Passover Warfare

Passover Warfare

Passover recently was celebrated among Jews and many Christians who study and follow the feasts. It is not just a one day celebration but a week long celebration that consists of actually three feasts: Passover, Unleavened Bread and Firstfruits. What do I mean by the term “Passover Warfare” and how do we apply it?

This is a term that I recently heard the Lord speak to me as I have been in a prolonged season of warfare, culminating with the Passover feast this year. Simply put it means perseverance and endurance. It means to take God’s word and obey and stand and watch to see Him move, and when everything goes the opposite you do not quit.

The Children of Israel had been in bondage 430 years when God dwelt in the bush (Deut, 33:16 NASB) and appeared to Moses to go tell Pharaoh to release His people so that they may worship the one true God. God could have used any means he wanted but he chose a man, Moses, and gave him his brother to help. God told Moses ahead that the only way Pharaoh would let them go would be under compulsion or constraint.

Ultimately, that is what happened and it was at the last of the ‘plagues’ that God sent that the Children of Israel were covered by the blood over the doorpost as a protection from the death of the firstborn. This was the price for their liberation, but it required steadfast, unmovable faith, and to be not only be obedient but to believe and trust that God would do what He said He would.

There are many forms or types of warfare listed in the Bible, including praise and worship. Binding and rebuking, praying, fasting and intercession are also used in doing spiritual warfare. But what I see in the Children of Israel, and especially Moses is humility, faith, and obedience. God told them what would happen and when Moses spoke to Pharaoh he refused every time to release God’s people. Nevertheless, Moses did not quit, but not only went back time and time again to Pharaoh but also went back to his people and told them what to do to avoid the death angel visiting their home.

In our lives we must incorporate everything I listed above and then some, but after we do all of that we must stand and lift up our shield of faith. God has given us our weapons, and equipped us but we must do our part and exercise our faith. When God gives us a word and tells us what He is going to do then we must hang on to that word and believe.

Jesus talked about perseverance of the saints, especially in the last days. As the days grow more evil and the spirit of the AntiChrist, which was present in Pharaoh, grows stronger and stronger we must hang on to God’s Word and trust that He will protect us and deliver us from all manner of evil. Whatever season or trial or wilderness we go through we must remember that God is watching over and He is doing more behind the scenes than we can ever realize.

Matthew 24:13 “he that endures to the end shall be saved.”

The Bible speaks of an apostasy or falling away in the end of the age.

1 Timothy 4:1 “But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons.” Nasb

Daniel 7:25 speaks of the AntiChrist ‘wearing out the saints of the Most High in the times of the end.’

There are so many verses that deal with perseverance, and endurance in the lives of Christians. Unfortunately we don’t see much of that today in the Church at least in the West. It’s time to get hold of God’s word for you in this season and believe it and watch to see what He will do. When the enemy comes at you He will also flee if you resist.

I pray the Church will rise up in a spirit of perseverance in God’s commands and obedience and to be steadfast and unyielding.

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When Did We Go From Passover Lamb To Easter Rabbit And Eggs

When Did We Go From Passover Lamb To Easter Rabbit And Eggs?

We are all familiar with the story of Moses leading the children of Israel out of Egypt. To recount on the last night God tells Moses to have the blood of a lamb smeared over the doorposts to protect them from the death angel which will pass over that night. The first born of the Israelites are spared from death and those of the Egyptians are not. We know that they go out and nearly every year since the Israelites have celebrated passover. It was a command given by God.

Furthermore as New Testament disciples and believers of Jesus we also know that Jesus ultimately became the Paschal or Passover lamb forever. What we celebrate as Easter is really Jesus’ resurrection. In the Passover seder that is still celebrated today there are four cups of ‘wine’. Jesus fulfilled each one but it is the fourth cup, that is the cup of redemption, that points to His death, burial, resurrection. That is the cup that Jesus drank of in the garden of Gethsemane.

Christians all over the world are preparing to celebrate the events of Jesus’ final hours on Earth. It is ironic that Jesus celebrated passover, and He became the passover lamb but we as Christians have forgotten this and do not celebrate this. Instead now we have rabbits and eggs. How did the church of Jesus Christ go from celebrating Passover to celebrating Rabbits and eggs? What have we lost in not celebrating the Passover Seder?

The early church began as Jewish people who worshipped on Sunday but as Jews they continued to celebrate Passover. The early church Fathers tied in the resurrection with Passover. It wasn’t until the second century that Easter began to be celebrated with no fixed date. The eggs some believe represent the empty tomb and the fact that Jesus broke out of the tomb. None of these traditions are rooted in scripture or what we call “the Jewish Roots of Christianity. While we commonly use various symbols to explain things in Christianity they are never meant to replace or to be idolized.

I prefer to call the celebration of Jesus resurrection as ‘Resurrection Day’, since the term Easter is derived from the fertility goddess Ishtar or Esther, possibly Ashtaroth. While hiding eggs in the grass and finding them is harmless, to me, at least, the knowledge that hiding them on the day we are supposed to celebrate Jesus replaces all of that and brings glory to the fertility goddess. We have over commercialized a holiday supposed to be holy.

In the Passover Seder there is a part where the host hides a piece of Matzah or broken bread and the youngest child is supposed to find it. Also the children are active participants recounting the exploits of Yahweh over His enemies. It is fun and not only a celebration but we get to eat also. We are recounting the deeds of old and tying in Jesus and all that He did.

Somehow, somewhere we have lost the Passover lamb Jesus and yielded to a rabbit who gives out eggs. Children know that rabbits do not come from eggs. Rabbits and eggs are again symbols of fertility. Spring is often tied in with fertility, especially in wiccan and druid, and occult practises. Remember that the enemy always takes what is good and makes it evil or makes evil look good.

I think it is time we as disciples of Jesus put the lamb of God back into the Spring celebration. Celebration of God’s victory over all of His and our enemies forever. Passover brings out all of this. There is no command to celebrate Passover for believers and followers of Jesus but why not? In the Millennial Kingdom we will celebrate, at least Passover and Tabernacles, perhaps all of the feasts. See Ezekiel 45:16 and Zech 14:16

Nevertheless, we will gather with all of the nations around the throne and worship the lamb, not the bunny. Not an egg!

Revelation 5:12 “ “worthy is the lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.”

13- “To him who sits on the throne and unto the Lamb”

We worship Jesus Christ the Son of the living God, who is the Eternal Passover Lamb, The Lamb on the throne that takes away the sins of the world. WE celebrate life, yes but that life which comes from God and through His Son Jesus. Let’s put the Lamb back in the celebration of the resurrection!

Golan: From Bashan, To Syria And Back To Israel Again

Golan: From Bashan, To Syria And Back To Israel Again

Once again United States President Donald Trump has brought controversy with a statement regarding the Middle East and particularly Israel. Last week after nearly 52 years he became the first US president to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the area known as the Golan heights. This area comprises roughly 695 square miles and was given to Syria after World War I after the break-up of the Ottoman Empire. It was part of the French Mandate until 1946 when it became part of the Syrian Republic.

The Syrian army invaded Israel and was defeated in the six day war in June 1967. Later in the Yom Kippur War of 1973 israel defeated Syria in a great tank battle. This area became known as the Valley of Tears. In 1981 Israel annexed the territory known as the Golan Heights. It was never recognized by any government until President Trump did so recently. However this was not Israel’s first time owning and conquering this territory.

The Bible describes this territory in Numbers and Deuteronomy. In fact this territory is mentioned in at least 52 verses. The land that God promised to Abraham and his descendants through Jacob was vast and at no point did any of its leaders conquer all that was promised. Nevertheless we see the land known as Golan Heights today referred to as Bashan in the Old Testament.

We first encounter Bashan in Numbers 21:33, “ Then they turned and went up by the way to Bashan and Og king of Bashan and his whole army marched out to meet them in battle at Edrei.”

Who was Og? He was king of Bashan and greater was the fact that he was a member of a race of giants known as the Rephaim. Deut. 3:11 For only Og remained of the remnant of giants, behold his bedstead measured nine cubits (14 feet) KJV

As the story goes God told Moses that he would give Og and his people to them and he did and they utterly wiped them out. Og and Sihon were Amorite kings and the Amorites were among the people that stood in Israel’s way when they came out of Egypt. After defeating Og, Moses divided this land among the tribes of Gad, Reuben, and the half tribe of Manasseh, with Manasseh receiving Bashan or what we now call Golan. Later, when cities of refuge were established one was known as Golan in the land of Manasseh. (Joshua 20:8)

The land known as Golan Heights was formerly called Bashan and God granted it to the tribe of Manasseh, who remained there until after the fall of the Northern Kingdom. That land changed owners several times over the past 2700 years it finally came back into Israel’s possession in 1967. This has been highly controversial, especially in the Middle east and among the Arab nations. The world does not recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan, even though Syria was defeated. It is a good thing that the United Nations et al were not around when Og was defeated. It is sad that it has come to this in the world. The world really does not want Israel to exist. It has been war and war since God called Abraham and promised the land to his descendants, and to bless those who bless him.

The Psalmists and Prophets wrote of Bashan. There are the oaks of Bashan and the cows of Bashan. Jeremiah 50:19 “ I will restore Israel to his pasture, and he shall feed on Carmel and in Bashan, and his desire shall be satisfied on the hills of Ephraim and Gilead.” Micah 7:14 “ let them feed from Bashan.”

Psalm 68:22 “ I will bring again from Bashan.” Bashan was known for its pastures, oaks, and great views, or gorgeous mountain scenes. Later it became known as Gilead. This is the land east of the Sea of Galilee, and near the are where Jesus spent much of his ministry.

So then what does all of this mean? Once again we see God working through the years to bring Israel back into the land as a nation, and not just any nation, but a ‘blessed nation.’ God’s plans for Israel as a ‘light to the nations’ are slowly coming to fruition. We know that ultimately that was fulfilled through Jesus, but still, Israel has a role as she will eventually be the place where all of the nations come to worship Jesus, in the Millennial Kingdom. It is also the place He will return. Finally, God told Israel to expand her tent pegs in Isaiah 54, and to make room. This is a scripture pointing to Aliyeh and the return to the land. Israel is a very small country in land. From the Mediterranean to The Jordan it is only a couple of hours drive. It is roughly the size of New Jersey.

Is God expanding Israel’s territory for the returning sheep? Is He at this time bringing an increase in territory to allow for more to come home before the ‘hunters’ find the Jews and they face further persecution? I don’t claim to have all of the answers, but I think it is worth noting that God promised to punish Israel and He also promised to bring them back in the land and prosper them.

Either way we need to continue to pray for Revival in Israel and for the Salvation of Israel. Romans 11:26 “and all Israel shall be saved.” Also we must continue to pray for the salvation of the many nations surrounding Israel and that the Arabs will be used to ‘provoke Israel to Jealousy”, so that she will indeed be saved.

Purim: Retribution For The House of Saul

Purim: Retribution For The House of Saul

The Jewish celebration of Purim is recounted in the book of Esther, and tells how an orphaned Jewish girl living in exile with her people rose to be the most powerful women in the Persian kingdom. It also tells Hadasa as was her Jewish name, was able to save her people from total extinction. I summarized these events in my previous blog. Purim is the plural of “Pur” meaning lot in the sense that something has been crushed or destroyed. It was begun by Mordecai to commemorate the defeat of Haman’s plan to destroy the Jewish people. It began on the fourteenth day of the twelfth month.

You may be asking what any of this has to do with The House of Saul, and better yet just what is the House of Saul. The House of Saul is simply the ruling or royal house and line began by Israel’s first king, Saul, of the tribe of Benjamin, Saul was killed in battle as well as his son Jonathan, resulting in a 7 year civil war between Israel and Judah, with David assuming the throne as the anointed king by Samuel the prophet. Unfortunately for David only the tribe of Judah followed him, the remaining 11 following Ishbosheth, son of Saul. David ruled Judah from Hebron for seven years.

The civil war between the House of Saul and House of David can be found in II Samuel chapters two thru four. If you recall, David was anointed king by Samuel but Saul remained king until his death. That brings up to speed regarding the House of Saul. Thus, there were only two actual rulers from the House of Saul. But, all of that is simply mentioned to reDavid was the king anointed by God, as God had chosen him. Saul and his family was rejected by God for disobedience.

I Samuel 15: 26 “ But Samuel said to Saul, ‘ I will not return with you; for you have rejected the word of the Lord, and the Lord has rejected you from being king over Israel.” verse 28 “The Lord has torn the kingdom of Israel from you this day and has given it to your neighbor who is better than you.”

Verse 29, “And the Glory Of Israel will not change His mind; For He is not a man that He should change His mind.” (NASB)

Thus, Samuel sought and found David and anointed him king, but it would be quite some time before he became king and then even longer before he ruled all of Israel. But, what happened that caused God to tear the kingdom of Israel from Saul? Why not just remove him as ruler and let the line continue through one of his sons? God had already chosen another as Saul was the people’s choice. He was from the tribe of Benjamin, not Judah.

We find the answer to this in I Samuel 15 verses 1-9. Samuel gave Saul strict orders to ‘listen to the words of the Lord,’! The Lord said he would ‘punish Amalek for what they did to Israel when they came out of Israel. Saul was charged with wiping the Amalekites out. He was to destroy all, including the oxen and sheep. So Saul’s orders were to not leave anyone or anything alive. However, he ‘captured’ Agag, king of the Amalekites, alive, and kept the best of the sheep. In essence by keeping the king alive and the ‘best’ of the sheep he disobeyed the Lord. Partial obedience is still disobedience.

Saul was rebuked by Samuel and thus by his disobedience he forfeited the kingdom. Samuel killed king Agag, yet somehow he had descendants to survive until the time of Queen Esther and the Persians. The Book of Esther chapter 3 verse 1 tells us that Haman wa sthe son of Hammedatha the Agagite, Sources confirm that Haman was an Amalekite, and descendant of king Agag. Perhaps there were some Amalekites away that day, we don’t know. What we do know is that Haman was an Amalekite, who were fierce enemies of Israel. We also know that Moredai, and thus Esther, since they were cousins, were of the tribe of Benjamin and descendants of Kish. Saul is not mentioned in Esther 2:5 it says, Shimei, son of Kish. Again sources confirm Mordecai was of the house of Saul.

Perhaps the text doesn’t mention Saul, since he was not thought of in good light after his disobedience and corresponding fall. Nevertheless, they were Benjaminites of the royal family of Saul, Is this a mere coincidence? I doubt it, further even though God tore the kingdom fromm Saul’s family, He still is a gracious God full of mercy and compassion. We see that here as he places the most unlikely person in the only place to save her people from their most famous enemy. It seems that even though Saul acted wickedly and prove unworthy to shepherd God’s people, God used descendants of his family to save all of Israel, in exile and in their land.

The fact that God would go to these lengths to set the right person in for the right time just to point out and see the demise of the most notorious enemies of all of the Jews up until that time proves His compassion, love, and goodness over His people. God rejoice over His people. He is for them. Even when we fail, and He must discipline us He is waiting as a good good Father for us to be restored. That is the message of the cross. Still, so many can’t get past the angry, mad God syndrome. He is angry at our sin, and hates it when we are disobedient, and yield to our flesh or the ways of the enemy. When we return He is overjoyed and delighted to see us restored. God was delighted to see children of Saul’s family over 400 years later have the opportunity to bring justice and defeat the evil plans to destroy the Jews.

As we move closer and closer to the return of Jesus remember that God is rejoicing over us and delights in us, and we are part of the plan to defeat all of His enemies. We are here to advance a kingdom greater than Saul’s or even David’s or any that has ever or will exist. Nothing can stand against the kingdom of darkness.

Esther 4:14 “ who knows whether you have obtained royalty (or come into the kingdom for such a time as this.” NASB

We are in the kingdom of God for such a time as to see all of The ‘Haman’s’ of this world’s plans come to nought. !!!!!

Receiving And Possessing the Kingdom Of God

Receiving And Possessing the Kingdom Of God

It seems I have been writing more about that Kingdom of God or also known as the Kingdom of Heaven. That is probably because I keep hearing about it everywhere I turn. Jesus spent so much time teaching about it. It is a common theme throughout the entirety of the Bible. The Kingdom is now and future, it is literal and spiritual. Ever since John the Baptist came preaching and Jesus established the Kingdom here as it is in heaven we have grown closer to the fullness of the Kingdom.

Who can be part of this kingdom and how does one get into it and what do they do? Is it s short term or eternal kingdom?

Daniel 7:13-14 “ I kept looking in the night visions and behold, with the clouds of heaven One like the Son of Man was coming, and He came up to the Ancient of Days and was presented before Him. And to Him was given dominion, Glory and the Kingdom, That all the peoples, nations, men of every language Might serve Him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which will not pass away; and His kingdom is one which will not pass away.”

Daniel 7:18 “ But the saints of the Most High will receive the kingdom and possess the kingdom forever, for all ages to come.”

Daniel 7:21-22 “I kept looking and that horn was waging war with all of the saints and overpowering them, until the Ancient of Days came and judgment was passed in favor of the saints of the Highest One, and the time arrived when the saints took possession of the kingdom.” Nasb

The prophet Daniel prophecies about the coming Kingdom we call the Kingdom of God. What other kingdom was there in which the Ancient of Days, who is God gives to the Son of Man who is Jesus? The Father has given the Son dominion and glory and rule forever. What will he rule and who does he rule? Basically He rules the entire earth which will be renewed, and everything in it and eventually He and the Father will rule heaven and earth together.

But, Daniel tells us something interesting in verse 18. He says that the saints of the most High or Highest One will receive the kingdom. This is clearly a reference to the ‘holy ones’ or what we call Christians. It speaks of John 3:16 where Jesus explains you are born again or get new life to enter the kingdom. However, it must be received. Jesus tells it is to be received by faith like a child. Matthew 18:3. It is simple requiring that we only believe. Believe and have faith that all that Jesus is the Son of God, died for our sins and likewise conquered death, hell, and the grave, and offers healing, deliverance, and one day He will give us a new body. He will come again and rule and reign.

So the saints are the ones who receive the kingdom. Saints are not just someone that a church venerates above others where it is determined that they worked a few miracles. It is for all who follow Christ.

How do we possess the Kingdom? We know that that ultimately speaks of the future, when Jesus returns and establishes His kingdom for 1000 years and then ultimately forever. It also is for now. That is the paradox of the Kingdom of God. It is partial now and full later. We possess it by obeying the commands and following the teachings of Jesus and espouse kingdom values in all aspects of life, including finances.

Matthew 11:12 NIV “ from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has been subject to violence and violent people have been raiding it.”

It is not a physical violence but rather a spiritual. Yes, we do things like repent, change our lifestyles, surrender everything to Jesus and pray for starters. Those are violent acts considered as foolishness by the world. It is so violent it allows us to one day actually possess this kingdom and dominion and rule and reign with Jesus.

Revelation 20:6 “Blessed and holy are those who share in the first resurrection. The second death has now power over them, but they will be priests of god and Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.” NIV

Revelation 21:1 “then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away and there was no longer any seas.” NIV

Don’t miss what God has in store for those who are willing to be violent enough to resist the temptations of this world and seek first His kingdom which is now and future. We can enjoy the future now but only partially. WE must still battle the evil around us but the King has given us His spirit and His word and an Angelic host to help us walk in victory now.

May the Lord Bless you as you receive and possess the Kingdom of God.

Ilhan Omar, Allegiance and Citizenship

Ilhan Omar, Allegiance and Citizenship

There has been a lot of talk about allegiance recently as a result of comments made by US Rep. Ilhan Omar D-MInn. To sum up her recent tweets and comments have placed those who support Israel, especially government officials as being allegiant to Israel. She also said it’s all about “the Benjamins” meaning money. Accusations that Jews control everything from Banks to governments have been going on for hundreds of years. Often there have been strong accusations that Jews have been the cause of wars and divisions of all kinds and it is the Jew that seeks to control the world.

What has all of this to do with allegiance and citizenship. For me I am a citizen of the United States and consider myself a loyal citizen. When we pledge allegiance to the “flag of the United States” we also pledge allegiance to “the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God.” The words Under God were added back in the 1950’s. Nevertheless that is not just a pledge but a declaration that we are one nation under God. That is all tribes, peoples and tongues. Even different religions who serve other ‘gods’. We are declaring the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ to be Lord.

My allegiance and citizenship is American but before that I am a citizen of the Kingdom of Heaven.

Philippians 3:20-21 ESV “But our citizenship is in heaven and from it we await our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like His glorious body by the power that enables Him even to subject all things to Himself.

Ephesians 2:19 ESV So then you are no longer strangers and aliens but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God.

AS disciples and believers of Jesus Christ we have been born into the Kingdom of Heaven and thus we become citizens of that Kingdom. Yet, we are still living in the earth in an age where even though the Kingdom of God is here it has not fully come, and the kings of the earth have not submitted to the government of Jesus Christ as King. So we are first citizens of Heavens kingdom here on earth and secondly citizens of our respective countries, mine being the US. The Heavenly kingdom will one day fully come to earth and the New Jerusalem will invade earth. Until that time we are subject to ‘laws of man and kings of the earth.’ It is not a conflict to be a Christian and honor your nation. However, when that nation oppresses its people or has laws that oppose the teachings and commands of the Bible then we have no choice to not follow that law.

WE already see Christians having to make a choice as to whether they will obey a law that opposes what the Bible teaches or to stand and so no.

Hebrews 11:16 NIV “ Instead they were longing for a better country a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.”

As Christians we are searching for the heavenly kingdom. We are waiting for it to be established fully even though it is already here. Muslims, like Ilhan Omar, and Rashida Tlaib are likewise loyal to Islam over their respective nations. Islam as also an invisible kingdom but it is opposed to the Kingdom Of God. All Islamic countries have a crescent on their flag(s). Praying five times a day or following the laws of Islam take precedent over anything else. Sharia law is the law of the land which is not good, and not peaceful.

There are many Christians and non-Christians who love Israel but do not put it above our allegiance to The United States. WE love Israel for many reasons. First because it is the apple of God’s eye Zechariah 2:8 ESV “ for he who touches you touches the apple of His eye.” God chose israel for a specific purpose and it will be accomplished, even though Jesus came and His own people didn’t receive Him. Isaiah 49 speaks of a nursing woman not being able to forget her children, a reference to Israel. Part of seeing Israel fulfill its destiny as “a light to the Nations” is part of the Church’s assignment. It is that provoking Israel to jealousy.

Today Israel is a secular nation with few Orthodox Jews controlling the spiritual atmosphere. It was an American president, Harry Truman that first recognized the nation of Israel. Likewise it was another US president, Donald Trump who aligned the US and the world by recognizing Jerusalem as the eternal capital of Israel. These acts caused much opposition. The State of Israel is the only true democracy in the whole Middle East. Even though it is a Jewish state there is freedom of religion whereas all other are Muslim and intolerant to other religions. Turkey, Tunisia, and to some degree Egypt have a form of democracy.

It is important that the US and other western nations support Israel financially and militarily. Israel is a stabilizing force in that part of the world. Nevertheless I am not ‘allegiant’ to Israel in the sense that I put it above The US. Whereas, Rashida Tlaib wrapped a Palestinian flag around her after she won her Congressional seat. That is allegiance to another country, and she was not born there but has ‘roots’ there. I wouldn’t wear a British, Irish, Scottish or German flag or Native American flag.

The bottom line is those who love and desire to see Israel be all that God intends will continue to support Israel in various ways. Because we send money there or help Jewish people does not mean we are controlled by Jews or that Jews rule the world. However, a Jew, a King, Jesus Christ will establish His Kingdom but it will only have ‘citizens if the kingdom.” My love for Israel flows out of God’s heart and love for Israel.

Pray for people everywhere and in every nation, tribe and tongue. Pray for The United States and all that she is. Pray for revival and Awakening here and all over the earth. Finally, pray for the ‘Peace of Jerusalem”, Psalm 122.

Remember as citizens of Heaven we have a greater inheritance than what we have here.

1 Peter 1:3-5 Esv “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.”

Support the US, support Israel, support your country, but remember we are first citizens of the Heavenly Kingdom. Amen

Preparing For The Wedding: Acquiring Oil

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Preparing For The Wedding: Acquiring Oil

AS times grow harder and harder with society and culture growing more evil we need to be reminded of our call as believers to prepare and be ready for Jesus’ return culminating in the Bride of Christ being ready. It seems that the level of demonic warfare and hatred of anything good and decent and moral continues to escalate. Many believers are challenged on every facet to fall into temptation and sin and ultimately apostasy. Jesus warned the early followers of such times, We are further from the day when Jesus first spoke about His return and likewise closer to the occurrence of the event.

In Matthew 25: 1-13 Jesus outlines what is known as the parable of the ‘Virgins’. This is a commonly preached and studied parable, but it’s deep meaning often overlooked. In this parable virgins are believers before the Lord who are waiting for the ‘Bridegroom’ to return. Jesus is the Bridegroom. 5 of the virgins add enough oil and were prepared, while 5 were foolish and not prepared. Most of the church teaches that we get saved and that is all that there is. There is no real emphasis on intimacy and living holy and as Jesus is really teaching here, to ‘watch and pray’.

Jesus repeatedly tells us we cannot know the exact day or hour of His return but He repeatedly gives us signs and things to watch for to let us know that ‘the season’ is here. Being prepared requires a lot of preparation. The enemy is pulling out all of the stops to pull as many as he can away from a love relationship with Jesus. As times grow harder and persecution increases we must be remain ‘burning and shining’ lamps for Jesus and His kingdom.

John 5:35 “John was a lamp that burned and gave light.” Here John is writing about John the Baptist. He referred to him as a lamp that burned, meaning he was a light, glowing, burning for the Lord. The people saw John and they saw the glow and shining light that he had when he spoke of Jesus and spoke of Jesus’ ministry. How did John burn? He spent a lot of time in prayer and fasting. He spent much time in the wilderness in preparation. He studied the scriptures and sought the Lord. He knew what his ministry was and what it would take to maintain it.

“WATCH AND PRAY”

Several years ago when I was at the Garden of Gethsemane as I studied the olive trees and the olive pressing process I was reminded of Jesus’ words to His disciples in the garden, “Watch and Pray that you enter not into temptation.” Matthew 26:41, Berean Study Bible. Jesus was praying and found his disciples asleep. He asked them if they couldn’t pray and watch for just one hour. I studied the scriptures, and I felt then that the Lord was saying this is the one thing I am calling you to do and really the whole Body of Christ in these last days. Yes. we need to evangelize, we need to serve, but above all else we need to ‘watch and pray’.

The oil is the oil of the Holy Spirit needed for ministry. Every born again believer has some sort of ministry. Moms, caregivers, business people, etc. as well as the small percent in full time ministry. To do whatever we are called to do we need all of the oil we can get. There are too many things pulling on us every day to lose our focus.

A Bride Made Ready

Revelation 19:7 “Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and the Bride has made herself ready.”

Here the Bride made herself ready, meaning she has to prepare, get clean, remain pure, get ‘clean linens’ and put on jewels, and all things a bride does in preparing for her Bridegroom. The Bride of Christ is no different. AS the hour grows late, and evil is more rampant, and persecution increases, we must go deeper in the word, in prayer, an in time we spend in His Presence, Acquiring our own oil requires sacrifice of time and sometimes money as we let go of some things the world see as important. The Kingdom of Heaven means that we live kingdom minded which includes watching for the King, watching for the Bridegroom, and burning and shining, like John, so that the world sees the Light of Jesus burning brightly and come, not so much to us, but the source of our light, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.

Before we can say “come” we need to have something for the lost to come to. We have to have water for the thirsty as Revelation 22:17 says, “ Let the one who is thirsty come; let anyone who desires drink freely from the water of life.”

Get some oil, get some water, and keep getting it, so that when the dark look for light they see us shining. They can also find drink. How can we expect there to be a great harvest if we do not spend time with the ‘Lord Of Harvest”? Lord we need your oil, give us each grace to spend time with you to get the oil, so that our lamps burn brightly. Amen!