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Difficult Verses: 1 Cor. 10.13

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Someone recently asked me to discuss 1 Cor. 10.13 as they found it a difficult verse.  No problems there, let’s do it!

No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.

It’s quite a long verse, so let’s break it down a bit so we can digest it.  The first section says “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man.”  This is actually one of the most encouraging sentences in the New Covenant.  We all have times when we feel overwhelmed with temptation – when doing the wrong thing pressurizes us so much it seems difficult to imagine ourselves surviving temptation.  But the good news is this: firstly, everyone has been tempted too.  Nothing has happened to you that is unique.  In a healthy church or community, you can easily share what you are going through and people will understand because they have been through similar things: that’s part of the value of a strong, healthy community.  It’s why Jesus puts people in churches! Secondly, it means that everything you are facing in terms of temptation is on a human level.  That’s awesome – it means that you are not having to deal with problems that are supernatural or spiritual!  Even an unregenerate human can deal with temptation – and you are born again, you have the zoe life of God inside you.  You are the head and not the tail.  You can deal with the temptation.  So that bit is double good news!

The second bit of this verse says: “and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able”.  This sentence is another bit of double good news. Firstly, God is faithful.  Now, in the Greek, there is no difference between the words “faithful” and “faith”.  This verse is actually letting us know that God is FAITH.  God believes in you.  God knows you can make it.  God knows you can manage.  God knows you can cope.  And God – who knows and believes in you – will never ever let things get beyond your ability to handle.  So whatever mess you are in right now, you know you can cope.  God believes in you – so why not believe in yourself?  So here is the double good news from this part of the verse: God is on your side.  No matter how many times you have messed up in the past, God believes you can make it this time.  No matter your past, God believes in your future.  And secondly: you will never be put in a situation you cannot handle.

Finally, we find out that “but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.”  Again, another double blessing in here.  With every temptation there is a way out.  You need to understand this – no matter what you are going through there is a way out.  Maybe you have a porn addiction – there is a way out, there is someone you can talk to, there are solutions to help you get out of it.  Maybe you are drinking too much, there is a way out.  Maybe you are becoming cynical and mean – there is a way out.  THERE IS ALWAYS A WAY OUT!  THERE IS ALWAYS A WAY OUT!  That’s great news.  And finally: you can endure.  The word endure means to put up with; you can find a way out – and it won’t always be easy, but you can endure the way out.  It might be difficult to share your struggles with another human, it may be a shame getting rid of the internet or satellite TV, it may be hard to ditch a couple of your best friends who are always leading you the wrong way.  But YOU CAN ENDURE – whatever the path out is, you can walk it, and you can walk in victory.

This verse is full of good news for anyone who is struggling with sin.  It really is.  

If you have any thoughts or comments, or prayer requests, why not comment below?

The Peace of God (A J Gordon)

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The Peace of God

by A.J. Gordon

“And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.” — Ephesians 2:17.
    “Think not I am come to send peace on earth. I came not to send peace, but a sword,” says Jesus. And how can we reconcile the words with those now before us? Evidently by remembering that He brings peace by the sword; conversion comes through conviction, healing through wounding, the peace of God through the word of God, which is ” quick and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of the soul and spirit.” When Christ crucified is preached, and we see how He was wounded for our transgressions, it must bring contrition if the Spirit applies the word, and we shall be pricked in the heart as they were on the day of Pentecost. But the risen Christ appears, preaching peace to those who have been convicted and slain by His word and His cross. And to such let our text speak to-day. Observe, first, that —

 
   

I. The peace which Christ preaches is the result of His conflict and victory on the cross

In the passage from which my text is taken, it is first said that Christ “made peace,” and then that He “preached peace.” And this is very important to be noted. He did not make peace by declaring it; He declared it because He had made it. Men often put words before deeds, and promises before performances; but Christ never does. His work stands ever as the solid background of His word. What He promises to us is always backed and buttressed by what He has performed for us.
    Now, I think the great mistake which superficial readers of the New Testament make about the gospel is, that they do not recognise the antecedent relation of Christ’s work to His gifts and promises. The scheme of salvation which they deduce from the Scriptures is deficient in this, that it lacks perspective, if I may say so; like a Chinese picture, in which all the objects are in the foreground, with no relief of darker shades and deeper lines, so that they see Christ’s peace and pardon as the prominent things in the gospel, without seeing the cross, the punishment of sin, the battle with death, and the bloody victory over the powers of darkness, which constitute the groundwork of this peace.
    Why cannot God pardon sin, and give the sinner peace, it is asked, without the intervention of atonement? When your child has offended, and is sorry, and asks forgiveness, you do not feel obliged to require one of the other children to stand as substitute for him, and to receive the chastisement that belongs to him, before you can consent to pardon him; and why should God require such a condition? Well, perhaps the family is not a perfect picture of the universe. There may be holy spectators to the scene of human guilt to whom it may be needful to make an exhibition of God’s hatred of sin. There may be other worlds than ours which have heard of God’s ancient decree, ” The soul that sinneth it shall die,” and before whom a righteous God must show Himself true to His word.
    There is much of mystery about the punishment of sin, as there is about the origin of sin. We do not profess to solve the mystery. But, since human relationships have been referred to, we do assert that in the dealing of man with man it is constantly found impossible to forgive and remit the penalty of wrong-doing. When a man in the highest circles of society has committed forgery, and confesses his crime, and is deeply penitent, declaring that he did it under the pressure of overwhelming and well-nigh irresistible temptation, why cannot the governor pardon him at once? Ah! there is the sanctity of law, which he is sworn to protect; there are the claims of justice, which must be vindicated; there is public sentiment, watching with its hundred jealous eyes, which he dare not defy. Hence, however deeply the heart of the chief magistrate may be touched at the sorrow of the offender and the distress of his family, he cannot, he dare not pardon him. And so I take the question which is often asked, and asked with an assurance which implies that it settles the whole controversy, “Is God less merciful than man?” I answer, No! He is infinitely more merciful. He can pardon where man can only punish. He can make heaven’s doors swing open to men whose prison doors we dare not open. He can accept men in the other world whom we have been obliged to swing out of this world on a gallows. Ay; man can be merciful where the claims of justice do not forbid; but only of God can that magnificent thing be said, that He is “just, and the Justifier of him that believeth in Jesus.”
    To come back now to the point which I am emphasizing. The thing which we want as sinners is peace with God. And I say to you now, with the fullest confidence in the truth of what I utter, that that peace may be yours, on this very day, and at this very hour, if you will accept it. It is not a peace which is fenced about by hard conditions. It is not a peace that has to be wrung from God’s hand by any prolonged toil and agony of soul. It is yours, if by the simplest exercise of faith you will receive it. “Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
    But, while this is all true, it is equally true that, on Christ’s part, that peace is at the cost of unutterable toil and conflict. Pluck the fruit of peace with God, O sinner! — it is ripe and ready to drop into your soul at the gentlest touch of faith. But, oh, forget not that the only tree in the universe that yields that peace is the cross of Christ. And that tree is a tree of life to us only because it was a tree of death to Christ. Its leaves are for the healing of the nations, only because He was punished there “by whose stripes ye were healed.” It gives peace to the world now, only because there the Captain of our salvation fought with death and conquered for us. And this is the answer we would make those who object to the terms of peace which we propose, on the ground that they make no demand for heroic endeavour on our part; that they lay no necessity on us for spiritual effort and toil; that they call for surrender instead of conflict and valour. Yes; but there was conflict enough on the part of the Redeemer to purchase that peace for us. If it is a free gift to us, it was costly enough for Him.
    When Caesar had bestowed a rare present upon one of his friends, the recipient of the gift said to him, “This is too costly a gift for me to receive.” — “But it is not too costly for me to give,” said the Emperor. The peace of God may be too costly a gift for us to receive, for the mere taking of it; but it is not too costly for Christ to give. He earned it, if we are not required to earn it. He paid enough for it, though it is without money and without price to us. No, we are not mistaken in saying that peace is proclaimed from the cross of Christ, and that it can come to you through a single look at that cross. But let us go around to the back side of the cross and study the awful conflict that was behind this front of blessed peace. We shall find that each benediction that is offered to us is rooted in the exceeding sorrow of Him who for our sakes was made a curse. We shall find that each thread in that robe of righteousness that is put on us was wrought by His bleeding toil who was made sin for us, “that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” And thus we shall learn anew that Christ preached peace to us only because by His death He had conquered peace for us. “Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God.” It costs us only faith to be justified. “Being justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.” It cost Christ His own blood to justify us. “My peace I give unto you,” says Jesus. — Nothing for us to do but simply to take it. “Having slain the enmity by the cross, so making peace,” that is what it cost Christ to give us peace. And that great price must always be kept before us, lest we lightly esteem our peace. And, more, it must be always kept before us, that we may be assured of the solid ground on which that peace rests.
    Have you ever noticed as bearing on this point that inimitable description of Christ’s first announcement of His peace after His resurrection? If an ambassador were to go to a rebellious people, carrying the tidings of peace, he would be likely first to announce the proclamation of peace, and then to show them the written documents and credentials to support it. So did Jesus. He had just risen from the dead. “And at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, then came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. And when He had so said, He showed them His hands and His side.” Yes, Thou mighty ambassador from God! These were the proofs and credentials of Thy peace! These scars of Thy conflict are our security. These marks of Thy passion are our title-deeds of peace; these nail-prints and spear-marks are our certificates to assure us that Thy ransom was accepted when Thou didst offer up Thyself without spot unto God. Here, then, O believer, is the ground on which your assurance rests. Christ’s conflict, waged for us, and waged to the end, is the present and eternal security for our entering into peace. And when that gentle benediction is let fall upon your heads, “The peace of God, which passeth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus,” remember that that benediction rests upon the accomplished and eternal fact that ” the God of peace hath brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, in the blood of the Everlasting Covenant.”
    Observe again, that —

II. The peace which Christ preached has its security now in the person of Christ on the throne

For in this connection we find it said not only that He “made peace,” but that “He is our peace.” This, you see, refers to His person, as the other expression refers to His work. And this again corresponds with what is said in the Epistle to the Hebrews in regard to Christ’s present office, — He has gone “into heaven itself now to appear in the presence of God for us;” not to do for us or to die for us any more, but to appear for us, to present Himself to God on our behalf. Since, then, He Who is our peace is there, our assurance of faith depends not upon that clear, discriminating inlook by which we can say, “I see where I stand,” but upon that penetrating and unclouded uplook by which, with the dying Stephen, we can say, “I see Jesus standing at the right of God.”
    Understand what I mean. It is the external fact that gives value and certainty to inward experience, and not vice versa. If you are a believer, you have “Christ in you the hope of glory;” but Christ in you is but the appropriation and realization of that unchanging fact of Christ for you on the throne. Therefore no inner experience is of any value which does not come to us as the apprehension and transcript of this outward reality. And to fix your faith on Christ within you as the basis of your assurance were like the astronomer pointing his telescope to the reflection of a star in the water, instead of pointing it to the star itself in the heavens.
    I am not disparaging Christian experience, or undervaluing the testimony of consciousness for establishing the believer’s peace; only it is not sufficient of itself. Feeling may be the reflection of feeling, emotion the reflection of emotion, all beginning and ending in the heart itself. One, by too habitual attention to his frames and feelings, can turn his soul into a whispering-gallery for echoing, and resounding his own emotions, instead of making it, as he ought, an oratory for receiving and recording communications from the Lord. There is no authority in feeling. There is no infallibility in consciousness. The “I am” and the “I say” of our Lord are our final appeal, and ever must be. And it is faith’s supreme office to transform that which is true for us in Christ into something true, and living, and real, in our own experience. It strikes the revealed and indisputable fact of what Christ is, and reasons down to what we are by virtue of our union with Him through faith. “As He is, so are we in this world,” says John. And we are not to reverse God’s method, and in searching for peace to gather up the hints and intimations which we find in our own hearts, and frame them into an assurance. We are to grasp the great central fact of Christ our peace, and rest in it as the end of all controversy, — no longer trying to make peace or to keep peace with God, but letting the peace of God that passeth all understanding, keep our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
    Have we sufficiently noticed how the Scriptures, in seeking to assure us of our standing as Christians, take our eyes away from ourselves and carry our vision always up to the risen Lord upon the throne? Hear Paul. “Who is he that condemneth?” And what follows as the ground of his exulting challenge? Does he appeal to the testimony of an unwavering personal conviction? Does He bring forward the evidence of a clear conscience? No. “Who is He that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea, rather that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God.” He knew not simply that he had believed, but he knew whom he had believed. And the sight of His radiant, glorified form above, was for him the end of all controversy. He knew that God’s eye, resting on His Son, saw an adequate reason for the salvation of every believing soul, and he rested and riveted his eye upon the same object, and challenged the world to shake him from his confidence.
    There stands our Redeemer, preaching peace, not by what He says, but by what He is. O brethren, it is not the eloquence of fervid speech and pathetic intercession by which He pleads our cause. “He is our peace.” The ineffaceable wounds of His passion and His obedience unto death are sufficient. His scars are our security; His crucifixion marks are our credentials. He need not cry, nor lift up, nor cause His voice to be heard in the streets of the New Jerusalem. He, He Himself, is there, and that is enough. And from all the tumult and perplexity of a troubled conscience we may lift up our eyes to Him, saying, “I have set the Lord always before me. Because He is at Thy right hand I shall not be moved.” I am persuaded that it is at just this point that we most frequently pervert the simplicity of the gospel. We want to believe because we feel, when God wants us to feel because we believe, and to believe because of what Christ is and has done. Our faith should rest on His word, as His written or spoken word rests upon Himself, the living Word.
    Now, it seems to me that when it is said of Christ that “He is our peace,” it is an expression that comprehends all else that is said about Him. For in His glorified person we have a “summary of His whole redemptive work. The scars of His vicarious woe, still visible on His body, are the perpetual reiteration of His atonement; the unchanged and unchangeable human form which He for ever wears is the archive in which all He has done and suffered for us is treasured up. Think of that sublime definition of Himself which He gives from the throne: ‘I am He that liveth and was dead, and, behold, I am alive for evermore.’ — ‘Was dead’ points backward to the cross and the sacrifice, never to be forgotten and never to lose its power in all the endless years. ‘Alive for evermore’ tells of the glorified life to which the Master taught us to fasten our hope, when He said, ‘Because I live, ye shall live also.’ All past, present, and future are contained in this definition. Let us see, then, how it meets our needs. I stand looking towards the throne, guilty and trembling, and asking the question, ‘Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord, and who shall stand in His holy place?’ And the answer comes, ‘He that hath clean hands and a pure heart.’ I look at my hands, and they are unclean. The stain of countless wrong-doing is upon them. I look at my heart; it is all impure. The gilt of untold sinful thoughts and motives is there. And, no matter how long and how intently I look, the case grows worse and worse, and I get no comfort. But from self I look up, and “‘Lo, in the midst of the throne’ there stands ‘a Lamb as it had been slain.’ I know Him; I accept Him; I believe in Him; and I am at peace. For this is He that was dead. By His death we have the blood that cleanseth from all sin. And through this blood I have clean hands and a pure heart. I stand no longer afar off, smiting on my breast. I hear the summons, and I obey it: ‘Having, therefore, brethren, bo1dness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, let us draw nigh with a true heart, in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.'”
    This is what a look of faith towards Him, who is “our peace,” can do for us. And this is what I mean by Christ’s glorified body containing in itself a summary of His redemptive work. He comprehends all His past in His present living personality. We drop our former years one by one, and they perish. He gathers up all the years of His redeeming toil and travail spent on earth, and lives them in perpetual offering in heaven. As the tree gathers up all the growths of successive summers, and contains them in its trunk, so Christ, in His ever-living person, is all that He ever has been, and preserves all for our redemption that He has ever done. I see peace written in His cross, written in His blood, written in His words; but in His exalted and enthroned person I read it as in a living word that sums up all other expressions in one, “For He is our peace.”
    See, then, O believer, how every question concerning your peace with God is answered there. Did Christ die for your sins, proffering to God His own blood as the price of your redemption? How know you that the price has been accepted? There is the receipt in the throned and glorified One above. Did Christ conquer death and the grave for you? How know you that that conquest is complete? There is the indisputable evidence of it, the Victor returned from the conquest, having “led captivity captive.” There is no question touching our peace that is not answered there.
    And now this peace is preached “to you which are afar off, and to them which were nigh,” that is, to both Gentiles and Jews. We Gentiles were once afar from God, strangers from the covenant of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus are we not only “made nigh by the blood of Christ,” — as nigh as the Jew ever was, — but as members of that “new man,” taken from both Jew and Gentile, we are brought into a nearness to God which the Jew knew nothing of. We are brought into His very presence-chamber, where we can speak to Him face to face, and hold with Him direct and unhindered communion; “for through Him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.”
    Such, O believer, is your heritage. And now let this peace of God rule within you, making you strong and victorious in all your conflicts with temptation, while you wait for the day when “the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet.”

This page Copyright © 1999 Peter Wade. The Bible text in this publication, except where otherwise indicated, is from the King James Version. This article appears on the site: http://www.peterwade.com/.

Prophecy by Kenneth Copeland (2008)

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“Pay Attention to Me…My system is stronger than ever.”

Don’t pay attention to or make any plans based on what the media says

or what the politicians say. Stand on My Word in John 16. Pay attention to Me.

I [the Holy Spirit] will obey verses 13-15. I will show you things to come. I will

lead you through troubled times. I already have THE plan for you, and it’s very

good. Follow it. It will not only get you through, it will place you in a very high

place—a rich place—a strong place of victory.

You will have to discipline yourself and be diligent to listen to Me. All the

other voices will have a plan, a word, an idea for your future and security.

Don’t listen to Babylon’s system. It has fallen apart. My system is stronger than

ever. My kingdom is flourishing, and THE BLESSING is the place to be.

Keep your eyes on My Word. Listen to it. It will guide you and I will

perform it. Love Me. Love My people as I have loved you. Walk in it. Love never

fails, and neither does My plan.

Be very cautious to stay completely clean from covetousness. First

Timothy 6:10 must live in the forefront of your thinking. If you will do these

things and continue therein, you will come into your wealthy place. A place

lifted up. A place in Me already planned and prepared for you now. Here. Not

heaven—not yet. But it will seem like heaven right in the midst of all the

trouble, and you’ll be able to reach out to untold numbers of suffering people

with the Good News of the gospel.

I’m coming very soon. Sooner than you think. Keep your eyes on Me and

you’ll get the job done.

—Prophecy delivered by Kenneth Copeland

Oct. 19, 2008

Wonderful News Healing Crusade (August 11-14th 2009 – ALL WELCOME)

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Wonderful News Healing Crusade

Wonderful News Healing Crusade

Kenneth E Hagin – What To Do When Faith Seems Weak and Victory Lost

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Every one of us have had times when we have felt that our faith is weak and our victory is lost. This sermon will teach you what to do in those times. Be blessed and enjoy!

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Kenneth E Hagin – The Devil’s Under My Feet (Full Sermon)

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If you enjoyed the 10 minute excerpt, here is the full presentation. Be blessed! Enjoy!

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Kenneth E Hagin – The Devil’s Under My Feet

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This is beautiful, Biblical preaching on how to deal with the devil. Enjoy!

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Satan Defeated (E. W. Kenyon)

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Satan Defeated!

by E.W. Kenyon

Few of us have ever recognized the fact that the Scriptures teach that Satan is defeated as far as the believer is concerned.

He was not conquered by the believer; he was conquered by Christ for the believer in His Substitutionary Work.

The Victory Christ wrought belongs to the believer, because we were identified with Christ in His Substitutionary Work. Right there in the presence of all the hosts of darkness, Jesus conquered the Prince of Darkness.

Rotherham’s Translation is graphic: “He paralyzed the death-dealing power of Satan.”

He paralyzed him. He broke him. Now this is what I want you to notice: This was an Eternal victory. Satan was Eternally broken, Eternally conquered.

Did you notice how Peter puts it? I Peter 5:8,”He goes about like a roaring lion,” and he says, “Whom withstand steadfast in your faith.”

Our combat has been fought and won. There isn’t any battle for you to fight except the battle of faith. You are to fight the good fight of faith. What does that mean?

You are to win all your victories with Words.

You are to learn the words of this Wonderful Book, and with Words, you will conquer the enemy.

You see, your combat is not against flesh and blood, as the Spirit tells us in Ephesians 6:12, but it is against the defeated principalities and powers.

These principalities and powers have all been conquered. Their defeat is spoken of in Hebrews 9:12 as an Eternal redemption from them.

You are Eternally set free. They are eternally defeated,whipped,conquered. You get your liberty by remembering these words and then acting accordingly.

Can’t you see what it means? That Satan knows he is whipped but he doesn’t want you to know it. He wants to keep you in ignorance of it.

Understanding Spirit, Soul and Body (Andrew Wommack)

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Understanding Spirit, Soul, And Body
By Andrew Wommack

Did you know a Christian can actually die from sickness or disease while the same power that raised Jesus from the dead lies dormant within them? Or did you know that believers can be overcome with depression, anger, and bitterness, all the while possessing God’s love, joy, and peace in their spirits?

It’s true—they can and they do. Why? Because they really don’t understand what changed when they were born again, and therefore have difficulty receiving the promises of God. The Bible says that every born-again believer has undergone a complete inner transformation.

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ” (2 Cor. 5:17-18).

It doesn’t say that all things are becoming new or have the potential of becoming new; they are new, the moment you are born again. But in order for that to make sense, you must first understand how God created you.

God’s Word clearly teaches that we are three-part beings, but very few Christians have a functional understanding of spirit, soul, and body in their daily lives. Intellectually, most Christians believe they’re three-part beings, but functionally, they act as though they’re only made up of body and soul. They’re confused about the operation of the soul and spirit, seeing them basically as the same thing.

Even Strong’s Concordance fails to distinguish all three! It defines “spirit” (pneuma in the Greek) as “the rational soul.” However, in my study of God’s Word, I have found a very distinct difference between spirit and soul. Your spirit is your innermost part, not your “rational soul.”

First Thessalonians 5:23 makes it very clear:

“And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” (emphasis mine).

If you were talking to me face to face, you’d be looking at my body but speaking to my soul. The word “soul” is defined by some as the mind, will, and emotions. While that’s certainly true, it’s incomplete. The “conscience” should also be included in that definition. The soul is really what most people call the “personality.”

You can feel both your body and your soul and are receiving information from them all the time. For example, if I put my hand on your shoulder, you would know that I touched you. I could also make you feel happy or sad, or even hurt you without any physically contact, simply by the words I speak. Those words are processed by your mind, and the result of their effect is often expressed in your emotions.

It’s easy to know how your body feels, what’s going on in your mind, and what emotions you’re experiencing. However, your spirit is much different. It cannot be accessed in any natural way.

John 3:6 says,

“That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”

Jesus meant that there’s no direct connection between the spirit and flesh. They are interrelated, but spirit is spirit and flesh is flesh. You simply cannot contact your spirit through your five senses or through your mind, will, or emotions. Therein lies one of the great problems of the Christian life!

If you don’t understand that spiritual reality can’t be felt, then you’ll be confused when God’s Word declares that you have the same power that raised Jesus from the dead living in you (Eph. 1:19-20). If you think truth can be discerned through your natural senses, you’ll be baffled when the Bible says you’re a brand-new creature who can do the same miraculous works that Jesus did (2 Cor. 5:17 and John 14:12).

The apparent disparity between your natural experiences and God’s Word will cause you to throw up your hands in frustration and conclude, “It must not be true.” It’s understanding spirit, soul, and body that unlocks the spirit realm so you can experience who you are and what you have in Christ.

In the natural, the spirit realm can’t be seen or felt; the only way to accurately perceive spiritual truth is through the Bible. Simply take God’s Word and believe it!

Jesus said in John 6:63,

“It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”

God’s Word reveals spiritual reality. If you want to know what your spirit is like, you must find out from the Word, not rely on emotions or other perceptions. God’s Word is spirit and life! When you look at your face in a mirror, you aren’t really seeing yourself; you’re viewing a reflection. Even though it’s only a reflection, you have learned to trust it and act on what you see. God’s Word is just like that mirror: it reflects perfectly who you are in the spirit.

“For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therin, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed” (James 1:23-25).

You must look into God’s mirror and trust the spiritual reality you see! It reflects your new born-again spirit, your innermost part. However, it does not reflect your body or your soul.

Although full payment has been made for your glorified body through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus, you still have a corrupted body. One day it will be redeemed and changed into an incorruptible one. For now, you still must live in the same body you had before you were saved.

Your soul wasn’t saved either. You may have the same thoughts and emotions you had before you were saved. And because of that, some people seriously doubt whether or not they are saved. They don’t understand that the change took place in their spirits. Typically, your body and soul are both impacted by what happens at salvation, but that’s not where the complete change took place.

The good news is you can change your mind. In fact, we are commanded to do so.

Romans 12:2 says,

“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

Your soul can be transformed to the degree that you renew your mind, change your attitudes, and conform to the Word of God. This should happen, and it’s in the process of happening, but it didn’t happen automatically when you were saved.

In your soul, old things did not pass away, and all things haven’t yet become new. For that reason, you could actually die from sickness or disease even though you have all of the power that raised Jesus from the dead residing untapped within your spirit. It’s like dying of thirst while leaning against a well full of life-giving water.

Think of your soul like the valve on a faucet. It controls the rate and volume of the flow of the spirit into your body. If your mind is renewed and in agreement with the Word, the valve is wide open. But if it is in agreement with what your body is feeling or your emotions are experiencing, the valve is either closed or in the process of closing.

Your soul has the power to keep every drop of life-giving power from ever reaching your physical body or flooding it with the same power that raised Jesus from the dead. If the valve is open, you’ll experience healing, deliverance, anointing, victory, power, joy, prosperity, and more. So, keep it open!

This revelation of the relationship of the spirit, soul, and body has transformed my life. When I realized that God had already given me everything I needed and it’s all contained in my spirit, it set me free. All I needed to do was release it. That simple understanding changes everything.

The Christian life isn’t a process of “getting from God”; it’s a process of renewing the mind and learning to release what you’ve already received.

If you don’t understand that you have already received all that you will ever need (in your spirit) at salvation, there will always be an element of doubt. You may know it’s possible or even promised in the Word, but you’ll be trying to perceive it in the mental, emotional, or physical realm. That’s a formula for failure.

That erroneous concept can also result in a performance-based relationship with God: “If I’m good enough, if I read the Bible enough, if I pay my tithe,” and on and on it goes in an attempt to motivate God to give you what you need. It’s the misconception that God hasn’t already given you everything and that somehow you have to make yourself worthy enough to get it.

You’re already worthy because of Jesus Christ and His sacrifice. He paid the price for everything you will ever need. In fact, you’ve already got it. It’s just a matter of understanding the relationship of the spirit to the soul and body.

Understanding spirit, soul, and body is critically important to every believer. It’s like the key that opens the treasure chest of God’s grace. It could be a matter of life and death, and it’s the foundation to understanding the rest of Scripture.

Covenant of Healing (Pastor Tim Burt)

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Our Covenant of Healing

1 John 5:4-5 “… This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.”

When it comes to healing, the Word of God is firmly established that it’s God’s will to heal and His will for us to be healed. Until that is a completely settled issue in your heart – faith on this matter cannot exist and it is only be faith that we please God! We have the witness of scripture from Isaiah, Matthew, and First Peter that Jesus died not only to save and deliver us from Hell instead giving us eternal life, but also so that we could experience the blessing of God including healing in this life – now!

Isaiah 54 paints a picture of the coming Messiah. He would come and be punished in our place taking our sins upon Himself. He would pay the price for our sins and our sicknesses and diseases. These verses also indicated that though the Messiah would do this, many would not recognize that what He was doing was His assignment of mercy and grace from God. Many would think that what Jesus went through was punishment from God brought on by His own lunacy. Isaiah 53:4-5 says of Him, “Surely He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions; He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed.”

The Hebrew words for griefs means sickness and disease. Jesus was beaten and punished for our sins to deliver us from the curse of sin including sickness and disease. This is why “with His stripes we were healed.” Can that really mean physically healing for today? Let’s look at the second witness from Matthew concerning these verses and see.

In Matthew chapter 8 we read about Jesus healing a man with leprosy and the centurion’s servant. We then see Jesus coming to Peter’s mother-in-law’s house. She was physically sick. What did Jesus do for her? Was this about physical healing? We read: Matthew 8:14-17 “And when Jesus was come into Peter’s house, he saw his wife’s mother laid, and sick of a fever. And He touched her hand, and the fever left her: and she arose, and ministered unto them. When the evening was come, they brought unto Him many that were possessed with devils: and He cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias (Isaiah) the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.” This is where we will see the witness of Matthew agree with the witness of Isaiah 53:4-5. Isaiah was prophesying of the Messiah to come and what He would do. Now we see Jesus actually doing it as the Messiah just as Isaiah foretold. What Jesus was doing, it says, was fulfilling the words of the prophet Isaiah saying, “that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias (Isaiah) the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.” This is physical healing. This is what Jesus did. This is what the prophet Isaiah said hundreds of years before that He would do. He did it because it was the will of God.

We then see this verse from Isaiah quoted one more time in 1 Peter 2:24. Speaking of Jesus, Peter wrote: “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by His wounds (beatings or stripes) you have been healed.”

Jesus has provided us with a covenant of healing. Jesus bore not only our sins but our sicknesses and diseases. He never intended this to end or to be a secret. It was part of the great commission to all His disciples and to any who would believe. Mark 16:15-18 “And Jesus said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”

In America, we may not deal with poison water or even snakes invading our space that we need to be delivered from, but in many parts of the world where I have Fresh Manna Readers, they do need those promises. Regardless, we are all surrounded by those that need healing. You will not lay hands on the sick if you do not believe it is God’s will to heal them. You will not believe for healing if you aren’t absolutely convinced that it’s God’s will. As long as there is a doubt, there is not faith. Healing has got to become a settled issue for you. You cannot impose healing on someone else. Everyone has to believe themselves and trust me – you do not know what is in the mind or heart of someone else. Quit measuring the reality of healing by others and let the Word of God alone set the standard for what you believe and your faith.

Go through the gospels and highlight every single instance of Jesus healing and look for God’s will in the matter. Jesus said, “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.” He also said that ”a house divided against itself cannot stand.” If God was making people sick and Jesus was healing them, then they would be divided. They were not. Sin through Adams’s fall has infected all of humanity. The effects of sin – sickness and disease, poverty and lack, and calamity and destruction along with Satan’s attack has touched all our lives – all of humanity whether we did anything to bring it on or not.

Jesus knew our human frailty and out of compassion gave us “gifts of His Holy Spirit” including healing to help us until He completely destroys every last work of Satan. This is how “…everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/

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