Beloved Part 8: In Bed Or In Red – Ps John Bendixen (WTB)
Scripture Reference: Deuteronomy 30:19-20 (NKJV); 2 Peter 1:1-4 (NKJV); 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NKJV); Acts 20:17-38 (NKJV); Galatians 4:6-9 (AMPC)
So, I have a modification to make in terms of the weekend of August, our prayer and fasting weekend. We were going to receive Dr. Gerrie Lindeque, who was going to come and minister to us on the power of what you eat or what you don’t eat, and just good health all the way around. But he’s unable to make that weekend for various reasons. So, I am moving the schedule ahead for what the Lord wants us to be speaking about, and I’m going to be speaking about relationships because the Lord has been dealing with me that this year He’s going to restore relationships. Glory to God.
And then I have good news for you that we are just by a few days, this side of that, Brother Jerry is going to be coming here in January of next year. Towards the end of January, they let me know this week. So, praise the Lord. You know, it’s just something that I had asked the Lord, if we as a church could be the first ministry internationally to receive Brother Jerry. And we will be the very first church that he will come and minister to with his private, with his own jet outside of the Americas. So praise the Lord. Hallelujah. Yeah, not even Canada. He’s been across America and the states that belong to America. But we are the first country outside of the Americas that he will come with his jets to come and minister to us. Hallelujah. So in weeks to come, we will be sharing just some things with you that we would like to have prepared, to make ourselves ready to receive, because he’s coming for quite a few days. So praise the Lord for that. Hallelujah. Amen. Glory to God.
I’m looking forward to September, to our weekend in September also, on faith, finance, and fasting because I believe that God is wanting to reveal things to us and bring wholeness to us when it comes to finances, and our faith. Hallelujah. Glory to God.
So the title of my message today is beloved. I want to make sure that I just get this right Beloved, in bed or in red. Hallelujah. I want to read to you out of the book of, this is not in my notes, but I want to read to you from Deuteronomy chapter 30 verse 19, and it reads like this, the New King James Version. 19 I call heaven, and if I could use because He uses it as a single sentence, I call heaven and I call earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live; 20 that you may love the Lord your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days; and that you may dwell in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them.” (Deuteronomy 30:19-20 NKJV) Well, in our modern-day version, it could be to live in the kingdom that Jesus paid the price for. So this is very interesting based on all the previous messages that I’ve ministered, and Pastor Sharon’s teaching on redemption and repentance. Wasn’t that just amazing and everything else that the Lord brought through her? And I’m going to be talking, just using her ministry as a springboard in some of my messages, particularly when it comes to redemption and repentance. I’m even going to address some of that today, but I won’t use that a lot today.
But this passage of scripture says that He has clearly given Himself to us and that He’s given us life and death. And it’s a choice. It’s not an emotion. It’s not a habit that you have to undo to become something. It’s a choice. A habit is just something you’re unwilling to give up because it’s a habit. A habit is just something you’re unwilling to give up because you like what you do, you do what you do, because you like what you do. And so because you like what you do, you’re unwilling to give it up for something else. That means if you have a habit in your life, that means that habit is much more important to you than the life that God offers. So it’s not about whether you are overcome with a habit that you can’t get rid of, or you can’t change your ways because you’ve been in your ways for so long that it’s going to take you that long to get out of your ways. Repentance is an instant choice. A life in God, choosing life is an instant, daily instant choice. It always happens in the moment. A choice never happens after the moment is gone. Because if you choose after the moment is gone, then it’s remorse or repentance. Either way if the moment is gone, if you repent, then you won’t have that moment again because the next time you make a choice, then it will be the right choice. So always, you have to choose life in the moment. Every moment, whenever there is a pressure on your mind, a pressure on your soul, a pressure on the life that you live, you have to choose life. If you don’t choose life then curses become part of your life. So you might say, “Well, Pastor John, I don’t really want to hear too much about curses.” Well, curses are just the opposite of blessing. Where things will go good for you, things will not go so good for you. It’s going to be something that happens to you that prevents you from walking in the blessing and the abundance and the very essence of the life of God. Amen.
And so, it’s interesting that of all the messages I’ve been sharing with you about Beloved, I’ve talked about how beloved is a favourite status. It’s a status of someone that’s redeemed, it says a status of someone that is highly sought after, is valued, is respected, and desired to have around you. So if you’re beloved, it means you’ve done something that is lovable. Right? And so, I clearly talked about the fact that as believers, every day, we live in a spiritual climate. There is no such thing, if you are a born again Christian, there is no such thing as living in a world of your natural human comfort – that what you’re doing has no impact on the spirit realm. If you’re a born again believer everything you do has an impact on the spirit realm. The fact that if you say, “I don’t want to follow the ways of God,” that has an impact on the spirit realm. Because the gift that God has called you to be, you are not. The ways that God has called you to walk, you do not. And so, the very fact that you do, you bring upon yourself, the curses that are in the world, you participate in their cursed life. Whereas if you choose God and you choose His ways, you participate in the blessed life – that’s what the Scripture says. Amen.
Now, let’s take Godfrey as an example and what a wonderful moment this was this morning. Now Godfrey has either come back to recommit his life to the Lord, or he has made a first time decision to receive Jesus in his heart. Either way, because of what’s happened in his spirit, it’s likely that Godfrey is going to start coming to church. So what happens if Godfrey doesn’t come to church anymore? Well, it might be circumstantial, in which case we must help him get to church. But if he doesn’t want to come to church, then I have to question what happened here today because if you’ve got a born again believer, if you’re a born again spirit, you want to be where the Spirit of God is. And so the Spirit of God is where the coming together of the saints is, that’s where the Spirit of God is. Now assume Godfrey comes to church on a regular basis, and he starts to hear information, he starts to get knowledge of what is going on here, he starts to get knowledge of his salvation. He starts to get knowledge about Jesus and about God the Father, and he starts to get knowledge. But let’s just assume for a minute that Godfrey gets the knowledge but he makes no choice to change. What will happen to Godfrey’s life? His life will not change for the better, his life will more than likely get worse. Why? Why would it get worse? Well, because God has given him the opportunity to receive power to live a good life, to live a knowing life and abiding life in Him. So if he does not live the abiding life, the things that are around him in his circumstances, and everything that’s happened are all going to be… What’s going to start happening is the Holy Spirit is going to start orchestrating circumstances to bring him to the good life. Whatever happens, his life can’t stay the same because he’s made a choice. So if he keeps making a choice to receive knowledge and that knowledge becomes revelation, then he receives power to live in the new life. His choice has got to keep making choices. The more choices he makes, the more new life he walks in – if he responds to the knowledge, and he allows revelation to be his portion.
So what’s happening to him? Remember, I said this to you, think like this; don’t put your body first. Don’t put your mind first. Put your spirit first. Because what you focus on is what’s going to develop. So if you focus on your mind, and you focus on your body, you’re going to develop in that. If you don’t focus on what’s happening in your spirit, you’re choosing to give other parts of you dominance in your life; your mind and your body. And so your spirit man has no growth. So if I use Godfrey as an example; today he became a juvenile. He became a little son. He’s a son. He’s a son of God. But he became a little son. So if he makes no choices to change – and if I may use the analogy of a little son – if he doesn’t start to crawl and start to walk and start to do things in terms of keep pressing into God with choices, then he’s going to just become a weak, feeble son that can easily be controlled. So I ask you; do you easily want to be controlled or do you want to be the one who understands as I grow in revelation, I have authority over my mind and over my body, so that my spirit, that’s the real me, can take me where I need to go?
So you remember I said the real you is the spirit you and you contact God with that you. Even though we raise our hands to worship God, you worship Him in spirit and in truth. Your body follows the spirit and truth that is in you. So you notice that as a church, we do not have a whole lot of people waving flags, and dancing around the church, and all that kind of stuff. I’m not criticising churches that have that. I have a revelation, Pastor Sharon and I have a revelation that when your spirit is alive to God, you don’t need to dance as a rehearsed dance routine and wave flags to show God that you worship Him. Because you’re not worshipping Him with the expression of your body, you’re worshipping Him from your spirit with truth. Now if the Spirit is so strong upon you, and in you that you dance, that’s dancing by the Spirit. If you laugh, it’s laughing by the Spirit because the Spirit in you is causing that to happen. Amen. Hallelujah.
Our focus is on building the spirit life you, so that if you want to dance around your house, and you want to praise and shout and scream, you do it from the spirit you, not because you’re just having an emotion. And if you remember I said, repeat after me; the real me is the spirit me. Say it with me again; the real me is the spirit me. And so the series that the Lord has given me to minister on is about the real you, the spirit you. If you continue to make choices that satisfy every desire of your body, every desire of your soul, and you develop your intellectual capacity to be the thing that runs your life, and you don’t feed your spirit man, there is no question about it that your life cannot be blessed by God. Unless there is someone in your life that is interceding for you, and protecting the curse that can come upon you – protecting that from coming to you. But that can only last so long because an intercessor will then by default create an environment where God must respond to the prayers and the standing in between. God must act on that because of the sacrifice of the in between person. Which is why judgement will come on the earth and everything that is in the earth because Jesus stands between God and sin. And so, because He is the Intercessor between God and man and all of creation, because He is that; eventually God must bring justice. And all who do not accept Jesus must be judged for that. The time will come that the end of all things must come to an end and all creatures and creation will be judged based on what they did with Jesus. Because if you have an intercessor that is standing in the gap for you, the very act of that intercession is a justice before God; brings that and demands justice from God to the circumstance or the situation or the person or the peoples. Glory to God.
I thank God that we have an Intercessor. His name is Jesus. He sits at the right hand of the Father forever, making intercession on our behalf. I thank God that we have a Helper with the Intercessor. He’s the Holy Spirit who gives you power to overcome habits. He gives you power to overcome wrong choices you’ve made in the past. He gives you the power to do things that bring you into a new order of God in your life. That power is available to you right now. Right now. When you walk out of this door, if you just say, “I’m making different choices, choices, choices, choices. Every time I choose, I’m going to speak; I make a life choice. I make a God choice. I’m making a choice by the real spirit me; the spirit that has the power over my choice.” Amen.
Previously, I read this to you. I’m going to be talking about relationships. Some of you might not have heard this because we have quite a lot of new people in the church. But if you have heard it, it’s always worthwhile being reminded of it. I actually can’t teach on relationships and I can’t get to the weekend of relationship teaching, unless I have this framework. It is what God showed me. It is what I live my life by.
I’m going to read to you from second Peter chapter one, verses one to four. 1 Simon Peter, a bondservant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have obtained like precious faith with us by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ: 2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. How do you get grace and peace that’s multiplied? Through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. That’s how you get grace and peace. 3 As His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness. That means we have all things that we need in our life, we have everything we need in our life, by Him, by the knowledge of Him, by the grace and the peace that He gives to us. … through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, 4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (2 Peter 1:1-4 NKJV).
At its very simplest form, if you want to stay away from corruption, you have to control and dominate lust. What is lust? Anything that is stimulated by your senses that demands a reaction that you respond to by your senses. When you take your senses and you control your senses by the Word of God, so that your senses do not tell you what to do, but your spirit man tells your senses what to do; you escape corruption. If you just live by your senses, then you are submitting to corruption, you are corrupted. Hallelujah.
But this same book of Peter talks in a different place, he talks about that we have an incorruptible seed that is inside of us. It’s the Word of God. That’s incorruptible. Okay, so if you know this by now, I’m going to use this passage of Peter because every revelation God gives me, every framework that God gives me, it should stand the test of all Scripture. If it doesn’t stand the test of all Scripture then it’s not a revelation that God gave you, then it might be just my own ideas of thoughts that might make information or knowledge useful to you. If God gives me a revelation, I always test it by the Word. If you read any scripture, and it can stand the test of it, then you know God has given it to you. Amen.
If I talk about relationships, I have to talk to you about relationships, on the five steps of relationships that God gave me. Which has touch, integration of ways, strategic intentions, divine productivity and covenant. These are the steps that God gave me to show me how I need to walk with God and how I can determine my decision making. It’s also something that God showed me how my marriage with Pastor Sharon works, how my relationships with the body of Christ works. If I use Godfrey as an example today, then Godfrey was touched today. He was touched by God. He was touched to come and stand here and pray and dedicate his life to God. He was touched. What does he have to do next? He’s got to integrate his ways to the knowledge of God. After you integrate ways, you move to the next level of relationship, which is strategic intentions.
Most Christians don’t want to know about integration of ways, they just want to go from touch to strategic intentions and or divine productivity; which is the fourth stage or the fourth level. How do I know this? Because what happens is that people go to churches where there’s a prophetic gift operating and they want to keep going to churches where there’s the gift of prophecy, or the gifts of the Holy Spirit operating because they want to hear the will of God, and they want to hear the strategic intentions of what God has for the lives. But they are not willing to integrate their ways. Hallelujah.
People want the covenant promises of God. They really do. They want the covenant promises of God. But they haven’t integrated their ways; so they live confused lives because they don’t integrate ways with God. I’m going to use this passage of Scripture that I’ve just read to you as a framework. You can test this with any scripture. You can test this with any scripture. If I say to you, and as the Apostle Peter wrote, and he said, 2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you. Isn’t that touch?
You’re touched by grace and peace. You’re touched. What about integration of ways? 3 … as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness. He has given us the power to integrate ways; His divine power. What about strategic intentions? Well, actually, on reading this scripture and preparing for this Sunday, even though I’ve used this scripture in previous weeks, I hadn’t thought I would be ministering on it this early. Strategic intentions are life and godliness. Yes? Because if you’re living with God’s life and godliness, you’re living with the strategic intentions of God. Because your godliness and your life of godliness, God will reveal to you what His intentions are. Because you’ve already integrated your ways, you can live with the strategic intentions of God. He will show you things that godliness brings because you have integration of ways He will give you things that life and godliness brings because He can trust you with it. Amen.
I mean, this is a very simple thing; if I keep giving you R1000 a month to save and in three months time I ask you, “How much money have you saved?” And if you haven’t saved any, then I can’t trust you to save the money. What I have to do is to stop giving you money because I can’t trust you because you’re spending it on your lust, yourself – which means you’ve not integrated your ways so I can’t trust you with a strategic intention. Divine productivity is the exceeding great and precious promises. When you are operating in greater, exceedingly great and precious promises, you are living in divine productivity. That means you have the promise, you receive the promise, you’re revealing the promise. And you don’t have to do anything to get it. God is making this power happen for you. It’s His promises He gave and it’s His promises that He makes come to pass. And then covenant which is according to this scripture, 4 … partakers of the divine nature (2 Peter 1:2-4). So we are partakers of the divine nature because of covenant. Hallelujah.
So you can take this framework and you can apply it to anything and I have done this. I’ve applied it to any scriptures and anything that the Holy Spirit is showing you and you can say, “What part am I in here? What scripture is this? Is this touching me? Is this an integration scripture? Is this a divine intention scripture? I mean a strategic intention scripture? Is this a divine productivity scripture? Is this a covenant scripture?” Amen. And if I use this framework in my life and I have a relationship with Pastor Sharon, then I say; there are moments when I have to touch her. There are moments when we are integrating our ways and this is a lifelong thing that you do. This is why Pastor Sharon and I are pressing for greater, more joy and more of God in our marriage because the more we integrate our ways with Him, those ways change us. And as you integrate with Him and those ways change you, your partner has to be changing. So I’ve got to keep dealing with the new person and she’s got to keep dealing with the new person. So if we don’t recognise the newness that is happening in the person then I can’t integrate ways with the new person because there are some things that I did before that she no longer sees in my life. So I did those things before, now I’m not doing those things before. So what am I doing with what I’ve done? Well, I’m doing more of what God is doing. So the way that she saw me behave before, I’m now different. So, she’s got to integrate with the different me and me with her.
If I can’t integrate with God, then I can’t integrate with her. It’s not possible. You will be self-centred in the way you live in your relationship because if you can’t integrate with God, everything you do is self-centred. I mean, this is the essence of what Jesus died for so that we have the power to integrate our ways with Him and live in His ways and enjoy His ways. If I’m not integrating with God, then I can’t integrate with Pastor Sharon, Sharon, my wife. There are some times where Sharon is operating in her gifting and when her gifting is operating, I receive from her gifting and so I integrate ways from the revelation knowledge that comes from her gifting. So then I don’t see her as my wife, I see her as Pastor Sharon and the gift that God has given her. But I can’t receive that from her if I don’t integrate my ways with God. That’s why in any given situation, you can hear the sound, you can hear the sound of someone who’s integrated their ways and someone who hasn’t. They have a sound – people that don’t integrate their ways, their sound is justification. “I’m always right, I’m never wrong.” Must be, must be. You can’t be wrong because if you’re wrong in your own eyes, then why keep doing what you’re doing. So in your eyes you’ve got to be right all the time.
A self-centred person has the sound of justification. A self-centred person has the sound of manipulation. A person who hasn’t integrated their ways has the sound of control, has the sound of, “It must be my way or no way.” And if they choose to, happen to compromise in their ways somewhat, it’s because it advantages them and benefits them, not because they want to, it’s because they’re forced to. We haven’t even got to the relationship weekend yet. Well, that’s because I’m doing the foundation work now so when we get there, we can talk about a lot of other good things. Amen.
So, touch is to affect emotionally, be relevant to your focus on and be in direct physical contact with or have an effect upon. So touch, most of the time people want to live their lives in the realm of touch because it’s all about the senses. You can touch people with your intellect and arguments. And so you want to live in the realm of touch all the time because it’s all relevant to me. It’s all real to me. It’s the only reason, relevance and reality I know, is in the realm of touch. That’s juvenile. That’s baby stuff. Why? Because a baby can’t think about even integrating ways. A baby has to be taught through discipline and correction to integrate ways. Daddy said, “No,” or Daddy says, “Yes.” And then, “Yes, but only so far.” Why? Because they are not capable yet of seeing the consequence.
I’ll tell you what; the whole world spends their whole life diminishing consequence. So that they can live always for themself-centred selves. So the whole world spends their time just diminishing consequence. It’s impossible to not have consequences. God said it. Because God said, “As long as there’s light and dark, night and day, summer and winter, there will be seedtime and harvest. And whatever you sow into your self-centred self, for yourself, by yourself, with yourself, you will reap from that. Somewhere along the line devastation and destruction is going to happen. You may be able to push it back, push it back, push it back, and you say, “I’ll deal with the consequences. I’ll do this, I’ll do this, I’ll repent later, I’ll deal with the consequences.” You might not be able to because the consequence that comes is so big, it crushes you. Because the devil’s got no mercy when it comes to consequence and that’s why the divorce rate in the world, generally speaking, is almost two thirds of people that are getting married are getting divorced. So people are saying, well, why get married now? And so they don’t get married anymore, they just live together. And then the consequence of that is that most of the time, they end up splitting at some point in time in their lives, which is another form of divorce. In fact, Australia has a law about that. They say if you’ve been a partner and you’ve accumulated assets together as a partner, where you’re not married, you still have a civil law contract as a partner where your assets that you’ve accumulated together have to be split, whether you’re married or not. They consider a partner that you live with, as a partner for life after a certain period of time. They have institutionalised and legalised non-marriage because people that are not prepared to integrate their ways with God, they are self-centred, they only live for themselves.
So if you want meaningful relationships, you have to be in a place where you get to a point where you say, “What can I do to serve you? What can I do to make your life better? What can I do that can meaningfully make me uncomfortable and make you comfortable?” Listen, I’ve always said this; there’s a lot of people that want to just give money to the church but they don’t want to be involved in the church. Because it soothes their conscience and it’s the same with Pastor Sharon. I can go and buy her jewellery and I can buy her gifts and I can do everything and say, “I’m meaningfully serving you.” No, you’re not. It’s easy for you to part with money. Give yourself, give yourself. I’m really preaching good today. God says, “I’m not looking for people that are sacrificing. I want obedience.” He doesn’t have pleasure in sacrifice. He has pleasure in obedience. So, if you’re obedient to Him, then your behaviour doesn’t become a sacrifice. It becomes a joy because you touch Him and you want to integrate your ways with His. If I had to ask you, right now, if you had a pen and paper and if I had to ask you to write down just one thing that you could change right now that would show you, that would be meaningfully change to you, to the people around you and to God. Change one thing to show God that you are prepared to integrate your ways with Him. What would you do? What would you do? Just one thing. If you can think of that one thing, that’s the one thing you should be doing. Amen.
So integration is uniting, it’s combining. It’s an occurrence that results in things being united, the act of combining things to form something new. We don’t have an old life that we’re just modifying to look like Christ. We have a completely new life and when we integrate our ways with Him, our ways become completely new. They’re not modified old ways. This is life giving relationships stuff. That word integration comes from the Latin word integrātus and it means I make whole, I begin again. Integrate of ways; I begin again, I make whole my decision making and my lifestyle so that I live in Him. This is a lifelong journey, I know that. But you’ve got to start somewhere. You have to start with a choice. The greatest joy I have in my life is the fact that I have a personal intimate relationship with Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, and with my Father God. I mean that song, I worship You, I mean that just moved me this morning. It really did. It moved me to tears not because I was having an emotional response but my spirit man was rejoicing at the worship. And it flowed into my humanity and my humanity responded with tears.
He is everything in my life. Because He is everything in my life the next greatest joy that I had was to meet and marry the love of my life, Pastor Sharon, my wife, Sharon. I met her, married her and I live with her with great joy. With great joy do I live with her. How did I get this great joy and this great and wonderful relationship that I have with her? Because God said to me, I didn’t know it then. I didn’t have this framework then. I didn’t know it then. But God said, “Give yourself up and love her like Christ loves the church. Give yourself up, John. Give yourself up and love her.” And so that was in her world with me because I was involved with sport a lot, the thing that was the biggest time consumer outside of work, and my relationship with her was sport. I played sport. And so then she said, “John, I didn’t marry you so I can sit on the sidelines and watch you play sport. I married you because I want to be with you.” So, she wanted me to quit sport. Well, I mean, she’s new in my life. I’ve been doing sport all my life. This is not fair. You know, I thought if I married her she would understand I’m a sportsman. But there was a greater drive and need in her to experience me, so that we could build on our togetherness. Amen. The togetherness that we have is because the Lord said, “You give yourself up for her.” So she said, “John, I don’t want you to play sport.” “Well, you knew I was a sportsman when you married me?” “Ja, but I can’t live with you with your attention all the time on sport. I want your attention. I want your attention.” So, I went to the Lord and I said, “Okay, Lord, what do I do?” He said, “Give it up.” So, you know the story. I didn’t think it was fair. I complained and murmured quite a bit. But then I realised that actually, if I wanted what God wanted for me, I had to give myself up. I had to give it up.
So I gave up my sport. So then, of course, I started watching sports on TV, of course. And then she said, :Hey, I didn’t ask you to give up sport, so you can now watch it on TV. Still me, I want eyeball to eyeball. So why dont you sell the TV?” Ai ja jai, and so we did. We sold the TV. Now I’ve got nothing else to do but eyeball her. And so we lived eyeball to eyeball. We began to become something that we couldn’t have become, if it had remained more important to me than integrating my ways with her. Because we integrated ways, God said, “I can build many relationships on this relationship.” And there are many that can come and nest in this tree where you have built a strong foundation and you have strong branches in your life. And so now I can build and people can come and taste the fruit of the strong tree, and come and rest in it and come and be restored in it and come and be revived in it because it’s so strong. It has the authentic life of Christ in the relationship. It’s not about me, it’s not about her, it’s because we both obeyed God. And so when I started loving her like that, what’s her response going to be? Because my words were then God’s words. “Okay, Lord, then I expect and I will wash her with the washing of the Word of God and I will present her to myself in glorious splendour.” In other words, she’s going to be gloriously splendorous to me. And so she is. And she has been for many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many years. Hallelujah. Praise the Lord.
So there’s been many people that have come around us, and they want what we’ve got and they want us to marry them and they want us to bless them so that they can have the kind of intimacy and closeness and just joy that we have in our relationship. And then I say, “You can have it if you will integrate your ways with God.” It’s not about doing what we do. If you integrate your ways with God, then God will show you what you need to do, for you. Because you’re different people to us. But you can’t have the joy of that unless you integrate. Hallelujah. And so, productivity is to bring forth, or to yield, to cause to happen. It talks about efficiency of production. Inputs and outputs. Productivity. So when you have divine productivity, it means you get a yield that is beyond what the input is. Because it’s not a natural input-output scenario, it’s a divine input-output. Give Me your ways, obey My voice, and I’ll show you what I can do with you. Hallelujah. But you can’t get there, you can’t get there unless you’ve integrated your ways. And of course, no relationship can withstand a life without touch. So touch is always going to be there. Touch is always going to be there. But you can’t live in touch. You’ve got to integrate ways because if you integrate ways, touch becomes more meaningful. When you have strategic intentions, you see God at work in each other, and you see God doing stuff with each other, and again, your touch becomes more meaningful. Your integration of ways becomes stronger. And then, when you start to have divine productivity, you celebrate and rejoice with each other at the divine intervention and the divine component of what’s happening in your life. And then sometimes God will bring that relationship to a place of covenant, where He will ask you to do something in the natural world that He would demand of someone – that He, Himself, needs to get done, but He needs someone to do something significant.
And so that’s what He asked Abraham to do. He asked Abraham to sacrifice Isaac because He needed a pattern that He could bring Jesus into the world, and have Him die for the world. So He asked Abraham to sacrifice because he was in covenant. Abraham had touched God, integrated his ways with God, God had revealed strategic intentions to him, with Sodom and Gomorrah, and he had interceded for them. So, God knew that, “If I show him my strategic intentions, then I know that he’s going to have the right response, which is grace and mercy.” And when He showed His strategic intentions to Abraham, then He said, “Now I’m going to give you divine productivity, and you’ll have a child at an age beyond which your natural man can have a child.” Divine can happen when you have strategic intentions, integration of ways and touch. God brings divine. That means He brings yield where you naturally cannot bring yield. And then there’s a covenant and He says, “Now I’ve yielded you this great harvest, I’ve yielded you this great thing, give it back to Me. No questions asked. Give it back to Me.” When Abraham gave it back to Him, He said, “Now I know that you will not withhold anything from Me, and the whole of the earth will be blessed. Everything that I promised you, you would have, will come to pass.” Hallelujah. Glory to God.
So, 1 Corinthians, chapter 6, verse 19, says, 19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit Who is in you…? Do you? Are you able to have the Holy Spirit in you without a body? Your body, on earth, Holy Spirit inside. No body on earth, no Holy Spirit inside. No body on earth, your spirit goes to be with God’s Spirit. Holy Spirit remains on earth. You have the Holy Spirit inside you, you have to be in your body. And he says, 19…do you not know that your body is the temple, it’s the carrying, of the Holy Spirit… whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NKJV). What’s he saying? He said; God has touched you with His life, integrate your ways. Remember, when you use your body to integrate your way, so the Holy Spirit can dominate, through your body.
I was reading this passage of Scripture, and I felt very strongly that I should read it to you. And when I realised what I was going to say about it, the human side of me did not want to draw attention to this. But the Holy Spirit really impressed upon me that I need to express it to you in this way. So, I want you to understand that I don’t read and say this passage of Scripture lightly. I say it because I feel strongly that the Holy Spirit is wanting me to present it to you this way. Acts chapter 20, verse 17. I’m going to read a number of verses of Scripture here. 17 From Miletus, which is a place, he sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church. 18 And when they had come, so he sent a message to the elders of the church in Ephesus to come and meet him in Miletus. 18 And when they had come to him, he said to them: “You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you… So he came to Asia. He came to touch them with the Gospel. Now he’s talking about, you know, the 18…manner that I… lived among you, which means, I’ve integrated my ways with God, and what I revealed to you was the ways of God, 19 serving the Lord with all humility, with many tears and trials which happened to me by the plotting of Jews; 20 how I kept back nothing that was helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and from house to house, 21 testifying to Jews, and also to Greeks, repentance towards God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 20:17-21 NKJV). I felt led to say this because this is something the Lord wanted me to say.
I want to say to you; from the first day that God put me in the ministry, I have come to you, and I have touched you, from the first day. I can say, you can measure what manner of man I have lived among you. You can measure what manner of man has lived among you. I do not come as a man that is domineering, to dominate you, or to lead you by force, or to lead you by coercion and by some kind of manipulation. I serve the Lord with all humility, understanding that I am human, as you are human, and that God has called me in a vessel and given me a message to preach. So I have no extra, additional gifts that you have, other than God that has called me and gifted me to come. And so, therefore, I come to you with humility. And I have come with many tears and trials, which happened to me by the plotting of people in the church. Years ago, for a period of five year, for a period of five years, people tried to unseat me from my position as pastor. Full stop. Anywhere and everywhere. People have lots to say about the way that I was amongst them. They caused divisions, they spoke words, they had things to say. More recently, an ancient accusation came back to me that I have preferential treatment towards my sons. It’s called nepotism. I was accused in 2004, of having nepotism, in other words, I prefer my sons above other sons in the church. I can say with tears and with trials that have been plotted against me, I’ve stood before you and you have seen what manner of man I am. You have seen that when my sons have stepped out of line, my natural bloodborne sons, they have been disciplined publicly and privately, over all the years.
If you judge me as a man that is not worthy of that, then you shouldn’t be here. But if you recognise the manner of man that is living among you, like the Apostle Paul, then you need to recognise the message that is coming. How I kept nothing back, nothing that’s helpful. Pastor Sharon and I, sometimes we feel like we are too vulnerable to you but we open up our lives, we don’t hold anything back from you. Our lives are open to you for you to see what kind of life we live. We are not hiding anything from you. We are not hiding money issues from you. We’re not hiding alcohol issues from you or drug issues from you or any other stuff from you. We live accountable and upright before God, before you. If I can’t be accountable to God, then I have no business trying to be accountable to you. Because then I’m just going to manipulate you to get what I want. But I can’t manipulate God, I have to obey His Word. I’ve said this a long time ago, if a man has a group of people that he’s accountable to, and he doesn’t really want to be accountable to them, he will manipulate and use his influence to get whatever he wants anyway. If you can’t be accountable to God, then you will not be accountable to men. Because how can you be? You’re self-centred. And to the measure that I have not yet attained, and I speak like the Apostle Paul, and I’m not comparing myself to the Apostle Paul. Please believe me, I know that Apostle Paul had revelations and he walked with God in a way that I’m still striving for and I’m a long way away from that. But I can say with him, to the measure I have not yet attained, I strive, I press, I’m moving towards the mark of the high calling of God that He has in my life. I do not leave it to chance or to others. I press.
I have brought you the message of repentance, both Pastor Sharon and I. Repentance because without repentance you cannot move on in God. You cannot move on in relationships unless there’s repentance. If Sharon and I have an issue between us and I’m the cause of the issue, I have to repent to her otherwise I can’t move past this. Because this will always be my self-centred place I come back to. I have to repent and repentance means I must change. And when I talk to her and I tell her I’m repenting, and then I say to her, “Now, if I do this again, Sharon, remind me of this commitment to repentance. Help me make sure that I don’t do this again.”
22 And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me. 24 But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself (Acts 20:22-24 NKJV). Can you see a man who’s integrated his ways with God ? Who was already living in the strategic intentions of God? Because he understands, “Everywhere I go in the cities, people are prophesying and they’re saying to me what awaits me. The strategic intentions of God are already made known to me, but with me going wherever I must go, and wherever I’m going to be bound, God’s divine productivity is at work in my life.” How do I know that? Well, we are here talking about him. That’s how powerful divine productivity is. And so, God asked Paul to give his life as a covenant in relationship and he died because of the church. And because he died because of the church, we can become the church, and we should live as the church. Hallelujah.
Pastor Sharon and I are not novices at this pastoring, spiritual leadership. We are not novices at this anymore. There was a time that we were and while we were in our novice state, people came after me and tried to stop me from becoming this. Having this with Brother Jerry, having the connections over the years with Brother Copeland, with Brother Jerry, with all the wonderful men of God, Richard Roberts, Keith Moore – all the wonderful people that we are connected to. He wanted to try and cut that off. So, it is likely that I would have still partnered with them but he wanted to stop my gift from being influenced by them and being connected to their gifts so that what’s in them can flow to you. The devil made a play for us.
Still today, the devil tries to make a play for me and my offspring – meaning all of you. Listen, he tried to kill Jesus. He did kill Jesus because he thought he could try and stop the future. But in death; resurrection. Hallelujah. What do you think happened to the people that killed Jesus? Do you remember what they said? They said, “Let His blood be upon us, and upon our children, and our children’s children.” What happened? The blood, the vengeance of God, their own proclamation came upon them, their children and their children’s children. You kill a son of God at your own peril.
And so, that was a big moment for me in my life because God demanded that I integrate my ways with Him. He showed me what would happen to those people that came, that tried to stop my ministry. And when I saw in the spirit, the impact of the devil’s work in their lives, He said to me, “John, the choice is yours because they have offended you,” in the sense that I wasn’t offended, but they have brought an offence to me – they judged me. And so, “Whatever you declare to be their future, I give you the right to declare it. But if you shake the dust off your feet, of them, this is what’s going to happen to them.” When I saw it in the spirit, I wept and I wept and I wept before God because I don’t want that to happen to anybody. Then the Lord gave me that great revelation that has saved my life many times. He said, “Jesus Himself, He was betrayed. He was betrayed by Judas; He was betrayed by Peter; and He was betrayed by His disciples.” And He said to me, “John, I could do nothing about Judas’ betrayal.” He said, “The effects of his betrayal drove him to death. He could not live with his betrayal. Peter’s betrayal, I had to go and speak to him to bring him back and I had to speak to him three times; do you love me Peter, do you love me Peter, do you love me Peter?” And Peter understood immediately; “What are You trying to say to me? Are You trying to bring back my betrayal of the three times?” And He was saying, “No, I am bringing restoration to you for the betrayal of three times. If you love me, feed my sheep. If you love me, feed my sheep. If you love me, feed my lambs. Peter, I’ve come to fetch you.” The other disciples that betrayed Jesus, God showed me, they were scattered because of the chaos that happened. And He said, “They will come back into relationship with me if you will just forgive them. They will eventually come back.” And that’s what I did. I went about the whole business of forgiveness. I went about the whole business of trying to rebuild trust with them.
But here’s what I am saying to you. I am saying to you today, even in the difficult times of tears and trials, it is incumbent on me to integrate my ways with God. It’s not incumbent on me to bring out any kind of thing about you. And if I am speaking about things that happened in my past and they bring some kind of harm to you, it’s not my intention to do that. It is a fact what happened to me. It is a fact and I understand clearly that it was the devil that was inspiring all of these things to come against me which is why I could forgive everyone. I could forgive everyone.
You see, the power of integration of ways allowed me to understand the strategic intentions of God when it comes to people that betrayed Jesus and the Word of God and the life that they lived that He always forgives. And not at any time does He want anybody to suffer under the hardships of what the enemy will bring to their lives. But their choices stand between the heavens and the earth. And He said, “I have given every one of them a chance to choose life or death.” And so; choose life. Every moment, every day; choose life. Choose life. Choose life.
And so, every city he went to people would say, “This was going to happen to you, this is going to happen to you.” Ps Sharon and I know that there are still circumstances that we will face in the future that we will receive trials and tribulations for because we make a stand for God. We make a stand with men that are with us that other people bring accusations against. There are many, many people that speak against Kenneth Copeland and against Jerry Savelle and against what they stand for. And because we stand with them, we will suffer trials and persecutions. We are not novices at this, we know that this happens. But that won’t stop me from receiving the apostolic gift and the awesome wonderful gift of faith that Brother Jerry is and Brother Copeland is and all of the legacy of Oral Roberts and Kenneth Hagin. All those people that they have brought into our lives. Authentic Christian living. Authentic authority. Authentic faith walk, not a mere practice of religion that is powerless to save, but an authentic walk with God where you can exercise power and authority and walk with words that bring life. And fill your mind with the Word of God and power of God so that your mind is not captured by the thoughts of men. Hallelujah. If you go against them, you go against me. I stand with them. Hallelujah.
24 But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. 25 And indeed, now I know that you all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, will see my face no more. I am not making this declaration over you today about me. 26 Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all men (Acts 20:24-26 NKJV). Because he was part of the persecution of the church. And so, he is making a statement, “I am innocent of the blood of all men.” Not just because he persecuted the church, but because he preached the Gospel so that the blood of men who choose otherwise are not to his account. He obeyed God to do what he is supposed to do so that those men who do not choose God, he is innocent of their blood because he preached the Gospel the way that God told him to – not regarding himself.
27 For I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:27). Pastor Sharon and I, we endeavour to teach you the whole counsel of God, not just the blessings and the abundance and make my soul feel happy and make me feel good that I can overcome. We preach and we endeavour to teach you the whole counsel of God. 28 Therefore, take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. (Acts 20:28 NKJV) I have news for you, you are the church of God and He has purchased you with His own blood. You are not your own, you need to live for Him. 29 For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves. In other words, twisted things. 31 Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears (Acts 20:28-31 NKJV).
In other words, every time he would preach the Gospel of God it was an anguish to him because he knew his time on earth was limited, yet his revelation was eternal and he was trying to bring an eternal revelation to a natural people, trusting in the Holy Spirit that his eternal revelation would change natural people and that they would choose life, and not choose death. That they would have the knowledge of God that could stand against savage wolves and they can stand against men that would come in the midst of people and try to deceive them. 32 So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up. I stand here and I minister to you because I trust that the Word of God is able to build you up. 32 … and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. If you are sanctified, it means you are integrating ways. Because righteousness you have through blood, sanctification you have through choice. 33 I have coveted no one’s silver or gold or apparel (Acts 20:32-33 NKJV). Do I stand before you as a man that has coveted your gold, that has coveted your silver? That has coveted your materialism? So therefore, I come to try and get something from you? I can say with the Apostle Paul that I did not come to covet what you have. Because my whole life I have learned to live with little and live with much. 34Yes, you yourselves know that these hands have provided for my necessities, and for those who were with me. 35 I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” 36 And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all. 37 Then they all wept freely, and fell on Paul’s neck and kissed him, 38 sorrowing most of all for the words which he spoke, that they would see his face no more. And they accompanied him to the ship (Acts 20:34 – 38 NKJV). Praise the Lord.
I’m going to finish with this one last verse and I’m reading from the Amplified version, Galatians four, verse six, 6 And because you [really] are [His] sons, God has sent the [Holy] Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, Abba (Father)! Father! 7 Therefore, you are no longer a slave (bond servant) but a son; and if a son, then [it follows that you are] an heir by the aid of God, through Christ.” If you are a son, then behave like one. 8 But at that previous time, when you had not come to be acquainted with and understand and know the true God, you [Gentiles] were in bondage to gods, all kinds of gods, who by their very nature could not be gods at all [gods that really did not exist] (Galatians 4:6-8 AMPC). Let me tell you, the lure of money is not a god at all. The lure of a successful career is not a god at all. But it will try and make it the most important thing in your life so that you don’t pursue God, and and and, et cetera, et cetera.9 Now, however, since you have come to know [the true] God [through personal experience], or rather to be known by God, how is it that you are turning back again to the weak and worthless elemental principles [of religions and philosophies] before Christ came, to which you want to be enslaved all over again? (Galatians 6:9 AMPC).
So, I finish there, and I say to you that this is not a moment in our life for us to look backwards and for us to see backwards of all that we were. This is a time for us to look forwards and to embrace sonship so that we can become something much more than we have been before. And as we have this framework of relationship that we touch, we integrate ways, and we understand the strategic intentions of God, that He will make Himself known to us, and we will be able to operate in a level that is much higher than we are currently functioning in. And so, I am declaring this to you today because as I minister this, God is going to restore relationships. But I want to tell you that it is not just going to be, I’m going to pray for you, lay hands on you, and suddenly everything is restored. This is going to be; you may be touched by God with this message but you have to start with integration of ways.
And so, it is my prayer and my declaration that as I minister the Word of God and as we go into the weekend where we are going to minister on relationships, and Pastor Sharon and I are open, we are an open book about our relationship and about relationships that we have. When I read you the book of Acts today and I shared with you about the things that happened to me, the Holy Spirit wanted this to be a foundation because I want you to understand that when I preach about relationships, I’ve had tears and trials in my own marriage that has brought me to this great place. I’ve had tears and trials when it comes to people relationships, and I’m delighted to be able to say that there are many people here that are with me now, that are with this church now, because there is a spirit of hope, there is a spirit of joy, there is a spirit of unity that is in this church. And if you will embrace what God is doing through the restoration of relationships over these next few weeks, you will find yourself on a springboard, a diving board, a springboard that will allow you to take a leaping dive into the future. And it will catapult you and make up time that has been lost.
I believe this with all my heart that what has taken ten years will be restored in one. What has taken twenty years will be restored in two. You can’t give up on this message and you can’t give up on your walk with God because circumstances still look bad. You have got to keep walking with God. You’ve got to keep having this relationship with Jesus. The relationship with Jesus is the most real thing that you can have because you are a spirit man, and your spirit man calls to the deep of the Spirit that is Christ, that is God the Father. Spirit to spirit you have mouth to mouth. Spirit to spirit you stand face to face. Spirit to spirit you have the impartation of life. Spirit to spirit you have power that overcomes the weakness of your humanity. Spirit to spirit you have what it takes. Switch the TV off. Switch the news off. Switch the stuff off and get spirit life into you. Switch your phone off and say, “I’m not looking at it for an hour. I don’t care who sends me an SMS, who sends me a WhatsApp, who sends me what kind of social media I want to be on.” Switch it off. Say, “Now I’m going to spend time with God. I’m going to listen to a message. I’m going to spend time with God. I’m going to take this and sow it as a seed into an integration that I’m not yet able to achieve.” Hallelujah. I’m preaching good today. It may be a bit confrontational but so be it. Hallelujah.
And so, the manner of man that stands before you, you know is a manner of man that loves you, that loves you with the love of God that He placed in my heart and so I can’t help but speak truth to you. I cannot stand in any situation and just paste over stuff. If I really believe this stuff, I’m ready for anything and everything by the power of the Holy Spirit that rests in me. Hallelujah.
Won’t you stand with me, please. Goeie genugtig. I just want you to know that that camera covers half of my clock, hey, from this angle. I mean it. No, I mean it, you must check for next week, it covers half of my clock. It’s the camera’s fault – that’s how justification works. Hallelujah. Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord. Justification works that way – always somebody else’s fault, It’s never mine, never mine. Hallelujah. Praise Jesus. Praise Jesus.
Won’t you put your hand on your heart, please. I’m going to first pray for you with your hand on your heart, and I pray, Father, that as Your people have their hands on their hearts, I pray that this message will penetrate those same hearts, will penetrate that spirit man, will penetrate their lives and that they will pursue a relationship with You that no matter what they’ve been through up until now, that You will bring them into that place of personal, personal understanding of You. They will live with You and they will live in You. Hallelujah.
Now you can pray this with me; I am a son of God. I receive the Spirit of God as a son of God. I am an adopted son and I have full status as Jesus. I have a personal relationship with God, my heavenly Father because I am a son. I receive my full inheritance as a son in Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Go and get your inheritance. How do I get it? Integrate your ways. Hallelujah. Be blessed going out and blessed coming in. Be blessed in your driving home, be protected and safe as you go. May His peace and grace and joy be upon you and no weapon formed against you, your health or your business will prosper in Jesus’ Name. You are blessed by the words of the Son of God, Jesus Himself, that blesses you with all prosperity and He says that you prosper and be in health even as your soul prospers. And today I have prayed that your soul would prosper by the Word of God in Jesus’ Name. And you all agree with me, don’t you? And you say; Amen. Thank you for coming.