I feel strongly that I need to address the positive side of the end times. There will be soon a mighty outpouring of the Person of the Holy Spirit that is unparalleled in the history of mankind. Coming with this will be the Spirit of prophecy which is the Testimony of Jesus. In addressing this I want to speak about the SPIRIT OF ELIJAH in the END TIMES.
Revelation 19:10 ESV Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, "You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God." For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
ELIJAH & DAVID: THE MOUNTAINTOP, THE DESERT, & THE VALLEYS
We find Elijah mentioned many times speaking from a mountaintop. It must have been a relief for him from the burden of the desert and the valleys of life that he had to encounter.
We all will face the desert places which I call “our wilderness experiences”. Those are the dry times when it seems that our very soul will fly away into nothing. We cry out for the presence of God and hear nothing, feel nothing, see nothing, and we begin to listen to the “other voices” that scream out in our head. These “other” voices scream out to us that we must have done something wrong and are in great sin. All the while it is God preparing us for the mountaintops and encounters with Kings. We are being prepared to face the false prophets of the enemy. In fact, David encountered the desert places where he cried out for God's presence.
Psalms 63:1 ESV A Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah. O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
Psalms 42:1-3 ESV To the choirmaster. A Maskil of the Sons of Korah. As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God. (2) My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God? (3) My tears have been my food day and night, while they say to me all the day long, "Where is your God?"
Like the desert, we will all face the valleys. The place where it would seem that our life is over, there is no way out and God has completely left us. But again, it is that training place, that place of fire and testing where the Father reveals our heart to us. This is also the preparation place for the mountaintops. Again, let’s see how David responded to the valleys of life.
Psalms 23:1-6 ESV A Psalm of David. The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. (2) He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. (3) He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake. (4) Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. (5) You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. (6) Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.
Up to this point I have spoken about the bad things coming and some tips on how to prepare. There is much more I want to speak about concerning these things, however I feel strongly that I need to address the positive side of the end times. There will be soon a mighty outpouring of the Person of the Holy Spirit that is unparalleled in the history of mankind.
In addressing this I want to speak about the SPIRIT OF ELIJAH in the END TIMES.
1 Kings 17:1 ESV Now Elijah the Tishbite, of Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, "As the LORD, the God of Israel, lives, before whom I stand, there shall be neither dew nor rain these years, except by my word."
We hear nothing about this great man of God, Elijah, before his introduction in 1 Kings 17. Here we see Elijah being introduced as being before Ahab, the king of Israel. In the opening words of Elijah we see that he stands in authority, power, and full assurance that his God is able to operate and perform the supernatural.
This is surely an intense declaration before the king and the nation, that there would be no rain, nor dew for a period of 3 years. This reveals that Elijah was a man who heard from God and walked in the power of the Holy Spirit. He was also a man who respected authority but did not fear man, no matter what position that he held. Today in the Church we have many that are operating in the opposite. They fear man and have no respect for authority.
Now we don’t know about the past experiences or life of Elijah, but we can be assured that this was not an event that “just happened” without a price paid by the man of God. What did he have to go through on his way of walking “in and by” faith? What small things did God trust him with to prove his heart before he could be trusted to stand before kings? What did God use to shape, mold, and cut away, the things in Elijah’s life that would get in the way of this servant of God?
As I thought about this, my mind traveled to my ministry trip to India back in 2001, as I am sure that you will think about some ministry trip that the Lord used you on. The people saw me as a man of God and greatly desired for me to pray for them and speak the blessings of God over them.
What they did not know were the years of God’s hand on me, molding me, shaping me, and cutting away the things that did not look like Him. Of course He is not done yet, but those whom I come in contact with on an occasional basis will seldom see what God has taken me through and is currently taking me through to make me in the image of His Son.
It is like seeing a beautiful butterfly. We see the grace of flight, and the beauty of color, which makes the butterfly such a charming sight. But in seeing the butterfly, how many times do we think that it was trapped in a cocoon just a few weeks before. It was a long hard struggle to get out of that protective wrapping and become that beautiful multicolored blessing, which we enjoy watching.
We are looking at those key verses in Genesis 1 which reach out and speak to us. I shared in the first three studies on Gen.1:1. We saw that it was the first of three acts of creation. We saw that the Hebrew word for creation is "bara" and means to call forth something from nothing. Today we will look at the second act of creation as we study another key verse in Genesis 1. Today we will look at Gen.1:21.
The creation of water and sky life:
Genesis 1:21 ESV So God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.
The animal kingdom is divided into three parts in reference to the regions to be inhabited, the water, the sky, and the land. Notice that the word "created" (bara) is used and not the word "made" (asah). God created the fish for the water, and the birds for the air. However He did not create the animals for the land but made them.
The land animals were made, means that God formed them from pre-existing material:
Genesis 1:25 ESV And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.
Notice when God created the creatures of the sea and the creatures of the air He did so "after its kind". Notice also when God made the creatures of the land that He did so "after its kind."
There is a Kingdom principle established in Genesis 1 that flows throughout the Scriptures of "like kind" and is worthy of your own investigation.
Genesis 1:11 ESV And God said, "Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, on the earth." And it was so.
Genesis 1:24 ESV And God said, "Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds—livestock and creeping things and beasts of the earth according to their kinds." And it was so.
Gardening season is here. Those who desired a garden has already plowed and seeded and watered and weeded. We garden because we like to enjoy the fruit of our labor. No one sows just to let the weeds take over. It’s a lot of work, but it is well worth the wait.
When we think of a garden, we think of the reproducing of the fruit. How you can take a seed that is so small, and with the proper care, it becomes a full grown fruit. The bible teaches us that sowing and reaping is a law that has been from the beginning, and will continue throughout the ages. Everything reproduces after its own kind.
God told Noah, that as long as the earth exists, there will always be seed time and harvest. This is a law from God, that he promises us will never fail. As long as the world turns, men will be sowing, and men will be reaping.
Genesis 8:22 ESV While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease."
We are coming to an end in this study on the blood atonement. In this post we will look at the fact that the blood atonement brings about TRUE SALVATION. There is a false message, a false hope, a false salvation being preached from churches across the land and in every nation. Many Churches are preaching a "bloodless salvation" meaning Jesus did not need to go to the cross and die for us to be saved because loves us all and will allow all of us to come to heaven on the basis of His love and not on the basis of faith in the work of the cross. Or the Churches are preaching a "Godless" salvation meaning they say it is not important to believe that Christ is God.
We started this study on the blood atone because of the TWO major DOCTRINES that are being attacked in these last days.
FIRST: The Deity of our Lord Jesus Christ will be attacked. It is the idea that we can have salvation without having to believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is God, has always been God, and will for eternity be God.
There are a multitude of religions that don't mind speaking about Jesus and calling Him a Prophet. Religions such as the Mormons, the Jehovah Witnesses, and even the Muslims regard Jesus in favor as a Prophet. The Mormons say that Jesus is the "son" of God, however we say that He is the SON of God. This sounds so good at surface, but they believe that Jesus is the son of God the same way the Tommy and David are my sons. They say that Adam (who they say is god) came down and had relations with Mary and produced a son called Jesus. They don't tell you this when they are standing at your doorway. They just say they believe that Jesus is the son of God. However, if you want to stop them in their tracks just say that Jesus is not only the SON of God but that He is GOD and their is no other.
People don't mind that a baby named Jesus was born meek and mild. They don't mind a helpless cute baby in a manger which we see celebrated in the month of December in a season called Christmas. People flock out by the multitude to see and hear the story of baby Jesus retold and acted out by children of the church.
People don't mind that a man named Jesus lived two thousand years ago and died on a cruel cross. They flock to the churches on Easter Sunday to hear the story one more time or to hear the latest musical performed by the church choir.
They don't even mind referring to Him as a great Prophet. The Muslims have great regard towards Jesus as one of their many Prophets. So do the Jehovah Witnesses. However, how can someone who claimed to be God also be known as a great Prophet? Either Jesus was who He says He was or He was a liar. Either He was, is and will always be God or He is a false Prophet.
As soon as you place the label "God-head" on the Lord Jesus Christ and saying that He is the creator of the world and that He is Deity and was the only sacrifice for the sins of man then the dividing lines start.
The next DOCTRINE to be attacked is the BLOOD ATONEMENT of our Lord Jesus Christ and this is why I spent these last 15 studies covering this topic. For all of the billions of people who believe in an "after-life" only a small percentage accepts the fact that Jesus Christ is not "a way" but "THE WAY" to eternal life.
The blood of our Lord screams redemption and cleansing of sin. But this is under attack mainly through HUMANISM within the body of Christ. This would lead us to believe that we could do something or become something on our own without the forgiving blood atonement of our Lord. The blood of our Lord Jesus Christ is the only way that we experience the complete work of God's SALVATION.
EXPERIENCING AND ENJOYING "BODY-LIFE"
This is post #14 on the blood atonement of our Lord Jesus Christ. We have already looked at the blood bringing about 12 wonderful Biblical life-changing truths. If you not done so it would be a great advantage to you if went back over the first 13 posts of this study.
The 13th truth concerning the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ is the believers right to "BODY MEMBERSHIP" or "BODY-LIFE". In the Old Testament when a covenant was made it was made through the blood of a turtledove, lamb, or some other accepted animal.
The covenant was sealed through the shedding of blood. The first Covenant Passover was given while the people of God was in bondage in Egypt by the shedding of blood and having that blood applied to the doorposts. This is called the Feast of Passover in the Old and New Testament. By the way, the Feast of Passover IS NOT Easter. Easter is not of God and should not be confused with PASSOVER, which points to and recognizes the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.
All who went under the covering of the blood entered into something called body membership. All of a sudden all differences between them seemed small compared to the greater need of deliverance from the bondage of Egypt.
Because of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ we have been THRUST into membership together in His body. We must contend, strive, fight for fellowship because we, the true believers, are all brothers and sisters in the Lord.
Our DNA is all the same as we have all been adopted into the same family and have the same Daddy/Father. We have our differences and contend with one another, but what if we all looked at the greater need. What if we all looked at the need for final deliverance from Egypt (the world) as one people, one voice, one man, with Christ the Head.
We have been studying on the Biblical difference between true worship and true praise. So far we have established form the Hebrew and Greek that worship has nothing to do with music. There is no "worship song", "worship team" or "now we enter into the worship time". Carrying this mindset causes the church and the Christian individual to rob God of the true worship which He demands and is worthy of.
We showed from Scriptures that Biblical worship includes: The Hebrew words for worship means to...TO PROSTRATE BEFORE; TO REVERE; TO ADORE; AND TO MINISTER TO:
The Greek words for worship means to...TO REVERE; TO HONOR; TO ADORE; TO KISS AS A DOG LICKS HIS MASTER'S HAND.
PRAISE however encompasses many different aspects of expression.
Examples of ways to praise:
2. Lifting of your hands:
5. Playing an Instrument:
7. To make a show or boast:
Some of the key elements in worship is learning how to worship God in the Spirit and how to flow with the move of His Spirit. Practicing these things will help usher in the last great move of God’s Spirit resulting in a tremendous harvest of souls.
John 4:23-24 ESV But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. (24) God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth."
Ephesians 5:18-21 ESV And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, (19) addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, (20) giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, (21) submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.
1 Corinthians 2:2-5 ESV (2) For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. (3) And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, (4) and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, (5) so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.
1 Corinthians 2:12-13 ESV (12) Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. (13) And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual.
The main reason for this study in PRAISE versus WORSHIP is to...
1. Show the difference between worship, (which has nothing to do with music) and praise which is one form of Biblical praise.
2. Show the difference between the worship of God under the Old Covenant (which was in the flesh) and the worship of God under the New Covenant (which is in the spirit).
(Romans 2:28 ESV) For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical.
(Romans 2:29 ESV) But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God.
(Philippians 3:3 ESV) For we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh--
(Philippians 3:4 ESV) though I myself have reason for confidence in the flesh also. If anyone else thinks he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more:
(Philippians 3:5 ESV) circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee;
(Philippians 3:6 ESV) as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless.
(Philippians 3:7 ESV) But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ.
(Philippians 3:8 ESV) Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ
(Philippians 3:9 ESV) and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith--
3. To explain the difference between man’s spirit, soul, and body so that our worship of God is in the Spirit.
(1 Thessalonians 5:23 ESV) Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
4. To teach us how to reverence God so that the Person of the Holy Spirit is not grieved and can manifest Himself as he desires.
Numbers 23:19-20 ESV God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it? (20) Behold, I received a command to bless: he has blessed, and I cannot revoke it.
Ephesians 4:30 ESV And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
Hebrews 12:28-29 ESV Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, (29) for our God is a consuming fire.
One of the joys that Paul embraced is receiving revelation from the Holy Spirit concerning our Lord Jesus Christ and then imparting that revelation to us. According to the Apostle Paul everyone has a song, a hymn, and a spiritual song.
Ephesians 5:18-19 ESV And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, (19) addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart,
Think of this promise. Because of the indwelling presence of the Person of the Holy Spirit we have a song in our heart, a hymn in our heart, and a spiritual song in our heart. It comes forth in the Spirit as a song of praise filled with the joy of walking with the Father.
Colossians 3:16 ESV Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
Now we see that having the Word of God dwelling within us brings forth the singing of psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. It comes forth with the attitude of thankfulness. I look for that in believers. I am around some that are filled with a negative attitude, unthankful and complaining. This is truly not God's plan for our lives in the Spirit.
Paul brought forth a song or hymn concerning the revelation he received concerning our Lord Jesus Christ.
Romans 14:17 ESV For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Charles Morris. Founder and Senior Pastor of RSIM USA.