TRUE WORSHIPPERS

My Worship

Foundation Scriptures: John 4:19-24

The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship.” 21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”  
John 4:19-24 NKJV

1. The differences between Old Testament worship and New Testament worship.

  • Everything changed after the Cross, Resurrection, and Pentecost.
  • 2 Timothy 2:15 NKJV—Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
  • What changed everything? The veil of the temple was torn in two (Matthew 27:51), the Holy Spirit came out of the earthly tabernacle, made by the hands of man, to come and live in our hearts. We are His temple, made by His hands.
  • True worship comes from the heart.

2. We can learn a lesson from the children of Israel.

  • Exodus 32:1-8
  • While Moses was in the Glory, they were building a golden calf and worshipping it.
  • This sounds like the modern church.
  • What is a golden calf in today’s context?
  • Anything that takes away from the presence of the Lord.
  • Anything that draws attention away from God Himself.
  • We don’t need anything other than our hearts, our hands, our mouths, our feet and His presence.
  • His manifest presence is what we look for.

3. A type of Pentecost.

  • The priests could not stand to minister— 2 Chronicles 5:11-14 KJV—And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place: (for all the priests that were present were sanctified, and did not then wait by course: 12 Also the Levites which were the singers, all of them of Asaph, of Heman, of Jeduthun, with their sons and their brethren, being arrayed in white linen, having cymbals and psalteries and harps, stood at the east end of the altar, and with them an hundred and twenty priests sounding with trumpets:) 13 It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of musick, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the LORD; 14 So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of God.
  • The priests could not enter the room—2 Chronicles 7:1-3 KJV—Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the Lord filled the house. 2 And the priests could not enter into the house of the Lord, because the glory of the Lord had filled the Lord’s house. 3 And when all the children of Israel saw how the fire came down, and the glory of the Lord upon the house, they bowed themselves with their faces to the ground upon the pavement, and worshipped, and praised the Lord, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.
  • The fire fell. The house was filled with the cloud of God’s glory. They worshipped, saying, “The Lord is good and His mercy endures forever”.

4. The Holy Spirit and worship.

  • The Holy Spirit is our Comforter—our Counselor, Helper, Advocate, Intercessor, Strengthener, and Standby
  • Ephesians 5:18-20 KJV—And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; 19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
  • Be filled with the Spirit.
  • Speak to yourselves in Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your hearts to the Lord.
  • Give thanks always for all things.

5. New Testament worship is Spirit-led and proceeds from the anointing—not the flesh or the mind.

  • Music that is anointed.
  • Lyrics that glorify God.
  • Word content—words of power, words of faith— not just mere words.
  • Worship is about Jesus not about us.
  • You cannot worship with an arrogant heart—true worship comes from a humble heart.

Our Hope

The people of this world are starving for true hope while, as believers, each of us is filled with hope and the light of God. It is up to us to be available so that we can share our message with unbelievers.

Rodney Howard Browne teaches that there is absolutely no hope in this life, or in the life to come, apart from a relationship with God through His Son Jesus Christ. Because of Christ, we have righteousness before God and the promise of resurrection—all because Jesus died in our place. All the hope we need for living in this life and eternity comes through Him.

According to Romans 5:6, Christ died for the ungodly—each and every person who will ever live. So what was Jesus’ plan for getting His message of salvation to all of these people? In Matthew 28, He commissioned the saved to share the Good News with the lost. In fact, spreading the word of God through people is the only method given in the Bible. Jesus said, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations” (v. 19). His disciples went without question. The Lord is still calling us to go, whether our field is a faraway country or our own workplace.

When God calls us, He doesn’t want excuses or pleas to wait; He wants our obedience. If we are surrendered to Him, the only thing we can answer when He calls us is yes. Could it be that God wants you to lay aside your plan for your life and take up His call—spreading hope to a rapidly changing world?

  • 1.
  • And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.
  • 2.
  • And devout men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamentation over him.
  • 3.
  • As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison.
  • 4.
  • Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word.
  • 5.
  • 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.
  • 9.
  • But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery , and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one:
  • 10.
  • To whom they all gave heed , from the least to the greatest, saying , This man is the great power of God.
  • 11.
  • And to him they had regard , because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries.
  • 12.
  • But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized , both men and women.
  • 13.
  • Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized , he continued with Philip, and wondered , beholding the miracles and signs which were done .
  • 14.
  • Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John:
  • 15.
  • Who, when they were come down , prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:
  • 16.
  • (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)
  • 17.
  • Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.
  • 18.
  • And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given , he offered them money,
  • 19.
  • Saying , Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.
  • 20.
  • But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.
  • 21.
  • Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.
  • 22.
  • Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.
  • 23.
  • For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity.
  • 24.
  • Then answered Simon, and said , Pray ye to the Lord for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken come upon me.
  • 25.
  • And they, when they had testified and preached the word of the Lord, returned to Jerusalem, and preached the gospel in many villages of the Samaritans.
  • 26.
  • And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying , Arise , and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert.
  • 27.
  • And he arose and went : and, behold , a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship ,
  • 28.
  • Was returning , and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.
  • 29.
  • Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near , and join thyself to this chariot.
  • 30.
  • And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said , Understandest thou what thou readest ?
  • 31.
  • And he said , How can I , except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.
  • 32.
  • The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer , so opened he not his mouth:
  • 33.
  • In his humiliation his judgment was taken away : and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth.
  • 34.
  • And the eunuch answered Philip, and said , I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?
  • 35.
  • Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
  • 36.
  • And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said , See , here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized ?
  • 37.
  • And Philip said , If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest . And he answered and said , I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
  • 38.
  • And he commanded the chariot to stand still : and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
  • 39.
  • And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip , that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing .
  • 40.
  • But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.

Heavenly Joy

Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” 21 In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight. Luke 10:20-21 NKJV

Verse 21 says that Jesus “rejoiced in the Spirit”. The Amplified translation says that He “rejoiced and gloried in the Holy Spirit”.

In that same hour He rejoiced and gloried in the Holy Spirit and said, I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have concealed these things [relating to salvation] from the wise and understanding and learned, and revealed them to babes (the childish, unskilled, and untaught). Yes, Father, for such was Your gracious will and choice and good pleasure. Luke 10:21 AMP

Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit and He rejoiced. The Greek word for “rejoiced” is agalliao (ag-al-lee-ah’-o). It means: to jump for joy; exult; be (exceeding) glad; with exceeding joy: rejoice (greatly).

It means:

Getting so glad, one jumps in celebration.

To exult or boast, because one is so experientially joyful.

Literally to “laugh very much” or “to laugh uncontrollably”

In other words, this passage says that Jesus was so full of exceeding joy that He laughed, exulted, jumped and celebrated. Jesus was full of life and joy! This kind of joy only comes by and through the Holy Spirit. It is not a product of the flesh or natural means.

And Mary said, My soul magnifies and extols the Lord, 47 And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, 48 For He has looked upon the low station and humiliation of His handmaiden. For behold, from now on all generations [of all ages] will call me blessed and declare me happy and to be envied! 49 For He Who is almighty has done great things for me — and holy is His name [to be venerated in His purity, majesty and glory]! Luke 1:46-49 AMP

His mother, Mary, when she was pregnant with baby Jesus, experienced this same exultant, spiritual joy (agalliao) as the Holy Spirit came upon her and she magnified the Lord and prophesied.

John 8:56

KJV: Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.

AMP: Your forefather Abraham was extremely happy at the hope and prospect of seeing My day (My incarnation); and he did see it and was delighted.

The Lord showed Abraham the future. He rejoiced (agalliao) as he saw the coming Messiah, and His sacrifice, and the day of salvation for all man. Even though Abraham would not see the salvation of our Lord with his eyes, he saw it by faith (Hebrews 11:13) and he laughed, rejoiced and exulted.

Then [the jailer] called for lights and rushed in, and trembling and terrified he fell down before Paul and Silas. 30 And he brought them out [of the dungeon] and said, Men, what is it necessary for me to do that I may be saved? 31 And they answered, Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ [give yourself up to Him, take yourself out of your own keeping and entrust yourself into His keeping] and you will be saved, [and this applies both to] you and your household as well. 32 And they declared the Word of the Lord [the doctrine concerning the attainment through Christ of eternal salvation in the kingdom of God] to him and to all who were in his house. 33 And he took them the same hour of the night and bathed [them because of their bloody] wounds, and he was baptized immediately and all [the members of] his [household]. 34 Then he took them up into his house and set food before them; and he leaped much for joy and exulted with all his family that he believed in God [accepting and joyously welcoming what He had made known through Christ]. Acts 16:29-34 AMP

Paul and Silas’ jailor almost took his own life when he thought all the prisoners had escaped. He asked them how to be saved and he and his family received Jesus as Lord and Savior. Then he greatly rejoiced (agalliao) – he leaped much for joy, and exulted.

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 8 whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9 receiving the end of your faith — the salvation of your souls.

1 Peter 1:6-9 NKJV

The joy (agalliao) we feel, when we are touched by the power and presence of God, is a heavenly joy that is full of glory and beyond human ability to express. Thank God, He has given us the ability to laugh, jump and dance, to be able to express the great joy we feel on the inside. We only receive the full benefit of it when we release and allow it to be expressed through us, rather than bottling it up. Laughter is medicine that is good for both heart and soul.

After that I heard what sounded like the shout of a vast throng, like the boom of many pounding waves, and like the roar of terrific and mighty peals of thunder, exclaiming, Hallelujah (praise the Lord)! For now the Lord our God the Omnipotent (the All-Ruler) reigns! 7 Let us rejoice and shout for joy [exulting and triumphant]! Let us celebrate and ascribe to Him glory and honor, for the marriage of the Lamb [at last] has come, and His bride has prepared herself.

Revelation 19:6-7 AMP

For now the Lord our God the Omnipotent reigns! Let His bride rejoice (agalliao), and shout, and laugh, with exultant and triumphant heavenly joy!

PERFECT PRAISE

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

Foundation Scripture:  Matthew 21:15-16  (NKJ)

15         But when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that He did, and the children crying out in the temple and saying, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they were indignant

16         and said to Him, “Do You hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants you have perfected praise’?”

 

Before people get born again, they might find loud and joyful praise, strange or unusual. They might wonder why we sing, clap and shout before the Lord, but once they are washed in the blood of Jesus, they find that there is praise in their hearts that demands expression! Pure and unashamed praise comes from hearts that have been touched by the awesome power of God. Hearts filled with the love, peace and joy that only the presence of God can bring.

 

Psalms 8:1-2  (NKJ)

1           O LORD, our Lord, how excellent is Your name in all the earth, who set Your glory above the heavens!

2          Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants you have ordained strength, because of Your enemies, that You may silence the enemy and the avenger.

 

The word ‘strength’ as used in this scripture, has to do with loud and bold praise! Children, untouched by the negativity of the world, find it easy to openly praise the Savior, because they have not yet been taught to please men rather than God. Their little hearts are honest and pure and so they can worship with abandon. The angels worship in the same way. It is only when religious tradition is taught, or when sin begins to exert its power over us, that we lose the ability and the desire to worship God wholeheartedly.

 

Religious spirits, and other demons, stirred up by Satan, hate to hear people praise God. Satan (or Lucifer – before iniquity was found in his heart and he was cast out of heaven) had instruments built into his body, so that he could worship before the throne of God. He tried to exalt his throne above the throne of God. So know he hates to hear people praise God. He tries every way he can to make people hate and curse God. He lies to people, telling them that God is the author of death and destruction in their lives, so that they will curse him.

 

Praise unto God will stop the work of the enemy in your life. When God’s people begin to truly praise Him, in spirit and in truth, the demons cover their ears and run for cover. Shouts of praise brought down the walls of Jericho (Joshua 6:5). Praise alone caused the defeat of the enemies of Judah (2 Chronicles 20:21&22). Praise, flowing from your lips, will stop the work of the enemy in your life. The very times you don’t feel like praising, are the times you should be praising, louder and longer than ever before!

 

We must praise God with our whole heart.

 

Psalms 9:1-3  (NKJ)

1           I will praise You, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works.

2          I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.

3          When my enemies turn back, they shall fall and perish at Your presence.

 

We must praise the Lord continually.

 

Psalms 34:1-4  (NKJ)

1           I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.

2          My soul shall make its boast in the LORD; the humble shall hear of it and be glad.

3          Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together.

4          I sought the LORD, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.

 

Praise God even when you don’t feel like it.

 

Psalms 42:11  (NKJ)

11         Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; for I shall yet praise Him, the help of my countenance and my God.

 

We praise God because of all He has done for us. We praise Him because He is our strength, our salvation, our deliverer, our protector, our healer, our joy, and everything else, to and for us that words cannot express. But most of all, we praise Him simply because He is worthy of all praise and honor and glory! So lift up your hands and lift up your voice – and rejoice and magnify the Lord today!

KEEP YOURSELF FOR YOUR SPOUSE

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

Hebrews 13:4  (AMP) Let marriage be held in honor (esteemed worthy, precious, of great price, and especially dear) in all things. And thus let the marriage bed be undefiled (kept undishonored); for God will judge and punish the unchaste [all guilty of sexual vice] and adulterous.

Proverbs 5:15-23  (NIV) Drink water from your own cistern, running water from your own well. Should your springs overflow in the streets, your streams of water in the public squares? Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with strangers. May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth. A loving doe, a graceful deer– may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be captivated by her love. Why be captivated, my son, by an adulteress? Why embrace the bosom of another man’s wife? For a man’s ways are in full view of the LORD, and he examines all his paths. The evil deeds of a wicked man ensnare him; the cords of his sin hold him fast. He will die for lack of discipline, led astray by his own great folly.

Proverbs 6:23-35  (NKJ) For the commandment is a lamp, and the law a light; reproofs of instruction are the way of life, To keep you from the evil woman, from the flattering tongue of a seductress. Do not lust after her beauty in your heart, nor let her allure you with her eyelids. For by means of a harlot a man is reduced to a crust of bread; and an adulteress will prey upon his precious life. Can a man take fire to his bosom, and his clothes not be burned? Can one walk on hot coals, and his feet not be seared? So is he who goes in to his neighbor’s wife; whoever touches her shall not be innocent. People do not despise a thief if he steals to satisfy himself when he is starving. Yet when he is found, he must restore sevenfold; he may have to give up all the substance of his house. Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding; he who does so destroys his own soul. Wounds and dishonor he will get, and his reproach will not be wiped away. For jealousy is a husband’s fury; therefore he will not spare in the day of vengeance. He will accept no recompense, nor will he be appeased though you give many gifts.

Proverbs 7:4-27  (NKJ) Say to wisdom, “You are my sister,” and call understanding your nearest kin, That they may keep you from the immoral woman, from the seductress who flatters with her words. For at the window of my house I looked through my lattice, And saw among the simple, I perceived among the youths, a young man devoid of understanding, Passing along the street near her corner; and he took the path to her house. In the twilight, in the evening, in the black and dark night. And there a woman met him, with the attire of a harlot, and a crafty heart. She was loud and rebellious, her feet would not stay at home. At times she was outside, at times in the open square, Lurking at every corner. So she caught him and kissed him; with an impudent face she said to him: “I have peace offerings with me; today I have paid my vows. So I came out to meet you, diligently to seek your face, and I have found you. I have spread my bed with tapestry, Colored coverings of Egyptian linen. I have perfumed my bed with myrrh, aloes, and cinnamon. Come, let us take our fill of love until morning; let us delight ourselves with love. For my husband is not at home; he has gone on a long journey; He has taken a bag of money with him, and will come home on the appointed day.” With her enticing speech she caused him to yield, with her flattering lips she seduced him. Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks, Till an arrow struck his liver. As a bird hastens to the snare, he did not know it would cost his life. Now therefore, listen to me, my children; pay attention to the words of my mouth: Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, do not stray into her paths; For she has cast down many wounded, and all who were slain by her were strong men. Her house is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death.

The marriage union is precious in the sight of God. He created Eve and gave her to Adam in a marriage union. Some people act like all relationships between men and women are evil, but marriage is ordained and sanctioned by God. You dishonor yourself when you dishonor your marriage vows or when you have physical relationships with one or more people who are not your spouse. God gives us these parameters for the welfare and safety of our children and ourselves. If people would trust God and obey Him, we would not have the destruction in people’s lives that we see in the world today. God knows best. Whether you are married or single – keep yourself for your spouse and for them alone.

THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT IS PATIENCE

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

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Galatians 5:22-23 KJV

Longsuffering, or patience, is a fruit of the Spirit. You cannot operate in the fruit of patience if you do not also first operate in the fruit of love, joy and peace. You need to walk in love in order to walk in patience, because love gives you a reason to be patient – love is patient and kind.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.  1 Corinthians 13:4-8 NIV

You need to walk in joy because joy keeps your attitude straight while you exercise your patience. You need to walk in peace in order to walk in patience because you are trusting God to come through for you and the measure of your peace is the measure of your trust. You can be patient because your trust is in God who answers prayer and delivers you from all tribulations.

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

Romans 5:1-5 NIV

Perseverance is patience in action. The Greek word in verses 3 & 4 translated patience in the KJV and perseverance in the NIV and NKJ mean cheerful and hopeful endurance and constancy. You will never know if you have patience unless you go through something that requires patience. The difficult situations that we go through, both call for patience, and also develop patience in us. Patience is something that grows as we use it.

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

James 1:2-4 NKJ

If you live on this earth – stuff happens. When you go through a trial or through adversity, you can rejoice in the middle of it, and you can rejoice in spite of it, because you know that something good will come out of it – you will grow in patience! Joy is an important part of your faith and your patience. When you encounter adversity, you need to know that the way you handle your situation determines the outcome of your situation. The trying of your faith produces patience. When you properly apply your joy and your faith in the middle of an adversity then your steady faith will produce patience. When patience is allowed to run its full course in your life then you will become perfected.

Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.

But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.

Luke 8:11 and 15 KJV

When you have heard the Word and you allow it to be planted firmly in your heart and you patiently allow it to be watered and to grow, you will bring forth good fruit in your life.

Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. Hebrews 10:35-36 (KJV)

God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, in order to make your hope sure. We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.

Hebrews 6:10-12 (NIV)

Our Father God has made us exceeding great and precious promises, but we will not be partakers of these promises unless we believe that what He has promised is true and unless we patiently exercise our faith in His Word.

 

PRIDE – THE ENEMY FROM WITHIN

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

Let not the foot of pride come against me, and let not the hand of the wicked drive me away.  Psalms 36:11 NKJV

In life, we are faced with two kinds of enemies – those from within and those from without. Pride comes from within and the wicked man comes from without. The way that this particular verse of scripture is rendered in certain other translations of the Bible, is to the effect that the foot of pride – or arrogance – belongs to another person coming from without. However, pride and arrogance will seek to claim your life whether coming from the inside or the outside – whether it is in your heart or your enemy’s heart. Most of the time – the outside influences are less potent against us than inside influences. Because God has promised to protect us from without – and He always does a good job – but we are responsible to guard our own heart and unfortunately we don’t always do such a good job.

And He said, “What comes out of a man, that defiles a man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within and defile a man.”  Mark 7:20-23 NKJV

Pride is an evil thing that comes from the heart of man, defiling him.  It is as evil, in God’s eyes, as any other sin that man can commit. Proverbs 16:5 says, “Everyone proud in heart is anabomination to the LORD.” Proverbs 6:16-17 says, that of the seven things that are anabomination to the LORD and that He hates, one of them is a proud look. Psalms 101:5 says, “The one who has a haughty look and a proud heart, Him I will not endure.”  Proverbs 28:25-26 says, “He who is of a proud heart stirs up strife, but he who trusts in the LORD will be prospered. He whotrusts in his own heart is a fool, but whoever walks wisely will be delivered.”

When you trust in yourself you are proud and you are foolish. The Lord will not tolerate pride in your heart or in your look or in your actions. Pride is destructive. Pride will destroy your own life. Pride causes division between man and man – and man and God. Pride will separate you from the presence of God. The pride in your life will not allow God’s grace to reach you and without God’s grace, you are lost. If you wish to please God and preserve your soul, you must walk in humility.

The highway of the upright is to depart from evil; He who keeps his way preserves his soul. Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. Better to be of a humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.  Proverbs 16:17-19 NKJV

The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; pride and arrogance and the evil way and the perverse mouth I hate.  Proverbs 8:13 NKJV

If you have any fear or respect for God – you will deal with any prideful attitude that you have. You will treat pride like the sin that it is and you will humble your own heart before the Lord. You must lose your life – lay down your pride and your selfishness – to honor the Lord in your life.

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it. What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?  Matthew 16:24-26 NIV

Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.  1 Peter 5:5-9  NKJV

Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”? But He gives moregrace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.”  Thereforesubmit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.  James 4:4-10 NKJV

WHAT ABOUT PENTECOST?

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

By Dr F.L.K. Howard-Browne (1905 – 1998) PhD, ThD, DD

Dr F.L.K. Howard-Browne was my uncle – a preacher, a teacher, a theologian and a fiery Pentecostal pioneer. He was a wonderful man of God and a great inspiration to me. This is one of his many inspiring messages.

What’s in a name?  Some say that “Pentecost” means fifty.  Technically they are correct, but to every Spirit-filled child of God it means vastly more than a mere technical definition.  There are words in our language that mean more to us than mere technicalities.  For instance, the word “Sterling” stands for a certain quality in silverware.  When we buy Sterling silver we know that we are obtaining a certain definite standard of silverware.  We are assured of its genuineness.  We know it will stand the test of time.  We know it has value.  We also know there are cheap imitations on the market, and if we are looking for quality we know enough to let such spurious articles alone.

Pentecost!  What does it mean?  It represents a pattern – a standard.  It signifies, in its spiritual significance, an empowered church.  It represents a Spirit-filled experience.  It stands for revival fires.  It holds within its inner meaning a burden for the lost; conviction for sin; repentance and faith toward God.

The early church walked in the light of Pentecostal fires and these were the results that followed.  Not only was the Gospel preached uncompromisingly, but also signs and wonders accompanied the preaching of the Word.  Pentecost meant something more than a name to the early Church.  A Spirit-endued people aroused opposition from unbelievers.  Persecution not only meant glory and shouting and great joy; it meant also being despised by the world – hated – stoned – being beaten with stripes – imprisonments – and many other trials.

Pentecost!  What does it mean today?  From a Scriptural standpoint it means as much as it ever did.  It is a proven fact that those who are truly Pentecostal, with a Pentecostal message and a Pentecostal experience backed up with a Pentecostal life of holiness, will have Pentecostal results in Pentecostal meetings in a Pentecostal way.  Instead of putting the soft pedal on Pentecost, let us magnify the work of the Lord as manifested in Pentecostal power and glory.

Pentecost has meant something wonderful to us.  It has meant the mightiest revival the world has ever seen since the days of the apostles.  It has meant the conversion of hundreds of thousands.  Likewise untold thousands have received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and have been set on fire of God.  The sick and deformed have been miraculously healed.  Restitution has been made in numberless cases.  A life of holiness has been the experience of those who have come under the blessing of Pentecost.  Churches have been revived.  A great evangelistic movement at home and in foreign fields has been established.  Sadness and sickness, sin and shame, half-heartedness and indifference have given way before the mighty God-sent avalanche of Pentecostal revival.

8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.  Acts 1:8 NKJV

1 Now when the Day of Pentecost had 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 the whole house where they were sitting. 3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.  Acts 2:1-4 NKJV

GOD CALLS THINGS THAT ARE NOT AS THOUGH THEY WERE

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

16 Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham’s offspring-not only to those who are of the law but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all. 17 As it is written: “I have made you a father of many nations.” He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed-the God who gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were.  Romans 4:16-17 NIV

The God of Abraham and his offspring – both physical (natural seed) and spiritual (those who share Abraham’s faith in the promise) – gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were.

1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before me and be blameless. 2 I will confirm my covenant between me and you and will greatly increase your numbers.” 3 Abram fell facedown, and God said to him, 4 “As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations. 5 No longer will you be called Abram; your name will be Abraham, for I have made you a father of many nations. 6 I will make you very fruitful; I will make nations of you, and kings will come from you. 7 I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you. 8 The whole land of Canaan, where you are now an alien, I will give as an everlasting possession to you and your descendants after you; and I will be their God.”  Genesis 17:1-8 NIV

15 God also said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you are no longer to call her Sarai; her name will be Sarah. 16 I will bless her and will surely give you a son by her. I will bless her so that she will be the mother of nations; kings of peoples will come from her.”  Genesis 17:15-16 NIV

Even though it looked as if Abram’s body and Sarai’s womb were dead and totally unable to produce a child, God renamed Abram, Abraham – father of many nations – and Sarai, Sarah – princess. God called Abraham and Sarah, father and mother, even though they had never had a child together and were now physically unable to have one. God called Abraham, “father of many nations”, and that is exactly what he became. God spoke it into existence.

11 Now the Angel of the LORD came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress, in order to hide it from the Midianites. 12 And the Angel of the LORD appeared to him, and said to him, “The LORD is with you, you mighty man of valor!” 13 Gideon said to Him, “O my lord, if the LORD is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all His miracles which our fathers told us about, saying, ‘Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt?’ But now the LORD has forsaken us and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.” 14 Then the LORD turned to him and said, “Go in this might of yours, and you shall save Israel from the hand of the Midianites. Have I not sent you?” 15 So he said to Him, “O my Lord, how can I save Israel? Indeed my clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house.” 16 And the LORD said to him, “Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat the Midianites as one man.”  Judges 6:11-16 NKJV

God called Gideon “you mighty man of valor” even though he was weak and afraid. He was hiding from the Midianites and he had no self-confidence. Even after speaking with the Angel of the Lord, he asked for one sign after the other. He seemed to be neither brave nor courageous. One might think that God had made a mistake in calling Gideon a mighty man of valor, but God calls things that are not as though they were. When the Spirit of the Lord came upon Gideon, he did as he was instructed.

Judges 7:12 NKJV says, “Now the Midianites and Amalekites, all the people of the East, were lying in the valley as numerous as locusts; and their camels were without number, as the sand by the seashore in multitude.”  Even though there were so many of the enemy, God cut the Israeli army down from 32,000 to just 300 and then, when they had surrounded the enemy, they defeated them with nothing but trumpets, pitchers and torches. And God got all the glory for it.

God always speaks to your future and He always expects the best of you. Who you think you are or what you think you have got does not count for anything at all. When God has a plan for your life, He may change your name, He may call you something that you know you are not, but when He calls those things that are not as though they were, you can be sure that it will come to pass exactly as He has said!

OUR INTERCESSOR

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

26 So too the [Holy] Spirit comes to our aid and bears us up in our weakness; for we do not know what prayer to offer nor how to offer it worthily as we ought, but the Spirit Himself goes to meet our supplication and pleads in our behalf with unspeakable yearnings and groanings too deep for utterance. 27 And He Who searches the hearts of men knows what is in the mind of the [Holy] Spirit [what His intent is], because the Spirit intercedes and pleads [before God] in behalf of the saints according to and in harmony with God’s will.  Romans 8:26-27 AMP

When Jesus left earth to go and sit at the right hand of the Father, He did not leave us helpless, as orphans – He left the Holy Spirit behind to be our

Comforter. He is our Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Standby. The Holy Spirit comes to our aid, bearing us up in our weakness – He makes up for the things we lack. The Spirit intercedes and pleads before God in behalf of the saints, according to and in harmony with God’s will. An intercessor is almost like an attorney. An attorney speaks to the judge on the person’s behalf. He knows the law and the right words to say even when the person has no idea of his rights or is unable or unwilling to make his own case. The Spirit is your attorney in the courts of heaven.

14 And this is the confidence (the assurance, the privilege of boldness) which we have in Him: [we are sure] that if we ask anything (make any request) according to His will (in agreement with His own plan), He listens to and hears us. 15 And if (since) we [positively] know that He listens to us in whatever we ask, we also know [with settled and absolute knowledge] that we have [granted us as our present possessions] the requests made of Him.

1 John 5:14-15 AMP

If we pray according to God’s will He always hears us and He always answers, but without the Holy Spirit, we do not know what prayer to pray, or how to pray according to His will. The Holy Spirit prays through us a worthy prayer. He pleads on our behalf and makes supplication for us through our own mouth as we pray in the Holy Ghost. The Holy Spirit in an invaluable ally of the believer – the devil is helpless to prevent the will of God in your life when you pray in the Spirit. This is why he has tried so hard to make Christians either afraid or ashamed of the Holy Spirit. He has deceived them into thinking that being baptized in the Holy Ghost is something bad or wrong or not for today. But when you get the revelation of the power of God that lives in you by the Holy Spirit – you will be unstoppable and the devil will wake up feeling like he just got run over by a steamroller!

28 We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose. 29 For those whom He foreknew [of whom He was aware and loved beforehand], He also destined from the beginning [foreordaining them] to be molded into the image of His Son [and share inwardly His likeness], that He might become the firstborn among many brethren. 30 And those whom He thus foreordained, He also called; and those whom He called, He also justified (acquitted, made righteous, putting them into right standing with Himself). And those whom He justified, He also glorified [raising them to a heavenly dignity and condition or state of being].   Romans 8:28-30 AMP

As we work with God and He works with us, everything works together, fitting into a plan for good for those who love God and are called according to His design and purpose. God has a wonderful plan for every one born on the earth. We can submit to His will and have His plan for our lives or we can rebel and have the devil’s plan for our lives. Father God gives us the choice.

According to Hebrews 7:22-25, Jesus is our eternal High Priest, able also to save to the uttermost – completely, perfectly, finally, and for all time and eternity – those who come to God through Him, since He is always living to make petition to God and intercede with Him and intervene for them.

As well as the Holy Spirit, we have another intercessor, Who sits at the right hand of God, always living to make petition to God and intercede with Him and intervene for us – Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. He is the perfect High Priest, Whose office will exist forever – He will never die and never cease to intercede on our behalf. If we could realize how much we have going for us – Jesus and the Holy Spirit on our side – we would rise up and take our place as the son and daughter of God that we are, shake off the bondage of sin and stand boldly in the presence of God. It is time for us to realize what God has called us to and for us to work with Jesus and the Holy Spirit to do our personal part to see the will of God done in the earth.

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