So it's midnight and I turn the tv on to TBN (Trinity Broadcast Network) to catch a little Creflo Dollar or some other inspirational speaker right before hitting the sack. I notice that "Praise the Lord" is coming on and it is straight kick back to the 70's. No joke, they had a re-run on from the early 70's that started with the host and hostess walking down a plush red carpeted staircase fully decked out in the tackiest suit and dress you could ever see on two people. The host had the grey tinted hair and matching mustache while the hostess was sporting a pink dress I can't even describe and what looked like silver lipstick including too much blush and eye shadow for anybody. My cynical nature was just waiting for the host to give some watered down version of praise and worship and how we "sinners" must turn our life to Jesus. I was waiting for some "miracle healing" and "praise be to God" anthem that was so famous for this age. I was pretty blown away when these two people from 30 years ago that had just received a complete lashing of my own judgement began to speak about prayer. The host stated, "I believe too many of us are commanding God to come down to take care of our business. We're busy saying, "Lord, come down and take care of this, heal that, cast out that". God commanded us to go out. God commanded us to heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give".
Did you catch that? Why is this the most difficult concept to hold onto? Why do we proclaim the message of salvation but stop there? Why do we merely claim a title but don't explore the power that was handed down to us? Jesus told us what we were to do. He told us what was going to be sent to us...the Holy Spirit.
Here are a couple simple questions....Do you believe in God....if you answered "yes" then...do you believe in Jesus Christ....if you answered "yes"...do you believe in the gift of salvation...if you answered "yes" then you must truely believe in the Bible??? Maybe, but maybe not totally?
Here's the deal...either the Bible is totally true or it's totally false. There is no in between with any of it. You can't pick and choose as you see fit or else you are making your own religion to follow. Sounds good but it doesn't really work. This is more of an "Oprah" opinion if you ask me.
My personal opinion...the Bible is 100% true, not one thing added or taken away. So, what took me so long to comprehend the fact that Jesus called us to "Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give."
No joke, Jesus put his Godhood aside to come and live on this earth as man should. He left everything aside to show us what man could do if he lived in right relationship with the Father. He showed us what TRUE faith really was. He created it, He perfected it. All that was available to Jesus is currently available to us. Heresy you say...read that Bible that you claim to be truth. We can cast out demons, we can heal the sick, we can heal the lame....IN JESUS NAME! Ever hear the song, "I can do all things, thru Christ, who gives me strength"? There is power in the name of Jesus.
Hebrews 12:2 says, "Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." Jesus never lost sight of where he was headed. Please understand that he did not come to earth as God. He came to earth as a man completely leaving any power that he had as the Son of God. His power came through the faith that he had in the Father. He knew that he would return to God and his faith pointed in that direction continually.
When you find yourself staggering in your walk of faith, remember that Jesus came to show us the way. He only did as the Father did. His faith was always in the Father. The faith that Jesus had is in us...the Holy Spirit! Such power and wonderful things exist by claiming the name of Jesus...the power to cast out demons, the power to heal our sicknesses, the power to oversome any forces of darkness that present themselves. Remember, only good comes from God. Those negative feelings, those bitter thoughts, those resentful impulses, those destructive ideas...they are not from God. But by the name of Jesus, they are forced to leave. Such peace and comfort lies in his name.
Name it and proclaim it. If you believe the words of the Bible to be true then you need to start acting upon them. Can you fully fathom what true believers can do if they follow the direction that Jesus is giving us? Our world is turning upside down but I know that the more this world is led into darkness the more the power of the Holy Spirit will be poured out upon the earth. We are in those times. Will you let the enemy trample us down or will you stand upon the Word of God and rightly claim what has been given to us?
"But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkenss. So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep , but let us be alert and self-controlled. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be self- controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing." 1 Thessalonians 5:4-11
What good are we if we sit on the sideline and utter God's greatness only in the presence of other faithful? What good are we if we sit in disbelief when we see the enemy taking advantage of life before us? What good are we if the Holy Spirit resides in us but does not pour out of us? What good are we if we don't proclaime the great name of Jesus who was brutally crushed and crucified...who committed no sin, who still bears the mochary of this fallen world but yet died in our place?
You are me and I am you...no joke. I write this with love and, hopefully, encouragement. I long to be a faithful servant of God but yet I fall so disgracefully short. I have to fall upon the Word and realize that I am not alone...nor are you. We are children of God but we are not perfect...but yet, we are empowered by the Holy Spirit and can learn to live as true children of God. I pray this in Jesus name!