|This ministry has a distinct kingdom, Messianic vision, identifying with God’s call and plan for the Jewish people and the church. My position is pre-trib! Personally: I was saved in 1976 while working as a war correspondent, journalist, photographer, artist and environmentalist. My calling is to share these great end-time dramas, to stand as a watchman and above all, to glorify my God.|
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●Israel launches attacks in Lebanon to destroy Hezbollah (backed by Iran) terror tunnels.
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Shabbat (Sabbath) begins on Fridays at 6pm and ends on Saturdays at 6pm. The purpose is to help the church and Israel become reconciled in Messiah and to identify the rift, and the needed restoration. There is much in the church that needs to change before it can be fully reconciled with the Jew. Likewise, changes in Jewish thinking are also needed.
Edition 402: January 30th 2018
The church under attack from within:
In this edition I will refer to Spirit-less or non Spirit-filled churches, meaning, those that reject the baptism of the Spirit with the evidence of tongues – mostly denominational churches.
Almost unnoticed the enemy has been preparing his final attack against the church as we head for the rapture! A secret, deadly Trojan-Horse is already deep inside the church.
One of the best methods of attack is from inside. In WW11 there was a story in which four columns of soldiers surrounded a city, but the deadly fifth column was already inside – hiding in plain sight.
I’m sure many of the people I will be referring to in this edition, have no idea that they are puppets on a devil-string, and many won’t believe it.
The gifts of the Spirit are not a salvation issue, but may well be a survival issue for many, very soon!
The successful army:
For an army to be successful in battle it needs a number of key, absolutely essential things:
●Weapons of warfare are needed. ●Defensive weapons and armour are needed. ●Offensive weapons are needed. ●Secret intelligence information is needed. ●Coded communication systems are needed. ●Knowledge of the enemy’s strategy is a must. ●Money is needed ●Unity of purpose is needed – and much more.
The above list is pretty obvious. Few would argue against it.
The Bible calls the church an army in a war. (2 Timothy 2:4)
How it all began:
The church was born at Pentecost as a new dispensation. The law was transferred from stone to the hearts of believers. (Romans 2:15) Because this was an entirely new, revolutionary thing God was doing, it was sure to be attacked severely.
God provided new weaponry, new armour and new methods of dealing with the old enemy.
Pentecost saw the Spirit of God descend, baptising those upon whom it fell, in the Spirit, with the evidence of tongues. This new outpouring of the Spirit came with a string of new spiritual gifts to equip this new body – the church.
This all occurred with the birth of the church at Pentecost identifying the church as a new entity.
The coming of the Spirit, tongues and the gifts are inextricably linked together. They were given for a particular time period, which is: “Until we all come into the unity of the faith,” (Ephesians 4:13) and until the church dispensation is over!
The Bible talks of the foundational doctrines of Messiah. (Hebrews 6:1-2) One of them is “baptisms” – plural! (This is water and Spirit baptism as separate events.)
The foundation of our faith is the key. Part of this foundation is: ●The new-birth, ●adult water baptism by full immersion and ●baptism in the Spirit with the evidence of tongues. That’s the “tripod.” If you remove one leg, it will fall over.
The gifts of the Spirit:
The gifts of the Spirit are revealed in Romans 12:6-8, 1 Corinthians 12:4-11, 28, Ephesians 4:11-13, Acts 1:8 and many other places. The five-fold ministry gifts are also part of the package, but for the administration and running of this new corporate body of Messiah. They are: ●Apostle ●Prophet, ●Evangelist, ●Pastor and ●Teacher. (Ephesians 4:11)
The gifts include: ●Tongues, ●Prophecy, ● Serving, ● Teaching, ●Encouraging, ●Giving, ●Leading, ●Words of wisdom, ●Words of knowledge, ●Discernment of spirits, ●Faith, ●Healings, ●Miracles and more.
With the gifts come weapons and armour: ●Breastplate of righteousness, Shield of faith, ●Girdle of truth, ●Shoes of prep of gospel salvation, ●Helmet of salvation, ●Sword of Spirit, the word of God. (Ephesians 6:14-20)
The Bible reveals that the gifts of the Spirit, with the evidence of tongues are used for: ●Edification (1 Corinthians 14:4) ●Magnifying God (Acts 10:46) ●Assurance of faith (Romans 8:16) ●Unity (1 Corinthians 12:12) ●Protection, ●Discernment, ●Warfare, ●Power, ●Authority, ●Endurance, ●Self Control, ●Prophetic insight, ●Leading and ●Guiding, ●Speaking unknown secrets to God, ●Praying mysteries to God. And more!
Collectively, all the gifts of the Spirit were given to establish the church, build it up, protect it, nurture it and guide it. The gifts are also for the edification and growth of individual Christians.
They were given to deal with enemy attacks throughout the church age, getting worse as we near the completion of this dispensation.
The attack on the gifts of the Spirit:
The Catholic church and the majority of the denominational churches reject the baptism in the Spirit with the evidence of tongues, which includes the gifts of the Spirit.
They call their doctrine “cessationism”, which mean that the gifts have ceased. They believe that the gifts were only introduced to establish the church, and ceased when the last apostle died! (Who knows where that bit of arrogant craziness comes come from?)
1 Corinthians 13:8 “Love never fails, but where there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease, (in an instant) where there is knowledge, it will vanish away...”
The above verse is very enlightening. The gifts were given at Pentecost as the church was born. The church age will “cease” in a blinding flash at the rapture. Knowledge will “vanish away” (a different original word is used,) because knowledge is not unique to the church, as tongues is, and will dissipate over time.
This verse is one of the great proofs of a pre-tribulation rapture and not that the gift ceased with the last apostle – What terrible presumption!
Some of these non Spirit-filled believers maintain that the baptism in Spirit comes automatically as the person becomes a believer at the new-birth. – Wrong!
Acts19:2 “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed? We have not even heard of it.”
Acts 19:6 “When Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, (believers) and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.”
Acts 2:38-39 “Peter said to them, repent and let everyone of you be baptised in the name of Yeshua the Messiah for the remission of sins (water baptism); and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, for this promise is to you and your children and all who are afar off, as many as call on the Lord.”
1 Corinthians 1:7 “I thank you that I come short in no gift, eagerly waiting for the revelation of our Lord.” (Till the Lord comes – other translations.)
Acts 2:17 “It shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour My Spirit out on all flesh; your sons and daughters shall prophesy...”
We see in these verses (and there are many more) that the gift of tongues and prophecy has not ceased. We see that the baptism in the Spirit is a separate act apart from salvation and it comes by choice, after being born-again.
The devils logic:
If the gifts, including tongues, were given to establish the church, and then ceased with the last apostle, logic presumes that the enemy was now defeated and irrelevant.
But the Bible shows the opposite! As we approach the close of the age, the attacks of the enemy will intensify. So why then, was the church given all the weapons of spiritual warfare, armour, and gifts of the Spirit only until the last apostle died?
Sorry, that is the logic of someone with a fried brain (or Satan!)
If you say, in your ignorance, the gifts ceased with the last apostle. You really have no place in the Lords army. How can you be part of an army with no weapons or armour?
●Do you think demons ceased?
●Do you think Satan died with the last apostle?
They say that the Satan and the demons were defeated. Yes that’s right, but they were defeated by our Lord on the cross and not the last apostle standing. Besides, their defeat is positional and will only see complete fulfilment at the Second Coming.
A criticism thrown at those baptised in the Spirit points out the excesses of some people in it, like the prosperity preachers. Of course there are some excesses and some circus clowns, but the essential messages of the prosperity verses in the Bible are quite true.
If you don’t like the excesses, (and I don’t) just avoid them., but you can’t change the Bible!
I agree that a balance with the discipleship verses is needed. But you can’t reject one aspect of truth which gets misused because you deem it objectionable!
Because some misuse a truth, does not nullify that truth! It most certainly is no excuse for believing one of the biggest lies in world history – which is, that the gifts have ceased.
The devil always tries to corrupt the true things of God. In fact he has done the same with the new-birth, water baptism and much more.
If ever there is a time for the all the gifts – it is now!
Identifying the enemy attack:
The Bible reveals that many people, in these end-times will be overcome, fall away, and reject their faith.
Satan knows his time is very short. He is going into attack mode, in overdrive!
Revelation 12:12 “...Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having (increasing) great wrath, because he knows his time is short.”
Ephesians 6:12-13 (Amp) “We are not wrestling against flesh and blood and physical opponents – but against despots, descending powers and master - spirits who are the world rulers and dominators of this present darkness, and against the forces of wickedness in the supernatural sphere. Therefore put on God’s complete armour that you may be able to resist and stand your ground in the evil, dangerous day...”
Beloved brethren, this verse above is profound. I strongly suggest you study it, going into every original word used!
Quenching the Spirit:
What does the word “quench” mean? It means to put out, stifle and extinguish, like throwing water on a fire.
Ephesians 6:16-18 “Take the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one...praying always in the Spirit...”
1 Thessalonians 5:19-20 “Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies. Test all things...”
So, in the above verses, we are told to quench the work of the devil (with the gifts) and not to quench the Spirit!
Much of the church has got that the wrong way around!
Any doctrine and practice that maintains the gifts of the Spirit have ceased or are irrelevant today is “quenching the Spirit,”
You can, and many do, grieve, resist and quench the Spirit, to your own destruction.
A huge part of the church - all of the Spirit-less church does not even know how to identify the enemy, never mind how to deal with him, and his evil entourage!
Demonic spirits get in just like you would expect: ●They walk in because the door is open. ●They come in by invitation of sinful lifestyles. ●They force their way in because of weak opposition. ●They come in through false doctrine. ●They come in through any and all involvement with the occult.
Once they are in, it is much more difficult to get them out and when you do, they come back to see if doors are still open! They often bring seven of their evil buddies for each one that was expelled.
Children are exposed to the demons their parents bring in. The breakdown of authority in the family opens the door for demons in children. They do not have the spiritual defences to deal with these things yet.
Many, many times parents are responsible for demon possessed children!
The character and operations of demons are referred to all over the Bible and the descriptions are consistent. Here are just a few from the New Covenant:
Demons are: ●unclean, ●they defile, ●they entice, ●they enslave, ●they compel, ●they cause addiction, ●they cause mental torture, ●they teach and create false doctrines and deceptions and ●they destroy relationships and authority structures.
Non Spirit-filled churches are largely ineffective in dealing with demons, the occult and the like.
Most of the Spirit-less church is ineffective in building the kingdom of God, because they can only see it partially. They build sectarian, institutional denominations – they can see them clearly.
We need the gifts of the Spirit to supernaturally empower and charge the word of God.
The word only becomes a “sword” in your mouth backed by the Spirit.
We must battle the enemy as we build the kingdom.
The word of truth must offend the word of error. The truth must offend the enemy. Those who love and practise the truth are an automatic offence to those who practice entrenched error.
► Truth is a sword. It cuts and divides between those that love it and those that don’t. Truth divides and conquers. Compromise produces an unholy unity!
Division and disunity destroys:
1 Corinthians 1:10 “Speak the same thing with no divisions among you”!
Amos 3:3 “How can two walk together, lest they be agreed?”
Matthew 12:25 “A house divided will not stand.”
So, if this house called the church can be divided, will it stand? The answer of course is – no.
So, if Satan can create division and disunity he has gone a long way towards causing at least a section of the church to fall. He cannot defeat the true church.
Because tongues used in one sense, is a faith exercise, and the interpretation is by God, it really is the way for us all to “speak the same thing.” It is our one unified language bringing a largely invisible, unseen unity to us.
The statistics for people falling away from the faith and church growth are extremely telling. We have huge numbers of non Spirit-filled Christians, especially in the west falling away. And huge growth numbers among the Spirit-filled crowd.
Some are going to war fully ignorant of the devils devices, with no weapons and no armour. Most of them are not even going to war, because they can’t see it or recognise it. They will be clobbered.
If you reject the baptism in the Spirit, you are exalting your own self-enlightenment, showing that you have little logic, and relying on very weak, stretched presumptions and interpretations of one verse!
When you remove God-given power from the church you are its enemy, though you sit in a putrid pew.
Have you noticed that the non Spirit-filled churches rarely talk of spiritual warfare? They have little or no interest or concern about it, or end-time prophecy (eschatology)!
The Bible says that we are to let our “speech be seasoned with salt”. (Colossians 4:6) Salt is a type of the word and in this particular day, how can you have spiritual conversation with other believers that has no eschatology in the mix?
The damage done:
In rejecting the baptism in the Spirit you are replacing it with the “baptism in self”. (The word “baptism” means, immersion) You then, are the supreme leader of your life, immersed in your own opinions, just like those of Laodicea!
The word “Laodicea” means people or self opinionated.
You are your own leader, defender and revealer of the things of God! No wonder there are over 30,000 so-called Christian denominations!
The Spirit-less churches of the world, collectively have done more damage to Israel than Hitler. They are the architects of replacement theology and all manner of anti-Israel acts. They will soon become far worse in their attacks against Israel.
You need to know how these things work. The church baptised in the Spirit, will get stronger under attack and persecution. The non-Spirit-filled crowd will fall away under attack! (There are tons of statistics available on this from Pew)
A terrible, consistent theme runs through history relating to the Spirit-less churches:
●The entire Catholic church was founded by those outside of the baptism of the Spirit. ●All of the denominational churches, (the word means, division), were founded by those who reject the baptism of the Spirit.
●All replacement theology was founded by those outside of the baptism in the Spirit, although, tragically, some Spirit-filled churches have fallen into that deception in recent times.
●Most doctrinal divisions and confused prophetic insight comes from those outside of the baptism of the Spirit.
You can’t endure in holiness without the power of spiritual gifts.
Building a church without the baptism in the Spirit is building on a foundation of soft sand.
Knowing who to trust in these times:
The problem with non Spirit-filled teachers is not so much what they teach, but what they don’t. (Correction, it’s both!)
You need to know the position of your teacher on these things. It is more important than you think. Ask him, if you don’t already know.
Spirit-less teachers produce Spirit-less followers, spineless, spiritually sleepy, unable to endure - no different to the world and just as evil in many cases.
The non Spirit-filled can’t study the Bible effectively with the enlightenment of the Spirit, because they’ve rejected the revelatory gifts. They can only study what they see before them – the dead letter of the word. They are always behind the curve rather than ahead of it, looking ahead.
Being against the baptism in the Spirit is being at war with truth. You are trying to disarm the church and render it blind in the face of its greatest onslaught ever.
How can you see who is inside the Trojan, when you’re blind and ignorant with no informers?
Whichever way you look at it, the baptism of the Spirit is a divider – a glorious divider, between those who love the whole truth and want all that God has for them, and those who want to be average nothings.
I would rather be identified and associated with those who acknowledge and keep all truth, even though some areas are sometimes misused, than with those who deny huge entire aspects of truth, removing it from their gospel and practice!
By the way, you can’t tell me that strawberry cheesecake is not nice. You fool...you’re too late. I’ve tasted that it’s good. Likewise, you are too late to tell me that tongues doesn’t edify, build you up, fill you with the wisdom of God and give you other gifts too. You’re too late!
I must stress again that this entire subject is not a salvation issue, but a growth and stability issue.
2 Peter 1:12 “We are to be established in the present truth.” In Peter’s day, “present truth” was the New Covenant epistles...the whole lot!
The big take-away here is that satanic warfare is increasing in these days, not dissipating. It is about to take on new forms as well. This is not the time for the church to retreat, assimilate with the enemy, or lie down and play dead (becoming truly dead!)
1 Timothy 4:1 “The Spirit expressly says that in the latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.”
A key “doctrine of demons” is that demons don’t exist and don’t need to be dealt with!
Zebra fun in the sun: I took these pictures in Namaqualand and blended them making the white of the Zebra transparent.
Shalom and grow in His Grace!