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Freedom Evangelistic Messages
自由福音讯息
自由福音訊息

Mike Connell

Deaf/Hearing-Impaired Audio Transcripts


Freedom Evangelistic Messages
  自由福音讯息
  自由福音訊息

Stand-alone messages on Deliverance & Healing, ending with an opportunity for people to respond to Jesus Christ, and be saved and delivered from tormenting spirits and sicknesses.

The power of God touched many people during these sessions - hundreds gave their lives to Christ and experienced Deliverance/Healing.

Expect the presence and power of God to touch you as you listen to these powerful messages.

一系列的消息:拯救(驱魔)和治疗,有机会为人们应对耶稣基督,并予以保存,并交付从折磨精神和病痛的结局。

神的力量在这些会议上感动了很多人 - 数百人选择了他们的生命服从基督,体验解脱/治疗。

期待神的存在和力量,你听这些强大的邮件碰你。

一系列的消息:拯救(驅魔)和治療,有機會為人們應對耶穌基督,並予以保存,並交付從折磨精神和病痛的結局。

神的力量在這些會議上感動了很多人 - 數百人選擇了他們的生命服從基督,體驗解脫/治療。

期待神的存在和力量,你聽這些強大的郵件碰你。

Spirit of Divination (1 of 12)
Acts 16:16 tells a story about a woman who was tormented by an evil spirit - a python spirit, or spirit of divination. Many people came to her city, a centre of Arts, wanting to know their future, and she made a lot of money for her owners by fortune-telling. What is the source of this power? How does it gain access to our lives? What does the Bible say about our destiny? How can we be set free?

由占卜的灵中得自由

由占卜的靈中得自由

The Bite of the Serpent (2 of 12)
In Numbers 21, the children of Israel became bitter in their heart and started complaining against Moses. Their sin released fiery serpents which bit the people and released poison into their system. Their was only one remedy for the bite of the serpent - fixing their eyes, with faith in their heart, on God's provision.The same power is available to you today -the power of the cross for curses.

由蛇咬中得自由

由蛇咬中得自由

Freedom from Bitterness (3 of 12)
In Exodus 15, we follow the journey of God's people who came out of the slavery of Egypt to the promised land. When they met difficult circumstances we see what was in their heart - all the "fruit" of bitterness. If the fruit is there, the root is there. Test yourself. Do you think like a slave or a son? We can focus on injustice and choose to be bitter, or respond to God's provision and embrace grace.

由苦毒中得自由

由苦毒中得自由

Honour your Father and Mother (4 of 12)
In Malachi 4 God prophetically declared the condition on the earth in our time - breakdown in family relationships, destruction and broken-hearts. The problem lies in our heart. We don't have to live out of disappointment and pain. God wants to heal the broken-hearted and TURN our hearts. We can resolve issues of the heart. King David and his wife Michal both suffered injustice from King Saul, but their heart response determined their destiny. Discover powerful keys for accessing God's promises and blessing. It's not automatic, it requires a response.

尊榮你的父親母親

尊榮你的父親母親

Blood on The Doorposts (5 of 12)
Jn 1:29 "Behold - the lamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world" has little meaning for people today, but for the Israelites who applied the blood of the Passover lamb on the doorposts (Ex.12) it was tremendously significant. When the destroyer saw the blood, they were protected, and 430 years of slavery finished. Jesus is God's provision for our sinfulness, and His blood still speaks. Get a fresh revelation of the power of the blood of Jesus for your freedom.

門柱旁的血

門柱旁的血

Come Out of Your Cave (6 of 12)
In 1 Kings 19 we find Elijah had yielded to fear and intimidation, and drawn back from his God-given assignment. We then get one of those "God Questions". He knows the answer, but wanted Elijah to think about where he was at, to recognize his distorted thinking, and to get back to his assignment, which included raising up others to fulfill the ministry. What are you doing here? Elijah had chosen to yield to fear, withdraw from his assignment, sit down, become passive and isolate at the crucial point when he needed to press forward. Sound familiar? Learn to recognize the signs of pressure.

由洞穴中得自由

由洞穴中得自由

Hope After Loss (7 of 12)
The widow of Nain ( Luke 7 ) was in a place of great grief and without hope for her future, no-one could comfort her. Maybe you too are locked into grief feeling numb and disconnected. Our God is a God of comfort, and a God of all hope. Set-backs are not the end. Let Christ in - He is able to breathe into a place of death, and bring life and fresh vision. Jesus still works miracles, and restores a broken heart.

損失之後的盼望

損失之後的盼望

Do You Want To Be Made Whole? (8 of 12)
In John 5 , Jesus likens us to sheep - this message gives several ways this is true! One similarity is that sometimes sheep are "cast", lying down, unable to move, unable to function. If we are lying down we may have many excuses, feel a victim, and be waiting for something to happen. However, like the man in this story, who had been waiting 38 years for help, we need to answer this same question Jesus asked: Do you want to be made whole? We have the power of choice - to receive Jesus and have the power of sin broken.

再造全新的我

再造全新的我

Stretch Out and Be Healed (9 of 12)
Sometimes an area of our life has become "withered", or without life, just like the man in Mark 3, who had a withered hand. We tend to conceal, or hide in shame, when we feel like this. To restore the man in the story, Jesus required 2 "action steps": 1) Bring the problem right out into the open 2) A stretch of faith - doing what Jesus asks us to do. The healing is "in the stretch"!

伸出手得醫治

伸出手得醫治

Spiritual Blindness (10 of 12)
The Bible describes 2 kingdoms - the kingdom of "light" (Jesus), and the kingdom of darkness (devil). The Bible also describes several spiritual problems in the heart which cause spiritual blindness - hatred, pride, bitter offences. Blindness speaks of limitations and captivity. In Mark 10, a blind man called Bartimaeus obtained his healing. What did he do that caused Jesus to stop and respond to him? What did he believe about Jesus? How did he demonstrate faith? His encounter can be a doorway to your encounter!

屬靈的眼盲

属灵的眼盲

Freedom from Divination (11 of 12)
God promises to direct our steps, as we trust Him and listen to His voice. Many people, fearful about the future, pay money to a fortune-teller to receive information (divination). They prostitute themselves with evil spirits - they pay money for information and receive a spirit into their body. Lev 20:6 warns of the dangers of this. We are not made for evil spirits. If you have opened your life up, you can be set free - like the girl in Acts 16:16

由占卜中得自由

由占卜中得自由

Healing from Abortion and Miscarriage (12 of 12)
The heart of God is full of compassion to heal and restore damaged lives. Abortion is a doorway for grief and demonic bondage which is largely hidden under secrecy and denial. When the truth is faced that the life of a child has been taken the pain is immense. The reality dawns, there is a son or daughter in heaven who we will meet one day! Discover how to bring meaningful healing to families who have lost a child in the womb, and set them free from bondage and torment. Jesus did not come to condemn - He came to save, heal, deliver, restore.

由堕胎流产中得医治

由墮胎流產中得醫治

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Spirit of Divination (1 of 12)  

Fri 4th Oct 2013 PM « Back to Top

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Acts 16:16 tells a story about a woman who was tormented by an evil spirit - a python spirit, or spirit of divination. Many people came to her city, a centre of Arts, wanting to know their future, and she made a lot of money for her owners by fortune-telling. What is the source of this power? How does it gain access to our lives? What does the Bible say about our destiny? How can we be set free?

Spirit of Divination (1 of 12)

Let’s open the Bible up to Acts 16. We’ll read from verse 16.

”Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. 17 This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.” 18 And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour.”

So, the Bible tells us very clearly that Jesus came to set people free. This is a story about a woman tormented by an evil spirit. It was in a particular place in Greece where they worshipped the god Apollo. It was the centre of the creative arts and in that place, there was the practice of divination. Another word for divination means fortune-telling. It means consulting spirits to try and find your future. So, there was a special temple there in this place.

There was what they called the oracle of Delphi. There was a woman who used to prophesy using demonic spiritual power. People would come to her and they would pay money in order to be able to get their fortunes told. This was a very famous city. People came from all around to try and find out what their future held. When there were major decisions to be made in business or in arts or in drama, they would come there. They would pay money in order to discover words about their future.

This is very common today. We want to know what the future holds. We want to know whether our life will be blessed. We want to know about tomorrow. We want to know about things in the future. This hunger for the future, hunger to know what’s ahead is found in all cultures. The Bible tells us our life is in God’s hands.

In Ephesians 2:10 it says: “God has planned works for us to accomplish with our life”. You are not an accident. You were born into this world by God’s design. There may have been difficulties in your family. You may have been born unexpectedly. Maybe you weren’t what your parents expected. The Bible says, God had a destiny, a plan, something for you to do with your life. Long before you were ever thought of, God was thinking of you.

There are many examples in the Bible where God reveals He knew about people before they even turned up in the earth. For example, Jeremiah 1:5 – God says to Jeremiah, “While you were in the womb, I formed you and ordained you to be a prophet to nations.” So while he was still in the womb, barely conceived, God saw a prophet. God had a destiny for him, and called him into that destiny.

In the Old Testament there’s another king by the name of Josiah. Would you realise this, that over 600 years before he was born, a prophet prophesied one day there’ll be a king called Josiah who will be a restorer of the nation and he’ll overcome all of these idols and alters. So, 600 years before he was born, God knew he was coming, knew his name, knew where he’d be born, and had a plan for him.

You go back into Genesis; God prophesied to Adam and Eve that there would be a saviour coming into the world called Jesus Christ. That’s 4000 years before He came. The Bible has many prophesies that were fulfilled in Jesus. In other words, God looks ahead and sees your life. He has a plan for your life and no matter what happens in your life, if you have faith in your heart to Him, He is able to use even the negatives for good in your life.

Now, if we don’t have a relationship with God, then we have no certainty about our future. So, people turn to divination. God hates divination; calls it spiritual prostitution. We are not made to connect with evil spirits, we’re made for relationship with God. So when we go to be involved in divination, we make contact not with God, but with an evil spirit.

That’s what’s happening with this girl. She had a spirit of divination. Today we’d call her a psychic. You would go pay money to have your reading. But, the source of power was an evil spirit. She had a spirit like a python wrapped all around her. Interestingly, the name of the goddess that was the one who prophesied was called Pythia, meaning python. There were lots of people that operated with this spirit. So they would go and pay money to the girl, and she had a spirit wrapped around her.

Evil spirits do not know your future. The devil cannot see ahead and know your future. Only God can do that. Isn’t it much better we trust in God and walk with Him, than we reach out to evil spirits? So, people in the entertainment industry, people in business, people in finance, people in government, would go there before they made any major decisions. When they exchanged money, they were trading with an evil spirit; opening their life for the spirit to now have power over them.

Did the demon know their future? Not at all. But there’s something like a demonic internet. The demons watch people. So, the demon can speak and say things about your life that you already know because they observe people. If you go to a fortune teller, go to a psychic, then you won’t connect just with the person, you’ll connect with an evil spirit. They tell you things about yourself which are true because spirits are watching you. But if you were to begin to believe the words they tell you, you will give them power over your life.

So, this woman, when she saw Paul, begins to follow Him. She began to cry: “These are the servants of the most high God. They’re showing the way of salvation.” She was telling the truth. She was actually speaking what was reality because the demons could see it. But her presence and the spirit around her was incredibly irritating. A python traps people by crushing them. Slowly wrapping itself around people, and then squeezing the life out of them.

So, when people go to be involved in divination, they get addicted to going and they can’t make decisions unless they consult. Steadily, they’re giving up power over their life to an evil spirit. Gradually, it wraps itself around the person and then begins to crush their life, destroy their hopes. This young woman had the spirit and one day, Paul turned, and the Bible says he confronted the spirit. He spoke directly to the spirit, commanded it in the name of Jesus Christ to come out, and the demon unwrapped from the woman, and left her, and she was set free.

Now, notice her life changed. No longer was the spirit wrapped around her squeezing her life. No longer did she have voices speaking into her ears. No longer did she have power to know what was going on in people’s lives. When the presence of the spirit left her, the power to talk to people and tell their fortune went with it. Evil spirits don’t know their future, but if you will consult and listen to them, you’ll open your life up and they’ll begin to influence your future.

God calls us to have relationship with Him. Calls us into a relationship of trust, of walking with God in life. Trusting Him, believing that a loving God who loves us deeply, has only the best plans for us. God doesn’t tell you all His plans, but He does write desires and dreams in your heart. He does speak to you and confirm what He wants, and as you choose to walk by faith, He begins to unravel His plan for your life.

It always starts with the first step – the step to receive Jesus Christ. A step away from sin. A step away from a life without God, and a step towards the living God. God wants some of you here tonight to make that step. A step to respond to God’s kindness. A step to receive His love.

How did this woman come to have the spirit? How do these spirits get into people’s lives? Possibly, it was in her family. Maybe the family worshipped idols. Maybe the family was involved with spiritism. So the spirit came down the family. She was hearing the voices from when she’s very young. Having disturbing dreams. Seeing the spirit at night time.

I was over in a place called Fiji, and we were driving down the road and I saw a group of people in a park. I got interested because I thought I saw snakes. So I said, “Stop the car, let’s have a look.” So we went over, and an area was fenced off, and there were some people there with a mat and they had some snakes. They were playing with the snakes. We don’t have snakes in New Zealand, so this was new to me. I was interested. One of them came up to me and said: “Please don’t pray against us. We just came from Borneo, we want to earn some money. We don’t really want to harm anyone.”

I realised they were not just operating with snakes, they were actually sorcerers. They were diviners. They were using the snakes and they had power over them. They were operating under demonic power. I see them take some water and they got 3 volunteers, and they just threw the water on them and they literally fell down on the ground. Then they put a hood over their head and they did some kind of sorcery. Then, when they took the cover off their head, the person was tremendously frightened because when he looked at the sorcerer, he could see in place of the sorcerer’s head, a serpent. They were absolutely terrified. They had been charmed or come under the influence of an evil spirit. So, these powers are very real.

The Bible says: “It grieves the heart of God when we get involved in those things.” There’ll be some of you and your family have been involved with evil spirits; have been involved with divination or fortune-telling of some kind. They’ve opened the door for spirits to come and torment your lives. There’ll be some of you, and you’ve been involved in fortune-telling yourself. Maybe you’ve had a Ouija board with letters on it and a glass called up spirits. You have connected with the evil spirits. God wants to set you free. Or perhaps you’ve done other forms, or gone to a psychic, or gone to a medium. A medium is a person who has a familiar spirit, and the spirit speaks through them. Maybe in your life, you’ve sought out these fortune-tellers, and it grieves God.

God loves you, has a plan for your life, and it makes Him sad, it breaks His heart when we turn to evil spirits and becomes entangled with them. So, maybe the spirit came down the family line. Maybe she was dedicated to this idol. Or maybe she just opened her life to the spirit, invited it to come in. Perhaps she was involved in spiritism. Whatever it is, she opened her life to the spirit, and Jesus set her free.



The Bite of the Serpent (2 of 12)  

Sat 5 Oct 2013 AM « Back to Top

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In Numbers 21, the children of Israel became bitter in their heart and started complaining against Moses. Their sin released fiery serpents which bit the people and released poison into their system. Their was only one remedy for the bite of the serpent - fixing their eyes, with faith in their heart, on God's provision.The same power is available to you today -the power of the cross for curses.

The Bite of the Serpent (2 of 12)

I want to read from the gospel of John. So the Bible reveals to us God’s plan to help us. It’s made up of two books – the Old Testament and the New Testament, who would set all people free. Now, we’ll read in verse 14 of John chapter 3, these wonderful verses. It starts with a picture and we’re going to look at the picture in a moment.

It says: “Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up.” So Jesus is speaking about a situation that happened hundreds of years before, with Moses in the wilderness with the people of Israel. He says it’s like a prophetic picture of his death on the cross.

So He says: “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man – that’s Jesus, be lifted up so whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”

You notice the heart of God. God doesn’t want you to perish, He wants you to be saved. The Bible’s very clear – the nature of God is love. God is a loving God. People have many different pictures of God. The picture you have of Him, what you believe about Him, will affect how you relate to Him. So, if you have distorted or wrong pictures of God, you won’t relate to Him properly.

The Bible says God loved the world. He loved the world this much, that He sent His son from heaven to come into the world to reveal what the kingdom of heaven is like, and to invite us to become part of that; to invite us back into relationship with God.

Jesus demonstrated God’s love in a number of ways. One, in His teaching. Two, in how He related to people. Three, in the miracles, the way He helped people overcome problems. But number four, most of all, by dying on the cross and then rising again from the dead. The fundamental problem that people have, is we are separated in our heart from God.

The Bible says – the consequences of that separation is death. So, Jesus came into this world to break the power of sin and to put His spirit or life into us again. We were designed to live in relationship with God. But separated from God, we just live out of our natural senses. God wants to change your life. Change your heart. Put His spirit inside you so you can live a different kind of life. God has no desire to judge you. He desires to set you free.

So whatever problem you have in your life, whatever bondage you have in your life, God does not blame you, does not condemn you. His desire is to help you. Jesus said – “I didn’t come to condemn people. I didn’t come to point out what is wrong. I came to save people.”

I want to show you a story in the Old Testament. The Old Testament contains many stories of people and their encounters with God. Sometimes we don’t understand spiritual matters easily. Sometimes we don’t understand things that are spiritual. So God gives many examples, many pictures in the Old Testament to help us understand spiritual things. So we’re going to look at a picture. We’re going to look at a story. We’re going to look at a real event. We’re going to show God’s love touching people. What God did to help them and what was required of people.

So, we look in Numbers chapter 21. We start in verse 4 and read through to verse 9.

“Then they journeyed from Mount Hor by the Way of the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom; and the soul of the people became very discouraged on the way. 5 And the people spoke against God and against Moses: “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and our soul loathes this worthless bread.” 6 So the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and many of the people of Israel died.

7 Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the LORD and against you; pray to the LORD that He take away the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people. 8 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole; and it shall be that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, shall live.” 9 So Moses made a bronze serpent, and put it on a pole; and so it was, if a serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the bronze serpent, he lived.”

Now God’s intention always, is great blessing. The people of Israel had been bondaged for 400 years. They served as slaves and the task masters were very hard on them. As a result of their difficult life, the people became very bitter and very weak. God sent Moses to deliver them. He heard their voice cry and He sent Moses to deliver them. God demonstrated His power in a great way and the people of God left Egypt and began a journey to receive an inheritance in Canaan. They had a season or a journey with some challenges.

This is very like us. Before we come to know Jesus Christ, we live in bondage to sin. We are a slave to sin. We just can’t help sinning. We also live under the influence of evil spirits. They afflict people with fears and torments and sickness. They torment people with addictions. They break people’s hearts. They cause all manner of problems to people.

When we come to receive Jesus Christ, God puts His spirit in our heart and He breaks the power. Breaks the power of sin. Breaks the power of the devil. But then, we have to choose how we will live our life.

In this story we just read, the people of God have had a major victory. God has helped them against their enemies. Every day God provides for them. Every day God protects them. In fact, every day they are living under the blessing of God.

But it said – the people complained. They complained because they were bitter in their heart. Whatever is in your heart will flow out into your life. What happened when the people came under pressure, is they began to complain bitterly. When bitterness gets in your heart, it will always come out under pressure. Complaining, criticising, negative speaking. The people complained against Moses. Moses has only tried to help them. They complained against God. They began to say – well, we’d be better off back there in bondage and we hate what God is providing.

So the people’s hearts were corrupt. The people did not see that God is a loving God. They could not see that God was with them. Their eyes were blinded to the goodness of God because of the bitterness and anger and unforgiveness in their heart. They had been deeply abused and hurt in Egypt.

God was showing them how to depend on Him. God was wanting to change them from being slaves into sons. God was wanting to change them from being victims into conquerors. But when the people bitterly complained, complaining releases demonic spirits. When they complained, serpents came and bit them.

Here’s the thing to understand – the serpents were always there in the wilderness. It’s just they had been protected by God from them. In the Bible, serpents are a picture of evil spirits. Jesus said – “I give you authority over serpents and scorpions and all the power of the earth.” Jesus wants us to have authority over evil spirits.

But when the people complained, when they rebelled, when their heart turned from God, and they began to do things that were wrong, the serpents were no longer restrained. The serpents now began to come into the camp. Suddenly they’d bite people. A person would go to lie down, suddenly a searing pain and he’s bit by a serpent. They go to pick up sticks, suddenly a hand is bitten by a serpent. Many many people, the Bible says, were bitten by serpents, and they died.

When you get bitten by a snake, there are two kinds of venom that they inject. They are different in the way they work. One kind of venom paralyses the system – all the nerves and muscles go into spasm and the person eventually goes into shock and dies. It’s a painful way to die. The other kind of venom begins to eat away the flesh. The body becomes toxic. The person goes into shock and dies. So the serpents bite was always fatal.

In the New Testament, Jesus encountered many people and they had demonic spirits living in their lives because they had broken the laws of God – idolatry and spiritism and sexual sin. Alcoholism, drugs. Demonic spirits were tormenting their lives. Jesus came to set them free.

So, the people had been bitten by the serpents. Then they began to figure it out –“We were doing fine, no serpents. Then we complained against God and Moses. Now we’re all getting bitten. We’ve obviously sinned.” So in this picture in this story here, you see the connection between sin, serpents, and death.

Whenever we sin, we give the devil access to our life, and the consequence of that sin is death. In the long term –physical death. In the short term – isolation, disconnection, problems in our lives. When people are wrestling with anger, it’s like a poison in their heart. When people are wrestling with lust, it’s like a poison in their heart. When people are wrestling with hatred, it’s like a poison inside them. They realise there was no remedy. Can you imagine how frightening it would be to live with serpents surround you, biting you, and there’s no remedy? Can you imagine how scary it would be to know that there are serpents waiting there to bite you and that there’s no remedy whatsoever.

The Bible is very clear – there is only one remedy for sin. There is only one remedy for demonic spirits. But most people don’t realise this. So what happened, is when the people connected, they had sin, and this is why they had a problem. They began to cry out. They said – “Moses help us. Moses, pray God will take the serpents away.” God heard Moses’ prayer.

I think Moses was very gracious. They’re complaining bitterly against him every day – then they come and say “Hey, the serpents are biting us. We’re so sorry. We’re so sorry we complained against you master. The serpent bites.” Moses could’ve said – “Well you got what you deserved.” But he prayed, he interceded. He had God’s heart for people.

God gave him an interesting instruction. He said – “Make a brass serpent, and put it up on a pole very high. Every time anyone’s bitten, this is what you’re going to do. You’ll have to, from wherever you are, you need to know you’re going to die unless you do one thing. You’re going to die. The poison is already working and there’s only one remedy – that’s to locate that brass serpent.

Can you imagine now, the panic someone had when they were bitten? “Ah! Maybe it will go away.” It’s not going to go away. There’s only one thing they can do. They had to find where the brass serpent was and look at it. Now, I want you to understand, it wasn’t kind of – “Oh yeah, there it is.” When the person is bitten, there’s only a short time before he dies. “Ahh! Where’s that serpent. Ah! There it is.” They’d be looking hard! They’d be giving it a good hard look. The Bible says – if you look on it, fix your attention on it with faith in your heart, the power of God will be released to you.

Now, it would’ve taken them no doubt, sometime of standing with their eyes fixed on the serpent, and then the power of God will be released. Now, can you imagine this – if you had been bitten by a serpent, and you’re starting to feel the pain. Now, what would you have done? If you don’t do something, you’re going to die.

There’s only one thing you can do – that’s to locate that serpent on that brass serpent. You would’ve fixed your gaze on that serpent. You would’ve fixed it in your gaze – “Don’t get in my way. Don’t get in my way! Don’t block my view!” I think it was probably up fairly high, so wherever you were, you could see it; and they would stand there looking. Just check and hold my hand up and see if it’s fixed. They would stand looking until they feel all the poison is gone. They feel the pain and the tingling go. “Thank You God. Your power has been released.”

Now, you understand this, the brass serpent had no power. It was just a focal point for their faith. Here’s what God wanted them to understand – that sin came into the world because of the serpent, and one day Jesus would come and He would be put up on a cross. You have to remember – this is hundreds of years before they ever invented crucifixion. The serpent was up on a pole.

God knew ahead of time that one day Jesus would come into this earth, and He would die a death on a cross which no one had ever heard of before, and when He died on the cross, the power of sin would be broken. The power of the serpent would be broken. The power of curses would be broken.

Colossians 2:14-15 – “When Jesus died on that cross, took the list of sins against us, cancelled it all, and disarmed the devil, broke the serpent’s power.” So God wanted them to understand that just as Moses lifted up the brass serpent, one day Jesus would go on a cross; and that every person who understood that sin was causing death in their life, if they looked to Jesus Christ with faith in their heart, the power of God would be released and they would be saved.

God so loved the world, He gave His only Son to die on the cross, that if we would believe in Him, that He died for my sins and rose again and conquered the power of sin, then the power of God would be released. Hallelujah. Come on, let’s give the Lord a clap, shall we? Thank You Lord. Thank You Jesus.



Freedom from Bitterness (3 of 12)  

Sat 5 Oct 2013 PM « Back to Top

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In Exodus 15, we follow the journey of God's people who came out of the slavery of Egypt to the promised land. When they met difficult circumstances we see what was in their heart - all the "fruit" of bitterness. If the fruit is there, the root is there. Test yourself. Do you think like a slave or a son? We can focus on injustice and choose to be bitter, or respond to God's provision and embrace grace.

Freedom from Bitterness (3 of 12)

We’re going to look in Exodus chapter 15. We did a story out of the Old Testament just last session, it was a different one. A different one, but it’ll point to the same person – Jesus Christ. So, we’re going to read in Exodus 15: 22-26.

“22So Moses brought Israel from the Red Sea; then they went out into the Wilderness of Shur. And they went three days in the wilderness and found no water.” A desert, no water – that’s a big problem.

23 Now when they came to Marah, they could not drink the waters of Marah, for they were bitter. Therefore the name of it was called Marah. 24 And the people complained against Moses, saying, “What shall we drink?” 25 So he cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a tree. When he cast it into the waters, the waters were made sweet. There He made a statute and an ordinance for them, and there He tested them, 26 and said, “If you diligently heed the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the LORD who heals you.”

So, this story is the story of bitter waters made sweet. I want to speak about the root of bitterness. I was in Singapore one time, and a young man came up on an alter call and he had a very severe pain in one shoulder. He came up on a word of knowledge – God show me a particular pain. As he came up, I felt the Lord showed me he had bitterness in his heart towards his father. The problem was not just a physical pain, it was a spirit of infirmity.

So, I spoke with him – said, “How do you get on with your father?” He said – “Well I love my father.” Then I listened to the Lord again, I said “Isn’t it true that your father is away a lot of the time? He’s been away for all the important events in your life, and that actually, you’ve become angry and bitter at him.” He bowed his head, and said “That’s true.” I said: “What’s happened, is your bitterness has opened a door in your life for a spirit of infirmity. You are sick in your body because you are sick in your heart, and you have power to make a decision over the sickness in your heart. You can choose to forgive. You can bring grace into the situation instead of judgement.”

So, he prayed a simple prayer and forgave his father. I commanded the spirit of infirmity to come out, and immediately, he was set free. Then he told me, “Actually, I had pain not only in my shoulder, I had pain all over my body.” He said: “All of the pain is gone. The doctor had just told me last week my back in stiffening and by the age of 40, I can never bend.” Then he bent over, and he was quite free.

Here was a young man who had a life-threatening disease. The cause was a spirit of infirmity, and what lay at the root of it was bitterness living in his heart. When he dealt with the bitterness, came to the cross of Jesus Christ, and forgave, he himself was delivered and set free.

Now, we’re going to have a look at this story here in Exodus 15. This is a story from the Old Testament, and it’s a picture for us about spiritual truth. Sometimes spiritual things aren’t easy to understand or see. It’s hard to get words for it. So, all through the Old Testament, there are stories of God interacting with people, and when God interacts with people, there’s something we can learn from the interaction.

So, this is a story of the people of Israel, and they had been in bondage in Egypt for 400 years. They lived as slaves. Their life was very hard. They were beaten, they were abused. Their young male children at one point were put to death. They were forced into slave labour. They lived a very hard, difficult life, and it had been like that for 400 years. As long as anyone remembered, they had been in bondage, serving the Egyptians. The Egyptians were very hard taskmasters, and they beat them and whipped them, and abused them. So, their life was incredibly difficult until God delivered them.

God had made a promise that He would deliver them out of Egypt, and He delivered them with great power, delivered them out of the bondage of the Egyptians so He could bring them to promises He had for them. He wanted to take them out of the land of Egypt, of slavery, and bring them into a land of promise, of inheritance, of great provision and blessing. There was just this short journey through the wilderness.

Now, this story of God’s people in Egypt is also our story. It’s our life. Before we come to know God, we are born into this world in slavery to sin. We can’t get out of sin. We have no power to stop it. Like a disease working in our life, we have bitterness and anger and resentment. We have lusts burning, we have desires for things that harm us. So, every person born into this world is born separated from God, a slave to sin.

The Bible tells us that these Egyptians are like demonic spirits. Whenever there is sin, there are evil spirits. So, many people here today have lived a life bound in sin, tormented by evil spirits – spirits that torment the mind, the emotions, the life, the body. This was our life before we come to Christ, and if you’re still in that place, God wants to set you free. He wants to forgive your sin, break its power, and loose you from evil spirits. It’s just a simple choice to believe.

Now, I want you to have a look in this story. Here is what the problem was – the people had lived in slavery for so many years that they thought like slaves. When they came out of Egypt, God wanted them to know and be established that they are sons. They’re no longer slaves, but they are a son. They have a loving father, a father who provides. When they were in Egypt, they lived like a slave and thought like a slave.

Now they’ve set free, they are free people, but they have to choose to think like a free person. They have to choose to understand who they now are. They had spent so many years as a slave, they thought they were still a slave. They thought like a slave, they reacted like a slave, even though they’re free. This is true of many Christians. We live in slavery to sin, Jesus comes and sets us free, Spirit of God comes into our life, we become a child of God, but we still think and live like a slave. It all has to do with what goes on in your heart.

Here’s what the problem was – these people were bitter in their heart. They were very bitter; and God wanted to reveal Himself as the God not only who delivers, but also heals. So, if you watch people for long enough, they will reveal how they think. So let’s have a look at these people. Let’s see what they did.

It said – “They went through the wilderness 3 days, and there was no water.” No water. So they were quite thirsty, wondering where their next provision would come from. Now, if you read in verse 27, when all of this is over, they came to Elim where there were 12 wells of water and 70 palm trees and camped by the waters. So let’s have a look at the picture and then we’re going to talk about bitterness.

God has got them delivered out of Egypt, and over here He’s provided for them, and there’s a place where there’s wells, there’s water, there’s palm trees. So, when God is looking, He’s a loving Father, and He’s provided for them. There’s water, there’s wells, there’s trees – wonderful place. But from the people of Israel, they can’t yet see the provision. They can’t see God has promised to provide for them. They can’t see that there is water, and there is a place to rest. They can only see their circumstances.

The journey of walking with God is a journey of faith. It’s a journey of believing God is good. God is good all the time. Always, God is good. No matter what I’m experiencing, God is good. He loves me, He’s provided for me. So as they journey, no water – what to think of this? What does this mean? We’re still slaves. We’re suffering. God doesn’t care about us. Then they get to some water, they taste – “Woah, bitter. It’s horrible water.” So, they’re very disappointed.

Now, they don’t realise God’s provision is just down the road. They’re about to reach God’s provision, but just before they get there, it looks very hard. Looking at the circumstances, it’d look like God had forgotten them. What does this mean? I know what it means – I’m all alone. God’s forgotten us. It’s just like it was in Egypt – we suffer, we die. What happened was, the bitterness in their heart came up.

You don’t see life through your eyes, you see life through your heart. What is it? Whatever that’s in your heart will influence the way you view life. They had 400 years of slavery and they still were bitter in their heart about their slavery. When they were in slavery, they lived in lack, they lived in suffering. They lived in torment. They lived without hope. Now they’ve been set free, they have a loving father who will meet all of their needs.

But he also has a plan – not just to meet their needs, but He also wants to heal them. If they’re going to possess the land, they need to change their thinking. They need to stop thinking like a slave. A slave feels powerless. When a person goes through difficult situations and feels powerless, they get angry. They become resentful, and then they become bitter because they make judgements – it’s no use, I’m powerless. When a person concludes they’re powerless, they become bitter. Angry and bitter in what’s happening to them.

Now, when we’re set free to follow Christ, we have the power of choice. We can choose how we respond to life. Look what they did – how you respond in difficulty reveals what is in your heart. What comes out of your mouth reveals what’s in your heart. So let’s have a look at what came out. Let’s have a look at what they did.

It said – they complained against Moses. They were angry and resentful and bitter and they complained. Now, when people are bitter, when people have got bitterness in their heart, they are bitter because they feel powerless. Bad things have happened – hurt and angry and resentful. They become bitter – which is a sour feeling in the heart because they’re powerless.

When they were in Egypt, they were in slavery. But now they’re following the Lord, they have a power to choose. They can choose to believe God is good and will provide, or they can choose to believe they’re powerless and God is against them. They can choose to believe God is good and generous, they can choose to believe God is mean and causes them to suffer. When faced with a difficult situation, it will bring up to you what is in your heart.

So what does bitterness look like? Let me show you some of the signs of bitterness. Every tree has got some fruit on them. Bitterness is a root that goes into the heart. It feeds off anger and resentment and judgement. It feeds off unbelief.

Here are some of the signs:

1. Complaining. When a person is complaining, they’re speaking that there’s lack. They don’t believe that God is big enough to provide for them. They complain because something is being withheld from them. Or they believe so.

2. Blaming – when people are bitter, they blame others.

3. Bitterness can be seen on the face. Especially as people get older. If there’s joy in the heart, joy on the countenance. Bitterness in the heart, sour countenance. They get frowny and all sort of puckered up in the mouth. You’ve met some people who are like that. It affects the whole body. People who have bitterness kind of shrivel up. We’re not made for bitterness, so bitterness shows up in our life. Shows in the words we speak, shows on our countenance. Here’re some other evidence of bitterness.

4. Lack of gratitude. Instead of saying: “Thank You God. You got us out of here. You can provide!” “Why’s this happening to me?” So, lack of gratitude. A person who’s bitter never says thank you. They demand more. They want more and more.

5. Here’s another thing a bitter person can’t do – they can’t celebrate someone else having a victory. So he comes up to me and says: “Hey, I just go promoted. I got a big bonus. Big wage increase!” So if my heart is free, I’d say: “That’s fantastic!” If my heart is in bitterness, “How come he got that? I don’t like him. Why do they not think about me?” Or he comes and says: “Hey, I just bought a new BMW.” If my heart is free, “Hey, that’s great. Can we go for a drive?” If my heart is not free, “How come he has that car? He doesn’t deserve that car.” That’s what a bitter heart is like. You’ve heard people say that?

You notice in the story of the prodigal son, the elder brother could not come in and celebrate. He was bitter. He was not grateful for what he had. He was bitter. He couldn’t celebrate with his lost brother being saved. He was bitter – it showed on his face. He was angry. Bitter people get angry very easily.

I had one person I spoke with the other day, and I said: “Why have you come up on the alter call?” They said: “I’m angry.” OK. It’s showing. I said: “Who are you angry at?” “Everyone.” Wow. Everyone. I remembered that verse – “Don’t hang out with an angry man or you’ll become angry too.” Angry person has demands on people. So I said: “Who did you start being angry with? You got angry with one person and you never stopped being angry because you didn’t deal with one anger, it’s become a root of bitterness, now it’s spreading against everyone.”

So I asked a few questions. Get this, the Holy Spirit must’ve guided the questions because I didn’t have time to talk with him for a long period of time. I said: “Who’re you angry with?” He said he didn’t know; everyone. I said: “It started somewhere? Are you angry with your parents?” He said: “Yes I am.” I said: “Alright. Are you the eldest in the family?” He said: “Yes I am.” I said: “Were you born out of wedlock?” “Yes I am.”

I said: “Alright then. Now we know what the problem is. You are struggling with a deep rejection because of your birth situation and you’re bitter against your parents. The bitterness has flowed out of your life as anger towards them. A demand on them. Lack of gratitude. Lack of appreciation. This is what has gone on through your life till now, you’ve forgotten who you’re angry at. You’re angry at everyone. You’ll get sick, and your life is going to be a mess.” I said: “You need to repent and deal with the root of bitterness.”

So, bitterness has a fruit in people’s lives. You notice another thing about bitter – is that people make judgements. The prodigal son – he said to his father – “Hey, you never gave me a party.” Bitter people make judgements and this gets into their heart and into their life. Bitter people struggle for power. Bitter people continually go through cycles of defeat. You notice all of these people are bitter, and it shows up in their life. They’re bitter; they’ve been like that for years.

They were saved out of Egypt, but anger and resentment and bitterness lay in their heart. All it took was one setback to bring it up. When they suffered some lack, when they went through difficulty, instead of believing God is good and will help me, instead of choosing to believe God, they chose to be bitter and complain.

This is the same for us. God wants your heart to be free of bitterness. Bitterness grieves the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is a gracious person. He is a forgiving person. So the Bible tells us – don’t grieve Him. Don’t cause grief to the Spirit of God by harbouring bitterness and resentment and anger and unforgiveness. Rather, be kind and tender hearted and forgiving. That’s who God has made you to be.

So notice what happened – when the people complained, they revealed their bitterness. Notice this – how to respond when you have a difficult situation. Moses did not try to appeal to them, didn’t try to fix it, he said – “Show me God, what is the answer to this problem of bitterness?” Notice this – God showed him something. God revealed something to him. God wants to reveal things to you. We’re going to ask Him to do that shortly. God had a provision to heal the bitterness. Not only had He provided water and a resting place, He wanted to heal them of the deep roots of bitterness. He had already provided an answer to heal them.

When Moses cried out, God showed him a tree. The tree was always there. The tree had been growing there a long time. What he didn’t know, was that tree could heal bitter waters. When he cast the tree into the waters, the bitter waters becomes sweet. God revealed Himself as a hero. Now listen, this is a picture for us. It’s a picture of the cross of Jesus Christ. Hundreds and Hundreds of years later, Jesus would die on a cross; and on the cross, He didn’t die angry and resentful and bitter. He showed what a man filled with the Holy Spirit does – He forgave.

So, this is what God wants you to understand. When we face difficult situations in our life, when we begin to discover we’re angry and bitter, come to the cross of Jesus Christ. The cross breaks that power of sin. Jesus broke the power of sin on the cross. He broke the curses on the cross. He broke demonic powers’ hold; and when He rose again from the dead, He manifested victory live.

Listen, when you come to Jesus Christ, you come to the same cross. To become a Christian is to trust what Jesus did on the cross is enough for me. That He died in my place, represented me. When He died, I died with Him. When He was buried, I was buried with Him. When He rose, I rose with Him. I need to take my bitterness, resentment, and anger and bring it to death on the cross. Bring it to death on the cross involves these things: Confessing the sin of my heart. Turning from it, and believing God can set me free.

In turning from the bitterness, I need to turn from holding things against people. I need to release grace and forgiveness. When people are bitter, they make a judgement that they are powerless, that they are victims, and they have a demand – you owe me something. God wants us to learn to handle it differently. Bring it to the cross, confess it, release forgiveness. You say: “Wow, this is the cross.” You see, Jesus died on the cross for our sins, but He also modelled how you deal with sin and bitterness. Forgive. Forgive.

So, if something bad happens and you find the feelings coming up, let them go, forgive. You either bring grace or judgement. You either become a sweet person or a bitter person. Your life is sour or sweet. See, sweet people are forgiving and gracious and loving and kind and tender-hearted. Now, that is the new person you are in Christ. Just got to stop living the old way, living out of the old mind-set that when someone upsets me, I get angry and resentful. No, I’m a new person. I bring the cross into this. That means – I let go. I forgive. I bless. I release.

God showed him a tree and when he brought the tree – the cross –into the bitter waters, the bitter waters were made sweet. Listen, every one of us has to make a decision – how we’ll respond to difficult situations in life. Some of you are resentful, angry, and bitter about what has happened to you. It will flow like a river through your life, grieving and limiting the activity of the Holy Spirit, and creating bitter fruit in your relationships.

You can make a choice to believe: “I’m now a new person – I am no longer slave to bitterness. I do not need to have bitterness rule my life. I do not let anger rule my life. I do not let hatred rule my life. I am a new person. I am a forgiving person. I release grace into the situation and I choose to love people rather than hate them; forgive them rather than judge them; show grace rather than bitterness. This is how I’m going to live my life”. Every time you choose to do that, you are bringing the cross into the bitter water.

Listen, all of us are going to have some tough situations in life. All of us will face painful situations. People let you down. People do bad things. Life deals up some difficulties. Happens to everyone. Think about Jesus. He’s the model. He was betrayed, He was rejected, He was despised, and He was abandoned by all His friends. Yet, He never reacted. He brought grace into it rather than bitterness.

Imagine what He could’ve said – He could’ve become angry and bitter. He could’ve said something like this: “Well I’ve had it with all these people on earth. I mean, I’ve given up heaven to come here and be among them. I was just born in a lousy manger. I’ve got animals all around me. My parents are so poor they can’t even have a decent house, and I’ve only got just shepherds and sheep around me. Then the government tries to kill me and we have to run away and live in another country. Then I come back, and all my life, people hate me. They don’t like me at all. I heal the sick, I cast out their demons, and then they yell out they want to crucify me. And my friend – I sleep with him, I share with him, I even trust him with the money, and he steals my money. Steals it! And he sells me out to my enemies. And then my friends all leave me. And then they whip me. I think I’ve had enough of all of this. I think I’ll just leave you all to it.”

But Jesus did not do that. You see, He taught us how to handle injustice. He taught us how to handle betrayal, unkindness, harshness, false accusations. You choose to judge, or release forgiveness? Become bitter? Or become sweet? You have to choose. The choices we make have consequences.

I want you to notice this before I finish. Those people never let go of their bitterness and never embraced grace, and they never received what God intended them to have. Bitterness will steal your future. Bitterness will steal God’s blessing from your life. You don’t have to be bitter. You choose to be. I’ll say that again – you don’t have to be bitter, you choose to be. You don’t have to be bitter – if you’re bitter it’s because you’ve chosen to be. That bitterness will extract a price – it will affect your relationships, your marriage, your children. It will go from generation to generation, it will steal away from you the blessings of God. The Bible says – Don’t fall from God’s grace and allow bitterness to come into your life.

Some of you sitting here, and you have been through some very painful situations. Home situations, abusive situations. You don’t have to remain bitter or angry; tormented by unforgiveness. You can make a decision to forgive and let it go and to show graciousness. You can choose to live as a son of your Father in heaven or live like a powerless slave. A powerless slave is bitter. A child of God is sweet. You choose how you live.

God has already made you one of His children. He’s already provided everything for you but if you don’t believe that, you’ll still think you’re a slave and be bitter. See, it’s how we think – what we believe in our heart. I believe God wants to set many people free today who are struggling with resentment, bitterness, anger, grief, and you’re harbouring it in your heart. God says – Let it go. Let it go. Take the tree and put it into the bitter waters and come out sweet and healed. Come to the cross with the issue, and let the power of God change you. Then you become like Joseph.

Joseph is a man who turned the bitter waters into sweet. He was betrayed by his brothers, sold as a slave, falsely accused, suffered in prison. When he came out the other end, God raised him up. He was like Nelson Mandela.

You know Nelson Mandela? He had 25 years in prison. When he came out, he chose to forgive. All those years. He chose to forgiven. When he came out, he hadn’t done a thing for 25 years except live in a prison. He was raised up to become the leader of the nation. Because of his achievements? No. Because of his character. When it was in his power to be bitter and angry and judge and pay-back his aggressors, he said - we need to walk together; we need to forgive. He set up a process of reconciliation in his nation and he will be recognised as South Africa’s greatest leader because he’s like Joseph.

When Joseph came out of the prison and was in a place of power and he saw his brothers, he said – don’t be angry; don’t blame yourselves. It was not you who sent me here. I see the hand of God making me into a great person. I see God used all of this to make me into a great person. So please don’t be angry with yourselves. I’m not angry with you. God has blessed me.

There’s story after story in the Bible of people who made choices – some became bitter and lost their destiny, some chose to embrace the cross, forgive, and experience God’s favour. I have just one question for you – what would you do with what’s in your heart? Bitter? Sweet? Judge? Forgive? What would you do? Whatever you do will show up in your life.

Want to make a decision tonight? You will remove the root of bitterness; forgive; and let God deliver you. You’re no longer a slave. You’re going to live like a son does – kind to people who don’t deserve it, who loves people and forgives them because their father’s like that. You choose that. Some people choose to give because they want to get something back. Even unsaved people do that.

I like to give because I’m a generous person now. Like my Father. It’s not about getting something back, it’s just who I am. I like to forgive. That’s who I am – living out of the new person and experiencing the blessing. Amen.



Honour your Father and Mother (4 of 12)  

Sun 6 Oct 2013 AM « Back to Top

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In Malachi 4 God prophetically declared the condition on the earth in our time - breakdown in family relationships, destruction and broken-hearts. The problem lies in our heart. We don't have to live out of disappointment and pain. God wants to heal the broken-hearted and TURN our hearts. We can resolve issues of the heart. King David and his wife Michal both suffered injustice from King Saul, but their heart response determined their destiny. Discover powerful keys for accessing God's promises and blessing. It's not automatic, it requires a response.

Honour your Father and Mother (4 of 12)

Open your Bible with me to Malachi 4. We’ve just been having a wonderful few days of meetings; God moving and touching so many lives. I was weighing up and praying on what to do today and I want to share with you a message called ‘Honour your father and your mother’.

We’re going to start here in Malachi – which is the very last closing of the Old Testament. There’s about 400 years of silence before God begins to move and Jesus enters this world. So God makes a promise to them – verse 5 and 6: “I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming great and dreadful day of the Lord. And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers lest they come and strike the earth with a curse.

So God expresses His concern and prophetically, He reveals a condition that will be in the earth in the last days. Prophetically, He reveals – in the last days before Jesus returns, that one of the chief problems in the earth will be the break-down of family relationships. Families are foundational to our society. Society’s built on strong families; strong marriages; strong relationships and God’s intention is that families should be healthy. God’s intention is that our parents will reveal something of the heart of God to the world.

So he describes here, a break-down in families. It doesn’t matter where you go in the world, this is what you find – immense problems in families. Breaches in relationship between husband and wife, and breakdown between parents and children. What should be a place where there’s great joy and love and it’s a wonderful place to be, in many cases, there’s many issues and problems and pain and destruction. This affects the children when they grow, so problems just multiply generationally.

Notice where God reveals the heart of the problem is – the root of the problem is in the heart. The heart determines what happens in your life. We think we run our life from our mind, and many people try to. But the Bible says – out of the heart flow the issues or rivers of your life.

It tells us in Proverbs 4:23 – “Guard your heart or out of it flows the boundaries of your life.” So when it’s talking about the heart, it’s talking about the connection point between your soul and your spirit. It’s not talking about your mind. It’s talking about the belief systems in the inner man. God says that there will be a need to turn the heart. In other words, the heart is directed in the wrong direction and needs to be converted and turned around.

If we don’t turn the hearts, there’s no flow of love and there’s no flow of healing. It becomes awkward and difficult and people try to behave right but there’s no life flow. God is always concerned not about your performance or external appearance, but your heart. So things can look good on the outside, but be wrong in the heart.

Notice what he says that he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and then children to their fathers. So it’s a twofold turning – towards the children and then from the children towards their parents. He said – if this doesn’t happen, the consequence is destruction, cursing in the face of the earth.

When families are broken down, marriage is divorce, children are abused, the hearts and lives are twisted with bitterness and anger, this is not blessing, this is a curse. Wherever there’s a curse, demonic spirits are operating. So, God wants to bring us into blessing and it always begins with the heart. If God can change your heart, He can change what you believe, then your life will change. Out of your heart flow the issues of your life, or literally the boundaries, the borders, and limitations.

In our counselling of people concerning marriage issues and problems, we found that there was a common feature in so many – that is unresolved conflicts with their parents. In other words, in entering into their marriage, they started off with great intentions –eyes full of love and romance. But over a period of time, what they hoped for did not happen because the unresolved conflicts from family are brought into the marriage. So before anyone gets married, they need to resolve issues in their heart concerning their parents. I’ll show you why in a moment.

If we have a look in Ephesians chapter 6 – this is talking about once we’re believers, how we need to live our life. Notice it says in verse 2 and verse 3 – “Honour your father and mother, which is the first commandment with a promise, that it may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth. You fathers, don’t provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.”

So we’re going to focus on verse 2 and 3. Notice here, there’s a principle and a promise. God says honour, place honour and value on your parents because there’s a promise goes with that. It says it’s the first commandment with a promise. In other words, it’s so important in God’s eyes that He attaches promises to it.

Here’s what the promise is: if I will honour my father and mother, I will live long and life will go well for me. Or putting it another way: if I honour my parents, it will affect my physical health, and will affect my life and relationships. The opposite is also true. If you dishonour your mother and father, the outworking of that in your life will show up as problems in your health and breakdowns and conflicts and problems in your life. And if you don’t see what the root is, you’ll never understand why you have the problems.

I talked with one young man and prayed for him; he was in great pain in his body – he was in pain in all his joints, his spine was stiffening up, and in a few years, he would be unable to bend. Or in other words, he had a major health issue. I inquired of the Lord and the Lord said he has a spirit of infirmity – a demonic spirit in his life producing sickness, and that the root or the cause of the problem is bitterness against his father.

When the young man repented and forgave his father, we prayed and he was delivered of the evil spirit, and immediately he was healed. He was able to move and free of pain. A demonic spirit was stealing away his health because he held bitterness in his heart towards his father. Did he love his father? Yes he did. The problem is, he had unresolved conflicts. He had developed reaction in his heart to what he perceived or judged was a failure in his father.

I can remember another person and they were having trouble with miscarriages. Each time they had a miscarriage, they prayed that God would heal and the next child would carry right through. Now they were having their fifth miscarriage. They asked me to pray for her. When I inquired, the Lord said – each of the children is a boy. She has an issue with her father. I talk with her and inquire, and sure enough, each child that she’d miscarried was a boy.

This is what I said – “How do you get on with your father?” Initially, she said she loved him. So, in her conscious mind, she’s thinking “I love my dad”. But as we asked a few questions, I found she had a deep bitterness against her father and she’d made an inner vow – “I’ll never carry a male child” and that’s true. She didn’t. There was literally a curse operating in her body and her body would not hold a male child – it rejected it. In other words, what was in her heart was determining the limitations on her life. In her heart was a vow – I will never carry a male child and her body had limitations that were determined by her heart. Quite extraordinary really.

So, God says very clearly in His word – There is blessing attached to honouring, and particularly honouring your parents. So, what does it mean to honour? And what would that look like? And what would be the reasons or consequence of me not honouring? The word honour in the Bible, in the Old Testament, is the word ‘weight’, ‘to place weight upon’. It’s the same word as the word for glory. When we say God has great glory, He has great weight. Or He is substantial – there’s something to Him.

So the word ‘honour’ in the Old Testament means to place value or weight upon your parents. To place value upon them. In the New Testament it’s a different word, and it means to fix a price on someone. It means to choose to put a value on them. So when we put it together, we understand from the Bible perspective what honour might look like. It means to consider your parents as being of great value and to put importance on your relationship with them and your communication with them. To put value on them.

Now, how do we honour or value people? We value people for a number of different reasons. Everywhere in our culture we see honour. So, people are honoured number 1 because of their achievements. Someone does something great, we honour them. Someone has a great achievement, we honour them. We place a high value on them because they’ve had an achievement. In other words, they did something we think was very important. So we honour people because something they did was very valuable.

The second reason we honour people is because of their character. It’s who they are. They’ve demonstrated courage or integrity. So we honour them because that’s a great person, showed great courage, great bravery, great endurance. They’ve earned it. So we honour them because they deserve it.

The third reason we honour people is because of the role they play. The president – we give honour to his office. Because the office is the highest government rank in the nation, we give honour to that office. The Bible says to honour those in authority. In fact, the Bible has got a lot about honouring.

So you notice then, three primary reasons why people give honour. One, because of the achievement – what they did. Two, their character. Three, their position. But God honours people for a different reason. Quite different to all of those reasons. It’s an important reason. God honours people because they are made in His image and likeness. Every person you meet is a value to God. Every person you meet, God places a high value upon them and He demonstrated it.

You see, I have a watch here. Is it valuable or is it not valuable? It really depends what someone will pay for it. They may look and say: “Ooh. $1000”. Put a value on it. Or they may look and say: “Oh. Market. $10”. So they put a value on it depending on what it means. So we place a value on people according to how we see them.

But God sees us as great value. So the price He paid, is He sent His only Son Jesus Christ into the world to give His life for us. Even though we’re in sin, we have all these wrong things going on in our life, even though there’s many bad things going on, God says: “You’re a value to me. I can look past the things that are wrong and I see in the core you are made in my image, and I value you.” So, honour is what God gives to us. It’s a value He placed on us by Jesus coming into the world, walking among people, laying His life down, showing us what real love is like. So, God values people just because they’re people made in His image.

Now, we tend to value people differently. If we think they’ve done good things, we think that’s good. If they disappoint us, we tend to judge them – “I don’t like.” If they fail in their character, we judge them – “I don’t like”. If we think that they’re not fulfilling their office or role well, “I don’t like”. So, we have opinions about people and we judge people according to how they behave.

So let’s have a look then at dishonour. One of the reasons people dishonour their parents is because of familiarity. We’re so close to them, that we see not only the good, we see the bad. We not only see the good qualities, we see their brokenness. We see their impatience or their anger. We see everything. So, because of what we see, we make judgements against our parents. “He didn’t do what I expected. He did what I didn’t expect”. And we become hurt in the heart. When people are hurt, they harbour anger. Anger is a demand – “You owe me.”

Now, in many families, there are real problems. Some of you will come from a family where your father betrayed your mother, betrayed his marriage vows, betrayed all of the family and he left his wife. So, you are left with this huge emotional turmoil and anger because of the break-up of the family.

One of your parents may be very angry – may have beaten you; may have abused you; may have abandoned you; may have rejected you. Many of you will have very painful experiences. Here’s the lesson to learn – you’re not responsible for what someone else did, but you have power to choose how you will respond. You have power to choose what you will do. You can choose to judge and despise and dishonour. Or you can choose to forgive and honour. This is your choice. You have power to make that choice.

All of you have made that choice, and will continue to do so depending on what is in your heart. If there’s anger and grief and bitterness and disappointment, you will despise one or other of your parents, judge them, and then you’ll dishonour them in various ways. Honour is an issue of the heart.

It helps if you understand this – God doesn’t ask you to honour your parents because they’re great parents. He asks you to honour them as a gift to them. They gave you the gift of life, and your response is to give honour and value to them.

So God makes this particular promise – if you give honour to your parents, regardless of how they conduct themselves, regardless whether they were good or not good parents, if you’ll make a decision to keep a heart of honour and honour them, you’ll live long and life will go well. If because you’ve been hurt by them, because they’ve done things that were very hurtful to you, and you harbour anger and resentment and bitterness, you harbour judgements against them, then life will not go well for you.

I have heard many young people say something like this: “I’ll never be like my father.” That tells us they’re bitter and they’ve judged their father. You can’t imagine the number of times I’ve found they’re doing the same thing their father did. They’ve literally become like them. It’s like he’s been recreated again.

Or someone says: “I’ll never be like my mother.” I hear someone say that, I said: “Give it time, you’ll be just like her. One day, you’ll hear yourself shouting like she shouted, yelling and scolding like she scolded, and all the things you hated so much, all the things you said you’d never do that – “When I’m a mother I will never do that!” One day you’ll find yourself doing just that. “How did I get here? How did I get to this place? I remember it hurt me so much, I think “I’ll never do that.” Now, I look in the mirror, I’ve just become like her. How did that happen?” Because you never resolved the issues of the heart. The judgements you formed against your parents led to despising of them, and this has led to a cycle of problems in your life.

I remember one man came and he’s having a conflict with his boss. I said: “Tell me about the last place you worked.” “Oh, I had conflict with him too. I left him.” I said: “How are getting on with your cell leader?” “Oh, that’s why we’re here having this meeting. I’m having conflict with him too.” I said: “Well, did you ever have any job where you were happy?” He said: “Oh, I was really happy in the army.” I said: “How did you get on with the officers?” “Oh, they didn’t like me. They picked on me. No, no, no. I didn’t like them either.”

I said: “Wow, we’re looking at a pattern here. How’d you get on at school?” He said: “Not so good.” I said: “How did you get on with the teachers?” “Oh, they always picked on me. Ah, I didn’t like the teachers.” I said: “Wow. Ok. How did you get on with your parents?” He said: “My father kicked me out of home.” I said: “Really.” He said: “They’re not my real parents, they’re adoptive parents. I said: “Really.”

I said: “Let me tell you what the problem is, and then you tell me about your future because the pattern is very clear. Your problem is this: You felt rejected when you were adopted. You harboured anger and resentment and bitterness towards your natural father and mother. This couple that have laid their lives down to love you and to raise you, you have rejected them and poured your anger out upon them. This dishonouring of both your natural parents and your adoptive parents is showing up with conflicts in your life. These conflicts will pursue you until you deal with what’s in your heart. You need to recognise what’s in your heart and repent.”

Let’s have a look at another story in the Bible just quickly. It’s found in 2 Samuel 6. Problems in life always follow dishonour of the parents. So, 2 Samuel 6 – let me just give you a little bit of background. It’s the story of a great revival. The nation has now got a new king – King David is now being positioned as king, his wife Michal has been restored to him, and now he is bringing the presence of God, the arc of the covenant into the city. It’s a national celebration day. Everyone is there. There’s shouting and music and dancing and partying. It is a wonderful day. God’s presence is wonderfully there. So we read that David is dancing and leaping and rejoicing. He’s so happy – the presence of God is here.

So, verse 14: “David danced before the Lord with all his might.” So David’s dancing. Now let’s have a look at his wife. “And as the arc of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal, Saul’s daughter, looked through the window and saw King David leaping and whirling before the Lord and she despised him in her heart.”

Two people, one event, two different responses. Let’s have a look at why. Michal was very attracted to David when he was a young man. Michal was the daughter of King Saul, and King Saul hated David. He was envious of him, wanted to kill him. So, after they were married, and David now became the son-in-law to the king. Saul’s jealousy got stronger and he began to plan how he can kill David. Finally he sends an assassination squad to kill him in his bed.

Can you imagine that? His own daughter’s husband and he sends a squad in, a hit squad to kill him. But she got word of it and lowered David out the window, he got out of town. Then David became the most wanted man. Saul began to pursue him and if he found anyone making David a friend, he’d kill them. So David was treated like a fugitive. He had years out in the wilderness, suffered greatly, always afraid. He becomes a friend of someone, they might betray him, or they might get killed. So he lived very very troubled.

His wife Michal – her own father gave her away to another man. It’s David who she loves, David’s her hero, David she dreams about, and her father gives her to some other man. So she has to marry someone, live with someone. But her heart is not for him. So both David and Michal were badly treated by the same person. When someone treats you badly, you can either operate in a Godly way and take God’s way of dealing with it – to bring grace into it, to release forgiveness, and to remain in a place of freedom in your heart. Or you can become angry and bitter – despise and dishonour.

Michal – Saul’s daughter – despised her father and as we’ll see, she also despised her husband. David in contrast, was a man who loved God. So he forgave Saul – he never raised his hand against him, he always sought to honour him. Now the day which should’ve been the greatest day in their life – they’ve come together, and now the arc of the covenant is coming in, David is experiencing God, his wife is looking in. “Oh, who are you? What are you doing this? You make a fool of yourself.” So she despised him in her heart.

Then when David came home, verse 20 – He returns to bless his household. So he’s full of joy and love, comes home to his wife, wants to bless his household. This is what she said: “Oh, how glorious is the king of Israel today. You uncover yourself like one of the servants, as one of the base fellas shamelessly uncovers herself.”

In other words, she gave him a real scolding. “How come you carry on like that? Why do you do that? You’re a king. Why do you dance like that? Geh geh geh.” Some of you know that? Yeah, we all know that one. This is what David said: “I did this to the Lord. I’ll do even more.” He refused to be intimidated by her bitterness and dishonour. He refused to let someone put him down. He refused to let someone take away his freedom.

Now look at what happens now. It says in verse 23 – Therefore, because of this, Michal the daughter of Saul, had no children to the day of her death. Now you notice what’s happened here. David chose the path of honour – he honoured God, he honoured Saul, he valued people. Saul did not deserve to be honoured, but David gave him the gift of honour in respect. Michal became bitter, despised her father, despised her husband, and these are the consequences.

1.) She was unable to experience what God was doing. Unable to enter into God’s blessing because of what was in her heart.

2.) Her marriage became barren. There was no joy, no love, no life in that marriage. All the love she had was overcome by the bitterness and judging and dishonour.

3.) She had no children. Notice for a person, or a Hebrew person, that was a huge reproach. It was like she failed in her identity as a woman. Later on in the Bible, in scenes where she picked up and adopted the children of someone else, that those children were put to death.

Notice the consequences. One was a man of honour, one was a woman who dishonoured. Let me just read you a couple of scriptures in Deuteronomy 27:16 – “Cursed is the person who treats his father and mother with contempt.” Here’s another one: Proverbs 30:17 – “The eye that mocks his father and despises to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out.”

So notice what it’s saying: that when there’s dishonour to our parents, demonic spirits are empowered to trouble and strip our lives. Now just in that second verse, when it says the “ravens of the valley” – that means demonic spirits. It says they pick out your eyes. That’s what they used to do to people who had fallen and failed and were defeated in a battle of life. So what he’s saying here is, when there’s dishonour in our heart to our parents, we will lose our capacity to see because demonic spirits will cloud us with blindness. These are quite horrendous scriptures aren’t they?

Here’s another one – Proverbs 20:20 – “Whoever curses his father and mother, his lamp shall be put in obscure darkness.” What it’s meaning is this – when it’s talking about the lamp, it’s talking about your spirit, your inner life. It says: when you’re cursing or speaking evil about your parents, it said ‘there’s a darkness that will fill your life and you won’t be able to see clearly’. These are quite serious scriptures.

So, what can we do about that? Here’s the first thing – God wants you to live differently. He offers you life. God understands the issue of broken families. He understands the pain and the sorrows that people go through and Jesus came with the intention of healing the broken-hearted.

So the first thing God offers is this: He says if you will turn to Him, and recognise the problem is not your parents or your family and all the things that have happened. The problem lies in your heart. He promises – I’ll give you a new heart. I’ll put my spirit inside you. He said: You’ll be born into a new family where God is your Father and you’ll lack nothing.

So God wants us to understand – natural families have limitations. But because people are sinful, pain and destruction is inevitable. Grief and disappointments are part of life. But we don’t have to live that way. You don’t have to live out of disappointment and pain. Jesus offers something better.

He says: Get your eyes off your natural family, get your eyes off your natural circumstances, and lift your eyes up – there is a God who loves you. There is a Father in Heaven who loves you perfectly. There is a God in heaven who will welcome and embrace you and love you. He will provide for you. He will never leave you, and He’s reaching out to you. In fact He’s been reaching out all your life.

Jesus said this: To everyone who receives Him, everyone who believed on Him, that He died on the cross for our sins and rose again victorious. He said: To everyone who believed in Christ, He gives power to become a child of God. In other words, no matter what our family has been like, God wants to put you in His family. He wants to give you a new start. He wants to give you a new identity. A child of the living God.

Yes, we’ll always have come from a natural family, but now we’re part of a bigger family with God as our Father, our needs provided for. He will always love us. He’s always kind. He’s always tender-hearted. He knows how to heal your heart. Our first step is to come into the family of God by faith in Jesus Christ.

Here’s the next thing – God wants you to change how you live. It’s not just about coming to the front and receiving Jesus, it’s more than that. It’s about a changed heart, a changed life. Changed in the way you relate to people. See?

So this is what God says: “Now that I’ve changed you and put my nature in you, you don’t have to live like you used to live – angry, bitter and twisted. Here’s how you live – just be kind because I’m kind. I’m kind to everyone.” “Oh, I thought you were only kind if we were good people and did the right things.” He says: “No, that’s not how it works. That’s the old family. This is the new family. I’m always kind.” “You mean, even if I really do something bad and goofy?” “Yeah. I don’t change. I don’t change because you had a bad day. I’m always kind.”

He says: “Be kind. Be tender-hearted. Tender-hearted, not hard. Why? Because that’s what I’m like. Very tender-hearted.” “You mean if I really goof up and really blow it and do bad, you’re not going to shout at me? You’re not going to scold me? You’re not going to punish me?” He says: “No I’m not into punishment. I’m tender-hearted. I want to find a way to get you back. See? Be kind, tender-hearted, forgiving one another. I want you to learn to forgive people instead of dishonouring them and judging them. Just like I forgave you.”

He said: “Now, I want you to relook at your family, relook at your mum and your dad. If you’ve got anger and bitterness in your heart because you felt they let you down, you felt they failed you. Or maybe they did fail you, maybe what they did was terrible. It does happen. But you don’t really know how broken they were and why they did that. Anyway, you’re in a new family now; and in the new family, we honour people.” “You mean…? But what they did hurt me.” He said: “I know that, and what you did hurt me too. But I’ve forgiven you; and just as I’ve forgiven you, you need to forgive them.”

So He says: “Now, I want you to have a change of heart. I want you to see them as people and without them, you’d never have had life. Without them, you’d have never entered into this world and have an eternal life ahead of you. So, even if they failed and everything else, I want you to give them honour and value because they brought you into this world. I want you to value them because I value them. They’re special to me as well. I want you to honour them and give them the gift of honour.”

“But they don’t deserve it! My father left me. He did this, he did this. He was unfaithful, he did these things.” God says: “I know that. But you’re a very angry person. You need to forgive like I forgave you because I valued you. What I want you to do, is when you’ve forgiven, would you begin to pray for them? Because when you pray for people, your heart begins to bond with them and you begin to see God’s best for them, and they begin to change. It’s impossible to pray for them and stay angry. So I want you to first of all forgive, let go of all the judgements and start to pray for them. Then, if you have really caused them pain, I think it’d be good to go and apologise.”

“What?! But you don’t understand what my father did. You don’t understand what my mother did.” “Yeah I understand. But I see you’re still so angry and the things you did really hurt them. When you judged them and rejected them, they may have said nothing, but they felt the pain because they’re parents. There’s still a part of them that fears for you.”

“Well, but my parents gave me up. But, my family broke up.” “Nevertheless, this is the new way of living. It’s called loving like I loved you. Forgiving like I forgive you. You remember when you shouted and yelled at your mother and you were very tough and abusive and critical and ignored her? She may have yelled back, you may have had a shouting match, but she was hurt. You hurt her.”

You could go and say something like this: “Mum, God has been talking to me and He’s shown me that I’ve held anger and hurt in my heart for many years. I am so sorry. Will you forgive me? I love you.” You can only do that if you first came to the Lord and did it. Then after you’ve put things right, start to find ways to show kindness. It’s your gift to them. I’ll tell you something, love always wins.

Can I just share with you now a little story. Then I’ll finish up. You’re going to like this one. I’m still amazed. We had many difficulties before I became a Christian. We had a daughter who we adopted out and we were in conflict and ashamed and we hid this thing, and it was a cause of great pain. When I came to Christ, I really repented and believed that God would restore our daughter.

One day, He did. Years later, after we’d built relationship with her, she said: “I want you to take my wedding. I want you to be the one who takes the wedding. I’ve been to the weddings of my sisters, they’re so wonderful. I want to have a wonderful wedding just like that.”

Of course, part of the wonderful wedding was that the presence of God came. It was her and the kids were grown up Christians and the presence of God came. But she didn’t understand any of that – she said: “I just want that for my wedding.”

So, we went to the wedding, and we had the night of the practice. It was very difficult. There was huge tension. Her adoptive father and mother were there, other members of her family were there, each of them were adopted; and there was this tension. There’s 1, 2, 3 families there. It was tense. The father, it was difficult for him I think. It was difficult for the mother.

I remember going out of that and going home thinking “Oh Jesus. This is so difficult.” I remember going to the beach and just weeping and saying: “Jesus, please help. What can I do? What can I say?” The Lord dropped something into my heart the next morning when I woke up. Sometimes God doesn’t answer straight away.

So I woke up in the morning, and God dropped an answer into my heart. We came into the wedding, she came down the aisle, she has her adoptive father with her and other family sitting here, and other family sitting there, and our family scattered in there among them, and you could feel tension in the air.

I can hear things sometimes in the Spirit. This is what I could hear: “What’s he going to say?” I could hear it – “What’s he going to say?” Her parents had tried to discourage her having me to do the service. They were not Christians and they did not really want me to take the service. But part of her journey was to stand up for herself and say what she wanted.

This is what I did – I thought through. They’re right in front of me, it was very tense. This was the day, her special day. So they’re all waiting for me to speak. This is what God said to me – “Honour her parents.”

So before we started the service, I spoke to the parents. I said: “I want to thank you for all you’ve done for Josephine. I want to thank you for the way you’ve cared for her and given her an education and a family. I want to thank you for the way you’ve picked her up and looked after her. I want to honour you for the role you’ve filled in her life. So we have no right to make any claims, but we appreciate that you have made room for us on this day.”

The atmosphere changed immediately. The presence of God came. You see people weeping. Just weeping. God moved in that service is probably the best of all weddings we’ve had. Because when grace is flowing, you feel God the most.

So then, we had the time of the reception and I remember thinking – “I wonder how the reception’s going to go. I wonder where we’ll all be sitting.” You know the tables, where you’re sitting tells you something. We went in there to see where we’re sitting. Now, get this – I had told my daughter – “You need to honour your parents on this day. You need to speak words to appreciate them just like you’ve seen in all the other weddings.”

When we got there, they had the main table where the wedding party were, and they had different tables around the room, and there were two tables right at the front. Not one higher than the other, both in equal places. One for her family, and one for us. I saw immediately what she was doing. She stood up and spoke. She honoured her father and mother for raising her, and then she honoured us.

God came. God always comes on honour. God always comes when there’s honour. And Joy stood up and spoke. She began to express appreciation to Jo’s mother. She was never going to stand up and speak, but she stood up and spoke. Then she told an interesting thing which we’d never known – that her own mother had pressured her not to take Josephine. She’d had to rise up against her own mother’s wishes and choose this child. She said every time she had a birthday, I gave thanks for the mother who brought you into the world.

The presence of God came, and people just began to weep. I’ve never been in a reception like that. It’s amazing. Some just broke out sobbing. The love of God flowed in that place. Here’s the thing I want you to understand – it could never have happened unless we decided to honour. The decision to give honour brings blessing. She chose to honour her mother and father and to honour us. We chose to honour them; and God was able to move freely.

It’s a gift you give people. It’s because that’s who we are now. We’re people of honour. We’re part of a great family – the family of God; and honour is what we give to people.



Blood on The Doorposts (5 of 12)  

Sun 6 Oct 2013 PM « Back to Top

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Jn 1:29 "Behold - the lamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world" has little meaning for people today, but for the Israelites who applied the blood of the Passover lamb on the doorposts (Ex.12) it was tremendously significant. When the destroyer saw the blood, they were protected, and 430 years of slavery finished. Jesus is God's provision for our sinfulness, and His blood still speaks. Get a fresh revelation of the power of the blood of Jesus for your freedom.

Blood on The Doorposts (5 of 12)

I’m going to start first of all on John 1:29. We’re going to look in about two or three places in the Bible. The Bible is God’s word. It explains to us God’s plan. It’s made up into two parts – what’s called the Old Testament and then the New Testament. So, I’m going to read to you just one verse. Then we’re going to look in the Old Testament.

“The next day, John the Baptist saw Jesus Christ coming towards him and said: “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.”” John was especially prepared and commissioned by God to prepare the nation for the arrival of Jesus Christ. His message was – repent from sin and people came from all over the nation. He was preparing them to receive the blessings that God had for them.

One day as he’s baptising, he saw Jesus Christ walking towards him. God spoke into his heart and spoke and revealed who Jesus is; that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. John, who was a prophet, says this: “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.” Now, to most of us, that has very little meaning whatsoever. But to the people he was speaking to, this had immense significance.

The problem mankind has wrestled with has been the issue of sin. Sin is transgressing or breaking the laws of God. Sin is running our life independent of God. Sin is finding ways to get ourselves ahead without God. Sin is being turned away from God to our own way. Sin brings destruction and death. The Bible says – the wages or consequences of sin is always separation, isolation, death.

God never intended our world to be like it is – with wars and violence and poverty and crime. He created the world a beautiful place. When he created it, he said it was good. But when sin entered the world, when the man God had created turned away from Him, the whole dynamic of this creation changed. Demonic spirits were empowered into the earth. Demonic spirits began to oppress people. When Adam sinned, sickness and death and sorrows entered the world.

But God promised one day, He would send someone who would redeem them. Someone who would deal with the issue of sin. Now in all the religions of the world, the challenge is: how do you deal with sin? In all the religions of the world, are aware of the issue of sin. They all have a similar way of dealing with it – you have to do something. We’ll show you very shortly that Christianity is completely different; that the core foundation for becoming right with God is not what I do, it’s not what you do, it’s what Jesus Christ did for us.

So we’re going to look at the Old Testament – we’ll go into the book of Exodus. So if you’ll just follow me, we won’t look at too many verses. We just want to lay a story for you. So we’ll look in Exodus and we’ll first of all look in Exodus chapter 1, so we get the picture. Exodus 1 –So it’s talking about the people of God and they’re in Egypt.

It says in verse 11: “The Egyptians set taskmasters over them to afflict them with burdens. And they built for Pharaoh supply cities. But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were in dread of the children of Israel. So the Egyptians made the children of Israel serve with rigor. And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage—in mortar, in brick, and in all manner of service in the field. All their service in which they made them serve was very hard.” They even sent them to kill their firstborn children.

So what is happening is, the people of God are trapped in a foreign nation. They’re living in slavery. None of us is made to be slave to anything. God has made us for freedom. We long for freedom. But these people were in bondage. They were in bondage to the Egyptians and the Egyptians put hard taskmasters over them. They beat them, they abused them, they made them serve. Their life was very bitter, very difficult. They suffered, they were beaten, they were abused, they worked hard, very little return. They had no freedom to run their own life. They were held in slavery. They were trafficked. Their lives were very miserable.

This is a picture for us. It’s a picture of the invisible reality of sin. When people are born into this world, we’re born in slavery to sin. Whatever conquers you, you are subject to it. Sins are bitterness, hatred, anger, fear. Sin afflicts every person. Behind sin and empowering it, are demonic spirits. So people born into this world are born in slavery to sin, and life is hard. There are disappointments, betrayals, difficulties, setbacks.

In the midst of it, people try to find relief of the pain. They become addicted to various things. Then their addiction is a bondage. Addictions to drugs, then the drugs steal their health and their finance. Addicted to pornography. Addicted to alcohol and nicotine. So this is slavery – people were made very bitter. The Bible tells us that behind Egypt, there was an invisible spiritual world. The Egyptians worshipped many different gods. They had gods for all kinds of manners of things.

So the reality is this – the people were in slavery and the power behind that slavery were demonic spirits working through the Egyptians. The people began to cry and ask God to help them. So God sent Moses to help them; and when Moses came in, said to the Pharaoh – “Let my people go. The Lord says – let my people go.” Pharaoh says: “Who is this Lord? He’s not my God. I will not let them go.” So God began to bring plagues on the nation of Israel.

Let’s come and have a look at it now. We’re going come right to the very last one and we’ll look at this in Exodus chapter 12. Here in verse 3 – “Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying: ‘On the tenth of this month every man shall take for himself a lamb, according to the house of his father, a lamb for a household.”

Verse 5 – “Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year. You may take it from the sheep or from the goats.” He said: “Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month. Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at twilight.”

Notice here in verse 7: “And they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses where they eat it.”

Verse 12: “‘For I will pass through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment, for I am the Lord.”

Verse 14: “‘So this day shall be to you a memorial; and you shall keep it as a feast to the Lord throughout your generations. You shall keep it as a feast by an everlasting ordinance.”

Verse 22 and 23: “And you shall take a bunch of hyssop, dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and strike the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin. And none of you shall go out of the door of his house until morning. For the Lord will pass through to strike the Egyptians; and when He sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over the door and not allow the destroyer to come into your houses to strike you.”

Verse 29 - 31: “And it came to pass at midnight that the Lord struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of livestock. So Pharaoh rose in the night, he, all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead. Then he called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, “Rise, go out from among my people, both you and the children of Israel. And go, serve the Lord as you have said.”

So the first thing we need to see is that God spoke, He was going to bring judgement on the gods of Egypt. Now, the Egyptians worship many gods. They worship the Nile river, so God brought a plague on the Nile. So, everything that they worshipped, everything that they said was God, God brought a judgement against it.

God demonstrated that His power was greater than these god, that these gods were false gods, and that He was the one true God. Each time He brought a plague, He was showing the powerlessness of their gods. He was demonstrating what they worshipped had no power and that the Lord God of Israel is the real God.

Each time that Moses came to the Pharaoh, the Pharaoh hardened his heart – “I will not let go.” So they brought another plague. “Ok, now you let go?” “No I will not.” Each time they bring another plague. “Will you let the people go?” “I will not! Who is this Lord?” Then, another plague!” “Will you let them go?” “Ok. Maybe just a little bit. But no money, no cattle, no children.” “Ok, you haven’t got the message.” On more plague. “Ok. You can go. But leave the cattle and the children.” Ok, one more plague.

So each time, one more plague came. Pharaoh’s heart became very bitter and hard. Finally it came to the last plague of all. Now you have to understand this – that the Pharaoh was worshipped as the living god. His son was also worshipped as the living god. So from the Egyptian point of view, the Pharaoh was one of the great gods of their nation and so was his son.

So notice what God says - he gives a very careful instruction to the people of Israel. So, Moses gathers all the leaders up, and he said: “Listen carefully. One more plague. God is going to break the power of Egypt. God is going to break the demonic powers. God is going to deliver us as He said. But there’s one more thing that will happen. I want you to listen really carefully. This is very important, what I’m going to tell you. This is what we do – it’s going to happen on the 14th day. What day? 14th day. You better get this one right. It’s not good if you have it on the 13th or 15th. 14thday. On the 14th day, I want you to do this. I want you to choose from your flocks, a lamb.”

The Egyptians despised the shepherds. They despised the sheep. So, God says ‘I want you to take a lamb, and I want you to check it carefully. No spot, no blemish, perfect lamb. Can’t be a blind lamb, limping lamb. Perfect lamb.’

He said: “On the evening of the 14th day – that’s about 3 o’clock – I want you to do this. You gather all your family to your household, and then you slay the lamb, and you get the blood from the lamb in a basin. Then you get some hyssop and you must do this. You must take the blood, put some blood on the lintel, then over on the doorpost, then over on the other doorpost. Then, you go in, and you eat the lamb together. At midnight, you will leave because the destroyer is going to come through the nation. He’s going to kill the firstborn of every family, every animal, unless he sees the blood. If he sees the blood of the lamb, you will be spared. When God sees the blood, He will say – ‘They’re my people. They’re protected by the blood. Nothing shall happen to them. Nothing shall come into their homes.’”

So the days went by, and the 14th day came. Now, if you were the eldest son, you would be very keen to make sure this is done. You’d be hanging out with your father. “Hey dad, let me check the lamb is well. Let’s give it a good look. Oh, maybe that’s a little spot. Get another one. I want to get this right. You know, my life is hanging in the balance here. Ok. Alright. Let’s get the blood in the bowel. Don’t spill any. Ok. That looks like it. Alright then. Now, take the hyssop. Ok, put it on the lintel. More! Just in case the angel doesn’t have good eyesight. Put it all over! Ok. Don’t forget this one. The doorposts. More! Over this one here. More! Let me have a look. Put some more. Just in case. Can I take any chances? There’s only one chance to get this right. You get it wrong, I’m finished.”

So, they put the blood. The Egyptians looked - “What are you doing?” Some of them listened. Some of them said – “What are these Hebrews up to?” So they asked the Hebrews: “Hey what are you doing?” “Oh, secret. But I’ll tell you – there’s one more plague. It’s coming through every house. Only way you can be protected – this is what it is: perfect lamb, check it out – no spots. Then on the 14th day, kill a lamb, take the blood in the basin – lintel, doorposts. Ok. Then, stay inside. Don’t go out for a little walk at night.”

Some Egyptians believed. They said – “Man, we better do what they’re doing because it looks like God’s on their side. You guys are scary guys, your God’s a scary God.” So some of the Egyptians did this as well. Then the night came. 7 o’clock, 8 o’clock. Nothing much, I don’t see anything. Have a look outside. “No. Don’t look, don’t go outside! We don’t know when!” 10 o’clock. No sign of the angel. 11 o’clock. Finally, it’s midnight. They start to hear the crying. They realise something’s happening.

Screams went up in house after house after house. Hundreds and hundreds of households. Demonic spirit went in and killed the children – eldest sons in households. Right down even in the prison. If you’re the eldest son in the prison, you’re in big trouble. You can’t get out! So, everywhere through the land, God brought judgement on the Pharaoh’s gods; and He broke the spiritual power. Notice this – He broke the power behind the nation.

Do you realise, Egypt never recovered after this? It has never recovered to become the nation it once was. It lost everything through this. So, the angel of death went right through the nation, but those who had applied the blood, they were spared. God said to them: “You must eat the lamb, and then be ready to take your journey because you’re coming out of bondage. You’re coming out of bondage! 430 years of slavery finishes tonight! Have your bag packed. Get ready to take the journey because tonight the slavery finishes.”

This is what the Bible says – it says: “Not one of them that came out of Egypt was weak.” That night, when they shed the blood, and they waited in faith, not only did the angel of death come through and kill the Egyptians, God’s spirit moved through the people of God, and their sicknesses were healed, the broken bones were healed. It says – “Not one of them were weak.”

They lived in slavery. They lived in poverty. But not one was weak and feeble. They were all strengthened by the power of God. The Bible says – God’s armies rose and left Egypt that night. Before they left, the Egyptians gave them silver and gold; they plundered Egypt, and they left on their journey to enter the promised land.

God said this – “I want you, every year, on the 14th day of this first month, to remember this. You will offer a Passover lamb, shed the blood, and you will remember what I did for you.” They did that year after year. So when John the Baptist rose up, and said: “Behold, the lamb of God”, they knew exactly what he’s talking about. It’s the Passover lamb. That lamb’s blood saved us, delivered us, healed us. This is the lamb of God. This is God’s choice. God’s choice – Jesus Christ. He takes away the sins of the world, He prophesied. Everything you’ve seen for 1500 years was a picture of this. This is the reality.

Now, I want you to see the crucifixion of Jesus. I want you to notice something. We’re going to look in Matthew chapter 27. We saw before that blood is important because the life is in the blood. So everywhere, in every culture in the world, people understand a little bit about that. In Matthew 27, we’re going to read about the death of Jesus Christ.

Matthew 27:45-46 –“Now from the sixth hour until the ninth hour there was darkness over all the land. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice.”

Verse 50-53: “And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many.”

Notice from the 6th hour to the 9th hour, Jesus has come to the end of His ministry. His life is not taken from Him, He gives up His life. The 6th hour to the 9th hour is between 12 midday and 3pm in the afternoon. It says – “God brought a great darkness over the land”, just as the Egyptians had darkness over their land.

It says – “The 9th hour, Jesus cried out.” Why does the Bible tells us – “the 9th hour”? The 9th hour is 3pm. At this time, in Israel, it was the feast of Passover. So, people had come from all over the nation for this feast. At the 9th hour, or 3 o’clock, the high priest was taking the Passover lamb and shedding its blood. What no one realised was that God’s Passover lamb was now giving up its life on the cross. “At the 9th hour, Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up His spirit.”

Now, if you’ve ever been around people who are dying, people don’t die with a loud voice. They don’t. They kind of fade away. Gone. They don’t have a loud voice. When Jesus died, the Bible says He gave a triumphant shout. The word ‘loud’ is ‘mega’. A ‘mega’ shout. He gave a triumphant shout. It’s finished. The work of atoning for sin for the world. Finished. He shed His blood.

Now, notice what happens. When God accepts the sacrifice, power is released. I want you to notice some things that happened. The first thing that happened – it say the veil in the temple was torn from top to bottom. Now the veil in the temple was a very thick veil. It stopped people going into the holiest part where God was dwelling. But suddenly, angelic hands tore it from top to bottom, and people were shocked. For the first time, they could see and have access right into the presence of God. God was wanting them to know – I have made a way for every person to come into the presence of God.

The second thing that happened was a mighty earthquake. Huge earthquake. A massive earthquake. I don’t know what scale it was, but it must have been very big because notice what it says – it shattered the rocks. Look what else it did – it broke open all the graves. Now that’s a big earthquake to break open the grave. Why did such a thing happen? See? The consequences of sin is death. And God opened up the graves. That is scary stuff! Dead people. Graves opened. Granddad, you just buried him and there he is. Woah. So all the graves open up, bodies in different stages of decay. Woah. Bones and skull. Dreadful. That’s scary!

People couldn’t leave it like that. So they had to go and camp out, look after the graves. But they had to wait till the Passover was over before they could do any work and fill them in. So, this is a traumatic scene. Massive earthquake, graves opened, and Jesus Himself descended into the deepest part of the Earth, declared to the demonic spirits and principalities – I have conquered you.

After 3 days, there was another massive earthquake, and Jesus rose from the dead. Look what it says in Matthew 27. It said: “Many of the bodies of the saints rose, went into Jerusalem, and appeared to many.” People think that death is the end. It’s not the end. Did you realise that when Jesus rose from the dead, many of the people in those graves, God supernaturally reconstructed the bodies, and they rose from the dead, they began to walk through the city of God. Maybe Moses and Abraham, some of the great saints and kings. That is scary.

You know, we have Easter and we have Easter eggs. Celebration, nice meal. They had ghosts walking through the city. Moses, come on! Appearing to many people! This is a traumatic event. This is not some secret event. God is demonstrating to everyone – His power released through the blood of Jesus can forgive your sins, break demonic holds, set you free from the power of sin, and raise you up, and put resurrection life in you. Resurrection life. God was demonstrating that no matter what the devil has brought upon us, by believing and faith in the blood that Jesus shed, God’s power is released to change your life. What an amazing thing.

The Bible tells us in Colossians 2:14-15 that when Jesus died on the cross, when He shed His blood, He said He took away every sin against you, and disarmed principalities and power. He took away the power of the devil to hold you in bondage; and it all comes down to this – it’s not what I have done, it’s what Christ did for me and whether I will believe it. This is what the Bible says – that God has made Jesus to be a mercy seat by faith in His blood. Romans 3:25 – God has made Jesus a mercy seat for us by faith in His blood.

If you have sinned, the blood of Jesus paid the price. If you have failed, the blood of Jesus has paid the price. If you have wrestled with something, the blood of Jesus has redeemed you. The word ‘redeemed’, we say – I am redeemed by the blood of the lamb. Know that song? “I am redeemed by the blood of the lamb, I am redeemed.” That’s the one. It’s a great song. The word ‘redeem’ means to pay the full price to ransom.

When Jesus shed His blood, He did the full price to set you free, to save you, to forgive your sins. He just requires that you turn from things and believe. If you sin and fall, turn and believe. The blood has paid the price already. You may be wrestling with sin, wrestling with struggles in your life, turn and believe that Jesus has died for that sin. Turn away from it. It just brings sorrow and destruction and condemnation. Believe what Jesus has done. What an amazing truth.

In every religion in the world you have to do something. Christianity – Jesus did it all. If I will respond to Jesus, if I will identify with Him by faith in my heart, then, all that He did for me becomes mine. Do you know what the meaning of water baptism is? I don’t know how they do it here, but in the New Testament they would take them down to the river, they put them under the water and bring them back up.

When a person gets water baptised, it’s not some little ritual. It’s a statement of faith in your heart –My old life finished when I came to Christ. When He died on the cross, I died with Him. I identify with Him. My old way of living is dead. Jesus was buried in the ground, we go under in the water of baptism, I believe that my life is now buried. The old sinful life, selfish life, it is finished. Come up out of the water baptism – it represents a new life has begun.

It’s not a matter of the water and getting wet. It’s understanding and believing in your heart – My old life finished, it died with Christ. It’s buried. From God’s point of view now, and I choose to believe it, I’m a new person and I’m now living a new life. It’s the life of a believer, a life following Jesus. Will I fail? Yes I will. That’s because I keep forgetting who I am, go back to thinking I’m that old person and doing those old things. But I don’t have to do them anymore because their power’s broken. So I can just repent quickly, the blood of Jesus will cleanse me, and I can begin to walk with God afresh.

If we confess our sins, He’s faithful and just to forgive us, and cleanse us from all our unrighteousness. Amen. If we walk in the light, it means we’re open with God, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Christ cleanses us. The blood is always available to cleanse you of sin and failure. We just need to believe. We need to believe in our heart that what Jesus did is enough. Enough.

Now, just one last thing. When you come to enter the presence of God, if you believe that what Jesus did is enough, you can come boldly. If you don’t believe it’s enough, you’ll come like this – “Oh, God I’m such a bad person. I’m so sorry.” That’s not how God wants you to come. He wants you to believe that blood is enough to cleanse your sins; and to arise and walk in the power of a new life.



Come Out of Your Cave (6 of 12)  

Mon 7 Oct 2013 « Back to Top

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In 1 Kings 19 we find Elijah had yielded to fear and intimidation, and drawn back from his God-given assignment. We then get one of those "God Questions". He knows the answer, but wanted Elijah to think about where he was at, to recognize his distorted thinking, and to get back to his assignment, which included raising up others to fulfill the ministry. What are you doing here? Elijah had chosen to yield to fear, withdraw from his assignment, sit down, become passive and isolate at the crucial point when he needed to press forward. Sound familiar? Learn to recognize the signs of pressure.

Come Out of Your Cave (6 of 12)

Let’s open our Bible to 1 Kings 19. I just want to share briefly with you, then we want to have a time to pray for you. We want to see God touch your life. Leaders need to be refreshed, need a fresh touch of God on their life. So we need to learn how to step up.

So, I want to take just a couple of verses and I’ll just open it up a little bit. We read in 1 Kings 19:9, and it says: “Elijah went into a cave, and spent the night in that place; and behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and He said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”

Verse 13: "Then came a still small voice - when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood in the entrance of the cave. The voice came to him again and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”

This is a very serious problem for Elijah. Elijah had a call on his life to stand up in the nation that was corrupt to represent and speak on behalf of God and to confront the spiritual powers of his days. He was called to bring revival to his nation. He was anointed to bring revival to his nation and he emerged out of a season where he was hidden – no one saw him.

You remember the story of how he brought a famine on the land, and then how he called fire down from heaven. A fire came on the alter. Then they destroyed the prophets of Baal. So Elijah was in a move of God. The nation was ready for God to move. But all movements of God require leadership. Nothing happens without leadership.

When God wants to make something happen, He needs a man or a woman to stand up. He needs something anointed with the Holy Spirit who will stand up and represent Him. This has always been the challenge God has had – to have a man or a woman who will represent Him. Represent what He’s like and carry His power to pull down the things that intimidate lives.

The nation lived under witchcraft. It lived in a place of idolatry, of temple prostitution, of all kinds of witchcraft in the nation. There was an oppressive atmosphere set over the nation. Most people were intimidated by it. They lived in fear of it. But God looked for a man to raise up who could stand up in that environment, who was not afraid of the spiritual atmosphere, not afraid of the idols, not afraid of the temples, not afraid of the witchcraft, able to stand up and live a life differently.

So, Elijah began very very well. Then, there came a point where he came under spiritual attack. A spiritual counter-attack. He had made great progress – torn down the alters, built an alter to the Lord, destroyed the prophets of Baal. He was having a move of God. If he could’ve just kept the move of God going, it would’ve reached and touched the whole nation.

But there came a strong spiritual backlash. There came a strong spiritual pressure against him. The Bible says that Jezebel rose up, she said – ‘I intend to kill you. I intend to take your life. I’ll take your life like you took the life of the prophets.’ So she began to intimidate him.

This is always one of the big problems in ministry – is it’s easy to start well, but you need to stand in the face of the battle. You need to stand when pressure comes on you. You need to be able to stand when the spirit world pushes back on you. Usually pushes back on you through people –people accusing you; people threatening you; people intimidating you. You have to choose how you’ll respond.

Paul wrote to Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:6-7 – He says: “stir up the gift of God which is in you. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” So Timothy also had a problem. He had a powerful anointing, a powerful gift in his life, but he became intimidated by older people. He became intimidated by the religious culture. As a result of being intimidated, the gift in his life began to close down.

If you become intimidated, if you let fear get a hold of your life, the gift in your life will begin to shut down. The anointing will stop flowing. You’ll be concerned about how to protect yourself and save yourself rather than advancing the kingdom of God.

Paul wrote 2 letters to Timothy and in both of them he addressed this gift. In 1 Timothy – he said “Don’t neglect the gift.” Now, God has given to each one of us, a powerful gift. He’s given you the gift of the Holy Spirit – same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead. That same spirit comes to live in you to empower you, to strengthen you. We all get the same Holy Ghost. We all get that same anointing comes into us.

But we have to choose whether we’ll stir up the gift of God, cause that anointing to flow, or whether we’ll become intimidated and withdraw, and hide in a cave. I wonder how many are hiding in a cave. There’s lots of Christians hiding in a cave, right down in the back of the cave – “I’m not coming out.”

What had happened to Elijah? I want to show you very quickly what happened to him, and I want to show you the mistake he made and how it outworked in his life. I’ll show it to you very simply. It may well be that some of you here tonight recognise you’re also under spiritual pressure and that in the heat of the battle, you’ve made the same mistake Elijah made, and ended up in pretty well the same place he ended up.

I had a pastor ring me up one day. I said: “How are you?” He said: “Can you help me? I am so depressed. I’m almost suicidal, and I don’t really know what to do. I have never been like that in my life before, but since I’ve come to this city, I’ve had these problems come.” I said: “I know exactly what the trouble is, and I know exactly what you need to do. You are under spiritual attack. You are under pressure on your mind and soul. It’s caused you to lose your perspective, to become intimidated, and to draw back inside, just like Elijah did.”

I want you to notice some things Elijah did. What happened was, Jezebel threatened him. In other words, a spiritual attack was launched upon him, threatening to take his life. Now, there is something in all of us that wants to survive, so anything that causes us pain, we draw back from. When you draw back from pain, you are trying to save yourself. If you draw back and try to save yourself, life will get very difficult. There’s no neutral ground when you’re in ministry. You have to stay in a place of strength and fire.

Sometimes it’s very difficult. Sometimes it’s very overwhelming. You see me ministering on the stage, the power of God flowing. There are times I come under immense spiritual pressure. Sometimes it’s like my head is so dark I wonder whether I can see again. I’ve had to learn how to stand up in these things. Every time you stand up, you grow stronger in the Lord.

Look what it says here in verse 3-4: “When Elijah saw that, he arose and ran for his life, and went to Beersheba, which is in Judah, and left his servant there. And he went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a broom tree. And he prayed that he might die, and said, “It is enough! Now, Lord, take my life. Please be kind to me. Take me to heaven right now, or kill me.””

So what happened to the mighty man of God, who one day is calling fire from heaven and killing the prophets, the next day is sitting down depressed – “I think I need to die.” How did this great mighty man of God go from there to here? And then end up in a cave? “I’m not coming out. You can’t make me come out. I won’t come out.” He was hiding.

So what happened? The Bible says that he was threatened. It says – “When he saw that, he ran for his life.” Now, if you just read the scripture there, it says – “She spoke to him.” Now, the message is spoke to him. But it says – “He saw something.” What you see will affect what you do. What you see will determine you approach things. Instead of seeing ‘God is with me!’ Instead of seeing the coming revival, he looked and he saw imminent death. He saw himself being attacked.

Whatever fills your mind and heart, whatever you set your eyes on, whatever you make the focus of your life will affect your emotions, will affect your spirit, and will determine what happens to you. You can’t afford to let your focus become negative. You have to keep your eyes fixed on Jesus. You have to keep your eyes fixed on what God has said. You have to keep your eyes fixed on God’s power, on His love for you.

How could it be that the God who brought fire from heaven and brought drought and then released rain, would now abandon him? How could it be that the God that commissioned him would then leave him alone? He lost his vision. He lost his view of the future. When the pressure came on him, he took his eyes off his vision. He took his eyes off what he’s called to do, he got his eyes fixed on his circumstances, he got his eyes fixed on himself. He said – “I’m the only prophet left. It’s only me! I can’t handle the pressure.” So he began to run.

When he got his eyes off God and his purpose, when he began to focus on the threats, his heart melted, his faith diminished, fear took over, and he ran as fast as he could. The Bible says – he ran. He literally ran for his life, ran away. What did he run away from? He ran away from his assignment. He drew back from what he was called to do.

It is very easy when pressures come to get your eyes off your vision, off what you’re called to do, to begin to look at the problems, become intimidated, and lose perspective. Instead of seeing it from God’s point of view, you begin to see the problems, the difficulties, and then you draw back from the place God wants you to be. You draw back from the position of faith. You draw back from your boldness. You start to shrink on the inside. Instead of there being strong prayer, now you can barely get up and pray. So he ran. He drew back from his assignment.

When a person draws back, they have no authority in their life. When the person draws back, there’s no anointing flow. God says – “I have no pleasure in him that draws back.” It’s staying in the battle, staying in the place of faith, staying in the place of believing God, that’s what pleases Him. I want to show you a couple of things he did. The first thing is he lost his perspective by focusing on the negatives. The second thing – he drew baack form his assignment.

The third things was – he isolated. He left his servant. He isolated himself. Isolation means you disconnect, means you stop connecting to people, stop connecting to God. Isolation and disconnection is the place of death.

It’s an interesting thing about sheep. You probably don’t see many sheep here, but we see lots in New Zealand. Sheep are very interesting. One night I should preach on sheep, that’d be a good idea. Funny creatures. This is what happens – when they get sick, they isolate. They draw away from the flock. It’s always easier to tell a sick sheep – they draw away from the flock. They draw away from fellowship. They draw back from the cell group. They draw away from the leaders’ meeting. They draw away from connecting.

They don’t want to connect because they don’t want you to ask question because they’re in a cave. “I don’t want you to look at me. So I won’t come near you.” See. There’s a fear that comes. Isn’t it interesting that when Adam and Eve sinned and fell, they felt fear and hid. Every time Israel was defeated, they hid in caves. A cave is a deep dark place with no exit.

What else did he do? The next thing he did was this – he sat down. Instead of standing up in his spirit and fighting, instead of rising in his spirit and beginning to pray, let the gift of tongues flow, he sat down. You can tell people sitting down – they may be standing up on the outside, but they’re sitting down on the inside. They’ve given up in the fight. They become passive. The fight is gone. They’re being knocked down. They need help.

Once he sat down, once he became passive and did nothing, then he became depressed. A terrible depression came over him and all he could think of then – “I just wish I could die.” Now, he didn’t suddenly arrive at that place. He progressed to that place. Firstly, when he got his eyes focused on the problems rather than on the solution, when he shifted his focus from his vision and got his eye on the problems. Secondly, when he let fear distort his thinking and he tried to preserve himself rather than giving himself to the assignment. Then he drew back from his assignment. He isolated himself. Then he sat down, became very depressed and very suicidal, and fell asleep. His last prayer before he fell asleep – “Lord, take me. I don’t want to wake up.”

Now God had mercy on him. God sent an angel to touch him and give him food. When you’re in a battle you need rest and you need food. But then, he carried on running. Another 40 days – that’s a lot of running. 40 days running is a lot of running. Finally, he found a cave and he went and he hid in the cave. “I’m not coming out.” God spoke to him and it’s interesting how God speaks. God asked a question. In the Bible, when God asks a question, He knows the answer.

Like, “What’s going on here?” He knows the answer. Like, the first question in the Bible – “Adam, where are you?” Hello? Like, God didn’t know where he was? “Come on Adam, you’re hiding behind those trees over there. I know where you are.” He said: “Adam, where are you?” That’s a relationship question. God knew where he was. God wanted him to face the question and face where he was and start to talk. There’s no record apart from saying – please kill me, that’s talking to God.

So, God looking at Elijah: “What are you doing here? You don’t belong here. What are you doing there? I had this big revival going on and you’re my key player in the revival. Why’re you in the cave? What are you doing here?”

I remember I was out one night with a group of people at a restaurant and as we were coming out of the restaurant, there’s another part of the hotel and it was the bar, and it was packed. People were all drinking and having a great time and there’s a DJ disco thing going, and it was pumping. Just like tonight. Wow. I heard the music and I like music. I thought: “That sounds like good music. I think I’ll go in.” You know the people, the leaders with me, thought: “Oh, pastor going in there. Why’s the pastor going in there?”

I said: “Just come in here and have a look. I guarantee I will find a backslidden Christian here because if you’re not filled with the spirit, you’ll get filled with something else. You don’t let God comfort you, you’ll try and buy a bottle and drink from that instead. You have to fix the pain somehow. So either come to God, or go down to the pub and buy a drink and then you’ll feel better.”

So, we went in there and I stood at the door. I looked around. They had people dancing. They even had the staff dancing on the bar. Oh, it was wild. I thought – “This is great.” I look over, and I see one straight away. So I went over. He went up to the bar, and he’s ordering all the drinks. There was a girl dancing on the bar, and I went and just stood behind him and waited. He turned around, and he was shocked.

He said – “What are you doing here?” I said: “What are you doing here? You don’t belong here. This is not what you were called to be. What are you doing here?” He’s got his back to the bar, arm full of drinks. I’m saying: “What are you doing here?” I said to him in a different way: “What happened to you that caused you to lose your confidence in God and come and try and find confidence in a bottle? What happened to you? What went wrong?”

He stood there holding the drinks, all the music’s going around, and he began to weep. He shared how his heart had been broken because a relationship he’d had broke-up. I said: “This is not going to help you. You need to come back to the Lord. You need to come back to the place you were called.”

So when God says: “Elijah, what are you doing here?” He’s really saying, “Elijah, how on earth did you get yourself here? We were having a revival. Where did you go? I turn my head to talk to the angels, and the next minute, you’re in a cave. I’ve been telling the angels about all the work my servant Elijah’s doing. ‘Woah. Did you see him? Fire from heaven! Killed all the prophets! Woah. Got that old ugly queen really worried. Man, look at my servant Elijah!’ What are you doing here in this cave?”

Elijah starts a story – “You don’t understand. I’m the only one faithful and they all want to kill me. I’m only trying to serve you. They just want to kill me, it’s not really fair. You never told me it was going to be this hard.”

“I become a cell leader – I never knew it was going to be this hard, that people would be not nice to me, and after I’m kind to them, then they walk away. They say bad things about me. So, I don’t like.”

“It’s only me who’s been faithful.” How can hiding in a cave be faithful? You see, he’s a very confused man because he let a spiritual pressure confuse him. God says: “Well actually Elijah, there’re 7000 others who haven’t been involved in this stuff.” “Really? I didn’t see that. I didn’t know about that.”

So God spoke to him twice – “Elijah, what are you doing here? Elijah, what are you doing here?” In other words, He’s saying – “You don’t belong here. You need to return to your assignment.” So He spoke to Him – “Go back to your assignment.”

Notice what He tells him to do. Get this – “I want you to raise-up some disciples. I want you to anoint others. I want you to multiply your ministry. I want you to multiply the ministry. You’ve been doing this all alone too long. You need to think strategically. You need to raise-up others who’ll carry the ministry. I’ll even tell you who they are so you don’t have to think – “Oh, there’re no one. Not him. Not him. There’s no one.”

God said: “I’ll tell you who they are. Elisha, and Hazael, and Jehu. You invest in those people. You release what’s in your life on them, and then you watch. The job you couldn’t finish, they’ll finish it up.” God reveals his intention – that he should raise up disciples, that he should multiply his ministry. But it started by returning to his post.

Now in this passage here tonight, you see the result of spiritual pressure. This pastor that called me, he was incredibly discouraged. I said to him – “It’s just spiritual pressure. It’s just a spiritual attack and you’re sitting under the tree like Elijah. I’ll stand with you. I’ll pray for you. But you need to stand up again, come out of that cave, go back to your assignment, go back to praying, go back to ministering, go back to doing what you need to do. You need to rise up again.” I told him how to stand up in prayer, how to recognise it was just a spiritual attack.

I said: “You need to stand up and pray in the Spirit until you feel your spirit raise up. Then you need to begin to speak into the spirit world and declare that enemy defeated. Go back again, begin to minister. If you will do this – pray in tongues, rise in your spirit, speak the word of God over your life, confront the devil, confront the spirits that are troubling you, and speak God’s word over your life, you will break through.”

That man has got a very thriving church in that area now. See? Because he stood up. Now, he didn’t ring me once, he rang me on several occasions. Each time, I told him the same thing – come out of your cave, go back to your assignment, stand up again in prayer, and speak God’s word over your situation. Get your eyes back on the Lord again; and he was a changed person. We’ll finish just at that point.

I’m sharing this with you tonight because I feel there are a number of people, and you are in a cave. Outside, you look like you’re doing everything ok, but in your heart, you’ve been hurt. In your heart, you’ve taken a knock. In your heart, you’ve drawn back, you’ve lost your vision. There’s even some of you here who’ve sat down. You’ve been contemplating giving up. God says – “What are you doing here? You don’t belong in that cave. You’re a mighty man of God. You’re a might woman of God.”

The same Spirit that overcome the devil and raised Christ from the dead is within you to help you. Don’t isolate, don’t draw back, don’t focus on the problem, stand up, refocus your vision, and then begin start to pursue. God says you’ll breakthrough.

You follow the story through, the wicked queen was torn down, her kingdom was overthrown, and God’s kingdom was established. But the key was a change, and the focus on discipling new people.



Hope After Loss (7 of 12)  

Wed 9 Oct 2013 « Back to Top

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The widow of Nain ( Luke 7 ) was in a place of great grief and without hope for her future, no-one could comfort her. Maybe you too are locked into grief feeling numb and disconnected. Our God is a God of comfort, and a God of all hope. Set-backs are not the end. Let Christ in - He is able to breathe into a place of death, and bring life and fresh vision. Jesus still works miracles, and restores a broken heart.

Hope After Loss (7 of 12)

Once you’ve opened your Bible with me in the book of Luke, and we’re going to look in chapter 7. Just a few verses, and look at the gospel message.

Verse 11-16 from Luke 7: “Now it happened, the day after, that He went into a city called Nain; and many of His disciples went with Him, and a large crowd. And when He came near the gate of the city, behold, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother; and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the city was with her. When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, “Do not weep.” Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still. And He said, “Young man, I say to you, arise. So he who was dead sat up and began to speak. And He presented him to his mother. Then fear came upon all, and they glorified God, saying, “A great prophet has risen up among us”.

So, Jesus has a large crowd of disciples with Him. Wherever Jesus went there were people following Him to see what He would do. In another place, Jesus said: “I am the resurrection and the life.” God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with power. Wherever He went, He interacted with people and revealed the kindness and the heart of God to people.

So, in this story, there’s a city called Nain. The name literally means ‘to be a beautiful place, a pleasant place, or a lovely pasture’. So all the appearances of this place was that it was a beautiful place. Or in other words, it looked very very good. It was an attractive place to come to, but hidden within that attractive place, there was great sorrow and there was great distress.

It’s true also with people. They can look very good, very attractive on the outside, but in the heart carry great sorrow, great grief, great disappointment. So, you may be here tonight and on the outside you look very good. The Bible says – God looks on the heart. So He can see the sadness, He can see what is happening in your life.

I want you to see what happened in this particular story. The story opens with a young man who is dead. The young man represents the next generation. The young man represents the future. The young man represents hope. The young man represents a great future for this woman. The Bible said – His mother was a widow. That means she had lost her husband. She’d suffered a tremendous loss. Lost the one who’d protect her. Lost the one who’d provide for her.

But she had one hope left – and that hope was her son. She’s very proud of her son. She looked forward to watching him grow. She had her hopes set that in the future he would protect her, he would provide for her. She had dreams in her heart, dreams of what he would become, dreams of him marrying, dreams of grandchildren. So she was looking forward to the future. This man, this younger generation represented her hope, her future, her legacy, her provision, her protection. Her life was wrapped up in this young man.

One day, the unthinkable happened. It was one thing to lose her husband, but it’s another thing entirely to lose a child, to lose a son. It sounds from the story like he was a grown young man. Something happened to him, something completely unexpected. He grew sick and then he died.

The day came when all her hopes of the future were taken away. She went into shock. “What will happen to me?” There appears to be no future. There appears to be no hope. She will grow old with no one to care for her. Not only has she lost her son, but she lost her dreams of the future. So the woman went into deep grief. No one could console her. She was grieving over her loss.

Grief is a very interesting thing. Grief is the process by which we come to terms with loss. You don’t grieve unless you have an attachment. We don’t grieve over a stranger we don’t know. We don’t grieve over someone we’re not connected to. We grieve when we lose something we’re attached to.

So, grief is quite interesting. It goes through several stages. The first stage is just shock – “I can’t believe this has happened.” The first thing she experienced was tremendous shock. She would look at her boy – “I can’t believe that this is happening.”

Following on after shock, the next sensation or emotion that people feel is great anger. Something’s been taken from me and people often feel very angry. They don’t know who to be angry at. So the next phase of grief often consists of blaming, or bargaining. Trying to find a way through it all.

So when people are in grief, they can be in shock, they can’t really admit something’s happened, or they may be very angry, or they may be blaming someone, or trying to find a way they can work their way out of the situation. The next stage of grief is depression or sadness. A lot of weeping. Finally, the person comes to a place of acceptance, and they adjust their life to the change. So that is the process of grief.

People can feel many of those emotions all in the couple of hours. To some people, they never let go of their grief. They never deal with grief properly. So they get locked into grief. Some of you here tonight are locked into grief. There’s a deep grief sitting in your heart, and it’s caused for different ones, by different things.

Perhaps some of you are grieving because someone you were very close to has died. Maybe a mother or maybe a father. They meant so much to you. So there’s a deep grief because they’re no longer in your life.

People grieve when there’s a divorce. Children who’ve been through a divorce carry immense grief because they’ve literally lost a parent, or lost both parents. They’re caught in a battle between the two. They become very angry, angry at everyone, not realising they’re suffering grief.

When people lose a hope or a dream, something they planned for, and suddenly it’s taken away. They’ve been looking forward to this promotion – suddenly, someone else gets it, and grief comes. They’re looking forward to some dream being fulfilled, and it’s totally taken away.

The grief can be immense. If grief is not dealt with, we can grieve all our life, and remain angry all our life, and continue to blame people all our life. But the real root of the problem is unresolved grief.

I remember I prayed for a woman recently and she was very angry. I said: “Well, what are you angry at?” She really didn’t know. She had no idea what she was angry at, she’s angry at everything. I said: “Well, you started being angry somewhere.” I tracked back, and I found out that her father had abandoned the family when she was quite young. She became deeply attached to her mother and then her mother died unexpectedly.

I said: “You’re still grieving over the loss of your mother. You became deeply attached to your mother, and she literally became an idol in your life – a substitute for God. When what was an idol in your life was taken away, you’re left very angry.” When things we depend on, things which are idols in our life are removed, or they fail, people grieve and become very angry. They grieve because they were attached, and something’s been taken away.

So it could be a person. It could be a dream. It could be someone you were attached to. It could be a loss in an accident or death. Could’ve been a divorce. People grieve when they’ve been abused. One of the problems you find with people who’ve been abused, whether sexually or physically or even verbally and emotionally, is they suffer great grief.

Unless the grief is addressed, the person can remain angry and in a state of shock, and soul-tied to what happened in the past. In other words, death has come. So in a place like that, it’s very easy for evil spirits to gain access to our life.

Spirits of grief – Grief is just an emotion and a process, but when we don’t deal with it, a spirit of grief can sit on our life and we just feel continually sad. Even when you’re in a happy situation, it’s not very happy. It’s like within a moment, sadness comes back again. The spirit of grief is there.

Sometimes, a spirit of death sits on people. When a spirit of death sits on a person, they feel numb, they feel disconnected – disconnected from people, disconnected from themselves. They just feel numbed on the inside. Surrounding that is this deep grief and a sense of hopelessness about the future.

Now the Bible tells us something about God. In 2 Corinthians 1 – it says He’s the God of all comfort. So when we’re in distress, God’s desire is to comfort us. Now the God of all comfort comforts us in all our tribulation that we may be able to comfort others. So God reveals Himself as a God who comforts people. Comes near to them, walks with them through their distress, walks with them through their sorrows, and says – “You’re not alone”. When people are in grief, loneliness becomes a big problem.

So this dear lady in this story was walking behind the coffin, clothed in black, spirit of grief over her, and even though there was a large crowd, she was the loneliest person in that place. The crowd of friends could not comfort her. No one could comfort her. She needed Jesus to come into her life, into her situation. So the Bible says – God is the God of all comfort. He heals the broken-hearted.

In Romans 15 it tells us in verse 13 that “God is the God of all hope. He fills us with joy and peace through believing that we might abound in hope.” So notice these two things – God comforts us, and God brings hope to us. God comforts us in the current pain. God brings hope for a better future. God comes alongside us in our pain, and God lifts our vision to see the future’s better. God is a God who works miracles.

The testimony tonight, when I first met that young girl, there was deep pain in her heart. I remember when I sitting there listening to her give her testimony, God spoke to me and says “I want to heal her. I want to comfort her.” I asked her to come up on the stage, and I took her hand, and as I prayed for her, the Spirit of God came and brought great healing; and now, great hope. Restored her mother to her.

It’s amazing what God can do. Something that was full of death comes abounding in life when God comes in. This is the great thing about our God. He is a God of resurrection. He can come into a situation and make the dead live, and give hope again. You may have suffered loss. You may have suffered a setback. But it’s not the end of your life.

If you will let Christ come in and walk with you through your grief, and lift your vision again, He can give hope for a great future. Your future looks good when you’re in God. It may look painful now. You may be in a valley of sorrow now, but there’s a miracle waiting for you. There’s a change waiting for you. There’s a better future awaiting you. You don’t have to live in despair.

So Jesus looked at the woman, and this is what the Bible said – “He felt deep compassion.” That’s what God is like. He saw her loneliness, her brokenness, saw the desperation, the grief, and He was moved to do something. See, she never did anything. The young man never did anything. Jesus initiated it all. This is what he did – He went to the woman, this is what He said: “Stop your weeping.”

Notice this, she had no reason to stop her weeping – her son is dead. But Jesus said: “Stop your weeping. Because I’m about to do something.” In other words, He’s saying – the weeping is finished. I’m about to change the situation around. The grieving is ended. I’m about to do a miracle. You don’t need to stay in that place anymore.

Notice He addressed her heart. He addressed her pain. “Stop weeping.” Then He touched the casket. No one touches the dead man’s casket. It would make you defiled. Then He spoke: “Young man, arise.” Then the dead man sat up and was restored to his mother.

You see, what is impossible for man is possible for God. If you can believe, God can turn your valley, and it becomes a well of life. Jesus loves to come into hopeless situations. What could be more hopeless than a dead person? Jesus comes in and restores them to life.

I just have to tell you this story, and then we finish up. My son David went to Pakistan. They had invited me there but I was too busy and I said: “Can I send my son?” He took a team with him twice. The second time he went there, he was on the stage and there was about 15000 people. His interpreter was interpreting. Then he began to cough. He fell down. So they put him back on his feet again, and he began to speak again. The interpreter coughed and fell down, and he was dead! It’s not good if your interpreter dies. It’s very difficult.

So, my son immediately stood over him and commanded the spirit of death to go, and the man woke up and within half an hour, was preaching again. My son thought – “Maybe he wasn’t dead. Maybe he was just lying down.” And his friend who was with him, went with him, and he said: “I’m a policeman. I have seen many dead men. I checked that man. That man was dead, and now he’s alive. God has raised him up.” The hopeless situation. Hallelujah.

God is able to come into your situation and breathe comfort and hope. When Jesus comes into your situation, you’re no longer alone. God is with you. Not only that, He begins to work to give you hope for the future. He doesn’t want you to stay weeping. He wants you to look ahead and say – “It’s a great day tomorrow.”

That day started with grief, it started with sorrow, it was a sorrow that spread over the whole city. The day ended with a party. Everyone celebrating. I guess if I was there, I’d want to say “What did you see when you were dead? Did you see heaven? What did you see?” That young man would have many testimonies of what God had done in his life.

When I heard the testimony tonight, I was just so moved in my heart. That God breathed into a place of death and brought life and hope. Hope to a mother who had given up her child, had lived in pain and regret for years, reunited with her daughter, fearful her daughter wouldn’t forgive her. But God had already met her daughter, and she was no longer dead. She was alive. She was no longer dead. She’s alive.

We know what it’s like to adopt a daughter out. This is something that we did also. All your life you grieve over that decision. No matter what the pain that caused you to do it, there is a grief and a death, and you suffer loss. When this happened to us, I came and opened my heart to Jesus Christ, I believed that one day He could bring her back.

So I was so deeply touched that this mother had given up a child, and Jesus met her child, took away the bitterness, took away the anger, took away the death, made her live. I saw her first before this happened, and then I saw her after Jesus healed her, and I hardly recognised her. She was alive because Jesus dealt with her grief. What a joy for us to meet her mother last Sunday.

The woman, abandoned by her husband, a widow, who had to give up her child; and years later, God visited her and the child is restored. This is exactly like the story we were just sharing. The Bible’s story I’ve read, happened 2000 years ago. It was a real mother, a real son, a real bad situation. The testimony you heard tonight is a real mother, a lost daughter, a dead daughter raised to life, and restored to her mother. Jesus still works miracles, restores people, and heals the broken-hearted.

I want you to close your eyes right now.



Do You Want To Be Made Whole? (8 of 12)  

Thu 10 Oct 2013 « Back to Top

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In John 5 , Jesus likens us to sheep - this message gives several ways this is true! One similarity is that sometimes sheep are "cast", lying down, unable to move, unable to function. If we are lying down we may have many excuses, feel a victim, and be waiting for something to happen. However, like the man in this story, who had been waiting 38 years for help, we need to answer this same question Jesus asked: Do you want to be made whole? We have the power of choice - to receive Jesus and have the power of sin broken.

Do You Want To Be Made Whole? (8 of 12)

I want you to have a look at this story here – “After this, there was a feast of the Jews and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now, there was in Jerusalem a sheep gate”. It’s where the sheep came in and out of the city. Actually, maybe they only came in. For some kind of lamb stew or something like that.

Anyway, “there was a pool which called in Hebrew Bethesda – having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of sick people – blind, lame and paralysed, waiting for moving of the water, for an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water and whoever stepped in first after the stirring of the water was made well, whatever disease he had. There was a man who had an infirmity 38 years.” That’s a long time.

“When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him: “Do you want to be made well?” The sick man answered: “Sir, I have no man to put me in the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I’m coming, another steps down before me.” Jesus said to him: “Rise, take up your bed, walk.” Immediately, the man was made well, took up his bed and walked, and that was a Sabbath day.”

So here is a story of a man in desperate need. Before we look at the man, I want to just look at the situation there. The Bible describes it – there was a sheep gate at the side of the city where the sheep would come into the city. There were several porches there and it was called Bethesda, the place or house of mercy. There were multitudes of people who were needing healing.

Just in a moment, we’re just going to focus on the sheep gate. The Bible says that Jesus is the shepherd. He said: “I am the good shepherd.” In another part it says “We all like sheep, have gone astray.” So, God uses many natural pictures to help us understand spiritual things. So, God uses many pictures to describe what people are like; and many pictures to describe what He is like.

So the Bible describes people as being like sheep. Of course, if you haven’t’ seen sheep or know much about them, that doesn’t mean anything. If we said they’re like people on a motor scooter, now you know what they’re talking about because you see heaps of those. They’re all wild, all going their own way.

There’s no place like Taiwan for these motor scooters. I’ve never seen so many. You get there, and they’re all at the lights, all crowded around you. Motor scooters everywhere, surrounding you. Where did they come from? They all line up. Lights change, woah they’re gone, weaving in and out of the cars. First couple of visits here, I get quite frightened. All these motor scooters. Then, when it’s wet, there’s this big long coat that they wear. Our daughter had a motor scooter. We thought she’d like one of those. She’s laughed, “I’d never wear anything like that.”

So, the motor scooters. We talk about motor scooters, then you know what I’m talking about. If I talk about sheep, “Bah, I don’t know.” So I’ll tell you a little bit about sheep. Years ago, when we went to a small country town, we were in a place with many farms, lots of sheep. So I decided we would get a pet lamb. So cute. They’re lovely. But they grow to be big sheep. They don’t stay cute very long. I had to learn a lot of things about sheep. So I share with you a few things about sheep. Here are a few characteristics of sheep.

The first thing, sheep have got absolutely no sense of direction. None whatsoever. The moment they get out of sight of the other sheep, they’re lost. They have no sense of direction. You get a cat, you can take it across the city, it’ll come home and find you. You take a sheep, just move it round the corner, it’s lost. That’s why the Bible says in Isaiah 53:6 – “We all, like sheep, have gone astray.” We just got lost. Sheep get lost. Once they’re lost, they’ve no idea where home is. They need a shepherd.

It’s just like people. People who walk in sin are like sheep who are lost. We don’t even know we’re lost, we just don’t know our way. Look for all sorts of things, but cannot find a way. We need a shepherd, someone to show us the way. So, one thing about sheep is they easily get lost.

The second thing about sheep is they get easily scared. They get very easily frightened. So you get a sheep, slightest noise, then they’re off. They run. It’s like that with people. They get so scared so easily. They read the news – “Oh” – they get frightened and scared of all kinds of things. That’s why through the Bible, it keeps saying – “Don’t be afraid.” I think it says that more than anything. “Don’t fear. Don’t be afraid”. Because people get scared. Fear stops us following God. Fear is the opposite to faith. So the moment you startle a sheep, it’s gone, runs away, and then gets lost.

Here’s another thing about sheep – they follow one another. They like to get in a group. Ever seen teenagers all get in a group? Sheep like to be together. But once one goes, it doesn’t matter if they don’t know where they’re going, the other sheep just follow. “Where’s everyone going?” “That way.” “What’s that way?” “I don’t know, we’re all going that way.” “Is there any good way?” “I don’t know, we’re all going that way. Follow quickly.” So they all follow.

It’s like the crowd; like people. Follow the fashion. Fashion goes this way – everyone goes this way. Fashion goes that way, everyone goes that way. You follow the crowd. So, sheep just follow the crowd. So if you startle one and it starts to run, the others all run too. Bible says – Don’t follow the fashion of this world. It’s changing. So, there’s some things about sheep.

Here’s another thing about sheep – when they get sick, they isolate. So you find a sheep on its own, it’s probably sick, got something wrong with it. So, it’s the same with people. When they get sick, when something’s wrong, they stop talking, they stop phoning and texting. They don’t come to church anymore, don’t come to the small group anymore. That’s why you have to keep ringing them up – “Hey where are you? What’s happening?” They’re sheep. They go astray. When they get sick, they just go away on their own.

So, here’s another thing about sheep – they get parasites in them. They get bugs in the ground from what they eat, and they cannot get rid of the parasites. They need the shepherd to come. They get parasites inside them from what they eat. It’s the same with people. We open our lives to many different things and then demonic spirits come in, and we can’t get them out. We need the shepherd to come and get them out.

So, in New Zealand, the shepherd will come and what they do is they drench the sheep. They have something – a chemical – they put in their mouth. So they grab the sheep, the sheep doesn’t like this. They squirt this thing inside, the liquid goes inside them. Then, you know what happens? All night – they’re coughing. Coughing out the bugs which have been killed by the drench.

It’s like that when I come to some meetings. I pray for people, I speak to the demons. Coughing. We were praying for someone just the other day, and they’d been coughing all week. The drench is working. The medicine is working. So, these are some things with sheep.

There’s another thing about sheep. We have a particular fly called a blowfly. It’s quite big. Horrible things really. What they do, is they come out at certain times of the year and they lay eggs on the sheep. On the back or on the head or around the ears. What happens is, the little eggs hatch and they become what’s called maggots - little wriggly things; and they will feed off the sheep. They’ll either eat right through the skin into the flesh, or they’ll go into the ear and into the brain and drive the sheep crazy.

It’s just like the devil - sows his lies into our life, and when you believe the lie, gets into your head. Then you act stupid. Do crazy things. “Why do you do that?” “I don’t know, I just want to do that.” So the sheep need to be helped.

Here’s another thing about sheep. There’re lots of interesting things about sheep. Here’s another thing about sheep – they have no defence against the predator. No defence. They got no sharp horns, they’ve got no sharp teeth. They really don’t have much defence against anything. It’s very like people.

The Bible likens us to sheep, likens the devil to a wolf or a predator – come to steal and destroy. When the predators chase the sheep, the sheep get highly distressed because they’re being hunted and they get into a panic.

So sometimes we have a problem in New Zealand where a dog will begin to chase the sheep, they begin to bite at them, tear at them. It’s incredibly distressful because once the dogs get a taste for the blood, they don’t eat the sheep, they just kill them. Something happens to some dogs when they get the taste of the sheep blood. They become extremely dangerous and they chase the sheep and then they’ll leave the sheep bleeding and dying across the paddock.

This is exactly like the devil – like a wild dog with a taste for blood pursuing people, destroying their lives, and leaving them bleeding, leaving them injured and wounded. Guilt and shame, grief and sorrow, damaged. If you look at a paddock where a wild dog has gone, you’ll see sheep lying on the ground and they’re bleeding, and because there’s no remedy, you have to put them out of their misery and kill them.

So in the same way, if you have spiritual lives to see, you’ll see people with broken hearts, broken lives, hearts full of grief, desperately needing help because they can’t help themselves. So the image of a sheep is an amazingly accurate image of what people are like spiritually, and our need for a shepherd. So Jesus describes Himself as the good shepherd, willing to give His life for the sheep.

If you read Psalm 23, you’ll see what a shepherd does. We haven’t got time to do that, I want to just stay on this story. There’s one more interesting thing about sheep. There’re lots of interesting things, I’ll give you one more thing.

Sometimes, the sheep when they’ve been well-fed and they lie down, if they lie down too long, they get an unusual condition. They become, we use the word ‘cast’. It probably can’t be described here so I’ll describe what they look like. They’re lying on the ground and they can’t get up, and if they get up, they’re all giddy and they fall over again. So when the sheep is cast, when it’s lying down like that, it can’t get up. It actually can’t get up of its own accord. It needs the shepherd to get it back on its feet again, hold it steady until it gets back going again. If it’s like that too long, it affects its whole balance.

See, we’re not made to lie down like that. We’re not made to be cast on the ground, unable to get up, unable to move, unable to serve God. We’re not made for that. Whatever has cast you down, whatever’s caused you to lie down and give up, if you stay there too long, it’ll get harder and harder to stand up. There’re many things that can cause us to lie down, many things that cause us to give up. We get offended, we have a disappointment, someone betrays us, someone hurts us, things we had hoped for don’t happen, and we start to draw back from God.

Instead of being alive and standing spiritually; instead of being in a place of faith and trust; instead of moving forward with God’s plan for our life; we quit and we give up. I see many people like that. They’re not lying on the ground, but they’re lying down inside. The fight is gone. The faith is gone. They’ve drawn back inside.

Last night, we used a different picture. We used the picture of a person hiding in a cave. Today, the picture’s of a sheep cast on the ground, unable to get up, and the shepherd goes to the sheep, never to condemn the sheep. The shepherd doesn’t go like this: “Hey, why’re you lying down? Why’re you lying down like that? Don’t you understand? If you stay like that, you never get anywhere, you’ll never be able to get up again. Stupid sheep. Get up on your feet!” See, they don’t do that. Doesn’t work. Sheep goes: “Bah.” The shepherd helps the sheep get up.

Now let’s have a look in the story – And Jesus came to the pool of Bethesda, which means the place or house of mercy. And there were lots of people there, and they were sick and they were blind and they were lame and paralysed. People who had infirmity – no strength. People with no vision. People unable to walk. People who were crippled, not functioning properly. They were waiting, hoping something would change. There was one man there who had an infirmity for 38 years. He was lying. Everyday someone would carry him to the pool and he was lying there.

38 years is a long time to be sick. That’s more than half of a person’s life. That’s a long time to be sick. Jesus saw the man, just as He sees you, and He asked him an interesting question. Remember the man is on the ground. He’s like the sheep, he cannot get up, he has no power to stand up. What he needs is a miracle. He needs the power of God to change him. Something is wrong.

The Bible says he had an infirmity. The word infirmity means to be without strength. Maybe he had what’s called ‘palsy’ or he’s paralysed. But he had no strength of his own to stand up again. So he’s hoping somehow God will do something. But he has his own idea about what would happen. God has to do it a certain way. God’s got many ways of helping us, getting us back up on our feet.

Jesus saw him and asked him an interesting question – “Do you want to be made whole?” Now that’s a strange question to ask. When God asks a question, it’s not because He doesn’t know the answer, He wants you to think and He wants you to see something about your life.

This man was so used to being like this, he developed a whole lifestyle around being a victim. A whole lifestyle around being powerless. A whole lifestyle around being helpless. When Jesus said – “Do you want to be whole?” You know what the answer to that is? There’s only one answer to that. The answer is – Yes. But he didn’t say that. He didn’t answer that at all. But what came out of this mouth was what God wanted to have out there. God wanted to draw out of him what was really going on in his heart.

“Do you want to be made whole?” “Yes!” So Jesus asked the question – “Do you want to be made whole?” “Oh, I have no one to help me. No one to look after me. There’re so many people here and when the angel comes, by the time I get there, it’s too late. This is so terrible. It’s not my fault. Too many people. No one to help me.”

See, he is thinking as a victim. He is thinking like a victim thinks. Victims blame everyone else. Victims find excuses. “Oh, well my family were very poor you know. My father left us. My parents broke up. Oh, the teachers didn’t like me.” “Do you want to be made whole?” “Oh, you don’t understand. I come from such a poor family.” “Oh, you don’t understand, I don’t have any opportunities.” “Do you want to be made whole?” “Oh well, you know, it’s been a long time that I’ve been like this you know. And I’ve been getting a benefit from the government. You know, I would lose my benefit. What would I do?”

You understand, his whole thinking is like a victim. There’s nothing there except blame and excuse. Jesus said – “Do you want your life to be different? Will you make a choice?” You see, our life, God has given us a free will. He’s given us the power to make choices. And the life you are living now is the result of the choices you’ve made. It’s not all the bad things that happened to you, it’s how you chose to respond. So God gives you the power to choose what you’ll do with your life.

When Jesus died on the cross, He died to break the power of sin. When He rose from the dead, He defeated the devil, He totally broke the power of sin. He made it possible for every person to be free from the power of sin, to be free from evil spirits. “Do you want to be made whole? Do you want to be free?”

See, the issue now lies with us. God has done on the cross for us, all that needs to be done. Do you want to be made whole? Will you make a choice? A choice to respond to God. A choice to believe His word. Do you want to be made whole? Do you want it to be different? If you want a different future, you need to start by making different choices.

“Well, I haven’t had much education.” “Well why don’t you choose to get some?” “Well, I was terribly treated. I’m so angry about that.” “Well, would you choose to forgive?” “Well I can’t get over what happened to me.” “Would you choose to let it go? Would you choose to go to counselling? Would you choose to get some help? Do you want to be made whole?! Do you want to be different?!” “Oh well, it’s my husband. You don’t understand what he’s like. He drinks so badly. He’s so bad to me. That’s why I’m always depressed.” “Do you want to be made whole?! It’s a choice whether you let that happen to you. We have the power of choice.”

So when Jesus died on the cross, He broke the power of sin and made it possible for you to make a choice; a choice to receive Him and have the power of sin broken; a choice to follow Him and live a different life. Every day you wake up, you have the power of choice. Every day when you wake up you can choose to walk with God. You choose your attitude for the day. You can choose a positive attitude, a negative attitude. You can choose to believe God, you can choose to remain in defeat.

“Do you want to be made whole?” That’s what Jesus said, and it drew out of him the condition of his heart. Then Jesus spoke to him “Rise and be healed.” The man snapped out of it and stood up. “Woah, I’m standing.” Then He said to him a little later, He said: “Don’t continue sinning or a worse thing will happen.” In other words, Jesus connected the condition of his life to sin in his life, and Jesus came not just to deal with sickness, not just to deal with demons, but to deal with the root issue in our life – the power of sin that separates us from God.

Do you want to be made whole? Wholeness begins with a decision and it’s also a journey. The journey to be made whole in your spirit begins with the decision to receive Christ. God puts the spirit in you, and you become connected and alive to God. The journey to wholeness involves many decisions – decisions daily on giving God access to your life and choosing to agree with Him about life, and to let go of your old ways and old opinions. When you begin to walk with Jesus, it’s a journey of wholeness. As we rise each day and connect with Him, and we begin to let His words get in our heart, we begin to change.

You can stop at any point. You can lie down at any point. So I find many people – some don’t know Christ, and they’re lying down on the inside. Defeated by life. Dependent on others. Living like a victim. A sad thing is to see Christians lying down, who came to Christ and stood up again to walk with God, and something happened – someone offended you, someone let you down, something negative happened. And instead of standing and believing God and asking God to show you how to handle it, you lay down on the inside and then couldn’t get up.

Jesus wants to help you today. He wants to speak into your life and get you back up again into the place of serving and functioning like you ought to be, walking with God again in a place of life.

Why don’t we close our eyes right now.



Stretch Out and Be Healed (9 of 12)  

Fri 11 Oct 2013 PM « Back to Top

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Sometimes an area of our life has become "withered", or without life, just like the man in Mark 3, who had a withered hand. We tend to conceal, or hide in shame, when we feel like this. To restore the man in the story, Jesus required 2 "action steps": 1) Bring the problem right out into the open 2) A stretch of faith - doing what Jesus asks us to do. The healing is "in the stretch"!

Stretch Out and Be Healed (9 of 12)

Transcription 9 of 12

If you have your Bible with you, let’s open our Bible in the book of Mark. Wow, we’ve had so many stories of people’s lives changed. It’s amazing. We’re going to read from Mark chapter 3 – The man with the withered hand.

Verse 1 - “Jesus entered the synagogue again, and a man was there who had a withered hand.” In another part of the Bible, it says it was his right hand.

Verses 2-6: “So they watched Jesus closely, whether He would heal him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse Him. And He said to the man who had the withered hand, “Step forward.” Then He asked the religious leaders, “Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they kept silent. And when He had looked around at them with anger, being grieved by the hardness of their hearts, He said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored as whole as the other. Then the Pharisees went out and immediately plotted with the Herodians against Jesus, how they might destroy Him.”

This is a story of a powerful encounter a man had with Jesus Christ. It’s also the only time that you hear in the Bible, Jesus got angry. So it’s good to look into the story, see what we can learn – what makes God angry. It’s not what you think. It’s usually something else.

So in the story, there’s a man who has a problem in his life. This man is a believer, he’s in a church. The Bible says – Jesus came that we might have life and have it abundantly. In other words, God wanted to restore to us, spiritual life and vitality. God designed us for relationship, designed us to be connected to Him so his like would flow through us.

God who is the spirit, desired His spirit would be united to our spirit, and His life would flow through us, His nature flow through us – love and joy and peace, that His life and creativity would flow through us. So Jesus said – I come so that you might have life, and have it much more abundantly. When man sinned, the life of God ceased within him. There was a breach in his relationship with God. Spiritually, he disconnected and so instead of being able to live with the flow of life from his spirit, man had to live out of his soul and body. Sin and sickness entered the earth.

Jesus was speaking in one of the feasts, and He said – out of your innermost being will flow rivers of living water. And He was speaking about the Holy Spirit who’d be given to people. So, God’s desire is to put His Spirit in you, to fill you with His life, and that that life will flow out creatively, with love, with the nature of God, that you would extend the kingdom of God in every arena of society.

The church is the group of people God has raised up to empower believers to get us filled with the Holy Spirit and mobilised to serve God. So Jesus came into the synagogue, there’s all these people there worshipping. There’s one man Jesus notices and this man has a withered hand. Something has gone wrong. Possibly he had a brain aneurysm because often that leads to a part of the body drying up. So the problem may have started in his mind – his brain. But it manifested in his hand and it was withered. That words means literally to lose life, to dry up. It means to shrivel up.

Have you ever had a piece of fruit and it slipped under the cupboard or under the bed; and then a long time later you find it. “Oh no. Look at that. All the juice, all the life is gone. It’s all dried up and withered. It’s just horrible. It looks so different when all the life is taken out of it. We use the term ‘withered’. No life. It’s all dried up.

So this man, his hand had withered. Often is the case when a man’s hand withers up, it begins to withdraw and turn inward. So when you find someone like this, often the hand is dried and turned in, and it turns right in – the man tried to hide it. No one wants to walk around like this. That’s awful. If someone’s got a problem like that, there are a number of problems that come with it.

First, is incredible shame. You know, no one wants to hold. You got to hide it. So there’s a shame and a tendency to conceal what is withered. Whatever we’re ashamed of, we have no power with. Whatever we have no power with, we feel ashamed of. When Adam and Eve sinned and they were ashamed, they covered over.

So any area of our life which has become withered, when something has gone wrong, we withdraw and hide it. This is true of people everywhere. When things have gone wrong in our life, when something is not working right, we tend to cover it and hide it. We tend to conceal it. The last thing you want is someone to point it out to you.

So this man had a withered hand and notice first of all, he’s got a physical condition. In the Bible, when the Bible speaks about the right hand, always in the Bible these things are symbolic of something. So, the right hand in the Bible was the hand of blessing. The right hand was the hand of power. The right hand is the hand you work with .

So when it says his right hand was withered, it means no blessing flowing around his life, no power in his life. So the right hand being withered is a picture for a person whose life is withered. If there’s no life, there’s no blessing. It’s actually cursed. Demonic spirits are operating and that person can’t work. He can’t produce in life what he could do. His potential is greatly limited. So when the man had the withered hand, there’s no blessing, no life, and he’s unable to fulfil his potential. There is a limit on what he can accomplish with his life.

When you think of the hand, you think of work. Imagine trying to work with only one hand. How do you manage your computer? It’s very hard if you’ve got a withered hand. It doesn’t operate. So his life was greatly restricted and limited because of the problem he had.

Not only that, the right hand in the Bible is often a picture of ministry – the ministry to people. So this picture of the withered hand is also a picture of people’s ministry withered away. So we see three different aspects:

Firstly a man with a physical problem – he’s in a condition that needs healing and restoration. In the story, we see the heart of God to heal him.

Secondly, it’s a picture of a life that’s not blessed – a life that is withered, a life that is cursed. It’s a picture of a life that’s covered in shame, whose potential is limited.

It’s also a picture of a believer whose ministry has become withered. Once they may have worked very well. Once they served God passionately. Once they were seeing fruit. Once they were accomplishing great things for God. But something happened and now the arm has become withered. No longer are you ministering like you once did. You’ve withdrawn – no life and vibrancy, and have drawn back inside, and is somewhat ashamed of your condition.

Jesus saw this man. His heart went out to him. There are a number of things that can cause our life to become withered. There are many things that cause us to shrivel up and draw back.

Disappointment can cause you to become withered. The Bible says – Sorrow dries the bones. If our heart is broken, there is a withering in our life – no joy, no vibrancy, you tend to draw back. So there are many people from broken homes whose soul is withered. They don’t carry the life and joy. There are problems in their life. So, grief can wither our soul.

Unforgiveness and bitterness can wither your soul. You can become withered and drawn back because you’re angry at what someone has done, angry at some bad treatment – mistreatment by a father, mistreatment by a mother, mistreatment by some other person. When people are angry and hurt and hold unforgiveness and bitterness, it causes the heart to wither. When people begin to hate someone, begin to harbour resentment and hatred, it withers the soul. We’re not made to carry these things in our heart. Our life becomes withered.

You don’t see it in the beginning because it’s concealed but over a period of time, the effect of bitterness, unforgiveness, hatred. It affects the person, causes them to draw back.

Another thing withers the soul is fear. Fear causes people to draw back. When we become afraid, when fear grips our life, we draw back from facing things. We close up on the inside. Like the man with the withered hand, we draw back within ourselves. Remember we saw the story of Elijah when he came under pressure and became afraid, shrivelled up and drew back and hid in the cave. Many people do that. When intimidating circumstances come, if we don’t respond with boldness and faith, we become intimidated and draw back and our ministry becomes withered.

In 2 Timothy 1:6, Paul wrote to Timothy. Timothy’s ministry had become withered. He had a powerful gift in his life. He had a powerful gift of the Spirit that could change lives, that could bring the life of God. But it was dormant, it was withered, it was not operating because of fear. He was intimidated by older people, and fear gripped his heart. Instead of rising boldly, he drew back, began to play it safe. He looked the same, but inside, his ministry was withering. It was drawing back because of fear.

Fear and intimidation will cause you to draw back from bold action – boldly following the Lord, bolding serving the Lord. Disappointment can cause you to wither. Disappointment can cause you to draw back. Listen, this is one of the things I know – that once you start drawing back, you feel ashamed of your condition. You know you’re not doing your best. You know that you’re defeated.

Maybe there’s sexual sin. Something’s going on in your life. You can’t seem to break free of it. The condemnation of it causes you to lose your authority. You begin to draw back in your ministry. There are so many different ways that our ministry can become withered, or our life can become withered.

I met many withered people desperately needing the touch of God – people from broken homes, people who’ve been abused, people who’ve suffered in relationships, whose soul has shattered, and they’ve literally draw back from life, grieving and hurt and lonely; sometimes suicidal, sometimes depressed.

In this situation in this particular meeting, Jesus saw the man and He did something interesting. He identified the man but the last thing the man would have wanted is to be pointed out. Jesus said – “Stand up.” And the man stood up. Now, everyone is looking at him. Tries to conceal his hand. Everyone can see him. The Bible says – Jesus looked around and He became very angry, became stirred inside. Isn’t it interesting, Jesus became angry?

This is the thing that angered Him. It says – He was grieving inside. When we feel grief, it’s because something has been robbed or taken away. We feel something has been lost, and you can feel grief over the loss of a person, grief over the loss of an animal, grief over the loss of a job. But Jesus grieved over something else.

He grieved that the church of the living God had lost its love for people and lost its desire to see people whole. Surrounded by people in need, they then becomes legalistic, judgemental, burdened with laws. Instead of the life of God flowing like a river, people were oppressed – laws to keep, condemned at left, right and centre. Jesus was grieved because the religious system of the day was more concerned about judging and accusing than about loving and healing.

The religious system did not represent God. It claimed to represent God. They said – we see, but they were blind. They were fixed in their opinions. They were of no help to people. God forbid that our life becomes useless for Him, that we become no longer any help because we’ve become rigid, judgemental, finding fault in others rather than seeing a person made in the image of God. The leaders were more interested in finding fault than in healing the broken-hearted, in healing those who were sick. They had lost their way, yet they said – we know the way.

When Jesus looked around, He saw the church, He saw the bondage that was there. He grieved. He was very angry at the religious leaders and He challenged them. Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath? They wouldn’t answer. The Sabbath was made for man – a place of rest and healing. So He spoke to the man with the withered hand. You notice, there are two things He told him to do.

The first thing He told him to do – stand up, come out of your place of hiding. Come out of your place of concealment. Come out of the place of shame where you cover what’s going on. Bring this problem right out into the open, where everyone can see it. Of course, he was ashamed. Of course he wanted to hide it. Of course he was embarrassed.

But God was embarrassed about the condition of the religious leaders. He said to the man – “Stand up. Don’t hide in the crowd.” I’m sure he wasn’t at the front row – He’s probably somewhere in the back, in the corner. Jesus said – “I see you there with that withered hand. Stand up.” The man stands up.

First step, becoming right again with God – you recognise your condition. Stop hiding. Stop concealing it and stand up, make a decision – you’ll respond to Jesus. Make a decision – you’ll say yes when Jesus speaks to you. He stood up, and he brought into the open this terrible dreadful condition. He did what he could do – he stood up and overcame his fear of people.

Then Jesus asked him to do something else. He gave a command, He said: “Stretch out your hand.” Physically impossible to do. The man made the stretch of faith. He began to respond to what Jesus said. When you obey what Jesus says, you are demonstrating faith. True faith is always seen in obedience.

He began to stretch and the most unusual sensation happens. His hand which should be withered, his hand which should have been dried up, as he began to stretch, he felt life flowing into his hand. The dead hand began to come alive. The flesh started to be restored and he stretched his hand out. It’s alive again! That which was dead has come alive. What was dead and shameful is alive! He’s excited. He’s not hiding anymore. He’s telling everyone.

The power of God had set him free. If your life has become withered, God wants to heal you and put His life back into you. If your life or ministry has become withered, God wants to restore you. But it does require something. You notice in the story 2 things – stand up – don’t hide this condition any longer. Bring it to the light. Bring it to Jesus Christ. Secondly, do what you haven’t been able to do – stretch out. As you stretch out believing, God could work with you. It’s always in the stretch that God moves.

So often in the Bible, Jesus commanded people to do something – told the blind man – “Wash in the pool”, and he could see. He told the lepers – “Go walk back and show yourselves to the priest”, and as they walked, they were healed. Many times, Jesus asks people to do something. Said to the blind man – “Look up, what do you see”, and he could see. God always asks us to do something and I’m going to ask you to do something.

I want you to close your eyes right now.



Spiritual Blindness (10 of 12)  

Sat 12 Oct 2013 AM « Back to Top

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The Bible describes 2 kingdoms - the kingdom of "light" (Jesus), and the kingdom of darkness (devil). The Bible also describes several spiritual problems in the heart which cause spiritual blindness - hatred, pride, bitter offences. Blindness speaks of limitations and captivity. In Mark 10, a blind man called Bartimaeus obtained his healing. What did he do that caused Jesus to stop and respond to him? What did he believe about Jesus? How did he demonstrate faith? His encounter can be a doorway to your encounter!

Spiritual Blindness (10 of 12)

Transcription 10 of 12 – Spiritual Blindness

Let’s open up our Bible and we’re going to look in the gospel of Mark. We’re going to read in verse 46-52.

Mark 10:46 –

“Now they came to Jericho. As He went out of Jericho with His disciples and a great multitude, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the road begging. And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Then many warned him to be quiet; but he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” So Jesus stood still and commanded him to be called. Then they called the blind man, saying to him, “Be of good cheer. Rise, He is calling you.” And throwing aside his garment, he rose and came to Jesus. So Jesus answered and said to him, “What do you want Me to do for you?” The blind man said to Him, “Rabbi, that I may receive my sight.” Then Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you whole.” And immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus in the way.”

So the story begins as Jesus comes into Jericho. Jericho was a city that was cursed. Many years before it had been cursed. There was a man in the city, his name was Bartimaeus. That means – son of Timaeus. This man had an unusual problem – he was blind. He was unable to see. So he lived in a world of darkness. The Bible says – he was the son of Timaeus – which means to be secret, or to be covered over. There’s something in that family, there were secrets.

The Bible says – this man was blind, couldn’t see, so he sat on the side of the road, and he would just beg. He would ask for people to help him. The blindness affected his life. The blindness changed what he did. Instead of being able to pursue his dreams, instead of being able to do what he had in his heart to do, he was now sitting by the edge of the road, dependent on other people to help him survive in life. He was a beggar and he had the official garment of a beggar on. The garment he was wearing was the evidence of being a beggar.

This day, he did something that caused Jesus to stand still. So we’re going to look into this story and what caused Jesus to stop. This is Jesus’ last visit through Jericho. He is on His way to Jerusalem; He is on His way to the cross. On this day, the man’s life changed. It changed because he encountered Jesus.

Now, I want us to first of all, have a look at the man’s condition. The man was blind – no vision, no ability to see. This was a natural blindness - blindness caused by some physical problem. But there are other forms of blindness – there can be also a spiritual blindness. The Bible says of Jesus – that the Spirit of the Lord was upon Him to bring recovery of sight to the blind. In other words, to help people see what they couldn’t see. The story is more than just a blind man being healed. It’s the story of Jesus opening a man’s eyes, moving him out of a world of darkness into a world of light.

I want you just to close your eyes for a moment. As you close your eyes, mostly you’re in darkness. If you were to put your hand on your eyes, it becomes quite dark. Now, with your hand over your eyes, try to imagine how you’re going to walk out of this place. Consider how you’ll find your way home. You have some memory but you don’t know what lies in the way. You can’t see the obstacles. You can’t see what’s in your way. You can’t see the stairs. You can’t see the dangers.

Can you imagine now, living in that world of darkness, how you will find your way home. Can you imagine now, how you would live your life if that darkness was permanent – no colour, no sun, nothing to see. Just darkness, and no way out of it. Can you imagine what that would be like? Now, open your eyes again. Look around – how beautiful everything looks. Your sight is very important to you.

The Bible tells us that the kingdom of God is a kingdom of light. It’s a kingdom which we can see clearly. It’s a kingdom where its nature is love. The Bible also describes the kingdom of the devil – calls it a ‘kingdom of darkness’. When you’re in that kingdom, you are spiritually blind, you are in a spiritual darkness, and you can’t see. You can’t see where you’re going, you can’t see what is in the way, you can’t see the dangers.

The Bible tells us – Jesus came to bring us out of the kingdom of darkness, a kingdom of spiritual blindness, and into the kingdom of light, into a kingdom where we can see. We see life differently. We see people differently. We understand about eternity. Everything changes as you come into the kingdom of God. You come out of the kingdom of darkness and into the kingdom of light.

Now, there are many things that cause spiritual blindness. I’m going to just give you a couple of them. If we look in 1 John chapter 2, and it says in verse 9-11: “He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.”

So, you notice the Bible talks about hatred. Hatred is an issue of the heart. When people get hurt, they harbour unforgiveness, it can grow to bitterness and hate. We don’t always feel hate, but hate is a spiritual problem in the heart. You can’t always see hatred, but it will often manifest in a person’s life.

If there’s hatred in a person’s heart, they’re literally unable to be loving. They can pretend to be nice, but the love is never authentic or genuine. Love can never flow from a heart where there is hatred. If there’s hatred in your heart, then love cannot flow to touch people. What is worse, if there’s hatred in your heart, it blinds you. You cannot see your way in relationships. Hatred creates a darkness around your life and it’s not surprising, because hatred comes from the devil and his kingdom is a kingdom of darkness.

So when people have hate in their heart, they literally become blinded by their hate. They can’t see clearly to make good decisions. So they make bad decisions in relationships. Literally because they can’t see clearly.

When you grow up in a family where there’s turmoil and trouble – perhaps the family breaks up, perhaps there’s grief and hurt in the family, you are not responsible for what your parents do. You are responsible for what you let get in your heart. If anger and hatred sit in your heart, this is your responsibility.

What you have to understand is this – that if you leave a family with hatred in your heart, hatred towards your father, hatred towards your mother, or even in some cases, hatred towards yourself, it will blind you. You’ll be unable to form good relationships. You will always see others through the filter of your hate and it will affect you.

The Bible says – He that has hatred in his heart walks in darkness, cannot see, because the hatred blinds the eyes. People who hate their parents will express that hatred towards their children. For some of you, the anger and hate you have experienced is generational – that children growing up hating their parents, express the same thing to their own children. This is a serious problem – that generationally, hatred can flow like a river; and generation after generation is in darkness. There’s a lack of love.

Love touches hearts. Love bonds people together. Love causes us to feel connected. So when there’s a lack of love, then we feel it deeply. Hatred can manifest in more than one way. You may not have realised this. The Bible says that hatred is the cause of murder. So if you read that a murder has taken place, there’s one thing you can be sure of, that underneath it was hatred; and all it took was a provocation. The person becomes provoked, their anger flares up, their hatred flows out and expresses as murder.

Let’s see if I can find the verse on that. In 1 John 3 – it tells us that he that hates his brother is a murderer. What an incredible thing that is. See, we’ve already read that he who hates his brother is in darkness. But the Bible tells us also that the person who hates his brother is a murderer – verse 15 of chapter 3. Let’s read it from verse 14: “We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death. Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.”

So we need to see here in this passage, a murderer takes life from someone. A murderer takes a person’s life. So, if someone is murdered, the motivation was hatred and the life was taken away. So, the first expression of hatred is violent or angry acts against another person. That can be physical violence, or it can be angry words. That’s why when someone is really angry, you will feel frightened because behind it there’ll be a spirit of murder. You can literally feel afraid because this could get out of control.

We’re not designed to hate people. We’re not designed to live with hate in our heart. We’re designed to be loving. When hatred is in our heart, we can’t see clearly, we react against people and then attempt to hurt them. People can really hurt you with their words and you walk away, and you feel your life has been drained away, end up in pain. It can take you some time to recover.

Another form of hatred – what I’ll call ‘cold love’. The love that God has is alive and warm and vibrant. It touches us. Cold love – the person’s heart is closed up against you. They are polite, they don’t do anything that’s really bad, but there’s no flow of love. It’s like a coldness in their heart. So their behaviour is ok, but you don’t feel the love at all. You look and you think, what’s wrong with this? But the heart is closed up. I have found whenever there’s cold love, underneath there’ll be hate. It’s just the person’s learned to manage it and not to learn how to express the love of God.

So you see, the Bible’s very clear – hatred in your heart causes blindness. You can’t see clearly in relationships; causes you to live in darkness; and it affects your relationships with people. The Bible tells us – demonic spirits can cause blindness. In 2 Corinthians 4:4 – “Now, the god of this world has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe, lest the light of the gospel would shine in.”

So another cause of spiritual blindness is the activity of demonic spirits. The Bible says – the god of this world – it’s talking about evil spirits. It says – it blinds the mind so they can’t see, they can’t understand. You share about Jesus with them, and they don’t understand. They might even say something like this: “I can’t see that.” They’re actually spiritually blind.

This is why we need to pray for the unsaved. All our efforts to reach people, we need to pray for them. We’re praying for the blindness to go. We’re praying for demonic influence to lift off them so that their mind becomes clear and they can see the truth and embrace the truth.

Another thing that causes us to become spiritually blind is pride. Let me give you a verse – Revelations 3:7 – the Bible’s talking about people in church and it says – “You say you have no need, but it says you’re wretched and poor and blind.”

Pride means – I’m excessively interested in myself. Pride has two faces – very arrogant and projecting myself, and I’m so in love with me I can’t see anything about you. Pride causes people to be very self-centred. The person who’s proud has this kind of view – “It’s all about me. Tell me more about me.” So, a person’s who’s proud, when you are with them, you would feel of no value whatsoever because they’re too busy thinking about themselves. When you start to talk with them, you don’t talk much, they do all the talking. It’s all about them. So that’s one face of pride.

The other face of pride is exactly the opposite. “I’m of no value whatsoever.” The person is introverted. They’re focused on themselves. They’re always thinking – what are people thinking about me. I wonder what they’re thinking. I want people to like me. So this again, is the face of pride. All of these things create a spiritual darkness around us. They make us blind – we can’t see.

Here’s another thing that creates blindness – and that is bitter offenses. When people are offended, when they harbour unforgiveness in the heart, it’s very hard to see clearly because you constantly see your offense. The young woman offended with her father, is easily offended by men. Young man offended by his mother, easily offended by women. These things blind us. We can’t see clearly.

You notice with blind Bartimaeus, he was begging. See, he was begging. What does it mean to beg? That means you’re reaching out to someone to come through for you. You’re reaching out to someone to meet your needs. Many people do this.

When you can’t see clearly what God says about you, you will try and get people to affirm who you are. When you can’t see clearly what God says about you – your values, your giftings and your purpose – you will want other people to tell you. So you will use relationships to help you feel better and your relationships will always have a hidden demand. “Please tell me you like me. Please tell me I’m ok.” So, dependent relationships are built, which become very unhealthy.

If we have judgements in our heart, this also blinds us. In Matthews chapter 7 verse 5 – Jesus talked about judging. When you judge people, it says – you can’t see them clearly and we judge people all kinds of different ways. We may judge people according to their gender. “All women are like this.” Or “all men are like this.” We may judge people according to their race. So people who have judgements in the heart can’t see clearly and it affects how we live our life.

Here’s the thing we need to see about this man –this man wanted to be different. He heard that Jesus was passing by and to him, this was significant. He heard that Jesus would soon be there and he’d heard many things about Jesus. He heard Jesus was the coming Saviour, he heard Jesus did miracles, he heard Jesus helped people, he heard Jesus never turned anyone down.

When he heard Jesus helped people – set people free of demons, set people free of sicknesses, faith rose in his heart. He wanted to be different. He wanted the power of God to come into his life to change him. “I don’t want to be blind. I don’t want to sit in darkness.”

In Isaiah 42 – I think about verse 7 or verse 9 – it says that people who are blind, were sitting in darkness in a prison. Spiritual darkness is like a prison limiting your life, stopping you from seeing, holding you captive. If you have pride, it’s holding you captive. Bitterness is holding you captive. Hatred is holding you captive. If you have something spiritually holding you captive, you’re sitting in darkness, in a prison, looking for someone to help you.

This man decided – “I’ve had enough. I want Jesus to change me. I don’t want to stay here in this place.” Most people will stay like they are and will not change until the pain of staying as they are is greater than the pain of change. This man believed Jesus could change him, he believed Jesus could change his life. So when he heard Jesus was coming by, he began to cry out.

You have had enough of living in spiritual darkness, enough of being in a spiritual prison, enough of reaching out to people to try and come through for you. Reach out to Jesus. This is how he did it – he raised his voice – “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me.” He used the term ‘Son of David’. This was the name given to the coming saviour of the world. So what he’s saying is this – “Jesus I know you save people. I know you can break the power of sin. I know you can break the power of the devil. I know you can change me. Jesus!”

Now, notice what the crowd did – many of them: “Shh be quiet. Don’t do that. Just stay like you are. Be quiet, don’t cause a fuss.” A crowd of people often is not interested in your welfare. They were objecting to being interrupted. They were objecting to the noise. Listen, they were objecting to his faith. There’s no record anyone else was healed. He had faith. Faith is not silent. When you have faith in your heart, it always shows up. It shows up in three ways for this man.

Number 1, he cried out to Jesus. Number 2, he persisted when people resisted. I love this next statement – they said: “Be quiet, stop this noise. This is a national day. Don’t cry out on the national day.” It says – he cried out even louder. When people tried to stop him, he’s more determined. “Wait, Jesus!” They go: “Quiet, quiet. We get the police on you! You’re causing trouble you know.” He cried louder.

Then Jesus stopped. Now, when you have a big crowd of people, there’s a lot of noise. Ever been in a big crowd? There’s a lot of noise. But in the midst of the noise, Jesus heard something that stopped Him. “I hear someone.” “Hey, of course you hear people, there’s hundreds here.” “No, no. I hear someone.” He stopped because He heard the cry of faith. He stopped because there was someone different out there. You see, Jesus didn’t just hear the crowd, His ear singled out one person who believed enough to keep crying out when everyone was against him, resisted him.

Sometimes we don’t get answers straight away from God. There’re a number of stories in the Bible when people didn’t get an answer straight away. Maybe you haven’t gotten an answer straight away when you’ve cried out to God. Maybe if people have tried to discourage you. But faith is never discouraged. Faith never gives up. You cry even louder, even stronger. The more the resistance, the more he cries out!

So number 1, he cried out to Jesus. Number 2, he persisted when everyone resisted him. He was determined! “I will have a miracle today!” Jesus heard him. He said – “Stop, someone’s calling out. Bring him to me.”

Notice how the crowd changes – one moment they said “Quiet. Too noisy. Disturbing us. Be quiet.” Next thing, “Oh, He’s calling for you. Not for me, for you.” Jesus doesn’t call for the person who’s complaining. He reaches out to the person with faith. “Hey, how come He’s calling to you? Why not me? Because I’m complaining and trying to shut down faith.”

So, notice it says – this is what he did – he threw off his garment and he rose and he came to Jesus. Now that garment was very significant. See, it was the official beggar’s garment so you needed that to do the begging. Probably had to pay a license fee for it. So when he threw it off, he’s saying – “my life is about to change.” He said – “I’m as good as got that miracle because Jesus is calling me to Him.”

So what does the garment represent? Number 1, the garment represents his old way of life. When he throws off the garment, he’s saying – I’m changing. The Bible calls that ‘repentance’. My whole life is about to change right now because I’m coming to Jesus; He’s been calling me to Him. So he throws off the garment – “first thing, my life is about to change. The old life in darkness, the old life in poverty, the old life depending on people, it’s all about to change.” So, he throws off the garments.

There’s a second thing about the garments. He’s thrown aside the garment. The garment represents limitations. He was limited in his life, limited because of the darkness, limited because of what he believed. Many people are limited because of what they believe about themselves. Many people are limited – not by God, but because of what you believe in your heart about yourself.

The Bible says – Proverbs 23:7 – “As you think in your heart, so you are.” So if you believe – “I’m of no value”, then you’re living in darkness and limitation. If you believe you can’t, you’re living in limitation. If you believe you can’t get anything right, you’re living in limitation. Whatever’s limiting you, throw it off! Repentance is another word for ‘throwing off’. How I think, how I look at life, it’s changed.

There’s a third thing that garment represents. It represents grief and pain in his life. Every time he puts on the garment, he’s reminded of his hurt: people abusing him and hurting him; making fun of him; ignoring him; sometimes stealing from him. Many people carry hurts, grieves, and sorrows, and they wear them like a garment. You ask them: “how are you doing?” “Oh, not good. You should see what’s happening to me. Oh, so many people hurt me: my father, my mother, my friends, and the teachers; then the pastors. Oh, so hurt.” “Oh, well you’re wearing a beggar’s garment.” “I wear my hurt. Please feel sorry for me. Oh, please feel sorry for me.” Many people are like that. They want someone to feel sorry for them. They’re wearing a garment of hurt, and they’re reaching out, begging – “Please, feel sorry for me.”

See, when the beggar put his hand out, I put some people in. But someone who’s wearing self pity, then they come and tell you how hurt they are. “Oh, so hurt, I’m so sorry to hear that. This is dreadful! Oh, the way they treat you is not good. You’re a good person!” Keep giving to me. Lot’s of people are like that.

So, the garment represented his hurts and pains, the limitations in his life, and his old lifestyle. In coming to Jesus, he’s determined he’s going to make a change. Not only that, the garment is his false security. Just in case. You see, he could’ve kept it, “I’ll go to Jesus, but just in case it doesn’t work, I’ll hold on to it. Just in case Jesus doesn’t work out, I’ll have a second plan.” A lot of people approach Jesus like that – “well, I’ll see, but just in case. I’ll have my escape plan.” But he had no escape plan, throws it off.

He came to Jesus, and Jesus said to him: “Hey, what do you want?” Woah, ask a blind man what he wants. “What do you want?” “I want to see!” He gave the right answer. Remember we saw the other story, the man who’s crippled, and he was asked: “What do you want? Do you want to be healed?” “Oh, you don’t understand, there’re so many problems I have.” He gave the wrong answer.

Jesus asked this man another question: “What do you want?” He knows straight away what he wants. “I want to see! I want to see!” That’s the way to come to Jesus. Don’t come to Him with excuses. Don’t come to Him with: “Oh, whatever you want.” That’s silly nonsense. “I want to see!” Jesus said: “Because of your faith, be healed!” Eyes open, darkness gone. Then he became a disciple of Jesus, he followed Jesus. The man who was in darkness is released out of his prison.

Now he sees. He’s got rid of the beggar’s garment, his life is changed, he’s got rid of the hurts. “I can see!” He got rid of the limitations, “I can see!” He got rid of his old insecurities, “I can see! I see!” What’s the first thing he saw? Jesus. And he followed Jesus. Jesus came to get us out of spiritual darkness. He came to change our life, remove the limitations, heal the broken heart. He came to give us a real security and bring us into a place of life.

In that story there, that was the last time Jesus walked through that city and one man stopped Him and got a miracle. Think about that. Hundreds of people, but one man stopped Jesus. Hundreds of people who were just looking with no faith. One man. One man – “I believe you’ll change me.” He threw off his garment, rose up, and Jesus changed him, just as he believed. I want you to close your eyes right now.



Freedom from Divination (11 of 12)  

Sat 12 Oct 2013 PM « Back to Top

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God promises to direct our steps, as we trust Him and listen to His voice. Many people, fearful about the future, pay money to a fortune-teller to receive information (divination). They prostitute themselves with evil spirits - they pay money for information and receive a spirit into their body. Lev 20:6 warns of the dangers of this. We are not made for evil spirits. If you have opened your life up, you can be set free - like the girl in Acts 16:16

Freedom from Divination (11 of 12)

Transcription 11 of 12 – Freedom from Divination

I want you to open your Bible with me and we’re going to go into John chapter 9. Thank you again musicians, you are amazing: just play for hours and hours. We must give them a clap and appreciate them. Wonderful.

Ok. We’re going to pick up in the sheepy passage where we were the other day. We’re going to pick up in John chapter 10. We’re going to pick it up at verse 27 and 28. Now, when we were looking in this passage, we saw that Jesus represented Himself as the shepherd, and people are like sheep. So I hope a number of you heard that, and now I’m going to just take up this next part of it.

Jesus said in verse 27: “My sheep hear my voice, I know them and they follow me. And I give to them eternal life, they shall never perish neither shall anyone snatch them out of my hand.”

So notice what Jesus says – 3 things. “My sheep know my voice. They know my voice.” One thing I found when we had a pet sheep, it quickly recognised my voice. Something unique about sheep is they can recognise the voice. So what Jesus says, “My sheep hear my voice.” He says: “And I know them.” Notice what He’s saying here about relationship. He says: “I know them, and they follow me.”

Everyone is following something in life. You’re either following the fashion, following the crowd, following the TV, following the media. People are following something. We often don’t even realise it, that there can be pressures on our life that cause us to follow. We tend to want to be with the crowd, just like sheep, they like their social, they like to be together.

Notice what Jesus said: “My sheep can hear my voice.” In other words, He said – if we’re following Christ, one of the keys of following the Lord is the ability to hear His voice. Now, there are many voices in the world, many voices pressing on you, wanting your attention, wanting your money, wanting your heart. Many many voices. God has designed us that we live out of relationship with Him. We are spiritual beings, we have a part of us which is spiritual. We need God to fill that.

So in the absence of that, we’ll find something else. We can listen to the voice of people, or we can be listening to the voice of evil spirits. If you’ve been listening to the voice of people or evil spirits, God wants you today to listen to His voice, and to respond to His voice. He makes a promise that if we follow Him, we won’t live in darkness, we’ll have life, His life in us.

So Jesus extends an invitation to every person to follow Him, to make a decision at some point in their life: that we’ll stop being led by sin, stop being led by the crowd, stop being led by demonic spirits, we’ll make a decision to follow Him. Jesus says: “Follow Me. Whoever follows Me won’t be in darkness, but they’ll have the light of eternal life.”

In many people today, there is a darkness in their life – a darkness of bitterness and hatred; a darkness of anger and unforgiveness; a darkness of sin of all kinds. The Bible says God’s kingdom is a kingdom of light. The kingdom of the devil is the kingdom of darkness. So, Jesus makes this promise – if we follow Him, our lives will become full of light, we begin to shine, we begin to look different, speak different, live different. He says: You won’t walk in darkness.

In other words, God says, as you walk with Him, as you follow His leading, the Spirit of God will help you address and get rid of the darkness in your life. The darkness of hurts and angers, of grief and bitterness and disappointment.

We have to make a decision of who will lead us. People are looking for direction. Unfortunately, we often look in the wrong place. We’re going to look in a story in the Bible of a particular woman and she was being led or spoken to; she was listening to voices. She wasn’t listening to the voice of God, she was listening to the voice of an evil spirit. We’re going to find as we see this story, that many people paid her money to tell their future. So let’s have a look at the story: it’s found in Acts chapter 16 verse 16.

“Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divi nation met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.” And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour.”

So Paul was in the city of Philippi, and Philippi was a very famous city. There was a region in Philippi, the region called Putho. There was what’s called an oracle there. It was the centre of fortune-telling. They worshipped the god Apollo, who’s the god of fine arts: music and public speaking, and drama. In legend, he’d conquered a serpent there, a python. So they worshipped this python and it was the centre of divination or fortune-telling.

People would come from all over the world: people are wanting to conduct new business, people wanting to get into some kind of career; people in government. Wherever people had to make decisions, they would come to have their fortune told, and they would pay money. They would pay money to the person, and we’d call that person a ‘psychic’. So, the whole city was full of psychics, and they had one major psychic there.

There was a spirit of fortune-telling or divination sat over the whole region. It was like this oppressive spirit, this demonic power rested over the region. So, there was a lot of fortune-telling going on, much spiritual activity, and like a heaviness over the whole area. People would pay their money, and the psychic would talk to them, the psychic would speak to them about their future, about their life and their future.

But the Bible says of this woman – that she had a spirit wrapped around her. It was in the shape of a python. You couldn’t see the spirit, but it was in the form of a snake, a big python wrapped around her. It’s head was right up by her ear, and it was a demonic spirit, it would speak into her life. She could hear its voice speaking. She would hear a voice from the spirit world speaking to her, and it would talk and give her information. While she had that spirit, it would give her information she couldn’t know any other way.

Divination is reaching into the spirit world to obtain knowledge and information from evil spirits rather than God. God has created us for relationship with Him. God is a Spirit and He’s made us spiritual beings, and God wants to talk to us. The Bible says He has a plan for your life, He has purposes for your life, and He wants to direct your life.

Notice what Jesus said: “I’m the good shepherd. My sheep hear my voice.” That means God talks with us. He says – “They follow me. They follow my leading or direction.” He says: “I lead them into good places.” But there is another voice. The voice of demonic spirits; and the Bible tells us in this story, that the woman made a lot of money from people who wanted to know about their future.

Does the devil know about your future? No he does not. Only the one who created you can see ahead and know what your life is for. Only the one who created you can know your purpose. Only the one who created you fully understands you. So God’s desire is that we would connect with Him and that we would receive revelation or guidance from Him.

The Bible tells us in Proverbs 3, it says: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Don’t lean on your understanding. In all your ways be intimate with Him, and He will direct your paths.” So, many places God promises to direct us and guide us. Now, people are fearful for their future. They wonder – “What will happen to me? Will I be successful? Will I prosper? Will I get married or have relationships? Will I get money?” These are questions everyone has.

God wants us to join to Him, and live a life of trust, of faith, learning to walk with Him day by day. He doesn’t tell us everything about our life, but He encourages us in a journey with Him, a journey of trust: listening to his voice, and also listening to our heart – what God has written in our heart. So if you begin to walk with God, you’ll be guided by your heart and by the word of God, and by the Spirit of God and you will prosper.

So notice what it says – it says in the verse I read, it talks about trusting the Lord with all your heart, and He will direct your way. So our relationship with God is one of trust. It has to do with the heart – trusting God with your heart, with your life; and not trying to figure it all out or work it all out. God has got your life figured out – He wants us to learn to trust Him, listen to our own heart, and make plans for our future: believing He will walk with us and bless our plan. The promise of God is to direct us. So one of the greatest things that you can do is to become connected to God and learn to hear His voice.

Now, if we don’t have a God who loves us leading us, we’re left rather frightened and uncertain about our future. If I know God is a good shepherd who loves me, who believes in me, who’s created me, has a wonderful plan for me, I can trust my life to follow Him. When I learn that Jesus died on the cross for me, I can trust my life to follow Him because someone who loved me enough to die for me, is someone I can trust.

But if I don’t trust God, then I’m left alone in life, and I’m frightened about my future. Some of you are frightened about your future – you feel anxious, insecure, fearful about what will happen. Of course, when you look in the news media, it fills you with more fear: tsunamis and earthquakes, nuclear meltdowns, terrorism and war. The media is full of bad news. People become fearful, and so in this day, people would turn to the fortune-tellers; and this girl as a psychic, earned a lot of money. People would come and they would pay her money. Did the demon know their future? Not at all.

Evil spirits have limited knowledge and limited power. They don’t know your future, but they do know what you’ve been doing. They observe you so they know what’s happening in your life. It’s like a demonic internet. Type up your name, google you – wow, all the information, woah, yeah. All the other demons get on board – “yeah, we’ve been watching, we know this person. Yeah, we know that person. Know their father, mother, grandfather, grandmother. We know the whole family line – we’ve been watching them a long time. We’ve been having a lot of fun messing them up.”

Jesus said that devils come only to steal, kill and destroy. “So, what do you want to know?” And they tell the demon, and the demon whispers in her ear – “This is what about this person.” So, this lady, she’ll go “Ohh”. She’s not that smart, you know. She’s only listening – listening to a devil. “Oh”; and still to say something. The person will say – “That’s true! Very true. Wow this must be right. So what’s my future?” “Oh, I’m glad you asked. Pay some more money.” Ok, they got the money, “Ok, now I tell.”

The demon doesn’t know your future. It just would lay out a path. If you agree with it, then the demon can start to work in your life to gain control. Now, listen what it says in the Old Testament – I want to show you something, something you may not have seen before. It’s in the book of Leviticus – chapter 20 verse 6. It says: “The person who turns to mediums and familiar spirits, to prostitute themselves with them, I will set my face against that person and cut him off from my people.” So, God is warning people about the dangers of engaging with evil spirits.

A medium is a person that an evil spirit works through to speak to people. A psychic is a person who a demon speaks to them, and they talk to you about your life. So, divination then, involves reaching out into the spirit world to make connection with evil spirits, and ask them to give you direction.

There are many ways or many forms this takes. A common one teenagers often play, is they put letters or words on a table in a circle and they put a glass, and they put their fingers on the glass. “Ooh, who is out there. Oh, speak to me. Oh, tell me this question. Wow.” What they don’t realise, is you are connecting with an evil spirit. There is someone out there; there are lots of things out there. But the Bible says, if I want to come to God, Jesus said – “I am the way, I am the truth, no one comes to God but by me.” So when you reach out to the spirit world with any kind of these methods of fortune-telling, you contact evil spirits.

Notice what it says in here – I want you to have a look. “The person who turns to mediums and familiar spirits, prostitutes himself with them.” Now, I want you think about this. Just think about this. If you think about what a prostitute is: a prostitute is a person who gives their body in exchange for money. So, a trade takes place. Person receives money, and they give over their body. The person that they receive the money from, uses their body.

Now, what the Bible is saying, is that when you get involved in divination, you are acting like a prostitute. You are receiving information, but you’re giving the demon a right to your body. You receive information, like the prostitute receives the money, and you receive the spirit into your body, like the prostitute opens her life to the man. So the Bible uses certain language, it says: “Don’t prostitute yourself with evil spirits.” Don’t be defiled by evil spirits because it will cut you off from connection with God.

This is an immense source of grief to God. He has designed you, He has a plan for your life, He loves you, He wants to help you, He wants to walk with you, He wants to come into your life, and for you to turn away from and turn instead to His enemies – evil spirits – and open your life and let the spirit come in, in exchange for what? Little bit of information.

You know what would happen with these people that would come to these things? They become addicted. They can’t make any decisions now unless they keep going back. They have to keep going back: pay more money, receive more information, pay more money, receive more information. When it doesn’t work out, they go back again. So their lives become controlled by the evil spirit. Whenever you get involved in divination, you enter agreement with an evil spirit and you give it right of access to your life. Then, you have many problems. You have many many problems.

Now, there are many kinds of different operations people get involved in. The media today are so full of these things – Harry Potter movies, many other different kind of movies; and they glamorise divination. They glamorise magic and sorcery. They make it to look really interesting. But what they never tell you is this, they will never tell you this – what is the source of the power. If there is real spiritual power, there is a real spiritual source. In the kingdom of God, the source of power is always the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ is honoured. In the kingdom of the devil, the source is an evil spirit, but you never know what it comes from, and you never really know that.

Some of you have been experimenting with divination. It seemed like it was harmless – “Well, everyone else is doing it. why don’t we, let’s do this eh?” So people sometimes do this in school, sometimes in their homes, sometimes on the weekend; and there’s a fascination that comes. Did you realise, serpents, the python, when it rears up, looks at the animal, often the animals become paralysed. They become fascinated, they cannot seem to move away from the gaze of the serpent.

When you get involved with evil spirits, there is a fascination because the power is real. There’s an attraction, there’s a spiritual draw; but you are opening your life to increase the bondage of spirits in your life. Some of you, your families have been involved in fortune-telling. This has allowed that kind of spirit to come into your life as well.

Some of you, your families have been involved with sorcery or magic, all kinds and forms of that – reaching out for spiritual power. Idolatry is one form of that. When people are involved in idolatry, they make a sacrifice, they make an exchange – they give the idol something in return for something. What are they getting in return? They’re getting an evil spirit. It’s the same kind of thing – it’s a prostituting.

We are not made for evil spirits. Our life is not made to be demonised. We are made for the loving spirit of God to be in us. God’s desire is His spirit flows out of our heart like a wonderful river. But when we’re involved in idolatry or in divination, fortune-telling of any kind, or in sorcery, magic, when we open our life to those things, we are opening our life to an evil spirit and then the trouble starts; and it’s progressive trouble.

When people are involved in these things, they often have nightmares, they have struggles spiritually, there can be heaviness and depression, they have premonitions, sometimes they have things begin to move in their rooms, or they hear voices speaking to them, they can’t shut the voices out. Sometimes people are tormented at night with nightmares, horrendous nightmares. Or they’re tormented, they wake up and like someone’s trying to kill them. Or they feel themselves being sexually molested but no one is there. Once evil spirits have a doorway, they will seek to increase the bondage. They seek to advance their hold. They seek to bring total defeat in your life. Jesus said: the thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. Jesus came to give us life.

Let’s go back and have a look at the story again. Let’s look back now, and we read in Acts chapter 16. In Acts 16, we find the girl with the spirit of divination, and it says: “She cried out, she was following Paul and crying out saying – these men are servants of the most high God, who proclaimed to us the way of salvation.” Now what she was saying was absolutely true. A lot of people wouldn’t know that. They’d just see another couple of people. But what she was saying was real. So, these spirits do have knowledge.

When Jesus confronted people with evil spirits, they would cry out, they knew who He was. So evil spirits recognised Jesus, and they recognise those who follow Him. They know who you are.

I can remember I was in Bali and we were driving past this park and I saw some people there and some snakes. I stopped to go and talk and find out what’s going on. New Zealand’s wonderful, we have no snakes. No snakes. Very good. So, you want snakes, you have to stay here. So I haven’t see snakes very close up, so I went over to have a look. They had a big mat on the ground and these people are handling these snakes. Very scary stuff. I think I stay away, I don’t get too close to the snakes.

So I’m standing just watching, and then someone said – I think they’re sorcerers from Borneo. I said: “Oh, interesting.” Then one of them came up to me, and I thought, “Oh this is interesting, what’s going to happen?” See, people who operate demonic spirits, recognise servants of God. How did they recognise me? Because when you follow Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit comes to live in you. God’s spirit dwells in you. You are marked by the spirit of God. You literally radiate light. Maybe no one can see it, but it’s evident in the fruit in your life, and in the spirit world, they can recognise these things. I’ll give you a couple of stories on this.

Anyway, one of these guys came up, and he spoke to me. This is what he said. Now, he’s never met me, I’ve never spoken to him, and this is what he said: “Please don’t pray against us to stop us. We’re just here to earn some money. We don’t want to hurt anyone.” Now, what would cause him to say a thing like that? The spirits that were working with them recognised the servant of God and responded by appealing to me not to stop them. In other words, they recognised I had the power to stop it. Jesus said – “I give you authority over serpents and scorpions and all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall in any way harm you.”

So, in the spirit world, they recognise who you are. See, we look at people, we just see people. We can’t see if they’ve got demonic spirits wrapped around them. We can’t see those things unless God shows it to us. We can’t even see who are the Christians, except often you can see the fruit of it in their life. But from the spirit world, they see exactly who you are and what you’re like. They know you and recognise you.

I was in a meeting in Taiwan not so long ago, September last year, and there were many people. There was a great move of the Spirit, there was joy and laughter, a lot of things happening. I felt God speak to me to begin to move in deliverance. So we had an alter call, and then God began to move in many many people were delivered, just like here. I had my youngest daughter with me, and this is what she said.

She said: “Because it was such a powerful meeting, I was having an encounter with the Lord.” She said: “I realise deliverance is taking place. I said: “Lord, show me what’s happening.”” And she said: “I thought I would just get a mental picture, it’s what I normally get.” The Lord said: “Turn around, face the people.” She said: “I don’t want to do that. My eyes, my mascara is running.” The Lord said: “Turn around, face the people. “ And He said: “Now open your eyes.” So she said: “I stood and I looked and opened my eyes.” And she said: “I got a shock. I could see with my eyes open, all of the people.” But she said: “I could see, imposed on it all, the spiritual world.”

In other words, she could see into the two worlds at the same time. You can only do this is God has opened your eyes to see these things. I said: “What did you see?” She said: “Well, I could see the demons.” I said: “What were they like?” And she said: “They were terrified. I could see them all in the meeting, and they were all terrified. They were full of fear and terror.”

I said: “What were they doing?” She said: “They were holding on to people and they were trying to keep hold on people.” I said: “Where were they holding them?” She said: “Well, some of them had their hands over their eyes, trying to stop the people seeing. Some of them had their hands over their ears, trying to stop them listening, stop them hearing. Some of them had their hands over the mouth, trying to stop them speaking, and all of them were trying to hold on desperately.”

I said: “What else did you see?” She said: “Well I couldn’t see you. I heard you speaking. I could just see this person who looks like Jesus, and there’s just light flowing out everywhere, and every demon is looking at this person and they’re terrified. Every time you began to speak, it was like a river of God flowed and the demons were just swept away.” I said: “What else did you see?” She said: “It was all too much for me, I couldn’t manage seeing into two worlds at once. I just closed my eyes again.” I said: “Oh I’d like to know more.”

But there’s the thing – the spirit world sees us as we really are. Demonic spirits recognise Jesus, they know He’s the Son of God; they are terrified of them. He defeated them at Calvary. The Bible says when Jesus died and gave up His life on Calvary, He legally broke the power of the devil over every person. Jesus extends an invitation to us to turn away from sin, turn away from these occult practices, and turn to Him, the living God. He loves us. We’re not made for evil spirits.

There are some of you here who have opened your life up to evil spirits. Maybe it’s come through your family. Maybe you were dedicated to some idol or temple. Maybe your family are involved in idolatry, fortune-telling. Or maybe you have done this: opened your life to spirits through fortune-telling of some kind. Perhaps you’ve opened your eyes to the occult world by invitations to demons. Maybe you’ve opened your life in these ways. God wants to set you free.

One way I’ve noticed some people have come into bondage is through computer games – role-playing computer games; playing the role of a sorcerer. I’ve prayed for a number of people, about 400+, who were involved with computer games, who became addicted and demonised when they used these role-playing imagination games, and began to engage in the spirit world. Others have got demonised through martial arts, from meditation, from various kinds of occult things. Jesus came to set us free.

Let’s finish our story now and see what happened. It says: “She did this for many days, and Paul was greatly annoyed. He was grieved.” The word literally means – he was struggling to break through. When there’s a lot of demonic activity, we can feel spiritual pressure and struggle to break through. He was struggling in getting breakthroughs, and then he began to realise the demonic spirit around this girl.

So he spoke to her, notice what he said – he came in the authority of Jesus Christ. Jesus is the devil conqueror; and when we align our life with Him, we become devil conquerors too. “In the name of Jesus Christ, come out!” Spoke to the spirit, and the spirit manifested, and then came out of her. It was a python. Came out of her, and she was set free.

I remember when I was in Hastings many years ago, and we had our first move of God in deliverance. I remember it very clearly – it was very spectacular. We had a meeting one night, and people came up for ministry, and I laid my hands on one man. He was from the Pacific Islands, and his family are involved in fortune-telling. He fell on the ground. It’s quite common.

But then he did this, and I had never seen this before – He imitated a snake and he slithered all this way under the chairs, all the way to the back of the room. I’d never seen anything like it! How do you do that trick? That’s a good trick to do at a party. The chairs were just popping like this, and he just slithered his way on the ground.

We came and spoke over him, commanded the spirit of divination to go. The spirit left him. It was a spirit in the form of a python, and it manifested just like it. I’ve had that happen on several occasions. People slither, very fast. I’ve seen all kinds of things like that. And here’s the point: they’re all bad. They’re all bad. And they seek to hurt you.

Paul confronted the spirit and the young girl was set free. She was a slave girl to people and she was a slave girl to demons, and that day she came to Christ and became a free person. Free in her heart from sin, free in her heart from the evil spirit. God wants the same to happen to you.

So, we’re going to extend two invitations – the first is for people to become a follower to Jesus. This is what Jesus said: Whoever received Him, made Him welcome, and believed on His name, Jesus is the Saviour who saves us from sin. To any person who received Him and believed on Him, He gave power to become a child of God; to be born into the family of God. This is what God wants to do for you today. He wants to change your life. He wants room in your heart, if you will let Him.

It doesn’t matter what has been happening in your life, how bad your life seems to be. God loves you. He loves you. He understands you. No matter what you’ve been involved in, it can never change that God loves you. Your behaviour, no matter how bad, cannot change that God loves you. While you were in sin, God sent His Son to die on the cross for you.

I want to tell you today, God loves you. God loves you. Jesus said – Those who follow Him, will hear His voice; and He will give them eternal life. I want to invite you today to take the first step. To follow Jesus – it’s to invite Him into your life, to ask Him to forgive your sins, to receive Him into your life.

Later on, we’ll have a second alter call, and I want to specially pray for people who have trouble with evil spirits. If you’ve been involved in divination or fortune-telling, been involved in occult activities to any kind: idolatry or spiritism, or you’re tormented by spirits. Maybe your family’s been involved in spirits. We want to have a second alter call to pray for deliverance, and the power of God will come on you and set you free from those spirits.

You can make a decision today to become connected with God. You can make a decision today to go home without your demons. By asking Jesus Christ to set you free. Let’s just close our eyes right now.



Healing from Abortion and Miscarriage (12 of 12)  

Sun 13 Oct 2013 « Back to Top

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The heart of God is full of compassion to heal and restore damaged lives. Abortion is a doorway for grief and demonic bondage which is largely hidden under secrecy and denial. When the truth is faced that the life of a child has been taken the pain is immense. The reality dawns, there is a son or daughter in heaven who we will meet one day! Discover how to bring meaningful healing to families who have lost a child in the womb, and set them free from bondage and torment. Jesus did not come to condemn - He came to save, heal, deliver, restore.

Healing from Abortion and Miscarriage (12 of 12)

The church needs to have a message of hope. The gospel is a message of hope to people. It's about God's love for us, and his willingness to help us. And so as Christians, no matter what is happening around us, we need to understand we have a message to help people. That Jesus Christ came to help people.

I'm reminded of an important scripture where it says: Jesus did not come to condemn people, but to save them; to rescue people out of the problems created by sin. So Jesus loves people, and he has no condemnation for us. No matter what has happened in your life, the heart of God is to reach into you, and love you, and restore you.

And so as believers, we should not be afraid of the issues in our nation, but should learn and understand them, and learn how to minister to people. We should not have areas we can't talk about. Rather, we should be able to talk about any issue; and come with a spirit of love, a spirit of hope, and with comfort for people.

I want to do this today – I want to share with you something that will be very deeply touching for many people. I haven't shared this message before, but God has spoken into my heart recently about this, and I wrestled somewhat last night and this morning. I really wanted to preach something else! But, I always feel that if you listen to God, he has something in mind for us. And this message may directly affect you, or it may indirectly affect you. And I just hope you will have an open heart and a loving spirit. Because we have prayed for people, and seen God bring tremendous breakthroughs.

Let's just have a look at Psalm 127:3. We've come here many times, and we've shared our story, most of you would know we have a big family with 7 children, and 21 grandchildren, and we've learnt a lot of things on the way. We also have 2 other children, but they're in heaven. So I want to talk today about abortion and miscarriage.

I want to offer hope for you. We want people here who don't know Jesus, to realize God loves you, and desires to help you; wants to break the power of sin in your life. After that I'd like to pray for 3 groups of people together. We'll pray for you together, because we don't want to embarrass you. We just want there to be a spirit of love, and the power of God to help you. I want to pray for people who've had an abortion, or perhaps you've been connected to someone who has. For people who've had a miscarriage; or for people who are barren, and are hoping for a child. We're not going to ask you at all what the nature of your problem is. We just want you to feel free to come and believe that God will help you.

So in Psalm 127:3, it says: “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, and the fruit of the womb is his reward”. So children are a heritage. It's an inheritance, something God gives to us. There's a part of every person that is a spirit being. The spirit comes from God. The Bible says: God is a Spirit. So when human beings come together, and create a life, they are partnering with God; and God puts a spirit into the child. The child becomes a living being, with an eternal destiny. God's desire is that the child shares his destiny with him. God's desire is for many children. This is the heart of God - many children. So God plans to reach out into this earth to help people - that's God's heart.

So when we're born into this world, we're born separate from God, because of sin. God's desire is to come to us, forgive our sins, put the Spirit in our lives, and give us an eternal destiny with him. This starts by responding to Christ.

I read in the paper just 3 days ago, it's a news story from China. It took place in a province called Weifang city, and there was a young couple. They went to bed one evening, they had one child, and they were expecting a second child. In the early hours of one morning, the police burst into their home. They held down the husband, and they dragged the wife out of the home, and took her to a hospital.

The panic-stricken husband tried every way to find out where his wife had gone. But the authorities refused to tell him. It took him 6 hours to find out where his wife was. They had threatened the wife, because she already 6 months pregnant - threatened to put her husband in prison. Then they injected her, and when he got to his wife, she was in the process of miscarrying.

What touched me very deeply was that both of them suffered great grief. They were grieving over the loss of their child, and there's no one to comfort them. My heart goes out to them, and I'll tell you why in a moment. I feel quite deeply touched by that story. I'll share to you a couple of personal testimonies, and then we'll open up the word of God. I want to offer hope to people today.

Some years ago, my wife went through two miscarriages. As a man, I didn't understand at that time what it meant to a woman, to miscarry. We were involved in ministry; we had many pressures on us - we already had 5 other children. When the two miscarriages came, my wife never complained. She had the miscarriages, went to hospital, and then we carried on with our life, and I didn't think about it much at all.

We had another two children - Peter and Sarah. Some years later, I was in another church ministry, and I was praying for a lady, and asked her: what is the problem? She'd had a miscarriage, and as I prayed, she began to weep; and I felt this incredible grief - I began to cry with her. I thought: that's very strange - I must be feeling the love of God.

Then on the same day, I went to another church; and the second time, the same thing happened. I prayed for a woman who'd suffered a miscarriage, and I had this incredible grief. When you feel something, you need to ask yourself: what am I feeling; and why do I feel it? So I went home and began to pray, and the Lord spoke to me. He said: you are grieving not because of her, but because of your own loss. He said: you've lost two children – a boy and a girl, and you've never stopped to grieve. You've never even admitted you've lost a child.

So I began to grieve, and the Lord showed me what to do. I went home to my wife, and I said to her: God's been speaking to me about our two miscarriages. Joy said: “Well God's been speaking to me too - I've been journaling about this. We had a boy and a girl; and I've given them names: Timothy and Catherine.”

I said: the Lord has shown me something we need to do for our family. So we had a family meal, like we always do, and Joy put two beautiful orchids on the table. Then we had our meal, and we shared with the children. I said: “You know that we have seven children in our family. Well actually, there are nine - there are another two in heaven”.

An interesting thing happened - the two children who came after the miscarriages, both began to weep, and they were really deep sobs. I realised that they had picked up a grief in their spirit; even though in their mind, they did not know we had lost two children. There was grief that my wife carried; and they knew in their spirit that they had lost a brother and a sister, and there was a grief in their heart. The spirit of grief had come around them.

So the grief my wife carried over her loss, was transferred to the next two children. So we laid our hands on them and prayed for them. For the other children, this wasn't an issue at all - it was just the two following the miscarriage. This opened our eyes, that a child in the womb can feel the feelings and the grief of the mother. That when a child is miscarried, and the mother feels the grief - if the grief isn't resolved, then the next children pick up the grief. That was quite a revelation to us.

We did get a tremendous insight: that when you've lost children to a miscarriage, it's important to identify who they are. Not just some ‘thing' we've lost. For me, it was like my wife lost something - like a tooth. Painful; but it's just something that happens. I didn't get a hold in my heart that I've lost a child; that as a father, one of my children had been taken away.

So I realised that when there are miscarriages, and also when there are abortions - there's a real grief left. One of the ways of processing the grief, I'll tell you a bit more about it later, is to identify what each child is; and to give them a name; and to release them to the Lord. Then it's not just some “thing” that happened, some “thing” I lost - some piece of tissue. It's actually a real living spirit being, whose body never developed, whose house did not last, and they had to leave. My wife put it this way, so beautifully: “It's a rose that budded, but never bloomed”. So over the years, we've prayed for many people, and helped them in this area.

Now, here's the second part of the testimony: earlier on this year I was in Singapore, and as I was in Singapore, I was teaching about encounters with God. We had a worship team, and we were ministering just to the worship team, to help them have encounters with God.

Now previously to this, the two children we had who had suffered grief, one day after church, said this to us - each independently. They said: we saw into heaven today in the meeting. We saw our brother and sister - and each of them saw that. It's like God opened heaven for them, and they saw the brother and sister they'd lost. Each of them saw the exact same thing, independently of each other; and they were really excited, and were able to describe them!

I must admit - I was a bit jealous; but this year, I was teaching on how to have encounters with God. So I taught people how to focus on Jesus, allow your imagination to see him as the word of God describes him, and begin to reach out in your heart to him. In other words, I was meditating on Jesus. All these other young people were having encounters with God; and I just felt that instead of leading the meeting, I should press in myself.

So I began to meditate on Jesus - I wasn't thinking about anything else. Suddenly, I became in the Spirit; and instead of seeing Jesus, the Holy Spirit revealed to me two people: a young man, and a young woman. It was a shock to me - I didn't expect to see that. They both spoke to me, and said: “Hello Dad”. I was just shocked! They said: “We've got so many things to tell you, about what happens in heaven”. Then I became aware of Jesus standing next to me - He was carrying a little baby in his arms. I realised that child was the grandchild we miscarried in December. Then suddenly I saw another little child, and he said: “hello Granddad”. I could recognise the facial features, and knew which of my children had lost this child.

My attention came around to my son and daughter, and I began to look at them; Jesus was right next to me. They began to talk to me, and said: we want to show you something. Suddenly my eyes opened up. I could see this huge immense vast area - full of children. They were all of different ages; from babies to a little bit older. There were so many that I couldn't count them – vast numbers. They said: these are children that have been miscarried or aborted; there's a special place in heaven for each of them, where angels look after them, and they're educated and grow up.

I realised then, that the size of my grandchild was about the proper age for the one I'd lost. I realised the age of my children were about the right age for when we lost them. As I looked around, at all of these children who had been miscarried or aborted; I realised that God was showing me something else. The ones He was showing me were all Chinese. I was quite shocked!

Then Jesus spoke to me, He had absolutely no condemnation towards anyone at all, I could just feel His love. This is what He said: “Every one of them has a mother, who is grieving over their child, and I want to bring healing to those mothers.” He didn't say anything about what they'd done. He just said: “I love them, and want to help them, because they're grieving”. He said: I want you to begin to study and prepare in this area. I want you to put some materials on DVD, and speak in China. My heart was deeply touched, not just from seeing all the children, but feeling the grief of the mothers. I could feel the heart of Jesus - His immense grief.

Recently we were up in China, and someone came to me privately. I couldn't believe it - they said they'd had an abortion. “Can you help me”, they said. God dramatically ministered and brought healing to this couple. It was like each place I went to after that, there would always be someone who'd come and ask us if we could pray for them.

So I felt I'd share some things about this here – have to start somewhere. I want to share some things from scripture - some basic keys we've learnt that could help. I want to establish that from God's point of view, a child is a living person, with a destiny - even if they're still in the womb. Sometimes people think that, because the child is in the womb: 1) it doesn't understand anything; and 2) that it's not a person - it's just a ‘thing', and often inconvenient.

I want to show you several scriptures quickly, to show you God's point of view. In Judges 13, you'll find something about Samson. Here is the common thread: that before a child is conceived, God already knows them and their characteristics, and has a destiny for their life. So no matter what stage the child is at in the womb, from God's point of view, it is a living person, with a destiny - a person He knows.

Judges 13:2-5 says: There was a certain man of Zorah, of the family of the Danites, whose name was Manoah; and his wife was barren and had borne no children. Then the angel of the LORD appeared to the woman, saying: “Behold now, you are barren and have borne no children, but you shall conceive and give birth to a son. “Now therefore, be careful not to drink wine or strong drink, nor eat any unclean thing. “For behold, you shall conceive and give birth to a son, and no razor shall come upon his head, for the boy shall be a Nazirite to God from the womb; and he shall begin to deliver Israel from the hands of the Philistines.”

Notice these things: before the child is conceived, God already knows it's a son. Secondly, God has a plan that this son will deliver Israel. Thirdly, it's very important how the mother conducted herself while she's pregnant. In other words, God is concerned about negative influences coming in to the unborn child. So you see, in this passage, that before a child is even conceived, God knows the child, and knows its destiny.

1 Kings 13:1-2 says – By the word of the Lord a man of God came from Judah to Bethel, as Jeroboam was standing by the altar to make an offering. By the word of the Lord he cried out against the altar: “Altar, altar! This is what the Lord says: ‘A son named Josiah will be born to the house of David. On you he will sacrifice the priests of the high places who make offerings here, and human bones will be burned on you.'”

The nation is corrupt and full of idolatry. God sends a prophet to warn them. This is what He said: “I am going to bring a child into this world. His name will be called Josiah, and he is going to be a major mover in bringing restoration to the nation”. Do you know how long after that prophecy was given until Josiah came? 360 years! In other words, 360 years before this man appeared, before he was conceived, before he was born - God named him even! God had a name for him, and had a destiny for him.

360 years later, when these parents had this child, they wouldn't have remembered that prophecy. All they did was have a thought come to them: “Let's name this child Josiah”. They didn't even realise, as they named him Josiah, that they were fulfilling something that God had already planned. God had a destiny for that child. 360 years ago, the parents weren't even alive. God could look through time, and say: in 360 years time, there's going to be a couple. The father would be a very corrupt man, but in spite of that fact - that he's a Satan worshipper - I will bring into that family, a child who will change the nation. His name will be called Josiah. You notice again, God has names for children; has destinies for them; and knows them before they're even conceived.

Let's look at another one in Jeremiah 1:4 The word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” How amazing! God says: He forms the child in the womb. He said: before the embryo or foetus was formed, I knew who was going to be in there. In other words - you're a spirit being, and even though the house you're going to live in isn't formed, I know who you are. I know all about you, and I've already set you apart. I already have a destiny for you. Even before you have formed enough that your mother knows anything, I have formed my spirit into you, and you will be a prophet to the nations.

You notice again that even before the child is properly formed, God knows the child, and has a destiny for them. Isn't this amazing? Isaiah 49:1 tells us the same thing. Isaiah was also known to the Lord before he was formed in the womb.

In Psalm 139:16, David says: “Your eyes saw my substance being yet unformed; and in your book were written all the days that were fashioned for me, when yet there are none.” What David is saying is this: when I was a tiniest embryo, just conceived, and I wasn't even formed -You saw me. Not only that, it says: ‘in your book, were written all the days of my life, when I hadn't even begun one of them yet'. In other words, what he's saying is that God saw him as a human being, as a spirit being, as a person with a destiny, and ascribed a course for him, before he was even born.

So these scriptures seem to indicate very strongly that before we're even conceived, God knows we're coming; and at the moment we're conceived, the Spirit of God goes into the child. Even though it's unformed, God loves that child. God has a destiny for that child, even if the child's born into difficult family circumstances.

Josiah was born into a family where the father was a Satanist, but God still had a destiny for him. How amazing that God would see an unborn child like this; see the child in the womb as a living being – with a name, with a destiny, with a life planned out. This is truly amazing.

Over and over in the Bible, we find God speaking about children before they're born. Zachariah and Elizabeth – Elizabeth was barren, and God spoke to Zachariah and said: “You know your wife is barren, she can't have any children”. He said: “I know that”. God said: “You're going to have children. You're going to have a child.” He said: “She's too old for that – how is this going to happen?” He argued with God, but God said “No more arguing. You'll have a child – he is going to be a prophet, and will prepare the way of the Lord”. The Bible is very clear – that God sees people before they're conceived and born, and He has a plan for their life, long before they come out of the womb.

Matthew 1:21 – “She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” Same thing again - before the child is even conceived, God knows the child, knows the name, has a destiny for that child.

How about you? Have a look in Ephesians 2:10, I want you to notice something – “Now you are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for a purpose, for good works, that God prepared beforehand, that we would walk in them”. So what it tells us is that each person is a unique work of God. Each of us is a unique manufacture of God. There's no one like you - your fingerprints are unique, your DNA is unique, everything about you is unique. Before you were born, God had a path for you to walk. It says: you were created for something - for good works. Before you were begun, God had a plan, that you'd do something useful in your life. Amen.

Have a look at the second thing, in Luke 1:39-44. The first thing we need to look at, is that God knows us before we're born. He knows our name; knows what we will be like; and He's interested in us while we're in the womb; and has a purpose for our life.

Let's have a look at the child in the womb. I was reading a secular book recently, and they have done a lot of research more recently with ultrasonic scans of infants in the womb. Prior to this, for about 100 years, people believed that the identity was in the brain – personality, understanding, awareness. But they found an interesting thing, once they started to do these experiments. If the personality and identity and feelings are in the brain, the conclusion that they came to, is that if the brain is not developed, then it is not really a person, so you can get rid of it.

But in the Bible, it's quite different. Recent research shows quite clearly, that it's the heart that develops before the brain. The Bible tells us, that out of your heart is where life flows. Also recent research has shown that the child in the womb is very aware of what's happening around it, even before the mind is developed. This was a secular book, and the conclusion he came to after lots of research, was that an unborn child in the womb is totally aware of what's happening around them, even if the brain isn't fully formed.

In other words - it's a person. The guy came to the conclusion, that there must be some sixth sense that enables the child to know things, when their brain isn't developed enough, and neither was their hearing. He was talking about their spirit - that the spirit of the child recognises what is happening around them. He discovers they could recognise the voice of the father and the mother; recognise conflict; and could understand what was happening around them. This is partly the reason for the Hebrew culture, that once the woman is pregnant, she would go into hiding for quite some months in a peaceful location, so the child could be at peace and rest during the formation stages in the womb. So this is modern research.

Now let's read what the Bible says. In Luke 1:39, it says: “At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, where she entered Zechariah's home and greeted Elizabeth.” Now Elizabeth is six months pregnant, and the baby is not yet fully formed. Now look at this - it said: “When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.” Who says the baby in the womb doesn't know what's going on? See, Elizabeth was very pregnant; door opens up and Mary was there; and Mary begins to prophesise and flow with the Holy Spirit. Elizabeth is listening to all the words, and the baby is picking up the prophetic flow! The baby goes: “yay!” and kicks, huge kick - full of joy, because this is his destiny – to be a prophet for the Messiah. This is his destiny - right from in the womb. He knows there's something for him, and as soon as he feels the Holy Ghost, he leaps; massive kicks.

So this is something they've only discovered, recently: that the child in the womb is aware of spiritual influences; but it's written in the Bible 2000 years ago. So children in the womb are aware of the environment around them. They're aware of the presence of God; they're aware of the mother and what she feels; they're aware of the father; they're aware of the environment.

Now the reason I've taken a bit of time to share these things, is because I want to talk about the impact when an abortion takes place. The Bible's very clear, when we look from one end to the other, that the devil is hostile to children. From the book of Genesis (Genesis 3:15) it says the devil is hostile to children, because of a promise God made: that through children being born out of women, a saviour would be born.

So when we look right through Bible history, we find demonic attacks on the child - either in the womb, or just born. In the days of Exodus, just before there was a great deliverance, all the male children under two were killed. In the days after King David, Athaliah killed all the royal children but one. In the days of Jesus, the spirit of murder came through Herod, and murdered all the children under two.

The devil has constantly been against children. The womb is an area of conflict. When miscarriages take place, something God intended for good is suddenly stopped. When abortion takes place, the life of a child is taken. Something wrong has happened, and there is a huge impact. I want to talk a little bit about the impact, because as we've prayed for people, we have realised that many people are suffering, but they cannot understand why they were suffering.

The Bible describes a number of reasons why miscarriages take place. But it does lay out this – that God's plan is no miscarriages and that the womb would be fruitful. So when we look at scriptures, we find that miscarriages came because of idolatry. Sometimes they came because of a curse in the family line. Sometimes it was because of incest in the family. Sometimes it was because people were involved in evil spirits.

I won't go into all the scriptures regarding that, but the Bible is very clear that God's intention is that we be productive. So when miscarriages happen, there can be a spiritual cause, or there can be just a natural, physical cause. When we enquired about the last miscarriage, one of my daughters got a word from God that the brain had not formed properly, and that my daughter and her husband had been spared years of grief. Sometimes there's a physical problem, because we live in a fallen world. Sometimes there's a spiritual problem; and sometimes it can be because the mother has made inner vows never to have a child.

Whatever the cause, the result is grief. When a mother carries a child in her womb, and loses the child, there is a deep grief and sense of loss. Men can't easily understand it - that a woman's life is wrapped up with the child, who is drawing life from her body. So when there's a loss, there's a great grief.

I want to focus on the impact of an abortion. Sometimes when we're counselling people, if you don't get to the root of the problem, you can never solve the problem. As I researched this area, I began to find that everywhere, they came up with the same conclusions – in order for a woman to have an abortion, she must somehow distance herself that this is a real person. Either the doctor informs her: it's nothing, and it's just a medical procedure; or because of fear, or difficulties in the physical situation, she just doesn't want to acknowledge what's happening.

One of the core issues is the denial this is a human being. Once the mother has denied that it is a human being, then it's just a physical operation like having your tooth pulled. However, that is not the truth.

Here are some of the things that are commonly attributed now, to someone having an abortion. These are widely-known symptoms, known as post-abortion trauma syndrome. Let me list them for you; and then we'll show how people can be set free. Surveys done on people indicated these kind of issues. I'll just list them without explaining them too much.

1) Shame – they'll feel shame and secrecy coupled with low personal-esteem.

2) Deep feelings of guilt – just guilt that would not go away.

3) Depression – often bouts of depression, sadness and crying, but no apparent reason. Because remember, if you've concealed the truth with a lie; if you've refused to accept this was a life that was taken; then you won't understand why you're so sad. If it wasn't anything - how could I be sad about it?

4) Suicidal thinking and attempts.

5) Issues with self-hate.

6) Issues with sleep disorders.

7) Flashbacks - the woman suddenly remembers the trauma, and goes back into shock and grief.

8) A strong desire for replacement babies; unconsciously wanting a baby, to make up for the baby that was lost. What's called “anniversary syndrome” - on the date of the abortion or the date the child was to be born, the mother begins to become depressed and weep, but usually doesn't know why.

9) Another thing is trying to atone, by spoiling the other children.

10) Alcohol or drug problems.

11) Self-punishing behaviour – I deserve to be punished, which could be self-harm (cutting), abusive relationships, or promiscuity.

12) It can be physical problems – constant bleeding, or constant miscarriages.

13) Often there's a deep guilt – I survived, but at the cost of my child. These are terrible feelings that people have.

I had a woman come to me for prayer recently, and I said to her: “What is your problem?” She said: “I have been bleeding for about 12 years. We desperately want children but cannot have any”. I said: “Have you ever had an abortion?” She said: “Yes. I had 4”. I said to the lady, in the spirit of love, “You actually have a family of 4 children, but they're all in heaven - and your actions have brought this about. When they told you this was a simple procedure - they lied. Actually, it's caused you this problem you now have. You and your husband are without a child to hold, because the ones you could've held, you've now lost”.

She just began to weep and weep. We shared with her that God loved her, and would forgive her; so she was restored to the Lord, and her heart was healed. I'll show you exactly how, shortly. My prayer is that the next time I'm there, she'll have a baby. I was at City Harvest this year, and a lady came up with a husband and a little baby. She said: “You must see our little baby - it's a miracle baby. It was 12 months since you were last here. We had a very bad first child, very difficult pregnancy, and I made an inner vow that I'd never have another child. So, every time I get pregnant, I lose the child through miscarriage. I realised when I went through your teaching, that I made an inner vow. I renounced the inner vow, and asked God to bless my womb - 3 months later I'm pregnant, and here's our little baby.” Actually it was short of 3 months, it was around 1 month.

So you see again, the spiritual connection to problems in the life. So, one of the issues that we have found, is that many problems women suffer with - they can't trace it back to the abortion, because they've pretended that nothing really happened. I want to share very quickly the path to get free.

Jeremiah 31:15 says: “Rachel, weeping for her children, unable to be comforted, because they are no more.” So how can we get free? For someone who is in this situation, the first step is to turn to Jesus Christ. John 3:16 says “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” So whatever you're suffering from, Jesus is able to save and heal you.

So we see then, the consequences of abortion are far bigger than we realise. They affect the mother; spirits are imparted to the womb that affect the next children; the family are affected; the man who was the father has lost his child; the grandparents have lost a grandchild; and siblings born after that are affected by the trauma.

I remember one lady brought her child to me. I said: “What's the problem?” She said: “My child will not bond and breast feed. In fact, as soon as I put him on the breast, he begins to scream. What can we do?” I said, “You didn't by any chance, try and abort this child did you?” She said: “Yes.” I said: “Is it surprising that the child is afraid of you? It senses the spirit of murder - it's not going to bond to someone who tried to destroy it”. She was shocked! She asked Jesus to forgive her, I prayed for the mother and child, and the child bonded. As soon as the child was delivered from the spirit of fear and murder, immediately it started to bond - it was a huge impact.

So let's have a look at how to get free. There are three areas: spiritual issues; emotional issues; and relationship issues. The answer is incredibly simple - it's very easy for you to move out of the place of death to life.

1) We need to face the spiritual issues. So the first thing is to face the truth: this is what I did - I took the life of my child. Most mothers only do it because they're under such pressure and stress - pressure from the boyfriend or husband; pressure from the family; pressure from circumstances; but nevertheless - they must take responsibility.

The first key to being set free is to break the lie. Isaiah 28 it tells us that when we cover ourselves up with a lie, we are in covenant with death and hell. So the first step is to face the truth: I had a child, and I've taken the life of my child. Just facing the truth hugely breaks open this problem.

2) You need to repent and confess it to the Lord. You need to actually come with words to the Lord. 1 John 1:9 says: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful to forgive us and cleanse us”. So God has already forgiven us - all you need to do, is position yourself to receive it.

3) The third area is forgiveness. Firstly the person must receive forgiveness - I am forgiven by God; secondly, they must forgive themselves; and thirdly, they must forgive other people. Often, the woman may be very angry at the man; very angry at the father; or very angry at the parents; or very angry at the people who did the procedures; angry at the friends who encouraged her to do it. There can be a lot of anger and grief - and that needs to be faced, and let go of - by forgiveness. Forgiveness is the way we resolve those things; and then deliverance from the demonic spirits.

Confession; release forgiveness; and deliverance from those spirits. And in a moment we'll pray for people to be set free. There's another area that's also needed. This is what we found to be extremely helpful. I have seen people break and weep when we've just taken this step: Ask the Lord - what is this child? Jesus knows, God knows your child - Is this a boy or a girl? Listen to your heart, and God will tell you; just like that.

The next thing to do is to give it a name and an identity. So we're breaking the lie by giving it an identity. We'll ask them, could you name your child. You know how hard it is to name children. You spend days working out a name for a child; but I found that in this kind of process, I've come to the conclusion that God's already named them - I just need to listen to the name. So ask the Lord: what is the name of my child I've lost? Or just rise up and give your child a name.

This lady that had the four abortions, I said: ask the Lord to show you what they were. And she said quite quickly “girl, boy, boy, girl”. I said: now let's give them names. All were named within the space of a couple of minutes. Now, she began to grieve - she started to be aware of her children.

I said, “Now the next step is to release your children to the Lord. See Jesus standing there, and pass your children to Him. Here's what you know: one day you'll see your children again.” So sometimes we pray a little prayer: Jesus, I release my child to You. I release her into your arms. Please tell her I'm so sorry for what I did, and I'm looking forward to meeting her again - a very simple prayer.

But you notice, all it has done is removed all the lie, and bring it down to the truth. Often there's a lot of grief, pain and emotions. Sometimes there are other broken relationships to repair. The path to freedom is very simple.

Of course, if the person's had a miscarriage, there's no sin to confess usually; unless there's some generational cause. But I have found it helpful, every time, to close your eyes and open your heart to the Lord. Ask Him to show you what the child was, and tell you the name. Now, it's not a thing - it's a person; and you'll see your child again. That is the hope of the gospel – the child is in heaven.

So whenever you speak to Jesus, you're speaking to someone who is speaking to your child. Leave your child is Jesus' hands, because one day you'll see them again. I have seen so many people set free, so many broken hearts healed. What a relief to have the secrecy, shame, and lies broken, and a broken heart healed, by faith in Jesus Christ.

A very simple thing to do, and I believe God wants to touch many. Let's close our eyes. I want you to know how much God loves you. Jesus came into this earth, God in the flesh. He showed us what heaven is like, He showed us the kingdom of God, and he invited us to connect with Him. We're all born in sin, separated from God, we can't even find God's way; but Jesus died on the cross for our sins. He rose again from the dead; broke the power of sin. Jesus said these words: to everyone who received Him, made Him welcome, believed in Him, He gave power to become a child of God.



由占卜的灵中得自由  

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由占卜的灵中得自由

请大家翻开圣经使徒行传第十六章16至18节,“后来,我们往那祷告的地方去。有一个使女迎着面来,她被巫鬼所附,用法术,叫她主人们大得财利。她跟随保罗和我们,喊着说,这些人是至高神的仆人,对你们传说救人的道。她一连多日这样喊叫,保罗就心中厌烦,转身对那鬼说,我奉耶稣基督的名,吩咐你从她身上出来。那鬼当时就出来了。”

圣经讲的很清楚,耶稣来是要释放人得自由;这个故事发生在希腊的一个地方,这个女子被邪灵折磨。他们那里拜的是叫阿波罗的神,当时那个地方是整个创意艺术的中心,那里的人喜欢占卜,算命,就是在灵里面跟邪灵打交道以找到自己的未来。那里有一个特别的庙,称为Delfai的神域。

这个女子就是依靠邪灵的力量来说预言;人们来找她,付钱给她,让她告诉他们将来的命运如何。这是一个著名的城,各地的人都涌来想知道他们的未来。当他们碰到生意上或者艺术娱乐上的要作出重大决定的时候,都来找她。付钱想知道他们的未来。

今天这也很常见,我们都想知道未来会怎样,想知道生命是否蒙福,想知道明天怎样,想知道未来的事物。对未来的渴望,想知道未来会发生什么,在各个文化中都有。

圣经告诉我们,我们的生命在上帝的手中,以弗所书第二章10节告诉我们,神在我们生命中有一个计划要我们去成就。你不是一个意外,你生在这世上是上帝特别设计的。你的家庭可能有各样的困难,可能没有计划生你,可能父母没有想到会有你。可是圣经告诉我们,上帝为你安排了计划和命定,要你去成就,可能你自己都没有想过,上帝一早就想着你了。

圣经中有很多例子,显明上帝认识这些人早在他们认识主之前。举例来说,耶利米书第一章5节,上帝对耶利米讲,“我未将你造在腹中,我已晓得你。你未出母胎,我已分别你为圣。我已派你作列国的先知。”当他还在母腹当中,根本还刚成型,上帝就看见先知了,上帝已经为他命定了,并召他进入这命定。

旧约中有一位王名叫约西亚,在他出生约六百多年前,就有先知预言说将来有一位王叫约西亚,他要胜过所有邪灵,恢复我们在神面前属灵的信结。在他出生六百多年前,上帝就知道他什么时候要来,叫什么名字,在什么地方出生。

再看创世纪中,上帝对亚当和夏娃发预言说,将来有一位救主,他的名字叫耶稣基督。这是耶稣之前四千年的事;圣经中,有很多很多的预言都在耶稣基督身上应验了。换句话说,上帝早就看见你的生命了,他在你的生命中有计划;不管你生命中发生了什么,只要你对上帝有信心,他甚至能将你生命中负面的东西变成你的益处。

如果我们跟上帝之间没有关系,对未来就没有这个确据,就会转向占卜。上帝恨恶占卜的事,他说这是属灵的召妓。我们受造不是要跟邪灵接触,我们受造是要跟上帝建立关系。当你参与占卜时,不是在跟上帝接触,而是在跟邪灵接触。

这个女孩身上就是这样,她有占卜的灵在身上,今天我们称她是灵媒。你可能付钱让她帮你算命,她力量的源头是邪灵,她身上的灵就像蟒蛇一样缠绕着她。很有意思,使用她发预言的那个女神的名字叫做Hasia, 跟蟒蛇是同样的字根。很多人是在这个灵底下运行的。他们付钱给这个女孩,她的身上有这个邪灵缠着她。邪灵不了解你的未来,魔鬼预见不了未来,只有上帝能看见。

信靠神,与神同行更好,而不要去找那些邪灵。在娱乐界,商业界,金融界,政府界的人们,在做重大决定的时候先过去找灵媒,付钱给他们,就是跟邪灵做交易,打开生命,让他的生命由邪灵来操纵。魔鬼知道他们的未来吗?完全不知道。可是这就像邪灵的网络一样,邪灵观察这些人,邪灵可以讲出他们在你生命中观察到的东西,他们一直在观察人。

如果你去找算命的,去找灵媒。你接触的不是眼前的这个人,而是他后面的灵。他讲到的一些你生命中的东西可能是真的,因为他们一直在观察你。可是一旦你相信他们跟你讲的话,你就把生命的权利交给他了。

这个女人看见保罗,就跟着保罗,大喊“这是至高神的仆人”,“让你看见救人的道”。她讲的是真话,她讲的是真相,因为邪灵看得见。可是她在那里,她身上的灵就让人非常厌烦。蟒蛇就是缠绕着将人挤碎,它慢慢的缠着人,不断的将他们的生命挤压出来。

当人参与在占卜当中,他们就上瘾了,什么事情都要问过之后才做决定,慢慢的就把生命的权利交给了邪灵。慢慢的邪灵也就缠绕着这个人,挤碎他的生命,摧毁他的盼望。这个女孩就有这个灵,有一天保罗转过身,圣经说,他直接面对这个邪灵,直接跟邪灵对峙,奉耶稣基督的名,吩咐他出来。邪灵马上放开这女人,立刻离开,使女就自由了。你注意她的生命改变了,已经没有邪灵缠绕她,挤压她了。也没有声音在她耳边讲话了,她也没有能力知道人的生命将会如何了。当邪灵离开她,帮人算命的能力也一起走了。

邪灵不了解你的未来,但如果你找他们,听他们的,你就打开你的生命,他们就会影响你的未来。神召我们是要我们跟上帝建立关系,召我们与其建立信任的关系,在生命中与上帝同行,信靠他,相信他是慈爱的上帝,他深深的爱我们,为我们安排了最美的计划。上帝不把所有的计划都告诉你,可是他将渴望和梦想放在你心中,他跟你说话肯定印证他要的事。当你选择凭信心而行,他就一步步为你展开生命的计划。

一定从第一步开始,就是接受耶稣基督。要远离罪,这第一步是离开没有上帝的生活,他是走向永生的真神。今晚就希望有人走出这一步,来回应上帝恩慈的一步,来接受上帝慈爱的一步。

这个使女一开始是怎么得到这个灵的,这邪灵是怎么进到她生命的?很可能是从她的家里,可能她的家是拜偶像的,也可能他们家参与占卜,邪灵就从家族下来,可能她很小的时候就听到这些声音,做很搅扰人的梦,晚上看到一些邪灵。

有一次我去到斐济,在路上开车,看到公园里面有一群人。很有意思的是,我觉得我好像看到一群蛇一样,我停下车走过去仔细看,发现有一些围篱,一群人坐在垫子上,中间有些蛇,他们就在那里玩蛇。在纽西兰没有蛇,所以这些对我来讲很新鲜,我很感兴趣。其中有一个人就来找我说,不要为我们祷告,我们是从珀流来的,只想赚点钱,我们没有伤害谁。

我发现他们不单只玩弄蛇,他们其实是一群巫师,他们使用这些蛇,这些蛇在他们生命中就有势力了。他们在邪灵底下运作,他们拿一些水,有三个自愿的人,把水洒在这些人身上,他们就倒在地上了。之后就将一个罩子放在他们头上,然后就做一些巫术的事情;当他们把脸上的面罩拿开后,那人像是受到很大惊吓;他看见那个巫师的头是一条蛇,他吓坏了。他们对他下了咒,就在邪灵底下影响这个人。

这些能力是非常真实的,圣经说,当我们参与在这样事上,上帝的心就会忧伤。有些人家中可能有参与邪灵,可能有做过占卜算命的事情,就打开了门让邪灵进来折磨你的生命。有些人自己也参与在占卜当中,可能有什么巫术碗或者碟仙等等;你已经参与邪灵了,上帝要释放你得自由。你可能有去找过灵媒,观鬼的,这些所谓的灵媒都是跟邪灵接触,邪灵借他们来说话。

可能在你生命中有去找过那些算命的,这让上帝难过,上帝爱你,计划好了你的生命。当我们去找邪灵跟他们纠缠在一起,就让上帝非常忧伤难过。邪灵可能是由家中传下来的;也可能你小时候献过给偶像;或者你向邪灵敞开你的生命,邀请他进来;可能你自己有过交鬼;不管是什么,这个使女把生命向邪灵敞开,而耶稣释放她得自由。



由蛇咬中得自由  

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由蛇咬中得自由

请翻开约翰福音,圣经向我们显明,上帝的计划就是要帮助人;圣经由两部分组成,一部是旧约,一部是新约。旧约所针对的国家就是以色列,上帝向以色列人应许说有一天救主会来,而且会释放所有人得自由。

约翰福音第三章14节,这是非常奇妙的经节,它是从一个图画开始的,我们等一下会带大家看一下这个图画。“摩西在旷野怎样举蛇,人子也必照样被举起来。”耶稣讲到在几百年前他们的祖先摩西在旷野的行为,就像预言他将来在十字架上的受死。15至17节,“叫一切信他的都得永生。神爱世人,甚至将他的独生子赐给他们,叫一切信他的,不至灭亡,反得永生。因为神差他的儿子降世,不是要定世人的罪,乃是要叫世人因他得救。”

所以你要认识耶稣的心,上帝不要你灭亡,他是要你得救。圣经非常清楚的告诉我们,神的属性就是爱。许多人对上帝有不同的想象;你对他的想象,或者你相信他是哪一位,会影响你跟他的连结。所以如果你对神的想象有扭曲,有错误的话,你就无法跟他正确的连结。

圣经告诉我们神爱世人,而且是如此的爱世人,他从天上降下来,来到这个世界,他向我们显现天上的国度是如何的,邀请我们成为这个国度的一部分。邀请我们跟天父建立美好的关系。耶稣是怎样示范神对我们的爱呢?

1)通过他的教导。

2)在如何跟人接触方面。

3)通过行神迹,帮助人得释放。

4)最重要的一点,就是透过他死在十字架上,并从死里复活。

但是人最根本的问题是,我们的心是跟神隔绝的。圣经告诉我们,这个隔绝就是死亡。所以耶稣来到世上,打破罪的权势,并把他的灵,他的生命再次放在我们的心里,好让我们能够活出当初被造的样式,就是跟神有美好的关系,而不是跟神隔绝。

在我们信主之前,我们靠着我们自然人的样式过活,但是上帝要改变你的生命,改变你的心,把他的灵放在你里面,好让你活出与以前不一样的生命。上帝没有要定你的罪,他乃是要释放你得自由,因此不管你生命中有任何问题,不管你生命中有多少捆绑,上帝没有怪你,没有定你罪,他的愿望就是要帮助你。

耶稣告诉我们他来不是要定世人的罪,他是要指出什么是错误的,他来就是要拯救人。我要跟大家分享一个旧约中的故事。旧约中有很多人遇见上帝的故事,很多时候我们不了解一件事的属灵意义,所以上帝用很多例子告诉我们。旧约中有很多的图画,让我们能够了解属灵的含义。

我们来看一个真实发生的故事,透过这件事显示上帝何等的爱世人。上帝做了什么帮助人,人需要什么条件才能得到这样的爱。请翻开民数记第二十一章4至9节,“他们从何珥山起行,往红海那条路走,要绕过以东地。百姓因这路难行,心中甚是烦躁,就怨讟神和摩西说,你们为什么把我们从埃及领出来,使我们死在旷野呢,这里没有粮,没有水,我们的心厌恶这淡薄的食物。于是耶和华使火蛇进入百姓中间,蛇就咬他们。以色列人中死了许多。百姓到摩西那里,说,我们怨讟耶和华和你,有罪了。求你祷告耶和华,叫这些蛇离开我们。于是摩西为百姓祷告。耶和华对摩西说,你制造一条火蛇,挂在杆子上。凡被咬的,一望这蛇,就必得活。摩西便制造一条铜蛇,挂在杆子上。凡被蛇咬的,一望这铜蛇就活了。”

上帝的意愿总是要赐福我们;这里的百姓已经被捆绑为奴四百年了,管理他们的监工非常的严厉,他们非常艰苦的生活,使得他们变的非常的苦毒,非常的衰弱。上帝差遣摩西去释放以色列的百姓,因为他听见他们哭求的声音,上帝透过摩西彰显了许多的神迹奇事,人们离开了埃及,开始了前往他们的应许之地迦南的旅程。

以色列人在旷野经历了许多的挑战,这很像我们。在我们认识主之前,我们被罪所捆绑,我们是罪的奴隶,没有办法不犯罪;我们也活在邪灵的影响下,他们用恐惧,挫折来伤害我们;他们让人上瘾,他们伤人的心,他们产生了许多的问题。但是当我们接受了耶稣基督之后,上帝把他的灵放在我们里面,摧毁了邪灵的能力,除去了这一切捆绑的权势。

我们必须要选择如何过我们的生活;我们刚刚看到的这个故事,当时以色列的百姓取得了极大的胜利,上帝帮助他们打败敌人,每天供应他们,保护他们,他们每一天都活在上帝的祝福之中,但是人们还是抱怨。他们为什么会抱怨呢?因为他们有苦毒。凡是在我们心里的,总是会显现出来的。当人们受压时,就会发出苦毒的埋怨。当苦毒进入到我们心里,一有压力就会流露出来,抱怨,批评,说消极的话。

当时他们就埋怨摩西,摩西只是想要帮助他们。他们也埋怨上帝,人们 说还不如回到埃及那个被捆绑的地方更好,他们完全忘记了上帝所供应他们的。所以人们的心腐败了,他们看不见上帝是何等的爱他们,他们看不见上帝与他们同在,他们的眼睛看不见上帝的美好,在他们里面就有苦毒,埋怨,不愿意原谅。

他们在埃及曾被大大的伤害过,上帝也曾指示他们如何依靠神。上帝的意愿是拯救以色列的百姓,由奴隶成为神的儿子,从受害者的身份变成得胜者的身份。当人们苦毒抱怨的时候,就会释放仇敌的权势在身上。他们埋怨的时候,蛇就进来咬他们;要知道,蛇总是在旷野里,以色列的百姓是被上帝保护的,蛇是不能伤他们的。

圣经告诉我们,蛇就是邪灵的写照;耶稣说赐给我们权柄胜过一切的蛇蝎毒虫,因此耶稣要我们胜过一切邪灵的权势。当人们埋怨,悖逆,当他们的心转离神的时候,他们就开始做错事,蛇就不再被限制,蛇就进入营地中,开始咬人,开始咬的人躺下来,立刻感到被蛇咬的疼痛,他们用仗击蛇,但是没有用,还是有很多人被咬后死亡。

当他们被蛇咬的时候,会有两种元素注进身体里,通过两种不同的方式发生作用。第一种是,瘫痪你的系统,所有的神经系统全部瘫痪,人们因此死亡,这是非常痛苦的死亡方式。第二种是,蛇吃你的肉,你的身体会被感染中毒,然后死亡。所以被蛇咬总是非常致命的。

新约中耶稣遇见许多人,他们的生命被邪灵控制;因为他们违反了上帝的律法,他们可能有拜偶像,交鬼,性犯罪,酗酒,上瘾的问题等等,这些问题让邪灵有空间进入他们的生命攻击他们。但是耶稣来是释放人得自由。所以当人们被蛇咬,他们就想原来都没有蛇,但是当我们埋怨神,埋怨摩西的时候,蛇就来咬我们了。非常明显就是罪的问题。

所以在这个故事的图画里,可以看见三件事情的连结关系,就是蛇,罪,死亡。我们犯罪了,就给撒旦空间进入到生命中,而且罪的后果就是死亡。长期来讲是身体的死亡,短期则是与神隔绝。当人们愤怒的时候,就像心中的毒药,当有人陷在情欲里面时,就像心里有毒药。当人们被仇恨抓住,也是心里的毒药。而且没有任何的解救之道。

可以想象当时蛇可以随时进来咬人,这是非常恐惧的,而且没有解药。圣经非常明确,对罪的解救只有一个方法,对付邪灵只有一个方法,但大部分人都不知道是什么。当人们跟罪有关的时候,问题就出来了,他们就开始呼求神,呼求摩西帮助他们。求摩西祷告将蛇挪走。上帝听到摩西的祷告,摩西太有恩典了,他们每一天都不断的批评摩西,可是蛇咬了他们之后,他们又对摩西说抱歉。摩西大可以说“这是你们应得的。”但是他没有,他为人祷告,他对人有神的心。

上帝给摩西一个很有趣的指示,他说制一个铜蛇,而且高高挂在一个杆子上面,每次有人被蛇咬,不管在哪里,你要知道你必须要做一件事,否则你一定死,因为毒素已经开始起作用。这个唯一的解救之道就是找到铜蛇。

你可以想象有人被蛇咬后一定很惊慌,无法走动,只有一件事能救他们,就是寻找铜蛇,而且要看着它。当人被咬后,只有很短的时间,他们会非常努力的寻找铜蛇,圣经说你要仰望铜蛇,眼睛要注视着它,心也要跟着它,铜蛇的权能就会临到你身上,上帝的权能就释放你。

我们的确需要花一点时间定睛注视着铜蛇,但是上帝的大能就会临到你。可以想象如果你被蛇咬,感到痛,你会做什么?你会寻找那个铜蛇,定睛在铜蛇上,不让人挡住你的视线。然后所有毒素都走了,疼痛也消失了。感谢神,你的权势释放了。

你要知道,铜蛇本身是没有权能的,它是你信心的焦点所在,这是上帝要他们了解的。罪进入世界因为这个蛇,有一天耶稣会来,而且他会被挂在十字架上。民数记里记载的是要在几百年后在耶稣身上应验的预言。上帝早就预知会发生的事情,因此主耶稣来到世上,并为我们死在十字架上的时候,这是没有发生过的事情。

当他死在十字架上,罪的权势就被打破了,蛇的权势被打破了,死亡的权势也被打破了。歌罗西书第二章14,15节,当耶稣死在十字架上,他取消了我们一切的罪状,解除了仇敌魔鬼的武装。上帝让他们知道,就像摩西举起铜蛇一样,有一天耶稣会在十字架上,每一个明白罪会导致死亡的人,当你注视耶稣的时候,心中对他有信心,你的罪就会被赦免,你就会得救。

神如此爱世人,他将他的独生子赐给人,为我们死在十字架上,只要相信他是为我的罪而死的,而且他三天后复活,胜过了罪的权势,死亡的权势,我们因此得释放。哈利路亚!



由苦毒中得自由  

Sat 5 Oct 2013 PM « 返回页首

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由苦毒中得自由

我们看出埃及记第十五章,上一堂我们也讲的是这一部书,不同的故事讲的都是同一位主角,就是耶稣基督。我们看出埃及记第十五章22至26节,“摩西领以色列人从红海往前行,到了书珥的旷野,在旷野走了三天,找不着水。到了玛拉,不能喝那里的水,因为水苦,所以那地名叫玛拉。百姓就向摩西发怨言,说,我们喝什么呢?摩西呼求耶和华,耶和华指示他一棵树。他把树丢在水里,水就变甜了。耶和华在那里为他们定了律例,典章,在那里试验他们;又说,你若留意听耶和华你神的话,又行我眼中看为正的事,留心听我的诫命,守我一切的律例,我就不将所加于埃及人的疾病加在你身上,因为我耶和华是医治你的。”

这个故事讲到苦水变甜,我要讲到苦的根源。有一次我在新加坡,有一个青年呼召的时候出来;他有一个肩膀非常的疼痛,因为有知识的言语,上帝让我看到他的疼痛,他就出来了。可是我感觉到他心中对他父亲有苦毒,他真正的问题不是身体的疼痛,而是心里有这个疼痛的灵。我就问他,“你跟你爸爸相处的如何?”他回答说,“我爱我的爸爸。”我再次听主的声音,就再问他,“你爸爸是不是常常不在家?你生命中重要的日子他都不在。你后来就开始对他生气苦毒了。”他低下头说,“真的是这样。”

你的苦毒在你生命中打开门,让疾病的灵可以进来。你身体生病是因为你心里先病了,而你是有能力决定不让心里生病的。你可以选择饶恕,可以让环境带下来的是恩典而不是论断。他做了很简单的祷告,饶恕他的父亲,命令那个软弱疾病的灵出去,他立刻得释放。之后他跟我讲,其实不光是肩膀疼,全身都在疼,现在所有的疼痛都不见了。前一个星期医生还跟他讲脊椎很僵直,他才四十岁就不能弯腰了。现在他自由了。

这个年轻人有威胁到他生命的疾病,可是源头是这个疾病的灵,真正的根源是他心中带着的苦毒。当他处理了苦毒,来到耶稣基督十架前饶恕,他自己就得到释放和自由。

我们再看出埃及记第十五章的故事,这是旧约的故事,这里的话让我们看到属灵的真理。有时属灵的真理不是那么容易看懂的,你很难用话去表述。在整个旧约中,就有上帝介入人事物当中的故事,上帝跟人互动,通过这些互动我们就学到一些东西。

这个故事讲到以色列的百姓在埃及做奴隶四百年,他们的生活很艰苦,被人虐待,被人鞭打,曾经有一段时间刚出生的小男孩都被杀死,被逼做奴役,活在非常艰难困苦的生活里。这样为奴四百年,每一个人的记忆所及,都是在捆绑底下服侍埃及人。埃及有非常严厉的监工,常常鞭打虐待他们,他们的生活非常艰苦,直到上帝拯救他们。

上帝应许他们,他会拯救他们脱离埃及。他用极大的能力拯救他们,拯救他们脱离埃及的捆绑,带他们进入上帝的应许里。带他们离开埃及奴役之地,带他们进入产业应许之地,那里有很大的祝福和供应。其实旷野的这段路程很短,上帝的百姓出埃及的这一段故事,也是我们的故事,也是我们的生命。

我们认识上帝之前,我们身在这个世界都做罪的奴隶,不能摆脱罪,没有能力拦阻它。就像疾病在我们身上一样,埋怨,苦毒,愤怒,有情欲,有渴望,不断想伤害我们。每一个生在这世界的人,都是跟上帝隔绝的,成为罪的奴隶。

圣经说埃及人就像在邪灵底下,每一次犯罪都有邪灵的作用。今天很多在座的人,你的生命一直在罪的捆绑底下被邪灵折磨,这邪灵折磨你的思想,情绪,身体,这就是我们接受基督之前的生命。如果你仍在这样的境况里,上帝要释放你得自由。他要赦免你的罪,打破邪灵的权势,释放你离开邪灵。你只要做简单的决定,就是相信。

我请大家仔细看这个故事,问题在哪里。那些在奴役当中活了这么久的人,他们的思想跟奴隶一样;他们离开了埃及,上帝想要他们知道你们现在的身份是儿子了,不再是奴隶了,有慈爱的父,这是供应他们的父。当他们在埃及时,他们过的像奴隶,想的也像奴隶,现在得自由了,是自由人了,可是他们需要选择像自由人一样想,他们需要选择相信自由到底是谁。他们这么多年在奴役当中,虽然自由了,但觉得自己还是奴役,他们思想像奴役,反应像奴役。

任何基督徒都是这样,我们活在罪的奴役当中,耶稣来释放我们得自由;所以生命的灵进到我们的生命,我们成为上帝的儿女。可是我们的思想生活还像奴隶一样,这全在乎你心中是如何想的。问题就在这里,这些人的心中是苦毒的,上帝要向他们显明自己他不单是拯救的主,也是要医治他们的主。

如果你观察人时间够久的话,他们会显明他们的想法。我们来看这些人,他们是怎么做的。他们在旷野走了三天,找不到水。没有水,渴了,就想哪里有下一个供应站呢?我们看27节这里,当这一切结束后,“他们到了以琳,在那里有十二股水泉,七十棵棕树,他们就在那里的水边安营。”

我们先看整个的情况后,再看苦毒。上帝拯救他们脱离了埃及,他供应他们,这里有泉源,有棕树,从上帝来看,他是慈爱的父。可是从以色列的百姓来看,他们看不见供应,看不见上帝对他们的应许,看不见那里有水,有休息的地方,他们只看到现在的环境。与上帝同行的路,就是信心的路,这条路相信上帝是美善的,上帝一直是美好的;可能会有不好的经历,但上帝是美好的。他爱我,他供应我。

当他们在走的时候,没有水,他们是怎么想的?“我们还是奴隶,我们还在受苦,上帝不关心我们。”然后找到水的时候,喝了一口,苦的,他们很失望。他们不了解上帝的供应就在前面,很快就要到了。可是在到达之前,这里看起来很苦。光看环境,好像上帝遗忘他们了,好像还在埃及受苦,要死了。

他们心里的苦毒出来了,不要从眼睛看生命,而要从心里来看生命。心里的东西,会影响你看世界的眼光。他们经历四百年的奴役,心中仍对这样的奴役带着苦毒。当他们活在奴役中的时候,他们活在缺乏里,活在受苦里,活在折磨中,活在没有盼望里。现在得释放了,有慈爱的父满足他们一切的需要。但他也有计划,不单只满足他们的需要,也要医治他们。如果要得地为业,你需要改变想法,不可以再像奴隶的想法了。

奴隶是无能为力的;当人经历困难,觉得无能为力的时候,他们开始愤怒,开始怀怨,开始苦毒,因为他们做了论断,觉得自己没有用,没有能力。当一个人觉得自己无能为力时,就会变得苦毒,对一切发生的事开始愤怒苦毒。当我们得释放跟随耶稣,我们有选择的权利,我们可以选择如何回应生命。你在困难时怎么回应就显明你心里的境况。你口中说出的话就显明你心里的境况。

我们看以色列人如何做,他们向摩西发怨言。他们生气,埋怨,苦毒,就开始发怨言了。当人心中有苦毒的时候,之所以苦毒是因为觉得无力;坏事发生,伤害,愤怒,埋怨,苦毒,心中酸涩,感觉无力。他们在埃及的时候是做奴隶的,现在跟随主,他们能够选择,选择相信上帝的美善和供应的能力,或者选择相信自己无力,上帝是敌对他们的。

他们选择相信上帝是好的,慷慨的,还是选择相信上帝是邪恶,让他们受苦的。当我们面对困难的时候,就把你心中所想的带出来了。苦毒会是怎样的?我让大家看一些苦毒的征兆,每一棵树都会结果子,苦毒是在心中的根,都是用愤怒,怀恨,论断来喂养的,都是用不信来喂养的。有些记号是这样的:

1)抱怨。当一个人在抱怨的时候,他们就是缺乏的,不相信上帝是伟大的,会供应他的。他们抱怨是因为有些东西得不到。

2)怪罪别人。苦毒会从脸上看出来的,特别越老的人越容易显出来。心中喜乐的,脸上都喜乐。心中苦毒的,脸上就很酸苦,整个人会缩起来。上帝没有造我们苦毒,苦毒会在生命中显出来。借着我们的面容,我们说出的话显出来。

3)不会感恩。不是说,“感谢上帝供应我们,我们脱离那里了。”而是说,“为什么会发生这个。”只要是苦毒的人就不会感谢,他们想要更多,越来越多。

4)不能庆祝别人的成功。别人可能高兴的说,“我刚刚升职了,加薪了。”如果心是自由的人会说,“太棒了,恭喜你。”如果心里有苦毒的人会说,“为什么是他,我不喜欢这个人。为什么不是我。”注意在浪子的故事里,哥哥不肯进来跟他们一起庆祝,因为他苦毒,对自己所有的不会感恩,不能庆祝他失去的弟弟回来了。苦毒在他脸上表示出来,他愤怒。苦毒的人是很容易生气的。

我曾经跟一个人谈话,我说你呼召的时候出来,他说“我生气。”我说“你对谁生气?”“每一个人。”我记得圣经上讲,别跟生气的人在一起,不然你也会生气。因为愤怒的人开始要求别人。你开头对谁生气,你从一个人开始生气,就一直生气下去。因为第一个生气没有处理,它就成为苦毒的根源,他就对每一个人都生气了。

我就问他几个问题,圣灵引导我所问的问题。因为我跟他讲了很久,我问他,“你对谁生气?”他说“不知道,对每一个人都生气。”我说,“总有个起头,你是否对你的父母生气。”“对。”“你是家中的老大吗?”“是的,我是。”“你是非婚生子吗?”“是的,我是。”“啊,我们知道发生什么了。”因为你出生的情况,让你有很深的被拒绝感。你的愤怒是因为你里面的苦毒流露出来了,你不断的要求,不能感恩,不能感激,这些在你生命中发生的事情,你都忘记对谁生气了,所以就对每一个人都生气。你会生病的,你的生活会一塌糊涂。我说你要悔改,处理苦毒的根。因此苦毒的根会在人的生命中结出果子来。

另外一点关于苦毒就是人会论断。那个浪子的哥哥对他爸爸说,你从来没有给我开过派对。苦毒的人会论断,这是从他们心里生出来的,苦毒的人努力要争权,苦毒的人不断经历失败的循环。这些人都是苦毒的,在他们的生命中就显出来了;这样的苦毒已经是很多年了,他们已经从埃及出来了,但愤怒,苦毒,怀怨还在心里,只要有一次的挫折,就全部出来了。当他们稍微有点缺乏,稍微经历困难的时候,不是相信上帝是美善的,会帮助我;不是选择相信神,他们选择苦毒,开始抱怨。

我们也是这样,上帝希望我们的心没有苦毒;苦毒让圣灵担忧,圣灵是非常施恩的,他是饶恕的主,圣经说不要使他担忧,不要让上帝的灵担忧;因着你心里留着埋怨,不饶恕,苦毒,圣灵就会担忧。你要温柔,恩慈,饶恕,这是上帝造你的样式。你注意,当一个人抱怨,就显明里面的苦毒。

当你面对困难该如何回应?摩西没有试着恳求他们,也没有试着解决问题,他问上帝,“神,这样苦毒的解答是什么?”上帝向他显明一些事情,上帝也想向你显明一些事情,是否向他请求就是你的事情了。上帝已经供应好医治这样的苦毒了,不光是将来提供他们水泉的地方,也要医治他们苦毒的根源,已经提供他们医治的解答了。

当摩西呼求,上帝让他看到一棵树,这棵树一直在那里长了很久了,可是他不知道的是,那棵树可以医治苦水。当他将树丢进水里,这苦水变甜了。上帝显明自己是医治的主,这让我们看见一幅图画,我们看见耶稣的十字架。几百年后,耶稣死在十字架上;他不是在埋怨,苦毒,愤怒中死亡,他显示被圣灵充满的样式。他饶恕,饶恕,饶恕。

上帝希望你明白这一点;当我们在生命中遇到困难,发现自己有苦毒,愤怒,来到耶稣基督的十字架,十字架打破罪的权势;耶稣在十字架上 打破了罪的权势,在十字架上他打破咒诅,打破所有邪灵的权势,他死里复活,他彰显得胜的生活。

当你来到耶稣面前,你来到同样的十字架,你要做基督徒,就是相信耶稣在十字架上所做的,在我们生命中有效,为我而死,代表我;当他死,我跟他同死,他埋葬,我跟他同埋,他复活,我跟他一起复活。我需要将我的怀恨,埋怨,苦毒全部带到十字架上,钉死它。

要承认心里的罪,转离罪,相信上帝可以释放我得自由。当我转离苦毒,我需要放开我里面敌对的人,我需要施恩饶恕人。当人苦毒,他们就论断,他们无力,他们是受害者,就不断要求“你欠我的。”上帝希望我们学习不一样的方法,带到十字架来,承认它,饶恕人。

耶稣为我们的罪死在十字架上,他为我们做榜样怎样处理罪,饶恕,饶恕,饶恕。坏事情发生,你感觉情绪要冒出来了,饶恕他。你可以带出恩典,也可以是论断;你要成为甜美的人还是苦毒的人?你的生命是酸的还是甜的?甜美的 是饶恕的,施恩的,慈爱的,恩慈的,有温柔的心,这就是你在基督里新造的人。你不要再活在过去的方式里,照过去的心态去活。如果有人让我生气,我就怀怨,愤怒;不,我是新造的人,我把十字架带进这里面,代表我放开,我饶恕,我祝福,我释放。

上帝让他们看见一棵树,当他把树,也就是十架,带进苦水里,苦水变甜了。每一个人都要做决定,你要怎么回应生命中的困境?有些人一直活在过去发生的埋怨,愤怒,苦毒里。它在你一生好像苦水一样,一直让圣灵担忧,限制它在你跟人的关系中长出苦的果子来。

你可以作出选择,相信我是新造的人;我已经不再是苦毒的奴隶了,我不要让苦毒来掌管我的生命,我不要愤怒掌管我的生命,不要让仇恨掌管我的生命。我是新造的人,我是饶恕人的人,我在环境中释放恩典,我选择爱人而不是恨人,饶恕人不是论断人,施恩典而不是苦毒,这是我要过的生活。每一次你这样决定,你就把十字架放进苦水里了。

每一个人都会在生命中碰到困难,都会碰到痛苦的情况;人会让你失望,坏事发生,生命是会碰到困难,每一个人都不能避免。想想耶稣,他就是榜样,他被人背叛,遭拒绝,被人轻视,所有朋友都抛弃他了,他没有反应出来, 他完全施恩典,不苦毒。我们可以想象耶稣可以这样说,“我受够了地上这些人了,我是放弃了天堂的宝座来到这里的,我生在马槽里,身边都是动物;我爸爸妈妈穷到连一个像样的房子都没有,只有羊在我身边;之后那些人又想杀我,后来我们又逃命,搬到别的国家去,后来又回来。我这一生别人都恨我,根本不喜欢我。我医治病人,赶鬼,他们竟然钉死我。我的朋友,我跟他们分享,可是他们偷光了我的钱,还把我卖给敌人。我的朋友全都离开了,他们鞭打我。我真的受够这一切了,让你们死在这里算了。”

耶稣没有这样,他教我们怎样处理不公义,怎么面对背叛,不恩慈,严酷,诬告。你选择论断,还是选择饶恕,就是变得苦毒还是变得甜美。我们作出的选择都是有后果的,在结束前我要让你知道,那些没有放开苦毒拥抱恩典的人,他们没有领受上帝为他们所预备的。苦毒会偷走你的未来,苦毒会偷走上帝在你生命中的祝福,你不需要苦毒,是你选择苦毒的。再说一次,你不需要苦毒,之所以苦毒是你自己选择苦毒的。

这个苦毒是有代价的,它会影响你的人际关系;婚姻,儿女,会从一代传到下一代,偷走上帝的祝福。圣经说,不要亏缺上帝的恩典,让苦毒进到你的生命。今天在这里的人,有人曾经经历过很痛苦的情况,家中的问题,虐待的问题,你不用一直苦毒下去,愤怒下去,被不饶恕折磨。你可以做决定饶恕放开它,开始施恩。

你可以选择活的像天父的儿女一样,或者活的像一个无力的奴隶。无力的奴隶才会苦毒,上帝的儿女是甜美的,你选择怎么活。上帝已经确定你是他的儿女了,他已经为你供应一切了,但你还不相信,仍然活在奴役的苦毒里。这是我们心里如何相信的问题,我相信上帝今天要释放很多人自由,你在埋怨,愤怒,苦毒里挣扎,你一直放在心里。上帝说放开它,放开它。

拿那棵树放进苦水里,能够得到医治变为甜美;把问题带到十字架前,上帝有能力改变你,之后你就会像约瑟一样。约瑟是那将苦水变甜的人,他的兄弟背叛他,将他卖了当奴隶,他被人诬告,在牢里受苦。当他从另一边出来,上帝兴起他。

就像南非的曼德拉一样,他在牢里住了二十五年,当他出来,他选择饶恕。这么多年,他选择饶恕。当他出来,他被提升做全国的领袖,是因为他的成就吗?不,是因为他的品格。当他有能力愤怒苦毒,可以报复当初伤害他的人的时候,他说“不,我愿意饶恕。”他在整个国家开启了和好的运动。大家公认他是南非最伟大的领袖,因为他跟约瑟一样。

约瑟从牢里出来,当他到了权位之地,看见他的哥哥们,他说,“不要生气,不用怪自己,也不是你们要把我送到这里来的,我看见上帝的手,让我成为一个伟大的人,我看见上帝使用这一切,让我成为一个更好的人。不用生自己的气,我也不生你们的气,上帝已经赐福我了。”

圣经中一个一个的故事,这些人做了选择,有些人变得苦毒,失掉自己的命定;有人选择拥抱十字架,饶恕,经历上帝的恩惠。我只有一个问题,你会怎样做?在你心里有什么?苦毒还是甜美?论断还是饶恕?不论你做什么,都会在生命中显露出来。就在今天作出决定,你要挪去毒根的论断,饶恕,让上帝释放你。你不再是奴隶了,你要活的像上帝的儿子。

对那些不配的人施恩,爱人,饶恕他们,因为我们的父是这样的。这是你的选择。有些人给予是想要得回什么,连不信主的人都会这样做。我现在选择给予,是因为我慷慨,就像我的父亲一样;他不要回报,他说我就是这样的人,我喜欢饶恕,因为我就是这样。活出新的人,经历神的祝福。阿门!



尊榮你的父親母親  

Sun 6 Oct 2013 AM « 返回页首

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尊榮你的父親母親

请大家翻开圣经玛拉基书,这是旧约中最后一本书。等到上帝运行,耶稣来到这世界,这中间有约四百年沉静的时间,上帝给他们这样的应许。第5,6节说,“看哪,耶和华大而可畏之日未到以前,我必差遣先知以利亚到你们那里去。他必使父亲的心转向儿女,儿女的心转向父亲,免得我来咒诅遍地。”上帝在表达他的关切,他先知性的显明在末世的日子会是如何。他显明在耶稣回来之前,在地上存在的最关切的问题就是家庭关系的破裂。

家庭是我们社会的根基,社会要建立在刚强的家庭之上,刚强的婚姻,刚强的关系。上帝的心意是希望家庭都是健康的,上帝的心意是让父母亲显明天父对这世界的心。这里描述到家庭的破裂,不管在世界哪个角落,到处都是这样的,最大的问题就在家庭里;夫妻关系的破裂,亲子关系的破裂;家原来是充满喜乐,爱,最美好的地方,但很多时侯你看到的是问题,痛苦和毁灭。这影响到孩子长大的情况,这个问题一代代倍增。

上帝显明问题的原因在哪里,问题的根源在心里。心就决定你这一生的境况,我们以为一生都是有大脑意念来决定,很多人试着用意念来做。圣经告诉我们,我们一生的果效是从心里面流露出来的。箴言第四章23节讲,“你要保守你心,胜过保守一切。因为一生的果效,是由心发出。”当我们讲到心,讲的是你灵和魂的交接点,讲的不是头脑,讲的是那人的内在信念系统。圣经说你需要转化你的心,换句话说,那个心已经朝着错误的方向,现在它需要转过来了。如果不使心转向,就没有爱和医治的流露,可能就会变得很尴尬困难,即使你想表现爱,都会是一种非常奇怪的方式。

上帝最关切的不是你外在的表现,外在的情况,而是在你心。你外面可能看起来很好,但是心却不对了。他在这里说,“他必使父亲的心转向儿女,儿女的心转向父亲”,这是双方的转向。要让父母转向儿女,也要让儿女转向父母。如果不发生的话,结果就会是咒诅遍满地面。当家庭破碎,父母离婚,儿女背叛,生命因为愤怒苦毒而扭曲,这不叫祝福,这叫咒诅,只要有咒诅就有邪灵在运行。上帝要带我们进入祝福,都要从心开始,上帝能够改变你的心;改变你所相信的,你的生命就改变,你一生的果效是从心发出的。

当我们在婚姻问题辅导人时,发现很多人都有同样的情况,就是跟父母之间有一些没有处理的冲突,这些问题就带进了他们婚姻里。一开始都有很大的期待,非常浪漫,充满爱意,而一段时间之后发现原来期待的没有发生,因为他们原生家庭没有解决的冲突带进了婚姻里。任何人结婚之前,他们需要解决心中对自己父母的问题。

我们来看以弗所书第六章,它讲到作为一个信徒生命应该怎么过。2,3节说,“要孝敬父母,使你得福,在世长寿。这是第一条带应许的诫命。你们作父亲的,不要惹儿女的气,只要照着主的教训和警戒,养育他们。”注意这里有原则,也有应许。上帝说孝敬,你要看重孝敬你的父母,因为这个后面带着应许。这是第一条带应许的诫命,代表在上帝的眼中这太重要了。他特别把应许加在上面。

应许就是:如果我孝敬父母,我能够长寿而且在世得福。换句话说,孝敬父母会影响我的健康,也影响我的生命和感情。反过来也同样,如果你不孝敬父母,这样带出的你的生命的结果就是健康出问题,在你的生命中会有各样的问题发生。如果你看不清问题的根源,不知道为什么会有问题。

有一次我为一位年轻人祷告,他身体上有很大的疼痛,所有的关节都痛,他的脊椎都僵直了;医生说再有几年他可能都不能弯腰了。他有很严重的健康问题。我寻求主,主就告诉我,他身上有疾病软弱的灵,邪灵在他身上造成的疾病,而问题的根源是他对他父亲的苦毒。当这个年轻人悔改饶恕自己的父亲,我们祷告他从邪灵中释放,他立刻得到医治,完全没有痛,可以很自在的行动了。邪灵偷走他的健康,因为他心里一直对父亲有着苦毒。他爱不爱他的爸爸?爱,他真的爱。问题是他里面有没有解决的冲突,他心里面的反应流露出来,就是论断他爸爸没有做好的事情。

我还记得另外一对年轻人,他们有流产的问题。每一次流产就祷告求上帝来医治,已经是第五次流产了,他们请我去为他们祷告。当我祷告的时候,我感觉到主告诉我,每一个流掉的都是男孩,她跟她的爸爸之间有问题。我私下跟这个姐妹谈,她真的每一个流掉的都是男孩。我问她,“你跟你爸爸怎么样呢?”她马上说,“我爱他。”在她的意识中她是爱他的,可是我们再问几个问题,发现她对自己的爸爸有很深的苦毒,她里面有内在誓言,“我绝对不要生男孩。”这是一个咒诅在她身上运行,让她没法顺利生下男婴。你心里的境况就决定了你生命的限制在哪里。如果你心里许下了这样的誓言,我绝不要生男孩,你身体的限制就是由你的心来决定的。

上帝在他的话语里很清楚的说“孝敬父母是有应许的。”孝敬是什么意思?会有什么样的情况?如果不孝敬会有什么样的后果呢?旧约中孝敬的意思是重量,把重量放在上面。跟荣耀是同样的一个词,当我们说上帝是荣耀的,代表他的分量很大,非常扎实。所以旧约里孝敬就是看重有极大分量的东西,加添他的价值。

新约中是另外一个词,代表为一个人立价格,你选择为他定一个价值。我们将这两个放在一起,就了解了圣经中孝敬的含义,代表你认定父母是有极高价值的,并看重你跟他们之间的关系和沟通,你看重这一切。

怎样看重孝敬一个人呢?我们会有不同的理由,每一个文化中都有受尊敬的方式。首先,有些人受尊重是因为他们的成就,有些人做了伟大的功绩,人们就尊重他们,我们看重他们的价值是因为他们伟大的成就,代表他们做了一些事情我们认为很重要。

第二个让我们尊敬一个人的理由是因为他们的品格,这个人显出的正直和勇气。我们敬重是因为他是一个伟大的人。因为他们勇敢,正直,忍耐,赢得了我们的尊敬。他们配得敬重。

第三种我们敬重人的原因是因为他们的角色,像总统,因为他的职位我们敬重他,因为他的位置是全国最高的政治地位,我们因此敬重他。圣经说,你要敬重在位的人。

三种主要敬重一个人的理由就是因为他的成就,品格,还有就是地位。可是上帝尊重一个人是有不同的理由,跟前面的理由很不一样,是很重要的理由。上帝尊重一个人是因为人是按照他的样式所造的,你碰到的每一个人对上帝都是很有价值的,每一个人上帝都在他们身上放了极高的价值,他也显明出来。

我的这个手表,到底它有没有价值呢?就看有人愿意付多少钱,可能有人说,值一千块;也有人说,夜市买的,十块钱。他们放了价格在上面,就看它有什么意义了。我们衡量一个人的价值就是因为他们如何看待他。上帝看我们是有极高价值的,他付的代价是差他的独生爱子来到世上,为我们舍了生命;即使我们还在罪里面,我们的生命一塌糊涂,很多不好的事情发生,神说你是我极其珍贵的,我可以不看那些错的东西,我看见的核心是这是按我的形象造的,我看重你们。

尊敬是上帝赐给我们的,是他放在我们身上的价值。耶稣来到世上,行在人的当中,为我们舍掉生命,为我们显明什么是爱。上帝是看重人的,只是因为是人,是按他的形象所造的。我们常用不同的角度看重人,如果他做的好就好,如果他让我们失望,我们就论断他,不喜欢他;如果品格上有瑕疵,我们就论断他,不喜欢他;如果他的角色没有扮演好,我们也不喜欢。我们对人有自己的意见,我们按照人的行为来论断人。

我们再来看看什么是不尊敬。有些人之所以不敬重孝敬父母,是因为太过没大没小,我们太亲近他们,不单只看到好的一面,也看到不好的一面;不光看到他们好的品质,也看到他们的破碎,看到愤怒,没爱心,所有的一切。因为我们所看到的,我们就论断敌对我们的父母。他们没有按照我所期待的去做,他们做的是我没有想到的,我们心里受伤了。当人受伤,就会有愤怒,愤怒是一种要求,“你欠了我的。”

很多家庭真的是有问题;有些朋友的爸爸背叛妈妈,背叛他的婚约,背叛所有的家人,离开自己的妻子。因为这样的家庭破裂,让你陷入极大的情绪折磨中。或者父母其中一方很生气,就会打孩子,虐待你,抛弃你,拒绝你。很多人都有痛苦的经验,这是要学的功课,别人做的事情你不用负责,但你有权利选择如何回应,你也能决定怎样做。你可以选择轻视,论断,不孝敬;你也可以选择饶恕和孝敬;这是你的选择,你有能力做这样的选择。每一个人做了这样的选择就继续这样做;看你心里的情况,如果有失望,怀怨,愤怒,你就可能轻视你的父母,论断他们,用各样不孝敬的方式对待他们。

孝敬是出于心的问题,这就让我们了解了,上帝要求我们孝敬父母不是因为他们了不起,他要求我们孝敬他们就如同给他们礼物一样。他们给了你生命这个礼物,而你的反应就是要给他们孝敬。上帝给了一个特别的应许,如果你孝敬父母,不管他们是怎样的人,不管他们是不是好父母,只要你做决定心中有这样一颗孝敬的心,你就会长寿得福。如果你受到过伤害,可能他们曾经做过很伤害你的事情,你里面有愤怒怀怨,有论断敌对他们,这样的生命是不能得福的。

我听过很多年轻人这样说,“我绝不要象我的父亲。”你听见他里面对他父亲的论断和苦毒,就可以想见他做的很多事情跟他父亲一模一样。就像再一次复制出来一样,他真的就跟他的父亲一样了。我听人这样讲过,“我永远不要像我妈妈。”我说,只要有时间,你就会变得跟她一样。有一天你会听到自己吼跟她一样,像她骂人一样骂人,所有你最讨厌的事情,你说你最不要的事情,你有一天会做的一模一样。怎么会这样,我怎么会到这个地步的?我记得那个很大的伤害,还说绝对不要这样。

怎么发生的?因为你没有解决心里的问题,因为你心里对父母的论断,因为你轻视他们,这就会在你生命中产生一个恶性循环。我记得有一个人来找我,他跟他的老板有冲突。我问他“你上一个工作如何呢?”他说,“我跟那个老板也处不好,也离开了。”“那你跟你的小组长相处如何?”“我就是因为这个来见你,我跟他也处不来。”我说,“有没有一个工作是你做的很开心的?”“我当兵的时候很开心。”“那你跟你的长官相处如何?”“他不喜欢我,一天到晚找我麻烦,我也不喜欢他们。”你就可以看到这个模式。“你在学校如何?”“不是很好,老师老是挑我毛病。我不喜欢他们。”“你跟父母关系如何?”“我爸爸把我赶出家了。他们不是我的亲生父母,是我的养父母。”

让我告诉你问题在哪里,我也告诉你未来会如何,因为这个模式很清楚。你的问题就在当你被收养,你感觉被拒绝了,你对自己的亲生父母带着愤怒,埋怨和苦毒;而真正愿意付出代价来养育你的父母亲,你却拒绝他们,把你的愤怒发泄在他们身上;你同时不孝敬自己的亲生父母和养父母,就显明在你生命中各处的冲突,这些冲突会一直追着你,直到你解决心里的问题。你需要认清心里的问题并且悔改。

我们很快看一下圣经里的一个故事,撒母耳记下第六章,生命的问题都是跟着你不孝敬父母而来的。这个故事的背景是,它是一个很大复兴的故事,国家有了一个新的国王,大卫王登基了,而他的妻子米甲也回到他身边,他把神的同在,约柜,带进城,全国欢庆,每一个人都在那里。到处是音乐,舞蹈,欢呼,非常美好的一天,有上帝的同在。大卫非常的喜悦,在那里欢喜跳跃,舞蹈,因为有神的同在。14节,“大卫穿着细麻布的以弗得,在耶和华面前极力跳舞。”

大卫在跳舞,我们来看他的太太米甲,16节说,“耶和华的约柜进了大卫城的时候,扫罗的女儿米甲从窗户里观看,见大卫王在耶和华面前踊跃跳舞,心里就轻视他。”两个人,一个世界,两种完全不一样的回应。

为什么?米甲在大卫年轻的时候非常受他吸引,她是扫罗王的女儿,扫罗讨厌大卫,他嫉妒大卫,想要杀了他。他们结婚之后,大卫成为了扫罗王的女婿,扫罗的嫉妒越来越强,他计划如何杀掉大卫,他派出一群杀手要在床上杀了他。你可以想象派杀手去暗杀自己的女婿,可是他的女儿听到这个消息后,让大卫赶紧逃了出去。大卫成为了通缉犯,扫罗派人追杀他,只要任何人跟大卫做朋友,就把他杀了。大卫像难民一样逃亡,很多年躲在旷野里面,受到极大的苦难,一直很害怕。如果你害怕一个人,他们可能背叛你,可能就杀了你。所以大卫非常的困苦。

而米甲的父亲扫罗又将她嫁给了另一个人。她爱的是大卫,大卫是她的英雄,是她的梦中情人,而她的父亲将她嫁给了另一个男人。她被逼跟另一个人生活,但她的心不爱这个人。大卫和米甲都是被同样一个人恶劣的对待。当有人恶劣的对待你,你可以用上帝的方式处理,使用敬虔的方式处理这件事,带进恩典,释放饶恕,让自己的心仍然保持在自由的境况。你也可以变得愤怒苦毒,轻看,不尊敬,扫罗的女儿米甲轻看自己的父亲,同样也轻视自己的丈夫。

大卫是一个真正爱上帝的人,他能够原谅扫罗,他从来没有举起手敌对他,他一直很敬重扫罗。而在他生命中最伟大的一天,他们聚集在一起,约柜进城了,大卫在经历神,而他的妻子盯着他,心里充满了轻视。当大卫回来,20节说,“大卫回家要给眷属祝福。扫罗的女儿米甲出来迎接他,说,以色列王今日在臣仆的婢女眼前露体,如同一个轻贱人无耻露体一样,有好大的荣耀阿。”米甲真的好好的骂了大卫一场。

大卫说我为主跳舞,我还要跳更多。他不要因为妻子的苦毒和不敬重而受到胁迫,他不要任何人把他拉下来,他不要任何人拿走他的自由。接下来看23节,“扫罗的女儿米甲,直到死日,没有生养儿女。”大卫选择敬重的路,敬重神,敬重扫罗,看重人;扫罗不配人敬重的,但大卫敬重他。可是米甲变得很苦毒,轻看自己的父亲,轻视自己的丈夫,后果就是:第一,她没有办法经历上帝的作为,没有办法进入上帝的祝福,因为她心里的情况。第二,婚姻无法生养。婚姻中没有生命,没有喜乐,没有爱。所有的爱都被她的苦毒,论断和不尊敬给掩盖了。第三,她没有儿女。在希伯来文化当中,这是很羞辱的事,就像她女人的身份失败了一样。后来也看到她收养了别人的孩子,这孩子也被处死了。两种后果,一个是尊重人的,一个是不尊重人的。

我们再看几处经文,申命记第二十七章16节,“轻慢父母的,必受咒诅。”另外一处在箴言说“轻视父亲嘲笑母亲的眼目,要被乌鸦啄去。”当你不孝敬父母,邪灵就有权利进入我们的生命折磨我们。第二处经文说的乌鸦讲的就是邪灵,它能啄去你的眼睛。这就是在生命战场上失败跌倒的人最后的结局。这里讲到我们如果不孝敬父母,就没有能力看清,邪灵会让我们盲目。另外一处在箴言第二十章20节,“咒骂父母的,他的灯必灭,变为漆黑的黑暗。”这里讲到的灯就是你内在的生命,当你咒诅或者对父母讲一些不好的话,黑暗会充满你的生命让你无法看清。

这些都是很严重的经文,我们应该怎么办呢?

第一,上帝希望你有不一样的生活,他给你的是生命;上帝明白破碎家庭的问题,他明白人经历的忧伤和痛苦;耶稣来,他的心意就是要医治伤心的人。上帝第一样要给我们的就是,你只要转向他,承认问题不在你的父母,家人或者发生的这些事,问题在你的心里面,他应许赐给你一颗全新的心,将我的灵放在你里面,你现在进入一个新的家庭,上帝是你的父亲,你没有任何缺乏。

上帝希望我们明白,自然的家庭是有限制的,人是有罪的,所以痛苦伤害一定会有。忧伤失望是生命的一部分。但是我们不用这样过活,不用活在痛苦忧伤里面,耶稣有更美的东西要给我们;他说眼目不要看自然的家庭,也不要看自然的环境,你要仰望,这位神是爱你的,天上的父是这样完全的爱你,天上的神他欢迎你,爱你,拥抱你,为你供应,永不离开你,不断来接触你,他在你这一生都在接触你。

耶稣说,凡接待他的人,相信他的人,因他为我们的罪死在十字架上,得胜复活。凡相信耶稣基督的,他赐他们权柄让他们做上帝的儿女。不管我们的家庭如何,上帝要把你放在他的家里,他要给你新的开始,新的身份,成为永生神的儿女。

我们都有自己的原生家庭,但现在是更大家庭的一份子;神是我们的父,他供应我们一切的需要;他一直爱我们,一直这样的恩慈,一直是这样的温柔,他知道怎样医治你的心。我们第一步是要进到上帝的家,相信耶稣基督。

第二,上帝要你改变生活的方式。不光是到前面来接受耶稣而已,是要超过这些,要改变你的心,改变生命,改变你跟人相处的方式。上帝说,“现在你改变了,我把我的信心放在你里面,你不用像以前那样愤怒,苦毒,扭曲的生活。你要恩慈,因为我是恩慈的,我对每一个人恩慈。不是光对好人,做对的事情的人才恩慈,这不是在你原生的家庭,这是新的家庭,我一直都恩慈。”“那么即使我做了很坏的事情也是吗?”“是的,我不改变,不是因为你日子不顺我就改变,我一直都是恩慈的。你要温柔,不用严厉,因为我就是这样。”

神是非常温柔的神,“如果我们把事情搞砸了,你不会吼我,不会骂我,不会惩罚我吗?”“不会,我不会惩罚,我会非常温柔的待你,我希望找到方式把你带回来。恩慈,温柔,彼此饶恕,我要你学习饶恕人,不是不尊重或者论断他们,就像我饶恕你一样。”上帝说,“我要你重新看你的家人,重新看你的爸爸妈妈;如果你心里有愤怒苦毒,你觉得他们让你失望,你觉得他们辜负你,他们可能真的很失败,辜负了你,确实会发生的,可是你不知道他们也是破碎,所以才这样做。现在你在新的家庭了,新的家庭里是尊敬人的。”

你说,“他们真的很伤我啊。”神说,“我知道,你做的也伤我,但我饶恕你了。就如同我饶恕你一般,你需要饶恕他们。现在我要你改变你的心,我要你看见他们,没有他们你不可能进到这个世界,也没有可能有永生的生命;即使他们所有的事情都没有做对,我要你仍然看重尊敬他们,是他们把你带进这个世界。我要你看重他们,因为我看重他们;他们对我一样也是特别的,我要你孝敬他们,给他们这个孝敬的礼物。”

你说,“可是他们不配呀,我爸爸做了这么可怕的事情,抛弃我们。”上帝说,“我知道,可是你很愤怒,你需要饶恕,就如同我饶恕你一样。因为我看重你,我要你做的,是当你得饶恕,你就会开始为他们祷告;当你为他们祷告,你的心就开始跟他们连结在一起。你看见上帝为他们安排最好的,他们开始改变。不然不可能为他们祷告,你如果愤怒的话是不可能为他们祷告的。首先你需要原谅,放掉所有的论断,开始为他们祷告。”

如果你也造成他们的痛苦,我觉得你需要跟他们道歉。你说,“你不了解我爸爸做过什么,我妈妈是怎么做的。”神说,“我知道,可是我仍然看见你里面的愤怒,你做的事真的伤害他,当你论断拒绝他们,他们可能没有说什么,但是他们感受到痛。因为他们是你的父母。这仍然在他们里面,他们仍然爱你,关心你。”

你说,“可是我的父母把我送给人,我的家庭破碎了。”“仍然一样,这是新的生活方式,这是用我爱的方式来爱人,我饶恕的方式来饶恕人。你记得你对你妈妈是怎样的又骂又吼,咒诅她悖逆她,她可能感觉不好,你们两个可能吼在一起,她也受伤了,你伤害了她 。”

你可以这样跟她说,“妈,上帝对我说话,他让我看见我心中很多年都有愤怒和伤害,我真的很抱歉,你愿意原谅我吗?我爱你。”当你这样做,你要先来到主的面前才能做得到,当你把事情调整对了,找一些方法表达你的恩慈,给他们礼物。我告诉你,爱一定赢,爱一定会赢。

我跟大家讲一个小故事,我很惊讶;我成为基督徒之前面对了很多的困难,我们有一个女儿送去给人收养,因为她带来冲突,羞辱,我们就把她送给人藏起来了。我接受基督之后,我真的悔改,相信上帝会恢复我们的女儿,有一天他真的做到了。几年之后,我们开始跟我们的女儿建立关系,她说,“我希望你来主持我们的婚礼,我去过我自己姐妹的婚礼,好美呀,我希望我也有跟她们一样美的婚礼。”之所以这么美是因为有神的同在,因为我的孩子都是基督徒,有神的同在降临。可是我的女儿不了解,她只是希望她的婚礼也有这么好。

我们开始有一个预演,开始确实很难,里面很紧张,她的养父母在那里,养父母的家庭也都在,他们都是收养的,一共有三个家庭在那里,她爸爸和妈妈大概也很难接受;我记得预演完之后,我跟主耶稣说,“这真是很难啊。”我走到海滩去,一直流泪,跟耶稣基督说,“主啊,请你帮助我,我能做什么呢?我能说什么呢?”第二天早上醒来,主就把一些话放在我心里。有些时候上帝会立刻回应,我早上醒来上帝就把答案给我。

我们来到婚礼,她从红毯走过来,她的养父陪着她,她的家人坐在这里,另一个家庭坐在那里,而我们的家庭就坐在他们当中;气氛非常紧张,有时候我会听到灵里面的一些话,我听见的是,“他会说什么?我要听听他会讲什么。”她的养父母不希望我主持婚礼,因为他们不是基督徒,也不希望我主持婚礼,可是我的女儿一直坚持。我怎么做呢?当他们站在我面前,非常紧张,这是她 一生最特别的日子,大家都在等我开口,上帝这样对我说,“敬重她的父母。”聚会开始之前,我特别跟她父母说,“我要特别感谢你们做的这一切,为了Josephine,谢谢你关心她,给她教育,给她家庭,谢谢你们照顾她接纳她,因为你们在她的生命中这么重要的角色,我要敬重你们。我们没有权利做任何要求,我们何等感激你容许我们今天能够来参加。”

整个的气氛马上就变了,神的同在降临,有人开始流泪,上帝开始运行,这可能是我们见过的最美的婚礼。当恩典流露,你最容易感觉到上帝。后面有用餐的时间,我在想不知道会有怎样的气氛,不知道我们会坐在哪里,座位的安排是会告诉你一些信息的。我们去到那儿看看我们会坐在哪里。我告诉我的女儿这一天你要好好孝敬你的父母,你需要讲话感激他们,就像其他婚礼一样。

当我们到了那里,发现前面有两张特别的桌子,没有谁比谁高,两边是平等地位的,一个是她的家人,一个是我们。我立刻看见我女儿站起来说话,她敬重她的养父母教养她长大,她也敬重我们,上帝降临,在敬重中上帝一定降临。我的妻子Joy站起来讲话,她也对Josephine的妈妈表达她的感激。Josephine的养母站起来说话,她讲了一个我们都不知道的事情,她自己的母亲给她压力要她不要收养这个孩子,她必须要反对自己的妈妈来收养这个孩子。她说,每一次她生日的时候,我都感谢生她的母亲把她带进这个世界。上帝的同在降临,每一个人都开始流泪。我从来没有参加过婚宴大家哭成这样的。很神奇,有些人哭出声音,有人哭成一团。上帝的爱真的充满那个地方。

我希望你明白一点,除非我们决定孝敬,这一切不可能发生。能够给人敬重,就带下祝福。她选择敬重自己的养父母,也敬重我们,我们也选择敬重他们,上帝就能自由的运行。这是你要给人的礼物,因为我们是这样的人,我们是愿意敬重人的人,现在我们在更大的家庭-上帝的家庭里面,敬重是我们愿意给人的。



門柱旁的血  

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門柱旁的血

我们看两三处的圣经,圣经是上帝的话,告诉我们上帝的计划,它分成两个部分,旧约和新约。我们先看约翰福音第一章29节,“次日,约翰看见耶稣来到他那里,就说,看哪,神的羔羊,除去世人罪孽的。”约翰是上帝特别差派准备的一个人,让国人预备好迎接耶稣的降临,他的信息就是悔改,离开罪。全国各地都有人来,他在预备这些人领受上帝为他们准备的祝福。有一天当他为人施洗的时候,看见耶稣朝他们这边走来,上帝对他的心说话,向他显明耶稣基督是谁,“耶稣基督是神的儿子。”

约翰这位先知这样说,“看哪,神的羔羊,除去世人罪孽的。”对我们大部分人来说,这根本没有什么意思,可是对在场的听众,这有极大的重要性。人类一直在挣扎的问题,就是罪的问题。罪违反上帝的律法,就是让我们的生命没有上帝,自己做主。罪就是不理上帝,我们自己往前跑;罪就是转离上帝,走我们自己的路;罪带来的是毁灭和死亡。圣经说,罪的工价,它的后果,就是要隔绝,摧毁,死亡。

上帝不希望我们的世界是这样的,战争,暴力,贫穷,犯罪;他创造的世界原是美好的地方,他的创造是好的。当罪进入到世界,他创造的人远离他,整个受造物的动力就改变了,邪灵开始有能力进到世界来,邪灵开始辖制人。亚当犯罪的时候,疾病,死亡,忧伤进入世界,上帝应许他们有一天他会差下一人救赎他们,这人能处理罪的问题。

世界所有的宗教,它们的挑战都是怎样面对罪,所有的宗教都了解罪的问题,它们的处理方式都差不多,你需要做点事情。基督信仰是完全不一样的,你要在神的面前悔罪是最主要的,不是我做什么,也不是你做什么,而是耶稣基督为我们所做的。

我们看旧约出埃及记第一章,让你知道整个的故事。这里讲到上帝的百姓在埃及。11至14节,“于是埃及人派督工的辖制他们,加重担苦害他们。他们为法老建造两座积货城,就是比东和兰塞。只是越发苦害他们,他们越发多起来,越发蔓延,埃及人就因以色列人愁烦。埃及人严严地使以色列人作工,使他们因作苦工觉得命苦,无论是和泥,是做砖,是作田间各样的工,在一切的工上都严严地待他们。”

上帝的百姓被困在外地,活在奴役底下。没有人一生下来就是奴隶的,我们生下来就是自由的,我们渴望自由。但这些人在捆绑底下,在埃及人的重担底下,埃及人派最严厉的督工来,打他们,虐待他们,让他们觉得非常命苦。他们受苦,被打,被虐待,很努力的工作,没有后果;不能自由经营自己的生命,都在辖制底下,都在悲惨当中,他们受到非常残酷的对待。

这就是我们看见的图画,受罪的辖制也是这样。当人生在世上,我们都成为罪的奴隶,什么东西征服了你,你就伏在他底下。罪,苦毒,仇恨,愤怒,这罪影响到每一个人,而在罪的后面就是邪灵。当人生在这世界,都生在罪的辖制下,生命很辛苦,很让人失望。背叛,困难,挫折,在痛苦中人们想要找到舒缓,他们对不同的东西上瘾,成瘾也是一个捆绑。他们毒品上瘾,毒品就吸走他们的健康和金钱。或者色情上瘾,酒精尼古丁上瘾,这就是奴役,让人变得很苦毒。

圣经告诉我们,在埃及后面有不可见的属灵的世界,埃及人拜很多不同的偶像,各样事情都有神。真相是,这些人在奴役中,奴役背后的权势就是邪灵,借着埃及人开始施压,让这些人哭泣,求上帝帮助他们。

上帝就派摩西帮助他们,当摩西来了,他跟法老说,“主说,让我的百姓离开。”法老说,“你的主是谁呀?又不是我的神,我不让他们离开。”上帝就在埃及地降下灾祸,我们来看最后一灾。在出埃及记第十二章,3节,“你们吩咐以色列全会众说,本月初十日,各人要按着父家取羊羔,一家一只。”5至7节,“要无残疾,一岁的公羊羔,你们或从绵羊里取,或从山羊里取,都可以。要留到本月十四日,在黄昏的时候,以色列全会众把羊羔宰了。各家要取点血,涂在吃羊羔的房屋左右的门框上和门楣上。”12节,“因为那夜我要巡行埃及地,把埃及地一切头生的,无论是人是牲畜,都击杀了,又要败坏埃及一切的神。我是耶和华。”14节,“你们要记念这日,守为耶和华的节,作为你们世世代代永远的定例。”22,23节,“拿一把牛膝草,蘸盆里的血,打在门楣上和左右的门框上。你们谁也不可出自己的房门,直到早晨。因为耶和华要巡行击杀埃及人,他看见血在门楣上和左右的门框上,就必越过那门,不容灭命的进你们的房屋,击杀你们。”29至31节,“到了半夜,耶和华把埃及地所有的长子,就是从坐宝座的法老,直到被掳囚在监里之人的长子,以及一切头生的牲畜,尽都杀了。法老和一切臣仆,并埃及众人,夜间都起来了。在埃及有大哀号,无一家不死一个人的。夜间,法老召了摩西,亚伦来,说,起来,连你们带以色列人,从我民中出去,依你们所说的,去事奉耶和华吧。”

我们第一个看见的是,上帝说他要来审判埃及地所有的神。埃及人拜很多的神,他们拜尼罗河,所以在尼罗河上有瘟疫;他们所拜的一切,他们所说的一切神,上帝就一个个审判他们。上帝显明他的能力大过这些神的能力,这些都是假神,他是唯一的真神。每一次带下瘟疫,他就让他们看到这些神无力可为,他显明你们拜的都是没有能力的,以色列的神,耶和华,才是真正的神。

每一次摩西来到法老面前,法老刚硬着心,绝不放开他们,埃及人再一次遭殃。每一次的遭殃,法老的心变得非常刚硬苦毒,终于来到最后的一次灾殃。你需要明白一点,法老被众民崇拜如同神一样,大家也拜他的儿子如同是神,在埃及人的眼中,法老是他们国家很伟大的神,他的儿子也是。上帝说,他给以色列的百姓很清楚的指示,摩西把以色列所有的领袖都聚集了,仔细听好,再一次的灾,上帝要打破埃及的权势,要打破邪灵的权势,上帝要照他的话释放我们。

这是非常重要的事情,会发生在第十四天,你要在羊群中找一只羊羔。因为埃及人轻看牧羊人,轻看羊群。上帝说我要你拿一只羊羔,仔细挑选,没有残疾,没有疾病,不可以是瞎眼的,瘸腿的,完美的羊。十四号的黄昏,大概下午三点钟,将全家带进家中,杀了这只羊,把羊的血留在盆里,拿牛膝草蘸血打在门楣门框上,你们进去,一起吃这只羊。因为半夜我要杀掉家中所有的长子,所有牲畜的长子,除非他看见这个血,看见羔羊的血,你就得赦免。上帝看见这血,就知道这是我的百姓,血遮盖他们,他们不会遭害,不会进到家里。

那一天来了,14号,如果你是长子,你一定会确定这一切都按部就班的做好了,不可以冒险,只有一次机会。埃及人看到他们,有些人相信,他们也这样做,他们感到神在以色列人一边。半夜十二点开始,哭号开始,一家一家,几百户家,天使进去把每一家的长子杀了,即使你坐牢了,是长子你都不能幸免。遍地每一个角落,上帝来审判法老这个神,他打破他们属灵的能力,他打破这个国家后面的权势,埃及后来再也没有恢复过来,再也不是以前一样的兴盛大国 ,在这之后,失掉了一切。

死亡使者走过全地,所有涂了血的家庭,都被饶恕了。上帝对他们说,你们要吃这羊羔,预备你们的旅程了,你们要离开捆绑,四百三十年的奴役,今晚结束,准备出门了,今晚奴役结束了。圣经 说,没有一个离开埃及的人是软弱的。那个晚上,当他们流出了血,他们凭信心等候,不光是灭命使者来杀人,上帝的灵也运行在当中,所有生命得医治,没有一个是软弱的,他们活在奴役中,活在贫穷里,没有一个是软弱的,神的能力使他们坚强。

上帝说,神的军队那晚要离开埃及,埃及人把他们的金银全给他们了,他们掠夺了埃及,走上了旅程,要进入应许之地。上帝说,我要你每一年的第一个月的十四号这一天,要纪念这个,要献上逾越节的羔羊,流出它的血来纪念我为你们所做的。他们每一年每一年这样做。

等到施洗约翰来到的时候,他说,“看哪,神的羔羊。”他们所有人都知道他在讲什么,那是逾越节的羔羊,那个羊的血,拯救我们,医治我们。这是上帝的羔羊,上帝拣选的,上帝拣选耶稣基督,除去世人的罪孽。他预言你在一千五百年所看见的所有事情,都要象征着这个,这才是真相。

我们来看耶稣基督被钉十字架的事,注意马太福音第二十七章,我们看到血很重要,因为生命就在血里面,世界各地的文化都会稍微了解一点这个。那时在全地都有极大的黑暗,46节,“约在申初,耶稣大声喊着说。”50至53节,“耶稣又大声喊叫,气就断了。忽然殿里的幔子,从上到下裂为两半。地也震动。磐石也崩裂。坟墓也开了。已睡圣徒的身体,多有起来的。到耶稣复活以后,他们从坟墓里出来,进了圣城,向许多人显现。”

从正午到申初,耶稣来到事工的末了,他的生命不是从他身上拿走,是他自己献上生命。正午到申初,大概是中午十二点到下午三点的时间,上帝让全地变得黑暗,就如埃及地全地黑暗一样。到了申初,耶稣大声喊着,为什么圣经要指出这申初的时间?申初是下午三点的时间,在以色列这个时候就是逾越节吃饭的时候,全国各地来参加这个节庆的人,大祭司在这时会带着羊羔,宰杀它,流出血来。大家没有留意,上帝逾越节的羔羊,在十字架上献上自己的生命,在申初,耶稣大声喊着,将他的灵献上。

如果你有见过临死的人,你知道在死前他们不会大声喊,他们渐渐断气。可是耶稣死时,圣经说他大声的呼喊,极大的呼喊,得胜的呼喊,成了,世界罪得救赎的工成了!他流出了宝血,当上帝乐纳这个祭,能力就释放了。

注意发生的事情,第一,圣殿里的幔子,从上到下裂为两半。圣殿的幔子是很厚的,是进入到上帝所在的至圣所的地方,突然圣灵的手把幔子撕开,人们惊讶。第一次他们能够看见进入到上帝的同在里。上帝警告他们,我已经开了一条路,让每一个人进入上帝的同在。

第二个发生的事情是,很大的地震。这里说连磐石都崩裂了,甚至震开了坟墓。能把坟墓震开是很大的地震了,为什么会发生?罪的后果就是死,上帝打开坟墓,这些尸体都在不同的腐烂阶段;骷髅起来了,人不能就这样离开去清理坟墓,要等到逾越节结束才能开始工作。耶稣自己进到地下最深之处,跟所有掌权的邪灵宣告,我已经胜过你了。第三天,有一次很大的地震,耶稣从死里复活。

马太福音第二十七章说很多圣徒的身体也都起来,进入圣城,向许多人显现。有些人以为死亡就是结束,这不是结束。你要了解,当耶稣死里复活,很多在坟墓里的这些人,上帝超自然的重新组合他们的身体,让他们死里复活,走出来见他们的神;可能是摩西,亚伯拉罕,或者是圣徒,伟大的王等;向很多人显现,真是超现实。上帝向每一个人显明,他的能力借耶稣的宝血显现,来赦免你的罪,打破邪灵的权势,让你不再受邪灵的辖制。

神把你举起来,把复活的生命放在你里面,上帝在显明复活的生命,不管魔鬼给了我们什么。因为我相信耶稣所流的血,神的能力的释放,能改变你的生命。这真是神奇的事情。圣经在歌罗西书第二章14,15节说,当耶稣死在十字架上,流出宝血,他将所有敌对人的罪都挪走了,也卸下那些执政掌权人的权势,把魔鬼所有的权势拿走让你不再受他的辖制。不是我做了什么,而是基督为我所做的,只要我相信。

圣经说,上帝让耶稣基督成为我们的施恩座,因相信他的血。罗马书第三章25节,上帝让耶稣成为了我们的挽回祭,因我们相信他的血。如果你犯了罪,耶稣的宝血付了代价;如果你失败了,耶稣的宝血付了代价;如果你在现世挣扎,耶稣的宝血救赎你。我们说羔羊的血救赎了我,救赎的意思代表所有的赎金都付清了,当耶稣流出宝血,他付了完全的代价,释放你自由,救你,饶恕你的罪;只需要一点,就是你转离罪来相信他。如果你犯罪跌倒,转向他,相信他,宝血已经付上代价了。

你的生命可能在罪里挣扎,转向来相信耶稣为这罪而死,转离罪,罪一直带给你忧伤;定罪,难过,相信耶稣所做的。有一个很神奇的真理,世上每一个宗教,都要你做一些事情,但基督信仰是耶稣做完了一切,只要我回应耶稣,只要我认同他,因我心中的信,他为我所做的一切都是我的了。

你知道洗礼的意思是什么?我不知道你们这里是怎么做,在新约中是把人带到河边,把他们放到水里面再起来。当一个人接受洗礼,这不是一个仪式,这是一个宣告,你心中信心的声明;当我进到耶稣里,我旧的生命就结束了,他死在十字架上,我跟他一同死亡;我认同他,我旧的生活形式已经死了;耶稣埋在坟墓里,当我们进到水里面施洗,我相信我的生命埋葬了,旧有自私犯罪的生命结束了。从洗礼上来的时候,代表新的生命开始了。

这不是水把你弄湿而已,而是心里明白相信,我旧的生命结束,跟基督同死,他已经埋葬了。从上帝的眼光来看,我现在相信他,我是新的人了。我现在活在新的生命中,是幸福的生命,跟随耶稣基督的生命。我还会不会失败?会,还是会。因为我常常忘记我自己是谁,我们常想到过去的那个人,做过去的事。但我不需要再做了,因为它的权势被打破了。我认罪悔改,耶稣宝血洗净我,我可以重新来跟上帝同行。

我们如认我们的罪,他是信实公义的神,必赦免我们的罪,洗净我们一切的不义。我们行在光中,代表跟上帝敞开,彼此团契,基督的宝血就洗净我们。这宝血随时都可以洗净我们的失败和罪,我们只需要相信,在心中相信耶稣所做的就足够了。

当你进入与上帝同在,你如果相信耶稣所做的足够了,你就可以坦然的进来。你不相信这就足够了,你就会感到胆怯。上帝要你相信,耶稣的血就够了,能洗净你的罪;能够让你起来,行在新生命的能力里。



由洞穴中得自由  

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由洞穴中得自由

我们翻开圣经列王记上第十九章,我先很简短的跟大家分享一下,然后跟大家祷告,领袖需要复苏,生命中有上帝全新的触摸,我们学习怎样跨出去。我们用一些经文为大家解释一下,列王记上第十九章9节,“他在那里进了一个洞,就住在洞中。耶和华的话临到他说,以利亚阿,你在这里作什么。”12,13节,“地震后有火,耶和华也不在火中。火后有微小的声音。以利亚听见,就用外衣蒙上脸,出来站在洞口。有声音向他说,以利亚阿,你在这里作什么。”

对以利亚来说,这是很严重的问题,他的生命有神的呼召,要在一个败坏的国家中站立起来,代表神向他们说话,直接面对当时属灵的权势,他蒙召要为国家带来复兴,他受到恩膏为国家带来复兴,原来他从一个隐藏的,人看不到的地方出来。你记得他怎样让全地开始饥荒,从天上降下火,火降到祭坛上,杀了巴力的先知,以利亚在上帝的运行当中。

整个国家预备让上帝来工作了,可是所有上帝的运行都需要领袖,没有领袖就没有结果。当上帝要成就一件事,他需要有一个人愿意站起来,有人承受圣灵的恩膏,站起来代表他。这一直是上帝给我们的挑战,找到一个代表他的人。代表他是如何的,带着他的能力,来拆毁一切威吓生命的事。

整个国家活在巫术的辖制下,在拜偶像的权势下,庙里有妓女,各样的巫术在畅行,整个国家都在非常压抑的气氛中。大部分人一直受到惊吓活在恐惧当中,上帝要找一个在那种环境中愿意站起来的人,不害怕这样的属灵气氛,不害怕偶像,不害怕庙宇,不害怕巫术,能够站起来活出不一样的生命。

以利亚一开始很棒,后来他面对属灵的攻击,一个属灵的反击。他本来有很好的进展,拆毁他们的祭坛,把所有献给主,摧毁巴力的先知,上帝很大的运行,他只要继续的运行下去,就能够触摸整个国家;可是有一个很严重的属灵的反击,有很大的属灵压力敌对他。圣经说耶洗别出来了,他说,“我要杀了你,夺走你的生命,你怎么夺走先知的生命的,我就怎么夺走你的生命。”他开始威吓以利亚。

这都是在服事当中大家会面对的问题,你很容易有一个好的开头;但要在战争中站立的稳,压力来到你也能站立的稳;当整个属灵的压力压在你身上,你还能站立的稳。这可能是借着人压在你身上,有人控告你,威胁你,惊吓你,你要选择如何回应。你看到保罗跟提摩太说,“你要挑旺神在你里面的恩赐,上帝赐给你的不是胆怯的心,乃是刚强仁爱谨守的心。”提摩太也有问题,他的生命有大能的恩膏恩赐,可是那些年长的人吓到他了,宗教的文化惊吓到他,因为受到惊吓,他生命的恩赐就封闭了。

如果你受到惊吓,让恐惧抓住你,你生命的恩赐就开始封闭,恩膏就不能流露,你只想着如何保护,救自己而已,而不是如何扩展神的国了。保罗写了两封信给提摩太,两次提到这样的恩赐。提摩太前书讲不要忽略这样的恩赐,上帝给我们每一个人都有大能的恩赐;他赐给你圣灵的恩赐,叫耶稣从死里复活的灵,同样的灵住在你里面,要给你能力,坚固你。我们都得着同样的圣灵,都有同样的恩膏临到我们,但我们要选择的是要挑旺神的灵,不断让恩膏流露,还是要受到惊吓,退缩,躲在山洞里。

很多基督徒躲在洞穴里,在洞穴的后面不出来。我们很快看以利亚怎么了,也看他怎样犯错,生命中是怎样做的。我们当中有些人可能发现自己也在这种属灵的压力底下,在这战争的热火中,与以利亚犯同样的错误,当最后你就跟他躲在同样的地方。

有一次有一个牧师打电话给我,他说,“你可以帮助我吗?我非常忧郁,几乎想要自杀了,不知该怎么办了?自从我来到这个城市,就一直有这些事情发生。”我说,“我真的知道问题出在哪里,我也知道你该怎么办,你现在在属灵的攻击底下,你的意念,魂,受到了压力。让你失掉自己的眼界,受到了惊吓,就在里面退缩了。跟以利亚一样。”

大家注意以利亚做了什么,耶洗别威胁他;属灵的攻击发动,敌对他,威胁要夺走他的生命。在我们每一个人里面,都想要活下去,遇到任何让我们痛苦的,我们就退缩;你因痛苦而退缩下来,你想要救自己;当你想救自己的时候,我们的生命就会很困难。在服事当中没有中立地带,你要留在战火之地。有的时候很难,真的受不了了;你看见我在台上服事,神的能力流露,可是我自己也有非常大属灵压力时候,有时好像头脑中一片黑暗,什么都看不到。我要学习怎样在这种状况中站起来,每一次你站起来,你在主里就更强壮。

3,4节说,“以利亚见这光景就起来逃命,到了犹大的别是巴,将仆人留在那里,自己在旷野走了一日的路程,来到一棵罗腾树下,就坐在那里求死,说,耶和华阿,罢了。求你取我的性命,因为我不胜于我的列祖。”上帝的仆人前一天把火从天上降下来,杀了他们的先知;第二天却坐在树下忧郁说,死了算了。上帝大能的仆人怎么从这里到了那里的呢?最后躲到洞穴里去了。

圣经说他受到威胁,当他见到这光景,他就逃命了。经文中说这是耶洗别说的话,有一个信差对他说话,他见到了。你所见到的会影响你所做的。你见到的会决定你怎么做。不是看见神的同在,不是看见将来的复兴,他看见的是可怕的死亡,看见自己受到攻击。不管什么充满你的心思意念,什么东西让你定睛在上面,你生命专注在哪里,就影响你的情绪,影响你的灵,就决定你会怎么样。

你绝对不要将焦点放在负面的东西上;要一直专注在耶稣身上,定睛在上帝所说的话上,定睛在神的能力上,他对你的爱上。从天上降下火,先带来干旱,又带来降雨的神,怎么会抛弃我呢?差派我去的上帝怎么会抛弃我孤单一人呢?他完全失掉异象,失掉对未来的看见,压力临到他,他的眼睛看不到异象,看不见他蒙召要做的事,眼睛只看见环境了,只看见自己。

当他的眼睛离开上帝和上帝的目的,专注在威胁上,他的心融化了,他的信心消失了,恐惧就来了。圣经说他开始逃,他逃离自己的任务,逃离自己的使命,从原来蒙召该做的事上退缩了。压力来临的时候很容易让你的眼睛看不见异象,看不见蒙召该做的事,只看见问题了,受到惊吓,失掉了眼界。不是从上帝的眼光看,而是看到了困难,退缩离开了上帝要你去的地方。离开信心的地方,退缩离开勇气,里面萎缩下去,不是成为刚强的祷告勇士,几乎爬不起来祷告了,从他的使命中退缩了。

当一个人退缩,他的生命中就失去了权柄,恩膏就不能流露了。上帝说那退后的人我不喜悦。你要留在战场上,连在信心之地,留在相信上帝的地方,这才让上帝喜悦。以利亚做的几件事就是,第一,他专注在负面的事上就失掉了眼界。第二,他从自己的使命上退缩下来。第三,让自己孤立。这种隔绝孤立让自己不再跟人连结了,不再跟上帝连结。孤立隔绝就是死亡之处。

就像羊,当它们生病,它们就孤立了,从羊群中离开了。你很容易辨别哪只羊生病了,它们从羊群中退缩出去,从团契中退缩了,从小组退缩,从领袖聚会退缩,从连结上退缩,不想连结了,不想你再问我问题了。有一种恐惧,就像亚当夏娃犯罪之后,第一个就是害怕藏起来。每一次以色列被打败,他们就躲在山洞里面。

洞穴是很黑很深,没有出口的,接着他坐下来。不是站起来争战,不是在灵里面兴起,不是开始祷告,让恩赐方言流露。他坐下来了,你可以看到一个人,外面可能是站着的,可是里面却坐下来。已经放弃不打仗了,开始消极了,战士不见了,被打倒了,他需要帮助。一旦他坐下,一旦他消极什么都不做了,他就开始忧郁了。

很可怕的忧郁临到他,他想到的只有死。他不是突然掉到这个情况中的,他是一步步来到这里的。首先,他的眼睛只看到问题不看到解答,他的焦点从异象离开了。第二,让恐惧夺去他的思想。他想要保存自己而不是为使命放下自己。他从使命中退缩,让自己孤立起来。最后,他坐下,非常的忧郁,很想自杀,想睡觉了。他最后的一个祷告就是主啊,带我走,我不想再醒来了。

上帝怜悯他,上帝派了一个天使拍拍他给他食物。当你打仗,你需要休息,需要食物,可是他继续逃,又跑了四十天,终于找到了一个山洞,他躲在山洞里不出去。上帝问他问题;在圣经中,上帝问问题时,他早就知道答案。圣经中第一个问题就是,“亚当,你在哪里?”这是一个关系上的问题,上帝早就知道他在那里,上帝知道他,上帝要他自己面对问题,自己说出来。圣经只有记载说他跟上帝说“杀了我吧。”,没有记载他跟上帝说话。

上帝看着以利亚,“你在这里干什么?你是大复兴的主要角色,为什么躲在山洞里?”有一次我跟一群人到餐厅去,餐厅另一边是一个酒吧,坐满了人在那里喝酒玩乐,音乐很响,我就要进去看看,陪我去的教会领袖就奇怪为什么牧师要去那里。我说我保证会在这里找到远离神的基督徒在这里。因为如果你没有被圣灵充满,你就会被其他东西充满。如果你不用上帝安慰你,你就会用酒来安慰。你总归是要得安慰的,不是来到上帝面前,就是去酒吧买醉。

我就站在那里看他们,甚至有员工站在吧台上跳舞,还一边点酒。我走过去站在他们后面等着。他转身看到我吓了一跳,问我干嘛,我反问他在干什么。“你不属于这里,这不是你蒙召该去的地方。”他靠在吧台上,满手都是饮料。我说,“你怎么了,失掉了对上帝的肯定,要到酒中去寻找自信。”他手里拿着酒,周围响起音乐,他开始哭泣,跟我讲他的心碎了,因为有人跟他分手了。我说,“这帮不了你,你需要回到主的面前,回到你蒙召该去的地方。”

所以当上帝说,“以利亚,你在做什么?”他要讲的是,你怎么将自己沦落到这个地步,我们的大复兴需要你,你到那里去了?我刚跟天使在说话,你怎么就跑到洞穴里来了?我的仆人以利亚需要做事情。“天上降下火来,杀了所有的先知,吓到了那个可怕的皇后,你看看我的仆人以利亚,躲在洞穴里干什么呢?”

以利亚开始讲他自己的故事,“只有我一个人忠实,他们都想来杀我,我只是想服事你,他们就要杀我,太不公平了。我不知道有这么难,我不想再做组长了,太难了,我对他们好,可是他们都走光了,还讲我的坏话。只有我一个人忠心。”你躲在山洞里怎么会忠心?他真的很困惑,因为他压抑的灵让他困惑。上帝对他讲,“事实上,还有七千个先知没有向巴力屈膝。”“我不知道啊。”

上帝两次跟他说,“以利亚你在这里干什么?以利亚你在这里干什么?”换句话说,你不属于这里,你需要回到你的任务上。上帝对他说,“回到你的任务上。”上帝让他做什么?“我要你兴起门徒,我要你膏抹别人,我要你倍增你的服事,你一个人这样做太久了,要有策略性的办法,要兴起别人,继续这样的服事。我会告诉你是谁,你都不用想会是谁,以利沙和耶户。你投资在这些人身上,将你有的释放在他们身上,你就会看到你做不完的工作,他们帮你做完。”

上帝显明他的意图,他要兴起门徒,倍增服事,可是首先要回到自己的岗位。今晚的信息里面,看到属灵压力的结果。那个打电话给我的牧师,极度的沮丧,我跟他说,“这是属灵的压力,属灵的攻击,你就像以利亚一样坐在树下,我会同你在一起,为你祷告。你需要站立起来,离开那个洞穴,回到你的任务里,回到祷告里,回到服事里,回到做你该做事情的地方。”

我告诉他怎样站起来祷告,怎样认清这些属灵的攻击,直到你的灵完全的兴起。要在灵里面说话,宣告敌人被打败了,然后再一次回去,开始服事。如果你这样做,方言祷告,灵里兴起,对你的生命宣告上帝的话,面对魔鬼,面对搅扰你的灵,你就会突破。现在这个人有非常兴旺的教会,因为他站起来了。他不是只打给我一次电话,而是好几次,每一次我都跟他讲同样的事。“从洞穴出来,回到你的任务中去,站起来祷告,对你的环境说出上帝的话,眼目再一次定睛在主身上。”他就改变了。

今晚我跟大家分享这个,是因为我感觉到好些人躲在洞穴里。从外面来看,有些人什么都好,可是心里受伤了,心被打倒了,你的心退缩,失掉了异象。上帝在说,“你在这里做什么,你不属于这个山洞,你是上帝大能的勇士。”

同样的灵,胜过魔鬼,让基督复活,就在你里面要帮助你;不要孤立,不要退缩,不要专注在问题上;站起来,再一次调整视线,再一次连结,开始追求,上帝说你会突破。你看完整个故事,看见皇后的位置被拆毁,整个国被倾覆,上帝的国被建立。关键就在改变,就是要培训新的门徒。



損失之後的盼望  

Wed 9 Oct 2013 « 返回页首

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損失之後的盼望

各位请翻开圣经路加福音第七章11至16节,“过了不多时,耶稣往一座城去,这城名叫拿因,他的门徒和极多的人与他同行。将近城门,有一个死人被抬出来。这人是他母亲独生的儿子,他母亲又是寡妇。有城里的许多人同着寡妇送殡。主看见那寡妇就怜悯她,对她说,不要哭。于是进前按着杠,抬的人就站住了。耶稣说,少年人,我吩咐你起来。那死人就坐起,并且说话。耶稣便把他交给他母亲。众人都惊奇,归荣耀与神说,有大先知在我们中间兴起来了。”

耶稣到哪里都有人跟着他,看他到底在做什么。圣经中另外一个地方,耶稣说,“生命在我,复活也在我。”上帝以能力膏拿撒勒人耶稣基督,不管到哪儿跟人互动的时候,都显明上帝的心和恩赐。

这个故事中的城名叫拿因,拿因原文的意思就是美丽美好,充满青草的地方。这个地方从外貌看是很美好的,可是后面隐藏的是极大的忧伤,极大的压力。人也是一样,外面看很好很吸引人,可是心里带着极大的忧伤,难过,极大的失望。

今晚你在这里,外表看可能很好,圣经说,神看的是内心。他看见你心里的忧伤,看见你经历了什么。这个故事中特别的情况是死的是个年轻人。年轻人指的是下一代,代表的是未来,代表的是盼望,代表的是这个女子美好的未来。圣经说他的母亲是个寡妇,已经失去丈夫了,受到了极大的伤痛。失掉能保护她的人,供应她的人,她只剩一个盼望,就是她的儿子。她以他为荣,期待看着她的孩子长大。

她前面的盼望就是将来儿子会养她,供应她。她心中的梦想就是这个孩子的将来,梦想着他结婚生子,非常期待将来。

这个年轻人代表她的盼望,她的未来,她的产业,她的供应,她的保护,她的生命完全的寄托在这个年轻人身上。有一天不可思议的事情发生了,失掉丈夫之后再失掉了孩子。故事中看他已经长大成人了,可是却生病死了。那一天所有未来的盼望都被夺走了,她非常震惊,以后会怎么办?好像没有了未来,没有了盼望,老了没人照顾,不单只是失掉了儿子,也失掉了对未来的梦想。

这个女人非常忧伤,没人能够安慰她,她为她自己的损失难过。忧伤是经历损失的过程,除非有原因,不然不会忧伤。我们不会为不认识的陌生人忧伤,也不会为没有连结的人忧伤。当我们失掉所珍爱的,才会忧伤。忧伤会有不同的阶段,第一个阶段就是震惊;不相信这件事会发生,看到这个孩子,不敢相信会发生这种事。第二个阶段就是极大的愤怒;人们的东西被夺走了,常常会非常愤怒,但又不知道对谁愤怒。所以第三个阶段就是怪罪;想要在当中找到出路。

忧伤中的人,可以是震惊,无法承认发生的事情;或者非常愤怒,怪罪别人,想为自己找一个出路。接下来就是忧郁和难过,流泪,最后只好接纳,调整自己的生命接受改变。这就是忧伤的整个过程,可能是在几个小时内就经历到所有的情绪,有些人从来没有放下过忧伤,没有正确处理这个忧伤,就锁在忧伤里了。

今晚有些人就锁在忧伤里,心里有很深的忧伤。不同的人会经历不同的事情。有些人忧伤是因为亲近的人过世了,可能是母亲或者是父亲,对你很重要的人,你很忧伤因为他不在你生命里了。离婚也会导致忧伤;儿女经历父母离婚,会带来极大的忧伤,因为他们真的失去了父母,他们在父母双方的拉扯当中,他们对每一个人都很愤怒,不了解自己在忧伤里面。

当人失掉盼望和梦想,他原来计划的东西突然被夺走了。他原来期待升官的,突然别人抢走了位置,忧伤就进来了;你期待梦想可以实现,完全被夺走后,忧伤是很大的。如果不处理忧伤,人可能一生都在忧伤里,一生都在愤怒里,一生都在怪罪人。问题的根源就是没有解决的忧伤。

我最近为一位女士祷告,她非常愤怒;我问她,“你在气什么?”她也不知道,她对每一样事情都生气。我说总有一个开始让你生气的地方吧,最后追溯发现她的爸爸在她很小的时候抛弃了她们,她深深的跟她妈妈连结在一起,后来妈妈突然去世了。我说你仍然在为失去妈妈而忧伤,你跟她太亲了,她变成了你生命中的偶像,取代了上帝的位置。一旦你生命中的偶像被拿走,你就会变得很生气。我们依靠的事物,成为我们偶像的事物,一旦被拿走或失败的话,人们就会变得很忧伤,很愤怒。

忧伤是因为他们的依附被突然拿走。这个依附可能是人,也可能是一个梦想,可能是你亲近的人发生车祸意外,死亡或者离婚。当人受到虐待,他就会忧伤,不管是受到身体或者性虐待的人,甚至是情绪,言语上的受虐待的人,他们有很大的忧伤。如果没有处理忧伤,这人会在震惊中一直忧伤下去。对过去发生的事产生魂结,即死亡进来了。

像这样的情况,很容易让邪灵进入到你的生命。忧伤是整个过程和情绪,可是你不处理,忧伤的灵就进来了。你会一直忧伤,即使在快乐的场合中,都快乐不起来,好像忧伤一会儿又回来了,这就是有忧伤的灵。有的时候是死亡的灵,如果死亡的灵在心里,这人就会麻木,觉得完全与人隔绝,也与自己隔绝,里面完全的麻木,就是很深的忧伤,对未来绝望。

圣经告诉我们上帝是怎样的;哥林多后书第一章上帝说他是赐一切安慰的神。当我们感到压力,上帝渴望安慰我们,在一切患难中安慰我们,让我们也能去安慰人。上帝显明自己是一位安慰人的神;在你的忧郁中,亲近你,帮助你;在你忧伤中陪着你,告诉你你不孤单。

当人在忧伤中,孤单是一个很大的问题。这个故事中的女士行在棺材的后面,全身穿的黑色的衣服,忧伤的灵在她身上,即使有很多人在旁边,她是那里最孤单的一个人。这群朋友安慰不了她,没有人能够安慰她,只有耶稣才能进入到她的环境中安慰她。

圣经说上帝是赐一切安慰的主,他医治伤心的人。罗马书第十五章13节告诉我们,“但愿使人有盼望的神,因信将诸般的喜乐平安,充满你们的心,使你们借着圣灵的能力,大有盼望。”上帝安慰我们,他也将盼望赐给我们。上帝在我们痛苦时安慰我们,也给我们未来更好的盼望。当我们痛苦,上帝陪在我们身旁,他让我们看见异象,未来是更好的。

上帝是行神迹的上帝。今晚的见证,我第一次遇见玉萍,她心中有很大的痛;我记得坐在那里听她做见证的时候,上帝跟我说话,“我要医治她,我要安慰她。”我到了台上,牵着她的手为她祷告,上帝的灵就带下极大的医治。有很大的盼望,她开始去寻找她的母亲,上帝是不是很神奇,原来全部死去的境况,再次有丰盛的生命。这就是我们上帝的伟大之处,他是恢复之主,他可以进入环境,让死的活过来,再一次有盼望。

你可能丧失了,可能有挫败,但生命中这一切不会长久;只要让基督进来,在忧伤中与你同行,再一次赐你异象,让你有盼望有美好的未来。当你在上帝里,未来是美好的,即使现在痛苦;可能你在忧伤的低谷里,当有神迹在前面等着你,改变在等待着你,美好的未来在等着你,你不用活在绝望里。

圣经说耶稣看着这个妇人,感到深深的怜悯。上帝看见这女人的孤单,她的 破碎,她的绝望,她的忧伤,他深深的感动了,要做点事情。这个女人什么都没有做,年轻人什么都没有做,是耶稣自己主动,他来到这妇人面前说,“不要哭。”请注意,她没有任何理由停止哭泣,儿子死了,耶稣说“不要哭。”因为耶稣要做事了。换句话说,哭泣结束了,我要改变你周遭的环境了。忧伤结束了,我要行神迹了。你不需要留在这个境况里。

耶稣处理她的心,处理她的痛,不要哭了,之后他手按着棺材。没有人会去按死人的棺材的,这让你受污秽。耶稣说,“少年人,起来。”死人就坐起来了,再一次回到他母亲身边。对人不可能的事,在神凡事都能。只要你肯信,上帝能将你的低谷转为生命的泉源。

耶稣愿意来到这种绝望的境况,还有什么比人死了更绝望的,耶稣进来恢复他的生命。我一定要跟大家分享一个故事,我的儿子大卫去到巴基斯坦,本来是邀请我去的,可是我太忙了,就差我儿子去了。他两次带着团队过去,第二次去的时候,他站在台上,大概有一万五千人,有人给他翻译,他开始咳嗽就倒了下去,等他再站起来说话的时候,这个翻译开始咳嗽然后就倒下去死掉了。翻译死掉了很麻烦,没办法讲下去了,我儿子站在他旁边,命令死亡的灵离开,那个人就醒过来了,半个小时之后又继续翻译。

我儿子想可能没有死吧,只是倒下去而已,跟他们这一起的一个人是警察,看过很多死人;他检查过这个人,他真的没有生命迹象了,现在活过来了,是上帝让他复活的。绝望的境况,哈利路亚。

上帝能够进入你的环境里,把安慰和盼望带来;耶稣进到你的环境里,你就不再孤单;上帝与你同在,他还工作,赐你有盼望的未来;他不希望你流泪,他希望你往前看,明天是更好的一天。

那一天从忧伤,难过开始,哀愁遍满全城,最后以欢庆结束,每一个人都在庆祝。如果我在那里,我会说,“你死的时候看到了什么?你有没有看见天堂?”那个年轻人会有很多的见证,讲述上帝在他生命中所做的一切。

今晚我听到那个见证的时候,我心里好感动;上帝在死亡之处吹气,带出生命和盼望。母亲盼望有另一个孩子,很多年活在痛苦和哀愁中;现在跟女儿团园了,害怕女儿不原谅她;但上帝早就遇见了她的女儿,她不再是死掉了,她活过来了。我们知道将女儿送出去收养的情况,我们也做过同样的事,这一生都在为这个决定忧伤,痛苦让你不知该怎么办。忧伤和死亡,在损失中难过。

当我们经历这个的时候,我向耶稣打开我的心,我相信有一天他会将女儿带回来。我很感动,这个妈妈送走的孩子遇见了耶稣,耶稣拿走了她身上的苦毒,拿走了她的愤怒,拿走了她的死亡,让她活过来。在这之前我就见过她了,耶稣医治她之后我几乎都认不出她来了,她活过来了,因为耶稣处理了她的忧伤。上个主日见到她的妈妈是何等的喜乐,那个女子,被丈夫抛弃,只好放弃自己的孩子。多年之后,上帝眷顾她,让孩子回到她的身边。

这就像我们刚刚讲的故事一样,圣经中的故事是两千年前的事,是一个真实的母亲,真实的儿子,真实的悲惨情况。你今晚听到的见证也是真实的母亲,失掉的女儿好像死了一样,再一次活过来,回到母亲身边。耶稣仍然在行神迹,恢复人,医治伤心的。



再造全新的我  

Thu 10 Oct 2013 « 返回页首

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再造全新的我

我们来看这个故事,约翰福音第五章1至9节,“这事以后,到了犹太人的一个节期。耶稣就上耶路撒冷去。在耶路撒冷,靠近羊门,有一个池子,希伯来话叫作毕士大,旁边有五个廊子。里面躺着瞎眼的,瘸腿的,血气枯干的,许多病人。因为有天使按时下池子搅动那水,水动之后,谁先下去,无论害什么病,就痊愈了。在那里有一个人,病了三十八年。耶稣看见他躺着,知道他病了许久,就问他说,你要痊愈吗?病人回答说,先生,水动的时候,没有人把我放在池子里。我正去的时候,就有别人比我先下去。耶稣对他说,起来,拿你的褥子走吧。那人立刻痊愈,就拿起褥子来走了。那天是安息日。”

我们先看当时的情况,圣经描述在城边上的羊门,就是羊进城的地方,那里有好些个廊子,有个池子叫毕士大,好多需要医治的人坐在那里。圣经告诉我们耶稣是好牧人,耶稣说“我是好牧人。”另外一处说,“我们都如同羊走迷了路。上帝使用很多自然的情况帮助我们了解属灵的事情,上帝用很多不同的方式来描述人是怎么样的,也有很多图画是描述他是如何的。

圣经描述人就如同羊,如果你不了解羊,这样的描述对你来讲没有任何意义。如果我讲骑摩托车的人,你就知道我在讲什么了,因为你见的很多这样的人。讲到摩托车,没有地方可以比得上台湾,从没有看过这么多的。前几次刚来的时候,摩托车吓到我了。

我跟大家解释一下羊。很多年前,我们到一个小地方,那里有很多的牧场,很多的羊。我想要一只小羊当宠物,好可爱,可是它们可爱的阶段不久,很快就变大羊了。我从中学到了很多羊的事情。

羊有这样一些特征,首先,羊完全没有方向感。一旦看不见别的羊,它们就迷路了。如果你带一只猫到另外一个城市,它自己会跑回来找你。羊呢,你才转个转角,它就找不到路了。所以圣经以赛亚书第五十三章6节“我们都如羊走迷,各人偏行己路。”羊一旦迷路,就根本找不到家,它们需要牧人。人一样,活在罪中就像走迷了的羊,我们找不到应走的路,我们需要牧人让我们看见方向。

第二,羊很容易受到惊吓。所以一只羊,只要很小的声音,它就会赶快跑开了。就像人一样,很容易被吓到,新闻中各样的事情都会让他们害怕。圣经一直告诉我们,“不要怕,不要怕。”因为人很容易受到惊吓。害怕让我们不能跟随神,与有信心相反。一开始寻找羊,如果它们被吓到后就逃跑了,它们就迷路了。

第三,羊彼此跟随。它们喜欢团体行动,青少年喜欢聚在一起,羊也是一样。一旦一只羊走,不管它知不知道要去哪儿,其他的羊都跟着它走。好像人一样,跟随时尚,跟着大众。羊也是盲从的,如果你吓到一只羊开始跑,其他的羊也跟着它跑。

另外一点,当羊生病的时候,它们就孤立出来;如果你发现单独一只羊,它大概就是生病了。人也是这样,当他们生病,有事情不对了,他们就不说话了,不打电话,不传简讯,不去教会,不来小组了。所以你要不断的接触,因为他们是羊,他们会走迷的,当他们生病了,就自己一个人躲开了。

还有一点,羊身上是有寄生虫的。它们吃的草上会有一些虫子跳上来,这些寄生虫是排除不了的,需要牧人帮助它们,因为它们吃的东西使它们里面有寄生虫。人也是这样,我们把生命向很多东西打开,邪灵就进来了,我们没法将他们赶出去,需要牧人帮我们赶出去。

在新西兰会有牧人来为羊灌肠,他们将一种化学的东西放进羊嘴里,整个晚上羊一直咳一直咳,把里面的虫子咳出来,因为药杀死了虫子。有一次我来聚会,为人祷告,对邪灵讲话的时候,那人一直咳。前几天我们也为一个人祷告,他咳了几个星期。看来这个药很有效。

另外我们有一种苍蝇,每年的特定时间就飞出来了,在羊背上,头上或耳朵边下蛋。这些蛋孵出后就变成小小的红红的蛆,很恶心,它们吃羊,吃到肉里,或者从耳朵钻进羊脑袋把羊弄疯了。就像魔鬼一样,把谎言撒在我们身上,如果你相信这个谎言,它就进入你脑中了,你被它弄疯了,做很多荒唐的事情。

羊还有一点就是没有防卫性。如果有人来侵犯它,它完全无法防卫,它们没有尖的角,锋利的牙齿,没有能力保护自己。很像人,圣经将人比作羊,而魔鬼是来侵略的狼,它是来偷窃杀害的。当攻击来临的时候,羊受到很大的压力,它们因为受到追杀而惊慌。新西兰有时会有狗追羊群,咬它们,把它们扯烂,很大的压力。一旦狗尝到了血的味道,它们不吃羊,只是把它杀了。有些狗尝到了羊血的味道就开始这样做,非常危险的狗,它追羊让它流血致死。

魔鬼就像野狗,嗜血追赶人,摧毁他们的生命,让他们流血受伤,罪咎羞愧,忧伤哀愁,受伤。如果你看见野狗走了,羊躺在草地上流血,这只羊就没救了,只能杀了。同样,如果你用属灵的眼睛看,看见那些伤心的人,破碎的心,心里充满忧伤,迫切需要帮助,因为他们保护不了自己。

羊的形象是非常精准的形象,看见人在灵里的境况,我们需要牧人。耶稣描述自己就是一个好牧人,愿意为羊舍命。诗篇二十三篇就可以看出好牧人是如何做的。

另外有一点,羊吃的很好的时候,它们躺下来,如果躺得太久,它们就会站不起来,当它们站起来时就会头晕又倒下去。所以当羊发生这种情况,躺太久自己起不来,需要牧人拉起它,扶着它站稳直到再次可以行走,躺太久会影响它的平衡。我们受造不是要躺在地上的,站不起来,不能动,不能服事神。不管什么将你弄倒,不管什么导致你躺下放弃,你躺的越久就会越难站起来。

很多事情会让我们躺下,让我们想放弃。我们被冒犯,我们失望,被人背叛,受伤害,我们期待的事情没有发生;我们从上帝那里退缩,不是在灵里面保持活力站立,不是站在信心里信靠,不是在上帝的计划里继续往前,而是放弃抛弃了。很多人都是这样,他们不是躺在地上,他们里面躺下了,战斗的精神没有了,信心没有了,他们里面退缩了。

我们昨天讲到一个人躲在洞穴里,今天看到羊瘫在地上起不来了。牧人来到羊群,不是定羊的罪,那样是没有用的,牧人帮羊站起来。

我们再来看这个故事,耶稣来到毕士大的池子,这个地方叫怜悯之处,好多人在那里,有瞎眼的,瘸腿的,血气枯干的,那些软弱没有力气的人,没有异象的人,不能行走的人,他们在等候,希望事情会改变。有一个人病了三十八年了,他躺在那儿,每天有人把他搬到那里去,他就躺在那儿。三十八年真的是很久了,超过了人的半生了。耶稣看见这个人,就像看见你一样,他就像羊站不起来一样,没有力气,他需要神迹,需要神的能力来改变他。他身体上有东西不对劲了,圣经说他是疾病软弱。

圣经说上帝有很多方法帮助我们,让我们站起来。耶稣看见他,问他一个很有意思的问题,“你想要痊愈吗?”这是一个很奇怪的问题,上帝问问题的时候,不是他不知道答案,他要你思想,他让你看见自己的生命。这个人太习惯这种状况了,他整个的生活形态都是这样,无力的,无助的。耶稣问他你要完全吗?你知道答案是什么?只有一个答案,就是“要啊!”他没有这样说,他说出来的是上帝想要怎样帮助他,上帝要从他里面带出来他预备好的东西。耶稣问他想不想要痊愈?要!

当耶稣问他的时候,他的想法都是受害者的想法,很多借口,“太多人,没有人帮我,天使来的时候,我太迟了。”等等。他要怪罪每一个人,不断的找借口。他整个的想法都是受害者,除了借口和怪罪,什么都没有。耶稣问“你要你的生命不一样吗?”你要不要这个选择。

上帝给我们自由意志,给我们能力作选择,你现在活着的生命都是你过去所做决定的结果。不都是因为那些坏事,而是因为你选择如何回应。上帝给你能力选择如何生活。耶稣死在十字架上的时候,他打破了罪的权势,他从死里复活,打败了魔鬼,他让每一个人有可能不再受罪的辖制,不再受邪灵的控制,你想不想要痊愈?你想要自由吗?

现在问题就在我们自己了;所有需要该做的,耶稣都在十字架上完成了,你想要痊愈吗?你要做这个决定吗?这选择是回应神,相信他的话;你想要痊愈吗?你想要改变吗?如果你想要不一样的未来,你需要开始做不一样的选择。“哎呀,我受的教育不多。”那你开始多学习。“我对这个很生气。”你可以选择饶恕。“发生的事情我真的放不掉。”你可以选择放下。你可以找一些辅导,寻求一些帮助。

“你想不想痊愈?你想不想改变?”“哦,你不了解我丈夫这个人,他很爱喝酒,他对我很不好,所有我这样忧郁。”

“你想不想要痊愈?”是你选择要不要发生,我们有选择的能力。

耶稣死在十字架上,打破了罪的权势,让你可以作选择来接受他,得着打破罪的能力,选择跟从他,过不一样的生命。每一天你醒来,都有作选择的能力;每一天你醒来,都可以选择跟上帝同行,选择今天的态度;选择正面的态度或者负面的态度,选择相信神或者选择继续留在挫败里。

“你想不想痊愈?”这是耶稣说的。他的生命带出他心中的境况。耶稣对他说,“起来,得医治。”他站起来了。后来耶稣对他说,“不要继续犯罪,不然更糟的事情会发生。”换句话说,耶稣把他生命的境况跟罪放在一起了,耶稣不光是处理疾病,不光是处理邪灵,还要处理生命中问题的根源:罪,罪的权势让我们跟上帝隔绝。

“你想要痊愈吗?”完全从你做决定开始,也是一条路程;痊愈的路程,从你灵里选择接受耶稣基督开始。上帝把灵放在你里面,让你选择跟上帝连结;进入这一条路程,需要做很多的决定,每一天选择让上帝进入到你生命,选择同意他的说法,放掉你过去的想法,过去的方式。与耶稣同行,是痊愈的路程,每一天跟他连结,让他的话语进入到我们心中,我们开始改变。

你可以在任何一点停下来,躺下;我发现很多人,有些人不认识基督,他们里面躺下了,被生命打败了,依靠别人,活的像一个受害者。难过的是看见这样的基督徒,他们来到耶稣面前开始接受与耶稣同行的路。事情发生了,有人冒犯了你,有人让你失望,负面的事情发生了,你不是站立稳,信靠神,求神帮助你处理,而是在里面躺下了,起不来了。耶稣今天要帮助你,要对你的生命说话,让你再一次站起来,再一次成全你想要服事的愿望,再一次在生命中与神同行。



伸出手得醫治  

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伸出手得醫治

我们翻开圣经马可福音,有很多神奇的生命改变的故事。马可福音第三章1至6节,“耶稣又进了会堂。在那里有一个人枯干了一只手。众人窥探耶稣,在安息日医治不医治,意思是要控告耶稣。耶稣对那枯干了一只手的人说,起来,站在当中。又问众人说,在安息日行善行恶,救命害命,那样是可以的呢?他们都不作声。耶稣怒目周围看他们,忧愁他们的心刚硬,就对那人说,伸出手来。他把手一伸,手就复了原。法利赛人出去,同希律一党的人商议,怎样可以除灭耶稣。”

这里讲的这个人见证了耶稣基督的大能,也是圣经中很少提到的耶稣生气了,我们来看看从中能学到什么?是什么让上帝生气了?

圣经说,“耶稣来是要我们得着生命,而且是更丰盛的生命。”上帝要在我们里面恢复属灵的生命和活力,上帝创造我们是要与他有关系的,跟他连结的,他的生命借我们流露。神是灵,他设计我们的灵跟他的灵结合,他的生命借我们流露,他的性情借我们流露。爱,喜乐,平安,他的生命创意在我们生命中流露。

所以,耶稣说,“我来,是要让你们得生命,而且是更丰盛的。”人犯罪,上帝的生命就不住在他们里面,跟上帝的关系就被破坏了,在灵里面分开了,没法在灵里面有生命的流露,只能靠魂和体来活了。罪和疾病进入世界。

耶稣说,“从你的腹中流出活水的江河来。”他还讲将圣灵赐给人。上帝渴望将他的灵放在你里面,用他的生命充满你,让生命从你流露出去,有创造性的,带着爱,带着上帝的性情,在社会的每一个领域里扩展上帝的国。

教会是上帝兴起的一群人,是上帝加添能力的信徒,是被圣灵充满的,动员起来服事上帝。耶稣来到会堂,很多人在那里敬拜,耶稣注意到一个人,他的手是枯干的,很可能是脑部受损,让身体的一部分枯干瘫痪,问题可能是从大脑发生的。结果是他的手枯干了,没有生命了,整个缩起来了。就像一个水果不小心掉到床底下或者角落里,很久之后才发现它,里面所有的水分,生命都没有了,整个萎缩枯干了。生命没有了,就完全不一样了。

这个人的手枯干了,常常一个人的手枯干后就会缩起来了。当你碰到这种人,他们手常常是缩在里头,想要藏起来。他们通常的问题是:第一,他们有很大的羞愧,想要隐藏他们的问题。凡是羞愧的东西,我们就没有能力处理它;没有能力呢,就觉得羞愧。亚当夏娃犯罪,他们感觉到羞愧,就遮掩藏起来了。我们生命里任何领域变得萎缩了,不对了,我们就退缩藏起来。

到处都是这样的人,当生命中有地方不对了,当东西没有正常运作,我们常常想要去遮掩隐藏,最不想让别人将这个指出来。这个人手枯干了,首先是身体上的问题,圣经如果讲到的是右手,这是有含义的,圣经中的右手是要祝福的手,右手是能力之手,右手是你工作之手。他的右手枯干了,代表祝福临不到他身上,能力不能进入到生命。

右手枯干就象征这个人的生命枯干了,没有生命,没有祝福,只剩咒诅了,邪灵在运行。这人不能工作,在生命中不能生产,不能做事,他所有的潜能受到限制。当这人的手枯干,就没有祝福,没有生命,无法发挥潜能,他生命的成就就受到限制。他的手没了,只有一只手怎么工作呢?生命就受到极大的拘谨和限制。

圣经中的右手也象征服事,服事人。所以枯干的手代表他的服事开始萎缩了。我们看见了三个层面,第一,他有身体上的问题。他的情况需要医治和恢复。这个故事中上帝的心是要医治他。第二,看见一个没有蒙福的生命,生命枯干了,是受咒诅的。象征这个生命在羞愧中遮盖,所有潜能受到限制。第三,象征一个信徒的服事萎缩了,可能他曾经做的很好,很热情的服事上帝,曾经看到果子,曾经为上帝成就很大的事。但有事情发生了,他的手枯干了,没有像以前一样的服事了,只能退缩了,不再有生命活力,好像进入了一个羞愧的境况。

耶稣看见这个人,他的心感动了。有很多事情会造成我们的生命萎缩,很多事情让我们枯干往回退缩。失望可能让你变得干枯,圣经告诉我们“忧伤的灵使骨枯干。”我们的心碎,生命就萎缩了,没有喜乐,没有活力,一直想退缩。

很多人来自破碎的家庭,他们的魂萎缩了,他们没有喜乐的生命,生命一直有问题。忧伤会让我们的灵萎缩,不饶恕,苦毒会让你的魂萎缩,你里面枯干了,因为你为别人做的事情愤怒,对不好的待遇愤怒;你的父亲错待你,母亲错待你,其他人错待你。当人愤怒受伤,一直带着不饶恕和苦毒,他的心就枯干了。当人去恨人的时候,心中充满了仇恨和怀怨,他的魂就会枯干。上帝造我们不要心里带着这些负面的东西;有这些负面的东西,心就会萎缩;一开始看不到,因为它藏在里面,一段时间之后,苦毒的影响,不饶恕,仇恨,会影响这个人,造成他们退缩。

另一个让魂萎缩的东西是恐惧,也让人退缩。当我们害怕,恐惧抓住我们生命,我们就退缩不敢面对事情,我们里面封闭起来,好像枯干手的那个人一样,我们退缩到自己里面了。记得我们讲以利亚的故事,当他面对恐惧,害怕的时候,整个人退缩逃到山洞里去了。很多人会这样,当在害怕的境况中,我们不用信心胆量去面对,受到惊吓就退缩了,我们的服事就枯干了。

提摩太后书第一章6节,保罗写信给提摩太,提摩太的服事萎缩了,他生命中有很大能的恩赐,他有很大能的圣灵的恩赐,可以改变生命的,可以把神的生命带出来的,可是却隐藏萎缩,没有运行;因为恐惧,那些年长的人惊吓他,恐惧抓住了他的心,他不能放胆的起来,他退缩了;他看起来一样,但里面的服事却退缩了,因为害怕和惊吓,不敢有放胆的行为,不敢放胆跟随神,不敢勇敢服事主。

失望也会让你枯干,失望也会让你退缩。这是我知道的一件事,一旦退缩,觉得这个情况丢脸,你知道你没有尽力,你知道你被打败了。可能是性犯罪,在你生命中经历的一些事情好像无法摆脱;那种犯罪感让你失掉了权柄,你在服事中就开始退缩了。有很多不同的方式让我们的服事萎缩,或者生命开始枯干,很多枯干的人迫切需要上帝的触摸。来自破碎的家庭,被虐待的人;在感情中受苦的人,他们的魂都失散了;他们真的从生命中退缩下来了,忧伤,受伤,孤单,有时想自杀,有时忧郁。

在这个聚会里,耶稣看见这个人,他做的事情很有意思。他马上叫出这个人,这个人可能最不想的事情就是被人指出来。耶稣说,“站起来。”那人就站起来了,每一个人都看着他,他试着把手藏起来。圣经说,耶稣周围看,他非常生气,他里面受到搅扰。很有意思,耶稣生气了,是什么让他生气的?他里面忧愁。当我们忧愁,是因为有些东西被夺走了,失丧了。因为你失掉一个人或者失掉一个宠物而忧伤,因为失掉工作而忧伤。

耶稣为其他事情而忧愁;他因为永生上帝的教会失掉对人的爱,失掉要看见人得完全的渴望;那里都是有需要的人,他们是律法的,论断的,承受律法的重担;没有上帝的生命像活水在他们身体流动。人们受到压制,要承受律法,一直被人定罪。耶稣忧愁当时的宗教系统注重论断和指控,而不是爱和医治,这个宗教系统根本没有代表上帝。它宣称代表上帝,他说“我们会看见”,但他们是瞎眼的,只看见自己的想法,对人一点帮助没有。

上帝禁止我们让生命变得无用,无法帮忙,我们就开始论断,到处找人的错,而没有看见人都是按上帝的形象造的。领袖更愿意找人的错误,而不愿意医治伤心的人,医治生病的人,他们失掉了方向,可是却说“我们知道方向”。

当耶稣四周观看,看见教会的捆绑,他很忧愁,对这些宗教领袖很生气。耶稣挑战他们,安息日可不可以医治?他们不回答。安息日是为人设立的,是要医治得安息的。耶稣就对枯干手的人说,他让他做两件事,第一,站起来,离开你躲藏之处,离开羞愧之处,把问题带到亮处来,让每一个人都看到。他当然羞愧了,当然他想藏起来,当然他很丢脸,可是上帝觉得丢脸的是这些宗教领袖们。

“站起来,站起来,不要藏在群众中。”我想他不会坐在第一排,大概躲在后面的角落中。耶稣说,“我看见你枯干的手了,站起来。”那人站起来了。这是第一步,你要与神调对频道,承认自己的境况,别再隐藏,别再遮掩,站起来;做出这个决定来回应耶稣,下定决心对耶稣说“我愿意”。把这个可怕的情况带到众人眼前,照他的能力去做,站起来,战胜对人的恐惧。

之后耶稣又让他做一件事,命令他伸出手来;他在生理上是做不到的,需要信心回应耶稣讲的话,当你照着耶稣所说的去做,就显出你的信心来,真正的信心是可以看得见的。他开始伸出手,最不可思议的事情发生了,原来枯干的手,已经萎缩的手,当他伸出来的时候,他感觉到生命流到里面,手开始活起来了,肌肉开始恢复了。他把手伸出来,手活过来了,原来死的,现在活过来了,他不再隐藏了,他告诉每一个人,是上帝的能力释放他得自由。

如果你生命枯干了,上帝要医治你,将他的生命放进你里面;如果你的服事枯干了,上帝要恢复你,但是你要做一些事情。在这个故事中有两件事,第一,站起来,不要再隐藏这个情况了,把它带到大家面前,带到耶稣面前。第二,要做做不到的事情,伸出来,当你相信而伸出来,上帝就开始运行;在伸出来的过程中上帝就运行。

圣经中经常看见耶稣命令人做一些事,告诉瞎子去池子里去洗,他就看见了。叫那个大麻风的回去让祭祀看,当他走的时候就得医治了。跟那个瞎子说往上看,你看见什么?他就看见了。上帝每次都要我们做一些事情。



屬靈的眼盲  

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屬靈的眼盲

请翻开圣经马可福音第十章46至52节,“到了耶利哥。耶稣同门徒并许多人出耶利哥的时候,有一个讨饭的瞎子,是底买的儿子巴底买,坐在路旁。他听见是拿撒勒的耶稣,就喊着说,大卫的子孙耶稣阿,可怜我吧。有许多人责备他,不许他作声,他却越发大声喊着说,大卫的子孙哪,可怜我吧。耶稣就站住,说,叫过他来。他们就叫那瞎子,对他说,放心,起来,他叫你啦。瞎子就丢下衣服,跳起来,走到耶稣那里。耶稣说,要我为你作什么。瞎子说,拉波尼,我要能看见。耶稣说,你去吧。你的信救了你了。瞎子立刻看见了,就在路上跟随耶稣。”

故事的开始就是耶稣来到耶利哥城,耶利哥城是一个多年被咒诅的城。在那个城里有一个人叫巴底买,就是底买的儿子,意思就是秘密的,隐藏的,在那个家族中有一些秘密的事情。巴底买是一个瞎子,看不见东西,活在黑暗的世界里。他坐在路旁乞讨,希望有人帮助他。

瞎眼改变了他的生命,改变了他人生的做法,他无法追寻他心里想做的事,追寻他的梦想。他只能坐在路边依靠别人帮助他活下来,他是一个乞丐,他必须要穿着乞丐的制服,披着乞丐袍,表示他是一个乞丐。但是今天他做了一件事情让耶稣停步,我们刚才读的故事中写道是什么让耶稣停步呢?

这是耶稣最后一次到耶利哥,他正往耶路撒冷去,往十字架的路上走。就在这一天有一个人的生命被改变了,因为他遇见了耶稣。我们先来看看这人的状况,这人是瞎眼的,没有视力,可能是因为身体上的原因而造成的天生的瞎眼,但是还有其他形式的瞎眼,例如属灵的瞎眼。圣经说耶稣将圣灵降临到他身上,恢复了他视力。换句话说,就是让看不见的人可以看见了。

这个故事不单只是让瞎眼的得医治了,而是耶稣打开人的心,带领他从黑暗的世界来到光明的世界。“请每一个人都闭上眼睛”;当我们闭上眼睛,大部分的世界都是黑暗的,如果将你的手放在眼睛上,就会更暗了。想象一下你这样离开会堂回家,你有一些记忆,但是你不知道你会遇见什么障碍,会有什么危险,因为你看不见。你可以想象在这个黑暗的世界中怎样找到回家的路,如果黑暗是永久的,你该怎样过活。没有色彩,没有太阳,看不见任何东西,只有黑暗,而且无法脱离黑暗。

现在打开眼,看看你的周围是何等的美丽,你的视力是何等的重要。圣经告诉我们上帝的国是明亮的国度,是我们可以清楚看见的国度,这个国度的本质就是爱。圣经也有描述撒旦的国度,撒旦是黑暗国度的国王,当你进到黑暗的国里,你的属灵的眼睛是瞎的,属灵的黑暗中看不见,看不见要去哪儿,看不见路上会遇见什么,看不见危险。

圣经告诉我们,耶稣来是让我们脱离黑暗的国度,脱离属灵的黑暗,进到光明的国度,我们可以看见,看见生命改变了,看见人改变了,能够明白永生,所有的事情都改变了。只要你从黑暗的国度出来,进到光明的国度。

有很多事情会造成属灵的黑暗,我们这里会讲几个,请翻开约翰一书第二章9至11节,“人若说自己在光明中。却恨他的弟兄,他到如今还是在黑暗里。爱弟兄的就是住在光明中,在他并没有绊跌的缘由。惟独恨弟兄的是在黑暗里,且在黑暗里行,也不知道往哪里去,因为黑暗叫他眼睛瞎了。”

你看到圣经中讲到仇恨。仇恨是一种心里的问题,当人们受伤,他们的心就不愿意饶恕,因为不饶恕就会产生苦毒和仇恨。我们经常看不见仇恨,但是它会彰显在我们的生命里。一个人心里有仇恨,就很难去爱人,他们可能装成很好的样子,但那个爱是不真实的。如果心中有恨,爱就不可能流露出来触摸别人。

更不好的是,恨会使你瞎眼,你无法看见如何跟人建立关系,仇恨会在你周围产生黑暗。不难想象仇恨是来自撒旦的,他的国度就是黑暗的国度。如果一个人有仇恨,他们就会被仇恨弄瞎眼睛,无法清楚的看见,也无法作出正确的决定。他们没有好的人际关系,因为他们看不清楚。

如果你长在一个混乱的家庭中,会产生忧伤和仇恨,你不用为你父母的行为负责,但你要负责的是如何在心里面对问题,愿意放手;如果心里有恐惧愤怒抓住你,这就是你的责任。我们需要了解的是,如果你将对家庭的仇恨留在心里,对父亲的仇恨,对母亲的仇恨,甚至有时是仇恨自己,就会使你瞎眼,影响你跟人建立美好的关系,你总是透过你仇恨的眼光来看别人的行为。

圣经告诉我们有仇恨在心里的,行在黑暗中,无法看见,因为仇恨弄瞎了他的心眼。如果一个人恨他的双亲,有可能仇恨也会转向他的儿女。有些人有仇恨愤怒的经历,可能会是从历代祖先传下来的。一个人从小长大时仇恨父母,成年后也会恨他的儿女,仇恨像一个河流从家族的血脉流下去,世世代代在黑暗中。这是因为缺乏爱,爱触摸人的心,爱使我们彼此相连。

缺乏爱,使我们受伤。仇恨不只有一种方式表达,它有多种的表达方式。圣经告诉我们,仇恨会引起谋杀,可以确认的是谋杀的诱因就是仇恨。有人被激怒,愤怒上升就会引起谋杀。约翰一书第三章14,15节讲,“我们因为爱弟兄,就晓得是已经出死入生了。没有爱心的,仍住在死中。凡恨他弟兄的,就是杀人的。你们晓得凡杀人的,没有永生存在他里面。”仇恨弟兄的人就是谋杀者。仇恨弟兄的人就行在黑暗中。

谋杀者就是取走别人生命的人,导致谋杀的原因就是仇恨。仇恨的表现就是对人的暴力行为,可能是身体上的暴力行动,也可能是愤怒的言语。当一个人非常愤怒的时候,你会感到害怕,因为背后有谋杀的灵,你能真实的感受到他控制不了的愤怒。

我们被设计不是要仇恨人,不是活在仇恨中;我们被设计的是活在爱中。当心中有恨,我们无法清楚的看见,会对人有不好的反应,想要伤害人,人们可以用话语伤害人,当你走开,觉得生命被吸干了,感到痛苦,需要时间复原。

另一种仇恨的形式被称为冷漠的爱,不是从神而来的爱。从神来的爱充满了温暖,亮光,温情,而冷漠的爱则是从封闭的心里出来;他们非常有礼貌,不会做不好的事,但是感觉不到爱,心是冷的。行为是无可挑剔的,但感受不到爱。冷漠的爱是因为心里有仇恨,表面假装没事,他没有体会神的爱。

圣经非常清楚的告诉我们,有仇恨在心里,就会使我们瞎眼,看不清关系,会引导你进入黑暗,影响你的人际关系。圣经告诉我们邪灵会导致属灵的黑暗。在哥林多前书第四章4节,这世界的王弄瞎了我们的心眼,以至于神的光进不来。

另外一个导致属灵黑暗的原因是,就是邪灵的工作。圣经告诉我们这世界的王就是邪灵,他弄瞎了我们的心眼,使我们看不见,不了解。当你跟他们分享耶稣基督的时候,他们不明白,他们会说“我看不见”,这就是属灵的盲眼。这就是为什么我们要为不信主的人祷告,打破黑暗的权势。我们祷告除去属灵的黑暗,祷告挪走邪灵的影响力,祷告有清晰的心思意念,看见真理,拥抱真理。

另一个导致属灵盲眼的原因就是骄傲。圣经启示录第三章17节,“你说,我是富足,已经发了财,一样都不缺。却不知道你是那困苦,可怜,贫穷,瞎眼,赤身的。”这里讲的是教会中的人。骄傲就是自我为中心,骄傲有两方面,第一,觉得自己自高自傲,无人可比;如此自爱,以至于看不见其他人。骄傲的人看到的全部都是自己,当你跟一个骄傲的人在一起的时候,你会觉得自己一点价值都没有,因为他们全部的关注都是自己。你跟他们谈话的时候,你没有什么机会讲话,他们全讲完了,都是有关他们自己的。

骄傲的另一种面貌就是刚刚相反,“我一点价值都没有。”这人非常的自我为中心,总是想别人会怎样看我,我要人们都喜欢我。所有这些人的骄傲都会在我们周围产生属灵的黑暗,使我们眼瞎看不见。

还有一个导致瞎眼的就是苦毒的冒犯,当有人冒犯我的时候,我心里不原谅他,这也使我们看不清问题,因为我们总是定睛在被冒犯这件事上。一个女孩被父亲侵犯就很容易被其他的男人冒犯。一位男孩被母亲冒犯也会很容易被其他女人冒犯。

这些事情都会使我们眼瞎,没法看清楚。巴底买瞎眼,他在乞讨。乞讨就是向别人伸手,希望他给予,满足你的需要,很多人这样做。如果你看不清上帝在你身上的作为,你就需要其他人的肯定来认同你;如果你看不清上帝对你说的话,你的价值,你的天赋,你的目标,你就希望其他人能告诉你,肯定你。你希望利用这样的关系使你感觉更好,需要这种关系能够告诉你是受欢迎的,你很好。这种依赖的关系是非常不健康的。

如果我们心中有论断,也会使我们瞎眼。马太福音第七章5节中,耶稣谈到论断。当你论断一个人的时候,你就无法看清楚。我们用许多不同的方式论断人,如按照性别来论断人,女人经常这样做,“所有女人都像这样。”或者“所有男人都那样。”还有以种族论断人。所以如果心中有论断,就不能清楚的看见,也影响我们的生命。

我们来看巴底买会如何;他想要不一样,他听说耶稣经过,这对他来讲意义重大;他听说过耶稣所做的事情,他听说耶稣是救主,他听到耶稣行的神迹,他听说耶稣帮助人,他听说耶稣从不拒绝人,他听到耶稣从邪灵中释放人得自由,从疾病中释放,巴底买的信心起来了,他希望他的人生不一样,他希望上帝的大能临到,上帝的权能影响他的人生,改变他的人生。“我不要再瞎眼了,我不要再坐在黑暗里了”。

以赛亚书第四十二章7节说,坐在黑暗中的人就像坐在监牢里一样。属灵的黑暗就像监牢一样影响你的生命,掳掠你,让你无法成功。如果你骄傲,就限制了你,捕捉了你,你仇恨的 心占领了你。如果你在灵里面是被虏的,你就在黑暗的监牢里,你需要寻找人来帮助你。巴底买说“我受够了,我要耶稣改变我,我不想再在这里待下去了。

大部分的人会维持现状,不想改变,不管有多痛苦,也不要承受改变的痛苦。但巴底买不同,他想信耶稣能够改变他 ,所以当他听到耶稣经过,他开始大喊。如果你厌倦了活在属灵的黑暗中,厌倦了呆在属灵的监牢里,厌倦了祈求别人来帮助你,向耶稣伸出你的手。巴底买是这样做的,他大呼,“耶稣,大卫的儿子,怜悯我。”他用大卫的儿子这个称呼,就是即将到来的弥赛亚。“耶稣,我知道你救人,我知道你能够打破罪的权势,打破魔鬼的权势,我知道你能够改变我,耶稣!”

众人是怎样讲的呢?很多人对他讲,小声点,不要出声,安静的呆在那儿吧。大众一点都不感兴趣你的人生争战,他们只是想避免受到拦阻,避免属灵的噪音,也就是他们在反对巴底买的信心。没有记录有任何人是邪恶的,巴底买有信心,他的信心不是沉默的。当你有了信心,你总是要显露出来的,这人的信心在两个方面显露出来:

第一,他大声的呼叫耶稣。

第二,当人们阻止他,他持续不停的叫。当人们想要拦阻他时,他就更有信心,大声的叫喊。当有一大群人的时候,会有很多噪音,耶稣听见了他的声音,停下来,他听到的是信心的呼声,他听出了不同。耶稣不是只听见众人的声音,他能分辨出那独一的声音。因为那人的信心和持续不停的呼叫。

有时我们祷告没有立刻从神那里得到答案,圣经有很多这样的故事;当你向神呼求的时候,可能你也不是立刻得到解答;可能有许多人想要让你沮丧,但是信心永远不被打倒;我们要一直大声呼求,更大声呼求,越多的拦阻就会呼叫的越大声。

耶稣要求带他来到面前,群众立刻改变了,耶稣不是呼叫埋怨的人,耶稣呼叫的是有信心的人。巴底买做了什么呢?他把乞丐衣服全部脱掉了,起来到耶稣面前。那件乞丐服是有象征意义的,它是正式的乞讨的制服,就像一个批准乞讨的证书。当他丢掉这件乞丐服,代表他的生命将会完全不同了,他就是上帝行神迹的那个人,因为耶稣叫他到前面去。

这个乞丐服代表了什么呢?

第一,代表他旧有的生活方式。当他丢掉这件衣服,他就改变了,圣经告诉我们这就是悔改。我整个的人生要完全改变了,因为我来到耶稣面前,他呼叫我上前来。我不再活在黑暗中,不再贫穷,不再完全依靠别人的怜悯了,他的生活要完全改变了。

第二,乞丐服代表了限制。就是他原来的生命是受限的,因为黑暗所以受限,因为不信而受限;很多人都是受限的,因为他们不想像他们自己;很多人受限不是因为神,而是因为你心中对你自己没有信心。

箴言第二十三章7节,“因为他心怎样思量,他为人就是怎样。”所以你相信你在撒旦的权势下,你就生活在受限和黑暗中;你不相信你能的时候,你就会受限了;你不相信你可以做好任何事情,你就活在受限中。

不管是什么让你受限的,将它丢掉吧,悔改就是丢掉的意思,我把我对人生的看法完全改变了。乞丐服代表的第三个意义是,他人生的忧伤和痛苦。每一次当他穿上乞丐服,都会提醒他的受伤,许多人仇视他,责骂他,取笑他,捉弄他,偷他的钱。

许多人带着伤害,悲伤,痛苦,就像穿上乞丐服一样;很多人伤害他,他希望人人都同情他,他抱着他的伤痛的乞丐服向人乞讨。

当他来到耶稣面前,他决定他要改变;不仅如此,这件乞丐服给他安全感,他可以不用完全丢掉它,万一耶稣弄不好怎么办?需要一个退路吗?很多人来到耶稣面前是抱有这个心态的。但是巴底买完全没有想过,他完全脱掉袍子,来到耶稣面前。耶稣问他,“你要什么?”“我要能看见。”正是正确的答案。

我们看到另外一个跛腿的人,当耶稣问他“你要什么?”他有一大堆的埋怨,他没有给出正确的答案。

巴底买立刻回答“我要看见。”所以当我们来到耶稣面前,不要埋怨,不要找借口,像巴底买一样干脆的回答“我要看见。”耶稣说,“因为你的信心,你就得医治。”立刻眼睛开了,黑暗不见了,他成为了耶稣的门徒,跟随耶稣。从前这人是在黑暗的监狱中,现在看见了,他把乞丐服丢掉了,他的整个人生改变了,他不用再乞讨了,他不用再受限了。他第一个看见的是什么?耶稣!他就跟随耶稣了。

耶稣来将我们从属灵的黑暗中拯救出来,他来改变我们的人生,去除一切的限制,医治伤心的人,给我们真正的安全感,带领我们过一个美好的人生。在这个故事里,耶稣最后一次经过耶利哥,有一个人挡住了耶稣,神迹改变了他的生命。

数百人中,只有一个人挡住了耶稣,数百人只是观看,他们没有信心,只有一个人,丢掉他的袍子,相信耶稣会改变他。就像他期望的,耶稣改变了他。



由占卜中得自由  

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由占卜中得自由

请翻开圣经约翰福音第十章27,28节,“我的羊听我的声音,我也认识他们,他们也跟着我。我又赐给他们永生。他们永不灭亡,谁也不能从我手里把他们夺去。”在这段信息中,耶稣把自己比作牧羊人,人就像羊一样。

这里耶稣说了三件事情,一,我的羊认得我的声音。我们曾经养过一只羊,他很快就认得了我的声音。如果你懂羊,你就知道它是认声音的。耶稣说,“我的羊听我的声音,我也认识他们”,这里讲的是一种关系,我认识他们,他们跟从我。每一个人在生命中都跟从一些东西,你可能跟着群众,跟着流行,跟着电视,跟着媒体。人们都是在跟着一些东西,只是常常自己不了解。

我们生命中可能会有压力,让我们跟从,我们喜欢在人群中,跟羊一样,羊也是喜欢群聚的。耶稣说我的羊听我的声音,代表我们跟从基督,跟随主的关键就是有能力听从他的声音。这世上有很多的声音,很多声音一直压迫你,要抓你的注意力,要你的钱,要你的心。上帝创造我们是要我们活在跟他的关系里,我们都是属灵的,在灵里有一个部分需要上帝来充满。没有神的时候就去找别的东西了,可能听人的声音,也可能听邪灵的声音。上帝要我们今天开始听他的声音,回应他的声音。

神做了应许,我们如果跟着他,我们不会活在黑暗里,我们会得着光,他的生命在我们里面。耶稣邀请每一个人来跟着他,在生命中的某一个阶段要做这个决定,不再让罪带领我们,不再让群众带领我们,不再让邪灵带领我们,做决定跟从耶稣。

耶稣说,“跟从我,跟从我。凡跟从我的,不再在黑暗里行,他们得着永生的光。”今天有很多人,他们的生命中有黑暗,苦毒,仇恨的黑暗;愤怒,不饶恕的黑暗;或者各样罪恶的黑暗。圣经说,神的国是光明的国,魔鬼的国是黑暗的国。耶稣应许我们,如果跟从他,我们的生命就满是活力,开始发光,看起来不一样,讲话不一样,活的不一样。他说,“你不会行在黑暗里。”

神说当你跟他同行,跟从他的带领,上帝的灵会帮助你处理生命中的黑暗,各样受伤愤怒的黑暗,忧伤,苦毒和失望。我们需要决定到底谁来带领我们。人们都在寻找方向,不幸的是我们常常在错误的地方寻找。

我们来看圣经中的一个故事,一位女子听到不同的声音,被领导,被带领,她听到的不是上帝的声音,她听到的是邪灵的声音。这个故事里,很多人付她钱,让她告诉他们的未来。在使徒行传第十六章16至18节,“后来,我们往那祷告的地方去。有一个使女迎着面来,她被巫鬼所附,用法术,叫她主人们大得财利。她跟随保罗和我们,喊着说,这些人是至高神的仆人,对你们传说救人的道。她一连多日这样喊叫,保罗就心中厌烦,转身对那鬼说,我奉耶稣基督的名,吩咐你从她身上出来。那鬼当时就出来了。”

保罗当时在腓立比这个城市,这个城市非常出名,它有一个区域叫Pufo,那里有所谓的神域,是算命的中心;他们拜的是阿波罗,是艺术,音乐,戏剧的神。传说他征服了当地的一条蟒蛇,他们之前拜这条蟒蛇。这个占卜算命的中心,人们从世界各地来到,想要做新生意的人,开始新事业的人,在政府的人,当人要做决定的时候,都来找算命的人,付他钱来算算,我们称这种人叫灵媒。

整个城市有很多灵媒,整个区域都在这种占卜算命的灵的笼罩下,压抑的灵。那里有很多算命的工作在做,很多这种属灵的活动,整个区域有沉重的压力。人们付钱,灵媒就讲他们未来的生活。圣经中讲到的这个女子,她身上有灵环绕,就像蟒蛇的形状;看不见这个灵,但这条蟒蛇缠在她身上,它的头就在她的耳边,那是个邪灵,对她的生命说话。她会听见它说话,听见灵界的声音对她说,告诉她资讯。当她有这个灵的时候,她给出的资讯不可能从其他地方得到。

占卜就是你参与到灵界,从邪灵处而不是从上帝那里得到一些资讯。上帝创造我们是要我们跟他建立关系,神是灵,他让我们也是灵;上帝要跟我们说话,圣经说上帝在我们身上是有计划的,他在我们生命中是有目的的,他要指引你的生命。耶稣说,我是好牧人,我的羊听我的声音。代表上帝会跟我们说话,他说跟从我,跟从我的指示带领,我带他们去好的地方。

可是还有一个声音,是邪灵的声音。圣经中的这个女人赚了很多钱,那些人都想知道自己的未来;魔鬼知道你的未来吗?他不知道。只有创造了你的那一位,才能看见前面,知道你的生命是为什么;只有创造你的那一位,才知道你的目的,只有创造你的那一位,才能完全明白你。

上帝渴望我们跟他连结,从他领受启示指引。圣经在箴言第三章5,6节告诉我们,“你要专心仰赖耶和华,不可倚靠自己的聪明。在你一切所行的事上,都要认定他,他必指引你的路。”很多时候,神应许会指引带领我们。人们都对未来充满恐惧,不知道会怎样,我会不会成功,我会不会很富有,能不能有美满的婚姻感情,每一个人都有这样的问题。

上帝要我们跟他连结,活在信靠的生命中,信心的生命是学习每一天与他同行。他不会把我们生命的一切告诉我们,但他鼓励我们跟他同行,走信靠的路,听他的声音,也听我们的心。上帝显明在我们心里的是什么,当你开始跟上帝同行,你的心就会指引你,借上帝的话语,也借上帝的灵,你会富足。

我们看刚才的经文中讲要全心依靠神,他会指引你的路。我们跟上帝的关系就是要有信任,这关乎你的心,以你的心来信任他,以你的生命信任他。不是全凭脑袋搞清楚事情,上帝搞清楚你的生命就够了,他要我们学会信任他,学会倾听我们心的声音,为未来做计划,相信他会与我们同行,祝福我们的计划。上帝的应许会指引我们,你可以做最棒的事情,就是跟上帝连结,学习听他的声音。

如果没有这位爱我们,带领我们的神,我们对未来就会很恐惧,很害怕。我知道上帝是好牧人,他爱我,他相信我,他创造了我,在我生命中有美好的计划,我会将生命交在他手上跟从他。当我知到耶稣为我死在十字架上,我可以将生命交给他,跟从他。因为有人爱我到可以愿意为我而死,这是我可以信任的。

如果我不相信神,我就活在孤单的生活中,对未来充满恐惧,有些人对未来充满恐惧。如果你焦虑,没有安全感,对将来的事情感到很害怕。当然你看新闻,会增加更多的害怕;海啸,地震,冰山融化,恐怖份子,媒体上都是坏消息,人们感到害怕,在这种情况下,人们就开始找算命的了。

这个女孩是个灵媒,赚很多钱,人们付他很多钱;邪灵知道人们的未来吗?不知道!邪灵的知识是有限的,他们不知道你的未来,但他们知道你在做什么,他们观察你,知道你过去经历过什么。就好像有一个邪灵的网络一样,把你的名字打上去,搜索一下,所有的东西都出来了,所有邪灵都上来了,“我知道他的爸爸妈妈,祖父祖母,他们全家我都认得,我观察他们很久了。很高兴将他们的生活搞得一塌糊涂。”

耶稣说魔鬼来就是要偷窃,伤害,毁坏,你要知道什么,邪灵就跟她讲;这个女士其实不那么聪明,她只是听而已,听魔鬼的声音,然后讲出来。邪灵不知道你的未来,他不过是给你开这条路,你同意他,邪灵就开始在你身上工作,开始控制你。

旧约圣经利未记第二十章6节告诉我们,“人偏向交鬼的和行巫术的,随他们行邪淫,我要向那人变脸,把他从民中剪除。”上帝警告人接触邪灵的危险,灵媒是邪灵运用的一个人来对人说话;交鬼的是让邪灵进入他里面,让他可以说出你生命的事情;占卜就是要进到灵界,连结上邪灵,请他给你方向。这可以用各式各样的方式来做,青少年常玩的,好像碟仙,放很多字在旁边,把碟子放在中间;谁在那里?他们不明白的是,这是跟邪灵在接触,真的有人在那里,还有好多人呢。

圣经说我们到神的面前,耶稣说我是道路,我是真理,若不借着我,没有人能到父那里去。当你进入到灵界,不管用什么样的方式接触,你接触的都是邪灵。交鬼和接触家族熟悉的邪灵的,是随他们行邪淫。我们想想妓女,她是付出身体以交换金钱,这是交易的产生,当她拿到钱就将身体出卖了,付钱的人利用她的身体。

圣经说,当你参与占卜的事,你就好像妓女一样。你得到资讯,可是你让邪灵有权利利用你的身体。你得到资讯就好像妓女拿到钱一样,你就让那个灵进入到你的身体了,就像妓女把身体为男人敞开一样;圣经用的一些类似语言,不要跟魔鬼行邪淫,不要让邪灵来污秽你,这让你跟上帝的关系被砍除。这是让上帝最忧伤的事,他设计了你,他在你生命中有计划,他爱你,想要帮助你,要跟你同行,要进入到你生命里,要你转离这一切,你反而转向邪灵仇敌去了。

你打开生命让邪灵进来,要交换什么?就这么一点点资讯吗?你知道找灵媒会怎样吗?他们会上瘾的。自己做不了决定,一定要回去先问过灵媒,付更多的钱,获得更多的资讯,再付更多的钱,得到更多的资讯。他们的生命就被邪灵掌控了。凡是参与占卜的,你跟邪灵达成了协议,你让他有权利进到你的生命,这样就会有很多问题了。

要参与到这当中,人们会有各样的方式;今天的媒体上都是这些东西,好像哈利波特电影,很多神奇鬼怪的电影,他们美化了占卜,把巫术,魔术讲的很美,看起来很有意思。可是他们没有告诉你的是,他能力的源头在哪里?真是属灵的力量就一定有属灵的源头。神的国里,能力的源头就是圣灵,耶稣基督得荣耀。但在魔鬼的国,能力的源头就是邪灵,你不知道它是从哪里来的。

有些人在占卜上做过实验,感觉好像没有伤害;大家都在玩,有的在学校玩,有的在家里玩,有些在周末玩;会有一些幻想出来,你有没有想过当那些蟒蛇立起来盯着一个动物的时候,那些动物常常就瘫痪了,感觉被蟒蛇催眠了,无法离开它的视线。当你参与在邪灵里,就开始有这样的幻想出现了,因为那个能力是很真实的,有吸引力,有邪灵的吸力。但这样做,你是打开生命让邪灵对你产生更多捆绑。

有些人是家族中有人做算命的事,这也有机会让邪灵进入到你生命。有些人家里有法术,巫术的事情;各式各样的找寻灵里的能力,拜偶像是其中一种形式;拜偶像的人需要献祭,要交换,给一些东西给偶像,要交换一些东西回来。交换回来的是什么呢?是邪灵。同样的,就像妓女一样,我们被造不是为了邪灵,我们的生命不是要被鬼附的,我们受造是要让神爱的灵住在我们里面,上帝的渴望是要他的灵从我们心中流出,如同活水的江河。

可是你拜偶像,占卜,算命等等,做巫术,魔术的事,当我们向这些东西打开生命,就向邪灵打开我们的生命了,麻烦就开始了;麻烦是渐渐增加的,参与这这些事里面,常常会做噩梦,在灵里面挣扎,很沉重,很忧郁,很难过;好像房中的东西都会动,或者听到声音跟他讲话又没法让他闭嘴,有时晚上被折磨,有各式很可怕的噩梦;或者醒过来感觉有人要杀了他,或者感觉被性侵犯,却没有人在房中。一旦邪灵有了入口,他就不断要增加捆绑,不断增加他的掌控,要完全打败你的生命。

耶稣说盗贼来就是盗窃,杀害,毁坏,耶稣来赐给我们生命。我们回过头来看这个故事,在使徒行传第十六章,这个女孩有占卜的灵在身上,她跟着保罗大喊着说,“这些人是至高神的仆人,对你们传说救人的道。”她讲的都是真的,很多人不知道,他们只是一群人在那里。这些人是有知识的,当耶稣面对邪灵,邪灵会大叫,他们知道耶稣是谁。邪灵认识耶稣,也认识跟从耶稣的人,他们知道你是谁。

记得有一次我在巴厘,开车经过一个公园,发现有些人和一些蛇在那里,我特别下车去跟他们聊一聊,看他们在干什么。因为在新西兰没有蛇,我就很好奇。那些人聚在一起,中间垫子上有一些蛇,非常吓人。我不敢太靠近,离得远一点,他们应该是从珀流来的巫师,其中之一就来到我面前。邪灵会认出神的仆人,他是怎样认出来的?当你跟从耶稣基督,圣灵活在你里面,上帝的灵住在你里面,你身上有神的灵的印记,你真的是散发光出来的,别的人可能看不到,但你生命中的证据果子,灵界都看得见。

于是这个人就出来跟我说,他从没见过我,跟我讲过话;他说,“请不要祷告敌对我们,让我们停下来,我们来只是要赚点钱,我们没有要伤人。”他怎么会讲这种话,在他们身上的邪灵认得出上帝的仆人,他们的回应就是拜托我不要拦阻他们,这也代表我们有能力拦阻他们;耶稣说我赐你们权柄胜过蛇和蝎子和一切仇敌的能力,没有什么能害你的。在灵里他们能认出你是谁,我们看人就是人,看不见他身上是否有邪灵缠着,除非上帝向我们显明。我们也看不出谁是基督徒,除非你看他生命的果子。可是在灵里,我可以看出你是谁,是怎么样的,他们认得出你。

去年九月在台湾的一次聚会,很多人,圣灵很大的运行;上帝跟我说话,开始释放,我们呼召,上帝就开始运行,有很多人得释放,跟我们这里一样。我最小的女儿跟我在一起,她跟我说,因为那是一个很大的聚会,我真的遇见主了,她发现她可以释放;她说:“我问主想要我发现什么事,我以为头脑里会想到一句话”;主就跟她讲“转身,面对这些人。”她回答说,“不要了,我的睫毛膏都流下来了。”主说你转身看这些人,打开眼睛。她跟我说,她站在那里打开眼睛看,眼睁睁看着这些人站在前面,可是在他们的上面还有一个属灵的世界存在,她同时看见两个世界。只有上帝打开你的眼睛你才有可能看见这些事情。我问她“你看到什么?”她说“我看到邪灵。”“他们长什么样?”“他们吓坏了,我看见他们在聚会中,每一个都吓坏了。充满了恐惧。”“他们在干什么?”“他们抓着这些人,试着一直要抓着他们。”“他们为什么要抓住他们。”“邪灵有些是 把手放在这些人的眼睛上,让他们不要看,有些邪灵把手放在他们耳朵上,让他们听不见。有些把手放在他们嘴上,让他们说不出话来。每一个都是死命的抓住这些人。”我说,“你还看到什么?”她说,“我看不见你,我听见你说话。”她看到一位好像耶稣的人,很大的光一直照出来。所有邪灵看着这个人,吓坏了。“每一次你说话,就像上帝的大水把邪灵冲出去。”我说,“你还看到什么。”她说,“太多了,我眼睛受不了,同时看到两个世界。我再一次闭上了眼睛。”

重点就是,灵界会看到我们真正的景况,邪灵认得耶稣,知道他是上帝的儿子,他们非常怕耶稣。耶稣在各各他打败他们,圣经说当耶稣舍命,他打破了邪灵在所有人身上的权势。耶稣邀请我们转离罪,转离邪教,转向永生真神。他爱我们,我们受造不是要与邪灵连结,有些人把生命向邪灵打开;可能从你家族里来,可能有人在庙宇中把你献给了邪灵,或者你家人在拜偶像,算命,甚至你自己也做过,就向邪灵打开生命了;或者你打开眼,进入到邪教的世界,邀请邪灵。

上帝要释放你自由,我注意到有些人进入捆绑的方法,就是借着电脑游戏,那些扮演角色的电脑游戏,扮演巫师什么的。我为很多人祷告,大概有四百人,都是玩线上游戏的,上瘾了,被鬼附了,他们通过这种想象力,角色扮演的游戏开始进到灵的世界里了;还有通过武术,打坐等的各式各样的方式接触灵界。

耶稣来是要释放我们得自由。我们来讲完这个故事,看看会怎样。这里讲她这样做了多日,保罗就心中厌烦,他很难过。字面的意思就是他在挣扎,想突破;有一些邪灵的活动,在灵里会感到压力,他明白是有污鬼在她身上。保罗就对她说话,他是奉耶稣基督的权柄而来的,耶稣能胜过魔鬼。我们现在跟耶稣同行,我们也能征服魔鬼了。“奉主耶稣基督的名,出来!”对那个灵说话,那个灵发作,就从那个女孩身上出来了。这是一条蟒蛇,就从她身上出来了,她就得自由了。

我记得很多年前在一个地方,我们第一次有上帝的运行和释放,我很清楚的记得,场面非常壮观。有一天晚上聚会,大家出来接受服事,我为一位男士按手,他是从太平洋岛来的,他的家族有做算命的事,他倒在地上,这个也很常见的,但是后来他做的事,我从没见过。他就像一条蛇一样,在椅子底下一路的滑,滑到房间的最后面。我从没见过这种把戏,椅子都飞开了。

我们开始对他说话,命令占卜的灵离开,那个灵就离开了,灵的形状就像蟒蛇。我碰到过好多次这样发作的情况,各式各样的事情都有;重点是他们都是坏的,他们是来伤害你的。保罗直接面对灵,这个女孩就得自由了。她是其他人的使女,也是邪灵的使女,那一天她接受耶稣基督,成为自由人,远离罪的自由,远离邪灵的自由。上帝让你经历同样的事。

今天我们要做两项邀请,第一,邀请人来跟从耶稣。耶稣说,凡接待他,欢迎他,相信他名的人。耶稣是救主,他拯救我们脱离罪,凡接待他的相信他的人,他赐他们权柄做上帝的儿女,进入上帝的家中。上帝今天要为你这样做,他要改变你的生命;只要你愿意,他要进入你的心中。不管你生命经历过什么,不管你生命有多糟糕,神爱你,他爱你,他明白你;不管你参与过什么,都不能改变上帝爱你的事实,你的行为不管有多可怕,都不能改变上帝爱你。当你还在罪中,上帝差他的儿子为你死在十字架上,今天我要告诉你,上帝爱你。

耶稣说跟从他的人会听他的声音,他要赐他们永生,今天邀请你做这第一步,来跟从耶稣,邀请他进入到你生命,求他赦免你的罪,接受他进入你生命。

后面还有第二次呼召,特别为那些在邪灵里挣扎的人祷告。如果你有做过算命,占卜的事,或在各样的邪教里面,拜偶像,交鬼的,或被邪灵折磨的,可能你家族中有人参与到邪灵里;我们会有第二次呼召,为你祷告释放,上帝的能力会临到你,释放你离开这些邪灵。

今天你可以做决定,跟上帝连结;你今天可以做决定,不再带邪灵回家,你只要求耶稣基督释放你得自由。



由堕胎流产中得医治  

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由堕胎流产中得医治

教会应传播盼望的信息。福音就是人们盼望的信息,是神对我们的爱,他愿意帮助我们。作为基督徒,无论周围发生什么,我们要明白我们需要帮助别人,耶稣基督来就是要帮助人的。

我想到一个很重要的经文,耶稣来不是来定人的罪,而是来使人因他得救,拯救人脱离罪恶。耶稣爱你,他从不定我们的罪,不管你身边发生什么,上帝的心一直伸向你,爱你,恢复你。

身为一个基督徒,不要为国家许多的问题害怕,要学习了解他们,服事他们。没有不能谈论的议题。事实上,我们应该谈论任何议题,带着爱的灵,盼望的灵,安慰人们。

今天我要做的是跟大家分享一些感人的事情,我以前没有分享过,但最近上帝对我的心说话。昨晚和今早我还在挣扎,我想讲别的东西,可是你当聆听上帝,他对我们已经有安排。今天的信息可能直接影响你,也可能间接影响你。希望大家有一颗敞开的心,爱的灵。因为我们为人祷告,看见上帝带来极大的突破。

我们来看诗篇127篇3节。我们来过这里很多次,经常跟大家分享我们的故事。大部分人知道我们有一个大家庭,七个儿女,21个孙子女。在这个过程中,学习到很多,其实我们还有两个孩子,在天上。我今天要谈的是堕胎和流产。

我希望给大家带来盼望,我希望还不认识耶稣的人,明白到上帝爱你,想要帮助你,想要打破你生命中罪的权势。然后,我要为三组人祷告,我们一起祷告,免得任何人觉得尴尬。我们希望爱的灵,上帝的大能能帮助你。我要为所有曾经堕胎的人,或跟曾经堕胎的人接触过的人,或流产的人,无法生育的人,一起祷告。我们绝不会开口问你是什么样的问题,希望大家自由的到前面来,相信上帝会帮助你。

诗篇127篇3节说“儿女是耶和华所赐的产业。所怀的胎,是他所给的赏赐。” 。所以孩子是产业,是上帝赐给我们的,每个人里面都有这个灵,是从神而来。圣经说神是灵。人与人结合会创造生命。人与神同工,上帝把灵放在孩子身上,孩子成为有灵的活人。上帝渴望孩子分享他给的命定,上帝的渴望是有许多的子女,这是神的心。上帝的计划就是接触这地,帮助人,就是上帝的人。

当我们生在这世上,因为罪与神隔绝。上帝渴望来到我们中间,饶恕我们的罪,将他的灵放在我们生命中,赐给我们永恒的命定。这一切由回应基督开始。

三天前,我读到一篇有关中国的新闻。故事发生在潍坊市,一对年青夫妇,他们已经有了一个孩子,正怀着第二个孩子。一天早晨,公安冲进家门,拦住这位丈夫,抓走了妻子,直接把她带到了医院。当时妻子怀孕六个月了,他们威胁她说要把她的丈夫关进监狱。而丈夫也四处找寻妻子,六个小时后才找到,但她已经被打了流产针。

深深感动我的是,他们两个人因为失去孩子而忧伤,这没有人可以安慰他们,我的心都碎了。我将分享一些我个人的见证。我们再看看神的话语,希望为人们带来盼望。

很多年前,我的妻子经历过两次流产。身为一个男人,当时我不明白这对女人意味着什么。我们四处服事,感到很大的压力。我们已经有五个孩子,我的妻子从没有抱怨过这两次流产。她从医院回来,我们继续我们的生命。没有多想什么。我们又有了两个孩子,Peter和Sarah。

多年后,我在另一个教会服事,为一位女士祷告。我问她发生了什么事情,她说她流产了,当我祷告时,她开始哭泣,我也感到非常忧伤,与她一起哭泣。我想太不可思议了,我一定是感受到了神的爱。

同一天,我去到另一个教会,同样的事情又发生了。我为一位流产的女士祷告,我又感受到了很深的忧伤。当你感觉到什么时,就要问自己,我的感受是什么?我为什么会有这样的感受?回到家后,我开始祷告,上帝跟我说,你忧伤不是因为她,而是因为你自己失去的两个孩子。一个男孩,一个女孩。你从未停止过悲伤,即使你并未意识到你的损失。

我开始很忧伤,上帝就告诉我该怎么做。我回到家跟妻子说“上帝跟我说到我们流产的两个孩子”。Joy说“上帝也跟我说话。他们是一个男孩,一个女孩。我给他们起名为Timothy和Catherine。”我说,神告诉我在家里应该怎么做,于是,像往常一样,我们全家一起进餐。Joy把两朵漂亮的花放在餐桌上。我跟孩子们分享说“我们家有七个孩子,实际上,应该是九个,还有两个在天上。”

有趣的事情发生了,流产后出生的两个孩子开始深深的哭泣。我感到他们灵里的悲伤。在他们的头脑里都不知道我们失去了两个孩子,悲伤一直由我妻子承担了。现在他们知道他们失去了一个哥哥和一个姐姐。他们的心中充满了忧伤。忧伤的灵在他们周围。

所以,我妻子的流产的忧伤,传到了后面的两个孩子身上。我们就按手在他们身上,为他们祷告。而其它的孩子们则没有这个问题。这就告诉我们,在母腹中的胎儿能感觉到母亲的忧伤。当忧伤没有解决时,就传递给后面出生的孩子。

我们做了一件事:为流产的孩子取名字。这很重要,不要只把他们当成一个东西。对于我,就好像我的妻子掉了一颗牙,很痛一样。在心中没有感到作为一个父亲,失去了一个孩子。

所以我认识到,当流产和堕胎发生时,会有很深的忧伤,处理忧伤的过程之一就是认出他们,为他们取名字,将他们释放在神的手中。不只是“一件事情”发生了,失去了“某样东西”,他真实的是一个活着的灵,她的身体没有成型,他的家没有长久,他们不得不离开。我妻子讲的很美“他就像一朵玫瑰花苞,没有绽放。”很多年来,我们为很多人祷告,在这方面帮助他们。

第二个见证。今年初我在新加坡讲道,教导关于与神相遇。当时我正在服事我们的敬拜小组,帮助他们与神相遇。在这以前的一天,教会结束后,我们的两个很忧伤的孩子分别跟我们说,他们今天聚会时看到了他们失去的哥哥和姐姐在天堂,还能清楚的描述他们。我必须承认我有些嫉妒。而当今年我讲与神相遇时,教导人们如何专注耶稣,用你的想象力想像圣经中是如何描述他的,让你的心伸向他 ,默想耶稣。这些年青人也都与神相遇。我感到不应只带领聚会,我也要进去。

于是我开始默想耶稣,不想其它任何事情。突然我进入灵里。没有看到耶稣,圣灵向我显出了两个人。一位年青男士和一位年青女士。我很惊讶,这不是我预期的。他们同时叫我爸爸。我更吃惊了,他们说“我们有很多关于天上的事情要告诉你。”然后我意识到耶稣站在我身旁,怀里抱了个婴儿,他就是我们十二月流产失去的孙子。突然,我又看到一个小孩,叫我爷爷,我能看出他的容貌,是我们另外的孩子失去的孩子。

我的注意力集中在我的儿女身上,耶稣在我身边,他们开始和我交谈,他们说“我们要给你看一些东西。”突然,我的眼开了,我看到在很大的一片地方,到处是孩子。不同的年龄,从婴儿到小小孩,数不清的孩子。他们说“这些都是流产和堕胎的孩子,在天上他们每人都有专属的地方,天使在照看他们,他们在那里受教育,长大。

我注意到,我失去的孙子的大小正是他相应的年纪。我也留意到我失去的两个孩子也是他们相应的年龄。我看到周围流产和堕胎的孩子们,神向我显示的全部都是中国孩子,我非常震惊。

耶稣对我说,他来不是要定任何人的罪,我能感受到他的爱。他说“每个人都有他的母亲,她因为失去孩子而忧伤,我要医治她们。”他没有说他们做了什么,他只是说“我爱她们,想医治她们,因为她们忧伤。”他说“我要你开始在这方面学习和预备,准备一些DVD,在中国讲道。”我的心深深的触动了。不光是因为看到了这些孩子,而是感受到了他们母亲的忧伤。我感受到耶稣的心深深的忧伤。

最近我们到中国,有人私下找到我。我不敢相信,他们说他们曾经堕胎,需要帮助。上帝大大地服事医治他们,赐这对夫妇安慰。这以后,我们每到一个地方,总有人要求我们为他们祷告。

我想与大家分享一些经文。问题最根本的关键是,在神的眼里,每个孩子即使还在母腹中都是一个活人,有他的命定。有时人们认为,在母腹中的孩子,他不懂任何事情,他不是一个人,只是一件东西,还很不方便。

我想告诉大家,在圣经中,神的看法是怎样的。孩子在怀孕前,神就知道他们,他们的品格,他们的生命的定命,不管他在母腹中长到什么阶段,在神的眼里,他都是一个活人,有他的命定,是神认识的人。

士师记十三章2至5节说“那时有一个琐拉人,是属但族的,名叫玛挪亚。他的妻不怀孕,不生育。耶和华的使者向那妇人显现,对他说,向来你不怀孕,不生育,如今你必怀孕生一个儿子。所以你当谨慎,清酒浓酒都不可喝,一切不洁之物也不可吃。 你必怀孕生一个儿子,不可用剃头刀剃他的头,因为这孩子一出胎就归 神作拿细耳人。他必起首拯救以色列人脱离非利士人的手。”

请留意,孩子在怀孕前,神就知道他是个男孩,神的计划是这个男孩会拯救以色列人,最重要的一点就是这位母亲在怀孕时应该怎样照顾自己,换句话说,神关心对未出生的孩子的任何负面影响。所以说,怀孕前,神就知道这个孩子和他的命定。

再看列王记上十三章1至2节“那时有一个神人奉耶和华的命从犹大来到伯特利。耶罗波安正站在坛旁,要烧香。神人奉耶和华的命向坛呼叫,说,坛哪、坛哪,耶和华如此说,大卫家里必生一个儿子,名叫约西亚。他必将丘坛的祭司,就是在你上面烧香的,杀在你上面,人的骨头也必烧在你上面。”

国家败坏,到处充斥着拜偶像,神派遣先知来警告他们。他说“我要为这世界带来一个孩子,他的名字叫约西亚。他要恢复整个国家。”你知道这个预言之后多久约西亚才出生的呢?360年!即360年前,在未怀孕,未出生前,神已经为他命名,为他安排了命定。

360年后,当他的父母有了这个孩子后,根本不记得当时的预言,他们只有一个念头,“为这个孩子取名为约西亚。”他们甚至不了解他们叫他约西亚,成就了神一早的计划。神为这个孩子360年前定命时,他的父母都还没有出生。上帝看见了未来。他说“360年后,有一对夫妇,尽管父亲非常败坏,拜撒旦,但我还是要将一个孩子带到这个家庭,他会拯救整个国家。他的名字叫约西亚。所以,神为孩子命名,安排他们的命定,在他们怀孕前就认识他们了。

另外一段经文,耶利米书一章4节5节“耶利米说,耶和华的话临到我,说,我未将你造在腹中,我已晓得你,你未出母胎,我已分别你为圣。我已派你作列国的先知。”多么神奇,神说在胚胎还未成型前,我就知道这将是谁。即你是个灵,在你住的人的家还没成型,我就认识你,知道你的全部,我已经将你分别出来,为你安排了命定。甚至你的母亲还不知道你,什么胚胎都没有,我已经将我的灵放入你中,你将成为列国的先知。

你注意到还在孩子成型前,神已认识他,为他安排命定,多么神奇!以赛亚书四十九章1节中也说:以赛亚也是在母腹中形成前,神就已经认识他了。

诗篇139篇16节,大卫说“我未成形的体质,你的眼早已看见了。你所定的日子,我尚未度一日,你都写在你的册上了。 ”大卫的意思是:当我还是小小的胚胎时,我还未成型前,你就看到我了。不仅如此,在你的书上,已经写下了我的一生,我甚至还没有过一天。 他的意思是,神已视他为一个人,一个灵,一个有命定的人。在他出生前,为他安排了一切。

这些经文强调在我们怀孕前,神已经知道我们,在我们怀孕时,神的灵进入到这个孩子,即使未成型,神爱他,为他安排了命定,即使他出生在一个困难的家庭环境中。

约西亚的父亲是个拜撒旦的,但上帝仍然安排他的命定,神看这个未出生的孩子是在母腹中的人,是活生生的人,有名字,有命定,有计划的生命,真实奇妙!

圣经中有很多次,神讲到未出生的孩子,讲到撒迦利亚和伊丽莎白。伊丽莎白是不能生育的,神对撒迦利亚说“你知道你的妻子不能生育,不能有孩子吗?”他说“我知道。”神说“你将会有一个孩子。”他说“她太老了,怎么生孩子?”他与神争执,但神说“不要争论。你们会有一个孩子,他将是名先知,为主预备道路。”圣经非常清楚的写明,神在他们怀孕和出生前很久就认识他们,为他们安排好一生的计划。

马太福音一章21节“他将要生一个儿子。你要给他起名叫耶稣。因他要将自己的百姓从罪恶里救出来。”再次说明,在孩子怀孕前身就认识他,知道他的名字,为他安排了命定。

你又如何呢?以弗所书二章10节中“我们原是他的工作,在基督耶稣里造成的,为要叫我们行善,就是神所预备叫我们行的。”请留意这里告诉我们每一个人都是神的独特的创造,没有任何人与你一样,你的指纹是独有的,你的DNA是独有的,每一样东西都是独有的。在你出生前,神已为你安排好了要走的路,你有一个目的,就是为了行善,在你开始前,神为你的一生就计划好了。阿门!

另一处经文路加福音一章39至44节中,神告诉我们在我们出生前就认识我们,知道我们的名字,知道我们长什么样子。我们还在母腹中,他就关心我们,为我们的一生安排了命定。

我最近读到一本书,他们对母腹中的胎儿用超声波进行了大量的研究。100年前,人们认为人的特征形成于大脑,个性,知识,意识等。如果一个人的个性,特征和感情是在大脑形成的,就得出结论是,如果大脑未发育完成前,他就不是个真正的人,你就可以随意处理掉他。

但是圣经告诉我们的完全不同。最新的研究也显示,人的心在大脑之前发育。圣经说“你的一生由心发出。”最新的研究发现,孩子在母腹中就能了解周围发生的事情,虽然他的大脑还未形成。经过大量的研究,这本书中得出结论:未出生的母腹中的孩子,完全了解周围的事情,即使他的大脑还未发育。他就是个人了。

最后,作者得出结论,孩子有第六感官。他讲的就是灵。他们的大脑,听觉还未发育好,他的灵知道周围发生的事情,他发现孩子能够辨认出父母的声音,能够分辨出争执,了解周围发生的事情。这也是希伯来文化中的一部分,当妇女怀孕后,要躲在一个安静的地方几个月,以使母腹中的孩子能够在平安和祥和的环境中生长。这些都是现代的研究发现。

圣经路加福音一章39至41节说“那时候马利亚起身急忙往山地里去,来到犹大的一座城。进了撒迦利亚的家、问以利沙伯安。” 以利沙伯怀孕六个月,婴儿还没有完全成型,“ 以利沙伯一听马利亚问安,所怀的胎就在腹里跳动,以利沙伯且被圣灵充满。”谁说腹中的婴儿不了解周遭发生的事情?你看,以利沙伯正怀孕,马利亚来探望她,圣灵通过她预言。以利沙伯听到了,婴儿也听到了,他大力的踢动,满有喜乐。因为这是他的命定,要成为弥赛亚的先知,还在母腹中,他就有了命定。他知道了这些安排,感受到了圣灵,他跳跃,大力地踢。

这就是他们最新研究发现的。婴孩在母腹中会感受到灵的影响。而早在2000年前,圣经就写明了。还在在母腹中就了解周围的环境,了解上帝的同在,了解母亲和她的感受,了解父亲。

我花时间分享这些事情的原因,是因为我要谈到堕胎的影响。圣经讲明,魔鬼对孩子非常有敌意。从创世纪三章15节开始,魔鬼对儿女就充满敌意。因为神的应许是:从妇女生出的孩子中,有一位将摧毁撒旦,成为世界的拯救。

当我们查考圣经历史,就会发现邪灵攻击孩子的例子。不管是在母腹,还是刚出生。出埃及记中,在上帝拯救之前,所有两岁以下的男婴被杀。大卫王之后,亚她利雅杀死了所有的王室小孩,只留下一个。耶稣时期,谋杀的灵临到希律王,又杀掉了所有不到两岁的孩子。

魔鬼常常攻击孩子,母腹是冲突之地。当流产发生时,神美好的计划突然终止了。堕胎发生时,孩子的生命被夺走了,不好的事情发生了,有巨大的影响。当我们为人祷告时,留意到很多人非常痛苦,但却不明白为什么。

圣经中讲述了流产发生的几个来由。 重点是,神的计划不是流产,而是生养众多。我们查考经文,分现流产的发生是因为拜偶像,有时咒诅临到家中,发生流产。有时是因为家中有乱伦的事发生,有时是因为人们交鬼产生的。

我不详细讲解所有经文,但圣经中非常清楚的告诉我们,上帝的心意是要我们生养众多,所以流产发生时,有属灵的原因,也有自然身体上的情况。我们对家里上次的流产求问神时,我的一个女儿从神那里得到话语,“是因为大脑没有正常发育成型”,我女儿和她丈夫经历了多年的忧伤。忧伤也会有生理上的原因。我们生活在一个堕落的世界。有时是属灵的问题。有时因为母亲做了内在誓言,不要生孩子。

不管原因如何,结果总是忧伤的,当母亲怀胎又失去了孩子,就会产生强烈的忧伤。男人不容易了解。女人的生命以孩子为中心,孩子是从她的生命中得着生命,当失去了一个孩子,就会有巨大的忧伤。

我想强调堕胎 的影响,有时当我们辅导人时,如果没有挖到问题的根源,问题就永远不会解决。当我研究这个领域时,发现不管在任何地方,人们得出同样的结论。当女人堕胎时,她必须让自己相信这不是真实的人。可能是医生告诉她,这没什么,只是一次医疗手术;也可能是因为害怕,或者身体条件不好,她就是不肯承认发生的事情。

最重要的一点就是否认他是个人。母亲否认他是个人,不过只是一次身体上的手术,就像拔一颗牙一样。但是,这不是真相。

堕胎的人有很多常见的问题。现在最普遍认同的症状是堕胎后创伤症。我在这里列出来这些问题,然后再探讨如何释放人们。

• 羞愧。他们会感到羞愧和隐秘,没有自信。

• 罪咎。不能脱离的罪咎感。

• 忧郁。时常忧郁,悲伤和痛哭,却没有明显的原因。请记住,如果你以谎言遮盖真相,拒绝接受一个生命被夺走,你不会明白为何会悲伤,如果他不是什么东西,我有什么好悲伤的呢?

• 自杀倾向。

• 自恨。

• 睡眠失调

• 各样回想的画面。女人会突然记起过去痛苦的经历,又回到震惊和悲伤中去。

• 强烈渴望拥有一个替代的孩子。下意识中希望有一个孩子可以弥补失去的孩子。这个被称为“周年现象”,在堕胎日或孩子的出生日,母亲时常开始忧伤哭泣,却不明白为什么。

• 宠爱,溺爱另一个孩子。

• 酒精和毒品的问题。

• 自我惩罚的行为。我应该被惩罚,可能自我伤害如割伤自己,虐待的关系,混乱的关系。

• 可能有身体的疾病。经常流血,或习惯性流产。

• 常常有很深的罪恶感。我活下来了,可孩子付上了代价。很可怕的感觉。

最近一位女士请我为她祷告。我问她“你的问题是什么?”她说“我时常流血,有十二年之久了。我们非常想要一个孩子却没有。”我问,“你有堕胎吗?”她说“有过四次。”我带着爱对这位女士说“你的家庭有四个孩子,但他们都在天上。这是因为你的行为造成的。当别人告诉你这只是一个简单的手术时,他们在撒谎,这就是你问题的根源,你和你的丈夫现在没有一个孩子,原来你们可以拥有的孩子却失去了。”

她开始不停地哭泣,我们与她分享上帝爱她,饶恕她。于是她在神里面得恢复,她的心得医治。我祷告下次再见到她时,她会有一个孩子。今年我到城市丰收教会,一位女士和她的丈夫抱着一个婴儿来到,她说“你要看看我们的宝宝,神迹的宝宝。你走后12个月,我们有了第一个孩子。怀孕非常困难。我自己以前内在誓言说再也不要生孩子了。每次怀孕都会流产。我听了你的教导,才知道自己做了内在誓言。我弃绝这样的誓言,请求上帝祝福我的肚腹,三个月后,我就怀孕了,就是这个宝宝。”实际上不到三个月,大约是一个月。

你可以看到,生命中有属灵的关联。女性经历的很多问题,她们不追溯到堕胎,她们假装这不是什么严重的问题。

耶利米书31章15节说“耶和华如此说,在拉玛听见号咷痛哭的声音,是拉结哭他儿女不肯受安慰,因为他们都不在了。”所以,我们如何得自由?处于这种情况的人,第一步就是转向耶稣基督。约翰福音三章16节说“神爱世人,甚至将他的独生子赐给他们,叫一切信他的,不至灭亡,反得永生。”神不是来定人的罪,而要世人因他得救。你的任何痛苦,耶稣都能够拯救医治。

可以看出,堕胎的后果远比我们认识到的严重。它影响到母亲,肚腹中灵里的部分,影响到下一个出生的孩子,影响到家庭,原本可以做父亲的男人失去了孩子,祖父母失去了孙子,以后出生的兄弟姊妹也受到创伤的影响。

我记得一位妇女带着孩子来,我问“什么问题?”她说“我的孩子不肯让我喂他母奶,我每次抱他到怀里要喂他,他就开始尖叫,我们该怎么办?”我说“你有没有试图想过要打掉这个孩子?”她说“有。”我说“是不是孩子怕你,他感受到了谋杀的灵,他不敢亲近曾想害他的人。”她非常震惊,请求耶稣饶恕她,我为母亲和孩子祷告,孩子就开始亲近她了。当孩子得释放,离开恐惧和谋杀的灵,立刻他们就可以亲近了,非常明显。

怎样得自由呢?有三个方面:属灵的问题,情绪的问题,关系的问题。离开死亡进入生命,答案非常简单:

1. 我们需要面对属灵的问题。要面对真相,是我夺走了孩子的生命。大部分的母亲这样做是因为感到极大的压力。来自男朋友或丈夫的压力,家庭的压力,环境的压力,不管怎样,他们必须负责任。得释放的关键就是打破谎言。以赛亚书二十八章告诉我们,当我们以谎言遮盖自己,我们就与死亡和地狱立约。

2. 在神面前悔改,认罪。真实的来到神的话语前。约翰一书一章9节“我们若认自己的罪,神是信实的,是公义的,必要赦免我们的罪,洗净我们一切的不义。”神已经饶恕赦免了我们,我们要做的,就是领受他,

3. 饶恕。首先人们必须接受饶恕,接受神饶恕了我们。其次,饶恕自己。最后,饶恕别人。经常,女人会对孩子的父亲生气,对自己的父母生气,或对帮她做手术的人生气,对鼓励她这么做的朋友生气。有各样的怨恨和悲伤需要面对。放开饶恕他们是解决这一问题的方法。释放他离开邪灵。

认罪,饶恕,从邪灵里得释放,我们等一下会为人们释放祷告。另一方面,对人们非常有帮助的是,求问神,这是怎样的孩子?耶稣知道,上帝认识你的孩子,男孩还是女孩?聆听你的心,神会告诉你。我看到人们在进行这一步时,总是痛哭。

接下来就是给他们取名字。给他一个身份,打破谎言。你知道给孩子起名多么困难,我们花几天的时间想好一个名字。但我在整个过程中发现,上帝已经为他们命名了,我们只需要聆听。求问神,我失去的孩子的名字是什么?或是自己给孩子一个名字。

我对那位经历过四次堕胎的女士说“求神告诉你孩子是怎样的。”她很快的回答说“女孩,男孩,男孩,女孩。”我说“给他们取个名字吧。”几分钟就起好了。接下来她就开始悲伤了,意识到了她的孩子们。我说“下一步就是释放你的孩子们在神的手中。耶稣站在这里,把你的孩子交给他。你要知道,有一天,你会再见到他们。”有时,我们简短的祷告“耶稣,我将我的孩子交托给你,把他交托在你的怀中,请告诉他我对我所做的非常抱歉,我盼望再见到他。”

请留意,这一切都是打破谎言,回归真相。经常会有很多悲伤,痛苦和伤感。有时,还有破碎的关系需要修复,通往自由的路是简单的。

当然,除非是有历代遗传的因素,流产的人不用认罪,忏悔。通常我发现这样做非常有帮助。就是每次闭上眼睛,心向神敞开,求他向你显示孩子是怎样的,告诉你他的名字。现在,他不再是一个东西了,他是一个人。你会再见到你的孩子。这就是福音的盼望,孩子在天上。

当你与耶稣交通时,他就会告诉你的孩子。把你的孩子交托在耶稣手中,有一天你会再见到他们。我看到很多人得自由释放,破碎的心得医治。凭着对耶稣基督的信心,把所有的秘密,羞辱,谎言都打破,破碎心得医治。

我相信上帝会触摸很多人。让我们闭上眼晴,你要明白神爱你,耶稣来到世上,道成肉身,让我们看见天堂如何,邀请我们与他连结。我们都活在罪中,与神隔绝,我们找不到神的路。但耶稣为我们的罪死在十字架上,他从死里复活,打破了罪的权势。耶稣说,凡接待他的人,欢迎他的,相信他的,他就赐他们权柄做神的儿女。



由占卜的靈中得自由  

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由占卜的靈中得自由

請大家翻開聖經使徒行傳第十六章16至18節,“后來,我們往那禱告的地方去。有一個使女迎著面來,她被巫鬼所附,用法術,叫她主人們大得財利。她跟隨保羅和我們,喊著說,這些人是至高神的仆人,對你們傳說救人的道。她一連多日這樣喊叫,保羅就心中厭煩,轉身對那鬼說,我奉耶穌基督的名,吩咐你從她身上出來。那鬼當時就出來了。”

聖經講的很清楚,耶穌來是要釋放人得自由﹔這個故事發生在希臘的一個地方,這個女子被邪靈折磨。他們那裡拜的是叫阿波羅的神,當時那個地方是整個創意藝術的中心,那裡的人喜歡佔卜,算命,就是在靈裡面跟邪靈打交道以找到自己的未來。那裡有一個特別的廟,稱為Delfai的神域。

這個女子就是依靠邪靈的力量來說預言﹔人們來找她,付錢給她,讓她告訴他們將來的命運如何。這是一個著名的城,各地的人都涌來想知道他們的未來。當他們碰到生意上或者藝術娛樂上的要作出重大決定的時候,都來找她。付錢想知道他們的未來。

今天這也很常見,我們都想知道未來會怎樣,想知道生命是否蒙福,想知道明天怎樣,想知道未來的事物。對未來的渴望,想知道未來會發生什麼,在各個文化中都有。

聖經告訴我們,我們的生命在上帝的手中,以弗所書第二章10節告訴我們,神在我們生命中有一個計劃要我們去成就。你不是一個意外,你生在這世上是上帝特別設計的。你的家庭可能有各樣的困難,可能沒有計劃生你,可能父母沒有想到會有你。可是聖經告訴我們,上帝為你安排了計劃和命定,要你去成就,可能你自己都沒有想過,上帝一早就想著你了。

聖經中有很多例子,顯明上帝認識這些人早在他們認識主之前。舉例來說,耶利米書第一章5節,上帝對耶利米講,“我未將你造在腹中,我已曉得你。你未出母胎,我已分別你為聖。我已派你作列國的先知。”當他還在母腹當中,根本還剛成型,上帝就看見先知了,上帝已經為他命定了,並召他進入這命定。

舊約中有一位王名叫約西亞,在他出生約六百多年前,就有先知預言說將來有一位王叫約西亞,他要勝過所有邪靈,恢復我們在神面前屬靈的信結。在他出生六百多年前,上帝就知道他什麼時候要來,叫什麼名字,在什麼地方出生。

再看創世紀中,上帝對亞當和夏娃發預言說,將來有一位救主,他的名字叫耶穌基督。這是耶穌之前四千年的事﹔聖經中,有很多很多的預言都在耶穌基督身上應驗了。換句話說,上帝早就看見你的生命了,他在你的生命中有計劃﹔不管你生命中發生了什麼,隻要你對上帝有信心,他甚至能將你生命中負面的東西變成你的益處。

如果我們跟上帝之間沒有關系,對未來就沒有這個確據,就會轉向佔卜。上帝恨惡佔卜的事,他說這是屬靈的召妓。我們受造不是要跟邪靈接觸,我們受造是要跟上帝建立關系。當你參與佔卜時,不是在跟上帝接觸,而是在跟邪靈接觸。

這個女孩身上就是這樣,她有佔卜的靈在身上,今天我們稱她是靈媒。你可能付錢讓她幫你算命,她力量的源頭是邪靈,她身上的靈就像蟒蛇一樣纏繞著她。很有意思,使用她發預言的那個女神的名字叫做Hasia, 跟蟒蛇是同樣的字根。很多人是在這個靈底下運行的。他們付錢給這個女孩,她的身上有這個邪靈纏著她。邪靈不了解你的未來,魔鬼預見不了未來,隻有上帝能看見。

信靠神,與神同行更好,而不要去找那些邪靈。在娛樂界,商業界,金融界,政府界的人們,在做重大決定的時候先過去找靈媒,付錢給他們,就是跟邪靈做交易,打開生命,讓他的生命由邪靈來操縱。魔鬼知道他們的未來嗎?完全不知道。可是這就像邪靈的網絡一樣,邪靈觀察這些人,邪靈可以講出他們在你生命中觀察到的東西,他們一直在觀察人。

如果你去找算命的,去找靈媒。你接觸的不是眼前的這個人,而是他后面的靈。他講到的一些你生命中的東西可能是真的,因為他們一直在觀察你。可是一旦你相信他們跟你講的話,你就把生命的權利交給他了。

這個女人看見保羅,就跟著保羅,大喊“這是至高神的仆人”,“讓你看見救人的道”。她講的是真話,她講的是真相,因為邪靈看得見。可是她在那裡,她身上的靈就讓人非常厭煩。蟒蛇就是纏繞著將人擠碎,它慢慢的纏著人,不斷的將他們的生命擠壓出來。

當人參與在佔卜當中,他們就上癮了,什麼事情都要問過之后才做決定,慢慢的就把生命的權利交給了邪靈。慢慢的邪靈也就纏繞著這個人,擠碎他的生命,摧毀他的盼望。這個女孩就有這個靈,有一天保羅轉過身,聖經說,他直接面對這個邪靈,直接跟邪靈對峙,奉耶穌基督的名,吩咐他出來。邪靈馬上放開這女人,立刻離開,使女就自由了。你注意她的生命改變了,已經沒有邪靈纏繞她,擠壓她了。也沒有聲音在她耳邊講話了,她也沒有能力知道人的生命將會如何了。當邪靈離開她,幫人算命的能力也一起走了。

邪靈不了解你的未來,但如果你找他們,聽他們的,你就打開你的生命,他們就會影響你的未來。神召我們是要我們跟上帝建立關系,召我們與其建立信任的關系,在生命中與上帝同行,信靠他,相信他是慈愛的上帝,他深深的愛我們,為我們安排了最美的計劃。上帝不把所有的計劃都告訴你,可是他將渴望和夢想放在你心中,他跟你說話肯定印証他要的事。當你選擇憑信心而行,他就一步步為你展開生命的計劃。

一定從第一步開始,就是接受耶穌基督。要遠離罪,這第一步是離開沒有上帝的生活,他是走向永生的真神。今晚就希望有人走出這一步,來回應上帝恩慈的一步,來接受上帝慈愛的一步。

這個使女一開始是怎麼得到這個靈的,這邪靈是怎麼進到她生命的?很可能是從她的家裡,可能她的家是拜偶像的,也可能他們家參與佔卜,邪靈就從家族下來,可能她很小的時候就聽到這些聲音,做很攪擾人的夢,晚上看到一些邪靈。

有一次我去到斐濟,在路上開車,看到公園裡面有一群人。很有意思的是,我覺得我好像看到一群蛇一樣,我停下車走過去仔細看,發現有一些圍籬,一群人坐在墊子上,中間有些蛇,他們就在那裡玩蛇。在紐西蘭沒有蛇,所以這些對我來講很新鮮,我很感興趣。其中有一個人就來找我說,不要為我們禱告,我們是從珀流來的,隻想賺點錢,我們沒有傷害誰。

我發現他們不單隻玩弄蛇,他們其實是一群巫師,他們使用這些蛇,這些蛇在他們生命中就有勢力了。他們在邪靈底下運作,他們拿一些水,有三個自願的人,把水洒在這些人身上,他們就倒在地上了。之后就將一個罩子放在他們頭上,然后就做一些巫術的事情﹔當他們把臉上的面罩拿開后,那人像是受到很大驚嚇﹔他看見那個巫師的頭是一條蛇,他嚇壞了。他們對他下了咒,就在邪靈底下影響這個人。

這些能力是非常真實的,聖經說,當我們參與在這樣事上,上帝的心就會憂傷。有些人家中可能有參與邪靈,可能有做過佔卜算命的事情,就打開了門讓邪靈進來折磨你的生命。有些人自己也參與在佔卜當中,可能有什麼巫術碗或者碟仙等等﹔你已經參與邪靈了,上帝要釋放你得自由。你可能有去找過靈媒,觀鬼的,這些所謂的靈媒都是跟邪靈接觸,邪靈借他們來說話。

可能在你生命中有去找過那些算命的,這讓上帝難過,上帝愛你,計劃好了你的生命。當我們去找邪靈跟他們糾纏在一起,就讓上帝非常憂傷難過。邪靈可能是由家中傳下來的﹔也可能你小時候獻過給偶像﹔或者你向邪靈敞開你的生命,邀請他進來﹔可能你自己有過交鬼﹔不管是什麼,這個使女把生命向邪靈敞開,而耶穌釋放她得自由。



由蛇咬中得自由  

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由蛇咬中得自由

請翻開約翰福音,聖經向我們顯明,上帝的計劃就是要幫助人﹔聖經由兩部分組成,一部是舊約,一部是新約。舊約所針對的國家就是以色列,上帝向以色列人應許說有一天救主會來,而且會釋放所有人得自由。

約翰福音第三章14節,這是非常奇妙的經節,它是從一個圖畫開始的,我們等一下會帶大家看一下這個圖畫。“摩西在曠野怎樣舉蛇,人子也必照樣被舉起來。”耶穌講到在幾百年前他們的祖先摩西在曠野的行為,就像預言他將來在十字架上的受死。15至17節,“叫一切信他的都得永生。神愛世人,甚至將他的獨生子賜給他們,叫一切信他的,不至滅亡,反得永生。因為神差他的兒子降世,不是要定世人的罪,乃是要叫世人因他得救。”

所以你要認識耶穌的心,上帝不要你滅亡,他是要你得救。聖經非常清楚的告訴我們,神的屬性就是愛。許多人對上帝有不同的想象﹔你對他的想象,或者你相信他是哪一位,會影響你跟他的連結。所以如果你對神的想象有扭曲,有錯誤的話,你就無法跟他正確的連結。

聖經告訴我們神愛世人,而且是如此的愛世人,他從天上降下來,來到這個世界,他向我們顯現天上的國度是如何的,邀請我們成為這個國度的一部分。邀請我們跟天父建立美好的關系。耶穌是怎樣示范神對我們的愛呢?

1)通過他的教導。

2)在如何跟人接觸方面。

3)通過行神跡,幫助人得釋放。

4)最重要的一點,就是透過他死在十字架上,並從死裡復活。

但是人最根本的問題是,我們的心是跟神隔絕的。聖經告訴我們,這個隔絕就是死亡。所以耶穌來到世上,打破罪的權勢,並把他的靈,他的生命再次放在我們的心裡,好讓我們能夠活出當初被造的樣式,就是跟神有美好的關系,而不是跟神隔絕。

在我們信主之前,我們靠著我們自然人的樣式過活,但是上帝要改變你的生命,改變你的心,把他的靈放在你裡面,好讓你活出與以前不一樣的生命。上帝沒有要定你的罪,他乃是要釋放你得自由,因此不管你生命中有任何問題,不管你生命中有多少捆綁,上帝沒有怪你,沒有定你罪,他的願望就是要幫助你。

耶穌告訴我們他來不是要定世人的罪,他是要指出什麼是錯誤的,他來就是要拯救人。我要跟大家分享一個舊約中的故事。舊約中有很多人遇見上帝的故事,很多時候我們不了解一件事的屬靈意義,所以上帝用很多例子告訴我們。舊約中有很多的圖畫,讓我們能夠了解屬靈的含義。

我們來看一個真實發生的故事,透過這件事顯示上帝何等的愛世人。上帝做了什麼幫助人,人需要什麼條件才能得到這樣的愛。請翻開民數記第二十一章4至9節,“他們從何珥山起行,往紅海那條路走,要繞過以東地。百姓因這路難行,心中甚是煩躁,就怨讟神和摩西說,你們為什麼把我們從埃及領出來,使我們死在曠野呢,這裡沒有糧,沒有水,我們的心厭惡這淡薄的食物。於是耶和華使火蛇進入百姓中間,蛇就咬他們。以色列人中死了許多。百姓到摩西那裡,說,我們怨讟耶和華和你,有罪了。求你禱告耶和華,叫這些蛇離開我們。於是摩西為百姓禱告。耶和華對摩西說,你制造一條火蛇,挂在杆子上。凡被咬的,一望這蛇,就必得活。摩西便制造一條銅蛇,挂在杆子上。凡被蛇咬的,一望這銅蛇就活了。”

上帝的意願總是要賜福我們﹔這裡的百姓已經被捆綁為奴四百年了,管理他們的監工非常的嚴厲,他們非常艱苦的生活,使得他們變的非常的苦毒,非常的衰弱。上帝差遣摩西去釋放以色列的百姓,因為他聽見他們哭求的聲音,上帝透過摩西彰顯了許多的神跡奇事,人們離開了埃及,開始了前往他們的應許之地迦南的旅程。

以色列人在曠野經歷了許多的挑戰,這很像我們。在我們認識主之前,我們被罪所捆綁,我們是罪的奴隸,沒有辦法不犯罪﹔我們也活在邪靈的影響下,他們用恐懼,挫折來傷害我們﹔他們讓人上癮,他們傷人的心,他們產生了許多的問題。但是當我們接受了耶穌基督之后,上帝把他的靈放在我們裡面,摧毀了邪靈的能力,除去了這一切捆綁的權勢。

我們必須要選擇如何過我們的生活﹔我們剛剛看到的這個故事,當時以色列的百姓取得了極大的勝利,上帝幫助他們打敗敵人,每天供應他們,保護他們,他們每一天都活在上帝的祝福之中,但是人們還是抱怨。他們為什麼會抱怨呢?因為他們有苦毒。凡是在我們心裡的,總是會顯現出來的。當人們受壓時,就會發出苦毒的埋怨。當苦毒進入到我們心裡,一有壓力就會流露出來,抱怨,批評,說消極的話。

當時他們就埋怨摩西,摩西隻是想要幫助他們。他們也埋怨上帝,人們 說還不如回到埃及那個被捆綁的地方更好,他們完全忘記了上帝所供應他們的。所以人們的心腐敗了,他們看不見上帝是何等的愛他們,他們看不見上帝與他們同在,他們的眼睛看不見上帝的美好,在他們裡面就有苦毒,埋怨,不願意原諒。

他們在埃及曾被大大的傷害過,上帝也曾指示他們如何依靠神。上帝的意願是拯救以色列的百姓,由奴隸成為神的兒子,從受害者的身份變成得勝者的身份。當人們苦毒抱怨的時候,就會釋放仇敵的權勢在身上。他們埋怨的時候,蛇就進來咬他們﹔要知道,蛇總是在曠野裡,以色列的百姓是被上帝保護的,蛇是不能傷他們的。

聖經告訴我們,蛇就是邪靈的寫照﹔耶穌說賜給我們權柄勝過一切的蛇蠍毒虫,因此耶穌要我們勝過一切邪靈的權勢。當人們埋怨,悖逆,當他們的心轉離神的時候,他們就開始做錯事,蛇就不再被限制,蛇就進入營地中,開始咬人,開始咬的人躺下來,立刻感到被蛇咬的疼痛,他們用仗擊蛇,但是沒有用,還是有很多人被咬后死亡。

當他們被蛇咬的時候,會有兩種元素注進身體裡,通過兩種不同的方式發生作用。第一種是,癱瘓你的系統,所有的神經系統全部癱瘓,人們因此死亡,這是非常痛苦的死亡方式。第二種是,蛇吃你的肉,你的身體會被感染中毒,然后死亡。所以被蛇咬總是非常致命的。

新約中耶穌遇見許多人,他們的生命被邪靈控制﹔因為他們違反了上帝的律法,他們可能有拜偶像,交鬼,性犯罪,酗酒,上癮的問題等等,這些問題讓邪靈有空間進入他們的生命攻擊他們。但是耶穌來是釋放人得自由。所以當人們被蛇咬,他們就想原來都沒有蛇,但是當我們埋怨神,埋怨摩西的時候,蛇就來咬我們了。非常明顯就是罪的問題。

所以在這個故事的圖畫裡,可以看見三件事情的連結關系,就是蛇,罪,死亡。我們犯罪了,就給撒旦空間進入到生命中,而且罪的后果就是死亡。長期來講是身體的死亡,短期則是與神隔絕。當人們憤怒的時候,就像心中的毒藥,當有人陷在情欲裡面時,就像心裡有毒藥。當人們被仇恨抓住,也是心裡的毒藥。而且沒有任何的解救之道。

可以想象當時蛇可以隨時進來咬人,這是非常恐懼的,而且沒有解藥。聖經非常明確,對罪的解救隻有一個方法,對付邪靈隻有一個方法,但大部分人都不知道是什麼。當人們跟罪有關的時候,問題就出來了,他們就開始呼求神,呼求摩西幫助他們。求摩西禱告將蛇挪走。上帝聽到摩西的禱告,摩西太有恩典了,他們每一天都不斷的批評摩西,可是蛇咬了他們之后,他們又對摩西說抱歉。摩西大可以說“這是你們應得的。”但是他沒有,他為人禱告,他對人有神的心。

上帝給摩西一個很有趣的指示,他說制一個銅蛇,而且高高挂在一個杆子上面,每次有人被蛇咬,不管在哪裡,你要知道你必須要做一件事,否則你一定死,因為毒素已經開始起作用。這個唯一的解救之道就是找到銅蛇。

你可以想象有人被蛇咬后一定很驚慌,無法走動,隻有一件事能救他們,就是尋找銅蛇,而且要看著它。當人被咬后,隻有很短的時間,他們會非常努力的尋找銅蛇,聖經說你要仰望銅蛇,眼睛要注視著它,心也要跟著它,銅蛇的權能就會臨到你身上,上帝的權能就釋放你。

我們的確需要花一點時間定睛注視著銅蛇,但是上帝的大能就會臨到你。可以想象如果你被蛇咬,感到痛,你會做什麼?你會尋找那個銅蛇,定睛在銅蛇上,不讓人擋住你的視線。然后所有毒素都走了,疼痛也消失了。感謝神,你的權勢釋放了。

你要知道,銅蛇本身是沒有權能的,它是你信心的焦點所在,這是上帝要他們了解的。罪進入世界因為這個蛇,有一天耶穌會來,而且他會被挂在十字架上。民數記裡記載的是要在幾百年后在耶穌身上應驗的預言。上帝早就預知會發生的事情,因此主耶穌來到世上,並為我們死在十字架上的時候,這是沒有發生過的事情。

當他死在十字架上,罪的權勢就被打破了,蛇的權勢被打破了,死亡的權勢也被打破了。歌羅西書第二章14,15節,當耶穌死在十字架上,他取消了我們一切的罪狀,解除了仇敵魔鬼的武裝。上帝讓他們知道,就像摩西舉起銅蛇一樣,有一天耶穌會在十字架上,每一個明白罪會導致死亡的人,當你注視耶穌的時候,心中對他有信心,你的罪就會被赦免,你就會得救。

神如此愛世人,他將他的獨生子賜給人,為我們死在十字架上,隻要相信他是為我的罪而死的,而且他三天后復活,勝過了罪的權勢,死亡的權勢,我們因此得釋放。哈利路亞!



由苦毒中得自由  

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由苦毒中得自由

我們看出埃及記第十五章,上一堂我們也講的是這一部書,不同的故事講的都是同一位主角,就是耶穌基督。我們看出埃及記第十五章22至26節,“摩西領以色列人從紅海往前行,到了書珥的曠野,在曠野走了三天,找不著水。到了瑪拉,不能喝那裡的水,因為水苦,所以那地名叫瑪拉。百姓就向摩西發怨言,說,我們喝什麼呢?摩西呼求耶和華,耶和華指示他一棵樹。他把樹丟在水裡,水就變甜了。耶和華在那裡為他們定了律例,典章,在那裡試驗他們﹔又說,你若留意聽耶和華你神的話,又行我眼中看為正的事,留心聽我的誡命,守我一切的律例,我就不將所加於埃及人的疾病加在你身上,因為我耶和華是醫治你的。”

這個故事講到苦水變甜,我要講到苦的根源。有一次我在新加坡,有一個青年呼召的時候出來﹔他有一個肩膀非常的疼痛,因為有知識的言語,上帝讓我看到他的疼痛,他就出來了。可是我感覺到他心中對他父親有苦毒,他真正的問題不是身體的疼痛,而是心裡有這個疼痛的靈。我就問他,“你跟你爸爸相處的如何?”他回答說,“我愛我的爸爸。”我再次聽主的聲音,就再問他,“你爸爸是不是常常不在家?你生命中重要的日子他都不在。你后來就開始對他生氣苦毒了。”他低下頭說,“真的是這樣。”

你的苦毒在你生命中打開門,讓疾病的靈可以進來。你身體生病是因為你心裡先病了,而你是有能力決定不讓心裡生病的。你可以選擇饒恕,可以讓環境帶下來的是恩典而不是論斷。他做了很簡單的禱告,饒恕他的父親,命令那個軟弱疾病的靈出去,他立刻得釋放。之后他跟我講,其實不光是肩膀疼,全身都在疼,現在所有的疼痛都不見了。前一個星期醫生還跟他講脊椎很僵直,他才四十歲就不能彎腰了。現在他自由了。

這個年輕人有威脅到他生命的疾病,可是源頭是這個疾病的靈,真正的根源是他心中帶著的苦毒。當他處理了苦毒,來到耶穌基督十架前饒恕,他自己就得到釋放和自由。

我們再看出埃及記第十五章的故事,這是舊約的故事,這裡的話讓我們看到屬靈的真理。有時屬靈的真理不是那麼容易看懂的,你很難用話去表述。在整個舊約中,就有上帝介入人事物當中的故事,上帝跟人互動,通過這些互動我們就學到一些東西。

這個故事講到以色列的百姓在埃及做奴隸四百年,他們的生活很艱苦,被人虐待,被人鞭打,曾經有一段時間剛出生的小男孩都被殺死,被逼做奴役,活在非常艱難困苦的生活裡。這樣為奴四百年,每一個人的記憶所及,都是在捆綁底下服侍埃及人。埃及有非常嚴厲的監工,常常鞭打虐待他們,他們的生活非常艱苦,直到上帝拯救他們。

上帝應許他們,他會拯救他們脫離埃及。他用極大的能力拯救他們,拯救他們脫離埃及的捆綁,帶他們進入上帝的應許裡。帶他們離開埃及奴役之地,帶他們進入產業應許之地,那裡有很大的祝福和供應。其實曠野的這段路程很短,上帝的百姓出埃及的這一段故事,也是我們的故事,也是我們的生命。

我們認識上帝之前,我們身在這個世界都做罪的奴隸,不能擺脫罪,沒有能力攔阻它。就像疾病在我們身上一樣,埋怨,苦毒,憤怒,有情欲,有渴望,不斷想傷害我們。每一個生在這世界的人,都是跟上帝隔絕的,成為罪的奴隸。

聖經說埃及人就像在邪靈底下,每一次犯罪都有邪靈的作用。今天很多在座的人,你的生命一直在罪的捆綁底下被邪靈折磨,這邪靈折磨你的思想,情緒,身體,這就是我們接受基督之前的生命。如果你仍在這樣的境況裡,上帝要釋放你得自由。他要赦免你的罪,打破邪靈的權勢,釋放你離開邪靈。你隻要做簡單的決定,就是相信。

我請大家仔細看這個故事,問題在哪裡。那些在奴役當中活了這麼久的人,他們的思想跟奴隸一樣﹔他們離開了埃及,上帝想要他們知道你們現在的身份是兒子了,不再是奴隸了,有慈愛的父,這是供應他們的父。當他們在埃及時,他們過的像奴隸,想的也像奴隸,現在得自由了,是自由人了,可是他們需要選擇像自由人一樣想,他們需要選擇相信自由到底是誰。他們這麼多年在奴役當中,雖然自由了,但覺得自己還是奴役,他們思想像奴役,反應像奴役。

任何基督徒都是這樣,我們活在罪的奴役當中,耶穌來釋放我們得自由﹔所以生命的靈進到我們的生命,我們成為上帝的兒女。可是我們的思想生活還像奴隸一樣,這全在乎你心中是如何想的。問題就在這裡,這些人的心中是苦毒的,上帝要向他們顯明自己他不單是拯救的主,也是要醫治他們的主。

如果你觀察人時間夠久的話,他們會顯明他們的想法。我們來看這些人,他們是怎麼做的。他們在曠野走了三天,找不到水。沒有水,渴了,就想哪裡有下一個供應站呢?我們看27節這裡,當這一切結束后,“他們到了以琳,在那裡有十二股水泉,七十棵棕樹,他們就在那裡的水邊安營。”

我們先看整個的情況后,再看苦毒。上帝拯救他們脫離了埃及,他供應他們,這裡有泉源,有棕樹,從上帝來看,他是慈愛的父。可是從以色列的百姓來看,他們看不見供應,看不見上帝對他們的應許,看不見那裡有水,有休息的地方,他們隻看到現在的環境。與上帝同行的路,就是信心的路,這條路相信上帝是美善的,上帝一直是美好的﹔可能會有不好的經歷,但上帝是美好的。他愛我,他供應我。

當他們在走的時候,沒有水,他們是怎麼想的?“我們還是奴隸,我們還在受苦,上帝不關心我們。”然后找到水的時候,喝了一口,苦的,他們很失望。他們不了解上帝的供應就在前面,很快就要到了。可是在到達之前,這裡看起來很苦。光看環境,好像上帝遺忘他們了,好像還在埃及受苦,要死了。

他們心裡的苦毒出來了,不要從眼睛看生命,而要從心裡來看生命。心裡的東西,會影響你看世界的眼光。他們經歷四百年的奴役,心中仍對這樣的奴役帶著苦毒。當他們活在奴役中的時候,他們活在缺乏裡,活在受苦裡,活在折磨中,活在沒有盼望裡。現在得釋放了,有慈愛的父滿足他們一切的需要。但他也有計劃,不單隻滿足他們的需要,也要醫治他們。如果要得地為業,你需要改變想法,不可以再像奴隸的想法了。

奴隸是無能為力的﹔當人經歷困難,覺得無能為力的時候,他們開始憤怒,開始懷怨,開始苦毒,因為他們做了論斷,覺得自己沒有用,沒有能力。當一個人覺得自己無能為力時,就會變得苦毒,對一切發生的事開始憤怒苦毒。當我們得釋放跟隨耶穌,我們有選擇的權利,我們可以選擇如何回應生命。你在困難時怎麼回應就顯明你心裡的境況。你口中說出的話就顯明你心裡的境況。

我們看以色列人如何做,他們向摩西發怨言。他們生氣,埋怨,苦毒,就開始發怨言了。當人心中有苦毒的時候,之所以苦毒是因為覺得無力﹔壞事發生,傷害,憤怒,埋怨,苦毒,心中酸澀,感覺無力。他們在埃及的時候是做奴隸的,現在跟隨主,他們能夠選擇,選擇相信上帝的美善和供應的能力,或者選擇相信自己無力,上帝是敵對他們的。

他們選擇相信上帝是好的,慷慨的,還是選擇相信上帝是邪惡,讓他們受苦的。當我們面對困難的時候,就把你心中所想的帶出來了。苦毒會是怎樣的?我讓大家看一些苦毒的征兆,每一棵樹都會結果子,苦毒是在心中的根,都是用憤怒,懷恨,論斷來喂養的,都是用不信來喂養的。有些記號是這樣的:

1)抱怨。當一個人在抱怨的時候,他們就是缺乏的,不相信上帝是偉大的,會供應他的。他們抱怨是因為有些東西得不到。

2)怪罪別人。苦毒會從臉上看出來的,特別越老的人越容易顯出來。心中喜樂的,臉上都喜樂。心中苦毒的,臉上就很酸苦,整個人會縮起來。上帝沒有造我們苦毒,苦毒會在生命中顯出來。借著我們的面容,我們說出的話顯出來。

3)不會感恩。不是說,“感謝上帝供應我們,我們脫離那裡了。”而是說,“為什麼會發生這個。”隻要是苦毒的人就不會感謝,他們想要更多,越來越多。

4)不能慶祝別人的成功。別人可能高興的說,“我剛剛升職了,加薪了。”如果心是自由的人會說,“太棒了,恭喜你。”如果心裡有苦毒的人會說,“為什麼是他,我不喜歡這個人。為什麼不是我。”注意在浪子的故事裡,哥哥不肯進來跟他們一起慶祝,因為他苦毒,對自己所有的不會感恩,不能慶祝他失去的弟弟回來了。苦毒在他臉上表示出來,他憤怒。苦毒的人是很容易生氣的。

我曾經跟一個人談話,我說你呼召的時候出來,他說“我生氣。”我說“你對誰生氣?”“每一個人。”我記得聖經上講,別跟生氣的人在一起,不然你也會生氣。因為憤怒的人開始要求別人。你開頭對誰生氣,你從一個人開始生氣,就一直生氣下去。因為第一個生氣沒有處理,它就成為苦毒的根源,他就對每一個人都生氣了。

我就問他幾個問題,聖靈引導我所問的問題。因為我跟他講了很久,我問他,“你對誰生氣?”他說“不知道,對每一個人都生氣。”我說,“總有個起頭,你是否對你的父母生氣。”“對。”“你是家中的老大嗎?”“是的,我是。”“你是非婚生子嗎?”“是的,我是。”“啊,我們知道發生什麼了。”因為你出生的情況,讓你有很深的被拒絕感。你的憤怒是因為你裡面的苦毒流露出來了,你不斷的要求,不能感恩,不能感激,這些在你生命中發生的事情,你都忘記對誰生氣了,所以就對每一個人都生氣。你會生病的,你的生活會一塌糊涂。我說你要悔改,處理苦毒的根。因此苦毒的根會在人的生命中結出果子來。

另外一點關於苦毒就是人會論斷。那個浪子的哥哥對他爸爸說,你從來沒有給我開過派對。苦毒的人會論斷,這是從他們心裡生出來的,苦毒的人努力要爭權,苦毒的人不斷經歷失敗的循環。這些人都是苦毒的,在他們的生命中就顯出來了﹔這樣的苦毒已經是很多年了,他們已經從埃及出來了,但憤怒,苦毒,懷怨還在心裡,隻要有一次的挫折,就全部出來了。當他們稍微有點缺乏,稍微經歷困難的時候,不是相信上帝是美善的,會幫助我﹔不是選擇相信神,他們選擇苦毒,開始抱怨。

我們也是這樣,上帝希望我們的心沒有苦毒﹔苦毒讓聖靈擔憂,聖靈是非常施恩的,他是饒恕的主,聖經說不要使他擔憂,不要讓上帝的靈擔憂﹔因著你心裡留著埋怨,不饒恕,苦毒,聖靈就會擔憂。你要溫柔,恩慈,饒恕,這是上帝造你的樣式。你注意,當一個人抱怨,就顯明裡面的苦毒。

當你面對困難該如何回應?摩西沒有試著懇求他們,也沒有試著解決問題,他問上帝,“神,這樣苦毒的解答是什麼?”上帝向他顯明一些事情,上帝也想向你顯明一些事情,是否向他請求就是你的事情了。上帝已經供應好醫治這樣的苦毒了,不光是將來提供他們水泉的地方,也要醫治他們苦毒的根源,已經提供他們醫治的解答了。

當摩西呼求,上帝讓他看到一棵樹,這棵樹一直在那裡長了很久了,可是他不知道的是,那棵樹可以醫治苦水。當他將樹丟進水裡,這苦水變甜了。上帝顯明自己是醫治的主,這讓我們看見一幅圖畫,我們看見耶穌的十字架。幾百年后,耶穌死在十字架上﹔他不是在埋怨,苦毒,憤怒中死亡,他顯示被聖靈充滿的樣式。他饒恕,饒恕,饒恕。

上帝希望你明白這一點﹔當我們在生命中遇到困難,發現自己有苦毒,憤怒,來到耶穌基督的十字架,十字架打破罪的權勢﹔耶穌在十字架上 打破了罪的權勢,在十字架上他打破咒詛,打破所有邪靈的權勢,他死裡復活,他彰顯得勝的生活。

當你來到耶穌面前,你來到同樣的十字架,你要做基督徒,就是相信耶穌在十字架上所做的,在我們生命中有效,為我而死,代表我﹔當他死,我跟他同死,他埋葬,我跟他同埋,他復活,我跟他一起復活。我需要將我的懷恨,埋怨,苦毒全部帶到十字架上,釘死它。

要承認心裡的罪,轉離罪,相信上帝可以釋放我得自由。當我轉離苦毒,我需要放開我裡面敵對的人,我需要施恩饒恕人。當人苦毒,他們就論斷,他們無力,他們是受害者,就不斷要求“你欠我的。”上帝希望我們學習不一樣的方法,帶到十字架來,承認它,饒恕人。

耶穌為我們的罪死在十字架上,他為我們做榜樣怎樣處理罪,饒恕,饒恕,饒恕。壞事情發生,你感覺情緒要冒出來了,饒恕他。你可以帶出恩典,也可以是論斷﹔你要成為甜美的人還是苦毒的人?你的生命是酸的還是甜的?甜美的 是饒恕的,施恩的,慈愛的,恩慈的,有溫柔的心,這就是你在基督裡新造的人。你不要再活在過去的方式裡,照過去的心態去活。如果有人讓我生氣,我就懷怨,憤怒﹔不,我是新造的人,我把十字架帶進這裡面,代表我放開,我饒恕,我祝福,我釋放。

上帝讓他們看見一棵樹,當他把樹,也就是十架,帶進苦水裡,苦水變甜了。每一個人都要做決定,你要怎麼回應生命中的困境?有些人一直活在過去發生的埋怨,憤怒,苦毒裡。它在你一生好像苦水一樣,一直讓聖靈擔憂,限制它在你跟人的關系中長出苦的果子來。

你可以作出選擇,相信我是新造的人﹔我已經不再是苦毒的奴隸了,我不要讓苦毒來掌管我的生命,我不要憤怒掌管我的生命,不要讓仇恨掌管我的生命。我是新造的人,我是饒恕人的人,我在環境中釋放恩典,我選擇愛人而不是恨人,饒恕人不是論斷人,施恩典而不是苦毒,這是我要過的生活。每一次你這樣決定,你就把十字架放進苦水裡了。

每一個人都會在生命中碰到困難,都會碰到痛苦的情況﹔人會讓你失望,壞事發生,生命是會碰到困難,每一個人都不能避免。想想耶穌,他就是榜樣,他被人背叛,遭拒絕,被人輕視,所有朋友都拋棄他了,他沒有反應出來, 他完全施恩典,不苦毒。我們可以想象耶穌可以這樣說,“我受夠了地上這些人了,我是放棄了天堂的寶座來到這裡的,我生在馬槽裡,身邊都是動物﹔我爸爸媽媽窮到連一個像樣的房子都沒有,隻有羊在我身邊﹔之后那些人又想殺我,后來我們又逃命,搬到別的國家去,后來又回來。我這一生別人都恨我,根本不喜歡我。我醫治病人,趕鬼,他們竟然釘死我。我的朋友,我跟他們分享,可是他們偷光了我的錢,還把我賣給敵人。我的朋友全都離開了,他們鞭打我。我真的受夠這一切了,讓你們死在這裡算了。”

耶穌沒有這樣,他教我們怎樣處理不公義,怎麼面對背叛,不恩慈,嚴酷,誣告。你選擇論斷,還是選擇饒恕,就是變得苦毒還是變得甜美。我們作出的選擇都是有后果的,在結束前我要讓你知道,那些沒有放開苦毒擁抱恩典的人,他們沒有領受上帝為他們所預備的。苦毒會偷走你的未來,苦毒會偷走上帝在你生命中的祝福,你不需要苦毒,是你選擇苦毒的。再說一次,你不需要苦毒,之所以苦毒是你自己選擇苦毒的。

這個苦毒是有代價的,它會影響你的人際關系﹔婚姻,兒女,會從一代傳到下一代,偷走上帝的祝福。聖經說,不要虧缺上帝的恩典,讓苦毒進到你的生命。今天在這裡的人,有人曾經經歷過很痛苦的情況,家中的問題,虐待的問題,你不用一直苦毒下去,憤怒下去,被不饒恕折磨。你可以做決定饒恕放開它,開始施恩。

你可以選擇活的像天父的兒女一樣,或者活的像一個無力的奴隸。無力的奴隸才會苦毒,上帝的兒女是甜美的,你選擇怎麼活。上帝已經確定你是他的兒女了,他已經為你供應一切了,但你還不相信,仍然活在奴役的苦毒裡。這是我們心裡如何相信的問題,我相信上帝今天要釋放很多人自由,你在埋怨,憤怒,苦毒裡掙扎,你一直放在心裡。上帝說放開它,放開它。

拿那棵樹放進苦水裡,能夠得到醫治變為甜美﹔把問題帶到十字架前,上帝有能力改變你,之后你就會像約瑟一樣。約瑟是那將苦水變甜的人,他的兄弟背叛他,將他賣了當奴隸,他被人誣告,在牢裡受苦。當他從另一邊出來,上帝興起他。

就像南非的曼德拉一樣,他在牢裡住了二十五年,當他出來,他選擇饒恕。這麼多年,他選擇饒恕。當他出來,他被提升做全國的領袖,是因為他的成就嗎?不,是因為他的品格。當他有能力憤怒苦毒,可以報復當初傷害他的人的時候,他說“不,我願意饒恕。”他在整個國家開啟了和好的運動。大家公認他是南非最偉大的領袖,因為他跟約瑟一樣。

約瑟從牢裡出來,當他到了權位之地,看見他的哥哥們,他說,“不要生氣,不用怪自己,也不是你們要把我送到這裡來的,我看見上帝的手,讓我成為一個偉大的人,我看見上帝使用這一切,讓我成為一個更好的人。不用生自己的氣,我也不生你們的氣,上帝已經賜福我了。”

聖經中一個一個的故事,這些人做了選擇,有些人變得苦毒,失掉自己的命定﹔有人選擇擁抱十字架,饒恕,經歷上帝的恩惠。我隻有一個問題,你會怎樣做?在你心裡有什麼?苦毒還是甜美?論斷還是饒恕?不論你做什麼,都會在生命中顯露出來。就在今天作出決定,你要挪去毒根的論斷,饒恕,讓上帝釋放你。你不再是奴隸了,你要活的像上帝的兒子。

對那些不配的人施恩,愛人,饒恕他們,因為我們的父是這樣的。這是你的選擇。有些人給予是想要得回什麼,連不信主的人都會這樣做。我現在選擇給予,是因為我慷慨,就像我的父親一樣﹔他不要回報,他說我就是這樣的人,我喜歡饒恕,因為我就是這樣。活出新的人,經歷神的祝福。阿門!



尊榮你的父親母親  

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尊榮你的父親母親

請大家翻開聖經瑪拉基書,這是舊約中最后一本書。等到上帝運行,耶穌來到這世界,這中間有約四百年沉靜的時間,上帝給他們這樣的應許。第5,6節說,“看哪,耶和華大而可畏之日未到以前,我必差遣先知以利亞到你們那裡去。他必使父親的心轉向兒女,兒女的心轉向父親,免得我來咒詛遍地。”上帝在表達他的關切,他先知性的顯明在末世的日子會是如何。他顯明在耶穌回來之前,在地上存在的最關切的問題就是家庭關系的破裂。

家庭是我們社會的根基,社會要建立在剛強的家庭之上,剛強的婚姻,剛強的關系。上帝的心意是希望家庭都是健康的,上帝的心意是讓父母親顯明天父對這世界的心。這裡描述到家庭的破裂,不管在世界哪個角落,到處都是這樣的,最大的問題就在家庭裡﹔夫妻關系的破裂,親子關系的破裂﹔家原來是充滿喜樂,愛,最美好的地方,但很多時侯你看到的是問題,痛苦和毀滅。這影響到孩子長大的情況,這個問題一代代倍增。

上帝顯明問題的原因在哪裡,問題的根源在心裡。心就決定你這一生的境況,我們以為一生都是有大腦意念來決定,很多人試著用意念來做。聖經告訴我們,我們一生的果效是從心裡面流露出來的。箴言第四章23節講,“你要保守你心,勝過保守一切。因為一生的果效,是由心發出。”當我們講到心,講的是你靈和魂的交接點,講的不是頭腦,講的是那人的內在信念系統。聖經說你需要轉化你的心,換句話說,那個心已經朝著錯誤的方向,現在它需要轉過來了。如果不使心轉向,就沒有愛和醫治的流露,可能就會變得很尷尬困難,即使你想表現愛,都會是一種非常奇怪的方式。

上帝最關切的不是你外在的表現,外在的情況,而是在你心。你外面可能看起來很好,但是心卻不對了。他在這裡說,“他必使父親的心轉向兒女,兒女的心轉向父親”,這是雙方的轉向。要讓父母轉向兒女,也要讓兒女轉向父母。如果不發生的話,結果就會是咒詛遍滿地面。當家庭破碎,父母離婚,兒女背叛,生命因為憤怒苦毒而扭曲,這不叫祝福,這叫咒詛,隻要有咒詛就有邪靈在運行。上帝要帶我們進入祝福,都要從心開始,上帝能夠改變你的心﹔改變你所相信的,你的生命就改變,你一生的果效是從心發出的。

當我們在婚姻問題輔導人時,發現很多人都有同樣的情況,就是跟父母之間有一些沒有處理的沖突,這些問題就帶進了他們婚姻裡。一開始都有很大的期待,非常浪漫,充滿愛意,而一段時間之后發現原來期待的沒有發生,因為他們原生家庭沒有解決的沖突帶進了婚姻裡。任何人結婚之前,他們需要解決心中對自己父母的問題。

我們來看以弗所書第六章,它講到作為一個信徒生命應該怎麼過。2,3節說,“要孝敬父母,使你得福,在世長壽。這是第一條帶應許的誡命。你們作父親的,不要惹兒女的氣,隻要照著主的教訓和警戒,養育他們。”注意這裡有原則,也有應許。上帝說孝敬,你要看重孝敬你的父母,因為這個后面帶著應許。這是第一條帶應許的誡命,代表在上帝的眼中這太重要了。他特別把應許加在上面。

應許就是:如果我孝敬父母,我能夠長壽而且在世得福。換句話說,孝敬父母會影響我的健康,也影響我的生命和感情。反過來也同樣,如果你不孝敬父母,這樣帶出的你的生命的結果就是健康出問題,在你的生命中會有各樣的問題發生。如果你看不清問題的根源,不知道為什麼會有問題。

有一次我為一位年輕人禱告,他身體上有很大的疼痛,所有的關節都痛,他的脊椎都僵直了﹔醫生說再有幾年他可能都不能彎腰了。他有很嚴重的健康問題。我尋求主,主就告訴我,他身上有疾病軟弱的靈,邪靈在他身上造成的疾病,而問題的根源是他對他父親的苦毒。當這個年輕人悔改饒恕自己的父親,我們禱告他從邪靈中釋放,他立刻得到醫治,完全沒有痛,可以很自在的行動了。邪靈偷走他的健康,因為他心裡一直對父親有著苦毒。他愛不愛他的爸爸?愛,他真的愛。問題是他裡面有沒有解決的沖突,他心裡面的反應流露出來,就是論斷他爸爸沒有做好的事情。

我還記得另外一對年輕人,他們有流產的問題。每一次流產就禱告求上帝來醫治,已經是第五次流產了,他們請我去為他們禱告。當我禱告的時候,我感覺到主告訴我,每一個流掉的都是男孩,她跟她的爸爸之間有問題。我私下跟這個姐妹談,她真的每一個流掉的都是男孩。我問她,“你跟你爸爸怎麼樣呢?”她馬上說,“我愛他。”在她的意識中她是愛他的,可是我們再問幾個問題,發現她對自己的爸爸有很深的苦毒,她裡面有內在誓言,“我絕對不要生男孩。”這是一個咒詛在她身上運行,讓她沒法順利生下男嬰。你心裡的境況就決定了你生命的限制在哪裡。如果你心裡許下了這樣的誓言,我絕不要生男孩,你身體的限制就是由你的心來決定的。

上帝在他的話語裡很清楚的說“孝敬父母是有應許的。”孝敬是什麼意思?會有什麼樣的情況?如果不孝敬會有什麼樣的后果呢?舊約中孝敬的意思是重量,把重量放在上面。跟榮耀是同樣的一個詞,當我們說上帝是榮耀的,代表他的分量很大,非常扎實。所以舊約裡孝敬就是看重有極大分量的東西,加添他的價值。

新約中是另外一個詞,代表為一個人立價格,你選擇為他定一個價值。我們將這兩個放在一起,就了解了聖經中孝敬的含義,代表你認定父母是有極高價值的,並看重你跟他們之間的關系和溝通,你看重這一切。

怎樣看重孝敬一個人呢?我們會有不同的理由,每一個文化中都有受尊敬的方式。首先,有些人受尊重是因為他們的成就,有些人做了偉大的功績,人們就尊重他們,我們看重他們的價值是因為他們偉大的成就,代表他們做了一些事情我們認為很重要。

第二個讓我們尊敬一個人的理由是因為他們的品格,這個人顯出的正直和勇氣。我們敬重是因為他是一個偉大的人。因為他們勇敢,正直,忍耐,贏得了我們的尊敬。他們配得敬重。

第三種我們敬重人的原因是因為他們的角色,像總統,因為他的職位我們敬重他,因為他的位置是全國最高的政治地位,我們因此敬重他。聖經說,你要敬重在位的人。

三種主要敬重一個人的理由就是因為他的成就,品格,還有就是地位。可是上帝尊重一個人是有不同的理由,跟前面的理由很不一樣,是很重要的理由。上帝尊重一個人是因為人是按照他的樣式所造的,你碰到的每一個人對上帝都是很有價值的,每一個人上帝都在他們身上放了極高的價值,他也顯明出來。

我的這個手表,到底它有沒有價值呢?就看有人願意付多少錢,可能有人說,值一千塊﹔也有人說,夜市買的,十塊錢。他們放了價格在上面,就看它有什麼意義了。我們衡量一個人的價值就是因為他們如何看待他。上帝看我們是有極高價值的,他付的代價是差他的獨生愛子來到世上,為我們舍了生命﹔即使我們還在罪裡面,我們的生命一塌糊涂,很多不好的事情發生,神說你是我極其珍貴的,我可以不看那些錯的東西,我看見的核心是這是按我的形象造的,我看重你們。

尊敬是上帝賜給我們的,是他放在我們身上的價值。耶穌來到世上,行在人的當中,為我們舍掉生命,為我們顯明什麼是愛。上帝是看重人的,隻是因為是人,是按他的形象所造的。我們常用不同的角度看重人,如果他做的好就好,如果他讓我們失望,我們就論斷他,不喜歡他﹔如果品格上有瑕疵,我們就論斷他,不喜歡他﹔如果他的角色沒有扮演好,我們也不喜歡。我們對人有自己的意見,我們按照人的行為來論斷人。

我們再來看看什麼是不尊敬。有些人之所以不敬重孝敬父母,是因為太過沒大沒小,我們太親近他們,不單隻看到好的一面,也看到不好的一面﹔不光看到他們好的品質,也看到他們的破碎,看到憤怒,沒愛心,所有的一切。因為我們所看到的,我們就論斷敵對我們的父母。他們沒有按照我所期待的去做,他們做的是我沒有想到的,我們心裡受傷了。當人受傷,就會有憤怒,憤怒是一種要求,“你欠了我的。”

很多家庭真的是有問題﹔有些朋友的爸爸背叛媽媽,背叛他的婚約,背叛所有的家人,離開自己的妻子。因為這樣的家庭破裂,讓你陷入極大的情緒折磨中。或者父母其中一方很生氣,就會打孩子,虐待你,拋棄你,拒絕你。很多人都有痛苦的經驗,這是要學的功課,別人做的事情你不用負責,但你有權利選擇如何回應,你也能決定怎樣做。你可以選擇輕視,論斷,不孝敬﹔你也可以選擇饒恕和孝敬﹔這是你的選擇,你有能力做這樣的選擇。每一個人做了這樣的選擇就繼續這樣做﹔看你心裡的情況,如果有失望,懷怨,憤怒,你就可能輕視你的父母,論斷他們,用各樣不孝敬的方式對待他們。

孝敬是出於心的問題,這就讓我們了解了,上帝要求我們孝敬父母不是因為他們了不起,他要求我們孝敬他們就如同給他們禮物一樣。他們給了你生命這個禮物,而你的反應就是要給他們孝敬。上帝給了一個特別的應許,如果你孝敬父母,不管他們是怎樣的人,不管他們是不是好父母,隻要你做決定心中有這樣一顆孝敬的心,你就會長壽得福。如果你受到過傷害,可能他們曾經做過很傷害你的事情,你裡面有憤怒懷怨,有論斷敵對他們,這樣的生命是不能得福的。

我聽過很多年輕人這樣說,“我絕不要象我的父親。”你聽見他裡面對他父親的論斷和苦毒,就可以想見他做的很多事情跟他父親一模一樣。就像再一次復制出來一樣,他真的就跟他的父親一樣了。我聽人這樣講過,“我永遠不要像我媽媽。”我說,隻要有時間,你就會變得跟她一樣。有一天你會聽到自己吼跟她一樣,像她罵人一樣罵人,所有你最討厭的事情,你說你最不要的事情,你有一天會做的一模一樣。怎麼會這樣,我怎麼會到這個地步的?我記得那個很大的傷害,還說絕對不要這樣。

怎麼發生的?因為你沒有解決心裡的問題,因為你心裡對父母的論斷,因為你輕視他們,這就會在你生命中產生一個惡性循環。我記得有一個人來找我,他跟他的老板有沖突。我問他“你上一個工作如何呢?”他說,“我跟那個老板也處不好,也離開了。”“那你跟你的小組長相處如何?”“我就是因為這個來見你,我跟他也處不來。”我說,“有沒有一個工作是你做的很開心的?”“我當兵的時候很開心。”“那你跟你的長官相處如何?”“他不喜歡我,一天到晚找我麻煩,我也不喜歡他們。”你就可以看到這個模式。“你在學校如何?”“不是很好,老師老是挑我毛病。我不喜歡他們。”“你跟父母關系如何?”“我爸爸把我趕出家了。他們不是我的親生父母,是我的養父母。”

讓我告訴你問題在哪裡,我也告訴你未來會如何,因為這個模式很清楚。你的問題就在當你被收養,你感覺被拒絕了,你對自己的親生父母帶著憤怒,埋怨和苦毒﹔而真正願意付出代價來養育你的父母親,你卻拒絕他們,把你的憤怒發泄在他們身上﹔你同時不孝敬自己的親生父母和養父母,就顯明在你生命中各處的沖突,這些沖突會一直追著你,直到你解決心裡的問題。你需要認清心裡的問題並且悔改。

我們很快看一下聖經裡的一個故事,撒母耳記下第六章,生命的問題都是跟著你不孝敬父母而來的。這個故事的背景是,它是一個很大復興的故事,國家有了一個新的國王,大衛王登基了,而他的妻子米甲也回到他身邊,他把神的同在,約櫃,帶進城,全國歡慶,每一個人都在那裡。到處是音樂,舞蹈,歡呼,非常美好的一天,有上帝的同在。大衛非常的喜悅,在那裡歡喜跳躍,舞蹈,因為有神的同在。14節,“大衛穿著細麻布的以弗得,在耶和華面前極力跳舞。”

大衛在跳舞,我們來看他的太太米甲,16節說,“耶和華的約櫃進了大衛城的時候,掃羅的女兒米甲從窗戶裡觀看,見大衛王在耶和華面前踴躍跳舞,心裡就輕視他。”兩個人,一個世界,兩種完全不一樣的回應。

為什麼?米甲在大衛年輕的時候非常受他吸引,她是掃羅王的女兒,掃羅討厭大衛,他嫉妒大衛,想要殺了他。他們結婚之后,大衛成為了掃羅王的女婿,掃羅的嫉妒越來越強,他計劃如何殺掉大衛,他派出一群殺手要在床上殺了他。你可以想象派殺手去暗殺自己的女婿,可是他的女兒聽到這個消息后,讓大衛趕緊逃了出去。大衛成為了通緝犯,掃羅派人追殺他,隻要任何人跟大衛做朋友,就把他殺了。大衛像難民一樣逃亡,很多年躲在曠野裡面,受到極大的苦難,一直很害怕。如果你害怕一個人,他們可能背叛你,可能就殺了你。所以大衛非常的困苦。

而米甲的父親掃羅又將她嫁給了另一個人。她愛的是大衛,大衛是她的英雄,是她的夢中情人,而她的父親將她嫁給了另一個男人。她被逼跟另一個人生活,但她的心不愛這個人。大衛和米甲都是被同樣一個人惡劣的對待。當有人惡劣的對待你,你可以用上帝的方式處理,使用敬虔的方式處理這件事,帶進恩典,釋放饒恕,讓自己的心仍然保持在自由的境況。你也可以變得憤怒苦毒,輕看,不尊敬,掃羅的女兒米甲輕看自己的父親,同樣也輕視自己的丈夫。

大衛是一個真正愛上帝的人,他能夠原諒掃羅,他從來沒有舉起手敵對他,他一直很敬重掃羅。而在他生命中最偉大的一天,他們聚集在一起,約櫃進城了,大衛在經歷神,而他的妻子盯著他,心裡充滿了輕視。當大衛回來,20節說,“大衛回家要給眷屬祝福。掃羅的女兒米甲出來迎接他,說,以色列王今日在臣仆的婢女眼前露體,如同一個輕賤人無恥露體一樣,有好大的榮耀阿。”米甲真的好好的罵了大衛一場。

大衛說我為主跳舞,我還要跳更多。他不要因為妻子的苦毒和不敬重而受到脅迫,他不要任何人把他拉下來,他不要任何人拿走他的自由。接下來看23節,“掃羅的女兒米甲,直到死日,沒有生養兒女。”大衛選擇敬重的路,敬重神,敬重掃羅,看重人﹔掃羅不配人敬重的,但大衛敬重他。可是米甲變得很苦毒,輕看自己的父親,輕視自己的丈夫,后果就是:第一,她沒有辦法經歷上帝的作為,沒有辦法進入上帝的祝福,因為她心裡的情況。第二,婚姻無法生養。婚姻中沒有生命,沒有喜樂,沒有愛。所有的愛都被她的苦毒,論斷和不尊敬給掩蓋了。第三,她沒有兒女。在希伯來文化當中,這是很羞辱的事,就像她女人的身份失敗了一樣。后來也看到她收養了別人的孩子,這孩子也被處死了。兩種后果,一個是尊重人的,一個是不尊重人的。

我們再看幾處經文,申命記第二十七章16節,“輕慢父母的,必受咒詛。”另外一處在箴言說“輕視父親嘲笑母親的眼目,要被烏鴉啄去。”當你不孝敬父母,邪靈就有權利進入我們的生命折磨我們。第二處經文說的烏鴉講的就是邪靈,它能啄去你的眼睛。這就是在生命戰場上失敗跌倒的人最后的結局。這裡講到我們如果不孝敬父母,就沒有能力看清,邪靈會讓我們盲目。另外一處在箴言第二十章20節,“咒罵父母的,他的燈必滅,變為漆黑的黑暗。”這裡講到的燈就是你內在的生命,當你咒詛或者對父母講一些不好的話,黑暗會充滿你的生命讓你無法看清。

這些都是很嚴重的經文,我們應該怎麼辦呢?

第一,上帝希望你有不一樣的生活,他給你的是生命﹔上帝明白破碎家庭的問題,他明白人經歷的憂傷和痛苦﹔耶穌來,他的心意就是要醫治傷心的人。上帝第一樣要給我們的就是,你隻要轉向他,承認問題不在你的父母,家人或者發生的這些事,問題在你的心裡面,他應許賜給你一顆全新的心,將我的靈放在你裡面,你現在進入一個新的家庭,上帝是你的父親,你沒有任何缺乏。

上帝希望我們明白,自然的家庭是有限制的,人是有罪的,所以痛苦傷害一定會有。憂傷失望是生命的一部分。但是我們不用這樣過活,不用活在痛苦憂傷裡面,耶穌有更美的東西要給我們﹔他說眼目不要看自然的家庭,也不要看自然的環境,你要仰望,這位神是愛你的,天上的父是這樣完全的愛你,天上的神他歡迎你,愛你,擁抱你,為你供應,永不離開你,不斷來接觸你,他在你這一生都在接觸你。

耶穌說,凡接待他的人,相信他的人,因他為我們的罪死在十字架上,得勝復活。凡相信耶穌基督的,他賜他們權柄讓他們做上帝的兒女。不管我們的家庭如何,上帝要把你放在他的家裡,他要給你新的開始,新的身份,成為永生神的兒女。

我們都有自己的原生家庭,但現在是更大家庭的一份子﹔神是我們的父,他供應我們一切的需要﹔他一直愛我們,一直這樣的恩慈,一直是這樣的溫柔,他知道怎樣醫治你的心。我們第一步是要進到上帝的家,相信耶穌基督。

第二,上帝要你改變生活的方式。不光是到前面來接受耶穌而已,是要超過這些,要改變你的心,改變生命,改變你跟人相處的方式。上帝說,“現在你改變了,我把我的信心放在你裡面,你不用像以前那樣憤怒,苦毒,扭曲的生活。你要恩慈,因為我是恩慈的,我對每一個人恩慈。不是光對好人,做對的事情的人才恩慈,這不是在你原生的家庭,這是新的家庭,我一直都恩慈。”“那麼即使我做了很壞的事情也是嗎?”“是的,我不改變,不是因為你日子不順我就改變,我一直都是恩慈的。你要溫柔,不用嚴厲,因為我就是這樣。”

神是非常溫柔的神,“如果我們把事情搞砸了,你不會吼我,不會罵我,不會懲罰我嗎?”“不會,我不會懲罰,我會非常溫柔的待你,我希望找到方式把你帶回來。恩慈,溫柔,彼此饒恕,我要你學習饒恕人,不是不尊重或者論斷他們,就像我饒恕你一樣。”上帝說,“我要你重新看你的家人,重新看你的爸爸媽媽﹔如果你心裡有憤怒苦毒,你覺得他們讓你失望,你覺得他們辜負你,他們可能真的很失敗,辜負了你,確實會發生的,可是你不知道他們也是破碎,所以才這樣做。現在你在新的家庭了,新的家庭裡是尊敬人的。”

你說,“他們真的很傷我啊。”神說,“我知道,你做的也傷我,但我饒恕你了。就如同我饒恕你一般,你需要饒恕他們。現在我要你改變你的心,我要你看見他們,沒有他們你不可能進到這個世界,也沒有可能有永生的生命﹔即使他們所有的事情都沒有做對,我要你仍然看重尊敬他們,是他們把你帶進這個世界。我要你看重他們,因為我看重他們﹔他們對我一樣也是特別的,我要你孝敬他們,給他們這個孝敬的禮物。”

你說,“可是他們不配呀,我爸爸做了這麼可怕的事情,拋棄我們。”上帝說,“我知道,可是你很憤怒,你需要饒恕,就如同我饒恕你一樣。因為我看重你,我要你做的,是當你得饒恕,你就會開始為他們禱告﹔當你為他們禱告,你的心就開始跟他們連結在一起。你看見上帝為他們安排最好的,他們開始改變。不然不可能為他們禱告,你如果憤怒的話是不可能為他們禱告的。首先你需要原諒,放掉所有的論斷,開始為他們禱告。”

如果你也造成他們的痛苦,我覺得你需要跟他們道歉。你說,“你不了解我爸爸做過什麼,我媽媽是怎麼做的。”神說,“我知道,可是我仍然看見你裡面的憤怒,你做的事真的傷害他,當你論斷拒絕他們,他們可能沒有說什麼,但是他們感受到痛。因為他們是你的父母。這仍然在他們裡面,他們仍然愛你,關心你。”

你說,“可是我的父母把我送給人,我的家庭破碎了。”“仍然一樣,這是新的生活方式,這是用我愛的方式來愛人,我饒恕的方式來饒恕人。你記得你對你媽媽是怎樣的又罵又吼,咒詛她悖逆她,她可能感覺不好,你們兩個可能吼在一起,她也受傷了,你傷害了她 。”

你可以這樣跟她說,“媽,上帝對我說話,他讓我看見我心中很多年都有憤怒和傷害,我真的很抱歉,你願意原諒我嗎?我愛你。”當你這樣做,你要先來到主的面前才能做得到,當你把事情調整對了,找一些方法表達你的恩慈,給他們禮物。我告訴你,愛一定贏,愛一定會贏。

我跟大家講一個小故事,我很驚訝﹔我成為基督徒之前面對了很多的困難,我們有一個女兒送去給人收養,因為她帶來沖突,羞辱,我們就把她送給人藏起來了。我接受基督之后,我真的悔改,相信上帝會恢復我們的女兒,有一天他真的做到了。幾年之后,我們開始跟我們的女兒建立關系,她說,“我希望你來主持我們的婚禮,我去過我自己姐妹的婚禮,好美呀,我希望我也有跟她們一樣美的婚禮。”之所以這麼美是因為有神的同在,因為我的孩子都是基督徒,有神的同在降臨。可是我的女兒不了解,她隻是希望她的婚禮也有這麼好。

我們開始有一個預演,開始確實很難,裡面很緊張,她的養父母在那裡,養父母的家庭也都在,他們都是收養的,一共有三個家庭在那裡,她爸爸和媽媽大概也很難接受﹔我記得預演完之后,我跟主耶穌說,“這真是很難啊。”我走到海灘去,一直流淚,跟耶穌基督說,“主啊,請你幫助我,我能做什麼呢?我能說什麼呢?”第二天早上醒來,主就把一些話放在我心裡。有些時候上帝會立刻回應,我早上醒來上帝就把答案給我。

我們來到婚禮,她從紅毯走過來,她的養父陪著她,她的家人坐在這裡,另一個家庭坐在那裡,而我們的家庭就坐在他們當中﹔氣氛非常緊張,有時候我會聽到靈裡面的一些話,我聽見的是,“他會說什麼?我要聽聽他會講什麼。”她的養父母不希望我主持婚禮,因為他們不是基督徒,也不希望我主持婚禮,可是我的女兒一直堅持。我怎麼做呢?當他們站在我面前,非常緊張,這是她 一生最特別的日子,大家都在等我開口,上帝這樣對我說,“敬重她的父母。”聚會開始之前,我特別跟她父母說,“我要特別感謝你們做的這一切,為了Josephine,謝謝你關心她,給她教育,給她家庭,謝謝你們照顧她接納她,因為你們在她的生命中這麼重要的角色,我要敬重你們。我們沒有權利做任何要求,我們何等感激你容許我們今天能夠來參加。”

整個的氣氛馬上就變了,神的同在降臨,有人開始流淚,上帝開始運行,這可能是我們見過的最美的婚禮。當恩典流露,你最容易感覺到上帝。后面有用餐的時間,我在想不知道會有怎樣的氣氛,不知道我們會坐在哪裡,座位的安排是會告訴你一些信息的。我們去到那兒看看我們會坐在哪裡。我告訴我的女兒這一天你要好好孝敬你的父母,你需要講話感激他們,就像其他婚禮一樣。

當我們到了那裡,發現前面有兩張特別的桌子,沒有誰比誰高,兩邊是平等地位的,一個是她的家人,一個是我們。我立刻看見我女兒站起來說話,她敬重她的養父母教養她長大,她也敬重我們,上帝降臨,在敬重中上帝一定降臨。我的妻子Joy站起來講話,她也對Josephine的媽媽表達她的感激。Josephine的養母站起來說話,她講了一個我們都不知道的事情,她自己的母親給她壓力要她不要收養這個孩子,她必須要反對自己的媽媽來收養這個孩子。她說,每一次她生日的時候,我都感謝生她的母親把她帶進這個世界。上帝的同在降臨,每一個人都開始流淚。我從來沒有參加過婚宴大家哭成這樣的。很神奇,有些人哭出聲音,有人哭成一團。上帝的愛真的充滿那個地方。

我希望你明白一點,除非我們決定孝敬,這一切不可能發生。能夠給人敬重,就帶下祝福。她選擇敬重自己的養父母,也敬重我們,我們也選擇敬重他們,上帝就能自由的運行。這是你要給人的禮物,因為我們是這樣的人,我們是願意敬重人的人,現在我們在更大的家庭-上帝的家庭裡面,敬重是我們願意給人的。



門柱旁的血  

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門柱旁的血

我們看兩三處的聖經,聖經是上帝的話,告訴我們上帝的計劃,它分成兩個部分,舊約和新約。我們先看約翰福音第一章29節,“次日,約翰看見耶穌來到他那裡,就說,看哪,神的羔羊,除去世人罪孽的。”約翰是上帝特別差派准備的一個人,讓國人預備好迎接耶穌的降臨,他的信息就是悔改,離開罪。全國各地都有人來,他在預備這些人領受上帝為他們准備的祝福。有一天當他為人施洗的時候,看見耶穌朝他們這邊走來,上帝對他的心說話,向他顯明耶穌基督是誰,“耶穌基督是神的兒子。”

約翰這位先知這樣說,“看哪,神的羔羊,除去世人罪孽的。”對我們大部分人來說,這根本沒有什麼意思,可是對在場的聽眾,這有極大的重要性。人類一直在掙扎的問題,就是罪的問題。罪違反上帝的律法,就是讓我們的生命沒有上帝,自己做主。罪就是不理上帝,我們自己往前跑﹔罪就是轉離上帝,走我們自己的路﹔罪帶來的是毀滅和死亡。聖經說,罪的工價,它的后果,就是要隔絕,摧毀,死亡。

上帝不希望我們的世界是這樣的,戰爭,暴力,貧窮,犯罪﹔他創造的世界原是美好的地方,他的創造是好的。當罪進入到世界,他創造的人遠離他,整個受造物的動力就改變了,邪靈開始有能力進到世界來,邪靈開始轄制人。亞當犯罪的時候,疾病,死亡,憂傷進入世界,上帝應許他們有一天他會差下一人救贖他們,這人能處理罪的問題。

世界所有的宗教,它們的挑戰都是怎樣面對罪,所有的宗教都了解罪的問題,它們的處理方式都差不多,你需要做點事情。基督信仰是完全不一樣的,你要在神的面前悔罪是最主要的,不是我做什麼,也不是你做什麼,而是耶穌基督為我們所做的。

我們看舊約出埃及記第一章,讓你知道整個的故事。這裡講到上帝的百姓在埃及。11至14節,“於是埃及人派督工的轄制他們,加重擔苦害他們。他們為法老建造兩座積貨城,就是比東和蘭塞。隻是越發苦害他們,他們越發多起來,越發蔓延,埃及人就因以色列人愁煩。埃及人嚴嚴地使以色列人作工,使他們因作苦工覺得命苦,無論是和泥,是做磚,是作田間各樣的工,在一切的工上都嚴嚴地待他們。”

上帝的百姓被困在外地,活在奴役底下。沒有人一生下來就是奴隸的,我們生下來就是自由的,我們渴望自由。但這些人在捆綁底下,在埃及人的重擔底下,埃及人派最嚴厲的督工來,打他們,虐待他們,讓他們覺得非常命苦。他們受苦,被打,被虐待,很努力的工作,沒有后果﹔不能自由經營自己的生命,都在轄制底下,都在悲慘當中,他們受到非常殘酷的對待。

這就是我們看見的圖畫,受罪的轄制也是這樣。當人生在世上,我們都成為罪的奴隸,什麼東西征服了你,你就伏在他底下。罪,苦毒,仇恨,憤怒,這罪影響到每一個人,而在罪的后面就是邪靈。當人生在這世界,都生在罪的轄制下,生命很辛苦,很讓人失望。背叛,困難,挫折,在痛苦中人們想要找到舒緩,他們對不同的東西上癮,成癮也是一個捆綁。他們毒品上癮,毒品就吸走他們的健康和金錢。或者色情上癮,酒精尼古丁上癮,這就是奴役,讓人變得很苦毒。

聖經告訴我們,在埃及后面有不可見的屬靈的世界,埃及人拜很多不同的偶像,各樣事情都有神。真相是,這些人在奴役中,奴役背后的權勢就是邪靈,借著埃及人開始施壓,讓這些人哭泣,求上帝幫助他們。

上帝就派摩西幫助他們,當摩西來了,他跟法老說,“主說,讓我的百姓離開。”法老說,“你的主是誰呀?又不是我的神,我不讓他們離開。”上帝就在埃及地降下災禍,我們來看最后一災。在出埃及記第十二章,3節,“你們吩咐以色列全會眾說,本月初十日,各人要按著父家取羊羔,一家一隻。”5至7節,“要無殘疾,一歲的公羊羔,你們或從綿羊裡取,或從山羊裡取,都可以。要留到本月十四日,在黃昏的時候,以色列全會眾把羊羔宰了。各家要取點血,涂在吃羊羔的房屋左右的門框上和門楣上。”12節,“因為那夜我要巡行埃及地,把埃及地一切頭生的,無論是人是牲畜,都擊殺了,又要敗壞埃及一切的神。我是耶和華。”14節,“你們要記念這日,守為耶和華的節,作為你們世世代代永遠的定例。”22,23節,“拿一把牛膝草,蘸盆裡的血,打在門楣上和左右的門框上。你們誰也不可出自己的房門,直到早晨。因為耶和華要巡行擊殺埃及人,他看見血在門楣上和左右的門框上,就必越過那門,不容滅命的進你們的房屋,擊殺你們。”29至31節,“到了半夜,耶和華把埃及地所有的長子,就是從坐寶座的法老,直到被擄囚在監裡之人的長子,以及一切頭生的牲畜,盡都殺了。法老和一切臣仆,並埃及眾人,夜間都起來了。在埃及有大哀號,無一家不死一個人的。夜間,法老召了摩西,亞倫來,說,起來,連你們帶以色列人,從我民中出去,依你們所說的,去事奉耶和華吧。”

我們第一個看見的是,上帝說他要來審判埃及地所有的神。埃及人拜很多的神,他們拜尼羅河,所以在尼羅河上有瘟疫﹔他們所拜的一切,他們所說的一切神,上帝就一個個審判他們。上帝顯明他的能力大過這些神的能力,這些都是假神,他是唯一的真神。每一次帶下瘟疫,他就讓他們看到這些神無力可為,他顯明你們拜的都是沒有能力的,以色列的神,耶和華,才是真正的神。

每一次摩西來到法老面前,法老剛硬著心,絕不放開他們,埃及人再一次遭殃。每一次的遭殃,法老的心變得非常剛硬苦毒,終於來到最后的一次災殃。你需要明白一點,法老被眾民崇拜如同神一樣,大家也拜他的兒子如同是神,在埃及人的眼中,法老是他們國家很偉大的神,他的兒子也是。上帝說,他給以色列的百姓很清楚的指示,摩西把以色列所有的領袖都聚集了,仔細聽好,再一次的災,上帝要打破埃及的權勢,要打破邪靈的權勢,上帝要照他的話釋放我們。

這是非常重要的事情,會發生在第十四天,你要在羊群中找一隻羊羔。因為埃及人輕看牧羊人,輕看羊群。上帝說我要你拿一隻羊羔,仔細挑選,沒有殘疾,沒有疾病,不可以是瞎眼的,瘸腿的,完美的羊。十四號的黃昏,大概下午三點鐘,將全家帶進家中,殺了這隻羊,把羊的血留在盆裡,拿牛膝草蘸血打在門楣門框上,你們進去,一起吃這隻羊。因為半夜我要殺掉家中所有的長子,所有牲畜的長子,除非他看見這個血,看見羔羊的血,你就得赦免。上帝看見這血,就知道這是我的百姓,血遮蓋他們,他們不會遭害,不會進到家裡。

那一天來了,14號,如果你是長子,你一定會確定這一切都按部就班的做好了,不可以冒險,隻有一次機會。埃及人看到他們,有些人相信,他們也這樣做,他們感到神在以色列人一邊。半夜十二點開始,哭號開始,一家一家,幾百戶家,天使進去把每一家的長子殺了,即使你坐牢了,是長子你都不能幸免。遍地每一個角落,上帝來審判法老這個神,他打破他們屬靈的能力,他打破這個國家后面的權勢,埃及后來再也沒有恢復過來,再也不是以前一樣的興盛大國 ,在這之后,失掉了一切。

死亡使者走過全地,所有涂了血的家庭,都被饒恕了。上帝對他們說,你們要吃這羊羔,預備你們的旅程了,你們要離開捆綁,四百三十年的奴役,今晚結束,准備出門了,今晚奴役結束了。聖經 說,沒有一個離開埃及的人是軟弱的。那個晚上,當他們流出了血,他們憑信心等候,不光是滅命使者來殺人,上帝的靈也運行在當中,所有生命得醫治,沒有一個是軟弱的,他們活在奴役中,活在貧窮裡,沒有一個是軟弱的,神的能力使他們堅強。

上帝說,神的軍隊那晚要離開埃及,埃及人把他們的金銀全給他們了,他們掠奪了埃及,走上了旅程,要進入應許之地。上帝說,我要你每一年的第一個月的十四號這一天,要紀念這個,要獻上逾越節的羔羊,流出它的血來紀念我為你們所做的。他們每一年每一年這樣做。

等到施洗約翰來到的時候,他說,“看哪,神的羔羊。”他們所有人都知道他在講什麼,那是逾越節的羔羊,那個羊的血,拯救我們,醫治我們。這是上帝的羔羊,上帝揀選的,上帝揀選耶穌基督,除去世人的罪孽。他預言你在一千五百年所看見的所有事情,都要象征著這個,這才是真相。

我們來看耶穌基督被釘十字架的事,注意馬太福音第二十七章,我們看到血很重要,因為生命就在血裡面,世界各地的文化都會稍微了解一點這個。那時在全地都有極大的黑暗,46節,“約在申初,耶穌大聲喊著說。”50至53節,“耶穌又大聲喊叫,氣就斷了。忽然殿裡的幔子,從上到下裂為兩半。地也震動。磐石也崩裂。墳墓也開了。已睡聖徒的身體,多有起來的。到耶穌復活以后,他們從墳墓裡出來,進了聖城,向許多人顯現。”

從正午到申初,耶穌來到事工的末了,他的生命不是從他身上拿走,是他自己獻上生命。正午到申初,大概是中午十二點到下午三點的時間,上帝讓全地變得黑暗,就如埃及地全地黑暗一樣。到了申初,耶穌大聲喊著,為什麼聖經要指出這申初的時間?申初是下午三點的時間,在以色列這個時候就是逾越節吃飯的時候,全國各地來參加這個節慶的人,大祭司在這時會帶著羊羔,宰殺它,流出血來。大家沒有留意,上帝逾越節的羔羊,在十字架上獻上自己的生命,在申初,耶穌大聲喊著,將他的靈獻上。

如果你有見過臨死的人,你知道在死前他們不會大聲喊,他們漸漸斷氣。可是耶穌死時,聖經說他大聲的呼喊,極大的呼喊,得勝的呼喊,成了,世界罪得救贖的工成了!他流出了寶血,當上帝樂納這個祭,能力就釋放了。

注意發生的事情,第一,聖殿裡的幔子,從上到下裂為兩半。聖殿的幔子是很厚的,是進入到上帝所在的至聖所的地方,突然聖靈的手把幔子撕開,人們驚訝。第一次他們能夠看見進入到上帝的同在裡。上帝警告他們,我已經開了一條路,讓每一個人進入上帝的同在。

第二個發生的事情是,很大的地震。這裡說連磐石都崩裂了,甚至震開了墳墓。能把墳墓震開是很大的地震了,為什麼會發生?罪的后果就是死,上帝打開墳墓,這些尸體都在不同的腐爛階段﹔骷髏起來了,人不能就這樣離開去清理墳墓,要等到逾越節結束才能開始工作。耶穌自己進到地下最深之處,跟所有掌權的邪靈宣告,我已經勝過你了。第三天,有一次很大的地震,耶穌從死裡復活。

馬太福音第二十七章說很多聖徒的身體也都起來,進入聖城,向許多人顯現。有些人以為死亡就是結束,這不是結束。你要了解,當耶穌死裡復活,很多在墳墓裡的這些人,上帝超自然的重新組合他們的身體,讓他們死裡復活,走出來見他們的神﹔可能是摩西,亞伯拉罕,或者是聖徒,偉大的王等﹔向很多人顯現,真是超現實。上帝向每一個人顯明,他的能力借耶穌的寶血顯現,來赦免你的罪,打破邪靈的權勢,讓你不再受邪靈的轄制。

神把你舉起來,把復活的生命放在你裡面,上帝在顯明復活的生命,不管魔鬼給了我們什麼。因為我相信耶穌所流的血,神的能力的釋放,能改變你的生命。這真是神奇的事情。聖經在歌羅西書第二章14,15節說,當耶穌死在十字架上,流出寶血,他將所有敵對人的罪都挪走了,也卸下那些執政掌權人的權勢,把魔鬼所有的權勢拿走讓你不再受他的轄制。不是我做了什麼,而是基督為我所做的,隻要我相信。

聖經說,上帝讓耶穌基督成為我們的施恩座,因相信他的血。羅馬書第三章25節,上帝讓耶穌成為了我們的挽回祭,因我們相信他的血。如果你犯了罪,耶穌的寶血付了代價﹔如果你失敗了,耶穌的寶血付了代價﹔如果你在現世掙扎,耶穌的寶血救贖你。我們說羔羊的血救贖了我,救贖的意思代表所有的贖金都付清了,當耶穌流出寶血,他付了完全的代價,釋放你自由,救你,饒恕你的罪﹔隻需要一點,就是你轉離罪來相信他。如果你犯罪跌倒,轉向他,相信他,寶血已經付上代價了。

你的生命可能在罪裡掙扎,轉向來相信耶穌為這罪而死,轉離罪,罪一直帶給你憂傷﹔定罪,難過,相信耶穌所做的。有一個很神奇的真理,世上每一個宗教,都要你做一些事情,但基督信仰是耶穌做完了一切,隻要我回應耶穌,隻要我認同他,因我心中的信,他為我所做的一切都是我的了。

你知道洗禮的意思是什麼?我不知道你們這裡是怎麼做,在新約中是把人帶到河邊,把他們放到水裡面再起來。當一個人接受洗禮,這不是一個儀式,這是一個宣告,你心中信心的聲明﹔當我進到耶穌裡,我舊的生命就結束了,他死在十字架上,我跟他一同死亡﹔我認同他,我舊的生活形式已經死了﹔耶穌埋在墳墓裡,當我們進到水裡面施洗,我相信我的生命埋葬了,舊有自私犯罪的生命結束了。從洗禮上來的時候,代表新的生命開始了。

這不是水把你弄濕而已,而是心裡明白相信,我舊的生命結束,跟基督同死,他已經埋葬了。從上帝的眼光來看,我現在相信他,我是新的人了。我現在活在新的生命中,是幸福的生命,跟隨耶穌基督的生命。我還會不會失敗?會,還是會。因為我常常忘記我自己是誰,我們常想到過去的那個人,做過去的事。但我不需要再做了,因為它的權勢被打破了。我認罪悔改,耶穌寶血洗淨我,我可以重新來跟上帝同行。

我們如認我們的罪,他是信實公義的神,必赦免我們的罪,洗淨我們一切的不義。我們行在光中,代表跟上帝敞開,彼此團契,基督的寶血就洗淨我們。這寶血隨時都可以洗淨我們的失敗和罪,我們隻需要相信,在心中相信耶穌所做的就足夠了。

當你進入與上帝同在,你如果相信耶穌所做的足夠了,你就可以坦然的進來。你不相信這就足夠了,你就會感到膽怯。上帝要你相信,耶穌的血就夠了,能洗淨你的罪﹔能夠讓你起來,行在新生命的能力裡。



由洞穴中得自由  

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由洞穴中得自由

我們翻開聖經列王記上第十九章,我先很簡短的跟大家分享一下,然后跟大家禱告,領袖需要復蘇,生命中有上帝全新的觸摸,我們學習怎樣跨出去。我們用一些經文為大家解釋一下,列王記上第十九章9節,“他在那裡進了一個洞,就住在洞中。耶和華的話臨到他說,以利亞阿,你在這裡作什麼。”12,13節,“地震后有火,耶和華也不在火中。火后有微小的聲音。以利亞聽見,就用外衣蒙上臉,出來站在洞口。有聲音向他說,以利亞阿,你在這裡作什麼。”

對以利亞來說,這是很嚴重的問題,他的生命有神的呼召,要在一個敗壞的國家中站立起來,代表神向他們說話,直接面對當時屬靈的權勢,他蒙召要為國家帶來復興,他受到恩膏為國家帶來復興,原來他從一個隱藏的,人看不到的地方出來。你記得他怎樣讓全地開始飢荒,從天上降下火,火降到祭壇上,殺了巴力的先知,以利亞在上帝的運行當中。

整個國家預備讓上帝來工作了,可是所有上帝的運行都需要領袖,沒有領袖就沒有結果。當上帝要成就一件事,他需要有一個人願意站起來,有人承受聖靈的恩膏,站起來代表他。這一直是上帝給我們的挑戰,找到一個代表他的人。代表他是如何的,帶著他的能力,來拆毀一切威嚇生命的事。

整個國家活在巫術的轄制下,在拜偶像的權勢下,廟裡有妓女,各樣的巫術在暢行,整個國家都在非常壓抑的氣氛中。大部分人一直受到驚嚇活在恐懼當中,上帝要找一個在那種環境中願意站起來的人,不害怕這樣的屬靈氣氛,不害怕偶像,不害怕廟宇,不害怕巫術,能夠站起來活出不一樣的生命。

以利亞一開始很棒,后來他面對屬靈的攻擊,一個屬靈的反擊。他本來有很好的進展,拆毀他們的祭壇,把所有獻給主,摧毀巴力的先知,上帝很大的運行,他隻要繼續的運行下去,就能夠觸摸整個國家﹔可是有一個很嚴重的屬靈的反擊,有很大的屬靈壓力敵對他。聖經說耶洗別出來了,他說,“我要殺了你,奪走你的生命,你怎麼奪走先知的生命的,我就怎麼奪走你的生命。”他開始威嚇以利亞。

這都是在服事當中大家會面對的問題,你很容易有一個好的開頭﹔但要在戰爭中站立的穩,壓力來到你也能站立的穩﹔當整個屬靈的壓力壓在你身上,你還能站立的穩。這可能是借著人壓在你身上,有人控告你,威脅你,驚嚇你,你要選擇如何回應。你看到保羅跟提摩太說,“你要挑旺神在你裡面的恩賜,上帝賜給你的不是膽怯的心,乃是剛強仁愛謹守的心。”提摩太也有問題,他的生命有大能的恩膏恩賜,可是那些年長的人嚇到他了,宗教的文化驚嚇到他,因為受到驚嚇,他生命的恩賜就封閉了。

如果你受到驚嚇,讓恐懼抓住你,你生命的恩賜就開始封閉,恩膏就不能流露,你隻想著如何保護,救自己而已,而不是如何擴展神的國了。保羅寫了兩封信給提摩太,兩次提到這樣的恩賜。提摩太前書講不要忽略這樣的恩賜,上帝給我們每一個人都有大能的恩賜﹔他賜給你聖靈的恩賜,叫耶穌從死裡復活的靈,同樣的靈住在你裡面,要給你能力,堅固你。我們都得著同樣的聖靈,都有同樣的恩膏臨到我們,但我們要選擇的是要挑旺神的靈,不斷讓恩膏流露,還是要受到驚嚇,退縮,躲在山洞裡。

很多基督徒躲在洞穴裡,在洞穴的后面不出來。我們很快看以利亞怎麼了,也看他怎樣犯錯,生命中是怎樣做的。我們當中有些人可能發現自己也在這種屬靈的壓力底下,在這戰爭的熱火中,與以利亞犯同樣的錯誤,當最后你就跟他躲在同樣的地方。

有一次有一個牧師打電話給我,他說,“你可以幫助我嗎?我非常憂郁,幾乎想要自殺了,不知該怎麼辦了?自從我來到這個城市,就一直有這些事情發生。”我說,“我真的知道問題出在哪裡,我也知道你該怎麼辦,你現在在屬靈的攻擊底下,你的意念,魂,受到了壓力。讓你失掉自己的眼界,受到了驚嚇,就在裡面退縮了。跟以利亞一樣。”

大家注意以利亞做了什麼,耶洗別威脅他﹔屬靈的攻擊發動,敵對他,威脅要奪走他的生命。在我們每一個人裡面,都想要活下去,遇到任何讓我們痛苦的,我們就退縮﹔你因痛苦而退縮下來,你想要救自己﹔當你想救自己的時候,我們的生命就會很困難。在服事當中沒有中立地帶,你要留在戰火之地。有的時候很難,真的受不了了﹔你看見我在台上服事,神的能力流露,可是我自己也有非常大屬靈壓力時候,有時好像頭腦中一片黑暗,什麼都看不到。我要學習怎樣在這種狀況中站起來,每一次你站起來,你在主裡就更強壯。

3,4節說,“以利亞見這光景就起來逃命,到了猶大的別是巴,將仆人留在那裡,自己在曠野走了一日的路程,來到一棵羅騰樹下,就坐在那裡求死,說,耶和華阿,罷了。求你取我的性命,因為我不勝於我的列祖。”上帝的仆人前一天把火從天上降下來,殺了他們的先知﹔第二天卻坐在樹下憂郁說,死了算了。上帝大能的仆人怎麼從這裡到了那裡的呢?最后躲到洞穴裡去了。

聖經說他受到威脅,當他見到這光景,他就逃命了。經文中說這是耶洗別說的話,有一個信差對他說話,他見到了。你所見到的會影響你所做的。你見到的會決定你怎麼做。不是看見神的同在,不是看見將來的復興,他看見的是可怕的死亡,看見自己受到攻擊。不管什麼充滿你的心思意念,什麼東西讓你定睛在上面,你生命專注在哪裡,就影響你的情緒,影響你的靈,就決定你會怎麼樣。

你絕對不要將焦點放在負面的東西上﹔要一直專注在耶穌身上,定睛在上帝所說的話上,定睛在神的能力上,他對你的愛上。從天上降下火,先帶來干旱,又帶來降雨的神,怎麼會拋棄我呢?差派我去的上帝怎麼會拋棄我孤單一人呢?他完全失掉異象,失掉對未來的看見,壓力臨到他,他的眼睛看不到異象,看不見他蒙召要做的事,眼睛隻看見環境了,隻看見自己。

當他的眼睛離開上帝和上帝的目的,專注在威脅上,他的心融化了,他的信心消失了,恐懼就來了。聖經說他開始逃,他逃離自己的任務,逃離自己的使命,從原來蒙召該做的事上退縮了。壓力來臨的時候很容易讓你的眼睛看不見異象,看不見蒙召該做的事,隻看見問題了,受到驚嚇,失掉了眼界。不是從上帝的眼光看,而是看到了困難,退縮離開了上帝要你去的地方。離開信心的地方,退縮離開勇氣,裡面萎縮下去,不是成為剛強的禱告勇士,幾乎爬不起來禱告了,從他的使命中退縮了。

當一個人退縮,他的生命中就失去了權柄,恩膏就不能流露了。上帝說那退后的人我不喜悅。你要留在戰場上,連在信心之地,留在相信上帝的地方,這才讓上帝喜悅。以利亞做的幾件事就是,第一,他專注在負面的事上就失掉了眼界。第二,他從自己的使命上退縮下來。第三,讓自己孤立。這種隔絕孤立讓自己不再跟人連結了,不再跟上帝連結。孤立隔絕就是死亡之處。

就像羊,當它們生病,它們就孤立了,從羊群中離開了。你很容易辨別哪隻羊生病了,它們從羊群中退縮出去,從團契中退縮了,從小組退縮,從領袖聚會退縮,從連結上退縮,不想連結了,不想你再問我問題了。有一種恐懼,就像亞當夏娃犯罪之后,第一個就是害怕藏起來。每一次以色列被打敗,他們就躲在山洞裡面。

洞穴是很黑很深,沒有出口的,接著他坐下來。不是站起來爭戰,不是在靈裡面興起,不是開始禱告,讓恩賜方言流露。他坐下來了,你可以看到一個人,外面可能是站著的,可是裡面卻坐下來。已經放棄不打仗了,開始消極了,戰士不見了,被打倒了,他需要幫助。一旦他坐下,一旦他消極什麼都不做了,他就開始憂郁了。

很可怕的憂郁臨到他,他想到的隻有死。他不是突然掉到這個情況中的,他是一步步來到這裡的。首先,他的眼睛隻看到問題不看到解答,他的焦點從異象離開了。第二,讓恐懼奪去他的思想。他想要保存自己而不是為使命放下自己。他從使命中退縮,讓自己孤立起來。最后,他坐下,非常的憂郁,很想自殺,想睡覺了。他最后的一個禱告就是主啊,帶我走,我不想再醒來了。

上帝憐憫他,上帝派了一個天使拍拍他給他食物。當你打仗,你需要休息,需要食物,可是他繼續逃,又跑了四十天,終於找到了一個山洞,他躲在山洞裡不出去。上帝問他問題﹔在聖經中,上帝問問題時,他早就知道答案。聖經中第一個問題就是,“亞當,你在哪裡?”這是一個關系上的問題,上帝早就知道他在那裡,上帝知道他,上帝要他自己面對問題,自己說出來。聖經隻有記載說他跟上帝說“殺了我吧。”,沒有記載他跟上帝說話。

上帝看著以利亞,“你在這裡干什麼?你是大復興的主要角色,為什麼躲在山洞裡?”有一次我跟一群人到餐廳去,餐廳另一邊是一個酒吧,坐滿了人在那裡喝酒玩樂,音樂很響,我就要進去看看,陪我去的教會領袖就奇怪為什麼牧師要去那裡。我說我保証會在這裡找到遠離神的基督徒在這裡。因為如果你沒有被聖靈充滿,你就會被其他東西充滿。如果你不用上帝安慰你,你就會用酒來安慰。你總歸是要得安慰的,不是來到上帝面前,就是去酒吧買醉。

我就站在那裡看他們,甚至有員工站在吧台上跳舞,還一邊點酒。我走過去站在他們后面等著。他轉身看到我嚇了一跳,問我干嘛,我反問他在干什麼。“你不屬於這裡,這不是你蒙召該去的地方。”他靠在吧台上,滿手都是飲料。我說,“你怎麼了,失掉了對上帝的肯定,要到酒中去尋找自信。”他手裡拿著酒,周圍響起音樂,他開始哭泣,跟我講他的心碎了,因為有人跟他分手了。我說,“這幫不了你,你需要回到主的面前,回到你蒙召該去的地方。”

所以當上帝說,“以利亞,你在做什麼?”他要講的是,你怎麼將自己淪落到這個地步,我們的大復興需要你,你到那裡去了?我剛跟天使在說話,你怎麼就跑到洞穴裡來了?我的仆人以利亞需要做事情。“天上降下火來,殺了所有的先知,嚇到了那個可怕的皇后,你看看我的仆人以利亞,躲在洞穴裡干什麼呢?”

以利亞開始講他自己的故事,“隻有我一個人忠實,他們都想來殺我,我隻是想服事你,他們就要殺我,太不公平了。我不知道有這麼難,我不想再做組長了,太難了,我對他們好,可是他們都走光了,還講我的壞話。隻有我一個人忠心。”你躲在山洞裡怎麼會忠心?他真的很困惑,因為他壓抑的靈讓他困惑。上帝對他講,“事實上,還有七千個先知沒有向巴力屈膝。”“我不知道啊。”

上帝兩次跟他說,“以利亞你在這裡干什麼?以利亞你在這裡干什麼?”換句話說,你不屬於這裡,你需要回到你的任務上。上帝對他說,“回到你的任務上。”上帝讓他做什麼?“我要你興起門徒,我要你膏抹別人,我要你倍增你的服事,你一個人這樣做太久了,要有策略性的辦法,要興起別人,繼續這樣的服事。我會告訴你是誰,你都不用想會是誰,以利沙和耶戶。你投資在這些人身上,將你有的釋放在他們身上,你就會看到你做不完的工作,他們幫你做完。”

上帝顯明他的意圖,他要興起門徒,倍增服事,可是首先要回到自己的崗位。今晚的信息裡面,看到屬靈壓力的結果。那個打電話給我的牧師,極度的沮喪,我跟他說,“這是屬靈的壓力,屬靈的攻擊,你就像以利亞一樣坐在樹下,我會同你在一起,為你禱告。你需要站立起來,離開那個洞穴,回到你的任務裡,回到禱告裡,回到服事裡,回到做你該做事情的地方。”

我告訴他怎樣站起來禱告,怎樣認清這些屬靈的攻擊,直到你的靈完全的興起。要在靈裡面說話,宣告敵人被打敗了,然后再一次回去,開始服事。如果你這樣做,方言禱告,靈裡興起,對你的生命宣告上帝的話,面對魔鬼,面對攪擾你的靈,你就會突破。現在這個人有非常興旺的教會,因為他站起來了。他不是隻打給我一次電話,而是好幾次,每一次我都跟他講同樣的事。“從洞穴出來,回到你的任務中去,站起來禱告,對你的環境說出上帝的話,眼目再一次定睛在主身上。”他就改變了。

今晚我跟大家分享這個,是因為我感覺到好些人躲在洞穴裡。從外面來看,有些人什麼都好,可是心裡受傷了,心被打倒了,你的心退縮,失掉了異象。上帝在說,“你在這裡做什麼,你不屬於這個山洞,你是上帝大能的勇士。”

同樣的靈,勝過魔鬼,讓基督復活,就在你裡面要幫助你﹔不要孤立,不要退縮,不要專注在問題上﹔站起來,再一次調整視線,再一次連結,開始追求,上帝說你會突破。你看完整個故事,看見皇后的位置被拆毀,整個國被傾覆,上帝的國被建立。關鍵就在改變,就是要培訓新的門徒。



損失之後的盼望  

Wed 9 Oct 2013 « 返回頁首

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損失之後的盼望

各位請翻開聖經路加福音第七章11至16節,“過了不多時,耶穌往一座城去,這城名叫拿因,他的門徒和極多的人與他同行。將近城門,有一個死人被抬出來。這人是他母親獨生的兒子,他母親又是寡婦。有城裡的許多人同著寡婦送殯。主看見那寡婦就憐憫她,對她說,不要哭。於是進前按著杠,抬的人就站住了。耶穌說,少年人,我吩咐你起來。那死人就坐起,並且說話。耶穌便把他交給他母親。眾人都驚奇,歸榮耀與神說,有大先知在我們中間興起來了。”

耶穌到哪裡都有人跟著他,看他到底在做什麼。聖經中另外一個地方,耶穌說,“生命在我,復活也在我。”上帝以能力膏拿撒勒人耶穌基督,不管到哪兒跟人互動的時候,都顯明上帝的心和恩賜。

這個故事中的城名叫拿因,拿因原文的意思就是美麗美好,充滿青草的地方。這個地方從外貌看是很美好的,可是后面隱藏的是極大的憂傷,極大的壓力。人也是一樣,外面看很好很吸引人,可是心裡帶著極大的憂傷,難過,極大的失望。

今晚你在這裡,外表看可能很好,聖經說,神看的是內心。他看見你心裡的憂傷,看見你經歷了什麼。這個故事中特別的情況是死的是個年輕人。年輕人指的是下一代,代表的是未來,代表的是盼望,代表的是這個女子美好的未來。聖經說他的母親是個寡婦,已經失去丈夫了,受到了極大的傷痛。失掉能保護她的人,供應她的人,她隻剩一個盼望,就是她的兒子。她以他為榮,期待看著她的孩子長大。

她前面的盼望就是將來兒子會養她,供應她。她心中的夢想就是這個孩子的將來,夢想著他結婚生子,非常期待將來。

這個年輕人代表她的盼望,她的未來,她的產業,她的供應,她的保護,她的生命完全的寄托在這個年輕人身上。有一天不可思議的事情發生了,失掉丈夫之后再失掉了孩子。故事中看他已經長大成人了,可是卻生病死了。那一天所有未來的盼望都被奪走了,她非常震驚,以后會怎麼辦?好像沒有了未來,沒有了盼望,老了沒人照顧,不單隻是失掉了兒子,也失掉了對未來的夢想。

這個女人非常憂傷,沒人能夠安慰她,她為她自己的損失難過。憂傷是經歷損失的過程,除非有原因,不然不會憂傷。我們不會為不認識的陌生人憂傷,也不會為沒有連結的人憂傷。當我們失掉所珍愛的,才會憂傷。憂傷會有不同的階段,第一個階段就是震驚﹔不相信這件事會發生,看到這個孩子,不敢相信會發生這種事。第二個階段就是極大的憤怒﹔人們的東西被奪走了,常常會非常憤怒,但又不知道對誰憤怒。所以第三個階段就是怪罪﹔想要在當中找到出路。

憂傷中的人,可以是震驚,無法承認發生的事情﹔或者非常憤怒,怪罪別人,想為自己找一個出路。接下來就是憂郁和難過,流淚,最后隻好接納,調整自己的生命接受改變。這就是憂傷的整個過程,可能是在幾個小時內就經歷到所有的情緒,有些人從來沒有放下過憂傷,沒有正確處理這個憂傷,就鎖在憂傷裡了。

今晚有些人就鎖在憂傷裡,心裡有很深的憂傷。不同的人會經歷不同的事情。有些人憂傷是因為親近的人過世了,可能是母親或者是父親,對你很重要的人,你很憂傷因為他不在你生命裡了。離婚也會導致憂傷﹔兒女經歷父母離婚,會帶來極大的憂傷,因為他們真的失去了父母,他們在父母雙方的拉扯當中,他們對每一個人都很憤怒,不了解自己在憂傷裡面。

當人失掉盼望和夢想,他原來計劃的東西突然被奪走了。他原來期待升官的,突然別人搶走了位置,憂傷就進來了﹔你期待夢想可以實現,完全被奪走后,憂傷是很大的。如果不處理憂傷,人可能一生都在憂傷裡,一生都在憤怒裡,一生都在怪罪人。問題的根源就是沒有解決的憂傷。

我最近為一位女士禱告,她非常憤怒﹔我問她,“你在氣什麼?”她也不知道,她對每一樣事情都生氣。我說總有一個開始讓你生氣的地方吧,最后追溯發現她的爸爸在她很小的時候拋棄了她們,她深深的跟她媽媽連結在一起,后來媽媽突然去世了。我說你仍然在為失去媽媽而憂傷,你跟她太親了,她變成了你生命中的偶像,取代了上帝的位置。一旦你生命中的偶像被拿走,你就會變得很生氣。我們依靠的事物,成為我們偶像的事物,一旦被拿走或失敗的話,人們就會變得很憂傷,很憤怒。

憂傷是因為他們的依附被突然拿走。這個依附可能是人,也可能是一個夢想,可能是你親近的人發生車禍意外,死亡或者離婚。當人受到虐待,他就會憂傷,不管是受到身體或者性虐待的人,甚至是情緒,言語上的受虐待的人,他們有很大的憂傷。如果沒有處理憂傷,這人會在震驚中一直憂傷下去。對過去發生的事產生魂結,即死亡進來了。

像這樣的情況,很容易讓邪靈進入到你的生命。憂傷是整個過程和情緒,可是你不處理,憂傷的靈就進來了。你會一直憂傷,即使在快樂的場合中,都快樂不起來,好像憂傷一會兒又回來了,這就是有憂傷的靈。有的時候是死亡的靈,如果死亡的靈在心裡,這人就會麻木,覺得完全與人隔絕,也與自己隔絕,裡面完全的麻木,就是很深的憂傷,對未來絕望。

聖經告訴我們上帝是怎樣的﹔哥林多后書第一章上帝說他是賜一切安慰的神。當我們感到壓力,上帝渴望安慰我們,在一切患難中安慰我們,讓我們也能去安慰人。上帝顯明自己是一位安慰人的神﹔在你的憂郁中,親近你,幫助你﹔在你憂傷中陪著你,告訴你你不孤單。

當人在憂傷中,孤單是一個很大的問題。這個故事中的女士行在棺材的后面,全身穿的黑色的衣服,憂傷的靈在她身上,即使有很多人在旁邊,她是那裡最孤單的一個人。這群朋友安慰不了她,沒有人能夠安慰她,隻有耶穌才能進入到她的環境中安慰她。

聖經說上帝是賜一切安慰的主,他醫治傷心的人。羅馬書第十五章13節告訴我們,“但願使人有盼望的神,因信將諸般的喜樂平安,充滿你們的心,使你們借著聖靈的能力,大有盼望。”上帝安慰我們,他也將盼望賜給我們。上帝在我們痛苦時安慰我們,也給我們未來更好的盼望。當我們痛苦,上帝陪在我們身旁,他讓我們看見異象,未來是更好的。

上帝是行神跡的上帝。今晚的見証,我第一次遇見玉萍,她心中有很大的痛﹔我記得坐在那裡聽她做見証的時候,上帝跟我說話,“我要醫治她,我要安慰她。”我到了台上,牽著她的手為她禱告,上帝的靈就帶下極大的醫治。有很大的盼望,她開始去尋找她的母親,上帝是不是很神奇,原來全部死去的境況,再次有豐盛的生命。這就是我們上帝的偉大之處,他是恢復之主,他可以進入環境,讓死的活過來,再一次有盼望。

你可能喪失了,可能有挫敗,但生命中這一切不會長久﹔隻要讓基督進來,在憂傷中與你同行,再一次賜你異象,讓你有盼望有美好的未來。當你在上帝裡,未來是美好的,即使現在痛苦﹔可能你在憂傷的低谷裡,當有神跡在前面等著你,改變在等待著你,美好的未來在等著你,你不用活在絕望裡。

聖經說耶穌看著這個婦人,感到深深的憐憫。上帝看見這女人的孤單,她的 破碎,她的絕望,她的憂傷,他深深的感動了,要做點事情。這個女人什麼都沒有做,年輕人什麼都沒有做,是耶穌自己主動,他來到這婦人面前說,“不要哭。”請注意,她沒有任何理由停止哭泣,兒子死了,耶穌說“不要哭。”因為耶穌要做事了。換句話說,哭泣結束了,我要改變你周遭的環境了。憂傷結束了,我要行神跡了。你不需要留在這個境況裡。

耶穌處理她的心,處理她的痛,不要哭了,之后他手按著棺材。沒有人會去按死人的棺材的,這讓你受污穢。耶穌說,“少年人,起來。”死人就坐起來了,再一次回到他母親身邊。對人不可能的事,在神凡事都能。隻要你肯信,上帝能將你的低谷轉為生命的泉源。

耶穌願意來到這種絕望的境況,還有什麼比人死了更絕望的,耶穌進來恢復他的生命。我一定要跟大家分享一個故事,我的兒子大衛去到巴基斯坦,本來是邀請我去的,可是我太忙了,就差我兒子去了。他兩次帶著團隊過去,第二次去的時候,他站在台上,大概有一萬五千人,有人給他翻譯,他開始咳嗽就倒了下去,等他再站起來說話的時候,這個翻譯開始咳嗽然后就倒下去死掉了。翻譯死掉了很麻煩,沒辦法講下去了,我兒子站在他旁邊,命令死亡的靈離開,那個人就醒過來了,半個小時之后又繼續翻譯。

我兒子想可能沒有死吧,隻是倒下去而已,跟他們這一起的一個人是警察,看過很多死人﹔他檢查過這個人,他真的沒有生命跡象了,現在活過來了,是上帝讓他復活的。絕望的境況,哈利路亞。

上帝能夠進入你的環境裡,把安慰和盼望帶來﹔耶穌進到你的環境裡,你就不再孤單﹔上帝與你同在,他還工作,賜你有盼望的未來﹔他不希望你流淚,他希望你往前看,明天是更好的一天。

那一天從憂傷,難過開始,哀愁遍滿全城,最后以歡慶結束,每一個人都在慶祝。如果我在那裡,我會說,“你死的時候看到了什麼?你有沒有看見天堂?”那個年輕人會有很多的見証,講述上帝在他生命中所做的一切。

今晚我聽到那個見証的時候,我心裡好感動﹔上帝在死亡之處吹氣,帶出生命和盼望。母親盼望有另一個孩子,很多年活在痛苦和哀愁中﹔現在跟女兒團園了,害怕女兒不原諒她﹔但上帝早就遇見了她的女兒,她不再是死掉了,她活過來了。我們知道將女兒送出去收養的情況,我們也做過同樣的事,這一生都在為這個決定憂傷,痛苦讓你不知該怎麼辦。憂傷和死亡,在損失中難過。

當我們經歷這個的時候,我向耶穌打開我的心,我相信有一天他會將女兒帶回來。我很感動,這個媽媽送走的孩子遇見了耶穌,耶穌拿走了她身上的苦毒,拿走了她的憤怒,拿走了她的死亡,讓她活過來。在這之前我就見過她了,耶穌醫治她之后我幾乎都認不出她來了,她活過來了,因為耶穌處理了她的憂傷。上個主日見到她的媽媽是何等的喜樂,那個女子,被丈夫拋棄,隻好放棄自己的孩子。多年之后,上帝眷顧她,讓孩子回到她的身邊。

這就像我們剛剛講的故事一樣,聖經中的故事是兩千年前的事,是一個真實的母親,真實的兒子,真實的悲慘情況。你今晚聽到的見証也是真實的母親,失掉的女兒好像死了一樣,再一次活過來,回到母親身邊。耶穌仍然在行神跡,恢復人,醫治傷心的。



再造全新的我  

Thu 10 Oct 2013 « 返回頁首

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再造全新的我

我們來看這個故事,約翰福音第五章1至9節,“這事以后,到了猶太人的一個節期。耶穌就上耶路撒冷去。在耶路撒冷,靠近羊門,有一個池子,希伯來話叫作畢士大,旁邊有五個廊子。裡面躺著瞎眼的,瘸腿的,血氣枯干的,許多病人。因為有天使按時下池子攪動那水,水動之后,誰先下去,無論害什麼病,就痊愈了。在那裡有一個人,病了三十八年。耶穌看見他躺著,知道他病了許久,就問他說,你要痊愈嗎?病人回答說,先生,水動的時候,沒有人把我放在池子裡。我正去的時候,就有別人比我先下去。耶穌對他說,起來,拿你的褥子走吧。那人立刻痊愈,就拿起褥子來走了。那天是安息日。”

我們先看當時的情況,聖經描述在城邊上的羊門,就是羊進城的地方,那裡有好些個廊子,有個池子叫畢士大,好多需要醫治的人坐在那裡。聖經告訴我們耶穌是好牧人,耶穌說“我是好牧人。”另外一處說,“我們都如同羊走迷了路。上帝使用很多自然的情況幫助我們了解屬靈的事情,上帝用很多不同的方式來描述人是怎麼樣的,也有很多圖畫是描述他是如何的。

聖經描述人就如同羊,如果你不了解羊,這樣的描述對你來講沒有任何意義。如果我講騎摩托車的人,你就知道我在講什麼了,因為你見的很多這樣的人。講到摩托車,沒有地方可以比得上台灣,從沒有看過這麼多的。前幾次剛來的時候,摩托車嚇到我了。

我跟大家解釋一下羊。很多年前,我們到一個小地方,那裡有很多的牧場,很多的羊。我想要一隻小羊當寵物,好可愛,可是它們可愛的階段不久,很快就變大羊了。我從中學到了很多羊的事情。

羊有這樣一些特征,首先,羊完全沒有方向感。一旦看不見別的羊,它們就迷路了。如果你帶一隻貓到另外一個城市,它自己會跑回來找你。羊呢,你才轉個轉角,它就找不到路了。所以聖經以賽亞書第五十三章6節“我們都如羊走迷,各人偏行己路。”羊一旦迷路,就根本找不到家,它們需要牧人。人一樣,活在罪中就像走迷了的羊,我們找不到應走的路,我們需要牧人讓我們看見方向。

第二,羊很容易受到驚嚇。所以一隻羊,隻要很小的聲音,它就會趕快跑開了。就像人一樣,很容易被嚇到,新聞中各樣的事情都會讓他們害怕。聖經一直告訴我們,“不要怕,不要怕。”因為人很容易受到驚嚇。害怕讓我們不能跟隨神,與有信心相反。一開始尋找羊,如果它們被嚇到后就逃跑了,它們就迷路了。

第三,羊彼此跟隨。它們喜歡團體行動,青少年喜歡聚在一起,羊也是一樣。一旦一隻羊走,不管它知不知道要去哪兒,其他的羊都跟著它走。好像人一樣,跟隨時尚,跟著大眾。羊也是盲從的,如果你嚇到一隻羊開始跑,其他的羊也跟著它跑。

另外一點,當羊生病的時候,它們就孤立出來﹔如果你發現單獨一隻羊,它大概就是生病了。人也是這樣,當他們生病,有事情不對了,他們就不說話了,不打電話,不傳簡訊,不去教會,不來小組了。所以你要不斷的接觸,因為他們是羊,他們會走迷的,當他們生病了,就自己一個人躲開了。

還有一點,羊身上是有寄生虫的。它們吃的草上會有一些虫子跳上來,這些寄生虫是排除不了的,需要牧人幫助它們,因為它們吃的東西使它們裡面有寄生虫。人也是這樣,我們把生命向很多東西打開,邪靈就進來了,我們沒法將他們趕出去,需要牧人幫我們趕出去。

在新西蘭會有牧人來為羊灌腸,他們將一種化學的東西放進羊嘴裡,整個晚上羊一直咳一直咳,把裡面的虫子咳出來,因為藥殺死了虫子。有一次我來聚會,為人禱告,對邪靈講話的時候,那人一直咳。前幾天我們也為一個人禱告,他咳了幾個星期。看來這個藥很有效。

另外我們有一種蒼蠅,每年的特定時間就飛出來了,在羊背上,頭上或耳朵邊下蛋。這些蛋孵出后就變成小小的紅紅的蛆,很惡心,它們吃羊,吃到肉裡,或者從耳朵鑽進羊腦袋把羊弄瘋了。就像魔鬼一樣,把謊言撒在我們身上,如果你相信這個謊言,它就進入你腦中了,你被它弄瘋了,做很多荒唐的事情。

羊還有一點就是沒有防衛性。如果有人來侵犯它,它完全無法防衛,它們沒有尖的角,鋒利的牙齒,沒有能力保護自己。很像人,聖經將人比作羊,而魔鬼是來侵略的狼,它是來偷竊殺害的。當攻擊來臨的時候,羊受到很大的壓力,它們因為受到追殺而驚慌。新西蘭有時會有狗追羊群,咬它們,把它們扯爛,很大的壓力。一旦狗嘗到了血的味道,它們不吃羊,隻是把它殺了。有些狗嘗到了羊血的味道就開始這樣做,非常危險的狗,它追羊讓它流血致死。

魔鬼就像野狗,嗜血追趕人,摧毀他們的生命,讓他們流血受傷,罪咎羞愧,憂傷哀愁,受傷。如果你看見野狗走了,羊躺在草地上流血,這隻羊就沒救了,隻能殺了。同樣,如果你用屬靈的眼睛看,看見那些傷心的人,破碎的心,心裡充滿憂傷,迫切需要幫助,因為他們保護不了自己。

羊的形象是非常精准的形象,看見人在靈裡的境況,我們需要牧人。耶穌描述自己就是一個好牧人,願意為羊舍命。詩篇二十三篇就可以看出好牧人是如何做的。

另外有一點,羊吃的很好的時候,它們躺下來,如果躺得太久,它們就會站不起來,當它們站起來時就會頭暈又倒下去。所以當羊發生這種情況,躺太久自己起不來,需要牧人拉起它,扶著它站穩直到再次可以行走,躺太久會影響它的平衡。我們受造不是要躺在地上的,站不起來,不能動,不能服事神。不管什麼將你弄倒,不管什麼導致你躺下放棄,你躺的越久就會越難站起來。

很多事情會讓我們躺下,讓我們想放棄。我們被冒犯,我們失望,被人背叛,受傷害,我們期待的事情沒有發生﹔我們從上帝那裡退縮,不是在靈裡面保持活力站立,不是站在信心裡信靠,不是在上帝的計劃裡繼續往前,而是放棄拋棄了。很多人都是這樣,他們不是躺在地上,他們裡面躺下了,戰斗的精神沒有了,信心沒有了,他們裡面退縮了。

我們昨天講到一個人躲在洞穴裡,今天看到羊癱在地上起不來了。牧人來到羊群,不是定羊的罪,那樣是沒有用的,牧人幫羊站起來。

我們再來看這個故事,耶穌來到畢士大的池子,這個地方叫憐憫之處,好多人在那裡,有瞎眼的,瘸腿的,血氣枯干的,那些軟弱沒有力氣的人,沒有異象的人,不能行走的人,他們在等候,希望事情會改變。有一個人病了三十八年了,他躺在那兒,每天有人把他搬到那裡去,他就躺在那兒。三十八年真的是很久了,超過了人的半生了。耶穌看見這個人,就像看見你一樣,他就像羊站不起來一樣,沒有力氣,他需要神跡,需要神的能力來改變他。他身體上有東西不對勁了,聖經說他是疾病軟弱。

聖經說上帝有很多方法幫助我們,讓我們站起來。耶穌看見他,問他一個很有意思的問題,“你想要痊愈嗎?”這是一個很奇怪的問題,上帝問問題的時候,不是他不知道答案,他要你思想,他讓你看見自己的生命。這個人太習慣這種狀況了,他整個的生活形態都是這樣,無力的,無助的。耶穌問他你要完全嗎?你知道答案是什麼?隻有一個答案,就是“要啊!”他沒有這樣說,他說出來的是上帝想要怎樣幫助他,上帝要從他裡面帶出來他預備好的東西。耶穌問他想不想要痊愈?要!

當耶穌問他的時候,他的想法都是受害者的想法,很多借口,“太多人,沒有人幫我,天使來的時候,我太遲了。”等等。他要怪罪每一個人,不斷的找借口。他整個的想法都是受害者,除了借口和怪罪,什麼都沒有。耶穌問“你要你的生命不一樣嗎?”你要不要這個選擇。

上帝給我們自由意志,給我們能力作選擇,你現在活著的生命都是你過去所做決定的結果。不都是因為那些壞事,而是因為你選擇如何回應。上帝給你能力選擇如何生活。耶穌死在十字架上的時候,他打破了罪的權勢,他從死裡復活,打敗了魔鬼,他讓每一個人有可能不再受罪的轄制,不再受邪靈的控制,你想不想要痊愈?你想要自由嗎?

現在問題就在我們自己了﹔所有需要該做的,耶穌都在十字架上完成了,你想要痊愈嗎?你要做這個決定嗎?這選擇是回應神,相信他的話﹔你想要痊愈嗎?你想要改變嗎?如果你想要不一樣的未來,你需要開始做不一樣的選擇。“哎呀,我受的教育不多。”那你開始多學習。“我對這個很生氣。”你可以選擇饒恕。“發生的事情我真的放不掉。”你可以選擇放下。你可以找一些輔導,尋求一些幫助。

“你想不想痊愈?你想不想改變?”“哦,你不了解我丈夫這個人,他很愛喝酒,他對我很不好,所有我這樣憂郁。”

“你想不想要痊愈?”是你選擇要不要發生,我們有選擇的能力。

耶穌死在十字架上,打破了罪的權勢,讓你可以作選擇來接受他,得著打破罪的能力,選擇跟從他,過不一樣的生命。每一天你醒來,都有作選擇的能力﹔每一天你醒來,都可以選擇跟上帝同行,選擇今天的態度﹔選擇正面的態度或者負面的態度,選擇相信神或者選擇繼續留在挫敗裡。

“你想不想痊愈?”這是耶穌說的。他的生命帶出他心中的境況。耶穌對他說,“起來,得醫治。”他站起來了。后來耶穌對他說,“不要繼續犯罪,不然更糟的事情會發生。”換句話說,耶穌把他生命的境況跟罪放在一起了,耶穌不光是處理疾病,不光是處理邪靈,還要處理生命中問題的根源:罪,罪的權勢讓我們跟上帝隔絕。

“你想要痊愈嗎?”完全從你做決定開始,也是一條路程﹔痊愈的路程,從你靈裡選擇接受耶穌基督開始。上帝把靈放在你裡面,讓你選擇跟上帝連結﹔進入這一條路程,需要做很多的決定,每一天選擇讓上帝進入到你生命,選擇同意他的說法,放掉你過去的想法,過去的方式。與耶穌同行,是痊愈的路程,每一天跟他連結,讓他的話語進入到我們心中,我們開始改變。

你可以在任何一點停下來,躺下﹔我發現很多人,有些人不認識基督,他們裡面躺下了,被生命打敗了,依靠別人,活的像一個受害者。難過的是看見這樣的基督徒,他們來到耶穌面前開始接受與耶穌同行的路。事情發生了,有人冒犯了你,有人讓你失望,負面的事情發生了,你不是站立穩,信靠神,求神幫助你處理,而是在裡面躺下了,起不來了。耶穌今天要幫助你,要對你的生命說話,讓你再一次站起來,再一次成全你想要服事的願望,再一次在生命中與神同行。



伸出手得醫治  

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伸出手得醫治

我們翻開聖經馬可福音,有很多神奇的生命改變的故事。馬可福音第三章1至6節,“耶穌又進了會堂。在那裡有一個人枯干了一隻手。眾人窺探耶穌,在安息日醫治不醫治,意思是要控告耶穌。耶穌對那枯干了一隻手的人說,起來,站在當中。又問眾人說,在安息日行善行惡,救命害命,那樣是可以的呢?他們都不作聲。耶穌怒目周圍看他們,憂愁他們的心剛硬,就對那人說,伸出手來。他把手一伸,手就復了原。法利賽人出去,同希律一黨的人商議,怎樣可以除滅耶穌。”

這裡講的這個人見証了耶穌基督的大能,也是聖經中很少提到的耶穌生氣了,我們來看看從中能學到什麼?是什麼讓上帝生氣了?

聖經說,“耶穌來是要我們得著生命,而且是更豐盛的生命。”上帝要在我們裡面恢復屬靈的生命和活力,上帝創造我們是要與他有關系的,跟他連結的,他的生命借我們流露。神是靈,他設計我們的靈跟他的靈結合,他的生命借我們流露,他的性情借我們流露。愛,喜樂,平安,他的生命創意在我們生命中流露。

所以,耶穌說,“我來,是要讓你們得生命,而且是更豐盛的。”人犯罪,上帝的生命就不住在他們裡面,跟上帝的關系就被破壞了,在靈裡面分開了,沒法在靈裡面有生命的流露,隻能靠魂和體來活了。罪和疾病進入世界。

耶穌說,“從你的腹中流出活水的江河來。”他還講將聖靈賜給人。上帝渴望將他的靈放在你裡面,用他的生命充滿你,讓生命從你流露出去,有創造性的,帶著愛,帶著上帝的性情,在社會的每一個領域裡擴展上帝的國。

教會是上帝興起的一群人,是上帝加添能力的信徒,是被聖靈充滿的,動員起來服事上帝。耶穌來到會堂,很多人在那裡敬拜,耶穌注意到一個人,他的手是枯干的,很可能是腦部受損,讓身體的一部分枯干癱瘓,問題可能是從大腦發生的。結果是他的手枯干了,沒有生命了,整個縮起來了。就像一個水果不小心掉到床底下或者角落裡,很久之后才發現它,裡面所有的水分,生命都沒有了,整個萎縮枯干了。生命沒有了,就完全不一樣了。

這個人的手枯干了,常常一個人的手枯干后就會縮起來了。當你碰到這種人,他們手常常是縮在裡頭,想要藏起來。他們通常的問題是:第一,他們有很大的羞愧,想要隱藏他們的問題。凡是羞愧的東西,我們就沒有能力處理它﹔沒有能力呢,就覺得羞愧。亞當夏娃犯罪,他們感覺到羞愧,就遮掩藏起來了。我們生命裡任何領域變得萎縮了,不對了,我們就退縮藏起來。

到處都是這樣的人,當生命中有地方不對了,當東西沒有正常運作,我們常常想要去遮掩隱藏,最不想讓別人將這個指出來。這個人手枯干了,首先是身體上的問題,聖經如果講到的是右手,這是有含義的,聖經中的右手是要祝福的手,右手是能力之手,右手是你工作之手。他的右手枯干了,代表祝福臨不到他身上,能力不能進入到生命。

右手枯干就象征這個人的生命枯干了,沒有生命,沒有祝福,隻剩咒詛了,邪靈在運行。這人不能工作,在生命中不能生產,不能做事,他所有的潛能受到限制。當這人的手枯干,就沒有祝福,沒有生命,無法發揮潛能,他生命的成就就受到限制。他的手沒了,隻有一隻手怎麼工作呢?生命就受到極大的拘謹和限制。

聖經中的右手也象征服事,服事人。所以枯干的手代表他的服事開始萎縮了。我們看見了三個層面,第一,他有身體上的問題。他的情況需要醫治和恢復。這個故事中上帝的心是要醫治他。第二,看見一個沒有蒙福的生命,生命枯干了,是受咒詛的。象征這個生命在羞愧中遮蓋,所有潛能受到限制。第三,象征一個信徒的服事萎縮了,可能他曾經做的很好,很熱情的服事上帝,曾經看到果子,曾經為上帝成就很大的事。但有事情發生了,他的手枯干了,沒有像以前一樣的服事了,隻能退縮了,不再有生命活力,好像進入了一個羞愧的境況。

耶穌看見這個人,他的心感動了。有很多事情會造成我們的生命萎縮,很多事情讓我們枯干往回退縮。失望可能讓你變得干枯,聖經告訴我們“憂傷的靈使骨枯干。”我們的心碎,生命就萎縮了,沒有喜樂,沒有活力,一直想退縮。

很多人來自破碎的家庭,他們的魂萎縮了,他們沒有喜樂的生命,生命一直有問題。憂傷會讓我們的靈萎縮,不饒恕,苦毒會讓你的魂萎縮,你裡面枯干了,因為你為別人做的事情憤怒,對不好的待遇憤怒﹔你的父親錯待你,母親錯待你,其他人錯待你。當人憤怒受傷,一直帶著不饒恕和苦毒,他的心就枯干了。當人去恨人的時候,心中充滿了仇恨和懷怨,他的魂就會枯干。上帝造我們不要心裡帶著這些負面的東西﹔有這些負面的東西,心就會萎縮﹔一開始看不到,因為它藏在裡面,一段時間之后,苦毒的影響,不饒恕,仇恨,會影響這個人,造成他們退縮。

另一個讓魂萎縮的東西是恐懼,也讓人退縮。當我們害怕,恐懼抓住我們生命,我們就退縮不敢面對事情,我們裡面封閉起來,好像枯干手的那個人一樣,我們退縮到自己裡面了。記得我們講以利亞的故事,當他面對恐懼,害怕的時候,整個人退縮逃到山洞裡去了。很多人會這樣,當在害怕的境況中,我們不用信心膽量去面對,受到驚嚇就退縮了,我們的服事就枯干了。

提摩太后書第一章6節,保羅寫信給提摩太,提摩太的服事萎縮了,他生命中有很大能的恩賜,他有很大能的聖靈的恩賜,可以改變生命的,可以把神的生命帶出來的,可是卻隱藏萎縮,沒有運行﹔因為恐懼,那些年長的人驚嚇他,恐懼抓住了他的心,他不能放膽的起來,他退縮了﹔他看起來一樣,但裡面的服事卻退縮了,因為害怕和驚嚇,不敢有放膽的行為,不敢放膽跟隨神,不敢勇敢服事主。

失望也會讓你枯干,失望也會讓你退縮。這是我知道的一件事,一旦退縮,覺得這個情況丟臉,你知道你沒有盡力,你知道你被打敗了。可能是性犯罪,在你生命中經歷的一些事情好像無法擺脫﹔那種犯罪感讓你失掉了權柄,你在服事中就開始退縮了。有很多不同的方式讓我們的服事萎縮,或者生命開始枯干,很多枯干的人迫切需要上帝的觸摸。來自破碎的家庭,被虐待的人﹔在感情中受苦的人,他們的魂都失散了﹔他們真的從生命中退縮下來了,憂傷,受傷,孤單,有時想自殺,有時憂郁。

在這個聚會裡,耶穌看見這個人,他做的事情很有意思。他馬上叫出這個人,這個人可能最不想的事情就是被人指出來。耶穌說,“站起來。”那人就站起來了,每一個人都看著他,他試著把手藏起來。聖經說,耶穌周圍看,他非常生氣,他裡面受到攪擾。很有意思,耶穌生氣了,是什麼讓他生氣的?他裡面憂愁。當我們憂愁,是因為有些東西被奪走了,失喪了。因為你失掉一個人或者失掉一個寵物而憂傷,因為失掉工作而憂傷。

耶穌為其他事情而憂愁﹔他因為永生上帝的教會失掉對人的愛,失掉要看見人得完全的渴望﹔那裡都是有需要的人,他們是律法的,論斷的,承受律法的重擔﹔沒有上帝的生命像活水在他們身體流動。人們受到壓制,要承受律法,一直被人定罪。耶穌憂愁當時的宗教系統注重論斷和指控,而不是愛和醫治,這個宗教系統根本沒有代表上帝。它宣稱代表上帝,他說“我們會看見”,但他們是瞎眼的,隻看見自己的想法,對人一點幫助沒有。

上帝禁止我們讓生命變得無用,無法幫忙,我們就開始論斷,到處找人的錯,而沒有看見人都是按上帝的形象造的。領袖更願意找人的錯誤,而不願意醫治傷心的人,醫治生病的人,他們失掉了方向,可是卻說“我們知道方向”。

當耶穌四周觀看,看見教會的捆綁,他很憂愁,對這些宗教領袖很生氣。耶穌挑戰他們,安息日可不可以醫治?他們不回答。安息日是為人設立的,是要醫治得安息的。耶穌就對枯干手的人說,他讓他做兩件事,第一,站起來,離開你躲藏之處,離開羞愧之處,把問題帶到亮處來,讓每一個人都看到。他當然羞愧了,當然他想藏起來,當然他很丟臉,可是上帝覺得丟臉的是這些宗教領袖們。

“站起來,站起來,不要藏在群眾中。”我想他不會坐在第一排,大概躲在后面的角落中。耶穌說,“我看見你枯干的手了,站起來。”那人站起來了。這是第一步,你要與神調對頻道,承認自己的境況,別再隱藏,別再遮掩,站起來﹔做出這個決定來回應耶穌,下定決心對耶穌說“我願意”。把這個可怕的情況帶到眾人眼前,照他的能力去做,站起來,戰勝對人的恐懼。

之后耶穌又讓他做一件事,命令他伸出手來﹔他在生理上是做不到的,需要信心回應耶穌講的話,當你照著耶穌所說的去做,就顯出你的信心來,真正的信心是可以看得見的。他開始伸出手,最不可思議的事情發生了,原來枯干的手,已經萎縮的手,當他伸出來的時候,他感覺到生命流到裡面,手開始活起來了,肌肉開始恢復了。他把手伸出來,手活過來了,原來死的,現在活過來了,他不再隱藏了,他告訴每一個人,是上帝的能力釋放他得自由。

如果你生命枯干了,上帝要醫治你,將他的生命放進你裡面﹔如果你的服事枯干了,上帝要恢復你,但是你要做一些事情。在這個故事中有兩件事,第一,站起來,不要再隱藏這個情況了,把它帶到大家面前,帶到耶穌面前。第二,要做做不到的事情,伸出來,當你相信而伸出來,上帝就開始運行﹔在伸出來的過程中上帝就運行。

聖經中經常看見耶穌命令人做一些事,告訴瞎子去池子裡去洗,他就看見了。叫那個大麻風的回去讓祭祀看,當他走的時候就得醫治了。跟那個瞎子說往上看,你看見什麼?他就看見了。上帝每次都要我們做一些事情。



属灵的眼盲  

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属灵的眼盲

請翻開聖經馬可福音第十章46至52節,“到了耶利哥。耶穌同門徒並許多人出耶利哥的時候,有一個討飯的瞎子,是底買的兒子巴底買,坐在路旁。他聽見是拿撒勒的耶穌,就喊著說,大衛的子孫耶穌阿,可憐我吧。有許多人責備他,不許他作聲,他卻越發大聲喊著說,大衛的子孫哪,可憐我吧。耶穌就站住,說,叫過他來。他們就叫那瞎子,對他說,放心,起來,他叫你啦。瞎子就丟下衣服,跳起來,走到耶穌那裡。耶穌說,要我為你作什麼。瞎子說,拉波尼,我要能看見。耶穌說,你去吧。你的信救了你了。瞎子立刻看見了,就在路上跟隨耶穌。”

故事的開始就是耶穌來到耶利哥城,耶利哥城是一個多年被咒詛的城。在那個城裡有一個人叫巴底買,就是底買的兒子,意思就是秘密的,隱藏的,在那個家族中有一些秘密的事情。巴底買是一個瞎子,看不見東西,活在黑暗的世界裡。他坐在路旁乞討,希望有人幫助他。

瞎眼改變了他的生命,改變了他人生的做法,他無法追尋他心裡想做的事,追尋他的夢想。他隻能坐在路邊依靠別人幫助他活下來,他是一個乞丐,他必須要穿著乞丐的制服,披著乞丐袍,表示他是一個乞丐。但是今天他做了一件事情讓耶穌停步,我們剛才讀的故事中寫道是什麼讓耶穌停步呢?

這是耶穌最后一次到耶利哥,他正往耶路撒冷去,往十字架的路上走。就在這一天有一個人的生命被改變了,因為他遇見了耶穌。我們先來看看這人的狀況,這人是瞎眼的,沒有視力,可能是因為身體上的原因而造成的天生的瞎眼,但是還有其他形式的瞎眼,例如屬靈的瞎眼。聖經說耶穌將聖靈降臨到他身上,恢復了他視力。換句話說,就是讓看不見的人可以看見了。

這個故事不單隻是讓瞎眼的得醫治了,而是耶穌打開人的心,帶領他從黑暗的世界來到光明的世界。“請每一個人都閉上眼睛”﹔當我們閉上眼睛,大部分的世界都是黑暗的,如果將你的手放在眼睛上,就會更暗了。想象一下你這樣離開會堂回家,你有一些記憶,但是你不知道你會遇見什麼障礙,會有什麼危險,因為你看不見。你可以想象在這個黑暗的世界中怎樣找到回家的路,如果黑暗是永久的,你該怎樣過活。沒有色彩,沒有太陽,看不見任何東西,隻有黑暗,而且無法脫離黑暗。

現在打開眼,看看你的周圍是何等的美麗,你的視力是何等的重要。聖經告訴我們上帝的國是明亮的國度,是我們可以清楚看見的國度,這個國度的本質就是愛。聖經也有描述撒旦的國度,撒旦是黑暗國度的國王,當你進到黑暗的國裡,你的屬靈的眼睛是瞎的,屬靈的黑暗中看不見,看不見要去哪兒,看不見路上會遇見什麼,看不見危險。

聖經告訴我們,耶穌來是讓我們脫離黑暗的國度,脫離屬靈的黑暗,進到光明的國度,我們可以看見,看見生命改變了,看見人改變了,能夠明白永生,所有的事情都改變了。隻要你從黑暗的國度出來,進到光明的國度。

有很多事情會造成屬靈的黑暗,我們這裡會講幾個,請翻開約翰一書第二章9至11節,“人若說自己在光明中。卻恨他的弟兄,他到如今還是在黑暗裡。愛弟兄的就是住在光明中,在他並沒有絆跌的緣由。惟獨恨弟兄的是在黑暗裡,且在黑暗裡行,也不知道往哪裡去,因為黑暗叫他眼睛瞎了。”

你看到聖經中講到仇恨。仇恨是一種心裡的問題,當人們受傷,他們的心就不願意饒恕,因為不饒恕就會產生苦毒和仇恨。我們經常看不見仇恨,但是它會彰顯在我們的生命裡。一個人心裡有仇恨,就很難去愛人,他們可能裝成很好的樣子,但那個愛是不真實的。如果心中有恨,愛就不可能流露出來觸摸別人。

更不好的是,恨會使你瞎眼,你無法看見如何跟人建立關系,仇恨會在你周圍產生黑暗。不難想象仇恨是來自撒旦的,他的國度就是黑暗的國度。如果一個人有仇恨,他們就會被仇恨弄瞎眼睛,無法清楚的看見,也無法作出正確的決定。他們沒有好的人際關系,因為他們看不清楚。

如果你長在一個混亂的家庭中,會產生憂傷和仇恨,你不用為你父母的行為負責,但你要負責的是如何在心裡面對問題,願意放手﹔如果心裡有恐懼憤怒抓住你,這就是你的責任。我們需要了解的是,如果你將對家庭的仇恨留在心裡,對父親的仇恨,對母親的仇恨,甚至有時是仇恨自己,就會使你瞎眼,影響你跟人建立美好的關系,你總是透過你仇恨的眼光來看別人的行為。

聖經告訴我們有仇恨在心裡的,行在黑暗中,無法看見,因為仇恨弄瞎了他的心眼。如果一個人恨他的雙親,有可能仇恨也會轉向他的兒女。有些人有仇恨憤怒的經歷,可能會是從歷代祖先傳下來的。一個人從小長大時仇恨父母,成年后也會恨他的兒女,仇恨像一個河流從家族的血脈流下去,世世代代在黑暗中。這是因為缺乏愛,愛觸摸人的心,愛使我們彼此相連。

缺乏愛,使我們受傷。仇恨不隻有一種方式表達,它有多種的表達方式。聖經告訴我們,仇恨會引起謀殺,可以確認的是謀殺的誘因就是仇恨。有人被激怒,憤怒上升就會引起謀殺。約翰一書第三章14,15節講,“我們因為愛弟兄,就曉得是已經出死入生了。沒有愛心的,仍住在死中。凡恨他弟兄的,就是殺人的。你們曉得凡殺人的,沒有永生存在他裡面。”仇恨弟兄的人就是謀殺者。仇恨弟兄的人就行在黑暗中。

謀殺者就是取走別人生命的人,導致謀殺的原因就是仇恨。仇恨的表現就是對人的暴力行為,可能是身體上的暴力行動,也可能是憤怒的言語。當一個人非常憤怒的時候,你會感到害怕,因為背后有謀殺的靈,你能真實的感受到他控制不了的憤怒。

我們被設計不是要仇恨人,不是活在仇恨中﹔我們被設計的是活在愛中。當心中有恨,我們無法清楚的看見,會對人有不好的反應,想要傷害人,人們可以用話語傷害人,當你走開,覺得生命被吸干了,感到痛苦,需要時間復原。

另一種仇恨的形式被稱為冷漠的愛,不是從神而來的愛。從神來的愛充滿了溫暖,亮光,溫情,而冷漠的愛則是從封閉的心裡出來﹔他們非常有禮貌,不會做不好的事,但是感覺不到愛,心是冷的。行為是無可挑剔的,但感受不到愛。冷漠的愛是因為心裡有仇恨,表面假裝沒事,他沒有體會神的愛。

聖經非常清楚的告訴我們,有仇恨在心裡,就會使我們瞎眼,看不清關系,會引導你進入黑暗,影響你的人際關系。聖經告訴我們邪靈會導致屬靈的黑暗。在哥林多前書第四章4節,這世界的王弄瞎了我們的心眼,以至於神的光進不來。

另外一個導致屬靈黑暗的原因是,就是邪靈的工作。聖經告訴我們這世界的王就是邪靈,他弄瞎了我們的心眼,使我們看不見,不了解。當你跟他們分享耶穌基督的時候,他們不明白,他們會說“我看不見”,這就是屬靈的盲眼。這就是為什麼我們要為不信主的人禱告,打破黑暗的權勢。我們禱告除去屬靈的黑暗,禱告挪走邪靈的影響力,禱告有清晰的心思意念,看見真理,擁抱真理。

另一個導致屬靈盲眼的原因就是驕傲。聖經啟示錄第三章17節,“你說,我是富足,已經發了財,一樣都不缺。卻不知道你是那困苦,可憐,貧窮,瞎眼,赤身的。”這裡講的是教會中的人。驕傲就是自我為中心,驕傲有兩方面,第一,覺得自己自高自傲,無人可比﹔如此自愛,以至於看不見其他人。驕傲的人看到的全部都是自己,當你跟一個驕傲的人在一起的時候,你會覺得自己一點價值都沒有,因為他們全部的關注都是自己。你跟他們談話的時候,你沒有什麼機會講話,他們全講完了,都是有關他們自己的。

驕傲的另一種面貌就是剛剛相反,“我一點價值都沒有。”這人非常的自我為中心,總是想別人會怎樣看我,我要人們都喜歡我。所有這些人的驕傲都會在我們周圍產生屬靈的黑暗,使我們眼瞎看不見。

還有一個導致瞎眼的就是苦毒的冒犯,當有人冒犯我的時候,我心裡不原諒他,這也使我們看不清問題,因為我們總是定睛在被冒犯這件事上。一個女孩被父親侵犯就很容易被其他的男人冒犯。一位男孩被母親冒犯也會很容易被其他女人冒犯。

這些事情都會使我們眼瞎,沒法看清楚。巴底買瞎眼,他在乞討。乞討就是向別人伸手,希望他給予,滿足你的需要,很多人這樣做。如果你看不清上帝在你身上的作為,你就需要其他人的肯定來認同你﹔如果你看不清上帝對你說的話,你的價值,你的天賦,你的目標,你就希望其他人能告訴你,肯定你。你希望利用這樣的關系使你感覺更好,需要這種關系能夠告訴你是受歡迎的,你很好。這種依賴的關系是非常不健康的。

如果我們心中有論斷,也會使我們瞎眼。馬太福音第七章5節中,耶穌談到論斷。當你論斷一個人的時候,你就無法看清楚。我們用許多不同的方式論斷人,如按照性別來論斷人,女人經常這樣做,“所有女人都像這樣。”或者“所有男人都那樣。”還有以種族論斷人。所以如果心中有論斷,就不能清楚的看見,也影響我們的生命。

我們來看巴底買會如何﹔他想要不一樣,他聽說耶穌經過,這對他來講意義重大﹔他聽說過耶穌所做的事情,他聽說耶穌是救主,他聽到耶穌行的神跡,他聽說耶穌幫助人,他聽說耶穌從不拒絕人,他聽到耶穌從邪靈中釋放人得自由,從疾病中釋放,巴底買的信心起來了,他希望他的人生不一樣,他希望上帝的大能臨到,上帝的權能影響他的人生,改變他的人生。“我不要再瞎眼了,我不要再坐在黑暗裡了”。

以賽亞書第四十二章7節說,坐在黑暗中的人就像坐在監牢裡一樣。屬靈的黑暗就像監牢一樣影響你的生命,擄掠你,讓你無法成功。如果你驕傲,就限制了你,捕捉了你,你仇恨的 心佔領了你。如果你在靈裡面是被虜的,你就在黑暗的監牢裡,你需要尋找人來幫助你。巴底買說“我受夠了,我要耶穌改變我,我不想再在這裡待下去了。

大部分的人會維持現狀,不想改變,不管有多痛苦,也不要承受改變的痛苦。但巴底買不同,他想信耶穌能夠改變他 ,所以當他聽到耶穌經過,他開始大喊。如果你厭倦了活在屬靈的黑暗中,厭倦了呆在屬靈的監牢裡,厭倦了祈求別人來幫助你,向耶穌伸出你的手。巴底買是這樣做的,他大呼,“耶穌,大衛的兒子,憐憫我。”他用大衛的兒子這個稱呼,就是即將到來的彌賽亞。“耶穌,我知道你救人,我知道你能夠打破罪的權勢,打破魔鬼的權勢,我知道你能夠改變我,耶穌!”

眾人是怎樣講的呢?很多人對他講,小聲點,不要出聲,安靜的呆在那兒吧。大眾一點都不感興趣你的人生爭戰,他們隻是想避免受到攔阻,避免屬靈的噪音,也就是他們在反對巴底買的信心。沒有記錄有任何人是邪惡的,巴底買有信心,他的信心不是沉默的。當你有了信心,你總是要顯露出來的,這人的信心在兩個方面顯露出來:

第一,他大聲的呼叫耶穌。

第二,當人們阻止他,他持續不停的叫。當人們想要攔阻他時,他就更有信心,大聲的叫喊。當有一大群人的時候,會有很多噪音,耶穌聽見了他的聲音,停下來,他聽到的是信心的呼聲,他聽出了不同。耶穌不是隻聽見眾人的聲音,他能分辨出那獨一的聲音。因為那人的信心和持續不停的呼叫。

有時我們禱告沒有立刻從神那裡得到答案,聖經有很多這樣的故事﹔當你向神呼求的時候,可能你也不是立刻得到解答﹔可能有許多人想要讓你沮喪,但是信心永遠不被打倒﹔我們要一直大聲呼求,更大聲呼求,越多的攔阻就會呼叫的越大聲。

耶穌要求帶他來到面前,群眾立刻改變了,耶穌不是呼叫埋怨的人,耶穌呼叫的是有信心的人。巴底買做了什麼呢?他把乞丐衣服全部脫掉了,起來到耶穌面前。那件乞丐服是有象征意義的,它是正式的乞討的制服,就像一個批准乞討的証書。當他丟掉這件乞丐服,代表他的生命將會完全不同了,他就是上帝行神跡的那個人,因為耶穌叫他到前面去。

這個乞丐服代表了什麼呢?

第一,代表他舊有的生活方式。當他丟掉這件衣服,他就改變了,聖經告訴我們這就是悔改。我整個的人生要完全改變了,因為我來到耶穌面前,他呼叫我上前來。我不再活在黑暗中,不再貧窮,不再完全依靠別人的憐憫了,他的生活要完全改變了。

第二,乞丐服代表了限制。就是他原來的生命是受限的,因為黑暗所以受限,因為不信而受限﹔很多人都是受限的,因為他們不想像他們自己﹔很多人受限不是因為神,而是因為你心中對你自己沒有信心。

箴言第二十三章7節,“因為他心怎樣思量,他為人就是怎樣。”所以你相信你在撒旦的權勢下,你就生活在受限和黑暗中﹔你不相信你能的時候,你就會受限了﹔你不相信你可以做好任何事情,你就活在受限中。

不管是什麼讓你受限的,將它丟掉吧,悔改就是丟掉的意思,我把我對人生的看法完全改變了。乞丐服代表的第三個意義是,他人生的憂傷和痛苦。每一次當他穿上乞丐服,都會提醒他的受傷,許多人仇視他,責罵他,取笑他,捉弄他,偷他的錢。

許多人帶著傷害,悲傷,痛苦,就像穿上乞丐服一樣﹔很多人傷害他,他希望人人都同情他,他抱著他的傷痛的乞丐服向人乞討。

當他來到耶穌面前,他決定他要改變﹔不僅如此,這件乞丐服給他安全感,他可以不用完全丟掉它,萬一耶穌弄不好怎麼辦?需要一個退路嗎?很多人來到耶穌面前是抱有這個心態的。但是巴底買完全沒有想過,他完全脫掉袍子,來到耶穌面前。耶穌問他,“你要什麼?”“我要能看見。”正是正確的答案。

我們看到另外一個跛腿的人,當耶穌問他“你要什麼?”他有一大堆的埋怨,他沒有給出正確的答案。

巴底買立刻回答“我要看見。”所以當我們來到耶穌面前,不要埋怨,不要找借口,像巴底買一樣干脆的回答“我要看見。”耶穌說,“因為你的信心,你就得醫治。”立刻眼睛開了,黑暗不見了,他成為了耶穌的門徒,跟隨耶穌。從前這人是在黑暗的監獄中,現在看見了,他把乞丐服丟掉了,他的整個人生改變了,他不用再乞討了,他不用再受限了。他第一個看見的是什麼?耶穌!他就跟隨耶穌了。

耶穌來將我們從屬靈的黑暗中拯救出來,他來改變我們的人生,去除一切的限制,醫治傷心的人,給我們真正的安全感,帶領我們過一個美好的人生。在這個故事裡,耶穌最后一次經過耶利哥,有一個人擋住了耶穌,神跡改變了他的生命。

數百人中,隻有一個人擋住了耶穌,數百人隻是觀看,他們沒有信心,隻有一個人,丟掉他的袍子,相信耶穌會改變他。就像他期望的,耶穌改變了他。



由占卜中得自由  

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由占卜中得自由

請翻開聖經約翰福音第十章27,28節,“我的羊聽我的聲音,我也認識他們,他們也跟著我。我又賜給他們永生。他們永不滅亡,誰也不能從我手裏把他們奪去。”在這段信息中,耶稣把自己比作牧羊人,人就像羊一樣。

這裏耶稣說了三件事情,一,我的羊認得我的聲音。我們曾經養過一只羊,他很快就認得了我的聲音。如果你懂羊,你就知道它是認聲音的。耶稣說,“我的羊聽我的聲音,我也認識他們”,這裏講的是一種關系,我認識他們,他們跟從我。每一個人在生命中都跟從一些東西,你可能跟著群衆,跟著流行,跟著電視,跟著媒體。人們都是在跟著一些東西,只是常常自己不了解。

我們生命中可能會有壓力,讓我們跟從,我們喜歡在人群中,跟羊一樣,羊也是喜歡群聚的。耶稣說我的羊聽我的聲音,代表我們跟從基督,跟隨主的關鍵就是有能力聽從他的聲音。這世上有很多的聲音,很多聲音一直壓迫你,要抓你的注意力,要你的錢,要你的心。上帝創造我們是要我們活在跟他的關系裏,我們都是屬靈的,在靈裏有一個部分需要上帝來充滿。沒有神的時候就去找別的東西了,可能聽人的聲音,也可能聽邪靈的聲音。上帝要我們今天開始聽他的聲音,回應他的聲音。

神做了應許,我們如果跟著他,我們不會活在黑暗裏,我們會得著光,他的生命在我們裏面。耶稣邀請每一個人來跟著他,在生命中的某一個階段要做這個決定,不再讓罪帶領我們,不再讓群衆帶領我們,不再讓邪靈帶領我們,做決定跟從耶稣。

耶稣說,“跟從我,跟從我。凡跟從我的,不再在黑暗裏行,他們得著永生的光。”今天有很多人,他們的生命中有黑暗,苦毒,仇恨的黑暗;憤怒,不饒恕的黑暗;或者各樣罪惡的黑暗。聖經說,神的國是光明的國,魔鬼的國是黑暗的國。耶稣應許我們,如果跟從他,我們的生命就滿是活力,開始發光,看起來不一樣,講話不一樣,活的不一樣。他說,“你不會行在黑暗裏。”

神說當你跟他同行,跟從他的帶領,上帝的靈會幫助你處理生命中的黑暗,各樣受傷憤怒的黑暗,憂傷,苦毒和失望。我們需要決定到底誰來帶領我們。人們都在尋找方向,不幸的是我們常常在錯誤的地方尋找。

我們來看聖經中的一個故事,一位女子聽到不同的聲音,被領導,被帶領,她聽到的不是上帝的聲音,她聽到的是邪靈的聲音。這個故事裏,很多人付她錢,讓她告訴他們的未來。在使徒行傳第十六章16至18節,“後來,我們往那禱告的地方去。有一個使女迎著面來,她被巫鬼所附,用法術,叫她主人們大得財利。她跟隨保羅和我們,喊著說,這些人是至高神的仆人,對你們傳說救人的道。她一連多日這樣喊叫,保羅就心中厭煩,轉身對那鬼說,我奉耶稣基督的名,吩咐你從她身上出來。那鬼當時就出來了。”

保羅當時在腓立比這個城市,這個城市非常出名,它有一個區域叫Pufo,那裏有所謂的神域,是算命的中心;他們拜的是阿波羅,是藝術,音樂,戲劇的神。傳說他征服了當地的一條蟒蛇,他們之前拜這條蟒蛇。這個占蔔算命的中心,人們從世界各地來到,想要做新生意的人,開始新事業的人,在政府的人,當人要做決定的時候,都來找算命的人,付他錢來算算,我們稱這種人叫靈媒。

整個城市有很多靈媒,整個區域都在這種占蔔算命的靈的籠罩下,壓抑的靈。那裏有很多算命的工作在做,很多這種屬靈的活動,整個區域有沈重的壓力。人們付錢,靈媒就講他們未來的生活。聖經中講到的這個女子,她身上有靈環繞,就像蟒蛇的形狀;看不見這個靈,但這條蟒蛇纏在她身上,它的頭就在她的耳邊,那是個邪靈,對她的生命說話。她會聽見它說話,聽見靈界的聲音對她說,告訴她資訊。當她有這個靈的時候,她給出的資訊不可能從其他地方得到。

占蔔就是你參與到靈界,從邪靈處而不是從上帝那裏得到一些資訊。上帝創造我們是要我們跟他建立關系,神是靈,他讓我們也是靈;上帝要跟我們說話,聖經說上帝在我們身上是有計劃的,他在我們生命中是有目的的,他要指引你的生命。耶稣說,我是好牧人,我的羊聽我的聲音。代表上帝會跟我們說話,他說跟從我,跟從我的指示帶領,我帶他們去好的地方。

可是還有一個聲音,是邪靈的聲音。聖經中的這個女人賺了很多錢,那些人都想知道自己的未來;魔鬼知道你的未來嗎?他不知道。只有創造了你的那一位,才能看見前面,知道你的生命是爲什麽;只有創造你的那一位,才知道你的目的,只有創造你的那一位,才能完全明白你。

上帝渴望我們跟他連結,從他領受啓示指引。聖經在箴言第三章5,6節告訴我們,“你要專心仰賴耶和華,不可倚靠自己的聰明。在你一切所行的事上,都要認定他,他必指引你的路。”很多時候,神應許會指引帶領我們。人們都對未來充滿恐懼,不知道會怎樣,我會不會成功,我會不會很富有,能不能有美滿的婚姻感情,每一個人都有這樣的問題。

上帝要我們跟他連結,活在信靠的生命中,信心的生命是學習每一天與他同行。他不會把我們生命的一切告訴我們,但他鼓勵我們跟他同行,走信靠的路,聽他的聲音,也聽我們的心。上帝顯明在我們心裏的是什麽,當你開始跟上帝同行,你的心就會指引你,借上帝的話語,也借上帝的靈,你會富足。

我們看剛才的經文中講要全心依靠神,他會指引你的路。我們跟上帝的關系就是要有信任,這關乎你的心,以你的心來信任他,以你的生命信任他。不是全憑腦袋搞清楚事情,上帝搞清楚你的生命就夠了,他要我們學會信任他,學會傾聽我們心的聲音,爲未來做計劃,相信他會與我們同行,祝福我們的計劃。上帝的應許會指引我們,你可以做最棒的事情,就是跟上帝連結,學習聽他的聲音。

如果沒有這位愛我們,帶領我們的神,我們對未來就會很恐懼,很害怕。我知道上帝是好牧人,他愛我,他相信我,他創造了我,在我生命中有美好的計劃,我會將生命交在他手上跟從他。當我知到耶稣爲我死在十字架上,我可以將生命交給他,跟從他。因爲有人愛我到可以願意爲我而死,這是我可以信任的。

如果我不相信神,我就活在孤單的生活中,對未來充滿恐懼,有些人對未來充滿恐懼。如果你焦慮,沒有安全感,對將來的事情感到很害怕。當然你看新聞,會增加更多的害怕;海嘯,地震,冰山融化,恐怖份子,媒體上都是壞消息,人們感到害怕,在這種情況下,人們就開始找算命的了。

這個女孩是個靈媒,賺很多錢,人們付他很多錢;邪靈知道人們的未來嗎?不知道!邪靈的知識是有限的,他們不知道你的未來,但他們知道你在做什麽,他們觀察你,知道你過去經曆過什麽。就好像有一個邪靈的網絡一樣,把你的名字打上去,搜索一下,所有的東西都出來了,所有邪靈都上來了,“我知道他的爸爸媽媽,祖父祖母,他們全家我都認得,我觀察他們很久了。很高興將他們的生活搞得一塌糊塗。”

耶稣說魔鬼來就是要偷竊,傷害,毀壞,你要知道什麽,邪靈就跟她講;這個女士其實不那麽聰明,她只是聽而已,聽魔鬼的聲音,然後講出來。邪靈不知道你的未來,他不過是給你開這條路,你同意他,邪靈就開始在你身上工作,開始控制你。

舊約聖經利未記第二十章6節告訴我們,“人偏向交鬼的和行巫術的,隨他們行邪淫,我要向那人變臉,把他從民中剪除。”上帝警告人接觸邪靈的危險,靈媒是邪靈運用的一個人來對人說話;交鬼的是讓邪靈進入他裏面,讓他可以說出你生命的事情;占蔔就是要進到靈界,連結上邪靈,請他給你方向。這可以用各式各樣的方式來做,青少年常玩的,好像碟仙,放很多字在旁邊,把碟子放在中間;誰在那裏?他們不明白的是,這是跟邪靈在接觸,真的有人在那裏,還有好多人呢。

聖經說我們到神的面前,耶稣說我是道路,我是真理,若不借著我,沒有人能到父那裏去。當你進入到靈界,不管用什麽樣的方式接觸,你接觸的都是邪靈。交鬼和接觸家族熟悉的邪靈的,是隨他們行邪淫。我們想想妓女,她是付出身體以交換金錢,這是交易的産生,當她拿到錢就將身體出賣了,付錢的人利用她的身體。

聖經說,當你參與占蔔的事,你就好像妓女一樣。你得到資訊,可是你讓邪靈有權利利用你的身體。你得到資訊就好像妓女拿到錢一樣,你就讓那個靈進入到你的身體了,就像妓女把身體爲男人敞開一樣;聖經用的一些類似語言,不要跟魔鬼行邪淫,不要讓邪靈來汙穢你,這讓你跟上帝的關系被砍除。這是讓上帝最憂傷的事,他設計了你,他在你生命中有計劃,他愛你,想要幫助你,要跟你同行,要進入到你生命裏,要你轉離這一切,你反而轉向邪靈仇敵去了。

你打開生命讓邪靈進來,要交換什麽?就這麽一點點資訊嗎?你知道找靈媒會怎樣嗎?他們會上瘾的。自己做不了決定,一定要回去先問過靈媒,付更多的錢,獲得更多的資訊,再付更多的錢,得到更多的資訊。他們的生命就被邪靈掌控了。凡是參與占蔔的,你跟邪靈達成了協議,你讓他有權利進到你的生命,這樣就會有很多問題了。

要參與到這當中,人們會有各樣的方式;今天的媒體上都是這些東西,好像哈利波特電影,很多神奇鬼怪的電影,他們美化了占蔔,把巫術,魔術講的很美,看起來很有意思。可是他們沒有告訴你的是,他能力的源頭在哪裏?真是屬靈的力量就一定有屬靈的源頭。神的國裏,能力的源頭就是聖靈,耶稣基督得榮耀。但在魔鬼的國,能力的源頭就是邪靈,你不知道它是從哪裏來的。

有些人在占蔔上做過實驗,感覺好像沒有傷害;大家都在玩,有的在學校玩,有的在家裏玩,有些在周末玩;會有一些幻想出來,你有沒有想過當那些蟒蛇立起來盯著一個動物的時候,那些動物常常就癱瘓了,感覺被蟒蛇催眠了,無法離開它的視線。當你參與在邪靈裏,就開始有這樣的幻想出現了,因爲那個能力是很真實的,有吸引力,有邪靈的吸力。但這樣做,你是打開生命讓邪靈對你産生更多捆綁。

有些人是家族中有人做算命的事,這也有機會讓邪靈進入到你生命。有些人家裏有法術,巫術的事情;各式各樣的找尋靈裏的能力,拜偶像是其中一種形式;拜偶像的人需要獻祭,要交換,給一些東西給偶像,要交換一些東西回來。交換回來的是什麽呢?是邪靈。同樣的,就像妓女一樣,我們被造不是爲了邪靈,我們的生命不是要被鬼附的,我們受造是要讓神愛的靈住在我們裏面,上帝的渴望是要他的靈從我們心中流出,如同活水的江河。

可是你拜偶像,占蔔,算命等等,做巫術,魔術的事,當我們向這些東西打開生命,就向邪靈打開我們的生命了,麻煩就開始了;麻煩是漸漸增加的,參與這這些事裏面,常常會做噩夢,在靈裏面掙紮,很沈重,很憂郁,很難過;好像房中的東西都會動,或者聽到聲音跟他講話又沒法讓他閉嘴,有時晚上被折磨,有各式很可怕的噩夢;或者醒過來感覺有人要殺了他,或者感覺被性侵犯,卻沒有人在房中。一旦邪靈有了入口,他就不斷要增加捆綁,不斷增加他的掌控,要完全打敗你的生命。

耶稣說盜賊來就是盜竊,殺害,毀壞,耶稣來賜給我們生命。我們回過頭來看這個故事,在使徒行傳第十六章,這個女孩有占蔔的靈在身上,她跟著保羅大喊著說,“這些人是至高神的仆人,對你們傳說救人的道。”她講的都是真的,很多人不知道,他們只是一群人在那裏。這些人是有知識的,當耶稣面對邪靈,邪靈會大叫,他們知道耶稣是誰。邪靈認識耶稣,也認識跟從耶稣的人,他們知道你是誰。

記得有一次我在巴厘,開車經過一個公園,發現有些人和一些蛇在那裏,我特別下車去跟他們聊一聊,看他們在幹什麽。因爲在新西蘭沒有蛇,我就很好奇。那些人聚在一起,中間墊子上有一些蛇,非常嚇人。我不敢太靠近,離得遠一點,他們應該是從珀流來的巫師,其中之一就來到我面前。邪靈會認出神的仆人,他是怎樣認出來的?當你跟從耶稣基督,聖靈活在你裏面,上帝的靈住在你裏面,你身上有神的靈的印記,你真的是散發光出來的,別的人可能看不到,但你生命中的證據果子,靈界都看得見。

于是這個人就出來跟我說,他從沒見過我,跟我講過話;他說,“請不要禱告敵對我們,讓我們停下來,我們來只是要賺點錢,我們沒有要傷人。”他怎麽會講這種話,在他們身上的邪靈認得出上帝的仆人,他們的回應就是拜托我不要攔阻他們,這也代表我們有能力攔阻他們;耶稣說我賜你們權柄勝過蛇和蠍子和一切仇敵的能力,沒有什麽能害你的。在靈裏他們能認出你是誰,我們看人就是人,看不見他身上是否有邪靈纏著,除非上帝向我們顯明。我們也看不出誰是基督徒,除非你看他生命的果子。可是在靈裏,我可以看出你是誰,是怎麽樣的,他們認得出你。

去年九月在台灣的一次聚會,很多人,聖靈很大的運行;上帝跟我說話,開始釋放,我們呼召,上帝就開始運行,有很多人得釋放,跟我們這裏一樣。我最小的女兒跟我在一起,她跟我說,因爲那是一個很大的聚會,我真的遇見主了,她發現她可以釋放;她說:“我問主想要我發現什麽事,我以爲頭腦裏會想到一句話”;主就跟她講“轉身,面對這些人。”她回答說,“不要了,我的睫毛膏都流下來了。”主說你轉身看這些人,打開眼睛。她跟我說,她站在那裏打開眼睛看,眼睜睜看著這些人站在前面,可是在他們的上面還有一個屬靈的世界存在,她同時看見兩個世界。只有上帝打開你的眼睛你才有可能看見這些事情。我問她“你看到什麽?”她說“我看到邪靈。”“他們長什麽樣?”“他們嚇壞了,我看見他們在聚會中,每一個都嚇壞了。充滿了恐懼。”“他們在幹什麽?”“他們抓著這些人,試著一直要抓著他們。”“他們爲什麽要抓住他們。”“邪靈有些是 把手放在這些人的眼睛上,讓他們不要看,有些邪靈把手放在他們耳朵上,讓他們聽不見。有些把手放在他們嘴上,讓他們說不出話來。每一個都是死命的抓住這些人。”我說,“你還看到什麽?”她說,“我看不見你,我聽見你說話。”她看到一位好像耶稣的人,很大的光一直照出來。所有邪靈看著這個人,嚇壞了。“每一次你說話,就像上帝的大水把邪靈沖出去。”我說,“你還看到什麽。”她說,“太多了,我眼睛受不了,同時看到兩個世界。我再一次閉上了眼睛。”

重點就是,靈界會看到我們真正的景況,邪靈認得耶稣,知道他是上帝的兒子,他們非常怕耶稣。耶稣在各各他打敗他們,聖經說當耶稣舍命,他打破了邪靈在所有人身上的權勢。耶稣邀請我們轉離罪,轉離邪教,轉向永生真神。他愛我們,我們受造不是要與邪靈連結,有些人把生命向邪靈打開;可能從你家族裏來,可能有人在廟宇中把你獻給了邪靈,或者你家人在拜偶像,算命,甚至你自己也做過,就向邪靈打開生命了;或者你打開眼,進入到邪教的世界,邀請邪靈。

上帝要釋放你自由,我注意到有些人進入捆綁的方法,就是借著電腦遊戲,那些扮演角色的電腦遊戲,扮演巫師什麽的。我爲很多人禱告,大概有四百人,都是玩線上遊戲的,上瘾了,被鬼附了,他們通過這種想象力,角色扮演的遊戲開始進到靈的世界裏了;還有通過武術,打坐等的各式各樣的方式接觸靈界。

耶稣來是要釋放我們得自由。我們來講完這個故事,看看會怎樣。這裏講她這樣做了多日,保羅就心中厭煩,他很難過。字面的意思就是他在掙紮,想突破;有一些邪靈的活動,在靈裏會感到壓力,他明白是有汙鬼在她身上。保羅就對她說話,他是奉耶稣基督的權柄而來的,耶稣能勝過魔鬼。我們現在跟耶稣同行,我們也能征服魔鬼了。“奉主耶稣基督的名,出來!”對那個靈說話,那個靈發作,就從那個女孩身上出來了。這是一條蟒蛇,就從她身上出來了,她就得自由了。

我記得很多年前在一個地方,我們第一次有上帝的運行和釋放,我很清楚的記得,場面非常壯觀。有一天晚上聚會,大家出來接受服事,我爲一位男士按手,他是從太平洋島來的,他的家族有做算命的事,他倒在地上,這個也很常見的,但是後來他做的事,我從沒見過。他就像一條蛇一樣,在椅子底下一路的滑,滑到房間的最後面。我從沒見過這種把戲,椅子都飛開了。

我們開始對他說話,命令占蔔的靈離開,那個靈就離開了,靈的形狀就像蟒蛇。我碰到過好多次這樣發作的情況,各式各樣的事情都有;重點是他們都是壞的,他們是來傷害你的。保羅直接面對靈,這個女孩就得自由了。她是其他人的使女,也是邪靈的使女,那一天她接受耶稣基督,成爲自由人,遠離罪的自由,遠離邪靈的自由。上帝讓你經曆同樣的事。

今天我們要做兩項邀請,第一,邀請人來跟從耶稣。耶稣說,凡接待他,歡迎他,相信他名的人。耶稣是救主,他拯救我們脫離罪,凡接待他的相信他的人,他賜他們權柄做上帝的兒女,進入上帝的家中。上帝今天要爲你這樣做,他要改變你的生命;只要你願意,他要進入你的心中。不管你生命經曆過什麽,不管你生命有多糟糕,神愛你,他愛你,他明白你;不管你參與過什麽,都不能改變上帝愛你的事實,你的行爲不管有多可怕,都不能改變上帝愛你。當你還在罪中,上帝差他的兒子爲你死在十字架上,今天我要告訴你,上帝愛你。

耶稣說跟從他的人會聽他的聲音,他要賜他們永生,今天邀請你做這第一步,來跟從耶稣,邀請他進入到你生命,求他赦免你的罪,接受他進入你生命。

後面還有第二次呼召,特別爲那些在邪靈裏掙紮的人禱告。如果你有做過算命,占蔔的事,或在各樣的邪教裏面,拜偶像,交鬼的,或被邪靈折磨的,可能你家族中有人參與到邪靈裏;我們會有第二次呼召,爲你禱告釋放,上帝的能力會臨到你,釋放你離開這些邪靈。

今天你可以做決定,跟上帝連結;你今天可以做決定,不再帶邪靈回家,你只要求耶稣基督釋放你得自由。



由墮胎流產中得醫治  

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由墮胎流產中得醫治

教會應傳播盼望的信息。福音就是人們盼望的信息,是神對我們的愛,他願意幫助我們。作為基督徒,無論周圍發生什麼,我們要明白我們需要幫助別人,耶穌基督來就是要幫助人的。

我想到一個很重要的經文,耶穌來不是來定人的罪,而是來使人因他得救,拯救人脫離罪惡。耶穌愛你,他從不定我們的罪,不管你身邊發生什麼,上帝的心一直伸向你,愛你,恢復你。

身為一個基督徒,不要為國家許多的問題害怕,要學習了解他們,服事他們。沒有不能談論的議題。事實上,我們應該談論任何議題,帶著愛的靈,盼望的靈,安慰人們。

今天我要做的是跟大家分享一些感人的事情,我以前沒有分享過,但最近上帝對我的心說話。昨晚和今早我還在掙扎,我想講別的東西,可是你當聆聽上帝,他對我們已經有安排。今天的信息可能直接影響你,也可能間接影響你。希望大家有一顆敞開的心,愛的靈。因為我們為人禱告,看見上帝帶來極大的突破。

我們來看詩篇127篇3節。我們來過這裡很多次,經常跟大家分享我們的故事。大部分人知道我們有一個大家庭,七個兒女,21個孫子女。在這個過程中,學習到很多,其實我們還有兩個孩子,在天上。我今天要談的是墮胎和流產。

我希望給大家帶來盼望,我希望還不認識耶穌的人,明白到上帝愛你,想要幫助你,想要打破你生命中罪的權勢。然后,我要為三組人禱告,我們一起禱告,免得任何人覺得尷尬。我們希望愛的靈,上帝的大能能幫助你。我要為所有曾經墮胎的人,或跟曾經墮胎的人接觸過的人,或流產的人,無法生育的人,一起禱告。我們絕不會開口問你是什麼樣的問題,希望大家自由的到前面來,相信上帝會幫助你。

詩篇127篇3節說“兒女是耶和華所賜的產業。所懷的胎,是他所給的賞賜。” 。所以孩子是產業,是上帝賜給我們的,每個人裡面都有這個靈,是從神而來。聖經說神是靈。人與人結合會創造生命。人與神同工,上帝把靈放在孩子身上,孩子成為有靈的活人。上帝渴望孩子分享他給的命定,上帝的渴望是有許多的子女,這是神的心。上帝的計劃就是接觸這地,幫助人,就是上帝的人。

當我們生在這世上,因為罪與神隔絕。上帝渴望來到我們中間,饒恕我們的罪,將他的靈放在我們生命中,賜給我們永恆的命定。這一切由回應基督開始。

三天前,我讀到一篇有關中國的新聞。故事發生在濰坊市,一對年青夫婦,他們已經有了一個孩子,正懷著第二個孩子。一天早晨,公安沖進家門,攔住這位丈夫,抓走了妻子,直接把她帶到了醫院。當時妻子懷孕六個月了,他們威脅她說要把她的丈夫關進監獄。而丈夫也四處找尋妻子,六個小時后才找到,但她已經被打了流產針。

深深感動我的是,他們兩個人因為失去孩子而憂傷,這沒有人可以安慰他們,我的心都碎了。我將分享一些我個人的見証。我們再看看神的話語,希望為人們帶來盼望。

很多年前,我的妻子經歷過兩次流產。身為一個男人,當時我不明白這對女人意味著什麼。我們四處服事,感到很大的壓力。我們已經有五個孩子,我的妻子從沒有抱怨過這兩次流產。她從醫院回來,我們繼續我們的生命。沒有多想什麼。我們又有了兩個孩子,Peter和Sarah。

多年后,我在另一個教會服事,為一位女士禱告。我問她發生了什麼事情,她說她流產了,當我禱告時,她開始哭泣,我也感到非常憂傷,與她一起哭泣。我想太不可思議了,我一定是感受到了神的愛。

同一天,我去到另一個教會,同樣的事情又發生了。我為一位流產的女士禱告,我又感受到了很深的憂傷。當你感覺到什麼時,就要問自己,我的感受是什麼?我為什麼會有這樣的感受?回到家后,我開始禱告,上帝跟我說,你憂傷不是因為她,而是因為你自己失去的兩個孩子。一個男孩,一個女孩。你從未停止過悲傷,即使你並未意識到你的損失。

我開始很憂傷,上帝就告訴我該怎麼做。我回到家跟妻子說“上帝跟我說到我們流產的兩個孩子”。Joy說“上帝也跟我說話。他們是一個男孩,一個女孩。我給他們起名為Timothy和Catherine。”我說,神告訴我在家裡應該怎麼做,於是,像往常一樣,我們全家一起進餐。Joy把兩朵漂亮的花放在餐桌上。我跟孩子們分享說“我們家有七個孩子,實際上,應該是九個,還有兩個在天上。”

有趣的事情發生了,流產后出生的兩個孩子開始深深的哭泣。我感到他們靈裡的悲傷。在他們的頭腦裡都不知道我們失去了兩個孩子,悲傷一直由我妻子承擔了。現在他們知道他們失去了一個哥哥和一個姐姐。他們的心中充滿了憂傷。憂傷的靈在他們周圍。

所以,我妻子的流產的憂傷,傳到了后面的兩個孩子身上。我們就按手在他們身上,為他們禱告。而其它的孩子們則沒有這個問題。這就告訴我們,在母腹中的胎兒能感覺到母親的憂傷。當憂傷沒有解決時,就傳遞給后面出生的孩子。

我們做了一件事:為流產的孩子取名字。這很重要,不要隻把他們當成一個東西。對於我,就好像我的妻子掉了一顆牙,很痛一樣。在心中沒有感到作為一個父親,失去了一個孩子。

所以我認識到,當流產和墮胎發生時,會有很深的憂傷,處理憂傷的過程之一就是認出他們,為他們取名字,將他們釋放在神的手中。不隻是“一件事情”發生了,失去了“某樣東西”,他真實的是一個活著的靈,她的身體沒有成型,他的家沒有長久,他們不得不離開。我妻子講的很美“他就像一朵玫瑰花苞,沒有綻放。”很多年來,我們為很多人禱告,在這方面幫助他們。

第二個見証。今年初我在新加坡講道,教導關於與神相遇。當時我正在服事我們的敬拜小組,幫助他們與神相遇。在這以前的一天,教會結束后,我們的兩個很憂傷的孩子分別跟我們說,他們今天聚會時看到了他們失去的哥哥和姐姐在天堂,還能清楚的描述他們。我必須承認我有些嫉妒。而當今年我講與神相遇時,教導人們如何專注耶穌,用你的想象力想像聖經中是如何描述他的,讓你的心伸向他 ,默想耶穌。這些年青人也都與神相遇。我感到不應隻帶領聚會,我也要進去。

於是我開始默想耶穌,不想其它任何事情。突然我進入靈裡。沒有看到耶穌,聖靈向我顯出了兩個人。一位年青男士和一位年青女士。我很驚訝,這不是我預期的。他們同時叫我爸爸。我更吃驚了,他們說“我們有很多關於天上的事情要告訴你。”然后我意識到耶穌站在我身旁,懷裡抱了個嬰兒,他就是我們十二月流產失去的孫子。突然,我又看到一個小孩,叫我爺爺,我能看出他的容貌,是我們另外的孩子失去的孩子。

我的注意力集中在我的兒女身上,耶穌在我身邊,他們開始和我交談,他們說“我們要給你看一些東西。”突然,我的眼開了,我看到在很大的一片地方,到處是孩子。不同的年齡,從嬰兒到小小孩,數不清的孩子。他們說“這些都是流產和墮胎的孩子,在天上他們每人都有專屬的地方,天使在照看他們,他們在那裡受教育,長大。

我注意到,我失去的孫子的大小正是他相應的年紀。我也留意到我失去的兩個孩子也是他們相應的年齡。我看到周圍流產和墮胎的孩子們,神向我顯示的全部都是中國孩子,我非常震驚。

耶穌對我說,他來不是要定任何人的罪,我能感受到他的愛。他說“每個人都有他的母親,她因為失去孩子而憂傷,我要醫治她們。”他沒有說他們做了什麼,他隻是說“我愛她們,想醫治她們,因為她們憂傷。”他說“我要你開始在這方面學習和預備,准備一些DVD,在中國講道。”我的心深深的觸動了。不光是因為看到了這些孩子,而是感受到了他們母親的憂傷。我感受到耶穌的心深深的憂傷。

最近我們到中國,有人私下找到我。我不敢相信,他們說他們曾經墮胎,需要幫助。上帝大大地服事醫治他們,賜這對夫婦安慰。這以后,我們每到一個地方,總有人要求我們為他們禱告。

我想與大家分享一些經文。問題最根本的關鍵是,在神的眼裡,每個孩子即使還在母腹中都是一個活人,有他的命定。有時人們認為,在母腹中的孩子,他不懂任何事情,他不是一個人,隻是一件東西,還很不方便。

我想告訴大家,在聖經中,神的看法是怎樣的。孩子在懷孕前,神就知道他們,他們的品格,他們的生命的定命,不管他在母腹中長到什麼階段,在神的眼裡,他都是一個活人,有他的命定,是神認識的人。

士師記十三章2至5節說“那時有一個瑣拉人,是屬但族的,名叫瑪挪亞。他的妻不懷孕,不生育。耶和華的使者向那婦人顯現,對他說,向來你不懷孕,不生育,如今你必懷孕生一個兒子。所以你當謹慎,清酒濃酒都不可喝,一切不潔之物也不可吃。 你必懷孕生一個兒子,不可用剃頭刀剃他的頭,因為這孩子一出胎就歸 神作拿細耳人。他必起首拯救以色列人脫離非利士人的手。”

請留意,孩子在懷孕前,神就知道他是個男孩,神的計劃是這個男孩會拯救以色列人,最重要的一點就是這位母親在懷孕時應該怎樣照顧自己,換句話說,神關心對未出生的孩子的任何負面影響。所以說,懷孕前,神就知道這個孩子和他的命定。

再看列王記上十三章1至2節“那時有一個神人奉耶和華的命從猶大來到伯特利。耶羅波安正站在壇旁,要燒香。神人奉耶和華的命向壇呼叫,說,壇哪、壇哪,耶和華如此說,大衛家裡必生一個兒子,名叫約西亞。他必將丘壇的祭司,就是在你上面燒香的,殺在你上面,人的骨頭也必燒在你上面。”

國家敗壞,到處充斥著拜偶像,神派遣先知來警告他們。他說“我要為這世界帶來一個孩子,他的名字叫約西亞。他要恢復整個國家。”你知道這個預言之后多久約西亞才出生的呢?360年!即360年前,在未懷孕,未出生前,神已經為他命名,為他安排了命定。

360年后,當他的父母有了這個孩子后,根本不記得當時的預言,他們隻有一個念頭,“為這個孩子取名為約西亞。”他們甚至不了解他們叫他約西亞,成就了神一早的計劃。神為這個孩子360年前定命時,他的父母都還沒有出生。上帝看見了未來。他說“360年后,有一對夫婦,盡管父親非常敗壞,拜撒旦,但我還是要將一個孩子帶到這個家庭,他會拯救整個國家。他的名字叫約西亞。所以,神為孩子命名,安排他們的命定,在他們懷孕前就認識他們了。

另外一段經文,耶利米書一章4節5節“耶利米說,耶和華的話臨到我,說,我未將你造在腹中,我已曉得你,你未出母胎,我已分別你為聖。我已派你作列國的先知。”多麼神奇,神說在胚胎還未成型前,我就知道這將是誰。即你是個靈,在你住的人的家還沒成型,我就認識你,知道你的全部,我已經將你分別出來,為你安排了命定。甚至你的母親還不知道你,什麼胚胎都沒有,我已經將我的靈放入你中,你將成為列國的先知。

你注意到還在孩子成型前,神已認識他,為他安排命定,多麼神奇!以賽亞書四十九章1節中也說:以賽亞也是在母腹中形成前,神就已經認識他了。

詩篇139篇16節,大衛說“我未成形的體質,你的眼早已看見了。你所定的日子,我尚未度一日,你都寫在你的冊上了。 ”大衛的意思是:當我還是小小的胚胎時,我還未成型前,你就看到我了。不僅如此,在你的書上,已經寫下了我的一生,我甚至還沒有過一天。 他的意思是,神已視他為一個人,一個靈,一個有命定的人。在他出生前,為他安排了一切。

這些經文強調在我們懷孕前,神已經知道我們,在我們懷孕時,神的靈進入到這個孩子,即使未成型,神愛他,為他安排了命定,即使他出生在一個困難的家庭環境中。

約西亞的父親是個拜撒旦的,但上帝仍然安排他的命定,神看這個未出生的孩子是在母腹中的人,是活生生的人,有名字,有命定,有計劃的生命,真實奇妙!

聖經中有很多次,神講到未出生的孩子,講到撒迦利亞和伊麗莎白。伊麗莎白是不能生育的,神對撒迦利亞說“你知道你的妻子不能生育,不能有孩子嗎?”他說“我知道。”神說“你將會有一個孩子。”他說“她太老了,怎麼生孩子?”他與神爭執,但神說“不要爭論。你們會有一個孩子,他將是名先知,為主預備道路。”聖經非常清楚的寫明,神在他們懷孕和出生前很久就認識他們,為他們安排好一生的計劃。

馬太福音一章21節“他將要生一個兒子。你要給他起名叫耶穌。因他要將自己的百姓從罪惡裡救出來。”再次說明,在孩子懷孕前身就認識他,知道他的名字,為他安排了命定。

你又如何呢?以弗所書二章10節中“我們原是他的工作,在基督耶穌裡造成的,為要叫我們行善,就是神所預備叫我們行的。”請留意這裡告訴我們每一個人都是神的獨特的創造,沒有任何人與你一樣,你的指紋是獨有的,你的DNA是獨有的,每一樣東西都是獨有的。在你出生前,神已為你安排好了要走的路,你有一個目的,就是為了行善,在你開始前,神為你的一生就計劃好了。阿門!

另一處經文路加福音一章39至44節中,神告訴我們在我們出生前就認識我們,知道我們的名字,知道我們長什麼樣子。我們還在母腹中,他就關心我們,為我們的一生安排了命定。

我最近讀到一本書,他們對母腹中的胎兒用超聲波進行了大量的研究。100年前,人們認為人的特征形成於大腦,個性,知識,意識等。如果一個人的個性,特征和感情是在大腦形成的,就得出結論是,如果大腦未發育完成前,他就不是個真正的人,你就可以隨意處理掉他。

但是聖經告訴我們的完全不同。最新的研究也顯示,人的心在大腦之前發育。聖經說“你的一生由心發出。”最新的研究發現,孩子在母腹中就能了解周圍發生的事情,雖然他的大腦還未形成。經過大量的研究,這本書中得出結論:未出生的母腹中的孩子,完全了解周圍的事情,即使他的大腦還未發育。他就是個人了。

最后,作者得出結論,孩子有第六感官。他講的就是靈。他們的大腦,聽覺還未發育好,他的靈知道周圍發生的事情,他發現孩子能夠辨認出父母的聲音,能夠分辨出爭執,了解周圍發生的事情。這也是希伯來文化中的一部分,當婦女懷孕后,要躲在一個安靜的地方幾個月,以使母腹中的孩子能夠在平安和祥和的環境中生長。這些都是現代的研究發現。

聖經路加福音一章39至41節說“那時候馬利亞起身急忙往山地裡去,來到猶大的一座城。進了撒迦利亞的家、問以利沙伯安。” 以利沙伯懷孕六個月,嬰兒還沒有完全成型,“ 以利沙伯一聽馬利亞問安,所懷的胎就在腹裡跳動,以利沙伯且被聖靈充滿。”誰說腹中的嬰兒不了解周遭發生的事情?你看,以利沙伯正懷孕,馬利亞來探望她,聖靈通過她預言。以利沙伯聽到了,嬰兒也聽到了,他大力的踢動,滿有喜樂。因為這是他的命定,要成為彌賽亞的先知,還在母腹中,他就有了命定。他知道了這些安排,感受到了聖靈,他跳躍,大力地踢。

這就是他們最新研究發現的。嬰孩在母腹中會感受到靈的影響。而早在2000年前,聖經就寫明了。還在在母腹中就了解周圍的環境,了解上帝的同在,了解母親和她的感受,了解父親。

我花時間分享這些事情的原因,是因為我要談到墮胎的影響。聖經講明,魔鬼對孩子非常有敵意。從創世紀三章15節開始,魔鬼對兒女就充滿敵意。因為神的應許是:從婦女生出的孩子中,有一位將摧毀撒旦,成為世界的拯救。

當我們查考聖經歷史,就會發現邪靈攻擊孩子的例子。不管是在母腹,還是剛出生。出埃及記中,在上帝拯救之前,所有兩歲以下的男嬰被殺。大衛王之后,亞她利雅殺死了所有的王室小孩,隻留下一個。耶穌時期,謀殺的靈臨到希律王,又殺掉了所有不到兩歲的孩子。

魔鬼常常攻擊孩子,母腹是沖突之地。當流產發生時,神美好的計劃突然終止了。墮胎發生時,孩子的生命被奪走了,不好的事情發生了,有巨大的影響。當我們為人禱告時,留意到很多人非常痛苦,但卻不明白為什麼。

聖經中講述了流產發生的幾個來由。 重點是,神的計劃不是流產,而是生養眾多。我們查考經文,分現流產的發生是因為拜偶像,有時咒詛臨到家中,發生流產。有時是因為家中有亂倫的事發生,有時是因為人們交鬼產生的。

我不詳細講解所有經文,但聖經中非常清楚的告訴我們,上帝的心意是要我們生養眾多,所以流產發生時,有屬靈的原因,也有自然身體上的情況。我們對家裡上次的流產求問神時,我的一個女兒從神那裡得到話語,“是因為大腦沒有正常發育成型”,我女兒和她丈夫經歷了多年的憂傷。憂傷也會有生理上的原因。我們生活在一個墮落的世界。有時是屬靈的問題。有時因為母親做了內在誓言,不要生孩子。

不管原因如何,結果總是憂傷的,當母親懷胎又失去了孩子,就會產生強烈的憂傷。男人不容易了解。女人的生命以孩子為中心,孩子是從她的生命中得著生命,當失去了一個孩子,就會有巨大的憂傷。

我想強調墮胎 的影響,有時當我們輔導人時,如果沒有挖到問題的根源,問題就永遠不會解決。當我研究這個領域時,發現不管在任何地方,人們得出同樣的結論。當女人墮胎時,她必須讓自己相信這不是真實的人。可能是醫生告訴她,這沒什麼,隻是一次醫療手術﹔也可能是因為害怕,或者身體條件不好,她就是不肯承認發生的事情。

最重要的一點就是否認他是個人。母親否認他是個人,不過隻是一次身體上的手術,就像拔一顆牙一樣。但是,這不是真相。

墮胎的人有很多常見的問題。現在最普遍認同的症狀是墮胎后創傷症。我在這裡列出來這些問題,然后再探討如何釋放人們。

• 羞愧。他們會感到羞愧和隱秘,沒有自信。

• 罪咎。不能脫離的罪咎感。

• 憂郁。時常憂郁,悲傷和痛哭,卻沒有明顯的原因。請記住,如果你以謊言遮蓋真相,拒絕接受一個生命被奪走,你不會明白為何會悲傷,如果他不是什麼東西,我有什麼好悲傷的呢?

• 自殺傾向。

• 自恨。

• 睡眠失調

• 各樣回想的畫面。女人會突然記起過去痛苦的經歷,又回到震驚和悲傷中去。

• 強烈渴望擁有一個替代的孩子。下意識中希望有一個孩子可以彌補失去的孩子。這個被稱為“周年現象”,在墮胎日或孩子的出生日,母親時常開始憂傷哭泣,卻不明白為什麼。

• 寵愛,溺愛另一個孩子。

• 酒精和毒品的問題。

• 自我懲罰的行為。我應該被懲罰,可能自我傷害如割傷自己,虐待的關系,混亂的關系。

• 可能有身體的疾病。經常流血,或習慣性流產。

• 常常有很深的罪惡感。我活下來了,可孩子付上了代價。很可怕的感覺。

最近一位女士請我為她禱告。我問她“你的問題是什麼?”她說“我時常流血,有十二年之久了。我們非常想要一個孩子卻沒有。”我問,“你有墮胎嗎?”她說“有過四次。”我帶著愛對這位女士說“你的家庭有四個孩子,但他們都在天上。這是因為你的行為造成的。當別人告訴你這隻是一個簡單的手術時,他們在撒謊,這就是你問題的根源,你和你的丈夫現在沒有一個孩子,原來你們可以擁有的孩子卻失去了。”

她開始不停地哭泣,我們與她分享上帝愛她,饒恕她。於是她在神裡面得恢復,她的心得醫治。我禱告下次再見到她時,她會有一個孩子。今年我到城市豐收教會,一位女士和她的丈夫抱著一個嬰兒來到,她說“你要看看我們的寶寶,神跡的寶寶。你走后12個月,我們有了第一個孩子。懷孕非常困難。我自己以前內在誓言說再也不要生孩子了。每次懷孕都會流產。我聽了你的教導,才知道自己做了內在誓言。我棄絕這樣的誓言,請求上帝祝福我的肚腹,三個月后,我就懷孕了,就是這個寶寶。”實際上不到三個月,大約是一個月。

你可以看到,生命中有屬靈的關聯。女性經歷的很多問題,她們不追溯到墮胎,她們假裝這不是什麼嚴重的問題。

耶利米書31章15節說“耶和華如此說,在拉瑪聽見號咷痛哭的聲音,是拉結哭他兒女不肯受安慰,因為他們都不在了。”所以,我們如何得自由?處於這種情況的人,第一步就是轉向耶穌基督。約翰福音三章16節說“神愛世人,甚至將他的獨生子賜給他們,叫一切信他的,不至滅亡,反得永生。”神不是來定人的罪,而要世人因他得救。你的任何痛苦,耶穌都能夠拯救醫治。

可以看出,墮胎的后果遠比我們認識到的嚴重。它影響到母親,肚腹中靈裡的部分,影響到下一個出生的孩子,影響到家庭,原本可以做父親的男人失去了孩子,祖父母失去了孫子,以后出生的兄弟姊妹也受到創傷的影響。

我記得一位婦女帶著孩子來,我問“什麼問題?”她說“我的孩子不肯讓我喂他母奶,我每次抱他到懷裡要喂他,他就開始尖叫,我們該怎麼辦?”我說“你有沒有試圖想過要打掉這個孩子?”她說“有。”我說“是不是孩子怕你,他感受到了謀殺的靈,他不敢親近曾想害他的人。”她非常震驚,請求耶穌饒恕她,我為母親和孩子禱告,孩子就開始親近她了。當孩子得釋放,離開恐懼和謀殺的靈,立刻他們就可以親近了,非常明顯。

怎樣得自由呢?有三個方面:屬靈的問題,情緒的問題,關系的問題。離開死亡進入生命,答案非常簡單:

1. 我們需要面對屬靈的問題。要面對真相,是我奪走了孩子的生命。大部分的母親這樣做是因為感到極大的壓力。來自男朋友或丈夫的壓力,家庭的壓力,環境的壓力,不管怎樣,他們必須負責任。得釋放的關鍵就是打破謊言。以賽亞書二十八章告訴我們,當我們以謊言遮蓋自己,我們就與死亡和地獄立約。

2. 在神面前悔改,認罪。真實的來到神的話語前。約翰一書一章9節“我們若認自己的罪,神是信實的,是公義的,必要赦免我們的罪,洗淨我們一切的不義。”神已經饒恕赦免了我們,我們要做的,就是領受他,

3. 饒恕。首先人們必須接受饒恕,接受神饒恕了我們。其次,饒恕自己。最后,饒恕別人。經常,女人會對孩子的父親生氣,對自己的父母生氣,或對幫她做手術的人生氣,對鼓勵她這麼做的朋友生氣。有各樣的怨恨和悲傷需要面對。放開饒恕他們是解決這一問題的方法。釋放他離開邪靈。

認罪,饒恕,從邪靈裡得釋放,我們等一下會為人們釋放禱告。另一方面,對人們非常有幫助的是,求問神,這是怎樣的孩子?耶穌知道,上帝認識你的孩子,男孩還是女孩?聆聽你的心,神會告訴你。我看到人們在進行這一步時,總是痛哭。

接下來就是給他們取名字。給他一個身份,打破謊言。你知道給孩子起名多麼困難,我們花幾天的時間想好一個名字。但我在整個過程中發現,上帝已經為他們命名了,我們隻需要聆聽。求問神,我失去的孩子的名字是什麼?或是自己給孩子一個名字。

我對那位經歷過四次墮胎的女士說“求神告訴你孩子是怎樣的。”她很快的回答說“女孩,男孩,男孩,女孩。”我說“給他們取個名字吧。”幾分鐘就起好了。接下來她就開始悲傷了,意識到了她的孩子們。我說“下一步就是釋放你的孩子們在神的手中。耶穌站在這裡,把你的孩子交給他。你要知道,有一天,你會再見到他們。”有時,我們簡短的禱告“耶穌,我將我的孩子交托給你,把他交托在你的懷中,請告訴他我對我所做的非常抱歉,我盼望再見到他。”

請留意,這一切都是打破謊言,回歸真相。經常會有很多悲傷,痛苦和傷感。有時,還有破碎的關系需要修復,通往自由的路是簡單的。

當然,除非是有歷代遺傳的因素,流產的人不用認罪,懺悔。通常我發現這樣做非常有幫助。就是每次閉上眼睛,心向神敞開,求他向你顯示孩子是怎樣的,告訴你他的名字。現在,他不再是一個東西了,他是一個人。你會再見到你的孩子。這就是福音的盼望,孩子在天上。

當你與耶穌交通時,他就會告訴你的孩子。把你的孩子交托在耶穌手中,有一天你會再見到他們。我看到很多人得自由釋放,破碎的心得醫治。憑著對耶穌基督的信心,把所有的秘密,羞辱,謊言都打破,破碎心得醫治。

我相信上帝會觸摸很多人。讓我們閉上眼晴,你要明白神愛你,耶穌來到世上,道成肉身,讓我們看見天堂如何,邀請我們與他連結。我們都活在罪中,與神隔絕,我們找不到神的路。但耶穌為我們的罪死在十字架上,他從死裡復活,打破了罪的權勢。耶穌說,凡接待他的人,歡迎他的,相信他的,他就賜他們權柄做神的兒女。



http://mikeconnellministries.com

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