Believe or Receive, Healing & GRACE
March 10th, 2007
As I quieted myself today, the Lord began speaking to me…
There is a rift among many as to the salvation of those in the church based on how we word our evangelism. Do we surrender to Christ, or do we RECEIVE HIM, accept Him? Do we repent, or just accept or RECEIVE HIM ? Some really fight about these things, and even for myself, I know that the gospel message is so important and I’ve been troubled too over the way it is sometimes represented. Some say, Jesus preached repentance, NOT love, and they cite all the passages about repentance, which are as numerous as the ones in which He demonstrates His love to soften hearts, or tells parables about His love to soften hearts. For how many times did he heal and deliver people demonstrating a kingdom of power and love ? Yet we fight and judge & criticize.
Yesterday in listening to the gospel of John which is so precious to me, it says in chapter one, John 1:12 But to as many as did receive and welcome Him, He gave the authority (power, privilege, right) to become the children of God, that is, to those who believe in (adhere to, trust in, and rely on) His name-- [Isa 56:5.] AMP
I looked up receive:
lambano (lam-ban'-o); a prolonged form of a primary verb, which is use only as an alternate in certain tenses; to take (in very many applications, literally and figuratively [properly objective or active, to get hold of; KJV - accept, be amazed, assay, attain, bring, when I call, catch, come on (X unto), forget, have, hold, obtain, receive (X after), take (away, up). [ from Strongs ]
So when he says RECEIVED, he means really “got a hold of” which to me says understanding comes, and realization of our need for Him. To ACCEPT ! - Meaning to accept HIS TRUTH, to believe on Him, which is explained in the amplified, to ADHERE TO, to TRUST IN, to RELY on, Praise the Lord ! So since Western America doesn’t know Greek and Hebrew, however we put it, we need to explain terms, and show that REPENTENCE is required, to receive, accept or believe on Him, and that believing or receiving or accepting HIM, means accepting His TRUTHS, accepting that we must learn to TRUST fully in HIM, RELY on HIM, and ADHERE to HIM, meaning having close relationship with HIM so that we may OBEY HIM.
I thought to myself, since it bothered me what one person said, that Jesus didn’t preach love to get people to turn to Him - to look at the many instances which came to my mind of His love shared. Because lately He has been urging me to read more of the Word looking for examples of His love, because of my desire to have more of His love.
The first thought that cames to mind, was how at the wedding of Cana, where HE seemed reluctant to do a miracle at the suggestion of His mother, yet HE DID IT ! He demonstrated His care and concern for all there, and turned water into wine – not only wine, but the best wine. And it says after He did this,[demonstrating His glory], that His disciples then BELIEVED ON HIM. So His love in doing this caused them to draw closer in belief. We know they didn’t fully “believe” because of many instances afterwards of unbelief by them. Had they repented ? Had they “received Him “ ? Yes, or they wouldn’t have left everything and followed HIM. Yet they needed ALL the unbelief removed in their hearts. TRUST is something that GROWS with RELATIONSHIP. We cannot TRUST fully till all the unbelief, all the doubts, all the fears, are removed.
Peter as an Example
Remember that it was Peter later, whose fear prevented him from admitting to fellowship, and being one of His disciples. So even after spending three years with Jesus, he was still fighting his fears, and doubts. We know that he fought doubt yet, because even after he had seen Jesus risen from the dead, he went out fishing on the lake, returning to his old past time, instead of TRUSTING in Jesus and doing the work HE called him to ! And in that incident out on the lake, he found no fish…rather symbolic for what doubt does, as you cannot catch “fish” without faith and confidence in GOD. Then Jesus says to them, cast your net on the other side of the boat. So CHANGE DIRECTION FELLOWS, and throw out the net. THEN they caught 153 fish. Strange number don’t you think ?
Lets look at that. It is the symbolic number for REVIVAL/AWAKENING.
100 stands for God’s elections of grace, children of promise, Liberty,
50 stands for Holy Spirit, Pentacost, Jubilee, Anointing
3 stands for Resurrection, Divine fullness, perfection, Witness, Godhead, conform,
resurrection power over sin, solid attributes
In looking at what came next, with Jesus’ asking Peter three times, Do you love Me?
It would seem that Peter might have felt shame over his saying he would stand by him and never deny Him, then doing just that when tested. And even after Jesus appeared to them, and breathed on them the Holy Spirit, in his heart, he may have felt yet some unworthiness or fear over the task ahead. So Jesus, tenderly but persistently, questions him, and tells him three times, FEED MY SHEEP/LAMBS.
In other words, Peter, even if your love is not yet perfected, I HAVE CHOSEN YOU
To do what I told you, and have not changed My mind. Maybe three times he asked to show him HE WOULD GET POWER OVER SIN, HE WOULD BE AN OVERCOMER !
In other words, even after blowing it again and again, MY GRACE IS STILL THERE FOR YOU, even if you aren’t perfected completely. And we know that even after this, there were times when Peter still needed more sanctifying. EVEN after PENTACOST, he was still caught up in prejudice, and misunderstanding the love of God, for he wanted to require circumcision for the gentiles, and PAUL rebuked him. He also got his vision on the roof, of the different unclean foods, and was told by the Lord to not reject what HE had called clean. Then tells him to go to Cornelius’ house and loose the Spirit of God on the GENTILES.
Peter is such an awesome example of the GRACE OF GOD for BELIEVERS. Yes he wanted to walk in holiness and righteousness, and God KNEW HIS HEART, that even though his flesh was not yet perfectly crucified, nor his understanding of His grace and love unperfected, yet, HE LOVED PETER, because HE knew Peter’s heart despite his failings was to do good, even when his flesh resisted. And HE knew what it takes to get religion out of a man’s heart !
This something PAUL rather earnestly grew to find out himself, for in the beginning of his writings in Romans, he talks about the struggle between flesh and spirit. Later in Philippians, while in jail he exclaims, I can do ALL things THROUGH CHRIST WHO strengthens me. He has learned dependency on JESUS, and HOLY SPIRIT, and not just what he knows of the law, or has been taught thus far. He learned how to CAST ALL HIS CARES UPON HIM. He knows now he can do nothing apart from HIM. Remember that to BELIEVE means to also be able to RELY on HIM. OH HOW MARVELOUS IS THE GRACE OF GOD FOR THOSE WHO BELIEVE, RECEIVE, ACCEPT HIM AND WHO ARE TRYING TO OBEY HIM in their hearts !
His Faithfulness to those who BELIEVE
HE IS FAITHFUL TO THOSE WHO BELIEVE on HIM. HE is reliable and caring, but the change comes with RELATIONSHIP, not the striving of our flesh. NOTE when PETER got his revelation about the gentiles, it was when he was RESTING on the roof.
Likewise, we need to rest in HIM to receive what we need, and trust will grow, love will grow, sanctification will come, resting in His presence, and obeying what He gives us to do day by day as we keep consistent communion with Him through worship, praise, prayer, adoration, meditation & the Word.
The Lord began to speak to me more then…
When people know how much He loves them, not just with their minds, but with their hearts, it makes them fall in love with Him, and more willing to obey out of love, not obligation to the law, which is striving. When HE treats us with GRACE and MERCY rather than harshly, since He took our punishments for us, then it overcomes the fear and shame in us. It undoes the enemy’s strongholds over us, like hopeless, and guilt as well, which is why LOVE is the GREATEST Paul said. Only when the enemy is kicked off of our soul can we obey perfectly ! This takes HIS GRACE – His Power to be and do; overcoming power. The immature sanctified soul which still has strongholds will still struggle with obedience though they TRY to obey.
Carnal Thinking is Death
Man’s reasoning is the enemy of the Spirit that yearns within us. It is carnal thinking that has to be removed. That takes RELIANCE on HIS THINKING, HIS WISDOM, HIS opinions over ours. This is a daily battle for the mind which is only renewed by the washing of the Word. Truth will only set you free if you know it, receive it into your heart and understand by your spirit how to apply it. Many read the truth for years like the Pharisees did, but never “get it”, because it only brings conviction or understanding by the SPIRIT OF GOD.
To be carnally minded is death, so if we walk in carnal thinking we aren’t walking in life that He intended but rather “death” HE IS LIFE. Life only comes through HIM. ALL life came through HIM. Our own righteousness is as filthy rags it says. He IS our Righteousness it also says. What does that mean ? We seldom walk in perfect righteousness because sanctification is a PROCESS. We are putting on the new man, and putting away the old man as we process the Word of TRUTH, and are changed by His presence.
Putting on His Righteousness
So we put on the breast plate of HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS [ through the blood of Jesus], and the shield of FAITH and the rest of the armor, that keeps our hearts and minds protected from the lies of the enemy. So when he starts speaking lies like, “I
feel depressed”, we can take that thought captive knowing the WORD and say “ That’s a lie, in HIS presence is fullness of JOY”,[ Psalm 16:11] and we can go put on the GARMENT OF PRAISE for the spirit of heaviness [depression] [ Is 61:3] that is coming against us, and it will take off running. For the Word says, Resist the devil and he will flee ! [ James 4:7] I remember so clearly a day when I was a new Christian, and depression was heavy on me that morning, so remembering Is 61:3, I went into the living room and sat on the floor by the stereo and put on my favorite song, and began to sing, and suddenly the jacket to the tape which was setting on the speaker over to the left of me, and not near me, suddenly FLEW off the speaker.
At that moment, it confirmed to me that it was a spirit bugging me, which made me laugh, and I continued praising the Lord. I can’t say I was always consistent, but that experience confirmed what I had been taught.
Introspection vs Conviction
Introspection is sometimes counterproductive because we get “off focus”, looking at self, which is ok, but if we RUMINATE on all that’s wrong with us it will invite the enemy to pummel us with condemnation, guilt, and self condemnation, self criticism and worthlessness leading to depression. This will temporarily separate us from God, for we aren’t walking in TRUTH or by the SPIRIT. When we “see” and our own eyes are opened to our own sin, through conviction, there is always hope, and we need then to
Repent, Renounce, & Rebuke, asking God to remove any of the emotional roots that that demon is feeding off of. We need to ask Him to show us any unforgiveness in our heart attached to all this, including unforgiveness towards ourselves, as sometimes we forgive others, but don’t shut the door, on the enemy, because we haven’t forgiven ourselves.
We also need to ask Him to show us any VOWS, pronouncements, or JUDGMENTS we’ve made of others or ourselves that we need to renounce so that we can renounce, repent, and nullify them so the door will be completely closed on the evil one’s access to our soul. A vow or judgment binds us to the carnal words spoken because our words are PROPHECY over us or others. They bring life or death.
Prov 18:21 NKJV Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who
love it will eat its fruit.
Here is an example. Saul says to Jonathon…
1 Sam 20:31 NKJV For as long as the son of Jesse lives on the earth, you shall not be established, nor your kingdom. Now therefore, send and bring him to me, for he shall surely die."
What happened in the end to Saul and Jonathon ? They both died. Saul vowed, and it came unto him instead.
Let’s say our vow was a common one that many make when rejected, “ I will never allow a man [ or woman ] to hurt me again”. That is a carnal thought and against the death to self Jesus calls us to, and it will BIND US to actually continue in drawing hurtful people to us again and again. It is SELF PROTECTIVE vs relying on God to protect us.
And it puts a wall around our hearts of self defensive pride. Remember how Peter said, “Lord I will NEVER deny You !” so adamantly and Jesus said , sorry Peter, but this very night before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times ! Peter spoke out of pride, and the very thing he VOWED NOT to do, he did the opposite of. Jesus was only telling him what HE knew would happen.
We are cautioned in James 4:13-16 NKJV Do Not Boast About Tomorrow
Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit"; 14 whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow . For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. 15 Instead you ought to say, "If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that." 16 But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.
HE says all such boasting is EVIL ! Why ? It’s coming from your fleshly mind. The soul is to be driven by the WIND of the SPIRIT of God, not your own will, your thinking or your plans. Also we are not to brag, walking in pride, assuming anything.
As James said, we are but a vapor, here today, then vanishing away. We don’t know what our life will be or whether it will be tomorrow. Jesus said,
John 3:8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but
cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born
of the Spirit." NKJV
The Holy Spirit is the Ruach, the Wind that blows us, guides us, leads us. We are to say as James, IF GOD WILLS, then we will do this or that. Or God says, this or that. But we are not to think we know everything that will happen to us. We are bought and paid with the blood of Jesus. When we are humble, then God gives GRACE for all that we need.
1 Cor 7:23 NKJV You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men.
So we are not to bow either to man’s will, but to the Spirit’s will. When two are listening to the same spirit, then they will be in agreement if they are meant to be together.
THE LOVE STARVED
Priscilla Van Sutphin
years ago the Lord spoke this. It took some comtemplation on my part to receive it fully.
"I sit and I wait. I sit and I wait to see the heart that will turn to Me, the heart that will minister to me! I've said, ' He that waits upon the Lord shall renew their strength, They shall mount up with wings like eagles. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint.' Isaiah 40:31 NKJ
The anointing brings strength for service as well as power gifting. There is such an impulsive nature to the flesh. It seeks it's own desires. It does not want to wait. It gets bored. It wants what it wants now, when it wants it. It is self-dependent. The spirit of man must wait on the Lord in order to depend on Him.
In order for the spirit to rule over the flesh, the will (soul) must be free of demonic bondages. If the soul is unhealed in an area; there can be no victory over the flesh in that area affected.
Luke 11:34-36 ' The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness. Therefore, take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness. If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, the whole body will be full of light, as when the bright shining of a lamp gives you light.'
All areas must receive nurturing to be functioning normally. The body must have food. The spirit must have 'spirit' food, and the soul of man must also have food (the Word). The mind (soul realm) must also see and understand TRUTH. The will must yield to the spirit of man (receive truth) and the emotions can defeat the will if they are un-nurtured in love.
So many today are love-starved. They have received all of the wrong kinds of love; conditional types, like perfectionism, or cold-love, rejection, or abuse, or NONE....as in neglect; absence of love. Neglect is a REFUSED love as much as rejection and abuse. Without love, men or women are emotionally starved which can lead to death of all kinds (spiritual, emotional, physical).
This is why Ecclesiastes says " Love is as strong as death".
Touch is nurturing to the flesh, but also to the emotions and intellect. Without enough of it, we are dysfunctional. That's why even pets can provide love that heals our emotions- meets the needs of our soul realm.
Love is gentle. Love is kind. Love is not proud or puffed up. It does not compete with another. Love rejoices in another’s victories, joys and accomplishments. LOVE conquers all.
No man can live without a heart. The heart is central to the body. It brings nourishment to all parts of the body, to every cell via the cardiovascular system.
Feed the body the right foods and it grows and is sustained with life. In order for the spirit and soul to receive life it must receive proper nourishment as well. It must receive the manifest love of GOD, and the Word of God to nurture the soul, and it is important for all parts to receive physical nurturing as well.
The church and the world have been devastated by wars, warring of the flesh, the spirit and the body. I come to bring soul peace, as you learn to trust in ME and get set free and healed, there is more and more peace of spirit and soul which leads to peace of body as well.
' My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me' I said. Likewise as you seek my FACE - you get illumination and direction, and as you obey....your soul can find peace."
This was from our loving Abba. We are about to be challenged in our churches and on our streets as we go out, with the outcasts, the unlovely, the jeered at, and the many who are love starved. We must act in love....not in religious judging of appearances. Many whom we will be challenged to love will be the unloveable. Those whose habits, and character are unloveable. But as we minister the love of JESUS through our arms outstretched...God will pour into us HIS COMPASSION AND LOVE if we ask. The youth who will be among the most of whom we minister to....will know if we are judging, or disgusted with them. They are very astute and well-trained in discernment these days. And there is so much rejection on people that it will fully stretch our souls to reach out to them. If we don't feel up to the challenge...then maybe there is some area in our own souls that needs healing.....so that we can become more Christ-like in our emotions and character. Abba is faithful to answer when we cry out for healing....and I feel His urgency ...more like the heavy-hand of the Lord....to get our houses in order for the great revival coming. May His grace be on you to make you to be and do all HE wants you to be and do.