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Monday, December 23 2013

    "Because you say, I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing'- and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked." Revelation 3:17

    The prosperity gospel has spawned a new breed of preachers who preach a dangerous and seductive message that promotes the worship and devotion to fleshly lusts and devotion to men and not to God! It sounds good and it definitely looks good, why, who wouldn't want to drive around in a Bentley, wear a diamond encrusted Rolex, have a six figure income, million dollar digs and an entourage of yes-men, body guards and stooges to do your dirty work? In the TV show The Preachers of LA, these so called "Bishops of Bling" are portrayed as men of God held in high esteem because of their ability to draw a crowd and preach the word of Goaud! (a Pentecostal two syllable word for God)

    Poor old Jesus wouldn't have held a candle to these boys who jump and sway the masses with their new, all about me gospel of get all you can, and can all you get! No talk of self denial, sacrifice and death by crucifixion, and oh no, don't mention the blood because it will scare the big tithers away! Keep the drama flowing and the image gleaming in the people's eyes, blinding them to any glimpse of truth, why, someone might accidentally get saved in this madness. The whole nation and even most parts of the civilized world have been led astray by this perverted and dangerous gospel that ultimately denies the word of God and nullifies the redeeming work of the cross of Christ. No repentance, no forgiveness, no forgiveness, no salvation, and so a multitude of lost church folks emerges who worship man and the promotion of self and not God. Charlatans, snake oil salesmen and false profits have infiltrated the true church of the living God and replaced the basic principles of discipleship with the art of salesmanship and false signs and lying wonders.

    With the rise of this brood of vipers, the true church of the Lord Jesus Christ has been polluted with false doctrine, a perverted and dangerous gospel, and the solid rock of true revelation has been lost to a generation who have chosen to follow these false shepherds onto the broad road that leads to destruction and damnation! The world has seen this travesty and the church has been made into a laughingstock for mockers to poke fun at anything that resembles the ministry of the Lord Jesus, making it hard for the true believer to preach the gospel and make disciples. What is the real tragedy is the fact that very few have even dared to renounce this bunch of false prophets and regain the spotless image of the true Bride of Christ, the most powerful entity in the universe! 

     "Thus says the Lord God to the shepherds: Woe to the shepherds of Israel who feed themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flocks? "You eat the fat and clothe yourselves with the wool; you slaughter the fatlings, but you do not feed the flock. "The weak you have not strengthened, nor have you healed those who were sick, nor bound up the broken, nor brought back what was driven away, nor sought what was lost; but with force and cruelty you have ruled them." Ezekiel 34:2-4

A DEN OF THIEVES

    Then Jesus went into the temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. And He said to them, "It is written, 'My house shall be called a house of prayer,' but you have made it a den of thieves.' " Matthew 21:12,13

    What do you think Jesus would do today if He walked into one of our shining multi-million dollar sanctuaries filled with book stores, CD's and coffee shops, not to mention our smooth merchandising tactics for selling anything from water from the Jordan river to anointing oil from Jerusalem. Why you can get anything you want from these new on-line super stores for Jesus, from crosses to crafts, even pictures of our Lord Himself, but what would He would do with all of this nonsense? I can tell you one thing, that's why He isn't in most of our assemblies, because of all the hype and promotion of things pertaining to rotten, stinking fleshly desires and lust! 

    God's holy bride has gone a whoring after the world and defiled herself with lusts and pleasures, forgetting Who her Husband is, she has spread her legs to the world! There is absolutely no respect nor honor for God or His Word in most of our services and His presence has long since gone from our assemblies filled with half-hearted pew-sitters and seekers, who if they heard one anointed gospel message they would run for the hills in fear of the convicting power of God's Holy Spirit. Just say it ain't so, but the proofs in the pudding, the reality is this: we have grieved the Holy Spirit away because of our worldly attitude and our ungodly handling of the things of God and we have invited the world into our assemblies for the sake of church growth and have made no attempt to make disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ!

    There is absolutely no fear of God, nor reverence for His presence as we waltz in to our comfortable auditoriums, sipping our Starbucks coffee and flippantly joking and talking about our success in business, sports or anything else but spiritual things. Our kids have no respect for God or their elders and sit in the back and mock and joke about whatever, being handed over by their parents to un-trained and in some cases lost babysitters who entertain them with ungodly music and games to hold their attention. Do you think God doesn't see, or grieve over our excessive devotion to the world and its ways? It's no wonder our children are committing violent acts of aggression, mass murdering their peers and teachers and committing suicide by the thousands, even adolescents who are making suicide pacts with one another out of boredom. May God have mercy on us!

    "Will you steal, murder, commit adultery, swear falsely, burn incense to Baal,, and walk after other gods whom you do not know, and then come and stand before Me in this house which is called by My name, and say, 'We are delivered to do all these abominations'? "Has this house which is called by My name, become a den of thieves in your eyes? Behold, I, have seen it," says the Lord." Jeremiah 7:9-11

ICHABOD, THE GLORY HAS DEPARTED

    "But go now to My place which was in Shiloh, where I set My name at the first, and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of My people Israel." Jeremiah 7:12

    The prophet Jeremiah was speaking of what God had done to the house of Eli in Shiloh where His corrupt sons, Hophni and Phinehas were priests which was a type and shadow of the time of Jesus where the Pharisees were in charge of the temple. This story in I Samuel speaks of a true church, the mother of Samuel, Hannah who was barren until she prayed for a son, Samuel who was dedicated to God as first-fruits and represented the Christ birthed in the midst of an ungodly and corrupt priesthood.

    Because of the corruption of the sons of Eli who represent a fat, apathetic and lethargic priesthood with absolutely no spiritual discernment, and the fact that Eli would not discipline or restrain his lost sons from stealing the offerings and bedding the temple prostitutes, the whole thing was an absolute travesty like it is today in the world of mega churches and false prophets. Samuel on the other hand was a true prophet of God called to speak the un-compromised word of the living God to the backslidden nation of Israel. The danger of allowing a corrupt leadership to stand in the very Headship of the Lord Jesus Christ unabated is because it gives our enemies opportunity to enter our assemblies to rob, kill and destroy, and because we have been lied to about submitting to our authorities," they have been allowed to pollute and pervert to the point it has grieved away the Spirit of God!

    We would do well to look at what God did to Israel and the house of Eli because of the on-going corruption of the very priesthood of God. First of all the Philistines, a type of the powers of darkness were allowed access to steal the ark of God which carried His divine presence, and to defeat Israel by destroying their forces and ultimately bringing to pass the prophecy that Samuel delivered to Eli that his house would be judged, thus his sons were killed, he fell over backwards and broke his neck and died, and his daughter-in-law delivered his grandson Ichabod, (inglorious or shameful) only to die, and the glory and presence of God departed and Israel's enemies prevailed! May God have mercy on the true church of the living God today and dispel the darkness that has invaded the assemblies of the righteous by ejecting this brood of corrupt leadership from standing in the Headship of the Lord Jesus Christ!

    "And now, because you have done all these works." says the Lord, "and I spoke to you, rising up early and speaking, but you did not hear, and I called you, but you did not answer, "therefore I will do to the house which is called by My name in which you trust and to this place which I gave to you and your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh, (the house of Eli) "And I will cast you out of My sight, as I have cast out all your brethren." Jeremiah 7:13-15

Posted by: Tim Laughlin AT 09:30 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, December 16 2013

    And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. I Corinthians 2:4,5

    The supernatural dynamite power of the triune (Three in One) Godhead (The divine nature or essence of God existing in three persons) is as present today in the world as it ever was from the beginning, and it is available to anyone who is born again who would simply dare to believe! Without the power of God our faith is worthless, our salvation is non-existent, and our religion dead and lifeless. The power of God created the entire universe, the earth, and all it contains, and to believe otherwise would put us smack-dab in the midst of evolution crawling out of the swamp with the rest of the critters!

    I don't know about you, but I don't want to be categorized with swamp things, monkeys and other creatures that are thought by evolutionists to have come out of pond scum because I was created by the power of the triune Godhead. Creation is not a theory like Darwin's evolutionary plan that has polluted the minds of countless school kids, it is the realization that there is a God and He is the Creator of all! We as believers know and can stand on the facts of the word of God because we have experienced His divine power when we were born again and transformed by His power into new creations! There is simply no more argument about whether you believe in Creation or evolution because when one is born of the Spirit of God he immediately is given the gift of faith to believe by the supernatural power of revelation, given by the Holy Spirit.

    In my studies and experience in years of ministry I have come to know about three forms of power given by God and utilized by the believer as tools, weapons and signs and wonders for the work of kingdom service, and they are as follows: creative power, redemptive power and restorative power. In this message I will attempt to explain their origin and their use in regards to our ministry that we have received in the Lord and how God orchestrates it for the furtherance of His kingdom.

    For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen. Matthew 6:13

CREATIVE POWER 

    In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Then God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light. Genesis 1:1-3

    Creative power is the ability to call into existence those things that do not yet exist. For instance, in the beginning God created the universe, the earth and all it contained by calling it by faith into existence. Creating something from nothing is not magic, nor illusion as some would think, but God's word spoken in faith to accomplish that which He desires.

    If you think about all that God accomplished in six days by calling those things that are not as though they are, it will blow your earthly mind! Everything from bugs to elephants that was spoken into existence by the creative power of a triune God went totally off the charts as all things came into being by the will of the Most High, and if that wasn't enough, He took some dirt, turned it into mud and created Adam, the first human being. I would say that would certainly deserve a day off, but He was only warming up for what was about to come next, the creation of woman! When you examine what was created and the attention given to detail in every creature and every living thing on the planet, not to mention the universe, how can anyone say it was all an accidental act of nature caused by a "Big Bang?"

    Because we are made in the image of God we have inherited His divine attributes, and so we have also been given the power to create that which doesn't exist! Throughout God's word there are numerous incidents of divine creative power activated by men moved by and assisted by Holy Spirit's direction for His purpose and plan in the development of His kingdom on earth. Signs, wonders and miracles abound in the history of God's people, always displaying His creative power to mankind, proving that He is indeed a supernatural and all powerful God. One such example of man using creative power is when Ezekiel the prophet was shown a valley of dry bones, a dead and lifeless cemetery and God told him to prophesy (to speak God's word) to the bones and He would raise them up to become a great army, and so he did, and the bones came to life!

    God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did. Romans 4:17

REDEMPTIVE POWER

    For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes. Romans 1:16

    Redemptive power is God's mercy and grace given to mankind to redeem him from sin, transgression and iniquity. The power to forgive, cleanse and deliver from the bondage of sin and eternal death. Jesus, the Son of the living God was sent to earth by an act of creative power when Holy Spirit gave Mary the ability to conceive without the aid of a man, but was impregnated by supernatural means.

    Within the seed of the word of God is the divine DNA of the Most High sown into the hearts of men who will accept the terms of His salvation by surrendering their lives into His capable hands to be led by His spirit and to renounce the world and the powers of darkness. The gospel or good news is the power of God for salvation in that it offers the blood of Jesus shed for man to be able to forgive sin and to cleanse his soul supernaturally. The redemptive power of the blood of Jesus was shed in seven specific places giving man a total deliverance from the effects of sin, sickness, poverty and death. For those who refuse to believe in miracles this power has the ability to transform a sinner, doomed to Hell, into a new creation conveyed into the kingdom of God by supernatural means!

    Jesus said a man must be born again to see and to enter the kingdom of God, not by works or good deeds, nor by being a good, moral and upstanding citizen, but by confessing and repenting of his sins and by faith making Jesus the Lord and Savior of his life. One of the greatest miracles in the kingdom is the re-birth of a sinner transformed from a worm to a butterfly through the metamorphosis of redemptive power.

    Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold all things have become new. II Corinthians 5:17

RESTORATIVE POWER

    "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. "And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?" John 11:25,26

    Restorative power is that which heals the sick, delivers the oppressed and raises the dead, to restore is to bring something back to its original condition. Jesus was called to heal His friend Lazarus, who had fallen ill, but took too long getting there and Lazarus died. Too late, call the undertaker, plan the funeral and call the relatives, Lazarus is dead! Wait! Hold the phone! Not according to Jesus, He said that Lazarus is only sleeping and that He would wake him up. The man had in actuality been dead and buried for several days and had begun to decompose, but that wasn't even a consideration for the Lord Jesus.

    Jesus told the family to roll away the stone from Lazarus' tomb and everyone gasped at the fact that this man was absolutely dead and in a hopeless state according to the mindset of the world, but Jesus didn't hold to that way of thinking because His mind was upon heavenly things as ours should be. With a voice of authority Jesus said, "Lazarus come forth!" And so Lazarus came out of the tomb wrapped in grave clothes to the amazement of those who witnessed this restorative miracle of God! The restorative power of the faith of Christ wrought by Holy Spirit brought life back to someone who was dead and buried, a totally hopeless situation, but normal for the Son of God who gives life to the dead and hope to the hopeless.

    Jesus told His disciples to heal the sick, raise the dead and cast out demons, that freely they had received and that they should freely give that which was given to them. All authority and the power to restore has been given to us in His name who believe and take Him at His word. Signs and wonders abound to those who believe and take up the God given power of attorney that He gave to us. The church of the Lord Jesus Christ was not meant to be just another "social service provider," but a powerful witness to display the restorative power of God to a lost and dying world in need of His mercy and grace! Remember, He said, "with God all things are possible!"

    For assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you." Matthew 17:20

Posted by: Tim Laughlin AT 10:05 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, December 09 2013

    "The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind. To set at liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord." Luke 4:18,19

    If you have been born again, washed in the Savior's blood, filled with the baptism of His Holy Spirit, then this is your mission statement! As followers of the Lord Jesus Christ we are as He is in the world, His mission is our mission and that is to bring His redemptive power to a lost and dying world by the preaching of the good news of the gospel. We are all called to preach, teach, cast out devils, heal the sick and even raise the dead and we were never meant to just fill a pew and sit there till we die, we are all called into the kingdom work of the Most High God, the greatest commission the world has ever seen!

    Jesus told His disciples to go, not stay and rot away, He didn't train them to sit and listen, He poured His very life into them for over three years, expecting them to be as He was in the earth and that is His plan for us. His intention for His church of the firstborn was never meant to be a potted plant, it was always intended to be a living vine that would spread across the earth bearing clusters of glorious fruit for God, replicating His divine nature in a harvest of newly born sons and daughters to fill His kingdom! Today's generation of all about me spectators just sit on the sidelines and read or listen to some stirring story about someone else that was willing to give all for Christ and jump out of the religious box of modern day consumer driven, event motivated, Sundays only, so-called Christianity.

    The modern day SPD (Senior Program Director) or Senior Pastor, a title the Bible doesn't even contain will stand in judgment for not training and equipping new converts for the ministry of Jesus. By standing in the Headship of Christ and dominating people with religious rules and regulations and not allowing Jesus to be Lord of the assembly only continues to breed a complacent company of dead and lifeless church members whose only spiritual life comes by showing up once a week to hear what wonderful things pastor has dreamed up for them to do, and it is a stench in the nostrils of God!

    "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. "He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. "And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; "they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick and they will recover." Mark 16:15

GREATER WORKS

    "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 the Father. "And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in His Son. 'If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. "If you love Me, you will keep My commandments." John 14:12-15

    There is a war of words stirring in the body of Christ at large pertaining to the use of the gifts of the Spirit and the power of God. It seems that a well known Bible teacher has stated that the gifts of Holy Spirit have passed away and that the Charismatic and Pentecostal churches are involved in the practice of creating "Strange Fire," something that is also a well known belief throughout the main-line denominational churches of the world. If this is true and you choose to believe it, then the gospel of Christ was only written for a few and then passed away forever and is absolutely worthless to us today as it is just a history lesson reserved for the libraries of antiquity.

    My answer to all of this is: nonsense! The glorious gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ according to Romans 1:16 is the power of God for salvation, a supernatural act of the Holy Spirit to transform a lost man into a new creation to be endowed with power from on high and to replicate the entire ministry of Jesus in the earth! I don't guess I got the memo on this 35 years ago when God saved me, filled me and allowed me to cast out demons by the thousands, see the sick healed, the dead raised, and experience the gifts and the power of God to transform a multitude of lives. Oh well, sorry, but Jesus didn't waste His breath or His Word on just a few, nor did He only give His power to the apostles, He freely gave the experience of the Baptism with the Holy Spirit to all who are born again and ask for it! He also promised in His Word that we would do greater works than He, hard to believe, yes, but absolutely true and solely given to all who would take Him at His Word and believe!

    Jesus said to us all who believe, "Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified." Can I just tell you, whatever covers a lot of ground and to those who literally take the Lord Jesus Christ at His word, signs and wonders will abound, people's lives will be changed and the power of God will be poured out from on high and all the world will know that there is a God and He is still on the throne of power forever and ever! I don't care what people think and I don't pay attention to those who refuse to believe the truth of God's holy Word and take it to heart because the world is spinning out of control and there are many lost who need the redemptive power of Christ to transform them into new creations to build up His body in the earth and to replicate His divine nature in all who would dare to believe!

    "And I will pray to the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever. "the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you." John 14:16,17

YOU SHALL RECEIVE POWER

    "You shall receive power (dynamite) when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth." Acts 1:8

    I can't imagine Jesus sending the Holy Spirit down on 120 sold out believers only to jump start the church and then have their spiritual batteries drained only to become what we have today in most cases: a dead and lifeless assembly of spectators! Jesus said we would receive power to be a witness, someone who can testify about what he has seen, not only of what has transpired in his own life but in the lives of others touched by the power and presence of God! Witnessing is not just handing someone a tract and then lead them down the Roman road to mutter a prayer, it is the testimony of the witness telling of how the power of God changed his life.

    Don't ever let anyone tell you that the power of God has passed away as well as the gifts of the Spirit, and the apostolic call of God on the life of the believer. If you are stuck in an assembly of dead unbelieving weekend warriors who never seem to get passed the church coffee shop, get out, because they will try to put out your fire because you are making them look bad! Jesus has saved you, washed you in His own blood, filled you with His Spirit for a purpose and His plan for your life will be hindered if you let people drag you down into their little sheep pens of doom and gloom. The sons and daughters of God are led by His Holy Spirit to bring about the redemptive process to a lost and dying world by preaching His un-compromised gospel of salvation and restoration.

    You are called to go and to make disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ, not to follow the dictates of some church program director who will only lead you to fulfill his vision for his ministry, or to pad his pockets and promote his plan that will hold you in bondage forever. Either Jesus is your Lord or something, or someone else is, and you have to choose who you are going to serve. Everyone who walks with God has to choose the path he will take, the narrow road, that will cost you everything, or the broad road that will allow you to live for yourself and fit in with the religious crowd of complacent spectators that will ultimately put out the fire of God in you! My prayer for those who read these messages is for them to take to heart what the Spirit is saying in these last days to those who will sell out for Jesus, shake off the chains of religious dead works and come out and serve the living God for His kingdom purposes!

    "All authority has been given to Me in Heaven and on earth. "Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, "teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Matthew 28:18-20

Posted by: Tim Laughlin AT 09:41 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Monday, December 02 2013

    Then Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, being tempted by the devil. And in those days He ate nothing, and afterward, when they had ended, He was hungry. And the devil said to Him. "If You are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread." But Jesus answered him, saying, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.' " Luke 4:1-4

    Upon your Holy Spirit baptism you need to be prepared to follow Jesus into the wilderness and be able to overcome by enduring all the temptations and trials that He suffered when the devil tempted Him. This is the reason we are to be filled with Holy Spirit power, in order to be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the evil one, and believe me they will come upon you just as they came upon Jesus! We would do well to take a hard look at the walk that Jesus walked and learn to conquer the powers of darkness that will be sent against everyone who is sold out for Christ! 

    In the above mentioned passage of scripture you will notice that Jesus wasn't tempted until He became hungry. The devil will not attempt to attack you when you are strong, only when you are in a weakened state of mind or weary in body will he take the opportunity to strike. Observe the lion or most predators in their quest for food, they don't jump on the head water buffalo or the strongest in the herd, no, they are patient and wait for the stragglers, or the sick, or very young, and then they attack with deadly force quickly overcoming their prey. Satan is the master of disaster when it comes to tempting the believer and from the garden of Eden up until now he has brought down some mighty men of God, so beware and be on the offensive as he will surely come to you to test what you are made of just as he has with every other born again, Spirit filled saint that has ever stepped on to the battlefield of true Christianity!

    The first temptation that the devil tried on Jesus was not with food as we would think because He was coming off a forty day fast and He was hungry and obviously weakened by the experience as anyone would be. No, Satan had the audacity to ask Him "If You are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread." If You are the Son of God! Was there any doubt that this Man Jesus, King of kings, Lord of lords, Savior of all of mankind, filled with the Holy Spirit, spoken to by God, His Father from above in an audible voice was not the One? Of course, Jesus knew exactly who He was as all believers need to know who they are in Christ because the devil will use this scheme more than once to take you out of the battle just as he tried to do with Jesus, but resist him firm in your faith just as Jesus did and use the Word of God against him and he will flee!

    Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, because He cares for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. I Peter 5:6-9

BEWARE OF THE SNARE

    Then the devil, taking Him up on a high mountain, showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, "All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. "Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours." Luke 4:5-7

    The devil has taken out multitudes with this scheme and in today's church the temptation to be a success in the world and be healthy, wealthy and wise has seduced millions of unsuspecting sheep who follow their false shepherds wherever they lead them! Everywhere you look today in media, TV and the internet they are promoting the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the deadly and seductive boastful pride of life. Self-help gurus and as the late David Wilkerson used to call them, "Pillow prophets" have led God's people astray with the perverted and dangerous gospel of the all seeing I, or in other words, the worship of self!

    Jesus said if anyone wished to be His disciple, they had to be willing to deny themselves, take up their cross ( a cruel instrument of death) and follow Him without the promise of a home or wealth or even the promise of keeping oneself from martyrdom, of which many suffered at the hands of violent men. Many a sold-out believer succumbed to a horrible fate because they chose to love not their life even unto death. Satan hates the word, self-denial because it denies him from controlling our lives with the promise of selfish ambition, pride and greed of which fuel his passion to destroy us.

    Satan tempted Jesus with all the world had to offer, authority, power, wealth and influence if He would only bow down and worship him, the problem being, Jesus already possessed these and the truth of the matter was the fact that the devil didn't, but only lied to gain an advantage. We would do well to follow Jesus as He defeated the devil by taking up His own God given authority and power to defeat him as we have also as born again Spirit filled saints been given to overcome the powers of darkness. A friend once said, "Deceived folks don't know that they are deceived," a very valuable word to the wise, don't be deceived!

    For to this you were called because Christ suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: "Who committed no sin, nor was deceit found in His mouth;" who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously. I Peter 2:21-23

FALSE SIGNS AND WONDERS

    Then he brought Him to Jerusalem, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down from here. "For it is written: He shall give His angels charge over You, to keep You,' "and 'In their hands they shall bear You up, lest you dash Your foot against a stone.' " Luke 4:9-11

    Satan's most dangerous tactic, the use of God's word and false signs and wonders to seduce, pervert and to deceive the unsuspecting saint. If Jesus had fallen for this demonic scheme and jumped off the pinnacle of the temple where hundreds, maybe even thousands would have been watching He would have created a firestorm of frenzied new believers ready to join up and immediately Jerusalem would have had a mega church full of uncommitted thrill seekers like we have today. 

    In the past twenty or so years millions have been deceived by the rise of false prophets displaying false signs and wonders such as the appearance of gold dust and angel feathers, female angels appearing and people barking and acting like animals, uncontrollable laughing and other grotesque manifestations brought on by demonic activity, not discerned by an unsuspecting crowd of spiritual babies who want to be entertained. True signs, wonders and miracles such as healing the sick, casting out demons, raising the dead and the use of true prophetic utterance should be common place to the born again believer anointed with the Holy Spirit. The gifts of the Spirit are not Christmas presents to be opened only on Sunday to entertain a complacent company of pew sitters, they are a supernatural arsenal of divinely  powerful weapons to be used to defeat the enemies of God and to make true followers of the Lord Jesus Christ!

    Jesus passed the test in the wilderness against the most powerful and deadly force in the universe, the devil, fallen arch angel, former son of God, raised in Heaven and trained in the art of subterfuge and camouflage, but you, born again Spirit filled saint of the Most High God have been given power and the anointing to defeat even the most vile demonic forces! The same power and authority that Jesus used in the wilderness has been given to us to not only defeat the powers of darkness but to do the greater works that Jesus promised we would do in His name. So, what are you waiting for, an engraved invitation, if so, you already have one, because He has inscribed you on the palms of His hands, you belong to Him and He has called you into service in the kingdom of God, the greatest appointment anyone on earth can receive.

    For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works. II Corinthians 11:13-15

Posted by: Tim Laughlin AT 09:53 am   |  Permalink   |  Email