Tag Archives: Rodney Howard-Browne Lakeland

Signs, Wonders, and Miracles

Signs, wonders, and miracles, were a hallmark of the Early Church in the book of Acts. We are still in the book of Acts. The final chapter has not yet been written. Those, who are filled with the power of the Holy Spirit, will do exploits in Jesus’ name. Here are some of the signs, wonders, and miracles of the book of Acts:

Wonders at Pentecost:

And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. Acts 2:4 KJV

Miracles by the apostles:

And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.

Acts 2:43-44 KJV

And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people; (and they were all with one accord in Solomon’s porch.

Acts 5:12 KJV

Lame man cured:

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. Acts 3:7-9 KJV

Death of Ananias and Sapphira:

Upon hearing these words, Ananias fell down and died. And great dread and terror took possession of all who heard of it. Acts 5:5 AMP

And instantly she fell down at his feet and died; and the young men entering found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her beside her husband. Acts 5:10 AMP

Many sick healed:

Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them. 16 There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one. Acts 5:15-16 KJV

Apostles delivered from prison:

But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, 20 Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life. Acts 5:19-20 KJV

Miracles by Stephen:

And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people. Acts 6:8 KJV

Miracles by Philip:

Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them. 6 And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. 7 For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed. 8 And there was great joy in that city. Acts 8:5-8 KJV

Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done. Acts 8:13 KJV

Aeneas made whole:

And Peter said unto him, Aeneas, Jesus Christ maketh thee whole: arise, and make thy bed. And he arose immediately. Acts 9:34 KJV

Dorcas restored to life:

But Peter put them all forth, and kneeled down, and prayed; 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.

Acts 9:40-41 KJV

Peter delivered from prison (see also Acts 12:6-10):

And when Peter was come to himself, he said, Now I know of a surety, that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews. Acts 12:11 KJV

Elymas struck blind:

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. Acts 13:11 KJV

Miracles by Paul and Barnabas:

Long time therefore abode they speaking boldly in the Lord, which gave testimony unto the word of his grace, and granted signs and wonders to be done by their hands. Acts 14:3 KJV

Lame man cured:

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.

Acts 14:9-10 KJV

Unclean spirit cast out:

And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour. Acts 16:18 KJV

Paul and Silas delivered:

And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. 26 And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed. Acts 16:25-26 KJV

Special miracles:

And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul: 12 So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them. Acts 19:11-12 KJV

Eutychus restored to life (see also Acts 20:10-12):

And Paul went down, and fell on him, and embracing him said, Trouble not yourselves; for his life is in him. Acts 20:10 KJV

Viper’s bite made harmless:

And he shook off the beast into the fire, and felt no harm. Acts 28:5 KJV

Father of Publius, and many others, healed:

And it came to pass, that the father of Publius lay sick of a fever and of a bloody flux: to whom Paul entered in, and prayed, and laid his hands on him, and healed him. 9 So when this was done, others also, which had diseases in the island, came, and were healed: Acts 28:8-9 KJV

BLESSED IS THE MAN

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Foundation Scriptures: Psalms 1:1-4 (Amp.) Vs. 1 Blessed (happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable) is the man who walks and lives not in the counsel of the ungodly [following their advice, their plans and purposes], nor stands [submissive and inactive] in the path where sinners walk, nor sits down [to relax and rest] where the scornful [and the mockers] gather. Vs. 2 But his delight and desire are in the law of the Lord, and on His law (the precepts, the instructions, the teachings of God) he habitually meditates (ponders and studies) by day and by night.

 Vs. 3 And he shall be like a tree firmly planted [and tended] by the streams of water, ready to bring forth its fruit in its season; its leaf also shall not fade or wither; and everything he does shall prosper [and come to maturity]. Vs. 4 Not so the wicked [those disobedient and living without God are not so]. But they are like the chaff [worthless, dead, without substance] which the wind drives away.

Blessing and prosperity come to those who delight in God and His Word and who meditate in it all day, every day. Notice the downward progression of the person who does not delight in God and His Word, as described in verse one. First, he walks in the counsel of the ungodly, following their advice. Then he stands, submissive, in the path of the sinners. Then he sits down, resting and relaxing, with the scornful and the mockers.

You cannot counsel with the ungodly. If you listen to them and take their advice, before you know it, you will be submitting to sinners and soon you will be joining in with the mockers, and you will be lost. You will begin to make decisions that send you on a downward spiral. For example, we know people who were once saved and excited about the Lord who began to fellowship with so-called Christians who criticized the church. Then they started in on the minister, then the move of God. Before long, they all were totally backslidden, and acting and living like the world. Be careful who you listen to—it is a slippery slide!

When you delight in God and His Word, you make a habit of reading, studying and meditating on His Word. The Hebrew meditate does not mean just “to think about it.” It has to do with speaking (muttering) to yourself. You need to take the scriptures and think on them, speaking them over and over to yourself. When you hear your own voice speaking the Word, it becomes reinforced in your heart.

2 Timothy 3:16, 17 (NKJV) All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

 Meditating on the Word of God is profitable. It may bring correction and discipline, but if you will receive it, you will be made whole. When you receive God’s instruction, you will become thoroughly equipped to do what God has for you.

Jeremiah 17:7, 8 (NKJV) Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, and whose hope is the Lord. For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, which spreads out its roots by the river, and will not fear when heat comes; but its leaf will be green, and will not be anxious in the year of drought, nor will cease from yielding fruit.

When you delight in God and His Word, you are blessed and prosperous in all seasons and at all times, no matter what happens to those around you. Trees do not produce leaves or fruit in drought, but when your roots are deep in the river of God, you never experience the drought or the killing heat. Your blessings are not dependent upon your surroundings, but God’s power is constantly at work in you. You will be fruitful constantly and consistently. Thank God for His Spirit and His Word.

JESUS – OUR PEACE

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Isaiah 9:6-7  (NKJ)

6 For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

7 Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

Luke 2:13-14  (NKJ)

13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

Jesus is our peace. Hundreds of years before Jesus’ birth, the Holy Spirit spoke through the prophets to declare that He would be the source of our peace. The only true peace you can have is peace with God.

Isaiah 48:22  (NKJ)

22 “There is no peace,” says the LORD, “for the wicked.”

There is no peace for those who do not know or fear God. The devil makes all kinds of promises  wealth and fame etc  but the one thing he can never give is peace. Peace comes only from the presence of God.

Isaiah 53:5  (NKJ)

5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.

Jesus paid the price on the cross and with His blood in order for us to be reconciled to God and to have His peace.

Ephesians 2:13-18  (NKJ)

13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation,

15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,

16 and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity.

17 And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near.

18 For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father.

It doesn’t matter what storm rages around you  Jesus has given you His peace. As long as you have peace with the Father, you have peace in any storm.  On the other hand, you may have everything going your way and yet, if you have no relationship with God, you will never know true peace. Because we are justified by faith and made righteous by the blood of Jesus, we have perfect peace with the Father.

Romans 5:1-2  (NKJ)

1 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

2 through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

HE CROWNS THE YEAR WITH HIS GOODNESS (HIS BOUNTY)

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Foundation Scriptures: Psalm 65:9-13

9       Thou visitest the earth, and waterest it: thou greatly enrichest it with the river of God, which is full of water: thou preparest them corn, when thou hast so provided for it.

10     Thou waterest the ridges thereof abundantly: thou settlest the furrows thereof: thou makest it soft with showers: thou blessest the springing thereof.

11     Thou crownest the year with thy goodness; and thy paths drop fatness.

12     They drop upon the pastures of the wilderness: and the little hills rejoice on every side.

13     The pastures are clothed with flocks; the valleys also are covered over with corn; they shout for joy, they also sing.

As we look back on the past year, we see the hand of God manifested in an awesome way.  We saw many souls saved and we also saw the miraculous supernatural provision of God, so that the work of God could be accomplished. The psalmist said that God crowns the year with His goodness or bounty. 1999 was a year of God’s goodness and grace.

 

I PREDICT FOR 2000

 

I predict for the year 2000 – God’s awesome plan revealed,

The Word will grow strong and many by the Spirit will be sealed.

They will come to maturity, the deep things they will know,

They will walk in the realm of the supernatural and the glory of God they will show.

 

There will be a demonstration of the mighty Holy Ghost,

As we draw nearer to the Coming of the Lord.

The Lost shall come in to be cleansed from their sin,

All heaven shall rejoice for they’ll make the right choice.

 

The River will flow, to other lands it will go,

New churches springing up

New wine skins, raised up by God, for the end time harvest

That must be quickly brought in.

 

The time is growing short and the end of all things is at hand,

And the power of God will be seen in the Land.

This work God will do, is quickly speeding up all things, by His power,

So that all that heaven has planned will be accomplished in this hour.

 

The plan and purpose of God will be seen,

And the gap between the godly and the unrighteous will be greater.

Evil men and seducers will wax worse as a hunger for the ways of evil will grow,

And men against the purpose of God will go.

 

This is not a time to quit or be fearful,

But in faith, to arise and press on

To the mark of the prize of the high calling

That is found in Jesus Christ.

 

What does the year hold?

Many will ask.

Will this be the end will this be the last?

All I know is He will accomplish all before we go.

 

The year 2000 will be crowned,

With the faithfulness and goodness of the Lord.

And the righteous will be blessed,

Those that work with His Word.

 

Signs & Wonders will follow them,

Everywhere they go.

And God will be their shield and buckler,

And exceeding great reward.

THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS RIGHTEOUSNESS, PEACE AND JOY

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters. One man’s faith allows him to eat everything, but another man, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. The man who eats everything must not look down on him who does not, and the man who does not eat everything must not condemn the man who does, for God has accepted him. Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand. One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. He who regards one day as special, does so to the Lord. He who eats meat, eats to the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who abstains, does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives to himself alone and none of us dies to himself alone. If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living. You, then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. It is written: “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bow before me; every tongue will confess to God.'” So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God. Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother’s way. As one who is in the Lord Jesus, I am fully convinced that no food is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for him it is unclean. If your brother is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy your brother for whom Christ died. Do not allow what you consider good to be spoken of as evil.

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men. Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a man to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother to fall. So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the man who does not condemn himself by what he approves. But the man who has doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.  Romans 14:1-23 NIV

 

The Kingdom of God is about spiritual things. It is about righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. It is about our heart attitude and not the outward rituals and observances that we think are so important. It is much more important to God that we love each other and that we are kind to each other, than that we observe rules and regulations. People try to impress God with their religion, whilst they sacrifice people and relationships. They are prepared to destroy another person to uphold a belief or an opinion. But to God – PEOPLE are the most important thing. We are all connected to each other because we are all connected to God. We need to love and take care of one another.

 

Through the ages, people have killed each other because their beliefs and practices differed, but God says that it is not our place to judge or condemn or pass sentence on another person. We are all God’s servants. We are each accountable to Him alone and must answer to Him alone. God always asks us to check out our own heart and not to judge others. He tells us how to live our own lives according to His word and not to regulate the lives of others. We must do the right thing no matter what anyone else is doing. We must do the right thing because it is the right thing. We must trust God and know that He has everything under control and that He sees all and know all and that He knows what He is doing. He will take care of all the wrong and the right. We need to mind our own business and make sure that we walk right, talk right and do right ourselves.

 

The Kingdom of God is about righteousness – being acceptable to and accepted by God, not man. It is not what man thinks of us, but what God thinks about us, that counts in eternity. If we are in right standing with Almighty God then we have nothing more to fear. The Kingdom of God is about peace – heart peace. It is about having peace with God. The peace

That passes understanding. The peace we have, knowing that Jesus paid the price and that there is nothing more we can do or need to do to earn God’s grace. The Kingdom of God is about joy – relaxing in God’s love and acceptance and enjoying the life we have in Him. It is time to forget about what everyone else is doing and to forget the things that are unimportant in God’s eyes and in eternity. It is time to enjoy this life we have in Jesus!

HEALING CONFESSION

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Thank you, Father, that you are the LORD, who heals me, you are my life-giver and you bring me health.  Exodus 15:26b

You will take sickness away from the midst of us. The number of our days you will fulfill.   Exodus 23:25-26

Father, I choose life that both my seed and I may live. You are my life, and the length of my days.  Deuteronomy 30:19-20

I shall yet praise Him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.  Psalms 42:11

Father, I will set my love upon You, therefore will You deliver me: You will set me on high, because I have known Your name. I shall call upon You, and You will answer me: You will be with me in trouble; You will deliver me, and honor me. With long life will You satisfy me, and show me Your salvation.  Psalms 91:14-16

I am planted in the house of the LORD. I shall flourish in the courts of my God. I shall still bring forth fruit in old age; I shall be fat and flourishing.  Psalms 92:13-14

Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: who forgives all my iniquities; who heals all my diseases; who redeems my life from destruction; who crowns me with loving kindness and tender mercies; who satisfies my mouth with good things; so that my youth is renewed like the eagle’s.  Psalms 103:2-5

I will cry unto You LORD in my trouble, and You will save me out of my distresses. You sent Your word, and healed me, and delivered me from my destructions.  Psalms 107:19-20

I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the LORD.  Psalms 118:17

Thank you Father that Your words are life unto me, and health to all my flesh.  Proverbs 4:22

As I wait upon the LORD I will renew my strength; I will mount up with wings as eagles; I will run, and not be weary; and I will walk, and not faint.  Isaiah 40:31

Surely You have borne my griefs, and carried my sorrows. You were wounded for my transgressions, You were bruised for my iniquities: the chastisement of my peace was upon You; and with Your stripes I am healed.  Isaiah 53:4-5

Father, Your word says that You will restore health unto me, and You will heal me of my wounds.  Jeremiah 30:17

Thank you Father that you will hasten my recovery and my cure.  Jeremiah 33:6

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.  Romans 8:2

If the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwells in me, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken my mortal body by His Spirit that dwells in me.  Romans 8:11

Christ has redeemed me from the curse of the law, being made a curse for me: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangs on a tree.  Galatians 3:13

Jesus Himself bore our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes we are healed.  1 Peter 2:24

I WILL CONFIDENTLY TRUST MY GOD

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

What time I am afraid, I will have confidence in and put my trust and reliance in You. By [the help of] God I will praise His word; on God I lean, rely, and confidently put my trust; I will not fear. What can man, who is flesh, do unto me?  Psalms 56:3-4 AMP

When I am afraid I will trust in my God. I will place my confidence in Him. I will trust Him and rely on Him. I will not be confident in my ability. I will not trust the arm of the flesh nor rely on human reasoning. I will exalt his word in my life. His word is true. I will trust His word. I will believe His word and stand on it. I will not consider my circumstances, but I will look to His word. I will not allow fear to control me nor to influence my decisions.

In God have I put my trust and confident reliance; I will not be afraid. What man can do to me? Your vows are upon me, O God; I will render praise to You and give You thank offerings. For You have delivered my life from death, yes, and my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of life and of the living?  Psalms 56:11-13 AMP

I will confidently rely on my God. I will continue to praise and thank Him, demonstrating my faith. I praise Him because I trust Him. He will sustain me. He will preserve my life.

Be merciful and gracious to me, O God, be merciful and gracious to me, for my soul takes refuge and finds shelter and confidence in You, yes, in the shadow of Your wings will I take refuge and be confident, until calamities and destructive storms are passed. I will cry unto God Most High, Who performs on my behalf and rewards me [Who brings to pass His purposes for me and surely completes them]!  Psalms 57:1-2 AMP

My God is merciful and gracious. My soul takes refuge and finds shelter and confidence in Him. My mind is stayed on Him. My will is submitted to His. I am calm because He is my strength. I have His peace in my heart. I know that I can call on Him and that He will be there for me. I will cling to Him and He will protect me. I will ride out the storm in the palm of His hand. I will shelter in the shadow of His wings. No matter how powerful the storm I am safe in His presence.

God has a plan for me. He performs on my behalf. He does those things that He said He would. He rewards me by bringing to pass His purposes for me. He completes me. He completes my life. Not only does He begin His work in my life, but He also completes it. He follows through with His promises. He does everything that He says He will do. He will never let me down or take me only half way. He will take me all the way. If He said it – He will do it!

“God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?  Numbers 23:19 NKJV

The NIV says, “God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should change his mind. Does He speak and then not act? Does He promise and not fulfill?”

Not only can I trust Him – I can confidently trust Him – because He does not lie. He will fulfill His promises to me.

YOU BEGAN WITH THE SPIRIT – NOW STAY WITH THE SPIRIT

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

1 You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. 2 I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard? 3 Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort? Galatians 3:1-4 NIV

The apostle Paul went to the province of Galatia to minister to the Galatians, to preach to them the Good News. He came to help them to leave the old life of sin and bondage behind them and to live their new life in the liberty of the Holy Spirit. He suffered many persecutions to bring them the Gospel and he also invested many precious hours praying for them and teaching them and helping them. He felt responsible for them and protective of them as if they were his very own children – which they were, in the Lord.

There were a group of Christians, converted from Judaism, who had not left the law and self-efforts and work-programs behind them. They preached that circumcision was necessary for salvation – even for the gentile converts -and they sowed confusion and bondage wherever they went. This made Paul very angry, because the Galatians were saved and free in Jesus, but now these Judaizers were trying to place a yoke of bondage back on them. Paul writes a letter to the Galatians to try to provoke and compel them to come back from law and bondage to grace and faith.

15 “We who are Jews by birth and not `Gentile sinners’ 16 know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified.  Galatians 2:15-16 NIV

Those who were Jews by birth were descendants of the Jewish nation and of Jewish parents. The Galatians were the “Gentile sinners.”  When Paul refers to them as “sinners,” he is not questioning their morality, but rather he is referring to their non-observance of the law. They were brought up worshipping idols, without any knowledge of God or of the law. The Christian Jews knew that there is no distinction between Jews and Gentiles as far as their salvation is concerned – it is all by faith, not by inheritance or works. Because it is by faith, they are all on equal ground with God.

17 “If, while we seek to be justified in Christ, it becomes evident that we ourselves are sinners, does that mean that Christ promotes sin? Absolutely not! 18 If I rebuild what I destroyed, I prove that I am a lawbreaker. Galatians 2:17-18 NIV

If we acknowledge that we must be justified by faith in Christ, but we find that we also need to be circumcised, then what we are really saying is that what Christ did is not good enough – it was not a complete work. We are saying that we are not really saved after all and we make ourselves to be sinners again. How can Christ’s redemptive work make us a sinner again? And yet that is what you say when you say that something other than the blood of Jesus is essential for salvation.

This line of human reasoning stems from the belief that God is not pleased with us unless we DO something to earn our salvation, when all along God is telling us that the only thing that pleases Him about us, is our FAITH. The law has been abolished by the death of Christ. If someone acts like a Jew and imposes the observance of the law – which has been abolished – on the Gentiles, then they are building again the things that they destroyed and, in this way, they make themselves transgressors once again, undoing their justification by faith in Christ.

Christ does not promote sin in releasing us from bondage only to bring us back under a legalistic system. We become the transgressor when we revert from Christ back to legalism. The law makes us conscious of sin, but the law gives us no power to overcome sin. The law cannot make us acceptable to God, therefore we must turn from the law altogether.

19 For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.  Galatians 2:19-20 NIV

I was in Christ when the law executed Him in my place. In Christ, I died to the law and paid the penalty of the broken law and in so doing, died to the law – the law has no further claim on me. When Christ arose, I arose with Him, and now I might live unto God. I was crucified with Him and I live with Him. It is not really my life – it is His life that I am a partaker of. I have died to the old life and have risen to a new life. My new life is a life of faith in Christ. Galatians 3:11 says, “The righteous will live by faith.” I will place my trust in Him alone, not my own efforts, for it is His grace and His mercy and His blood that has saved my soul and my life.

PUT YOUR HOPE IN GOD

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for You, O God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? 3 My tears have been my food day and night, while men say to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 4 These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go with the multitude, leading the procession to the house of God, with shouts of joyand thanksgiving among the festive throng.

5 Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and 6 my God.

My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember You from the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon–from Mount Mizar. 7 Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. 8 By day the LORD directs His love, at night His song is with me–a prayer to the God of my life. 9 I say to God my Rock, “Why have You forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?” 10 My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 11 Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God. Psalms 42:1-11 NIV

King David was a man who was hungry and thirsty for God. He had a great reverence and respect for the presence of God. Even when he became a great king, he continued to humble himself before the Lord and give God all the glory and honor. He went through hard times just as all of us do, but he kept his heart right before the Lord. He made mistakes and wrong choices, he even committed murder in his quest to cover his sin of adultery, but he was quick to repent when God confronted him.

Through his lifetime, he endured a lot of persecution and hardship. Even though he was God’s anointed, he had to run for his life – first from Saul and then from his own son – and live in caves. There were many times when he felt miserable, abandoned and neglected. However, he maintained his relationship with the Lord by praising and worshipping Him and by rejoicing in His Word and His goodness. Because he continued to praise God in the good times and the bad – God protected him and delivered him – even though he was chased and threatened, his enemies never could get the victory over him. He knew Who his Rock was – he knew Who watched over him, protected him and provided for him on a daily basis.

For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. 10 He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. 11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.  1 Thessalonians 5:9-11 NIV

We need to encourage each other and ourselves in the Lord. We need to remind each other that, as we honor Him, God is on our side. We need to tell our soul – our mind, will and emotions – how they feel and not allow them to dictate how we feel. We need to control our feelings and not let them control us. Your feelings are inconsistent and unreliable – they change with the weather; they get offended; they don’t naturally display the fruit of the Spirit. Your Spirit needs to take control over your flesh and your feelings and tell them what to do and feel. Tell yourself to be joyful and cheerful. Tell yourself to rejoice. Begin to praise the Lord and your feelings will come into line.

Even if you feel bad, if you make your face smile, you will already feel better. Doctors say that smiling and laughing causes a chemical reaction in your body that makes you feel much better than you did before. But God already knew that a long time ago. He knows that as we praise Him and as we rejoice, we will begin to throw off our mourning clothes and put on robes of rejoicing. As you praise your feelings feel better. You were created to praise God and that is why you feel so good when you do it. God inhabits the praises of His people. When you praise, He shows up and when He shows up, the devil departs in a hurry. He cannot hang around in the presence of God – he cannot function in an atmosphere of praise.

Why do you think that he tries so hard to prevent you from praising God? He tries to convince you that you can’t do anything unless you “feel” like it. He tries to make you feel shy and embarrassed about praising God. But when you get a revelation of how much God loves you and that He is on your side – even when your circumstances are really, really bad – you can begin to praise Him and see His hand move on your behalf to change your situation. Don’t wait to feel good before you choose to praise God. Tell your feelings what they should feel, begin to praise God, and then see His mighty works in your life!

THE SEPARATOR

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Then Jesus said, I came into this world for judgment [as a Separator, in order that there may be separation between those who believe on Me and those who reject Me], to make the sightless see and to make those who see become blind.  John 9:39 AMP

For thus it stands in Scripture: Behold, I am laying in Zion a chosen (honored), precious chief Cornerstone, and he who believes in Him [who adheres to, trusts in, and relies on Him] shall never be disappointed or put to shame. 7 To you then who believe (who adhere to, trust in, and rely on Him) is the preciousness; but for those who disbelieve [it is true], The [very] Stone which the builders rejected has become the main Cornerstone, 8 And, A Stone that will cause stumbling and a Rock that will give [men] offense; they stumble because they disobey and disbelieve [God’s] Word, as those [who reject Him] were destined (appointed) to do.  1 Peter 2:6-8 AMP

Jesus is Who He is. When Moses asked God what His Name was so that he could tell Pharaoh Who had sent him, God told him to tell them that the Name of the One Who had sent him was “I am that I am!” Jesus is the Son of God. He was with God in the beginning. He was there when the earth was created. He knows Who He is and He is not shy or ashamed of it. He is equal with God. If you have seen Jesus, you have seen the Father. It is no secret that He was born into the body of a man through the womb of a virgin. He walked and lived as a man and died as a man to cut an unbreakable covenant between God and man. He was raised from the dead after He defeated the enemy, and He lives now, seated on the right hand of the Father.

Those who believe on Him will live forever in His presence. Those who do not will die without Him and spend eternity in torment in hell. He cannot be both a chief Cornerstone AND a rock of offense – He is either one or the other. However, in the hearts of men, He is different things to different people. Jesus is always the same – but whatever you believe about Him – that is what He will be to you. In other words, He is to you whatever you make of Him. If you choose to believe Him, your eyes will be opened to see the truth, but if you reject Him, you are destined to walk in darkness and confusion. You will be living in darkness and believing a lie.

For the son dishonors the father, the daughter rises up against her mother, the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law–a man’s enemies are the men (members) of his own house.  Micah 7:6 AMP

Therefore, everyone who acknowledges Me before men and confesses Me [out of a state of oneness with Me], I will also acknowledge him before My Father Who is in heaven and  confess [that I am abiding in] him. 33 But whoever denies and disowns Me before men, I also will deny and disown him before My Father Who is in heaven. 34 Do not think that I have come to bring peace upon the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I have come to part asunder a man from his father, and a daughter from her mother, and a newly married wife from her mother-in-law–36 And a man’s foes will be they of his own household. 37 He who loves [and takes more pleasure in] father or mother more than [in] Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves [and takes more pleasure in] son or daughter more than [in] Me is not worthy of Me; 38 And he who does not take up his cross and follow Me [cleave steadfastly to Me, conforming wholly to My example in living and, if need be, in dying also] is not worthy of Me. 39 Whoever finds his [lower] life will lose it [the higher life], and whoever loses his [lower] life on My account will find it [the higher life]  Matthew 10:32-39 AMP

There is a separation between those who accept and love the Father and Jesus, His Son, Whom He sent to pay the price for you and for me. Even within families, there is a separation. On earth, family relationships are the strongest bonds that we have. However, the only thing that matters in eternity is who we chose to serve here on earth. If we compromise what we believe to please our family and to make life more comfortable for ourselves, we may lose our own life and burn in hell forever, but if we choose to serve Jesus over the objections and even persecution, rejection and emotional blackmail of family and friends – the people we care about – we will find the higher life and live with Jesus in eternity.