Some thoughts about the name of Jesus

Jesus is able to grant salvation to those who believe, have repented of sin and have received him as Lord just because He won a decisive victory through his death and resurrection. This salvation includes the forgiveness of sin, breaking of sin’s power over the believer, deliverance from Satan’s dominion, freedom from the bondage of death, healing from sickness, freedom from the curse, blessing, eternal life, empowerment to be witnesses, power and authority over the kingdom of darkness, over sickness, over the curse, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and an impartation of the nature of Jesus.

The overwhelming victory of Jesus over sin, Satan, sickness, the curse and death and his authority in Heaven and earth is both contained in His person and contained in his name. His name contains his salvation. That is why at his name every knee in heaven and on earth bows and every tongue confesses that Jesus is Lord. Satan bows at the mention of the name of Jesus. So does every sickness, every disease, every pain, every curse, nature itself and even death. The use of his name must produce the same results as when He himself were present.

When the disciples returned from an assignment Jesus had given them in Luke 10, they were so glad that “even the demons submit to us in your name”. The use of the name of Jesus brought demons under submission to the disciples. The demons recognised both Jesus and the fact that his name contained authority.

Similarly now, the use of the name of Jesus bring demons, sickness, disease, pain, curses and nature under submission to the believer. The centurion who sought the healing of his servant saw sickness as being under the authority of Jesus. He had no doubt that sickness had no choice but to obey Jesus.

There is power in the name of Jesus when it is used by those who believe and are submitted to his Lordship. Every kind of sickness must submit to me when I use the name of Jesus for his name releases his victory over sickness. Peter and John, when explaining the healing of the lame man at the gate “Beautiful” (Acts 3:16) said that it was the name of Jesus that enabled the lame man to be healed – “And His name, through faith in His name, has made this man strong, whom you see and know.” The name had released healing virtue. Similarly the name releases deliverance, blessing and freedom from sin. Jesus said in Mark 16:17,18 – “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues;  they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” The name would release such supernatural power. A lump of incense, when heated, releases such a powerful fragrance. That which is contained within the incense is released. Similarly, salvation, which is contained within the name of Jesus is released when his name is spoken in faith.

The disciples of Jesus have been authorised to use his name in prayer, in dealing with sickness, demons, curses, nature and death. The next time you are confronted by an obstacle of any kind (not caused by your own sin, of course!) or a need or in the preaching of the gospel, use the name of Jesus with boldness; it is guaranteed to produce results.

 

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The dual work of the presence of God

Worship, prayer, experiencing God’s presence and receiving revelation from the Word are times in my Christian walk that I forever treasure. The best times of my life have been these times with God and the time that I spend with my family. I would not trade these for the world. When the Lord speaks to you during your meditation upon His Word, you come away with your spirit so full of His presence and His Word. Every part of your being rises up to respond to that revelation in wonder and adoration and rest, which just validates the fact that man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.

When we consider the manifest presence of the Lord, we ought to realise that His manifest presence brings different results to different people. We know that there are two basic categories of people in this world – those who are of God and those who are under the control of the wicked one (1John5:19). Within the church too, the Bible describes different categories of people –

Wheat and tares

Spiritual and carnal

Vessels of honour and vessels of dishonour

Those who call on God from a pure heart and those with an impure heart

Godly and those with a form of godliness

In the Spirit and in the flesh

Approved and disapproved

Lets look at what the Lord’s presence does to different people –

1. Exodus 14:19,20 “And the angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud went from before them and stood behind them. So it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel. Thus it was a cloud and darkness to one and it gave light by night to the other, so that the one did not come near the other all that night.” The presence of God brought light and assurance to Israel but darkness and confusion to the Egyptians.

2. Isaiah 8:14 “He will be as a sanctuary but a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense to both the houses of Israel, as a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.” The presence of God was a sanctuary to some and a stumbling stone, offense, trap and snare to others.

3. 1 Corinthians 11:29,30 For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgement to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep.” The presence of God in communion brings blessing, strength, health and long life to some, while bringing judgement, weakness, sickness and premature death to others.

4. 1 Corinthians 1:18,23, 24 ” For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God. But we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.” The cross, message about Jesus and presence of God in Jesus Christ is salvation to some and a stumbling block and foolishness to others.

5. 2 Thessalonians 1:9 “These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power when He comes to be glorified in his saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.” Psalm 68:1-3 shows us that the wicked perish at the presence of God, while the righteous are glad and rejoice in God’s presence. The presence of God brings glory to some and punishment and destruction to others.

The Anti-Christ will be consumed by the breath of Christ’s mouth and be destroyed by the brightness of Christ’s appearing 2Thess2:8.

As we read this, may we be filled with reverence for God. May the Spirit of the fear of the Lord keep us always. Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God. How unsearchable HIs judgements and His ways past finding out!

What is the presence of God doing in your life?

 

God’s idea of salvation

What is the prevalent thought with regards to God’s salvation in the time we live in?

The prevalent thought with regards to God’s salvation in our lives while upon the earth is about being saved from sin, Satan, hell, sickness, curse and the world. It includes receiving every spiritual blessing in Christ and living victoriously as a witness for Jesus, assured of a place in heaven. This is brought about by repentance, faith in Jesus Christ, baptism in water and the Spirit.

While this understanding is correct, permit me to present a different perspective which I think we would do well to consider.

God’s idea of salvation is simple – it is about bringing me into a union with Christ so that He can live in me, manifesting His character in me, expressing Himself through me, speaking through me, continuing His ministry through me, overcoming Satan, sin, sickness, curse and the world through me.

God’s mysterious plan is Christ Himself (Col 2:3, NLT). Paul understood this so well. Thats why he speaks of Christ Jesus in the following manner –

* knowing Christ (Phil 3:8)

* gaining Christ (Phil 3:8-10)

* devotion to Christ (2Cor10:3, NLT)

* joined to Christ (1 Cor 6:17)

* be with Christ (Phil 1:23)

* connected to Christ (Col 2:19, NLT)

* to live is Christ (Phil 1:21)

* united with Christ (Eph 2:6; 1 Cor 1:30; Eph 2:13, NLT)

* Christ lives in me (Gal 2:20)

* God revealed His Son in me (Gal 1:16)

* bringing honour to Christ (Phil 1:20)

* fellowship with Christ (1Cor 1:9)

* to be a dwelling place for Christ (Eph 3:17, Col 1:27)

* a slave of Christ (Phil 1:1)

* make it our aim to please Christ (2 Cor 5:9)

* Christ has possessed me for perfection (Phil 3:12, NLT)

Christ occupied his mind and was the goal of his pursuit. Nothing else mattered – worldly success did not matter, prosperity did not matter, persecution did not matter, danger did not matter, troubles, hardships, calamities, prison, angry mobs, exhaustion, sleepless nights, shipwreck, stonings, whippings, hunger, slander or poverty did not matter (Read 2 Corinthians 6: 6-10, 2 Cor 101: 23-27, NLT). Christ was all that mattered (Col 3:11, NLT).

The presence of Jesus in me is holiness, his presence in me is righteousness, his presence in me is freedom from sin 1 Cor 1:30 NLT.

May Christ Jesus be our chief pursuit – after all, Christ living in us is God’s salvation.

The New Covenant

God directed my focus to the term ” new covenant” the other day so I spent time meditating upon it and did receive revelation from the Lord, which I would like to share. I know that once your eyes are opened to receive this into your spirit, your relationship with God will drastically improve. Every Christian experience is preceded by revelation knowledge that we receive from the Holy Spirit individually through the Word of God. In our age we have spent many years receiving head knowledge but not revelation (heart) knowledge and thats why our experience has been shallow and does not match up with what we profess to believe.

The term “covenant” in the Scriptures is generally understood as a contract or agreement between God and man. I see, however, covenant as much more than just a contract or agreement, much more than just agreeing to a set of stipulations.

Covenant primarily involves a union, an inseparable union between God and man.

All of God’s being and all of man’s being is involved in covenant.

The covenant also involves agreement and stipulations but the primary focus of covenant is this union.

Malachi 2:14, 15 tells us that marriage is a covenant too – between a man a woman with God as witness. In the process of this covenant, God establishes a spiritual union between the man’s spirit and woman’s spirit and the two are then one in spirit. Thats why adultery or divorce does such damage – it tears at the very spiritual union between husband and wife that God established.

Lets look at the facts. While there will be some who will dissect this and list all that they disagree with or think is unbiblical and receive nothing in the process, my focus is on reaching the rest.

1. The New Covenant is one that has been established between God the Father and Jesus the Son.

Psalm 89 : 19-29 shows us that God makes a covenant with Jesus. Jesus’ part was coming to earth, taking on human flesh, living s sinless life, preaching, teaching and healing, destroying the works of Satan, going to the cross, bearing man’s sins, sicknesses and curse, shedding his blood and dying on the cross. The Father’s part was to be with Jesus all through his journey, to empower him with the Holy Spirit, to give grace to pass through suffering and death, not to leave him in Hell, not to allow his body to decay, to raise him from the dead and raise him to Heaven to the right hand of God, to give him all authority in heaven and earth and through him to provide for the salvation of man.

2. Since we are in Christ, we are part of this new covenant. This means that God has made a covenant with us too because we are in Christ.

Hebrews 8:8 shows us that God makes the new covenant with the house of Israel and Judah in the last days. The Bible tells us the following as to who comprises Israel –

Romans 9:6 – …”for they are not all Israel who are of Israel.

Romans 9:8 – “That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed.”

Galatians 3:7 – “Therefore know that only those who are of faith are the sons of Abraham,”

Galatians 3:29 – “And if you are Christ’s, you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

Philippians 3:3 – “For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.”

Roman 2:28,29 – “For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh; but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.”

We can see that we who are in Christ are the Israel that God is speaking of here and this new covenant involves us too for we are in Christ.

What is the implication of us being a party to the new covenant in Christ?

In return for our belief in and surrender to the Lordship of Christ, we get to enjoy every provision of the new covenant. We have a union between our spirits and God. All of God’s being is involved in this covenant and all of ours too.

All that has been provided for us through Christ’s death, burial, resurrection and ascension are available through this covenant – the forgiveness of sin, cleansing, deliverance from sin, sickness, curse and the devil, eternal life, assurance of Heaven, God’s indwelling, God working in us to satisfy his own demands of us, God working through us in signs, wonders, miracles and gifts of the Spirit, divine health, divine blessing, divine authority and power over all the power of the enemy, power to be witnesses of Jesus and many others.

Can you see the force of this covenant? Nothing can stand in its path, nothing can destroy it, nothing can break it, it is as if we are in the grip of a mighty force field, anything that comes in will be destroyed by the power thereof – it is an eternal covenant between God and Jesus and by extension, with us who are in Jesus Christ.

May we receive revelation as we meditate upon this. Believe and receive all the provision of this wonderful new covenant in the blood of Jesus. God be with you.

 

Union with Christ

“He who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him.” 1 Cor 6:17

The disciple of Jesus Christ has been placed in a spiritual union with him. This union is with the resurrected and ascended Christ.

The ascended Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father, far above all principality and power and might and dominion and every name that is named throughout all ages (Eph 1:21). The ascended Christ has all authority in heaven and on earth (Matt 28:18) and at his name every knee in heaven, earth and under the earth shall bow and every tongue shall confess that He is Lord (Phil 2:10,11). The ascended Christ is the one who destroyed Satan (Heb 2:14), every power of darkness is subject to him (Col2:15), he holds the keys of hell and death (Rev1:18). The ascended Christ is the one who overcame death (Rev1:18) and will die no more (Rom6:9) and death has no power over him. The ascended Christ is the one who overcame sin, sickness and the curse. Through his death and resurrection, he destroyed the power of sin, sickness and the curse. He rules until all his enemies are made his footstool (1Cor 15:25).

We need to recognize this union that we have with the ascended Christ. We are in a spiritual union with the one who has all authority in heaven and on earth. It will do us immense good to meditate on this fact on a daily basis until it sinks into our spirits and we can live in that reality. Then we will live out of that reality, which is that the ascended Christ is living through us. That is why we read of Paul writing that Christ speaks through him, that Christ works mighty signs and wonders through him, that Christ lives in him, that Christ has possessed him to bring him to perfection. In fact, in Ephesians 3:17, Paul prays for Christ to dwell in our hearts.

Have you ever wondered why he prayed thus? Did we not receive Christ when we first repented and believed in him (Col 2:6)? Why then did Paul pray for Christ to dwell in our hearts?

I believe that Paul wanted us to experience the reality of Christ’s indwelling on a daily basis. It is one thing to receive Christ when we believe, but yet another to walk in that reality on a daily basis. This then gives us a new meaning to John 15 on abiding in Christ. Abiding in Christ would then mean living in the consciousness of this wonderful spiritual union we have with him. Knowing Christ, then would refer to this same spiritual union through which there is a continual impartation of life, virtue (power) and character from Christ to us. In Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Col 2:2,3) and this wisdom and knowledge are made available to us through this union. Through this union, Christ himself is made available to us so that we can experience and walk in the reality of his life.

Christ then, is our promised land and the concept of entering into and taking the promised land for the Christian is just an experience of all of Christ’s salvation, of all that Christ died to provide. Perfection, then is just becoming like Christ.

May we live in this reality.

Friend, yet separate

“Look, a glutton and a winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!”
We see in the gospels that the people of his generation called Jesus a friend of sinners (Matthew 11:19). I find Jesus’ attitude towards sinners so amazing. He was able to reach out to them, spend time with them and minister to them during the course of his ministry. He reached out to Zacchaeus, Matthew, the woman caught in adultery, the woman who poured perfume on his head. He recognized that they needed a Saviour and reached out without condemnation. The Pharisees were as much sinners as these people – the only difference was that they did not realize it. Pride, anger and hypocrisy are as sinful as adultery and murder. The Pharisees may not have been guilty of adultery in deed but may have been so in thought. They may not have been guilty of murder but were guilty of hypocrisy and pride. The Word says in Romans 5:8 that God demonstrated his own love towards us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. The only aspect of our lives that qualified us for God’s love, mercy and grace was the fact that we were sinners.


When we consider the word, “sinner”, we should recognize that it does not refer to just committing acts of sin. We are not sinners because we commit sin; we commit sin because we are sinners. All of us need to recognize the sinfulness of sin so that we can experience godly sorrow over it and see our desperate need of a Saviour.


Jesus was and still is the friend of sinners. He alone can change us from being sinners to becoming saints. The core of our being is changed from being inherently sinful to becoming inherently righteous with Christ’s righteousness. All of this because of Jesus death and resurrection. Oh, the friend of sinners!

The Bible also tells us that Jesus was without sin (Hebrews 4:15) and that he was separate from sinners (Hebrews 7:26). Although he was a friend of sinners and reached out to them, we must not lose sight of the fact that he was without sin and separate from sinners during this whole process. He did not let them influence him or defile him in any way. It was rather he who influenced them. He did not change, they changed. In all of his interactions with sinners, he remained sinless and separate. Amazing!

A friend of sinners, yet separate from them.

May we emulate him.

Jesus learned obedience

Have you ever wondered what the Bible means by stating that Jesus learned obedience? (Heb5:8)
I did too.
I want to share with you my understanding of this verse. It says that though he was a son, yet he learned obedience by the things he suffered and having been perfected, he became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey him.
A few verses above state categorically that Jesus was tempted in all points just as we are but was without sin (Heb4:15). Therefore we see that his obedience to God’s word was perfect. He did not learn to obey as in when a child learns to walk – by falling and rising. He was perfect in his obedience to God’s word. After all, he said that he had come to fulfill the law, which means that he kept the law perfectly.

What then could this verse mean?


I believe it refers to the fact that Jesus learned to obey the Holy Spirit in every situation he was in. He learned to implicitly obey the leading and the voice of the Holy Spirit in every situation. He said that he could do nothing except what He saw the Father doing. 


“H
aving been perfected” refers to when his work was completed, when he had made the supreme sacrifice for sin and had been raised from the dead.

How are you getting along in obedience to the Holy Spirit’s promptings?


I am learning to obey Him.