GIVING SO MUCH

Giving So Much They Had To Be Restrained
Foundation Scriptures: Exodus 36 verses 1 – 7

Bezalel and Aholiab and every wisehearted man in whom the Lord has put wisdom and understanding to know how to do all the work for the service of the sanctuary shall work according to all that the Lord has commanded. 2 And Moses called Bezalel and Aholiab and every able and wisehearted man in whose mind the Lord had put wisdom and ability, everyone whose heart stirred him up to come to do the work; 3 And they received from Moses all the freewill offerings which the Israelites had brought for doing the work of the sanctuary, to prepare it for service. And they continued to bring him freewill offerings every morning. 4 And all the wise and able men who were doing the work on the sanctuary came, every man from the work he was doing, 5 And they said to Moses, The people bring much more than enough for doing the work which the Lord commanded to do. 6 So Moses commanded and it was proclaimed in all the camp, Let no man or woman do anything more for the sanctuary offering. So the people were restrained from bringing, 7 For the stuff they had was sufficient to do all the work and more.  Exodus 36:1-7 AMP

1. People were stirred to come and give their best and those who were wise and skilled in their work were stirred to sow to the Lord by working with their hands to build the tabernacle.

a. They were stirred so much so that they brought the Lord free will offerings every morning and every night.

b. The people brought, and brought, and brought—so much that they needed to be restrained.

c. There was sufficient all around. There was enough for the tabernacle and the people still had much left over.

2. God asked only for those who were willing and generous to bring stuff for the sanctuary. Can you imagine their excitement; can you imagine their joy? There was no hesitation; no regrets; no doubts; no second thoughts. They came to the Lord with willing and generous hearts and with a continual flow of offerings.

a. They gave every day—in the morning and in the night.

b. When enough had been given for the sanctuary, they had to be restrained from bringing anything else. Most people have to be begged to give—these people were begged to stop!

c. Sufficient means: enough for a particular purpose. Verse 7 says that the STUFF they had was sufficient for ALL the work—not just sufficient, but more than enough—to make whatever was needed.

N. B.  What a day that will be when we see God’s people willingly and generously bringing to the Lord, so much, that they need to be restrained.

Pastor Adonica’s Thoughts:
If anyone would want to stop the building of the Kingdom of God or His sanctuary, it would be the devil. The devil always tries to ply us with fear about parting with what we have and to supply us plenty of reasons why not to give to God’s work. He knows that money gives power on earth and he does not want the church to have the power to expand or extend God’s Kingdom on earth. Don’t be fooled by him; don’t play into his hands. What we must do is move in the opposite spirit. We must confront our fears and see God’s call to give for what it is: an opportunity, to bless God, bless the work of God and to receive a great blessing in return. It is not merely your action of giving that matters, but your attitude in giving. Stepping out in faith to give generously and willingly breaks a spirit of poverty and poverty-mindedness off your life.

Pastor Rodney’s Thoughts:
Putting God first place in our life means that we give His House and His Kingdom top priority. Can you imagine a day, in the 21st century, when God’s people would take His Kingdom and His purpose and make it theirs? Malachi says that each man runs to his own house—eager to build it—and to his own plans. But God says, “seek ye first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33). We started building our first house back in 1993, and moved in 1994. When the foundation was laid, I stood on it and lifted up my hands, thanking the Lord for our house, when I heard the Lord say, “Son you have built my house for the past 14 years and now I am going to build yours!” God so blessed us with that house and provided everything we needed for the house including all the furniture. It was exceedingly above all that we could have done on our own. When God builds something, He does it well!

Prayer and Confession:
Father, I put your house first; I make your priorities my priorities. I am a willing and generous giver. I pray that I come to the place where I am so blessed that I am able to give so much that I have to be restrained in my giving because it is more than enough for what needs to be done to build God’s Kingdom. Thank you, Lord, for all your abundant blessings bestowed on me!

SPEAK ONLY WHAT YOU HEAR HIM SAY

I have still many things to say to you, but you are not able to bear them or to take them upon you or to grasp them now. 13 But when He, the Spirit of Truth (the Truth-giving Spirit) comes, He will guide you into all the Truth (the whole, full Truth). For He will not speak His own message [on His own authority]; but He will tell whatever He hears [from the Father; He will give the message that has been given to Him], and He will announce and declare to you the things that are to come [that will happen in the future]. 14 He will honor and glorify Me, because He will take of (receive, draw upon) what is Mine and will reveal (declare, disclose, transmit) it to you. 15 Everything that the Father has is Mine. That is what I meant when I said that He [the Spirit] will take the things that are Mine and will reveal (declare, disclose, transmit) it to you.  John 16:12-15 AMP

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth – He will always speak the Truth and lead you into the Truth. He does not bring you His own message or His own opinion. He will never speak anything contrary to the Word of God. Everything He says is of God and from God. He never speaks on His own authority – He only speaks on the authority that He has been given by Jesus and by the Father. He tells us whatever He hears the Father say – He gives the message that has been given to Him. He is the One Who announces and declares the things that are to come.

The Holy Spirit takes, receives, and draws upon that which belongs to Jesus and which comes from Him and He reveals it to us. Therefore and thereby, He honors and glorifies Jesus! He brings glory to Jesus, because He speaks only the words that come from Jesus. He brings glory to the Father, because He speaks only the words that come from the Father. Obviously, then if we or anybody else speaks words that do not come from the Father, Son or the Holy Spirit – words spoken on our own authority, by our own opinion, and coming from our own heart and mind – then they are not the truth and they will not bring glory to the Lord.

Anyone who rejects Me and persistently sets Me at naught, refusing to accept My teachings, has his judge [however]; for the [very] message that I have spoken will itself judge and convict him at the last day. 49 This is because I have never spoken on My own authority or of My own accord or as self-appointed, but the Father Who sent Me has Himself given Me orders [concerning] what to say and what to tell. 50 And I know that His commandment is (means) eternal life. So whatever I speak, I am saying [exactly] what My Father has told Me to say and in accordance with His instructions.  John 12:48-50 AMP

Jesus, Himself did not speak on His own authority or of His own accord – He only said what His Father told Him to say. Therefore, everyone who hears Him is accountable before God to receive it as the Truth and be saved or to reject it and be judged. If Jesus did not speak on His own authority and the Holy Spirit does not speak on His own authority, then we certainly have no right to say or preach anything that has not been given to us by the Father. We have no right to preach our opinions apart from the Word of God. We have an obligation to preach the Word as it is, with no changes, no compromise and no dilution.

 

And how from your childhood you have had a knowledge of and been acquainted with the sacred Writings, which are able to instruct you and give you the understanding for salvation which comes through faith in Christ Jesus [through the leaning of the entire human personality on God in Christ Jesus in absolute trust and confidence in His power, wisdom, and goodness]. 16 Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, [and] for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s will in thought, purpose, and action), 17 So that the man of God may be complete and proficient, well fitted and thoroughly equipped for every good work.  2 Timothy 3:15-17 AMP

And we have the prophetic word [made] firmer still. You will do well to pay close attention to it as to a lamp shining in a dismal (squalid and dark) place, until the day breaks through [the gloom] and the Morning Star rises ( comes into being) in your hearts. 20[Yet] first [you must] understand this, that no prophecy of Scripture is [a matter] of any personal or private or special interpretation (loosening, solving). 21 For no prophecy ever originated because some man willed it [to do so–it never came by human impulse], but men spoke from God who were borne along (moved and impelled) by the Holy Spirit.  2 Peter 1:19-21 AMP

Whether you preach, pray or prophesy, let it be led, guided and guarded by the Holy Spirit. Bring glory to God as you speak only the words that He puts in your mouth.

DON’T EAT OF THE TREE

Thoughts on Stewardship
Lesson No. 6 from Genesis

Don’t Eat of the Tree
Foundation Scriptures: Genesis 3 verses 1-7

In Genesis 2:15-17, God took Adam and put him in the Garden of Eden to tend and guard and keep it. He gave him a commandment that he could freely eat of every tree of the garden, but not of the tree of good and evil because, “in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

Now the serpent was more subtle and crafty than any living creature of the field which the Lord God had made. And he [Satan] said to the woman, Can it really be that God has said, You shall not eat from every tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said to the serpent, We may eat the fruit from the trees of the garden, 3 Except the fruit from the tree which is in the middle of the garden. God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die. 4 But the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die, 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing the difference between good and evil and blessing and calamity. 6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good (suitable, pleasant) for food and that it was delightful to look at, and a tree to be desired in order to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she gave some also to her husband, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves apronlike girdles. Genesis 3:1-7 AMP

1. Have you ever wondered why God would  put a tree in the Garden if He did not want Adam and Eve and their kids to eat the fruit of it?

a. God made us to be stewards of all that He has given us and all that He has placed on the earth.

b. However, He always sets something aside, keeping it for Himself, and tells us not to eat of it. It’s Holy; it belongs to God alone.

c. It’s all about obedience and the free will of man. God gave us a free will so we could choose to obey. Obedience pleases God.

2. This is what Satan used to tempt Eve and cause her to sin. His plan was to get her to eat of that which was under their stewardship, but was not to be touched.

a. They could eat of every tree—including the tree of life, but they were not allowed to eat of the tree of the Knowledge of Good and of Evil. God told them, “the day that you eat of the tree in dying thou shalt die.” They would die spiritually (be cut off from God) and then die physically.

b. The scripture declares that if you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land (Isaiah 1:19). The devil knows that the only way that he can trap us is to get us moving in the direction of disobedience and against God’s Word.

3. In this day and this age, there is still a tree that is Holy, and it belongs to God. It is called the Tithe.

a. It is tempting to someone, who has not been taught how Holy the tree (tithe) is, to want to eat it.

b. To eat the tithe tree is to use the tithe for your personal use.

c. The tithe is Holy. Don’t eat that which belongs to God. Set it aside and bring it to the altar of worship where you are fed the Word of God.

d. Giving it as an act of worship as a first fruit to the Lord.

4. Many of those who have eaten from the tithe tree are now barren and naked and suffer lack. They have removed themselves from God’s protection.

Pastor Adonica’s thoughts:
From the time I received Jesus as my Lord and Savior, at the age of 17, I was taught about tithing. I fell in love with Jesus and fully committed to Him. I worked for my father at the time and when I received my monthly pay of 175 South African Rands, I immediately set aside my tithe, rounding it up to R20, and then sowed it into the offering the very next church service I attended. This became a committed habit for me, as it did for Rodney, and as God blessed and increased us, we continued to tithe on everything we earned. It is not a difficult thing to do because we committed to do it a long time ago and we would not dream of using the tithe for anything else. As a result, we expect—and receive—God’s blessing and favor on our lives and He has never let us down!

Pastor Rodney’s thoughts:
I can remember, as a child, being taught the principle of the tithe. I would tithe on my allowance. I would also tithe on the income I earned as a child working at whatever job I could find during school vacations. I knew that I wanted to do my part and sow seed into the Gospel. When we first arrived in America we heard that 20% of the body of Christ tithed. Apparently, the current statistic is that 6% actually tithe! This means that 94% spend their time eating of the tithe tree that is Holy and yet they wonder why they struggle financially and are unprotected—naked and barren.

I so desire God’s people to be blessed! God so desires to bless and increase all of our lives!  Even though He has a strong desire to bless you, His hands are tied when you eat that which does not belong to you. Don’t forget—the tithe is the Lord’s!  You are stewards over the tithe—don’t eat it—set it aside as Holy unto the Lord and allow the blessing of God to transform your life and overtake you from every side!

Prayer and Confession:
Father, I worship you with that which has been set apart for You—the tithe—it is Yours and I honor you with it and thank you that I will never be naked or barren or ashamed, and Your provision and protection will be upon me, all the days of my life.

The Gift of Faith

1 Corinthians 12 verse 7

But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.

 

The Gifts of the Holy Spirit are as He will’s not as we will – however He will’s more than we will.

 

The Gift of Faith is a supernatural Gift from God of His Faith given to you at a specific time at a specific place for a specific purpose. 

 

It is the ability from God the divine grace to receive a miracle

Miracles of Salvation, deliverance, healing, protection, provision etc involving all of our needs down here on the earth.

 

We see passages of scripture that these are showcased in.

 

1. The Red Sea parted making a way for them to pass and burying their enemies.

2. Water provided from the Rock, Manna and Quail from Heaven.

3. The Pillar of Cloud by Day and the Pillar of Fire by night.

4. God brought the Children of Israel forth with Silver and Gold and there was not one sick or feeble one among their tribes.

5. The Son and the Moon stood still.

6. The Axe Head Swam 

7. The ravens fed the prophet.

8. The Oil and the meal did not Fail.

9. The Rain that came to break the drought.

10. Water into wine.

11. Feeding the Five thousand with 5 loaves and 2 fishes.

12. Tax money from the Fish’s mouth 

 

The List goes on and on I have only sighted a few examples from the Scripture.

 

The Gift of Faith will propel you supernaturally – the Lord will sustain you in  the most adverse circumstances – He will make away where there is no way and He will furnish a table in the wilderness and make the crooked path’s straight.

 

If the Gift of Faith is as He will’s and not as we will then how do we access the gift – we can use our Faith to receive the gift of Faith

Just lift your hands right now and pray this prayer and Say

Father in Jesus name I thank you for the gifts of the Spirit and especially the gift of Faith – we receive by Faith this gift right now to help me in my situation and I receive by Faith

 

Divine Grace so as to move mountains. I receive this in the wonderful name of Jesus and by the power of the Blood of Jesus.

 

Thank you in Jesus Name

Amen.

 

PS Love and blessings to you as you read this I am in Tulsa Oklahoma and it is Friday 17th April pm 6.30 and I am preaching on the gift of Faith tonight and felt to post my notes on this blog – looking forward to the Sunday am and pm at the River

 

Love and Blessings 

Pastor Rodney Howard Browne

Say Yes and Do Yes

But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, Son, go work to day in my vineyard. 29 He answered and said, I will not: but afterward he repented, and went. 30 And he came to the second, and said likewise. And he answered and said, I go, sir: and went not. 31 Whether of them twain did the will of his father? They say unto him, The first. Jesus saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you. 32 For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.  Matthew 21:28-32 KJV

The father of the two sons asked them to work in his vineyard. One initially said no, but afterwards went and obeyed his father. The other said yes, but then disobeyed him.  Which one of them pleased his father? Obviously, the one who actually obeyed him was the one who pleased him. There are many Christians, who think that mere lip service is enough, but our actions must match our words. There are others, who feel that they have disqualified themselves, because they were disobedient in the past; but it is never too late to obey God’s call.  Of course, the very best is up for us to say yes, and then go and do what we said we would do.  However, if we did initially say no, now is a great time to say yes, and then to actually go do it!

I tell you, for this reason the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce the fruits of it.  Matthew 21:43 AMP

Jesus said that the kingdom of God would be given to a people who will produce the fruits of it.  If we want God’s blessing, favor, power, and anointing to be on us, then we must be faithful to use them to bless people and to extend His kingdom.  We cannot brag about how we have been given the keys to the kingdom, while we either sit on our bottoms and do nothing, or if we run around doing everything except what He specifically told us to do.

Jesus said to them, My food (nourishment) is to do the will (pleasure) of Him Who sent Me and to accomplish and completely finish His work.  John 4:34 AMP

Jesus was a Son who did everything his Father asked him to do.  He is our example of willingness and complete obedience.

For I have come down from heaven not to do My own will and purpose but to do the will and purpose of Him Who sent Me.  John 6:38 AMP

Your highest call is to do the will and purpose of your Heavenly Father, and not your own.

Jesus was still speaking to the people when behold, His mother and brothers stood outside, seeking to speak to Him. 47 Someone said to Him, Listen! Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, seeking to speak to You. 48 But He replied to the man who told Him, Who is My mother, and who are My brothers? 49 And stretching out His hand toward [not only the twelve disciples but all] His adherents, He said, Here are My mother and My brothers. 50 For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother!  Matthew 12:46-50 AMP

You did not have to be born into Jesus blood family to be his brother or sister or mother.  All you have to do is the will of your Father in Heaven.  That means that any one of us can consider ourselves the immediate family of Jesus, if we are a doer of the Word of God.

Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father Who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me on that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name and driven out demons in Your name and done many mighty works in Your name? 23 And then I will say to them openly (publicly), I never knew you; depart from Me, you who act wickedly [disregarding My commands]. 24 So everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts upon them [obeying them] will be like a sensible (prudent, practical, wise) man who built his house upon the rock. 25 And the rain fell and the floods came and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not do them will be like a stupid (foolish) man who built his house upon the sand. 27 And the rain fell and the floods came and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell — and great and complete was the fall of it.  Matthew 7:21-27 AMP

Not everyone who calls Jesus his or her Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the person who does the will of His Father Who is in heaven.  That is a scary thought! Even if people prophesied and cast out demons and did many mighty works, in Jesus’ name, if they personally disobeyed His word, He will not acknowledge them as His own on the day they stand before Him.  Do not say that you are a servant of God if you are not a doer of His Word.  It is vitally important that you take stock of your life and that you make sure that you do highly respect God’s word and that you faithfully apply His word to every aspect of your life. Say YES today to the Father, Son and Holy Ghost – with your words, and in your actions!

The Power and Benefits of Your Covenant Promise

When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am Almighty God; walk before Me and be blameless. 2 And I will make My covenant between Me and you, and will multiply you exceedingly.” 3 Then Abram fell on his face, and God talked with him, saying: 4 “As for Me, behold, My covenant is with you, and you shall be a father of many nations. 5 No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you a father of many nations. 6 I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. 7 And I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you in their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and your descendants after you. 8 Also I give to you and your descendants after you the land in which you are a stranger, all the land of Canaan, as an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.” 9 And God said to Abraham: “As for you, you shall keep My covenant, you and your descendants after you throughout their generations. 10 This is My covenant which you shall keep, between Me and you and your descendants after you: Every male child among you shall be circumcised; Genesis 17:1-10 AMP

1. God is a covenant making and covenant keeping God

Old Testament: Covenant ( Hebrew word : BERIYTH)

•Means to cut

•Implies the shedding of blood

•Agreement

Jesus the Lamb of God was wounded and bruised at the cross and shed His blood for us.

New Testament: Covenant. (Hebrew word: DIATHEKE)

•Imposition of the will is a Superior, that is GOD, upon the will of the inferior, that is man.

Covenant: You can accept it or you can reject it, But you cannot ALTER it. It is always on God’s terms.

Once we step out of the kingdom of darkness into God’s kingdom of LIGHT, there is a transformation that takes place.

2. When Christ sets us free, we now live by the laws of the Kingdom.

When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am Almighty God; walk before Me and be blameless. Genesis 17:1 AMP

A). There can be no liberty without a law.

This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Joshua 1:8 AMP

If things are going wrong, check by which law you are living.

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus,[a] who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. Romans 8:1 AMP

The law of the Spirit

The law of sin and death

B) In Covenant. – I am connected to the LIFE SOURCE

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will[a] ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. John 15:5-7 AMP

No covenant. – No answers to prayer

No covenant. – No fruit

No covenant. – No success

When you in Covenant with God: Gen 17:1-10

God’s Response. – I will prosper you

•I will bless you

•I will multiply you

•I will increase you

•I will never leave you nor forsake you

•I will change your name

•I will change your nature

•I will cause you to be fruitful

•I will open up the womb of your wife and out of you shall come a blessed nation.

2. (a). In covenant when things go crazy: it’s time TO STAND BEFORE THE LORD.

Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the Lord. Genesis 18:22 AMP

(b). The power of Covenant gives you the right to remind God of His Promise.

And Abraham came near and said, “Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked? Genesis 18:23 AMP

(c). When in covenant, you can feel your way forward in faith.

23 And Abraham came near and said, “Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked? 24 Suppose there were fifty righteous within the city; would You also destroy the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous that were in it? 25 Far be it from You to do such a thing as this, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous should be as the wicked; far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?”

26 So the Lord said, “If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.” 27 Then Abraham answered and said, “Indeed now, I who am but dust and ashes have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: 28 Suppose there were five less than the fifty righteous; would You destroy all of the city for lack of five?” So He said, “If I find there forty-five, I will not destroy it.” 29 And he spoke to Him yet again and said, “Suppose there should be forty found there?” So He said, “I will not do it for the sake of forty.” 30 Then he said, “Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Suppose thirty should be found there?” So He said, “I will not do it if I find thirty there.” 31 And he said, “Indeed now, I have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord: Suppose twenty should be found there?” So He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of twenty.” 32 Then he said, “Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak but once more: Suppose ten should be found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of ten.” 33 So the Lord went His way as soon as He had finished speaking with Abraham; and Abraham returned to his place.

Genesis 18:23-33 AMP

Benefits of a covenant partnership

1. He lives in me and I in Him

For in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’ Acts 17:28 AMP

2. I have understanding and knowledge in Him

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.

1 John 5:20 AMP

3. In Him I have Life

For though He was crucified in weakness, yet He lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, but we shall live with Him by the power of God toward you. 2 Corinthians 13:4 AMP

4. I am established in Him

As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, Colossians 2:6 AMP

Contented in All Circumstances

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Philippians 4:9-14  (NIV)
9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put it into practice.  And the God of peace will be with you.
10 I rejoice greatly in the Lord that at last you have renewed your concern for me.  Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it.
11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.
12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.  I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.
13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength.
14 Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles.

Paul experienced times of plenty and times of want as he traveled all over preaching the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.  On different occasions, he had found himself both well fed and hungry.  Yet regardless of the circumstances, he was not dismayed, but he was in a state of peace.  How could he be contented in the midst of hunger and want?  How indeed, seeing he put his trust in his Father God?

Many people’s moods, on the other hand, are completely governed by their circumstances, including some Christians.  If things are going well, they are happy, but if things are not going their way they either wail or whine or get angry.  When things are going well, they get a prideful attitude, but when they go badly, they get bitter, crying, “Why me?”  All these things are an indication to us that we are dealing with an immature person  unstable and unreliable.

We need to get a revelation that God is on our side at all times.  Even if we go through trying times, He is always close by to take us through to the other side.  We must put our confidence in Him at all times, regardless of our circumstances, because He will not let us down.  The bible does not promise us a flowery path or a bed of roses, but it does promise us that the Lord will be with us at all times, and in all circumstances, to bring us through!

Psalm 34:19  (NKJ)
19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD delivers him out of them all.

This verse says that the Lord delivers us out of all our troubles, afflictions, adversity, calamity, and distress. Why does it seem as if some Christians get delivered and others don’t?  What is the difference?  The difference is attitude!

1Thessalonians 5:18  (NIV)
18 . . . give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

No matter where you find yourself – in whatever circumstances you find yourself, give thanks to God.  We don’t have to thank God for all the hard things we go through, but we must be thankful to God in these things. When we have a positive attitude, it is amazing how things begin to work out.  No matter what the devil tries to do to you, God can turn the situation around for good.  You can be all the richer for the hard things you endured.

James 1:2-4  (NKJ)
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.

When you go through trials, the most important thing you can have is patience. Paul displayed patience when he was contented in all the circumstances he found himself in, knowing that God had it under control and would bring him through. He knew that he could do all things through Christ who strengthened him. He did not allow the ups and downs of life to govern his moods, but he kept his heart fixed on God, he kept his mind stayed on the Word, and walked in perfect peace!

Training Your Children to Serve God

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Proverbs 22:6  (NKJ)

6 Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.

Proverbs 20:11  (NKJ)

11Even a child is known by his deeds, whether what he does is pure and right.

Many parents allow bad behavior in their children to go uncorrected, because they think that the child does not know any better, but even at a very young age children do know the difference between right and wrong. It is the parent’s responsibility to guide them in the right direction. Children are looking for guidance from parents  their flesh will rule them unless they are taught to conquer their flesh. Their own conscience will condemn them unless they have peace before God. The only way to have peace with God is through repentance. Repentance comes through correction and discipline.

Proverbs 22:15  (KJV)

15Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.

Children are not born perfectly wise as some misguided “experts” have tried to convince gullible parents. “Just leave them to make their own choices” they say, “and they will make the right ones!” But if these parents had stopped to inquire of some older and wiser (now) grandparents and great-grandparents, they would have heard a different story. Besides that, we have a handbook, written many years ago, inspired by the God who made us and He knows all about us and He knows what is best for us.

Children are born with a personality intact, but all they know and learn of the world is what they are see, hear, taste, smell, touch and are taught. They do make foolish choices, because they don’t know or understand everything as they should, but it is our responsibility to train them and to correct them. As parents, we have do decide whether we will trust and obey God in every area of our lives, including how we raise our kids. God’s Word is final authority in every area of our lives and the sooner we accept that  the better our lives will be.

Proverbs 23:13-14  (NKJ)

13Do not withhold correction from a child, for if you beat him with a rod, he will not die.

14You shall beat him with a rod, and deliver his soul from hell.

The Hebrew word for “correction” here yacar (yaw-sar’) means to chastise, literally (with blows) or figuratively (with words); hence, to instruct. It is translated in the KJV as bind, chasten, chastise, correct, instruct, punish, reform, reprove, sore, teach. We are to correct our children and if we do it right, they will not end up in hell. If we raise our children as God directs us they will serve God. If we do not do the right thing in spanking and instructing our children, there is a good chance that they will have a very bad end. The purpose of spanking is for a connection to be made, in the child’s brain, between cause and effect  action and consequence. They must learn that bad action bring bad results.

Spanking also is supposed to bring repentance. Without repentance there is no forgiveness. Where there is no forgiveness, there is a tormented heart. Do not torment your children with guilt and condemnation. Give them an opportunity to have peace before God, because ultimately all sin keeps us from the presence of God. Why would we willingly allow sin in our children’s lives that will hinder their relationship with God? Who needs the devil with parents who don’t have the guts to stand up to the devil and say, “You will not have my child. I will raise him to serve God and to have a clear conscience before God, so that he can come boldly into God’s presence!”

Proverbs 20:30  (NIV)

30Blows and wounds cleanse away evil, and beatings purge the inmost being.

If you think that God’s discipline is not the right way to do things  consider how you would feel when your uncorrected child ends up in jail or worse! Many “good” parents have ended up weeping over their children, because they did not want to be the “bad guy” and discipline the kid when he was little. Remember you are not your child’s friend  you are his parent. He may not seem to delighted with your rules now, but he will come back to thank you for raising him right when he is grown  especially if he has his own kids!

Proverbs 29:15  (KJV)

15The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame.

Many people, even highly educated ones, seem to lack wisdom or common sense. They know a lot, but it isn’t enough to help them to make a success of their lives. If we are wise parents and if we spank and instruct our children the way God tells us to, they will be wise children and we will not be ashamed of them when they are grown.

THE COMFORTER – PART 7

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

POWER TO PRAY THE PERFECT WILL OF GOD

And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.  Acts 2:4 KJV

 

While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God.  Acts 10:44-46 KJV

 

The Holy Ghost is a free gift, poured out on all those who would receive Him. In the book of Acts, those who were baptized in and filled with the Holy Ghost, also spoke in other tongues, extolling and magnifying God. The Hebrew word for “gift” – “dorea” – of the Holy Ghost is not the same as the word for “gifts” – “charisma” – of the Spirit – tongues, interpretation of tongues, prophesy, etc. in 1 Corinthians 12. The Holy Spirit is a gift in the sense that He is given free – you can’t pay for Him. The gifts of the Spirit, wThe Holy Ghost is a free gift, poured out on all those who would receive Him. hich operate through those who are baptized in the Holy Spirit, are a gift in the sense that they are a special, supernatural endowment – an ability which operates through men as the Spirit wills.

 

When you are filled with the Spirit, you pray out of your spirit man. Your spirit speaks in tongues through your mouth. The Holy Spirit, in your spirit, is the One who gives the utterance. You can pray in the spirit whenever you choose. This is not the “gift” of tongues – it is your prayer language. When you pray out of your own spirit in tongues, it is a hot line to heaven. Your mind cannot understand it and most importantly, the devil cannot understand it!

 

For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful. What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding.  1 Corinthians 14:14-15 NKJ

 

We should pray and sing in our native tongue – in our case, English – and we should pray and sing in the spirit – in other tongues as the Spirit gives us the utterance. We speak, pray and sing in our own languages in order to edify others and ourselves.

 

But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost.  Jude 1:20KJV

 

We build up, strengthen, and edify ourselves spiritually, as we pray in the spirit.

 

Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.  Romans 8:26-27 NKJ

 

Unless we pray according to God’s will, He will not hear us and He will not answer us. If we want our prayers to be answered, we must pray so that God can hear us. When we don’t know what or how to pray, we can pray in the spirit and the Holy Spirit will pray, through us, the perfect will of God for our life and situation. As people, we are not perfect, we don’t know everything and we may not even know the word of God very well, but if we can pray in tongues, we can be praying God’s perfect will!

 

Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.  I John 5:14-15 NKJ

 

What a tremendous blessing from God – to have the ability to pray according to God’s will at any time. Because when we pray according to God’s will, He hears us and if He hears us, He answers our prayers!

 

HOW TO EAT THE GOOD OF THE LAND

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the best from the land; but if you resist and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword.”  For the mouth of the LORD has spoken.  Isaiah 1:19-20 NIV

God is the author and source of all the blessings in our lives. In order for us to live in His blessings and become a partaker of them, we must be submitted, spirit, soul and body, to Him. We are able to make the choice to serve God or not – it is our option – God does not force us. However, if we choose to resist the Spirit of God and if we rebel against Him, our lives will be destroyed. It is important that we are obedient to the Lord, but we must also be willing to serve and obey Him in everything.

Rebellion is an attitude. We can carry out acts of obedience and yet still have an attitude of rebellion on the inside. We can be outwardly obedient and inwardly rebellious and what we really are is rebellious. That is why God says, “willing AND obedient”. Obedience and submission are two different things. Obedience is an action and submission is an attitude. God looks at our heart. He knows whether we are willing to obey Him or not. It takes humility to submit to God’s authority in our life and to do what He says. So we must be submitted to God with all our heart and we must obey Him by DOING everything He says to do.

“And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.  1 Chronicles 28:9 NIV

If we want God’s blessing, we must serve Him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind.

One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: `Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.  Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.‘ The second is this: `Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.” When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.  Mark 12:28-34 NIV

Then Samuel said: “Has the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. 1 Samuel 15:22-23b NKJV

Just because we can make the choice to disobey God, does not mean that we will get away with it. The sin of rebellion against God is equivalent to the sin of witchcraft. God takes it very seriously. This is not a game we play, but a matter of life and death. God is not someone you mess with lightly. If He gives an order, we must realize that it is not a suggestion. We are obligated to obey, if we want to live long and prosperous lives. We cannot toy with God. We cannot offer an acceptable sacrifice from a rebellious heart. Our sacrifice must be offered from a heart of obedience.

By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.  1 John 5:2-3 KJV

God’s commands are not grievous. They are not burdensome, irksome or unpleasant. Whatever God tells us to do is going to be a blessing to us in the end. God asks us to lose our lives – to lay down our agenda – for Him, but this is something that He has already done for us. He laid His life down and gave it up for us. He gives us His all and He wants our all. We definitely have the best end of the deal!

Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone to obey him as slaves, you are slaves to the one whom you obey-whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness? Romans 6:15-17 NIV

If you are not wholeheartedly yielded to the Father, then you are yielded to someone else – i.e. the devil. You are a slave to the one you obey – whether it is God or the devil. Do not be deceived – you are either a slave of the devil –the author of sin and death – or a slave of God – the author of righteousness. So submit yourself to God. Be willing and obedient and you will eat of the good of the land!

The Truth about the ministry of Rodney Howard Browne