Archive for the ‘Holy Spirit Power’ Category


Scarlet Cord Memorial of Rahab

The book of Joshua is a Mighty Book of Faith in God and His ability. An insignificant people face insurmountable obstacles and enemies and all they have is a willingness to believe and obey an unseen God! That is the very essence of faith, for faith is at its strongest when we are at our weakest. The Power of God is never wasted on trifling matters. He delights in answering the call of people facing impossible situations.

Joshua Sends Spies to JerichoIn Chapter 2 we find Joshua sending a couple of young men to spy out the city of Jericho. I ask, why, Joshua? Remember the last time spies were sent out? Didn’t God tell you to be Strong and of Good Courage, for you would overtake the land? This is the mystery of a life aligned with the Holy Spirit’s purpose. When you align yourself with the Holy Spirit, He will lead you do things which make no sense to a rational thinking man.

Surely you have made decisions that at the time seemed stupid or even irrational, yet God used that decision and the events that resulted to dramatically impact your life and the lives of those around you. I remember one particularly irrational decision I made:

After my brothers had voted me out of Tompkins Industries in 1988, I had gone to work for Kenneth R Johnson Co. It was a very difficult 2 years financially because I had taken a 40% cut in pay and with no savings tried to keep my wife and six children fed and clothed. In the meantime I built up the hydraulic adapter business for KR Johnson from $20,000 a year to over 1.5 million dollars a year in little over 18 months. The owner was an old oil man with a bank and real estate holdings. This was kind of a sideline for him. He offered to sell the company I had built up for him for no money down but with a note of $1,000,000. But there were a lot of strings attached. At first I was chomping at the bit because it would mean a lot of good things for my young family. I could realize the rewards of my labors. But it also meant that I would really be butting heads with my two brothers. It also meant that the family would not be restored. We were all set to close the next day and I just had a feeling like none I had ever had before. I can’t explain it, but it was very gut wrenching. I am one to honor my word, but I told Lydia that I just could not go through with it. So I called John and told him I was not going through with the purchase and was quitting my job.

Boy you should have heard the fur fly. I experienced more grief from that decision and added to the grief caused by my brothers I should have taken my life. Before I had a little debt and a little income. Now I had a lot of debt and no income.  Plus a teenage driver. God used that moving of His Spirit to affect my family’s inheritance. It worked to the saving of my family, because that combined with my grandmother’s death got my brothers back together. It brought my parents back into my children’s lives.

In God’s Inheritance that He wants us to claim, our FAMILY is always in view. So many families are falling apart because of putting fleshly pride and possessions ahead of the family. Yet God wants our families, all of them. I could have made the business work, but God would have brought leanness to my soul because my family would have been destroyed.

In sending the two spies to Jericho, God saved an entire family! Are you working to toward the salvation of your family? Have you let selfish ambition, pride, possessions get in the way of your love for your family, your concern for their souls, for God’s work in their life? You are losing your inheritance. Gaining inheritance will always involve faith to follow God’s leadership. He will never, never lead you to put money, possessions, reputation, fleshly rights before your parents, your siblings, your wife, your children, your extended family. God has the inheritance of a Godly heritage in view and claiming that inheritance will always involve death to self and following God by faith. Faith in Him doing the impossible.

We Now Meet A Young Woman Named Rahab.

Meet Rahab the ProstituteJoshua 2:1-7 (NKJV) Now Joshua the son of Nun sent out two men from Acacia Grove to spy secretly, saying, “Go, view the land, especially Jericho.” So they went, and came to the house of a harlot named Rahab, and lodged there. And it was told the king of Jericho, saying, “Behold, men have come here tonight from the children of Israel to search out the country.” So the king of Jericho sent to Rahab, saying, “Bring out the men who have come to you, who have entered your house, for they have come to search out all the country.” Then the woman took the two men and hid them. So she said, “Yes, the men came to me, but I did not know where they were from. And it happened as the gate was being shut, when it was dark, that the men went out. Where the men went I do not know; pursue them quickly, for you may overtake them.” (But she had brought them up to the roof and hidden them with the stalks of flax, which she had laid in order on the roof.) Then the men pursued them by the road to the Jordan, to the fords. And as soon as those who pursued them had gone out, they shut the gate.

Rahab is not your typical gal. She is a harlot, a prostitute. There is no disguising what Rahab did. Both the language here and in the New Testament indicates she was a whore. Now you can speculate why these young men went into her place, but I think the language and Rahab’s statements indicate it was the easiest place to hide without being too conspicuous. Obviously these men looked like out of towners to be so easily discovered. So they sought sleep in a place that normally would not look too suspicious. They were not there very long before the King’s soldiers came knocking, looking for them. Obviously their lives were in danger.

This Prostitute, Rahab, Lied.

Rahab LiedNow I’m not condoning lying. God says lying lips are an abomination to Him. In her defense, she knew not God’s Laws, and was merely doing what she thought was best to spare the lives of the two young men. Does God excuse small sin to prevent a greater sin? I don’t believe so, as sin is sin. But the greatest evil that God hates is when we go our own way. Rahab was not going her own way when she lied. Something was happening in her heart, and that led her to protect the lives of the two young God-Followers.

We See Two God Events Taking Place In Her Heart.

We hear a phrase quite often nowadays. It’s a God Thing. I just used a God Event. I could have said God Thing and you all probably would have said, sure I understand. A God thing-that’s when something happens that only God could have done or manipulated. Something happens in your life causing you to do this or take this job or etc and you look back and say “That was a God Thing”. I just want to offer you a caution. God is at work every day of our life. He doesn’t’ just do God Things now and then. In fact, He wants us to every day say, wow God, thanks, wow God, you are so awesome. The flat tire, the sunset, the storm, the person who smiled at us, the person who cut us off, all of it is a God Thing!

Paul prayed that we would know the Love of Jesus Christ that surpasses our knowledge, that we might be filled with the fullness of God! If you are filled with the fullness of God everything is a God Thing! This is what the Hebrews were bringing into Canaan. They were bringing the Fullness of God into a God Empty Land. And Whenever GOD EMPTY People Encounter GOD FILLED people, God wants to see happen what happened in the life of RAHAB.

1. Rahab FEARED the GOD of the Hebrews.

Rahab Feared God of the HebrewsJoshua 2:8-11 (NKJV) Now before they lay down, she came up to them on the roof, and said to the men: “I know that the Lord has given you the land, that the terror of you has fallen on us, and that all the inhabitants of the land are fainthearted because of you. For we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were on the other side of the Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom you utterly destroyed. And as soon as we heard these things, our hearts melted; neither did there remain any more courage in anyone because of you, for the Lord your God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath.

In an age before CNN, the news still traveled fairly quickly and accurately. The people of Jericho had heard about the Jewish Nation, how they had crossed the Red Sea on dry ground. They had heard about the destruction of Pharaoh’s Army. They had heard about the destruction of two mighty Kings, Sihon and Og. They heard how they had killed everyone, and left no survivors, not even children.

  • Deuteronomy 2:24-25 (NKJV) “‘Rise, take your journey, and cross over the River Arnon. Look, I have given into your hand Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and his land. Begin to possess it, and engage him in battle. This day I will begin to put the dread and fear of you upon the nations under the whole heaven, who shall hear the report of you, and shall tremble and be in anguish because of you.’
  • Deuteronomy 2:31-34 (NKJV) And the Lord said to me, ‘See, I have begun to give Sihon and his land over to you. Begin to possess it, that you may inherit his land.’ Then Sihon and all his people came out against us to fight at Jahaz. And the Lord our God delivered him over to us; so we defeated him, his sons, and all his people. We took all his cities at that time, and we utterly destroyed the men, women, and little ones of every city; we left none remaining.
  • Deuteronomy 11:25 (NKJV) No man shall be able to stand against you; the Lord your God will put the dread of you and the fear of you upon all the land where you tread, just as He has said to you.

Listen to her fears:

  • We are afraid because of you.
  • All the inhabitants are faint-hearted.
  • Our hearts melted;
  • Their courage vanished.

She concluded in her heart that the Lord God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath. To Rahab, He who is invisible suddenly became visible because of the presence of the Jews.

Fear Should Open Our Eyes to See God!

Fear Opens the Eyes to See GodMen do different things in response to fear. Some run away, some give up and commit suicide, some relish the fear and channel it into a fight. Rahab allowed the fear of her heart to open her eyes to see God! FEAR SHOULD OPEN OUR EYES TO SEE GOD! When Sennacherib threatened to invade Judah and King Hezekiah with his considerably larger army, Hezekiah allowed his fears to open his eyes to the power of God. Listen to his prayer in 2 Kings 19:14:

2 Kings 19:14-19 (NKJV) And Hezekiah received the letter from the hand of the messengers, and read it; and Hezekiah went up to the house of the Lord, and spread it before the Lord. Then Hezekiah prayed before the Lord, and said: “O Lord God of Israel, the One who dwells between the cherubim, You are God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth. Incline Your ear, O Lord, and hear; open Your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to reproach the living God. Truly, Lord, the kings of Assyria have laid waste the nations and their lands, and have cast their gods into the fire; for they were not gods, but the work of men’s hands–wood and stone. Therefore they destroyed them. Now therefore, O Lord our God, I pray, save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the Lord God, You alone.”

What fears do you face? What foes are at your doorstep? If you trust in Jesus as your Savior, allow them to open your eyes to almighty God. Allow your fears to drive you to trust in God and God alone. Perfect love casts out fear. Rahab is about to meet perfect love – the love represented by the scarlet cord.

2. Rahab’s FEAR led her to FAITH in the God of the Hebrews.

Joshua 2:12-21 (NKJV) [Now therefore, I beg you, swear to me by the Lord, since I have shown you kindness, that you also will show kindness to my father’s house, and give me a true token, and spare my father, my mother, my brothers, my sisters, and all that they have, and deliver our lives from death.” So the men answered her, “Our lives for yours, if none of you tell this business of ours. And it shall be, when the Lord has given us the land, that we will deal kindly and truly with you.”] Then she let them down by a rope through the window, for her house was on the city wall; she dwelt on the wall. And she said to them, “Get to the mountain, lest the pursuers meet you. Hide there three days, until the pursuers have returned. Afterward you may go your way.” So the men said to her: “We will be blameless of this oath of yours which you have made us swear, unless, when we come into the land, you bind this line of scarlet cord in the window through which you let us down, and unless you bring your father, your mother, your brothers, and all your father’s household to your own home. So it shall be that whoever goes outside the doors of your house into the street, his blood shall be on his own head, and we will be guiltless. And whoever is with you in the house, his blood shall be on our head if a hand is laid on him. And if you tell this business of ours, then we will be free from your oath which you made us swear.” Then she said, “According to your words, so be it.” And she sent them away, and they departed. And she bound the scarlet cord in the window.

Rahab had Faith in GodShe knew that God would cause the Hebrews to prevail against the mighty city Jericho. Her fear had led her to see the Invisible and she knew He would prevail. She boldly told the young men to promise to save her and her family. She had faith that they could save her family. She had faith that God was powerful enough to protect her! This coming from a prostitute, one whom the world rejected, used and abused, yet she believed there was a God who could love her and her family.

Rahab Fell into the Hebrews 11:6 Principal:

TO PLEASE GOD, WE MUST BELIEVE TWO THINGS: FIRST, THAT HE IS & SECOND, THAT HE IS A REWARDER OF THOSE WHO DILIGENTLY SEEK HIM!

Hebrews 11_6 Without FaithHere was a woman with a bad reputation, with no important status in the world, and all of a sudden the future of Israel is bound up in her faith. With God, there are no special privileges because of who you are, or what you do. We all stand before God with the common ground of faith. There is a little child over there with more faith in God than a wizened old preacher. There is a young teenager with more faith than a dying saint. God does not call good people to follow Him. God does not call perfect people to Him. He calls flawed people, but the one thing we must have to come to God is FAITH! This lowly prostitute became great in the eyes of God because of her faith in Him. That is why she is listed in Hebrews 11.

Hebrews 11:31 (NKJV) By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace.

Her fear of Almighty God and her faith in His power to save her led her to choose to protect these two young men rather than give them up to the authorities.

This is why Peter and John told the authorities in Jerusalem: Acts 4:19  But Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. Rahab chose to fear God rather than man, and so she protected the two Jewish men. Who do you fear? We have many, many fears in this world. Yet our fears should lead us to faith in the Power of God to KEEP us, and to Work His Perfect Will in our lives.

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18

Archeologists have discovered that Jericho at this time was probably at the peak of their prosperity and safety. The walls were the most fortified in Canaan. Water was plentiful from underground springs. Crops were abundant. There was no human way this city could fall and be destroyed. Yet this woman was afraid of the power of God, and that fear led her heart to choose to believe in God rather than the power of her civil government.  Who is your faith in? What is your faith in?

When Fear Produces Faith It Always Encounters the Grace of God

3. Rahab Found the Grace of God

Rahab Found Grace of GodJoshua 6:25 (NKJV) And Joshua spared Rahab the harlot, her father’s household, and all that she had. So she dwells in Israel to this day, because she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.

Fear of the Lord that leads to Faith in His Provision ALWAYS brings one into the Marvelous GRACE of God! Look at what the Grace of God brought into this prostitute’s life:

  • She Found Freedom
  • She Found A New Family (Joshua 6:25; Matt 1:5; Ruth 4:21)
    • She Went From Sinner to Saint
    • She Went From Being the Cursed Of God to Being a Child of God
    • She Went From The Dying In A War To Participating In A Wedding. (Revelation 19:7-9)
  • She Found A New Fame. (Matthew 1:5, Hebrews 11:31)
    • She Went From The House Of Shame To The Bible Hall Of Fame.
    • That Scarlet Cord was a Memorial for the Hebrews to See. To Save.
    • The Scarlet Memorial Begins at the Cross and Runs Past Present & Future

No one lies outside the possibilities of God’s grace!

scarlet cordWhy A Scarlet Cord? Was it something peculiar to her profession? It was obviously something she had on hand. It became the salvation of the two young men, and it became the salvation of Rahab and her entire family. The Scarlet Cord represented the sins of her former life. Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be white as wool. The Blood of Jesus cleanses the vilest sinner and makes them clean, set apart, and usable for Holy God’s purposes.

Look at What the Grace of God Accomplished

Rahab met a nice Jewish man named Salmon who loved her and accepted her completely, just the way God accepts and loves all those who come to Him through His Son. God blessed her with children. In fact, her oldest boy was Boaz, who gave such grace to Ruth. She was the Great grandmother of Jesse, the father of King David. The Grace of God in Rahab’s life extends to King David, all the way to the birth of Jesus Christ, and all the way to my New Birth! What a testimony of right response to fear!

Matthew 1:5-6 (NKJV) Salmon begot Boaz by Rahab, Boaz begot Obed by Ruth, Obed begot Jesse, and Jesse begot David the king. David the king begot Solomon by her who had been the wife of Uriah.

  • Hebrews 7:25 (NIV) Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.,

What a heritage because one woman chose to let her fear draw her into the matchless grace of God. That Wonderful grace found root in the heart of her son Boaz, who loved a young poor, widow woman who also feared God.

The Scarlet Memorial is a Memorial to God’s Grace

Scarlet Cord is a MemorialGod’s Holy Spirit was working in the people of Jericho. He was giving them an opportunity to turn to Him. Of the several thousand inhabitants, only one woman along with her family saw a ‘GOD THING’. She is the only one who opened her heart to seek after this Almighty God. The picture of God’s Grace is such that it is able to bring beauty into the ugliest life. Those lives that the world considers most decrepit, most destroyed, most likely to be cast aside are the lives that God can make most valuable, most beautiful. This is not to minimize sin. Yet when we learn of something someone once was, we recoil, we say no way, but there is no sin that the Grace of God cannot conquer. Where sin abounds, grace much more abounds. God was bringing His people into their inheritance, a place of rest. Too many Christians are running around all worried, frustrated, angry, upset, acting as if there is no Almighty God who is working in their lives. Rahab, a sinner in the world, found rest in God because she trusted in the Scarlet Cord.

You say you trust in the Scarlet Memorial of Jesus death on the cross, yet you run around as if there was no resurrection, there was no power of God to conquer sin and Satan and this world. Rahab could say I know this God. He is all Powerful. He will keep me safe. He will save me! No matter the quaking of the walls, no matter the screams of those around me, no matter the fainting hearts of mighty men, I will rest in the power of Jehovah God!

Do You Have a Scarlet Memorial in Your Life?

Do You Have Scarlet Cord MemorialThe Lord is after getting us inwardly resting in HIM. Unrest, anxiety, is ever the ground of defeat. Uncertainty about the Lord brings weakness and defeat; the Lord sets great value on BELIEVING GOD – faith in GOD. In the list of the heroes of faith in Heb. 11, the Holy Spirit records Rahab the harlot, and links her with Abraham in James; she believed God and leapt out of ungodliness into righteousness, because her fear led her to believe God and she put her faith into action. Rahab was the key to Jericho and Jericho is the key to the land. That is the kind of key He uses. He uses the Key of Restful Faith!

Let us Remember the Blood of JesusThe Scarlet Thread runs through the Bible. It is a Memorial to our Savior and His precious blood. How are you responding to the pressures of this life? Is there a Memorial in your life, a Scarlet Cord of the Saviors Blood?


clouds-over-american-economyDuring a recession, it seems there is a cloud that obscures the future, and that is the case in this recession. Gloom and Doom is the theme in the news each and every day. Everyone seems to have their own idea of what America should do. The problem with this particular recession is that it is so bad, so deep. Economists admit they don’t know what to do, because this particular type of recession has never happened before. Thankfully, we have new leadership. and our new leader has a vision which he believes is right for this particular time in America. Obama’s Vision: Only Government Can End Economic Woes. barrackobama_change_2Obama believes that only the U.S. Government can bring victory against the economic enemies that threaten America’s way of life. He is taking his vision into uncharted waters, and sink or swim, he will try to get passed the largest government economic stimulus package in history. I pray that it will succeed. But I think in the long run, it will result in further economic and political turmoil.

envision_logoI went to a workshop on the “Vision of a Leader” yesterday. It was very good, and centered upon Nehemiah and how he received his vision to rebuild the temple. One point of the session was that visions must be identifiable. You must be able to see the result, or else it is to vague and nebulous. In Nehemiah’s case, the vision was easy to see. Everyone gets excited about building things. New is was the rage in America. Entire cities of homes and shopping districts cropped up because people moved to a “new” area. At one time people were buying and selling homes like clothes. The days of “NEW” may have passed for a while. Recycle, reuse, economize, thrift, bargain, and value are the terms we now embrace in the “Deep Recession America”. They say car sales are down becasue people aren’t buying new. People are opting to keep their cars longer. Besides, the cars of today are built much better than they were. This represents a dramatic shift in the thinking of the American Consumer. “New” is out, “Value and Preservation” are in. Perhaps this will signal a change in American Moral Values. Perhaps people will return to the  Old Reliable Bible. Perhaps they will see the value of older churches, even the faith of their grand parents. Maybe we will learn that we don’t have to have “New” to be better.

At no other time in America has our leader’s vision been so important. The problem will be getting his vision through Congress. He says “no earmarks” but what will they say? The problem I see is that there are people in Congress that view their position as an entitlement. They see themselves as little ‘kings’ of their own domains. Will Obama have the tenacity to push his vision through their little ‘kingdoms’.

I have discovered that small (less than 150) churches DO NOT respond to “vision” style pastors. They are not leadership driven, in the sense of following a pastor. The reason is because the faithful people view the church as “their” church. They take ownership very personally. So a pastor may have a vision, but unless he can get his “key” people to believe it is THEIR vision, he will be frustrated in trying to accomplish it. This was really tough for me coming from the business world and owning businesses. I was use to getting my vision done. If anyone didn’t follow my vision, I fired them. I discovered that doesn’t work in churches. (No, I did not try to fire anyone!)

holy_spirit explosive blastI don’t think pastors that are filled with the Spirit and following closely after God lack for vision. What they do lack is how to get fleshly people with fleshly focus to see that God speaks to them and God expects them to follow Kingdom thinking and living too. Unfortunately there is no blast from the Holy Spirit that immediately ignites the minds of fleshly followers. A Pastor soon realizes that even his deacons and “entrenched” members sometimes follow a fleshly agenda. He will become frustrated unless he learns how to preach and teach to first of all restore to God His proper place in the church and in his people’s hearts. And then he must learn to build a consensus of vision with his “key” people. In a small church, the “key” people are those that secretly control what suceeds or fails.

Visions are great and are often the result of a special movement of God. But Pastors live in the hum drum reality of Christians who have not learned to walk in the Spirit.

mind of ChristObama may learn the hard way that Congress, even a Democratic one, will seek to control his vision. Small churches often do the same thing to Pastors. This is how America works, and someday Christ will have to rule with a rod of iron, because men’s hearts are sinful and wicked. A wise Pastor or leader must realize this when seeking to accomplish his “Vision”. Even Nehemiah had to think like a wily fox to get his people to follow his vision. Let’s pray that Congress and our churches “have a Mind to work”. With churches I pray they put on the mind of Christ. He had to lay aside all His ‘earmarks’ in order to accomplish God’s Vision. May His mind be the mind of America.


Stiff NeckI am discovering that people living in a rural area usually chose to do so because they are a bit independent. The older ones are especially that way. They don’t like change, they don’t really like to be told what to do. Ones who have been faithfully attending a traditional rural church are used to hearing traditional-style sermons (3 points and a teary story). They don’t mind their hearts being tugged, but they don’t like to think too hard. They prefer a simple moral life. A ‘good’ religion with a few simple rules suits them fine. They can relate to “Thou Shalt Not’s”, because they are easy to understand. Don’t lie, steal, commit adultery is easy for them to do.

I’m not that kind of preacher.

I like the “Thou Shalt” kind of religion. I like it when Paul writes about ‘liberty’ and ‘walking in the Spirit’. I preach the “Gospel of the Kingdom” – the Gospel that produces change in earthly lives and enables us to live according to Christ’s Kingdom Commands. His Kingdom Commands are more “Thou Shalt DO” than thou shalt not (see Matt 5-7). The Pharisees burdened the Jews with so many DON’TS that the Joy of worship was gone. Jesus was all about JOY. He wanted His disciples to wait until the Holy Spirit was available to fill them. The Holy Spirit is the Key to Joy in this Christian Life. The Holy Spirit is the Key to DOING this Christian Life.

Not Traditional Southern Baptist Preaching

StephenI am discovering that this is not “traditional” Southern Baptist teaching. Some are enthusiastically accepting a life of Faith. Alas, some are what I believe God calls “stiff-necked”. Stephen got stoned because he called the Jews “You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. As your fathers did, so do you! (Acts 7:51).

God said something interesting when he was disgusted with the Jews He had rescued from the slavery of Pharaoh. In Exodus 33:5 God says: For the Lord had said to Moses, “Say to the people of Israel, Stiffnecked people‘You are a stiff-necked people; if for a single moment I should go up among you, I would consume you. So now take off your ornaments, that I may know what to do with you.’ ”

Take Off Your Ornaments

These ornaments were the ones lavished upon them by the Egyptians as they were leaving. These were the same golden ornaments which were melted to cast the Golden Calf just days before. Their actions had prompted God to exclaim: Golden OrnamentsAnd the Lord said to Moses, “Go down, for your people, whom you brought up out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves. They have turned aside quickly out of the way that I commanded them. They have made for themselves a golden calf and have worshiped it and sacrificed to it and said, ‘These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!’ ” And the Lord said to Moses, “I have seen this people, and behold, it is a stiff-necked people. Now therefore let me alone, that my wrath may burn hot against them and I may consume them, in order that I may make a great nation of you.” (Exodus 32:7-10). God wanted to kill them all, and start over. Now, due to Moses Intervention, He was allowing the people to continue toward the Promised Land, but He did not want to go with them.

God did make one thing very clear however. If they were to go on, they must set those ornaments aside. They must leave them there in the desert.

These ornaments represented their fleshly desires, their fleshly ways. They represented a walk of sight, not a walk of sightless faith. Even though they were slaves in Egypt, they were familiar with all the luxuries the Egyptians possessed. They desired to go back, to go their own way, to go after those things of the flesh. God said NO! If you are to go to the Promised Land, the Land of My Blessing and Victory, you must go according to My leadership and My commands. You cannot bring anything of the flesh or the world with you. Isn’t that what the writer of Hebrews was telling those Jewish Christians thinking of turning back to the world, turning away from God? In Hebrews 12: 1 they are told to “drop the weights and the sins that weigh you down”. These things were keeping them from running the race, from achieving God’s goals. They were told to “Look to Jesus!”

Many Christians are “Stiff-Necked”

The sad truth of many ‘Christians’ is that they are stiff-necked, clinging to a god or a religion that is far from the Life of Liberty in the Spirit of Christ. They are good and moral, but they fear the Walk of Faith. They would rather have their rules and pride in their goodness. They can only see Jesus if He is smack dab in front of them. They cannot turn their neck to follow after Him. But our God is seeking those who will worship in spirit and in truth. God is seeking those who follow after the Holy Spirit, and desire His fullness and His joy. The Christian walk is a walk of Joy because we are doing, we are following Christ, no matter where He leads.

If we do something today because we did it yesterday, that is law. But if we do something to day because the Holy Spirit is leading us, that is grace.

Another thing about stiff-necked Christians-they usually are a pain in the neck. No wonder God wanted to get rid of them. As Moses implored: “Do not be stiff-necked, as your fathers were, but yield yourselves to the Lord and enter His sanctuary, which He has sanctified forever.”


FOAB On September 11, 2007 Russia successfully exploded what it claims is the largest Thermobaric Bomb ever made, leveling a multi-story block of apartment buildings with a power greater than that of the smallest diallable-yield nuclear weapons at their lowest yield settings. Russia named this particular ordnance the “Father of All Bombs” in response to the United States developed “Massive Ordnance Air Blast” (MOAB) bomb whose backronym is known as the “Mother of All Bombs” and previously enjoyed the accolade of the most powerful non-nuclear weapon in history. Thermobaric: Sometimes called fuel-air explosives, the name comes from Greek and literally means “heat” and “pressure.”
Thermobarics first disperse a flammable mist of underoxidised fuel which ignites to create a gigantic explosion of immense destructiveness. The explosion of the SMAW-NE is effective in three main ways. Firstly, it is accompanied by a massive fireball which incinerates all in its path. Secondly, it creates a massive pressure wave capable of rupturing the internal organs of all those nearby and so powerful that it can reduce load-bearing walls to rubble and bring down buildings. Finally, the explosion also sucks all the
oxygen out of the air, asphyxiating anyone in the immediate vicinity. Basically, if you’re in the building when it hits, it’ll kill you. As a result, a fuel-air explosive can have the effect of a tactical nuclear weaponBomb Detonates without residual radiation.

Bombs for dummies

In Acts 2 God drops the True Father of All Bombs. An explosion so powerful it shook the four corners of the globe. People from around the world were gathered. They all heard the explosion.

BOMBS FOR DUMMIES

Now, as we already learned, with thermobaric bombs, there is an explosion that releases a powerful liquid or powder that is highly explosive. Then another explosion sets off this powder or liquid. The resulting blast creates a vacuum by literally sucking all the oxygen out of the area. There is Heat from the blast and there is Pressure that will kill.

Here at Pentecost we have a very similar situation. A Bomb is detonated in stages. There is both Heat and Pressure. Only the damage that results is the slaying of Satan and Man’s idea of religion.

Now what Detonated this Bomb?

Prayer UnitesActs 2:1 When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
Acts 1:14 says that they were in one accord in prayer and supplication.

Jesus said “I want you to wait and when the Holy Spirit comes, you will receive Power!” So while they waited, they prayed! What did they pray? I think I know.

The disciples had asked Jesus: Teach us to pray. Not Teach us how to pray, but teach us to pray. So I know how they were praying in the upper room. They were praying the following:

6:9 In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. 10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, As we forgive our debtors. 13 And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen. Matthew 6:9-13 (NKJV)

The disciples were gathered together before the throne of almighty God. They were Honoring His Name!

hallowed

Holy is your name.

Elohim – All Powerful Creator

El elyon – God Most High

El Shaddai – God Almighty

Jehovah –The Lord our Covenant Keeper

El Olam– Everlasting God

Jehovah Roi – the Lord our Shepherd

Jehovah-Jireh – the Lord our Provision,

Jehovah Shalom – the LORD our Peace

Jehovah Rophe – the LORD our Healer

Jehovah Tsidkenu -the LORD our Righteousness

Jehovah Nissi – the LORD our Banner

Jehovah Shammah – the LORD is there

Jehovah Mekaddishkhem – the LORD that sanctifies

Then, they were praying:

YOUR KINGDOM COME, YOUR WILL BE DONE:kingdomcome

They were earnestly desiring God’s Kingdom. God’s Will. Before they were quarreling over who would sit at the right hand, who would have this power or that. But not now. Now it was all about God’s Kingdom and God’s Power!

When you are kneeling before the throne, when your heart is focused on how awesome and how mighty He is, You sense how tiny and worthless you are. When all your being is desiring His Will in your life, It’s hard to be mad at Sister Susie who made that snide comment. Its hard to hold something against brother Peter because he forgot your birthday. When your heart is focused on God and what He wants to do in and with your life, those things that use to irritate and get you upset will just roll off your back. When God Ignites us with His Love, it burns away the flesh with all of it’s hurts and resentments and jealousies.prayerignites

  • God used Prayer to Unite these believers.
  • God used Prayer to Ignite these believers.

There have been times in my life when I was discouraged, thinking I was washed up, or unfit for use. I have had a friend since Bible College, that has always been a source of prayer encouragement for me. Our friendship was cemented as we spent hours in prayer-as we preached revivals together, as we held prayer meetings in the dorm. God has enabled me to help him, but I believe he has helped me more. Prayer with Don has more than once ignited me to keep on serving the Lord. Who do you pray with when you are down? Who do you have encouraging you in this Christian walk?

detonator

PRAYER was the DETONATOR

Suddenly there came a Sound from Heaven of a mighty rushing wind.

Normal sound is 70 decibels. Whisper is 40 decibels.

Crank up your stereo at home 117-123 db

128 db the loudest scream measured at 8’

128 db human head hair starts to crawl

133 db average gunshot. 44 mag can be 160

140 is Blast of Wind

143 db Feels like someone just tackled your chest.

145 db human vision begins to vibrate

154 Toy Balloon pops

163 NHRA Dragster 5000 to 7000 horsepower, liquid nitroglycerin fuel

164 Internal Sound level of Jet Turbine motor

174 db Air begins to Heat up due to compression

180 db 1 pound of TNT at 15’

195 db Human eardrums rupture 50% of time

212 db Average Sonic Boom

240 db F5 Tornado with winds of 300mph

310 db Krakatoa Volcano Eruption (cracked 12” concrete 300 miles away)

(Ultimate Sound Pressure Level Decibel Table, William Hamby 2004)

Now there is no scientific proof, but this sound that was heard had to be somewhere between 240 decibels and 174 decibels. I would place it at just under 190 decibels. The sound of a small explosion.! It could have been louder, but I think God wanted to preserve their eardrums.

If Prayer was the Detonator, what provided the EXPLOSION?

Holy Spirit PowerThe Holy Spirit Provided the Explosive Power

Jesus had told them earlier in Acts 1:5 “you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

I can think of no more explosive force on earth or in heaven than the Holy Spirit of God!

When Their Prayer ignited the explosive Holy Spirit, it made a sound so loud that it sounded like a bomb had gone off. The change in pressure filled the entire room. The increased pressure created heat, and we see tongues of fire on each of the disciples. Not on just a few, but on everyone.

2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Now I don’t mean to imply that what happened on Pentecost was an explosion of some sort. I only want you to see how what happened compares to an explosion. What happened that day was actually mightier than any explosion in history.

Even mightier than the Eruption of Mt Krakatoa. With that eruption rock were thrown to a height of 34 miles, dust and debris fell continuously for 10 days. Shock waves “echoed” around the earth 36 times and lasted for about a month!

What happened on the Day of Pentecost was much greater. Praise God!