Wednesday, 31 August 2016

The Baptism with the Holy Spirit

When John the Baptist said "...He shall baptise you with the Holy Ghost..."

did he have in mind regeneration only - or another experience distinct from and subsequent to regeneration - or did he have the whole gamut of our experiences with the Holy Spirit in mind, irrespective of whether or not an individual happens to experience it for the first time all together on the same day, or some days apart.

How we label it doesn't matter as much as that we experience all that God has for us - although labelling it properly is important too.

It's the same with water baptism. Some Bible-verses seem to talk about baptism with regeneration, almost as if they were one and the same thing. But other verses show baptism didn't always immediately occur at the same moment as regeneration, or even on the same day.

A possible reason for that could have been because it was always assumed by New Testament writers that all believers were also baptised in water and filled with the Holy Spirit - therefore in later discussions by the New Testament writers, perhaps it wasn't necessary to the point in question that they always distinguish between regeneration and water baptism or being filled with the Spirit, while in other passages they did distinguish between the experiences.

That could explain the interchangeable use of some of their terms - the same term sometimes meaning this but not that, at other times meaning that but not this, and at other times seemingly meaning both! (I'm referring to terms like born again, regeneration, begotten again, baptised, receive the Spirit, filled with the Spirit, baptised with the Spirit, and having the Spirit.)

So again, what matters is not so much whether we distinguish regeneration or the baptism with the Holy Spirit from water baptism or from being filled with the Spirit - although labelling our experiences correctly is important too - but what's more important is that we experience and do all that God has for us.

Sometimes it helps to experience it first, then learn later how to better explain your experience with Scriptural detail and labels.

For others, coming to understand the Bible's distinctions and labels first, is necessary to clear their conscience and impart faith to receive the experience.

In my view, water baptism may or may not occur simultaneously with regeneration, and there is also an experience with the Holy Spirit which may or may not occur simultaneously with regeneration. That we label those experiences correctly is important, of course - but what's more important is that you actually have the experiences and do them.

Our New Nature

When I was standing on Burleigh mountain, resting for a moment after walking around and up the whole mountain, I started thinking about physical conditioning. I realised that while physical-conditioning can enhance performance, your core-capability really has nothing to do with conditioning.

It has nothing to do with trying harder.

Nothing to do with training.

Diet and environment might help performance too.

But your core-capability has nothing to do with that either.

It's more to do with what you are - by birth. Irrespective of anything you do. You can because it's your physical nature.

Looking out over the ocean towards Surfers, I thought about migratory birds. Storm birds can fly all the way to Indonesia or Papua New Guinea every year, then fly back again to the very same tree, arriving on approximately the same week every year. Without conditioning or training - they just can. Because it's their nature.

Then I saw a Hoop Pine towering above all the other vegetation. Not because the Hoop Pine tried harder than other plants, or because it trained - not even because it had more sunlight, water or better soil, although those things help. Just because it's its nature. Hoop Pines are just tall.

Whales. They swim past every year on their way from Antarctica to Hervey Bay, and back again, mostly underwater. Your domestic cat can't do that! Not because the cat hasn't tried hard enough, or needs conditioning or training. Whales can do it just because it's their nature.

Like a donkey isn't a race horse by nature - and it can't become one by training. A racehorse is a horse because it was born that way - by nature.

"I do it because I just can," the words came to me.

See, there is a Divine nature. God is love. He is righteous. We weren't born with that nature. We were born in Adam, in sin - and death came by sin.

But here's the good part - we were born-again - and made partakers of the Divine nature.Therefore we can, because it's our new nature to!

Since God is love, and since He poured out His love into our very heart when we were born again, now we can walk in love.

And since Christ defeated sin by His death, and death by His resurrection - and we are in Him - now we have dominion over sin and death.

Walking in love, and living holy, isn't the product of trying harder. We do because we can - it's who we are, in Him.

God isn't asking us to walk in anything He hasn't already made us.

The old works of the flesh are contrasted with the fruit of the Spirit - not with new works. What we walk in is fruit (which originates from the Holy Spirit, in our spirit - we are joined to Him, we are one spirit with Him) - the new behaviours are not something external which we strive to make internal.

I thought it would be good to feed believers on a spiritual diet of hearing who they are in Christ. To put something in them - rather than require them to do something. Because faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

In Adam, all die because all are sinners - but now you do (holiness, righteousness, good fruits, love, and have eternal life) - now, in Him, you do because you can, you can because you are, you are because He is.

It's just how it is!

Monday, 29 August 2016

Amanda Wells Quote

"Rest is not something you do it is a legal position you have. Jesus our defence lawyer says ... 'The Defence Rests Your Honour'. There is no more to do, we won the case with overwhelming testimony. So be seated in that position."

Saturday, 27 August 2016

The Big Weapon

One time I invited all the pastors in a certain city together - and I promised to take them all out to a restaurant for dinner afterwards.

When the pastors turned up, I said to them, "You're probably expecting me to share some word with you - but I'm not going to - you've heard it all before.

But how long has it been since you had a fresh touch from the Holy Spirit?

We're just going to hand all the time over to the Holy Spirit.

You know the Holy Spirit - whatever He tells you to do, respond to Him."

Then without any further ado, we...well, we didn't anything...

...the Holy Spirit just started to touch us.

Afterwards the President of the Ministers' Fraternal, looking very moved, said to me, "Brother John, this is exactly what we need in our churches".

Friday, 26 August 2016

Receive the Spirit by Faith

Ever since I was baptised with the Holy Spirit at the age of 12, I've always felt I knew how to help others receive.

Some people were 'chronic seekers' - people who'd prayed many times to be filled with the Spirit, but were still waiting.

Some had even given up, saying, "If God wants to fill me, He'll do so when He's good and ready".

But from the ripe old age of 12, whenever I met someone who hadn't received yet, I always felt I knew exactly why - and how to help them.

To me there was no mystery to it!

I could even tell whether a person was going to receive or not, before anyone even prayed with them - because faith is something you can 'see'!

(You can tell by their words; often you can even see it on their face - or the Holy Spirit might gift you to perceive it in your spirit.

When you've received salvation by faith; and then also received the Holy Spirit by faith, you know how to help others receive by faith too - because you've experienced a thing or two about how faith works, like a baby instinctively knows how to drink milk as soon as he's born.)

When I saw a person had faith to receive, I'd minister to them straightaway. But if I didn't see they had faith to receive, I'd first spend a moment talking to them, dealing with any obstacles to their faith - pulling up the stones out of the highway, so to speak. The obstacle to their faith was nearly always in their own minds.

(Often they wrongly wondered whether something in their past might disqualify them from receiving. That idea was a hinderance to them believing they receive.

Or they just didn't understand how faith works - thinking it was all up to God, and not up to us to act.)

But once they were ready, and had faith to receive, I'd 'see' it. Then I'd pray with them, and they all received straightaway every time, as far as I can recall. Some had been attending church for years.

Whether in the school playground; or in church after a service - whether young or old, and now in every nation where I've been.

1. Ask the Father in Jesus' Name

2. Believe you receive

3. Since you believe you've received - act your faith: go ahead and begin to speak in a new language, trusting the Holy Spirit to give you utterance

4. And you shall have it!

" filled with the Spirit" (Ephesians 5:18).

Reply to A Facebook Group Member

I can't think of a single time when I have asked, and not received, in nearly 37 years as a Christian!

According to Jesus' promises about prayer, that should be the norm, not the exception.

And yes, you must have missed some of my Posts - unless you don't think healing from a life-threatening brain tumour, or having food, or obtaining spiritual salvation, or guidance regarding one's ministry-career, are 'needs'.

Certainly there are things you cannot obtain for others through your own faith alone - like their salvation for instance; or receiving the Holy Spirit; and maybe sometimes even their healing. That you can't completely override the free-will of others, is a given. And there may be other principles too.

Nevetheless, despite those obvious ethical parameters, Jesus still made the scope so broad - when He chose words like "ask anything"; "whatsoever"; and "all things"!

I'm saying, let's lift our awareness of just how involved in our daily lives Jesus is willing and waiting to be (without denying obvious ethical parameters).

As for my shoes and coat - the reason I wanted them, was to wear them to church. I wore the shoes out, wearing them everyday on the mission field, walking to villages, preaching more than once every day on average, sometimes going to remote places that hadn't had a visiting minister since the mid-80s; and the coat - the only place I've worn it is to church, as far as I can remember.

The piece of silver jewellery, or the Versace-branded item, I could do without - but God gave it anyway.

I don't share that to condone covetousness - but to encourage our faith when we come to ask for things which matter even more.

To illustrate that Jesus can be taken at His Word.

I reckon He's willing and even waiting for us to engage Him a little bit more deliberately in this way: that your joy might be full; that ye bear much fruit; and that the Father be glorified.

Because you know, there are certain things Jesus can't do in this present world, unless we first engage Him by our faith.

The Presupposition of Abraham's Promise

The fact God promised Abraham that " thy seed (not seeds plural, but seed singular - which was Christ) all families of the earth (without distinguishing between ethnicities) shall be blessed (justified, saved)" - which Paul said was the 'Gospel' - implies the removal of the Law (which was added later) - because the Law stood in the way of the blessing coming on the Gentiles (it stood in the way for Jews too!)
Thus, the true 'Hebrew Roots' of the Gospel go back further than the Law, to the Promise - a promise given to Abraham the Hebrew - before his grandson Jacob (Israel) ever became a nation; before the Law was given; and which presupposed the removal of the Law which was only added later.

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Love's Don't-Do's

Sometimes you gotta do things - or not do them - for the sake of someone else's conscience (not your conscience, because you already think it's equally okay to do it or not do it). For their sake, not your sake.

In non-essentials.

Love makes you do that!

Because if you go ahead and do it, how's it going to impact on your brother who thinks it's wrong?

You might genuinely sadden him - because he'll feel you've sinned.

He might feel duty-bound to rebuke you.

Or, at least there'll be a silent feeling of not flowing together with you so well.

If you're a leader, you'll have lost some of your capacity to lead, in his eyes.

Or, you might tempt him to do what you've done, which would put him in breach of his own conscience, and he'd feel he's sinned.

When all along, you could have refrained, out of love - seeing it's a non-essential anyway.

Things that are essentials, work no ill - to our neighbour. They edify our neighbour too - not only ourselves.

Something non-essential that's right, can become wrong - if it's done without due respect for your neighbour's conscience, not only your own conscience.

Our goal should be to please - to edify - to make provision for - our brother's conscience, not only our own. For his good.





Monday, 22 August 2016

Divne Law

Divine Law is eternal - because the law of God is an expression of His Own Divine Nature, which is unchanging.

God is love: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.

Divine law existed even before it was written on stone by the finger of God.

The Old Covenant, made with Israel when He brought them out of Egypt, was God's law - for them, there, then.

Meanwhile, the law of God was already written on the hearts of Gentiles, even if they didn't know Moses' written law.

Many Gentiles, having the law written on their hearts, also heard about Moses' Law, and became Jewish proselytes.

Then God made a new covenant with the house of Israel, a law which was not according to the covenant that He made with them when He brought them out of Egypt, which they broke.

In the New Covenant, God gives us a new heart, and writes Divine law onto our new hearts - yea we are made partakers of the Divine Nature! That's a greater provision than what existed under the Old Covenant.

As a result, believers were no longer subject to Moses' law - yet not altogether without Divine law, but under Divine law as Christ achieved it in us.

Walking in this new commandment does not negate the Scriptures of the law - rather, it is a lifestyle which carries-out all of the ethics, morals and principles which the old law had merely foreshadowed...

...and our experience in Christ establishes the old law - it shows that what had been prophesied in and written in the Scriptures of the Law has been true: for they spoke of Christ's suffering for us.

Friday, 19 August 2016

A Blessing

I've still got the pencil case I used when I was eight years old.

The same ornaments are still displayed in my room.

Still use the chopsticks given to me before my ninth birthday.

Still use the ruler I used in primary school.

My Grade 8 dictionary.

Recently when I wore a shirt given to me for my 21st birthday,  someone thought it was a new shirt.

Still use my original Email address.

And mobile-phone number.

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Purposes of Speaking With Tongues

There is a misconception among cessationists, that in Bible-times, the sole-purpose of speaking with tongues, was to preach the Gospel to unbelievers.
But if it was, Peter would not have needed to preach to the multitude after they heard the 120 speaking with tongues.
Despite each person among the multitude having heard the 120 in his own tongue, they still asked, "What meaneth this?" and "What shall we do?"
So if the tongues was the preaching of the Gospel, it must have been some pretty poor preaching!
Peter still had to follow it up with the preaching of the Gospel.
(It isn't even clear from the Book of Acts whether the miracle was only in the speaking, or also in the hearing. Because it says each man heard the 120 speaking in his own tongue.)
But whatever the case, it is evident there were other valid purposes, functions and affects of speaking with tongues in Bible-times - but none was ever a substitute for the preaching of the Gospel.
One such purpose for tongues, was to be a 'sign' to unbelievers - to attract their attention, but not as a substitute for preaching the Gospel;
Another function, was prayer - praying to God, or giving thanks to God, in a tongue - even privately;
Despite the tongue being unknown to the speaker, praying privately in the tongue was still 'edifying' - edifying to one's own spirit (as well as having all of the usual benefits that praying privately with one's own understanding has);
A person who spoke with tongues was said to be speaking not to men, but to God - for no-one understood him; nevertheless he was genuinely speaking mysteries to God.
Another function of tongues, was to address a congregation with the tongue - in which case the spiritual gift called 'the interpretation of tongues' was often required in tandem with the gift of tongues.
If tongues were always known-tongues by a congregation, there would never have been a need for such a supernatural gift as 'interpretation'! The very fact that the gift of interpretation was sometimes needed, shows tongues didn't always have the sole purpose of preaching to an audience in their known-language.
If no such interpreter was present, it didn't mean the tongue was false - rather, in such a scenario, the speaker had two valid options:
He could pray that he himself might interpret; or
He could refrain from addressing the congregation with the tongue, and instead continue speaking it to himself and to God...
...But his tongue itself was not invalid, even though no-one present understood it.
Otherwise, if being unknown by the immediate audience meant it was invalid, the speaker would not have been encouraged to pray that he might interpret it; nor given the option of continuing speaking with that tongue to himself and to God: he would have been told instead to just plain stop, if the tongue was invalid just because it was unknown.
Jesus had said that believers would speak with 'new' tongues.
Also mentioned in the Bible are 'tongues of men', and 'tongues of angels'.
Other Bible-terms included: 'unknown tongue'; 'diversities of tongues'; 'divers kinds of tongues'.
Jesus didn't say anything about tongues becoming a direct means of preaching the Gospel - rather, He said these signs would 'follow them that believe'.
Signs were to 'follow' the word - they weren't meant solely as the means of directly preaching the Word, per se.
It meant speaking with tongues was to become a common phenomenon among the believing-community.
Sometimes, hearers heard their own tongue; other times, no-one in the immediate audience understood.
There were benefits for the unsaved, and the saved.
Public uses, and private uses.
The signs of the outpouring of the Spirit were to continue all the way up until the great Day of the Lord - according to Peter's interpretation of Joel's prophecy.
The promise of receiving the Holy Ghost was said to be for you, and your children, for those who were near, and for all who are afar off - even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

Would You Like Another Painting Tomorrow

Last night I was looking at the paintings on my wall above my computer desk, and the thought came to me:

"Would you like another painting, tomorrow?"

"Yeah," I said to the Lord, "but I don't want to pay too much for it".

Today I felt led to drive a certain way while on my way home, and decided to have a look in an Anglican Op Shop.

I saw this painting, and was standing looking at it, and a staff person talked to me about it, admiring it with me, and asked whether I'd like it.

Of course a discussion about the price ensued. She went out the back to ask the supervisor, who came out together with her and said I could have it at a discounted price.

While paying for it, I got talking to the guy behind the counter, about how I'd been born in Japan, a child of missionaries; he introduced me to another customer, seemingly a good acquaintance of his - the three of us stood there having a favourable chat.

"Storm Over Milthorpe"- Oil on Board 25.4x50.8cm - by Shirley Williams

I walked outside to put my nice new acquisition in the car, "...and then go back," I heard the Lord say.

So after putting it in the car, I turned back - and saw another pleasing painting, facing outward, in the shopfront window.

I went back inside, and asked the same staff-person whether I could have it at a discounted price too.

She went and asked the supervisor, then came back saying, "It's your lucky day".

She offered me an even better discount than I got on the first painting.

"Late Afternoon Lake Julius Road" - Oil on Board, 40x60cm - by Joy Clifford

Incline Thine Ear

One Saturday morning, I felt the Holy Spirit tell me to go to a certain secondhand shop at Burleigh Heads.
I seemed not to pay enough attention.
He said it again, a bit stronger this time.
So I went.
I was still wondering why, as I walked into the shop.
I looked through some paintings, and when I saw one - I knew straightaway that was why.
It was marked $25, which is a bit more than you'd usually want to pay in a secondhand shop - but sensing it had value, I eagerly took it to the counter.
As soon as I got home, I searched the artist's name. He was a listed Australian artist who was born overseas and studied at the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts before coming to Australia - and he'd only just passed away earlier that year.
An art-collector friend of mine, well-connected, has looked at the painting since - and told me how much it's worth.
Your Father knows what you like - so if the still small voice of the Holy Spirit comes to you, incline thine ear!

Tuesday, 16 August 2016


Out of the 613 Mitzvot (commandments) in the Law of Moses... 244 can't apply today at all 37 can't apply outside the land of Israel Many can't apply in the Southern Hemisphere 222 are "don't do's" - things a believer already might not ever do anyway 99 - you might go through your whole life without ever encountering a situation where they apply Out of the remaining positive commands, that leaves only 48 which would apply to everyone But of those, only 5 apply all the time And each of those five are something which all true believers, everywhere, already do all the time anyway, whether they're 'Hebrew Roots'/'Messianic' or not. And yet they insist nothing's changed! So it's really no biggie. Live and let live. So long as we each truly know and experience Who Jesus really is - as our Lord and Saviour, our righteousness and our life.

Monday, 15 August 2016

Instructions for Healing

A few years ago I did some personal study on the subject of Divine healing.

(How to receive or minister healing; and why some have not been healed.)

After a few weeks of learning, I told the Lord I thought I was ready for Him to start sending me some cases.

From that moment on, without having told anyone, people started contacting me, asking me to pray for their healing!

The first was a woman who desired to have a child. She'd been married for years.

I went for a walk to pray about her, asking the Lord how I should approach her particular case. And I felt the Holy Spirit instruct me:

"Tell her I've already heard her."

So I told her.

About three to four weeks or so later, she told me she'd found out she was three or more weeks pregnant.

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Which Religion is Right?

One day I was walking to the train station.
When I passed a certain house, I had a strong feeling I should knock on the door, and talk about the LORD Jesus.
I kept walking - but the feeling persisted.
A hundred metres or so up the road, I turned around and went back.
I knocked on the door. A man opened.
I explained about the feeling I had when walking past his house.
"Well you sure picked a good time," he said, "I was just sitting down, thinking about all the world's religions, and I said to myself, 'I wonder which one is the right one' ".

Friday, 12 August 2016

The Practising is Over

The claim being made by some, that we should still be keeping the Feasts because three of the Feasts foreshadowed things that are still future while the other Feasts foreshadowed things that are now past, is a bit of an awkward claim to make, I think.

It's awkward because one of those Feasts included the Atonement - and it's clear in the New Testament that Christ's death was an atoning sacrifice for us. So it doesn't sit naturally to just place the anti-type of each of those three Feasts entirely in the future.

Besides, by that rationale, the other Feasts which have already been 'fulfilled' shouldn't be kept anymore at all then: only the remaining three should be kept. But of course those who are making this claim insist on keeping all of them.

Certainly the last trumpet is still future; so also is the resurrection; final judgment; and God dwelling (tabernacling) among us forever in the new earth and heavens - but the atonement has already taken place.

And in a sense there has already come the inauguration of those other Kingdom-hopes, foreshadowed by the Feasts, too:

The Day of Judgment is indeed still coming - but the prince of this world was already judged on the cross. We died with Christ; we were buried with Him in baptism.

The dead in Christ are going to rise - but in a sense we have already been raised with Him, and seated with Him in heavenly places.

All things are going to be made new - but any one in Christ is already a new creature - old things have passed away, all things have become new.

We're going to be saved in that Day - but in a sense we've already been declared righteous, and saved.

We're waiting for His Kingdom - but in a sense we are already in the Kingdom.

God is going to dwell among us - yet He already indwells us.

It's only the physical consummation of it that still awaits us, at His second coming.

He has begotten us again unto a lively hope!

Through Christ we are already living in the time of fulfilment, although we still await the consummation of it.

That was the assertion of the Apostles - that in Christ there had already come the fulfilment of the promises, although we still await the consummation of it.

That's altogether a different and better experience than anything that was available prior to the cross!

Therefore seeing we have a sense of fulfilment about us in Christ, rather than continue carrying-out the Feasts, which were only shadows, we now live by faith in Christ.

We simply show forth His death, 'til He comes.

"We are saved (present) in hope (future)," Paul said.

Besides, it isn't possible to carry out the Feasts anymore the way the Law commanded anyway!

Pilgrimages to Jerusalem?

The Bible doesn't explicitly state that all nations must go to Jerusalem to worship in future. It can be argued that the prophecies which predicted that, were fulfilled in Old Covenant times, after the return from captivity. The Bible even provides the history, showing it happened. But Jesus stated that the time had come when the true worshipers would no longer worship in Jerusalem, but in spirit and in truth. Not because the Jews would go into exile; and not due to the actions of Roman armies - but because these are the type of worshipers the Father seeks, said Jesus.

Childbirth As Strategy

How's this for a longterm evangelistic, business or political strategy:
Suppose that out of every 10 women in the present generation:

  • 3 have no children (Group A)
  • 3 have one child (Group B)
  • 2 have 2 children (Group C)
  • 1 has 3 children (Group D)
  • 1 has 4 children (Group E)

First Generation Offspring

The total number of children is 14

Average fertility is 1.4

Children in Group E number 28% of all children
Note:- the most fertile 10% of women contribute nearly a third of all the children in the first generation of offspring (4 out of every 14)

Next Generation

Assuming each female has as many children as her mother, in the second generation:
  • In Group A there would still be 0 children
  • In Group B - 3 children of course
  • In Group C - 8 children
  • In Group D - 9 children
  • In Group E - 16 children
Total = 36 children

Average fertility = 2.57 (up from 1.4)

Children in Group E = 44% of all children Note:- nearly half of all children have come from Group A

Third Generation

  • Group A - 0
  • Group B - 3
  • Group C - 16
  • Group D - 27
  • Group E - 64
Total = 110 children

Average fertility = 3.05

Children in Group E = 58% of all children

Note:- in the third generation, more than half of all children have come from Group A

Fourth Generation

  • Group A - 0
  • Group B - 3
  • Group C - 32
  • Group D - 81
  • Group E - 256

Total = 372 children

Average fertility = 3.38

Children in Group E = 69% of all children

14 Years

When I woke up one morning, still lying in bed, I had an impression of the Mitsubishi Motors Logo - the three red diamonds.
And I felt I should go to Boonah to visit a family-friend.
Since I didn't have a car, I started thinking about how I could get there using public transport.
It was going to be quite a mission, but I resolved to do it - then I got up to start the day.
But as soon as my feet hit the floor, the words came to me: "Wait 'til you've got a car".
I looked at ads for cars, in the community paper. But pretty soon I just said to myself and to the Lord:
"If I'm meant to have a car, I don't want to look for it, I don't want to pay one cent for it, it will probably have to be given to me, delivered to me - I don't even want to fill-out any paperwork".
And left it at that.
Two hours later, the phone rang.
"I was praying this morning," a friend of mine said, "and I got two words: ‘car’ and ‘John'. I feel like I'm meant to give you my car. But I need a confirmation - could you use a car right now?"
So I told him I'd felt I needed to go somewhere, and about the words that came to me as soon as I got out of bed.
"That's all the confirmation I need. When can I come over? he said.
Next day he came over, with a form - all he needed was my signature. Then he left, saying he'd be back.
A short while later he was back. The car was paid in full; it had been serviced; he'd already got a Safety Certificate, and been to the Department of Transport - and it was registered in my name. My friend even gave me some cash, just in case I needed it!
We went out to the footpath together - I still hadn't seen what make of car it was - and there it was, right in front of my eyes, on the car: the Mitsubishi Motors Logo.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Reaping in Due Season

Some years ago I desired to have a push-bike; and some more clothes.

An acquaintance of mine had a rusty old bike, left out in the weather - and I thought of buying it. But I didn't feel quite right about it in my spirit - like it wasn't exactly the Father's plan.

A short time later someone who'd heard me minister in Toowoomba some months beforehand phoned. He and his wife wanted to visit me.

So they drove down to the Gold Coast, and met me at church.

After the service, he said, "We want to take you out for lunch - choose any restaurant you like.

But first, we've got some things we want to give you. Can we follow you to your house and unload them? Then we'll have room in our car for you."

So they followed me home, then opened the boot.

He lifted out a racing bike - a Peugeot - worth nearly a couple of thousand dollars, he mentioned.

Then from the backseat they produced three Nino Cerruti suits.

"They might not fit," I said.

He told me to have a tailor do whatever adjustments were necessary:

"Then send me the bill - I don't care how much it is," he said.

"But take them to a good tailor - they're good suits, so it'd be a shame not to have good quality work done on them," he added.

I asked how much they cost.

"Don't ask. All I'll say is - they're top-of-the-range," he answered.

I reflected on how I'd had quite a hard few months in Toowoomba despite having been so clearly led there - yet now some months later I was being so blessed, by a couple from the very place where I'd had the hardest time.

If you're doing what the Holy Spirit has led you to do, don't be dismayed if hard times come.

As sister Hagin said:

"Payday doesn't always come every Saturday night, but if you are faithful to God and His Word, payday always comes."

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Ezekiel 37:15-28 Fulfilled

* It mentioned Judah and Israel being regathered and reunited.

Based on the witness of numerous New Testament verses, I'm proposing that it happened.

* It said they would be rid of idolatry. 

I think that happened (compared to the rampant idolatry in Israel and Judah prior to their captivities).

* It said they would be cleansed. 

A spirit of supplications was indeed poured out on them, when they returned from captivity.

* It mentioned their sanctuary. 

Their temple was indeed rebuilt.

If that's all still future, then Yashua was too early to qualify for the Messianic prophecy included in the above passage:

* that David their King would reign over them forever.

The witness of the New Testament (by the angels, the priest Zechariah, other prophets, and the Apostles) is that the Davidic Messiah had indeed come - Yashua of Nazareth. 

Certainly we still await the consummation of His Kingdom - but according to the NT, that did not mean there had not already come the inauguration of the Messianic salvation-scheme. 

Therefore the passage does not, in my opinion, form a strong basis for the view that Levitical-style worship must resume in our future.

It also bears out the divinity of the Messiah (because while Ezekiel spoke of the Davidic King dwelling amongst His people forever, Revelation depicts Him as "God" dwelling among us forever).

Two Sticks of Judah and Israel

The two houses of Judah and Israel were regathered to their land, and reunited.
They resumed Levitical worship in a rebuilt temple.
It happened when they returned from captivity in Assyria, Babylon and from all nations wherever they'd been carried away.
It wasn't only the tribe of Judah who returned.
And Levi.
And Benjamin.
The New Testament also mentioned Asher.
And Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim.
And Paul said all twelve tribes were instantly serving God day and night.
Therefore the Levitical worship described in the prophecy is not still in the future.
Yashua Messiah has already brought the promised salvation of Israel. 
But only believers experienced it - including Gentiles. 
We only await the consummation of His Kingdom when He comes the second time. 

Australia's Islands

Australia has 8,222 islands - that's more islands than the Philippines, Japan, UK, Maldives, Solomon Islands or the Bahamas.

One of Australia's islands is the largest island in the world - so large that it is also considered a continent - the world's smallest continent.

(Australia is the only sovereign nation in the world whose territories include an entire continent - an island-continent.)

Numerous of Australia's islands are larger in area than numerous sovereign nations.

One of the islands, Fraser island, is the world's largest sand island.

The world's whitest sand beach is in Australia.

ISAIAH 42:1-4
1Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.
2He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street.
3A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth.
4He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the ISLES SHALL WAIT FOR HIS LAW. 

World's Largest Cattle Station

Australia's largest farm - Anna Creek Station - at 23,677sq km, or nearly 6million acres, is over seven times bigger than the largest ranch in Texas USA; and is bigger in land-area than probably about 49 sovereign nations, likely including: Faroe Islands, Belize, Djibouti, El Salvador, Slovenia, Fiji, Kuwait, Swaziland, East Timor, Bahamas, Montenegro, Vanuatu, Qatar, The Gambia, Jamaica, Kosovo, Lebanon, Cyprus, Brunei, Trinidad and Tobago, Cape Verde, Samoa, Luxembourg, Comoros, Mauritius, São Tomé and Príncipe, Dominica, Tonga, Kiribati, Micronesia, Singapore, Bahrain, Saint Lucia, Seychelles, Andorra, Palau, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, Malta, Maldives, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Marshall Islands, Liechtenstein, San Marino, Tuvalu, Nauru, Monaco, and Vatican City... ...larger than Israel's pre-1967 territory.... ...larger than the islands of: Shikoku (Japan); New Caledonia (Grande Terre); Negros, Samar, Palawan, Panay, Mindoro, Cebu, Bohol or Masbate Island (Philippines); Hawai'i (Big Island); Bougainville (PNG); Cyprus; Puerto Rico; Crete or Bali (Indonesia) - to name just a few.