THE FIRE OF GOD (Pt. 3)

“These are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is the third hour of the day. But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh’”.(Acts 2:15-17 NKJV)

The words of Peter, first spoken on the Day of Pentecost, were like a thunderclap or lightening bolt right in the midst of the mocking crowd. He who had come from heaven as a gracious, prophetic fulfillment of God’s promise to His people caught the crowd by surprise! It left many amused. Others mocked. Little did they realize, that the fire of God had come to melt their cold, religious, indifferent hearts. But, for those waiting, the fire of God rapidly fell UPON them, WITHIN them, and AROUND them. And, like a bonfire, it quickly spread.

DO YOU WANT HIS FIRE?

Be sure of what you are asking for. When the fire of God comes, it will first burn up the stubble of pride and religious hypocrisy. It will mean a fresh baptism of love, leading to forgiveness and reconciliation. The fire of God will also ignite a new passion for prayer. And people will begin to insist on a holy word from a Holy God, spoken through the holy lips of holy vessels.   Remember, it is the refiner’s flame that reduces and melts what it touches in order that it maybe purified to be molded into something new and useful. It is no coincidence, that God closed the last book of the Hebrew prophets with these words, “““Behold, I send My messenger, and he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, Will suddenly come to His temple, Even the Messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight. Behold, He is coming,” Says the LORD of hosts. “But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire And like launderers’ soap. He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer to the LORD an offering in righteousness.”(Malachi 3:1-3 NKJV) God was not interested in the precious metals of silver and gold. He was concerned about the precious souls in His house who were not prepared to meet a holy God.

 FRUIT INSPECTORS

Be warned! Where there is Holy Spirit fire, there is bound to be the smoke of controversy. Every true move of God, throughout Church History, has had its detractors. Some will feel uncomfortable when God shows up in the demonstration of the Spirit’s power. And they will (often in ignorance) openly oppose what they do not understand. They forget the words of Paul, that teach us how to remain, spiritually open but not spiritually gullible. “Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophesies. Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.”(1 Thessalonians 5:19-22 NKJV) The gifts of the Holy Spirit may always be discerned by the fruit of the Holy Spirit manifest. Jesus taught, “A tree is known by its fruit”. (Matthew 7:20)

GRACIOUS GIFT

Pentecost reminds us of the gracious gift from our heavenly Father. Jesus taught, ““If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!””(Luke 11:13 NKJV)

On the Day of Pentecost, the fire of God fell upon waiting hearts to confirm that God was making no distinction between Jew and Gentile sinners. For both, He was “purifying their hearts by faith”(Acts 15:9 NKJV). The Holy Spirit’s fire fell to comfort the saints and convict the backslidden of their need to return to God. The promised Holy Spirit was a new thing that God was doing in the earth; it was no longer relegated to a few specially selected individuals. But was available to all who called on Jesus by faith. And so, it is true today, “Whosoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved”. (Acts 2:21 NKJV)

© Copyright 2015, Walter Fletcher Jr. All rights reserved. This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered in any way from its original content. Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

THE FIRE OF GOD(pt. 2)

THE FIRE OF GOD(Pt. 2)
In the Book of Acts, Chapter 2, Luke writes, “When the day of Pentecost had fully come.”(Acts 2:1a). It was the official day of the Feast of Pentecost, in keeping with the Jewish calendar. This was to commemorate the children of Israel receiving the TORAH. Moses was given God’s word for Israel, officially inaugurating their new identity as His own special people. This day was not featureless, as if it was just any other day. They were never to forget the way God came to them on this day. It was a “Lights and Sounds Show”!  God descends in a cloud of fire and smoke; a loud, repeated blast of a ram’s horn; and a mountain shaking before them like an earthquake.  God had their attention because He had something to say and wanted to be heard.
ACTS 2
Fast forward, and we read of similar phenomenon, “When the day of Pentecost was fully come”(Acts 2).  For thousands of Jewish pilgrims, it was as it were a “Light and sound Show”. “When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”(‭Acts‬ ‭2‬:‭1-4‬ NKJV)
Just as on the original Day of Pentecost, when through the many phenomenon, God got their attention,speaking to them as His people, so God spake His word through the Apostle Peter. His message was not only intended to arouse their senses; the words preached were directed to their heart and their conscience. “But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words…. this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy. I will show wonders in heaven above And signs in the earth beneath: Blood and fire and vapor of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the LORD. And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the LORD Shall be saved.’ “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know— Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it….This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses. Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear….Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” (‭Acts‬ ‭2‬:‭14, 16-24, 32-33, 36‬ NKJV)
This message preached, in the fiery baptism of the Holy Spirit could not help but produce results. Three thousand Jewish people immediately believed and behaved as if they believed. “Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.”Acts‬ ‭2‬:‭41-42‬ NKJV)
The sign of the three thousand turning from the kingdom darkness to the kingdom of light was not the external fire produced but rather hearts ignited by the Holy Spirit’s fire. It was the fire of “the love of God shed abroad in their hearts by the Holy Spirit.”(Romans 5:5b). They were a new community of lovers; Lovers of God through Jesus their Messiah; lovers of His Word and lovers of His/their new family.
One of the great miracles at Pentecost was that through the fire of God we learn to love people we didn’t think we could like! Where there is the fire of God, it will melt cold hearts.
(c) Copyright 2015, Walter Fletcher Jr. All rights reserved. This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered in any way from its original content. Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

THE FIRE OF GOD(Pt.1)

“But Nadab and Abihu died when they offered strange and unholy fire before the Lord.”(Numbers 26:61 AMP)

This verse follows the beginning of the generations of the Levites.  The Levites were given a special designation and honor among the tribes of Israel to minister on behalf of the people in the presence of God.

 Two of Aaron, the high priest’s sons, Nadab and Abihu, did not value their position and calling among the priesthood. Although being designated to minister the holy things of God, they offered “strange fire” before the Lord. The fire of God broke forth upon them and they died in the presence of God. What a tragedy.  What should have been the beginning of one of the most awesome privileges ,for any human being, was spoiled by death.

NADAB

The root word for Nadab is “to volunteer or offer free will offerings”.  He clearly did not live up to his potential.  Rather than minister out of a heart of gratitude and love for God, he along with his brother, decided to bring unauthorized fire into the presence of God. This resulted not as a blessing but rather as a curse.

Sad to say, many, today, do not take their gifts and calling seriously. There is a lack of the fear of God. It is no light matter to have the privilege to come into the presence of God and minister in His holy name.

This was a such a serious matter that, later, the Lord designates a special inheritance blessing for those who have faithfully served Him. Regarding this reward ,He declares through the prophet Ezekiel, “It shall be for the priests of the sons of Zadok, who are sanctified, who have kept My charge, who did not go astray when the children of Israel went astray, as the Levites went astray” (Ezekiel 48:11).  The Hebrew root meaning for Zadok is “righteous”.  It is a foreshadowing of a new priestly order which Jesus the Messiah inaugurated.  “For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, to whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all, first being translated “king of righteousness,” and then also king of Salem, meaning “king of peace,” without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, remains a priest continually…Therefore, if perfection were through the Levitical priesthood (for under it the people received the law), what further need was there that another priest should rise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be called according to the order of Aaron?…For He testifies: “You are a priest forever According to the order of Melchizedek.” (Hebrews 7:1-3, 11, 17 NKJV)

God announced that He is doing something new in the earth. A new and faithful priesthood.  John records, by revelation, that as believers in Jesus Christ, we are a part of the new priestly order in the earth. “From Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.” (Revelation 1:5-6 NKJV)  The new order of priesthood is the Melchizedek order; a King-Priest order in the earth.

BEWARE OF PRESUMPTION

As we approach the Feast of Pentecost, let us reflect upon Aaron’s two sons death.  Both Nadab and Abihu died due to the sin of religious presumption.  They made light of the God who had called them to serve Him.  The apostle Peter admonishes that God commands his people, “Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.” (1 Peter 1:13-16 NKJV)

FROM DEATH TO LIFE

In Isaiah Chapter 6, we have a contrasting story to that of Nadab and Abihu.  Isaiah experienced this in the year that King Uzziah died. The death of an earthly king, along with an empty throne of power, prepared him to lift his eyes higher to the heavenly throne and the thrice holy God.  At first, Isaiah, was undone by his own spiritual condition. Then he became acutely aware that this was the same condition of his own people. Isaiah’s cries out to God, confessing his own sinfulness. Immediately, God sends an angelic being, a Seraph, with a red-hot coal from the altar, touching and cleansing his lips.  From now on,they were no longer Isaiah’s lips to use as He pleased. They now would only be used for the Lord.

FROM PRIEST TO PROPHET

Isaiah was ready to fulfill his God-given destiny and purpose.  Before,he had been a priest, ministering on behalf of the PEOPLE before the Lord.  Now he would minister to the people in behalf of GOD, saying, “Thus says the Holy One of Israel”.

Like Isaiah, if you have encountered the thrice-holy God, you must get rid of any “strange” and “unauthorized” fire in your midst. When you do, you will know that you have been touched by the fire of God’s love.  You will also know that you have been touched with the coal of the fellowship of a burning heart.  From now on, things will only be said or done for the glory and honor of His Holy name. 

(c) Copyright 2015, Walter Fletcher Jr.  All rights reserved.  This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered in any way from its original content.  Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

SONG OF SONGS (Pt.3)

“O my love, you are as beautiful as Tirzah, Lovely as Jerusalem, Awesome as an army with banners!” (Song of Solomon 6:4 NKJV)

 CAPTIVATED BY HER LOVE

The Shulamite captures the King’s attention.  He sees her through the eyes of love.  We remember that although she had been mistreated by her “brothers”(SOS 1:6) and had been mishandled by the watchmen, who were not alert to her lover passing by them. But she was not made bitter through her experience but better.  She teaches us that by her loving response, that her trials were sent to transform her…not deform her life.

CAPTIVATED BY HIS MAJESTY

She too is attracted to the beauty and majesty of the King.  In Song of Songs Chapter five, she describes her lover from “head to foot” and then declares to the other maidens, “His mouth is most sweet, yes, he is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, and this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem!”(Song of Solomon 5:16 NKJV)  Have you come to a place in your walk with the King that “He is altogether lovely”? Are you surrendered to all of His ways?  This is where the Bridal Call becomes a Bridal Friendship; their hearts have become one heartbeat. The bride is now able to say (In spite of difficulties), “Yes, Lord.  Not as I will but Thy will be done”.

The Shulamite is also captured when she sees the King movement through the desert. “Who is this coming out of the wilderness Like pillars of smoke, Perfumed with myrrh and frankincense, with all the merchant’s fragrant powders? Behold, it is Solomon’s couch, with sixty valiant men around it, of the valiant of Israel. They all hold swords, Being expert in war. Every man has his sword on his thigh Because of fear in the night. Of the wood of Lebanon Solomon the King Made himself a palanquin: He made its pillars of silver, Its support of gold, Its seat of purple, Its interior paved with love By the daughters of Jerusalem. Go forth, O daughters of Zion, and see King Solomon with the crown with which his mother crowned him on the day of his wedding, the day of the gladness of his heart.” (‭Song of Solomon (3:6-11 NKJV)

There is prophetic imagery to consider: (1) 60 valiant warriors armed with swords drawn prepared against a night assault against the King.  Sixty is a number comprised of 5×12.  Five is a number pointing to the 5 wounds of Jesus, the Atoning Work of His Cross.  Twelve is a governing number (12 Tribes of Israel; 12 Apostles of the Lamb).   (2) His Crown given to him “on his wedding day…the day of the gladness of his heart”.   John receives a preview of that great day. “And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” (Revelation 19:6-7 NKJV).  This day is not far off. Are we making ourselves ready? “Forsaking all others…Clinging to Him alone?”. These are vows often repeated in Wedding ceremonies today. The Bride and Bridegroom make public declarations of their exclusive devotion to one another.

THE CHARIOT OF THE KING

Even the description of the King’s chariot in SOS 3:6-11 mentioned earlier is suggestive of the work of God’s transforming love.

(1) Wood is a beautiful picture of His sinless humanity.  He took on our human form to demonstrate what perfect humanity was all about through his words and deeds. (2) Gold in the scriptures speaks of the divine nature.  It speaks of the mystery of God’s nature & character represented in humanity.  “God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself”(II Corinthians ‭5:19a NKJV) (3) Silver speaks of redemption and the goal of purifying process of the crucible is purified silver (See Psalm 12:6;Malachi 3:3).  (4) Purple is associated with royalty; Kings were adorned often on purple robe to indicate their sovereignty and rule.

All of these descriptions are to remind us of the value and worth which the Father in sending Jesus, the Messiah thought about us. “And from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.” (Revelation 1:5-6 NKJV)

For the Shulamite, her beauty and transformation as a result of the King’s love is so magnificent that “they praised her.  ‘Who is she who looks forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, Awesome as an army with banners?’ “(SOS 6:9b-10 NKJV).  So it will be in this hour of transformation.  A Bride without spot or blemish is arising, adorned with His beauty, terrible as an amy with banners.

(c) Copyright 2015, Walter Fletcher Jr.  All rights reserved.  This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered in any way from its original content.  Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

SONG OF SONGS (Pt.2)

“Do not look upon me, because I am dark, because the sun has tanned me. My mother’s sons were angry with me; they made me the keeper of the vineyards, but my own vineyard I have not kept.” (‭Song of Solomon‬ 1:6 NKJV)

KEEPER OF THE VINEYARD

The Shulamite found herself in an undesirable position.  She experienced rejection from her family, being placed outside and exposed to the elements. She was left alone to care for their vineyard.   To increase her consternation and perplexity she says, “my own vineyard I have not kept”(SOS 1:6).

This is truly one of the mysterious ways God deals with those who are truly called of the Lord.  They are often called FROM their job or natural vocation TO serve in His vineyard.  In other words, His jealous love over them will mean first a sense of isolation from that which is comfortable and familiar.  It may even seem like they are somehow being “punished” through their isolation.  And yet, in the purposes of God, their isolation is the beginning of the process unto promotion. They have been proven and are counted worthy caretakers of His vineyard.  We see this time and again with His servants in the scriptures; Moses was separated for forty years on the backside of a desert.  Joseph spent thirteen years in isolation in Egypt before being called into Pharaoh’s court. Elijah was called by God to go and hide himself for three years before he was revealed to be God’s voice in the midst of Israel’s spiritual confusion under King Ahab and Jezebel’s reign.

WHAT TO DO?

What do you do when you are in a season of “down time” or secluded in the Lord’s vineyard.  Be faithful and learn the lessons that the season (and gift) of hiddeness has allowed. For example the Shulamite has some wisdom to pass along. “Catch us the foxes, the little foxes that spoil the vines, for our vines have tender grapes.” (Song of Solomon 2:15 NKJV).   It is not the big foxes that ruin the vine of your future calling.  Rather it’s the “little foxes” that pull at the tender vines in order to eat the maturing grapes on the vine.  

God looks for those who will be faithful to care and watch over His vineyard. The little foxes are often the seemingly “innocent” things allowed in to spoil the intertwining fellowship and fruitfulness of God’s vineyard (personally and corporately).

ABIDING FELLOWSHIP

The Lord Jesus teaches us the secret of abiding fruitfulness and fellowship. “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser…Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing…You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. These things I command you, that you love one another. (John 15:1, 4-5, 16-17 NKJV)

 SONG OF THE VINEYARD

The Shulamite captures the King’s heart by her beauty and the singularity of purpose. Everything changes. Fruitfulness occurs where there was seemingly nothing to display for her efforts. “Solomon had a vineyard at Baal Hamon; He leased the vineyard to keepers; everyone was to bring for its fruit A thousand silver coins. My own vineyard is before me. You, O Solomon, may have a thousand, And those who tend its fruit two hundred. You who dwell in the gardens, the companions listen for your voice— Let me hear it!” (‭Song of Solomon 8:11-13 NKJV)

They were being called not merely to celebrate the King’s lush vineyards but the Shulamite’s vineyard as well.  So it is true, God’s love for us and our response of love toward God, our King, will produce great spiritual fruitfulness in our life and vocation.   King Solomon honors the Shulamite by asking her to share with others the secret of her fruitful vineyard.  His companions are ready to listen to what she has to say.   So, too, today there are those who are eager to hear from those who have been prepared to make known the secrets of the fruitful vine of His Kingdom.

 (c) Copyright 2015, Walter Fletcher Jr.  All rights reserved.  This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered in any way from its original content.  Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

SONG OF SONGS(Pt. 1)

If you have ever read the Song of Songs (Song of Solomon) in one sitting, you get the sense that this would make a beautiful modern Opera (Saving for the tragedy).  The writer provides movement, balance and counter-balance. When you think about it…as these movements occur in this great canticle(Song of the Bride and the Bridegroom) so it is true in life.                 Life has it’s movement and change(Winter, Spring, Summer, Autumn). You cannot hasten nor prevent the seasons. They come,whether you want them to or not.  Seasons of the Spiritual life are also about Seasons which bring Spiritual change. Let’s consider some of the seasons that the woman called the Shulamite experienced.

REJECTED…RECEIVED
In the first chapter, the Shulamite describes her condition as being rejected by her brothers.
“Dark am I, yet lovely, daughters of Jerusalem, dark like the tents of Kedar, like the tent curtains of Solomon. Do not stare at me because I am dark, because I am darkened by the sun. My mother’s sons were angry with me and made me take care of the vineyards; my own vineyard I had to neglect.”(Song of Solomon 1:5, 6 NIV)
Her brothers do not have a very high opinion of her worth so they excluded her as it were from the life of the family. She is left exposed and discounted in her true value and worth. And yet, this exclusion was the occasion by which she caught the eye of the King.  “Like a lilly among thorns, So is my love among the daughters…Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest is my beloved among the young men. I delight to sit in his shade, and his fruit is sweet to my taste. Let him lead me to the banquet hall, and let his banner over me be love.”(Song of Solomon 2:3, 4 NIV)
This is true in the ways of God. Often the shunning by so called “brothers” is the means by which God gets you free to be wholly His.  Remember in the Book of Acts,Chapter 7, Stephen gives one of the great messages regarding the mystery of God’s ways using the examples of the Bible heroes, Moses, David, Joseph (and even pointed toward Jesus of Nazareth). He points out that they were first shunned and rejected then later received and accepted. Their ill treatment of isolation(and  threat of death) would lead them later to time of glorious exaltation.
So too,the Shulamite discovered what may have been meant for evil, God meant it (in the end) for her good. Being exposed by the trials,caring for their vineyards and “darkened by the Sun”,only caused her to be even more distinguished and beautiful in the eyes of the King.
JOY IS COMING
You may be going through a difficult season. A season of dark trials may have come, not of your making. Hang on in faith! God will have the final word. The psalmist wrote, “Sing the praises of the Lord, you his faithful people; praise his holy name. For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.”(Psalm 30:4, 5 NIV)
The Shulamite could celebrate His faithfulness, “He brought me to his banquet table, His banner over me is love”. God’s love for you will never fail. Remember…You’re His favorite!

(c) Copyright 2015, Walter Fletcher Jr. All rights reserved. This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered in any way from its original content. Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

ALL THINGS NEW (Pt. 2)

In our last article, I mentioned two events recorded in the scriptures that are given to help us understand the story of God and Man.  The first is the Creation Story.  God made the heavens and the earth, creating human beings to walk & work in partnership with Him.  One day (in spite of the Fall), we will give account to God for our obedience to His desire and design for our life.

The second part of the Biblical narrative that is essential to our understanding is the story of the Exodus.  We must understand how God has journeyed with Mankind through history. The apostle Paul wrote in the Letter to the Believers in Corinth, “Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that all our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ”(1 Corinthians 10:1-4 NKJV).  When he says, “I would not have you unaware (or ignorant)” he is saying, “Pay attention! This is important for your spiritual consideration and growth.”  The story of the children of Israel’s exodus from Egypt into the Promised Land is a typical model for our exodus to spiritual freedom today.  Here are some points in the story of the exodus that mirror the climate for deliverance.

(1) Egypt’s Bondage.  Israel went into the land of Egypt as a “free” People.  God arranged for Joseph to be sent to Egypt to preserve his father and his brothers from a famine coming upon the whole of that North African region.  The children of Israel settled into the land of Goshen and began to thrive there.  But a new Pharaoh came to power, “who knew not Joseph”, and did not want the children of Israel to grow & prosper in Egypt’s land.  So he conspired with his “Cabinet” and began to mistreat them and to cruelly enslave them.  But, the more they were oppressed, the more they continued to multiply!  So this king thought that the “final solution” was to destroy their potential future growth and influence by ordering all the Hebrew baby boys to be thrown into the river Nile (Exodus 1&2).   This is application for us.  Please be aware, that if the enemy can’t defeat you, he’ll try and destroy your future and hope (See John 10:9).

(2) God raises up a deliverer.  His name was Moses. He was drawn out of the river of the Nile and would eventually be used to deliver his people out of Egypt.  But he also would be used to see that Pharaoh and his Army were drowned in the Sea! (Exodus 15)  God will never give us more than we can bear.  He has a person.  And He has a plan for our deliverance.  

God’s people came out of bondage, under the hand of Moses by the blood of the Lamb.  Likewise, God has made a way for our deliverance.  This the rest of the story, found in John’s Gospel concerning John the Baptist.  He was sent by God to announce our Deliverer, “The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29 NKJV).  Jesus came as the atoning sacrifice to set people free from their sins.

(3) God had a purpose for their freedom. “The LORD spoke to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and say to him,’ thus says the LORD: “Let My people go, that they may serve Me” (Exodus 8:1 NKJV).  God wanted His people to be free to choose to do that for which they were created…To “Serve” and “Worship” Him.   Jesus affirms that this was the Father’s purpose. “God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and truth.” (John 4:24 NKJV)

We were created to worship the LORD God (& have no other gods besides Him).

What does true freedom look like?  It looks like a people who have gained their freedom by the blood of the Lamb.  And they have learned to sing the true Song of redemption.   John saw this from a heavenly view:”They sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying: “Great and marvelous are Your works, Lord God Almighty! Just and true are Your ways, O King of the saints! (Revelation 15:3 NKJV)

May we cry out for true spiritual freedom to be what God created us to be…’Lovers and Ministers’ of/and in His presence. Tune your heart and enter into the Song…Singing your part.

 

(c) Copyright 2015, Walter Fletcher Jr.  All rights reserved.  This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered in any way from its original content.  Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

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