Friday, December 24, 2010

Stop the Gimmicks! Prayer Still Works!

FASTING and PRAYER – It still works!

To GOD be the glory! Over the last few weeks, God has been dealing with the Body of Christ about gimmicks. The church has certainly adopted too many rituals and rules without the stamp of approval from the Father. As “Christian” television gets more and more worldly and spooky, one must sit back and wonder why we can’t just stick to the word. Must everything be so deep and mysterious?

We’ve all heard the games… Power comes by giving your last $250 to the pastor. Or perhaps from having hands laid on you by someone else who appears to have a gift. Yet, we continue to wonder why the church is powerless. We continue having “miracle” and “healing” services where no miracles or healing takes place. How long?

Paul warned Timothy that times such as these would come. He warned him that he should never adopt any doctrine that differs from what he’d been taught (1 Timothy 1:2-4; 6:2-4). Yet, the church continues to buy into the new ideologies that are flashed before us.

The power of the Holy Ghost DOES NOT come from money. The gifts cannot be bought or purchased. The power of God does not show up just because we raise our voices louder or are able to entice a crowd. Dancing, shouting and crying will never move God like a true heart of repentance. Believe it or not, PRAYER STILL WORKS! God has been saying that now for months. Church, we must get back to prayer…not just the act every now and then, but a lifestyle of prayer, which is consistent communion with God. That prayer must then be coupled with fasting, which strengthens the Spirit of God working through us and teaches us self-control.

In the book of Mark, chapter 9, the Bible tells us of a young man possessed by a demon. The disciples, who walked and talked with Jesus, were unable to cast out the demon. After Jesus rebuked the spirit, they asked their Teacher of the reason for their failure. His response was simple…

17And one of the multitude answered and said, Master, I have brought unto thee my son, which hath a dumb spirit;
18And wheresoever he taketh him, he teareth him: and he foameth, and gnasheth with his teeth, and pineth away: and I spake to thy disciples that they should cast him out; and they could not.
19He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him unto me.
20And they brought him unto him: and when he saw him, straightway the spirit tare him; and he fell on the ground, and wallowed foaming.
21And he asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? And he said, Of a child.
22And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us.
23Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.
24And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.
25When Jesus saw that the people came running together, he rebuked the foul spirit, saying unto him, Thou dumb and deaf spirit, I charge thee, come out of him, and enter no more into him.
26And the spirit cried, and rent him sore, and came out of him: and he was as one dead; insomuch that many said, He is dead.
27But Jesus took him by the hand, and lifted him up; and he arose.
28And when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately, Why could not we cast him out?
29And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.

Yes, prayer still works. Some things come only as a result of prayer and fasting. Too many of us are trying to walk in the power of God without sitting in the presence of God. It cannot work. You cannot have fruit without the tree, and you can’t have a tree that bears good fruit without strong roots. What are the roots? They are the foundation. Our foundation must be built on FAITH, which comes only by the Word of God!

God is calling us “back to the basics!” There are no formulas and 12-step solutions to effective ministries. We are not a people called to follow signs, but signs and wonders should follow us as a sign to them that do NOT believe. Where did that get twisted?

People of God, the spirit of anti-christ is very much alive in the church today. The devil himself graces many pulpits each Sunday morning. Why? Because we are impressed by entertainment and shows rather than the anointing. We like to hear a good pep talk, even if the promises never come pass.

Think about it… We have established “Schools of the Prophets” that teach people how to read minds and body gestures, but fail to teach worship. These things ought not be so!

My spirit is vexed every time I hear the “prophetic interview.”

Do you have children?
- No
I see children. Hmmm… Perhaps it’s another child in your family.
- I have a little sister, but that’s it.
Yes, it’s your little sister. Praise God. Does she live with you?
- No
Amen. I sense that in the spirit. She lives with another family member, then?
- Yes
God is getting ready to do something great for your little sister, but you are not forgotten.

STOP IT!!! Either God is speaking or He isn’t! Say what God says or be silent. We are using the methods practiced by psychics to “prophesy” in God’s house. The devil is a liar! Church, we cannot continue teaching witchcraft and sorcery. We cannot continue to fall for every trick of the enemy. YOU CANNOT HAVE POWER WITHOUT COMMUNION WITH GOD! Your ministry is not pleasing to Him if you do not have a lifestyle of PRAYER AND FASTING…. Period!

Look around… We have more ministries endorsed by “apostles” and leaders that have never met their “followers” than we do those who have actually been sent and commissioned, according to the Word of God, with hands laid on them. What is going on? Ordination on the internet and by mail… People claiming spiritual mothers and fathers they’ve never even met… With all this anointing, there is NO excuse for anyone to be claiming a call outside the guidelines given in the word of God. There are over 6 billion people on this earth. Surely, two or three of them should be able to vouch for your “anointing” and call to ministry (Proverbs 27:2; Acts 13:3).

The help books are useless. The self-help tapes and CD’s are a wasted investment. Travelling to 50 cities in 3 months with your “titled” leader will do you NO good if you do not have a relationship with God. Let’s get back to the basics!

If you want to see signs and wonders, fast and pray. It still works! Selah.

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