THIS WEEKS MESSAGE
BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Presented by Pastor John S. Torell from his home church
message is available on audiocassette from our Book Store
8 November 1998
I am speaking today on the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. I pray today you will listen very closely to what I have to say. If you learn what is to be said you will be a very blessed person.
So you have been saved (born again) and you are happy that someday when you leave this earth, you will be taken to heaven by God's holy angels. In the meantime, you have to live on this earth with all its tribulations. What does the Bible tell us to do, while we are lingering on this planet?
I am a person just like you. I have a handicap and it is that I was not born in this country. Many times when you move to another country you have to learn the language. It can be difficult when you are older. You will not always know every word. You will always have an accent. Whenever you meet someone for the first time they will always ask, "Where are you from? Why did you come to this country?" It is some kind of stigma. I have learned that all people living in America are foreigners, including the American Indian. The American Indians walked in. Some of your ancestors came here on a boat. Others came in on airplanes. We have all originated from one place. It was near the center of the earth, in the Middle East area where God created Adam and Eve. We are descendants from Noah, his three sons and their wives.
When I received Christ I had no idea that there was power in the gospel. I was barely existing. It was not until I understood that there is a baptism of the Holy Spirit. The wonderful thing about Christianity is that the Holy Spirit is the same for all people. If you are into occultism here is how Satan works. There are only certain people that can do power tricks. It depends upon what type of demon they have. Everything God creates works for all people. Gravity works for all people. Electricity works for all people. Everything that God has created works for everyone including the baptism of the Holy Spirit. All the power is available to each one of us. There are no stars in the kingdom of God.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 3 versus 11. "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and [with] fire:"
If you will investigate the religion of the Buddhists you'll find that they do not give you any power. They teach you to live so that you can disappear from the earth. Hinduism does not give you any power either. The Islamic faith does not give you any power. Christianity, is the only thing on this earth that says all men and women are created equal and that all of us have access to the Father through the Son, Jesus Christ. All of us have the same power available to us.
Turn to Joel, chapter 2 verse 27. [This is spoken 2800 years ago. Joel lived 800 years before Christ.] "And ye shall know that I [am] in the midst of Israel, and [that] I [am] the LORD your God and none else: and my people shall never be ashamed. [Over and over again the Bible says you shall not be ashamed if you walk with God.] And it shall come to pass afterward, [that] I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit."
Something is going on. In the gospel of John seven 800 years later Jesus spoke to a crowd that was familiar with Joel.
Turn to John, chapter 7 verse 37. "In the last day, that great [day] of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet [given]; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)"
There is a condition that asks are you thirsty? Do you really want to see God's power move in your life? Picture this, each one of you is like a light bulb. If you look at a light bulb it is nice to look at and it is pretty but it does not give any light. The moment you attach electricity to it there is a light and there is power coming from this bulb. The bulb cannot say how great I am. Look at the power I'm generating. There is no generation of power within the light bulb. Power goes through the light bulb. All that you and I have to do is plug into God.
Turn to Acts, chapter 1 verse 4. "And, being assembled together with [them], commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, [saith he], ye have heard of me. 5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence. 6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? 7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. 8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth."
Jesus said, you shall have power. Did it happen? Yes!
Turn to Acts, chapter 2 verse 1. "And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance."
What you have just read is where I was in 1969. I had read this and we started to go to some Pentecostal meetings. I read some books. I was in the southern Baptist seminary. They taught us in the seminary that there is no power in God left on this earth. There is no baptism of the Holy Spirit. There are no miracles or tongues. When the apostle John died he packed up the Holy Ghost in his suitcase. He took him with him and went to heaven. We now have the Bible and we don't need the Holy Ghost. This is what was taught in the Baptist, Lutheran, Presbyterian seminary and all the Cemetery's, if I may call them that.
After reading these verses' it caused a conflict with me because of what I was being taught in the seminary. I had read the word of God and I could see in my own denomination there was no power. All I saw in church was conflict and a lot of hard work. I wondered how I could tap into this power? How could I, as an individual tap into this? I felt very inferior. There were many ministers that were not of our denomination that had very powerful ministries. There were many healing ministries. I wanted to find out where I could go to receive this power. I wanted to go to some of these big-time ministries and have them pray for me so that I could receive this power. It never happened. I never had any one of these big, "boys!" Lay hands on me. It never happened. In 1971 the Holy Spirit talk to me softly. He said, "Why don't you, in faith, believe My Word the Bible? Proclaim a healing meeting."
I was overseas at this time and I had never really prayed for the sick. God said to me, "I want you to announce to everyone that you are going to have a healing service tomorrow night." This would be like you announcing tomorrow that you are going to perform miracle surgery on anyone who needs to be operated on. Come at the appointed time and we will do surgery on you. I did not have any training. I did not have any background in doing this. I said to myself, "I guess this is what it means to walk on water." I announce to everyone, "bring the sick and afflicted tomorrow. We are going to have a healing service tomorrow."
How do you think I slept that night? I said, "Dear God, what have I got into? What do I do?" To myself I was thinking. God, send me someone with a cold or a headache, something where no one could tell the difference. The first person in line to receive prayer was a person that was on disability. Their back was implanted with a steel brace. They were in much pain. This person was about 45 years old. She made her way out to me and said, "I want to be healed." I ask her what she wanted to be healed of. She described it to me. I said to myself, "God, you send me someone like this in my first healing meeting?" This is what happened. She was not healed the first night. I prayed as hard as I could and sent her on her way. I said to myself, "I should not have gotten involved. I should have stayed a Southern Baptist. It is much safer." After the meeting she came to me and said I'm not healed. I told her to come back tomorrow and we will pray for you again. She came the next day in a taxi. I went through everything with her, was she involved in the occult, was their unforgiven sin. I went through everything I could think of that would hinder her from receiving her healing. We questioned her for over two hours. Finally we decided it was time and we anointed her with oil and prayed. She said, "I am not healed." I told her to go home and we are just going to trust God.
Here's what God was doing. God showed me at that very moment, that He is sovereign. I cannot manipulate Him. We do not tell God what to do. We are to step out in faith. That night she did not come back to the crusade. I said to myself, "That is the end of my healing ministries." The following night she was back. She wanted to give a testimony. I thought myself that she was going to stand up and tell everyone that I was a phony. He had a healing meeting, I'm not healed and my pain is worse. We give her the microphone. She bounced up to the podium and told how God had healed her. She moved around to show how she had no more pain. She said, the night after we prayed and anointed her with oil in the morning meeting she woke up feeling herself being raised about a foot off her bed. There was heat like a hot iron going up and down her spine. She was lowered to her bed and she knew she was healed. I said woman; "I want you to go see your doctor." She went and saw her doctor. They examined her and took x-rays. It was found out that the steel plate was removed from her back. The vertebrae were perfect. The disks were perfect. She no longer had to be on disability. We have the write up that was in her local newspaper about her healing and how she was able to go back to work. The reason I share this with you is that so many of you think that you are not worthy of doing God's work or are worthy of the power that is available to you through the Holy Spirit. We have prayed for many people since that time. I do not guarantee that you are going to be healed but I will pray for you. God does the healing, if you would make a decision today as to how you want to live your Christian life.
Jesus had a five old ministry! I'm giving this to you as the Holy Spirit has given it to me. Jesus had total dominion over Satan's kingdom and exercised his dominion by casting out demons.
Turn to Mark, chapter 5 verses 1. "And they came over unto the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gadarenes. 2 And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, 3 Who had [his] dwelling among the tombs; and no man could bind him, no, not with chains: 4 Because that he had been often bound with fetters and chains, and the chains had been plucked asunder by him, and the fetters broken in pieces: neither could any [man] tame him. 5 And always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones. 6 But when he saw Jesus afar off, he ran and worshipped him, 7 And cried with a loud voice, and said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, [thou] Son of the most high God? I adjure thee by God, that thou torment me not. 8 For he said unto him, Come out of the man, [thou] unclean spirit. 9 And he asked him, What [is] thy name? And he answered, saying, My name [is] Legion: for we are many. [Legion was 7,000. This man had 7,000 demons living in him.] 10 And he besought him much that he would not send them away out of the country. 11 Now there was there nigh unto the mountains a great herd of swine feeding. 12 And all the devils besought him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them. 13 And forthwith Jesus gave them leave. And the unclean spirits went out, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the sea, (there were about two thousand;) and were choked in the sea. 14 And they that fed the swine fled, and told [it] in the city, and in the country. And they went out to see what it was that was done. [Here he is a little background on the Jewish people. Jews are not to eat pork or are Christians. The Jews had the Arabs run a small swine production. Jesus had the entire herd of swine killed off. This cost the Jews a lot of money. When the demons went out of the man into the swine and by having the swine commit suicide, they got lose and could roam the world so that they would not have to go to prison.] 15 And they come to Jesus, and see him that was possessed with the devil, and had the legion, sitting, and clothed, and in his right mind: and they were afraid. 16 And they that saw [it] told them how it befell to him that was possessed with the devil, and [also] concerning the swine. 17 And they began to pray him to depart out of their coasts. 18 And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with the devil prayed him that he might be with him. 19 Howbeit Jesus suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee."
When we talk about deliverance some people become very nervous. This crowd said it would be better if you did not hang around here Jesus. Go on to another place.
Jesus cast out demons.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 17 verse 14. "And when they were come to the multitude, there came to him a [certain] man, kneeling down to him, and saying, 15 Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed: for oft times he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water. 16 And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him."
This week if you read the papers you will notice there was an article on the apprehension of another serial killer in California. This man turned himself in. He was born in Petaluma and move north to another community. He was a truck driver. He had problems in his marriage and left his family. This person was so filled with demons that at this point he has confessed to 4 rape murders. It must have been a grizzly site when he walked into a police station in Eureka this week. He carried in a plastic bag a woman's breast. He said, "I am a murderer." The woman had been found South of us. She had been mutilated and had a breast missing. Then he said, "There were three other people that he had murdered." He stated that he could not control himself any longer and he had to turn himself in. As I read this, two things struck me. The evilness of evil spirits. This person that committed these crimes was considered a fine outstanding person in the community. No one could dream that this man was a monster. Pornography is what started him out onto this road of perversion. If someone could have gotten to him prior to his murders, led him to Christ and cast out the demons he would not have done all these things. There is such a need today to cast out spirits. People are filled with demonic spirit and they don't even know. You can see the power of these spirits by the way people act. This past Halloween is a good example. There was a party going on and a young man crashed it. A fight started and he took a knife and plunged into another man's skull and then walked off. The man died two days later in the hospital. He probably went to hell if he was not saved. As believers in Christ we need to exercise the power of the Holy Spirit like we have never done before. We need to take Dominion over what is happening in the world.
Verse 17. "Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me. 18 And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour. 19 Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? 20 And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: [mark verse 20, remember it.] for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. 21 Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting."
We're going to have to decide if we want be used in the kingdom of God. To do this we cannot live a sloppy life. The reason we are admonishing people to get rid of their television sets is, the children cannot control it. By not having a television you'll find that you have more time to spend with your family. You will get to know them and find out who they really are. Television today is a sewage pipe. It will spew out all the violence there is in the world. It will destroy us.
In 1971 after the healing I became encouraged. I gave praise to the Lord. I wanted to keep safe so I said I would preach the gospel and have a healing ministry. But a few weeks later God said now I want you to do a deliverance. I said, "Lord, I have cast out a few demons privately." One night as we were in ministry at a revival with about 700 to 1000 people attending the Lord told me to preach against the occult tonight. I was to give the invitation that we're going to cast out demons. The community was conservative and most were Christians but it was a very demon infested area. I preached that evening and gave the salvation invitation. Then I said, "If anyone who wants to get rid of their demons, we are going to pray for you. Anyone who wants to be prayed for stand up." I put my hands over my eyes and said, "Dear God, help them right now." I looked out. What I saw looked strange to me. What I didn't realize was they were all standing. They were all waiting for me to cast out demons. I said, "Dear God, how do I do this with so many people at onetime?" He said, " Lead them in a prayer and throw the demons out." I had them kneel. It was awesome to see the power of God move that night. I had to step out in faith. Here is the problem with most of us. We will not step out in faith. The number one reason is that most of us have an insecurity problem. Secondly we think that we are not important enough or who am I. Jesus did it, so can you.
Jesus knew that without a body a human being could not live on this earth. So God provided healing for the human body.
Turn to Luke, chapter 13 verse 10. "And he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath. 11 And, behold, there was a woman which had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bowed together, and could in no wise lift up [herself]. 12 And when Jesus saw her, he called [her to him], and said unto her, Woman, thou art loosed from thine infirmity. 13 And he laid [his] hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. 14 And the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because that Jesus had healed on the sabbath day, and said unto the people, There are six days in which men ought to work: in them therefore come and be healed, and not on the sabbath day. 15 The Lord then answered him, and said, [Thou] hypocrite, doth not each one of you on the sabbath loose his ox or [his] ass from the stall, and lead [him] away to watering? 16 And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day? 17 And when he had said these things, all his adversaries were ashamed: and all the people rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by him." Jesus healed the sick. Read on in Luke, chapter 14 verse1. "And it came to pass, as he went into the house of one of the chief Pharisees to eat bread on the sabbath day, that they watched him. 2 And, behold, there was a certain man before him which had the dropsy. 3 And Jesus answering spake unto the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath day? 4 And they held their peace. And he took [him], and healed him, and let him go; 5 And answered them, saying, Which of you shall have an ass or an ox fallen into a pit, and will not straightway pull him out on the sabbath day? 6 And they could not answer him again to these things." We continue in, Matthew, Chapter 5 verse 25. "And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years, 26 And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse, 27 When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment. 28 For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole. 29 And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in [her] body that she was healed of that plague. 30 And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes? 31 And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me? 32 And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing. 33 But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. 34 And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague."
Jesus preformed miracles when needed.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 14 verse 22. "And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away. 23 And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone. 24 But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary. 25 And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea. 26 And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear. 27 But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid. 28 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. [Of all the disciples Peter said, "If that is you I want to walk on water ask me to come.] 29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. 31 And immediately Jesus stretched forth [his] hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt? 32 And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased. 33 Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God."
Nineteen seventy-one was a great year for us. It was the first time I had been in Sweden for many years. I was able to witness to my brother who was not saved at the time. He loaned me his car and the first day I had it the heater hose broke. My brother at that time was a tough cookie. He said, "You drove it. You fix it." He had been driving that automobile for a longtime and it just happened to break on my shift. Being that I am an engineer I decided to try and fix it myself. I did not know that you on are not suppose to take a part a heater core. They are usually a sealed unit. There were some screws on the heater core so I loosened them. After doing that I heard a piece of metal fall inside of the core. I then realized that there was no way I could retrieve that part. At that point my brother came to see what I was doing. He was furious when he realized what I had done. He said, "Now it is going to cost you more money." I realized that I needed a miracle. I prayed to Jesus to help me. I lifted the heater core and I heard a noise. The Holy Spirit told me to put the screw in and turn it. I tightened the screw and it fit perfectly. My brother saw what happened and could not understand it. A couple of nights later I had a vision. It was of an automobile accident involving my brother and he was killed. I talked to him about it before he was going to go out for the evening. He had a date and was going to go drinking in a nearby country. I said to my brother that this was the last time that God was going to call him. I shared the vision that I had with him. It scared him, so he prayed the sinners prayer and accepted the Lord. He said that I had ruined his party time and that he wouldnt be able to drink now. I said, "Praise the Lord!" He did go out that evening but he did not drink, the rest of those that went with him did. On the way back from their evening out they had an accident. The back of the car was hit so hard that it shaved off the trunk. He was sitting in the back seat. He was within inches of losing his life. When he got back to me he said, "I need to be baptized right now." I shared this to express to you some of the many miracles that I have witnessed. God does not want us to exploit His miracles, such as those that go on television and do so. In our daily life when we need a miracle God will give us one. It does not matter what it is. If there is something you cannot handle. God will give you a miracle.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 8 verse 1. "In those days the multitude being very great, and having nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples [unto him], and saith unto them, 2 I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now been with me three days, and have nothing to eat: 3 And if I send them away fasting to their own houses, they will faint by the way: for divers of them came from far. 4 And his disciples answered him, From whence can a man satisfy these [men] with bread here in the wilderness? 5 And he asked them, How many loaves have ye? And they said, Seven. 6 And he commanded the people to sit down on the ground: and he took the seven loaves, and gave thanks, and brake, and gave to his disciples to set before [them]; and they did set [them] before the people. 7 And they had a few small fishes: and he blessed, and commanded to set them also before [them]. 8 So they did eat, and were filled: and they took up of the broken [meat] that was left seven baskets. 9 And they that had eaten were about four thousand: and he sent them away."
Raising people from the dead when God told him.
This may be shaky ground for some people. Some people have said, " If you are going to raise people from the dead let's go and empty the mortuary." Remember, Jesus never went and cleaned out the mortuary. He raised those people that God told Him to raise.
Turn to Mark, chapter 5 verse 35. "While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue's [house certain] which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further? 36 As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe. 37 And he suffered no man to follow him, save Peter, and James, and John the brother of James. 38 And he cometh to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and seeth the tumult, and them that wept and wailed greatly. 39 And when he was come in, he saith unto them, Why make ye this ado, and weep? the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth. 40 And they laughed him to scorn. But when he had put them all out, he taketh the father and the mother of the damsel, and them that were with him, and entereth in where the damsel was lying. 41 And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise. 42 And straightway the damsel arose, and walked; for she was [of the age] of twelve years. And they were astonished with a great astonishment. 43 And he charged them straitly that no man should know it; and commanded that something should be given her to eat."
Jesus raised people from the dead. He only did only what God told Him. He raised Lazarus from the dead. We read about it in the gospel of John.
Turn to John, chapter 11 verse 1. "Now a certain [man] was sick, [named] Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. 2 (It was [that] Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.) 3 Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick. 4 When Jesus heard [that], he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby. 5 Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. 6 When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. 7 Then after that saith he to [his] disciples, Let us go into Judaea again. 8 [His] disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again? 9 Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. 10 But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him. 11 These things said he: and after that he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. 12 Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. 13 Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. 14 Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. 15 And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him. 16 Then said Thomas, which is called Didymus, unto his fellowdisciples, Let us also go, that we may die with him. 17 Then when Jesus came, he found that he had [lain] in the grave four days already. 18 Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off: 19 And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother. 20 Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary sat [still] in the house. 21 Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. 22 But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give [it] thee. 23 Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. 24 Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. 25 Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: 26 And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? 27 She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world. 28 And when she had so said, she went her way, and called Mary her sister secretly, saying, The Master is come, and calleth for thee. 29 As soon as she heard [that], she arose quickly, and came unto him. 30 Now Jesus was not yet come into the town, but was in that place where Martha met him. 31 The Jews then which were with her in the house, and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up hastily and went out, followed her, saying, She goeth unto the grave to weep there. 32 Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. 33 When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled, 34 And said, Where have ye laid him? They said unto him, Lord, come and see. 35 Jesus wept. 36 Then said the Jews, Behold how he loved him! 37 And some of them said, Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died? 38 Jesus therefore again groaning in himself cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it. 39 Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been [dead] four days. 40 Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God? 41 Then they took away the stone [from the place] where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up [his] eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. 42 And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said [it], that they may believe that thou hast sent me. 43 And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. 44 And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go."
Raising people from the dead is not something you just do to put on a display. When my father died two months ago I asked the Lord, do I have permission to raise him? The Lord's answer was, "No! I took him. He is finished. I do not want him brought back." My wife had an experience some years ago where she and another lady raised someone from the dead. It was the time to do it. It is available when God tells us.
Teaching and bringing in new disciples.
Turn to Luke, chapter 14 verse 7. "And he put forth a parable to those which were bidden, when he marked how they chose out the chief rooms; saying unto them, 8 When thou art bidden of any [man] to a wedding, sit not down in the highest room; lest a more honourable man than thou be bidden of him; 9 And he that bade thee and him come and say to thee, Give this man place; and thou begin with shame to take the lowest room. 10 But when thou art bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee. 11 For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. 12 Then said he also to him that bade him, When thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor [thy] rich neighbours; lest they also bid thee again, and a recompence be made thee. 13 But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind: 14 And thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee: for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just."
Jesus taught and brought in new disciples. How do we teach? We teach the way that we live. Words are cheap. If all of us here would live a Holy life and walk with the Lord, people would see this. You would be able to lead them. The reason that most churches are not growing is because people wait for the pastor to invite people in. Sheep beget sheep. The work of a minister is to feed the sheep. If you do not beget sheep we will not have very many sheep. Most of you have come into this ministry either by hearing from us on the radio, someone has told about us, you read our publication "The Dove" or you had a need. I would challenge you to become part of the five fold ministry and next Sunday bring someone new with you to church. If we do not build his body we will be like an ingrown toenail. You do not go anywhere, you just have pain. Amen!
I have a question. What about the church of Jesus Christ today? During Jesus earthly ministry He transferred His Spiritual authority to the 12 apostles.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 10 verse 1. "And when he had called unto [him] his twelve disciples, he gave them power [against] unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease." Verse 7. "And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. 8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give." This power transferred to the apostles is repeated in Luke, chapter 9 verse 1 Then he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases. 2 And he sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick."
In the gospel of Luke chapter 10 we find that it is transferred to 70 other people.
Turn to Luke, chapter 10 verse 1. "After these things the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come. 2 Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly [is] great, but the labourers [are] few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest. 3 Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves."
These men received the same commission as the apostles.
Turn to Luke, chapter 10 verse 9. "And heal the sick that are therein, and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you." Verse 17 "And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name. 18 And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven. 19 Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you. 20 Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven."
This spiritual authority was transferred to all believers through the ages. It will continue until the return of Jesus Christ.
Turn to Matthew, chapter 28 verse 18. "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. [In 1969 I read this verse. I made a decision then that I would believe the words that I read. Then I read.] 19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen." I believe that. Jesus said, "To teach them to observe all things." Everything that Jesus had his apostles and the 70 others to do, we are to do also. He is with us always even until the end of the world. You do not have to be a minister to have this working in your life. God wants you to have these powers on a daily basis, regardless if you are a homemaker, businessman, teacher, salesperson, regardless of your profession. Every day you will meet people. Every day people have needs. You are a light bulb. You are plugged in. Let the power of the Holy Spirit flow through you. Make decision that this will be part of your daily life. A decision has to be made that you'll have to walk with God. You'll have to know what is written in the Bible. In order to do that you have to read it. You will have to have a life of fasting and prayer. You will have to give up your idolatry and cleanup all the garbage that we have around us if you want this power. The reason that most people today do not have this power is because they do not want to give up the world. This does not mean they have to be a Monk or a Nun. It just means that they have to have their priorities in order.
One of the richest men that lived in this century was Latrunal. He was raised in the 1930s. He was in the Caterpillar business. He accepted the Lord and he made an agreement with God. He said, "God if you will bless my business I will give 10 percent of my income." God began to bless his business. His income became so great that he gave ninety percent and 10 for himself. He could live on 10 percent. He is now with the Lord. He gave hundreds of millions of dollars during the '40s, '50s and '60s. He had missions all over the world. The more God blest him the more he gave. Today he is in heaven. His houses are still here. He left everything behind. He transferred his wealth into the heavenly bank. During that period of history many people lost their earthly wealth. His was in heaven. He made a decision. You can make a decision. What are you going to do?
What I have spoken to you can be found in the book of Acts. God told me to present this very simple so that it can be understood.
Turn to Acts, chapter 3 verse 1. "Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, [being] the ninth [hour]. 2 And a certain man lame from his mother's womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; 3 Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms. 4 And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. 5 And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. 6 Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. 7 And he took him by the right hand, and lifted [him] up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. 8 And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God. 9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God: [Jesus worked through Peter and John. This is a tremendous healing testimony. What were the results of this healing? Scores of people were saved. In our society today we're focusing on healing and miracles. Healings and miracles point people to the cross. We have healings and miracles so that we can function. We are not to make a business out of it. It is available for you and I.] 10 And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him. 11 And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon's, greatly wondering. 12 And when Peter saw [it], he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk? 13 The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let [him] go."
Turn to Acts, chapter 9 verse 32. "And it came to pass, as Peter passed throughout all [quarters], he came down also to the saints which dwelt at Lydda. 33 And there he found a certain man named Aeneas, which had kept his bed eight years, and was sick of the palsy. 34 And Peter said unto him, Aeneas, Jesus Christ maketh thee whole: arise, and make thy bed. And he arose immediately. [Notice how simple this is done. He did not have an audience requesting them to route him on. He simply said, "Jesus is going to make you whole. Stand up. Roll up your bed." He arose immediately.] 35 And all that dwelt at Lydda and Saron saw him, and turned to the Lord. [Healing should bring salvation.] 36 Now there was at Joppa a certain disciple named Tabitha, which by interpretation is called Dorcas: this woman was full of good works and almsdeeds which she did. 37 And it came to pass in those days, that she was sick, and died: whom when they had washed, they laid [her] in an upper chamber. 38 And forasmuch as Lydda was nigh to Joppa, and the disciples had heard that Peter was there, they sent unto him two men, desiring [him] that he would not delay to come to them. 39 Then Peter arose and went with them. When he was come, they brought him into the upper chamber: and all the widows stood by him weeping, and shewing the coats and garments which Dorcas made, while she was with them. [Their motive might not have been very spiritual. They may have said, "Look at the things she has made. We need her back in our production line. Regardless of their motives God had her raised.] 40 But Peter put them all forth, and kneeled down, and prayed; [I'm sure he asked God if he could raise her.] and turning [him] to the body said, Tabitha, arise. And she opened her eyes: and when she saw Peter, she sat up. 41 And he gave her [his] hand, and lifted her up, and when he had called the saints and widows, presented her alive. 42 And it was known throughout all Joppa; and many believed in the Lord." YES, Peter raised someone from the dead.
Turn to Acts, chapter 13 versus 6. "And when they had gone through the isle unto Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew, whose name [was] Barjesus: 7 Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God. 8 But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith. 9 Then Saul, (who also [is called] Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him, 10 And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, [thou] child of the devil, [thou] enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord? 11 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord [is] upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand. 12 Then the deputy, when he saw what was done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord." We move on to Acts, chapter 14 verse 8, "And there sat a certain man at Lystra, impotent in his feet, being a cripple from his mother's womb, who never had walked: 9 The same heard Paul speak: who stedfastly beholding him, and perceiving that he had faith to be healed, 10 Said with a loud voice, Stand upright on thy feet. And he leaped and walked."
As you go through the book of Acts you'll find many healing and miracles. These were the norms at the time of the book of Acts. They did healings, casting out of demons, raising the dead, there were power miracles, teaching and leading people to Christ.
Let us talk about you and I. Are you filled with the Holy Spirit? Do you have a five-fold ministry like Jesus and the apostles had?
Turn to Acts, chapter 19 verse 1. "And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, 2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. 3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John's baptism. 4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus. 5 When they heard [this], they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 And when Paul had laid [his] hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied. 7 And all the men were about twelve." Verse 11. And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul: So that from his body abroad unto the sick and handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them." They lived in miracles.
In 1971, I will never forget this woman that came to us one night. She said, "Pastor John, my son is in rebellion. I want to have a cloth prayed over for him. I said, okay even though I had not done this before. The following night this woman brought two bed sheets and a pillowcase. She said, "I want my son to be totally wrapped. He will not escape." I said, "Go, for it." I remember we had everyone in the congregation pray with me over that material. We anointed it with oil. I said, "Dear God, Let this man burn with Your presence when he sleeps. Give him the gift of repentance. Save his rotten soul." That Lady went home rejoicing.
There is a problem and that is that we just don't believe. I don't know what happened to her son but he must have got saved sooner or later. He was wrapped. He did not have a chance.
God is not a respecter of persons. What God does for one believer, he would do for us all.
Turn to Acts, chapter 10 verse 34. "Then Peter opened [his] mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:" Also in Romans, chapter 2 verse 11. "For there is no respecter of persons with God."
You can actually proclaim today that you are going to move into a five-fold ministry. You can make that proclamation today. You do not have to be a pastor or an evangelist or a missionary. You can have a five-fold ministry in your life now. The beautiful thing is that God is your menetor. He did not have to go searching. God will send you someone. There are people in me all around you. There may be someone who is going through divorce, people who are sick, or someone who is imprisoned. There are all kinds of people around us who have needs. Began to proclaim that you're going to be a five-fold light bulb. I can shine in five different directions. Make that decision today. It will happen.
There is only one requirement from you, YOU MUST ASK IN THE NAME OF JESUS AND YOU MUST LOVE HIM AND YOU MUST ABIDE IN HIM!
Years ago my wife was going blind and I did not have much faith. The church I attended did not have any faith. God moved upon her and gave her faith to believe that her eyes would be healed. They were healed. At that time I stood ashamed. I did not even know how to pray for her.
Turn to John, chapter 14 verse 9. "Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou [then], Shew us the Father? Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. Believe me that I [am] in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works' sake. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater [works] than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. [He will not have power if you have a bottle of beer in your hand most of the time or watching television, telling dirty Jokes, going to movie houses and watching pornography here and there. He will not have any power. You will have power if you walk with Jesus everyday. There is no excitement in a bottle of beer or drugs. There is nothing greater then to stand back and see God moving. Seeing someone healed. Someone saved. A family put back together again and rejoicing in Christ. There is a satisfaction that is far greater than 10,000 gallons of whiskey or all of the precious jewels in the world. I challenge you today. Do you want to walk with Jesus.] And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do [it]. If ye love me, keep my commandments."
About 10 years ago my wife and I left the city of Auburn. We had been to a doctor. She had a growth on her throat. The doctor did some tests and told us that it was probably cancer. My wife loved to sing. This would have finished her singing career. I remember driving home on the freeway that day. The thought came to me that this is what it is like when a person hears bad news. I look that her and we made a decision. She said, "No, knife will touch me." I said, "I will stand with you in faith." That was 10 years ago. We don't know what happened but the lump disappeared. The strange thing is, the doctor the told us this news is now dead. My wife is still alive. We stood on this scripture.
Turn to John, chapter 15 verse 1. "I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every [branch] that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye [are] the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing."
IS THE PRICE TOO HIGH FOR YOU?
Turn to Luke, chapter 9 verse 23. "And he said to [them] all, If any [man] will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it. For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away? For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and [in his] Father's, and of the holy angels."
Are you willing to deny yourself and take up your cross and follow Jesus?
Are you willing to believe that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is for you? Do you want God to move in your life? I challenge you to become one step closer to Jesus. Reach out and ask God for the five-fold ministry now. You can have it. We have a sign over our door as you leave the church. It reads, "YOU ARE NOW ENTERING YOUR MISSION FIELD." When you come to church, it is like having your gas tank filled. When you go out into the world you are burning it up. It is between you and the Holy Spirit now.
Let us pray. My heavenly Father, I pray that Your power fall upon the eyes that read the words that you have given me. Let the anointing fall upon them. Touch all that read this and raise them up Father. I pray in the name of Jesus.
May God richly bless you is my prayer!