From April 5th, 2020
~~~ Things are not going to return to “normal”, they cannot. Normal as we knew it was not what was needed before and it will not work going forward. The church was never meant to be housed in Cathedrals and isolated from the world waiting for them to come join us. With the “tearing of the veil” the time of the earthly temple ended as the people of God became living temples of the Holy Spirit of Christ. We were sent out into the world to expand His kingdom. The command was that we would “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cure those with leprosy, and cast out demons. Give as freely as you have received!” Matthew 10:8. I can find multiple scriptures to reinforce this command but none to revoke it.
~~~ We are entering into a new season and in this season, we must be alert and aware of the days we are living in. Do you see the world in panic around us, this is crazy? In thinking about this the other day on the way to work it occurred to me “why do I find this amazing”? I have believed for a long time we were in the last days. I have been more certain in recent years we were nearing the return of Christ so why am I surprised to see these things. Pestilence has the entire world paralyzed and frozen with fear. If I believe that we are going to experience “birth Pangs” of things to come then I should expect this type of thing and more. This will pass but there will be other labor pains to follow. We as the people of God must be ready and not shaken as they occur. Our Lord told us “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33.
~~~ We must remember and take action in response to the promise given in 2 chronicles 7:14 “Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land”. This direction is for the people of God to turn away from their sins and seek His face. We hold the keys to turning the course of events around. We are supposed to be salt and light but we have been more focused on the things of this world. We need to repent, really repent and return to the one we claim to serve and stop emulating the world (Rom 12:2) The following verse applies now and we need to heed its command.
11 This is all the more urgent, for you know how late it is; time is running out. Wake up, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. So remove your dark deeds like dirty clothes, and put on the shining armor of right living. 13 Because we belong to the day, we must live decent lives for all to see. Don’t participate in the darkness of wild parties and drunkenness, or in sexual promiscuity and immoral living, or in quarreling and jealousy. 14 Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires. Rom 13:11-14
~~~ We must dress for battle but you cannot put on the armor of God while you are still AWOL from Active Duty. We have not been actively serving the Lord. With our lips we have served him while our hearts have been far from Him. The world is suffering and this could be our finest moment as we rise up to serve our King in purity and undivided devotion. How do we serve a King who has risen from the dead, commands the course of all creation and holds our very breath in his hands? Pastor Troy Brewer recently preached a series of messages titled “Lead, follow or get out of the way”. This is a word directed to the backslidden church of Laodicea (Rev. 3:14-22), a word to us. We have a call and a duty of service to the Lord that we have not been faithful in.
~~~ Passover is coming this week and in it we see the promise of God protecting the people covered by the blood and causing death to Passover their homes. There are prophecies to the effect that we will see the tide turn with Passover. The question to believers is what will your life look like after this has passed on. We cannot go back to normal in our worship services, our prayer meetings, fellowship and study time. Things must change. I suggest that it is time for the Glorious Church to arise. Passover begins on the evening of the 8th and runs through the 16th. I sense that a deep and prayerful Spirit led study of the book of Ephesians is in order on the other side of Passover. We need Jesus to redefine and reset our “Normal”.
Ephesians 4:11-24 (NLT)
11 Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. 12 Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. 13 This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ.
14 Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. 15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. 16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.
17 With the Lord’s authority I say this: Live no longer as the Gentiles do, for they are hopelessly confused. 18 Their minds are full of darkness; they wander far from the life God gives because they have closed their minds and hardened their hearts against him. 19 They have no sense of shame. They live for lustful pleasure and eagerly practice every kind of impurity.
20 But that isn’t what you learned about Christ. 21 Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, 22 throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. 23 Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24 Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.