Read and Believe




America is in great need of a mighty wind to usher in a Holy Ghost revival across our nation. We have many churches, but few are filled with the power of God. Manís wisdom has replaced the position Godís Holy Spirit once held in our places of worship. The power of God released in our midst is the convicting evidence He is near. It used to be that Christians, when faced with urgent situations, joined hands and prayed, and the power of God was released. The Bible says, ďAnd my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of manís wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power. That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.Ē I Co 2:4,5.
The American church has been slowly changed to parallel our growing society. We are a country filled with trained people in manís wisdom. In most of todayís churches the first one called upon when there is a need is the expert specializing in the slot. Christians, we have been robbed of a great gift! We have fallen into the trap of depending on manís wisdom rather than the power of God.
When you experience the power of God you know that Heaven has touched you. It brings heart change that is deeper than any manís wisdom can reach. Manís wisdom cannot transform the soul; only a touch from Jesus changes the whole person. Wisdom does not come from learned men, but rather from the Spirit of God. ďThe fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.Ē Pr 9:10.
The disciples were for the most part unlearned men who were transformed by knowing Jesus. The Bible says, ďNow when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marveled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus. And beholding the man which was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.Ē Ac 4:13,14.
A preacherís words should be backed by the power of God to bring miracles into difficult situations. Just like we print money but it is backed by gold, or was backed by that amount in gold. It is kind of like that with modern day Christians. Our preaching about Jesus should be backed by the power of God. The problem is many preachers across America no longer believe that the power of God for miracles is available today although the Bible tells us, ďJesus is the same yesterday, today and foreverĒ. Heb 13:8.
Godís power entering situations on earth has always been dynamic. In the Old Testament, in the story of the magicians and Moses, we see Moses depending on the power of God to complete the huge job of bringing the Israelites out of Egypt. Following Godís orders Moses went back to Egypt to lead the Jewish people out. During his audience with Pharaoh he threw down his rod and it turned into a serpent. The kingís magicians said they had the same power. They threw some rods down, and their rods became serpents. Moses knew the power of God, so he was not deterred. Mosesí serpent swallowed the other serpents up, demonstrating the genuine power of God.
We were greatly blessed to pastor an Acts 2 church in Auburn, California in the 70ís and 80ís. We all didnít know any better so we believed God for everything that was written in the Bible. It was the time of the Jesus Movement and we were in the middle of it in Northern California. Hippies came to the mountains and got saved. Many were dramatically delivered and became great Christians.
Ralph and I had no formal training as pastors, but we were discipled by a believing pastor into ministry. We read the Word of God and believed. Our church moved as a united body in prayer and fasting. And we saw miracles! And we grew.
One day we got a call from one of our elders. He had gotten hurt and broke his arm. The broken bone was poking at his skin. He called for Ralph and the elders to come and pray. The men went and prayed and before their eyes the bone went back in place and Carl was healed. Would he have gone to a doctor? Yes, if that was what God had directed, but they believed and prayed first and God answered their prayers.
Ralph and I later completed our college with earned Masterís degrees. It is interesting that since our college input we have to deal with being more careful not to fall into the trap of manís wisdom more than ever before. It was so simple to read and believe.
As our church grew into a strong body of believers people who needed deliverance came for help. Whenever the power of God is moving demoniacs are always drawn. Some are seeking deliverance and others to cause distraction.
Homosexuals began coming to our church for deliverance. One college professor came and sought deliverance. He was tormented with his life style and wanted to be set free. The elders fasted and prayed and then came together and prayed for him. As they prayed he began to speak in another voice that said, ďI have been with him since he was born. He will die without me.Ē The men commanded the spirit to leave the professor. All of a sudden he ran outside and began throwing up violently. After he quit throwing up he laid on the ground like a dead person. When he woke up he was speaking the words, ďI am free, I am free.Ē He was free indeed and was able to walk as a straight man.
The demonic that mocked Paul was dealt with by the power of God. ďAnd it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation. And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour.ĒAc 16:16-18. An interesting thought is Jesus commanded the spirit to come out of her and then it says he (the spirit) came out the same hour.
I experienced something like that while in China. I led in a team of 17 believers for mission work in an orphanage deep into China. We were praying in our hotel room in preparation for the next day of visiting the orphanage. As we prayed we felt God was leading us to prayer walk the prison. There was a prison just outside the city and we knew it held thousands of Christians who were imprisoned for their faith. As we prayed the impression increased that we should prayer walk that prison.
We decided to go there and prayer walk quietly. We got into taxis and traveled outside the city limits to the village beside the prison. Then all 17 of us got out and quietly walked around the huge prison grounds, which was about 8 blocks. As we quietly walked a woman came and began heckling us. She was clearly a stirred up demonic. I told my interpreter to ignore her and keep quietly walking and praying. I whispered to every one to bind the spirit within her in prayer. We did that and she wandered off.
If you want to see the power of God released into a situation gather a united church body for a fast. I am not talking about giving up a few choice things, but going without food for a set time. We saw God move in great ways in our Acts church. We fasted as a church body setting aside time to gather together to seek Godís face. It was usually a 1-3 day fast. Most of the older children also fasted because they were excited about seeing God do something. One time that stands out to me was a young couple that was part of our fellowship. The wife was 5 months pregnant when the doctor told her the baby had died. He wanted her to go in and have a DNC to remove the dead baby. The couple could not come to grips with that so they came and asked for the church to fast and pray for them because they had decided not to have the DNC. The doctor had warned the wife that she could get infection and be in danger, but they felt they wanted to trust God so we all gathered for prayer and fasting. I remember the great peace of God that came upon the fellowship of about 300 believers. Seemingly nothing changed and the wife was in danger according to manís wisdom, but 3 weeks later she birthed the dead baby boy at the hospital. She miraculously had no complications and the doctor told her they could try again for another child.
The medical field has grown and the power of God in healing has diminished. Not that there is anything wrong with doctors, they are a great blessing and we are very thankful for them in our lives. But we need to seek God first for His touch.
While in China many times I heard testimonies of healing and deliverances. They read the Bible and believed and the power of God was released.
The world is full of counterfeit powers that are not of God. It is interesting to note that wherever there is a counterfeit there is always something genuine. In the Bible it tells us in the later days there will be seducing, deceiving spirits to lead Christians astray.
Do you listen to manís wisdom or the voice of God? It is easy to listen to manís wisdom, but it takes fine-tuning to hear the voice of God. It takes fasting and seeking His face to see His power released. It takes waiting on Him and staying in His presence while things are pressing in for your attention. Those who are hungry for revival will press into God. I am hungry for revival and a genuine awakening. Are you?