Mothers, Women and Spirits – Ps John Bendixen (WTB)
Scripture reference: 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 (NKJV); Genesis 2:15-18; 22-25 (NKJV); John 2:1-6 (NLT); Acts 16:7-15 (AMPC)
Hallelujah. You know, I have the privilege of waking up in the morning and my house is situated in such a way that I, most mornings, I’m awake long before the sunrise and I’m privileged to be able to see the sunrise most mornings, especially in the winter where there’s no clouds, normally cloudless mornings, where the sun rises. I can see a clear view of the sun rising. When the sun rises, when the time for it to come—there’s nothing that can stop it. Even if clouds come between the rising of the sun, it doesn’t stop the sun from rising. It’s just it’s going to happen. It’s just going to happen.
I believe. I believe I hear in the spirit the move of God that is happening in His Church. I hear the move of God that is happening in the sound and the song that God is bringing into the earth. I hear God moving; I see God moving in such a way that it’s like the sun rising – it’s unstoppable. It’s His time. It’s His time. It’s an unstoppable moment that God has ordained. The enemy of God has indeed tried to try and change that by stopping the Church from gathering together because of a disease, an unseen enemy. But the Church is used to dealing with unseen enemies every day, every day. Hallelujah.
And so we are unstoppable. Just put your hand on your chest like this and say, “I’m unstoppable.” And then if you’re, if you’re socially kind of okay with hitting someone else next to you, to hit them on the arm and say, “I’m unstoppable.” And then you may be seated. Praise the Lord.
Normally, I’m rather unmoved by human events, or humans that place things on calendars, like Mother’s Day, and Father’s Day and Women’s Day, and all the others—Freedom Day and all the other days. You know, I’m kind of unmoved when it comes to preaching the gospel because I’m much more about teaching and moving the church forward than giving any special significance to things that men want to put in place as important, you know.
But it is Mother’s Day today. And so I say happy to all the mothers, Happy Mother’s Day. Happy Mother’s Day.
I’m sure that as you came into the church this morning, you receive a gift. If you somehow didn’t receive a gift when you came in, you can get one on your way out. Please, if you’re a mother, or you have a mother that should be here and isn’t here, take one for her, give it to her, bless her.
Praise the Lord.
1 Thessalonians chapter 5 verse 23 talks about us as an entire person. Verse 23 says, 23 Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 NKJV)
I’m just laying a little bit of a foundation here that we are a three-part being. We have a body. We are a spirit, and we have a soul. Why do I put it that way? Because this body of mine will eventually cease to exist, but the person that I am will live for eternity. That person is my spirit and my soul. My soul that helps me make decisions, my soul that has desires, my soul that has intelligence and intellect, my soul that appreciates things around me in life. My soul is always eternally connected to my spirit. It’s only your body that is going to die, and one day will be resurrected gloriously for eternity. Right?
This is very important because the thing, and I’m going to just use my relationship with Pastor Sharon as the foundation for this for a little bit because I am going to be talking about women. I feel like I’ve got some big statements to make about woman, because well, God has actually made it, from time to time, my business to actually talk about women. I didn’t think that this would be the time, but He moved on me this weekend and said, “This is the time.”
When I fell in love with Pastor Sharon, the first time I laid eyes on her, I literally laid my eyes on her. She was on the other side of the swimming pool, and she was in a swimming costume, and she was sunning herself and looking extremely gorgeous. Just gorgeous. I looked at her lying on the other side of the swimming pool, I thought, and there was a bunch of guys sitting close to her chatting her up, and I thought, “Ag no, I’m not gonna go and compete for any babe that looks hot.” I’m waiting for the God-girl.
Really, I didn’t. I thought she looked hot, but there’s a lot of people that can look great. Anyway, I found out later she was coming to the same church, found out later we were put into the same worship team together; found out later, I adored her.
I fell in love with how, really, really, the thing that drew me to her most was just how passionate she was about God. Because in my life, I had found very few people, young people my age at that time, that were so passionate about God. I certainly understood that if she was that passionate about God, then she was placing herself in a place where God would govern her life. So a God-governed life.
A God-governed life is a fruitful life. A God-governed life brings about things into life; that doesn’t matter how gorgeous and beautiful your body is when you’re in your 20s. That will change. Trust me. Trust me, it changes. Right? It does change. There comes a time where your body is no longer the most important thing, or the beauty of it, or the things that the body can give. It’s not the most important thing. It’s actually what the spirit-man is that will dictate the outcomes of the soul life. Because if your soul is not dictated by your spirit, then your soul will be dictated by other desires that come through your senses. If your soul is dictated by your sense-living, all of your senses, then there’s no real anchor to your future, but if your soul is dictated to by your spirit, then there’s a great future for your soul and your body regardless of how many wrinkles your body gets. Amen.
Okay, so I’m going to make some bold statements this morning, and if I stand on your toes, good. If you think I’m offensive, study the Bible and then come and show me where the Bible tells me I’m wrong. If you’ve got enough evidence, I might change my mind. I say might.
Because you can’t just come to me and club me with one scripture, you’ve got to come with a whole Bible dissertation that shows me you’ve studied the Bible, not just read one or two verses or said someone else’s opinion about what that verse means. If you can’t do that and you don’t do that, then don’t come and club me either. Amen. Okay, since we’re on the same page…
I have to go to the beginning. I’m not going to spend much time in the beginning, but it’s Genesis 2 verse 15. It says, 15 Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and to keep it. 16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat. (Genesis 2:15-16 NKJV) I want you just to notice what the first command of God was. The first command of God was; You’ve got complete freedom, you’ve got the run of the house, dude. Do everything you want to do here. He didn’t say, don’t do everything. He didn’t focus on the one thing he couldn’t do. He focused on everything he could do. I wonder where we started going wrong. Huh?
Anyway, 16 …you may freely eat; 17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” 18 And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” (Genesis 2:16-18 NKJV)
Now I’m not talking about marriage today; I’m talking about; it’s not good that man is alone. God did not make… So you understand, He made Adam with all of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, all of the God-being in one body hosted. All of the forms of God was hosted in one being.
When Adam, being one being with God, was going about his business in the Garden, God looked at him and said, everything else in life is more than one, and you are the only one that’s one. So that can’t be. I must make another one. Alright, so He was going to make another spirit. Please help me with this, He was going to make another spirit, and that spirit would have a soul. The one thing He had to do was change the body. Same spirit, soul, different body. Okay.
So then verse 22, 22Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. 23And Adam said: “This is now bone of my bones And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man.” 24Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. 25And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed. (Genesis 2:22-25 NKJV)
So, I am just trying to prove a point here when I am talking about the nakedness of the two beings, is that their body was the least important of what God made. Their bodies were the hosts of their spirit and their soul. The body itself, they didn’t even know that their bodies were that different, that they would be ashamed of each other. Come on now. Because they looked so close, they looked so much like each other, and it’s my belief anyway that they were clothed with the glory of God and they were clothed with the life of God. The way they saw each other was not through the eyes of a body filter; they saw each other through the eyes of the Spirit of God in His Glory, in the Spirit and Soul of the Being.
They were meant to be together, not so that their bodies—you understand that their bodies were not designed so that they would go and drive a tractor together. Or, have the man hitch up a cow and have the woman lead the cow, and he would sit on the wooden ploughs or whatever they would make eventually, and act as a physical partnership. God didn’t design in the beginning, for that to be their essence of the partnership. In the beginning, the essence of the partnership was, they were to rule and they were to have dominion and they were to show off the glory of God, which would obviously have to come through their bodies because that is what put them on the earth. It was more about what was in their spirit and what was in their soul. What was in the spirit and soul of the man and the woman was that they could see that all of the creatures and all of the environment were equally subjected to both of them.
Well, how do you know that, Pastor John? Well, because if they were not equal in the garden, then the enemy would have had no right and had no desire to want to deceive Eve. In the Garden, they were equal because their spirit man was equal. Their soul was equal. Heyta! Magtig man!
Now we think that because certain things have happened after the fall of man, that suddenly there is a lot of focus on women’s bodies and men’s bodies, and the role of men and the role of women.
I am going to make a few statements, some of these statements you have heard me say before, some of them might be a little bit new, but I have never ever since I got married to Pastor Sharon, I have never ever misunderstood a women. My women. It has never come out of my mouth “I don’t understand women,” because I have occasions that I don’t understand her. I never ever said, “I don’t understand you,” never said that. Never in my life, on the contrary, everything I have ever said is, “I understand you. I understand you, I understand you, I understand you, Sharon. I understand all your emotions, I understand all your desires, I understand all your passions, all your everything, I understand you.”
Why would I talk like that when everybody else in the world says, “I don’t understand women? Men say, “I don’t understand women; they are like different creatures, you know, different species. I don’t understand women.” Why would I want to say that when God has actually placed me with a women, and actually everything I can do in the future is to understand her? Why would I say out of my mouth I don’t understand her when everything I want to do is to understand her?
If life and death are in the power of the tongue, then if I say, “I don’t understand her”, then I’m going to have that part of my life die, and I will never understand her. Then we will always have a conflict in our relationship based on “I don’t understand her.” And so she’s never ever used those words with me, “I don’t understand where you’re coming from, John,” because if we say to each other, “We understand each other”, then that forms a foundation of our agreement. Hello?
There are some things that women goes through physiologically that are a mystery to me, and they are beautiful in their mystery. I had said to Sharon when she was pregnant with our two children, I mean many times I would put my hands on her belly like this and I say, “Wow – this is such a unique experience to you as a woman. I wish I could understand this. I wish I could feel what you feel; I wish I could have the emotions that you’re having as a woman.” I couldn’t. Never would, never have, never will.
It is a unique physiologically that is available to women that is not available to me. But that thing alone that physiology the way that they have affection and physical intimacy with a man is unique to a woman, but it doesn’t make me understand her less because there are some things that are unique about a woman. Hello?
Because if I say, “I understand her”, then I can understand her. Not because I am a man, but because my words create a spiritual condition and a soul condition which opens my heart and it opens my words, and it opens my future to be able to understand everything that she desires.
She will tell you; this happens to us frequently in our marriage. She will tell you something is going in her, and then I would just walk up to her, and I would say, “I think Babe, we need to have a conversation”. We have a cup of tea or something like that, and we sit, and we talk. Then as we are talking, she—things would begin to come out of her and then after an hour of talking or whatever, she would say, “You know John, I needed this so much. I didn’t even know how much I needed to talk and solve these issues that have been in my heart.” She says, “It is like you have this sense about when I need a conversation or I need to deal with something that you come into my space and you are just there for me.”
How did that happen? That didn’t happen because I didn’t understand her. That happened because I have all these years of spoken words; I understand her, I understand her, I understand her. I can even say, “I can understand the parenting part of the women.” I can’t understand the women that feeds a baby on the breast and has this unique tie or this unique attachment to a baby that a man can never have. Never. Or give birth to a child. I can never have that. Thank God, when I see the labour and all of the pregnancy and all that stuff, but certainly, God made woman a very powerful, powerful, powerful, super-being to be able to carry all that stuff.
I’m not intimidated by that super-being. I embrace her, I celebrate her, and I understand her. When she wants to order me around—” Okay, babes, I understand you.” She doesn’t do that very much, but sometimes she will. She will kind of like—” Let’s do this”—” Babe, I can figure those details out for myself.” “Okay.” I don’t say, “I don’t understand why you are trying to tell me this.” I understand that there are times when she gets into this and into that, then she’s just in that flow, and she’s teaching somewhere, and she comes home, and now she’s got to be teaching me too. We just flow with it because I understand her.
So here’s what happens, because I understand her, I understand a lot more about women than most men. I’m not trying to make something special about it. This is a spiritual thing because I have declared these things. Celebrate her, understand her, love her, speak the word of God over her, bless her, consider everything that she wants in her life, as almost my command to be something special to her. It’s the way I live my life; that’s the foundation of why we have such a great relationship. It’s because I understand her.
Okay, now, now it’s time for me to be a little bit bold. When there’s this whole movement in the world that’s happening about feminism and women have got to stand up for their rights, and they’ve got to have equal rights and you’ll hear women talking about the glass ceiling that exists because men dominate society and all that kind of stuff.
That is a soulish thought pattern that is established in the deceptive nature of the enemy. It is not a God-given principle because if you understand a God-given principle, then you understand that you and a woman, your woman, in particular, are co-labourers, co-partners, equal in spirit and soul. The only difference is that you as a man, might have a stronger physical body than the woman. That’s not always the case, but mostly, and women, you have a kind of superpower that is able to give love and nurture and do things that men, generally speaking, physiologically they are kind of not made up for that, you know.
I consider mothers to be the pinnacle of superpower people in the earth. I do, because they contend with a lot of emotions and they contend with a lot of hopes and dreams about the future of their children from a place of having nurtured them in the womb and giving birth from the womb and often having nurtured on the breast that a man can’t understand that component of it. If you are a father, that’s not just a biological father or a dad. If you are a father that is a God given, understand your God given responsibilities, then as a father, you will understand the parenting passion of a woman.
Hello, so if you want to adopt any of the principles of the world system about the differences between men and women in society and glass ceilings and feminism and the rise of feminism, let me tell you the danger of this whole level of thinking is that and this is a fact, this is a researched fact. Men, right now, across the earth, there are more men that don’t know what they should be as men than women because of this unrighteous attack on equality. Men have lost their identity of what they need to be because all of society says that its men that are violent and they are mostly (I mean the acts of violence come often from men), violence against women often come from men in a relationship and those things should be stopped.
The answer is not in the legislation of law from the government, I mean that helps, but it should come from the church. I’m not ashamed to say this: if you are a woman in this church and you are hearing this message and your husband abuses you, or abuses your kids, physically or emotionally to such an extent that things are really bad, you need to come and talk to one of us, and we’ll help you lay a charge against them at the police station because they don’t have any business behaving that way. They have no business behaving that way. They have no business behaving that way. God does not sanction that, and neither do I.
I’m not going to talk about the other side of the equation, where women critically and with a sharp tongue of their mouth, and withholding favours of their body, and withholding their body from men can actually dominate a household by dominating children, and dominating through a mouth and dominating through all manor of whiles and giles, I’m not discounting that side of the story either but that’s not what I’m talking about today.
I’m wanting to just say to you that God has created us beings equal, and here’s the ultimate end of this is that one day when I die and Pastor Sharon dies, we will one day die, that’s probably a hundred years from now, but one day we will die. Our bodies will cease to exist unless the Lord has a different plan with eternity before we get to that age.
When she and I die, she’s going to go and stand, and it’s very seldom unless there’s a car accident or an aeroplane accident or something; it’s very seldom that both people die at the same time. If she goes a few seconds, maybe it’s a few years, but in the blink of an eye in eternity time, she hits heaven before me; she just crosses over from her natural body into her spirit life. If that happens, she’s going to have an encounter with Jesus, and He’s going to talk to her, and he’s not even going to mention me; in that conversation, I’m not relevant. What she did in her life spiritually, to live with me and obey God with me and her role as a partner to me, those things will become relevant. But it’s not about me; it’s about her obedience to God in those things.
Similarly, when I stand there, I’m going to stand before God one day, and God is not going to; she’s not even going to come into the equation. All He’s going to say is, here’s My Word, what you were supposed to do when you had a relationship with your life partner, and here was the instruction for you to be obedient to the will of God and the Word of God. Did you do it? Because if you didn’t do it, it meant you didn’t trust Me in relationship. So if you didn’t trust Me in relationship, then there’s a lot of things I wanted you to do through relationships that didn’t get done through relationship.
When I say to you, I’m not called to marriage, but I’m called through marriage. It’s one of the most accurate things the Lord ever had to correct and rectify in my life. I’m not called to marriage, and I’m not called to my kids beyond the fact that once I’ve raised them, they are their own adult. I’m not called to my kids, and I’m not called to marriage. I’m called through marriage, and once my kids get old enough, I’m called to pray for the final destiny of the outcome of their lives.
It becomes, they transition, at when they become at adult age, whatever that time is. They transition from being your kid to being God’s kid. They are your bloodborne family, but that is no longer your responsibility to develop them in their calling. They become God’s responsibility, and hear me now; they become the church’s responsibility to make their calling come to pass.
That’s why people are supposed to stay planted in a church long enough so that people can see what your gifting is. See what your calling is. See where your assignment leans. What’s going on because we together are supposed to be? We are uniquely put together by God so that we can rub each other the wrong way. Yeah, make each other cross and then give each other peace and then deal with each other, deal with each other because if you’re someone that likes to just barrel ahead, and I don’t care about what anybody thinks, I’m doing this thing. You need someone to say, “Hey, wag ‘n bietjie. Wait, wait, wait, wait. You need to plan a bit and organize.” “No, don’t plan just do.”
Yeah, then someone else says, “No, no, you’ve got to plan a bit.” You say, “I don’t want to plan, I want to do.” But the doer says to the planner, “You’ve been planning long enough, now you must do. The planner says to the doer, “You can’t just do; you’ve got to plan. Can you understand that in that, there is some confrontation, that doesn’t mean that you run away from the church, “Yeah, they don’t understand me there? I’ve got to go and find somewhere else that some people appreciate my gift.” No, we appreciate your gift; we are just not going to let you do it the way you want to do it; we want to let everybody in the body of Christ help.
The place where you start is, you start with a marriage relationship, or you start in a family, you start in the basic unit or family living. You start with honouring your mother and honouring your father. That doesn’t mean to say that when they get old enough, they are obedient; you have to be obedient to everything. It’s like, you know, my sons are in their 30s already, and they’re on the other side of 35 already. That will tell you how long we’ve been married and all of that, and they don’t come and ask me if they can go to the shower. Or buy groceries? Huh? No, it’s their responsibility. They’ve got to live life now. I had to stop parenting them.
It no longer became a matter of obedience; it became a matter of honour. Honour is such a higher level of living with your parents. That sometimes it’s a state of, “I hear what you’re saying, mom, and I’m not trying to speak against you, mom, but the blood-bought Body of Christ is saying something about my future, different to what you are saying about my future.” So, mom says, “But I raised you and all those years. Remember all those years; we did homework together; you remember all those years, I helped you to get to sports events. I was there for you when you did that, and you broke your arm, and I took you to the hospital, and I took it to the dentist, and I took you to all of those things. I mean, I’ve been there for you for 17 years of your life. Surely I have a right to talk about what your future looks like.”
Well, firstly, you should have been a parent that’s in the church that actually is allowing the body to affect you. If you don’t let the body… Like a message, like I’m preaching today. You might not like what I’m saying because you might think, “What is a blood-bought family got to do with my kid? My kid is my kid, and we’ll decide together what we must do in life?” The answer is no.
What happened to what God wants for their life? “So yeah, but it’s my kid, I’ll hear, I’ll hear what God’s future is for their life.” There comes a point where you’re not supposed to hear for them anymore, for them. There comes a point where they’ve got to hear for themselves.
Then what happens when they’re hearing for themselves, and they’re having their own God encounters. Then they come and tell you that thing that you and I talked about since we were 12? And that I was going to do, I’m not doing that anymore. Well, why would you have even told him from 12 what they must become? Well, it’s because you think you have a right to your child’s future more than God does.
That was the same in a marriage relationship. If you don’t see your marriage relationship accurately, you think you have a right to your partner, to your partner’s body, to your partner’s future. You think you have a right to it, but actually, they belong to Jesus.
Wow, you’re all looking at me like, “Where’s this Pastor coming from today? This day, this Mother’s Day.” Happy Mother’s Day.
This week I had a completely different take on this Scripture, partly because I ministered this very powerfully to my staff, and actually, today, they have so much peace about what they do. The interns, the A-team, all of the people that work with me, they have such a settled, powerful understanding of how they live and work in the ministry because I preached the message the Lord gave me only to them. It was about carrying jars, carrying clay pots, or carrying jars. Recently I became aware of— and they will often talk about themselves when things are hectic. When we were building things and doing things in the upgrade of the auditorium, things were hectic, and they had such clarity, we are carriers of jars. We are carriers of jars.
I’m not going to go through all of that message now. How many of you want to hear that message? You’ll have to ask a little bit louder than that, you know? I’ll ask my staff whether they think I should share it with you or not. What do you all say? What do you guys say? You think we should share it with them? [A team says yes] okay.
It comes from this passage of scripture John 2 verse 1-11 in the New Living Translation. 1The next day there was a wedding celebration in the village of Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, 2and Jesus… Jesus’ mother, it’s mother’s day. Jesus’ mother was there …. and Jesus and His disciples were also invited to the celebration. 3The wine supply ran out during the festivities, so Jesus’ mother told Him, “They have no more wine.” They have no more wine.
Just notice how Jesus answers her. 4” Dear woman, …” (John 2:1-3 NLT). What is He doing? Why is He not saying, “Hey Mom, what’s the story here?” Woman. Do you know what He was doing right there? He was putting her on a spiritual footing that says, “You are no longer mother to Me, you are just woman. You’re no longer mother to Me. You are a spirit being placed by God in eternity to walk with Me.”
If we think, and I have this clear thing about my grandchildren. My children and my grandchildren are not my property to dote on and to say, “I’m a grandfather, and we’re grandparents.” And we love every minute of it, and we absolutely adore. We adore our grandchildren, and we just think they’re fantastic. Like Brother Jerry said, “If I could have become a grandparent before I become a parent because it’s so good, I would have done that first.
But unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way, but I’m clear. I mean, Pastor Sharon and I are very clear in our focus. Our responsibility to our grandchildren is not to say, “We’ve come to the part in life now where we can have this fun relationship with our grandchildren, and this becomes our next meaning in life.” Sorry, it’s not for us. I don’t believe it’s for anybody.
Why not? Well, because first of all, their mom and dad have a responsibility to be in a blood-bought family, which they must choose for themselves. Their mom and dad, so in this case, it happens to be my kids. Their mom and dad, my grandchildren, their mom and dad must make spiritual decisions about their involvement with a blood-bought church. The blood-bought church must have an involvement and a say in what they become in their gifts and their callings. Not just us. In my kids, we got to have a say in what they become; all of us, as they are becoming what they need to become, they will have a clear insight as to what their children must be becoming, together with the blood-bought family, which is why children should be in church; a lot. They should have relationships in the church; a lot.
So, let’s be clear if we go back to Genesis, God didn’t put another person with Adam because he needed to have a reproductive being. Man and Woman reproductive. It is my belief that they could have reproduced another being with their own words of agreement with the Father; if the time came, they wouldn’t have needed the differences between the man’s body and the woman’s body. If they did not eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, they would have continued to create, if that was in the will of God, that they should create more men, because the probability exists is that if they had not done that, they would have lived forever in eternity with God.
Maybe there wouldn’t have had to be more kids other than the ones that God the Father, Son, Holy Spirit, and Adam and Eve decided together; we should actually have more of us creatures. Then God would say, “Okay, but you got to give them the same instruction that I gave you. You can have all the stuff in the garden; just don’t eat of that tree.”
Come on; it’s quite possible that they wouldn’t have had reproduction the way they have. Where do I get that from? Well, look, I can’t say this is what would have happened. Certainly, when God spoke to them after they were understanding each other’s naked bodies, He then introduced this that she will bear children, and she will bear children in pain. That was the first time that God actually mentioned further offspring and reproduction in human beings because they now no longer had the glory of God. In fact, they had to kick them out of the Garden of Eden lest they then go back and eat of the tree of life. Anyway, take that revelation with what you want. It’s not a doctrine; I’m making of it, just an observation in the Word.
The blood-bought family is a much more powerful thing. So it was even in the covenant relationships of the Old Testament. There was a powerful thing that existed in the community. I’m not going to talk too much about that today.
4”Dear woman, that’s not our problem,” Jesus replied. “My time has not yet come.” 5But his mother told the servants, “Do whatever He tells you.” So, she refused to let go of the mother thing. He was speaking to her as a Spirit.
Come on. He was speaking to her as a Spirit in a woman’s body. He was no longer speaking to her as a mother. She did not want to get let go of the mother title. Because she understood, from the Old Testament, from the laws of the covenant, that Jesus must honour His mother. She wanted a result that a mother could produce, not a spirit woman.
Jesus had to do this again because she didn’t get it the first time. Closer to the time that He was going to die, somebody came and said to Jesus, while he was about God’s business, “Your mother and your brothers are waiting for You outside. He had to address this again to bring clarity to her. Who is my brother, who is my mother? But them that do the will of my Father.
Now He is even making it plainer. Mother status and brother status are no longer the important status in my life. It’s the will of the Father and those that follow the will of God; that’s the status that matters more than anything. Don’t you think the Holy Spirit’s given me a good opportunity to take a mother’s day and twist it a little bit to make it significant in the message? Thank you, Holy Spirit. Thank you. Thank you, Holy Spirit. Hallelujah.
I’ve got so much to teach. I’ve got so much to teach women. Really, I have. I have got so much to teach women, but I can’t teach it all today. Now all the feminists, not you all, but the feminists out there; they say, “What right does a man have to teach a woman?” Well, I understand one completely. Understand one completely.
When I read the Bible of God, He allows me to understand other spirit beings and other souls. This is cool stuff. Come on, men, if you’re all out there, this should be happy news for you. It really should. Because if you’ve been one of those guys that says, “I don’t understand women anymore.” You got to understand that the barrier that’s caused you to say those things is that you are choosing choices for yourself because you are self-centred and not because you want to actually understand women.
You only want to understand her when it’s nice for you. I’ve got kids in the auditorium, so I’m very careful. Then I understand you perfectly well. Right? The other times I don’t. I want to do sport, and I want to watch TV, and I want to do that. I don’t understand you because you’re that person there and then when you want nice things from me, then you understand me suddenly. We need this conversation in a different setting, right? Are you registering, babes? [Pastor John asking the question to Pastor Sharon] I’ll meet you afterwards, okay?
5But his mother told the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” 6Standing nearby were six stone water jars; this is why I talked about carrying jars used for Jewish ceremonial washing. They were not wine jars; they were used for ceremonial washing, that means the clean water became dirty water. Please bear this out. Please remember this; Each could hold twenty to thirty gallons. (John 2:5-6 NLT)
So who are those people that know how many litres there are in a gallon? Five, it’s not quite five, right? It’s four and a half-ish, five-ish, but if you want to round it up, let’s make it five. It’s good to make it five for the sake of this equation. Five litres, because we are familiar with litres, right? Five litres in one gallon. So, if these jars were 20 to 30 gallons, this is a minimum of 100 to 150 litres.
How much water do you fill in a bath? Maybe 50 litres, right? I don’t know. Let’s make it 100 litres. Okay, you’ve got a big round bath. Let’s make it 150 litres. How many people do you think are going to carry that bath full of water? Not one. Not two. It’s going to be at least four. Do you know why they make those jars, and they’ve got these rings on the jars? Nowadays, they are just funky looking rings because they are small on these jars. In the times of the Bible they had proper rings on the jars, because you had to put a rod through the jars.
So you can have four people carrying 100 to 150 litres to the well. How many jars were there? Six. Right? Six stone jars. How many people are involved in this miracle now? Come on. At least 24. Now when we look at it, we think it’s six guys that go in and quickly fetch water out of the well. No, these are 24 people one at a time; they’re drawing water out of the well to fill 150 litres. How long do you think this process took them? A long time.
It’s a good thing they celebrated weddings a long time, those days because this is at least an hour’s job. Maybe two, maybe three. Right? Because they were drawing it from the well, and they were bucketing the water into these jars—one by one.
But it is His mother; mother said this. It’s all about mother. 7… “Fill the jars (John 2:7 NLT) because she says do whatever He tells you. She knew she didn’t have the power, other than the power that He would let her have, based on the honour of a mother. She didn’t want to hear that I’m a spirit; she wanted to hear, I’m a mother. So when she made a pull on Him, she made a pull on Him as a mother.
Then when He spoke to her, He said, “You are touching on the strategic timings of God and the Father in My life and My time has not yet come. You are making a pull on Me as a mother to become something before the time is supposed to be, become.” Hey, mother’s, we think we know what’s best for our kids? But God’s agenda is the thing that must stand.
In this moment, because she addressed him as a mother, he honours her as a mother, and a miracle of turning water into wine happens because she pulled on the honour principle of mother to God. If we don’t think that mothers are not powerful in the outcome of their children, you’re mistaken. Therefore, mothers have to be very careful what they put into their children’s spirit and what they put into their soul for them to become something that God doesn’t want them to become.
Even when Jesus was 30 years old, she was still trying to tell Him how God was going to actually work through Him, and she was the one who was trying to manifest He’s assignment before His time. Because mothers are so passionate about their children, and they’re so passionate about their children becoming something that they take the role of God. We can’t do this, mothers; we got to let God help our children. Why would you want your child following all of the weaknesses that are in your life? We don’t think that we have any weaknesses; when we raise our kids, we just raise them according to what our value system is.
I’m standing on lots of toes; I can feel it. I can feel it, we raise our kids because we think we have the best value system than anybody else, so we raise them with our value system. We raise them with our value system, and then we think they must live like us because we know better than anybody else. Maybe you do it for you, but what about what does God say about it?
We’ve been impacted for generations, and I’ve ministered this to my, to the interns and the staff on Friday. All of us that come together, we have generations of people that are sitting here in the service with us. There are 1000’s of people that are sitting here with us today.
Because we all have great grandparents, grandparents, fathers and mothers, friends and families, we have associates; we have school friends, we have whatever, people in our lives that have impacted the way we think and now we think we’ve got a value system best suited to our kids. When the Babylonion system and all the ways of the world that’s had all those people for years think they know God and they don’t know God, and they then told us how to live, and so, they’ve been telling us how to live marriage for years, and they’ve got no clue.
They’ve got no clue about marriage, and they’ve got no clue about sex in marriage either. They got no clue! Because their sex in marriage is a one-dimensional sex relationship. God has made us body, soul and spirit, and all three are meant to be intimate at the same time. They got no clue what that looks like and yet we want them to tell us how we should have sex. Huh? Ja, amen.
Anyway, I wanna just, I’m gonna give you a scripture reference, and I’m gonna close the service with this. Are you enjoying yourself in church today? How much longer do you think I can preach today? Hey, another five or ten minutes? I mean, I know maybe somebody got mother’s day dinner in the oven or something like that, so I’m trying to be sensitive about that, you know, but if that’s not happening, I can stand and preach here all day. I mean, this subject, I love it, I love to teach on this stuff. You know God kind of put this in my heart for years and years. I’ve got years of stuff to teach you.
Anyway, the Apostle Paul, he’s going about his business in life, he’s going about his business, and he’s calling, and he’s going into to certain cities, you can find this in Acts chapter six and 7And when they had come opposite Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not permit them. (Acts 16:7 AMPC)
Come on; Paul is on his journey; he’s taking the gospel to different towns, and he wants to go to this town, and the Holy Spirit says, “You can’t go to that town.” “But, but Lord. I’m on my journey; You haven’t told me not to go to a town before.” If it was like that, He would’ve written like that. Right? “So Lord, what is going on here?” “Don’t go; you’re not allowed to go to that town. I do not permit you. The Holy Spirit does not permit you.”
You mean the Holy Spirit can permit you not to go to towns? [Pastor John nods his head yes.] You mean the Holy Spirit can tell you not to buy houses or sell houses or do stuff? Yes? He wants to be involved in all those decisions if you’ll let Him.
Here, in this case, the Holy Spirit did not permit them. ⁸So passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas. ⁹[There] a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man from Macedonia stood pleading with him and saying, Come over to Macedonia and help us! ¹⁰And when he had seen the vision, we [including Luke] the Apostle at once endeavored to go on into Macedonia, confidently inferring, Did you see that there? …confidently inferring that God had called us to proclaim the glad tidings (Gospel) to them. (Acts 16:8-10 AMPC)
You know what a confident inference is? It means He hasn’t specifically talked, but He actually said no, don’t go there, that was specific. When the vision came to Him, in the Spirit, “Come to Macedonia.” He didn’t have to have another voice of the Holy Spirit talk to him. It was a confident intelligence. It was a confident intelligence that he should go to Macedonia. I’m just showing you that God is actively involved in telling us where we can go and where we shouldn’t go. Praise Jesus.
And so off they go. ¹²And from there [we came] to Philippi, which is the chief city of the district of Macedonia and a [Roman] colony. We stayed on in this place some days; ¹³And on the Sabbath day we went outside the [city’s] gate to the bank of the river where we supposed there was an [accustomed] place of prayer, and we sat down and addressed the women who had assembled there. ¹⁴One of those who listened to us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a dealer in fabrics dyed in purple. (Acts 16:12-14 AMPC)
I talked to my staff the other day, and I talked to them and said, “Please don’t call me a dealer of cracking”, because I spoke to them about the message of cracking, not a message of dying, but a message of cracking. Because a seed has got to crack the outer shell before the inside can come out. So, I said please don’t call me a crack leader or a crack dealer. Here is someone who was dealing in garments of purple.
¹⁴One of those who listened to us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a dealer in fabrics dyed in purple. She was [already] a worshiper of God, and the Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul.¹⁵And when she was baptized along with her household, she earnestly entreated us, saying, If in your opinion I am one really convinced [that Jesus is the Messiah and the Author of salvation] and that I will be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay. And she induced us [to do it]. (Acts 16:14-15 AMPC)
Wow, I just wanna show you something, I just wanna show you. There were twelve apostles; they were all men. They were all men. Twelve disciples, they were all men. I don’t know what that influence has had on church and Christianity in terms of the leadership of men in the church. It is clear from this passage of scripture that God said, don’t go to that city; I do not permit you to. A vision came in the night, so he goes to another city. When he gets to that city, he doesn’t immediately start to build a business or look for money or do something. He just goes and he sits at the river where in the customs of that time period people would go to the river and pray.
So, he went there, and when he went there to go and pray, he saw the women, and he began to teach the women and out of all the women hearing the message, Lydia came, and she said,” Hey, if you think that I am, I know the Lord Jesus is the Messiah and the Savior, and I’m a worthy follower that He wants to use me, please come and have my house as your base. Use my house as your base.”
And so, when he uses the word induced, it was almost like she persuaded him. What did she persuade him with? She persuaded him with her faith, with her love for God, with her resources, with everything she had. Everything that she had. With her words, with all of her influence, she persuaded him, stay here and stay in my house….with your disciples.
We know Silas and Luke were at least, there were at least three of them travelling together. Yes? Do you remember a story in the Old Testament of another woman who said, “My husband and I have got status in the city, and we perceive you coming and going out of the city, Prophet? We perceive you as a prophet. We haven’t had any direct experience with you, but we’ve perceived you and watched you coming in and out of the city. And we got a spare room, and you can use the spare room anytime you like.”
He kept using the spare room; can I say he used her house? He used a woman’s house. It’s the man’s house when he builds it; it’s the woman’s house when it’s built [Laughter in congregation]. So, she says, “Come use my house.” That woman, after many years, after the Prophet had come and gone, says, “I want to do something and bless this woman.” So, what’s to bless? They got enough money; they have enough status and everything in the city. They don’t need anything. He says, “Well, go and ask her what she needs and come back. Nothing?” So, he says, “There must be something we can do for her?”
When they find out, “Oh, she’s, they’re much older people, and they’ve never had children.” He says, “Go and tell her she’s going to be pregnant and is going to have a child,” and she gets cross with him like, “Don’t mess with me. I’m like, beyond that age where you can tell me something that I’ve long lost, had hopes about, that I’ve lost my hope for it.” He says, “No, no, don’t worry, you’ll be pregnant.” He has such a long-term relationship with them that when her child grows up, and he’s busy helping his father in the fields, he gets sick and dies and then she still has a relationship with that Prophet, and she goes to him and says, “Come, my child is sick.” He was already dead, but she wouldn’t speak those words. Then the Prophet comes on her request and raises her son from the dead.
It’s amazing. What just giving someone a room in a house to live in can do. What did Lydia do? She persuaded him. “If you think that the Spirit of God is in me, that I love Jesus Christ, that I’m here, that I want to serve Him with everything I’ve got and He will use me, then please come and use my house.” Hallelujah.
She was a trader. She was a businesswoman. She was also a praying woman. She was a faith woman. This was a powerful woman. She had influence in the community. This was a powerful woman. Hey, come on, men. We got to be men. If we want to be men, we can’t be afraid of superpower women. Come on. Thank you, Pastor Sharon.
Anytime you have to be afraid of a superpower woman is when she’s a feminist. That means she doesn’t want God to be the leader in her life. She wants her own agenda, her own political liberal views to be the thing that runs her life, and she doesn’t want to get into the Bible and read the Bible and understand what the Bible says about a woman. How powerful she is in partnership with a man. Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord. Praise Jesus.
I have a lot to say about women on assignment. Woman in business, woman in marriage, I’ve got a lot to say about women, that are lovers of God and not lovers of culture, and lovers of this order of society. A women that is lovers of God that can do things that are so powerful, that are so dynamic, that are so spiritual, that they can change the course of an apostle’s history.
I can’t prove what I’m about to say; this is just my supposition; I believe that her faith in God and the prayers of these people, actually was what caused Paul to have a vision, I would go so far as to say this; if Paul had a vision of a woman calling him, he wouldn’t have gone because he would have challenged, a spirit because it would have been a woman.
So, God sent the vision of a man saying, “Come to Macedonia to come and help us” so that he could communicate with Paul in his language and his cultural references so that he would go to Macedonia. But it was clear that God intended him to meet Lydia because later, when you read in the book of Philippians, the only church that he ever had any relationship with that he could talk to, as a meaningful partnership with his church at Philippi. And who was the first leader of the Church of Philippi? Lydia.
So, he doesn’t talk about his financial partnership with other churches like he does with the Philippian church. It is only to the Philippian church who partnered with him the way they did. It is only to the Philippian church that he writes and says, “…and my God shall meet all your needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” It wasn’t based on their giving; it was based on their partnership, the understanding of who Paul was as an apostle. It was their understanding of the spirituality as women and as beings and as people.
I can’t get into this right now, but if you read the next verses in Acts, they now are staying with Lydia, and they’re in the house, and Paul’s using this house as a base. He now goes to walk through the city, and as he walks through the city, he encounters another woman. So, who’s his divine contact in the city? A woman. Now he encounters the next woman, and this woman starts to shout at him, “This is the servant of the Most High God; these are the servants of the Most High God; these are the servants of the Most High God.” What did Lydia say to him? Let me read it to you quickly.
15…If in your opinion I am one really convinced [that Jesus is the Messiah and the Author of salvation] and that I will be faithful to the Lord come to my house and stay. And she induced us [to do it]. (Acts 16:15 AMPC). If I will be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay. This woman comes walking on the streets, “These are the sons of the Most High God.”
She doesn’t come and ask a question. She came to make a statement. She wasn’t going God’s way. She was making a statement that was controlled by another force; it was called the ‘familiar spirit’. Paul puts up with her nonsense for three days. Why did he put up with it for three days?
Part of him was like, “Lord, I’m here on assignment. I’ve got this divine relationship with these other women, and he has another woman saying the same thing as that woman said, but I must discern what this woman is saying.” He waits, and he waits. When the fullness of the time came of the Word of God inside of him, he turned to the woman and said, “Devil, you come out of her!” Philippi, he has just come there, they just met, a divine connection. The next woman he meets, she’s got a familiar spirit. The people have been using that familiar spirit, that demonic force in her life, to profit and make money.
What was Lydia doing for Paul? She was providing for all of his needs. What did the familiar spirit do? She was providing for the needs of other men in the city that were ungodly in an unholy way.
Come on, if you don’t think that the devil tries to mirror what God’s doing all the time, trying to mirror what’s God doing and it looks so close to the same thing, but it’s so far apart. Then he says, “Get out—woman, you can’t influence me.”
What’s the next thing that happens? All the men that were making a profit, they come, and they start making noises, and they lay complaints against Paul, and they start taking Paul into the council of the people that ran the city, and these people are causing divisions in the city. Why were they saying that? Because that woman no longer had the spirit of divination or familiar spirits, she couldn’t have men come. Do you know what would happen? She would have people come in, they want to know what their future is, and she would, by a familiar spirit, tell them what their future is. They were selling her insight into people’s lives with a familiar spirit for money. You know, but the Good Shepherd knows what you need for your life. So, the devil has an alternative too. Sjoh. Happy Mother’s Day.
I’m just saying to you; I hope you got …..
Lord, I hope I delivered today what I needed to deliver today. That’s all I can say is my vessel has been here for You to use. I want to say God didn’t make us to be alone; God made us to be in community. I’m not using this message to focus on a marriage relationship; I’m focusing on this as a community relationship, but if you are married, and you do have children, you need to be in a place where you understand that God has a plan for their life, and they were born to you because God knew that you would eventually bring them to a place where this message could be preached, and you would hear it and that you would allow your children to be given to God, and not to your own desires for the future.
Here’s the thing. God is so clear about this. Parents do a good job while you can. When they’re grown up, kids, don’t think that because you now have responsibility for your life, that you just disregard and disrespect your parents. It’s time for you to honour them, honour them. You know what that means when you grow up? It means you go and visit them and you love them. It means if they want to say something to you listen to them. You listen to them carefully, and you give them all the affection and all of the respect that you need to give them. That doesn’t make them right. It just makes you respectful.
If they’re godly in their relationship, you may want to say, “Hey, listen, my wife and I, we’re in our family, we’re in agreement on a thing with God. So, mom and dad, if you want to get into agreement with us, what the Bible says, let’s pray together.” They don’t like it, and they don’t want to do that, and you say, “You understand that when we talk to you about … we’re going to keep listening to you, but we’re not going to have arguments with you. We’re not going to have all these issues that come out of this argument with this thing because actually God’s got an agenda for our lives, and it’s not yours.” That’s His agenda for ours and our kids.
It’s a very different Mother’s Day message, hey? Hallelujah. Praise the Lord.
I hope, I hope everybody understood, that I think men should be just men and should be just superpower men because if you’re a superpower, man, you can have a super understanding for the super woman. Because we are supposed to both be super-beings. In God, right? Come on, men. Where’s your story? Come on. And when you become a super being man, let me tell you the other stuff, that’s nice stuff, it’s better. Much better. Because super-beings produce super things, really, really, really, really it’s like that.
I think you should stand because I’ll preach another half an hour. Thank you for being an amazing audience. Thank you for being amazing people. The congregation, thank you for being together here with us today. Hallelujah. You have a song for me? If I want? Ja. I think we should sing a song. Hey? Praise the Lord.
I want you all to do this with me while we wait for the Sound and Song Technicians to come up. Praise the Lord.
I want you to do this with me; please put your hand on your heart and say I’m a son of God. Okay, if you’re a woman, you can say, I’m a child of God. Sons are generic, you know, so I’m a son of God. I ask you, Lord, to make yourself more real to me every day. I receive you in my heart, as my Lord and Savior, and that You save me, from myself, from all my weird things in Jesus’ name. And that I thank You, Lord, that You helped me become a person that completely follows You. In Jesus’ name. Hallelujah.
You know, if you prayed that prayer this week, today, you can pray this prayer the whole week; I am a person that is following Jesus completely even if it’s not like that. You can say it, and it’ll become like it. Hallelujah. Hallelujah. I’m going to close the service. I urge you to stay for the song, but I want to just pray over you.
I pray that the peace of God will be upon you. No weapon formed against you will prosper. I pray in the name of Jesus that whatever you put your hands to, it will work out for you. That you will have the wisdom of God, you will have the intelligence of God; you will have the direction of God. That everything that you must do will be in alignment with Him and put you on your life assignment. Because there blessing follows you and overtakes you, favour overtakes you, and that’s my request and pray by the Holy Spirit that favour will overtake you this week. Your eyes will be open, your ears will be ready to hear your heart is being led by the Holy Spirit. I pray in the name of Jesus that you will give your wholehearted affection to Him this week in the name of Jesus. Say that with me, “I give my wholehearted affection to Him this week, in Jesus name.” Because He’s a Good Shepherd. He’s our good shepherd. Praise the Lord.
He’ll unscramble your brain if you’re a feminist. He’ll and scramble your brain if you’re a man that feels badly done by. He’ll unscramble your teenagers and kids brains. Whatever is being put there by whoever with whatever, however, and that in itself sounds like a scrambled thing, but God will unscramble it. Nobody can undo a scrambled egg, only God. He can put Humpty Dumpty together again. Come sing.