Archive for the ‘Deliverance’ Category

The dead and lost son

June 26, 2014

The beautiful story of a dead and lost son, commonly known as the prodigal son, is an allegory of a selfish, wasteful life that through the process of being stripped to nothing and hitting rock bottom, finds redemption.

After he hit rock bottom, the first ray of hope we find is “But when he came to himself,”. Here we see that he began to see his need. Without “need” there is no turning back.

Then he purposes what he is going to do.
“I will arise and go to my father,”
He then purposes what he is going to say.
“I have sinned against heaven and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son…”

After he purposes, he then follows through with his purpose.
“And he arose and came to his father.” He then confessed his sin and his unworthiness.

Then the father was quick and right there ready to forgive and give him his best, the “Best robe”, and “A ring on his hand”, and “Sandals on his feet”.
Then….. the father has a feast prepared along with a big party.

Then, lest we forget, the father makes a very important statement about his son. “he was dead”. “he was lost”.
Certainly the father was not talking about the sons physical death because he never died. But, he was talking about a spiritual death. This shows how sinning against the Father brings spiritual death that makes one lost from the Father.

In the end of the story, the father says to the other son that was jealous and angry about what his brother was receiving,
“It was right that we should make merry and be glad (threw a big party)
Why? “for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.”
What a God!
(see Lk.15:11-32)

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The Greatest Deliverance

December 13, 2013

Do you know of the greatest deliverance that there has ever been?

It is that of our soul (the real us) being delivered from death. Of course, we are not referring to physical death. That is a given death of which we will all take part in.

The death we speak of here is the death required by law, and that being God’s law, his word. This law actually goes all the way back to the beginning of mankind. We see in the first book of the Bible, the book of Genesis, where God had given them one commandment to obey.

“And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of the tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” (Gen.2:16-17)

Most of us know the story. After they ate of the forbidden fruit, did they fall over and die physically? No. They were expelled from the garden, and thus separated from God. So we see the consequence of their disobedience in breaking a commandment of God, death.

This death we speak of, is the “just due payment” for sin.

The Prophet Ezekiel also taught of this law. “The soul who sins shall die” (see Ezek.18:19-32).

The Apostle Paul taught of this death. “For the wages (payment) of sin is death,” (Rom.6:23). In Roman’s 7 and 8, he speaks of the “law of sin and death”. There is no escaping it. It is settled in God’s word.

Besides the law of God, there is one major fact that clarifies the need for death to be the just reward, or payment for sin. And that being, God’s righteousness and holiness. He is Holy. He cannot even look upon sin. And because He is JUST, RIGHTEOUS, and HOLY, sin of any kind, demands to be killed or put to death in His very presence.

When we begin to “see” (understand) a little into how Holy, Just and Righteous He is, then the demands for sin make total sense. Outside of His Holiness, sure the demands seem way too unjust, way too unfair, way too unloving etc. This is only because we have not been given the understanding, or that we refuse to look into the Holiness of God. If we refuse and turn our face from it, it is an act of rebellion.

If we would but turn towards a Holy God, and look and catch a small glimpse of understanding, then it would began to make sense. We would then “see” our greatest deliverance, and that being, a DELIVERANCE FROM DEATH. This death in its finality, is recorded in the final book of God’s word, and that being “The Revelation”. Here we see that the final death, the second death, is none other than “The Lake of fire and brimstone” (see Rev.20:14, 21:8)

Why this second and final death? Because God’s holiness demands it. He is God, and He is Holy.

Have you been delivered from this death yet? Have you received “The Greatest Deliverance?” Do you know the one who has conquered this death? Do you want deliverance? If so, there is only one way. It is through Christ Jesus. The only one who has been resurrected by the power of God to bring deliverance to all those who believe. Put your faith in the one who provided this great deliverance from the wages of our sins. And its all because of God’s love for us. He provided the way through His Son on the cross who was buried, then rose again to bring us life which is the total opposite of death.

Have you? Will you?

Radical Meth addict has change of heart

April 19, 2012

I have known this guy for about six years. He has battled Meth and pornography ever since I have known him. He shared with me how the last time he was high (approx. 90 days ago) it sent him over the brink. It was the one high that scared him enough to want to start to change and to continue.

Of course, one of the major effects of Meth is “paranoia”. And, it gets worse and worse with each use. His last time using, he was on one of the commuter trains in the city and saw this guy who he taught was staring at him. Then his mind (through the demonic spirit of the drug) told him that this guy was after him and was out to kill him. This night, my friend had taken a knife with him. Now, he was contemplating slitting this guys throat. He was just seconds away from going up to some innocent man and doing him in. It was all played out in his mind.

THEN GOD STEPPED IN

The next stop, the train security boarded to do their usual ride along. This of course took on a major turn in his paranoia. The next stop, out he bolted and took the back alleys home. He basically went back to his apartment and stayed inside the rest of his time while still high. God had him locked up inside until he came down.

A couple of days later we heard of this story.

He shared how this had never happen before. Never was there such deception and fear. This time he was truly fearful. He had never thought it would get to this point. So close to something that would change his life forever. And, the guilt that he would have to live with the rest of his life.

This brother has always had a heart for God. He would come around when we were preaching, passing out tracts, or just talking to someone about Jesus. On many occasions, he would ask for tracts to pass out himself. Most of the time when he wasn’t high, he would be seen walking or sitting around downtown. Many have prayed for him for a very long time.

And now, I am blessed to say that he is 90 days clean. He is coming to our Tuesday night mall gatherings and we are seeing great advancement spiritually. God is doing an incredible work in this mans life. He has had enough. He truly wants change. His last time was enough to scare him into change. That is God’s love in real action! Loving him enough to allow this to happen, to allow it to get to this point to where he would change. What a God!

Just to share a testimony of how his heart has been changed since. Last week, he was walking down the sidewalk, he heard this girl screaming. He looked across the street and this guy was beating this girl to a pulp. So, he ran over there and jumped in to help. He got between the car door and the girl when the driver punched the gas and it knocked him over the door on to the road. Later, all bruised up and bloody, he saved the girl. The police, the paramedics showed up, and they went to the hospital. A bystander was able to get the licence plate number, and by now, hopefully they are locked up.

Here is a guy that once used prostitutes. Now he was saving their lives at the risk of his own. Now that’s heart change!

 

From rags to True Riches

February 9, 2012

“He would do things like, scream and yell at people. He would run as fast as he could down the sidewalk, screaming and yelling, pushing people out of his way. People who didn’t know him, or weren’t from this area, would freak out. Many would call the police. He was picked up and taken to jail so many times that Joe had lost track of the count. The police of course knew him all too well.”

I believe in the redemptive power of God to change a life. Testimonies prove it.

Today was a lot like a typical day going out on the streets, getting on the train after riding the bus to the train stop. As the train was getting ready to make its first stop into downtown, I looked out the window and noticed a corner, and a spot to stand hit my eye. I heard the Spirit say, “stand there”. So, as it stopped, I got off and walked back to that spot.

I stood there smiling and handing out the “Why do you need Jesus cards”. Had a couple of good contacts with a few people, and good reception in taking the cards. After about 20 minutes, I turned to my right and this guy almost knocked me over. It was Steve! (name changed to protect the redeemed).

Now, I will back up to approximately five years ago.

The Hawthorne area is an area that the Lord has led me to quite often over the years. Like a lot of towns, they have their part of town that cater to the younger generations and it’s “hippy” like culture. Such is this part of our city. Like a lot of cities, it has deep roots in the occult and witchcraft. But hey, the light shines brightest in the dark, right?

On many visits to this area, I would see this man who lived here and everybody knew him. Why did they know him? Well, it wasn’t exactly for his well dressed look or his very charming personally. He was known as the guy who everybody felt sorry for. He was a part of the town. He would bum food, money etc. from anybody at anytime of the day or night. You’re thinking right about now, that he was the “local town bum” right? Well, you could say that, but it ran a little deeper than that. Let me explain.

I have developed a friendship with one guy down there who has his corner where he hangs out everyday with his cardboard sign. His name is Joe (name changed to protect his popularity). Joe has known Steve ever since he came to this area. Many times when I landed here, I would go over to Joe’s corner and hang out for a while. We would always eventually bring up Steve and talk about how he was doing.

You see, Steve had some real mental things going on. And yes, a good deal of it was spiritual. He would do things like, scream and yell at people. He would run as fast as he could down the sidewalk, screaming and yelling, pushing people out of his way. People who didn’t know him, or weren’t from this area would freak out. Many would call the police. He was picked up and taken to jail so many times that Joe had lost track of the count. The police of course knew him all too well.

I remember on one occasion, I had just arrived there, and it was night-time. I looked down the street and saw the flashing lights. I walked by the police car, and there they were, putting Steve in the car again. After visiting with Joe, he shared with me as to what he was arrested for. It was “indecent exposure”. You see, Steve also had this problem where he would for no known reason, pull down his pants and began to take his clothes off. And yes, right in front of everybody as they passed by. And you can guess what would happen shortly afterwards. Yep, the flashing lights.

Two occasions stand out in my mind as a recall the times when I saw him there. One time, it was the middle of winter, and he had his usual dirty clothes, long matted hair, and dirty face. Because of his condition, you could not carry on an intelligent conversation with him. This always bothered me, however, I did not want to succumb to the thought of “oh well, that’s just the way he is”, and just let him be. I believed he was going to be delivered and healed. So, when ever I would see him, I would push through and try to speak with him. Well, this day he actually stopped long enough to hear me invite him to go with me to the Starbucks for coffee. He said he would! Wow! I was shocked, and quite frankly didn’t expect it. So, we walked down the sidewalk. I spoke to him about God’s love for him. I prayed for him and tried to get some feedback, but nothing.

We came to the coffee shop. I opened the door and he just stood there. I said, “let’s go in”. He just stood there. I closed the door, and we stood outside. After trying to find out why he didn’t want to go in, I finally figured it out. Here was a man who didn’t live inside of four walls. He had no house to stay in. All he knew was the outdoors. It was his home. I’m sure the enclosure frighten him, big time.

So, I asked him what kind of drink he wanted. Much to my surprise he said, “a latte”. I said, “what kind?” He said, “vanilla” Wow!, I thought. Praise God! I got an intelligent response out of him. I hugged him and said, “all right! that it will be”. So, he waited outside and I went in. I came out and smiled, gave him his drink and…….. off he went. What? He could not even stay for a minute? There went Steve, pushing aside people and hurrying down the sidewalk. Well, I was thankful that I had experienced a breakthrough with him anyways.

The other time was when I was standing on a corner in the area, passing out cards and noticed that he came by. I reached out and said “hey Steve, remember me? I bought you the latte? He looked at me as if he never met me or seen me before. I began to really pray for him. I didn’t like what the enemy was doing to this man. Frankly, I was getting real upset. Here was a wasted life that the enemy had no right to take and destroy. After about 20 minutes, I saw him coming back my way. I was not going to let this opportunity pass by. As he came by, I……..

immediately followed him rebuking the devil the whole way. It was a busy day and the sidewalks were full. We swerved in and out of the people passing by. I did not care what they thought of this “crazy man” following this guy and talking out loud, saying “I rebuke the unclean spirits in my brother! Come out of him, right now! In Jesus name! etc.etc.” Then……

He took off in a dead run. I followed a short distance, then stopped and gave him to the Lord. No doubt, many people have prayed for him over the years. I know many people have blessed him with untold blessings such as food, water, sleeping bags, money etc. Heaven will tell the story.

A year went by. No sight of him anywhere. I asked around and nobody knew. Of course, we hoped that he made his peace with God, if he had left us for good. Then one day……. I was downtown at a certain corner, and I looked to my left, and saw him. He was walking at a regular pace. He was dressed nicer. He was clean. I called out, “hey Steve!” He looked at me. I said, “do you remember me?” He shook his head up and down and said, “yes”. I smiled and said, “how are you doing?” He said, “really good”, I have my own place now”. I said, “really!” He said, “yeah!” Then he said, “hey I got to catch this bus”. We parted and I couldn’t believe what I had just heard and seen. I went home that night rejoicing in our Lord.

I couldn’t wait for the next time to go out to Hawthorne and tell Joe the good news. The next week came and I found myself led to go out there and tell him. He was so excited to hear that he was alive. I think he might have given up hope. It was an exciting time for sure.

Now fast forward six months, to today. As I turned to my right, this guy almost knocked me over. It was Steve!  I asked him how he was doing. He said great. He reminded me again that he had his own place, and that he had his own food. He looked really good. We reminisced a little about our times on Hawthorne. He remembered.

Now here is the best part………. I asked him, as I stood there holding one of my “why do you need Jesus” cards, “What about Jesus!” He looked at me and said, “Oh yeah! He’s my Lord and Savior!” Wow! To hear that come from his mouth, was like sweet dew coming from heaven! I hugged him and said, “God bless  you brother!” He smiled and said he needed to catch the bus. What a Redeeming God He is! Changed forever!

Christ has borne it all

December 23, 2011

Some of the “all” that Christ has borne for us is found through the Prophet Isaiah.

One such example is found in the 53rd chapter, verse 4a. It reads, “Surely He has borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows;”. Let us take a look at the word, “griefs”. The Hebrew meaning is “malady, anxiety, calamity, disease, grief, sick (ness). If you are like me, I saw the word “malady” and said, “what’s that?” According to Webster, it means, “sick, bad condition, an unwholesome condition”. Now, when I consider “an unwholesome condition”, it brings a lot with it, does it not? When you talk about this kind of condition, the sky is pretty much the limit, isn’t it?

I believe that we could also include “demon possession” into this “unwholesome condition”. Let us turn to the book of Matthew. Here we will see one of the many cases where Jesus healed. But, there is something to notice here besides just the physical healing.

Let us start with verse 14. “Now when Jesus had come into Peter’s house, He saw his wife’s mother lying sick with a fever. So He touched her hand, and the fever left her. And she arose and served them.” Here we see the physical healing of the fever. But, what is next? Starting with verse 16, we read, “When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick,”

Here we see that “many” were brought to Him who were “demon-possessed”. He casts out the “spirits” of demons that were in them, and He healed the sick. Together He did them both. He didn’t say, “tonight we are going to heal the sick, then tomorrow we are going to cast out the demon spirits. No, they were done the same day. We won’t take the time to read the many other accounts were Christ healed and casted out demons at the same time. Physical healing and the casting out of demons run hand in hand.

Now, check this out. Why was this done this way? Verse 17 explains. “that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “He Himself took our infirmities and bore our sicknesses.” Here he was speaking about Isaiah 53:4. Even though the quote is worded a little different here in Matthew, it’s meaning is still the same. The word, “infirmities” here in the Greek means, “feebleness (as in body or mind)”. By implication it means, “malady”. Bingo! Where did we see that meaning before? Right. The same as the Hebrew word, “griefs” found in Isaiah. The definition goes on for “infirmities” with, “frailty, disease, sickness, weakness”.

In the end, we can safely say the Christ bore everything that was “sick, bad or any unwholesome condition.” This includes “Demon-possession”. Christ also bore this in his humanity for us. Isn’t this awesome! Nothing is left out! CHRIST HAS BORNE IT ALL FOR US!

Now, I can’t leave without asking the question, have you personally believed that Christ has borne it all for you? Whatever you have carried in your life to this point, be it “abuse”, be it “self-hatred”, be it “anger”, be it “unforgiveness”, be it “addictions” of any kind, Christ has borne it all. But, we must give it ALL to him, personally. He has already carried it, but you have to give it up. You can’t hold back and keep some, or part of it. All must go for Him to bare it all.

“God doesn’t answer my prayers”

November 26, 2011

Or, “I’ve tried God, it didn’t work for me”.

In ministry, I have heard many people make these kind of remarks. Basically, whenever they were in need, or had a crisis in their life, they cried out to God for his help. When they became desperate they needed or wanted God. This is common when we as human’s need something, or someone.

It is certainly not wrong to cry out to God in times of need. This is how most people come to have a relationship with Him. Most come when their backs are against the wall, so to speak. He does allow difficulties, and He also does cause them in some cases. Of course, when you mention “cause” that is very touchy ground. If I were to say that He caused some kind of tragedy, or unfortunate circumstance, most, if not all would run away from God, not towards Him. We of course, can’t know for sure whither He allowed it or cause it. In any case however, God is over all, and he is in control of all. Nothing happens in one’s life without Him not knowing, and not knowing why and how.

Everybody would jump on board if God was a “Santa Clause” God. If all he did was treat us like spoiled children and give, give and give without no obedience, no acting right, what kind of people would we be? I guarantee we would be as a people, way worse off than we are now. If there were no restraints with God? What happens with children when they are spoiled and given everything they want? What happens when they become adults? The answer is easily available, take a look around.

So, it’s hard to confront the reason why “God doesn’t answer our prayers”. Why? Because you have to deal with the most honest, difficult and hard realization there is. What is that? SIN. Nobody wants to talk about it. Nobody wants to bring it up. It’s offensive. It gets more personal than anything else you have to deal with in life. It’s the “hardest of hard”.

Now, there are two classes of people. Those who have believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, and have trusted him for the forgiveness of their sins, and have allowed Him to be Lord of their lives. Then, there are those who have not yet believed and received.

In this post, I am not going to take the time to address “God not answering my prayers” to those who have yet to receive Christ. If you are one of these, this of course must be your first step. He is a God who does answer our prayers. But, the prayer He is waiting to hear from you, is that of crying out to Him in repentance (wanting to turn and give up sin) and asking for forgiveness for the offences that you have done against Him. It’s hard, but it must be done.

For those who have received Christ at one time, but are not currently living for Him and allowing Him to be above all in their lives, this is for you.

The Prophet Isaiah very clearly and pointedly puts forward the key for God answering our prayers. We would all agree, that one would have to first be able to “hear” our prayer before one could answer, right? So, the question would go out, why doesn’t God hear my prayer?

In the passage of Isaiah 59:1-3, it very clearly speaks of being separated from God. While the passage can also be used to teach us that sin separates us from God, when we are outside of a relationship with God, it also speaks to those who may have at one time had that relationship and walked with him. However, because of sin, they have become strayed from Him, and the wall of separation is being built, brick (sin) by brick. Where they might have had a one time relationship with Him, there is now no “hearing” from God for their prayers.

One must ask, “why is this the case!”. “Why doesn’t God answer my prayers!” These questions could very well be the best ones to ask. They could lead to finding the answer as to why doesn’t He hear me.

Isaiah speaks:

“Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear. But your iniquities (perversity) have separated you from your God; and your SINS have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear. For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue has muttered perversity.”

It’s a hard passage, but true. It gives the answer as to why God will not “hear”. Again, he has to hear first to be able to answer.

So, if you want your prayers to be answered (and of course, answered according to the one who knows best what our needs are) or more importantly, heard, so He can began to move, repair, make new etc. his will for you, turn in prayer towards Him. Cry out to Him for help. Really desire to turn from sin. Realize that you are bound up in it, and that you cannot turn from it on your own. You want deliverance!

For He has said, “Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near. Let the sinner forsake his way, and the unrighteous person his thoughts; let them return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on them; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.” (Isa.55:6-7)

There you have it. Come to the God of Mercy and Pardon. He is waiting to Forgive.

“Would you like the good news?”

September 19, 2009

After he was delivered from unclean spirits, I invited him to come with me and engage the Spirit of God within him.

Today was an awesome day because God delivered a brother from some unclean spirits. I had been working with him over the past couple of months and yesterday he finally told me that he wanted to be set free. So I contacted a seasoned brother in the Lord and asked him if he could come with me today.

Through the guidance of The Holy Spirit our seasoned brother prayed and we (myself and another brother) backed him up. It was awesome to see and hear what took place. Such insight in the Spirit was heard through his prayers. He prayed for the unclean spirits to come out as he named some that the Spirit gave to him. When he finished praying and talking to our delivered brother, he asked me if I had anything. I said what the Lord gave me that morning. I quoted a scripture and told the unclean spirits (by name) to come out in Jesus name. They did not come out because of us, but because of what Christ has done. Praise God who alone delivers! To God alone be the glory! Great things he has done and great things he is doing!

In Jesus name this is the first of many deliverance’s that will take place here. All because The Father will be glorified through The Son (Jn.14:13).

After we finished, I invited our new delivered brother to come with me and pass out some tracts. He hesitated at first, then he picked up his pack and got ready to go.

I had shared with him how that one thing that the enemy of his soul does not want and that is for him to began to step out and share Christ. As an act of faith on his part, I encouraged him to step out and engage The Spirit of God within him. One good way and an easy way, is to stand there and hold out a tract. It might seem like a simple and non effective way, but I have seen on countless occasions how the Spirit of God moves through those who are just available and willing to do even the simplest task of sharing Christ. And tracts are a good way to engage The Spirit.

Now, I would say that after all the tracts that I have passed out over the years, two or three out of ten that actually take one is a good average.

This is the awesome part!
I gave him some “why do you need Jesus” cards to him to pass out. The very first one that he put up for grabs was taken by a lady that passed by. I noticed and said, “wow, brother!” “the very first one you held out was taken!” He smiled back.

As time went on, I noticed that they were taking tracts from him about twice the rate that they were taking mine. This was truly awesome to behold! Here was a guy that God was using and blessing because of his obedience to come to Jesus and be delivered.

What an awesome God we serve! This was joy divine! What an encouragement for our brother to partake in today. I was so blessed to have a part in seeing what God did.

After awhile we both came to the conclusion that “six out of ten” people took tracts from him. This is particularly unheard of around here. All the time he would smile and say, “would you like the Good news?” To God be the glory!