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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Illustrated Message Review with Marjorie



This is a weekly review that I do of Pastor Richard's Illustrated Messages from our Sunday services. If you're in our area, please come and join us to participate, as we each play roles in the scripts. 


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July 8th, 2018 - Holy Spirit Power
Part 12

The Gift of Faith is what the message is today. It’s another one of the nine Gifts of the Holy Spirit as mentioned in I Corinthians 12. Let’s start by reading Mark 11:22-24; “So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God.  For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.”

This is a powerful scripture and the Lord Jesus wants us to walk and live in. The Apostle Paul says in Romans 14:23 that whatever is not from faith is sin. Many Christians, I suspect, get defensive when faith is talked about, because it is a measuring stick as to how we live and they don’t want to admit that if they’re in unbelief, they're in sin. Either we live by faith, or we live in unbelief, doubt and fear. Do you tarry in faith or have you given up already?

The Gift of Miracles is instant, where the Gift of Faith produces similar results only it not so spectacular. Miracles services, if you’ve been in any, are spectacular. You see instant signs of God’s power in the lives of people, whether it be limbs growing, the deaf hearing, the blind seeing and on and on.

Elisha exercised the Gift of Faith when he trusted God to feed him daily by the use of ravens. This is considered the Gift of Faith because it’s just like you believing God for daily food and provision for your life. It says the following in I Kings 17:2-6; “Then the word of the Lord came to him, saying,  “Get away from here and turn eastward, and hide by the Brook Cherith, which flows into the Jordan.  And it will be that you shall drink from the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there.” So he went and did according to the word of the Lord, for he went and stayed by the Brook Cherith, which flows into the Jordan.  The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening; and he drank from the brook.  And it happened after a while that the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land.

When the brook dried up, the Lord then commanded Elisha to go to a widow and we read in 1 Kings 17:7-16 the following; “Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. See, I have commanded a widow there to provide for you.”  So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, indeed a widow was there gathering sticks. And he called to her and said, “Please bring me a little water in a cup, that I may drink.”  And as she was going to get it, he called to her and said, “Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.” So she said, “As the Lord your God lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar; and see, I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die.” And Elijah said to her, “Do not fear; go and do as you have said, but make me a small cake from it first, and bring it to me; and afterward make some for yourself and your son.  For thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘The bin of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil run dry, until the day the Lord sends rain on the earth.’” So she went away and did according to the word of Elijah; and she and he and her household ate for many days. The bin of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke by Elijah.”

When Elisha asked the widow to make him a meal first, with the promise that she would never run out of oil and meal, he was operating in the Gift of Miracles.

Natural faith is available to all believers, just like the gift of tongues is for all believers. But, the rest of the Gifts of the Spirit are given as the Holy Spirit wills. Being born again and speaking in tongues is the norm. Like we’ve talking about on other messages, speaking in tongues when you’re baptized in the Holy Spirit is different than the Gift of Tongues.

God gives the Gift of Faith to work thru the believer’s faith and as a result, brings about miracles over a period of time. It normally doesn’t happen immediately. In the instant society we live in, faith gets challenged because its something we grow in and isn’t instant. The Gift of Faith produces the same results as the Gift of Miracles, only in a different time frame.

In John 14:12, Jesus says the following; “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.

The Apostle Paul says in Romans 12:3; “For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.” Each Christian has a measure of faith, but it’s not the Gift of Faith.

The primary definition of faith is what’s known as the innate capacity in every human being to believe in a Supreme being. Romans 1:20 says; “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,”


Creation itself reveals God and since we are his creation, we are without excuse too.

Let’s look at two kinds of faith; natural faith and supernatural faith. As I just said, we’ve all been given a measure of faith, so that measure is natural faith and can lead a person to repent and receive forgiveness and be born again.

Hebrews 11:6 says; “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” In order for natural faith to grow into supernatural faith, it must receive its direction from the Bible. So this measure of faith that has been given to you – this natural faith – must grow by reading the Bible to step into supernatural faith.

It says this in Romans 10:17; “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

Supernatural faith as a Gift of the Spirit is beyond natural faith in that it is immovable faith that counts those things that do not exist in the natural as though they do exist. You’re immovable, steadfast, rock-solid and your circumstances don’t move you because you SEE those things that are not – as though they are.

Hebrews 11:1-3 says this; “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.  For by it the elders obtained a good testimony. By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.”

In this chapter of faith, Hebrews 11:30-40 continues saying; “By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days.  By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace. And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets:  who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.  Women received their dead raised to life again. Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection.  Still others had trial of mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment.  They were stoned, they were sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented— of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth. And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us.”

The Holy Spirit came on its own accord and will as we read in Acts 2:1-4; “When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.  And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.  Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them.  And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

This was a work of the Holy Spirit himself. We also read in Acts 10:44; “While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word.”

In other cases, by faith with the laying on of hands, the Holy Spirit is given as seen in Acts 8:14-17; “Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit.  For as yet He had fallen upon none of them. They had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.  Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.

Philip the evangelist was operating in miracles, and many Samaritans became converts, however it was Peter who had the supernatural Gift of Faith to lay hands on the people and they received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. We see that these Samaritans specifically needed to have hands laid on them to receive. The Gift of Faith was in operation as Peter did that.

Ananias, by the supernatural Gift of Faith, laid hands on Saul to be both healed and filled with Holy Spirit. We read it in Acts 9:17; “And Ananias went his way and entered the house; and laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you came, has sent me that you may receive your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Saul now, who became Paul the Apostle, starts operating in the supernatural Gift of Faith and he too is laying hands on Christians to receive the Holy Spirit. We read in Acts 19:6; “And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.”

These men did not operate in their own power, but rather by the Gift of Faith they laid hands on individuals and the Holy Spirit was given by God.

Look at what Jesus says in Mark 9:23 about faith; “Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all   things are possible to him who believes.” Do you believe today? Are you willing to step out when the Gift of Faith comes on you to do what the Holy Spirit is asking of you? Or are you going to cringe back and fall into unbelief?

The Apostle Paul says this to Timothy about his gift in 1 Timothy 4:14; “Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership.” Paul continues to exhort Timothy again in 2 Timothy 1:6 by saying; “Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” It shows that a persons gift can become nominal, dry or dormant if they don’t use it. It has to be stirred up.

It’s evident that certain people are given a supernatural Gift of Faith to lay hands on individuals to receive Gifts of the Holy Spirit as God wills. The baptism in the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues is for all who believe, however, it is not the case regarding the Gifts of the Holy Spirit as these Gifts are given as the Holy Spirit wills.

This passage in 1 Corinthians 12:4-11 is at the core of this teaching of the Gifts and we read it again where it says; “There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.  There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord.  And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.  But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all:  for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.  But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.

Did you know that supernatural protection is provided for believers through the Gift of Faith? Do you want supernatural protection in your life or are you just going to wait until the calamity is upon you and be concerned about it at that point? By then, it’s usually too late because you’re in fear, doubt and unbelief. Calamity has taken over your house, family and your welfare because you haven’t allowed the Gift of Faith to operate. The Holy Spirit knows ahead of time what you have need of when the doctor gives you a bad report, or when calamity strikes, when bad news comes your way. You’re not immune to any of this. But, this Gift of Faith being exercised constantly will deliver you and you’ll be protected.

Psalm 91 reveals supernatural protection and clearly states that all things are made possible to those that believe. Don’t wait for calamity to come, but pray this prayer over your life daily and BELIEVE IT, have faith in God’s word that it is TRUE!

I’ve broken it up with subtitles so you can see what God will deliver you from;
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.

Deliverance from traps
Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler.

Deliverance from fear
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day,

Deliverance from accidental death
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday. A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; But it shall not come near you. Only with your eyes shall you look, and see the reward of the wicked. Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place,

Deliverance from evil, sickness and accidents
No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways. In their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone.”

Deliverance from Satan and beasts
You shall tread upon the lion an the cobra, the young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot. “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, and show him My salvation.”

The Gift of Faith can operate and prevent a lot of calamity in your life. Why wait for calamity to come in order to seek Gods supernatural protection, when it can be avoided by applying this scripture to your life now.

But if you allow yourself to yield to fear, doubt and unbelief, not believing God for the supernatural Gifts of the Holy Spirit to be in operation, you can see what the end result of it is. Choose to align yourself with the scriptures by faith in every situation. Allow the Holy Spirit to come upon you and fill you by faith and allow the Gift of Faith to function in you.

Be like the patriarchs of faith that we read about in Hebrews 11.  They’re a tremendous example of walking in faith. This isn’t saying that there is no persecution of Christians and churches, but here and now you can have the Gift of Faith to see you through; to walk in faith when it doesn’t look very good, to talk in faith when in the natural it looks ridiculous.

When you’re serving the Lord with all your heart, soul and mind, expect the adversary to come against you. But by the Gift of Faith being in operation, you’re not struck down. Don’t limit yourself to natural faith but desire earnestly the Gift of Faith to see you through to the end.

Remember, without faith…it’s impossible to please God, Hebrews 11:6 and whatever is not of faith is sin, Romans 14:23. Repent where you have not believed God’s word. Repent where you’ve walked in fear, doubt and unbelief. Repent for not having allowed the Gift of Faith to operate in your life and let him work. It says in Isaiah 12:20 that a smoldering wick he will not put out. Jesus will revive you and cause that smoldering wick to light up … if you repent.

Part of the Lords Prayer in Matthew 6:13 states this; “And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”  Jesus knew you’d be tempted – daily – so he’s giving you a way, to proactively pray ahead so that deliverance is already in motion. Be proactive in praying these prayers diligently over your life and save yourself from unnecessary battles.

We read this short script from Bob Snook, it’s applicable to today’s message. It’s entitled, ‘
Highwire’. 


July 1st, 2018 - Holy Spirit Power
Part 11

We continue this week on the Gift of the Discerning of Spirits and today we’ll highlight the discerning of human spirits as last week we studied discerning angelic spirits and demonic spirits. This gift of the Discerning of Spirits is so needed in the body of Christ. As we continue to see the escalation of intrigue and craving for people to delve into the spirit realm or the supernatural, Christians have to discern what’s of God, of the devil or of the human spirit.

As human beings, we are made up of a spirit, a soul and a body. The secular says from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia; “The human spirit is a component of human philosophy, psychology, art, and knowledge - the spiritual or mental part of humanity. While the term can be used with the same meaning as "human soul", human spirit is sometimes used to refer to the impersonal, universal or higher component of human nature in contrast to soul or psyche which can refer to the ego or lower element. The human spirit includes our intellect, emotions, fears, passions, and creativity.”

Wikipedia also says this; “Christians emphasise that the human spirit is the 'real person', the very core of a person's being, the essential seat of their existence. When a person accepts Jesus Christ as their Saviour, it is their human spirit that is transformed as they become 'new creatures' in Jesus Christ.

If you’ve become born again of his Spirit, your body became a temple of the Holy Spirit, and he is transforming your human spirit by the Holy Spirit, to come in line with the Word of the Lord. It’s called sanctification.

Let’s look at some examples of people in the Bible that were operating in the human spirit. In the Old Testament we read about Isaac who is deceived by his son Jacob, who is impersonating to be his brother Esau. Had Isaac been able to discern this human spirit, he would have never given him a blessing.

You can read about it in
Genesis 27:1-29. Here is a portion of it in verses 18-29; “So he went to his father and said, “My father.” And he said, “Here I am. Who are you, my son?” Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau your firstborn; I have done just as you told me; please arise, sit and eat of my game, that your soul may bless me.” But Isaac said to his son, “How is it that you have found it so quickly, my son?” And he said, “Because the Lord your God brought it to me.” Isaac said to Jacob, “Please come near, that I may feel you, my son, whether you are really my son Esau or not.”  So Jacob went near to Isaac his father, and he felt him and said, “The voice is Jacob’s voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.”  And he did not recognize him, because his hands were hairy like his brother Esau’s hands; so he blessed him. Then he said, “Are you really my son Esau?” He said, “I am.” He said, “Bring it near to me, and I will eat of my son’s game, so that my soul may bless you.” So he brought it near to him, and he ate; and he brought him wine, and he drank.  Then his father Isaac said to him, “Come near now and kiss me, my son.”  And he came near and kissed him; and he smelled the smell of his clothing, and blessed him and said: “Surely, the smell of my son is like the smell of a field Which the Lord has blessed. Therefore may God give you of the dew of heaven, of the fatness of the earth, and plenty of grain and wine. Let peoples serve you, and nations bow down to you. Be master over your brethren, and let your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone who curses you, and blessed be those who bless you!

You can see Isaac’s wife, Rebekah, took matters into her own hands, instead of waiting to see how God would move. She knew from her pregnancy when these twins were in her womb, that God told her that the older of the two would serve the younger. But she operated in her human spirit to make this happen, even though she was a Godly woman and not evil. In her human spirit, she was deceiving her husband who was a Godly Patriarch. Both Rebekah and Jacob operated in their human spirits by lying and manipulating the blessing which was to go to Esau.

Let’s look at another example in the Old Testament where Tobiah and Sanballat hire a false prophet to deceive Nehemiah the prophet, but the human spirit is discerned by Nehemiah. You can read the full story here in
Nehemiah 6:1-14 . Here is a portion of it in verses 8, 12 and 13 “Then I sent to him, saying, “No such things as you say are being done, but you invent them in your own heart.”… 12 Then I perceived that God had not sent him at all, but that he pronounced this prophecy against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him. 13 For this reason he was hired, that I should be afraid and act that way and sin, so that they might have cause for an evil report, that they might reproach me.”

Nehemiah perceived or discerned, that this was of the human spirit, it was a set up and that this man was a hireling to prophecy lies.

There are people in the church today who are impersonating to be Christians but are really wolves in sheep’s clothing. Jesus said this in Matthew 7:15-20; “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.  You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles?  Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.  A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.  Therefore by their fruits you will know them.

When the gift of discerning human spirits is in operation, it’s important to keep in mind that they (the person who is being discerned), can repent of their sins and God will forgive them, so it’s good to not expose them publicly, but rather privately giving them an opportunity to repent and receive forgiveness. However, if after being exposed privately they continue in sin, God may very well make it public to set an example in the church (Matthew 18:15-17).

When a prophet is prophesying out of his own heart and deceiving people for the love of money, or some kind of personal gain or someone else’s gain, he is operating in a human spirit, that is skilled at the art of fraud, with the religious pretence, but really is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. These are religious prophets, not possessed by demons but prophesying out of their human spirit. They know the right words to say, the right button to push, the right song to play to work on the emotions of people, to ultimately gain control and manipulate you for their gain.

There are prophets who are possessed by a familiar spirit (demonic) and there are prophets who are simply speaking presumptuously out of their own human spirit.

Deuteronomy 18:21-22 says; “And if you say in your heart, ‘How shall we know the word which the Lord has not spoken?’— when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.”

The false prophet Hananiah, who spoke from his own human spirit, was judged by God. We read this in Jeremiah 28:10-17; “Then Hananiah the prophet took the yoke off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck and broke it.  And Hananiah spoke in the presence of all the people, saying, “Thus says the Lord: ‘Even so I will break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all nations within the space of two full years.’” And the prophet Jeremiah went his way. Now the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, after Hananiah the prophet had broken the yoke from the neck of the prophet Jeremiah, saying, “Go and tell Hananiah, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord: “You have broken the yokes of wood, but you have made in their place yokes of iron.”  For thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “I have put a yoke of iron on the neck of all these nations, that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; and they shall serve him. I have given him the beasts of the field also.”’” Then the prophet Jeremiah said to Hananiah the prophet, “Hear now, Hananiah, the Lord has not sent you, but you make this people trust in a lie.  Therefore thus says the Lord: ‘Behold, I will cast you from the face of the earth. This year you shall die, because you have taught rebellion against the Lord.’ So Hananiah the prophet died the same year in the seventh month.”

Jeremiah discerned the human spirit that Hananiah prophesied out of and in return prophesied Gods judgement on the false prophet. This might help to explain the untimely deaths of many Christians who have prophesied out of their own spirits for personal gain or the gain of others.

It says this of Jesus Christ in the book of John 2:23-25; “Now when He was in Jerusalem at the Passover, during the feast, many believed in His name when they saw the signs which He did.  But Jesus did not commit Himself to them, because He knew all men, and had no need that anyone should testify of man, for He knew what was in man.” Jesus knew the human spirit of man.

A good example of someone who operated in the human spirit is Peter when he denied Jesus Christ during his trial before the religious leaders. It says in John 18:15-17; “And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple. Now that disciple was known to the high priest, and went with Jesus into the courtyard of the high priest.  But Peter stood at the door outside. Then the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out and spoke to her who kept the door, and brought Peter in.  Then the servant girl who kept the door said to Peter, “You are not also one of this Man’s disciples, are you?” He said, “I am not.

It continues in verses 25-26 where Peter denies Jesus twice more; “Now Simon Peter stood and warmed himself. Therefore they said to him, “You are not also one of His disciples, are you?” He denied it and said, “I am not!” One of the servants of the high priest, a relative of him whose ear Peter cut off, said, “Did I not see you in the garden with Him?

We need to remember that Peter was a Godly man, he wasn’t full of an evil spirit, but he was operating in his human spirit. Matthew 10:32-34 says; “Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven.  But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven.” “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.

Luke 9:23-26 says; “Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.  For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.  For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?  For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels.

Let’s look at this closely. We just read that Peter denied Jesus three times. Peters actions clearly show that regardless of how close he was with Christ, and his confession to Jesus about willing to die with him, we see that the human spirit is about self preservation. That’s what happened to Peter. He didn’t want to possibly be crucified or flogged with Jesus. Instead of saying, ‘yes, I’m a disciple’, he denied Christ. In the same way, self preservation can and will hinder your Christian walk if it is not brought under the complete lordship of Christ by the Holy Spirit.

Had Peter died that night with out repenting of his denial of being a disciple Jesus he would have been judged and denied by Christ and would have been separated from God for eternity in hell. Jesus made it clear that if you deny him, he’ll deny you.

All the more reason we are in need of the Gifts of Holy Spirit to help us keep our human spirit from denying His lordship in our lives.

It’s important for you to take a good look at your life and see where you’ve allowed your human spirit to deny Jesus by rejecting the gifts of the Holy Spirit in exchange for a nominal faith that is void of the supernatural. It’s a form of denial. When you reject and deny the gift of the Holy Spirit who has been freely given to you, or even if you’ve operated in these gifts that we’re talking about and then deny that you do because you’re afraid, intimidated or step into self preservation because of public or nominal church opinion or even persecution; aren’t you also operating in denial? It’s not saying the judgment of hell is on you if you’d die that you’d go to hell, but it’s denial just the same. When you deny the Holy Spirits work in and through you or others, you deny Jesus.

Rejecting the Gifts of the Spirit is nothing more than a work of humanism that has crept into the Church and will ultimately have you denying Jesus somewhere down the road while under persecution. As Jesus says, a little leaven leavens the whole lump of dough, so your denial may start out small and almost obscure, but it will grow if you don’t repent. In these end times we’re living in, you need the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit to be able to stand in the midst of persecution.

The American Humanist Association’s moto is “Good without God”. They say; “Humanism is a progressive lifestance that, without theism or other supernatural beliefs, affirms our ability and responsibility to lead meaningful, ethical lives capable of adding to the greater good of humanity.

 2 Timothy 3:1-7 talks about this mindset and how people will live, think and operate in the last days. It says; “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come:  For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!  For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Sound familiar? These are the times we are in right now, having a form of godliness but denying its power always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Do you have a form of Godliness but deny its power and are you always learning but never able to come to the truth? Don’t allow the human spirit to deny the Holy Spirit, because without the Holy Spirit you’re separated from God for eternity, the Holy Spirit is your only ticket to heaven, not your human spirit.

 

After Peter got filled with the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, he had the power to lay down his life for Christ and build the early church, prior to this he denied being a Christian. This is a powerful example to us today.

As Christians, we have the trinity or triune God abiding in us; God the Father, God the Son (Jesus) and God the Holy Spirit. Jesus sent the Holy Spirit at Pentecost and the Holy Spirit has now given gifts to us who receive his infilling. When we deny Holy Spirit and these gifts, we deny the absolute best of the supernatural of God. You will end up resorting to your human spirit and inevitably will make mistakes because you’re only led by your human spirit. Your human spirit will lead you down roads where you’re not to go and even prophecy of things that are not of God as we’ve studied today. It will have you believe, embrace and even teach lies as we’ve studied today because it’s birthed from your human spirit. Humanism will get you to deny your faith in Jesus and the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit and have you stay in the natural realm.

This has crept into the church today. Churches today deny the Holy Spirit. Just like the serpent lied to Eve in the Garden of Eden saying ‘did God really say”… so satan is saying the same thing about the power and gifts of the Holy Spirit today. The human spirit and condition will continually try to rationalize and reason away the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit.

In closing, let’s read 1 Corinthians 2:14; “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

The Apostle Paul couldn’t have been clearer or forthright. The human spirit will always get you to walk in the natural. Only the Holy Spirit abiding in you will teach you the truth. Repent if you’ve rejected the work of the Holy Spirit. Learn how to discern the spirits of those who are in the pulpit, pew, congregation and those you fellowship with and listen to. It is of utmost importance to discern between the human spirit and the Holy Spirit.

We read a good script by Bob Snook. It’s entitled ‘Therapy’.
Please click on this link to read it.


June 24th, 2018 - Holy Spirit Power
Part 10

The gift of Discerning of Spirits is this week’s message theme. This gift enables you to identify the character and nature of spirits both seen and unseen. These consist of angel spirits, demon or satanic spirits, human spirits and the Spirit of God. The purpose of the gift is to open the doorway into the spiritual world and how to discern between good and evil spirits.

Before Paul the Apostle’s conversion to Christ, he was one of the main instigators of the persecution of the early Christians and was ruthless in carrying out evil actions to all he found. In Acts 9:3-7 it says; “As he journeyed he came near Damascus, and suddenly a light shone around him from heaven.  Then he fell to the ground, and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” Then the Lord said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.  It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?” Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” And the men who journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice but seeing no one.  Then Saul arose from the ground, and when his eyes were opened he saw no one. But they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus. And he was three days without sight, and neither ate nor drank.”

Here, Saul saw and heard in a vision from the Lord Jesus what the others who were with him could not see but they heard a voice. Saul had the discernment of spirits in operation. The gift of discerning of spirits is given to see in the spirit world and perceive spirit beings. It’s a gift.

In the Old Testament we read about the Prophet Elisha’s servant, who sees in the spirit and discerns angelic spirits as we read about in 2 Kings 6:15-18; “And when the servant of the man of God arose early and went out, there was an army, surrounding the city with horses and chariots. And his servant said to him, “Alas, my master! What shall we do?” So he answered, “Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”  And Elisha prayed, and said, “Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw. And behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. So when the Syrians came down to him, Elisha prayed to the Lord, and said, “Strike this people, I pray, with blindness.” And He struck them with blindness according to the word of Elisha.

Elisha’s servant’s eyes were opened to the spirit realm so he could see in the spirit the heavenly host of angels that were doing battle for them. We need to remember here again, these are gifts given by the Holy Spirit as he chooses, not as you choose. It’s for specific times, seasons, places and people as the Holy Spirit knows and gives.

This gift is given: to discern evil spirits. We read about it in 1 John 4:1-3; “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.  By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

With the purpose of deceiving Christians, evil spirits will fake to be Gods Spirit. They will counterfeit the truth. Jesus always revealed evil spirits and cast them out of those they possessed. We read about this in Mark 1:34; “Then He healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and He did not allow the demons to speak, because they knew Him.”

Matthew 12:22 also says; “Then one was brought to Him who was demon-possessed, blind and mute; and He healed him, so that the blind and mute man both spoke and saw.”

After the disciples returned with awe and excitement after casting out demons, healing the sick with many other attesting miracles, Jesus keeps things in perspective where says in Luke 10:18And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.” Remember, from the beginning of time, Jesus saw one-third of the angels cast out of heaven together with Lucifer when he rebelled against God and incited insurrection in heaven.

Casting out evil spirits was just a normal walk in the park for Jesus and should be the same for you and me as we allow the gift of discernment of spirits to operate in our lives. Remember, the same Jesus that cast out demons (fallen angels) and saw that one-third of angels cast out of heaven … lives in you! He hasn’t changed.

In Acts 16:16-19 we read about what happened to Paul and Silas who are imprisoned as a result of discerning an evil spirit in a woman and casting it out. It says; “Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.”  And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour.  But when her masters saw that their hope of profit was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to the authorities.”

The business of divination and magic arts to make money was exposed by discerning of evil spirits and is a good example of Paul operating in the gift, discerning the evil spirit that was faking to be of Gods Spirit.

This gift is given to discern evil and hypocrisy amongst Gods people. This gift is needed in the church today to keep it clean of evil spirits that counterfeit to be of God. Paul, speaking about false apostles in 2 Corinthians 11:12-15 says; “But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast.  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.”

The Apostle John says in 1 John 3:8; “He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.”

Originally man was intended to be a citizen of two worlds, heaven and earth, like Adam and Eve who lived a natural life on earth but also a supernatural life, when in the cool of the day, God would come down and commune with them. How supernatural is that! Spirit God coming to have fellowship with his creation – Adam and Eve. Face to face communion. Adam and Eve had the best of both worlds, the natural and supernatural.

After the fall of them in the garden, a veil was put between God and Man because of Sin, now limiting the once supernatural to a more natural walk with God.

The gift of discerning of spirits gives us the ability to get a glimpse into the spirit realm that once was just a normal walk in the garden for Adam and Eve and although we are now redeemed through the salvation of our souls by what Jesus did when he died for our sins, becoming born again spiritually, our citizenship of heavens spirit world on earth has not been fully restored. The gift of discerning of spirits opens up this spirit realm again. It discerns what’s of God, the devil or the human spirit, to help you discern right from wrong and truth from lies.

Talking about heavenly angels, we read in Hebrews 1:13-14 where it says; “But to which of the angels has He ever said: “Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool”? Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?

Everyone is assigned an angel as Jesus says in Matthew 18:10; “Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of My Father who is in heaven.” 

 When Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden of Eden an angel was put on guard of the Tree of Life so they could not eat of this tree. We read this in Genesis 3:24; “So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.

But now we as Christians, have been given a new access to the tree of life through Jesus and his salvation plan and now the angels are commissioned to not keep us away from the tree of life but rather protect us until the day that we actually partake of its fruit in heaven. We read this in Revelation 2:7; “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God.

So thru being born again of his Spirit we have dual citizenship on earth and in heaven, with the heavenly citizenship being revealed to us through the Gifts of the Spirit in a supernatural demonstration in the natural realm we live in. It should be the norm for us now to hear and see in the Spirit, things that we wouldn’t see or hear in the natural realm as the Holy Spirit reveals.

Hebrews 13:2 says; “Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels.” In the Old Testament, angels for the most part resembled the image of man. Abraham was visited by the Lord and 2 angels that told him about his wife Sarah having a child when they were both beyond age to have one. You can read it in
Genesis 18:1-15.

Abrahams great faith that marked his life, had a lot to do with these supernatural visits from angels and the abode that all Old Testament saints went to when they died, was named after him and it was called Abrahams bosom.

Here are some other examples of visitations where men became citizens of two worlds.
The first is Joshua 5:13-14 where it says; “And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, a Man stood opposite him with His sword drawn in His hand. And Joshua went to Him and said to Him, “Are You for us or for our adversaries?” So He said, “No, but as Commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped, and said to Him, “What does my Lord say to His servant?”

Here we see Jesus, the Commander of his army, revealing himself physically to Joshua in a time of need. Likewise we need the gift of discernment when the heavens open up in the spirit and give us an open vision.

Second, we see Gideon who had a supernatural visitation from and angel which gave him the courage that he didn’t have to battle the Midianites. You can read about it in
Judges 6:11-23.

Thirdly, there is the story of how angels cohabited with women on earth which gave birth to the Nephilum race of giants. It says in Genesis 6:1-4; “When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive. And they took as their wives any they chose.  Then the Lord said, “My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.”  The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown.”

It’s pretty obvious that these angels appeared unto the women on earth in flesh as humans and conceived children with them. These women obviously did not have the gift of discernment to recognize that they were fallen angels. There is a society, the Smithsonian Institute, that is keeping these discoveries hidden. If they were revealed, the theory of Darwinism and Evolution would be confronted as false, as Creation given the legitimacy in it’s truth. You can go to dinosaur museums which support the theory of Evolution, but, you don't see the remains of the Nephilim giant race that would support creation which is found in the Bible.

How many Christians today are in bed with the devil spiritually, becoming spiritually impregnated and are giving birth to all sorts of false teaching and lying spirits? 1 Timothy 4:1-5 says; “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.  For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving; for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

The Apostle Peter also says in 1 Peter 5:8; “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” This is why we need the gift of discernment! To discern not only good, but evil, and the keep us away from deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons!

1 John 4:1-3 says; “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.  By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

There is a generation of preachers who are seducing Christians teaching them doctrines of demons. Without the gift of discernment of spirits you can end up listening to fallen angels counterfeiting as angels of light. There are ministries who focus a lot on the worship of angels, entertaining them, conversing with them by name, but if there is no discerning of spirits, who knows if they’re in communication with a heavenly angel, or a fallen angel of light masquerading as good? We can’t think that this isn’t happening. This is not negating angelic visitations because they are very real and very amazing! But…we need discernment.

Had Eve discerned and known who was tempting her, she would have fled from the serpent. How many Christians today are under the influence of the same tempter and not knowing who he really is? You can sure understand why the devil has done such a good job at keeping the gifts of the Spirit from manifesting in most Church’s because it keeps him from being exposed, be it in the pulpit or in pew. If he can keep the Gifts of the Spirit under wrap, he’ll keep the Christians operating in the natural realm.

Ephesians 6:12 says; “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” If this is where our battle is, we need to discern the spirits behind the battle.

We, as the church, need to always keep in perspective that we have these invisible forces to help us fight our battles in the spirit. That’s why we need this gift of discernment to perceive the true supernatural forces that are available to help us fight the good fight of faith.

More angelic visitations are mentioned in
Luke 1:11-22 where an angel appeared to Zacharias announcing  to him that his wife would conceive a son and his name would be called John. We know him as John the Baptist.

An angel appeared to Mary announcing to her to become the virgin mother of Jesus. We read it in
Luke 1:26-38. There have been big moments in history where angels appear to announce major events to come.

The Apostles are set free from prison by an angel as we read in Acts 5:17-20; “Then the high priest rose up, and all those who were with him (which is the sect of the Sadducees), and they were filled with indignation, and laid their hands on the apostles and put them in the common prison.  But at night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, “Go, stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this life.

How would you like that to happen to you some time? And it just might as the Holy Spirit would deem necessary. This is the supernatural that as Holy Spirit filled Christians we can expect – just as Jesus supernaturally walked on the earth, he sent the Holy Spirit to fill us in the same way – to walk supernaturally! The devil has made it out to be ‘abnormal’ in nominal Christianity today though hasn’t he. But without the manifestation of these gifts, the devil has nominal Christians where he wants them to be – oblivious, blind, unbelieving and faithless.

Another angelic appearance is to Paul on a ship in a storm as we read in Acts 27:23-24; “For there stood by me this night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve, saying, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul; you must be brought before Caesar; and indeed God has granted you all those who sail with you.’” This was after 14 days without eating food, being tossed in a wild Mediterranean Sea storm!  I’d be encouraged too if it would have been me!

It was the gift of discernment in both the Old and New Testament that opened up the door to unveil the supernatural beings in the unseen world which strengthened and encouraged them to do great things for God that they could not have done in the natural.

The Discerning of Spirits is closely related to the ministry of healing. Either directly or indirectly, the cause of all sickness is from satan. In Paul’s first sermon to the Gentiles he declares that sickness is caused by the oppression of Satan and Christ destroyed his works. He says this in Acts 10:38; “…how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing
all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.

In Luke 13:16, Jesus states that the woman bowed over for 18 years from infirmity, was the work of satan. He says; “So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound—think of it—for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?

Sickness caused by evil spirits is not always the case, but if it is the case of possession, there will be no healing until the demon is cast out. This needs to be clear. All sickness is from satan and can be healed in Jesus name, but when there is a demonic spirit of infirmity through demonic possession, it has to be cast out first before healing occurs.

Many kinds of evil spirits exist. We see the spirit of infirmity in Luke 13:11 that we just alluded to with Jesus healing. It says; “and behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up.”

There’s a deaf and dumb spirit as we read in Mark 9:25; “When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!”

There’s a blind spirit as we read in Matthew 12:22; “Then one was brought to Him who was demon-possessed, blind and mute; and He healed him, so that the blind and mute man both spoke and saw.”

We need to remember that we can’t look at these things logistically. So many people reason infirmity to be generational – which it can be. You’ve heard someone say that their great-grandmother had it, their grand-mother had it and their mother had it and now they have it. It’s very probable that it’s a generational spirit that has been handed down. This is the point here. The gift of discernment will reveal what is transpiring.

There’s a murderous spirit as we read in 1 Samuel 18:9-11; “So Saul eyed David from that day forward. And it happened on the next day that the distressing spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied inside the house. So David played music with his hand, as at other times; but there was a spear in Saul’s hand.  And Saul cast the spear, for he said, “I will pin David to the wall!” But David escaped his presence twice.”

How many people are in prison today that have a spirit of murder in them? They aren’t delivered just because there in jail either. Until they are prayed for and have received deliverance, they’re still tormented with it.

There’s an epileptic spirit. It may be more than genetic – which Jesus took a strip for so that person can be healed too. We read deliverance from an epileptic spirit in Luke 9:39 where it says; “And behold, a spirit seizes him, and he suddenly cries out; it convulses him so that he foams at the mouth; and it departs from him with great difficulty, bruising him.”

There’s an insane spirit as we read in Luke 8:29; “For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had often seized him, and he was kept under guard, bound with chains and shackles; and he broke the bonds and was driven by the demon into the wilderness.

How many people are in psychiatric wards today, insane – never changing because they’re possessed with an evil spirit that they never received deliverance from. They’re treated in the flesh, treated with medication, treated with council and yet nothing works. Why? Because that spirit is still possession them.

There’s an unclean spirit also as we read in Mark 1:23; “Now there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit. And he cried out.”

The Spirit of Discernment in healing will give understanding of the demon or demons that need to be cast out in order for them to be totally healed. This gift will reveal if it’s sickness only or if there is demonic possession. How will you know what you’re dealing with unless you have the Spirit of Discernment in operation? In praying for people, the Holy Spirit will reveal what is needed.  All these gifts are available to you to live and move in the supernatural to be a vessel in God’s hands to see so many set free, delivered, healed and edified. Don’t limit yourself to the natural tangible life. Live in the supernatural life that Jesus has redeemed us back to like Adam and Eve. These are glimpses that the Holy Spirit is enabling us to walk in…it sure is better than none, right!

I’d like to end on one statement that I’m sure you’ve heard: “You’re just so heavenly minded that you're no earthly good”. What an oxymoron statement! As a Christian, how is it possible that if your mind is so set on things above, and you’re walking in the power of Holy Spirit ... that you can be no earthly good?


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Please click on the links to read and view previous books, messages and video reviews of;


Holy Spirit Power

Christiana's Progress

The Life and Death of Mr. Badman

NEW - Video Programs of The Life and Death of Mr. Badman

Illustrated Messages

Pilgrim's Progress Reviews



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