Archive for the ‘Holy Spirit’ Tag

Walking In The Spirit   Leave a comment

Bible Commentary by Andrew Wommack

Galatians 5:16; [This] I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

How do we walk in the Spirit? The Greek word "PERIPATEO," translated "walk" here, means "to tread all around, i.e. walk at large…figuratively, to live, deport oneself, follow" (Strong’s Concordance). The figurative meaning is what Paul was referring to here. He was speaking of living by, conducting our actions according to, and following the leading of the Holy Spirit.

The way we do this is through living by, conducting our actions according to, and following the leading of the Word of God as quickened to us by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit and the Word of God agree perfectly because the Holy Spirit is the one who inspired the written Word of God (2Pe 1:21).

The Spirit is truth (1Jo 5:6), and God’s Word is truth (Joh 17:17). The Word of God is spirit and life (Joh 6:63). Jesus and the Holy Spirit are one (1Jo 5:7), and Jesus was the Word of God made flesh (Joh 1:1-3 and 14).

When people walk according to the spirit of God’s Word, they are walking in the Spirit. Those who walk contrary to God’s Word are not in the Spirit.

Walking in the true revelation knowledge of God’s Word, as quickened to us by the Holy Spirit, is the way we walk in the Spirit. When we do that, we reap the benefits promised in this verse (see note 7 at this verse).

The deliverance from sin and its influence does not come from ourselves. This can only be achieved through the power of the Holy Spirit. When we let the Holy Spirit control us, He breaks the power of the flesh. One of the true differences between Christianity and other religions is that God provides us with His power through the Holy Spirit to enable us to perform His will. Other religions preach that God will accept us in proportion to how we overcome sin. What a difference!

It is important to notice what this verse does not say. Denying the flesh will not produce walking in the Spirit, but walking in the Spirit will produce denying of the flesh. This is a subtle difference to some, but the difference is truly profound.

As a whole, false religions teach that as we overcome our flesh, there is a noticeable increase in the presence and power of God in our lives. That was what the Pharisees of Jesus’ day and the legalistic Jews of Paul’s day taught. Just the opposite is true. As we experience more of the presence and power of the Spirit of God, the influence of the flesh is diminished. Victory must come in this order. We don’t get the Spirit as a result of overcoming the flesh; having the Spirit results in overcoming the flesh.

It’s similar to how a dark room is filled with light. The darkness isn’t shoveled out and then light comes. No! The light is simply turned on and darkness flees. Much of religion preaches to us to stop sinning (get rid of the darkness) and then the Holy Spirit will come and empower us (the light will come). That’s not the way it works. We can no more get rid of the power of the flesh on our own than we can get rid of the power of darkness without light. We have to receive the working of the Holy Spirit in our lives by grace, and then that union with the Holy Spirit breaks the power of the flesh.

The key to breaking the dominion of the flesh is to appropriate the power of the Spirit through faith while the flesh is still giving us problems. Those of us who are waiting on the Spirit to come after we have subdued the flesh will be waiting as long as the one who is trying to get rid of all the darkness so the light can come.

Posted October 31, 2014 by Free From Burdens in Uncategorized

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The Positive Ministry Of The Holy Spirit   Leave a comment

The Positive Ministry Of The Holy Spirit – By Andrew Wommack

Most people have been led to believe that self-doubt, self-condemnation, feelings of unworthiness, and conviction for individual sins are the work of the Holy Spirit. But it’s just not true!

Those of you who are familiar with this ministry know that I spend a great deal of time teaching on the unconditional love and grace of God. That is what changed my life. But I can tell by the questions and comments I get that many people still don’t get it.

Because of that, years ago I asked the Lord to give me a way of expressing His grace that people can’t miss. That is when He gave me one of the most important revelations I have ever had about the positive ministry of the Holy Spirit. Not everyone likes this, but they understand what I’m saying.

The devil’s favorite tool, religion, has done a great job of convincing the body of Christ that the Holy Spirit is the source of negative feelings. He has believers convinced it’s the Holy Spirit showing them they are unworthy and have to “clean up their acts” if they ever want to receive from the Lord.

The truth is, it’s your heart or, more specifically, your conscience that is condemning you, not God. That is not the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is never the source of any of your guilt or condemnation. He is not the One that makes you feel bad when you sin.

Your conscience is the part of you that condemns you. And if you are feeling unworthy it’s almost impossible to receive from God.

First John 3:19-21 says, “And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things. Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.”

This verse makes it very clear: Your heart can condemn you even though God is not. What a radical truth, which comes as a complete shock to most Christians. We’ve just assumed that it is always the Holy Spirit who is condemning us.

Then John said in verse 21, “Beloved if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.”

If you can reach the point where your conscience is not condemning you, judging you, and causing you to feel unworthy to receive, then you will have confidence toward God, which has great recompense of reward (Heb. 10:35).

Most Christians never reach that place. Most know that God can answer their prayer; they just don’t have the confidence that He will, because they feel unworthy. They aren’t willing to stand in faith, because feelings of guilt and unworthiness, which they believe are coming from the Holy Spirit, shipwreck their faith.

“Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck” (1 Tim. 1:19).

Our conscience is not something we can or should ignore; it can be trained for our benefit, but it is not the Holy Spirit. The best way to deal with the conscience is to, as much as possible, not give it any occasion against us. It can’t condemn you if you aren’t giving it a reason. However, no one lives a perfect life and ultimately you’ve got to purge your conscience from dead works.

Hebrews 9:14 says, “How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?”

In Hebrews 10:22, the Bible says, “Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience.”

And in Hebrews 4:16, we read, “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”

The ministry of Holy Spirit is just the opposite of what many Christians think. In John 14:16 read how Jesus describes the Holy Spirit: “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.”

Notice that Jesus calls the Holy Spirit the “Comforter,” not the afflicter. It also says that He will send “another” Comforter. “Another” means one of the same caliber, the same kind. Jesus was and still is a comforter; He didn’t condemn people during His earthly ministry.

John 3:17-19 reads, “For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deed were evil.”

John 14:26 says, “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name…”

In John 15:26, Jesus said, “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father…”

And in John 16:7, Jesus continues to say about the Holy Spirit, “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.”

There can be no doubt that the ministry of the Holy Spirit is not one of condemnation; it’s one of comfort. Jesus said that it was expedient for you that He go away and the Comforter comes. The word “expedient” means “to your advantage.” Jesus is saying that it’s better to have the Holy Spirit ministering to you than it is to have Him present in His physical body. What a statement!

I know someone is thinking, What about John 16:8: “And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.”

Well, first of all, there is a huge difference between conviction and condemnation, but let’s set that aside for now. Look at the next verse. Jesus knew people would impute things to the Holy Spirit that He wasn’t doing. So, Jesus explained very clearly just which sin the Holy Spirit would convict us of. It is the singular sin of not believing on Jesus.

John 16:9 says, “Of sin, because they believe not on me.”

The Holy Spirit doesn’t convict us of lying, stealing, adultery, murder, etc; He convicts us that we aren’t trusting in Jesus. That’s the root of every sin.

Technically, people don’t go to hell for their individual sins; Jesus has already forgiven all of them (1 John 2:2). People go the hell for the single sin of not making Jesus their personal Savior, the complete and only payment for their sin.

Even after receiving salvation, it’s not our actions (sins) that are the problem but the heart attitude of not trusting Jesus. That is the root of all sin. The reason people do dope and alcohol is because they are turning to something other than Jesus to dull the hurt inside.

When we lie, it’s because we don’t trust Jesus and feel we have to manipulate others. That’s what all sin comes down to: not trusting Jesus. That’s what the Holy Spirit convicts us about.

Most Christians have not truly understood this positive ministry of the Holy Spirit. We have made Him the source of our feelings of guilt, condemnation, and unworthiness. Because of that, we haven’t really let Him do His job, and we are missing the benefits and power of a relationship with Him.

The Holy Spirit should be your best friend. He was sent here to encourage you and constantly assure you of God’s love. He is the most important and most powerful person in your life. If you haven’t been thinking correctly about the Holy Spirit, it’s time to change your thinking.

You will never be able to relate to God correctly until you understand this positive ministry of the Holy Spirit. My new and expanded series, The Positive Ministry of the Holy Spirit, will help you make this change in your thinking. The Holy Spirit is the great Comforter, but His positive ministry goes far beyond that. If you want power in your life, you’ll have to know and understand what I teach in this series.

Posted October 23, 2014 by Free From Burdens in Uncategorized

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God Is Our Comfort   Leave a comment

GOD IS OUR COMFORT – Andrew Wommack Ministries

John 14:16 "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;"

JOHN 14:16-17

Remember that Jesus was saying these things to His disciples so that they would not be offended. Jesus is speaking to His disciples about the Holy Spirit, who is the Comforter. The ministry of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer is the front line of defense against the devil and his devices of defeat. The phrase, "The God of all comfort" carries the idea of a divine comforter who encourages, refreshes, strengthens, aids, assists, and is an ever present help in the time of need. The ways that God chooses to comfort are not always the same. He may deliver you or remove the cause of the affliction, or He may comfort you with words giving you a hope for the future. He also uses people to share their faith with you by prophesying. He sends fellow-laborers to serve and strengthen you by the ministry of the Word, and uses the body of Christ as a channel to comfort you, using prayer.

The point is that the source of all comfort is God, no matter what channel He chooses to use.

In 2 Corinthians 12:9, God revealed to Paul that His strength is made perfect in our weakness. Paul, who had experienced God’s comfort in a way that perhaps no other man has, now reveals how the Lord accomplished this. It was through the power of the Holy Spirit. True Christianity is not the absence of trials, but the strength and comfort of Jesus through the Holy Spirit, that will bring us through to the other side.

Even a strong metal container with a vacuum inside will be crushed just by normal atmospheric pressure. But that same container, with an equal or greater amount of pressure inside, will be just fine. Likewise, an individual who is void of God’s comfort inside will be crushed by the pressures of this life. But a believer who takes advantage of the comfort available to him through the Holy Spirit, can withstand anything. Victory is not dependent on the pressures without, but rather on the comfort within.

Posted October 22, 2014 by Free From Burdens in Uncategorized

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The True Nature Of God   Leave a comment

The True Nature Of God – Article – Andrew Wommack Ministries

For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. Romans 8:15

“Abba, Father” speaks of an intimate, loving relationship with God. Today we would say “daddy” or “papa.” Sadly, though, many do not have this kind of relationship with the Lord. They’re so worried about not sinning themselves into hell that they can’t process the idea that God might actually love them unconditionally.

Even those who know they are saved still believe God will give them a disease, keep them poor, or refuse to answer their prayers. They try to put a positive spin on it by saying God is trying to “perfect them,” but the bottom line is, in their minds, they are being punished for not being good enough. That creates a spirit of fear and puts them in bondage to sin.

That should not be how a Christian relates to God.

First John 4:18 says, If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced His perfect love. New Living Translation

Just because you fear that God wants to punish you doesn’t mean it’s true. It just means you don’t understand God’s loving nature yet. I believe one of the reasons many Christians perceive God as angry or demanding is because they have never thought of man’s redemption from God’s point of view.

God made man in His image, after His likeness (Gen. 1:26). Contrary to what many pet owners think today, a dog is not in the image of the man who takes care of it. But a child is. God made man to be His child. That’s why in the Gospels, Jesus repeatedly refers to God as “your Father.”

We know that from the Garden of Eden, God wanted Adam and Eve, His children, to live in beauty and provision. There was no sickness, no death, and no lack. Man ruling over a perfect, blessed world was God’s perfect will.

Imagine, then, how this loving Father must have felt when one day His children were hiding from Him. He had literally given them the whole world. There was only one thing that was bad for them, the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. God had warned His children that they would die if they ate of it, but instead of trusting Him, Satan convinced them that God was holding out on them. They still believed there was some sort of enjoyment their Father did not want them to have.

This act of disobedience transferred man’s authority over the earth to Satan, making the devil the “prince of this world” (John 12:31). It’s also the reason there is death, sickness, and lack. Those things do not exist in God’s kingdom. They weren’t in the Garden of Eden. They aren’t in heaven either. They only exist where Satan is in authority. When people blame God for suffering and death, they are getting their kingdoms confused.

God hates human suffering. It was never His will, nor is it in His kingdom. But the world was created by the integrity of His Word. The Lord had given the authority to rule over this world to Adam. Adam voluntarily chose to hand it over to Satan and separate himself from God.

To me, this is where the Lord shows His true nature. He could have just said, “You made your bed—now lie in it.” He could have destroyed Satan’s kingdom immediately, sending man to hell right along with it. But God didn’t do either one. He never stopped loving His kids, so instead of punishing them, He sent Jesus with the sole purpose of paying their ransom with His death (Matt. 20:28).

This made the way for right relationship with God. Anyone who believes in the name of Jesus can be reborn as a child of God. The moment we receive this salvation, we are no longer sinners in His eyes, but are righteous and truly holy (Eph. 4:24). It’s our nature to want to tell God how unworthy we are, but God doesn’t see us that way.

Hebrews 10:17 reads, And their sins and iniquities will I [God] remember no more. Brackets mine

Born-again believers are not on probation. That’s what most Christians don’t understand. We are not trying to work our way back into God’s kingdom. The moment we accept Jesus as our Savior, we are delivered from Satan’s kingdom and translated back into God’s (Col. 1:13).

That’s why Jesus taught His disciples not to worry about life, or having enough food to eat or clothes to wear. There is no lack in God’s kingdom. If you need something in life, don’t look at yourself and your abilities; instead, “seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Luke 12:31).

Religion has taught us that prosperity is a dirty word used by people who are spiritually immature and selfish. That isn’t true. Being blessed isn’t about our will; it’s about God’s nature.

Jesus said in Luke 12:32, Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

If you surveyed the average Christian today about what gave God pleasure, most would answer with something about repentance from sin or dead works. Probably not one out of a hundred would answer, “Seeing His children blessed.” On the other hand, if you asked one hundred parents what gave them pleasure, most answers would include something about seeing their children happy and doing well.

If it is in a parent’s nature to want to see their children prosper and be in good health, why would God be different (3 John 2)?

That’s exactly the point Jesus was making in Matthew 7:11:

If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?

It is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. God doesn’t just want you to have a cup; He wants you to have a cup that is overflowing. God doesn’t just want you to catch a few fish; He wants you to catch so many fish, your nets are breaking and your boat is about to sink. He wants everyone to have their fill with twelve baskets left over.

Many argue that the existence of struggling Christians is proof that it’s not always God’s will to see His children healthy and prospering. Again, they are getting their kingdoms confused. Sure, we still live in a fallen world. We still have an Enemy who wants to steal, kill, and destroy us. But that’s why we must receive our blessing through a supply channel called faith.

Hebrews 11:6 refers to this: But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Many Christians don’t feel worthy to come to God in faith that He will help them, because they have been taught that their sin has disqualified them. But, see, that doesn’t please God. He doesn’t want you to think of Him as the punisher of those who aren’t perfect; He wants you to come to Him with the expectation of reward—not because you are good but because He is good.

I know this is the opposite of what religion has taught us, but it’s clearly illustrated in the parable often referred to as the Prodigal Son. When most of us read this story, we relate with the son who ran away. We know our behavior has made us unworthy to be in the presence of our Father, so maybe if we beg forgiveness and confess our sins, God will let us live in His kingdom as a lowly servant.

However, Jesus was not telling this story to illustrate man’s nature; He was illustrating God’s nature.

Luke 15:20 explains how God feels about us when we become born again.

But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.

The son confessed his unworthiness to the father, but the father didn’t even acknowledge it. There was no putting his son on probation or making him work his way back into the father’s good graces. The father wasn’t interested in punishing his son; he was too excited about getting back to what brought him pleasure—blessing his children.

He immediately restored his son into the family by putting a ring on his finger, shoes on his feet, and dressing him in the best robe. Then he threw a party. The son’s disloyalty and rebellion would no longer be remembered or brought up. It didn’t matter anymore. The only thing that mattered to the father was expressed in Luke 15:24: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

That’s the attitude of a loving father. That’s the true nature of God.

Posted October 19, 2014 by Free From Burdens in Uncategorized

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True Riches   Leave a comment

So many think when they obtain a lot of goods/things that’s godliness (1 Timothy 6:5; "Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, SUPPOSING THAT GAIN IS GODLINESS: from such withdraw thyself"). But verse 6 says, "But godliness with contentment/satisfaction/ease of mind is great gain".

One day while laying in bed, instead of looking around at the things I have, I began to realize Who I have. then I thought I’m rich, not because of what I have, but because of Who I have; JESUS. I have the true Word of God. His Word comforts me more than any THING I have or will have. I used to think money or things would make me feel like I had some worth. But the Lord helped me realize those things did not; and what they gave me was temporary satisfaction. His unconditional love for us all makes me smile. When you have someone that loves you, no matter what you’ve done wrong or will do wrong, that brings peace. So, I don’t boast in any worldly accomplishments I’ve done or boast in any worldly goods I have, because they are all dung/RUBBISH to me (Philippians 3:8). They are now because I realized no matter how much I get, I will never have true happiness or peace without Him. The greatest Gift I have is my relationship with my Father, my Creator, Abba God. My Daddy. He loves us so much He came to earth to live as a man. He understands all our troubles because He suffered for us. He left His awesome home in Heaven, to be spit on, poked on, talked about, lied on, to have a thorn of roses on His head, to be beaten beyond recognition, to have stakes put through His hands and both feet; all because He loves us. So, I can truthfully and honestly say I have it good. Real good because of Him and what He did for us. Thank You Lord God, my Creator, my Abba/Daddy; Thank You Jesus, my Lord AND Savior; Thank You Holy Spirit; my Help, my Comforter. Thank You… So if you get comfort in the things you have in your life, you are truly missing out. The greatest comfort and peace comes from the Prince of Peace, Jesus. I’m not against having things, but those things are only temporary and cannot give what Jesus did. If you don’t have peace, you haven’t truly acknowledged Christ as your everything. Instead of seeking after those things that make you look good, seek after that One, who made us righteous. That’s being rich. Having riches isn’t bad, but if they are what you need to feel worth, then you really aren’t rich.

Mark 4:19; And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.

Mark 10:24; And the disciples were astonished at His words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that TRUST IN RICHES to enter into the kingdom of God!

Luke 6:24-26; But woe unto you that are rich! for ye have received your consolation. Woe unto you that are full! for ye shall hunger. Woe unto you that laugh now! for ye shall mourn and weep. Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.

Luke 12:33; Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth.

1 Timothy 6:7-19; For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses. I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen. Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.

Posted October 16, 2014 by Free From Burdens in Uncategorized

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As I Have Loved You – Article – Andrew Wommack Ministries   Leave a comment

Please listen to this teaching series on: http://www.awmi.net/extra/audio/1077. You will be blessed beyond your expectations.

As I Have Loved You – Article from Andrew Wommack

Imagine the night before Jesus’ crucifixion. He has communion with His disciples and washes their feet. He reveals that Judas is the one who will betray Him. He tells the disciples that He is leaving and they can’t come. Then, He speaks these words:

A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. (John 13:34-35)

By virtue of the fact that this would be, in part, His final words to the disciples, they had to be very important. And notice that what He said to them was in the form of a command, not a suggestion.

I am sure that everyone reading this letter has read or heard this passage many times. But in reality, most do not think that this is something they can actually do. It’s a goal that they may strive to reach with gritted teeth, but usually with little success.

It begs the question—would Jesus give His disciples a command He knew they couldn’t keep? The answer is obviously no, so why is it so hard for us today to love other people? Could it be this simple—we can’t give what we don’t have?

The majority of churches are teaching that God’s love for us is conditional. They are misrepresenting His love, and it is one of the main reasons that we as Christians are so judgmental and harsh toward other people. Consciously or not, we tend to treat people the way we believe God is treating us.

We must understand that God does not love us because we are lovely. He does not love us because we read the Bible, go to church, pay our tithes, or do our best to keep the command to love others as He loved us. The truth is that He loves us without conditions. That’s huge!

I grew up in a Baptist church where all that was preached was the message of evangelism. They made me feel like I had to pay God back for saving me by leading others to Jesus. It became such a part of me that I used to say this: “The sole purpose for our existence here on this earth is to lead somebody else to Jesus.”

Then the Lord spoke this to me—“If evangelism is the sole purpose for your existence, then what about Adam and Eve? They had no one to lead to the Lord, no Sunday school class to teach, no one to pray for, and no physical need of any kind.” The answer can be found in Revelation 4:11— Thou artworthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power; for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

The original purpose of all creation was to give God pleasure. And that is still God’s purpose. Adam and Eve were created for fellowship with God. He wanted someone to love and for them to voluntarily love Him back.

God’s purpose for creating human beings was all about relationship. But religion has succeeded at turning us from “human beings” into “human doings.” When that becomes the focus, we begin to tie God’s love for us to something that we do for Him. I did! But that was never His plan.

Over the years, I have prayed for thousands of people. The vast majority of those who come forward begin by telling me about their spiritual lives: “I’ve been praying, fasting, reading the Bible, and attending church, but I’m still not healed.” They don’t realize it, but they just told me why they weren’t healed. They’re pointing to what they are doing instead of what Jesus has done.

The same is true about our relationship with the Lord and with other people. We have come to believe that God loves us and acts on our behalf based on our performance. Therefore, we hold others to the same standard—our love for them is in direct proportion to their works, or how they treat us.

Romans 5:8 says, But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

God’s love has never been or ever will be conditional. He loved you at your worst, and most Christian churches would agree with that initially. They believe you are saved by grace through faith, no matter your history, but that is often where grace stops and religion starts. And religion always puts the emphasis on the external.

Once you’re saved, religion says you must live holy, and the evidence of your holiness will likely be judged by the standards of your church: Do you dress the right way, do you say the right things, are you leading people to Jesus, and most important, are you tithing—just to give a few examples.

That is not how God sees us. God looks on the heart. First Samuel 16:6-7 says this: And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the Lord’s anointed is before him. But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.

Samuel was going to choose Eliab to replace King Saul because of the outward appearances. But God was not looking on the outside. The church today is judging believers in the same way. You might carouse in secret on Saturday night, but as long as you come to church the next morning well kempt and well dressed with a check in your hand, you’re accepted because you have the appearance of holiness.

Under the New Covenant, God is still concerned about your actions and behavior. It’s not okay to lie, to steal, to commit adultery, or any other sin. However, He knows that those are nothing more than the byproduct of a relationship—or the lack of one—with Him. So, He is focused on your heart.

As long as you believe God is judging you according to your performance, you will never fully receive His love. Love is a decision, and God decided to love you even though you didn’t deserve it. There is nothing you can do to earn it or deserve it, so just receive it as a free gift.

When you understand how much God loves you, it becomes easy to love others. And when you love others as He has loved you, your behavior will change toward them. If you loved your mate the way that Christ loves you—unconditionally—you would never commit adultery. If you loved your neighbor as Christ loves you, you would never steal from them or bear false witness against them.

How does the world know that we are disciples of Christ? John 13:35 says, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

Did you know that the first-century church evangelized the known world in thirty years? They didn’t have television, the internet, smart phones, or texting. But they loved one another, and that love was so evident; it attracted people like honey attracts bees.

A Pharisee who was a lawyer asked Jesus this question: “Which is the great commandment in the law?” Jesus answered this in Matthew 22:37-40. Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

The Pharisees wanted Jesus to name the most important “Thou shalt not,” and instead, Jesus spoke “Thou shalt.” Many believers are still living under the Old Testament Law mentality. They are trying to earn the love of a God who already made the decision to love them unconditionally.

Once you begin to understand how much God loves you, love will flow out of you toward others like rivers of living water.

The New You   Leave a comment

The New You – Andrew Wommack Ministries

One of the leading evangelists of our day has been quoted as saying that he believes only fifteen percent of professing Christians are truly born again. That’s a startling statement! I’m not sure that’s accurate, but I certainly believe that many, if not a majority, of those who call themselves Christians are not truly saved.

You can tell that by the values they hold and the lives they live. This means that millions of people who profess to be saved aren’t. The following certainly confirms it.

BARNA RESEARCH SURVEY: MOST “CHRISTIANS” CONFUSED ABOUT SALVATION

The results of a recent survey indicated that most protestant Christians don’t understand—or believe—their own theology about salvation. The Barna Research Group asked 6,242 adults nationwide, “Can a good person earn their way to heaven?” The percentage of those responding “yes” were as follows:

Assembly of God 22%

Baptist 38%

Presbyterian 52%

Lutheran 54%

Episcopalian 58%

Methodist 59%

Roman Catholic 82%

How can this be?

“Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17).

If there isn’t a clear presentation of true salvation, then there won’t be faith to receive it. Unfortunately, many “Christian” churches today are presenting church membership and holy living as the way to salvation.

They preach that there is a God but that the way to have a relationship with Him is through being a good person. In that respect, they are not much different than any other religion. But that’s not what the Bible teaches. It doesn’t matter how good you may be. Who wants to be the best sinner that ever went to hell? The Bible teaches: ALL have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23, emphasis mine).

The glory of God that this verse is speaking of is Jesus. You may be good compared to me or some other person. But compared to Jesus, “There is none righteous, no, not one” (Rom. 3:10).

The Bible teaches that no one can have a relationship with God by just being good. We are all doomed under sin so that we can all have salvation through Jesus (Gal. 3:22).

True Christianity differs from all other religions on the face of the earth in one very specific way: We are the only religion with a Savior. Others teach there is a God and that we are accountable to Him, but they believe we save ourselves by good works. Even the Jews and Muslims believe God is the God of Abraham, but reject Jesus as their Savior.

All other religions place the burden of salvation on the back of the individual. They teach that through acts of self-denial and holiness, you earn your place in heaven. But true Christianity puts the burden of salvation on Jesus. Our only part is to believe and receive, or doubt and do without.

If a Buddhist, a Muslim, and a Christian all stood before the Lord, how would they respond to this question, “What makes you worthy to enter heaven”? The Buddhist and Muslim would certainly try to convince the Lord of their holiness by their worthy accomplishments. That’s precisely the logic behind terrorist’s suicide bombers. They are told that if they kill the infidels, they will be granted entrance to heaven and given a harem of women for eternity.

But a true Christian wouldn’t point to any good deed they have done, and they certainly wouldn’t expect that killing others would earn them favor with God. Instead, they would point to Jesus and say, “I have no virtue of my own to make me worthy. All my faith is in Jesus, my Savior, and what He did for me.”

It’s always about how we view Jesus. Every religion of the world recognizes Jesus. They have to. There is more physical evidence that Jesus lived than that any of the Caesars lived. And Jesus’ example of love and turning the other cheek has never been equaled by any other religious leader.

The Muslims and the Jews say Jesus was a prophet, a good man. They commend His teachings, but they reject Him as God and Savior. Amazingly, many who call themselves “Christians” have a similar view of Jesus. They admit He’s a wonderful example, but they don’t believe He is God, and they don’t believe He is the only way to the Father.

But that is totally illogical. Either Jesus is who He said He was, or He was a deceiver. There can be no middle. You can’t admire His teachings and actions and then reject His claim to be the Son of God sent to save the world.

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me” (John 14:6).

Jesus didn’t claim to be “a” truth, “a” way, and “a” life; He left no other options for having a relationship with God the Father than through Him. He also said, “All men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him” (John 5:23).

Jesus made Himself equal with God and said that if we didn’t honor Him as such, then we weren’t honoring God the Father. No one can receive God’s salvation who doesn’t recognize Jesus as God and the only way to the Father. His own claims leave no room to accept Him as good and then not as God.

There was an instance in Scripture where a rich young man came running and threw himself down at Jesus’ feet. He certainly respected Jesus and recognized Him as being a religious leader. But despite his outward pretense, Jesus could tell he wasn’t ready to make a real commitment to Him. The young man said, “Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God” (Mark 10:17-18).

Jesus was saying that the only one who is truly good is God. So this person either needed to accept Jesus as God or quit calling Him good. What was the young man’s response? In verse 20 he said, “Master…”

The rich young ruler dropped the word “good” when addressing Jesus. He was not willing to make Jesus God. He was willing to identify with Jesus and proclaim His goodness, but he was not willing to make Him God.

This young man went on to proclaim his own goodness as the basis of his relationship with the Lord. He said he had kept all the commandments from the time of his youth. The truth is that no one has kept all the Law and lived a sinless life.

We have all sinned and come short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23). This man was deceived because he compared himself with others (2 Cor. 10:12). Compared to others, he may have been holy, but he was a sinner in need of a Savior, and he didn’t know it.

The story continues, “Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me” (Mark 10:21).

Notice that this verse says Jesus loved this young man. Jesus didn’t tell this man to sell all he had and give to the poor because He didn’t want him to be a disciple. He loved him. And because Jesus loved him, He had to break the deception that he could earn his salvation.

He needed a Savior but didn’t know it. He had lived such a good life that he thought he would be accepted by God for all his goodness. He said he had kept all the commandments of God, but he hadn’t. He had deceived himself into believing it, but Jesus knew better.

Jesus told this young man to sell whatever he had and give it to the poor. He had never told this to anyone else who wanted to follow Him, so why did he do this? He did it because He knew what his god was.

The very first commandment says, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me” (Ex. 20:3).

Jesus was showing this young man that he had broken the very first commandment. He trusted his money and what it could do for him more than he trusted God. Jesus loved him and wanted to bring him to salvation, but He would not lower the bar, and the young man went away sorrowful (Mark 10:22). There is no other way to the Father but through Jesus.

In my complete teaching The New You, I have much more to say about what really happens when you’re born again. I share foundational truths that every believer needs to know and many other scriptures that clarify the meaning of true salvation. I deal with issues like the forgiveness of past, present, and future sins; eternal security; and the many benefits of our new born-again spirits that have been made perfect forever. I also talk about the importance of a good church, how to find one, and many other basics.

One of the comments I often hear is, “I’ve been a Christian for years, but I’ve never heard the things you’re saying.” Well, it’s time to make sure your foundation isn’t cracked. Order this message today, and gain a clear and simple understanding of what true Christianity really means. It leaves no room for the devil to deceive or bring confusion.

Teaching series on this subject: http://www.awmi.net/extra/audio/1078

The New You – Article – Andrew Wommack Ministries

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