IN-COURAGED!

[SW219] 02/05/2016 message notes by

Reverend/Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2016

“IN-Couraged”

Texts: Joshua 1:1-9

Deuteronomy 34:9

John 20:19

Acts 2:14, 22, 3

Acts 4:8ff

The Lord is asking me to encourage you to be IN-Couraged — His boldness, His strength, His courage IN you!

In Joshua 1:3, the Lord tells Joshua that every place on which the sole of his foot treads, the Lord has given to the sons of Israel, just as He spoke to Moses.

What a promise!

In Joshua 1:6, the Lord commands Joshua to be strong (fasten upon the Lord, be constant, be established, seize) and courageous (mighty, steadfastly minded). Be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord (1Corinthians 15:58). Why? Because he SHALL give the people possession of the land.

The Lord commands Joshua again in Verse 7, and in Verse 9. Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go!

Joshua  will lead Israel in, and they will be an occupying army, possessing the land promised to them through Abraham.

And believer, understand that your role is to occupy Satan’s territory here on earth, and possess it until the Lord comes again. And it is to ask God to bring you fully into the Promised Land with His strength and courage IN you — IN-couraged! When the end comes, Jesus Christ will bless the one who has been doing what He commanded, and condemn the one who didn’t obey (Matthew 24:46)!

Joshua needed power to obey the Lord’s command to be strong and courageous. Where did it come from?

In Numbers 27:18, the Lord says Joshua was a man in whom was the Spirit. And when Moses laid hands on him, he was filled with the spirit of wisdom.

Deuteronomy 34:9   Now Joshua the son of Nun was filled with the spirit of wisdom, for Moses had laid his hands on him; and the sons of Israel listened to him and did as the Lord had commanded Moses.

Therefore, he had the Lord’s wisdom, strength and courage IN him, because the Spirit was IN him. He was IN-couraged. The Lord gave him the Spirit for that single assignment.

Today, God wants to fills you with the Holy Spirit permanently, rather than for a single assignment. Then you will have His strength, His courage and His boldness so you are able to occupy and possess the Enemy’s territory. You will become a member of an occupying army, freeing captives from sickness, demon possession, and sin, in the power and words of the Holy Spirit! He will give you what to say (Matthew 10:20).

Look at the difference between the disciples in John 20:19, after Christ was crucified, compared with Acts 2:14, 22, 36 and Acts 4:8 and forward!

In John 20:19, they hid behind locked doors for fear of the Jews. But in the scriptures in Acts, they were very strong, courageous, and bold! They now had God’s strength, courage and boldness IN them, and the actual love of God in their hearts compelled them to go (2Corinthians 5:14, Romans 5:5)!

Why the difference? They were filled with the Holy Spirit at Pentecost! They were IN-couraged!

Paul persecuted Christians with all his might, until he had a vision of Jesus Christ on the road to Damascus. Then Ananias came to him and he was filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 9:17). Afterward, in Christ’s strength and courage, Paul boldly proclaimed Jesus Christ and performed miraculous signs and wonders all across the known world. He was IN-couraged!

Paul joyously wrote to the church at Philippi, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13)! Amen!

Real-life testimony:

One day, we received a call from a man we had known for a couple of years. He said he was in the county jail, and needed us to come to him. We had never been behind locked doors in a jail before. But the Lord told us to go, and we went in His strength, courage and boldness.

We entered another world as we heard the thick steel door close behind us. The spiritual darkness in that place was so thick you could cut it with a knife.

We pressed on, met with the man, ministered to him with bold words from the Lord, and continued meeting with him until he was tried and sentenced to prison. He wrote us from there, and asked us to come.

I contacted the chaplain at the Maine State Prison. Come to find out, I had worked for him at the VA, before I was diagnosed with MS and had to retire on disability!

Jeff and I went through a four-hour training program. Then the chaplain asked us to come to a Bible study conducted by a man who had been doing Bible studies for the prisoners for 25 years, so we could learn how to interact with the prisoners who attended. On our way to that Bible study, we asked the Lord to give us a sign that we were to minister there. A flashing neon one, please!

When we arrived at the prison lobby, the chaplain was called to meet us. We passed through two metal detectors. Our worship gear was searched.

We were lead by the chaplain and one guard through one very thick steel door, stopping at a window to turn in our car keys and driver’s licenses and receive visitor/clergy ID badges.

Then we passed through a second very thick steel door. As we went through we saw a giant man from the Max (maximum security pod) clad in orange, shackled head-to-toe with thick chains, flanked by two large, muscular guards.

After another locked steel door, we passed the cafeteria on our right. A “man down” code was issued; that meant a fight had broken out between prisoners, and at least one prisoner was on the floor.

We continued on across the courtyard to the activities building, in the Lord’s strength and courage, completely unfazed by it all. We were on a mission — on assignment — to go in and possess this land controlled by Satan, and occupy it. And we were IN-couraged! Glory to God!

The Bible study teacher, who never missed a meeting in 25 years, missed this one. That was the first confirmation that we were to minister there. In a circle sat about twenty captives, along with the chaplain, Jeff and me.

The chaplain said he’d stay with us to guide and support us. But God stepped in, began speaking through us to the men, and soon, the chaplain said, “I’ll leave you now; you don’t need me.” That was our second confirmation from the Lord that we were to minister there.

The Lord ministered through us to these men for two years at our Monday prison worship service, as we sang and played guitar and proclaimed Jesus Christ from the Word of God.

The first time, I told them they needed to know that I wasn’t a goody two-shoes. I gave them some history of my drug addition as a teen and young adult, my drug dealing husband, and the Saturday Night Special that was at my side constantly, in case someone came into our apartment to try to steal our drugs. I told them how God came to my rescue in the middle of the night, and freed me from drug addiction in a moment of time.

Then I asked them for a show of hands. How many of you really like it here? No hands were raised. Just as I thought. How many want to come back again real soon? Again, no hands were raised.

I asked, “Do you wand to know how you can get out of this cycle of in and out, in and out, like a revolving door? Jesus Christ will change your heart, fill you with His Spirit and His love, and you won’t want to plan your next crime from here. You’ll just follow and obey Him forever.”

I told them I knew many outside of the prison walls who were in invisible chains, behind invisible bars. They needed the same thing!

What compelled us to go behind prison doors? The love of God, because the Holy Spirit had filled our hearts. And He gave us His strength, courage, and boldness! Our boast is in the Lord, not ourselves! We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us!

We are not special, beloved. Some say the missionaries who go into countries so hostile that their names can’t be released, are special. Some think missionaries through the ages have been special. They had a calling, they have a calling, we have a calling, AND you do, too. Have you answered Christ’s call?

Now I’m truthin’. I’m being bold (frank and blunt). The truth is, most of the church is complacent. People go to church and leave unchanged. They live like the devil for six days and pretend to be holy and righteous on Sunday. They want the Lord to bless them, but they don’t care about blessing Him or anyone else. They are the ones I spoke of earlier, the ones with invisible chains and invisible bars.

How about you? Are you strong and courageous? Are you bold? Are you possessing and occupying Satan’s territory?

Or are you complacent, going to church and leaving unchanged? If so, repent here and now, and ask the Lord to fill you with His Spirit.

You can’t help but be changed when He comes in and fills you! And you will say with Paul and us, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!” You will be IN-couraged!

Jesus Christ calls you today to be IN-couraged. He calls you to ask Him to fill you with His Spirit so you can go in and possess the land and occupy it, as you should! Will you obey His call?

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LOVING HIS APPEARING

[SW212] 12/18/2015 message notes by
Reverend/Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“Loving His Appearing”

Have you loved Jesus Christ’s appearing? If you have, you will not fear when He returns. And He will award you with a crown of righteousness!

But if you have not loved His appearing, you will not be ready for His soon return.

Text:

2Timothy 4:8 in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.

“Appearing” means brightness, manifestation. It refers to what has already taken place — Jesus Christ’s presence and power when He walked the earth, and His light that He shed on all mankind (John 1:9). But it also refers to His brilliant return from heaven to earth, which will be like lightning flashing across the sky (Matthew 24:27).

What is it to love His appearing, then?

I can look back now and say I love God’s promise of Christ’s appearing in Isaiah 9, a great Light to a people living in deep darkness. I was in darkness, but then I saw His great light!

I love God’s promise of Christ’s appearing in Isaiah 60, to know that a light would come and shine upon me, and that His glory and light would even be upon me, so kings would come to the brightness of my rising, the appearing, the manifestation, the brightness of His glory literally inside of me! Glory to God!

I love His appearing as Simeon and Anna did, when Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the Temple in Jerusalem, to be presented and dedicated to the Lord (see Luke 2). They were waiting, the Lord had promised Simeon that he would see it in his lifetime, and God was faithful to His promise. And Anna, who had waited and fasted and prayed, joyfully proclaimed that this little child was the Son of God, the Messiah, the Christ!

I was glad when He spoke to me in the night when I had no strength to continue. I was addicted to drugs, beaten until I bled, and He healed me of my addiction.  But I did not love Him then, nor did I thank Him then. But now I can say that I love His appearing to me on that night, 35 years ago.

I loved His appearing when He came to me in the middle of the night 14 years ago, when His presence was manifested to me as He spoke to me and said I was sinking in a sea of doubt. I reached up, and cried out to Him, and shortly after, His presence was manifested to me even more, as He healed me of the incurable disease called MS! Oh, His glory moved all through me!

Not long after that, I loved His appearing when He manifested Himself in a vision to me. I looked up and saw Him on the cross, covered with His own blood. He looked down at me with a love that no words can describe. I saw what He had done for me, in living color. I awoke sobbing, with a deep understanding of His sacrifice on my behalf, and on behalf of all mankind.

I will love His appearing when He brings revival to the church — not a jumping and hollering revival, but a falling-on-your-face and weeping revival as His holiness and majesty is powerfully manifested to the church, and He heals her of her sin.

And I love the promise of His appearing once again, like lighting flashing across the sky. Everyone will see it! That time is coming soon!

What will happen then? Some will be judged and punished. Those who love His appearing will not fear judgment, though, because God has filled them with His perfect love, poured into their hearts by the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5, 1John 4:18).
Praise God!

Then those who love His appearing will receive a crown of righteousness. It won’t be because of anything we have done, but because of what He has done in us! Praise His name!

Therefore, I love the promise of His soon appearing! I am ready!

What is God’s heart in this scripture? That you be ready!

Why wouldn’t you be ready? If we look at the whole chapter, it’s about standing firm in the truth which is in Christ, and on the Word of God, amidst a time when many are turning away from it.

Paul gives a solemn charge to Timothy, and to all who preach and teach. As he writes, Paul stands before God and Christ, spiritually. He swears it, by Christ’s appearing and His kingdom.

What is Paul’s charge? Preach the Word. Don’t make excuses for it. Don’t apologize for it. Don’t water it down. Reprove, rebuke, exhort, with all patience and instruction.

Why? The time has come now when many do not endure sound doctrine, but want only messages that make them feel good when they hear them (ear-tickling messages). And they pile up around themselves heaps of teachers who will teach that way. They turn aside to false teaching, taught by those who have no conscience, who do not love His appearing, but the appearance of money in their coffers. That’s the truth!

But we who love His appearing will be sober, watchful in all things, and will be about our Father’s business (Luke 2:49), evangelizing and ministering, doing what God has ordained and empowered us to do.

We will fight the good fight against the prince of the power of the air, Satan. We will keep the faith despite the tremendous pressure to cave in and dumb down our message.

Beloved, if there is no sword, there is no conviction, there is no surgery, there is no healing.

It is the double-edged sword of God’s unadulterated Word that pierces, divides, and exposes so hearts are convicted and heart surgery can be done by the Holy Ghost. I love to watch Him operate! Don’t you?

He operated on me, and the outcome was LIFE, ABUNDANTLY, ’TIL IT OVERFLOWS TO OTHERS!

ALTAR CALL:

Ask Him to do heart surgery on you this morning! Ask Him to forgive you, then ask Him to fill you with the Holy Ghost, and you, too, will love His appearing. He will manifest Himself to you:

John 14:21 “He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him.”

In Matthew 24 and elsewhere, He commands you to be ready. Let Him fill your heart with His love today, so you love His appearing, because you know you will not face judgment and punishment when He comes. Then you will be ready!

STORMS

[SW211] 12/11/2015 message notes by
Reverend/Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“Storms”

Storms (troubles) come to all of us. You want your storm to be stilled, but you must first understand the cause of the storm. Then you will know how to cry out to your Father in heaven, and He will rescue you!

Please know that Jesus Christ has rescued me out of each of the storms described in Psalm 107.

So why do storms come into your life?

The Holy Spirit tells us, through the psalmist —

vv. 4-9

Cause: Unbelief/lack of trust in God, referring to Numbers 13:31-33, when all but two spies said Israel was not strong enough to defeat the giants in the land.

Result: Desert wandering/humbling

The cry to the Lord: Help my unbelief, change my heart! A broken and contrite, crushed and crouching heart, He will not despise (Psalm 51:17).
The Lord’s response: Deliverance!

Your response: Thank Him for His lovingkindness and His wonders, on your behalf! Continually. Forever.

Don’t do as I did, when the Lord delivered me from drug addiction. I just woke up in my right mind, and went on my merry way without a thought of Him! Thank You, Jesus, for forgiving me, Lord, when I turned to You many years later!
vv. 10-15

Cause: Rejecting God’s wisdom/Word

Result: Chains, labor, darkness, shadow of death

The cry to the Lord: Forgive me, Lord! Change my heart!

The Lord’s response: He brings you out!

Your response: Thank Him for His lovingkindness and His wonders, on your behalf! Continually. Forever.

Well, that’s what happened because I didn’t turn to God after He healed me of drug addiction. I went on, unchanged, not wanting to hear His name mentioned in conversation. But a time came when I found myself in chains and in the shadow of death, and I no longer rejected His wisdom and His Word.

vv. 17-22

Cause: Rebellion/sin

Result: Sickness, just as when I was stricken with MS, an incurable disease!

The cry to the Lord: Forgive me, Lord, Change my heart! Heal me!

The Lord’s response: He sends His Word and heals you, and delivers you from the pit!

NOTE: Example in Isaiah 38: 21 — the poultice of figs to heal King Hezekiah’s boil! For me, “You’re sinking in a sea of doubt.”

Your response: Thank Him for His lovingkindness and His wonders, on your behalf! Continually. Forever. Yes, Lord, yes. Now I do!
vv. 23-31

Cause: A test of faith that has nothing to do with rebellion, sin, unbelief, or rejection of God’s Word and counsel.

The Lord Himself raised up a strong wind.

Result: All their wisdom was swallowed up.

The cry to the Lord: Don’t You care that we are perishing? (Mark 4:38)
Save us, Lord! (Matthew 8:25)

Now the Lord wants to fill you with His Spirit (which had not yet happened to His disciples in this passage), so you won’t cry, “Don’t You care?” You know He does; you just ask what He wants you to do. If it’s just “sit tight,” then you do it. You trust Him to bring you through.

The Lord’s response: He calms the winds and sea.

Your response: Thank Him for His lovingkindness and His wonders, on your behalf! Continually. Forever.

vv. 39-42 Princes (those who do not think they need to cry out) end up in misery, chains, captivity. But He sets the needy (who know they need to cry out) in an inaccessibly high place (seated with Him in heavenly places, per Ephesians 2:6)!
Glory to God!

v. 43 Consider, give heed!

MARK 6 COMMENTARY

This is a commentary for you and me. It isn’t complicated, because Jesus wants you to understand it, so you can be healed physically and even more importantly, in your relationship with God, which was broken by sin.

Verses 1-6 — There are many listeners in the synagogue, but there is no mention of crowds in Mark’s account of Jesus teaching at Nazareth. Keep that in mind.

He is soundly rejected by His hometown synagogue. After all, He is simply a carpenter, the son of Mary. They are offended by Him. Who does He think He is, teaching us? Where does He get His wisdom? How did He get the power to do the miracles we’re hearing about? Humph!!!

When Verse 3 says “they took offense,” the word means they were tripped up. The Greek word is skandalizo, from which we get our word, “scandalous.” They disapproved of Him, which tripped them up. He became a stumbling stone, a rock of offense (Matthew 21:42, Romans 9:33, 1Peter 2:8).

So was it their unbelief that blocked Jesus from doing miracles in His hometown? No! As I said, there were no crowds. They did not believe He could heal, so most did not come to Him. But those few who DID come to Him were healed.

IMPORTANT POINT: Jesus is not stopped by unbelief; but if you do not come to Him for healing, you will not be healed by Him.

Verses 7-13 — The Twelve disciples are sent out in pairs. They are given authority over evil spirits. They also preach that men should repent (verse 12). They cast out many demons and anoint sick people with oil so they are healed (verse 13). Again, the “many” here indicates that if someone comes to them, they are set free from demons and healed of sicknesses.

We who belong to Jesus, who follow Him, love Him, and obey Him, also have this authority, and the ability to anoint for healing.

Note that as they are sent out, Jesus commands them to take only the clothes on their back and the sandals on their feet. Those to whom they minister are to provide for their needs. But if any reject them (verses 10-11), they are to shake the dust off the soles of their feet for a testimony against them.

The shaking off the dust from their feet (v.11) may be understood in the light of the Jewish custom of removing carefully the dust from both clothes and feet before reentering Jewish territory (cf. SBK, 1:571). For the Jews heathen dust was defiling. The significance of the act here is to declare the place to be heathen and to make it clear that those who rejected the message must now answer for themselves.

Don’t let their rejection cling to you, Jesus says. Amen!
Verses 14-29 — King Herod has been warned by John the Baptist that having sex with his brother’s wife is a sin against God (verse 18). So Herod imprisons him, but keeps him safe (though in a dungeon!). Then he makes a foolish vow to Herodias’ daughter. And John loses his head for Jesus. John’s disciples take his body away and lay it in a tomb.

Verses 30-32 — The disciples return from being sent out, report all that happened to Jesus, and He commands them to come away and rest. It is essential, when we are being used in such a way by God, that we rest afterwards, away from people who would like us to continue to minister. It is God’s power, not ours, by which we work, but intense ministry does tire our physical bodies.

Verses 33-44 — Our God is the God of more than enough. Jesus and the Twelve cannot keep the crowds away. They arrive ahead of them, and Jesus feels compassion for them. They are like sheep without a shepherd. He sees the same thing today. Many are misled, many are not offered anointing for healing, many remain possessed by evil spirits, many receive no teaching at all. So they wander around, directionless.

For everyone filled with Jesus, our inward parts are physically moved at such conditions. And the response of a Spirit-filled believer in Jesus Christ is to immediately begin teaching these sheep many things, because the Holy Spirit who has filled us is the Author of the Word of God, and He teaches us so we can teach others.

Jesus teaches for a long time, and the crowd is hungry. The disciples think Jesus should send them away so they can find food. But Jesus says, “YOU feed them!” With what? Five loaves and two fish. But there are 5,000, excluding women and children!!! How can this be?

He commands the crowd to sit down in groups, blesses the food as He looks heavenward, breaks the loaves continuously, and distributes the pieces of fish continuously — way beyond what He started with! He continues until every person is satisfied. Not just a taste. They are full.

This God of more than enough has more than enough of whatever you need. Have you heard Him teach? Seek Him out!

Verses 45-52 — This is the scene the Lord brought to mind the night I was healed of MS. His words here literally are, “Be comforted! I AM (I am the I AM of the burning bush in Exodus 3:14)! Do not fear!”

Are you in a storm of sickness or confusion or some other situation? Do not be afraid. He is coming. Invite Him into your boat. He will rescue you. He will calm the sea and the wind. Do not be astonished. He is God the Son! If you are astonished, it is because you do not yet see Him. Your heart is blind. Ask Him to soften your heart. He will do it, and you will see.

Verse 53-56 — Jesus is coming! Everyone runs to get sick ones. Everywhere Jesus goes, sick ones are laid in the market places, so they might touch the fringe of His garment. As many as touch the fringe of His cloak are being cured.

I repeat, as many as touch the fringe of His cloak are being cured.

They are desperate. They believe if they touch the fringe of His cloak, they will be healed. And they are. Are you desperate enough to ask Him to come by so you can touch His garment? Do you believe you will be healed, if you touch it?

MARK 5 COMMENTARY

This is a commentary for you and me. It isn’t complicated, because Jesus wants you to understand it, so you can be healed physically and even more importantly, in your relationship with God, which was broken by sin.

Verse 1-2 — Jesus calmed the sea and the boat reached the shore. Immediately a demon-possessed man meets Him. You will find that despite demon possession or illness, you will seek to meet Jesus when you see Him.

Verse 3-5 — The man is terribly possessed, breaking his chains, screaming, gashing himself.

Verse 6 — The man runs up to Jesus and bows down. The Greek word is proskuneo. He worships Jesus. That means he understands, despite his demon possession, that Jesus is God in the flesh.

Verse 7-10 — Then the demons speak from the man. Jesus is telling them to come out. They consider this to be torment. No demon wants to be in a spiritual desert. Demons want to enter into and possess someone or something that is alive.

Jesus asks the name of the demons, and the demons answer “Legion,” because there are many demons in this man. They didn’t want to be sent out of the country. What does that mean? Powers and principalities are demonic forces that occupy geographical areas all across the earth. They are in their area, and they don’t want to leave it.

Verse 11-14 — They can only do what Jesus permits them to do, and they must leave the man because He is commanding them to come out. So they beg to enter a herd of pigs. Jesus gives them permission. Why? He knows what is going to happen next.

As soon as the demons enter the pigs, the animals kill themselves by running into the sea and drowning. There were 2,000 of them. That means there were 2,000 demons in this one man! But NOTHING is too difficult for Jesus, and Satan and his demons must obey Him.

Verse 15-16 — The pig farmers run and report what happened. Everyone comes to see what has happened. They are frightened when they see the demon possessed man clothed and in his right mind, and when they hear the story. Why are they afraid? They know they are dealing with Someone much greater than them, and much greater than demons — they are dealing with God.

Verse 17-20 — Losing 2,000 pigs is a financial disaster. So the people strongly beseech Jesus to leave.

But the man who was delivered from all those demons asks to go with Jesus. But Jesus tells him to go home to his people (he is not Jewish) and tell them what great things the Lord has done for him. The man gladly obeys, and goes to the Decapolis, a cluster of 10 Greek (non-Jewish) cities nearby. Everyone who hears is amazed.

You will be like that man, when you are healed and delivered. You will shout from the rooftops! And people will be amazed at your testimony, just as they are amazed at mine. God the Son does GREAT things!

Verse 21-23 — Again a large crowd gathers as Jesus crosses the sea again and comes ashore. One in the crowd is Jairus, a Jewish synagogue official. He has a daughter who is at the point of dying. He also has a great deal of faith.

He falls at Jesus’ feet, and again, it is proskuneo. He understands that he is before the very Son of God, and he worships Him. He beseeches Jesus, he pleads for Jesus to come. If Jesus just lays His hands on Jairus’ daughter, Jairus knows she will be healed. He has faith!

Verse 24-29 — As Jesus starts to go with him, another large crowd follows, so large that people push up against Him.

But in that crowd, there is another person with faith. She has a bleeding problem which makes her unclean according to Jewish law. She is not supposed to be around other people, because her presence will make them unclean, too.

She has spent all her money on physicians, and endured much at their hands, but they cannot heal her.

She hears about Jesus, and breaks all the rules about uncleanness, breaks through the crowd, and comes up behind Him. She is desperate. As she pushes through, she is thinking, “If I just touch His garments I will get well.”

As soon as she touches His garments, the bleeding stops and she feels in her body that she is healed.

I know that feeling. When Jesus Christ healed me of progressive MS 14 years ago, I felt His power go through me, and I knew He was healing me.

Verse 30-34 — Jesus senses that power has gone out from Him. He asks, “Who touched My garments?”

Important point: Just touching His garments is enough to heal you! Are you desperate? Break the rules, break through the crowds!

His disciples think it is impossible to determine who touched Him, with the large crowd pressing in. But He looks and sees the woman.

She comes forward, afraid and trembling, and falls down before Jesus. Again, it is proskuneo. She worships Him.

You will worship Him, too, when He heals you. She confesses the whole truth. His response? Her faith has healed her. He commands her to go in peace. After all of that sickness, she is well, and at peace!

When Jesus says, “Your faith has healed you,” does He literally mean that faith heals us? No, God the Father heals us. God the Son, Jesus Christ, heals us.

Important point: We will not come to Him to be healed if we don’t believe He can do it. So in that way, the woman’s faith has healed her. If she had no faith, she would never have pushed through the crowd in desperation, in order to touch His garments and be healed by Him. Faith makes you desperate to touch Him.

Verse 35-40 —A bad report comes — it’s too late. Jairus’ daughter has died. No need to bother the Teacher. Jesus says, “Don’t be afraid (that it’s too late). Only believe.”

Only believe. That’s all you have to do. He’ll do the rest. Believe and He will show you that what He says is true. Without faith it is impossible to please God, for if you come to Him, you believe He is real and not just some theory. And He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6).

Jesus arrives at Jairus’ house, accompanied by Peter, James and John. He is teaching them, their faith will be increased by what is about to happen, and they will be eyewitnesses who will report His miraculous works to others.

The professional mourners are busy at work. Unbelief saturates the whole scene. Woe! Woe! Woe!

But Jesus rebukes them and goes into the house. They laugh when He says she has not died; she’s just asleep. He puts them out — He removes the unbelieving ones from the scene, and goes into the girl’s room.

NOTE: When you know Jesus, you do not die. Your spirit goes to Him. To be absent from the body is to be at home with the Lord (2Corinthians 5:8). But your body sleeps.

Then, the Author of life does what only God can do. He takes Jairus’ dead daughter by the hand and says “Get up!” She has to do it. He has commanded it. And she begins to walk around. She is 12 years old.

And her parents and Peter, James and John are astounded. They wonder, they are amazed, they are astonished.

Jesus says, “Give her something to eat.” It is another proof that she is not a ghost, but alive!

I tell you, when Jesus does His work in you, many will wonder at it, many will be amazed, many will be astonished.

He gives life to the dead, physically and spiritually. He is still doing that, because He is the same yesterday and today and forever (Hebrews 13:8)!

Only believe! If you do, you will come to Him, you will touch His garment, and you will be healed. Even though you have been given up for dead, He will raise you to life!

THE LESSER LIGHT

DSCN1259

[SW172] 02/07/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015
[NOTE: Much more on the video message; just click on the link to the right of this post.]

“The Lesser Light”

Christ is the great Light who was with the Father before anything was created. And  you were created to be a lesser light who reflects Him.

Text:  Genesis 1:16

Genesis 1:16 God made the two  great lights, the  greater  light  to govern the day, and the lesser  light  to govern the night; He made  the stars also.

As I began to read through the Bible again this week, the Holy Spirit used this verse to stir my spirit. Someone needs to hear this message today. It will free them, it will encourage them, it will challenge them, and God will empower them through it.

The greater light is the sun; the lesser light is the moon. Does the moon have any light of its own? Does it produce light by itself?

No, the moon simply reflects the light of the sun shining on it. It is not a great light in and of itself. But it reflects to such a degree that it sheds light on a dark night when that moon is full.

Well, there’s a lot there! But here’s the difference between Genesis 1:16 versus Jesus Christ and  you. Jesus is the greater Light, but He was not created — He was with the Father before anything was created (John 1:1-2), and the Father assigned Him to create (Hebrews 1:2). And you, beloved, are created to be the lesser light.

When the moon is fully lit outwardly by the sun, it shines brightly. So do you, when you’re full. Your purpose is to shine in the darkness of today’s world, but unlike the moon, you were created to shine 24/7.

When the sun is no longer seen physically, the moon still reflects it. That lets everyone in the world know that the sun is still shining. Otherwise, the moon would not be lit.

The lit moon is evidence of the sun’s existence.

It’s the same with you. The world can’t see Jesus Christ, even though He lives. But He’s still here, and we who reflect Him are evidence of the fact that He is.

The moon has no ability to light itself. It must be lit by the sun.

You have no ability to light yourself up with the Son of God. But the Son lights you up so you reflect Him.

The comparison changes a bit now. Even when it is fully lit by the sun, the moon can only OUTWARDLY reflect the sun’s light. It has no light inside of it.

But when you are full of Jesus Christ, full of the Holy Spirit, you shine brightly FROM WITHIN.

The Lord showed me something that will touch someone today.

In Florida, I was called upon to give my testimony of healing at a church. I prepared, I prayed, but after I gave it, I felt like I had failed.

You see, I was not used to giving my testimony. So I was awkward about giving it.

I felt I missed what the Lord had wanted to say through my testimony. And I was very sad the next morning, as I sat on the couch in my morning prayers and meditations with Jesus.

From my couch, I could see the sun rising and the moon setting. As the moon faded in the light of the sun, I said to the Lord, “Make me disappear like the moon, so all people see is You.” I wept, I prayed, and then I went to Jeff. I told him how I felt, and he said this:

“I did not see failure last night. That is not what I saw. What I saw was the lesser light proclaiming the greater light.”

I felt a great release, and my sadness left me. I am a lesser light. Christ is the great Light. I reflect His light, from the inside of me, because I am full of His light. But I am yet a lesser light.

So I don’t have to be perfect in my presentation of the gospel, or in sharing my testimony.

The greater Light will shine from this lesser light, and by His shining from me, I am His witness. Even though the world can’t see Him, they can see Him in me.

It is so that they will not be able to deny that He is alive, though they can’t see Him.

Jesus is the great Light, the never-before-seen light that came into the world —

John 14:19 “  After a little while  the world will no longer see Me, but you will see Me;  because I live, you will live also.

Isaiah 9:2  The people who walk in darkness
Will see a great light;
Those who live in a dark land,
The light will shine on them.

He is the Light of the world —

John 8:12   Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “ I am the Light of the world;  he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”

But He says we are, too —

Matthew 5:13   “You are the salt of the earth; but  if the salt has become tasteless, how  can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men.

Matthew 5:14   “You are  the light of the world. A city set on a  hill cannot be hidden; 15  nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a  basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may  see your good works, and  glorify your Father who is in heaven.

But the disciples didn’t reflect Jesus Christ when He walked with them on the earth. They argued about who was the greatest, they were confused by what Jesus spoke to them.

But after Pentecost, they were full of His light. They became His witnesses. Even the Sanhedrin had to admit that it was obvious they had been with Jesus. But Jesus was no longer on the earth.

How could they be with Jesus when He was no longer physically with them? He was in them. He said:

John 16:7 “But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the   Helper will not come to you; but if I go,  I will send Him to you.

He was speaking of the Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit would come, if they would wait in the city until they were clothed with power from on high (Luke 24:49).

Even then —

2Corinthians 3:18 But we all, with unveiled face,  beholding as in a mirror the  glory of the Lord, are being  transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from  the Lord, the Spirit.

The reflection of His light in us will grow brighter and brighter!

Philippians 2:14   Do all things without  grumbling or disputing;  15 so that you will  prove yourselves to be  blameless and innocent,  children of God above reproach in the midst of a  crooked and perverse generation, among whom you   appear as  lights in the world,  16 holding  fast [forth] the word of life, so that in  the day of Christ I will have reason to glory because I did not  run in vain nor  toil in vain.

Before Pentecost, before the disciples were baptized in the Holy Spirit, the disciples grumbled and complained.

After Pentecost, they proved themselves to be just as Paul said — children of God above reproach, lights in the world, holding forth the word of life to a world in desperate need of His light, the light that will reconcile them to God, remove God’s wrath, and give them eternal life with God.

Before, and after. What a change!

Altar call:

If you are lit up with Christ, don’t expect to do everything perfectly. It is necessary for the greater Light to be reflected in a lesser light, so that we are the evidence that He IS, living here and now in you.

I boldly rejoice in my weaknesses —

2Corinthians 12:9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for  power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather  boast  about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.  10 Therefore  I am well content with weaknesses, with  insults, with  distresses, with  persecutions, with  difficulties,  for Christ’s sake; for  when I am weak, then I am strong.

Are you a lesser light so the greater Light can be seen? Examine yourself. Ask God if you are.

And if you don’t get a response, ask Him what He needs to do to make you His lesser light. He’ll not only show you, but reveal to you that He is ready and waiting to change you. All you have to do is agree with Him.

Do you believe that you are something? Do you boast in your ministry, in what you have done?

Galatians 6:3 For  if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself.

Become nothing. Decrease YOUR ministry, and He will increase HIS (John 3:30). And you will see a marked change. You will see His light shine from you, and from the ministry that HE, the greater Light, does through you, the lesser light.

We must get right, to be that lesser light.

We must get right, to be filled with His great Light.

Amen.

WORKING HARD

[SW160] 11/08/2014 message notes by Sister Susan J. Wynn ©2014
“Working Hard”

If you obey Jesus Christ today, His promise to you is that you will catch many people, and they will no longer be under the wrath of God, but will believe and obey Jesus, and have eternal life!

LOOKING AT THE TEXT (LUKE 5:1-11):

Verse 1 – Jesus is teaching the Word of God; He is doing what He sees His Father doing (John 5:19). As a result, the people press in around Him and listen. They know God is speaking.

Verse 2 – The fishermen had finished THEIR work, which they were doing in their own power.

Verse 3 – He uses Simon’s vessel to teach from, so all can hear and see.

Verse 4 – He commands Simon to go out again into the deep water and let down the nets. He says they will have a catch. When HE commands, it will be so, even though it seems impossible!

Verse 5 – Simon says THEY worked hard all night but caught nothing.

— But He OBEYED JESUS, saying, “I will do as you say.”

Verse 6-7 – The catch is huge, the nets start to break, the other boat is called, and even then, both boats begin to sink from the weight of the catch. When HE commands, we go out in HIS power and miracles happen!

Verse 8-9  – As a result of this miracle, Simon is convicted of his own sinfulness, and falls down in worship to Jesus. Note that Simon was NOT convicted of his sinfulness prior to this point, even though Jesus had been talking with him and the others.

— When true miracles are done by God, conviction of sin and repentance are always the result. In this way, we can discern whether signs and wonders are false or truly from God.

Astonishment seizes (grabs) them all!

— They are trained fishermen, experts! But they had no catch. Suddenly, there is a huge catch!

— Training and expertise does not make for a huge catch. Apart from Him, we can do nothing:

John 15:4 “ Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit  of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. 5 “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he  bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

Verse 10 – After this amazing miracle, Jesus amazes them further by telling them that from now on, they will be catching men!

Verse 11 – They left their work which they had been doing in their own power, and followed (BELIEVED AND OBEYED) Jesus.
Catching men! They did, with Him!

And then, He told them He was going to leave them, If they obeyed, He would give them the Holy Spirit:

John 14:15   “ If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. [the original Greek has “kai” before the next verse, which means “and”] 16 “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another   Helper, that He may be with you forever . . .”

Note the connection between OBEDIENCE (if you keep My commandments) which is evidence of loving Jesus Christ, and receiving God’s power to do God’s works through God’s Holy Spirit!!

And they will do even greater works, BECAUSE Jesus is going to the Father:

John 14:12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and  greater works than these he will do; because  I go to the Father.”

What happens when Jesus goes to the Father? He is glorified, and the Holy Spirit is given:

John 7:39 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.

That happened in Acts 2! And He is still filling those who obey Him (Acts 5:32)!

Then we go out in HIS power and do the works we see the Father doing, and catch people!

FOR THE CHURCH:

Beloved, we work very hard in our own power and our own training and expertise.

But we can only do what He has called us to do — catch people — when we obey Jesus’ commands and thereby show that we love Him. And most of the church is disobedient to the Lord.

This is disobedience — working in our own power! We disobey Jesus Christ when we rely on our own:

— skill
— knowledge
— expertise
— logic
— wisdom

We disobey Him when we:

— use demographics to ensure success (that’s like using an electronic fish finder to make sure you get a catch!!!)
— do motorcycle and dog blessings to attract people
— hold carnivals to attract people

The result of such things is that people are attracted to a ministry or a man, and there is no conviction of sin and thus, no repentance, because these are natural works, not God’s works.

And that man or that ministry receives glory, not Jesus Christ.

We will catch nothing that way!

I tell you the truth, the church is a laughing stock to the world, because she is full of sin and acts like the world.

But when we cease from our natural works and do God’s works, our detractors will be silenced:

Acts 4:13   Now as they observed the  confidence of  Peter and John and understood that they were uneducated and untrained men, they were amazed, and  began to recognize them  as having been with Jesus.  14 And seeing the man who had been healed standing with them, they had nothing to say in reply [my emphasis].

We must be doing miracles, signs and wonders, so conviction of sinfulness results, and repentance comes. That’s why the newborn church prayed like this:

Acts 4:29 “And  now, Lord, take note of their threats, and grant that Your bond-servants may  speak Your word with all  confidence,  30 while You extend Your hand to heal, and   signs and wonders take place through the name of Your holy   servant Jesus.”

THEN men and women are saved from the wrath of God.

EXHORTATION:

Beloved, confess your sinfulness in disobeying Christ by working in your own power, with your own expertise and your own training.

Repent, have a change of heart!

Cease from your own labors, just as Simon and his companions did.

His promise to you, if you obey Him, is that you will catch many people, and they will no longer be under the wrath of God, but will believe and obey Jesus, and have eternal life!