I Will Take The Children Part 14 – Pastor John Bendixen (JHB)
Scripture References: John 8:32 (NKJV); Ephesians 5:5 (NKJV); Ephesians 5:17 (NKJV); Ephesians 5:18-21 (NKJV); 1 Corinthians 1:18-19 (TPT); 1 Corinthians 1:21-23 (TPT)
Thank You Father that You are our Saviour, Redeemer, You are our Helper, our Strengthener, we can always trust and depend on You. I pray Lord, that even today as we are in Your Presence, and You are here with us that we are ever-changing, ever-growing, ever-strengthening and we receive Your favour and blessing upon our lives Father. In this service today, I pray that Your Word will continue to transform us, make us more like Christ Jesus, more like the Church You want us to be on the earth. I thank You that today’s service will help to bring us closer. In Jesus’ Name. Hallelujah, Amen, Amen. You may be seated.
Praise the Lord. Well God is good to me, what about you? (Congregation responds saying “yes”.) Are you sure? Then I think you should say; “God is good to me.” (Congregation says “God is good to me”). There you go. It sounds a little more convincing you know. Praise the Lord.
We’re doing some major changes to our website platform for a number of reasons. Part of the reason is, in the next week you will be able to access a range of material on video that relate to all of our services, digital connect – all of the stuff we have been doing and you will be able to access it on the platform itself rather than on YouTube. So you will do everything through the website. Hallelujah. We don’t mind being on YouTube, but we prefer to be on our own platform that we can manage things and people like Google don’t have a say over what we do or what we don’t do.
So we have been working on this for some time, but it also has an effect of allowing us to evaluate what is going on, on our platform. So, you’re up for some very interesting and wonderful things and the next time I come back here, I’m going to be talking to you about some things that God has got on my heart for us to be doing big and bold things in the ministry next year, by the end of this year and next year.
Hallelujah, praise the Lord. So, one of the reasons I am telling you that is that you will be able to – if you don’t see TBN on a Tuesday afternoon or a Wednesday afternoon, where your Pastor is preaching on television and you don’t see it for whatever reason, then you will have no idea what kind of truth I am speaking to the world. I’m telling you what I am preaching on that platform is good stuff. Ja, but you don’t know, what would you know, you don’t listen to me, watch me five a clock on a Tuesday afternoon because you see me every week so, “Why should I watch him on TV?” Eina! Are you feeling like ah? A little bit? At least someone is sensitive to this.
Other people are still looking at me like it doesn’t matter what I say, “I am not watching you on TV.” I know you do, Pastor Lynn, you and Elsabe do. I know like Val and Glynn South for example, where they live in Vereeniging and they can’t get here over this period and others, they often send a message and they enjoy the worship or they’re enjoying something about the message or something. I know some people, some people, will watch. Anyway, for you guys who don’t, you can go onto the website and you can watch the TBN sessions and you can watch other church services, and you can watch music videos, and all the stuff we’ve been busy doing this whole year and you can see how busy we’ve been and what good things have been happening and what’s likely to be coming down the pipe.
One of the things I have been preaching on TBN, not that you would know, is I have been preaching on truth. See, Pastor Lynn has been watching. I’ve’ been preaching on Truth. (Pastor Lynn says; “true”). Thank you, Pastor Lynn [Pastor John laughs]. Well, I’d say that’s a fact, truth is something different, but it is true. I’ve been preaching predominantly on the scripture that is in John eight verse 32 8And you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free (John 8:32 NKJV). So I have been talking; it’s not truth that sets you free, because truth is out there. It’s the truth you know that sets you free. So truth is God. So, now I am going to do a bit of TBN teaching for you right now, just for a few minutes.
Truth is God. There is no other truth but God. Anything that is from God, in God, with God; is truth. Anything that contradicts that is not truth. I don’t care if people come to you with scientific facts and say facts are truth; no, that is just facts. What happens out of God is truth and the facts will verify the truth. There is no such thing as truth is one thing and science is another. All science will actually just promote the truth of who God is. Now what happens is people make a choice in their hearts and that they don’t want to know God and they use science to say that God doesn’t exist, or they come up with another philosophy of what God may or may not be and they use science with their own mental and heart justification to say there is no God.
The Bible is clear that God is truth, because He is the source of all life, so it doesn’t matter what anybody else may think truth is, when the source of all life has given you life, then the only life that is truth, is the One that gave you life. True, thank you. That’s why Jesus could say in John 14 verse six; 6Jesus said unto him, I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me (John 14:6 NKJV).
Here He is making a very clear statement. I am the way, I am the truth, and I am the life, and by the way, the Father is the source of all of that, and you can’t get to the Father of all Truth or Way and all Life unless you come through Me. I mean, come on, this is as simple as it gets. It’s a simple truth this, right? The Father is the Source of all life, and so Jesus comes to the earth and He says; “I am the Way, I am the Truth and I am the Life. You think you have life without Me? You don’t. You exist. You think you have the ways, you have a way to live without Me? You don’t. It is just your ways that you choose. If you choose whatever truth that you think you want to live and ways you want to live you are not going to live the kind of life that you can live. You will just exist and you will walk as the Bible says ‘As dead men walking’. You will walk through your life as dead men walking, thinking that life is great but actually you have no clue. It is just survival, that is all it is, it’s just survival.
You may say “Pastor John you are preaching good.” You may say that because I am. If I preach nothing else other than this today it is enough. If you just chewed on this for a week you will begin to understand; “I have to pursue Jesus not myself”. I have to pursue Jesus because He is the Way, He is the Truth and He is the Life. I have to pursue Jesus. I have to pursue Jesus. I have to pursue Jesus.” Jesus is the Way, Jesus is the Truth, Jesus is the Life. Can anybody dispute that? I mean is that complicated? So then all I have to ask you and then we can shut the service down and go home, is; “Are you pursuing Jesus or are you pursuing you?”
Can I go home now? If you think about it that is all you really need to answer. If you say; “I am pursuing me”, then you are pursuing your way, your truth, your life. Your truth would be known as your philosophy, or your ideology, or your value system and value system, by the way, people tend to talk about value systems as something positive all the time but a value system can be; “I kill everybody that crosses me” that does not make it a good value system it just is your value system. “I do not take any prisoners, you cross me I kill you.” There are a lot of people out there like that, you know? Especially like warlords and drug lords and things like that. “You cross me, I kill you. That makes me the most powerful man in the area because you cross me I kill you.” It’s a value system. Not a good one.
So, 6I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one gets to the Father except through Me (John 14:6 NKJV). Pursue Jesus. With everything, you have got pursue. Then you pursue the Way, the Truth, the Life and everything in your world is ordered, by the Way, the Truth, the Life. Everything. Amen.
So, something happened to me this week. On Monday, Tuesday, Tuesday I was in the studio, I went to record TBN and other things, and I was in the studio and I got finished preaching or teaching to the camera, and I, they have stuff there to take stuff off my face, the chemicals off my face that women use every day, I do not know how you do it. Thank God I don’t have to do it. I cannot think that a man wants to actually do that to himself. But, you know, for the camera, okay I will do it, all this stuff and take this stuff off, anyway. I am standing in a studio. The three young people that serve me with recording, preparing the studio and having it all ready, they are all just standing there waiting for me to walk out. Suddenly the Holy Spirit comes upon me, so I just walk into their space and I begin to speak what is on my heart by the Holy Spirit and I begin to talk to them.
I say; “You know it is an amazing thing what God has done in my life.” I said, “When I was seven years old I, was baptised, filled with the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking other tongues and I remember the event, I remember the church, I remember the pew, I remember the people that watched me, I remember the before and after like it was yesterday. I was seven years old and I remember it. I don’t remember what happened to me when I was in the Spirit, I cannot tell you what happened to me when I was in the Spirit but I can tell you that everything that happened before and after and surrounding that, as though it was yesterday.” I said; “You know it is quite an amazing thing that when you are seven years old and you have an encounter with God like that, it is like you are still the little boy that goes out the next day and you play marbles, and you run around and take peaches off the tree that grows in your garden and eat the peaches, and you still have to walk to school the next day and walk back from school, but something has changed in me. I am seven, something changed in me that was never ever, never ever would it be taken away from me.” Impossible, because when you have that encounter with God there is nothing that you understand that is more important, there is nothing as significant as that encounter with God, even though you play marbles with your friend. Even though you go to the athletics track at school, even though you go and play soccer with your school mates, and you are on the school soccer team and you are on the cricket team and you are doing all the things that other boys are doing in the school. Something happened in me. Right?
That thing was never ever lost till now, I have never had to, and some people have had this and people that have been around pentecostal churches for some time, people will tell you that some people really struggle to get filled with the Holy Spirit and sometimes they go for a year or two or three years or even longer without getting filled with the Holy Spirit and speaking in other tongues. Maybe their mind gets in the way, maybe they want something, whatever. From as early as I can remember I never had to actually even ask God to get filled in the Holy Spirit I just always spoken tongues. No one ever had to lay hands on me, no one had to say anything to me I just could speak in tongues. I didn’t even ask God for the infilling of the Holy Spirit but when I was seven He did. I have never, when I speak with my spiritual language, I do not even doubt, and some people have this doubt where they say; “Am I speaking from head or am I speaking from my spirit?” I have never even had that question I just know that when I speak it is from my spirit because He filled me. That moment is still with me and I was seven. Huh?
I am telling them this story, not quite in this way, and I went on and I said; “And that moment led me to another moment when I was, it was in July, I don’t remember exactly when in July, sometimes I would say I was fourteen, sometimes I would say I was fifteen because it was around my birthday, my fifteenth birthday; but I could still have been fourteen. It was around my fifteenth birthday when the Lord actually came upon me. I went out to go and evangelise on the streets with my friends who would then all go back to church with the people that got saved on the streets, and then when I was done with evangelising the Holy Spirit said to me go back to your room and stay there don’t go to church tonight. So that’s like for me, that is like, to miss church, “No way.”
Church is one of the most favourite things that I do. Anyway, I went into my room, do you know where we lived at that time, if you go back downtown to Berea, there is a round building, it is called “Ponte”, because of our circumstances and whatever. We lived on the thirty-third floor of Ponte. I went up with the lift to the thirty-third floor of Ponte and I am in the room alone, by myself, and the next minute I am aware that His presence has come into the room. He is there. He is just there. Jesus is just there, I can’t see Him, I can’t touch Him, but He is there as powerfully as I have ever known Him to be. He is just there. Then He begins to speak to me, not in an audible voice but in my spirit, He begins to speak to me and He begins to talk to me about my life, and my calling, and what He is going to do, and in my mind it was like such a short time and my parents were home, and like when His presence left. They arrived home, and it was “pshewt”, it was like that. I thought; “Why are they home so soon, did something go wrong?” In the meantime, it was three hours that I was in the presence of God. I remember it like yesterday.
When I went to the army, and I am in this place, where the whole systematic reprogramming of a young man is to be to make choice about how long his hair is; whether he wants to wear bell-bottom jeans or tight jeans, or whatever time he wants to get up in the morning, you know? In the army, you are reprogrammed, and they need to reprogramme you because actually, your life depends on the reprogramming. This is a real thing. This is a real military psychological thing; why you wear a uniform, why you all get up together, why you train together, why you do everything together, because, it is only in the togetherness of the military unit when you come against the enemy that you can help each other and actually war with each other effectively and your life gets saved because of your training. You can’t think like you want to by yourself, they reprogramme you.
You know, they stand in front of you, as part of the reprogramming, and they put their face right here, and they swear at you, and spit at you, they rage on you, and if you don’t follow the right protocol they take their boot and they kick you on the shin. I mean, you know, those were days, now it would be called a human rights violation. This is what actually made the South African defence force at that time, in many many peoples eyes, the top three or four defence forces in the world; along with the Israelis, and the British and the Americans, because actually, they treated you, reprogrammed you.
I made a decision that I was going to encounter God in the army, you know, I went to an elite unit where, part of the thing was; if you don’t like it, “Goodbye, walk. You can go to another unit”, and you can do it today and they kept speaking to you like that because they were actually testing your mentality and your mental strength. What they were doing, they were putting you through most severe programming, reprogramming. They wanted you to be able to react to an order instantaneously without thinking when your life was on the line. Why am I telling you this? Because of all this process of their reprogramming, they couldn’t touch my spirit. My spirit was dominating, it wasn’t just there, I wasn’t just there as a Christian, but living as a non-christian; swearing, using the language, drinking beers with the guys, doing what they do to get away from. I wasn’t doing that stuff, my spirit man was dominating.
When they were shouting in my face, when I was whacked out with push-ups and sit-ups, then they demanded more and they began to run more and the hours of the day clicked by and don’t know if you can go another minute and you just find that if you can put one foot in front of the other you get through another minute. Their whole idea was to break you, and while they were busy trying to break my body and my mind, my spirit was dominating. Why? Because when I was seven the Holy Ghost came upon me, when I was fifteen, Jesus came into my room, when I stood there with these guys railing on me and trying to dominate me, they could and had permission to dominate my body and dominate my thinking, but they could not dominate my spirit. So when they had time for a smoke break, I would take my new testament Bible out and I would read my Bible because I was determined to feed my spirit, so that my spirit would dominate. I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
When you are in the army, they will want to tell you, you don’t have a mother you don’t have a father you don’t have anybody else. They don’t exist. Oh “jou sussie”, oh”jou Ma”, oh “jou Pa”, they go at you. They run them down and swear about your parents on purpose to see if they can actually get you to react because in their world there should be nothing that can get to you because you belong to them. Your life belongs to the training. This is real. This was real to me. All the while they are dominating my physical space, my sleep time and they put you through sleep deprivation, plenty sleep deprivation, you know what happens when you are deprived of sleep, day after day after day, after week, after week, and they come into your sleep time any hour of the day, any hour of the night, and immediately you have to get into action because this is what they are training you to do, react, not even think, just to react to the training. Your body is totally, totally on the edge of complete meltdown. Your mind doesn’t exist anymore, you’re in this fog of obedience if you’re going to make it.
My spirit man was dominating. My spirit man was on fire for Jesus. I wasn’t going around telling everybody; “I’m a Christian, I’m a Christian, you must make Jesus Lord and Saviour of your life. You’ve got to do this, you’ve got to do that.” I wasn’t doing that. What I was doing, was making sure that my spirit man was strong and so whatever else they were throwing at my life, it just couldn’t, they couldn’t get a hold of me there. That strength of spirit, that strength of spirit prevented them from pushing my mind and my body over the limit to a point where I would walk off the course. To the point, that when I actually graduated, you know, one of the guys came up to me and he congratulated me. He said, I did everything – he called me “Soutie”; this Afrikaans sergeant, permanent force, who made a career out of breaking people. But in the same sense in making people. Because those that didn’t break; then they used them and moulded them into an awesome fighting machine.
He came to me at the end of the programme and he said to me: “Soutie”, he came to shake my hand – he said; I’ll never forget it because it was a really amazing moment – Sersant Liebenberg. Sersant Liebenberg came up to me and he said; “Soutie, I did everything I could to break you, because I didn’t want an Engelsman like you in my unit.” He said; “I did everything to break you”, and he said; “You would not be broken. I’ve come to personally congratulate you today for not breaking.” Now, I am not talking to you because I was physically more dominant than the other guys, because I wasn’t. Let me tell you, there was some truly powerful guys there. You know? I am not telling you because I was mentally stronger than anybody. I’m telling you because my spirit man was so powerful and so dominant that they could not actually break my body.
So what do you think happened to Jesus when He hung on the cross and they wanted to break his legs because that’s how they know that people are dead. But God had prophesied that not one bone in His body shall be broken. What do you think happened when the man comes and he wants to break his leg and someone else says; “No, don’t worry, He is already dead.” What happens was the spirit life of God dominated the moment even though all those soldiers’ training for years said; “You have to break the legs.” Spirit life dominates. Spirit life dominates, not reality, not circumstances, not what other people tell you is happening around you. Spirit life dominates. Hallelujah.
So, I was telling these young people in the studio, so how powerful do you think, can I ask you today, how powerful do you think a single encounter with Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, a single encounter where you know, that you know, that you know that Jesus has met with you – how powerful is that encounter in your life? I asked them the question. So one of them said; “Pastor John, can we ask you a question back?” I said; “I am here, by the Holy Spirit, talking to you, I should have been out of the studio twenty minutes ago but the Holy Spirit has designed that I should stand here and talk to you now.” So I said; “Go ahead.” So they said, so one of them asked the question and said; “So how much does that moment affect everything that happens in your life?” I said; “That is a very good question.” Because there has never been a moment, not a single moment, not a single time, not a single day, not a single moment, where I have doubted that God is my God. There is not a single day, not a single moment, not a single thing, where I have even doubted the calling of God on my life. Even though I was playing rugby and soccer, and doing things, even though I was in the military, even though I was in the business world, and being successful in the corporate ladder, not for a moment did I ever think that that was my life. I knew all of that was just preparation for what God was calling me to do.
I stood in there, talking to them and I said; “And I am called to you. What I am doing right now, is God’s calling on my life to do with you because God had a reason that I should step away and before I walked away, and walk out of this room, I should have this conversation with you because He is about to encounter you, otherwise, I can’t understand why else we would have this conversation. He wants to encounter you and meet you in a place where your future is so clear, that nobody ever has to tell you what your future must be.”
Those two encounters have other encounters. But I didn’t need more than those two encounters to stand in a place where I was forced to be for two years and you understand in the first months of training, I ended up, once you were in the system for a while, then you could go to the free church services, or you could go to, they had like a few other services, but otherwise it was all Dutch Reform. So, everybody had to go to “kerk” op ‘n Sondag. So you went into the church in your company’s time or your battalion’s time and you go into the church and sit there for 45 minutes, they preach and they say something from the Bible in Afrikaans and “warra, warra warra.” You know? You walk out. That was their form of God they represented. It wasn’t my God.
My God was so alive in me, that even when their dominee read a scripture, I’ll say, “I’ll take that scripture for me.” You know? I won’t tell you the rest of the story of what happened in the studio, but I said; “Umm, I’m done”, after a while. I said a few more things. After a while I said, I am done, I must go now. And they’re all standing there and they said, please don’t go, Pastor John, please don’t go.” I said; “No, God has done what He wants to do.” They said; “No sir, this moment is so beautiful, the presence of God is so strong, we don’t want you to leave, we don’t want to change this moment.” I said; “I know, but God is done what He wants to do. It’s time for me to go.”
There’s a moment, waiting for you. There’s a moment. Maybe you’ve already had one moment, but I know for sure God is about to establish a pattern of moments in this ministry that will be changing you if you let Him and come into your space that will change everything, everything, everything, everything. You don’t want to have God? You don’t want to have a moment like that with God because you’re afraid that when you have an encounter with God like that, you might have to repent before others for the things that you have said, the way that you have lived.
Let me tell you when you have that moment with God, you don’t care about what you say after that. You only care about it before you have that moment. If you want to resist God because of your pride and your ego; well what do you think is going to happen in the rest of your life, every time God wants to encounter you? Your pride and your ego is going to stand before Him. Do you know what the Bible says about that, He resists the proud and He won’t just leave you alone, He will resist you.
Am I preaching good Pastor Lynn? Ephesians chapter five verse 15 says this, I am reading from the New King James, 15See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, 16redeeming the time, because these days that we are living in are evil (Ephesians 15:5 NKJ). Anybody doubt how evil the times are that we are in right now? I want to just speak about this for a moment because it’s very real in my heart. If President Donald Trump doesn’t win the American election, what do you think the Democratic party is going to do in the next four years? What do you think they are going to do? In the natural; they are going to pack the Supreme Court because they won’t tell anybody what they are going to do because that’s what they are going to do. That will alter, they won’t only just, and if they don’t take the Supreme Court, they are going to do everything in the District Courts to undo what Donald Trump has done in the four years. They are going to increase the amount of judges on the district and appeal’s courts so that they can further their liberal agenda.
Do you think they are going to stand up to China, whose explicit goal is world domination? Do you think that the liberal party is going to undo abortion? No, they are busy passing laws that actually when the baby is full term-born before they cut the umbilical cord, you can kill the baby. This is already in law in three states in America. This is already law, the state of New York, the state of California and I forget the third one. It’s already law that they call it ‘full-term’ whatever the name is. They always use these names that make it sound innocent.
So what do you think, suddenly the world has gone crazy when Donald Trump took office. I mean it, isn’t it so? I mean the world has gone crazy since Donald Trump took office and he started to change. Make America Great again and he started to confront China and he started to confront Germany; “Put your money where your mouth is into the United Nations, we are not funding the United Nations on your behalf” and he started to confront Europe and he started to confront all these others things. Donald Trump did that. The world went crazy and the end result of that was Covid-19 hit the world.
He is the first president that has had pentecostal, charismatic, faith Christians praying for him on a regular basis, praying for him in his White House. Say whatever you want to say about Donald Trump. I don’t like his style, I wish he would stop tweeting half the stuff he tweets, really. You know, there is a lot about him that I don’t like but isn’t just like God that He would take someone like Samson who is uncontrollable and rouge to bring a judgement against the enemies of His people. Huh? Yes, I pray for Donald Trump that he gets a second term but I’m trying to say something to you. If you and I think that the world order is going to be the same, just because another democratic leader is voted in and they are all talking about, “Joe Biden will bring normal, normalcy back to the world.” You know what ‘normal’ is? China’s world rule domination, a socialist, liberalist agenda that wants to kill more babies than Covid-19 will ever kill. More babies in America are killed through abortion every year. I’ll tell you, in the year, in the time that Covid has killed 220 000, there’s probably 100 000 000 or more babies that have been killed through abortion at the same time and no one talks about that.
So why is this issue about Donald Trump? Suddenly he’s got God’s agenda and so darkness went crazy. How do I know that? Well, Jesus arrives on an island and here is a man who has been filled with demons and he has been going crazy on this island and they have to keep him bound up in chains because he cuts himself and he is wild. Jesus goes and confronts the demons in him and rebukes the demons and they have a conversation; “Have you come to destroy us before our time?” Meaning the end time. Right? Jesus says; “You keep quiet, you got nothing to say here and so then they say, “Will you please let us just enter the bodies of the pigs?” Because they have to have a host and then so of course, when they go into the bodies of the pigs, they chase the bodies of the pigs into the water and they kill what hosts they have because they can’t help themselves, that’s what they do. They kill, steal and destroy. As Christians, if we think that we want the world agenda because it suits us to serve because the world’s agenda has got some really good things going for it and we want to be part of the world agenda but we will determine how much of it we want and how much of it we don’t want cause we can manage that.
You cannot, you cannot manage the world’s influence on you. “I’ll give a bit to God and I’ll give a bit to the world and I’ll give a bit to God and I’ll give a bit to the world,” and, “I can walk this line.” You have no power, you have no authority, you have no strength because your strength comes from your spirit which you are choosing to keep quiet. That’s the only way you can walk that line; “Shut up spirit, don’t tell me what to do.” That’s where Jesus lives. Right?
I mean if Jesus occupied my body, my hair wouldn’t be falling out. So Jesus is not occupying my body but His life force works in my body for health and strength. He lives in my spirit. God is about to have some moments, and we as a church, we, we as a church, we’ve got to respond to God and we got to have God moments. The days are evil that we are living in and God wants to redeem the time that the evil ways have been taking our stuff. Let me tell you, the devil’s been eating the lunch of the church for a long time and God wants to redeem it right now. Even in the days of Covid, even in the days of lockdown, even in the days of where prospects don’t seem great, God can multiply stuff that is beyond our understanding.
17Therefore do not be unwise but understand what the will of the Lord is (Ephesians 5:17 NKJV). Will of the Lord, I’m wise. I don’t go and do what the will of the Lord is, unwise. Foolish, actually, is what that scripture says. Right? Come on. So perhaps, if I said to you; “You know, you’re being a bit”, so it says, not as fools but as wise. I might want to say, “Hey, fool. What are you doing following your own agenda in life? Thinking that you can live what wise people say is the way to live.”
I’m about to read you a Scripture in a minute. Are you getting something out of this today? I’m a truth-teller here. This whole thing of what God is doing in our ministry is dependent on me being a truth-teller, not a motivational speaker. Not an inspirational giver of words. To be a truth-teller. You know me like that. You’ve worked with me a long time, you know that Pastor Sharon and I; we are truth-tellers. Sometimes you leave inspired, sometimes you don’t. Inspiration is not a measurement of my success here.
17Therefore do not be unwise but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, So whatever, don’t be caught up in the world’s way of pleasure. Instead of using don’t be drunk with wine. Don’t get caught up in the world’s way of pleasure. But be filled with the Spirit, 19speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, 20giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, 21submitting to one another in the fear of God (Ephesians 5:18-21 NKJV).
How is it that I can submit to you? I can submit to you. I have no problem submitting to you, even as the leader of this ministry. I have no problem submitting to you. When you are speaking for God in this congregation, in this body, when you speak for God because the fear of God is here and you’re speaking on His behalf, whatever you say I’m going to listen to you. That’s why I have no problem submitting to things that my wife tells me. When she comes with a word from the Lord to me, she says; “John, I feel in my spirit this and this and this.” “Yes sir, yes ma’am.” Doesn’t matter that she’s my wife. She is now the truth-teller. As the truth-teller that happens to be in a woman’s body, in this body; I listen. Why? Because I don’t want to be foolish. I want to be wise, I want to do what the will of Lord is and when she speaks on behalf of God that becomes the next will of the Lord for me. That’s how the body is supposed to work. When we’re all in the fear of God then we are prepared to hear what each other has to say. Hallelujah.
I’m nearly finished. First Corinthians chapter one verse 18. I’m reading from the Passion Translation; 18To preach the message of the cross seems like sheer nonsense to those who are on their way to destruction (1 Corinthians 1:18 TPT). So this is, the context of this scripture is not really speaking about the unsaved and the saved. Let me tell you if you’d listen to a truth-teller who’s telling you what the power of the cross, the moment of your time with God can do for you. It might sound like sheer nonsense. In your head, it doesn’t make sense that an encounter with God, a death and a resurrection of Jesus can do such a big thing. All of you here today, I said this to Sharon, I said and I’ll tell you this, I have been feeling for some time there’s a prophetic word building in my spirit for us, regardless of what Brother Jerry has. That’s a given, we go always with what Brother Jerry says prophetically. God has something specific for us to say. He’s birthed it in me. I’m telling you, church, this is a moment and this is a time that God’s got something to say to us. He’s got encounters for us. He’s got moments for us that we as a church have to obey. We have to obey. Otherwise, we will just barrel towards destruction.
18But to us who are on our way to salvation, it is the mighty power of God released within us. 19For it is written: I will dismantle the wisdom of the wise. I will dismantle the wisdom of the wise (1 Corinthians 1:18-19 TPT). Who is He talking about here? This is the entire system of the world that says; “The only way you can succeed is to go to university, get a degree.” Or; “You have to have some talent and if you’re talented you must pursue your talent because that will be the door to your success.’ Or; “You must go and get a corporate job and climb the corporate ladder in order to be successful.” Whatever, it is about the economic system. It’s about the social order system. It’s about any system that you want to think of that the world is dominating right now because the prince of the power of the air has a right to influence the world’s systems because men will give him the right.
This scripture says; I will dismantle the wisdom of the wise and I will invalidate the intelligence of the scholars. 20So where is the wise philosopher who understands? Where is the expert scholar who comprehends? And where is the skilled debater of our time who could win a debate with God? Hasn’t God demonstrated that the wisdom of this world system is utter foolishness?(1 Corinthians 1:18-19 TPT).
We want to give our children to that system? We think that that system’s not impacting us to give our children to them? Us, parents, adults, we think ‘that’ voice is quiet? We think that voice says; “Oh no you’re an exception a good Christian, you got a good Christian home, good Christian value systems. You’ve raised your kid’s right. You send them into the world system, don’t worry, your child will make it.” You don’t think that this foolish system is speaking to you as parents. This is the time right now, this is the time for many parents where the system has to have your permission to take your children. From when they are very young, the system is always making you give your permission. “Send them to school. Send them to rugby. Send them to soccer. Send them to…” That’s success, that’s where they got to be.
Now hear me now, I’m not suggesting they shouldn’t do any of those things. But if you allow that system to be the thing that actually helps you get through and causes them to be promoted, they’ve already got you into their way and your future will be dominated by that foolish system that God’s about to dismantle. I’m a truth speaker today. I’m a messenger sent here by God to say what has to be said. You think, and I’m talking generically here to everybody, you think you can run your finances better than God can give you the wisdom to run your finances because I don’t tithe? “Tithing doesn’t need to be done.” Well because; “Why should I give ten per cent to the church?” Well, what you just saying is; “That’s a foolish concept to give ten per cent of your money to the church.”
Right at this point in time and if you haven’t heard it before I’m telling it to you again. Pastor Sharon and I take no salary from the ministry. We have been living like this for some years now. We take no salary, nothing from the church. We sow all of our money back into the ministry. “How do you live Pastor John?” With God’s blessing and His favour. That’s how I live. So do you think; “Oh Pastor John, lets just put a number to it. You think you could be earning thirty thousand rands a month. How many of you would begrudge me a salary of thirty thousand rands a month, hey? Let’s just say it’s thirty thousand rands a month. You know in a year that’s three hundred and sixty thousand rands. “You mean to say Pastor John you’ve given your thirty thousand, three hundred and sixty thousand rand to the ministry?” Yes, I have. Where’s my trust? Where’s my trust? Come on now, where’s my trust? My help comes from the Lord. Exactly.
I have someone whose’s close to me who tithes twenty per cent out of his business. Off the top line, off the gross income. So I have this conversation with him one day because I was concerned that his heart for the ministry was causing him to give too much, I needed to know that he had the faith to give what he was giving. Come on now. So I said to him; “You know if I was talking to a normal businessman, if I was having a conversation with a normal businessman, who had to invest in machinery and had to invest in all kinds of things, I would say you need you to take money and invest in that and keep your business alive so that you can earn an income that you can tithe on.” You’ve all heard me preach like that. Right.
He, as a son in the house, began to open my eyes. He began to say; “Pastor John, I have the faith to give twenty per cent of my income. My faith in God to prosper me is beyond ten per cent. So please don’t stop me. Please permit me to keep doing this because I intend to increase it in time to come.” Well, how can I say no to him when I pay all my salary into the ministry? So what do you think is happening to this young man’s business. In Covid-19 time, what do you think is happening to his business? It’s flourishing. You see because he heard me talk one day and heard me preach a message and say when I was in debt and I wanted to get out of debt I was earning a salary and we gave twenty per cent of our gross income because ten per cent was tithes and ten per cent was…. Because I wanted the blessing to continue forever.
That was foolishness to anybody who didn’t have a revelation of it. “Don’t be a fool, John. How can you give twenty?” That day, I mean I had no choice. The was salary, forty per cent off the top so you left with sixty per cent of your salary. You understand what I’m saying. So even though I was giving twenty per cent of my gross income, it wasn’t tax-free. It was twenty per cent after tax of the gross number. So he had heard me preach that a long time ago and he said; “You did it when you were in the corporate world. So allow me to say that I have the faith to walk in that revelation.” The Lord spoke to me right that moment, He said; “John this is going to happen to you more and more people are going to come because of the stand that you’ve made because of the walk that you’re walking because you listened to your father Kenneth Copeland and Jerry Savelle and they said they live off the ninety per cent and going for the hundred per cent, years ago where they take no money out of the ministry because their faith has taken them to a hundred per cent. Now, because you are living like that the door of that blessing is going to keep flowing, it’s going to keep flooding to you.
People like that are going to do things for you all the time for the ministry, at times, they will do personal things for me too. You see, God is dismantling, dismantling that ‘wise’ system of the world and the way He is going to do it is with people who are going to live by faith. They are going to put God first place.
21For in his wisdom, God designed that all the world’s wisdom would be insufficient to lead people to the discovery of himself. He took great delight in baffling the wisdom of the world by using the simplicity of preaching the story of the cross in order to save those who believe it. Hallelujah. 22 For the Jews constantly demand to see miraculous signs, while those who are not Jews constantly cling to the world’s wisdom, 23but we preach the crucified Messiah. The Jews stumble over him and the rest of the world sees him as foolishness (1 Corinthians 1:21-23 TPT).
The world sees this message as foolishness. I promise you. Go stand in WITS, go stand in Tukkies, go stand in any corporate structure and go and preach this message to them and they will call you radical and they will say; “This kind of person doesn’t belong in our business.” I’ll tell you what, if you are going to be in business, become so successful at it that they can’t ignore the living Christ that lives in you. That is why I’m not preaching that you should be out there but if you’re going to be out there, be it with a God encounter. You’ve got to have a moment with God so that when you go into that place, you take life with you. You don’t let the foolishness of what they try to teach you dominate you. They will rage at you, they will rage at you. I’ve been there. They have raged at me not because I was preaching Jesus all the time but because Jesus was living in me.
I remember this guy who wanted me to be part of the, he had this carrot; “Be part of my executive team.” He was retrenching everybody else and he was busy restructuring the company and, “But John, you are so successful and I want you to be part of my executive team.” I said; “What does that look like?” He said; “I own you 24 hours a day for the next three years but I promise you, you will earn big money.” I said; “How much money?” He said; “Millions.” I said; “No thank you.” He said; “You don’t turn me down.” I said; “I am turning you down.” He said; “Why?” I said, “Because what you are asking, I can’t deliver to you, sir.” He said; “Why not?” I said; “Because I’ve got a marriage I want to keep, I’ve got children I want to grow up with and I’ve got a church that I want to be part of. You are asking me to commit myself to all of that, of what you to restructure. You’ll suck all of my energy and pay me millions for it.” I said; “No thank you.” He said; “You don’t know what you’re walking away from.” I said; “Yes sir, I do but I really thank you for the offer.” Then he tried to do everything to get rid of me but I became so successful that he couldn’t. That was my encounter with God. “God, I will leave when I am on my terms.”
Some people are strong enough to live like that and others are not, spiritually but I’m telling you I was strong spiritually because I had already had encounters with God along the way that when I hit that mammon spirit that was so strong coming at me, I was strong enough.
You mustn’t take my testimony and think you can do that just because it is my testimony. You’ve got to have encounters and moments with God and you’ve got to have already overcome certain battles in the spirit to know that when that big mammon spirit comes at you, you can stand and take him. I’m preaching good today, hey? Huh. I’ll tell you what. If this message was designed and ordained and ordered by God today and if you will listen to this over and over again, God will speak to you and He will transform you and change you and you will have encounters with God.
I’m going to just finish with this. 25For the “foolish” things of God have proven to be wiser than human wisdom. And the “feeble” things of God have proven to be far more powerful than any human ability (1 Corinthians 1:21-23 TPT). Case closed. Go read it, go read the whole passage of scripture again. Go read it again and again and again. I double-dog dare you. Go read it, go read it and keep reading it and keep reading it and let the Spirit of God use that in you. Hallelujah.
I know that God is speaking to some of you today. I know that there are actually things happening in you, in some of your lives and God is actually doing amazing things in speaking to you guys in amazing ways that are here today and the anointing of the Holy Spirit is upon me. The gift of the Spirit is flowing in me today. I am seeing things in the spirit and I am not only seeing things in the spirit today, I am telling you, I’ve been praying about and I’ve been seeing things in the spirit about you, about people’s lives for weeks and weeks. I’ve been seeing things in the spirit and I have to be careful not to speak everything that I see for two reasons. One of the reasons is, if I speak it too soon, your faith can’t be involved in connecting with God and reaching out to get it for yourself.
“Now Pastor John, that doesn’t sound like, you know.” This is the order of God because He doesn’t want to spoon-feed you with stuff and you say, “Okay, I am going to do that”. He wants you to search for Him so that you can have an encounter with Him so that when you encounter him then the moment will be right and the Lord will say; “Speak it out”. He doesn’t want just you showing up and I speak and then “Hey, I’ve got this Word and I’m going to speak this Word” and now you miss out on the encounter with God so that when the Word comes, now it speaking Word that is fire in your belly.
You say; “But Pastor John, I want the fire now”. No, you want an encounter with God now and then the fire will burn. Let me tell you, believe me, It is harder for me to shut up right now than to speak. [Silence followed by a big sigh]. Praise the Lord, Praise the Lord.
Is He here? Can you feel His presence? It’s like you could almost, it’s like you can touch Him. He is here. Holy Spirit is confirming His Word that is being preached. His anointing is right here, His anointing is right here. It’s sweet. His presence is sweet. [Pastor John laughs] Hey come on. When you are in His presence like this, you don’t want to go home. Jesus. This is Jesus.
[Pastor John laughs]. Glory to God, Glory to God. A couple of weeks ago I was here and I called out the young people and I prayed for the young people who came forward. This message that I am preaching today is a continuation of that one, cause I am telling you, God is going to touch the young people who want His touch, He is going to touch them and sometimes He is going to do it bypassing the parents because the parents stand in the way. Not because ah, not necessarily because they don’t want their kids to encounter God, but sometimes they haven’t had an encounter with God themselves and so they don’t know, so they stand in the way but God just goes right past them.
I am going to finish with this, lead by the Holy Spirit, I wasn’t to know this but at fifteen years old, my mother was already a full-blown alcoholic and she would always go to church under the influence of alcohol, I didn’t know this but another two or three years later what was going happen was my life was going to fall apart because the church was going to judge my family because of my mom alcoholism. My dad would find himself without a church, he would find himself without a lifeline and life and once more the denominational leaders would call me in to testify against my mom and dad. But I had an encounter with God when I was fifteen that no one could take away from me, because that religious spirit was working through Christian men well-meaning if you like, but political in their orientation and they were using those men to destroy my future, my calling, my anointing. The devil wanting nothing more than for me to get offended and to judge those spiritual men as well, isn’t that the way church is really? There is no love in the church really, everybody is in it for themselves really. That’s what the devil wanted me to do is to judge the church because I didn’t know that was going to happen and I am eighteen years old, and I am called into this meeting they are asking me to speak about facts of things that happened in the home that I had witnessed.
What did I do, I did what the book of proverbs did and I went before God and I asked him to put wisdom in my mouth. At eighteen years old I went and I stood in front of those council men and I looked them in the eyeballs standing up, looking at them in a formal judiciary hearing standing up and I am looking them in the eye balls and I said; “You men that are sent by God to work in the church, you ask me for my facts I ask you the spirit of truth in you to be your guide, which requires no facts from me so if you will excuse me, you should not be asking me any questions as it relates to my family because you should be hearing from God how to deal with this matter, whatever God says. So please excuse me, sirs.” And I walked out.
At eighteen years old, cause I had encounters with God but let me tell you, that was a big religious spirit that came after my calling and my future, and it hasn’t only been one time that it has come after me, it’s come after me many times. The spirit of mammon working through people trying to use money to manipulate me to make decisions in this church. God, in a moment, can give you the strength because you encounter Him. He can give you the strength to work through all of those so-called wise philosophers, so-called wise people, the Spirit of God is the Truth, He is the Way, He is the Life. That’s why I can stand here before you and say all Glory to Him that actually, I know as a church what we stand for God has always wanted us to stand for this.
Hallelujah, what is happening in this service today with all of these young people, all of these kids, all of these young people sitting, quiet, quiet for an hour and a half because the Spirit of God has been here touching every single one of us, every single one of us.
I release you into His grace, I release you into the futures of your encounters with God, I release you into peace, I release you into His hands, I release you into the Spirit of Truth, I release you into the prosperity of God, I release you into His protection and into His council, I release you into the order of God, I release you into the good things that He has prepared for you from before the time you were born till now, I release that to you and over you right now, I release you into moment and encounters where you will fall to your knees and worship Him and glorify Him because He is God Almighty. I release you into encounters with angels and the Holy Spirit. I release you into encounters with the Word of God that will burn like fire in your belly. I release you into the things of God into His mercy and into His grace.
I am done. Can I say goodbye? Until we meet again. Well goodbye then.