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Years ago I was preaching a series of strong holiness messages in a particular church. After one of the meetings the pastor said something to me that I’ve never forgotten. “The Lord has dealt with me about preaching more on love than holiness,” he said.

That statement didn’t sit well with me. I knew it was not accurate. Yet back then I didn’t know why. I pondered that pastor’s statement with my own thoughts that raced through my head. Is love more important than holiness? Are they different, or are they virtually the same? They have to be different, or we’d have a lot of redundancy in the Bible, I thought. But how are they different? Although I knew the pastor’s statement came from a lack of understanding true holiness, at that time I couldn’t thoroughly explain the difference.

This pastor’s statement put an emphasis on love, which is of primary importance, while de-emphasizing holiness, which is not only God’s greatest attribute, but foundational to understanding man’s relationship to God. I walked away from that conversation knowing that this pastor’s view of holiness was not becoming or beautiful. I thought of how his view was probably shared by a multitude of believers, who have formed erroneous ideas and notions of holiness, due probably to their own negative experiences—like the cat who is afraid of water because of one negative experience of getting scalded by boiling water. Or of those who may have come from a background of legalism where do’s and don’ts were associated with holiness. These are among the reasons holiness has gotten a bad rap and is looked upon with a sort of disdain, as being primitive, outdated and just not culturally relevant. We need to realize, however, that negative experiences or unsound teaching does not nullify the real meaning, necessity, and beauty of God’s holiness.

WHAT IS TRUE HOLINESS

What then is the real meaning of holiness? Holiness is the likeness of God. It is the total summation of all His attributes. One of my favorite definitions of holiness as it applies to believers is that it is a moral dedication and a life committed to purity of thought, word, motive and deed. At the center of that definition is the fact of being set apart or consecrated to God’s purposes. Just as God is otherworldly, we as His chosen people are to be distinct and set apart from this world. In other words, we are not to be conformed to its ideals, patterns, or standards. Holiness is conformity to God’s nature and will.

But even more importantly, holiness has more to do with to whom we belong. To whom do we give our loyalty, love, and allegiance to? To be holy means that all we are and all we have belongs to God, not ourselves, and is set apart for His purposes. It means that every aspect of our lives is to be shaped and directed by God.

Personally, I believe that restoring the beauty of biblical holiness in the church is a critical ingredient to healing the moral confusion in our culture. As the church goes, so goes the world. Our disproportionate view of holiness is one of the big reasons there is so much of the spirit of the world in the church. A distorted view of holiness, or simply the ignorance of it, is clouding our understanding of God’s true love. When God is seen as a loving, nondemanding pushover whose love overrides His holiness, then people will live in accordance with that belief. Permissiveness and promiscuity will be prevalent.

For example, if a person believes that God is so loving that He would never manifest His judgment or wrath or send anyone to hell for their sin, then their conduct will reflect that belief, and much of their life will be lived with that awful presumption. Popular false concepts of God such as these are spreading rampantly in much of the Western culture. A vision and revelation of God’s holiness will alter any of these false perceptions and will serve to greatly strengthen the church.

Any understanding of sin must begin with an understanding of true biblical holiness. In Canaan the temple prostitute was considered a holy woman, and a homosexual priest was considered a holy man. However, what was accepted among the Canaanites and the other nations was an abomination to God (Deut. 23:17-18). And Israel, as God’s chosen nation, a type of the New Testament church, was forbidden to practice these things. The people of Canaan didn’t understand God’s holiness so they couldn’t possibly understand the gravity of their sin.

A person defines sin by his own concept of God. This is the reason we now have books being written that one can be a gay Christian; and now we also have the spread of universalism and the emergent church that teaches that in the end all will be saved, because God will not allow any human being to go to hell. Many do not understand God’s love because they are not seeing it through His holiness.

Our understanding of God’s holiness determines our estimation of sin. God defines Himself through His holiness. His holiness is the standard by which we judge what sin is and what sin is not. Righteousness and justice, which are vital aspects of God’s holiness, are the foundation of His throne (Ps 89:14). All God’s dealings with us are based on the foundation of holiness. Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of Christ depart from iniquity” (2 Tim 2:19).

It is wrong to elevate what we think is love at the expense of holiness. In fact, God’s true love manifests within holiness. Just as water flows through a pipe the love of God flows through His holiness. Moreover, it is God’s love that keeps Him from overlooking His holiness. After all, it was His holiness which made the atonement necessary. His holiness demanded the cost of God’s own Son, for He cannot excuse, acquit or clear the guilty (Ex 34:7). And what His holiness demanded His love provided on the cross of Calvary.

HOLINESS AND LOVE ARE NOT OPPOSITES

Holiness and love are not at odds with each other. Holiness is not in opposition to love or separated from it. The Bible tells us that love is the greatest (1 Cor. 13:13) and any word, motivation or act void of love is as nothing (1 Cor. 13:1-3). But at the same time, love is not separated from holiness. Rather, it is constrained by holiness.

For example, if a church will not draw a sharp distinction between sin and righteousness, or will not practice church discipline among its members as taught in the Word (Mat. 18:15-17, Rom. 16:17, 1 Cor. 5, Tit. 3:10, 2 Thes. 3:6, 14-15, and such) because in their minds, it doesn’t seem loving, has probably been deceived into a false view of love absorbed from the pop culture. On the other hand, a church that emphasizes holiness, yet fails to do so in the motivation and service of love is a church that does not understand God’s holiness.

The true love of God is fixed on God’s holiness. If a church does not abide in holiness, it does not abide in true love. Conversely, if it does not abide in true love, it does not abide in holiness.

A holy church is in the world but not of it. They abstain from sin while dwelling among sinners—both are characteristics of true holiness. The problem has been that some churches have swerved too far in one direction or too far in the other, waffling between a false view of holiness and a false view of love.

The same Bible that tells me to pursue love (1 Cor 14:1) tells me to pursue holiness (Heb 12:14). Without love we are nothing. Without holiness we will never see the Lord.

But here is my warning:

A holy church is in the world but not of it. They abstain from sin while dwelling among sinners – both are characteristics of true holiness. The problem has been that some churches have swerved too far in one direction or too far in the other, waffling between a false view of holiness and a false view of love.

It’s time for the modern day church to get that right and walk in that light.

This is an excerpt taken from The Real Jesus, a compelling piece of a tetralogy of books (The Real Salvation, The Real Gospel, The Real Spirit of Revival)

NOTE: Our books and articles are forerunners to the move of God and personal holiness. The fire of God and the fear of God is attached to them. If you feel like this article is valuable, please use the social media buttons below to share it. Also, this ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those who believe in the mandate and message of revival that this ministry carries. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? 

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In 2002 in a lengthy season of prayer and fasting I saw a glass ceiling above me and everything I desired in ministry was on the other side—favor, anointing, power, significance, open doors, impact, etc. But while I was gazing at that glass ceiling God pointed me to the floor and began speaking to me about my foundations and character. He came to test me on a book I had just written called Soulish Leadership.

On the heels of several well known ministers who recently died, among them some who were overcome by sinful lifestyles and vices, this is a sober reminder. God anoints men. Men qualify themselves with character (1 Tim. 3). Men are enamored with anointing, gifts, charisma, and talents. God places the premium on character, and He will test you, especially if you are crying out to be like Him.

My father in the faith, the late Kenneth E. Hagin, ministered to 1000s of pastors and churches in his lifetime. He told us that very few of those pastors qualified for ministry. He even predicted how their children would turn out by how the parents were living. His predictions were 100% correct. Character should be the highest priority in life and ministry.

Don’t tell me about how great your gifts and anointing are when your marriage and children are out of order. Don’t tell me how you’re going to conquer the world but you can’t even conquer your lusts and addictions. Today it’s common for ministers to be caught in adultery or very unethical practices and continue on in ministry, and their pitifully poor followers continue to defend and worship them as gods and hold up their thou-shalt-not-judge card. Personally, I think the false concept of judgment is one of the deadliest in modern day Christendom. It is the reason for such a dirty and defiled version of Christian ministry. Paul knew judgment was in fact the key to keeping the church clean.

“Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life?  If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge? (1 Cor. 6:2-4)

The least esteemed in the church to judge are those who say, thou shalt not judge.

This lack of righteous judgment should break our hearts and send us to our knees to pray for the sad state of much of the body of Christ. Why are we so driven by ungodly success and popularity? Why are we so mesmerized by celebrity style ministry, a stage, bright lights, and a microphone? Isn’t it because we don’t know Jesus very well at all. We have no private life with Him. We don’t know Him in the secret place.

By the inspiration of the Holy Spirit the apostle Paul outlined character qualities for those who aspire to leadership in the Church (1 Tim. 3:1-7). Ministers of the gospel and local pastors and elders need to familiarize themselves with these character qualities instead of being so driven by unscriptural success. Even deacons must possess certain character qualities to serve in the church, after first being tested and found blameless.

“But let these also first be tested; then let them serve as deacons, being found blameless” (1 Tim. 3:10).

Blameless! That means there is not to be found anything in his character that could be used against him. Why have we lowered this standard in the Church today?

People say, “Well, nobody is perfect.”

“We’re all flawed and have shortcomings.”

“You can’t be legalistic.”

And of course the infamous, “don’t judge…God is the judge.”

Why then are these character qualities listed in the Word? Paul gives us the reason:

“I write so that you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:15). 

Paul wanted to deeply impress upon young Timothy that the Church is the great defender of the truth in the world, and that the truth which the Church is to maintain is of utmost importance. One commentary says this: “This relates to the incarnation of the Son of God, and to the work which he accomplished on earth (v. 16)–a work which excited the deepest interest in heaven, and the true doctrine respecting which it was of the utmost importance to keep up among people.”  This great truth is further elaborated on in the next chapter (1 Tim. 4), by showing that the time would come when, under the influence of Satan, these great doctrines would be denied, and the truth would be corrupted and perverted. We are living in that time.

These character qualities are so basic and foundational to Church leadership that it amazes me how far we’ve drifted from them in the Church today. I’m concerned about young ministers today who rise to publicity and popularity so quickly. Many of them are like shooting stars, here one day and gone the next. It’s better to be a shining star and just keep shining day after day through transformed character, not gifts and talents. Many are mistaking gifts and talents for God’s approval and qualifications for ministry. No, gifts and talents are the equipping for the calling. God equips us through His gifts and anointing, but we qualify ourselves through character. If we don’t prioritize character we will be candidates for deception.

During my aforementioned 2002 season of extended prayer one rhema word from Jesus changed my life. He said, “The reason I’ve not opened the doors that you thought should’ve been opened is because of My protection. The deception would’ve increased in you had I opened those doors, and you would’ve ceased to be a man after My own heart.” I wept like a baby when I heard Him say that, and His love overwhelmed me when I realized He was protecting me from myself.

Then He brought me to a place when I didn’t desire public ministry any more but only to know His heart and ways and to be obedient to His will. It was a miracle of great transformation because of the mystery of iniquity that is prevalent in man’s heart.

God is always ready to use us in great ways according to His calling on our lives, but often we are not ready and qualified by character. We will shoot ourselves and blow up His perfect plan and purpose for us. Listen to the wise words of Kathryn Kuhlman:

“I looked up and said audibly “Oh dear Jesus, why didn’t you allow all of this to happen to me when I was sixteen years of age? I never got tired in body, I could ride those buses all night and then preach all day. Why didn’t you let this all happen to me when I didn’t need sleep? Why did you wait so long wonderful Jesus? There wasn’t an audible voice, but He did speak to me and this is what He said.

“Kathryn, had I given it to you then, you would have blown the whole thing!!” I knew exactly what He meant.”

The Father knows best. Work on your character and let Him bring forth the fullness of His will in His own timing.

Our books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God, and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. 

Also, if any of our books or articles on this blog are a blessing and encouragement to you please use the social media buttons below to share them, and kindly post reviews on Amazon for any of our books you feel are worthy.

Finally, this ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those who believe in the mandate and message of revival that this ministry carries. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? 

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Thank you, and may God’s richest and best be yours.

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A happy church…one that doesn’t make you feel uncomfortable…one that will never offend you…one that will always tell you how much they love you and how much God loves you.

They change their church name for branding an image. They change their church culture for wooing the masses. They assemble cool young bands that play cool uplifting music and songs. They adapt their message for itching ears and unknowingly take away the power of redemption.

This is the current trend of many churches.

The happy church will entertain you. They say they exist to give people hope. They have fun programs for all your children. All their music and songs will make you feel special and soothe your guilt ridden emotions. And they’ll do whatever they can to keep you coming back for more.

This is the church who is playing in Delilah’s lap. If they stay there too long their conscience will be seared and they will be prime targets for deception and destruction. They won’t be able to shake themselves free because they won’t know that the anointing has departed from them.

“Then she lulled him to sleep on her knees, and called for a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his head. Then she began to torment him, and his strength left him. And she said, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” So he awoke from his sleep, and said, “I will go out as before, at other times, and shake myself free!” But he did not know that the Lord had departed from him” (Judges 16:19-20).

Samson played in Delilah’s lap until the secret of his power was cut off. Like so many churches and leaders today he didn’t realize he lost the anointing until it was too late. The secret of Samson’s power was his long hair. The secret of the church’s power is the mighty Holy Spirit.

Delilah bewitched Samson. Popular voices and popular concepts are bewitching today’s church. The world has our attention.

“O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth…Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?” (Gal. 3:1, 3)

A DISTURBING DREAM

A disturbing dream was given to my wife. She was driving to a church service amidst great devastation. Roads had been damaged. Cars blown up. Trees were down. Destruction was all around. As she approached the front door of where the church was meeting, the doorkeeper directed her to go in another way.

She had to walk behind the venue and crawl through a low porch window to get in. Once inside my wife saw carpenters working, people smoking and swearing like sailors, coarse conversations and tales of adultery. Then further below she entered the room where people gathered. In the dream I got up to preach, burning with the fire of holiness, and immediately an assassination attempt was made on me by an instrument that shot out strange fire.

On the way home from that meeting my wife ran into a very weary and spiritually depleted member of this church who was being affected by the deadness of this once life-giving church.

Just as there are evil alliances in the world so there are in the church. Both are subtle. Both are demonic. We wrestle not against flesh and blood. They are seducing spirits promoting doctrines of demons. It’s rampant and worse than you think. Nice people who’ve been deceived are engaged and involved in these unholy alliances.

THE TITANIC IS SINKING BUT WE’RE STILL PLAYING

The Titanic is sinking but the band keeps playing and the singers keep singing. Warnings have been issued of the impending danger and devastation. The Ark is being built, but people are going about their business with great indifference and unbelief.

When people are about to drown and die you don’t plan parties. You don’t entertain the masses. You don’t need to hear monotone voices telling you everything is alright. That’s cruel. It’s like telling a lost sinner on his death bed that everything’s going to be alright when he’s about to split hell wide open. It’s telling church goers that homosexuality is alright—that eventually everyone goes to heaven—that there is no hell. It’s dumbing down on the vital necessity of the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the power of God. It’s remaining silent about controversial issues that affect the church and laws and legislation being passed to rob us of more of our liberties. How can we keep silent during such an onslaught of evil on the church and our nation? Cultural conditions have been changing for a number of years now, and with it the rules have also changed.

A demonic culture with unimaginable addictions needs to meet a church and a people full of power and unapologetic fire. In a time of mass murders in public gatherings and in the halls of our schools and churches—in a time of hurricanes, earthquakes, flood and fires, and volcanoes on the brink of deathly eruptions—we don’t want to see Noah swinging his hips from the platform of the ark and telling you how wonderful you are and how God will make all your dreams come true. It is not a time for pastors to display their wealth, and talk of their multi-million dollar airplanes, and grant people mild cures for their life threatening diseases and lustful addictions.

I don’t care how large your church is if it is not a threat to Satan’s kingdom and the encompassing darkness. I don’t care how popular of a speaker you are if hell doesn’t know you. If all people do is sing your praises God hasn’t sent you. If you only make people glad, but never sad or mad, you’re probably doing a bad job. It means you’re not impacting the culture of sin. In fact, worse than that, you’re inoculating your own people against the real Jesus, the real gospel, and the real salvation.

If you’re in a happy church where the cross, the blood, and hell are never preached, where there’s no real power to redeem from sin, and no warnings are ever given, you might be in Delilah’s lap.

You better exit now before your strength is cut off.

Our books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God, and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. 

Also, if any of our books or articles on this blog are a blessing and encouragement to you please use the social media buttons below to share them, and kindly post reviews on Amazon for any of our books you feel are worthy.

Finally, this ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those who believe in the mandate and message of revival that this ministry carries. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? 

DONATE 

Thank you, and may God’s richest and best be yours.

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This article is being published in honor of Rev. Mel Montgomery who recently departed to be with the Lord. Mel had a passion for reforming Charismatic doctrine and restoring the genuine flow of the Holy Spirit to the Church today. We shared this common passion and became spiritual friends as a result. I’ve taken the liberty to edit his article and make minor grammatical corrections. You can visit his website and familiarize yourself with old recordings of true ‘Word and Spirit’ pioneers of the faith that will enrich your life:  brothermel.org 

Some time ago Charisma News published an article in favor of “Apostolic Alignment”- the error that claims you need to come under an apostle to stay in alignment with heaven’s order. Here was my response:

Hmmm. . . “Apostolic alignment . . . keeps us out of error.” Well then, how did the error-saturated travesty known as the “Lakeland Revival” occur?

Ten of the greatest “apostles” and “prophets” of the New Apostolic Reformation and the New Prophetic Move flew down to Lakeland and “aligned” Todd Bentley. They whipped out their apostolic authority, praised Todd’s “purity” and “integrity”, and prophesied that the Lakeland “Revival” would increase and spread around the world, ushering in the return of Christ. Peter Wagner declared Todd Bentley to be properly “aligned.” Then two weeks later, the revival collapsed in sexual scandal, financial scandal, and revelations of an attempted cover up. Far from keeping Todd or anyone else out of error, the “apostles” and “prophets” were in partnership with Todd’s errors, some even going so far as to attempt to cover up his sin.

If I remember the account correctly, Charisma magazine sent someone down to investigate the revival and its claims of 17  people being raised from the dead, and countless healings and miracles. The investigator could not document even one single healing taking place, much less 17 people being raised from the dead (he did document that Todd Bentley kicked someone’s tooth out. However, we were never told if the man came forward to have his tooth healed). Todd and his staff became unresponsive to the investigator, specifically requesting that he not ask any more questions.

The investigator reported the facts to Charisma (and I commend Charisma for actually ascertaining the facts rather than falling for the falsehoods peddled by so many major Charismatic leaders). After reporting to Charisma, since the investigator had personal relationships with several of these so-called apostles and prophets, he contacted and met with some of them. He told them the facts he had uncovered of sexual misconduct, financial misconduct, false claims of miracles, and so on.

So . . . the apostles told him to expose it all, right? They put on sackcloth and ashes and wailed over the hoax that had deceived so many and brought disrepute to the gospel of Jesus Christ, right? LOL!. Nope. Instead, those he spoke with urged him to cover it all up and not expose any of it. Then within days, knowing what they knew, they flew down to Lakeland and proudly appeared with Todd on stage. They publicly praised Todd’s “integrity” and “purity,” gave him their apostolic “alignment” and then prophesied his continued success.

But, the jig was up. The investigator went ahead and exposed the lies and sin.

Hey, the track record for this whole “apostolic alignment” mess is not so good.  Corruption saturated groups of men in modern times who set themselves up as apostles and peddle such erroneous doctrines is nothing new. Pentecostal historian Keith Malcomson’s book, “Pentecostal Pioneers” documents the fact that there was a well developed apostolic network of churches that arose throughout Great Britain in the 1920’s, 1930’s, and 1940’s.

WIGGLESWORTH AND OTHER PIONEERS OF THE FAITH WOULD HAVE NONE OF IT

Members of Smith Wigglesworth’s Bowland Street mission began to agitate for Wigglesworth to bring his mission and ministry under this apostolic network. But Wigglesworth would have none of it. So some of his members split from his church and left, figuratively writing “Ichabod” over the door and declaring that God was finished with Smith Wigglesworth’s rebellion and refusal to come under “apostolic authority.” And Wigglesworth’s ministry collapsed, right? Hardly. He had some of his most productive years and anointed meetings after he refused to submit to so-called apostolic alignment.

What happened to the churches that aligned under the great apostolic mother church in Great Britain? The head “apostle” got off into deep error, and those churches that did not flee from “apostolic alignment” went into error too. Eventually the network collapsed, just like Lakeland. Rather than keeping anyone out of error, these two major apostolic alignment catastrophes actually partnered with, led into, or attempted to cover up, error and sin.

Smith Wigglesworth, Stanley Frodsham, Howard Carter, WFP Burton, David Du Plessis, Maria Woodworth-Etter, Aimee Semple McPherson, and many other early Pentecostals were well aware of this exaggeration of the apostolic ministry and not only did they not come under “apostolic alignment,” they absolutely refused to hold meetings for any church that was a part of it.

Since then, think of all of the major Evangelical, Pentecostal, and Charismatic ministers who never placed themselves under any so-called “apostle.” They never experienced “apostolic alignment.” How did their ministries turn out? Judge for yourself. A partial list would include: Kathryn Kuhlman, Oral Roberts, Kenneth Hagin, Lester Sumrall, T. L. Osborn, and even Billy Graham. Yes, Billy Graham. He sure went off into error and his ministry never amounted to anything without Apostolic Alignment!

Apostolic Alignment? No thank you. I’ll stick with Wigglesworth’s position on this error.

Our books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God, and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. 

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The following article is another summary of one of our many recorded prayer sessions when the Holy Spirit stepped in and became the Teacher. Once again, for the last several years this has been a common operation whenever Carolyn and I pray together. Most of these revelatory utterances  would be classified as a word of wisdom from the Lord. I’ve included Scriptural references to confirm the prayer utterances.

(Note: Spoken and prayed with the same Spirit that came on Jesus when He went into the temple and overthrew the tables and drove out the money changers).

“For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5).

“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. None of them shall teach his neighbor, and none his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them” (Heb. 8:10-11).

“Then the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom” (Mk. 15:38).

PRAYER BEGINS…

The veil was rent in two so we could come to God without a human mediator. Closing the veil is the spirit of religion that tells us we need to go through a man, an organization, or a program.

This is being manifested in many forms today. There is to be no more condemnation concerning these things.

For this is truly a judgment of the heart for all believers to put their fellowship with God above religion and the traditions of man, or having to go to a prophet to hear what the Lord is saying.

For this was the same spirit always confronting Jesus and the manifestation of His compassion, “Who does He think He is healing and forgiving man’s sins?”

Behind the open veil is everything we need, but man ruled by his traditions, wittingly or unwittingly, seems to always be trying to close that veil.

True freedom comes to the one who believes and knows they have free access to the Father through Jesus.

There will be some in traditional churches today who will not fall away simply because they’ve been taught to go into the Holy of Holies for themselves.

Our part is to show them the access without criticizing the traditional church.

It’s necessary and important that the young ones (babies) know how to go into that place in the Spirit even as we were trained in local churches and learned to move with the body.

The key is to train them to move into the Spirit and access that place on their own. Once they learn they can be established as strong trees of righteousness.

For if you train just one to come and be a part of an assembly without man’s restrictions, it’s a victory…(The Holy Spirit brought to remembrance Carolyn’s first church worship leader and what she did with Carolyn and the group in training them to access that place).

Even in Pensacola during the great outpouring of the 1990s those young revival babies learned the presence of God.

Never does it benefit when a man leads another to a man and the wisdom of man.

Keep pointing them to the veil and the access.

For you and the pray-ers are to hold open that door and that entrance for others to come through. And it’s the leaders who then encourage them to move on in.

That is why we can never be satisfied with playing church. Christ has been formed in us.

Instead of being like Joshua who sat on the outside of the tent of meeting and listened (Ex. 33:11), it’s our place as ministers to draw them on in and teach them to stay there and meet with God.

There will always be saints who want to go on in.

This is the only place we are truly rooted and grounded in the Lord.

Gal. 3:1 – That is why this place of man putting their dependence on man is such a bewitching place.

For we will not always be there for them, but they must learn to go there beyond the veil on their own.

That is why this bewitching in toning down the move and manifestations of the Holy Spirit is such a diabolical move – the spirit that closes the veil makes it hard to access Me.

Got to keep people moving toward the Lord where they are at home with Him.

He is the door, the only door.

Free access is through the Blood.

The seeker friendly philosophy closes the door and says you can only have this much access, and you can only go this far by toning down on the Holy Spirit and His workings.

God is in the midst of His people, not behind a veil (Carolyn saw leaders standing in front of a veil and pulling it shut).

Confusion and bewilderment came to those who were used to free access but now are being blocked and bewitched by man.

I believe this is truly a word of wisdom from the Lord that traditionalists may have difficulty receiving. 

The file that contains this wisdom and counsel is called, The Prayer Jotter, and we hope to make a unique book or journal from these some day. But for now we will just be blogging some of them. I hope this one was a blessing to you. If so, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help our ministry? 

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Thank you, and may God’s richest and best be yours.

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This is a transcription of one of our prayer times when divinely inspired utterances were brought forth by the Spirit of God. This has been a pattern now since 2013 when Carolyn and I began praying and traveling together more frequently. The purpose of this special anointing and operation of the Holy Spirit is to bring forth provision of the wisdom of God for the body of Christ. I believe it would fall under the heading of the revelation gifts of the Holy Spirit with prophecy—a spirit of seeing and knowing. 

Here now is one sample of this operation:

Just like in a natural family the mothers and fathers learn what their children respond to and the children learn what the parents respond to because they learn their love language in a healthy family.

And they’re always reaching to meet (fulfill) that love language because they love the response that they receive.

So it is in His body – I see it.

Every believer and every son and daughter of God has a love gift that they respond to and it’s important to find it and recognize the gift that they respond to and then they will respond to Me.

For some like words of affirmation and some like pretty things and pretty gifts like diamond rings (laughter)…

For some it’s just an act of kindness, an act of service, a helping hand…

A loving shepherd learns the love language of every sheep and every lamb.

And this will be a key, not just to open up individual hearts but congregations of people, too.

For you see, I am the author and the finisher of their faith and I am the one who gives utterance and moves through you in gifts that releases them to receive from Me.

So we pray that now Father…

I see where many hearts have been hardened and have sifted themselves and even resisted because they’re not receiving that love language.

There’s been nothing to cause their hearts to respond.

We pray wisdom now in your ministers to release that love language on your body that would turn them from the things of this world and cause them to look intently and strongly on Jesus again.

We understand Father…

That’s why the 5 fold ministry gifts are so imperative and to be used in the body of Christ because they all carry something different and they move in the different gifts, and some are stronger than others in things.

So right now we agree as touching that in prayer that there would be a release of the 5 fold ministry gifts into your body worldwide.

Your body does not deserve to be hungry and lacking in the equipping they need to do the work of the ministry and respond to you.

Your body is diverse – one gift can’t reach everyone…

And that’s the reason many leave their churches because they only hear the one gift and they get tired of the one voice always talking to them.

Thank you Lord for your diversity and your manifold wisdom.

Acts 16 – And the Lord opened the heart of Lydia so that she heeded the things spoken by Paul.

You are the one who opens hearts and knows what each heart needs and what each heart connects to.

Your Holy Spirit is the equalizer.

He’s the one that does it and that’s why we must point people to Him, and not to us.

Too many are trying to get people to follow them, but they need to teach them to follow Him.

And then there’s grace, for the grace is in Him, and it’s released when you point people to Him.

Did He not say when He’s lifted up He would draw all men unto Him.

You’ve made it so simple that we’ve missed it.

We must be like John the Baptist who said he must decrease so Christ could increase – he got out of the way so You could be seen and heard and followed.

Oh, may we as your ministers learn to move out of the way!

Yes, lead them in a way we’re called to lead but lead them to You…

After all, that is the ministry of the Holy Spirit who said that He would not even speak of Himself, but whatsoever He would (pause and laughter)… but whatsoever He would hear that He would speak.

He doesn’t even speak of Himself and He’s the Holy Spirit.

He speaks only the Father’s will, he speaks the mind of Jesus Christ, but not of Himself.

Oh, this is a revelation that we need.

This is important!

This is the meekness of the Lord, even as Paul came in the meekness of Christ, not to point others to himself but to the Lord.

We’re nothing without Him, but we have God’s heart by the Holy Spirit.

Understand this, get this … for except the Holy Spirit reveal it to you, you will not know it (1 Cor 2).

The Holy Spirit reveals the deep things of God’s heart.

So we draw on those deep things this morning…

For as we go our way and minister throughout the days and this year that we would be keen to remember that it’s the Holy Spirit that brings up the heart of God and that speaks the need of that love language to your people, and even to those outside of Christ.

For there are some now that are ready to come into His kingdom and to believe.

For them we pray, those outside…

Jesus always knew what to say (tears) – He knew how to minister to the harlot, He knew how to minister to the blind man. He knew how to love the broken-hearted mother who just lost her son.

Power – with that revelation comes power; with those keys comes power for those outside.

That waitress must have needed something yesterday at that restaurant, and we pray for her now that she would not rest until she comes to Jesus Christ as her Savior and Lord.

We spoke Your name to her, Lord and may Your name resonate in her heart and mind.

May she never forget the words, “He changed my life”, but may those words come back to her again and again.

And may that gift we left her speak of the love of the Father…

As I said, this operation has manifested frequently in our prayer times since 2013. It is most prolific through Carolyn’s vessel. We have well over 500 documented pages of these utterances. The file is called, The Prayer Jotter, and we hope to make a unique book or journal from these some day soon. But for now we will just be blogging some of them. I hope this one was a blessing to you. 

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Thank you, and may God’s richest and best be yours.

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I believe there is no other way the modern day Church will be cleansed from all its hypocrisy and impurities derived from the worship  of mammon, except through judgment that produces the fear of the Lord. It may come through hardship, death, or even a crisis of massive proportions such as a civil war to bring this about. The landscape of Christianity must be cleansed, so that the Church’s impact can be much more far reaching. Without widespread and deep repentance and awakening,  this may be the only solution and remedy to the current idolatrous condition of the church world. The power and glory of God may not be restored to the Church any other way. We are so far gone and numb to the true condition of the nation and the Church that this may be the only remedy to true restoration (see this recent article by my friend Michael L. Brown – How Can We Be So Numb?). A severe shaking may be our last line of hope.

Let’s take a close look at the first miracle of judgment in the early Church that cleansed it immediately of the sin and hypocrisy that was seeking entrance. This judgment kept it strong and pure and increased its power and impact.

“In hearing these words, Ananias fell down and died. And great fear came on all those who heard these things” (Acts 5:5).

“At once she (Sapphira) fell down at his feet and died. Upon entering, the young men found her dead and carried her out and buried her beside her husband. Great fear came on the entire church and on all those who heard these things. Many signs and wonders were performed among the people by the hands of the apostles. And they were all together in Solomon’s Porch. No one else dared join them, but the people respected them. Believers were increasingly added to the Lord, crowds of both men and women” (Acts 5:10-14).

Can you see how this cleansing led to increased fear and power with many believers being added to the Lord?

We often forget these portions of Scripture and how this judgment produced the component of the fear of the Lord, which stopped this lie and other impurities from having access into the early Church, thus preserving its white hot purity and keeping it from being defiled. This miracle of judgment contributed to the glory, power, and growth of the early Church. Notice also the effect it had on the people:

“No one else dared join them (the disciples), but the people respected them” (Acts 5:13).

The Message Bible says it this way: “But even though people admired them a lot, outsiders were wary about joining them. On the other hand, those who put their trust in the Master were added right and left, men and women both.”

Could these incidents of judgment in the early Church be a type and shadow of what we may expect in the last days Church in both the coming judgment and glory:

Could it be that preachers who have peddled the word of God for gain have their ministries judged and some even be publicly humiliated and taken out of the way?

Could churches and ministries that have been built on compromise and the wisdom of man see a mass exodus as people begin to seek pure truth and authenticity as well as the reality of the Holy Spirit and the power of God?

Could we see organizations and companies who have used their power and wealth to persecute the righteous be shaken and some big CEO’s even die? Could we also see the same type of judgement on leaders of nations who persecute the glorious Church and do not give glory to God (think of king Herod; Acts 12:23)?

I believe we will see these kind judgments again but only as the glory increases and is restored to the true Church.

POLARIZATION: ONE EFFECT OF GOD’S JUDGMENTS AND THE FEAR OF THE LORD

The judgment that fell on Ananias and Sapphira caused sinners to be leery of joining themselves to the apostles and the church while at the same time gaining public respect and influence. This divided or polarized those who were not interested in genuine repentance and living whole-heartedly for the Lord from the multitudes that were being genuinely converted and being added to the church. Oh how we need this work done today in this era of postmodern and so called progressive Christianity! It would root out so much complacency, carnality, and compromise.

The dividing line was very distinct in the early Church. In a day when we are trying to include everyone into our sheepfolds by toning down on the demands of the gospel, there was a certain exclusivity that the judgments of God and the fear of the Lord produced in the Church’s earliest beginnings. People couldn’t enter in with sin in their lives. In many places today, it is difficult to tell the difference between the Christian and non-Christian, but not in the early Church. God wants to restore this polarization in the Church of today.

This is an excerpt from my newest book awaiting its release, THE CLEANSING OF THE TEMPLE, RESTORING THE GLORY TO THE LATTER DAY CHURCH. 

Join our growing list of subscribers hungry for truth and the pure glory of the Lord.

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During our recent Holy Ghost Forum the spirit of prophecy was prominent. The following utterance released the fear of the Lord. Please watch it. He that has an ear let him hear.

A clarion call to holiness 

“Pursue … holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled” (Heb. 12:14-15).

“Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (2 Cor. 7:1).

The subject of holiness has taken a bad rap. It has almost become a dirty word, an outdated and primitive theme in many Christian circles. Nowadays Christians equate it with living by rules and dos and don’ts. Many equate it to legalism, salvation by works, or attempting to earn God’s approval from a system of works. But what does the Bible say about true holiness?

First of all, holiness is not salvation. Holiness is not something you pursue in order to obtain salvation; it is something you are set apart for after salvation. It is what true converts pursue and perfect in their new life and walk with God.

Holiness is the likeness of God. It is the total summation of all His attributes. It is to be as Jesus is. He is the brightness of God’s glory and the express image of His Person, and so we are to be conformed to His image.

What many Christians fail to realize is that holiness, like a lively flowing stream that cuts through a dense forest, is the theme that runs through all the epistles. It is to be our post-salvation and post-Pentecost life and walk with God. It is what one Pentecostal scholar called “Pentecostal Pedestrianism” or “rule of the road”. It is the walk in the Spirit so that we will not fulfill the desires of the flesh (Gal. 5:16) (Rom. 8:13), and the pursuit of God and sanctification that we are to walk in for the rest of our lives, especially as the Lord’s coming draws near (1 Thes. 5:23).

We affirm again that indeed holiness and sanctification are the supreme themes of the apostolic letters to the churches. The emphasis being on the gracious sufficiency of every saint to live a life of victory over the flesh, the world, and the devil in every area of life – whether it be at home with family, at work with employers and employees, or within the church and community. The epistles are full, full, full of such instructions while many churches today are nearly empty of any.

The overall body of teaching in the New Testament epistles implicitly implies that believers who had received the baptism of the Holy Spirit still needed to “put off the old man and put on the new man”, “be doers of the Word and not hearers only”, “be diligent to make your calling and election sure”, “contend for the faith”, and “work out your salvation with fear and trembling”. There was no automatic rule that once they had started well they were certain to go on well and finish well. The very opposite was true – their going on was dependent upon a constant appropriation of sanctifying grace and power through a continually renewed fullness of the Spirit, and faithful obedience to the Word.

It was also the regular care of the ministers of Christ in the early Church to remind and exhort the believers in the various local assemblies to “not receive the grace of God in vain”, to “not be deceived”, “to not drift away”, “to stir one another to love and good works”, and to “be rich in good works”. Even in Christian churches that were throbbing with the supernatural manifestations of the Holy Spirit it was the habit of its ministers to expound on sound doctrine and teach and exhort the saints with all authority on living an exemplary life of holiness lest their testimony spoil their witness.

Beware of those who make light of holiness and water down the necessity of it with greasy grace, lollipop love, and mushy mercy that are void of the spirit of truth.

Our books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God, and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. 

Also, this ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those who believe in the mandate and message of revival that this ministry carries. Again, if this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? 

DONATE 

Thank you, and may God’s richest and best be yours.

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Forum Promo - YouTube

It’s time again to save some dates for special corporate times of renewal and refreshing in the presence of the Lord! Make plans now to be with us for our upcoming 2019 Holy Ghost Forums.

WHAT IS A HOLY GHOST FORUM?

It is a five-fold ministry panel discussing the Word of God, not with enticing words of man’s speech, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of the power of God (1 Cor. 2:4-5).

It is a team of ministers moving in a 1 Cor. 14:26 format where each one has a psalm, a teaching, a tongue, a revelation, and an interpretation.

The purpose of the Forum is to light and ignite a passion for the moving of the Holy Spirit in the Church and on the earth in demonstration and in power – in lighting lives that they might carry this to other places they will return to.

Here’s a testimony from someone in England who watches our forums on YouTube:

“I love the way Holy Spirit moves and speaks through you all. I’ve never seen anything like it. It stirs up my spirit, teaches me and increases my spiritual appetite for more.” 

The Forum is a service to the body of Christ and other ministers. I’d like to encourage local pastors and ministry leaders to pray about hosting one of these in your city and area. Include other churches in your region. A forum of this magnitude could ignite other pastors and ministry gifts, propel the body of Christ into a deeper move of the Spirit, and create a momentum of divine activity in your area.

Here is a very profound prophetic utterance concerning the Forum:

“It was Your provision in that day to meet with God, to prepare for Him. And so shall it be in this hour. The Forum is a place to prepare for His return, for the marriage, to be filled with the Spirit, for the Bride to come and be equipped in the river – to be visited and experience the presence and power of God through the gifts of the Holy Spirit. For there are some who need a fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit, and there are many wise virgins that You are awakening, and foolish virgins who need to trim their lamps.

“I’m making a way for those wise virgins who gave all they had for extra oil. They paid a price to burn bright in the darkest hour – to hear as they heard John in the wilderness. You are a voice by the river of living water aiding and helping those who need fresh baptisms.” 

Praise God!

COME AND JOIN US FOR OUR HOLY GHOST FORUMS!

SAVE THE DATE! SCROLL DOWN AND  REGISTER HERE for our upcoming March 9 Forum.

Friday February 8, 2019 at 7:00 pm and Saturday February 9, 2019 at 10:00 am, Good News Family Worship Center, Barrington, New Jersey (no registration required for this forum)

Saturday March 9, 2019, The Shepherd’s House, Woburn, MA (all day event from 9-5 with sessions and breaks)

Friday April 26, 2019 at 7:00 pm and Saturday April 27, 2019 at 10:00 am: Grace Assembly of God, Salem, NH (registration for this forum starts March 4)

It is a great honor and joy again for Carolyn and I to be hosting and/or participating in these forums, and to minister alongside our regulars and dear friends, Pastor Ray and Carol Shannon from New Jersey. They are strong Word and Spirit ministers who carry great wisdom from nearly 40 years of ministry experience.

REGISTER NOW

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“I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead. Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God” (Rev.3:1-2).

I am a messenger of the Lord. My wife and I have been divinely commissioned to draw forth in prayer provision of the wisdom of God for the body of Christ in this hour. We minister in churches and in cities and nations He sends us to.

The Spirit of God has shown me that something is very amiss in many of our churches across the land. There is a disturbing trend that is locking up a certain supply of the Spirit of God to the saints.

LACK OF A FULL SUPPLY FROM EQUIPPING MINISTERS

Many churches now only have a Sunday service while some others still maintain a mid-week meeting of some kind. Long extended meetings where exposure is given to the other fivefold ministry gifts are for the most part a thing of the past. Even to have consecutive day meetings is becoming rare. This is causing a lack among the sheep.

Think about it. If the sheep get the pastor/teacher a majority of the time then they are missing the full equipping they need  for edification of the body of Christ to do the work of the ministry (Eph. 4:11). Without the apostle, prophet, and evangelist the saints will not fully mature. Most churches are top-heavy with pastors, teachers, and administrators and very low on apostolic, prophetic, and evangelistic ministry.

This lack is manifested in a dullness, a heaviness, a boredom, and a general apathy in the body of Christ. I love the local church, but I am bold to tell you that we need a great stirring in many of our churches in this hour.

Pastors will tell you that people are too busy, that it’s a different day, and that we cannot have extended meetings and that we need to limit our special speakers. But no matter what day we are living in, no matter the culture, no matter how busy people are, God always has a plan to meet the spiritual needs of His people.

Several years ago in Kansas City I participated in a monthly forum with a panel of 5-fold ministers, and over a two day period I watched the Spirit of God minister to people in a way I’ve never seen before. I realized the importance of what a 5-fold ministry team can bring to a people.

THE WORD AND THE SPIRIT

Another element of lack in local churches in this hour is how very little of the move of the Holy Spirit the saints are experiencing. We are losing Pentecost. We are raising a generation who knows very little about Pentecost. Many of the early Pentecostal ministers are moving on to heaven to receive their eternal reward. Who will take their place and run with the baton they have passed on to us?

In most of our churches we have sermons, but not much Spirit. We have songs, but too much style. We have announcements, but so little anointing. We receive offerings, but when the needs of the sheep go unmet those same offerings become offensive to the Lord.

A recent statistic revealed that only 15% of all Pentecostals use their prayer language on a regular basis. The manifestation of tongues and interpretation, which distinctly belongs to the New Testament Church, is all but extinct from our Pentecostal churches. Many shepherds no longer lay hands on the sick. Healings and miracles in the local church are now so rare.

LACK OF FERVENT SPIRIT-INSPIRED PRAYER

Another compelling problem in many churches today is the absence of effectual fervent prayer. This is the primary reason for the lack of power and glory in the body of Christ in this hour. Too many pastors are ashamed of fervent prayer that manifests in tongues, groaning and travail, and deep intercession. There’s a new brand of tepid, boring, and listless praying that is far too common in many of our churches that caters to the lukewarm and the visitor.

Here’s a great word:

“If you build a church with people who won’t devote themselves to prayer, you build a church on a weak foundation that will be unprepared for the coming storms, for God’s glory and Jesus’ return, and for the harvest yet to come. This will breed a place for a lukewarm, passionless people void of true judgment and discernment. Your church will be a smoldering altar with only smoke and ashes instead of one where the fire rages.”

BIG I, LITTLE YOU

Another element of imbalance in the body of Christ is the neglect of the smaller church. There needs to be a greater equality among churches. In an hour when ministers are taught to give “up” to bigger ministries there is such a need to give “down” that there may be equality among the churches. The same applies to ministries. Pentecost began this way when the rich sold their houses and possessions and brought the proceeds to the apostles’ feet and distribution was made to all who had need.

Never have I seen such spiritual poverty, hype, and charisma rewarded while the truly holy and anointed are meagerly supplied. Big ministries and big churches have large platforms for sharing their needs while too often our frontline missionary and foreign heroes who are serving in near obscurity have no platform to share their needs, and frankly, are often too busy to do so. Most of them are hardly compensated for the measure of sacrifices they make and the number of risks they take.

And I am not speaking of young ministers who are yet unproven. I am speaking of seasoned ministers and missionaries who have so much wisdom and impartation to make, and yet so little honor is given to them. We need their voices in this hour.

Let’s get out of selfishness. God’s nature is unselfish. Look for the ‘little’ guys who have the character, the calling, the vision, and the anointing to do what God has called them to do, but lack the resources. Pay attention to them and what they are doing. Sow into them and honor their labor.

Listen to the Head of the Church. He is speaking. Will we hearken?

Our books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God, and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and the turning away from the truth we are seeing in our day. The Real Gospel, The Real Jesus, The Real Salvation, and  The Real Spirit Of Revival are especially strategic in trumping the many falsehoods spreading in the modern day Church. If any of our books or articles on this blog are a blessing and encouragement to you please use the social media buttons below to share them, and kindly post reviews on Amazonfor any of our books you feel are worthy. Thank you for helping unknown writers who self publish the word of the Lord. 

Also, this ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those who believe in the mandate and message of revival that this ministry carries. Again, if this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? 

DONATE 

Thank you, and may God’s richest and best be yours.

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