Sunday, March 22, 2015

Text:  Exodus 12:1-14; I Corinthians 5:7
Subject:  The Feast of Passover
Introduction:

The chosen and elect nation of Israel had been enslaved in Egypt for over four hundred years, just as God had told Abraham in Genesis 15:13.  But the Lord responded to the cries of His people for freedom by raising up and sending Moses to be the vessel through whom He would work to deliver them from their bondage.

So, according to Gods Word, Moses went down to Egypt to confront Pharaoh and to set the nation of Israel free. But as scripture makes it clear, Pharaoh was full of pride and refused to let Israel go.

Consequently, the Lord brought a series of plagues against Pharaoh to help change his mind. The first nine plagues were as follows: 1.) Turning the Nile River into blood 2.) frogs, 3.) gnats, 4.) flies, 5.) disease, 6.) boils, 7.) hail, 8.) locusts and 9.) darkness.

Although the first nine plagues did not change Pharaoh’s mind, the tenth plague would be a different story! In this final plague God would send the death angel to kill all the first born in Egypt—both animals and people.

And this is where we come to the sacrifice of the Passover Lamb. God instructed the Israelites to take a lamb into their homes on the tenth day of the month of Nisan on the Hebrew calendar and March or April on the Gregorian calendar. Then on the fourteenth day of this month they were to kill the lamb at twilight.  They were to take the blood of the lamb and put it on the top and sides of their door frames.

The Lord said to them that when He sent the death angel to execute the tenth plague by killing the first born of Egypt, the angel would “Passover” them when he saw the blood of the lamb applied to their dwellings! They would be spared and would not die.


And so it was. At midnight the death angel entered into Egypt, and every house that had the blood of the lamb applied to its doorpost and lintel was spared. But every home without the blood of the Passover lamb experienced the death of their first born.

The result of this tenth and final plague on Egypt forced the Pharaoh to let Israel go!

What a powerful truth is here! A nation of over two million people were set free from the most powerful empire on earth at that time by the power of the blood of the Lamb.

This was the first Passover, and it was the foundational salvation event in the Old Testament that was to be remembered by the chosen people of God from generation to generation.

Therefore, it was the first of the annual Spring Feasts in Israel that was to be celebrated each year. And it was to be a constant reminder of how the people were set free, not by what they had done, but by the power of God expressed through the shed blood of the Passover Lamb.

Also by keeping this annual Passover Feast, as the Hebrew words “mo’ed” and “mikraw”  suggests, this would be an historical rehearsal by the elect nation for the set time when Messiah would ultimately fulfill this Passover Feast. And so for hundreds of years the chosen people of God were to rehearse the Passover Feast each spring. What an amazing, prophetic picture of what was to come!

And it did come on the day that Jesus Christ rode into Jerusalem on the tenth day of Nisan, on the back of a donkey, in fulfillment of hundreds of years of rehearsal by the chosen people and according to the prophecy of Zechariah 9:9, “Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your King comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”

Jesus the Messiah rides into Jerusalem on the tenth day of Nisan, the very same day that thousands of Jewish people were bringing their lambs to by examined by the Jewish Priests to make sure that the animals had no blemishes and were suitable to be a Passover Lamb. In the same way, Jesus the Lamb of God was examined by the Jewish religious leaders for four days as they questioned Him over and over and found no defect or fault in Him. Even the political system and Pontius Pilate found “no fault in Him.”
It is now the fourteenth day of Nisan, and the four days of inspecting the Passover Lamb is completed. At nine in the morning, the third hour of the day, the High Priest goes to the Temple and ties the Passover Lamb to the altar—the lamb which is to be sacrificed for the nation. The lamb will remain there throughout the day.

Close by, at the very same hour of the day, Jesus Christ is nailed to the cross. As Mark 15:25 says, “It was the third hour (9am) when they crucified Him.”

I find it very interesting that the Jews, on this fourteenth day of Nisan, without really knowing what they were doing, before the Gentile or Roman authorities, cried out for their Passover Lamb to be slain when they said, “And all the people answered, ‘let His blood be on us and on our children.’”

Little did they know that by the time that they had set down for their traditional Passover meal, on that same evening at 6pm, they would have acted out the very fulfillment of God’s Passover Feast!

In Jesus, they chose their Passover Lamb, and in Jesus they slaughtered their Passover Lamb!
And for every Israelite who would put themselves under His blood, by faith, they would be saved from eternal judgment.

It is now three in the afternoon, the ninth hour of the day. The High Priest makes his way to the lamb which had been bound to the altar at 9 that morning. And he says what had been said for hundreds of years, “It is finished.” He then cut the lamb’s throat.

Also, at this very same hour, from the altar of the cross, Jesus says, “It is finished.”  Jesus literally fulfilled the Passover Feast to the very day and the very hour! The Lamb of God had been slain.

At 3pm on the fourteenth day of Nisan, when Jesus said, “It is finished,” He was declaring that the last and final lamb had been slain. The eternal sacrifice had been made.

As we bring this message on the Feast of Passover to a conclusion, I ask you to wonder with me at our amazing God as we look together at two other related scriptures on this powerful truth.

First is Revelation 13:8 where we are told that the Lamb was slain from the creation of the world! God planned the death of His only-begotten Son “as our Passover Lamb”  before He created the worlds!

Secondly in Genesis 3:15, God promised that “the Seed of woman would crush the serpent’s head, and he would bruise His heel.” The entire Old Testament is the story of the chosen nation, Israel, through whom God would bring the Seed of woman who would crush the serpent’s head—beginning with the death of the Lamb of God on the Feast of Passover. Although at the cross His heel was bruised, that bruise was the beginning of the end for Satan when his head will be crushed! I will share more about this in my next message.

And as we have already stated, this grand event was pre-figured through God’s elect nation on that very first Passover night in Egypt when the Lord delivered His people through  the power of the blood of the lamb—the blood that they applied to the door of their homes!

This foundational, salvation revelation was then rehearsed each spring by the chosen people of God for hundreds of years!

Then two thousand years ago the Son of God, Jesus Christ, fulfilled this Feast down to the very day and the very hour as Father-God’s Passover Lamb.

Friend, you can trust God and His infallible Word, the Bible.

The way of salvation is secure, and all who put their trust in the shed blood of the Lamb of God will be saved, will be delivered from judgment, will be set free from the penalty and power of sin, and will spend eternity in the glory of God!

I ask you dear friend, are you trusting in the blood of Christ alone to save you? If so, then rejoice, but if not, why not make that decision right now.

As the old song says, “what can wash away my sins, nothing but the blood of Jesus; what can make me whole again, nothing but the blood of Jesus.”

For more information on how to begin your new life in Christ, please visit our website at warriorassemblyofgod.com.


Sunday, March 15, 2015

Text: Select
Subject: God’s Plan for Jerusalem, Part VI—The Battle for Jerusalem
Introduction:

Our first five messages on God’s Plan for Jerusalem have led us to this sixth and final message in this series. It is my hope that in today’s message we will be able to connect all of the dots resulting in a better understanding of this prophetic and critical end time subject. We are now at the end of Daniel’s 70th week  and at the end of Jacob’s trouble.

After Israel’s final suffering at the hands of her enemies—a suffering allowed by God to break off her pride and unbelief—the Lord Jesus will save the elect remnant. The combination of her suffering and the act of God’s mercy to her through Jesus will cause “all Israel to be saved” (Romans 11:26-27).

At this time God will also judge the nations that have attempted to annihilate the Jews/Israel
(Matthew 25:31-46).

Following the battle for Jerusalem and the conclusion of “Jacob’s Trouble” will be the millennial reign of Jesus Christ—a world-wide reign from His headquarters in Jerusalem. (Matthew 5:35; 23:37-39; Revelation 19:11-20:10)

Let’s look now at the battle of Jerusalem with our focus being on the central place and significance of this chosen city.

1. In things pertaining to the Kingdom of God or the rule of God on the earth, all roads lead to the city of Jerusalem—the literal city of Jerusalem, Israel.

Psalm 122:6 says “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem; they will prosper (or be secure) that love you.”  This scripture can be seen as an Old Testament equivalent of “Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is done in heaven” (Matthew 6:10).  I will show you why this is true as we go forward.

Isaiah 62:6-7 “I have set my watchmen upon your walls, O Jerusalem, which shall never hold their peace day or night; you that make mention of the Lord, keep not silent, and give Him no rest until He establishes and makes Jerusalem the praise of the earth.”
These two scriptures make it clear that Jerusalem is central in God’s plans to rule and reign on the earth. Believers and intercessors need to lock in on this truth and ask the Lord for more revelation concerning it. What is important to God should be important to those who love Him.

2. Because of the importance of this city to God and to His plans, this city will become “a cup of stumbling to all people.”

Zechariah 12:3 “On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves."

Jerusalem will be the center of the coming storm. The dilemma of Jerusalem will become the complex problem of international politics that increasingly threatens world stability. And Jewish inflexibility over Jerusalem will be the trigger that ignites the prophetically anticipated resurgence of world-wide anti-Semitism.

Yet, it will be the issue of Jerusalem or the "unsolvable problem" of Zion that God will use to draw all nations into the final conflict that leads to Armageddon and the Day of The Lord.

The battle for Jerusalem is the age-old contention that has raged in both the heavens and on the earth concerning “the holy covenant.” The city of Jerusalem represents the place of God’s name and His divine rule on the earth.

In Matthew 5:35 Jesus referred to Jerusalem as the city of the Great King. It is the city of God’s Messiah. Consequently, that is why “the nations rage and the people imagine a vain thing.”

3. The central issue on planet earth in the Last Days will be the final outworking of the quarrel that began in the tents of Abraham and will continue to escalate until the Second Return of the Prince of Peace from heaven—the Lord Jesus.!

It is the issue of the holy covenant that God made with Abraham and his descendants (the Jews) that leads to the question of divine election and sovereign rule. It is about God’s divine right as God to choose whom or what as He pleases!

It is precisely God’s choice that is causing the contention and controversy over Jerusalem, the Jews and the land. God’s choice and divine election of the Jews and the city of Jerusalem is really an issue about God’s authority and His right to rule (Kingdom of God).
It is this issue that God is using to offend humanistic reason (the natural man) as well as provoke “the powers of the air” (Satan and his cohorts).

This is about the wisdom of God revealed in the “rule of grace” that so completely opposes any notion that the right of promise and inheritance is in any way based on human qualification, virtue or merit.

The battle for Jerusalem, especially in the Last Days, is forcing the nations and the peoples of the world, as well as the church, to come to grips with the great questions of God.

What questions? God’s predestined purposes, His right to rule, His election of Israel, His covenant with the Jews concerning Jerusalem and the land.

Jerusalem will be the lightning rod that God is using in the Last Days to force the world to come to the place of decision concerning Him and His covenant with His chosen people Israel. And because Jerusalem will be the place of God’s rule/kingdom, it will also be the focal point of God confronting the spiritual and fallen powers of darkness. These powers that have deceived and manipulated governments, institutions and the nations will be broken through the judgments of God. And all of it will center on and around the battle for Jerusalem!

That this one mountain (Zion) and this one city (Jerusalem) should be in such a spectacular spot-light and place of world-wide importance is truly miraculous!

At the end of the age, the city of Jerusalem and the Jews/Israel, because of nothing but the sovereign, electing grace of God, will be the ultimate offense to the natural man and humanistic reasoning! There is no other explanation for anti-Semitism.

The world, because of its pride and unbelief, will “stumble” over what Jerusalem truly means in God’s divine purpose. And Jerusalem will also be the place of Satan’s greatest contention with God and with His purposes.  Note the following:

Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem (Luke 13:33).
The Antichrist kills the two witnesses in Jerusalem (Revelation 11).
The Antichrist puts his palace there for 42 months (Daniel 9:27; 11:45).

Why does the Antichrist so desire the city of Jerusalem? What is really behind his lust to possess that city?

The answer to the above question is found in Isaiah 14:13. Here we find that what is behind the Antichrist’s obsession with Jerusalem is Satan’s original envy of the Messiah ruling from the chosen city:

          “For you (Satan) have said in your heart, ‘I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north” (Isaiah 14:13). “The sides of the north” is a reference to the city of Jerusalem as described in Psalm 48:2, “Beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth, is mount Zion, on the sides of the north, the city of the great King.”  At Jerusalem, God will confront both the nations and Satan's rebellion!
4. Making it personal.

The natural impulse is to reject God’s sovereign choice—concerning anything. For example, let’s take our own standing and relationship with God.

The Bible basis for salvation is to recognize and accept that grace is wholly apart from works, that it is a gift from God and has nothing to do with human merit or worth.

Although God’s choice anticipates or foresees the necessity of a new heart (whether individual or nation) that is never its basis.

God’s election is based in the eternal predetermination of God through the everlasting covenant that guarantees the imputation of another kind of righteousness that is God’s alone and is through faith alone imputed in order to exclude any natural claim or merit.

What am I saying? At the time of the end, “all Israel will be saved” (Romans 11:26) as a result of God’s grace! Her national salvation will be the same as our personal salvation: the free gift of God based on His eternal purpose and by His grace totally apart from works or merit.
         
Israel’s national salvation at the end of the age will be a miraculous and visible demonstration that salvation is wholly of the Lord, conferred on the basis of grace alone, through faith alone, by Christ alone. And this grace is on the basis of divine election.

Why election? Paul answers in Romans 9:11, “For the children not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to ELECTION might stand, not of works, but of Him that calls.”

The promise is according to election because only the sovereign act of God choosing fully defines the nature of grace and is the basis on which it is given or not given. It is to whom He wills. So then, the dilemma of Jerusalem and subsequently the so-called “Jewish problem” is designed to force the nations and the peoples to a consideration larger than Jerusalem itself: the question of the nature of righteousness as defined by election and grace as taught in the Word of God.

Therefore, Ishmael’s  age-old contempt for the child of promise (Israel) touches the issue for the very basis of promise as well as the basis for the nature of grace. Ishmael could be saved, but only if he is willing to accept God’s choice and grace and do it God’s way.

Ishmael’s contempt is more for what God has chosen. It is the presumption that raises itself to contend with the divine right to choose, revealing a lack of humility and understanding about the utter ruin of sin and its only solution or remedy.
Therefore, in the divine genius and wisdom of the uncreated and transcendent God, the purpose of Jerusalem is to cause all nations and all people to consider the basis of righteousness as well as the truth of divine grace and election.

God has sovereignly chosen the city of Jerusalem to be “the city of the Great King” (Matthew 5:35). It is the city where He will establish His Kingdom, and from this city the glory of His Kingdom will cover the entire earth. Further, He has elected to show His grace and mercy to the descendants of Abraham by giving them the land—including the city of Jerusalem to be ruled by a descendant of David—namely Jesus Christ,  the Jewish Messiah.

It will be the contention of Satan as well as a rebellious world that will descend upon Jerusalem and the Jews in their protest of God’s election and sovereign choice of grace.

Also at the end of the age, those who call themselves Christians will find themselves choosing. To stand with Israel will be a choice to accept God’s right to rule; it will be a choice to put the Kingdom of God first, or not.

Choosing to love and support Israel, especially in the days ahead, will actually be a choice that will reflect where a person stands spiritually and in their relationship with God. The battle for Jerusalem is much bigger than most people think. The all-wise God is using it and will use it to divide the sheep from the goats, the pure from the impure, the unbelievers from the true believers.  God will use the battle for Jerusalem in the last days to not only save the remnant of Israel but to also purify His Bride before His return to this planet. The battle for Jerusalem will absolutely cause people to make a choice either for God or against Him. I say it again, what is happening and will happen to Jerusalem and the Jews in the Last Days is much, much bigger than we know.

That is why we absolutely must pray and seek God for revelation concerning this issue. I do not believe that it is simply an option where we can take it or leave it. And remember, the more we know about what God knows, the more we are in the center of His perfect will. This will not only make us more complete and cause us to have a greater peace, but it will also make us more effective in bearing witness to the truth. It will help us to work more efficiently in seeing God’s Kingdom established on the earth.

Hopefully after what you have learned in this message as well as in the other five messages in this series, and what the Spirit will reveal to you in the days ahead, you will be more motivated to pray and intercede for what has always been on God’s heart: Jerusalem and its importance to His eternal plan of redemption and restoration. His vision will become your vision. And as it does, you will be walking in greater agreement with God and His end-time purposes.

Isaiah 62:7 “. . . and give Him no rest until He establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise, (or the song) of the earth.”

I am indebted to Reggie Kelly for much of the information in this particular message. If you would like to access Reggie’s material, simply go to themysteryofisrael.org.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Text: Isaiah 62:6-7
Subject:  God’s Plan for Jerusalem, Part V
Introduction:

Hopefully it has become clear in the previous messages we have preached that Jerusalem is the most unique and significant city on this planet, and in the universe! “Heaven is God’s throne; earth is His footstool; and Jerusalem is the city of the Great King—even the Lord Jesus Christ Himself!”

With this truth as our beginning point, it is easy to see that Jerusalem is unique and significant because the eternal God has chosen it as His own. As I have recently said, God did not choose Jerusalem because it is special, but Jerusalem is special because God chose it!

And it is what God has chosen it for that makes it so special.

1. Jerusalem is where Father-God secured our eternal salvation through the life, death, and resurrection of His only-begotten Son.
2. Jerusalem is the city where the Lord poured out the Holy Spirit giving birth to His Church and empowering her to be His witnesses to a lost and dying world.
3. Jerusalem will be the city where Jesus returns with His raptured Church to do the following:
a. Defeat the Beast kingdom and save the remnant of Israel from the Antichrist.
b. Kill the Antichrist and cast him and the False Prophet into the lake of fire.
c. Be welcomed back by the Jewish leadership and crowned king.
d. Set up His capital and reign over the earth for a thousand years.
e. Rule the earth in righteousness and bring peace and prosperity to the entire world.
f. Ultimately bring heaven and earth together when He brings down the New Jerusalem to the earthly Jerusalem. The natural realm and the spiritual realm will become one forever.


By understanding the uniqueness and significance of Jerusalem to the heart and plan of God, hopefully we can now more readily grasp why that Father God chooses and calls people and churches to be “watchmen” on “the walls of Jerusalem” who will never be silent day or night!

As you heard or read in our last message, I believe that God has uniquely prepared and called Warrior Assembly of God, and others, to be “watchmen” for Jerusalem in this amazing prophetic generation in which we are living.

Yes, I also believe that the Lord has chosen and called His people in every generation to pray for Jerusalem. And the “incense”  of those collective prayers has been filling up the bowls which are in heaven.

However, I believe that we are now in a unique prophetic generation, a generation that has witnessed the rebirth of the Jewish nation in 1948,  and a generation that also witnessed the Jewish people retaking their city of Jerusalem in 1967.  It is my conviction that the incense of prayer now ascending from the end time Church will see those heavenly bowls completely filled and then poured out on the earth in answered prayer!

Beloved, I believe that we are the generation that will see God’s heart and God’s plan for Jerusalem fulfilled! This should fill our hearts with anticipation and excitement!

With this understanding as our scriptural foundation and consequently our motivation, let’s probe a little deeper into the revelation given to the prophet Isaiah in Isaiah 62:6-7.

I. First, let’s look at the call to prayer for Jerusalem: “give yourselves no rest and give Him no rest until . . .

From the words of this text, it is clear that this is a call to persistent prayer, or as the Apostle Paul said in the New Testament, “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).

Actually, this is more than a call to prayer as many would think of it. Rather, this is a call to a way of life, a call to a continuing partnership with God for what is on His heart.




Unfortunately, this kind of call to prayer and partnership with God is alien to much of the narcissistic preaching and teaching in the church today. Many believers are only interested in what God can give them to live a happy and carefree life of temporal pleasure.

Many Christians only see God as their security from hell and as the one who can get them out of trouble when they call on Him. Yes, God has provided both of those things to all who have been born again.

But for those who see and think of God only in that way, the call to prayer from our text in Isaiah cannot be understood and is not considered relevant to their lives.

However, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ called us as true born again Christians into the same spirit and truth of what the Holy Spirit spoke through the prophet in Isaiah 62:6-7 when He said,

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these other things (the necessities of life) will be given to you as well.

Beloved, the Great Shepherd of the Church, even the God-man Himself, tells us that our first priority in life is not to go after the things of this world. Rather, He calls us to go after what is on Father God’s heart.

Jesus said that if we would make what is on God’s heart our top priority, then we would be given everything that we need.

The call to prayer in Isaiah 62:6-7, supported and confirmed by Jesus in Matthew 6:33, is a call to partner with the eternal God until what is on is heart becomes a tangible reality.

And as I said recently, this partnership with God is the most important and satisfying thing that believers can do with the gift of life that we have been given to live on this earth. It is a partnership that will continue into eternity!

But to be clear, this partnership is not a one and done kind of thing! Rather, as we have tried to say, this is a call to discipleship—a call to a way of life.


Sadly, not many will answer this call to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness because they are unwilling to let go of “the things” that they deem to be more important to them.

Yet, for those who will let go of the temporal to lay hold of the eternal, they will be truly blessed. How about you friend, are you willing to partner with God by “praying without ceasing” for the city that is on God’ heart?

As missionary Jim Elliot once said, “he is no fool who gives away what he cannot keep that he might gain what he cannot lose.”

Church, what I want you to see is that this call to prayer for Jerusalem is a call into the very heart of the eternal God Himself! It is a call into Who He is and into His eternal plan for Israel, for His Church, for the earth, and the universe!

It is a call into all Father God has planned forever, and Jerusalem just happens to be at the epicenter of that plan!

This is, I believe, what the Holy Spirit is saying in His Word when he said, “you who call on the Lord, give yourselves no rest and give Him no rest . . .” “pray without ceasing,” “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. . .”

Beloved, this is more than a typical call to prayer as many perceive prayer to be. Instead, it is a call to a way of life and a call to a continuing partnership with God in a life of prayer until what is on His heart becomes a reality.

II. The second point in this message is a call to prayer for the cause that is on God’s heart.

“Give yourselves no rest, and give Him no rest until He establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth.”

Our partnership with God is to live a life of prayer until His eternal plan is realized, a plan that has Jerusalem at the epicenter.

Beloved, when we are praying for God to establish Jerusalem and to make her the praise (the song) of the earth, we are living out our highest purpose for being on this earth.



Jesus Christ died on a cross, rose from the dead, ascended back to heaven, and will return to the earth for this central purpose that is on the Father’s heart.

There is absolutely nothing in your life that is more important than this! This is the meaning of life; it is the ultimate goal of all scripture!

If you can receive it, this very prayer in Isaiah 62:6-7 is echoed in Matthew 6:10 in the Lord’s Prayer, “Your Kingdom come, your will be done, in earth as it is done in heaven.”

So whenever you pray, “Your kingdom come, your will be done in earth as it is done in heaven,” you are praying for God to “establish Jerusalem and to make her the praise of the earth!”

And when you pray the Word of God in Revelation 22:17 which says, “The Spirit and the Bride say come. . .” you are coming into agreement with all of God’s saints from every generation, and with the Holy Spirit, in asking God to establish Jerusalem and to make her the praise of the earth!

This is a Holy Spirit inspired prayer for Jesus Christ the Messiah to return to the city of the Great King— to Jerusalem, Israel!

It is a prayer for Him to come and complete the Father’s eternal plan of salvation which began with His first coming.

This is the plan that was in the heart of God before He created the worlds.  It is the culmination of the plan that was first announced in the book of Genesis.

And when we pray with the Apostle John in the next to the last verse in the written Word of God to man, “Amen, come Lord Jesus,”  we are doing our part to help fill up the bowl of incense which is in God’s presence and which will one day be poured out on the earth in answered prayer.

Beloved, when that bowl is poured out on the earth Jerusalem will be established and made the praise (the Song) of the entire earth!


CONCLUSION/ALTAR

So the call of the Holy Spirit to you is this:

Will you give yourself no rest and give Him no rest until He establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise or the song of the entire earth?

Will you partner with your Creator and Savior by living a life of prayer until what is on His heart for Jerusalem becomes a reality?

This journey begins with a simple step of faith that says Yes to God.

You don’t have to understand it all or even feel anything, even though that feeling will eventually come.

All that you really need to do is mix childlike faith with the revealed Word of God that you have heard or read. The Holy Spirit will then lead you from there.

Beloved, all roads lead to Jerusalem, Israel because this is the city where God’s eternal purpose of salvation and restoration will become reality.

That’s why that in our sixth and final message we will do our best to connect all the dots for you as we go into detail as to why there will be such a ferocious battle for Jerusalem at the end of the age!

Prayer: Father God, open our understanding to your heart for Jerusalem so that we can more readily enter into a life of prayer and partnership with you for what has always been on your divine heart. In the strong Name of Your Son, Jesus Christ, we pray.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Text:  Isaiah 62:6
Subject: God’s Plan for Jerusalem, Part IV (The call of the eternal God is an irresistible force!)
Introduction:

If someone was to walk into Warrior Assembly of God, they may be thinking to themselves, “why is the Star of David on that wall?” And, “why do they have a five by five poster of the city of Jerusalem on the other wall?” Further, “why is the pastor here preaching a series of messages on God’s plan for Jerusalem?”

After having done three messages on why the eternal God is so passionate about the city of Jerusalem, I thought this would be a good interval or place to give the background and context of how we have arrived at where we are as a church and why we are focused on Jerusalem, Israel.

It actually began in August of 2008 while on a trip to the International House of Prayer in Kansas City Missouri. While there, I had a prophecy spoken to me, that at the time, I didn’t quite fully grasp.

A prophetic lady named Gloria, under a strong anointing of the Holy Spirit, prophesied to me, “you are going to love Israel.” Although I liked Israel, I couldn't say that I loved Israel or even thought about Israel that much. So it was somewhat surprising at the time.

However, in that atmosphere of the Holy Spirit (there was a strong witness and presence of God) I found myself completely broken and weeping over what I was hearing because I knew it was God speaking to me.

Now, many times when the Lord speaks a prophetic word to someone, it is like a farmer putting a seed into the ground. Over the days, weeks, months and even years that follow (however long it takes) God will “water” that seed that He has placed into the heart and soul until that seed becomes full grown!

So in 2009, God watered that seed when a friend, actually someone who is a member of Warrior Assembly, gave me a set of videos by a pastor from the West Coast named Mark Biltz. The videos were about the Four Blood Moons that have occurred in the last five hundred years, beginning in 1493 and continuing to the year 2015, and which are connected to the nation of Israel! And as you know from the messages that I have preached on this subject, these blood moons are connected to the feasts of God that He gave to Israel!
Actually, the blood moons occur on Passover, the first of God’s seven feasts, and Tabernacles, the last of God’s seven feasts. The final two blood moons, which will occur for the last time in this century, will be on April 4, 2015 (Passover) and on September 28, 2015 (Tabernacles).  This is an interesting subject, but is not our main focus today.

The point I want to make here is that these videos “watered” the prophetic word that God had put into my heart about loving Israel in 2008. I even attended a Messianic synagogue for a while to learn more about Israel.

Then in the spring of 2011, while Brother Tommy and I were talking in the foyer of the church, the Holy Spirit “blew in” on us like a wind. I was knocked down to my knees, and the Lord spoke ten words to my spirit: “The burden of the Lord is awaiting you in Jerusalem.” The Lord once agian watered the seed of His word that He had put into my heart in Kansas City.

When that happened, although I had never been to Israel, I knew that I was supposed to go.  When I shared it with Connie, she was in total agreement. So in November of 2011 I flew to Israel.

Beloved, in sharing this, I hope you can see how that the Lord directs our steps even when we don’t have the full picture. Let that truth inspire your heart today—knowing that God is leading your steps, even when it doesn’t all make sense, and that He has an amazing plan for your life!

I recently shared with you what I experienced when I saw Jerusalem for the first time while standing on the Mount of Olives. I felt and said in my heart, “I am home!”  It was a moment that God burned into my DNA that I will never forget!

I stood transfixed as I thought about what God had done in that city.  It was there that God provided a ram as a substitute when Abraham offered up Isaac. And it was there that Jesus was offered up as our substitute that we might be set free from death as was Isaac! Jehovah Jireh—the Lord our Provider! From there, Jesus was raised from the dead as our hope of eternal life; and the fire of Heaven fell there forming and empowering the first Church!

As I was thinking on what the Lord had done there, the Holy Spirit spoke to me and said “yes, but I yet have much more to do in Jerusalem!” God was watering the seed in my heart!

On the final night that I was in Israel, I walked from my hotel in the new city of Jerusalem to the “Wailing Wall” in the old city of Jerusalem. I went there to place prayer requests in the wall that had been given to me from you, my church, and from others.

While I was there, I was thinking about what a good time it would be for the Lord to enlighten me on the word which He had given me back in the spring: “the burden of the Lord is awaiting you in Jerusalem.” But as usual, He didn’t take my advice! What’s that scripture again, “trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding?”

On the flight back home, which is about a 14 hour flight, about two hours our from JFK airport, I began to talk with the two ladies I was sitting between. The lady on my left, who was a Catholic, had her doctorate in education, and the lady on my right was a Jew from Jerusalem and was a Psychologist.

I’m going to make this brief. We became engaged in a very intense conversation about the geopolitical situation in the Middle East and about the importance of Jerusalem to both Israel and the Church. Neither of them agreed with my point of view! They simply didn’t get it! So after a couple of hours, the plane landed before somebody got hurt! Actually I complemented both ladies, wished them well, and thanked them for the lively debate!

It wasn’t until I was making my way through customs that the Lord spoke to me. He basically said, “Did you get it?” The burden of the Lord that is yours is to help remove the veil that is over Israel’s eyes as well as over the Church’s eyes. Neither Israel nor the Church can see the importance of Jerusalem! But they will.

Although I understood a little of what the Lord was saying to me then, I really didn’t know what He meant. Again, He was patiently watering the “seed,” the prophetic word He had planted in my heart in 2008.

By the grace of God, I do believe that I have a little more understanding today that I did then.

Church, Warrior Assembly of God and anyone else who can receive this word, you and I have been called to help remove the veil that is over the eyes of the church with regard to God’s heart and His plan for Jerusalem!

We do that through the proclamation of God’s Word and through continual prayer and intercession.

Just as Esther “came to the kingdom for such a time as this,”  so too have we been uniquely called and positioned in this prophetic season of time for this purpose!

Our text says, “I (Jehovah God) have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem…” I want you to really understand something very, very important here:

You are at Warrior Assembly of God (or you are reading this message)
because Jehovah God has called you!

Some of you may actually be wondering, “why am I at this church?” or “why am I reading these messages about Jerusalem, Israel?”

Let me answer that question for you: you are here or you are reading these messages because you are called by God for “such a time as this!”

Now you may be saying to yourself, “O yeah, well I didn’t sign up for this!”  Maybe not, but the God who knows you better than you know yourself obviously has a different plan!

“But pastor, I really don’t get all of this stuff about Israel and Jerusalem.”

I know, it may only be a “seed” right now, but God will be faithful to water that seed and it will continue to grow.

“Well, maybe I’m just not into what God is doing here.” Okay Jonah, then get yourself the first ship to Tarshish and head on out. But watch out for big storms and big fish!

Dear friend, if God has called you to be a “watchmen for Jerusalem,” the city that He loves and has big plans for, if you resist, then you will end up in a wrestling match with God that you cannot win! You will be in way over your head! Trust me, I speak from experience!

However, if He has not called you, then go, find your place and be blessed!

But be warned, God Almighty can be very convincing. And let me say this: what a high honor and blessing to be called by God to be a part of what He is doing in these unique and amazing days in which we are living!


Beloved, what a privilege to be called by the eternal God to be a watchmen for the City of the Great King—even the city of the Lord Jesus Himself!

Dear friends, we are not just a small church in a small town in rural Alabama. Rather, we have been chosen by Jehovah God to be “a voice of one crying in the wilderness, prepare the way of the Lord.”

Just as God chose the ordinary people of the Bible to accomplish His purposes in their generation, so too has He chosen ordinary people like you and me to fulfill His purposes in our generation.

Dear Warrior Assembly of God, and all of those who can hear His voice, this call of God has been years in the making. From the fire of intercession that God deposited in our DNA from Brownsville Florida to the prophetic mantle that he placed upon us from Toronto Canada, everything that the Holy Spirit has done over the years has been to bring us to this moment.

We have been uniquely prepared “for such a time as this.” So let us rise up and fully embrace this call of God upon us!

You don’t have to understand it all right now. All you need to do is just keep living and walking in faith. Keep doing what God has put in your hand to do: keep coming to Church, keep hearing the voice of the Lord, and keep praying.

And Beloved, this is not something that we are called to do in our own strength. This call and commission of God is by the power of the Holy Spirit!

All we have to do is hoist the sail  of faith and catch the wind of the Spirit! God’s plan and God’s purposes can only be accomplished by God’s power. And there is rest in that.

ALTAR

Today, let’s join all of those who walked in faith and fulfilled God’s purposes in their generation and so fulfill the purpose of God in OUR generation!

All that God needs from you and me is a simple yes. Will you say yes to God? Will you take your place on the wall and so be one of His watchmen for the city that He loves—for Jerusalem?

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What if the Church in the 1930’s had had the wisdom to earnestly and courageously pray that Adolf Hitler and Nazism be exposed and stopped?  World War II could have been prevented, and over fifty million lives could have been saved! Now here we are just a generation removed and a new Nazism is on the rampage. I am talking about radical Islam. And if the Church doesn’t have the wisdom to courageously and earnestly pray that it be exposed and stopped, then instead of thousands being killed it will be World War III and millions being killed! Therefore, I am asking you to have the courage and the passion to join me in prayer and ask God Almighty to intervene and do whatever it takes to stop this Satanic evil that is threatening our generation. If that means God using drastic means to open the eyes of president Obama, then so be it! And if he stubbornly refuses to see and act, then may the Lord remove him from power and raise up new leadership which will! To pray “whatever it takes means whatever it takes!”  If you are in agreement, then please like and share. Dear friends, we have reached critical mass, and time is of the essence. Through a simple act of obedience, we together can start an intercessory prayer chain that can shake the gates of heaven which in turn can and will shake the gates of hell!  Thank you!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

TEXT: Isaiah 62:1-5
SUBJECT: God’s Plan for Jerusalem, Part III
INTRODUCTION:

In this message, we will continue unfolding and unwrapping God’s plan for the literal, physical city of Jerusalem by listing nine things that are a part of that amazing plan as seen in verses 2-5 of our text.

As I have said previously, it will be as we receive God’s revelation about Jerusalem and understand His heart for this city that we will grow in our desire for her and in our understanding of how to pray for her according to His will.

Church, we are entering into the season on God’s prophetic calendar where the Holy Spirit is revealing the heart of Jesus—the Bridegroom King—to the Church—His Bride!

In the last days the heart of the Bride will become one with her Bridegroom-King. What is on the heart of Jesus will be on the heart of the true Church.

As He burns with passion for the city of Jerusalem because of His plan for her, so too will His Church burn for the city that is on His heart.

Let us today be thankful that the Holy Spirit is giving us a prophetic voice to help prepare the way of the Lord. And a big part of that preparation is to help remove the veil that is covering much of the Church’s eyes as to the Lord’s heart and plan for Jerusalem Israel.

Sadly, at this juncture, much of the Church doesn’t even give Jerusalem a second thought.  Most pastors never preach on it. And this is in spite of the fact that the battle for Jerusalem is constantly in the 24/7 news cycle. It is no accident that Israel is mentioned in the news 362 out of 365 days each year!

Be that as it may, by the grace of God we can yet be a voice ministering under the anointing of the Holy Spirit to help awaken the Church to the reality of Zechariah 8:2, where God said, “I am very zealous for Zion; I am burning with jealousy for her.”

May God open our eyes, and the eyes of the Church, to His heart and plan for Jerusalem.


1. First on the list from our text in God’s plan for Jerusalem is that “The nations will see your righteousness.” (V.2)

Since I preached on the “righteousness that will shine forth from Jerusalem like the dawn,” in last week’s message, I will only make a brief comment or two here.

First of all, the prophet said, “the nations will see your righteousness.” What the Lord is going to do in Jerusalem in the Millennial Kingdom of Jesus will not be done in secret or out of sight from the rest of the world.

God’s righteousness, that is the true standard of justice for all, will flow out of Jerusalem and will touch and transform the whole earth. And “This same Jesus”  of the New Testament, who now has a resurrected and glorified body, will extend His righteous rule to every person on the planet.

The scripture says that the nations, all 195+ of them,  will see (and be impacted) by His righteousness! It will be a glorious day for everyone who truly loves and desires God’s righteousness! Beloved, righteousness will flow from the city of Jerusalem.

2. Next on the list in God’s plan for Jerusalem is that all kings (rulers, presidents, prime ministers and all of those in authority) will see the glory of God.  

Under the leadership of Jesus from Jerusalem—along with His Church and saved Israel—there will be no lack of resources anywhere in the world. True prosperity will flow from Jerusalem to all the nations of the world.

The rulers of the nations will come to Jerusalem to encounter the Greater Solomon—the Lord Jesus Christ—to learn His ways and take them back to their countries.

As I said last week, there will be no need for any third world countries during the millennial reign of Jesus Christ.

But along with the glory of abundance will be the much greater glory of the presence of Jesus where people will come to the Holy Land and to Jerusalem just for that reason.  Just to be in the glorious presence of King Jesus will be life-changing!

3. Third on the list in God’s plan for Jerusalem is this: “You will be called by a new name which the Lord will bestow.”

Jerusalem’s history as a city of war and bloodshed because of the devils desire to possess it will no longer be remembered.

Because of how God is so abundantly blessing the world through His Son Jesus Christ, Jerusalem will have a new name.

The Hebrew word for “name” here is “shem.” It means “fame, glory and reputation.” God’s plan for Jerusalem is to give her a new name—a new reputation that will be glorious.

In the Millennial Kingdom of Jesus, Jerusalem will be a name and a city that the whole world will speak of with appreciation, honor and respect. I believe that there will be many number one hit songs about the city of Jerusalem and what it means to people world wide!

4. Fourth, “Jerusalem will be a crown of splendor in the Lord’s hand.”

The Hebrew word for “splendor” also means “beauty and honor.” It can refer to beautiful garments and jewels. In God’s plan, Jerusalem will be the most beautiful city that has ever been.

This beauty and splendor will not be because of its geographical features but because of Who is king there, even the Lord Jesus, and because of what is coming out of Jerusalem—the very beauty of God Himself!

Beloved, God is coming to Jerusalem! That is and has always been His plan. And when He does the entire world will be transformed by His divine beauty that is flowing out from there! This will be one thousand years of the earth experiencing the glory of the eternal God up close and personal.

5. Fifth, Jerusalem will be “a royal diadem in the hand of your God.”

A royal diadem was a head piece, usually a piece of cloth wrapped around the head like a turban, and in many cases studded with gems or precious jewels and worn by Monarchs.

Jerusalem will be ruled by the beautiful God-king, Christ Jesus. Think of a city ruled by the One Who is perfect in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22).

That is God’s plan for Jerusalem Israel—to be ruled by the perfect man! And in this way the whole planet will be impacted and blessed with His beauty!

6. Sixth on the list in God’s plan for the city of Jerusalem is that she will no longer be called deserted or its name desolate.

I will only say here that once Jerusalem has been transformed into the millennial capital of Jesus, all negativity of her past will be forgotten forever. And she will never be deserted or desolate again!

7. God’s future plan for Jerusalem is that she be called “Hephzibah.”

“Hephzibah” means “my delight is in her.” Because Jerusalem will be “God’s delight,” she will also be the delight of the world.

The literal city of Jerusalem will literally be a blessing to the whole world. Because the God-man King will be in Jerusalem, His presence and wisdom will be what delights the whole planet.

As it was in the New Testament when God in the flesh—even Jesus of Nazareth—fed the five thousand; healed the sick; raised the dead; calmed the storm and spoke words that have blessed people for over two thousand years, so will it be when He is ruling and reigning from Jerusalem in His resurrected and glorified body! The God-man will be living on the earth!

And the entire world will find their delight in Jesus Christ. There will never have been a time like it! Beloved it will truly be the day of days up to that point in God’s redemptive plan.

All the nations will come to Jerusalem to delight themselves in Jesus. What a day it will be when Jesus Christ has returned to planet earth—this time as Lord and King!

8. Along with Jerusalem being called Hephzibah, it will also be called Beulah.

“Beulah” means “to rule, to be a husband.” From Jerusalem Jesus Christ will be “husband” over the whole world. He will have authority over all nations.
All the rulers and all of the nations will submit to the righteous king who is ruling from the chosen city of Jerusalem.

Let me say it this way: King Jesus does have a strategy for dealing with ISIS and all other kinds of evil and unrighteousness. And He will do more than just talk!

As the old song says, “I’m kind of homesick for a city.” And that city is Beulah land—Jerusalem, Israel.

9. And number nine on the list in God’s plan for Jerusalem is found in verse 5, “As a young man marries a maiden, so will your sons marry you; as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride, so will God rejoice over you.”

Beloved, God passionately desires the city of Jerusalem.

And He desires her because from there he will fulfill His heart’s desire of forever dealing with sin and its effects on HIS CREATION.

He desires Jerusalem because from that city he will restore back to Himself all that was lost when man joined Satan’s rebellion and so caused the earth to be subjugated to bondage, corruption and decay.

He also desires Jerusalem because from Zion He will completely and totally liberate the earth and bring it into divine perfection.

And God Almighty desires the city of Jerusalem, Israel because it is the place where He will completely remove the veil that separates Him from His eternal desire to dwell completely and fully dwell with His eternal family on a perfect earth in a perfect universe.

CONCLUSION

Beloved, let it now be our increasing desire and prayer to grow in the revelation of knowing God’s heart and His plan for Jerusalem. This is our blessed hope in Christ Jesus the Lord.

Friday, February 20, 2015

ISIS (ISLAMIC STATE OF IRAQ AND SYRIA) OR ISIL (ISLAMIC STATE OF IRAQ AND THE LEVANT—THE HISTORICAL NAME FOR THE LAND ON THE EASTERN SHORES OF THE MEDITERRANEAN SEA—FROM EGYPT TO IRAN TO TURKEY.
ISIS or ISIL is not just a group of uneducated, unemployed, disenfranchised, and disadvantaged Muslim youths committing “acts of violent extremism” in the Middle East! Rather, they are a branch of radical Islam (Al Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, Boco Haram, and others) driven by the teachings of the Koran and the Hadith (the teachings, deeds and sayings of the Islamic prophet Muhammad). Their goal is threefold: 1. First depose of all “moderate” leaders in their region and replace them with those who will implement Sharia law. 2. Invade and destroy Israel and “liberate Jerusalem” from Jewish control. 3. From Jerusalem, launch the global jihad to force the whole world to accept Islam or die.
With that said, perhaps it will be a little easier to hear and believe the true Word of God and the only Holy scriptures. What is happening in the Middle East right now is really all about who will control Jerusalem (God or Satan). That is why God inspired the Hebrew prophets to tell us plainly that Jerusalem will be the focus of the whole world in the last days. Joel 3:14-16 “Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision. The sun and moon will be darkened, and the stars no longer shine. The Lord will roar from Zion and thunder from Jerusalem; the earth and the heavens will tremble. But the Lord will be a refuge for His people, a stronghold for the people of Israel.” Zechariah 12:1-3 “The Lord, who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and who forms the human spirit within  a person, declares, ‘I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when ALL nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for ALL nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves.’ ” I would also encourage you to read all of Zechariah 14.
Jesus was crucified, raised from the dead, and poured out the Holy Spirit, forming and empowering His Church, all in Jerusalem. This same Jesus will return to Jerusalem, kill the antichrist, save the remnant of Israel, and rule over all the earth for a thousand years! And then from Jerusalem, Father God will forever remove the veil between the natural and spiritual realms bringing together both heaven and earth under one Head—even the God-man, Christ Jesus!
Dear friend, the pages of prophecy are turning before our very eyes! These are dangerous days but also very exciting days in which to be living on the earth. I encourage you, if you have not done so, open your heart and receive God’s Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, as your Savior and Lord. And then join the growing number of the last days Church by praying that God would hasten the day when He will establish Jerusalem and make her the praise (or song) of all the earth (Isaiah 62:6-7). Shalom