Scripture reference: 1 Samuel 22:1 (NKJV); Romans 12: 1-2 (NKJV); Romans 12:2 (TPT); Ephesians 1:15-23 (NKJV); Ephesians 2:1-10 (NKJV)
Good, thank you. I am blessed. Did you see how neat I look today? Because today is going to be a blockbuster day. Do you know what a blockbuster is? A blockbuster is one of those things that just breaks records, it just shatters the boundaries over. It is like the best thing ever. Today is going to be one of those best-ever days.
So, I dressed with a jacket on because it’s possible that in our multimedia department, this is going to be such a blockbuster day, that they might use this for a long time to come. In which case I need to look a little natty, you know? Nifty, posh. Yeah. Sharp. I see some of you guys got you know, shorts and tekkies on, at least not slops but close. [Pastor John laughing] So today is going to be a good, good day. Amen. Praise the Lord.
It seems like some of the people from Johannesburg and other places are still drifting in. I am glad we could all make this time to be together, this weekend. I believe God is doing something amazing. He is doing something supernatural. Well, I am trusting that this weekend is going to change your life forever, it is going to change me. It has already changed me just preparing for it. I’m just getting myself ready for it spiritually. It has already changed me and well, praise the Lord. Are you ready for something really, really amazing? Regtig? Sjoh. You sound a little unconvincing here this morning. Is it a bit early in the morning to open the voice pipes? Say, amen. You see, you can do it when you really have to, you can do it. Praise the Lord.
So, the way we are going to structure today, is I am going to talk for about an hour. We are going to have a fifteen, twenty minute break and I am going to talk for another hour or so and then we will have our lunch break and then this afternoon I will duplicate the sessions more or less. If I don’t get through it by tomorrow morning I might use Message Moments, tomorrow afternoon too, to be able to finish what I have to say over this weekend. Amen. Praise the Lord.
So, over many years, I am not going to get into the merits of it, one way or another. If you are a planted person, if you are an established person in a local Church and you have an understanding of your assignment and your mission in life, there are some things that you can do because you have grown into maturity. Oftentimes I have used testimonies of my life and then I have to clarify that just because it is my testimony, it doesn’t necessarily make it something that you can do immediately when you get born again. Because I have to clarify that if I share things with you, I need people to understand the context that I was born into a home where my father was a pastor. I was born again when I was five. Filled with the Holy Spirit when I was seven. Was spending my life in Church the whole time. I was a young – for those days in my age, there were not too many people that did what I did. But I had a passion for the life of God, the Word of God, the ways of the Church.
So, instead of spending my time pursuing many, many things that young people would pursue, I spend my time pursuing God. So, when I say to you that I had never had a – and I have often taught on tithing for example and people often have a challenge about tithing. Well, I never had that challenge because I grew up with it as part of my life. I didn’t even have to question it, it wasn’t even a doctrine that I needed to worry about. Of course, I studied it to check it out for myself later. But I never studied it to question it. Because it was just part of me.
Over the years I have taught about how God told me to love Pastor Sharon as Christ loves the Church. Many, many, many, many men have said what God showed me is unreasonable and impossible for them to love their wives that way because that is just not the way it works. It is too high a standard, often they would say that, it is too high a standard. Well, I can’t speak for their choices, I can understand that if you’ve got a lot of baggage from your past, then it is more difficult to go that route. Not impossible but more difficult. You have to let the Word change you before you can do that.
So when I got married at a young age the Word of God was so strong in me, having come out of a military environment where God really showed Himself strong as my God. Coming into life and then going on into life with God as my God, when I married Sharon, I was ready to receive the Word and live the Truth in my life. Are you with me?
So, over the years Pastor Sharon and I have had opportunities where we have studied many, many things and read many books. In fact, I’ve had to make a decision to get rid of the books that are in my library just because, ah there is too many books that I have bought over the years. There was a time when obviously I was in the corporate world and I was having to learn about business and learn about different things, you get materials so that you can be better educated about some things. But when it comes to spiritual matters, the most go to people that I would go to would be Kenneth Hagin, Kenneth Copeland, Jerry Savelle and people that were associated or connected to them. If I was reading a book I would read, people that other people don’t know about like Norvel Hayes, Charles Capps or one of those kinds of people, I would read about. I would read those kinds of books or listen to those materials.
Occasionally, occasionally I would be in a place and a time and I would go to a book table or I would go into a store and I would see a book and I would feel a leading by the Lord to go and read that book or buy that book. It hasn’t happened a lot, but it has happened sometimes. So, some of those books have impacted our lives and some of those books are for example in Leadership Academy. So, if you do the third year Leadership Academy you will find the book there by Myles Monroe, called Spiritual Leadership. It is one of the finest books that anybody can write and you can read about spiritual leadership. It is fantastic. So, that is why it is in there again it was something that when I was putting leadership school together or Leadership Academy together, you know, it is one of those things I just knew I can trust the material because I could trust the character of the man, even Brother Jerry said that he would always share a pulpit with Myles Monroe, Doctor Myles Monroe before he died, because of what he said, his character, the authenticity of his ministry and the content of both his character and his message. So, because of that, I was confident that Myles Monroe being in our school would represent what we want to teach. Amen.
So, there are others over the years like that in my current position that I find myself in. I don’t read too many books. Most of the time I am studying the Word and I am receiving things from the Lord myself and I am bringing out the revelations that God has given me and I am not referring to too many books. Most of the extra stuff that I do is listen to Jerry Savelle. I might listen to messages from Kenneth Hagin going back. I bought some of his materials. Read his books. Some of the stuff that I have learned to trust over the years, I might go back and make reference to that.
So one of those books is a guy that came out of Rhema and he wrote a book and I am going to read to you from his book first up this morning. It is one of those books you know, it is just you read it, it has an impact on you, you may not go back and look at it for many, many years, but the author is a wonderful author.
He says this, We are flawed individuals who have made plenty of mistakes, failures and yes even sins that accompany our resumes. But thank God we are in good company with people like Abraham, Jacob, Rahab, Gideon, Samson and David. All of them were mentioned in Hebrews 11 as great men and women of faith. They are the heroes of the Old Testament set up for us to view as examples. The great thing about the Bible is that in recording history it left the bad and the ugly in with the good. When you look at any of those characters you will easily find a multitude of failures and sins that they committed. Abraham didn’t leave his dad and mom’s place until he was seventy five years old. I think if you are twenty five you are still ok. Many of the parents said, “Shut up, my kids need to leave when they are eighteen or earlier. [Pastor John laughing]. Anyway, I guess if you live to hundred and fifty then you know, it is slightly different.
Then he headed out for an unknown destination and on his way he had a falling out with his nephew. He lied, he let a king take his wife for his girlfriend, he kept slaves, and he slept with his wife’s handmaiden and yet the Bible refers to all believers as the children of Abraham. Jacob was a deceiver. Rahab was a harlot. Gideon was a coward. He was. It is the reason he was hiding. Samson had his share of disreputable women. But the one that tops them all is King David. David lied, cheated, committed adultery, he even had one of his most loyal men murdered. I think I am doing alright with you guys. [Pastor John laughing]. If that is all we knew about David the Bible we would consider him one of the most vile sinful men that has ever walked on the face of the earth. But God called him a man after My Own heart and gave him a Messiah as a heritage. Even blind beggars called Jesus the Son of David. The statement that David was a man after God’s own heart was even repeated in the New Testament. You say, “Whaaaaaat?” Right? I mean how can the Bible talk about a man that was so bad in glowing terms?
How in the world could God describe David that way after all the horrible stuff he had done? We are often so focused on human perfection and put off by human failure that we become blind to the greater purpose of God who has chosen to reveal Himself through earthen vessels or as some translations read, jars of clay. Well, I will tell you it might not be that I have done the kind of things that David has done, but in the end, God is the One Who looks at the heart and we are going to talk about that in a minute. But it is true that certainly our Church where we find ourselves now and the time that I was born into the Church. When I was born into the Church, everything was about perfection, about laws and rules and perfection. The modern-day Church has become a lot more grace-minded. That doesn’t make grace the right way to have Church. It just means that we no longer focus on the imperfections of human vessels.
We are so quick to discount the validity of people with outward flaws and imperfections. But the Lord does not look at things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. That comes from one Samuel 16 verse 7. Do you remember what context Samuel said that? He had all these strapping good-looking men that were going to be potential kings, one of them was going to be the king of Israel and starting from the oldest to the strong good looking, brave everything, next head of the family and God said, not that one, not that one, not that one, not that one, until the youngest one that was looking after the sheep, God said, “These guys look all pretty good, they all got lots of talent, they are all very sharp, they are all ready to run their own fathers household, but the ones heart that I see is David.” The same one we have been talking about. He is the guy because God looks at what is going on in the heart, not look on the outside, our human nature and the way we are designed is, we want to measure everything on the outside. But God sees everything on the inside. You can fool some of the people some of the time. You might even fool all of the people some of the time. But I will tell you, you can’t fool God anytime, anytime. You can not fool God anytime.
There was a divine discontentment that drove each one of those men and women to pursue their calling and purpose at any cost. They were Kingdom or bust. Covenant or bust people and despite their sins and moral failures they landed in the New Testament as shiny examples of heroes of faith. Jesus Himself said that the prostitutes and tax collectors which were known to be thieves were closer to the Kingdom of God than the religious Pharisees who whitewashed the outside, but were filthy within. I mean if that is not a perfect example of the way people present behaviour, but on the inside, they are very much their own. They just don’t show you what is going on inside.
King David led a group of what the Bible called; mighty men. These powerful guys were the cream of the crop. They were the reason that Israel defeated its enemies time and time again. One of them …I’ll tell you what? This is an amazing story if you go and read it. One of them by the name of Jashobeam, took on eight hundred warriors by himself and killed them all with his spear. Wow. This guy was committed to King David. He was one of King David‘s mighty warriors. In our modern-day world, if you had a warrior like that he would be off making money doing his thing, showing his talent. The last thing he would be, is committed to the Church, because what is a Church going to do with my talent? God needs your talent to build the Kingdom. He needs your God-ordained gift that He gave you to build the Church. Another one, Shammah, successfully defended a plot of land against an entire camp of Philistines. Benaiah, another of David’s mighty men, fought and killed two of the Moabites, skilled warriors, an Egyptian giant and a lion. You don’t read much about these guys. That’s why in the book of Hebrews chapter 11, it talks about and many, many more.
But take a look at how this noble group started out. When David first formed this group of mighty men, he was hiding from King Saul in a cave. And the Scripture says in 1 Samuel chapter 22 verse 2, 22 And everyone who was in distress, everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented gathered to him. So he became captain over them (1 Samuel 22:1 NKJV). So how did they start out? They started out as those that were in distress. They started out as those who were in debt and those that were discontent. Then they joined him in his runaway from a king.
So, I just want to make a point about David, what happened with David here. David was an anointed king in waiting. Just remember this. David was an anointed king in waiting. He refused to take up the appointment of the king in waiting until God made the time for him to become the anointed and appointed king. He had to wait and chose to wait for God to do it, not just because he was anointed and not because he killed Goliath and not because he won the king’s daughter because he killed Goliath, not because he was known amongst Israel as the one who slew his tens of thousands, not because of any of those reasons did he come and take his kingdom. He waited for Saul to die, and then when Saul died, he still did not take up his kingdom. He waited for God to move on the hearts of the people to ask him to be the king. That’s why God said, “He’s a man after My Own heart.” Because he didn’t take stuff. He allowed God to bring him to the stuff. It’s a huge difference in the way we approach life. Amen.
I’m nearly done on this section of what I’m reading. Today, there is a great exodus taking place from the organized religious denominations. There are more leavers today than new believers. There are more people that are leaving Church, than people that are believing in God. It’s true. There are more people that think that Church should be according to their wish and how they want to do Church, and so therefore their believing is conditional. Anything that is conditional is up to you to decide what’s good for you or not. So, there are more leavers than there are believers. A believer will not come to Church on conditions. A believer will come because of believing, because they believe.
If you are a part of that exodus, stop it. Stop it. It’s a choice. It’s a choice. It’s something that you can fix quickly. Stop doing it. The Pharisees will continue to play religious games, quoting Scriptures and saying things that they don’t really mean. They will pray lofty prayers for the sake of the listeners. They will preach flowery sermons to tickle the ears of their hearers. They will embrace the letter of the law, but live a life separated from the spirit of the law. This is a condition that we find ourselves in the Church. I find that in our modern-day world, as we are going about life right now, that there are less and less people living their life with purpose. But the thing that more and more people are really hungry for is a life with purpose and a life for purpose. But isn’t it interesting that right now there’s so much more need for purpose and there are so few people that are willing to live for purpose?
If people are ready to live a life for purpose, they want to choose their purpose. They don’t want God to choose it for them. They want to choose their purpose. If you look at many wealthy men around the world and for the moment I’m going to constrain myself to talk about global wealth and global wealthy people, you will find that many, many of them have started their own foundations. Because they’re embarrassed by the fact that they have so much wealth and there’s so many people in the world that are so poor. But they are not prepared to give up their wealth for the poor. What they will do is that they will give up some of their wealth for the poor. But most of the time, they’ll also join with others or promote their foundation so others can join their foundation so that those others can also feel less guilty about how much they’ve got while other people are poor.
So, they find their purpose in, “I’m helping the poor.” There are some that say they’re wanting to cure diseases and they fund research. Then if you dig a little bit deeper, you find out that they have big shares and big ownership rights in many of the pharmaceutical companies, but they’re spending their “foundation” money on research. In the meantime, they’re getting wealthier and wealthier as on people’s sickness and disease. I’m already preaching good today. Yeah.
So, in this session today, I’m going to read you a portion of a book that the Lord led me to read many, many, many years ago. I’m going to read it in a short while, but I’m going to just give you some facts that are happening right now in the world so that we can establish the context of what God is going to say to us today. Around the world today, there are many, many organisations and many people that are being set up to accumulate knowledge and to accumulate wealth. Many of them are designed to accumulate knowledge and wealth. So that those, through knowledge and wealth, they can exercise power. If we think that people’s words are a reflection of what they’re doing, we are mistaken. This finds itself in a deep rooted spiritual combat and a deep spiritual conflict. It is my assignment by the Lord this weekend, to give some structure, some framework and at the same time to create a vision for the future. Amen.
So, can anybody tell me what is one of the key ingredients of batteries that you use in your car, that you use to back up your power in your house if you have a power battery backup? Lithium is one of them, a much rarer element. Cobalt, who said that? Yeah, the lab man. Nice, Conrad. Cobalt, cobalt. Who owns ninety percent, no, probably ninety five percent of the cobalt resources in the world today? Anybody like to guess? Can’t be that complicated. Huh? No, no, who owns the rights to it? Yes, Congo is one of the places where you find it. It’s got huge deposits of it, so you’re right. But who owns the right to it from the Congo? Who’s mining it? Who’s buying it? China. China is buying cobalt. In fact, China has got the contracts of ninety five percent of the mines in the world today, certainly in Africa. I can’t be hundred percent sure about these facts. If it comes to places like Russia and South America. But to my knowledge, to the research that I’ve done, it’s a huge percentage of contracts to mine cobalt around the world is owned by China. To my knowledge, America has not yet signed over, although some of them have already been signed over to China, for China to mine cobalt in America. At least America stopped mining cobalt, let’s put it that way, in some areas.
So now, in America, right now, you have a government that is putting a huge amount of pressure onto motor manufacturers to manufacture more electric vehicles, to the point where they are putting billions of dollars into motor companies that will establish new electric vehicle plants. They are penalising through fuel prices and the lack of opportunity to have clean energy from America to have petrol driven cars or gasoline driven cars.
So, one of the biggest investment companies in the world, they have ten trillion dollars of asset management in their organisation. Anybody like to guess who this investment company is? It’s not JP Morgan. They’re big, but they’re not that big. It’s BlackRock. There are four that are in between having a range of six to ten trillion dollars of asset management under their control. Trillion dollars, trillion dollars. That means that outside of the GDP of China and the United States of America, BlackRock, Vanguard and there’s two others, their names escape me right now, there’s two others, that their asset management is higher than other countries’ entire GDP. BlackRock. Come on, work with me now. Are you still with me, everybody? I don’t wanna get too technical here today, but I wanna share this with you.
So, if you think that BlackRock goes onto all of the boards of where they invest their money into companies and they have a seat on the board, sometimes two, sometimes three, sometimes they have the majority share, they go onto the board and they say, “We are not going to promote your shares on our investment portfolio any longer unless you have a sustainable plan for ESG.” Which is an environmental friendly acronym for green. Right? That is promoted by the current Government of America. Are you listening to me?
So, BlackRock starts to dictate how business, big business, lots of business, in America is having to change their corporate strategy and their corporate vision and mission statement to incorporate, green future. Okay, I’m just going to talk about BlackRock for a minute. Are you all with me? Are you enjoying this? I mean, you should know about BlackRock, if it is a ten trillion dollar investment company, for sure it is having an impact in your life, in South Africa, it’s having an impact. There are companies that will be investing or not investing and depending on the investment, lots of things.
How did BlackRock actually start as a company? BlackRock started, as a company, with a man who was working for a Wall Street type investment company and he was a very successful investor but he made one mistake. He made a mistake and his mistake cost his investment company a hundred million dollars. So, after the mistake of a hundred million dollars, which you will all agree is some mistake, he read the markets wrong. He was one of the big influencers because of the success he had up to that point. He read the markets wrong and he lost a hundred million dollars. He left the company, not in good shape, I mean he left with his own reputation in tatters. He took eighteen months to make the decision as to what he should do with his life after that.
Anybody want to know what the name of this man is? The name of this man is Larry Fink, however, you want to say it. Larry Fink is probably the right way to say it. Larry Fink is the CEO, the owner and founder of BlackRock Investments. If you want to go and read up on his story, by all means, go and read it. Larry met up with another man who was a very wealthy person and willing to go along with the financial and economic insights that he had about the future economy. I’m going to not just spend too much time on this today, I am going to cut the story short.
I am going to fast forward that what he has been able to do, is he has been able to see trends that are happening and come out with financial models of how to best, best maximise profitability from patterns and trends happening in government and in economics trends. One of the things that happened is that he became known as a specialist in a very marginal area of financial management and investment, he became a specialist at bad debt management. In other words, how to view bad debt, how to restructure bad debt and then how to use that bad debt to maximise tax right-offs, to maximise new investments and maximise profitability, bad debt.
At this point in time, Larry Fink was probably worth and you can probably hold me, that if some of these details are not hundred percent, you might find that some of the numbers are a little different but I think he was worth a hundred billion dollars or his company, that he was investing, was doing a hundred billion dollars at this stage. He was called in by the United States Reserve Bank to help them in a, the United States Central Bank, to manage their, a portion of the stocks that they issue that went, that was not considered to be bad debt which was bad for the US Government and for it’s, for it’s whole credit structure. They asked him to help to deal with it.
They invited a consulting company that makes money in investing into the inner workings of the Central Bank of America. He advises them, they do what he tells them, they get rid of their bad debt, he makes a fortune. Trillions of dollars. Now, as things keep moving along, he keeps, get’s known, he is known, his company is known, as the man that can find the next best thing to invest in. He’s known as the man that can fix problems, BlackRock Investments. Are you all with me?
Along comes a government that says, “We want to press the green agenda. Let’s get Larry in because we helped make Larry rich. He, already, is with our government. Let’s get him in. Let’s tell him to put pressure on all the companies that if they don’t go with our agenda, we don’t invest, his company doesn’t invest anymore.” So, now. Do you think that when you see the dollar rand price moving up and down, you think that this is just a few forces like George Soros, who is one of those big guys that are billionaires? I don’t know that he’s a trillionaire but he’s certainly a big billionaire. George Soros. You think it’s, uh, Bill Gates? There’s governments at play here. There’s power at play here. What are they doing? They’re saying, “We are going to control things in any which way we can so that we accumulate power. We are going to accumulate political influence. We’re going to accumulate financial influence, we are going to accumulate as much as we can while we are telling the world that we are actually caring for the poor. While we’re telling the world that we’ve got a green agenda and everybody’s going to believe our story and we’re going to look like the shining knights.” But actually underneath this, there’s a lot of bad stuff happening. Yes?
So, I ask you, these organisations that are designed to accumulate knowledge and these organisations that are created to accumulate wealth. Do you think that these have got nothing to do with the spirit realm? Do you think it’s just Larry Fink? Do you think it’s just Bill Gates? Do you think it’s just an old, half senile, US President by the name of Joe Biden? Do you think it’s just, do you think it’s just the Guptas and Jacob Zuma? Well, in South Africa, we have a very real situation developing because we, as South Africans, have become part of BRICS. We are a strong player in BRICS, which is a whole economic sector that’s designed or framework that is designed to have cooperating countries to cooperate economically and to cooperate in the sharing of knowledge. Wealth and knowledge for the betterment of those countries that cooperate in BRICS. So you have Brazil, you have India, you have China, those are the big players. Then, of course, you have South Africa in there. We’re not on the size of that, but we are certainly the biggest African economy that’s involved in it. Did you know about BRICS? [Congregation answers] Yes. So, ah, good. Good. Well, what is the essential reason for BRICS? Well, BRICS wants to be the alternative power base to the Euro, European Union and or the United States as an alternative economic empire to those economic empires.
Do you notice my language? The empire strikes back. It’s coming. The empire’s about to strike back. It’s the empire of the Church, the Kingdom of God. Because these are kingdoms that are being set up under our noses. They are economic kingdoms or empires. These are knowledge empires. Do you think it’s a coincidence that China sends tens of thousands of students to America to the best universities in America and then those students leave America and go back to China? What do they go do there? They get the knowledge from the best in America. They take it back to China because they want to be the premium knowledge base in the world. So, there is a knowledge empire structure or a knowledge framework and there is a wealth framework and these two are busy accumulating and working together for the absolute distribution of power.
So, if we consider a single mighty warrior that was under David’s leadership, where he was anointed king, but not yet appointed king, he was a man that was on the run from a king who was corrupt. Hello. What was King Saul’s corruption? King Saul’s corruption was that he was more interested in the voice of the people, the will of the people, than he was in the voice of God and the will of God. It was God that appointed him by the will of the people, but he was more interested in the will of the people and what the people said, than what God said. That is another big reason why David was a man after God’s heart, because he was more interested in what God wanted than what the people wanted for all his flaws.
So, here David is running from a corrupt king and he’s having to live in caves for a period of time, but he’s busy building an army. Now just bear with me for a minute. King Saul was a figurehead of the will of the people. So, the people said, “We want a king.” Samuel the prophet said, “They’ve rejected me.” God says, “No Samuel, they haven’t rejected you, they’ve rejected Me as their King. I will give them what they want, but this is the cost.” Remember? Now Saul takes the best of their children and go and fight against other nations. Whereas before God was the One Who would fight their fights. Now man is going to fight their fights.
So God says alright they can have a king, He appoints King Saul. King Saul gets to hear about and gets to know that the anointing is no longer on him in a manifested way, David has got the anointing. So he’s appointed, God is never going to un-appoint someone, you can just look through the whole Bible. When God places a blessing on someone for something He never removes it, never.
So, David is on the run. In this whole process, he finds himself in a cave where Saul, with a couple hundred discontented, in debt men. Who they running from? Same king, same king. This same king comes into the cave, tells his men to wait outside because he’s going to the toilet, in the cave. This very same cave that David is in, hiding from the very king that’s chasing him. This very same David that’s been anointed by the prophet as the next king. With a whole bunch of men that are discontented with the current king. This king comes into the cave, these men, whisper, whisper, whisper, “God has given the king into your hands, kill him.” He’s all man alone where will you ever get another opportunity, he’s got no warriors, he’s got no army, he’s man alone, here we are, kill him, now’s your time. Moment of vulnerability, moment of weakness, moment of huge strength versus very little strength. David starts to teach his discontented people a big lesson. The first lesson he’s about to teach them is, “I will not touch God’s anointed.” I will not touch God’s anointed.
Opportunity does not equal execution. Opportunity is not everything in life. That is contrary to everything that the system will tell you. The system will tell you that opportunity is everything. Some people will work their whole life to create one opportunity. Here David is presented with the perfect opportunity, wouldn’t you agree? If you were at war, it’s the perfect opportunity. So much so that his people say, “God has created this opportunity, God has created this situation. You must take it, it’s obviously God. Can’t you see David? God that anointed you is now recognizing you, He’s created it, go for it David.” Spiritual principle, I will not touch God’s anointed.
But what he does do is he cuts a piece of his cloth, his cloak off and holds it and the next day he goes and he walks out and he says to Saul, “I could have taken your life yesterday, last night, but I didn’t. I am always your servant.” Saul’s reaction for a season was that he absolutely repents, wails and weeps at the condition of his heart. He takes his army, he goes away and he leaves David in peace for a season. Which allows David to create a mighty army of mighty men not just contented, discontented people. This David, God uses him to create an empire. He uses him to create a kingdom of worship, a kingdom where he establishes the Temple of God for generations. The same David.
I’m gonna fast forward you to a story of David. Now, David does some foolish stuff as I got reading to you in that book. David does some foolish stuff, sleeps with a woman that’s already married, has a baby by that woman, tries to kill her husband, does kill her husband on the front. It requires a prophet to come and address him for his sins. I’ll tell you what, if God ever speaks to you about something that’s wrong in your life, if you don’t repent, repentance is not an outward thing. Repentance is an inward thing. You gotta show on the outside what’s on the inside, otherwise it’s not repentance.
But repentance is what David did. Because what David did was when the prophet said, “You are that man, David.” For seven days, he puts on sackcloth and ashes and he eats nothing and he mourns and he grieves at the state of his own heart. But the prophet said, “Because you behave this way, even though you repent, the sword of this thing will not leave your household.” So, just bear with me as I move through the story quickly.
So Absalom is born, Absalom becomes his own son, sits in the city gates and he turns the Nation of Israel against his own father. He turns the wise men that are David’s counselors against the king. These wise men are so smart that they actually advise Absalom on a strategy that works so well, David has no option but to take what he has from his palace, his woman and his staff and servants and he flees. He runs and he’s on the run and Absalom comes and occupies the palace. The wise counselor says to Absalom, “Go after him, wipe him out, go kill him, it’s your time. Our counsel and your willingness has brought about an opportunity. It’s your time to wipe him out. It’s your time to kill him, go after him. With all of the army of Israel, they’re all on your side, you’ve won the victory, you occupy the palace, go after your Dad, the king.”
Absalom in his arrogance says, “What’s the point? I’ve already won. How is my father in this weakened state ever gonna come back and take me out? Not possible.” I think that wise man’s name was Abinadab. Anybody can remember? No? Anyway, what he does was the minute Absalom says, “I’m not going after David.” He goes home, puts his affairs in order and hangs himself. This wise man that advised Absalom that got him this great victory, went and hung himself. Why? Because he said, “Now, I know that God is with David because if David is still alive, the God of Israel is going to bring him back and I’ll have no future. So best I take my future now because God is with him.” So it proves, he goes, he waits, he signs treaties with other armies, he comes back, he defeats Absalom, he resumes the throne. God was with him. I wonder if the seed of his deliverance was not sown in the cave? “I will not touch God’s anointed.” When it came time for him to be destroyed because of his own bad choices, God says, “I will spare your kingdom and your life because I promised it, but I will do it in such a way that you live out your lives with strength.” Huh?
Okay, I’m nearly done with the first hour. How are you enjoying the blockbuster day so far? Praise the Lord. So there are these kingdoms, these empires that are busy being formed on a global stage and their whole business is to accumulate knowledge and accumulate wealth so they can be the power brokers on the earth. Don’t for one minute think that if you’re a big power broker, they are going to be satisfied with the much power they have. Don’t for one minute think that the European Union with all of its power of the union together is satisfied with the power of the European Union. They want more. They have a globalist agenda because they want to be the centre of the distribution of wealth.
Don’t for one minute think that the United States because it’s the number one capitalist nation on the earth, at the moment, that it is satisfied with that. They want the power that the capitalist agenda would bring to control all trade on the earth. They want to control governments, they want to control trade. Don’t for one minute think that Russia, China, Brazil, South Africa that formed the BRICS that they’re going to be satisfied with an alliance of economies. You think China is going to give its voice over to South Africa on anything when it comes to trade? What about Brazil? You think Xi Jinping is going to take advice from Vladimir Putin? “Oh, but we are alliance partners in a whole new power economic block.” Right? You think Putin is going to let Xi Jinping tell him what to do? Bedfellows in the accumulation of power until it comes down to, “Okay, we got the power now. Now who’s going to be the number one power person?” You just have to look at history. I’m going to finish with this because it’ll lead into what I’m going to read first up in the next session.
If you don’t know, Xi Jinping and the Chinese Communist Party had a structure of government which said that if you had so many terms as the chairman of the Communist Party that your term either had to come to an end or something else had to happen. So they changed the rules so that the something else that could happen allowed Xi Jinping to be voted in again. When he got voted in, he got voted in as the chairman for life. Yes?
So, Xi Jinping is the current chairman of the Chinese Communist Party for life. That doesn’t mean to say he’s going to have all the power because there’s lots of undercurrents that happen in the Communist Party. The day that he was sworn in, in this grand assembly of the Chinese Communist Party, the very same event, the guy that was the chairman of the Communist Party, that had the second most influence, Xi Jinping had him goose-marched out of the chambers and no one has seen him again. What does that tell you? Any threat to my newfound power, I will obliterate it. Those guys, that guy, those people, you think they’re satisfied with taking over Taiwan? Taiwan is a blip on the radar for them. It might be the thing that they end up flexing their muscles with, but you think that the Belt and Railway Initiative that they’ve got going from China the East through to Asia and Europe, all these things, and they’re buying ports and they’re buying people’s debts, government’s debts around the world, you think they’re satisfied with it? What’s this all about, you might ask? “Pastor John, why are you talking all about this?” Because under David’s reign, one man, just one, was strong enough to take out eight hundred people with a single spear. Hello, can I fast forward to the New Testament Church?
Did you know that the armour of God comes with, the armour comes with a spear? Rick Renner and others have preached and taught on this. I happen to agree with it. If you study the Roman armour, that spear is the spear of prayer. Because you can launch it and it can kill somebody far away, but you can also use it in close quarters and you can use it like a sword and you can kill people with a spear, prayer. Hallelujah, glory to Jesus. I wonder if it’s a coincidence that we are a Church that is leading, I want to say, we are one of the leading Churches in the world in powerful authoritative prayer. We are, we are.
God is no longer interested in one man taking out eight hundred. He’s interested in a single Church destroying the works of the enemy. He is interested in His Kingdom that is on His shoulders. His is the Kingdom forever and ever. To Him be the glory forever and ever. To Him is the praise and the honor forever and ever. His is the Kingdom, His is the Government, His is the Authority and He’s given all of that to the Church. We are not a wussy organization. We are not a playing-games-church. We don’t come to Church on a Sunday and clap hands and feel good and then leave here and we just forget about the fact that we were at Church and you can’t remember what was even taught to Church on Sunday. We are not those people.
We take the Word of God that He brings to us from the Holy Spirit through His servants. We take prophetic words and the words that God gives to our spiritual father and we live with these words. We do battle with these words. We use these words as powerful tools to bring about the Kingdom of God and the Kingdom of Light. Hallelujah. So we are not just a congregation. We are an Ecclesia Church. Hallelujah. I could not preach this message if we were not an Ecclesia Church. I thank God that we are. I thank God that we are because He’s got some great things in mind for us. Amen. You’re enjoying blockbuster day? Let’s break for ten or fifteen minutes and we’ll come back. Amen.
Are you having fun so far, today? I trust you’re also learning something. Are you? Sure? Praise the Lord. If you can’t control people through knowledge and wealth, what is the one other thing that you can use to your advantage to manipulate people? Culture. Right? Which you use media to do. Specifically in our modern-day world, social media. There’s a reason it’s called social media, is because you can manipulate cultures. So, if you can’t control people through knowledge and you can’t dominate them through economic power, then which pulls into political power or governmental power. So, if you can’t do that, then culture. Which is why there is now such a global thing as cancel culture. If you don’t do what the culture says, you’re canceled.
So the developments in the culture of the day are not just, well, you know, it’s a liberal thing. It’s a liberal thing because there’s something behind the liberal thing. I’m going back to a church in the US now in when I go back in a month or so’s time to the US, I’m going to spend most of my time with Brother Jerry, but I am going to a couple of churches as the Lord has led me to do. Brother Jerry is quite happy with it, Joe and Jerry are quite happy with the way that things have developed for us. But I was in this church probably twelve years ago.
Well, I’ve been there since then, but as far back as about twelve, thirteen years ago when I started going to the church, I remember, or to this group of Christians, I remember the Lord, the Spirit of the Lord came upon me and I said at that time, it would be about the time that there was an election for Barack Obama’s first term of office, maybe two years before that. I remember the Spirit of the Lord came upon me. While I was speaking in a convention of these Christian people, the Spirit of the Lord came upon me and I started to speak about the liberal agenda of the United States and how the liberal agenda is going to undermine and it’s going to be a force against the Church, if the Church doesn’t actually rise up and become the Church. That’s around about 2009, 2008, maybe somewhere around about there, where I was speaking under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
That liberal agenda has accelerated so much through social media that today we have a culture, a thing of culture where cultural forces that use social media are influencing the direction of governments and certainly they are influencing people’s lifestyles and behaviours in a very dramatic way. If we as a people allow this culture, knowledge and wealth to drive our agenda in life, we are going to be a people that are going to be without purpose. We are going to be driven by survival, not purpose. If we’re not careful, we can fully embrace without thinking, the survival of the fittest and the survival of the strongest. So, that can come in fittest strongest financially, fittest strongest intellectually, fittest strongest culturally or socially. “If I’ve got those things covered, I can’t be destroyed.” Really? If the whole society and culture sets its target on you, so then some people might say, “Well, I just won’t let myself be put in that position.” You don’t know because it’s not about when you become the target because this thing’s all rooted spiritually. Okay.
Many, many years ago, I was looking at the date of this and this goes back to 2006. This book was written in 2006. I’m going to read to you a portion of this book now and then I’m going to read you a portion of this book at the end of our last session this afternoon. We’re going to, it’s going to serve as a part of our context for today. You ready for me to read to you? Okay.
The demonic army was so large that it stretched as far as I could see. It was separated into divisions with each carrying a different banner. The foremost division of this demonic army marched under the banner of pride, self-righteousness, respectability, selfish ambition, unrighteous judgment and jealousy. There were many more of these evil divisions beyond my scope of vision. But those in the vanguard of this terrible horde from hell seemed to be the most powerful. The vanguard meaning the front of this division. And the front was these things, pride, self-righteousness, respectability, self ambition, unrighteous judgment and jealousy.
The leader of the army was the accuser of the brethren himself. The weapons carried by the sword were also named. The swords were named, intimidation. The spears were named, treachery. The arrows were named, accusation, gossip, slander and fault finding. Scouts and smaller companies of demons with such names as rejection, bitterness, impatience, unforgiveness and lust were sent in advance of this army to prepare for the main attack. These smaller companies and scouts were much fewer in number. But they were no less powerful than some of the larger divisions that followed. They were smaller only for strategic reasons.
Just as John the Baptist was given an extraordinary anointing for baptizing the masses to prepare them for the Lord, these smaller demonic companies were given extraordinary evil powers for baptizing the masses. A single demon of bitterness could sow his poison into multitudes of people, even entire races or cultures. A demon of lust would attach himself to a single performer, a movie or advertisement and send what appeared to be bolts of electric slime that would hit and desensitize great masses of people. All of this was to prepare for the great horde of evil that followed. Although this army was marching specifically against the Church, it also was attacking anyone else that it could. I knew it was seeking to preempt a coming move of God, which was destined to sweep great numbers of people into the Church.
The primary strategy of this army was to cause division on every possible level of relationship, Churches with each other, congregations with their pastors, husbands and wives, children and parents and even children with each other. The scouts were sent to locate the openings in Churches, families or individuals that such spirits as rejection, bitterness and lust could exploit and enlarge. Through these openings would pour demonic influences that completely overwhelmed their victims.
The most shocking part of this vision was that this horde was not riding on horses, but primarily on Christians. Most of them were well-dressed, respectable and had the appearance of being refined and educated. But there also seemed to be representatives from almost every walk of life. While these people professed Christian truths in order to appease their consciences, they lived their lives in agreement with the powers of darkness. As they agreed with those powers, their resigned demons grew more and more and easily directed their actions.
Many of these believers were host to more than one demon, but one of the demons would clearly be in charge. The nature of the one in charge dictated which division it was marching in. Even though the divisions were all marching together, it also seemed that the entire army was on the verge of chaos. For example, the demons of hate hated the other demons as much as they did the Christians. The demons of jealousy were all jealous of one another. The only way the leaders of this horde kept the demons from fighting each other was to keep their hatred focused on the people they were riding. However, these people would often break out in fights with each other. I knew that some of the armies that had come against Israel in the Scriptures had ended up destroying themselves in the same way. When their purpose against Israel was thwarted, their rage was uncontrollable, and they began fighting each other.
I noted that the demons were riding on these Christians, but they were not in them as was the case with non-Christians. It was obvious that these believers had only to stop agreeing with the demons in order to get free of them. For example, if the Christian on which a demon of jealousy was riding just started to question the jealousy, the demon would weaken very fast. When this happened the weakened demon would cry out and the leaders of the division would direct all of the demons around that Christian to attack him until the jealousy would build up on him again. If this did not work, the demons would begin quoting Scriptures, perverting in such a way that would justify the bitterness, accusations, or other satanic influences they were spreading.
The power of the demons was clearly rooted almost entirely in the power of deception, but they had deceived these Christians to the point where they could use them and the Christians would think they were being used by God. This was because banners of self-righteousness were being carried by almost everyone that was a Christian so that those marching could not even see the banners that marked the true nature of these divisions.
As I looked far to the rear of this army I saw the entourage of the accuser himself. I began to understand his strategy, and I was amazed that it was so simple. He knew that a house divided could not stand, and his army represented an attempt to bring such division to the Church that she would be powerless and ineffective. It was apparent that the only way the accuser could do this was to use Christians to war against their own brethren, and that is why almost everyone in the forward divisions was a Christian, or at least a professing Christian. Every step that these deceived believers took in obedience to the accuser strengthened his power over them. This made his confidence and the confidence of all of his commanders grow with the progress of the army as it marched forward. It was apparent that the power of this army depended on the agreement of these Christians with the ways of evil.
What do you think, church? Do you think that just giving ways to your self judgment of someone else is just you? Do you think self ambition is just you? Do you think that self righteousness is just your own perspective of the fact that, “my life is okay, so I’m good,” is just you?
You know, I’ve been around Church a long time where everything was a demon. Then the Church compensated by going the other way and said but a lot of your stuff is your own lust, it’s the own carnal nature of the human being. The problem with that is that you can’t say it’s one or the other, it’s both. They feed each other. The reason I’m reading you this story today is because I want us to understand that there is a real spiritual war going on here and it’s not that far away. It’s not that far away. I’m going to share with you in a minute. Well, I’m going to share with you right now.
You know, in the Old Testament, there is a story of Elisha and the Syrians came to encamp around about him and his servant said, “We’re done for. This whole army has surrounded us and we’re done for.” And Elisha says, “There’s more of us than there are of them.” His servant says, “Me, you, us two, big army?” So then he says, “Lord, open his eyes.” Nothing changed. They were standing in the same place. All that happened was he now could see into the spirit realm. An instant he saw chariots, he saw the Hosts of the Army of the Lord encamping around about them and suddenly he realized that the Armies of the Lord are much more and much more powerful than the natural human army that stood in front of them.
We think that actually, the spirit realm is somewhere else. These demon forces are working somewhere else as this man having this vision that he had from the Lord many years ago, and wrote this book. As he talks about it, it was on the backs of Christians. The army’s transportation mechanism was Christians. Hey, thank God that we are awake and we are alert and we are not just going to let the modern day world tell us how to think and how to behave. Do you agree? Can I continue? Do you want to hear more? Okay. Obviously, you’re enjoying the storytelling.
Trailing behind these first divisions was a multitude of other Christians who were prisoners of this army. All of these captive Christians were wounded and they were guarded by smaller demons of fear. There seemed to be more prisoners than there were demons in the army. Surprisingly, these prisoners still had their swords and shields, but they did not use them. It was a shock to see that so many could be kept captive by so few of the little demons of fear. If the Christians had just used their weapons, they could easily have freed themselves and probably done great damage to the entire evil horde. Instead, they marched submissively along, controlled by little demons of fear.
Above the prisoners, the sky was black with vultures named depression. Occasionally, these vultures would land on the shoulders of a prisoner and vomit on him. The vomit was condemnation. Where the vomit hit the prisoner, he would stand up and march a little straighter for a while and then slump over, even weaker than before. Again, I wondered why the prisoners did not simply kill these vultures with their swords, which they could have easily done? Sometimes the weaker prisoners would stumble and fall. As soon as they hit the ground, the other prisoners would begin stabbing them with their swords, scorning them for their weakness.
The vultures would then come and begin devouring the fallen ones even before they were dead. The other Christian prisoners stood by and watched this approvingly, occasionally stabbing the fallen ones again with their swords. As I watched, I realised that these prisoners thought the vomit of condemnation was truth from God. Then I understood that these prisoners actually thought they were marching in the army of God. This is why they did not kill the little demons of fear or the vultures they thought because they thought these were God’s messengers.
The darkness from the cloud of vultures made it so hard for these prisoners to see that they naively accepted everything which happened to them as being from the Lord. They felt that those who stumbled were under God’s judgement, which is why they attacked them the way they did. They thought they were helping God. The only food provided for these prisoners was the vomit from the vultures. Those who refused to eat it simply weakened until they fell. Those who did eat it were strengthened for a time, but were the strength of the evil one. Then they would weaken unless they drank the waters of bitterness that were constantly being offered to them. After drinking the bitter waters, they would begin to vomit on the others. When one of the prisoners began to do this, a demon that was waiting for a ride would climb up on him and ride him up to one of the front divisions.
Even worse than the vomit from the vultures was a repulsive slime that these demons were urinating and defecating upon the Christians as they rode. The slime was the pride, selfish ambition, eccetera as previously mentioned. That was the nature of their division. However, the slime made the Christians feel so much better than the condemnation had that they easily believed the demons were messengers from God. They actually thought this slime was the anointing of the Holy Spirit. I had been so repulsed by the evil army that I wanted to die. Then the voice of the Lord came to me saying, “This is the beginning of the enemy’s last-day army. This is Satan’s ultimate deception. His greatest power of destruction is released when he uses Christians to attack one another.” Hello.
Throughout the ages he has used this army, but never has he been able to use so many for his evil purposes as he is now. Do not fear, I have an army too. You must now stand and fight because there is no longer any place to hide from this war. You must fight for My Kingdom, for truth and for those who have been deceived.” This Word from the Lord was so encouraging that I immediately began yelling to the Christian prisoners that they were deceived, thinking that they would listen to me. When I did this, it seemed that the whole army turned to look at me. The cloud of fear and depression that was over them started to come toward me. I still kept yelling because I thought the Christians would wake up and realise what was happening to them. Instead, many of them started reaching for their arrows to shoot at me. The others just hesitated as if they did not know what to make of me. I knew I had spoken out prematurely and that it had been a very foolish mistake.
Time for a confession from me. This confession is that when I came into the ministry, I stood for a level of truth that I spoke out prematurely. It opened up me and my family to a level of spiritual and demonic attack that took us years and years and years to recover from. I thank God, that in an extremely vulnerable time, God sent people into my life. He sent a Pastor Lynn into my life and He sent others. He had a Brother Jerry stand with me and when we were at times ready to quit, that there was no giving up because as you will see from this story, you can’t quit. If you’re one of those Christians that are just going to let the enemy vomit on you or let the demons do their dirty stuff all over you, condemnation, judgement all of that stuff. There’s no place for that. We’ve got to get up and war. We’ve got to take on the battle. We’ve got to be in the army of God. Amen.
Well, I’m going to read you the rest of the story because this represents to a large extent what happened in our lives. We had to fight many self righteous Christians. We had to fight people amongst us. Great division came into our Church because accusations were leveled at Pastors Sharon and I. Many things have happened to us in our lives, from Christians, and it nearly destroyed our ministry. Nearly destroyed our calling. Nearly. But not quite.
So, here we stand as an united Ecclesia today, strong in the Lord, understanding what the power of prayer is, living in faith, anointed by the Holy Spirit, a divine assignment and divine connections in our lives. We would have had none of this if we had quit under the pressure of those evil onslaughts that the enemy used Christians to bring against us. I understood then as I understand now that it was not them, but it was the spirits that were driving them. This that I’m speaking to you, I saw this in my spirit, without referring to this book. I don’t believe this book was even written then. This only came later, years later.
But I saw this in my spirit, because when there was a division going on and people were accusing me of things. The Lord said to me, “Whatever you judge about these Christians will be their future, John.” So, I said, “Lord, I need help here.” Then He showed me what would become of their futures and this that I’m speaking to you now, I saw this in the spirit. I saw the demons and the enemies coming into their lives through ambition and through, I wouldn’t have called that then. I just saw the demons coming into their lives and slowly but surely eroding and undermining and bringing their lives down. I saw the impact of their lives and their children’s lives and their children’s children’s lives. I saw this great darkness and this great depression and this great horrible thing happening to these Christians. I saw it in my spirit like a movie. And when I saw that, I said, “Lord.” I couldn’t, I couldn’t, if it was up to me, there’s no way that I could let this happen to anybody that even spoke one word, because the consequences are so horrible and so terrible and to be in the power and the clutch of the enemy of God and the evil force in such a way. There’s no way that I could ever want that. That wasn’t the human John speaking. That was the love of God spirit man, John, that was driving me to pray that prayer. Then I prayed that prayer and I said, “I forgive them, Lord. Let not their sin behold as an account against them. As if it’s for me, forgive them of their sin, Lord. I forgive them completely as if they brought no accusation against me.”
When I release them with my words out of my spirit, man, God gave me a revelation. And it’s become a driving revelation for me. You heard me preach it many times, the betrayal of the disciples, the betrayal of Peter and the betrayal of Judas and the Lord said to me, “The disciples that betrayed, they were betrayed, they betrayed Jesus, because of the pressure. You can get them back. You can win them back through love.” The betrayal of Peter is a choice that Peter has to make, but the betrayal of Judas is not a betrayal that can be redeemed. When He showed me those levels of betrayal that Jesus had to go through, I understood that this is a spiritual battle and it is being shown in this story.
Then I turned and saw the army of the Lord standing behind me. Let me just say this before I move on. Many people have had a lot of things to say about me and Pastor Sharon and about our Church over many years. But there came a time when, as you will see when I read now and later this afternoon, there came a time when we grew in strength and then we moved and God moved us and God helped us to move above the chaos of vultures and above the chaos of the evil hordes of depression and many other things and the further we moved up the mountain, the power of God increased in our lives till now and even now we have an authority in the spirit that people, they want to diminish it. It’s not possible. It’s not possible for any man to diminish the authority that God has given us.
I do not stand and speak this with selfish ambition. I do not stand and say this with pride or self-righteousness. I stand this with a full understanding of the price that I paid with premature teaching, premature words, in a way that people were not ready to receive them. I stand with, as I read earlier on, if every Christian was perfect, there wouldn’t be a need for a Church, because then every perfect Christian could just be perfect wherever they lived and they would create more perfect people. But we need the Church because we are imperfect and the Church becomes strong together, which is why the devil has to fight against the Church because it’s only the Church that can defeat the devil. There is no single individual that can defeat this army. He’s been practicing self-ambition and lust and self-righteousness and all of those previously named sins. He’s been practicing working them in people’s lives for centuries, millennia and we’re around for fifty, sixty, seventy, hundred years and we think we on our own we can take it, bring it on. Not on your own, you can’t. There’s only One Person that’s ever been able to do that. His name is Jesus. He was born by the Father Himself with His seed, not a man’s seed. He’s our Savior and He’s our Champion. His name is Jesus. He’s the only One that could do that.
So then I turned and I saw the army of the Lord standing behind me. There were thousands of soldiers, but they were still greatly outnumbered. I was shocked and disheartened, for it seemed there were actually many more Christians being used by the evil one than there were in the army of the Lord. I knew that the battle about to begin was going to be viewed as the great Christian civil war because very few would understand the dark powers that were behind the impending conflict. As I looked more closely at the army of the Lord, the situation seemed even more discouraging. Only a small number were fully dressed in their armour. Many only had one or two pieces of their armour on. Some did not have any at all.
A large number were already wounded. Most of those had all their armour, still had very small shields. A shield of faith. Which I knew would not protect them from the onslaught that was coming. Very few of those who were fully armed were adequately trained to use their weapons. To my further surprise, the great majority of these soldiers were women and children. Behind this army was a trailing mob, which seemed very different in nature from the prisoners who followed the evil horde. Those in the mob seemed overly happy, as if intoxicated. They were playing games and singing songs, feasting and roaming about from one little camp to the next.
This reminded me of Woodstock. So, if you don’t know what Woodstock is, go look it up on Google later and you can see what Woodstock is a revolution of music, drugs and free sex in the sixties. I ran towards the army of the Lord to escape the onslaught I knew would be coming at me from the evil horde. In every way, it seemed we were in for a mostly one-sided slaughter. I was especially concerned for the mob that was trailing the Lord’s army. So I tried to raise my voice above the clamour to warn them that the battle was about to begin. Let’s call them partying Christians. Happy-go-lucky Christians. “My life must be good. Make me feel good. If my life is good, I party. I don’t need to fight. It’s a party. Christianity is a party. Help me dream so that I can fulfill my dreams. Help me go after the best life that I can live.”
Only a few could even hear me. Those who heard me gave me the peace sign and said they did not believe in war. When those in the mob assured me that the Lord would not let anything bad happen to them, I tried to explain that He had given us armour because we needed it for what was about to take place. To this they retorted that they had come to a place of peace and joy where nothing like that could happen to them. I began praying earnestly for the Lord to increase the shields of those with the armour and to help protect those who were not ready for the battle. Then a messenger came up to me, gave me a trumpet and told me to blow it quickly. When I did, those who had at least some of their armour on immediately responded, snapping to their attention. More armour was brought to them, which they quickly put on. I noticed that those who were wounded did not put armour over their wounds. But before I could say anything about this, enemy arrows began raining down on us.
Everyone who did not have all of his armour on was wounded. Those who had not covered their wounds were stuck again in the same wound. Those who were hit by arrows of slander immediately began to slander those who were not wounded. Those who were hit with gossip began to gossip. And soon a major division had been created within our own camp. I felt that we were on the verge of destroying ourselves, just as some of the heathen armies in Scripture had done by rising up to kill each other. The feeling of helplessness was terrible. I’m nearly done with the story, of reading the story.
Then vultures swooped down to pick up the wounded and deliver them into the camp of prisoners. The wounded still had swords and could have easily struck down the vultures, but they did not. They were actually carried off willingly because they were so angry at those who were not wounded like they were. I quickly thought about the mob behind the army and ran to see what happened to them. It seemed impossible, but the scene among them was even worse. Thousands lay on the ground, wounded and groaning. The sky over them was darkened by the vultures that were carrying them off to become prisoners of the enemy. Many of those who were not wounded just sat in a stupor of unbelief. They too were easily carried away by the vultures.
Even though a few had begun to fight off the vultures since they did not have the proper weapons, the vultures did not even pay them any attention. The wounded were so angry that they would threaten and drive away anyone who tried to help them, but they became docile and submissive to the vultures. Those from this mob who had been wounded and had tried to fight off the vultures began running from the scene of battle. The first encounter with the enemy was so devastating that I was tempted to join them in their flight.
Then, incredibly fast, some of those who had fled began reappearing with full suits of armor on, holding large shields. This was the first bit of encouragement that I remember seeing. These warriors were returning no longer had the mirth of the party, but an awesome resolve had now replaced it. I knew that although these had been deceived once, they would not be easily deceived again. They began to take their place, the place of those who had fallen, and even began forming new ranks to protect the rear and flanks. This caused such great courage to spread through the army that the determination of everyone to stand and fight again began to rise. Three angels named Faith, Hope and Love immediately came and stood behind the army. As we looked at them, all of our shields began to grow. It was amazing how quickly despair had turned to faith. It was a solid faith too, tempered by experience. Hallelujah.
Romans chapter 12 verse 1 says this, I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God (Romans 12:1-2 NKJV). I’ve read this to you over many months in different translations. I’m going to remind you what verse 2 says in The Passion Translation. 2Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you, but be inwardly transformed by the Holy Spirit through a total reformation of how you think. This will empower you to discern God’s will as you live a beautiful life, satisfying and perfect in His eyes (Romans 12:2 TPT). This is not a beautiful and satisfying life according to your desire. It’s a beautiful and satisfying life in His eyes.
So this whole weekend is called Crossover. Why did the Holy Spirit want me to call it Crossover? Because we as a Church have to understand that we can’t just live the way that everybody in the world lives and think that we just have to be the odd, occasional light to the world and a little bit of salt of the earth and that that’s going to cut it. We have to be the army of the Lord. We have to be a people that are a holy people. We have to be a people that are a royal priesthood. We have to be a people that are kings and priests of the Most High God. We cannot just be a people that live in the world, with the world, as the world, with the occasional ray of light that may or may not come from our lifestyle choices or a few occasional words that might be uttered out of our mouths that might lead someone to think maybe they need Jesus. There is a much bigger deal that’s happening in the spirit realm, right now. Every moment of every day.
So the word, as used in that book, the Greek word, is the word metamorphosis or metamorphoo and it’s to transform, like a butterfly is metamorphosed from a lava pupil to a butterfly. It completely transformed. So when the Bible says that we must be transformed, how do you get transformed? Well, you can’t be transformed if you have your body given to anything that you think your body should be given to. Because the previous Scripture says, I beseech you to give your body as a living sacrifice. So, you think, “I can think like God, but I can give my body to whatever I want to.” No, you can’t. If you give your body to whatever you want to, then your body is going to dictate your future. But if you transform your mind and you give your body, then you are going to metamorph. You’re going to be transformed into something that is beautiful.
I’ve used this before, but I just felt led that I should refresh us today. The middle English or the old French version of the word transform was transformare, which is two words, trans and form. So, the word trans is to go across, go beyond. It literally means as stepping across, as moving across, going beyond, moving to the other side, depending on which dictionary you look at. You literally go from one state to another state or one place to another place. You move across from one place to another place.
If you are transformed, then you can’t be in two places at once. You’ve got to go across, which is why the Bible says that Christians that are double minded are unstable in all their ways because they’re trying to be two things at once. They have not moved across. So if you trans, it means you’re surpassing or transcending. The word form is the visible shape or configuration of something, a particular way in which something or a thing exists or appears. So if we are being transformed, then we are literally moving across from appearing as one thing, we are moving across to appearing as a different thing completely. You’re moving away from one thing and becoming an entirely different thing, completely.
If you are being transformed by the renewing of your mind, then you are moved from one place to another place. You cannot be conformed to one place and try and say, “I’m behaving like another place.” It’s not possible. That’s why Jesus says in the Book of Matthew, you cannot say that you can love God and mammon at the same time. You will love one or hate the other one. You can’t do both at the same time because you can’t live in two places at the same time. So, we have to be not conformed to this current culture and the way that the world’s opinions want to influence us. We have to be transformed into something completely else. We’ve got to become something different. Hello Church. Hello Church. We are that amazing people. Transformed. Transformed. We have moved from one place to another. If we are still in the moving, well, that’s also good because we’re moving. We’re not staying conformed. Hallelujah.
I need to read this whole Scripture based on the story that I read you, this morning. I have to read this whole Scripture. Will you bear with me? Ephesians 1 verse 15, 15Therefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints. Now, remember the story I just read you? Are you remembering? I needed to read you that story so that you could get a context of the spiritual war and that the Apostle Paul, when he’s writing this letter, he’s been in the Heavenly realms. He’s understood this war. He’s seen it. So when he says, when, 15 I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, 16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers. Why would he give thanks to the Lord for the Ephesians Church? Because of their faith. Because they love the saints. They were the Church. 17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, 18 the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of his calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints.
Our inheritance is in each other. Our inheritance is not in a bank account. Our inheritance is in each other. 19 And what is the exceeding greatness of His power towards us who believe. Remember what I read earlier, the church is more filled with church leavers than church believers. So the Scripture says, 19 and what is the exceeding greatness of his power towards us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power 20 which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at the right hand in the heavenly places (Ephesians 1:15-20 NKJV).
So for a moment, I’m just going to remind you that when Stephen was being stoned to death, he lifted up his eyes to heaven and the Heavens opened. And he saw the glory of Jesus and the glory of God. And he was taken up out of his body into the Heavenly realm. Why am I saying that? Because in the same way that the demon forces are right here, you just can’t see them. But they’re in the same spirit realm active right here. You can’t see them. But if I eyes could open, you would see them. But so are the angels. So are your weapons of warfare that God has given you. We are right here engaged. Engaged.
20 He seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places. Watch this now, 21 Far above all principality and power and might and dominion. Remember those armies and the hordes and the accuser himself. God has put Jesus at His right hand in charge of the whole deal. Good news. Good news. 21 And every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. 22 And He put all things under His feet, and God gave Him to be head over all things to the Church (Ephesians 1:20-22 NKJV). All those demons, those principalities, those powers, the might and the dominion of all of those streams of knowledge and streams of wealth and cultural wars. Church, you’re in the middle. Do your thing. Take up your position of power. Take up your position of authority. Take up your armour of God. Stand shoulder to shoulder. Do your thing Church. There is nothing that can stand against you.
That’s what the Scripture is telling us in Ephesians. Those demons that trying to bring their slime of condemnation and try to promote self ambition and try to promote jealousy and envy and different things in Christians so that they can get isolated. Be alone. Stand alone. Use all the gifts and talents and callings that God has given you before you were born for yourself. Look how great I am. God says, “Stick with your brothers in the Church.” Don’t get isolated. Don’t go off on your own tangent about how great you are and how wonderful you think you are because you will have safety there shoulder to shoulder. Face shield to face shield. The helmet of salvation. Breastplate of righteousness. Not self righteousness but God’s righteousness. Put the belt of truth on. The loins, let your loins be covered with truth. Let your feet be shot with a preparation of the Gospel of peace. Put on the whole armour. Take a Sword of the Word of God and stick it up to the devil every time he comes against you. Use the Word of God. Use it as a weapon. Hallelujah.
The end of the story I will read to you at the end of the day. It’s fantastic. 22 He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the Church, 23which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all (Ephesians 1:22-23 NKJV). You know if the Church doesn’t do what the Church has to do then it’s like Jesus is absent from the battle. Because Jesus can’t come and refight the battle. We are the battle takers now. We are the warriors of God now. Jesus has done all the fighting He’s ever going to do. So, He moves, remember what I said previously. Remember what I taught previously. Can I have your Bible please? This is God’s love letters to us. He loves us so much that He said, “I need you to have all the letters you need to combat that horde and become what you need to become.” Love letters.
So in the modern day version of this there’s chapters and verses so we can have reference. But I want you to see the Book of Ephesians as one love letter. It’s just one love letter. Don’t see the different chapters. Just read it as a love letter. 1 And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, 2 in which you once walked. Come on, I’ve got six minutes to go and I’m really nearly done. God’s helping me get through this in good timing today. 1 And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, 2 in which you once walked according to the course of this world, We just read in Romans. Don’t be conformed to this world. So once we walked according to this world. Now don’t do it anymore. Just because you did it once doesn’t mean to say you must keep doing it. 2 … according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, those demons, those vultures, those things that I was reading about. That dude. Those guys. Disgusting evil things. They motivate so much of what’s going on in the world today and we must follow them? Don’t do it anymore… the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, It’s still working in the world. Those disobedient to God people… 3 among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others. Children of wrath means we were the point of God’s anger.
4 But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them (Ephesians 2:1-10 NKJV).
What does that sound like to you, church? Does that sound like God’s got a plan? Do you think? Do you think? You think that when God the Father and Jesus and the Holy Spirit made Adam and Eve and the possibility of sin was there that He didn’t already have a plan to deal with it? You think that when He saw the weakness of the human mind and the human nature against all of those evil hordes, that we never stood a chance, you think He had a plan? We are the plan.
It’s not an inevitable thing that every Christian must just give up and die because of their wounds that the devil has been able to inflict on your life. On the contrary, He’s just waiting for a few strong Christians to stop partying. He’s waiting for a few strong Christians to say, “I’m not going to give in to the depression, I’m not going to take the vomit anymore. I’m not going to take all of this stuff.” You start to grow stronger. It’s a choice by the strength of the Holy Spirit. Hallelujah.
So, you will see that there is a picture here of a bridge. And I had some interaction with the media team to choose a picture for me. In our next session, we’re going to start with bridges. I’m going to talk to you a little bit about bridges. Because what does this bridge do? It allows you to cross over. So the crossing over is depending on the scope of the crossing. The type of bridge that you build or the type of bridge that you need, is depending on how big you want the crossing to be. Crossing over. Hallelujah. Praise the Lord.
What time does this afternoon session start? Half past one. Are you ready for lunch? Is an hour and a half enough time? We should be done by 3h30 or 3h40ish. Are you good with this day? [Congregation answers: yes.] I told you it’s a blockbuster day today. Blockbuster. We’re blocking the devil and we’re busting him in the chops. Hallelujah. Hallelujah. Praise Jesus.
May your food be blessed. May it be a nourishment to your body. May it do your body good and not any harm in Jesus’ name. Blessed are you when you go out and blessed are you when you come back. Amen. Bye-bye army. [Pastor John salutes the congregation.]