SOMETHING GOOD IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO YOU

Amos.9:13 – Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him who sows the seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine and all the hills shall melt [that is, everything heretofore barren and unfruitful shall overflow with spiritual blessing].

Words of the Lord are precious and powerful to us. Over the years I have literally lived off of several scriptures that the Lord gave to me. A word in season can empower and sustain us through anything. Like Dick Mills used to always say, “He spoke and I was strengthened. Today’s verse is from the Amplified Bible and drips with the promise of the supernatural. This word describes a Spirit empowered life and the promise of supernatural favor on everything we do. Like every other promise, they are not automatic. Our part is to believe them, embrace them, and walk in the provisions of the promise. Obviously this promise is for givers, sowers of seed, and laborers in God’s work. Here is how Adam Clarke describes the blessing of this verse.

“The ploughman shall overtake the reaper. All the seasons shall succeed in due and natural order: but the crops shall be so copious in the fields and in the vineyards, that a long time shall be employed in gathering and disposing of them; so that the seasons of ploughing, sowing, gathering the grapes, treading the wine-press, &c., shall press on the heels of each other; so vast will be the abundance, and so long the time necessary to gather and cure the grain and fruits. We are informed by travelers in the Holy Land… that the vintage lasts from the fifteenth of September to the middle of November; and that the sowing season begins at the close of October, and lasts through all November. Here, then, the ploughman, sower, grape-gatherer, and operator at the wine-press, not only succeed each other, but have parts of these operations going on at the same time. But great fertility in the land, abundance in the crops, and regularity of the seasons, seem to be the things which the prophet especially predicts.”

So let’s get on with it. We are sowers and reapers in the kingdom of God. Get your seed in the ground, pick up your harvesting tools, and walk in expectancy of the overtaking blessings of the Lord. As Oral Roberts used to say, “Something good is going to happen to you”.

WHEN SIMEON SAW HIS FACE

(Luke 2:28–31 THE MESSAGE) – Simeon took him into his arms and blessed God: God, you can now release your servant; release me in peace as you promised. With my own eyes I’ve seen your salvation; it’s now out in the open for everyone to see:

And who could forget old Simeon who had been waiting for this day for years. How did he know who this little baby was? Was it something in his face that grabbed his attention? This was Simeon’s defining moment. This was the messiah, a supernatural birth, a sign to be spoken against. Now he could go home in peace.

When you see Him for yourself it changes the way you see everything else. Like David said, “in Your light we see light”. Simeon’s world was literally flooded with light the day he saw Jesus in the temple. He had been waiting for a long time, probably for years, to see that wonderful face. It is believed that Simeon had been a powerful leader in Israel and lost his position because of what he believed about the coming Messiah. All of that waiting and ridicule was done, He had now seen the One he had been waiting for. This was the sign spoken against that would flood the whole world with light. This light was shining on Simeon as he prophesied of things to come. Here is how Matthew Henry describes this a passage.

“Lord, now let thou thy servant depart, for mine eyes have seen the salvation I was promised a sight of before I died.”… He blessed God that he saw that salvation in his arms which many prophets and kings desired to see, and might not…..And, while it has been thus long in the coming, it hath still been in the preparing. It is a farewell to this world: “Now let thy servant depart; now mine eyes have been blessed with this sight, let them be closed, and see no more in this world.” The eye is not satisfied with seeing, till it hath seen Christ, and then it is. What a poor thing doth this world look to one that hath Christ in his arms and salvation in his eye! Now adieu to all my friends and relations, all my enjoyments and employments here, even the temple itself.”

I love what Henry said, “the eye is not satisfied with seeing until it sees Christ, and then it is”. Have you seen Him for yourself? How will you know ? When you can say goodbye to everything else like Simeon because you have seen the treasure Who is Christ for yourself. Simeon was willing to walk away from friends, relations, and the temple itself. What was his reward? He saw the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

RED SKY – SAILOR TAKE WARNING

Matt.16:2,3 – He answered them, “When it is evening, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.’ And in the morning, ‘It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times.

Recently I was preparing to play golf with some friends and we were noticing the beautiful red sunrise in the east. One of my friends said, “red sky in the morning, sailor take warning” and then made reference to this scripture. I began to ask some questions (seeing my friend is a fisherman) and he said that red sunrises speak of a rainy day later and a red sunset usually predicts a coming beautiful day. I have been thinking about what the Lord was saying in this passage all day today. Obviously He was rebuking the religious leaders He was speaking to. He said that could recognize signs in nature and miss the prophetic signs of the coming of the Lord all around them. Here are some comments from Spurgeon on this passage.

“They were able to draw nice distinctions on the variable condition of “the face of the sky: ” why could they not “discern the signs of the times? ” They could have seen, if they had chosen to do so, that all the prophecies were one in declaring that the date of Messiah’s appearing had arrived; and they could also have observed that every event was fulfilling those prophecies; but they were false at heart, and would not see, and yet cried out for a sign. Signs were all around them, and yet they repeated the parrot cry “Show us a sign.” Most justly our Lord was indignant with them, and upbraided them, using the justly severe words, “O ye hypocrites! ”… Lord, do not allow any of us to be blind to the heavenly signs, — thy cross, thy resurrection, thy Word, thy Spirit, and thy work of grace, Teach us carefully to discern ” these things as being in very deed the abidingsigns of the times.

Just as there were signs of the first appearance of the Lord (the magi recognized a star proclaiming the Lord’s birth) there are signs all around us proclaiming the end of the age and the Second coming of the Lord. There are spiritual signs; the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. There are signs in the political and economic world; the alignment of the nations against Israel for one. There are also signs in creation; earthquakes and natural disasters have multiplied in the last century. Look at the signs; red sky – sailor take warning.

SHOWERS

Ezek.34:26 – And I will make them and the places all around my hill a blessing, and I will send down the showers in their season; they shall be showers of blessing.

This is an amazing prophetic word involving renewal for all of us. I found some amazing commentary on this verse from Matthew Henry. First, Henry says that this blessing begins in the local church.

“The heavens shall yield their dews; the trees of the field also shall yield their fruit. The seat of this plenty is God’s hill, his holy hill of Zion, for on that mountain, in the gospel church, it is, that God has made to all nations a feast; to that those must join themselves who would partake of gospel benefits.”

Secondly, Henry points out that the cause of this season of blessing is an outpouring of the Holy Spirit.

“The cause of this plenty is the showers that come down in their season, that descend upon the mountains of Zion, the graces of Christ, his doctrine that drops as the dew, the graces of Christ, and the fruits and comforts of his Spirit, by which we are made fruitful in the fruits of righteousness.”

He goes on to point out the effect of these outpourings, we are refreshed and God is glorified by the fruit in our lives.

“The instances of this plenty are the blessings of heaven poured down upon us and the productions of grace brought forth by us, our comfort in God’s favor and God’s glory in our fruit-bearing.”

Next, Henry says that the effect is far reaching. Everywhere the river flows there is healing and there is life.

“The extent of this plenty is very large, to all the places round about my hill; for out of Zion shall go forth the law, shall go forth light to a dark world, and the river that shall water a dry and desert world; all that are in the neighborhood of Zion shall fare the better for it; and the nearer the church the nearer its God.”

Finally Henry says that those effected by renewal will be extremely blessed and blessing to all they associate with.

“And, lastly, The effect of this plenty is, I will make them a blessing, eminently and exemplarily blessed, patterns of happiness. They shall be blessings to all about them, diffusively useful.”

Times of renewal are sure as long as the church exists. Lord, let me and our church step into these Showers of Blessing today.

THE ALMOND BRANCH

Jer.1:11,12 – The word of the LORD came to me saying, “What do you see, Jeremiah?” And I said, “I see a rod of an almond tree.” Then the LORD said to me, “You have seen well, for I am watching over My word to perform it.”

This passage was given to me and our ministry in January of 2000 as a word from the Lord by the prophet, Dick Mills. After Brother Mills shared this word with me he asked me if I knew what it meant. I said no so brother Mills proceeded to share the meaning of this prophesy. He said that the almond tree was like the “watcher of the harvest in Israel”. He went on to explain that the almond harvest came in first. He said that the almond harvest would point toward the harvest of the rest of the crops for that year.

The thing Brother Mills didn’t know was that we had just started the production Beyond the Grave about two months earlier. As soon as Brother Mills explained the significance of the prophesy it suddenly hit me. Beyond the Grave would be the almond branch watching over the coming harvest. Almost twenty years have passed since that first performance of BTG. Many thousands of people have come to Christ through this production and are now in churches all over this area. The exciting thing is that the BTG harvest is the almond branch pointing to the super natural harvest about to break out. Here is Dick Mills definition of this word translated ‘watching’ in the NASB Bible.

“Watching – shaqad: Watching, waking, hastening, anticipating; to be sleepless, alert, vigilant; on the lookout; to care for watchfully. This verb occurs 12 times, including Ps. 127:1: “Unless the LORD guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.” In Jer. 31:28, God promises to watch over His people with an intent to build and to plant. The present reference may best be understood by noting the linguistic connection between “waking” (shaqad) and “almond” (shaqed) in Hebrew. The almond is considered the “waker” in Hebrew thought, because it, of all trees, blossoms early, watching diligently for the opportunity to bloom. Thus, in vv. 11, 12, the linking of the vision of an almond branch and its interpretation is clear.”

So get ready, get ready, get ready. I think the harvest of the Lord in this region is about to break out suddenly.

ONE OF THE LAST PROPHETIC PIECES OF THE PUZZLE

Rom.11:12,15 – Now if their transgression is riches for the world and their failure is riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their fulfillment be! For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?

I remember a class I had at Bible School in the fall of 1973. Our teacher showed up in class looking like local weatherman Bob Breck when a cat 5 hurricane enters the Gulf of Mexico. Obviously the teacher was totally disheveled and disturbed by what had happened in the news that day. Israel had just entered into a war with the Muslim nations surrounding them and had a sudden overwhelming victory. What disturbed our teacher was what he expected to happen next. He said that Jerusalem could be surrounded by Russian tanks by morning. Obviously that didn’t happen but what did happen is that I suddenly became aware of Israel’s involvement in God’s prophetic time clock.

As I began to study Bible prophesy on my own I became aware of something Jesus said about Jerusalem and the last days. He said in Luke 21: 24, “Jerusalem will be trampled under foot by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled“. This is the phrase that grabbed me, “until the time of the gentiles is fulfilled”. I had no idea what that meant and I just had to find out. What I discovered was this, that the Lord had dealt primarily with the people of Israel until the time of Christ. Their rejection of the messiah brought the destruction of their land. That is actually what Romans 11 is about. The Lord turned to the gentiles for a season and the Jews were blinded from the truth. The good news is the Lord is not finished with Israel. Paul also referred to the time of the gentiles in this chapter. He said that there would be a great harvest of Jews when the time of the gentiles is fulfilled. Here is how Paul says it in Rom.11:25,26, “For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery — so that you will not be wise in your own estimation — that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.”

So what conclusions I have come to in my studies of Bible prophesy is this, keep your eye on Israel, He is not finished with them yet. Finally, don’t be rigid in what you believe. What you believe may have to be altered as you see the events unfolding before your very eyes.

PREACH

Lk. 4:16 -18 – And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read. And the book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the book and found the place where it was written,

“THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME, BECAUSE HE ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR. HE HAS SENT ME TO PROCLAIM RELEASE TO THE CAPTIVES, AND RECOVERY OF SIGHT TO THE BLIND, TO SET FREE THOSE WHO ARE OPPRESSED,

Today’s passage reminds us why Jesus came to earth as a man; it also reminds us what it means to be one of His followers. This is our first real glimpse into the preaching of Jesus. This is the message He preached in His home town. He was preaching in the synagogue He had attended all of His life. He saw the same people He had known throughout His childhood still sitting in their familiar spots like they had done for all of those years. His message outlined what He would preach and live for the next three years; it also upended the apple cart. He started by saying He was anointed to preach good news to the poor. He came to break the power of poverty from our lives through His death and bring God’s message of provision in His actions and words. He would feed the hungry as well as teach them about the blessing of sewing and reaping. After all it was Jesus that taught us “it is more blessed to give than to receive”.

Secondly He proclaimed release to the captives. Man has been enslaved to sin since our first parents fell. The message of Christ is forgiveness and release from the power of sin. His death is the basis for our freedom from those horrible shackles of sin. We are freed from sin”s bondage by the power of forgiveness.

Next Jesus proclaimed recovery of sight to the blind. Not only did Jesus open sick, blind eyes; He also opens the eyes of our heart. One touch from His hand and we view our world differently. This is part of our ministry, opening the eye of the spiritually blind to the beauty of our Lord.

He also preached healing from oppression. The power of the gospel releases us from the ramifications of our sinful past. No matter how much we messed things up He has provided a way of escape.

Finally, Jesus declared the beginning of the season of God’s favor. The gospel is good news. The season of our bondage is over. We are now entering the season of God’s favor on our lives through the power of the gospel.

VISION IN OUR HEART

Hab.2:2 – Then the LORD answered me and said: Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it.

This scripture played an important role in the early days of our church. Our hearts were inflamed with a passion to see the vision of the Lord fulfilled in our city. This word vision in this passion is an important Bible word. The very nature of this word is supernatural. It is describing a prophetic vision. The Hebrew prophets were a very important part of the Old Testament jewish world. Their ability to hear from the Lord kept the people of Israel on course. Without a prophetic vision from the Lord that would “come off the rails” and end up in a bad situation. We too need to “hear from the Lord”. Today, all of us have an ability to hear from God. He speaks to our hearts by the scriptures inspired and breathed upon by the Holy Spirit. We too need to have “vision” that we can fulfill God’s plans in our lives. Here is how Dick Mills explains today’s verse.

“vision, chazon (cha-zohn); A prophetic vision, dream, oracle, revelation; especially the kind of revelation that comes through sight, namely a vision from God. This noun occurs 35 times and is from the root chazah, “to see, behold, and perceive.” Chazon is especially used for the revelation which the prophets received. The prophets understood God’s counsels so clearly because He revealed matters to them by visible means. Prov. 29:18 shows that when a society lacks any revelation from God (divine insight), such a society heads in the direction of anarchy.”

So today our spiritual vision starts with having a vision of Christ in our hearts. What do I mean by that? Having a vibrant, daily relationship with the Lord where He actually becomes real to us. Out of that “vision” of Christ comes His vision for our lives. He has a plan for each of us. He has a ministry of touching and helping people for each of us. Finding that “vision”, recording it on the tablet of our heart, is critical to having a complete life. Once we begin to allow the Spirit to write His vision on our heart it becomes part of us. Then, and then only, can we begin to run. Draw near to the Lord. Seek Him and His vision for your life. Before long, you too will find yourself on the run.

CATCH THE WAVE

CATCH THE WAVE

John 1:16 ¶ And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.

It was early summer of 1994 when I received this prophetic phone call from Dick Mills. Now receiving a phone call from Brother Mills was not that unusual, he would often call me and talk about his latest treasures he had discovered. His treasures were old books that he would come across in his travels. It would be a set of Bishop Ellicott’s commentary he found somewhere in England or the discovery of a reprint of John Trappe’s commentary. He loved those books but that is not what this conversation was about. He was asking me what I thought the next move of God would look like. At the time I didn’t really understand the question (I thought I did). To me, it was irrelevant. I didn’t really know what a move of God would look like. Brother Mills was seeing through different eyes. He had been a teen at Sister Aimee Semple MacPhaerson’s church, he had witnessed much of the healing revival, and he had been a key player in the charismatic revival of the sixties and seventies. He had tasted the different streams and had an anticipation that something great was about to hit again. Thus the question, “What do you think the next move of the Spirit will look like?”
Several months passed until I heard from Dick again. This time he called me with the excitement of a teenager in his voice (in 1994 Brother Mills was in his seventies). He was calling from Toronto and wanted to know if I had heard of the Toronto blessing. Suddenly I remembered our last phone conversation and I finally understood his question. “What will the next move of God look like?” You see by this time our church had been swept into a fresh move of the Holy Spirit. We were experiencing waves of supernatural joy, people falling under the power and going into trance like states for hours, healings, deliverances, salvations; God had come down in a very unusual way. The most outstanding and common trait of this move of the Spirit was the joy, the kind of joy that was accompanied by laughter. You know the kind, that deep belly laughter that goes all throughout your being. Peter called it joy unspeakable. Now the question was making sense, before now I had no way of knowing what a new revival would look like. Sometimes our preconceived ideas just get in the way.
Looking back on these events, I want to learn again from Brother Mills example. Too many older Christians get stuck on the proverbial good old days, I don’t want to be like that. Brother Mills had tasted of the afterglow of Azusa as a child in Sister Aimee’s meetings, he had tasted the power of the healing revival, he had been involved in the charismatic renewal; he still wasn’t satisfied. There had to be one more wave. That’s where I am today; Lord, just one more wave. Are you ready for a new move of the Spirit. If so, let me ask you a question. What do you think the next move of God will look like?

JOSEPH’S WELL

JOSEPH’S WELL 1

Years ago I was given a word from The Lord that described the future of the ministry The Lord has blessed me with. Some people get nervous about personal words from The Lord. This one was pretty safe, it was entirely scripture. Here it is with a few comments from me.

PLANTED BY A FOUNTAIN

Gen. 49:22 “Joseph is a fruitful bough,
A fruitful bough by a well;
His branches run over the wall.

This has been very precious to me over the years. I have enjoyed “drinking” from this spiritual fountain all throughout my ministry. This is the secret to having a fruitful life and ministry.

HARASSMENT AND PERSECUTION

Gen. 49:23 The archers have bitterly grieved him,
Shot at him and hated him.

We have had our fair share of criticism over the years. I have come to the conclusion that if no one is speaking bad about me something is wrong. The anointing always brings persecution. Ask Joseph, it was just after he put on his Father’s coat (type of the anointing) that his brothers attacked him. Joseph was persecuted throughout his life.

STRENGTHENED BY GOD

Gen. 49:24 But his bow remained in strength,
And the arms of his hands were made strong
By the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob
(From there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel),

The anointing also brings supernatural strength. All of us face various obstacles throughout our Christian walk. Often times, these problems intensify as we drink from the well and begin to walk in a fruitful life and ministry. As long as we stay close to the well and continue to drink we will be fine. The Shepherd, the Rock of Israel hangs out by that well. He becomes a very present help in our times of need.

THE SHEPHERD AND THE STONE

Gen. 49:24 But his bow remained in strength,
And the arms of his hands were made strong
By the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob
(From there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel),

I love this reference to the Shepherd and the Stone. Immediately, all of us think the same thing. The Lord is my Shepherd. Even if I walk through the Valley of The Shadow of Death I will fear no evil because the Shepherd is with me. The Lord is my Rock. My shadow in the times of fiery trials and the very strength of my life.

SUPERNATURAL HELP

Gen. 49:25 By the God of your father who will help you,
And by the Almighty who will bless you
With blessings of heaven above,
Blessings of the deep that lies beneath,
Blessings of the breasts and of the womb.

This is a promise of divine help. He provides all kinds of help and help at the right time. What kind of need do you have today? Stay close to the fountain, drink in His life. As you do, you are drinking in help itself. Maybe I should say help Himself. The living water that we drink from the well is God the Holy Spirit. He is more help than we could ever need and He is always on time.

PART 2 TOMORROW