Holy Spirit

Persecuted Christian! They Cannot Eliminate You

Image credit: Ben White, on Unsplash

Ever felt hurt, dejected or demotivated when people have persecuted you because you are a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ? Take heart from the Bible – I too have. Let me begin with a portion of Scripture:

1 Peter 4:12-14 says:
Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. 

Think of the martyrs who have shed blood and sacrificed their lives for the sake of the Gospel. Be thankful that you are at least alive. And while you are alive, get equipped to not just preach the Gospel boldly, but also be filled with the Holy Spirit. He will give you the power to demonstrate the Kingdom. If you preach the Gospel with signs following, unsaved people will lose most (if not all) of their resistance to the message that you bring. It will be clear who reigns – Jesus Christ the risen!

People who persecute others can, at the most, kill – but not eliminate – the victim. The spirit of the born again Christian will personally go to Heaven at death. In fact, positionally, you are already in Heaven if you are born again. So any which way you take it, your persecutors cannot eliminate you. In my view, your safest bet to minimize persecution and maximize your impact for the Kingdom is to operate in the way that Jesus operated. And he not only preached the Gospel of the Kingdom – he also healed the sick, raised the dead and cast out demons. Ask God to give you the power needed to do the same. According to the Bible, the key to getting filled with Holy Spirit is this, as stated in Ephesians 5:18-21

And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ. 

When the religious people of Jesus’ day tried to attack him physically, he escaped from their midst every single time. He knew that the time had not yet come for him to be hung on the Cross. So, with the Holy Spirit’s ability, he could escape unhurt, untouched. If we keep renewing our minds to the Word of God – the Bible – and keep preaching with signs following (or at least attempting to do so in obedience to the Bible), we too will be able to avoid being persecuted more than God allows us to be.

According to a preacher that I respect, Bro. Curry Blake, as you develop the reputation of being a warrior for Christ, demons will trouble you less. They will look for a more opportune time. But every time, you can beat them. So brother/sister! Keep reading the Bible, studying the Bible, meditating on its verses, and doing the Bible. There is nothing that comforts you more than Scripture. and there is nothing that gives you greater hope and strength. Above all, forgive those who persecute you. Encourage others by sharing your experiences overcoming persecution, in the comments section below, and offline too!

 

Posted by Ketan Rindani in Born-again, Christian, Gospel, Holy Spirit, India, Life Issues, Persecution, Prayer, Sacrifice, Suffering, 0 comments

God Saves Households – Not Just Individuals

“Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” – Acts 16:31 (KJV)

Let’s continue from the first part in this series on family salvation promises in the Bible. If you have not read that part yet, head over to Salvation of Loved Ones – Comfort in Times of Discouragement and then come back here.

God is good not just at shooting promises off His mouth. He backs up His Word too. He does not utter (write/promise) any word unless He is serious about bringing it to pass. It applies both ways – in matters of judgement and in matters of forgiveness (or salvation/deliverance/healing etc.) too. Read further, beyond verse 31 in Acts 16:

Verses 32, 33: “And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house.
And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.”

We see that the jailer’s family too believed and all of them got baptized in water before daybreak. Take that as proof that God fulfills the promises He makes, provided we fulfill the part we need to. In this case, our part is to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (believing that he is the Son of God who died for the forgiveness of our sin and who came back to life to give us everlasting life). So if you are born again, you have already fulfilled your part. So God fulfilled the first part of His promise – He saved you. Now He will also save your entire household.

“But my family members are not yet saved” you say. Yes. One of the factors preventing their salvation can be your doubting God’s willingness and ability to save them NOW. If you doubt that God really wants to save them or that He really can save them, flip through the pages of history and you will find that in spite of maybe nobody to believe or pray for your salvation, He did save you, did he not? How much more then, would He want to save your folks – with you praying for them and standing on the promises of His Word (not yours). Read through a list of promises and prophecies in the Bible and their fulfillment. You will soon discover that you are dealing with and trusting on the God who has always delivered what He has promised. If anyone, it is He who is trustworthy. You can calmly and without being anxious, place your trust on our God Jehovah, His Son Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Rest assured, God will never let you down, because He will never let His Word down. He has promised an He shall fulfill.

Will continue this series. If any of your family members got saved in the meantime, do leave a comment and allow me to rejoice with you! Until then the peace of God Yahweh Shalom be with you.


Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” – Isaiah 26:3
Amen.

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Is This the Last Christmas Before the Rapture?

“For you yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in the night.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:2

The Bible says that the day is coming when Jesus Christ will come down (but not step on Earth) and resurrect the bodies of those followers of his who are already dead at that time. These bodies will be given to their respective persons (who are now in heaven) and the bodies will be incorruptible (indestructible). Immediately after that, he will also supernaturally lift up those followers of his, who are alive at that time on Earth. The bodies of these followers will supernaturally be translated into incorruptible bodies. No matter which group we are in, we will be united with the Lord Jesus Christ forever. This event, as you might know, is called the Rapture. 

And after that, the 7-year Great Tribulation will begin. Those who have not repented of their sins and accepted God’s Free Gift of Salvation by then, will be left behind. The Antichrist will appear on the scene and woo the hearts of as many people he can deceive. All this will reach a climax with a war at Armageddon, when Jesus and his forces will defeat the Antichrist and his forces.

Some scholars say that Jesus saying in the Bible that a generation shall not pass since Israel will be re-formed, that the Rapture will occur. They say a Biblical generation is 70-80 years. Israel was re-formed in 1948. This means Jesus could come for the Rapture anytime from 2018-2028. Others say the 4 Blood Moons that will occur from April 2014-October 2015 will likely bring this event. 

Some other people believe not in a Pre-Tribulation Rapture, but a Mid- or Post-Tribulation Rapture. They say the first 3.5 years of the Antichrist’s wooing the world’s people will pass and then the event will occur. So when is it really going to happen? Or is it even important for you if you are a born-again child of God? Well, here is my take on it, with helpful insights from a Christian friend…

Scenario 1: Pre-Tribulation Rapture

Well, this is what most Christians would want, wouldn’t we! Supernaturally airlifted out of the danger zone before the zone turns dangerous like it never has in history. But there is another side to it… 

This also means you and I have less time to preach the Gospel and do the other works that destroy the works of the devil. So if your loved ones or friends are unsaved, maybe you need to develop a plan soon, to witness to them. 

Mark 16 says that believers shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover. It also says that the disciples went about obeying the commands of Jesus and preached the Gospel everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word with signs following. So if you think you only need to preach the Gospel but not lay hands on the sick or cast out devils or raise the dead, better re-read Mark 16 again a few times. If the Lord needed to confirm the message with signs, and he is the same yesterday and today and forever, he needs us to yield to him so he can confirm the word with signs following today as well. So make yourself available to the Holy Spirit. If the Pre-Trib Rapture is what it’s going to be, then you might just have 3.5 years less to get your loved ones into the Kingdom.

“The day you realize that who you lay your hands on will live and who you do not lay your hands on could die…from that day, you will start looking at your hands differently.” – Curry Blake, General Overseer, John G. Lake Ministries

Let your hands and feet be the hands and feet of Jesus. Allow him to continue his ministry today…this time through you!

We will look at the Scenario 2: Post-Tribulation Rapture in the next blog post. Till then, keep witnessing and demonstrating the Kingdom!

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How Not to Fulfill the Great Commission

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8,9

That sounds really spiritual, doesn’t it? Maybe that applies to you if you are a Jew – but certainly not if you are a Christian. Because if you are a Christian, then the Bible says that you have the mind of Christ:

“For “who has known the mind of the LORD that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 2:16

Do you really think you can fulfill the Great Commission if your thoughts are lower than God’s thoughts and your ways are lower than His ways? If that were possible, then why would the Bible say that we have the mind of Christ? Why would we even need the mind of Christ? Praying and reinforcing the idea that God’s thoughts are higher than ours and His ways are higher than ours is a good way to try hard not to fulfill all that God has called you to do, as a Christian. Because God’s heart is for salvation, deliverance and healing for every human. So if He conceived that plan, only His thoughts and ways can achieve the fulfillment of these goals. If you don’t share His vision, think His thoughts and deploy His methods, there is no way to achieve these goals.

Maybe I’m preaching this to myself too, but if you want to fulfill the Great Commission, then the starting point is this:

  1. Learn to think (believe) like Jesus did; and
  2. Learn to walk (act) the way Jesus walked (acted).

That’s because the Old Testament saints – the Jews – did not have the Holy Spirit living inside of them. So they could not think or act like Jesus. But since we have the mind of Christ, and Jesus Christ and God the Father are one, our thoughts and ways are positionally the same as God’s. So the only thing we need to do is enforce that position in our lives. Once we get to doing that on a regular basis, we will be taking big strides to fulfilling God’s plan for our lives!

Are you on fire for the Gospel? Good, because you should be! Then here’s a blog post you might like and find useful: How to Spiritually Capture a City: Download MP3

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What’s Common Between Gilbert Hill and Christians?

The picture above is that of Gilbert Hill, Mumbai, India. According to Wikipedia, Gilbert Hill is a 200 ft (61 m) monolith column of black basalt rock at Andheri, in Mumbai (my hometown). The rock has a sheer vertical face and was formed when molten lava was squeezed out of the Earth’s clefts during the Mesozoic Era about 65 million years ago. If you are a practicing Christian, you might know that the Earth is not that old, but probably only about 6000-7000 years old. Scientists seem to have proven that all it takes for the Earth to cool down is a fraction of a second (Refer to Josh McDowell’s free ebook Reasons Skeptics Should Consider Christianityhttp://www.josh.org/resources/free-book-downloads/).
Gilbert Hill is a national level prehistoric heritage site. Many people the world over might be thrilled to learn that the town they live in is home to a prehistoric site like this. I too was, until the Holy Spirit told me that every square inch of ground I walked on is a prehistoric site. It has always been existing since He created Earth! What’s more, He showed me another important fact – guess what it was – that I am a prehistoric site myself, being born again! And how? Of course, because as per the Bible, my body is a temple of the Holy Spirit and the spirit of Jesus Christ lives in me. The Ancient of Days (God the Father – Jehovah) lives in me through Jesus and the Holy Spirit. So is not my body a prehistoric site? Yours too is, if you are a born again child of God through faith in His Son Jesus. Yet what a joyful irony, the Bible says that when you turn your life over to Jesus, old things pass away and all things become new and all things are of God!

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. Now all things are of God…” – 2 Corinthians 5:17,18

If you want to become a prehistoric site (yet recreated through faith in Jesus Christ the Son of God), read this blog post.


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Faith Confessions: When a Child of God Speaks…

Romans 8:14:
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.”

It’s been a long time since I wrote a blog post. So here it is…

In the Divine Healing Technician Training seminar conducted by Curry Blake of John G. Lake Ministries, Blake says a few landmark things. Open a notepad or Word document and save this:

“When a child of God speaks, Heaven hears and agrees, and hell hears and obeys.”

Read that once more. Let it sink-in.

Here’s another one:

“An anointed teacher makes the complicated simple. An annoying teacher makes the simple complicated.”

And another one:

If you’re a Christian (saved, born again), then say this:

“I am God’s son, the devil’s master, and Man’s servant.” Read each part of that statement carefully and let it sink-in. Then repeat.

I suggest you memorize all the 3 statements given above.

If you want to learn more about their ministry, visit www.jglm.org. God bless you!

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How to Spiritually Capture a City: Download MP3

“Practice what you preach.”

Here’s a great teaching from John G. Lake Ministries, titled “How to Spiritually Capture a City.”


Click the link below to download the teaching as an MP3 file:



Curry Blake – General Overseer of JGLM says in that teaching that they have actually practiced what he teaches and it’s worked. If it worked for them, it should surely work for any other church and for any born again child of God. 
Caution: Jesus sent disciples two-by-two. So I suggest you go out in groups to evangelize the way they recommend. And if there is hostility in the area you live or plan to evangelize, I suggest you speak to your pastor first, because the pastor is responsible for your spiritual well-being and life before God. If all is fine, then try it out and leave your comments here. If I do try out the method, I too will update. Till then, forever, God bless you and use you more mightily as a blessing, in Jesus’ name. Amen!

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Blood of Jesus Vs. Poison of Serpent…and Jesus Wins!

“…and the blood of Jesus, His Son, cleanses us from all sin.” 1 John 1:7

A European in Australia had immuned himself against the deadly Australian Tiger Snake’s poison. He thought he was immune to all types of snake venoms. One day a snake with another type of poison bit him and he died the following day. Such is the tragedy of many people. Even when it comes to sin, they think they are immune from its wages (consequences). But the Word of God shall not pass away (Matthew 24:35). They who sin shall surely die…unless they cleanse themselves with the antidote to the poison – the Blood of Jesus. The life of the flesh is in the blood. And the life given by the Spirit is because of the Blood…of Jesus Christ!
Just as snake venom can change human blood so that it is no longer life-sustaining; the blood of Jesus changes a sinner to a completely new creation through the working of the Holy Spirit. It gives eternal life to the one who accepts God’s plan for their salvation. Learn how
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Led by the Spirit of God

“Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith.” – Hebrews 13:7
I remember those who led me to the Lord Jesus Christ. I got saved through a website www.demonbuster.com. Although I do not agree with some of their teachings on spiritual warfare, God used that website to plant the seed of His Word in me. I was hungry so I ate up that seed and by His grace and through the power of His Spirit, the seed is bearing fruit.
There have been several others who have led me along the Way. Heb 13:7 exhorts us to imitate their faith. Praise God for the solid faith of that uncle (I will keep all the names anonymous) who had lost an eye and has been on dialysis for the last few years. The devil has not succeeded in shaking his faith in God, despite the afflictions. Recently, this uncle’s doctor asked him to give a speech to about 60-70 people in the hospital where he regularly goes for dialysis. Uncle got up and shared the Gospel with them. Looks like he has decided to glorify the LORD come what may! By all means, physical fitness is necessary and you should aim for it/preserve it; but what good is it if you are not fit enough to preach the Gospel? This uncle truly gives God a ‘Sacrifice of Praise’.
There is another brother who has interceded for me quite a lot. He has seen countless miracles as a result of his faith in the Living God. His church’s managing committee once asked him whether he had a first class pass to commute in Mumbai’s suburban trains. He said he didn’t. They asked him to get one, but he refused. He said “the money that pays for my pass is the blood of the saints – they work hard and live out the Word of God. I cannot squander their hard-earned money to commute in comfort.” He often goes on house visitations in various parts of Mumbai. Mumbai is one of the largest and most populous cities in the world with a reasonably good but grossly inadequate mass transport system. A local train that is supposed to carry only 1,200 commuters carries 5,000! And to travel this way in 35 degrees Celsius with 80% relative humidity – not an easy task. But this soldier of God chooses the narrow, thorny road as Jesus his Master and Leader is with him wherever he goes (Joshua 1:9). He lives out the verse “I can do all things through Jesus who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)
My local pastor graduated from Bible College at Baltimore, Maryland. He prayed about God’s call on his life and felt the Spirit tell him He wanted him to come back to India – God had a job for him here. He confirmed this with his pastor who prayed about it and felt the same. My pastor has now completed almost 20 years of ministry in India. It’s not easy – he’s been put in prison once for preaching the Gospel (though Christian evangelism is perfectly legal in India) – in the same Indian state where an Australian missionary was martyred many years ago. He’s had a tough job. Life would probably have been much less challenging had he stayed in the comforts of the US. But thanks be to God that he brought him back to India, as our church now has almost two dozen branches all over India and about seven in Nepal!
Why do you think some people seem to be able to overcome all odds? It’s not only because they have faith in Jesus. It’s because they have the faith OF Jesus!
I thank God for exhorting me to imitate the faith of those who have led me spiritually in one way or another. My real Leader is the Spirit of Jesus Christ, who leads me and guides me into all Truth. (John 16:13) Amen.
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Is Sin Related to Sickness?

“Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”)” Galatians 3
The previous blog post “Does God Allow Sickness for His Glory? received a great response on LinkedIn. Some readers cited verses to argue that God lovingly (?) uses sickness to glorify Himself. Others cited verses to claim that God never allows sickness for His glory. At one point, it seemed to me like a game of tennis with aggressive and prolonged volleying from one end of the court to the other. So does it mean that the Bible contradicts itself? No! Not if you interpret it correctly.
One question that bothers people sometimes is this: “My friend is saved – her sins have been forgiven and she does not have any unconfessed sin in her life; then why did this sickness come upon her?” When I began this series of posts on healing, I said it was on healing. So in a sense, whether you are sick because you committed sins or you are sick even though you have no unconfessed sin in your life – it does not matter. Jesus did not command “they shall lay hands on the sick who have repented, and they shall recover.” He simply said “they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” Mark 16:18)
Once you are healed – or during your healing – if you repent of your sins before God, the sickness loses legal grounds to be in you. But if you have not repented, the sickness can come back to you. But there it is – it can come back. This means it can go. So if a born again child of God commands in faith and with the authority he has, for healing to take place, the healing has to take place. In fact, Jesus did not even ask us to ‘pray’ for healing. He simply said we would lay hands on the sick and they would recover.
One more thing – those who fatalistically accept sickness saying it is God’s will for them to be sick; these people still go to the doctor to get treated. Why? If you do not want to tolerate the sickness physically, then why should your Father who formed your inward parts (Psalm 139:13) tolerate it? Wouldn’t He pull out all stops to ensure you got your healing? As I see it, it is basically a matter of indoctrination and sticking to your guns. But at all times Truth must stand. We children of God here on Earth, need to enforce God’s will (the Truth) here as it is in Heaven.
In the next post, we will discover why even sinners (saved and unsaved alike) can be healed even though they may have unconfessed sins in their life. Later, we will also see that the original promoter of sin was the devil – not God, Adam or Eve.
Praise the LORD!
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