[SW152] 08/29/2014 message notes by Rev. Susan J. Wynn ©2014
The Breath! The Breath of God! It gives life to dry bones and makes them stand up, as an exceedingly great army!
Text: Ezekiel 37
The vision Ezekiel saw, and the Breath that he prophesied, came to pass on the Day of Pentecost in Acts 2. The rushing wind of the Holy Spirit blew into an upper room filled with 120 Jews who obeyed Jesus Christ’s command to stay and wait in the city until they were clothed with power from on high (Luke 24:49).
When those tongues like fire fell upon them, they were baptized in the Holy Spirit, and they inhaled the very Breath of God! Then they became an exceedingly great army!
But the church has fallen from that glorious place, particularly in the U.S., where I have been called to speak to her.
God’s intent and will:
John 10:10 “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”
Abundantly (4053 perissos) — in the sense of beyond; superabundant (in quantity), superior (in quality); by implication, excessive — exceeding abundantly above, more abundantly, advantage, exceedingly, very highly, beyond measure!
’Til it overflows!
Acts 2:1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.
It was the fulfillment of:
Joel 2:28 “It will come about after this
That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind;
And your sons and daughters will prophesy,
Your old men will dream dreams,
Your young men will see visions.
29 “Even on the male and female servants
I will pour out My Spirit in those days.
Pour out (8210 shaphakh), intensely, mounded up, gushing out!
If we are filled with God, He will overflow from us!
John 7:37 Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. 38 “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” 39 But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
With joy we have drawn water from the fountain of salvation (Yeshua):
Isaiah 12:3 Therefore you will joyously draw water
From the springs of salvation.
We are temples of the Holy Spirit, His living water flows from us! Therefore:
Ezekiel 47:1 Then he brought me back to the door of the house; and behold, water was flowing from under the threshold of the house toward the east, for the house faced east. And the water was flowing down from under, from the right side of the house, from south of the altar.
Our temple is so full of His living water that it comes out from under the threshold of us, and flows, and flows, and flows, deeper, and deeper, and deeper! Wherever it goes, there is life!
We are full of His life, which overflows us!
We are full of joy unspeakable and full of glory:
1Peter 1:8 and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
It is His joy:
John 15:11 “ These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.”
He rejoices in us!
We overflow with His glory, full of His kabod!
Colossians 1:27 [His saints] to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
Ephesians 5:27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
Psalms 45:13 The King’s daughter [bride] is all glorious within;
And we overflow with His love:
Romans 5:5 and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Poured out to overflowing, gushing out to us, gushing out from us!
We freely give what has been given to us, doing as Jesus Christ commanded us:
Matthew 10:8 “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give.”
Healing, raising, cleansing, casting out cannot help but happen when we overflow!
To today’s church:
Remember that picture of the church that the Lord showed me? She is like the old man with the long beard, sitting in a chair, bent over, looking down. No hope.
Much of today’s church is like the house of Israel, in exile in Babylon:
Ezekiel 37:11 Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel; behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope has perished. We are completely cut off.’
Jesus is grieved by the dryness that is in the church, the complacency, the emptiness.
Even in those churches that have the life of God in them, that welcome the Holy Spirit, I see churchgoers who are content to enjoy His presence while they are in church. But they go home as dry bones.
They go home empty rather than full of God’s life that overflows into the world, empty rather than full of His living water that gushes from the belly,
empty rather than full of His joy,
empty rather than full of His love,
empty rather than full of His glory. May it never be!
We cannot overflow if we are not filled.
If we are filled with the Holy Spirit, we overflow not only in the four walls of the church, but wherever we go. We are filled with the Holy Spirit, with life as God has it, with God’s actual love, with His living water, with His joy, with His glory.
And we who are overflowing call the rest of the church, the complacent church, the lukewarm church, to come and be filled, so they may overflow. The hour is late! The Spirit was given to empower the church. We must obey God’s command, and yield ourselves completely to Him. Only He can make us overflow!
Today I prophesy to the Breath — O Holy Spirit, blow through the churches of America! Let each one inhale deeply, and be filled, so she may be that exceedingly great army in Ezekiel’s glorious vision!
This is my last video message for this season. There have been many seasons in Jeff’s and my ministry: as associate pastors, as part-time pastors to a church off the coast of Maine, as church planters, as house church leaders, as those who assisted others in Florida during church transitions, as a safe place for ministers of the Lord Jesus Christ to come and rest (and that last one is still in effect).
But I have sensed a new season, even as we go from summer to fall. I am changing my ordination from Free Methodist to Church of God in Christ, and I am leaving the way wide open for the Lord and the church to use me as the Spirit leads them.
Amen, Lord! So be it!