Posted tagged ‘Add new tag’

A greater works generation, resting in God

January 9, 2015

Hebrews 4:10 “For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His.”

As I was reflecting on this verse, God told me that it was connected with the restoration of the tabernacle of David Amos 9 11-12 reiterated in Acts 15 16-17, and Christ’s millennial reign but I could not immediately see the link. What does entering into God’s rest truly mean for us individually, and also how does it relate to our generation?

It does not mean lounging around doing nothing meaningful, and waiting for God to do something wonderful. It requires us to be proactive in drawing closer to God, surrendering everything to Him so we are ready to be His vessels with no limits on what He will do through us for His glory. It requires courage to obey Him as we respond to His call on our lives.

When Christ returns to rule and reign for 1000 years known as The Millennial reign, there will be glorious restoration with God’s redemptive purposes for mankind manifest. There will surely be 24/7 praise and worship as people from all over the Earth come to the temple to worship Him, not just during the feast of tabernacles yearly. The kingdoms of this world will literally have “become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ” (Revelation 11 15)

Today we see the tension and dichotomy of this glorious future increasingly breaking in now bringing shakings and birth pangs as the forces of darkness try to resist the inevitable conclusion of Christ’s return. Before He comes back however there is an opportunity for His bride to taste the powers of the age to come as Heaven invades Earth, and God tabernacles in us to bring in the final harvest of souls. That is why Hebrews tells us that we have to cease from our own works.

Psalm 90 verse 4 and 2 Peter 3 verse 8 state that a day is “as a thousand years” to the Lord. In reflecting on the millennial reign of Christ, it is interesting that Hebrews 4 verse 4 refers to God resting on the seventh day. It is well known that given that we are approximately 6,000 years from Adam, each 1,000 years is considered to represent a day, with the 1,000 year reign considered to be the third day since Christ was on the Earth, and the seventh day since mankind was created. So entering into God’s rest means allowing Him to tabernacle in us, with all of our agendas that do not align with His having to go. Entering into his sabbath rest means that our works must be His works. As He will rule and reign when He returns, we allow Him now to rule and reign in our hearts and lives so that we can manifest His Kingdom, His glory, Heaven, the future breaking in to the present!

Jesus tells us in John 14 12 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.”

To be a greater works generation we have to cease from our own works and allow Him to do His works in us and through us. This includes the fruit of the character of Christ, but also signs, wonders, and miracles. What is considered supernatural now will be part of everyday life in the 1000 reign of Christ on Earth. With satan defeated and bound during this time God’s people will enjoy rest from their enemies.

We cease from our own works, “as God did from His.” (Hebrews 4 10)

Isaiah 11 prophecies a coming King whom the Spirit of the Lord will rest on with sevenfold attributes reigning in a period of peace and prosperity. While this might have been partially fulfilled with the reign of King Hezekiah, it is clearly prophesying about the coming Messiah Jesus and the Millennial reign where it will find its true fulfilment:

“The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.” Isaiah 11 6-9

As a result of The Holy Spirit coming to rest on and in Jesus during His baptism (Matthew 3 16) He fulfilled His earthly ministry of demonstrating the Kingdom before dying and rising again. As born again believers Holy Spirit lives in us. We are being “builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit” (Ephesians 2 22) to bring The Kingdom of God to Earth, even a foretaste of Isaiah 11 before Jesus returns as the knowledge of His glory inhabits The Earth. There are gifts of The Spirit such as the word of wisdom and working of miracles that are available for believers but there is an even higher calling to be in such union with God that like forerunners such as William Branham there is a fuller expression of The Spirit’s attributes through Him abiding in us. Consequently we could function in abiding knowledge, abiding counsel, and abiding might rather than just the gifts. God will raise up an army of radical laid down lovers of Jesus Christ who will operate in this way. This is available to all believers though not all will respond to this call.

We can enter the finished work of Christ, the glorious future of the millennial reign and ultimately eternity now in terms of how we minister here because we are citizens of Heaven now (Philippians 3 20). We are all called to minister, we belong to Him, and we are His representatives here on Earth with a commission to make disciples, and a mandate to do greater works. That is exciting, awesome, but also challenging. It requires complete surrender, humility, boldness, faith, and above all the Father’s love flowing in us and through us to touch those hurting and lost. They can experience His manifest power revealing Jesus and the gospel to them.

The restoration of the tabernacle of David in Amos and Acts is not so much talking about restoring a building in terms of its prophetic relevance to us now, but ultimately restoration of intimate communion with God as His Church allow Him to abide and rest in them. As we rest in God, so He rests in us, and His Spirit transforms the world around us.

We only have to turn on the news to see another tragedy that can bring discouragement, sadness, and fear, but rather than be intimidated and sidetracked out of God’s purposes for us now, we should appreciate that the darkness represents an opportunity prophesied in God’s Word for us to shine in. Increasingly people are confused about why the world seems to be getting darker, but there is a hunger for Jesus Christ, the “desire of all nations” to give them the answers they seek, even if they do not yet know it. Many people are ready to encounter Jesus through us:

Isaiah 60 1-3 “Arise, shine; for your light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon you. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon you, and His glory shall be seen upon you. And the Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising.”

Romans 8 19 “For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God.”

This is not a time to be passive, lukewarm, and neutral, but to press in to God, most of all because of the blissful union of our relationship with Him, the reason we were created, but also because His blood was shed for souls to come to know Him through you and me. We must allow His light to shine in the darkness.

Todd Bentley, Lakeland revival, God TV, and The Dudley outpouring

July 12, 2008

Update January 19th 2013: In the light of history it’s easy to be critical of the Lakeland outpouring, and although mistakes were made, it must not be forgotten that for the most part it was an authentic and powerful move of God that saw many awesome testimonies fully documented. I stand by the original article I wrote in 2008 that you can see here in that I believe God’s desire through Lakeland was to empower the church for harvest. Was there an excessive focus on the evangelist on the platform? Yes and as a result I believe that that hindered what God wanted to do through it. History shows that in past revivals The Church squandered golden opportunities it was given to be restored to its Early Church paradigm of moving in love, unity and great power to see a glorious harvest of souls, and go beyond what even the early church walked in. The same mistakes must not be made again. Too many people look to the minister at the front and feel inadequate. This comes down to a misperception of their identity. Higher levels of authority are conditional and come out of intimacy with The Lord, but every believer has an authority that comes purely out of knowing their identity in Christ. There is only one Kingdom worth seeing built and that belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ.

In defense of Todd I believe that he understood what God was wanting to do in Lakeland and that is why he would stay late into the night to make sure that everyone who wanted it received an impartation to take back to their city, region, and nation. Many did use what God gave them, but sadly I believe that a big opportunity was missed for reasons mentioned earlier. Paul Keith Davis referred to the Lakeland revival as being the last of an old order. I would agree, but I believe it was meant to be the beginning of something as well. What is encouraging are some prophecies relating to the apostolic for our new season that we can embrace and see His Kingdom come. With that in mind, here is my archived entry from July 2008:

2008/07/12
Let’s look at the bigger picture again because it does tie in with posts in this blog that document through video footage miraculous healings on our streets.

Many people are not convinced that this new move of God is genuine. As a result, there has been criticism. However, much of this comes from people who have never been to any of the meetings. I’ve been to Lakeland, and many evening meetings in Dudley, and I can tell you that without a shadow of doubt this is an authentic move of God.

With over 100 nights of revival in Florida, initially breaking out at a conference in Ignited Church, Lakeland, Florida pastored by Stephen Strader with evangelist Todd Bentley and Fresh Fire Ministries, and over 75 nights in my church Revival Fires Dudley pastored by Trevor Baker, people from all over the world are coming to experience God’s glory presence, receive miracle healings, and receive impartation. The question people are asking is what is God doing? What is His sovereign purpose for pouring out His Spirit so powerfully?

One of the most notable features of this move is that people are getting more intimate with God through worship, especially as they experience His manifest presence, and also people are getting physically healed. There are many testimonies of this that you can find on the internet through going to http://www.revivalfires.org.uk http://www.ignitedchurch.com http://www.freshfire.ca and http://www.god.tv Miracles bring glory to God. They point to Jesus, and if people look to the minister who has prayed for people and not The Lord Jesus Christ then they are missing the point. Miracles of physical healing demonstrate the veracity of Jesus Christ, and tell us that God loves people, and sickness is not His will for our lives. They also lead people to give their lives to Jesus Christ. I’ve found that when I’ve been out ministering in the streets in Dudley and elsewhere that the demonstration of The Spirit’s power is far more effective that any “enticing words of man’s wisdom”. ( 1 Corinthians 2 4-5) , and you can see from the testimonies and video footage in this blog that that bears true. When I don’t minister in my own strength and God shows up and does what He wants to do, the results are so much better! We need The Word and The Spirit together, not sterile religion devoid of a genuine encounter with a loving and all powerful God.

I agree with what I’ve heard from Todd Bentley, my pastor Trevor Baker, John Arnott, Mark Stibbe, Jerame Nelson, Charlie Robinson, John Laframboise, Patricia King, Bob Jones, Paul Keith Davis, Keith Miller, and many other notable speakers that this revival, this outpouring is for the harvesting of souls. It is to empower the church for harvest. Yes we need God’s love and compassion. However, we need something that will show people that Jesus Christ is God, and the only way to Heaven. We have an inheritance as the body of Christ that we have neglected for generations. We have believed the lie that miracles were just for the early church, or at best the special apostles, but the bible never said that. Why is it that people who start stepping out in obedience to God to pray for people with signs, wonders, and miracles following are then persecuted by the church? People are accused of trying to build their own thing, or not operating in God’s power. People often get jealous, or if they can’t understand something or believe in it, will attack it.

It needs to be emphasised that this move of God is for all the body of Christ. A powerless church is not going to be effective. With so much pornography, violence, and degradation available on the internet, isn’t it time that we as the body of Christ showed people The Kingdom of Heaven invading earth? I’d like to see the internet full of videos of ordinary people being used by God doing great exploits in His name (Daniel 11 : 32 “And the people who know their God will be strong, and do mighty exploits.”) Do we want to see genuine revival in our community? Then let’s seek God and pray fervently, but also take the fire out there with much love and compassion onto the streets, our communities, in our workplace, amongst our family, friends, and neighbours. Bobby Conner says “talk is cheap. Evidence persuades.” Some years ago God lead me to start a website jesusevidence.org to show people that Jesus is real. I started off by collecting historical documentation about Jesus. It went a long way to proving His existence in history. I realised that I needed to demonstrate His divinity on the website too though. God showed me that evidence of His supernatural works today would be very compelling. I started researching into other phenomena such as the bible codes, the Turin Shroud, near death experiences, and signs, wonders, and miracles. This lead me on a fascinating journey of exploration. I would have found it difficult to imagine that I’d be praying for people and seeing Jesus miraculously heal them in front of my eyes and even on camera for me to put on the website to glorify His name.
The simple truth is that we live in a sceptical world that are tired of religion. People want a tangible encounter with God! When people get miraculously healed, or receive a word of knowledge that could have only come from God, or just experience His manifest presence then it often softens their hearts, and brings conviction to save them. That’s why we owe it to the lost to introduce them to the reality of who God is, and The Kingdom of Heaven. Testimonies glorify Jesus Christ, stir people’s faith, and show them He is real.

I would encourage people to continue to tune into God TV, and watch the Florida outpouring meetings. You can also view meetings at Revival Fires Church Dudley on the internet live.
Let’s all be encouraged to take a risk for Jesus. He died for you and me. Let’s give Him everything we have, and remember how valuable every person is to Him. Let’s also love and encourage each other to step into all that God has for each one of us. The Lord is building His Kingdom, and to Him alone be all the glory, the honour, and the praise!

Dudley outpouring : many miracles on the streets!

May 15, 2008

On Saturday 10th May our daughter Sorcha got healed of poor eyesight. She no longer has to wear her glasses! We had read testimonies of similar healings in Lakeland Florida and our faith level was raised as we prayed for her, and Jesus touched her powerfully.
It’s been an eventful week in Dudley town centre in this outpouring! On Sunday I prayed for a man with arthritis in his hand and arm and he felt God’s presence, and was healed. He could move his arm in a way he hadn’t been able to before, praise God! See footage below and then read on!
God enabled me to lead two men to Christ, and another man testified of healing from arthritis. Also within the last few days, I was sitting on a bench reluctant to talk to a man about Christ, but had an opportunity to pray for his arthritis. Although he didn’t seem to receive anything instantaneously, he wanted me to pray for his wife when she came out of the shop. She had been suffering with constant pain from arthritis in her twisted spine for a long time. As I prayed for her she felt an “unwordly” feeling, the pain left her and she felt healed! They both accepted Jesus Christ as their Saviour and Lord!
On Tuesday it was a struggle as I went to the market place. Although I led a man to Christ, there were no immediate miracle healings, although salvation is the greatest miracle. I knew that I needed to go back to the prayer closet. The next day I had to go into town to get another key cut. I went back to my usual place behind the mall and prayed for a lady who got healed of suspected arthritis and then led her and her friend to Christ. I then ventured into the centre of the market place and prayed for a man who received tangible healing from arthritis.
I heard that John Wesley had preached in Dudley too, so I can claim an ancient well as well as the new one! In fact John Wesley said something interesting about Dudley. Although he wasn’t that happy with Dudley, referring to it as a “den of lions”, he also maintained about it that “the last will be first.” In terms of what God is pouring into the UK at the moment, that very much seems to be the case.
I prayed for a man who had had his left ear drum burst as a result of his cousin putting a pin into his ear when he was 5 which had made his stone deaf in that ear since. That was possibly over 50 years ago. When I prayed for him he told me he could hear out of his left ear for the first time since aged 5, and his other ear which had required a hearing aid was improved. In fact he said things were sounding ever increasingly louder! Praise God for this glorious miracle. Jesus is so alive in Dudley. Our meetings in Revival Fires Church Dudley have now reached the 19th consecutive day. If you want this impartation or need a miracle healing get to one of the evening meetings here. Go to http://www.revivalfires.org.uk for more details.