Joseph Herrin (02-03-2010)
Perhaps you have noted the tiniest hint of frustration in my recent posts. Okay, maybe there has been a LOT of frustration. Do you know that our heavenly Father will at times drive us to frustration that we might begin to cry out for that which is lacking in our life? Quite often the Father will expose our utter inadequacy to perform His will that we might press in to receive that which we need.
Consider Solomon as a recently coronated king. His father had been a mighty man of war and valor. David was greatly respected for his wise counsel, his heart after God, and his faith. David had greatly expanded the borders of Israel and had subjugated many nations under his rule. Imagine the pressure upon Solomon to fill the large shoes that his father left behind. I can well understand the desperation in Solomon’s heart when he spoke the following to Yahweh.
I Kings 3:6-9
And Solomon said: “You have shown great mercy to Your servant David my father, because he walked before You in truth, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart with You; You have continued this great kindness for him, and You have given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is this day. Now, O Yahweh my God, You have made Your servant king instead of my father David, but I am a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in. And Your servant is in the midst of Your people whom You have chosen, a great people, too numerous to be numbered or counted. Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?”
Have you ever come to a place where God has set before you some task that you know that in yourself you are totally inadequate to perform. This was Moses’ situation when the Father appeared to him at the burning bush (The picture at the top of this article is a reference to that Scriptural event.)
God was sending Moses to deliver the people of Israel from bondage. Moses had attempted to accomplish this deliverance in his own power forty years earlier, and he failed miserably. Moses slew one Egyptian and then fled for his life. He set no one free. Moses reasoned with God, “You’ve got the wrong man. I cannot even speak. No one will listen to my words. I am a nobody. I have no abilities that will commend me to this task.”
All that Moses said was true. He had no skills, or abilities that made him indispensable to God. He had nothing that Yahweh needed. But Yahweh doesn’t need anything, does He?
I believe the burning bush was a prophetic parable that God set before Moses. The burning bush signified a man of the wilderness clothed with the power of God, even the Spirit of burning. Even as a bush lacks the stature of a tree, being lowly, so too was Moses a humble man. Yahweh intended to place His power upon this man, power of such magnitude as had never been witnessed before. An ordinary man would have burst into flames of destruction by the experience of such power. Pride would have consumed them. They would have been left as smoking cinders, destroyed by the very power that the soul of many a man would covet greatly. Moses, however, was not an ordinary man.
Now the man Moses was very humble, more than all men who were on the face of the earth.
Moses was extraordinary in this one area. He was lowly. He thought very humbly of himself, and his abilities. Moses recognized that before both God and man he had nothing to boast. It would require such a man to be able to bear the power and authority of Yahweh. God intended to accomplish a profound work through Moses. He would bring Israel forth from the most powerful nation on earth, having spoiled the Egyptians of their wealth, and humbled them in all their strength.
God has another great work to perform in this hour. It will require a manifestation of His power such as the world has not witnessed. What will occur will be an unusual sight. Men who have grown callous to the word of God due to the powerlessness of the church, will once more turn aside and stand in fear and awe of what God will accomplish.
Moses turned aside, for what he observed in the bush that burned yet was not consumed, was an unusual sight. Truly, the world has rarely witnessed such a spectacle.
Any man passing by this lowly bush before it was set ablaze would not have even considered it. The bush would not have rated a second glance. Many an eye that fell upon it would not even note its presence. Such was the experience of Moses before God endued him with power. He was just an aging man in the wilderness tending a flock of sheep. There was nothing glorious about him, and as Moses declared to God, there was no reason that Pharaoh, or even the leaders of Israel, should pay him any attention.
A lowly bush in a wilderness seems hardly worthy of note. However, a bush that is set aflame and not consumed, that will cause a man to turn back and investigate this phenomenal sight.
As I was in jail recently, I observed carefully the men who shared this prison home with me. I noted how careless they were concerning their souls. These were men who had transgressed and were suffering the consequences. Few were repentant. Most railed against those who had put them in jail. Many of the men were habitual offenders.
Strangely (or perhaps not), a significant portion of these men professed belief in Christ. They would attend chapel services whenever they were held. Time and again I heard some minister ask these men in chapel, “Is there anyone here who is not saved?” No one would raise a hand. He would then say, “So everyone here is a Christian?” The men would murmur their assent and many hands would be raised. The minister would then say, “Praise God. That is good news.”
These same men who testified of being saved would leave the chapel service and return to their habits of speaking obscenities, watching filth on television, gambling during their breaks, and speaking all manner of carnal and unrighteous things. All the while, these men willfully deceived themselves into thinking that they were immune from the wrath and judgment of God because they had spoken a word of belief in Christ.
Oftentimes the Scripture would rise up in my mind, “Be not deceived. You will reap what you sow.” Yet, I understood that there was not a man present who would change His ways simply by hearing the Scriptures proclaimed to them. Sin had too great of a hold upon them. Only one thing would suffice. There was only one thing these men understood and respected. POWER! And they did not see it in the church.
The church has displayed to the world such an insipid, weak, ineffectual, lethargic, futile, impotent religion, that men no longer pay heed to the testimony of professing believers. The church has demonstrated by example that they are powerless over sin. Ministers have developed doctrines that leave men in the chains and bondage of their fleshly habits, persuading them that they need not trouble themselves to overcome. These false doctrines encourage men to lead dissipated lives by promising them heaven apart from sanctification. The apostle Paul prophesied of these days:
II Timothy 3:1-5
But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God; holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; and avoid such men as these.
One day while I was in jail I came across the following quote:
There pass the careless people
Who call their souls their own.
Here by the road I loiter
How idle and alone.
Truly, all around me I saw careless men. This carelessness springs from men thinking they are masters of their own souls. They do not consider that they must give an account of every deed done in the flesh. How lonely is the one who would declare that man was created for the pleasure of God.
I Corinthians 6:20
For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.
As I looked at these men, observing their bondage and knowing the end result of their course, I began to cry out to the Father to have mercy on them. I entreated Yahweh, pleading on behalf of such ones. I reminded my Father that these men had been deceived by false shepherds, and they had never witnessed an example of overcoming Christianity. I asked the Father to reveal Himself in power to them that they might both fear Him and have courage to believe that He will deliver them completely from the sin that binds them.
I have written previously of the necessity of obtaining this power in order to accomplish the will of the Father. Both Christ and His disciples walked in great power, observed both outwardly and inwardly. In an article I wrote back in 2003 I shared the following:
And Yahshua returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about Him spread through all the surrounding district.
And amazement came upon them all, and they began talking with one another saying, “What is this message? For with authority and power He commands the unclean spirits and they come out.”
One day He was teaching; and there were some Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting there, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem; and the power of the Lord was present for Him to perform healing.
And all the people were trying to touch Him, for power was coming from Him and healing them all.
Yahshua understood that this power was necessary to accomplish the task assigned to Him. He walked in great power, and He gave this same power to His disciples, for they too needed it to advance the Kingdom of God.
And He called the twelve together, and gave them power and authority over all the demons and to heal diseases. And He sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to perform healing.
This power continued after Pentecost as the Spirit rested in power upon the apostles and other saints. Yahshua commanded the church to not try to do the works of the Father apart from this power. He instructed them with great earnestness to wait for the endowment of power to come upon them. They were not to attempt to do the works of God in the strength of the flesh. They were to receive heavenly power.
“And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.“
He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.”
Only AFTER the power of the Holy Spirit had come upon them would the disciples of Christ be able to go forth as His witnesses to the world. The early church knew great growth and advancement because she had great power, and this is seen throughout the New Testament. The book of Acts is a book of power…
The Jewish leaders threatened Peter and John to no longer preach in the name of Yahshua the Messiah, and, in response to the threats of these men, the saints prayed that God would give them even more power and even greater boldness to walk as witnesses of Christ.
“And now, Lord, take note of their threats, and grant that Your bond-servants may speak Your word with all confidence, while You extend Your hand to heal, and signs and wonders take place through the name of Your holy servant Yahshua.” And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak the word of God with boldness.
Notice that the saints did not merely ask God to give them boldness to preach the gospel. They asked that Yahweh would extend His hand to heal and to grant signs and wonders to take place. Why do we not ask for the same today?
We live in an age of hardened people and the church itself has become hardened against the will and mind of Christ. How futile it is for ministers today to speak truth to such a skeptical and wayward body of believers. True ministers everywhere need to cry out for a return of power to their ministries. How unusual would today’s ministries appear to the apostles of old as they observed the lack of power. The apostles of old would surely get down on their knees and pray for the power of the Holy Spirit to be granted to today’s ministers before they would encourage them to lift a finger to perform the will of God. Paul spoke of this power that was present in his own ministry.
I Corinthians 2:4-5
And my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God.
Ministers today have a need for people to witness the power of God that their faith should also rest upon a firm foundation. Paul also relied upon this witness of power to silence those who were detractors of his calling and ministry. He used it to prove who were true and false ministers.
I Corinthians 4:19-20
But I will come to you soon, if the Lord wills, and I shall find out, not the words of those who are arrogant but their power. For the kingdom of God does not consist in words but in power.
People of God, my recent frustration has been in great part due to my recognition that I do not have the power to accomplish the things God would call me to. This was testified to me by way of a parable when I was released from jail. My daughter picked me up and took me to pick up my van. (Vehicles symbolize ministries.) My van, being a small motorhome, has two batteries in it.
When I tried to crank the van it would not start. There was no power at all, not even the slightest amount, for when I turned on the interior lights they did not glow even dimly. I hooked the van up to my daughter’s car with jumper cables, but there was still not the slightest power getting to the starter, or to any other part of the van. I knew that I had a bigger problem than a drained battery, and suspected that one of the batteries was faulty.
I took both batteries out of the van and hooked them to a charger and one of them indicated that it had a fault. A couple days later my daughter took me to the auto parts store to purchase a replacement.
About a year earlier I had done some research into car batteries as I was looking at solar powered systems, and I found that one particular line of batteries was rated above all others. It was considered the gold standard, being both extremely powerful, as well as durable. This line of batteries is called Optima, and they are Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) cell batteries. They are also more expensive than other batteries. (There is a high cost to obtaining power.)
As we approached the auto parts store I was considering whether I should spend the money for the best battery. At that moment we drove past a bank clock and the time read 5:23. The Father has often used these numbers in combination to denote to me His grace for provision. The only thing I had left to verify is that these more powerful batteries would fit in my van, for the battery sits in a very confined space. Sure enough, it was a perfect fit and I took home a new Optima battery.
As we left the store and passed the bank clock again, it read 5:55. This is abundant grace, and I had a strong witness that the Father was testifying to me that it was His intent to reveal His power in His sons, and to grant His power to accomplish this ministry.
After installing the battery the van cranked right up. The starter sounded stronger than ever, and did not hesitate at all.
People of God, I sense that the Father would have His sons and daughters to walk in a greater power in these coming days. When Joseph was brought up out of the prison, he was granted power and authority BEFORE he was sent out across the land.
I am very much discerning the absence of this power in my life. The anointing is power, and the anointing is needed to know the will of the Father and to perform the will of the Father. The Spirit of Christ has been revealing to me my inadequacy. I cannot even begin preparations for the things He is calling me to do apart from receiving His anointing. My natural mind is insufficient to know what to do, or how to accomplish anything. Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build do labor in vain.
The Spirit is testifying to me that the thing that is most needful now is for me to tarry before Him until I be endued with power from on high. I am therefore going to seek a place alone with God, undistracted from posting blogs and answering e-mails, with the attitude to keep on asking, keep on knocking, and keep on seeking until I receive that one thing that is most necessary.
“And I say to you, ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it shall be opened. Now suppose one of you fathers is asked by his son for a fish; he will not give him a snake instead of a fish, will he? Or if he is asked for an egg, he will not give him a scorpion, will he? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?“
Please continue with me in prayer. I ask you to be understanding of the reason that I must once more be away from the computer for a season. Truly, there is something I lack and find most needful at this hour, and I must seek it from my Father.
May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days.
Note: Immediately after posting this I was praying in my heart for the Father to confirm this immediate direction in my life, that He would have me to wait upon Him to receive His power. I went to check my e-mail, and there was but one e-mail written to me. The sister who wrote it shared the following Scripture (this was sent before my article posted).
Mighty are the ways of our God. Hallelu-YAH!
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