A phrase being thrown around in Christian circles today is “Hyper grace.”
Grace can be “hyper” to Christians who are not in need of hyper grace but from my perspective I need all the grace I can get !
Let’s examine the doctrine of grace in a hyper grace mode shall we?
Hyper means to be really active with energy and grace (charis in the Greek) according to the Bible is the divine influence on the heart which is freely given not by merit but by God’s sovereign power.
In other words grace is the enabling power of the Holy Spirit to help those born of God to be over comers of this world through faith since grace works through faith.
Well, what do you know! Energetic active grace by God’s Holy Spirit enables Christians to be over-comers! What are we supposed to be overcoming? Scriptures tell us it’s the world, the devil AND the flesh or ungodly desires of the soul realm and body.
So if anybody ever needed hyper grace it would be the hyper sinner! True grace is active with God’s energy. Just so you know all life operates by energy and even scientists don’t fully understand it.
As Christians we know that scriptures tell us that all things are held together by God’s power or energy.
Grace is activated by faith so if you need God’s grace to over come in this life then call on him to extend his grace to you. God’s grace will energize your heart to trust him to do what he has promised in his word to do.
If scriptures say that there is no power that can take you out of the Lord’s hand then that’s a fact. If scriptures say that you are more than a conqueror through Jesus Christ who strengthens you then that’s a fact. If scriptures tell you that grace abounds to the sinner then that’s a fact!
Next time some one tells you that you belong to the hyper grace camp just smile and nod because God’s grace is the active power of his Holy Spirit that will give you victory over every sin and every demonic attack. All you have to do is believe through faith in that fact and God will work his grace into your life!
I think the Lord was trying to make a statement like, “I have now cleansed the land.”
Repentance will often lead to tears of sorrow. The salt in our tears are heart cleansing so after a good heart wrenching cry of repentance the soul is cleansed by God.
Our tears also have a physical effect on our body. Scientific studies have shown that tears help the body recover from stress by excreting excess proteins and the cortisol hormone which can be damaging to the body in excess. Emotional tears also release endorphins responsible for reducing pain and improving mood.
Salt cleanses from disease. Our bodies have a perfect balance of salt and water. If we don’t have enough salt in our system then disease may rear it’s ugly head. It’s the same with sin. Sin is a deadly disease. Not only can it kill physically but it can kill spiritually.
That is why the Lord calls his church to be the salt of the earth. As long as God’s people are here there is healing and salvation. But what happens if the salt looses its saltiness? Sin creeps into society and the world becomes perverted. Only salt purifies and preserves.
The ungodly can trod all over the world when there is an unsalty church and that is why we are exhorted by the Lord to be like salt. Be life preserving. Bring the salt to a sin infected world. Bring to others the cleansing of repentance and faith in Jesus Christ.
Many of us know that the seed of God’s word falling on thorny ground does not grow properly because of being choked out by the desire for this world’s goods.
What we don’t take a closer look at is that the seed of God’s word gets drown out also by the cares of this life or merimna in the Greek that translates as distractions.
While we may not be trying to climb the ladder of success in order to get rich or living to gratify our bodily appetites what we do a lot of is let distractions get in the way of our spiritual life.
Yes, this seems to be the big issue we face day to day in trying to maintain a close walk with the Lord.
Satan is a clever rascal. He knows that we probably are not going to buy into get rich quick schemes or raid the fridge to eat all of the left over birthday cake, (after all we have some restraint) but what he does and does a lot is distract us.
Distractions come in various forms. Talking too long on the phone when we are supposed to be praying, watching too many videos instead of reading the word, spending too much time in fellowship with people instead of in communion with the Holy Spirit.
We all do it and then we wonder what happened ! Where is God? Where is his presence? Did I do something wrong?
Well, yeah! We just ignored the Holy Spirit who was tugging at our heart and continued to get carried away with distractions.
Alright! I get it Lord Jesus! Losing a sense of God’s presence is like the hammer that has to fall on my head before I come to my senses.
Now, I’m listening Lord. Distractions! That’s what it is! Dialing heaven for self control!
It’s all a matter of priorities. Do we want to be a vessel ready for the Lord’s use ? Then it means giving up more than just pursuing worldly affairs. It means not letting distractions of life drown out God’s voice. Not letting even seemingly harmless things become more important than our time with God.
Unless we draw from the Holy Spirit in our prayer closet and fill our hearts with his word we will end up being only spiritual duds. All talk and no action. All religion and no anointing.
Distractions drown out the word of God sown by the Holy Spirit into our heart and that’s what we have to be on guard for. Old slew foot knows that distractions are his most powerful weapon against a Christian pursuing after God.
So we just have to say no to his sneaky agenda and ignore those distractions when they come our way. If there is one thing that Satan is afraid of it’s a prayed up filled with the word of God daily Christian.
With the Lord’s help we can make those distractions take a back seat and wait for us.
Don’t let distractions choke out your spiritual destiny!
We are called to be servants of Jesus Christ and stewards of the gospel. “If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him. ” John 12:26
A servant of Jesus Christ is a faithful follower who dutifully serves him. What did Jesus mean by serve? It means to perform our duties. In other words, the Lord expects us to perform our responsibilities as his disciples that are set out in scriptures according to our own individual gifts and calling.
Since each of us are different and have been given different mandates according to the will of God then we must be faithful to perform all the directives he has given to each of us personally as well as corporately.
A steward is a caretaker of another’s property. Since we are not our own but bought with a price, redeemed by the Lord, all he has given to us, whether; family, friends, church, business, and other responsibilities, belong to him.
Therefore, he expects us to treat those responsibilities as an extension of his grace to us and be good stewards for him in those gifts of grace. ” As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.” 1 Peter 4:10
Nowadays this is not a popular message even among Christians because the natural minded person wants to live for themselves and follow after their own path. The carnal nature desires things that bring comfort and glory to the flesh which in reality is basically selfish motivation.
Quite the contrary, Jesus said that if we want to be considered a spiritual giant in his kingdom then we must be willing to be last, hidden, and sometimes even get no thanks for the performance for our duties. When we submit to the plan of God in this life we are in effect laying up treasures in the next life.
“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ. ” Colossians 3:23,24
“The greatest among you shall be your servant.” Matthew 23:11
“For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Jesus Christ. ” Galatians 1:10
The only real freedom is to be IN Jesus Christ and be found having his righteousness, not our own. Our plans needs to be in line with Jesus’ plan for our lives which always have as a central theme the extension of his glorious kingdom.
We are called as good stewards to be hid in Jesus Christ and not going about doing our own thing. We are not our own scriptures tell us ! We have been bought with a price!
The servant and steward have been given Jesus Christ’s authority to fulfill all his will, not our will. The Lord’s agenda must be our agenda! The Lord’s will must be our will!
As good stewards of the kingdom of God we are called to glorify God in all that we do!
Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work. ” John 4:23
Are you ready to make Jesus Christ your King today?
“Who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. ” Philippians 2:6,7
It’s interesting to note that the very first miracle that Jesus did was to turn the water into wine. The significance of this is that in order for God to pour forth his new wine from earthen clay vessels (there were 6 clay pots. 6 is the number in scriptures that represent mankind) they had to be filled with water first.
Water scripturally speaking represents the word of God.
In other words one must receive the word of God and then be made alive unto God through his living word, the logos made flesh. This is the regeneration process of the Holy Spirit or the born again experience.
The old clay pot of ours after we put our trust in Jesus Christ for salvation is miraculously filled with his living water and then that living water is turned into wine! (Which in scriptures represents the manifestation of the Holy Spirit.)
When the water becomes wine it is meant to be poured out so that others may taste and see that the Lord Jesus is good!
Wine left in the clay pot vessel doesn’t bring blessings to others. Wine must be served from earthen vessels to those who are invited to the wedding banquet of the lamb.
Having tasted the old wine or worldly experience the recipients can now taste the new wine through God’s earthen vessels.
Then the recipient must decide whether they want to partake of the wine of God’s Holy Spirit. Remember it is those who eat the bread of life and partake of the divine nature who are saved and not just tasting of the powers to come.
If your earthen vessel has been filled with the water of the word and changed into the new wine of the Holy Spirit then you can be used of God as a vessel to pour forth that new wine to others.
The first miracle Jesus wants to do in your life is to turn the water that you received at the new birth into wine. Once you are filled with the Holy Spirit then (as the life of Jesus continues in the book of John), even greater works will you do because Jesus has given to you his Holy Spirit.
God wants to use your clay pot and pour out his new wine from your vessel. Scriptures exhort us to”Be filled with the Spirit!” because only vessels filled with the Holy Spirit can pour forth God’s miracles!
In order to live a victorious life in Jesus Christ we must be watchman over our hearts.
This means being careful what we look at with our eyes and what we listen to with our ears. Unless we need to know information for the purpose of prayer scriptures tell us to be innocent concerning evil. In other words we don’t (unless specifically called to) fill our minds with specifics of demonic worldly activity.
The Bible says that as a man thinks in his heart so is he. ( Proverbs 23:7) The word for “think” in this scripture is translated as Shawar which means to split open or gatekeeper.
To paraphrase : as a man being a gate keeper over his mind so he is in his thinking and being.
The Bible tells us about gate keepers who were watchman that kept a look out for wolves and enemy attacks. When the gate keeper saw that an enemy was approaching he sounded the alarm which rallied the people to take up arms of defense.
Allegorically speaking this verse implies that whatever we let into our heart; that is mind, will, emotions or feelings is what will be the out come of our actions and the destiny of our life.
So if we watch and listen to worldly entertainment (enemy devices) then we will soon act and behave like what we are letting into our heart or soul. We will end up being worldly. No different than the unsaved. This is not God’s will for our lives. The Holy Spirit in his word has given us all the information that we need to live a holy life that is well pleasing to God.
The Bible tells us that Christians are to be separate from the world. We are called to think on good things that are godly and worthy of our Lord. The reason the Lord told us to meditate on his word day and night was so that we would be conformed to his word and not the world.
Putting on Christ is putting on the word of God for Jesus is the living word made flesh.
If we think God’s thoughts written in the Bible then we will think and act the way God wants us to act.
Worldly thoughts or worldly ideas are seeds that will grow into tares and choke out the word of God planted in our heart. We must be careful gatekeepers so that we can cast down all high and lofty thoughts exalting themselves against the knowledge of God and bring captive all our thoughts to line up with the truth of scriptures.
Christians who watch worldly programs become indoctrinated with worldly ideas. This is why many Christians live defeated lives. Listening to Satan’s worldly system keeps many bound to the world so that they become filled with unbelief and start to explain away the Bible.
The Bible tells us to cast down imaginations and high thoughts exalting themselves against the word of God. Misconceptions and distortions in our mind that do not agree with the Bible need to be cast down. In other words we don’t receive them and rather replace those thoughts with what God says in the Bible.
Satan always comes with his lies. Has God really said that? Are you sure he really meant that? Didn’t he really mean this?
If God said it in his word then it’s TRUE. Any voice disagreeing with the Bible is satan’s voice and we need to cast down those demonic thoughts!
If God says he is able to do exceedingly and abundantly above all that we can ask or think then that’s exactly what is true. If we are not living up to that standard then we need to examine ourselves as scriptures say. Are we really in the faith? Are we trusting and relying on God for everything or are we swaying like a reed in the wind? Tossed to and fro with a double mind. Limiting God so that he cannot do any mighty works in our life?
God’s word says that I am righteous because of Jesus Christ. God’s word says that I am more than a conqueror through Christ who loves me and gave himself for me. God’s word says I am the head and not the tail. God’s word says he will lead me in his ways and into his paths as I put my trust in him. God’s word says he came to give me an abundant life.
So who are we going to believe? Mr. Devil and his balcony or the word of the living God?
Victory is sure to those who have their minds transformed by God’s word for as we think in our hearts so shall we be.
Be a gatekeeper of your heart! Guard your heart with all diligence for out of your heart or spirit proceeds life. Don’t let the thief steal, kill and destroy you!
Put the word in your heart and then you will think like God wants you to think and act like God wants you to act and be what God wants you to be !
Jesus is the Rock. All who belong to him are secure in his strong fortress. In Jesus Christ the child of God can hide from the storm’s of life and be protected. Jesus the rock is a fortified place of refuge for the oppressed. A refuge from our enemies. When life tries to over whelm us then we can run to the rock that is mighty in strength.
In ancient Israel fortresses were made of Dolomite which is a sedimentary rock. Today it is called Jerusalem stone. Dolomite is resistant to erosion. It can handle heat, wind, and water without scratching or breaking. Dolomite is even acid resistant!
When the gates of hell target us then the Holy Spirit will leads us to the rock that is higher than our own strength and power. We can run to Jesus our rock of defense!
The key however, is to run to him. Don’t take matters into your own hands ! Don’t opt for deliverance by your own methods ! Rather look to the rock from which you were hewn!
Jesus is a mighty stronghold that will keep the storm from sweeping us away.
There is no power of hell that can breach the fortified rock of defense for those who put their trust in Jesus the rock. Run to the Rock and hide in him! No power on earth can remove you from him who is greater than all!
The Bible tells us that we are in a spiritual war. Not only with the devil but with our flesh or carnal nature. In order to fight that war we need supernatural weapons.
Ephesians 6 tells us that faith, truth, righteousness, salvation, the word of God , proclaiming the gospel and prayer are our weapons of war that are mighty through God to take down all enemy devices.
However, many times we try to use carnal weapons to fight a spiritual war. This strategy will always lead us to failure.
Let’s look at some of our carnal weapons so we will then be able to put our lives into proper perspective.
“When things get tough the tough get going.” Sounds like a plan right? Wrong. Bad plan. The Bible says that when we are weak then God can be strong on our behalf.
Recognizing our human limitations is the best way to come to a victory. When we acknowledge our inability, our weakness, our ignorance and humble ourselves before the Lord asking for his help in the situation we are always going to get the victory.
Oh, it may not come in the way that we expect because our pea brains don’t know what’s good for us but God knows. He has a plan. A master plan.
If we trust in our own directive we are sure to fall off a cliff but trusting in the Lord will bring us to the place that we need to be.
“It’s my way or the hyway.” Sounds like a plan? Yeah, I don’t think so. Self sufficiency always goes hand in hand with pride and we know where pride leads. Not a good place.
The key to conquering self will is to surrender to the Lord. But it’s too hard you may say. You don’t know my situation!
True but I do know one thing and that’s that the Lord knows your situation and he says in his word that nothing is impossible to those who put their trust in him.
So give up ! Toss aside the carnal weapon of self will and stubborn pride! Instead seek the Lord in prayer. He will always change the bad places into blessed places. God has promised and he never breaks a promise.
What about worry and fear? What carnal weapon do we use?
If you look at the Bible it clearly says fear and worry come from a lack of faith in God. Bottom line. I’m not going to soft soap it for you.
What about God’s remedy? Its reading the word to build up our faith. Seeking the Lord till he pours out his Holy Spirit power on you and delivers you. Basking in worship till you feel like a marshmallow. Sound like a plan? It is for those who choose to trust in the Lord above their circumstance or feelings.
The world will give you all kinds of carnal weapons to use in the day of trouble but God says that those who put there trust in him will never be disappointed. So who are you going to believe?
“I can handle this! ” I don’t know about you but that one never worked for me. If my hand’s in it …yeah…a flop.
God’s word tells us that if we put our plans aside and seek his wisdom to lead us then we will have success. Our ways are not God’s ways the bible says. What seems like a genius plan to us may not be to God and unless God builds our house it will end up sinking into the sand.
“I’ll show them ! “
Putting some one in their place usually ends up with me on my backside. I don’t recommend it.
Leaving vengeance to the Lord however will eventually lead us to coming out on top. Being the head is much better than being the tail.
The weapons of our warfare are not carnal weapons. They don’t work. Carnal weapons will always lead to disaster. It is written. It is written.
So put down your carnal weapons ! Take up the shield of faith, pray in the Holy Spirit and stand in the power of the Lord’s might. Stand on God’s word and you will be guaranteed the victory!
Ephesians 6 tells us to put on the full armor of God in order to stand against all the schemes of the devil. However, prior to that in verse 10 this scripture gives us a perquisite for that armor to be effective.
Before we are told to put on the full armour of God we are commanded to be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Let us examine this exhortation.
To be strong, according to the ancient Greek language, means to be able to perform feats of strength. That is having the power to move heavy weights or perform physically demanding tasks.
We are called to be strong, not in our own strength but in God’s power. Power in this verse is endowment. We are given by God through prayer his strength to perform tasks under his delegated authority.
So in effect we need the Lord’s empowerment to perform great feats of strength which we are commissioned by him to do.
We are called to be strong in the Lord with his mighty power, not reliance on our ability and resources but by his dumnis supernatural Holy Spirit power.
Power in this verse context means to be positioned in Jesus Christ’s supreme authority.
In other words we are to be strong in the Lord (positioned in his authority) and in the power of his might. Not just in authority but in power. Here is where many Christians miss it. They exercise authority in Jesus name but have not tapped in to Holy Spirit power.
Scriptures tell us that kind of teaching emphasizing form without power (concentration on our authority) has a form of knowledge but no power.
We can scream at the devil, demand that he jump to our command even using Jesus name and strut around in our Christian armor all we want but unless we have HOLY SPIRIT POWER to back up our claim its just a lot of noise.
Might in this verse is literally forcefulness which means to exert power,effort, strength stamina, exertion, pressure, to fight.
HIS MIGHT is the key. Not your might. Not your spiritual prowess or Biblical knowledge but through HIS MIGHT. This is because having Holy Spirit power requires surrender and that is just way too high a price for many Christians to pay.
Surrender to Holy Spirit requires death to self. Not just death to sin but death to self effort. Holy Spirit power requires depending on the Holy Spirit for everything. That’s why Paul said “If we live in the Spirit let us also walk in the Spirit.”
Many Christians are born again of the Spirit and live in the Spirit but they don’t walk in the Spirit. Walking is more than positional. Walking it is an action. To walk in the Spirit is to move in the Spirit in every thing that we do. To rely on Holy Spirit as our source for every thing in life. All our decisions and all our actions.
Putting it all together, Ephesians 6:10 says, to be STRONG IN THE LORD AND IN HIS MIGHTY POWER. This means to be positioned in his great power (with the ability to perform by the Holy Spirit)and having dominion (authority and jurisdiction of the government control of God’s Kingdom) and HIS MIGHT (possessing great and impressive power or strength, especially on account of size.)
THEN AFTER we are commissioned and empowered with the Lord’s strength for battle, we can put on the full armor of God.
No soldier goes out to battle without a commission and back up of military power. This is the same with the soldier in God’s army.
When we are delegated athourity to exercise power to perform tasks of strength then we are able to go into battle.
Ephesians 6 tells us that once we are commissioned with delegated power and strength we are to then put on the whole armor of God so that we are able to stand against the wiles of the devil and his principalities and powers of whom we wage war with or wrestle.
Our battle according to this chapter in Ephesians 6 takes place in the spiritual realm or high places of wickedness and our use of Spiritual weapons provided for us by God are demonstrated through the function of prayer. We are battling demonic powers and therefore we need God’s supernatural power in this battle.
We are called to be constant in prayer with all kinds of prayer; supplications, petitions, intercessions, declarations , praying the word, praying in tongues. This constant prayer life is for the purpose of being watchful over the saints. It is also for praying that souls be saved. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-28)
Lastly, after we have done all through prayer and what God shows us to do then we are called to stand in faith.
This is another area we miss it. If we don’t see a manifestation right away or answered prayer in our time schedule we give up. We should never give up but trust God in faith that he will do what he has promised to do in his timing and in is way.
BE STRONG IN THE LORD AND THE POWER OF HIS MIGHT and put on the full armor of God then you will be able to stand against all the schemes of the devil. Keep standing for victory is guaranteed to those who put their confidence in the Lord Jesus Christ.