LFM – 2016 April 3: Moving to the Next Level – No Testimony without a Test

LFM 3 April 2016

 

  • We are but vessels of God that He uses through His spirit to empower us to accomplish His will purpose & plan.
  • I thank God for the gift of teaching the Word — clearly a gift from God — and I pray that the Holy Spirit continues to empower me to grow the gift for the glory of God.
  • Paul’s prayer in Hebrews 20:20-21 (NLT)

20 Now may the God of peace—  who brought up from the dead our Lord Jesus,

the great Shepherd of the sheep, and ratified an eternal covenant with his blood—

21 may he equip you with all you need for doing his will.

May he produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to him.  All glory to him forever and ever! Amen.

 

Last week we saw in Luke 8, the woman with the issue of blood — that I / we need to:

  • Sacrifice – make an effort / a step towards God –> Seeking God’s Presence
  • Reach out by faith –> God’s power released through faith — claim mali ya baba yetu
    • Crowd pressing and touching Jesus– but no power released
  • Have A Testimony –> Proof
    • Testimonies are what bring glory to the Father – Luke 17:18
    • Testimony completes healing – physical & spiritual — go in peace – Fruits of Spirit
    • Not — nimeokoka, niko na yesu but no testimony of what God has done in our lives
    • Crowd would say they are with Jesus, but no testimonies / proof that they indeed had an encounter with Him.

 

The testimony of Jesus Christ is the resurrection — Mathew 28

  • Our testimony –> Living & Spreading the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ
  • John 5:39 – Jesus said the scriptures point to me —> Word of God
  • Challenge –> Overcoming fear, DOUBT and unbelief — Do I Believe in Miracles??
  • God will fulfil the promises in His Word and will always be there to guide us
  • John 14:12

Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.

  • Mathew 11:5

The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them.

 

We need Jesus to help us overcome our unbelief – to help us believe the way we ought to

  • Mark 9:23-24

23 Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.”

24 Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”

  • Jesus will be faithful to help us in our unbelief
  • After overcoming and repenting of the sin of unbelief, we need to testify and help others in the same problem
  • Luke 22:31-32

31 And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat.32 But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.”

…Power of Testimony…..

  • It doesn’t matter what the world says or tries to do
    • Putting large stones and sealing our blessings – left for dead
    • Putting soldiers or enemies to ensure we never try to claim our blessings

–> Jesus has taken all authority in heaven & earth and has the keys to all our breakthroughs.

Like for the woman with the issue of blood…

Faith is the key to releasing God’s power

 

What is MY / OUR testimony in Christ Jesus?

What is the evidence that Jesus moves in my / our lives?

  • THE KEY
  • Philippians 2:12 -13 (NKJV)

12 Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; 

13 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.

NLT

Work hard to show the results of our salvation through obedience to God as He works giving us the desire and power to do what pleases Him.

  • Working out our own salvation with fear and trembling:
    • Having total obedience to the Word of God for our lives without compromise
    • God says jump–> We jump and ask questions later
  • I thank God that He gives me the desire and empowers me to do what pleases Him
  • He has given me the DESIRE TO LOVE the Word &
  • EMPOWERED TO TEACH the WORD

 

Finished off last week’s service with Jesus opening doors for us in different areas of our lives

  • Revelations 3:7-8 (NLT)

“Write this letter to the angel of the church in Philadelphia.

This is the message from the one who is holy and true, the one who has the key of David. What he opens, no one can close; and what he closes, no one can open:[a]

“I know all the things you do, and I have opened a door for you that no one can close. You have little strength, yet you obeyed my word and did not deny me.

 

  • Jesus has the key to our breakthroughs – Health, Finances, Relationships
  • Jesus has the key to lock out the things from the enemy
  • The path of life requires some doors to be open and others shut –> Jesus has the KEY

 

  • I thank God for the different doors He has opened in my life both spiritually & physically and continue to pray that he shows me the path I need to follow so that He may open the appropriate doors – in line with His will purpose and plan for my life and close those not according to His will purpose and plan for my life.

 

 

 

 

Moving to the next level Spiritually – INDIVIDUALLY & Corporately ( LORD’s FAVOUR)

 

  • With the ultimate goal –> Presence of God – In Our lives, In the Ministry
    • Presence of His Word, Power, Glory, Spirit – fruit & gifts
    • We are complete / can be fully satisfied in God’s presence

 

  • Requires a test of Faith to ensure we have what it takes for the next level
  • It is the level of Faith of Jesus that we carry
    • Not operating on our own imperfect faith that may fail – Peter’s denial
    • Not having faith in the ways of man or the world
    • Operating in the Perfect Faith of Jesus Christ
      • Is the Perfect Faith of Jesus operating in our lives?
    • I can do all things through Christ Jesus who strengthens me – Philippians 4:13

 

  • James 1:2-4 (NKJV)

2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

  • (AMP)

2 Consider it nothing but joy, my[b]brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. 3 Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. 4 And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing.

 

  • Joy for trials
  • Trials are a test of faith through experience –> practical not theory
  • The experience leads to endurance / patients in the things of God
  • Endurance –> spiritual maturity & inner peace – Trusting God is in control
  • In God we are perfect & complete

 

  • A testimony is what brings glory to God –> Luke 17:18

 

A test / trial / sacrifice / Kugharamia –> prepares us for a testimony

  • Jesus paid the ultimate sacrifice on the cross for His testimony for our lives
  • Jesus tell us to claim our blessings (the kingdom) through violence : Mathew 11:12

And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.

  • 1 John 5:19 (NLT) –> The world around us is under the control of the evil one

 

The enemy will also not let go easily of what God has allowed Him to have

 

  • A testimony comes out of a test that we overcame
  • The testimony of Jesus Christ is the resurrection – suffering death and rising in Glory
  • Testimony of David was his battle with Goliath
  • Our personal tests that give our testimony –> How I came to teach the Word

 

  • Education –> kuna mitihani lazima tupite to go to the next level
  • Me / Lord Favour need to prepare ourselves for the next level of God’s blessings for us
    • From baby class to primary
    • From milk to meat
    • From well level to river level
    • From servants to friends — John 15:14-15

14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.

 

 

Becoming a friend of God – Requires Intimacy – His Presence – A Relationship

  • Doing what God commands us to do –> John 15:14
  • Obedience is greater than sacrifice –> 1 Samuel 15:22
  • –> Obedience is the Key to Elevation

 

  1. Understanding what the Lord wants us to do – Ephesians 5:17
  • Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.

 

  1. Accept what God wants us to do –> FAITH – Romans 8:28
  • And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

 

  1. Obeying – Works of faith –> Faith without works is dead – James 2:20
  • May involve moving out of our comfort zones
  • Overcoming enemies of progress –> fear, doubt & unbelief
  • James 2:23-24

And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”[g] And he was called the friend of God. 24 You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.

 

  1. Trusting – Even if it doesn’t seem to be as was promised in the physical
  • 2 Corinthians 5:7 –>  For we walk by faith and not by sight
  • Psalm 23:4

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil;

For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

 

 

Presence of God –> Favour, Blessings, Fruits of the Spirit – love joy, peace, patience

  • Every area of ones life can be satisfied in the presence of God – Jehovah – I AM
  • Psalm 65:4

Blessed is the man You choose, And cause to approach You,

That he may dwell in Your courts.

We shall be satisfied with the goodness of Your house, Of Your holy temple.

 

That is why we:

  • Strive to move to the next level closer to His presence –> blessings
  • Want to move from the gate of salvation into His presence –> protection
  • Reach out by faith for God to pull us to His presence –> power released
  • Trust and obey as He knows the way for us to His presence
  • Listen to His voice to guide us to His presence – Holy Spirit the Advocate
  • Look to Jesus – who has been in His presence –
  • No one can come to the Father except through me –> John 14:6

 

Corridors of Life

  • Divine Destiny –> Heaven –> Presence of God
    • Door leads to life and life more abundantly
  • Enemy destiny –> Hell –> Presence of Satan
    • Doors lead to killing, stealing and destruction of our divine destiny

 

Blessings / favour flows from the center of power – even in politics people strive to be close to the center of power. We should also strive to be close to God.

The enemy fears those that are close to God.

We can only obey / be in obedience of what we understand. We can’t be effective in what we don’t understand

 

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