every day is made and designed by the Lord to fulfill His desires and will. “This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalms 118:24 NKJV).
Beginning this new year and understanding the conditions of our culture and society, the words of Isaiah are so powerful and encouraging to all believers who abide in Christ. “Arise, shine; for your light has come! And the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; but the LORD will arise over you, and His glory will be seen upon you” (Isaiah 60:1-2 NKJV).
This new year will be defined by the relationship one has with God through Jesus Christ and Holy Spirit determining the paths one takes, the fruit of the Spirit one produces, the victories one obtains, and the blessings one will be to others.
|Posted on December 24, 2019 at 4:00 PM|
There is no stronger message needed in the world, our country and culture as a whole than that God has granted peace in the birth and life of Jesus Christ. We hear peace, peace but seemingly there is no peace which is true because there can be no peace without Jesus Christ. Like in the Old Testament, the prophets would see visions of peace, when there was no peace.
In celebrating Christmas this year, it is good to remember the wonderful gift that Jesus declares in John 14:27a, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you.”
Merry Christmas to you all. May the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be in you, upon you, be alive in your life, and be a guide throughout the coming year.
For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. Isaiah 9:6-7 NKJV
(This blog post was previously posted in December, 2014.)
|Posted on December 19, 2019 at 4:45 PM|
As one experiences the end of one year and the beginning of a new year, there is oftentimes a resurgence of hope, heightened faith, and the freshness of new beginnings. Upon entering this new year believers in Jesus Christ should have total confidence that God’s mercy, grace, and faithfulness is upon them; that He has ordered their steps (Psalms 37:23); and that all things are possible to him who believes (Mark 9:23). God has provided every believer with His strength, power, might, anointing, and authority to be a beacon of light, be a bearer of His presence, be released into culture, affect society, and accomplish all that He has set before them.
Confidence in God is central and essential in a believer’s life in order to live and walk by faith (Hebrews 10:38, 2 Corinthians 5:7). Confidence is a multifaceted word that exists in the belief system and thought life of a believer which enables one’s faith; creates trust and assurance in God and His Word; promotes courage, boldness, and determination in the development of one’s relationship with God; and enhances one’s dependence on His mercy and grace. Confidence is also realized through one’s conviction and surety of their purpose and destiny.
One of the greatest challenges in a believer’s life in this materialistic and demanding world is where to place one’s confidence so that it will lead to a life of victory and fulfillment of purpose. For a believer to place their confidence in man’s abilities, power of government, the god of this age or the world and its culture will lead to weakness, falsehood, darkness, and deception. When a believer places their confidence is anything other than God, they risk the danger of entering into some form of idolatry. Scripture declares that one should have no other gods before the LORD (Deuteronomy 5:7), keep themselves from idols (1 John 5:21), and flee from idolatry (1 Corinthians 10:14). When a believer places their confidence in God, one enters into His kingdom, authority, provision, promises, and sovereign power where all things become possible (Matthew 19:26). Once one’s confidence is properly placed in God, then there is genuine increase in the level of trust, faith, and ability to live and walk in God’s Spirit.
Developing confidence in God is a process which begins the day one accepts Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. This process includes a believer’s life being transformed from glory to glory into the image of the Lord (2 Corinthians 3:18), led by the Spirit (Galatians 5:18), sanctified by the Spirit (2 Thessalonians 2:13), and solidified in the truth of God’s Word (1 Thessalonians 2:13).
For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end… Hebrews 3:14 NKJV
|Posted on December 5, 2019 at 4:50 PM|
Every believer of Jesus Christ can experience the abundance, fruit, reward, and blessing of a personal harvest in every aspect of their life. In this modern age there is little knowledge, understanding or emphasis on the process of agriculture, the principle of sowing and reaping or the components of harvest. Because of the lack of knowledge and understanding of the natural process of harvest very few believers can grasp hold of the spiritual principle in order to achieve their personal harvest (1 Corinthians 15:46). Also very few believers have an agricultural mindset or understanding that harvest is the result of a seed being planted, watered, and cultivated or the time of harvest. “Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor” (1 Corinthians 3:8 NKJV).
For a believer to experience the blessing and benefit of reaping a harvest in their life one must know, believe, and embrace the truth that it is God’s will for one to reap a harvest from every seed sown in faith. Scripture is very clear and concise "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap” Galatians 6:7 NKJV. The word 'sow' is used in agriculture meaning to scatter and plant seed. Whatever kind of seed is sown in a field is what will be reaped. The word 'reap' means to harvest, gather, obtain the fruits of labor or works, and receive the consequences of what was sown. The law of sowing and reaping is a governing and guiding principle of the kingdom of God to be activated in one's life and is crucial in the release of God’s promises and provision. God provides seed to the sower and will respond in portion to what the sower does with the seed. “But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully" 2 Corinthians 9:6 NKJV.
In the current age of I want it now mentality, there is little patience for the process of seed planting, watering, and cultivating where the outer shell of the seed dies and the contents of the seed comes forth to be harvested. "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (John 12:24 NAS). Believers through erroneous teaching, unscriptural belief system, and cultural influence oftentimes attempt to reap a harvest where there is no seed planted or dig up the seed before it matures preventing what is on the inside to come forth.
When the time of harvest has come many believers are unaware or ignorant of the principles and laws of harvest and are unprepared and lack the tools and foresight to experience the abundance and reward of a personal harvest. God does not hinder the reaping of one’s harvest but rather apathy, lack of belief, weak faith, and mindset of the believer is what hinders their harvest. The believer who has a harvest mentality, belief system, and activated faith will properly sow their seed in good soil, will know how and when to reap the harvest, and will preserve the harvest for its intended purpose.
|Posted on November 28, 2019 at 4:20 PM|
Issued by President George Washington, at the request of Congress, on October 3, 1789
By the President of the United States of America, a Proclamation.
Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and—Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me “to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:”
Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favor, able interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted; for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.
And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations, and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shown kindness to us), and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally, to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best.
Given under my hand at the City of New York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.
(This blog post was previously posted in November, 2013.)
|Posted on November 21, 2019 at 4:50 PM|
So many believers of Jesus Christ desire to be free from an up and down lifestyle where they are held captive and controlled by the elements of society and culture and there is no surety or hope in the future. One of the remedies to an up and down lifestyle is for one to come into agreement with God and His word. "Let every valley be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; and let the rough ground become a plain, and the rugged terrain a broad valley” (Isaiah 40:4 NAS). Scripture clearly instructs each believer to walk by the Spirit (Galatians 5:16) which is only possible when one is in agreement with God.
Scripture proposes a question, “Can two walk together, unless they are agreed” (Amos 3:3 NKJV). To walk in agreement with God identifies and describes one’s relationship, connection, trust, and dependence in God, Jesus Christ, and Holy Spirit. Also walking in agreement with God reveals a believer’s lifestyle as one who walks and moves in conformity, in one accord, and in rhythm with God according to His will and destiny for their life. Each believer is to live, move, and have their being in God (Acts 17:28). To walk in agreement denotes that two or more parties have come together with one purpose, agenda, and direction and to function as one in unity, harmony, and one accord. A great illustration is found in Matthew 11:29-30 NKJV where Jesus stated, “Take My yoke upon you…For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Being yoke is likened to two individuals walking and functioning as one unit in total agreement.
Walking in agreement with God is a key element to releasing the Lord and His kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. Every person lives in agreement with someone or something. An individual is either in agreement with the living God, His kingdom and word or with culture and the god of this age. Scripture instructs us, "As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him" (Colossians 2:6 NKJV). Every believer must learn to walk in oneness with the Lord in order for Him to truly release His character, nature, presence, and power in their lives. For a believer to be in oneness with the Lord they must come into agreement with Him.
Coming into agreement with God and walking with Him is to enter into an intimate heart relationship with Him through faith in His Son, Jesus. Then God becomes the believer’s focus, driving force, passion and zeal, assurance, and confidence in their faith. The results and benefits of walking in agreement with God is that each believer will gain understanding and knowledge of who God is, execute His word, know His will, hear His voice, have discernment in the spirit realm, fulfill one’s purpose, and be an instrument of praise and worship to His glory.
One of the greatest kingdom principles in operation is the power of agreement which releases God’s word, freedom, presence, and promises in your life.
|Posted on November 14, 2019 at 4:55 PM|
The heart is vital to a quality life in both the natural realm and the spiritual realm. In the natural realm science and medical professionals have studied, researched, and invested in the health, vitality, and condition of the human heart; designed many methods, medicines, and cures; and recommended lifestyles that sustain and maintain a healthy heart to prolong the life of mankind. In the spiritual realm there needs to be the same diligence and care of the spiritual heart because it is crucial and vital to a life of purpose, quality, and right standing before God. Scripture states that one should “Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life” (Proverbs 4:23 NKJV). The spiritual heart is the core or seat of one’s life from where all spiritual life, actions, and words flow forth shaping one’s life determining the depth of one’s belief system and rules the content of the mind. Scripture declares, “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45 NKJV).
Many believers in Jesus Christ are believing, praying, and hoping for revival to break out; looking for the outward manifestation of God’s presence; and anticipating that such a move of God’s Spirit will affect and change the atmosphere, culture, and their lives. One must realize that revival begins when God breaths on and touches man’s heart. Lasting spiritual revival flows from the inside when the zeal, presence, and fire of Holy Spirit is released through mankind setting one’s heart ablaze. “So God, who knows the heart, acknowledged them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as He did to us” (Acts 15:8 NKJV).
Understanding and receiving spiritual revival within one’s heart is essential in order for a believer to have proper relationship with God, be a spiritual instrument in God’s hands, and experience the flow of God’s Spirit. One of the most dangerous conditions any believer can have is a hard heart which will block the voice of Holy Spirit (Hebrews 3:7-8, 15), lead to an evil heart of unbelief (Hebrews 3:12), and result in going astray not knowing God’s ways (Hebrews 3:10). A hard heart is a condition where sin, iniquities, and transgressions will manifest and is the playground of the enemy.
Sometimes the fire, zeal, and passion in one’s heart for the Lord and His kingdom loses its brilliance and clarity and begins to wane, dim, and lose its luster. There is nothing more miserable and daunting than a heart that has lost its fire, grown cold, and become hard affecting their relationship with Jesus and grieving Holy Spirit. When this kind of spiritual condition exists in a believer’s life, one needs a heart revival to receive the breath and fire of God that brings life to the smoldering coals causing one’s heart to become a burning fire, to allow God’s Word to become a penetrating fire within them, and to guard their heart and not allow the fire to go out.
For thus says the High and Lofty One who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: “I dwell in the high and holy place, with him who has a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones…” Isaiah 57:15 NKJV
|Posted on October 31, 2019 at 5:05 PM|
Contained in the inner being of an individual is a desire and hope for a life full of stability, assurance, and endurance with the ability to deal with the issues of life in a comprehensive and orderly fashion. Every individual’s life is created, designed, and equipped to be anchored in a life-giving source, divine purpose, and destiny. The only way for one to experience the stability of being anchored in life is to know Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord which gives grace and enables one to believe, trust, and have faith to abide in Him. Jesus declares in Scripture "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing” (John 15: 5 NKJV). For a believer abiding means more than living right, holding the proper beliefs or presenting oneself in a certain way, it is about relationship, agreement, obedience, and commitment with God through His Son Jesus Christ and by the power of Holy Spirit.
Each believer must understand that in order to abide in Christ one must be steadfast, fixed, and unwavering in their commitment to continue, endure, remain, stand, dwell, and reside in Christ no matter what the issues, circumstances or conditions one might face. Abiding in Christ requires a believer to be dependent, reliant, and subservient to God through Jesus Christ and Holy Spirit. The scriptural concept and principle of abiding in Christ solidifies each believer’s standing in God’s kingdom. “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me” (John 15:4 NKJV).
Abiding in God’s kingdom brings new life, establishes one as a new creation, ensures communion and fellowship with God, enhances the justification of faith, enables one to partake of God’s promises, encourages the renewing of one’s mind, causes one to become prudent and wise, provides grace to strengthen one’s resolve to overcome, and secures a permanent relationship with God the Father.
Some characteristics and qualities of a believer who abides in Christ are: one’s love and devotion to Jesus transcends what God has done or given (1 John 4:16); one is obedient to Jesus’ instructions (John 15:10); one is a doer of the word (James 1:22); one aligns their heart and comes into agreement with God’s will (Matthew 6:10); one consistently matures and grows spiritually (Philippians 3:14, 2 Peter 3:18); one is not conformed to this world but is transformed into a heavenly mindset (Romans 12:2); one’s service unto the Lord is fueled by love, intimacy, and devotion for the Lord Jesus Christ.
Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love. John 15:9-10 NAS
|Posted on October 17, 2019 at 4:55 PM|
The revealing of the kingdom of God on earth will bring much needed order, truth, and light to a world full of chaos, uncertainty, upheaval, and darkness. The kingdom of God through God’s Spirit will change the atmosphere and environment and create a climate where the hearts of mankind will be transformed and refocused on God’s will being done here on earth. “Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10 NAS). God’s kingdom being revealed on earth will initiate and establish God’s dominion, glory, power, and authority in the affairs of mankind and the spiritual work of the body of Christ (ekklesia). Jesus declared while preaching in Galilee, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel" (Mark 1:15 NAS).
With the revealing of God’s kingdom every believer in Jesus Christ needs to have revelation, knowledge, and understanding of the kingdom they serve and its power, magnitude, authority, and dominion. Kingdom can be defined as a realm which designates the rule, reign, dominion, royal power, and sovereignty of a king. The king of God’s kingdom is Jesus who has been given all authority in heaven and on earth (Matthew 28:18). God’s kingdom is not limited by that which He created or the natural laws that He established. God makes things that are not seen into things that are seen (Hebrews 11:3) and transforms what is in existence. Also, upon the revealing of the kingdom of God, there is an anointing, empowerment, and activation of each believer who boldly speaks the Word of the Lord, is obedient to Holy Spirit, becomes a doer of God’s Word, and becomes a spiritual instrument of God.
Because of this current age, the condition of culture and the mindset of its people, there is an inherent danger when a believer does not discern the times or seasons, is unprepared, is out of position, and is disconnected from the things of God which will prevent one from taking full advantage of the revealing of God’s kingdom. Because of the lack of knowledge, a believer can be destroyed (Hosea 4:6) and caught between two kingdoms unable to serve and be devoted to either one. Without realizing and recognizing that the kingdom of God is greater than the kingdom of darkness, a believer will be bound, held captive, restricted, and robbed of the victorious life promised in the Word of God. This is why each believer is instructed to first seek the kingdom of God. “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33 NKJV).
“The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand” Mark 1:15a NAS
|Posted on October 10, 2019 at 5:25 PM|
The forward movement of a believer’s life is coupled with one’s view of the future and the level of faith to make the future a reality. A quality life is always moving forward, is unharnessed from the past, does not stand still, and through faith captures the freshness of God’s plans and purposes. One does not need faith for what was or what is. Faith is needed for what will be and reaching forward to those things which are ahead. “Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal” (Philippians 3:13-14a NKJV).
For a believer to have a faith forward mindset, one must understand the correlation of faith and the unseen or invisible world. Scripture declares that God framed the world through His Word so that things which are seen were not made of things which are visible (Hebrews 11:3). Scripture also captures the essence of the principle of the unseen when it declares that “God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did” (Romans 4:17 NKJV). Every believer of Jesus Christ through the activation and exercising of faith can live and operate in the realm of the unseen with the ability to pull those things into the realm of the seen. It is imperative for every believer to realize that they have been given a measure of faith (Romans 12:3). The key issue in the forward movement of one’s life is the development, establishment, and building of that measure of faith given by God.
Each believer who desires to press forward through the gateway of the future may encounter numerous situations or challenges in their pathway which will affect, build, and establish their faith to overcome. One should take courage because the Scripture declares “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith” (1 John 5:4 NAS). There are some fundamental truths that will enlighten and encourage each believer in their walk of faith and enable one to lay hold of their future and “press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14 NAS). Faith is the reflection of what is in one’s heart, a deep conviction of an internal belief that produces corresponding action, a force that works from the inside out not the outside in, based on a promise not a problem, and the eternal hope of God’s Word being worked out as one moves forward.
Being discerning and conscious of the atmosphere, environment, and cultural pressure in one’s life that enters the soul assists in knowing how the belief system and level of faith is affected. Having discipline as to what enters one’s soul will establish, activate, and elevate a believer’s quality and level of faith as they move forward. One must be mindful that the gates of entry to the soul are connected to what one sets their eyes on which creates mental images, allows the ears to hear which establishes patterns of thought, declares from their mouth having creative power, sets the tone of one’s life which affects the condition of the heart. It is one’s responsibility and role to understand these gate areas and how they affect your life which ultimately determine your walk with the Lord and the level of victory and success you attain with the completion of your destiny.
|Posted on October 3, 2019 at 5:05 PM|
The favor of God can be described as one who gains approval, acceptance, special benefits or blessings from God as evidence and confirmation of one’s approval by God. There is a close association between favor and grace which comes from the same Greek word meaning graciousness, loving-kindness, and goodwill of God. Scripture declares “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God” (Ephesians 2:8 NKJV). For a believer to find and receive favor, one must first find and receive grace. Grace implies more than favor--grace is a free gift and favor may be deserved or gained. Access to God’s favor is available to those who by grace have received Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and the indwelling presence of Holy Spirit. The favor that mankind receives from God depends on His good pleasure and is often extended in response to prayer, worship, obedience to His Word, and righteous living.
There is not an external or natural source that can produce life and favor for mankind. In Scripture Job identifies the source of life and favor. “You have granted me life and favor and Your care has preserved my spirit” (Job 10:11 NKJV).
God shows and gives favor to those who delight themselves in Him (Psalm 37:4), seek Him daily and endeavor to know His ways, live by faith (Hebrews 10:38), and are humble and contrite in spirit and tremble at His Word (Isaiah 66:2). Believers who are favored by God know that He will not leave or forsake them (Deuteronomy 31:8]; cause all things to work for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28); hear their prayers (Proverbs 15:29); and extend grace, mercy, and peace to those who live in truth and love (2 John 3). God through Jesus Christ invites all believers to seek His favor. “I seek your favor with all my heart. Have mercy on me as you promised!” (Psalm 119:58 NET).
God’s favor is available to every believer and will change their lives once these basic truths are understood: His grace is favor; His favor is available to all those who believe; His favor is received by faith; His favor affects every aspect of one’s life; and His favor surrounds one’s life all day and every day.
Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us; and confirm for us the work of our hands; yes, confirm the work of our hands. Psalm 90:17 NAS
|Posted on September 26, 2019 at 5:00 PM|
Being an overcomer is an achievement that every individual aspires to, desires, and pursues in every aspect, endeavor, and facet of one’s life. The foundation of one who overcomes is their relationship with Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Jesus declared that “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26 NKJV). Overcomers are disciples of Jesus Christ who are victorious in resisting the power, temptation, and cultural norms of the world’s system. An overcomer is not perfect, sinless or blameless but one who prevails, is steadfast, and is determined to walk by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7), press on (Philippians 3:12), and run the race (Hebrews 12:1) until the end or finish line. One does not turn away when times, issues or life get difficult or become a backslider or defector.
Overcoming requires total trust and belief in the sovereignty of God; complete dependence on His Word, voice, promises, direction, and purposes; and faith to follow His plan for one’s life. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6 NAS). To overcome means to rise above, conquer, subdue, vanquish, overpower, and prevail against any conflict, issue, obstacle or challenge that stands in the way of one being obedient and fulfilling what God has called, instructed, and purposed. A believer who overcomes is known as one who is obedient (2 Corinthians 2:9), is faithful to God’s Word (Titus 1:9), is steadfast and immovable (1 Corinthians 15:58), finishes the race (Acts 20:24), and endures to the end (Matthew 24:13). “He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne” (Revelation 3:21 NAS).
Being an overcomer is more than wishful thinking or hoping for something, it necessitates a decision and a choice to live by faith (Romans 1:17), have a strong and vibrant belief system (Mark 9:23), be a doer of the Word (James 1:22), and work out one’s salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12). Scripture declares that “He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son” (Revelation 21:7 NKJV). Every believer of Jesus Christ has been equipped and empowered by God through His Word and His promises, giftings, and instructions to be an overcomer in every aspect of life.
For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world — our faith. Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? 1 John 5:4-5 NAS
|Posted on September 19, 2019 at 5:00 PM|
God’s gives life because He is the Creator and source of life. God breathed the breath of life into man who was formed of dust from the ground and man became a living being (Genesis 2:7). By the breath of God mankind not only became living beings but God gave mankind a soul which distinguished mankind from all other beings. Scripture states that there is a natural body and a spiritual body (1 Corinthians 15:44). “And so it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living being. The last Adam became a life-giving spirit’” (1 Corinthians 15:45 NKJV). It is important to note that the first man (Adam) was from the earth and bears the characteristics and image of the earth while the second Man (Jesus Christ, Last Adam) is from heaven and bears the characteristics and image of the heavenly Man (1 Corinthians 15:47-49). Upon being born again (John 3:7) by receiving Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, one’s spirit becomes alive and is given a new heart and new spirit (Ezekiel 36:26). Through the breath of Jesus Christ, believers receive Holy Spirit (John 20:22) who quickens the spirit man and empowers life in Spirit.
Throughout Scripture the breath or wind of God denotes the impartation of life both in the natural man and in the spirit man. For example, on the day of Pentecost there came a sound from heaven as a rushing mighty wind and filled all in attendance with Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4). The word ‘wind’ also can be interpreted as breath which brings new life in Spirit. Another example comes from the vision of Ezekiel where he was instructed to prophesy for the four winds to come and breath upon the dead bodies so they may live again (Ezekiel 37:9).
The breath of God will bring new life--a refreshing, an awakening. God’s breath will also revive those believers who have become weak, apathic, and lethargic in the things of God; are influenced by an unstable belief system and lack of faith; have turned away from the Lord; and are in cultural bondage and have lost hope. Upon experiencing God’s breath there will be a quickening of one’s spirit resulting in the transformation of the inner man. This transformation brings hope, a renewed belief system, and an empowered faith which enables one to draw close to God changing the inner man and shifting the focus of life to the Lord and the things above (Colossians 3:2). God’s breath is essential for every believer and the body of Christ (ekklesia) to be awakened, revived, and brought into right standing before the Lord.
What society, culture, and people need is a fresh breath (wind) of God to be released or blown throughout the earth that will bring change in the hearts of mankind and shift the atmosphere from darkness to light. This will require believers and the body of Christ to enter into fervent prayer, have a hunger and zeal to seek the Lord (Isaiah 55:6), walk by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7), and believe for a fresh outpouring of the breath of God bringing new life to all.
|Posted on September 12, 2019 at 5:00 PM|
It is written in the Bible that God’s ways and thoughts are higher than ours (Isaiah 55:9). Each believer that sets their mind on the things above not on the things that are on earth (Colossians 3:2) will position and establish themselves with the ability to receive and be in tune with what God is speaking and revealing thus enabling them to receive the instruction of Holy Spirit in the higher ways and thoughts of God. “Make me know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day” (Psalms 25:4-5 NAS).
Many believers have been indoctrinated in worldly thinking which causes them to live in the natural environment where they believe it is impossible to receive, live in, and embrace the full revelation of God’s heavenly realm. In order to embrace God’s ways and thoughts and make them a part of the inner being, the believer is instructed to not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:2). In the renewing of the mind, believers will understand that the entire universe was framed by the word of God so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible (Hebrews 11:3).
A worldly minded believer would believe that God’s ways and thoughts are beyond them and impossible to obtain. A spiritually minded believer would declare the word of God and believe that "With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible." (Matthew 19:26 NKJV) and "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes." (Mark 9:23 NKJV).
But as it is written: "Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him." But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, and the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. 1 Corinthians 2:9-11 NKJV
(This blog post was previously posted in January, 2016.)
|Posted on September 5, 2019 at 4:50 PM|
In the beginning God’s purpose was to establish the Word and cause all creation to come through the Word–the Word being the Son of God. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men” (John 1:1-4 NKJV). God’s purpose was to move upon the earth which was without form, void, and full of darkness and speak forth light in the midst of darkness, bring order between the waters and firmament, bring life through creation, and set the atmosphere and environment for mankind. Everything God created including man was made to expedite, facilitate, and fulfill His purpose.
Another dimension of God’s purpose through Jesus Christ and by Holy Spirit is to raise up and empower a body of believers as sons and daughters who are worthy, obedient, and comply to His Word. Every believer must realize that they were chosen before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4), predestined according to His purpose (Ephesians 1:11), and called to fulfill their role or portion of God’s purpose (2 Timothy 1:9). Having the vision and divine revelation of God’s purpose will assist in identifying one’s assigned purposes, guide in running the race (1 Corinthians 9:24), and sustain momentum as one presses towards the goal of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:14).
Understanding God’s purpose in life is when one discovers the reason why one was created. Every believer of Jesus Christ was created with purposes, assignments or missions that are set before them which not only fulfills their call but furthers and establishes the kingdom of God. Having God’s purpose identified, defined, and revealed in one’s life will bring substance, value, and relevance thus preventing one from being unduly influenced by circumstances, life issues, cultural norms, individual mindsets, and social pressures.
God’s purpose in one’s life is worked out and demonstrated on a daily basis. The challenge is many believers have a misconception of the magnitude and importance of God’s purpose. There are practical ways to activate and empower God’s purpose in and through one’s life such as caring for and nourishing one’s family, being part of and serving in a local church body, being a witness in one’s community, and being a light in the work place. “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones” (Luke 16:10a NLT).
And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28 NAS
|Posted on August 29, 2019 at 5:25 PM|
Deep in the inner being of mankind there is a longing, quest, and yearning to know and understand the significance, meaning, and defined purpose for their life. Every individual's life is designed, created, and given life by the word and breath of God with a divine purpose and destiny. God’s original intent in the creation of mankind was to share His nature, power, and plans in the design, forming, and implementing His divine purpose. “To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1 NKJV). Mankind was fully positioned and equipped to know one’s purpose until sin, rebellion, and disobedience caused a divide between God and His creation. As a result of this divide, mankind relinquished any awareness or connection between their life and the designed purpose God intended. It is important to understand that although there was the fall of mankind God’s original purpose and destiny for one’s life was not nullified, canceled or altered; however, the awareness and recognition of their purpose became hidden.
The Lord speaks in Jeremiah 29:11 NAS, “'For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.'” The word ‘plans’ means that God has thoughts, intentions, and purpose. For us today to give a future and a hope means to lead one into a relationship with Jesus Christ and the restoration and activation of God’s given purpose enabling the fulfillment of one’s destiny. When an individual accepts Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, their divine purpose and destiny is then released to fulfill God's will in their life. Every believer must realize that they were chosen before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4) and predestined according to His purpose (Ephesians 1:11) so purpose was established the moment one took their first breath. To know God’s intended purpose for one’s life requires obedience and committed action to call upon Him, come to Him, and pray.
As in many things in today’s culture, purpose has evolved into a self-centered and man-driven desire for the edification and gratification for one’s life. The importance of the origin, source, and substance of purpose has been diminished and is some cases eliminated. One’s significance, meaning, and defined purpose for life cannot be disconnected with the Creator. God created mankind and equipped them with giftings, qualities, characteristics, and abilities enabling them to activate His Word, walk in Spirit, carry out His instructions, and perform His purpose.
The LORD has made everything for his own purposes... Proverbs 16:4a NLT
|Posted on August 22, 2019 at 5:15 PM|
With everything that is transpiring in the world today including rapid change and the condition of culture, one of the greatest battles in one’s life is to remain faithful in a faithless society. Faithfulness is considered as a quality, attribute or characteristic which is attributed to both God and mankind. Someone who is faithful is true to their word, keeps their promises, honors their commitments, performs their duty, loyal to their covenant relationships, and adheres to established standards. There is a cultural challenge for any individual to exhibit a faithful lifestyle without a committed relationship with God who is the source of all faithfulness through Jesus Christ and by Holy Spirit.
Faithfulness is one of the distinguishing facets and distinctive characteristics of God’s nature. It denotes the sovereignty, steadfastness, and constancy of God in His relations with mankind and particularly with His people. God’s faithfulness is not contingent on what He does but it is who He is and He is unchangeable, immutable, and constant in keeping His covenant, promises, and Word. God is the Beginning and the End (Revelation 1:8],does not change (Malachi 3:6), and through Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8], God established the earth to all generations (Psalms 119:90); keeps covenant and lovingkindness (Deuteronomy 7:9); chose Israel (Isaiah 49:7); gave His Son, Jesus, for the redemption and salvation of mankind (John 3:16-17); and cleansed believers of all sin by the blood of Jesus, His Son (1 John 1:7).
For each believer of Jesus Christ to maintain a healthy relationship with God and be effective in the body of Christ, one must remain faithful to God’s Word, voice, Spirit, and commandments. “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37) and “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39). Faithfulness is not an option and is expected of every believer because it demonstrates God’s attributes, character, and nature in and through their life. Each believer is required as a steward in God’s kingdom to be found faithful (I Corinthians 4:2). Without faithfulness to God there can be no life in Spirit.
Remaining faithful hinges upon what one values as important combined with commitment. To remain faithful, believers should engage in life disciplines such as having holiness as a priority, holding God’s Word as true and the source of authority, relying and depending on God’s strength not man’s, staying the course regardless of the storms and issues of life, and embracing the fellowship of believers.
His lord said to him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.' Matthew 25:21 NKJV
|Posted on August 15, 2019 at 5:15 PM|
All creation and mankind long to experience authenticity, reality, and truthfulness in every aspect of life. Some of the major challenges that mankind faces today is that authenticity is met with skepticism, reality is shaped by uncertainty, truth is replaced with opinion, and ethics are substituted by what works. The makeup and design of any society and the structure of its culture must have at its very core authentic people whose lives are founded and rooted in truth, principles, and ethics derived from a source which is established in God, the Creator. For someone to be authentic one is genuine, credible, trustworthy, faithful to their beliefs, steadfast in their convictions, and confident in their nature no matter what issue or situation is in front of them. Authenticity is a powerful force rooted deeply and established by a genuine and bona fide source whose origin is supported, approved, and authorized by factual evidence and confirmed as true which stands contrary to what is false, fictitious, counterfeit, and deceptive lies.
The true source or origin of authenticity that exists in life rests in God the Father who created all things, His Son Jesus Christ who redeemed all things, and Holy Spirit who sustains all things. From the beginning God the Father invested all in His Son Jesus Christ. “For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist” (Colossians 1:16-17 NKJV). Currently in today’s culture mankind has adopted and embraced other sources created by the god of this age, the spirit of religion, and false teachers. These other sources have given way to destructive heresies, the philosophy of relative truth, false doctrines, the denial of and resistance to God’s creation, rebellion against foundational truths, and a decline and weakening of standards established by God.
The deterioration of society and instability of culture has created a deep longing and craving within man’s soul for reality to overshadow uncertainty, light to penetrate darkness, truth to replace lies, and good to triumph over evil. The only authentic force that can affect and change the prevailing culture and bring healing, restoration, wholeness, and peace is the body of Christ (the ekklesia). This authentic force is believers of Jesus Christ who have been redeemed by the blood (Ephesians 1:7), adopted as sons of God (Galatians 4:5), empowered by Holy Spirit, and called and commissioned by God to bring authenticity, reality, and truthfulness into the world, its society and culture.
There are many people who desire and attempt to live an authentic life. However, without a relationship with Jesus Christ and the indwelling of Holy Spirit, one is unable to accomplish this because there is no connection with God--His presence, Spirit or Word. It is time for every believer to allow Holy Spirit to work in their life from the inside out to mold and shape them into being an authentic force and be released into society as a bold representative and an effective witness for the kingdom of God. This can be accomplished when one puts on Christ (Galatians 3:27) and takes upon themselves the characteristics of an authentic believer. Authentic believers openly confess Jesus Christ (Matthew 10:32), walk as children of light (Ephesians 5:8), obey the commands of Jesus Christ (1 John 5:3), submit to God’s Word (1 John 2:5), walk in the Spirit (Galatians 5:25), hear the voice of Holy Spirit (Revelation 2:17), enjoy fellowship with other believers (1 John 1:7), seek first the kingdom of God (Matthew 6:33), and love the Lord with all their heart, with all their soul, and with all their mind (Matthew 22:37).
|Posted on August 8, 2019 at 4:55 PM|
Living a quality life comes from the innermost part of man. There is a perception that if the outside of man looks good then the inner quality must be good. Jesus addresses the religious leaders about the outside and inside condition of their lives in Luke 11:39-40 NAS “But the Lord said to him, 'Now you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and of the platter; but inside of you, you are full of robbery and wickedness. You foolish ones, did not He who made the outside make the inside also?'”
Mankind has learned to address the issues of life by changing their exterior conditions, presentations, life style, circumstances, relationships, atmosphere, and environment. There is a problem with this perception because it is the opposite of and contradicts God’s Word and His process of changing a person’s life from the inside by the indwelling and power of Holy Spirit. Scripture declares in Ezekiel 36:26-27 NKJV, "I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them." A change from the outside of one's life can only change what is around them and is always temporary where an internal spiritual transformation is full of life and everlasting. Scriptures declare that out of the center of your being (heart) will spring the issues of life.
But as it is written: "Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him." But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. 1 Corinthians 2:9-12 NKJV
Only Holy Spirit, who is the Spirit of life (Romans 8:2) and who dwells in each believer (Romans 8:11, I Corinthians 3:16), can bring full assurance to a person (I Thessalonians 1:5) upon the acceptance of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior to a quality life full of righteousness, peace, joy, victory, and the fulfillment of all that God has purposed and destined.
(This blog post was previously posted in March, 2015.)