Welcome to September 2016

The walls are falling down flat and the gates are flinging open. 

God has given you the victory over every wall and gate preventing your access. 

Identify and mark out whatever the form is before you; Speak to them with a voice of triumph in the exalted name of Jesus. 

They are becoming history this September. 

Happy new month.

HOW TO CROSS SIGNIFICANT HURDLES INTO YOUR PROMISE 5

So Jesus stood still and commanded him to be called….
And throwing aside his garment, he rose and came to Jesus. Mark 10:49-50

 

… let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, Heb. 12:1

Once the Lord gives you an instruction concerning a move you should make; He stands still watching over His word to see it coming to pass. After the word must have been given, it becomes your responsibility to optimise the provision as an already settled process and not as a work that is still pending.

The word given is for you to cross over to a place of change or difference. Wherever He asks you to move to or whatever He asks you to do is for a place or an experience where there shall be in your life a manifestation of the triumph of Christ and the fragrance of His presence. The battle is not to be won, it is already won; the work is not to be done, it is already done (from the foundation of the world – Heb. 4:3). Your duty is not to do in a sense but to use the provision already made.

He is not out to abandon you after the word has been given; He watches over His word to see it performed. He has moved not to abandon you, but to lead you as your frontrunner to the place that awaits you.

To cross over according to His instruction, there is a lesson to be learnt from Bartimeus for whom we vividly see the standing still of the real Ark in the gospels (check the last editions). Not only did he know that Christ had the provision for him, he also had an intense desire for the provision. His desire was so intense that he cried out loud to use the provision. People tried to shout him down, but he was resolved so be passed by. He intensified his plea for help by shouting more. His cry for help was so powerful that the Lord stood still and called for Him.

Upon being told that the Lord called for him, Bartimeus flung off himself his cloak to receive what awaited him. He got what he wanted eventually. There are people with intense desire for one thing that is needful. Be encouraged to maximise the present provision that the Lord has for you. Now is the acceptable time … You desire to cross over; The Lord is willing to wait for you to cross. Whatever direction He faces concerning you with His word, there can be no more hurdle or hindrance. Whatever hurdle you see after He must have given the word will only be the one you permit or accommodate.

If Bartimeus will fling off his garment which was significant to his old estate and unnecessary for His desired estate, it is time you marked out those things that are presently important but totally not useful for your desired future.

According to R. Alan Culpeppe, in the recurring theme of garment in the wider context of Mark, there is a significant representation. Though an avoidable reference, it was mentioned because of its significance to the details of the narrative and the wider context of the account of Mark.

In Bartimeus particular case, there has been suggestion that the garment was spread in front of him so that he sat on part of it with the rest covering his shoulder. The garment was unclean, yet a covering. He sat on it while it also served as the receptacle for the alms he was collecting. This shows how important the garment was. As a cover, as a seat, and as a receptacle. He will need to throw the garment off for him to jump up. Throwing the garment means he will possibly be throwing off all his collection for the day.

The significance of Bartimeus garment points to the important things that you have to forego to receive your needed desire and what a disciple must leave behind to follow Jesus. Some of them of these could be sins that naturally will beset you; some of them could be superfluous weight you do not need for your race. Such things are to be counted as garbage so as to receive the excellency of the gift from Christ. If you would do this, you would have beaten all odds to appropriate heaven’s provision and blessing for you. Cheers.

HOW TO CROSS SIGNIFICANT HURDLES INTO YOUR PROMISE 4

Then the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firm … in the midst of the Jordan; …, until all the people had crossed completely over the Jordan. Josh. 3:17

 

So Jesus stood still …. Luke 18:40

Our emphasis has been on how you can cross over the hurdles before you.  The spiritually sensitive will admit that there is an ongoing significant work that God wants to accomplish on everyone, with none left behind. There is a Jericho ahead of you. He wants to get everyone there for His next operation. The world knows about you, but you haven’t seen anything yet. Where God is taking you is a place where through you He will create more awareness of Himself. A place where He will publish the victory of Christ vividly by what He is set to do in your life. He would not want to see anyone left behind in this corporate plan.

It has been pointed out that the key to crossing over life’s hurdles is in seeing the move of Christ or the direction of God’s word and presence. So, drawing from the typology of the Ark of covenant which prefigured Christ, it is important to be mindful of what ministers carry. The priest bearing the Ark provided the direction for the people to follow. In the text, it is clear that the priests bearing the ark set out before Joshua and his people, while the they crossed over opposite Jericho. In the New Testament, the Ark of the Covenant himself moves and around because of the people; whenever they see him, they have their needs met to move on to their next phase in life.

Significant for this administration of the word is that the priests who bore the ark stood firm until all the people had crossed completely just as the Reality Himself stood still to ensure that the disadvantaged was not left behind. CHRIST IS SET OUT CLEARLY BEFORE THE PEOPLE. He is the word and the presence of God. Every time we preach Him, what we are doing is bring Him, the creative, living, and the manifest word into people’s lives.

It is dangerous and wasteful to practise form or religion. 2 Tim. 3:1-5 portrayed what will characterise the last days. It shall be perilous times when there will be people having a form of godliness while denying the power thereof. The ministry of the word is not a form or ritual; neither the hearing of the word. Every attentive and careful hearing of the word should lead to seeing the operations of God and moving in response to the revelation and the prophetic instruction of the word (Phil. 4:9) so as to cross over to the next camp; victory; and possessions ahead.

HE ENSURES THAT EVERYONE CROSSES OVER INTO THE NEXT PHASE. As it was with them at Jordan, so it must be with us today. To cross cannot be by might nor by power, it must be by the operation of the Lord. The next phase is not necessarily according to human preference. For the Israelites, it was to cross over Jordan; For the multitude around Jesus, it was for their needs to be met in diverse ways. They could see him; they all followed him. They did because they knew that in following him they will have their needs met. For Bartimeus, it was to receive his sight.

EVERYONE MAY NOT BE SET TO CROSS OVER. The challenge is not the lack of desire to cross over, it is the inability to see. 2 Cor. 4:4; Matt. 13:14-15; the operation of satan – 2 Cor. 4:4; also known as ignorance – Luk. 18:35ff. Bartimeus represented others who are not set to cross, but will be glad to cross. FOR SUCH PEOPLE, THE ARK STANDS STILL. The Ark stands firm for everybody to cross over opposite Jericho. For them in Joshua days, the Ark of the Covenant stood firm, Josh. 3:17; For them during the life of Jesus on earth, He stood still – Luk. 18:40; for no one should be left behind. Is there anyone who suspects that there is a move going on but could not plug into it? Is there anyone who is not sure of what the spirit of the Lord is doing? The Lord is set to push you to the place of fragrance. 2 Cor. 2:14-17. He stands still for your sake, for He seeks to lead you in the triumph of Christ and to diffuse through you the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.

I CHALLENGE YOU TO ENSURE YOU DO NOT LET HIM PASS YOU BY: by clarifying what you are hearing; asking for the Lord’s help; resisting every force or element that seeks to quieten you; intensifying your desire to see as you cannot afford to be left behind as everyone crosses over to Jericho. God has sent this word to ensure that you will cross over to the other side.

Our Cause or the Cause of Christ

I have been musing in recent times as I have done in the past about the energy and time believers are putting into campaigning against purported islamisation of Nigeria instead of devotion to evangelism and prayers for the will of God to be done on earth. I am asking myself which one will be better.

Regional failures of Christians in history were not so much as a result of being overrun by other religions, but as a result of failing CHRIST while still feeling cool about themselves being busy with self interest. We wouldn’t have known this if not for the letters to the churches in Revelation.

I often ask myself what would Christ do if He were here now. Will He be busy with reactions or with taking right actions, those that He came for.

I ask my self what was the church’s disposition when Emperor Nero was haunting them. Check what Peter wrote in his first epistle.

The only way we can fight for the cause of Christ is through obedience to the charge He gave us. I think in these agitations we are rather fighting for ourselves and not for Christ.

What did Christ teach on how to live under persecution and what did the Apostles affirm after Him?

Christian living and response cannot be synonymous with civil activism. It is either we are preaching Christ or saving our heads.

He that will find his life will loose it and he that will loose his life will find it. Read across the Gospels and see what Christ wrote.

The perpetuation of Christ’s work on earth will never depend on these agitations. No one can wipe out the cause of Christ on earth. He promised to build His church; He promised that the gate of hell shall not prevail. They were not busy agitating in Jerusalem; they rejoiced when they suffered for Christ.

Christians in certain parts of India are going through tough times. They are facing the heat while still winning souls even among their detractors. Christian are not called to campaign against persecution.

I have to keep checking if my Bible is not different. I have to keep asking myself why my friends will keep sending the same message from years ago to me over WhatsApp either ignorantly or to promote agitations.

Can I plead with you to spare me of being copied in these Biblically baseless campaigns. I have taken my stand 27 years ago and I am not changing it in being an obedient disciple of Christ. I have children and I have not shun to show them what the bible says to us on such things.

I am not holier than thou, sincerely. I am also not given to religious campaigns that make enemies or opponents out of those I was sent to minister to.

I am Isaac Boluwatise. Not as if I am already perfect, neither will I be involved in what Christ did not send me to do. I haven’t lost my sense of reason and neither will I rationalise on clearly defined biblical matters.

I have the fear that those who fight to keep their head in relatively peaceful times are doing injustice to the believers’ choice when they will be directly confronted in evil days. How many will stand if they are offered options.

We are here for the cause of Christ and not to save our lives. May the Lord help us all.

Shalom.

HOW TO CROSS SIGNIFICANT HURDLES INTO YOUR PROMISE 3

…, “When you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the priests, the Levites, bearing it, then you shall set out from your place and go after it. Joshua 3:3

The promise from God grants you a window into the plan of God or points you through the scriptures to a future waiting for you. The promise is a settled plan with God. Every time God says I will, it is because he has- josh 1:2-3. His works are already finished …. Heb. 4:3. All that is needed from man for the realisation of the promise is not the effort of man but the faith of man in the finished work. The supply comes from the love/grace of God. The receipt is accomplished through or via the faith channel.

The Israelites were not going to cross Jordan because they have come to Jordan; they will because it was in the plan. They did not choose the route, God did. He knew what will be on the way before he commanded their entrance into the promise. Look at Matt. 8:18; 23-27. With God, there is no hurdle on the way. He only sees the route to the destination. We, however, see hurdles naturally just as the disciples saw the storm in Matt 8:24 and in Matt 14:22-33. We see the problems instead of the prospects, like Zerubbabel (Zech 4:7) until he saw from God’s perspective.

God wants us to see the solution: In Matt. 8:25, they looked to the Lord; In Matt. 14:27-30, he looked to the Lord; In Zech. 4:6, he looked to the word of the Lord and the spirit of the Lord. God has already settled it that Jordan shall be crossed.

The key to crossing the hurdle as planned was seeing the Ark of the covenant of the Lord and the priests bearing it, Josh 3:3.

The Ark of the covenant of the Lord – Ex 25:10-22, was the most important furniture in the tabernacle of witness. The tabernacle was constructed all because of the Ark and it was the first sacred object Moses was instructed to construct. It was a rectangular wooden case that was overlaid with pure gold. It has golden crown around its top. The lid on its top, separate, yet one with the ark, was known as Mercy Seat with the cherubim which cover the mercy seat. Inside it was the stone tablets of the ten commandments, the golden pot containing a measure of manna; and later, Aaron’s rod that budded – Num. 17:7-8.

It was part of Christ concealed in the Old Testament as types and shadows. The acacia wood speaks of the indestructible complete humanity of Christ. The gold overlay speaks of the divinity and glory of Christ. The golden crown around the lid signified Him as the King of kings and Lord of lords. The unbroken tables of the law speak of the perfect obedience of Christ. Aaron’s rod that budded was a pointer to Jesus’ confirmation to be the son of God and our eternal High Priest, through his resurrection. Rom 1:3-4; Heb. 4:14; The golden poles, represented the ever present and Living Saviour. The ark led their procession just as Christ leads his sheep. Jn 10:1-5. If the hurdles before us will be crossed, our eyes must be on Jesus.

The second part of the instruction is not about the priests but still about the ark. While every believer is a priest in the New Testament, the reference here is to the priests who bear the bear the Ark just like those who preach the word. No one is called to ultimately follow the preacher. The significance of the preacher is in the word he preaches. Ask every time what the minister is bearing. His words must publish Christ who is our redemption, the wisdom and the power of God.

Whether it is to cross your hurdle or to make progress into the future, look for the direction of the word. Your salvation lies where the word points to. When we behold carefully where the word points, we shall be wise unto salvation. The ultimate key to crossing your hurdle is Christ, the living word, who is in the midst of his church. He is our salvation; the wisdom and the power of God.

HOW TO CROSS SIGNIFICANT HURDLES INTO YOUR PROMISE 2

And Joshua said to the people, “Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.” Then Joshua spoke to the priests, saying, “Take up the ark of the covenant and cross over before the people.” So they took up the ark of the covenant and went before the people. Josh 3:5-6

To cross every significant hurdles into the promise like the crossing of Jordan will require the process of change: an admission of the current state; a foresight of what should be; and the embrace of the promise. Crossing the Jordan requires preparation and obedience to instruction

Crossing the hurdles requires personal consecration (separation from – habits, attitudes, cultures, and dedication to) for tomorrow, the wonders that God will do. A great social and spiritual misnomer today is the bid to transit into the future you are not holistically changed for. Change is spiritual, mental and material. Your life today will not adjust into the reality of the promise until you have the word of God for it. Remember always to identify where you are and juxtapose it with where you should be; Die to the reality of what is while longing for what should be; Awake within you to what should be and experience God raising you up to the new day of what should be, becoming what now is.

They crossed by following the lead of God’s word and presence and not miracles. The desire for miracles is good, but the understanding of God’s way is much better. God’s way is revealed by God’s word and when God speaks, it points you to the future. Faith however brings the promise into now. Until faith comes, it remains a hope which is always in the future. Their faith related with the significance of the ark of testimony and followed it.

Simple obedience births outstanding miracles. Jn 2:4. Note that there was no agitation in the new generation as it was with the old. They were only following instructions. They crossed Jordan in principle. They did not only have the direction; they were positioned to know what steps to take. Their act of faith required that there be space between you and the ark. It is mindful, not just of the destination, but of every steps.

Walking with God helps one to know His ways and this is superior to His works. God has given the word; we are to act on the word. The Joshua generation is an obedient generation who give attention to the word. Miracles will not accomplish what obedience should. God wants us to birth miracles by cooperation with Him. When we walk in His ways we shall see His works. In obedience, we shall see that the living God is among us. As we do what He has told us to do, we shall see a result that signifies the cutting off of the past and a leeway into the future. A proof that things greater than these shall be.

WELCOME TO AUGUST 2016

There are things meant to be under your rule

Which you presently do not see there

As you journey into the month of AUGUST 

There shall be a distinct turnaround

That you will see Christ

In the place of those pending victories

And that He, as the Captain of your salvation

Will bruise under your feet shortly

The head of satan and his contending forces

HAPPY NEW MONTH TO YOU

Isaac Boluwatise

HOW TO CROSS SIGNIFICANT HURDLES INTO YOUR PROMISE

And Joshua said to the people, “Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.” Then Joshua spoke to the priests, saying, “Take up the ark of the covenant and cross over before the people.” So they took up the ark of the covenant and went before the people. Josh 3:5-6

We all have promises that we go after, and we do if we press on to know the Lord. Hos 6:2; 1 Cor. 8.2. the more we press, the more we discover the promises/plans He has for us. Pursuit of God can be seen as the pursuit of His promises for His word is the same as He. The more the pursuit, the more the materialisation of the blessings in spiritual places in your material realm. God wants this to be. The more you have his seed for the earth, the more you will enjoy the rain of His grace.

The way this ongoing experience happens is in your response to the promises discovered. The response is usually a change of mind-set and an improvement in your walk. Rom 12:2.

The climate changes in from time to time and so we must recognise the demand on us per time. We are not the coming out generation, but the going in generation. The generation that takes over the land, promises that have been pending for long. To enter into these promises, there is the necessity of crossing the hurdles that those before were unable to cross. The typology of the experience of Israel according to 1 Cor. 10:1ff and Rom 15:4 is a great lesson for us.

Jordan was a significant hurdle in the way of these people. You will agree that this is not in any way an enemy coming against them. This was just naturally there from the past (in the order of natural order from your history into the future or matters general to everyone) and they must be crossed if they will ever get deeply into the promise. Everyone would in one way or the other have such hurdles. The good news is that the grace of God however is so abundant that there will be a way through them. Robert Frost made an interesting statement. He said, the best way out is always through. God amazingly took them through this predicament as He would do with everyone, no matter the predicament. 1 Cor. 10:13 affirms that with (in association with) the situation, God makes a way of escape.

Before considering the practicality of the crossing of the hurdle, it is good to remember that there was a crossing of another before now – the red sea. Looking at the differences and the distinctive of the two crossings respectively will also help us.

When they were to cross the red sea, they were full of murmurings and complaints. They were in a situation that overwhelmed or had power over them. It was necessary for Moses to calm them down and give them special encouragement (Ex 14:13-14) not to fear; but to stand still; so as to see what the Lord will do. The interest of God for them was that they will see the Egyptians no more forever. Their agitation was rooted in not being assured of that. Obviously, there was no response from them to the plan of God to take them all the way. Moses only calmed them down as faith is not built in a crisis situation.

The crossing of the red sea was all between Moses and God. God had settled the matter and Moses could believe that. God told him to instruct them to go forward while he (Moses) would carry out the work of faith by stretching the rod over the sea. This looks stupid just like “fill the water pots with water”; “go your way, your son is healed”; “go to the pool of Siloam and wash” etc. Miracles happens consequent to the obedience/agreement of faith.

They crossed the sea because the miracle had taken place, and that because Moses responded in faith to God. To cross the Jordan will be totally different from this. The Joshua generation were a people of the word. They relate with promises and instructions to see the will of God done in their lives.

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