Scripture reference: Proverbs 3:6-10 (AMPC); Matthew 7:7-10 (TPT)
Glory to God. Praise Jesus. You all look so beautiful today, hallelujah. Let’s just ask the Lord for His blessing upon this service. We, thank You Lord, that everything happens in this time, we dedicate to You. We ask You, Holy Spirit, to touch our hearts, touch our minds and our ears, so that our inner man can receive everything that You have for us. So, that once again in Your presence, we will experience the fullness of joy, in Your presence we can see that everything can be made right, because of who You are. We submit ourselves to the hearing of the Word and Your anointing today, Father. We are prepared and ready to make adjustments in our lives, so that we can walk closer and do better, in Jesus Name, we thank You, Lord Amen, amen. You may be seated. Hallelujah. Praise the Lord.
You see there is an empty piano here, and we don’t have a new grandchild yet. He was supposed to come like early in the week already. He is just very comfortable with mamma, you know, and he is like “I don’t want to come into this world. Let me delay it a little bit,” and so what must we say about that. All things happen in the perfect time of God. Amen.
I will tell you that it has been a lesson for us actually, because every day we call Garth and Marcelle, and ask “and so, and so… anything, anything?” Nothing dad, nothing.” Marcelle is like “Ag dad, I am big, I am heavy, I am uncomfortable, can this baby just come now” I have asked for their permission this morning, if I could just use what is just happening to them as a brief example of what happens when we live in faith. Because, you know, when faith actually conceives something in the Spirit, it happens exactly the same way as a human conception.
When human conception happens in the womb, it has already happened, you can see nothing, sometimes you don’t even know anything has happened for weeks, right? But it has already happened, and then it grows and it grows and it grows, but actually the material visualisation of what is happening, still not there yet. Something is happening, but you can’t touch it, you can’t feel it, you can’t, it is not making any noises, you know, it is just here, and you know it is coming, it is coming, it is coming, and it is getting bigger and it is getting closer and you know it is coming. Well, that is how faith works.
When faith happens in your heart, it already knows that what you believed for is already done. If you don’t actually have that, that Rhema, that understanding, that Rhema meaning, the revealed Word to you, you don’t have that, then you may still be in a space where the Word is developing faith in you. You may think you are in faith, but once faith has been conceived, you know, it has happened, because faith is the substance of the things you hoped for, the evidence of things you can’t see, but it is already the evidence of things you hoped for, that means that evidence is already there, you just can’t see it. You are still hoping for the seeing of it, but it is as good as done. It just takes time to come from where it is in the spirit realm to manifest itself in the natural realm. Sometimes that waiting period can be long, sometimes it can be short because every faith project has a different incubation period.
It is the same thing, aahh is it there, is it there, is it time, is it time, but it is getting closer, it is getting closer, it is getting closer, now it is days away, but I think it is going to be tomorrow, but it is not tomorrow. You can get like really “moedeloos” you know, really down in the dumps… I know it is supposed to be here, and I wish it could come, but it is not here yet, that doesn’t mean you go back to the beginning. “Oh griet”, maybe I have got my faith wrong. Hold on, you have got this big thing about to happen, don’t go back to maybe I got my faith wrong. Hello.
The reality is, if you allow confusion to come into your mind, you are actually saying, “I’m not pregnant.” Mostly that happens right at the beginning, when faith has conceived something and you don’t see anything, you don’t feel anything, and it is like weeks, maybe months before anything actually begins to really reveal itself. In that time, you’re most vulnerable because that is the time when you can abort something. I am preaching really good. Huh?
Faith is like that, faith comes from words of the Word of God. It comes from allowing those words to grow in your heart, those words to take root in your heart, and then one day, when you have faith, it’s like you know, it is there. It is just there.
I have an entirely different subject I want to speak about today, well not entirely different, but I am going to take it in a different direction in a minute. I mean I can tell you when I was in lots of debt, that is how I became debt-free because I took the Word of God and I put the Word of God in my heart and I began to say, “I am debt free through the miracle power of Jesus.” I was in such a mountain of debt, I didn’t see any human possibility of getting out of debt, for years and years and years and it is like maybe ten years. I was in that much debt.
I began to speak the Word of God, you know I was in my mid-twenties, and I began to speak to Word of God and I said, “I am debt free through the miracle-working power of Jesus” and I began to speak the Word over my life, I am a tither, I am a giver, and yes, even though I was in debt, I was a tither and I was a giver and I maintained my faith and my trust in God, with my giving because if I stopped that then my faith would stop. I just said, “I am debt free through the miracle power of Jesus” and I knew the moment it happened in my heart that I am really debt-free, I knew that I knew.
From that day onwards my debt-free declaration became a declaration of joy, and I didn’t say it because I had to convince myself, I said it, to speed up the process. I am debt-free, I am debt-free, you know it is all that came out of my mouth, all the time… “I am debt free through the miracle power of Jesus.” One by one things begin to happen in my life, one by one things began to happen in my life, this debt got paid, this debt got paid, then this money came in I could pay that, and in that time when large amounts of money came through commission, as I got promoted and profit-sharing and things like that, we would tithe ten present and give an extra ten percent on the gross of our income.
So, you understand, if you’ve got a mountain of debt, you are giving ten percent on your gross before tax, and then you give another ten percent on your gross before tax, that is a lot of money, that’s a lot of money, after you have paid tax, and the amount of money I was earning then, I can’t remember what the tax rate was then maybe it was 42 percent or whatever the number was that time, but you know, if they have taken tax off and now you been giving God 20 percent off the gross. You might say to me, “Pastor John why did you do that?”
The faith in my heart was so strong, that I wanted to give the stuff to God, it was way and above beyond what was just the basic. This mountain of debt from house bond, car payments, credit card debts, overdrafts, everything, that mountain of debt was paid off in just over three years. After everything has been taken off before taxman, ten percent on the gross, ten percent more giving on the gross, so if you do the calculation maybe you are left with 35 percent of your gross income. When faith is conceived in your heart, you can believe God.
I will never forget the first time, I think it was after that faith Rhema faith was birthed in my heart, I think the next cheque that they had to pay me, the next cheque was just shy of a million rand in commission. They never thought that would happen. They never thought it was possible that the targets they set me and the people that were working for me. They set me a target and they said this, “If you get, if you make target, you are a boffin, then you are a super salesman” – sales manager actually with the team underneath me, but I would have to be selling because some of the people needed to go.
I was both selling and managing at that time. They said, “If you could get the deal and you make your target, we will be so happy with you, we will pay you this percentage. If you make a 120 percent which is impossible, it is just naturally impossible that you will reach 120 percent of your target in these six months that are left, then we are going to pay you that really great bonus. If you hit more than that,” they didn’t even put a limit to it. If you hit more than, because to them, it was so impossible for me to hit more than that. Then we are going to pay you per- every, whatever rand, we are going to pay you so much money, and they never thought that that would be possible.
When they calculated it at the end of six months, I hit 256 percent of the target, and they tried to backpedal. How did you do that? Let’s check all the numbers, because suddenly they were just paying me this, groot big cheque.
When faith is birthed in you, it is just going to happen, it is just going to happen. Now you understand I am talking about something that happened to me 25 years ago. When they write you a cheque of just about a million rand, 25 years ago, as a commission cheque, that is like… can’t be possible that anybody earns that kind of money from bonuses. It was a bonus cheque, not my salary cheque. See, when faith works, you can throw someone in a lion’s den and hungry lions can’t eat you, because the angels stand and they keep those lion’s jaws closed.
When you are in faith and you get thrown in a lion’s den, it’s a real thing. They can’t touch you. You think angels are less powerful than lions? I tell you what, those lions think they’ve got it all, the power, they’re the king of the beasts, and an angel stands there and holds it’s mouth closed, he doesn’t even have to apply pressure, just, “Hou jou bek, jy!” [Congregation laughs] You know what I mean.” Just be quiet. Keep your mouth shut, you can’t touch this man.” I am sure their hunger pangs were like grrr…[Pastor John growls]
Well, the rest of the story tells you how hungry they were, because when the king came the next morning, you can read it in the book of Daniel, and he kind of almost had faith, that Daniel’s faith was so strong, that he would survive the night. He did because he went, first thing in the morning and he opened the thing and said, “Daniel, are you there?” He said, “I am here king, o king, I am here.” “Get him out of here, get him out of here, quick! Bring him up, if he can survive a night with the lions, then this man has got God on his side, for sure.” And he did. Pulled him out of the lion’s den and he said, “You guys who set him up, your turn.” You read the Bible and those lions savaged them because the angels said, “We’ve got no need to protect these dudes.” Hallelujah!
I wait with confident expectation that we will have a new grandchild in the next few days. Hallelujah! We will let you know. Praise the Lord. Thank you, to the music team for doing a marvellous job this morning. It shows you that we can do without Garth. Just for a while anyway. Maybe make do for a couple of weeks, because he is now on paternity leave. That’s a cool thing.
I am going to read Proverbs 3:5-10 in the Amplified Bible. Just because I am in a suit today doesn’t mean I am always going to be in a suit, but if I can wear jeans I can also wear a suit. I mean there is no religion here. Do I look smart this morning? I am glad you think I look smart.
⁵Lean on, this is the Amplified Bible, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. ⁶In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths. ⁷Be not wise in your own eyes; reverently fear and worship the Lord and turn [entirely] away from evil. (Proverbs 3:5-7 AMPC).
What is the evil that he is talking about here? The evil is that you are so wise in your own eyes, that you do not lean on Him. Do you see that? There’s no other context, that you can see evil actually being described as someone who is so wise in their own eyes, that they don’t lean on God, they lean onto their own understanding. Could it be that evil? It could be, because we are not supposed to trust in our own understanding, we are supposed to lean our entire being on Him. People think evil is like, people who stab people, and murder people and do all bad kinds of things, but evil is any twisted way that is not the way of God. That’s why I said some of the most evil things are committed in church.
How can that be? Because in a lot of churches people gossip about each other. Tell me that’s less evil than murdering someone. Sometimes your gossip is actually as bad as murdering someone because you kill that person’s reputation. You kill the way other people think about that person. Isn’t that right? Suddenly you alienate them out of the church because you have something to say about them. Gossip can be a bad thing. Maar nou ja…
⁶In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths. ⁷Be not wise in your own eyes; reverently fear and worship the Lord and turn [entirely] away from evil. ⁸It shall be health to your nerves and sinews, and marrow and moistening to your bones. ⁹Honor the Lord with your capital and sufficiency [from righteous labours] and with the firstfruits of all your income; ¹⁰So shall your storage places be filled with plenty, and your vats shall be overflowing with new wine. (Proverbs 3:6-10 AMPC)
I am going to talk to you today, for a little bit about a contract. If I had to talk to you about a contract that you have with a rental agreement for your home or a lease agreement for your home. Or maybe you have a contract where you have bought a car from a finance house. Or maybe you have got a mortgage or a bond where you’ve purchased a house. Maybe your contract is with a clothing company where you’ve got a card like Woolworths or a credit facility, I don’t know how many of these places have survived yet, maybe, does Thruworths still exist? I know Edgars has closed down or busy closing down. Maybe you have a Truworths card or you have a whatever card and so you have. You may not realize this but even a credit card, if you have a credit card you have signed a contract. You have signed an agreement with that company. So, let’s use a motorcar as a basic, because most people do that with a motorcar, right?
You may not know this, but if you go and buy a car from a finance house… Let me rephrase that, let’s say you go to a dealer and you find a car that you want to buy and you haven’t got the cash to buy the car, so you have to finance, to buy the car. They will introduce you to a finance house or you will have your own, and you will negotiate with them and they will charge you a certain percentage interest rate over a period of time, that you buy the car. At this point in time, you have no contract. You are busy negotiating the terms of the contract. The time comes that you’ve got to make a decision. The decision says, I want this car, the price is the price that I can pay, the monthly payments are right, the period of time is good, everything is right on the interest rates. So, then you sign the contract. You take possession of the car. You think the car belongs to you. The car does not belong to you.
How do you know? I can ask you to test it, I don’t recommend this, but I can ask you to test it. Just miss one payment and see if the car belongs to you. Because if you miss one payment, the finance house is going to call you and say, “You didn’t make payment this month.” “Ahh, sorry I forgot, maybe things didn’t quite work, I didn’t have enough money in the account.” “Okay, but make the payment.” Maybe two months go by, maybe three months go by and now the phone calls get more frequent. They get more urgent, letters start to come. Now, who’s got the car now? Who’s car is it actually? It’s the person who paid for it, which is not you. You’re busy paying for it. Right?
Do you believe that these contracts are real? Anybody? You believe the contracts are real? They are real contracts. In fact, these contracts are so real, that actually someone would part with a car that cost maybe hundred thousand rand, two hundred thousand rands depending on how much you spend on a car. Hundred thousand, two hundred thousand rand worth of asset vehicle and place it in your hands, because this contract is so real, that they know that if something goes wrong, they can come and fetch their asset back. It’s a real contract. I ask you, do you have faith in the contract? Sure you do. You believe that the terms of the contract are correct, otherwise you wouldn’t drive the car off the floor.
Hey, I mean, I would go so far as to say, most of society operates on the fact that these contracts are real. Because the contract is real, the benefits of the contract exist and the consequences exist. The contract explains both benefits and consequences. Do you really have faith in this contract?
I mean if you’re renting a house and you sign a lease agreement, then let’s you currently renting a house, I am sure you go and walk in there everyday because you believe in the contract. Right? I mean because you know that you pay your monthly rent and so you stay there. So there are certain conditions attached to a contract. As human beings, we live in the age of contracts that determine the cause of our lives. Agreed?
You look like you’re not sure where I am going with this. You’re not wanting to commit too much because where is Pastor John? Everything he says is real and right, but where is he going with this? The thing about a contract is that if you really believe it, then you will walk according to the terms of the contract. If you understand, if you read the contract before you enter into it, and you should very carefully, always enter into a contract with great care, because you need to understand what those terms are because the terms may say something that you’re not familiar with, even though you are used to a contract meaning this and that. They might just say if you miss one payment, we come collect your car. Most other people may have experiences where they get three months leeway before they come and collect the car, and you might have heard that before, so that doesn’t mean that your contract is like that.
You need to read the contract and when you sign it, you sign it because you have every intention of meeting the terms of the contract. Don’t you? Unless you are fraudulent in your heart. If you are fraudulent in your heart and you sign that contract then you are just looking for trouble and you know something about the system and you’re about to manipulate the system for your own benefit, even though you know you can’t meet the terms of the contract. There are lots of people out there that do that.
I mean there’s people that move into houses and they pay rent to houses or they sign rental contracts and make the first month’s payment, maybe the second month’s payment and then they don’t make any more payments. They say they dare you to actually evict me out of the house and they end up staying for six months in the house for free. Come on you’ve all heard the stories and then eventually you get a court order and the police come and before that happens, they leave. You have to end up changing all the locks or whatever. I’ve known people that actually stopped renting their houses out because it’s too much trouble because these kinds of things go on. It’s a fraudulent heart, right?
Unless you go into a contract with a fraudulent heart. You go into a contract because you want to uphold the terms of the contract. You really don’t want to actually, you want to have, I want to pay this car for 24 months or 36 months and then I want it to be mine. I then want it to be owned and then I can drive it for another three or four years or so and then I don’t have to pay money on it and I can drive it for free as it were. Most people really go into a contract wanting that outcome.
So, you really believe in a contract, don’t you? I mean you have faith that this contract system works. It’s got benefits and it’s got consequences. [Waving hands] This is good news, this is good news because actually, I’m looking for a, has anybody got a paper Bible? I left my paper Bible at home. Anybody got a paper Bible on them today? Die Grobler het ‘n paper Bible. Dis nie ‘n paper ene nie, dis ‘n soort van, hay, hay. [Paging through Bible] I’ve got news for you.
What do you think this is? [Pastor John lifts the Bible in the air, referring to it] It’s a two part contract. There’s the old contract that existed before Jesus died. Everybody on earth had to live according to the terms of that contract. There was no other contract on the earth that existed between man and the living God, other than that contract, the Old Testament, the old contract. Those were the rules of the contract, so you had to abide by and you had to live by and you had to keep the rules of the contract.
I ask you, were there benefits to the old contract? Lots of benefits, right? Were there consequences to the contract? Lots, because the Bible says, if you do not do these things, then judgement will come upon you. Curses will come upon you, things will come. It’s not because He wanted curses to come on you or because He wanted bad things to happen. It was just a matter of if you keep the contract, you have the benefits. If you don’t keep the contract, I have you keep you to the contract, because you chose the contract. It wasn’t God that chose the contract.
Come on now, this is Bible study 101, today. Okay? If you read in the beginning of the Old Testament, it was man that said I want to be like God, so I’ll do what God said I mustn’t do. He broke the contract, and when he broke the contract, God said consequences. You could have had all the benefits, but now you thought you could do better than Me. Isn’t it what Adam and Eve said? You thought you could do better than what I said. Because you thought, you could do better, consequences.
Then as God delivered the people from Egypt and they were busy being delivered and set free, God began to thunder and speak to the whole nation on Mount Sinai. Was it Mount Sinai? I think it was Mount Sinai.
Anyway, He began to speak to them in thunder and all that kind of stuff happened and it frightened all the people and they said to Moses, “Moses we do not want to hear from God directly, you go and hear from God for us and then we will live according to what God says to you.” Then God says, “Okay, well Moses there is going to be a time when you die, so the contract between Me and the people must be written. Come up to Me and I will spend forty days and nights with you and I will give you ten terms of the contract.”
As time went by, the terms of the contract and the consequences, their benefits and consequences became more clear. In the meantime, God had to have a whole tribe of people, who would act as people who would sacrifice because they allowed the terms of the contract to develop consequences because they could never fully live up to the contract.
Although God kept on giving them benefits, they also had to deal with the consequences and part of that was that they had to make sacrifices and blood had to be shed every year. So that, consequences could be dealt with under blood. All the consequences that were going to come to you, was not coming to you because you killed an animal whose blood actually paid for your consequences. Old contract.
Then God said no you know this old contract is not working for you or for Me because actually, I didn’t intend the contract to be about all these rules and about all these regulations and about all these do’s and don’ts. My contract was so that we could be friends, we could have fellowship. I could tell you the secrets of my heart as God, you would be able to receive them and you could live in your life with the secrets of My God-life in your life. Then you could tell me the secrets that were going on in your heart because we’re so close, you’re going to find out that everything I am is so good that your secrets become My secrets. I want a better contract, so now I can’t trust you to keep your contract because you’ve broken it once before. I’m going to make a contract with Myself, that you can’t break.
I’m going to send Jesus and His going to die on the cross and His Blood is going to be shed as a consequence of all of the non-performance of the contract. From the time that Jesus dies there’s a new contract in place where the Blood has taken care of every consequence. You only have to live in the benefit, but there is just one thing that has to happen now, is you got to believe that the power of the Blood has taken care of the contract. I believe in the Blood. I believe in the Blood of Jesus, that He has paid the price, which makes me a son of God. Every time I say, I am a son of God and I thank You, Lord that you have taken care of all of my past sin, all of my current sin, all of my future sin. Well, how can you say the sin you have not even sinned yet is taken care of.
Well, the Blood paid the price for once and all, so whatever you’re going to mess up in the contract going forward, even that’s been taken care of. Now I don’t have to walk in a whole bunch of fear, that I’m going to mess up on the contract. I’ve just got to walk in the belief that Jesus has paid the price and I want to have the secrets of God in my heart. Now, I don’t want to know God, based on the terms of the contract, I just want to live in the contract. What is that? I must believe Jesus. It’s like, have a relationship with Jesus and that’s the fulfilment of the contract?
Do you understand that? He actually paid the price so that you could have a new contract so that you can actually have a relationship with Jesus and in having a relationship with Jesus, that’s free of consequence, you are fulfilling the contract. Wow.
So, if I go back to this scripture and I say, ⁵Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. ⁶In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.(Proverbs 3:5-6) He is saying here’s a contract, can you live by this contract? It’s a relational contract. There’s a lot of stuff that is written in the old contract, the old testament that makes reference to what’s about to happen in the new contract. Amen.
Be not wise in your own eyes; reverently fear and worship the Lord and turn [entirely] away from evil. (Proverbs 3:7) What’s evil? Living according to my wisdom, living according to the things I know best, cause I know best. When I say, “I know best how to live life,” then I’m putting all of the stuff on me that I know best, but actually, God said, “I paid a price and I’ve shed Blood with my Son, so that you don’t have to live according to your own self. I want to live with you, in a relationship that the benefits are immeasurable because not only is there peace and joy and all of the beauty that comes with living in a wonderful relationship, but there is all the benefits that come from it that when you’re in a love relationship like that, God just heaps upon you good things.
I am actually wanting to make this quickly about, I don’t want to make this about money, but God did, because in the rest of the scripture He says here, “And you will have health and you will have a wonderful life,” in other words, you will remain healthy and you will have a good mind and you will have good things in your body. Then He says, 9Honour the Lord with your capital and sufficiency [from righteous labors] and with the first fruits of all your income: 10So shall your storage places be filled with plenty, and your vats shall be overflowing with new wine. (Proverbs 3:9-10 AMPC) He is saying, if you give God, honour with your money that you earn, come on, is this the Bible I’m reading? Am I still reading the terms of the contract?
Come on now, He is laying out the benefits, isn’t He? He says, “Don’t lean on your own understanding, come and turn to Me with every decision that you need to make in your life. Don’t be wise in your own eye’s. Don’t think that you’ve got all the answers for everything. Come to Me with everything. Lean on the relationship that I’m wanting to have with you. Now, when you are in this kind of relationship, I’m going to bless you. When you are blessed, honour Me with the blessing.”
How do you do that? Honour Him with your capital, your income, and everything that you earn. It’s not a matter of it’s an insurance policy. It’s not a matter of, because Malachi calls it a tenth and a tithe. This is about honour.
This is about relationship. He says, “Now if you and I worked together, in this new contract, and you show Me that you honour Me in relationship, your storage places will be so full and your vats will be so full that they will be overflowing. Wow! So, I want to just say, for the record, that this doesn’t refer to a special ability to make money. It refers to any believer who accepts the terms of the contract.
So, I want to ask you, if you want to go from living a life where you are paying contracts off to the banks, to living a life where you don’t have to pay contracts off to the bank, then this contract is the way to live. Because the contract is not a…, the Bible says it is a living contract that He writes on our hearts. That’s a living testament that He will put and write on our hearts, rather than having it written on stone.
He is going to write it on our hearts. So, then you don’t even have to wonder about this contract. It just naturally is a relational thing. Sjoe. This is good news! I’m going to Matthew 7 verse 9, and I’ll finish with this scripture, today. In fact, I’m going to go straight, huh, to the Passion Translation and I’m going to read from verse 7, 7“Ask, and the gift is yours. Seek, and you’ll discover. Knock, and the door will be opened for you. 8For every persistent one will get what he asks for. Every persistent seeker will discover what he longs for. And everyone who knocks persistently will one day find an open door. Well, we are in the year of a new door being open. 9“Do you know of any parent who would give his hungry child, who asked for food, a plate of rocks instead? (Matthew 7:7-10 TPT)
Dr. Nico, can I ask you a question, Sir? If Nicolaas comes and asks you for some food, will you give him rocks to eat? Dr. Nico said no. You give him something that is useful to his body, nê? Because you are a good dad. I think you are a good dad, you know? You want your son to grow up healthy, nê? I mean it is just the way it is. Your kids grow up, you want them to grow up healthy. You want to give them food.
So, 9 “Do you know of any parent who would give his hungry child, who asked for food, a plate of rocks instead, 10 Or when your son asked for a piece of fish, what parent would offer his child a snake instead? Snake being something that is lethal, dangerous, can hurt you. Right? 10Or when asked for a piece of fish, sorry, 11if you, imperfect as you are, know how to lovingly take care of your children and give them what’s best, how much more ready is your heavenly Father to give wonderful gifts to those who ask him?” (Matthew 7:7-10 TPT)
Dr. Nico, I think you are a good father, but I have to stick with the Word of God here, I have to say you imperfect, and I don’t put you in the same category by yourself, I’m also imperfect. I raised my kids with imperfection. The Bible says every parent that raises their kids, does that imperfectly. Right? Because you are just not perfect, but imperfect as you are parents. Now, listen, I don’t often recommend that you say something that is negative and this is not negative. It may sound negative, but if you are a parent that is currently raising a child or a teenage child or whatever, you should regularly say this to yourself, “I’m imperfect. I’m imperfect. I’m imperfect, and so, I’m imperfectly raising my child.” Why on earth would I suggest you say that? Why would I even make such a recommendation, when I should be telling you to confess that you are perfect?
Well, because of as much as you confess that you are not going to be, right? But there is someone in your life who is perfect. His name is Jesus. If you, as imperfect as you are, do the best job of raising your kids, there is the one that can live with you that is perfect. That can help you raise your children, the way He suggests, you raise your children, because He will never demand that you do what He tells you. He will make strong suggestions, that you do what He tells you.
Right? But He is trying to make a point here, and He is saying, if you are good parent and you know what is good for your kids, and we, Heavenly Father and children, have a relationship, don’t you think I know how to give good gifts to you? Don’t you know that my whole life is about making sure that yours turns out good? I mean which of you parents actually wants your kid’s life to turn out bad? If you are in this church, I’m about to go and take out my club and asked you to wait for me outside and I’m going to beat your kneecaps, because if you are, if that’s your purpose that you wanting your children lives to turn out bad, then you deserve your kneecaps to be broken. By me, nogal!
I mean, I think you know, I’m nearly finished. I think you know the story of a friend of mine that I led to the Lord in the army. When he came out of the army, he went to a church and he got involved in the church, in the South of Joburg. The Pastor came to him one day and he said, “Hey, I got this trouble with this man in the church, he is beating his wife.” He said “Can you deal with it?” Because this guy was a strong man. So, he said, “Sure, Pastor, I’ll go and sort it out.” He goes to the house and knocks on the door. It’s in an apartment block and they got the security gate on the front of the door, and the guy comes and opens the door. Sees him through the door and he’s got this security gate, but just bars, slates like that, [Ps John making horizontal movements] you know?
He asks him, are you so and so? He said, “Yes, I am.” He took his fist and hit him through the wires like this, you know, wha! Hit him, on his backside. I mean he hit him in the mouth, straight in the mouth. Hit him as hard as he could, and on his backside. He said, “You touch your wife again, I’ll be back.” He walked away and went to the Pastor after, and the Pastor said, “Have you taken care of it?” He said he won’t hurt his wife again.
As a Pastor, I can’t do that, but privately I’ll take you behind, and I’ll take my bat out and I will say, “Hey, boetie, if you got harm on your mind for your kids, then you and I need to talk!” You know? Because something else is affecting you here.
Let’s get it clear spiritually and if you don’t want to listen spiritually, let’s put you in a place where you can think about it for a while, while the pain is strong in your leg. You know, what I’m saying? Cause kids got to grow and be nurtured and looked after and given the proper space in life to grow.
It doesn’t matter if you are poor or rich. They just got to give a proper place to grow, right? Hallelujah! Well, our Heavenly Father is like that, and He is saying, “Hey, if you think you, as imperfect as you are, know what is good for your kids, I know what is good for you, and I’m a perfect Father, so come, put all your trust in Me. Come and lean entirely on Me.
Come and be with Me and I will show you all of My goodness, I will show you all of My things. If you think I’m not listening, keep coming. So, this scripture says, 7 Ask, and the gift is yours. Seek, and you’ll discover. Knock, and the door will be opened for you. 8For every persistent one will get what he asks for. Well, He is not saying, that your faith won’t work the first time, or that He is not hearing the first time. He’s saying your relationship with Me should be, so persistent and so consistent, that even though you don’t yet see benefits, keep believing that I’m a good Father.
Keep believing that I want the best for you. Here is the final thing I want to say, about this. That God is, has been using, there is a swelling message that has been happening, first in the Joburg church and now, that God will take the children. The reason why God will take the children is because adults grow up and they grow up with ideas, they grow up with baggage. They grow up with fears. They grow up with lots of stuff that has happened in their past and so parents want their children to have better than them. Right?
I have taught on this here before, and so, when the parents want their children to have better than them, they take all of their knowledge and they give it to their children and then they expect their children to do better.
So that whole, that whole thing is about performance. It’s about standards and it’s about things that the world sets as the standard of performance.
Huh. I wonder what would happen if we said, “Hey, I’m not even going to look at what the world says, is a performance standard for my son or my daughter. I’m not even going to let them affect my thinking. I’m going to let God tell me what’s best for my child.” Because even though you are the caretaker of the child right now, I’ve got news for you; that child belongs to Jesus. It’s not your child. He’s just given the care of that child to you, until they grow up, and they follow Him for themselves.
If I was not a father, you could say to me, “Pastor John, you don’t know what you’re talking about.” I happen to be a father of two, and a grandfather of five, or almost five. I know what I’m talking about. I know what I’m talking about because I’ve done the world’s performance thing and then I’ve had to repent from that. and I’ve had to go and follow God’s way of doing things and it turns out much better. Much better!
Before you decide what your child’s future should be, you should first put your future in the hands of God. Have a new-contract-relationship with Him. Parents, you should put yourself in the hands of God, and have a parent-son relationship, or -daughter relationship with the Most High God and say, “What do You got for me today?” And keep asking and keep persistently connecting with Him to say, “I want Your best for me. What do You want me to do? Where do You want me to go? How do You want me to conduct my life? What do You…” Because when you start doing that, [Pastor John points up and down] then you start to know what to do with your kid. When you don’t do this [Pastor John points up and down], then everything that you’ve learned as a human being becomes the next generation’s human being experience. Then you’re still not putting God first place into that relationship. You’re still putting yourself as the first place in the relationship.
Huh. Did you get something out of this today?
You know, there might be somebody who’s listening to this, there might be someone who thinks; this is too hard for me to do. Well, the first thing that you do is; you’ve got to say, “Lord, I’m not sure that I can do this because it seems like I’ve gone so far down this line and I’m not sure what it means, but I’m going to keep asking You to show Yourself to me, in such a way that I can learn Your ways and I can be in this new contract with You.”
I finish off like this; if you so believe, in a human contract that has both benefits and consequences, if you are so obviously, faithful to a human contract, should you not want to be faithful, and understand – to a covenant contract that God made with Himself and sealed it with Blood, that you cannot mess up. If you don’t have that much faith in this contract [Pastor John gestures to the Bible], as you do in a human contract, then it shows you that you need to still have more work done in your heart that this contract becomes the priority.
Because Jesus has said; He will never leave you, He will never fail you and He is a friend that is closer than a brother. He is a One, that has always been there for you. Not only did He seal the terms of the contract, but He sent the Holy Spirit to be the lIving contract in your heart so that in the living contract, you can seek Him, you can keep knocking, you can keep inquiring of Him and He will not withhold anything for you – He will make sure that gifts come to you.
When you understand that relationship with God, your children can experience God the same way through you and then your life together becomes about; what does God want for our future? Not; what do I want for my future?
I ask you this – in final, in closing, I said that three times already. I’m in good company. Kenneth Copeland, Jerry Savelle do that all the time.
But finally, I want to say; let’s say, you think you’re going to do isometric testing with your kid and everything comes out; actually, your child is very good with their hands and wa-da-wa-da-wa-da and they should go and become a mechanic or do an engineering qualification or, you know, depending on where your financial structure is, might depend on what where they can learn, maybe become an apprentice or, you know, whatever.
Well, the isometric test says that’s what his skills are, so let’s put him in that direction. Have you asked God yet? So, what does God say? What does God say? “Well, surely you don’t have to ask God about what your child’s future needs to be.” Why would you not? What you’ve just said is; the world’s learning has got more reality in my life than this contract. [Pastor John gestures to the Bible]
“But I don’t hear from God that well, that I really actually have heard from Him what He’s telling me about my child’s life.” Well, okay, what does it mean? Does it mean you go ahead and still make decisions for your children? Or do you say, “Wait a minute, let’s pause? Let’s pause a little bit and let us make the commitment, that we will enter into this new contract and we will begin to seek this contract and then let God speak to us about our kids.”
I’ll tell you this; when you get to heaven – this is for nothing this morning – when you get to heaven, as a parent when you get to heaven, God is not going to ask you whether you did the right by your child because he was accepted by all your other friends that you connect with, that actually, you could boast to those friends how well your son or your child is doing. Because some of them may not even be in heaven, and if they are in heaven, and that moment, they won’t actually care what your child became, if you made decisions based on what society thinks about how good you are as a parent, and about how successful your child was. Society has no care in heaven about that.
I’ll tell you what will happen is; the great cloud of witnesses that have gone before us, together with Jesus, will see all the plans that have come to pass that God intended for your children. On those plans, eternity, he will be given a whole lot of rewards, and he will either be said or she will be said, “Well done, good and faithful servant,” to your child and to you as a parent, because you handed your future of your children to God. Huh?
So, we have a two-part relationship, ours is to understand that God is our Father. And really, He wants the best for us. You might not see God as a good loving Father, because as you grew up as a child, you might have had so many things happen to you, that just messed up your image of what a good father is, what a good parent is, a mother is. And so, because you messed up in that thinking, you may not be able to see God that way. The only way to change that is to get stuck into the covenant. If you struggle to do it by yourself, you should do Digital Touch Bible school, or you should come to Bible school, or you should listen to the messages more and more so that the Word can take, so that God can print an image of Himself in you.
Because that image becomes the image that you need to live by. Then when you live by that image, then your children can begin to say, “I can see God, I can ask God what my future is. Me and mom and dad, we can together pray, we can seek God for what our future is because now we’re all seeking God the Father, for our future.”
Didn’t He just say, that all the good gifts that He’s got, He’s waiting to give them to you, your storage places will be full, your vat will be overflowing and just many things are just waiting for you, good things are just waiting for you. But if you don’t believe this contract [Pastor John gestures to the Bible], as well as you believe human contracts, then you’re tending to always go to the human contract, which means; myself and the human contract has more value to me and I believe in the teeth of the human contract and I believe in the rewards of the human contract more than I believe in the rewards of this contract [Pastor John gestures to the Bible].
This doesn’t happen overnight, I know that and I hope this is coming across as affectionate and loving; I’m not trying to beat you with this. Although, if you treat your child worse, I’m going to beat you. Not really, I mean, but you know, we will have a chat, we will have a chat.
I have to speak the Truth to you because it’s only the truth that can set us free. It’s not pretty preaching that’s going to set us free, which is why I will still get back to my message of Marvellous and Messy because people that actually are wanting the good contract, but they’re still living in the old contract, this [Pastor John gestures to the Bible] is the most marvellous contract you could live your life by, but as you’re leaving this old-contract-thinking behind, it gets messy, because sometimes you go back there, and sometimes you’re here and sometimes you go back there and sometimes you’re here.
It becomes a messy process because you mess up and that’s no reason to stop doing it. You’ve got to keep making progress and it might look messy and if you get messy, and you’ve got to come to us and say, “I messed up,” don’t worry. God’s got it covered. We’ll help you clean up. Keep carrying on. Amen.
Please stand. Hallelujah. Praise the Lord. I want to know that you actually received the Word of the Lord today. Did you? Did you? Do you understand that I said it in love and affection for you because I want the best for you in your life? I don’t want anything bad for you. Amen. Hallelujah.
Put your hand on your heart like this and say; I am a son of God. I live in the contract of God. I love contract. He loves me and I love Him. He’s got the best for me and I receive the best from Him. Thank you, Lord, that I am a son of God. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
I trust that your week ahead of you is filled with blessing. I trust that the Word of God and the blood of Jesus surrounds you and protects you and no harm comes near you. There will be nothing that will hurt you or by any means harm you. And that whatever your hands touch, you will prosper in it. And you are blessed in going out and bless coming in. And may you have happy feet this week. In Jesus’ name. Thank you for coming.