THIS WEEKS MESSAGE
DO NOT BECOME YOUR OWN
Presented to you by Pastor John S. Torell from his home church
Your responses and comments are always welcome.
Today is the second part of a two-part series on, Do Not Become Your Own god.
To maintain a relationship with God the Father, we must be walking in light as He is in the light.
Turn to First John, chapter 1 verse 5. If you have been following crisis in Washington DC for the last few days, I would like to make a comment. The different networks have been asking the people of the country, "What do you think about all these things that have been taking place?" It was brought up about that the number of women that had voted Democratic. Bill Clinton was voted in because of the women that had voted Democratic. Women were asked, of all races, about Bill Clinton's behavior and they said it does not matter to us. If there has been sexual misconduct, why do we care. The economy is good. I have a job. Who cares about this man's private affairs. What is the big deal? I'm thinking how far we as a country have fallen when it comes to morality. It is amazing that the National Organization for Women have kept themselves silent over this business. Normally, if there is a sexual harassment suit, they are out in force. This time they are not saying a word. The reason is, understand this, most people in this country do not have any morals. They are lost. I heard some men say in a commentary, "Find a politician in Washington D.C. who does not have a skeleton in his closet. This is normal practice to be a politician. You have a few men or women on the side. What is the big deal?" They were also interviewing a woman from France. She had lived here for some time. She said, "We French people cannot understand you Americans. In France there is no problem. Everyone has a lady on the side. In France this is no big deal."
I wanted to say this to you because I believe God is dealing with our country. It is also amazing that the Republican leadership is also silent. Have you noticed how quiet they are? Maybe they do have some skeletons in their closet.
"This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declared unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all." Let's look at a definition. Ask yourself this question. What kind of standard do we have or should we have? If we're going to have some kind of morality, what should be the norm? Should we look to the Buddhist? What is the Buddhist norm? Should we go to the Hindus? Who should we go to? This nation was founded on the Bible. Not on Buddha, not on Hindus, not on New Age, not on cultism, it was founded on the Bible. What is the bedrock of our morality? The 10 commandments. In the first half of the 10 commandments, God says, this is how you treat me. In the second half, He says, this is how you treat people. There was no salvation value in it. You did not become saved by keeping the commandments. It gave the nation a fabric to function under. What is the most devastating thing to business, education, and to a country? The most devastating thing is lying.
Lets talk about marriages. If the husband or wife cannot trust what has been said to be true, the marriage will crumble. If you do business and have contracts and person to whom the contract is made lies and cheats, it will destroy the business. Lying is a cancer that is absolutely destructive. Yet according to the polls 95 percent of Americans lie everyday. And we don't even think about. We say we lie in small things. If you lie in small things you will eventually lie in big things.
Let's read verse 5 again. "This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declared unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us."
To maintain a relationship with the Father, you and I have to walk in the truth. What is true? It is actually easier to live in truth than to live a life of lies. A liar has to have a good memory. Right! I think lawyers are trained to be professional liars. They can bend anything. To walk in truth is very simple. There is a saying that goes, what you see, is what you get, if we can learn to treat people in honesty. What you see in me is what you get. I have no hidden motives. This is something that I have worked on for years with people. Our tongue has a tendency toward flopping. There is a disease in us. We seem to have to talk about each other when it is not necessary. Doing this is called gossip. When we do this there is a destruction in the spirit world. We lose respect. We should come to the place where if we have something good to say, we say it. If we do not have anything good to say we do not say it and we take it to the person directly. The biblical way that Jesus laid it out for us is that if you have a problem with someone, you go to that person first. If you cannot resolve the problem one-on-one, then you take a witness with you and try to resolve the problem. If that does not work you take it to the church. Most of us do not follow this procedure. To walk in the light is to walk in honesty and integrity.
I preached four sermons on integrity last year. As I went back and looked upon these messages it seemed as if we still do not understand. To have fellowship with God we have to walk in the light.
To be able to receive the benefits of our salvation on this earth, the saved man has to line up with the word of God!
Turn to Matthew, chapter 8 verse 14. "And when Jesus was come into Peters house, he saw his wife's mother laid, and sick of a fever. And he touched her hand, and the fever left her: and she arose, and ministered unto them. When the even was come, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils: and he cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick: That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses."
Today the Holy Spirit spoke in a prophetic word. This is what He said, "The same yesterday, today and forever." Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. Hebrews chapter 13 verse 8. If you want to know what Jesus is doing today, find out what He did yesterday and then you'll be able to predict what He will do tomorrow. Isn't that great! When Jesus came to Peters house, what did He see? He saw Peters mother-in-law sick. What did Jesus do? He didn't say, "Well, let's call a doctor. That poor woman. I feel sorry for her." He went over to her and healed her. She got up and went straight to the kitchen and started minister to them. He touched her hand. The fever left. She arose and ministered unto them. When evening came, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils. How many did He heal? All that were sick! Why did Jesus do this? Because it had been prophesied in Esaias chapter 53. "Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses." That is good news.
About a week and a half ago Henry W. Wright was here. He had an approach which I think is outstanding. He said, "I am not in disease management. I am in disease radication."
We had an elderly woman that died this week. She was here in this church. She is from the Bay Area. She was involved in alternative medicine. We had prayed for her and she was doing fine. People that were close to her and her family, started to tell her that she did not need to take her medicines. Her doctor told her that if she did not take her medicines she would die. She took them and she died in six months. Did the drugs heal her? No! She had a stroke. She is with Jesus right now. Isn't it amazing what the medical society will tell you. You have to take this stuff or you'll die. You take it anyway and you die. What do they say? NEXT! You're not allowed to question the American Medical Association. Jesus has given us a way out. I am not saying that all doctors are bad. I am saying this. If you have tried disease management you are going to struggle for a longtime. Jesus came to eradicate disease.
Turn to First Peter, chapter 2 verse 24. "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes you were healed. For you were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls."
One of the testimonies this morning was about being in disease management until they understood that Jesus sets us free. What hindered this person was the lack of knowledge. If you do not known that someone is selling around the corner, beef, that has been raised without an antibiotic or preservative. It is being sold for 40 cents a pound. If you do not know this, it doesn't matter if there are 5,000 pounds available. You'll go away and get nothing. If you saw an advertisement saying that beef was 40 cents pound, you would say that is a bargain. You would go buy some of the beef. You won't buy it, if you don't know about it, even if you have the money. Knowledge is the key. Knowledge allows us to discern what the problem is so that we can make a decision.
How many of you have struggled with your car when there is an electrical problem? In the old days you could probably find out what the problem was yourself. Today with everything being computerized you have to take it into a specialized technician. He doesn't kick the tires and say, I don't know what the problem is. Instead he attaches the car to special equipment that diagnoses what the problem is. This is what you and I have to do in our spiritual life so that we will not become our own gods.
When we are in disease management we have actually become our own god. What we're saying is, "I know that you are out there God. I know I have this problem. I'm able to manage it myself." God says, "Why don't you let Me?" You say, "No, I have these things to handle it." He says, "Okay, have your bondage." Until we say, "Lord, I think I'm ready to have You manage me."
When a Christian unknowingly becomes his own God, he is cursed, since he is breaking the First Amendment of God.
Turn to Exodus, chapter 20 verse 1. "And God spake all these words, saying, I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of a land of bondage. Thou shall have no other gods before me." [I spoke on this last week. Notice that he is gods with a small "g". What has happened over the years to us is. We say we're not into idolatry. I don't worship different statutes and things like that. Most idolatry is made by us when we have made ourselves into a god, with a little "g".] "Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;"
Spiritually we need to take an inventory and ask ourselves this. Have I made Jesus Christ Lord of my life? Or is He my savior, but I am trying to work things out myself? This is where we breakdown. Jesus wants us to totally, absolutely make Him, Lord.
Turn to Luke, chapter 18 verse 9. [People make socialism their god. For example, people on welfare make the welfare check their god. People that are retired make their Social Security check their god. What we have to learn to understand is this. Whether it be finances, food, healing whatever it is, the source is God. God can work through men but the source is God. As long as you understand this, you will have a right perspective.] "and he spake his parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: [Isn't it wonderful that Jesus addressed this problem? What did Jesus say?] Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank you, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto Heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for everyone that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted."
Last week I shared with you that we cannot pay for our salvation. It is a gift of God. We cannot work for it. We cannot do anything for it. It is grace. It is total grace that God gives us. The let's have God be God and we to be His children.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 6 verse 24. "No man can serve two Masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what you shall eat, or what you shall drink; nor yet for your body, what you shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for the sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are you not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubic unto his stature? [That means which one of you can add one second to your life span?] And why take you thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that you have need of all these things. But seek you first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."
What is a false burden barer? It is a person that says, "I know that God loves me. I know God is in control, but I don't know if we will have enough money tomorrow to pay the rent. I do not know if we will have food. What about if the Russians are coming. What about all the different things that may be happening? What are we going to do?" There's nothing that you can do. It is out of our hands. Who will feed us? It will be the Lord.
There is a lady in our congregation that lived in the city of Berlin when she was young, around 20 years old. We do know from records, that every German woman that could be found, was manhandled something terrible. God protected this woman. Even in the worst type of conditions when we think, how could God possibly allow this, He has a solution. It is no problem for God. God wants us to have the faith where we say, "Father God I trust my life to be in your hands. I will not be a false burden barer." How many problems have solved when you have worried all night? How much money did you make by worrying about if you are going to make the mortgage payment? Did it help you? No! It ruined your immune system. It made you sick. Let Jesus be God.
In James, chapter 14 you will read that it is God who gives us breath.
I don't see anyone setting here in a panic trying to figure out whether they're going to have another heartbeat. You have no control over it. Who controls your heart? God! How many beats does it give you every day? One at a time. We must learn to trust God that He will give us another heartbeat. When our time is through on his earth, He will whisper, "It is time to come home." That is how God works. Praise God, I do not see anyone here panicking. If you can apply this to everything else in your life. Trust God!
What is the duty of each believer in Christ?
Turn to Job, chapter 38 verse 1. [You and I have to learn to recognize each problem that we are facing.] "Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said, Who is this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge? Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me. Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of earth? declare, if thou hast understanding." [God goes on to say to Job, "Tell me all these things if you are so smart." Job says, "I'm sorry God, but I don't know anything." God says, "Fine, now I can deal with you." Joe had to come to the place where he realized that he did not have the answers. God did.
Recognize your problem. Once you have recognized your problem, do not do what so many people do. They say yes, "Here comes another procrastinator. I know I need to fix different things, but. When you have recognized your problem, handle it. It has to be faced.
Take responsibility for your actions.
Turn to Second Samuel, chapter 12 verse 7. [King David had committed adultery, murder, he had lied and cheated. God had sent Nathan the prophet to him. Nathan told him a story about a man that had a little lamb that someone had stole.] "And David's anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, As the Lord liveth, the man that hath done this thing shall surely die: And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had not no pity. And Nathan said David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I anointed thee King over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; and I gave thee thy master's house, and thy master's wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things. Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the Lord, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon. Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife. Thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will rise up evil against thee out of thy own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbor, and he shall lie with thy wives in the site of this sun. For thou didst it secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun. And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord, And Nathan said unto David, The Lord also hath put away thy sin; thou shall not die."
David took responsibility, that is the first key to recovery. Recognize your problem, then take responsibility. Do not blame it on circumstances. We are not to blame it on our parents. Say, "Yes, it is my fault." When it is your fault you take responsibility. When we take responsibility it is then that we can repent. It is amazing the type of music we sang here this morning. We sang this morning, "Create In Me A Clean Heart". I did not let anyone know what my sermon was going to be on this morning. The Holy Ghost knew what I was going to preach on. Isn't that amazing!
In First Samuel we read where David said, "I have sinned." David did more. I believe right on the spot he began to sing. Psalms 51. "Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. [For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.] Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shall make me to know wisdom. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow."
Some people say if you repent and ask for forgiveness that is a sign of weakness. Asking for forgiveness is not a sign of weakness. It is lining up with God's word. If we do not ask for forgiveness, we cannot be forgiven. If we cannot be forgiven then the flow of the Holy Ghost is stopped.
You take responsibility and then you repent. Why is it so hard to repent? It is because we have an inferiority complex. We are insecure. We cannot afford to let people know that we have blown it. So we lie and cover-up what we have done. We try to protect our image that does not exist. When we ask for forgiveness there is a cleansing, then we do not have to protect an image. It is not my righteousness but His righteousness. I do not have to protect my reputation. I have none. It is Christ in me.
What did David do? Verse 8. "Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. [David had a wrong spirit before.] Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit." David was restored instantly.
So many times I struggle with mistakes I've made over the years. I've gone to God and repented but I still felt unworthy. I felt that I had to make some kind of atonement to make sure that this was paid off. One day God said this to me, "When I forgive, I forgive instantly." This does not mean that we can run around and do it again. It is not like the Roman Catholic church where we have to do penance. When we come to God and ask Him for forgiveness, we are clean by the blood of Jesus at the moment. Isn't that wonderful! There's no bondage. When there's no bondage, verse 13, "Then will I teach transgressors thy ways: and sinners shall be converted unto thee." This is when we will start to evangelize. We will talk to everyone about it.
Renounce your sins, and break the curse.
Turn to Isaiah, chapter 1 verse 16. "Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow. Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white is snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. If you be willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land: But if you refuse and rebel, you shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it."
We have done deliverance in this ministry for many years. It was refreshing to see Brother Henry Wright come and minister. I've told you over the years that we have a method, not the method. Brother Henry has a little different approach, but it is the same principle.
Renounce, break the curses. Then something happens in the spiritual world when you break the curses. Then Satan loses his grip because you are applying what Jesus did on the cross.
Draw nigh unto God and resist the devil.
Turn to James, chapter 4 verse 7. "Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter return to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up."
When we started deliverance back in the mid-1970s, we were just trying it out on our own as we learned. In the late '70s we met a gentleman who was a Baptist preacher. At that time I had an assistant pastor who had been with me for five years. For five years we were a pain in each other's neck but we stayed together. I told him that he needed to be delivered. He said that I needed to be delivered. One day this Baptist preacher came into our town. My assistant pastor went to the meeting and he got delivered. He came back and said to me and said, "Brother John, forgive me for being such a pain." After that we became the best of friends. He had learned deliverance just one way, the way this Baptist pastor taught it. As we would cast out the spirit he would say, "manifest yourself." That is like asking demons to give you a party. They manifested. It was like a circus. I did not want to get my assistant pastor upset so I went along with him. Chairs would be smashed people would be vomiting and all different kinds of things would happen. One day my wife came in said, "John, does it have to be this messy?" I said, "At least when the people are stirred and when they leave in their right mind, they know that the demons are gone." She said, "Can't we walk by faith?" I said, Yes, we should walk by faith." So we decided to change. Instead of commanding the demons to manifest, I said, "In the name of Jesus, you will not be able to manifest. When you are called, you will come out and go to prison and that is the end of it." They had to obey. Now I had another problem. People would come and say, "I want to be delivered." These people were expecting to have rockets go off and smoke go out of their ears. They wanted to really feel it. We would pray over them and there would be no manifestations. The people would say then, "How do I know that I have been delivered?" Number one, when you got saved, how did you get saved? By faith! I said, "Did you have rockets go off and bells ringing in your ears? Were you out in the spirit for two hours?" No! How did you get saved then? "I just asked God for forgiveness, repented of my sins and asked Jesus to come into my heart." Do you believe that you are saved? Yes! That is the same when we do deliverance. It is by faith. The demons have to go. I have never yet met a demon that did not have to go. You are delivered. The demons are gone. What happens next is. The demons that are in the world will question you as to your deliverance. They will say you were not really delivered. They will try to put unbelief in your mind. Unbelief is a sin. In Hebrews, Chapter 11 verse 6. It says, "But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him." If you break that law, the demons simply say, "Thank you, set down we are back." We have to learn to resist the devil.
In James chapter 4 verse 7. "Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee for from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double mind. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourself in the sight of Lord, and he shall lift you up." These are five steps.
RELEASE ALL SINS, BURDENS AND DISEASES!
Turn to Matthew, chapter 6 verse 14. [Now we are going to talk about release.] "For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if you forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." This is a very profound statement. We have to forgive in order to be forgiven. This can be a hard thing to do. The hardest person to forgive is ourselves. The reason is, because we carry anger, resentment and bitterness in our heart. How many times have you gone over the things that have happened in your life and said to yourself, "If I only would have done this. Or what if I had made that decision." You must understand, yesterday is gone. We have to release all sin.
I talked to a person sometime ago about a problem they had with one of their parents. Rejection! It was rejection by her mother and her father. We've learned from Henry Wright when you have rejection by your father in the early years of your life, it brings all kinds of diseases into you, including diabetes and other disturbances. There are disturbances that are brought in also from rejection by the mother. I said to this person, "You have not forgiven your mother." The person said, "Yes I have." I said, "No, you have not forgiven your mother. If you would have forgiven your mother, you would be able to face your mother."
Listen to what is being said here. If we have not forgiven we have not released. If you think about someone and there is hurt and pain, you have not been able to forgive. Forgiveness is to be able to release. Release means, that you come to your heavenly Father and say, "Father God, I am determined to forgive this person. I'm determined to release this person and give me the strength to do it, God, in the name of Jesus." He will do it. It is a must.
Turn to Mark, Chapter 11 verse 22. [We see this in our ministry all the time now as divorces started to increase in the 1920's and 1930's. We now have the second, third and fourth generation of people coming from broken families. Now they have broken families themselves. There is much pain and hurt in families where there is divorce. There's a lot of sickness. Jesus can heal them.] "And Jesus answering saith unto them, have faith in God. [In the Greek, it says have faith of God.] For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them. [This is an absolute tremendous promise.] And when you stand praying, forgive, if you have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses." Without forgiveness there's no release. The burden of the disease will continue and get worse.
I'm speaking out of experience. In my life there was a person that hurt me very deeply. Only friends can hurt you. Strangers, we don't care about. If you have someone whom you think is a friend, they can really hurt you. This particular person I considered a very close personal friend. We had a disagreement and it destroyed our friendship. I made this statement to this person, "I never want to see you again. The next time I see you it will be at the judgment seat of Christ. I forgive you but I do not want to see you." Years past and it began to eat at me. One day I began to preach on forgiveness. God, knocked at my heart. "Hello, I am here. You have a problem." I remembered the man. It was tough. I said, "God, how
do I know it is you speaking to me?" When you do not want to hear something you question whether it is God are not. It was God! There was no doubt. I told my wife that I was going to contact this person. I called this person whom I had not talked to in years. He was very surprised. He said, "Yes, I will meet with you." We met. As we sat there looking at each other. I said, "There is a trespass that I have done against you. It is this. I would not release you. You ask me to. You even went to another pastor to ask him to be a mediator between us. I said, "No way." I said, "God, has shown me what I have to do. I ask you for forgiveness." He said, "I forgive you." I had my release. It was like a heavy load was released off of my back. We prayed and we hugged. We left. He is now doing his thing and I am doing mine. It is a finished thing between us. There is a release. So many of us have families, in laws, brothers, sisters that have hurt us. We have hurt them. We try to forgive them but we have never had that release. The release comes when you have been with that person. You have done it all. Once you have done this do not carry it anymore and say, "Father, God, I'm going to release that person. I am no longer going to be hurt." How do you know when you have been released? When you can mention the persons name and feel no pain, only joy. How can you speed up the point of release? You do it by adding the person to your prayer list every day. You pray for that person every day and say, "God, I pray that you will bless them Lord. Father, let Your Holy Spirit work with them." Don't pray in this manner. Dear God, slam that person hard until they see their sins. You are not releasing them! Releasing them is to stand back and watch God bless them and feeling joy in your heart for what God is doing. That is releasing them. Release your burdens. Release all diseases.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 16 verse 24. [It is wonderful to walk in the freedom of God.] "Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?"
Let go of your life. Don't try to control others and yourself. Lose your life to Christ and you will actually find it.
Turn to Luke, chapter 10 verse 38. "Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat Jesus' feet, and heard his word. But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me. And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her."
Become the Mary not a Martha. Major in the major not the minor. Began to say this. Dear God, I want to spend quality time with You first. Most of us spend time with God at the tail end of our day, when we are so tired. Give God our best. Give Him your mornings. Go to bed a half hour earlier so that you can get up a half-hour earlier. Give him your best. Sit at His feet and receive from Him.
Proclaim your own funeral.
Turn to John, chapter 12 verse 23. "And Jesus answered them, saying, The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal. If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour." [Have your funeral. Begin to proclaim.]
I do not care about my reputation anymore. It doesn't matter what people say. Come to the place where you die to yourself. This is where you say, "I have nothing to protect, because I no longer live, it is Christ that lives in me." With this attitude no one can ever stress you.
Turn to Galatians, chapter 2 verse 20. "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me."
If you understand this, you'll never be frustrated. You'll never again get stressed. If someone comes up to you and tries to agitate you, you'll not be stressed. You can say, "I've been crucified with Christ, I do not have to worry about my reputation." The reason we get up tight is because we have to maintain an image. Drop the mask that we put in front of our face. Say this, "There are 24 hours in a day. I can only do so much. I need to sleep. I need to eat. I need to take time with Jesus. Come back tomorrow. If I'm not here tomorrow come back the next day. If you do not like that go some other place." I'm not going to try to be a super person. I'm not going to try to be something to everyone. I cannot. I'm going to do the best I can and say, "I am crucified with Christ." There are going to be times that I will have to tell people that I am sorry I cannot come. I do not have to consider what they will be thinking of my reputation. I do not have one. I am just a man that is dead, but Christ lives in me. I have no reputation to protect. There's freedom with this. A total freedom is when Christ can work within you.
Another thing, we have to quit being driven by fear.
Turn to First John, chapter 4 verse 17. [I have been driven by fear, but God has set me free.] "Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear has torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. We love him, because he first loved us."
Fear left me when I realized who God is. When I realized what it says in Matthew, chapter 28 verse 18, where Jesus said, "All power is now given to me, in heaven and in earth." When I realized that my God is all powerful, that He is the same yesterday today and forever. He will never leave me or for sake me, that is when I lost all fear. Luke, chapter 10 verse 19, says, that I can walk over the enemies power and he will not hurt me. I am fearless.
Turn to Second Timothy, chapter 1 verse 7. "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." [Let the love of God saturate you.]
Turn to Matthew, chapter 8 verse 23. "And when he was entered into a ship, his disciples follow him. And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep. And is disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. And he saith unto them, Why are you fearful, O you of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. But the men marveled, saying, What manner of man is this, even the winds and sea obey him!" [If we have fear it is because our God is too small. God can handle all things. There's nothing that God cannot handle.]
Some time ago we were at a meeting in the Bay Area. Upon returning to our automobile we noticed that the car was blocked in. I decided to go find the driver. My wife and her friend said that they would pray that the car would move over so that we can get out. When I got back to the car it was slid over so that we could drive away. When you see things like this you realize that God is a reality. He is not an abstract. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. That is why we should not have fear. There's not a crisis in heaven. There's not a shortage of solutions. God has a solution for every problem that we face, we ask Him. That is all that we have to do.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 13 verse 23. [I have a question for you.] "But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty." [My question for you is this. You hear the word, are you able to receive it, so that it can bear fruit in your life?
Turn to John, chapter 1 verse 12. "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:" [Authority, Dumas power. If you asked Jesus Christ into your life, he gave you power. You are son, a daughter of God. You are a child of the King. Paul says we are joint heirs with Jesus Christ. If you can come to the understanding that what is God's is ours. This is because we are his children and heirs to what is His. He gave us power to become the sons of God. What are you going to today? Receive from the banquet table. The some of you have a need, take that need today. It does not matter where you are today. You can receive from the banquet table.
Pray with me right now. Heavenly Father, we come to you right now and we ask you to forgive us of our sins Lord. Forgive us for unbelief. Father God, release the spirit of faith. Let Your Holy Spirit of faith come into us. Create in us a clean heart and fill us with Your Holy Spirit.
If you are not saved, ask God and He will forgive you of your sins.
Made God richly bless you is my prayer.