REST FOR YOUR SOUL

[SW178] 03/27/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“Rest for Your Soul”

Rest! For your soul! It is a gift from Jesus Christ. I will show you how to receive it.

Matthew 11:28   “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29 “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. 30 “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

In v. 28, “rest” means intermission from labor, a refreshment to strengthen.

But in v. 29, “rest” means cessation of labor, refreshment, and re-creation.

Jesus does both. First v. 28, when you come to Him, and v. 29 when you take His yoke upon you. We’ll get to that later.

The word “come” isn’t a suggestion or invitation. It is an imperative command, urgent and authoritative. It is, “Follow!”

Why does He command it. He knows you have no rest, you are rest-less.

If you are rest-less, you are weary (fatigued from labor) because you are heavy- laden (loaded up, overburdened).

You are overburdened, fatigued.

What is your burden that fatigues you from the labor of carrying it?

Surely Jesus does not talk to us today of the yoke of legalism, “Do not handle, do not taste,  do not touch” (Colossians 2:21).What else is a burden to you? For you, Today, the Lord says your burden is sin. All sin, all rebellion against God. If you come to Jesus Christ, He will lift from you:

— bitterness
— addiction
— grudge-holding/unforgiveness
— anger (murder)
— and much more!

He commands you to come to Him. He will give you rest. It’s a gift from Him.

You are carrying a heavy burden. You are carrying sin. You are in a single yoke, a human yoke, made for a single human to bear. He wants to break it TODAY!

Isaiah 9:4      For You shall break the yoke of their burden
and the staff on their shoulders,
The rod of their oppressor, as at the battle of Midian.

Hallelujah! It is Christ and Him alone who can do it. He was sent by the Father for that purpose.

When does He break the yoke of your burden? When you come to Him. When you respond to His imperative, authoritative and urgent command.

Why does He break your yoke? To give you rest (373, intermission from labor, a refreshment to strengthen).

Once He has broken your yoke, He commands you to take up HIS yoke.

Matthew 11:28   “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29 “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. 30 “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Take HIS yoke upon you. Didn’t He just break the one that was on you? Why would you want to take another yoke?

The yoke Christ is asking you to take up is the kind used with two animals — one animal is older, the other younger. The older teaches the younger what to do, whether they are attached to a plow or to a cart.

Some say Matthew 11:28-30 refers to a yoke designed for a human. Surely, that’s the one He’ll break, as I said above, but  if He commands you to take up HIS yoke and learn from Him, then He must be in it with you. Glory to God!

Why? Because it is the only way you will learn from Him. It is submission to Him, submission to the will of God. It is a yoke of submission, it means you have been crucified with Christ so He can live in you.

Then you have that cessation of labor, that re-creation that I talked about in the beginning of my message. Hallelujah! No more single yoke, no more burden of the sin nature you were born with.
In His yoke, He is the One who will continually teach you His humility and His meekness.

You submit to His yoke, and it will be easy to learn, because He is in it with you!

You gladly obey, because you have submitted.

But all of your life, He will show you how to be more and more like Him, going from image to image and glory to glory (1Corinthians 3:18)!

Oh, beloved! You will find rest for your souls, refreshment, cessation of your rest-lessness, and re-creation.

Re-creation — the old will go, the new will come.

You will be a new creature, with a new heart, a new life in Him, no longer heavy-laden with sin, but set free, indeed!

VERY IMPORTANT NOTE:  Not free TO sin, but free FROM slavery to sin!!!!

It is rest from slavery to sin.

It is an inward change, where you rest and He works through you.

It is submission to His yoke, which is easy, carrying the burden He carries, which makes it light. He gives you the power to carry it.

What burden did AND does He carry? He carried a cross, it is true. He tells us to take up our cross and follow Him. That is submission, that is obedience. Taking up our cross is like taking up His yoke.

So what is the burden? I asked the Holy Spirit to show me.

It is that we will see as He sees. We will see the lostness of the world, and the hardness of hearts. We will see the vast fields white for the harvest. We will see the sheep without shepherds. You will feel the grief He feels, but you will also feel the joy He feels, joy unspeakable and full of glory!

You will be persecuted, as He was persecuted —

John 15:18   “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. 19 “If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you.

The world will hate you, and the world that has wormed its way into the church will hate you.

But He is in the yoke with you, which makes seeing and experiencing all these things bearable. And you will walk in His power, and through you, He will free the captives, through us! So the burden is light and pleasant!

Beloved, do you see that it’s not about getting blessed?

It’s about blessing God by obeying His Son’s command. It’s about submission to God.

Certainly, the side benefit of following Jesus’ command is certainly freedom from slavery to sin and intimacy with God the Father and God the Son through God the Holy Spirit, and that is surely a blessing!

Are you in it for what you can get from Him, or are you in it to know Him intimately, to have a relationship with Him?

Come now to Him.

He will give you rest, like your first good night’s sleep in eons.

He will break the yoke of sin that’s on you.

You will take up His yoke, submitting to Him fully, no longer seeking what’s in it for you, but living to learn Him more and more.

He will teach you more and more deeply what it is to be humble and lowly like Him.

And you will find rest for your soul, that cessation from the labor of carrying your sin. Total cessation. Freedom from slavery to it.

Come now to Him. He says it urgently and authoritatively and imperatively!

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ASK FOR RAIN!

[SW177] 03/20/2015 message notes by
Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2015

“Ask for Rain”
Word:  The Lord is setting the stage for revival. It’s time to pray!

Text: Zechariah 10:1ff

Spoken to: The remnant that returned from Babylon to rebuild Jerusalem and the Temple. Zechariah and Haggai prophesied to the rebuilders, encouraging them (Ezra 5:1, 6:4), for their natural AND spiritual restoration!

v. 1 Ask rain from the Lord at the time of the spring rain — it is spring, as of today!

— Ask rain not from man, but from the Lord! He is the only One who has what we need — His life, His heart, His love and His power in us!

— So if we ask the Lord, He will give us showers of rain

Joel 2:23 NIV    Be glad, O people of Zion,
rejoice in the LORD your God,
for he has given you
the autumn rains in righteousness.
He sends you abundant showers,
both autumn and spring rains, as before.

Showers of blessing (Ezekiel 34:26)!

— And we who are His people will be fruitful and have abundance once again. What abundance? The Holy Spirit. What fruit? His fruit. When His fruit is manifested, many souls will be saved.

Rain represents blessing and revival. The need to pray for it means something has been amiss between God and us. The next verse tells us what is amiss.

v.v. 2-3a False gods, false shepherds

— We have looked to dead, inanimate things that cannot answer us (Psalm 115:4-8), rather than to the living God. We have listened to ear ticklers, so we are wandering sheep without a shepherd. We have not heeded the voice of the Good Shepherd.

v. 3b But the Lord has visited his flock! He is our true Shepherd!

— Why does He use the past tense? Because in heaven, where He dwells, He sees the end, and He sees the beginning. He sits above time, so He says He has visited, even before we see that He has visited.

— Visit means He will go to see, avenge, care for, deliver to keep, and remember!

When we went astray, He left us to our own devices. But He has not forgotten us. At the appointed time, He returns to us — that’s what “remembered” means.

— He will make us like HIS majestic horse in battle.

— Horses were a superior instrument of warfare battle in those times.

— They were a symbol of swiftness, sure-footedness, power.

— No longer will we trust in men or natural horses. Instead, we will be like the Lord’s horses! Swift. sure-footed, powerful in His power! And He never loses a battle!

v. 4     His Cornerstone —  His Christ
His tent peg — His support
His bow of battle (He trains our fingers for battle, and makes us able to bend               a bow of bronze (Psalm 144:1, 18:34)
His rulers — no longer chosen by men, but by Him

v. 5     We will be as mighty warriors (2 Cor 10:5)
We will tread down the enemy (1John 4:4, James 4:7)
We will fight, for the Lord will be with us (2 Chronicles 20:15, 20)

v. 6    The Lord will strengthen us (make us firm so we prevail against the Enemy)
He will deliver us (save us out of the miry clay we’ve been in)
He will bring us back to Himself
He has racham toward us (tender mercy, like a mother toward her child)!

It will be as though He never rejected us (cast us off, moved us away from Him), though He did reject us when we followed false gods and false shepherds.

Why? Because HE is our God.

He will visited us, go to see  us, avenge us, care for us, deliver us to keep us, and remember us!

v. 9 Our exile from His presence caused us to remember Him, and now, He will remember us.

v. 10 He will bring us back from sin (Egypt).

v. 11 We will cross over and out of the sea of distress (trouble, anguish) and not drown in it.

He will strike the waves in the sea, as in the Exodus, so that even the mightiest waters dry up.

The scepter will depart Egypt — sin will no longer rule us.

Assyria’s (in this case, a typology or symbol of Satan as well as a real kingdom) pride will be cast down, it will fall down, Satan will fall down.

v. 12 Again, He says I will strengthen you in Me.

— Not in our own strength

— And He says, “They will walk in My name,” as representing Me, having My character and nature. He declares it!

We will, indeed, become partakers of the divine nature, and that will permanently repair the rift between us and our God. HALLELUJAH!

Beloved, a warning from the Lord — when He sends the rain, do not try to manage it or manipulate it. Just stand by and let Him work in hearts. Simply rejoice as you watch Him!

And remember, it will no longer be necessary to work real hard to be like Jesus — He will do the heavy lifting. All we have to do is agree with Him as we walk with Him!

Ask rain from the LORD at the time of the spring rain! He is coming to visit us once again, to free His people and bring them back to Himself!

Come back to Him even now, this very moment! Cast away your idols and false shepherds to the moles and the bats! Now is the time!

MAGNIFYING GLASSES

[SW166] 12/27/2014 message notes by Sister Susan J. Wynn ©2014
“Magnifying Glasses”

NOTE:  These sermon notes are brief, but you can go to the Youtube link to the right of this blog to watch the message.

When I was first filled with the Holy Spirit and was learning to walk in the Spirit, my mentor and pastor, David “Doc” Uber, came to me with a word from God. He said, “The Lord says you are to be transparent but not invisible.” I asked, “What does that mean?”
He said, “I have no idea!”

So I prayed and asked the Holy Spirit to explain the riddle to me. I write in my journal nearly every day, during my early morning devotional time. One day, as I wrote, a lightbulb went off — the Holy Spirit showed me that a magnifying glass is transparent, but not invisible. You can see its frame and its handle, but the magnifying part is transparent! The Lord told me I was to be His magnifying glass, and it is true for each one who says they follow Jesus Christ, beloved.

Text: 2 Samuel 7:10-11, 22, 25-26

God made David a house, and David’s response was one of humility, humbleness and contriteness before God. Who am I? I am nothing, yet you have chosen to make me a house. It is true of all of us who realize that God wants to come and dwell in our hearts, as Jesus speaks in John 14:23! We realize our littleness, and His greatness.

David goes on to proclaim the Lord’s greatness — and in Verse 25-26, David shows us the purpose of making him a house — so the name of the Lord would be magnified forever. Think of the many Psalms written by David, in which he speaks and sings of the Lord’s greatness! He will do the same in us, when we realize He wants to make us a house and come and dwell in us! We, too, will become His magnifying glasses!

Another voice of a magnifying glass is heard in Paul, in Philippians 3:7-14, and Galatians 2:20. There is a cost to becoming a magnifying glass. You must realize your littleness to see His greatness. You must die to the “old you” so He can live through you. And you must see that all good works and great accomplishments are as dung, compared to knowing Jesus Christ intimately. You must utterly reject your old life in order to have His life. But when you do, He makes your life GLORIOUS, filling you with His glory, His mightiness, His weightiness, and you cannot contain yourself — you must proclaim all that He has done, all that He is, all that He will do for anyone who will come to Him!

But beloved, some of you sit under teaching that says Jesus is small, that He worried, that he was depressed, that He was unsure. I have heard this in messages from leaders of denominations, from professors, from preachers! I have heard that Jeremiah was bipolar, and that other prophets were delusional. God help us!

Rather than becoming magnifying glasses who declare the greatness of God, these voices look at him through the wrong end of binoculars, and have miniaturized God!!!

Do not listen to them! Run from them! Find one who has become a magnifying glass, and listen and heed and do what the Word of God says.

Ask God to make you a house for His immensity, and you will become His magnifying glass!

VISION OF PRESENTS GIVEN

Matthew 24:24 [Jesus says] “For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will  show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect.”

I had a vision last night. I saw men, two at a time, bowing to one another and presenting boxes, with a flourish. There were several sets of men. They had proud looks on their faces and were impressed with each other. Some wore capes like magician’s capes. I did not know what it meant.

Today, the Lord revealed the interpretation. These are the presenters of a false gospel, magicians who perform false signs and wonders.

Some of these presenters preach a false gospel that has no requirement for repentance from sin.

Some of these presenters preach a false gospel that tells believers that at best, they will have to choose, from moment to moment, not to sin (as if we had the power to do that, in ourselves!).

Some of these presenters preach a false gospel that tells believers that the rebellious nature in humans cannot be destroyed and replaced with Christ’s nature.

Some of these presenters preach that Christ died to make your life happy. With this, they are especially impressed with one another.

John 12:43  for they loved the approval of men rather than the approval of God.

These presenters have used their impressive “magic” to transform the gospel of Jesus Christ from a gospel of freedom to a man-made gospel, one formed from their own imagination.

Lamentations 2:14  Your prophets have seen for you
False and foolish visions;
And they have not exposed your iniquity
So as to restore you from captivity,
But they have seen for you false and misleading oracles.

Matthew 23:13  [Jesus says]  “But woe to you . . . because you shut off the kingdom of heaven from  people; for you do not enter in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.”

 

WATER!

[SW153] 09/16/2014 message notes by Rev. Susan J. Wynn ©2014
“Water”

(NOTE: These are notes and scripture references. I urge you to watch the video on Youtube, because it is an interpretation of John 4 that I believe will speak to your heart. The video message will be available later today. The link is in the right-hand column on my blog site.)

I announced last time that I would discontinue this video ministry, to make myself available for other ministry as needed, but the Lord showed me that I can vary the days I speak a video message. So I will continue.

Breath — Last time, I spoke about the breath, a symbol of the Holy Spirit, a breath that is breathed into dry bones.

The Lord instructed me to continue with a few other symbols of the Holy Spirit:

Water — Living water which flows from the bellies of those who are filled to overflowing.

Fire — Purifies our hearts and make them completely and entirely God’s, with no other rival.

Oil — That which keeps a flame burning.

So today, I speak about water.

You are thirsty with a thirst that nothing has quenched. Your sins leave you dry, the gods you’ve worshiped leave you dry, preachers who preach ear candy leave you dry. Jesus Christ has living water for you today, and you will never thirst again.

Text:  John 4 — the condition of the woman at the well (and of you, beloved), and the solution.

The nature of living water:

Zechariah 14:8   And in that day living waters will flow out of Jerusalem, half of them toward the eastern sea and the other half toward the western sea; it will be in summer as well as in winter.

These are waters that never dry up! In Israel, rivers and streams often flow in the winter but dry up in the summer. But the living water of the Holy Spirit is an endless source of life!

Zechariah 10:1        Ask  rain from the LORD at the time of the spring rain —
The LORD who  makes the  storm clouds;
And He will give them  showers of rain, vegetation in the field to each man.

Zechariah 10:12 “And I will strengthen them in the LORD,
And in His name they will walk,” declares the LORD.

It is water that strengthens, water that transforms you so that you become God’s representative, walking in the name of Jesus Christ, as His ambassador, obeying God, walking as Christ walked when He was on the earth. The strengthening rain, the living water, the Spirit! He is what is required to make it so!

Water! The Holy Spirit, who was poured out at Pentecost, with a fisherman named Peter preaching repentance in Acts 2, for repentance is the first step:

Joel 2:12 “Yet even now,” declares the LORD,
“ Return to Me with all your heart,
And with  fasting, weeping and mourning;
13      And  rend your heart and not  your garments.”
Now return to the LORD your God,
For He is  gracious and compassionate,
Slow to anger, abounding in lovingkindness
And relenting of evil.

and then . . .

Joel 2:28  “It will come about after this
That I will  pour out My Spirit on all mankind; [all who ask, Luke 11:13]
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.

And the day that Peter preached, and in the days that followed, thousands upon thousands were transformed, healed of their rebellion against God, and reconciled to Him through Jesus Christ! Peter had flood-stage living water flowing from his belly!

Poured out! Water! Rivers in the spiritual desert of Judah’s exile in Babylon, and also in the desert of today’s Christianity!

Only our God, the one who called forth the generations from the beginning, can help us, and He will gladly restore and revive the fallen-away church, if she will turn. Here is His promise:

Isaiah 41:18  “I will open  rivers on the bare heights
And springs in the midst of the valleys;
I will make  the wilderness a pool of water
And the dry land fountains of water.
19      “I will put the cedar in the wilderness,
The acacia and the  myrtle and the olive tree;
I will place the  juniper in the desert
Together with the box tree and the cypress,
20      That  they may see and recognize,
And consider and gain insight as well,
That the  hand of the LORD has done this,
And the Holy One of Israel has created it.

These cannot grow in a dry desert . . . they require water! But  He promises water:

Isaiah 44:3  ‘For I will pour out water on the thirsty land
And streams on the dry ground;
I will  pour out My Spirit on your offspring
And My blessing on your descendants;

For today’s church:

Who is the Source of living water? Who will relieve you of the dryness that I know you feel? Who is the One who will take you out of your desert, out of your wilderness, the place of dryness that results from sin?  Jesus Christ!

What is your sin, you ask? Rather than idols made of stone or wood or metal,  the idolatry of self is your sin. (I was the same way, before I received the Holy Spirit’s living water.) And most pastors build their sermons around you and your sensual desires. That may make you feel good for a moment, but then you find you are still dry. Theirs is a deceptive stream; it dries up quickly. You are still in your idolatry. If your pastor does not speak of sin and righteousness and judgment and repentance from sin, you remain a slave to sin.

Jesus Christ is in the business of making people free from slavery to sin (John 8:31-36), and that is by the Holy Spirit, the living water:

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.

Who receives the living water of the Holy Spirit? He who believes in Christ, not just in a mental assent that Christ lived and died and rose again, but who obeys Christ out of love! He who has repented and asked God to do it! That one will have living water flowing from his belly like a flood-stage river!
Jesus Christ was sent by God the Father for this reason:

Isaiah 42:7      To open blind eyes,
To bring out prisoners from the dungeon
And those who dwell in darkness from the prison.

This water, the Holy Spirit, will open your blind eyes and  deliver you from your prison of selfishness and rebellion against God, and make you an oasis for the lost (Isaiah 42:7). He who gives you sight and freedom will do the same for them, through us!

And there is another purpose for His living water:

Acts 1:8 “but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be  My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and  Samaria, and even to  the remotest part of the earth.”

The living water of the Holy Spirit gives you power to be a witness that Jesus Christ is truly the Son of God, that He came and died and rose again, because His Holy Spirit will fill you with His presence and His love and His holiness and His power, and that will trigger repentance in others!

You cannot be the church without His living water!

The cure for your dryness, the exit from your desert, is before you now. Jesus Christ will give you living, overflowing water that will never dry up, living water that will make you a witness that Christ is real. People who see God’s power in you and living water flowing form you will repent and believe.

Beloved, most of today’s church cannot claim to be witnesses of Him, but His offer is open NOW. Repent, turn from your idolatry of self, cry out to God and receive His living water!

HE LONGS TO BE GRACIOUS

[SW151] 08/22/2014 message notes by Rev. Susan J. Wynn ©2014
“He Longs To Be Gracious”

He longs to be gracious . . . He waits for you to turn to Him and to adhere yourself to Him, because He will surely receive you back to Himself, if you do it!

Text: Isaiah 30

Verse 18 — He longs to be gracious to you. I praise Him, because it is His very nature and character to be gracious and compassionate. But it is also His very character to be just and righteous. You will see all of these characteristics in this message.

He longs to be gracious to you. That means there must be times when He has to withhold His grace for some just and righteous reason, doesn’t it?

He waits on high — emphasizing His position versus yours, and His authority and power over everything that exists. But it also indicates distance between God and His people.

What does He wait on high to do? Have compassion. That means He had to withhold His compassion for some just and righteous reason, doesn’t it? The word is racham (7355), and the root has to do with birth. Compassion comes from the depths of His being.

It is as with Paul to the Galatians (Galatians 4:19); he again travailed as in a woman in labor, so that Christ would be formed in them. That means Christ wasn’t yet formed in them, doesn’t it, or that somehow they had lost their connection to Christ?

Here’s the question, then: Why did the Lord withhold His grace and compassion from Judah? Why does He withhold it from much of today’s church?

The answer is in Isaiah 30:1 and forward:

Verse 1 — Woe to the rebellious children! His children rebelled against Him. How? They execute a plan (literally, “weave a covering web”). But it is not His plan. They make an alliance, but it is not of His Spirit. They do not seek His counsel, but devise their own plans.

Verse 2 — We rebel when we turn to the world. Egypt is not only a country to whom Judah would eventually turn for protection from Babylon, but it is also an example for us.

For the church, Egypt represents the natural, turning to the ways of the world to try to keep the church-at-large from becoming extinct.

It is using management techniques, psychology, psychiatry, and sociology to try to keep the pews filled, trying to be an “attractional” church that entertains, a church where there is no mention of sin or repentance because it might make people feel bad about themselves.

Just as Nebuchadnezzar routed Egypt and destroyed the Jews who sought shelter there, Satan will also destroy those of us who seek the world’s wisdom and power to overcome him, instead of God’s wisdom and power. I am telling you the truth.

Verse 9 — For this is a rebellious people, false (literally, “lying”) sons, who refuse to listen to the instruction of the Lord.
That is what it is to rebel. We turn to the world and listen to its instruction. We seek its protection from Satan’s plan to destroy the church, instead of turning to the Lord.

Verse 10 — Much of the church, just as Judah in Isaiah’s day, does not want to hear true words from the seers (prophets) the Lord sends to warn them.

[NOTE: The idea that a person can hear from the Lord is totally rejected in most seminaries and by many pastors and their overseers, and thus, it is also rejected by the congregations. So in a way, it is even worse now than in Isaiah’s day, when men still believed prophets heard from God.]

Judah agreed that God sends men and women to warn them. They just didn’t want to hear it.

So they command prophets not to see visions. They command them not to prophesy what is right. “Speak to us pleasant words (literally “smooth things”),” ear-tickling words. Prophesy what we want to hear, even though it will keep us in our self-made deception.

And many pastors and their overseers oblige the people. The Lord is grieved.

Judah (and many churches today) would say — Get out of the way! We’re on the broad path that leads to destruction. Don’t bother us. Turn aside.

We don’t want to hear any more about the Holy One of Israel. We don’t want to hear that HE is righteous and just, and that WE are not.

We don’t want to hear that WE have deserted the HIM, the One who is totally separated from the world, who says through His prophets that WE are not separated from the world, but SHOULD BE.

We don’t want to hear that we are wrong to put our trust in the world instead of Him.

Verse 12 & 14 — And so the Lord says (and I paraphrase), “Since you have rejected Me, I will let you be broken shattered, broken to pieces.”

Verse 15 — “I told you through my prophets that you would be saved by repenting and resting, trusting and relying on Me. But you were not willing.”

Verse 18 — “Therefore, because you have not trusted Me but have rebelled against me by relying on man and refusing to listen to those I send you, I am in the position of longing to be gracious to you.”

“I am not now gracious to you. I have had to withdraw My grace because of your rebellion. I long, I wait from on high, since you do not want to hear My words, I have withdrawn from you.”

Verse 19 — This was a cause for weeping among the people of Judah. It should be a cause for weeping among the people of the church of today.

But what will happen when you cry out in repentance to Him? HE WILL SURELY BE GRACIOUS TO YOU.

What will happen when He hears the sound of your cry of repentance? HE WILL ANSWER YOU.

He longs to be gracious. The turning point is your repentance. If you cry out —

Verse 20 — He will no longer hide Himself from you.
Your eyes will BEHOLD HIM.

Verse 21 — Your ears will HEAR HIS INSTRUCTION

Verse 22 — You will contaminate and call unclean (“not of God”) all the false things you trusted in.

Verse 23 — THEN He will bring the rain of His Spirit that will make you fruitful.

Verse 26 — THEN He will bind up the fracture in your relationship with Him and heal the bruise He has inflicted on you because of your rebellion against Him.

God wouldn’t do that, would He?

Maybe that’s just for the Old Testament. We’re under grace now. But so was Judah, before they rebelled, beloved!

And in Hebrews 12:8 the Spirit-inspired author tells us that we are bastards and not children of God if we are not disciplined by the Lord.

Here is His grace to the errant, rebellious church — He will bind you up, He will heal you, if you will return to Him. Hallelujah!

He withholds His grace and compassion from you until you:
RETURN
REPENT
DO ACTS IN KEEPING WITH REPENTANCE (verse 22)

And then He will:
RECEIVE YOU BACK
RECREATE YOU
REVIVE YOU

When you cry out in repentance:
HE HEARS
HE ANSWERS
YOUR EYES BEHOLD HIM
YOU HEAR AND HEED HIS INSTRUCTION
YOU THROW AWAY UNCLEAN THINGS THAT YOU HAVE RELIED ON (ACTS IN KEEPING WITH REPENTANCE)

And this yields:
FRUITFULNESS
HEALING

But many would say that sin (willful rebellion against God) is no longer an issue to the Lord, and there is no way we can stop willfully rebelling, but that because of Jesus Christ, God forgives all willful rebellion — past, present and future. That is flat-out false teaching, beloved. It contradicts the Bible.

What does Paul mean in Romans 6:1-2?

Romans 6:1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?  2  May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?

What does he mean in Galatians 5:24?

Galatians 5:24 Now those who  belong to  Christ Jesus have  crucified the flesh with its passions and  desires.

What does Peter mean in 1 Peter 4:1-2?

1Peter 4:1   Therefore, since  Christ has  suffered in the flesh,  arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because  he who has  suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin,  2  so as to live  the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the  will of God.

What does Jesus mean in John 8:31-36?

John 8:31   So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly  disciples of Mine; 32 and  you will know the truth, and  the truth will make you free.” 33 They answered Him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never yet been enslaved to anyone; how is it that You say, ‘You will become free’?”34   Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. 35 “ The slave does not remain in the house forever;  the son does remain forever. 36 “So if the Son  makes you free, you will be free indeed. He does what only God can do — He sets us free from slavery to sin.

This freedom from slavery to sin was very costly — it cost the Father the Cross, the sacrifice of His Son’s physical body on it. Dare we say He cannot set free from slavery to sin? I do not dare!

I know you will cite other passages that seem to indicate we cannot help but willfully rebel. But you cannot cite them only, and ignore these.

Beloved, the Lord longs to be gracious to you, and to have compassion on you. Return to Him now. Cry out now, and call unclean the things that you have trusted in. Trust in God alone. He will hear and answer!

#1 REBUILDING — INTERCESSION

[SW135] 04/05/2014 message notes by Rev. Susan J. Wynn ©2014
“#1 Rebuilding — Intercession”

The Lord Jesus Christ is calling for intercessors within His church to beseech the Father to rebuild today’s broken down church (see the latest Barna report). He is faithful and will hear us!
Jesus has shown me something in the Book of Nehemiah. It’s about today’s church, and what she must be taught and how she must be exhorted. In Nehemiah, the Lord reveals the necessary steps to rebuilding:

Chapter 1 — Interceding

Chapter 2 — Requesting Christ’s provision

Chapters 3 and 4 — Possessing God’s strength and wisdom

Chapter 5 — Convicting regarding sin

Chapter 6 — Discerning

Chapters 8 and 9 — Repenting

Chapter 10 — Consecrating

Chapter 13 — Cleansing

Here was the spiritual condition of Israel that led to the Babylonian exile of Judah (southern Israel) about a hundred years after Samaria (northern Israel) was exiled through Assyria:

Ezekiel 22:26-31 “Her  priests have done violence to My law and have  profaned My holy things; they have made no  distinction between the holy and the profane, and they have not taught the difference between the  unclean and the clean; and they hide their eyes from My sabbaths, and I am profaned among them.  27 “Her princes within her are like wolves tearing the prey, by shedding blood and  destroying lives in order to get  dishonest gain.  28 “Her prophets have smeared whitewash for them, seeing  false visions and divining lies for them, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD,’ when the LORD has not spoken.  29 “The people of the land have practiced  oppression and committed robbery, and they have wronged the poor and needy and have  oppressed the sojourner without justice.  30 “I  searched for a man among them who would  build up the wall and  stand in the gap before Me for the land, so that I would not destroy it; but I found  no one.  31 “Thus I have poured out My  indignation on them; I have consumed them with the fire of My wrath;  their way I have brought upon their heads,” declares the Lord GOD.

Prior to the exile, the Lord’s prophets had warned and called for repentance, but no one listened. It continued during the exile, and once again, men stood in the gap to intercede for Israel:

— The Lord’s call to intercession through the prophet Joel, in Joel 2:12-17

— Daniel’s great prayer of intercession in Daniel 9, after he read Jeremiah 25:11 and realized that the 70 years of Babylonian exile had been completed.

— Nehemiah, cupbearer to King Artaxerxes, who stood in the gap before the Lord for the people, to restore and rebuild.

Nehemiah 1

Cyrus of Persia made the proclamation to his entire kingdom (and the Medo-Persian empire conquered the Babylon empire which encompassed the known world). In 2 Chronicles 36:22-23, Cyrus proclaimed that the Lord God had appointed him to build Him a house in Jerusalem, and released all Jews in exile to go up to Jerusalem. This was just according to the prophecy the Lord gave Isaiah in Isaiah 44:28 and 45:1, 150 years before Cyrus came to power!

Persia was now under the rule of Artaxerxes. Of the approximate million who were in Judah at the time of the exile, only 42,360 Jews would return to their land and rebuild. The rest died in battle when Babylon laid siege, or tried to escape to Egypt and were killed there. A few were allowed to remain in the land to tend it and a few escaped. Some stayed in Babylon, preferring it to Israel.

Intercession was the first step to rebuilding, and that’s what Nehemiah 1 is all about.

Nehemiah heard the terrible report about the remnant in the land. He wept and mourned, fasted and prayed before the God of heaven.

That’s intercession — seeking God’s heart for the church or for individuals, weeping and mourning, praying and fasting day and night (v. 6), beseeching God to act on behalf of His people, and having faith that He will answer.

Let’s look at Nehemiah’s prayer in Chapter 1, so we may understand how to pray for today’s church —

— He beseeches the Lord God of heaven, who is faithful to keep covenant with those who love and obey Him.

— Hear! See! I am Your servant. I am praying on behalf of the sons of Israel Your servants. We have not served you well, for we have sinned against you. Even I and my family have sinned against you.

— We have acted very corruptly against You. We have completely disobeyed You. And just according to Your command to Moses, You have scattered us.

— But remember, Lord God, that if we repent, if we return to You and obey You, even though we’ve been scattered to the remotest parts of the earth, you will gather us and return us to Israel, where You have chosen to cause Your name to dwell.

— You redeemed them before, Lord, by your great power and strong hand.

— I beseech You! Hear the prayer of Your servants who love and revere You.
Bless me by granting me compassion (7356, raham mercy, from the word for womb) from King Artaxerxes.

— For I am cupbearer to the king. I have a close relationship to him, as a friend. I hear what goes on in his throne room. He trusts me not only with his secrets, but with his life, for I taste his wine before he drinks it, so if it is poisoned, I die rather than him.

For today’s church:

Please listen to the message, for I interweave the Lord’s words for today’s church with verse-by-verse explanation of Nehemiah 1. The video will available later today at:

https://www.youtube.com/user/SetFreeMinistriesFMC

http://vimeo.com/myfathersplace

Intercession did not end when Jesus came! Our Lord interceded in John 17, and He literally IS our intercession in heaven, for His work is finished! The Holy Spirit intercedes for us when we don’t know how to pray (Romans 8:26-27). The Apostle Paul was a great intercessor, in Ephesians 1 and 3 and throughout all of his letters to the churches.

Oh, beloved, intercession is not only petitioning God, but it is spiritual warfare!

2Corinthians 10:3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war  according to the flesh,  4 for the  weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but  divinely powerful  for the destruction of fortresses.  5 We are destroying speculations and every  lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the  obedience of Christ . . .

Colossians 1:9   For this reason also,  since the day we heard of it,  we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the   knowledge of His will in all spiritual  wisdom and understanding,  10 so that you will  walk in a manner worthy of the Lord,   to please Him in all respects,  bearing fruit in every good work and  increasing in the  knowledge of God;  11  strengthened with all power, according to  His glorious might,  for the attaining of all steadfastness and  patience;  joyously 12 giving thanks to  the Father, who has qualified us  to share in  the inheritance of the  saints in  Light.

And it must be done for today’s church. She is exiled from the presence of God. She has sinned greatly and been scattered. Many have fallen away, many follow false teachers who tickle their ears. Many do not believe or declare that Jesus Christ came in the flesh. Many of our churches are dying or dead.
Ezekiel 22:26-31 “Her  priests have done violence to My law and have  profaned My holy things; they have made no  distinction between the holy and the profane, and they have not taught the difference between the  unclean and the clean; and they hide their eyes from My sabbaths, and I am profaned among them.  27 “Her princes within her are like wolves tearing the prey, by shedding blood and  destroying lives in order to get  dishonest gain.  28 “Her prophets have smeared whitewash for them, seeing  false visions and divining lies for them, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD,’ when the LORD has not spoken.  29 “The people of the land have practiced  oppression and committed robbery, and they have wronged the poor and needy and have  oppressed the sojourner without justice.  30 “I  searched for a man among them who would  build up the wall and  stand in the gap before Me for the land, so that I would not destroy it; but I found  no one.  31 “Thus I have poured out My  indignation on them; I have consumed them with the fire of My wrath;  their way I have brought upon their heads,” declares the Lord GOD.

So I pray the same prayer as Nehemiah. By the grace of God, all whose hearts are entirely His are able to pray and beseech Him to act on behalf of our broken churches. Who will pray with me? Who will return with me to rebuild the church?