» View one page at time »

Sonship Series

Mike Connell

Deaf/Hearing-Impaired Audio Transcripts

Sonship Series

Sonship and Eternal Purpose (1 of 4)
Sonship is not gendered.
When he talks about sons, he's talking about representatives who rule over the family business.
When he's talking about a bride, he's talking about someone who is very beautiful, and attractive, that he has a love relationship with.
When he talks about temple, he's talking about a dwelling, and that he comes and fills all of it with his presence.
There are many different ways that God expresses himself, so when we talk sonship, we are talking male and female.

3 R's of Sonship (2 of 4)
Relationship. He said: "that this is eternal life - that they may know you". Relationship means having a personal relational connection with God as your father.
Responsibility. He said: "I have finished the work you gave me to do". To finish a job means you were responsible. You did what you were called to do.
Representation - to be a representative. He said: "I have manifested your name". It means to reveal who you are.

Sons Are Builders (3 of 4)
1) God, as a father, initiates the plan of building a family, building a house, that He can come and dwell in.
2) He speaks into the hearts of sons who love him, in relationship with him, to become builders, and to work with them in that building.
3) He brings revelation of the pattern of how to build, so you will build according to what He wants, the way He wants, motivated by love, not by self-centeredness.
4) God will supply and provide everything you need to build.
5) He will fill it with his presence.

Sons are Led by The Spirit (4 of 4)
Israel was led in the wilderness, by the manifest presence of God; but Jesus was led by the spirit. This is better, so we can all disperse throughout the world.
The spirit is gentle. We are not driven. We make our own decisions, and take responsibility for them.
If you are led by the spirit, He's going to lead you into maturity. He going to want you to grow up!



Sonship and Eternal Purpose (1 of 4)  

Sun 18 Dec 2022 « Back to Top

Video»  Audio»  Share»  Website»  

Sonship is not gendered.

When he talks about sons, he's talking about representatives who rule over the family business.

When he's talking about a bride, he's talking about someone who is very beautiful, and attractive, that he has a love relationship with.

When he talks about temple, he's talking about a dwelling, and that he comes and fills all of it with his presence.

There are many different ways that God expresses himself, so when we talk sonship, we are talking male and female.


I'm going to do a series over four weeks called Sonship, and today we're going to look at Sonship and Eternal Purpose. God's eternal purpose, and look at the big picture.

Main Message

Ephesians 3:10-11. Paul is writing in Ephesians. It's full of so much revelation. He says to the intent that: now - hear that word now, not future. Now, the manifold wisdom of God, something that's the wisdom of God, not man's wisdom, the wisdom of God might be known, made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places according to the eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus, our Lord.

So notice that word, Eternal Purpose. Purpose means that God has a long-term plan, that He is working out. So nothing happening in the world is random. There is a plan being worked out.

The problem is, most Christians look at the media and they don't understand the plan. If you look at the media, you just get filled with fear and overwhelmed, but if you study the word of God, to find God's plan, you will be filled with hope, and it will cause you to persevere, and be filled with faith in the season. See, that's the difference.

God says He has an eternal purpose, and that word Eternal is the word age. We taught a series on ages: this present evil age; the age to come; and then the eternal age. This present age; the age of the kingdom; and then the eternal age.

And so it says that God's purpose is an age-lasting purpose. So what we're seeing, when we look into the purpose of God, it has been worked out in this age, and then will be worked out and fulfilled in the next age. And so it's a long-term plan. God has a long-term plan; but you notice, although it'll come to its fulfillment in the future, there's a part now, happens; now, to the Principalities and powers, to the unseen spirit rulers, who influence nations, influence world events are behind the manipulation of governments and finance and things like that. They're still operating and influential. Nevertheless, now, God wants to show through people, how wise He is; what his wisdom is.

When you receive Jesus Christ, that is the wisdom of God. You have got a fresh start in life. When you begin to walk with God, that is the wisdom of God. When you choose to love people, instead of hate them - that is the wisdom of God. When you choose to be a giver rather than a taker, that is the wisdom of God. So the plan of God is not just something in the future, it's something that is operating in our life day by day, but leading to a grand climax.

That's the eternal purpose of God, which he purposed in Christ. So Christ is the center of that purpose, and that purpose is outworked now through the church.

A lot of people get wound up about the church, and the media have a go at the church. The church is always going to be in the front line of conflict, because it's the family within which God brings forth His purpose.

The church is not his purpose. There's nothing to indicate that is his purpose. The church is the body of people, through which he outworks his purpose, which is to bring forth sons and daughters into the destiny he has for them.

The church is a great crowd of people and very, immature at that, but nevertheless, God uses the church as his instrument to fulfill his purpose. Now, through the church, the body of people known as the local church.

Now look at Ephesians 1:16-19. God's eternal purpose is actually a family of Christ-like sons and daughters. Let's have a look in Paul's prayer for believers... Notice here he's praying for believers.

Ephesians 1:16-19 - "I do not cease to give thanks for you." He doesn't complain about the church or people; he give thanks.

"I have a good thanks for people, making mention of you in my prayer. So he's in his prayer. He just thanked God for the people that's been entrusted to him. Now, here's what his prayer is...

He's saying: "My prayer is that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the father of glory, may give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation."

He's praying for the church - that's for believers, that's for you - that God would give you something you need. It's called the spirit of wisdom. It's the Holy Spirit; who imparts wisdom (knowing what to do), and understanding (knowing why to do it).

He prays specifically for three things, and they're all interrelated.

Paul is saying: "...that the eyes of your understanding might be enlightened, that you might know the hope of His calling." Theres the first one.

"...the riches of the glory of His inheritance, (what God gets in you), and the exceeding greatness of His power towards us who believe according to the working of His mighty power."

So he's praying then that God will give us three areas of understanding; that you would understand what God is doing, and this would unfold for you. It would be progressive.

The first one is: that you would understand the hope of your calling. God has called to you. That means he's invited you. He's extended you an invitation. You should know what He's inviting you to. If you don't know what he's inviting you to, then it's hardly likely you will fulfill the invitation. He's inviting us to a great wedding. He's inviting us into sonship. He's inviting us to be part of His plan in changing creation. There's many aspects to what he's inviting us to.

It's called the hope - something you look forward to; something that hasn't happened yet. The hope of his calling.

Paul called it: the prize of the high calling of God. He said: I abandon everything, just to do that.

Many Christians just live to come to services and survive life. That is not how we're designed to live. We're designed to live with a great hope, of God's calling and purpose in our life. We're designed to live out of purpose, so everything connects to that purpose.

And he said (the second thing): "the riches of the glory of his inheritance and the saint."

I pray this prayer over me every day. I pray for the spirit of wisdom, and understanding, knowledge of you, and that the eyes of my understanding might be open. I know the hope of my calling - that's the riches of the glory of your inheritance and the saints.

God has something he wants in you. God has an inheritance. An inheritance comes after someone died. There's something that God has in you, that He's longing for, that's connected to his purpose.

The third thing he prays for is: that you might know the exceeding greatness of His power towards us who believe. He wants you to understand that the power of God is incredible; and He demonstrated through raising Christ from the dead, indicating this hope has to do with us being raised out of this mortal body. Oh, that's a good news! That is great news! That is exciting news!

Most people just think of the inheritance as being, they think of the of what God has for us, as 'going to heaven'. Nothing could be further from the truth. Go see if you can find one verse that says that God's plan is to get you safe, so you can go to heaven. It says: heaven is the place his inheritance is reserved for you.

So God's inheritance, what is he planning? In the Bible, because spiritual things are not always easy to understand, God uses lots of different ways to describe it. He uses pictures.

One way he uses is: a family. God is a father; wants a family; sons and daughters just like Jesus Christ. He loves Jesus. Jesus is his exact reflection; Jesus is his delight and joy, and He wants many, many more like him. A family - God is a father; God is a family person.

Secondly, another picture is the picture of a bride - a bride for a son, Jesus Christ. God is choosing people, and he uses the image of a bride, being be beautifully prepared for a wedding feast with her husband.

Then then he uses another picture; He's got many pictures... Another one, is a picture of a temple, a corporate building of people, and they're filled with the holy ghost, the spirit of God dwells on them.

These are all pictures, and you can go and look into each one, because each one helps to give an understanding of the bigger plan.

We're going to focus on the area of Sonship. Let's look at God's design, His intentional design. God is intentional in how he made us, and designed us.

Genesis 2:7 - "God formed man from the dust of the ground. He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man become a living being."

The word 'form' means to shape, like a potter with a clay. He took clay out of the land, and he took it in his own hands - He began to shape man. He was engaged in forming us. That word there means literally form. He become a living being. To form man literally means to design or create a piece or work of art.

You get pictures through the meaning of that word formed. It means as though, like God got involved personally, and took earth, and took it up in his hands, and began to shape it and mold it, untill he got it exactly the way he wanted.

The word describes almost like a work of art, in Ephesians 2:10 - "You are his workmanship, a creative work of art that he's working on, not completed yet."

It uses the image that there's nothing random about you being here. Now, you understand that the way evolutionists teach, that you just began to stand out of a monkey; out some animal, or out of some cell; whereas the biblical perspective is no, a loving God, who created everything, formed us intentionally. There's no accident. You are intentional. Even if your entrance to the world may have been accidental, nevertheless, God is intentional about his plan for you. Everything about you is intentional. That's why you want to celebrate who you are! There's noone like you; don't try and be someone else, be yourself.

He fashioned us; there is workmanship. The Bible also tells us, in Philippians 1:6 - "What God has started, He will complete."

God has started something, and He's going to finish it. If you look around the church, it's like a building project that's not complete. Everyone you look at is a building project that's not complete. So don't look at it like it should be complete. There's a part of it that's built - that's good. Enjoy the part that's built, and say thank you for that, and celebrate that. The rest of it's a mess. It's a work in progress. It's a work site, there's tools, there's dust, there's stuff everywhere. That's true of all of us; so don't get focused on the bit that's not done. Focus on the bit God has done, and where he's going with it all. He got a great and mighty plan at the end of all of this.

He's intentional. You are his workmanship. He will complete what he started. All you have to do is just co-operate with him. God is intentional, you're not an accident! Tell someone next to you: you're not an accident. You are intentional. God is diverse, and I think God's got a great sense of humor.

Here's the second thing about that design... God designed you to be a spirit being.

Genesis 2:7 - "...he breathed into his nostrils, the breath of life."

God formed man out of the ground, and then he breathed a spirit into man. The word breath in the Bible is the word Nouma spirit. The word 'spirit' is the word 'breath'. Remember in the New Testament, Jesus breathed on the disciples and they received the holy ghost. So He made man, and shaped him, and then He imparted a spirit into him.

Now that makes man really, really different. I think sometimes we don't realize that, because we get seduced by the culture around us; but God is called the father of spirits. What he produces and imparts is spirit. God is a spirit; and he put into you, a human spirit. Scientists can't tell you about that, they can't measure that; but the Bible makes it very clear - you are created uniquely; and you are a spirit being. That's who you are - a spirit being, and you have a soul and ability to be able express, feel, think, make choices, and you live in a body. The spirit being lives in a body.

There are other beings that God created. He created angels. They are spirit beings, but they're not human beings; they don't live in a body. He also created demons, fallen angels; they're ugly, and destructive, but they are spirit beings. They're not human beings; they don't have a body of their own.

He made animals; and animals do not have a spirit. Animals are animals. They have a soul, but they do not have a spirit.

So on the face of the earth, in the physical creation, there is a unique species of created beings called mankind, which are a spirit being, carrying something of the image of God within them. So every person, even if the they've fallen because of sin, every person is valuable, because they carry something of God in them. God gave them a spirit; and on death the spirit returns to God. We are a spirit being. God has designed that we would be spirit beings.

The first man was different to everything. Spirit beings belong in the spirit world - we're human beings. We're like an alien invader - there's nothing like us in the world, because we actually can live in two realms. As a spirit being, you're able to live and connect into the realm of the spirit, and to access the life and resource of God. As a human being, you can live in the world, and taste, and touch, and enjoy all the things God's created. You are created a spirit being.

Thirdly, you are created to be a Son. God designed man, not just to be a spirit being; God designed man to be a son. The primary purpose of a Son in the Bible is to represent his father. God's design is for you to represent Him.

[17:12-20:52 missing]

When you hear these Bible words, watch that you don't attach a human meaning to them; but see what it meant when they wrote it. When we read the word Son, we read gender in it immediately, because we read it through a carnal mind. But you know, the Bible also tells us that not only is God creating sons, he's also creating a bride for Christ. That means if you're a woman, a bride is awesome; but if you're a man and you're a bride, that's a little weird; but it's not a gendered term. It's a prophetic picture term, to describe a function.

When he talks about sons, he's talking about representatives who rule over the family business. When he's talking about a bride, he's talking about someone who is very beautiful, and attractive, that he has a love relationship with. When he talks about temple, he's talking about a dwelling, and that he comes and fills all of it with his presence, until everyone can feel it. There are many, many different ways that God expresses himself, so when we talk sonship, we're not talking gender; we are talking male and female.

If you have a look at the word for son in the Bible, in the Old Testament, its Ben, meaning: a builder of the father's house. If you look at the word for daughter, it's the word Banna, which comes from the word Ben, which means the builder of the father's house. So whether we're male or female, we're one through Christ, Jesus. God sees us, not as men or as woman. He sees us as sons, or called to be builders; but within our own flow, we have different functions on earth and our relationships. Does that make sense?

In eternity, theres no giving in marriage, there is just sons; but right now, of course, we have male and female. When it comes to the things of God, we have equality. When it comes to how we function, we function differently. So women can contribute certain things that Men can't; and men can contribute certain things women can't; but together they can reflect what God is like, because together they come from God.

Man can never fully, on his own, reflect what God is like; because some of the qualities of God are uniquely in women and they're more easily discovered in women. It's wonderful. God is so brilliant. That's why I like it.

God talked to Adam differently than when he talks to Eve. He says to Adam: did you eat the fruit of the tree? Straight down the line! When He talks to Eve: what have you done? A different conversation style! Women don't like the other one! The women are very like God - they ask a lot of questions!

A son is a builder. Why? Because he carries the DNA of his father; he carries the nature of his father; and he's called to act as a representative. Every person who is a son or daughter is called to act as a father's representative. Even Jesus, as a young person at the age of 12...

Luke 2:49 - "don't you know about must be about my father's business?"

At 12, he had an awareness of his identity - a child of God - of his calling to represent his father; and he positioned himself so that could happen.

Another thing is, God designed sons to fulfill specific responsibilities.

Genesis 1:27-28 - "God did create a man in his own image, and the image of God He created them, male and female. He created them. Then God blessed them, and said to them: be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, subdue it."

Has the earth been filled yet? No, it hasn't! So why are they trying to reduce the population? Exactly, fill the earth; subdue it.

"Have Dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air and every living being that moves on the earth."

God the father gives his son responsibility. One of the things that dads do is to give their sons jobs to do; all sons get given responsibility.

He's called to be a representative of his father, and he's called to do two things: one is to be fruitful; and the other is to rule.

In other words, take what has been given to your care, and then cause it to multiply and increase and grow. So every son is called to be productive; and interesting enough, God provided an ecosystem. He provided a financial system for us to do it. He provided all the trees, all the fruit. He provided everything the the son needed to set up the business. Provided everything for him - put him in a garden, provided the place for it to be worked out. But the sons, all sons are meant to be productive.

Understand then, there's no way that in just attending a church, you're productive. You actually have to engage with people, and engage in service, and adding value to someone, or something - that's how we do it. In other words, you approach life from the point of view as a son: I'm here to invest, and to cause it to grow and increase; not to just take something from it.

The second thing was to rule. When you hear the word rule, you think of bossing, but it's not like that at all in the kingdom of God. To be a ruler means you protect something that could be hurt, and then you also cultivate it, provide the environment so that it will produce. So if you're a father, the head of the household, you're called to protect the home. It's a primary male function to protect the home, and to protect the marriage. Protect - it's in men to protect. It's designed in men to protect, to lay your life down, to protect. It's also put in men to cultivate the environment within which relationships can flourish, and a family can grow. So fathers are responsible for that, as sons.

The mother will work with the father, as a team; and they work together, each contributing their own amount. But ultimately, the dad is held responsible. When Adam and Eve sinned, Adam was the one called to account - because Adam was in charge. Men cannot get away from their responsibility to rule over their households, to protect them, and to cultivate the environment where it'll be fruitful and productive, and relationships will be healthy. That's a God-given thing to do.

God prepared and gave a territory. The interesting thing is, God didn't just have a plan; before the plan, he had a territory called the Garden of Eden, and he planted a man in the garden he'd already made. You are born into an environment. God put you in an environment where you can outwork His plan; and God, although he gave Adam rules over the whole earth, only gave him a little bit to start with, to see how he'd do; with the plan being that as he grew and matured, he could add more and more and more to it, until he filled the whole earth. He gave him a little bit to work with. God puts us in a garden, he gives you something to be responsible for. Your territory, whatever you're responsible for, is your garden, and God designed you to tend and to keep it.

When you look at every person through the Bible, the one problem comes through, right through the whole Bible - everyone since Adam has sinned! Noone produces the perfect picture, except for one person, who is called Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is called the pattern son; and he is preeminent, and the center of all God's plan.

God has got this wonderful plan involving people. However, the center of the plan is the person of Jesus Christ. Absolute center. He is the pattern Son.

Colossians 1:15-16 - "He's the image of the invisible God, the first born over all creation. By him, all things were created in heaven and earth, visible and invisible Thrones or dominions, all things were created through Him and for Him."

He's the Son of God. He's the express image of God. When you see what Jesus is like, you're seeing what the Father behaves like. Don't get upset because some Christian offended you - it's totally predictable. Even Jesus caused great offense, because he held up to the word of God. What it offends is our flesh. The thing is, if you want to overcome the issue that people within the church, and sometimes how the church does stuff, and the decision they made, and all that kind of stuff. It's never perfect; but don't get offended, because God can use it, even though it's imperfect, to change you; but that will only happen if you keep your eyes on the one who is perfect - Jesus.

He's always there. He's always the one. Get your eyes on him. Don't make an idol out of any person, any ministry, no matter how anointed, they are just the servants of God. If you keep your eye on people, you get offended and upset, and then you lose your destiny. Keep your eyes focused on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. He's the one. You have to keep your eyes fixed on him, because he's the pattern.

Paul said: follow me, as I follow Christ. In other words, if there's a part of his life which is weird, and not following Christ, then don't follow that bit; follow the other bits, that are like Jesus.

When God sets Godly people in the body of Christ, you don't copy everything; just take a look at the Godly aspects, and they're a model for you to copy. There's someone showing you what it could look like, but Jesus is the only one who's got it all together. None of us have got it together. We all need Jesus.

In Romans 8:29 - "For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to become like Jesus Christ, that he might be the first born among many brethren"

God is saying: his plan is to have many, and he wants them to be like Jesus. Therefore, study Jesus, focus on Jesus, pray to Jesus, talk to Jesus, get to know Jesus; and as you make Him your focus, you become like the one you focus your life on.

If you hang out with angry people, after a while, you're angry; and if you hang out with victim people, after a while it's "poor me", and "you're to blame"; but if you hang out with Jesus... Oh That's much better, much, much better. I don't know why you never thought of it before. Hang out with Jesus a lot more. Spend time with him, listen to him, ask him for advice and so on.

God is very clear. His plan is to bring many Children to become like Jesus Christ.

If it's God's plan to conform you to become like Jesus Christ, that means you're not there yet. That means a part of you is out of shape. Some are really out of shape! If you want to get in shape, you have to go someplace where you'll get in shape. So God puts you in a church of family, and he gets you into a relational flow with him, and he wants to get you shaped up to be like Jesus in your character, so you're meek and humble. You've got to not have anger issues and pride issues. God wants you to become like him.

You say: well, that sounds a bit weak and wussy to me? Who's in charge of the earth then? Who's been exalted by God to the highest realm of rulership? The one who was meek and lowly, and was humble and served. Greatness is found in embracing the hard qualities of Jesus. He's the one you want to become like; and in any place you're not like that - that's the place you repent; that's the place you talk to Him, ask for his help and grace to grow.

God has got you in his own growth process, and it's unique to everyone, and the challenges you face are meant to grow you. So when you come up, and you're crying and weeping because of all the stress you're going through, really, God has just put you in a growth situation! I've been there. I get to understand what that's like, but it's because I took my eyes off Jesus. As soon as you get your eyes back on him, you're empowered again to become, and to change.

The problem is friendly fire, isn't it? When the people who are supposed to be on your side are the ones who are shooting at you, that's called friendly fire. That's one of the challenges in the church. The people who are supposed to be on your side start shooting at you, and saying things behind your back... that's called friendly fire, and it's not very friendly at all; but anyway, you gotta get over that as well.

Jesus is preeminent; the Bible calls him: the head over all things. He's the first born. Jesus is being given the place of preeminence, but his goal is to raise up sons and daughters to be just like him. That is the plan. It starts when you receive Jesus Christ.

John 1:12 - "To him who received Him, every person who received Jesus Christ, he gave the authority, the right, to become a child of God."

And that word child is the word technon, meaning just a little child, little, just born, newborn. Newborns mess up, all the time; but after a while they grow up - and you hope you're not feeding them and cleaning them up. In the church, you hope you're not feeding people all the time, and cleaning them up. They should be feeding themselves; should be studying the Bible; should be praying, should be hearing God. You shouldn't have to be doing it all for them all the time, because you're growing up.

God wants us to grow. He's got a plan for you. So embrace the plan! Jesus: that stress, I'm feeling, I welcome it! Thank you, Lord. Show me how you want me to grow. How about that? That would be a good response, because I believe you're changing me to be like Jesus.

Bible is very clear, it says: "this light affliction..." Whatever you're going through, the Bible calls it a "light affliction". It's a little wee bit of an upset. This light affliction works for us. It works on our behalf. It works for us. It works an eternal weight of glory, or transforms us, while we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus Christ.

So in the midst of whatever you're facing, get your eyes back on Jesus Christ. Don't get your eyes on the media, and what they're saying; get your eyes on Jesus Christ, what the word of God is saying, and allow Him to direct the course of your life. That will turn you to gradually become like the one that you focus your life on.

Then he has a grand conclusion: Jesus will succeed where Adam fails. Where Adam failed, and left a legacy of separation; left us a culture of an orphan right through the world; left us a loss of dominion and subject to sin and all kinds of sickness and problems... Jesus has overcome all of that, and left a different legacy, a legacy of life, a legacy of hope, a legacy of spiritual strength. He's given all of that, so it's all available to us, all available through the Holy Ghost.

He gives it to all who believe on him. He says: as many as received Christ, you've received the spirit of adoption - the spirit that bears witness to our spirit. We're Children of God! Who are you? You're a child of God! Are you a son of God? Not yet. I'm on the way.

Let me just finish the grand conclusion...

The Bible says: all of creation is waiting the completion of this plan. The whole of creation, creation itself - it groans! Oh, it's a burden, all these people!

Creation is a living thing; not that we should worship it, but it's alive, and it's responsive to man, and the sin man brings puts a burden on the earth. When there's bloodshed, the blood cries out of the earth.

Romans 8:18 - "I consider the sufferings of this present time not worthy to be compared to the glory that will be revealed in us."

You have received a taste of that. Christ has gone into you. This is the hope that he will manifest himself in the future for the earnest expectation.

Romans 8:19 - "All creation, it eagerly is awaiting the manifestation of the sons mature, who he has full grown sons of God."

Romans 8:20 - "For creation was subject to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope"

He's saying that a curse was placed upon creation, but God gave a hope that it would be redeemed. All of creation has a hope that one day God will complete his plan, and the curse will be lifted off the creation. The animals will change, the ground will produce, everything will be different. It'll be back like it was before the fall. This is a hope that creation has.

Romans 8:22 - "For we know that the whole of creation groans and labors with birth pangs, right up to the present time". Those birth pangs - earthquakes, volcanoes, weather issues.

Romans 8:23 - "Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body."

The placement into sonship, which means the redemption and resurrection of our body. And it says: if we hope for what we don't see, we're eagerly awaiting for it with perseverance.

God's eternal purpose hasn't yet been seen. When people look at you, it's very true.

What John said: "it does not yet appear what we shall be, but when he appears, we shall be like Him for, we shall see Him as he is see."

God's plan is yet to be revealed. This great hope, its not that we'll go to heaven; the great hope is our being placed into full sonship and having access to the inheritance Christ bought. It's called the adoption. When is that going to happen? It will happen at the end of the age. It will happen at the return of Christ. The return of Christ will mean that we are placed into sonship and the evidence of it is: our body is resurrected and transformed. The Bible calls this a great hope. Hope means it's in the future. It's not now. But when you have a hope, it causes you to look at now and change how you live. It causes you to embrace the challenges, and to embrace the process of growing. It calls you to reach out to build relationship with God. It causes you to persevere, no matter what's wrong. And when people threaten your life for following Christ, you say: I'd rather yield and give up, than to surrender Christ.

This is an amazing thing. This is called our great hope. It doesn't yet appear what we shall be; but when he appears, we'll be like him and everyone who has that hope frees himself from defilement. A lot of people in the church live very defiled lives, defiled by the world, defiled from things in their past, defiled also by things that they're doing; but everyone who has a hope of God's plan in their heart, they don't need anyone to tell them what to do. They know and desire to be free of defilement, and please their father, because they're sons. Their reference point is they're sons; sons as their father; and the person to model on is Jesus Christ.

Closing Prayer

I feel the presence of God here. I believe God's going to touch many, many people. I think we should actually lift and exalt the name of Jesus high, because Jesus is the one who gets the preeminence. He's the one we exalt on high. He's the one that they threw their crowns at his feet. He's the one that everything flows from him, Jesus Christ.

If you don't know Jesus Christ, this would be a great day to make a decision. I'm having an empty life. I'm walking my own way today. I choose to follow Christ. Make a response to receive Jesus Christ. Pray a simple prayer. It will change your life and your destiny.

Perhaps you're struggling with something. God wants you to fix your eyes back on Jesus. Perhaps is there is healing you need in your body. Perhaps there's an area where you're oppressed and you're struggling and feeling weighed down. Say God, I really want to be free of that today.

Perhaps there's other people, and you're struggling as I was sharing before with some aspects of defilement; and you say, oh man, I just realized there's stuff I need to be cleansed from. I need to actually get rid of this stuff out of my life. I want to do it today. I want to fulfill the destiny God has for me, that eternal purpose, of being a son of God, fully manifested in the earth, to be part of changing this earth.

It's an extraordinary destiny we're called to; an extraordinary future we're called to; and out of every generation, men and women have made a decision to receive Christ, to walk with Him, some gave up their lives, some went through hardship, some have passed on, but every one of them who has followed Christ, made that decision to live for him, God knows who they are, and he will raise them up at his coming. And those whe are alive, who serve him faithfully, He will raise them up. It is coming, they will come and enter sonship, they will rejoice. That will be so glad, the sufferings and difficulties will mean nothing, because they've seen the one face to face. Here I am, exchange me, out of this weak and tired body, in a resurrection body, and now I have an eternal destiny. Working with my god and father, to change creation. What a glorious hope that is.

3 R's of Sonship (2 of 4)  

Tue 20 Dec 2022 « Back to Top

Video»  Audio»  Share»  Website»  

Relationship. He said: "that this is eternal life - that they may know you". Relationship means having a personal relational connection with God as your father.

Responsibility. He said: "I have finished the work you gave me to do". To finish a job means you were responsible. You did what you were called to do.

Representation - to be a representative. He said: "I have manifested your name". It means to reveal who you are.


I want to welcome all those who are watching online. I know we've got heaps of watching online, and so great to connect with you, and I know whatever God's doing here, he wants to do with you as well.

I want to speak this week on the three R's of sonship. How many ever heard the term? Three Rs: Reading, Writing and Arithmetic - the foundations of an academic education.

I looked up three R's, and I found there was another one too. If you're going to be a leader, then the three R's of Leadership are: Respect, Responsibility and Resourcefulness.

I want to look into John 17, and I want to show you three foundational functions of what it means to be a child of God, to be a son of God.

Main Message

When we don't understand things, if we don't understand how something works, then we misuse it. It's really important in days like this that we understand our identity, and how to function in that identity.

John 17:1-6 - "Jesus spoke these words, and he lifted up his eyes to heaven and he said: father, the hour has come to glorify your son, that your son may also glorify you. You've given him authority over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as you have given him. And this is now heard (he begins to describe it), this is eternal or age-lasting life (or this is the life that comes out of the eternal realm). This is eternal life: that they may know. You, the one true God (only one true God! There's no 'many ways', there's only one true God), and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent (the word sent means apostelo - to send as a representative on a mission. So if you reject the representative, you reject the one who sent him). I have glorified you on earth. I have finished the work you've given me to do. (Now, he hasn't gone to the cross, so we need to think what that work might be). Now, father glorify me with yourself, the glory I had before the world was. (And here's the third one:) I have manifested your name to the men you've given me out of the world; they were yours, you gave them to me and they have kept your word."

So Jesus reveals three aspects of what it means to be a child of God; three aspects of what Sonship design is. If there's a design, it means God has planned a way for it to work. If you take one part out, it doesn't work as it was intended. And so here they are, and they are the three R's.

The first R is Relationship. He said: "that this is eternal life - that they may know you". Relationship means having a personal relational connection with God as your father.

The second R we would call Responsibility. He said: "I have finished the work you gave me to do". To finish a job means you were responsible. You did what you were called to do. The second aspect of being a child of God is that we serve our father, we fulfill things he gives us to do.

The third aspect is Representation - to be a representative. He said: "I have manifested your name". It means to reveal who you are.

If you're going to be a child of God, you're called firstly into relationship with him - a connection with him.

Secondly, you are called to be responsible. It's a big issue today. People don't want to be responsible. They want to play the game of victim and blame someone else; but God calls sons to be responsible. He gives them assignments, something for them that's suited for them to do.

Thirdly, representative. To be a representative means you act in place of someone else. You're not doing your own thing, you're acting to represent someone. I'm going to focus around that, because this is an area that the church doesn't really get or understand very much.

Every part of this is like three circles, interacting with one another: Relationship; Responsibility; and being a Representative. To be a representative, I must know what my father's like. I need relationship, in order to do what he wants me to do. All of the three things work together; if you focus on one at the expense of the others, you become somewhat dysfunctional.

I want to pick up the thought of man being created as the representative. I just want to focus on God's creation and his plan. Then we're going to look at each of the three aspects.

First of all, man was created to be representative. I don't know if you've ever thought of that, but you're actually called to represent someone, and that means you're not here to do your own thing. You're called to act as a representative.

Psalm 103:19 - "The Lord has established his throne in the heaven. His kingdom rules over all".

When God created the earth, he had in mind that he would extend his kingdom. His kingdom existed in the realm of the spirit. When he created the physical earth, all of the physical creation, his plan was he would expand his kingdom into that whole realm. He's a king, he's going to expand his kingdom; and so he intended that he would rule over the earth he created, and that he would display what he's like. His goodness is love. The earth would be filled with the goodness of God, the creativity of God - that's what he had in mind.

Any kingdom has four essential components:

1) A king that rules. So whenever you read about the kingdom, the kingdom of God, you're talking about a ruler, someone who rules; they're not elected, they are the king, they're in charge. Our thinking must be aligned to think kingdom. When God created all of this earth, he created it to extend his kingdom over it all, and that means he would rule over it.

2) A kingdom refers to property or territory. The whole of the physical world is called to be an extension of God's kingdom, the place he rules.

3) A kingdom also refers to subjects, or people. If a king is over a kingdom, then there's a place he rules over; and a people he rules over as well.

We have a brilliant example of that just looking at the funeral of the queen of England, and then the appointment of a king. Many of the features around the appointment of the king, and the anointing of the king, and even what they sing and read all comes out of the Bible. It goes right back to David's kingdom. The kingdom is the pattern God has for uniting everything in creation.

4) A kingdom has a cultural system of rules that makes it work. So it isn't just: everyone does what they want! There's always a system of law and rules; a way of doing things.

When you are born again, when you receive Christ, you are translated out of another kingdom - out of the power of darkness, out of an invisible kingdom, ruled over by the devil; and you are positioned in your heart as part of a different kingdom. That means you have a new king or ruler over your life, you become part of a family of people that God rules over - and there are patterns and ways that He does things. If you follow his pattern - things go well; but if you don't follow his pattern, if you break his laws, then demonic spirits have room to operate.

The chaos we see in the earth today is because of the rejection of God, the rejection of His rule, the rejection of His principles; and therefore, chaos, absolute chaos, wars, all kinds of difficulties - we see that everywhere.

God is the king over all of creation. He creates the physical realm, his desire is to extend his kingdom in it. Now, how is the king going to rule? Any kingdom, it has to be ruled. There's two ways the king can rule over his kingdom. One is He does it directly. God, because he is God, is able to directly rule everywhere. He's able to speak into the heart of every person. He's able to engage you. He's omnipresent, he's able to be everywhere. Therefore, it's possible for God to rule over the whole earth by himself. He don't need anyone to do it. However, he decided that that's not how we would do it. He would work through people.

A kingdom then, is ruled over, either directly by the king, or by someone he delegates to represent him - an organized pattern or structure for his kingdom, that's how it must work. All kingdoms work the same way. God has created man to be his representative, to carry out his purposes, to rule as he would rule - that's God's plan.

If you have been created to rule, you need to know the one who created you to rule; you need to know what He's like, and how he would do stuff. How can you represent someone you don't know? If you don't know Him, you won't know how He would deal with stuff; you would just come up with your own ideas, which is what people do. Clearly then, God has chosen man to represent Him. If we're going to rule over whatever sphere God's given us, then we need to know what God is like, how He would operate, and we need to know the rules and principles of His kingdom. They're all found in the Bible. You want to read and study the Bible, and find out how God operates.

For example, when God formed the nation Israel, the first thing he did was to give Moses 10 commandments; and the 10 commandments are divided up into two groups: how to relate to God; and how to relate to people. They were to form the foundation of a nation, and a culture - heaven on the earth. Once you start to see it, you see how all of these things in the Bible come together, and how God has displayed in it little by little all through the Bible.

Only someone specially made for this purpose could do the job. Only someone specially made, or specially created, could do the job. Why didn't he get angels to do it? Well, the Bible says that angels are just servants. Angels do not carry the nature of God. They are very powerful beings, but they don't carry the nature of God. There's only one part of creation that actually carries the nature character of God, and that is man. Any man can be the representative.

Genesis 1:26 - "Let us make man in our image according to our likeness, let them have Dominion."

God's thinking was not just of one man in charge of everything; he's thinking of people, in charge over God's creation, delegated something to do.

Genesis 1:27 - "God created man in his image, the image of God, he created a male and female. He created them."

When God created man, he created them male and female; so male and female together represent the nature and the character of God. His intention was they would work together. They would not be competitive. Competitiveness came in after the fall. Unity was what was characterized before the fall.

Man is created, and he created us in our image, meaning His image. He created us to be to resemble him, or to represent Him. 'In his likeness' means to be a similar form, or to be closely representing him.

How was man to be the representative of God? Very simple, God created man to be a spirit being. God is a spirit. You are a spirit. Birds produce birds; cats produce cats; dogs produce dogs; and God, a spirit, produces spirit beings. He's called the Father of Spirits. You are a spirit being. There's a uniqueness about you; a spirit being, dwelling in a body, with soul and emotions, able to make decisions. That's who we are. We're created as a spirit being, able to connect with God, because we are spirit like him - connecting spirit to spirit. We are created for an assignment on the earth, and we are created to represent God - that's what the design is. Sin is what's wrecked it all.

God has created us to be sons. When we use the word son, we're not using a gender term, it's just a pattern. Father and a son have a function in the Bible. When he's using the term son, he's including men and women; he called their name Adam. They, the man he created, was made up of male and female; so you don't distinguish when we use the word son. We're not referring to gender, man or woman; we're referring to the people God has created.

Here's the thing, there is a difference between a servant and a son. Here's two differences:

1) A servant just fulfills the tasks that are given to him. He just does the jobs that he's told to do. That's a servant.

2) A servant does not have any inheritance in the house.

The son is really quite different. The servant is concerned about getting the task done; but a son is the heir of the of the house. If you're part of a family, then there's probably some inheritance of some kind. If the parents have been Godly, they will have built some inheritance, financially or otherwise. When the parents pass on, then there's an inheritance. If you are investing in that inheritance, it's something you eventually going to have yourself. A son then knows that whatever he works with his father to build, he will be owning later on. There's a huge difference right there.

So angels, which are servants, just serve the father, and do what he tells them to do; they don't carry the nature of God and they're not heirs. The only ones that are heirs, that have the right to ownership of all of creation, and to share it with God, is man. That's the privilege we have.

If you're an heir you look at every task differently to a servant. If you're a servant, we just do what you're told to do. But if you're an heir, you're thinking: this is not just a job to do, this is my father's business, and I'm working with him to build something that I'm going to be a part sharer in. Think about that.

The Bible talks a lot about inheritance and how, when it came to inheritance, remember Jacob and Esau - how Esau despised the inheritance, but Jacob valued it; and even though he was crooked in how he went about trying to get it, God valued the fact that He valued eternal things. God raised him up.

We're created then, to be representative of God.

Genesis 1:26 - "Let them have Dominion"

Psalm 115:16 - "The heaven, even the heavens are the Lord's; but earth, he's given to the Children of men."

Who has he given the earth to? To men! Our whole legacy in the future is to rule the creation God gave us. Of course, since we've only got 70, 80, 90 years, whatever it is, we need to have a resurrected body to fulfill all of that; but that's all part of the plan as well. The design has never changed; that man would be a steward of the earth and everything that God has created.

Psalm 8:6 - "You have made him to have Dominion over the works of your hands. You put all things under his feet."

God has created man to rule as his representative. You've got to understand that one of your primary functions as a human being is to be a representative of someone. An ambassador is a representative of someone; they represent another country. They don't give their own opinions; they give the opinions of the country they belong to. You are called an ambassador for the Kingdom of God. Therefore, you are an ambassador, to speak and act on behalf of your father. You need to know what he has to say - about marriage, family, finances, attitudes, morality. He's got a lot to say, about a lot of things, because he's got the idea how to make it work. If I'm His representative, then I need to discover how he wants things to work.

It's great to see people doing a relational course, learning how to make life work according to the pattern that God gave. I'm sure those going through it would have found: I'm not doing it right! So dumb, how could I have done that for so long, and not known? Ignorance is the problem - we don't know God's ways! We do our own dumb ideas, and then it doesn't work. We end up yelling at one another, and that's not working either. No-one's listening. So we need to really get to know God's ways.

If you're chosen to be a representative, a representative stands in the place of another. So man, that's you and me, men and women, were called to stand on the earth, in the place of God standing on the earth, as His representative. That means you act on His behalf. You function to do what He needs done. That's why every one of us has got a call on our life. Everyone has got something you need to do.

We're called to display what He is like. To be a representative means you show up what someone else is like in the way you respond - a lot of Christians need to get that one. If you're the representative, then you act to advance His purposes; a representative - stand in His place; act on His behalf; show what He is like; advances His interests - that's what it means to be representative.

Here's the question: will you represent yourself; or will you represent what God your father? That's the core of the issue. So Adam, carrying the DNA of his father, could then make a decision: he could decide to be the representative of his father, and fulfill his purpose; or he could cast off the restraint and act on his own behalf, and do what he felt would be in his own interest - and therein is the cause of the fall. This is why man fell. This is why man lost his everything. This is why we have the problems in the earth. It comes down to this: instead of acting as God, his father's representative, and fulfilling what his father wanted; he decided to advance his own interests, to cast off the restraint of his father, cast off the boundary, his father set. I have a better plan for me to get ahead - that's the core of the fall. I have a better plan than God's plan, and it will get me ahead - that's the core of it.

Ever since Adam sinned and fell in that way, that's how everyone thinks - I've got a better plan than God's plan; and the core center of this plan is me getting ahead of everyone else. I'm in competition with everyone else. That's the core of sin; that's what sin looks like. I have fallen away from a relationship that's life-giving and loving, and being the representative of another, serving another. I've now become the center of my own world.

God's representative in the world is always a son; it's never an angel - it's a son. God intended that the kingdom of Heaven would be the same in the earth as it is in the heavens. When you pray it, your kingdom come. So God intended that the kingdom in the realm of the spirit would become the kingdom revealed on the earth. What did that look like - that the will of God would be done on the earth, and all the resources and goodness and the things that God would release would be released into the earth. That's the plan! So when you're praying "our father in heaven", you're acknowledging God is your father. We're giving honor to Him as the creator, and then we're praying to align our life with His life. Father, your kingdom, your rule come - and that means your will be done on earth, just the same way it's being done in heaven. In other words, all the resources of heaven would start to flow into the earth, and make the earth a wonderful place - marriage a wonderful place; family a wonderful place; finances blessed.

Adam's mandate was to establish the order and culture of heaven in the earth. Adam's mandate was to establish on earth, the order, the way relationships work, and the culture, the values of heaven, in the earth. So if you're God's representative, then you need to think about order, the way relationships are intended to work; not how the world says it's meant to work. The world is under the the influence of another spiritual power, totally contrary to God's order. Therefore, the message the world brings will always be one of rebellion and anger against the order that God has established, because that's a governmental order.

God has set an order in the church. He set an order in marriage. You need to understand what the order is. It's not to be oppressive; it's an order of service, in order to function, so God's blessing would flow. God's got an order between children and parents; and parents and Children. When it's functioning properly, then blessing, and benefits, and legacy is flowing. That's order; and culture means the the values, the creativity, the expression of something.

Every every group of people has a culture, but heaven has a culture. Heaven has values. When Jesus came, do you remember his message to the Sermon on the Mount? It's about the culture of heaven - the ways you relate to people, the kind of values that is important in heaven. In the earth, strength is important; in the kingdom of God, Meekness is important. In the world, to rise up and be the top dog is important; but in the kingdom, to be humble and be the servant is important. There's a conflict between the culture of earth, which has been shaped by rebellion against God's order; and the culture of heaven, which is a new culture.

When you get born again, your spirit comes alive, and you enter a relationship with God, and now you have the power to change. It doesn't mean you've become mature; it just means you have the power to change. You've received the spirit of your father into you; you are now placed into a relationship with your father; you have the power to be different. Before, you couldn't. You kept falling over, falling into traps and snares and all kinds of things you hated, and a very self-centered life; but once we receive Jesus Christ, who is the pattern representative of the father, when you receive Him, then His spirit enters your life. It's called the Spirit of Sonship. It's called the Holy Spirit, and He now generates a new life in you. You're born again; you're not mature, you're still childish in many ways. We're just infants, but we've got a new start, a new spirit, a new heart. We have a desire towards God - that's the new thing, and I've actually become a new creation. Every one of you here that among us, that have received Christ as our savior, the spirit of God has entered us. We are a completely new creation in the earth.

What else is in the earth? Well, there's other people who are separated from God, and living out of their soul, and out of their their mind, and their reasoning; but this is a new creation, where God has united with man and the earth, that makes you a new creation. But you got to learn the culture and the ways of your father; you've got to learn his order in relationships, and embrace it. When we reject His order, we're rebelling against that, and we come under constantly demonic pressure and all kinds of torment.

Adam then had the potential to rule as a representative, and fulfill the call of God on his life; or, refuse and throw off it, and do what he wanted to do. When he chose that path, which is the same path we've all chosen... The Bible says all men have gone astray - "all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God". There is a way that seems right to man; but the end of the ways is death. All of us have taken that path, that's been our way of living.

When Adam chose to reject his father's boundaries, and living under authority and the guidance and provision of his father, a lot of things happened. He lost his relationship, he lost his capacity to represent his father; he now represented himself. He become a spiritual orphan - no father, alone in the world, and has to provide for himself. Then he becomes led by his soul, his feelings, and circumstances, and not by the spirit. He becomes self-centered, not God-centered, and he lost his authority. Quite serious. That's the condition we find people in.

When you come to Christ, then a seed is planted in you - a seed of the Kingdom of God. You now have the potential to totally be transformed, but that's not automatic. Just coming to church isn't going to do it for you. It's a help, but more is needed. I actually have to embrace the process of growing and maturing as God intended, and recognize how He does it. I need to pursue a relationship with my father, because I'm going to represent Him. I need to get to know what He is like. If you've had Brokenness in your family, you've got distorted perceptions of what God might be like, and so there's got to be a process of restoration take place. There's a lot of learning there, a lot of growing. We've got to grow up; and in order to grow us up, God puts us in His family, called the church.

People get attitudes about the church, and they've got attitudes about God and his family. I don't know about you, but when people get attitudes against my family, I kind of take it a little personally. It may not be a perfect family, but it's still my family. When you look at the local church, for all its shortcomings and shortfalls, it's still God's family. How you treat it, is how you're treating the father of that family. Think about that.

God's intention was to create a son to represent him, and that son failed miserably. God never changed the plan. He didn't have to come up with a rescue plan or anything. He actually already had planned that His son would be the restorer of the problem. In other words, instead of God trying to explain what it all looks like, He lets it unravel like a great story over history, so you can see it, study it, and then learn about how amazing God is.

Restoration came through the son. When Jesus was born, the angels all said: "glory to God on high and on earth, peace and goodwill to men".

God announced: the kingdom may have been lost, but I'm about to bring it back again.

Even Isaiah prophesized that: "unto the child is born unto us, a son is given; upon his shoulders shall be all the government".

When Jesus started his ministry, what did he start by saying? "Repent, the Kingdom of God is at hand". Understand then that, with the advent of Jesus Christ, God was sending a son to refix up all the damage, and get it back on track again; but He never changed the plan, that He would have sons and daughters that would share in his rulership over creation. He just needed God's son to fix it up, which He did; and we haven't seen the full fix yet. We saw the legal part of it, and now we see it's moving towards the end, as we get towards the end times.

In order to repair the damage, God had to send a son. He couldn't send angels in to fix it up. He had to send a son, because the son needed to do what Adam didn't do. Jesus came to do what Adam didn't do, which was to be fully obedient to his father, and therefore by yielding his life to serve his father, he was able to rescue us all. Amazing. You give Jesus all the honor. Jesus revealed exactly what the father is like.

John 14:9 - "If you've seen me, you've seen the father", and: "The works I do, My father in me is doing them".

He's the perfect representative. That's why He says: this is eternal life, that they know you, the one true God, and your representative; because if you reject the representative, you reject the one who sent them. If you reject Jesus, there is no way into heaven, there is no way into the kingdom. He is the only way, because He is the representative. You can't say: I've got a different plan. I want to park Jesus over there as a good guy, and I've got another plan to get there. Sorry, it's not going to work that way, because your father has not got a second plan. He's got no alternative routes. If there was an alternative route, Jesus wouldn't have had to die. He would have taken the easy way.

There is only one way. Jesus said: "I am the way, no man comes to the father, but by me. To reject Jesus, is to reject the fatherhood of God. People don't like to hear that. They want to hear there's many ways, but really what they're saying is: I reject the authority of God to declare the way; I want to make up my own salvation. That's what all religions are all about - making up our own way towards a relationship being restored with God again.

He said: there's only one way - it's by His death, as our representative.

Ephesians 2:18 - "we have access to the father by Him (by Jesus Christ) through the spirit of God".

There is no other way of accessing God as your father again, except through Jesus Christ. We come to Christ, then the spirit of God is put into our heart. Now we're born again. We can begin the journey of discovering and fulfilling what God called us to be. That brings us down to then 3 areas of sonship, three words that you need to really think of.

1) I need a Relationship with God.

2) I need to become Responsible, stop playing the victim; be responsible, not just for my life, but for what God called me to do.

3) I need to live my life as the Representative of another, not just doing my own thing.

Having a relationship is a priority, because a relationship opens up a life flow to you. Relationship means you're connecting to someone. It means there's an interaction between you. To know, that word know - this is eternal life, that they know you. That word know means a personal, intimate knowledge, gained through experience. God wants you to have experiential knowledge; not just know about Him. You need encounters, experiences with Him, where he reveals himself to you. That knowledge is progressively developed. Don't think that because you got to know Jesus years ago, that's the end of it. It talks about the unsearchable depths and riches; it's an ongoing thing. Every son makes a relationship with God, their priority.

The first thing to look at is: how is your relationship with God going? A relationship with God would consist of three things:

1) Personal intimacy; drawing close, experiencing being near, and belonging to Him.

Intimacy would mean getting to know someone progressively, because more of your life is being shared, and more of Him is being shared with you. That's what intimacy looks like: it's a progressive opening of your life, your fears, your doubts, your struggles - you're bringing God into each part of your life; you're becoming intimate. It's developed through worship, and listening to God. Another aspect of that intimacy: it starts by receiving Jesus Christ into your life as your savior. That's the start point of intimacy with God: I receive Christ to become born again, filled with the spirit of God; now I must then build my relationship. No one is responsible but you to build it. You build it through daily encounters with God. You build it through fellowship, sharing your life with Him. You build it through hunger, developing a hunger for Him, and you develop it by surrendering, yielding to his spirit.

2) Another aspect of relationship is Trust.

Psalm 37:3 - "Trust in the Lord with all your heart".

Trust is a decision to place confidence, that God is good and faithful, reliable. It's a decision to become vulnerable. Trusting. It's a hard one, this one's the most sensitive one. To trust God means you commit something you value into His hands, it makes you vulnerable to Him. To trust God means you respond to His counsel and guidance. You're trusting Him, that His way is better than your way. When you forgive someone, you are trusting that God will take care of this issue for you. When you start to order your finances, and make a portion for giving to the Lord, you are trusting that God will care and multiply the rest.

Psalm 9:10 - "Those who know your name (or those who know what you're like) will trust you."

You need to know what God is like. Then you know I can trust him. Can you trust Him with your marriage? If you're a wife, can you trust your husband? Big issues, but that's the core of relationship. If there's areas of distrust, they have to be repaired, so intimacy can be established by deepening the trust.

3) The third aspect of relationship is honor. Honor means you place a high value, and you treat someone with respect. If you want to build a relationship with God, learn to honor Him and respect Him, and His word, and His ways and deal with the defilement in your life, and have a proper attitude to the family of God. It's our father's family, don't get familiar, and treat them, and talk about them, and gossip about them, and run them down and criticize them. They're just immature Children on a journey; love them, and build them, and help them, and invest in them. If I want to build a relationship with God, then I must honor Him in my life on a daily basis. I must learn to progressively entrust my life into His care, and trust He will work it out, even though it doesn't always initially look that way, and I must learn how to build the intimacy with him.

4) The other area was responsibility. Responsibility means you got something you're called to do - you're responsible. There are lots of areas we are responsible for. Jesus said: I honored you father, and this is how I honored you...

John 17:4 - "...I finished the work you gave me to do".

Fathers give their sons work to do. They have a purpose. He's assigned a work, and in doing that, he's called to represent his father in the work. He was called to do what Adam didn't do. An assignment then is a specific task, and the Bible tells us very clearly that all sons are given assignments. It's your job to find what He called you to do. God puts you in a house like this, so you can be trained how to be faithful. That's one of the purposes of being in a church, is so you can learn how to be faithful in serving the house of our father. If you can't be trusted to turn up when you've got a job to do for your father's house, you can't be trusted full stop. It means you've got an attitude about your father, and His house, of disrespect and dishonor. Maybe no one says anything, but God sees it all, and notices, and this is very important to your maturity, your development, your inheritance.

Every son is given assignments, and they vary in scope and size over the course of our life. When I started my first assignment, I just cleaned the floors with a vacuum cleaner, I made cups of tea, all kinds of things - even cleaned out the toilets. It didn't really matter, it's just a job to do for father, and you're doing it all for your father in heaven; not for someone to notice you, or to get some recognition - that's what it's about.

Ephesians 2:10 - "We're created for works that God has prepared before you've begun".

Before you're even thought of, God has something for you to do. You've got to find what He's called you to do, and prepare yourself, so he can fulfill it. God has purposes in those assignments. Another thing to recognize about your assignments is that God sends you; every son, God sends. If you're in a certain neighborhood, God sent you there; if you're in a workplace, or got a business, God sent you there. You're commissioned as His representative to carry out His purpose there. If you just think church is church, and the rest of it's everything else, you're not thinking kingdom. You've got to think: I am a representative, all the time, of my father. If I've got a marriage and a family, I was sent there to be a blessing, and to build it. If I'm in a business or a work, I'm sent there to build it, and whatever God has sent you to do, he will authorize it. He will back you up, and give you spiritual authority to operate in that area. You just got to learn how to do that. It's so simple, but so profound, because it affects everything that you do.

The last thing is that we need to represent God. How did Jesus represent God? He did it through His life. He did it by the kind of life He lived - purity, perseverance, commitment. That's how He showed what God is like. How else did He show it? He showed it by the way He related to people. He included people; didn't judge them, included them; showed compassion on them, served them. That's how you be a representative of God. It's not being a boss man, it's being a servant person, a loving person, a compassionate person, a person knows how to stand up for truth, and not be pushed around and manipulated by people. That's how Jesus did it.

He did it in his teaching. He taught: this is what it looks like. I'm living it out. He demonstrated what His father's like by his ministry, the power of the Holy Spirit. You're called to be that representative too, wherever you are. I cannot do what you alone are called to do. You can look and you can say: I've got all these culture issues and whatever. No, no, no! You're saying God didn't know what he was doing, when He made me like this, with this gender, this racial background, that family background, and that cultural issue to face. You're saying God didn't know what he was doing; but He did know what he was doing! He made you, and sent you there, to show what He's like, and what can be done by someone yielded to the Holy Spirit. Doesn't this bring honor to your life? It brings honor and dignity to what you're called to do.

You don't have to be looking at what anyone else is doing. That's the result of the fall, that comparison. I just need to know, and be confident, what God called me to do, and act at all times like his representative. God puts me in a body and you've got to do something. To be His representative means He puts me on a maturity pathway. The Holy Spirit is responsible for your personal maturity. It's His job. How does he do that? Well, he sets you up in certain ways. He just lets the fruit of what's going on in your life manifest, and people react, and suddenly you've got issues to face, and it causes you to look and say: wait a minute, I got areas in my heart that need healing. There's places I don't know the love of God. I've got issues in my heart because of the broken family I came from, the abuse I suffered, all of that thing. I've built walls and barriers, and now I'm resistant to God's authority in so many different ways. I see I need my heart healed. I see I've embraced lies about myself, and about life and people. I need the truth into my heart. I need to renew my mind. Oh, I see, I seem to be powerless. I need deliverance from things that have got around my life. Now I need to invest in building the qualities of the kingdom into my life - meekness, and humility and purity and uprightness and faithfulness and loyalty. I need to be intentional.

Your first part of your journey is just cleaning up your act. After that, it gets much deeper and it gets very personal, and just things which are little things that no one would even notice, the Holy Spirit speaks to you and tells you: that's not loving; come on, repent of that, and let me show you what it means to love people. How awesome! Called to relationship, intimacy, knowing him, walking with him, trusting him, honoring him. We're called to service, to serving Him, engaging in what he's called us to do, doing it passionately doing it well, fulfilling it faithfully, whatever it is. We're called also to grow, to grow up. You know, Paul said, put away the childish stuff, grow up! Grow up, to become like Christ. How, how appalling when the church remains immature! Immaturity looks like: it's all about me, and I'm offended. That's what it looks like. That's exactly the face of it. Immaturity! We must grow, must be committed to do that growing, amen?

Closing Prayer

What an amazing privilege God has given us, that he has appointed us to manage his creation. How generous, that he sent His son, to fix up our mess, to die on our behalf on the cross, and to offer us a way back into relationship and into glory with Him. One of the saddest things would be for us to reject the offer, the invitation to be included in the people God calls my family.

If you've been born into this world, you're born outside God's family. You're programmed literally to look out for yourself like an orphan. God extends an invitation through Jesus Christ, to accept that He loves you, has paid a price for your sin and failure, and He wants to welcome you into his family. It just requires a decision from you, to say yes to Jesus Christ. It tells us in the Bible to as many as received Him, made him welcome in their life, responded to Him and began to follow Him. He gave power, the authority, the right to become a child of God. That's within your decision today.

What's holding you back? Fear? Fear of a God who loves you so much, He gave everything for you? Pride? What will people think of me? Listen, God can be trusted. There is no one you know in your life, that has given their life up for you; but Jesus Christ did. Today I invite you to say yes to Jesus Christ. I invite you to receive Him into your life and heart; and if you've fallen away from Him, you've lost sight, you've been seduced away from the honor of what it means to be a child of God. Today would be a great day to return to Him.

If something's got in your heart, an offensem or some kind of issues got in your heart, today would be a great day to just bring it to the Lord and say: Lord, forgive me, I release this thing to you. Is there anyone here would just right at this point want to make that decision? I want to receive Jesus Christ? I want to become a Christian. I want to be born again.

If you're here, and you've fallen away from the Lord, and you're no longer walking with Him, why don't you say: God, I'm coming back to you today. I want to come back to Him. I want to draw back into his presence again.

If there's anyone here and you're holding things in your heart that are blocking intimacy, blocking your serving God, blocking you representing Him, why don't you say: today Lord, I want to put that right.

Let's just all stand together. And as we stand, presence of God will come, as we just worship and honor Jesus. I want to thank you for being just so attentive. There's a lot that I shared. I know that, I encourage you to get the message, go back over it and study the scriptures yourself. There's many others that could be shared that teach these things. Begin to build the truth: this is who I am. I am not some failure. I am not some broken person. I'm a child of the living God. God himself dwells in me. I am called part of his family. I am called beloved. I belong to him. I refuse to live in shame.

Sons Are Builders (3 of 4)  

Thu 22 Dec 2022 « Back to Top

Video»  Audio»  Share»  Website»  

1) God, as a father, initiates the plan of building a family, building a house, that He can come and dwell in.

2) He speaks into the hearts of sons who love him, in relationship with him, to become builders, and to work with them in that building.

3) He brings revelation of the pattern of how to build, so you will build according to what He wants, the way He wants, motivated by love, not by self-centeredness.

4) God will supply and provide everything you need to build.

5) He will fill it with his presence.


We've been doing a series on Sonship. People get all kinds of ideas, but we never stop to think: do the ideas we have, and the concepts we have, align with what God says or not? If you want to build, one of the things about building is alignment - you must make sure things are aligned. If they're not aligned, it doesn't look so much so different at the beginning, but by the time we get to the end of the building, it's really, with messy, gaps and cracks and all kinds of things. It's a real mess of things aren't aligned properly. Builders always make a lot of effort to make sure everything's aligned.

Each year of our life, we need to ask the question: have I even inquired what God is looking to build in that part of my life? Is that part of my life aligned in any way with God's plan, that he wants to bless? Once you start to think that way, then you relook at everything you have, instead of looking at the media and the culture which is broken, and defiled and corrupt. Instead of looking to the culture to guide you, how you build, you begin to build from the principles of God's Word.

Jesus taught, in Matthew 7, about this. He talked about two men building their house: one built on a rock; and one built on the sand. The storms came on both the houses, but the one that stood was the one that was built on a rock. It was built by people who listened to what Jesus said, and applied it to their lives. You don't have to look far around to see marriages and businesses failing, financial collapse, destruction, in all kinds of ways. The foundation is not right, so when the pressure comes, it collapses. We need to be people that inquire and search God's word, to put the patterns and principles into place in our life.

Main Message

I want to share a message called Sons of Builders. First of all, let's look again at a passage in the Bible where Jesus explained how we're designed to function. He revealed sonship design. Design is just a blueprint or a pattern. In these three verses, God gives you just the basics of the pattern He wants you to apply in your life. If you leave one part out, it's a problem. When we're looking for a pattern, we're looking for something to model upon. We're looking for a blueprint. The Bible tells us, Jesus, and the way he lived his life, his values, He forms the blueprint, to follow. People, they can help to some extent, but there's always some character lack somewhere.

John 17:3 - "This is eternal life, that they may know you, the one true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent".

John 17:4 - "I have glorified you on earth. I finished the work you've given me to do".

John 17:6 - "I have manifested your name to the men, whom you gave me out of the world".

We saw in there, God's threefold design, three areas we are to function in, that when you apply yourself to each of those areas, they cause you to grow into maturity and become productive.

The first is Relationship; relationship with God. If you want to build something that will last, build through a relationship with God. "This is eternal life, that they know you". So relationship is a connection. It's a union between two people; and relationship is characterized by the sharing of lives, one with another. If you're a son, a child of God, you become a child of God, not by the process of adoption, but by God imparting his life into you when you receive Christ. But that just makes you a child, you still got to grow.

The second is Representation. Verse six - "I have manifested your name to the men you gave me". That means Representation. We're called not just to have relationship, which is an ongoing, growing thing; we're also called to Represent what God is like. We're called to reveal to people the nature and character of God, which means the fruit of our life. Instead of being self-centered, we become a loving people, a kind people, a patient people. We begin to demonstrate in our relationships what the life of God looks like. It's in how you deal with people.

The third one is Responsibility. Jesus said - "I honored you (I brought honor to you). I finished the work you gave me to do". All sons are given an assignment, work, or something unique to them. God knows exactly who you are, how he's designed you, where you'd be born, what family, what background - there's something only you can do, and you've got to find that. For all of us, as Children of God, we are called to share the gospel of Jesus Christ to people, to let people know that there's a possibility of another kind of life. Jesus obviously had a very big awareness of this; even at 12, he said: don't you know, I must be about my father's business.

Let's go to the meaning of son; and then we're going to look at the whole issue of sons being builders; and then I'll show you how it practically works out in your life, in a very practical way. When we hear the word son in the Bible, frequently people are described as the son of someone else, for example, Simon Bar Jonah, meaning the son of Jonah. People were described by their father, thats where they came from, their family of origin, because in the cultures of the Middle East, a person's honor came from the family of origin. That's their first source of honor, so that they ask who you are. They want to know your family background, who you come from? Do you come from a good family? Well, if you didn't come from a good family, that was a really a bad place to start life at; but if you come from a good family, then that was a great place to start life at. Your father had already built something for you to live on, and build on. The good news for us, is we've come from a bad family, broken family, destructive family, but we all get a new beginning in Jesus Christ, and that's so good.

The word son, is the word Ben, and it means to be a builder. If you're a child of God, a son of God, then you are a builder. In other words, who are you? I'm a son of God; I'm a builder of God. You've got to keep in mind what these words meant, otherwise we live out of a western thinking. If you're a child of God, a son of God, then you're called to be a builder. You're called to build the father's house. The root word is the word Bannah, meaning to build, establish, or cause something to continue. If you're a child of God, you're called to build, add to, and enlarge your father's house, and cause it to continue. In other words, we're to evangelize disciples. There's a whole range of things we're called to do.

Now, just in case you think we're just talking about men here, understand that in these passages, the Bible is just talking about a function; about a way of relationship. It's a way of presenting how God operates. God uses many natural things. The word for daughter comes from the same word, it's the word Bannah, meaning to be a builder. So both men and women are seen equally in the eyes of God; are called to be builders of their father's house, to extend the father's family, to extend his name and reputation.

When you're a child of God, you don't live from rules (do this, don't do that); you live from identity (this is who I am). I do this, because this is who I am. I'm generous, because this is who I am. I'm a representative of my father, who's a generous person. I'm a forgiving person - not because I have to, because I've been manipulated to, or because of any other reason, but because my father is this way - he forgives me, and I pass it on.

You start to think: who am I? This is a big challenge in the culture today, which is destroying or undermining people's identity (who I am); so we need to be established in our new identity: I'm a child of God. I therefore operate out of who I am, and I behave like my father behaves. Once you see that, you stop living by rules, of I should do, or ought to do; you do it because: this is my identity. As I do this, my father's blessing is upon me, like a flow, like a river.

That doesn't mean you're all the same. Think for example, of a tree. A tree has a trunk, roots and leaves - everyone knows what a tree looks like. However, when you go out into nature and look, oh my! Look at the diversity of trees! Same with a flower, everyone knows what a flower looks like; but if you go and look into nature, look at the diversity! So although God calls us sons, once we're born into his family, there's huge diversity in what they look like, and how they work. He doesn't call you to give up, and just become a clone. He's calling you to become in the character, the image, the likeness of Jesus, in the way he functions, in terms of his character; but be unique in your own expression. Isn't that great news!

A son then is a builder. You're a child of God, and you're a builder. A son by nature extends, or is a generational extension of his father. If I have sons, then those sons are an extension of this generation, to form a new generation. Sons are a generational extension of their father. They carry their father's DNA, and they're called to reproduce another generation, to extends the family of God. You extend your own family, you have children and they produce grandchildren, great grandchildren, and so on. As believers, as Sons of God, we're called to be builders of our father's house. One way we do that is by bearing fruit, by leading other people to Christ, by drawing them into the Kingdom of God, by sharing the gospel of Jesus, and then another generation comes to Christ.

We're also called to build the house of God as well. A son is a generational legacy, and if you're thinking like a son, you think about building a generational legacy. We live in a world that wants everything fast, and everything now, and doesn't think about building for the next generation; but anyone who wants to have an impact in their life, builds with the next generation in mind, they plan with the next generation in mind. They're thinking beyond their lives and their generation - that's how God thinks. That's why he calls himself the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. In other words, he's saying: I am a multigenerational God. I build generationally. What I start in one generation, I continue in the next generation. That puts a tremendous responsibility on you as a parent, to then add value, or to build values into your Children that will extend the family on, and be built in the generation that follows.

Everywhere in our culture now, Christian values and Christian culture is being undermined. God needs builders who will stand up and build, and actually uphold. Not everyone is happy when you uphold Christian values, but that's too bad, it doesn't really matter. There's always been enemies of Christ. We're just to make sure we hold fast to the values of God, not to the values of the culture. So sons then build a generational legacy.

What legacy are you building for the next generation? I have my children, they're all grown up, but you can still be involved in serving somewhere and having an influence upon a next generation. Everyone can be involved in helping build and establish and contribute to the welfare of the next generation. Not only are sons builders, but sons are also repairers, and rebuilders. Sometimes we come from a family which is damaged and broken. We come from a history where our lives have been broken and damaged, then we're called to repair and rebuild. That's what sons do - they restore what God intended. If you come from a very bad background, a very abusive background, very troubled background, you can either look as a victim, and complain about it; or you can say: God has given me the honor, as a son, of being a repairer of this damage and a rebuilder, so I build what he intended families to be like. To do that you'll need models, and you'll need teaching.

Isaiah 61:4 - "They shall rebuild the old ruins, they shall raise up the former generations. They shall repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations".

Who are the people who are doing that? Isaiah 61 - those who have allowed God to touch them, to save them, to heal them and restore them, are then called to be repairers and rebuilders. So wherever you've come from, build something better for the next generation. Whatever your background, work with God to build something better for the future. We're called to be believers, to be investors, to be adding value, not subtracting and taking. Thats a change in thinking.

This is the Bible - you've got to go back to the word of God, if you want to find the patterns. I want to show you this issue of sonship working out in terms of building, and there's many ways sonship shows up. The area of building, so we're thinking now: I'm called to be a builder. We're going to look firstly in the Old Testament, at two people that God called to build him a house. You will see that there are principles in the building, that repeat in both of them. Then we look at the true house, which is Jesus Christ. Jesus came to build his father's house, and we find the true house is not a physical building; it's actually a spiritual building, it's a people. You are called then to be a builder of people.

Sons build their father's house. Let's look at the natural, first of all. A house can refer to a physical building, and it can also refer to a generational dynasty - both are a house. Let's have a look at Moses...

Exodus 25:8-9 - "Let them make me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them, according to all that I show you. That is the pattern of the Tabernacle, the pattern of all his furnishings, just so you shall make it".

Exodus 40:33-35 - "He raised the court around the Tabernacle, the alter. He hung up the screen of the gate. He finished the work (just like Jesus finished the work). The cloud of God's glory covered the Tabernacle in the meeting and the glory of the Lord filled the Tabernacle, and Moses could not even enter the building because the cloud rested above it. The glory of the Lord filled the Tabernacle".

God is the initiator of this building process. He's the project designer or architect. God desired to dwell among men, that is the plan. When we talk about a house, we're talking about some place you live. God wants to live on the earth among people. I don't want to get into teaching around heaven, but people have got some strange ideas what heaven is; but the Bible tells us very clearly, man is made to dwell in the earth. The earth has been corrupted and God's desire is to restore it, and dwell in the earth with men.

You can see the pattern here, it starts off: and God said, "let them make me a house". I want you to make me a house, a tent, a temporary dwelling, and I'll come and live in it. The idea came from God. His heart is to live among us, and to express His nature, and all His resources, and share them among us. "Let them make me a sanctuary". This came from God. It's God's intention, God's purpose. That's the first thing. God is the initiator of the plan, and He's the grand architect.

Secondly, it's a son who built the house. Exodus 25:8 - "Let them make me a sanctuary, a dwelling place, so I can live among them". How do we know it was a son? Because in another part, in Exodus, God calls Israel "my son". In other words, when God is thinking son, He has a whole corporate family. He's thinking of a whole body of sons. So when he says "let them", he's saying: "let my son build the house". God doesn't choose a servant to build the house. He chooses a son. People who carry his heart, carry His nature, carry a passion for Him, and build what he wants. He's the planner; but we are expected to carry out the plan, and add our creativity into it.

For example, in Exodus 4:2, Pharaoh says, "The Lord Israel is my son. Let my son go, that he may serve me". So when God says: "let them build the house", He's viewing Israel as a son - let my son build the house.

1) God is the planner, the architect, the designer, the initiator - that's what father means. He's the source.

2) He says: my son will build the house. People who aren't in relationship with God, can't build for him. What they build, He won't bless it. You must be born again.

3) Father gave the pattern. Father gave the design.

Verse 9 - "According to all I show you the pattern, the Tabernacle, the pattern of its furnishings, and you'll make it".

The word pattern is a template, the detailed plan of how it should be done. How do they get the plan? They didn't come up with a plan by having a planning meeting, or a committee. Moses saw the plan. God showed it to him. I don't want you to build me anything you like, and say I'll be happy with it. I want you to build what I want, because what I want will be a reflection of what is already existing in heaven. I want you to make it according to the pattern, not your own way of doing it. I want you to make it according to my pattern, my design - it's always that way.

If you want to build, build according to God's pattern. If you want to build a marriage, find out what the role of a husband is, and what the role of a wife is, and embrace the pattern and learn how to make it work. Want to raise a good family? Find out the pattern for family, and begin to apply the pattern. That's how this is how you build - by discovering how God wants things built. If you want to grow your finances, study and find out finance principles in the Bible, and then put them into practice.

1) God initiates plan. 2) it's the son who does the building. 3) God has the pattern.

The pattern was given by revelation. God spoke to him very clearly: stick to the pattern. When you stick to God's pattern, you are actually submitting to his role as a king over your life. When you resist His pattern, you are resisting His role as a king over your life. Its all very well to say: Jesus is king; but actually He becomes king in our life when we recognize He knows how to build. By wisdom is a house built; wisdom comes from God.

We have our own ideas. Most of us, when it comes to building marriage, building family, bring our old pattern we're used to into the marriage, and often it's a broken pattern, a dysfunctional pattern, but we're used to it, so it feels normal. We don't understand, if you're going to build something that's different and better, then you need to do something different. Find out what God said to do, and do that, it'll be a lot better.

4) God filled it with His glory

The last thing is, as we saw in Exodus 40, when the house was built, according to the pattern God designed, then God filled it with His glory. His glory is all his goodness, His nature. There was a supernatural, tangible manifestation in the earth, that could be seen day and night, and was spectacular to watch. You could not doubt this was a house where God was in it, because you could see God was in the house. The display of his glory was so enormous. That's Moses.

I found the same four things with Solomon. 1 Chronicles 28:10-19

1 Chronicles 28:10 - "Consider now for the Lord has chosen you to build a house for the sanctuary, be strong and do it"

Then David gave his son Solomon, the plans for the vestibule, the houses, the treasuries, the upper chambers, the inner chambers, the place of the mercy seat - for the plans for all, he had by the spirit. Notice all the detail: the courts of the house, the chambers, the treasuries, treasuries of dedicated things. Verse 13, all the divisions of the priests, the levites, all the work. Verse 19 - "all of this, the Lord gave me the plan". He didn't come up with a grand idea of his own; he got it by revelation. God revealed to him how to build, and what to do. He said: the Lord made me understand, in writing by his hand upon me. We would expect that if this is a pattern, that when he builds according to what God wants - God fills it! If you want God to fill it, then build it his way.

2 Chronicles 5:13-14 - "It came to pass, when the trumpeters and singers were as one, making one sound praising, thanking the Lord, lifting up the voice with trumpets and Cymbals and instruments and music. Praising the Lord saying: for He is good, His mercy endures forever".

God loves music. The house of the Lord was filled with a cloud, and the priest could not continue ministering, because of the the glory of the Lord filled the house. They fell over, they could not stand because of the Majesty, the glory, as God himself did what He said he'd do - come and fill the house with all his fullness. He would dwell on the earth. Now, that's astounding.

Have a look at the time and the season after that, all that happened in Israel, as a nation. The nations of the earth came, the riches of the earth came. People came all over to see the wisdom of Solomon. The kings of the earth came there. They gathered into Jerusalem. What did they gather to? The house God had built. How was it built?

1) God was the architect, the designer. He was the one who initiated it. It's His plan, to build, and come and live in it.

2) He got a son to build it. God said to David: you can't build it. Solomon, your son, is going to build the house.

3) It came by a divine pattern, revelation. It was built according to what God showed him, not his own plan.

4) When it was completed, it was filled.

5) David, the father, provided everything needed to build the house.

We have five things in play:

1) God, as a father, initiates the plan of building a family, building a house, that He can come and dwell in.

2) He speaks into the hearts of sons who love him, in relationship with him, to become builders, and to work with them in that building.

3) He brings revelation of the pattern of how to build, so you will build according to what He wants, the way He wants, motivated by love, not by self-centeredness.

4) God will supply and provide everything you need to build.

5) He will fill it with his presence.

If you want your marriage filled with God's presence, build it God's way.

If you want your family filled with God's presence, build it God's way.

If want your business in favor with God, build it God's way.

Now lets go into the New Testament now, and we'll see if the pattern is still there. The Old Testament shows you natural things happening, and they all pointed to something that really God wanted to do - little glimpses of it, so we could understand it. The real house God wants to build is people - people of the temple of the living God. Jesus said: I'm the temple, I'm the house of God.

Jesus is the one who who builds a house for God. The Bible lays out that Jesus is the builder, and we build with Him, as sons. He came as a carpenter.

2 Samuel 7:12-16. This is an incredibly important prophecy that came in 2 Samuel, and it's a prophecy concerning Israel; but beyond Israel, to the coming kingdom of God and the earth. This is a promise, a covenant God made with David. God loved David, and God made a covenant with him concerning the coming kingdom, that would invade and fill the earth. It doesn't look like that now, but that doesn't mean it won't happen; it just means it hasn't happened yet.

You either build according to what you see around you, or you become word-focused, and build according to God's plan and pattern where he's going. You build generationally.

2 Samuel 7:12 - "When your days (that's David) are fulfilled, and you rest with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you, who will come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom".

The kingdom is the rule of a king. It's a territory, it's a culture, and laws. It's a people. I will do this - God's promise to David.

He said: "He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be his father. He shall be my son."

2 Samuel 7:16 - "Your house and your kingdom shall be established forever before you. Your throne shall be established forever".

To help you understand this, we'll show you its fulfillment. This is a promise to David, that in his family line, God would raise up someone who would build the house of God. Now, short term that was fulfilled by Solomon; but it actually is prophetic about Jesus, and what He would build.

"He will build a house for my name". It's not just the natural temple. It's a people for His Name. "I will establish the throne of his kingdom, and I will be his father. He will be my son".

He's talking about God raising up a kingdom that will fill the earth. It was fulfilled naturally in Solomon; but it actually referred to Jesus, the true son of David.

You find the same principles - God desires, and initiates a plan, to build a dwelling place. This time, it says: Jesus is the son who will build the house. When Jesus came, it was not just to save us; it was to build something, and restore something. He was a son. He came to restore what we're supposed to be, and what we're called to function like. Jesus is the son who builds the house of his father.

Hebrews 3:4-6 - "Every house is built by someone, but he that builds all things is God. Moses was faithful in his house, as a servant, for a testimony of things that will be spoken of afterwards (things that would come), but Christ is the son over his own house, whose house we are, if we hold confidence and rejoicing of hope, firm to the end".

Moses was a servant; servants complete tasks. Servants don't have a a legacy or inheritance; but Jesus is the son. Sons build their father's house, because they know that whatever they build for their father, will be theirs in the future. Different thinking.

Here's the thing - are you a servant, completing tasks; or are you in love with your father in heaven, building because you love him? It's all to do with the relationship, isn't it?

Jesus is the son, who builds his father's house. He came to build a house for his father.

What is the house that God is building? The church is the house that the son is building for his father. A lot of people want Jesus without the church. They have all kinds of issues and things around the church, because the idea of the church is shaped on their experiences, or religious concepts, or cultural thinking about the church.

The church is the word ecclesia, a people called out, to make governmental decisions regarding matters concerning the Kingdom. Church is a people, always a people; it's not the building. The building is where the church gathers.

Matthew 16:18 - "And I say to you, you are Peter, (Jesus is talking now to the next generation) and on this rock, I will build (the revelation I've given you) my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it".

What is Jesus building? He is building His church. Church is pictured as a family; as a temple; as a bride; as Sons - but Jesus is building it.

If Jesus is building something, don't go attacking it, and pulling it down; you need to be a builder. Sons are called to be builders, they may not be perfect, maybe broken, maybe things wrong, but he's committed and will succeed in His endeavor to build His church, because His church is people. It's not the organization. It's an organic body of people, who relate with Him, and with one another properly.

1 Timothy 3:15 - "If I'm delayed, I write, so you may know how you ought to conduct yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of truth".

The church is called a pillar, something unmovable, and the foundation of truth. One of the things believers must uphold is truth. In a generation that's being deluded and deceived, the church must uphold the truth of God's word, and not be afraid of the reactions that come when you hold to that truth. He said "the house of God" which is the church. God is the living God, and the church is the house of God, the place he dwells. It's not a building; it's a people, and it's called the church.

Look around you, you see people who are the church, but its only part of it. There's more of it in our town, all over the place. Some gathered together, some scattered, some broken down, some hurt, some wounded, some in bondage, but they are the church. We are not in competition with other groups in the town. We're part of building the church of Jesus Christ, that's called to advance His Kingdom. No competition at all - that's the wrong spirit, it's an orphan spirit.

He says: "I'm writing, so you might know how to conduct yourself". He's having to tell Timothy how to conduct himself. That means how to behave properly. A lot of people don't behave well at all. They're very badly behaved; they gossip, criticize, complain, all kinds of stuff. That's not behaving well, not behaving like a child of God; its behaving like a little child.

1 Corinthians 6:19 - "Don't you know your body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit, whom you have from God, and you are not your own".

The church is not an organization; not a business; not a physical building. It's a body of people, who in relationship with their head, Jesus; and with one another, form a living temple - that's what the church is.

God will provide everything we need to build.

Matthew 6:33 - "Seek first the kingdom of God (or place God's rule and order and purposes first), and everything you need will be added to you".

Instead of living anxious and uptight, realign your priorities so that you put God first, and you start to look at his priorities; then the other things will flow to you like a river. People will say: oh, you're lucky. No, not lucky. I'm actually blessed. What I have comes and goes, you just use it for the glory of God. It's the lifestyle of leaning on your father, and working with your father.

God has designed the house, and how it should function.

Ephesians 2:19-21 - "Now you're no longer strangers and foreigners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord".

Citizens means you belong to a country. We belong to two countries: Heaven, and New Zealand. We're common citizens of a country called Heaven, the Kingdom of God.

You are being built together for a dwelling place of God. Everything that divides you is not from God. God's work is to build us together into relationship. That's why this whole COVID lockdown was so harmful, because it hinders people from coming together, to be relational and connect and share and build one another. That's how church is meant to function. It's never just about the meetings; it's about the connecting and assembling, gathering together and functioning. Functioning means you've got something to bring in, and I've got something to bring in, and we both bring in what we have, from God.

Jesus Christ, the chief cornerstone, means that you can use people as a model to a certain level, but there's no perfect man except Jesus Christ. Jesus is the cornerstone. The cornerstone was the first stone they laid down, and the whole layout of the building was built around being aligned with a cornerstone. You didn't look at the other blocks; just look at the corner block, keep it lined with that one. You attach a line to it, run the line along, and everything is aligned with that corner one, otherwise it goes out of kilter. A lot of Christians get lost, and they get out of kilter, because someone upset them. Rather than looking to Jesus, and staying focused on Him, they become offended, and get into all kinds of trouble.

Every believer is called to be a builder. Jesus is the builder; He's the foundation; He's got the plan; He's the one who empowers people to do it. You're called to be a builder.

Every believer, that's a child of God, is called to be a builder. You will live in what you built, or what you tolerated. Your financial circumstances - they are what you built, or what you tolerated. Your marriage - is what you built, or what you tolerated. Your family - is what you built, or what you tolerated. Tolerate means you let it happen, and you put up no resistance, or gave no direction. It worried me when I first saw that.

God sets all believers into a family.

1 Corinthians 12:18 - "God has set the members, each one in the body, as it pleases Him".

God places members into a local church - a portion of the family of God. He sets them; that means he assigns them. When it comes to a local church, God your father, assigned you to a church. Go to the church that you feel the Holy Spirit leads, and draws you, and assigns to you. When you're there, stay through thick and thin; don't be a quitter! Don't pull away because something upset, or hurt, or offends, or whatever - stuff happens. All families have stuff that happens at times, things happen.

I've noticed that churches, any organisation, they go through seasons where they're thriving and great; seasons when it's really difficult, and the seasons are difficult. You got to know that God planted you there. You move by revelation, not reaction. There are times God shifts people. If God spoke to them, then that's fine; if he didn't, and you're just reacting, that's not so fine.

What is the role of the church? The role of the church is to make disciples. Jesus gave us a clear message:

Matthew 28:19 - "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit".

It's not just lead people to a decision; it's to create or develop people who are committed to follow Christ and live like him - that's the work of the church. It's to make a family for him. The churches are given the role of making mature children, sons and daughters, growing a decent family. How difficult that is these days.

2 Timothy 2:1-2 - "My son (Paul writing to Timothy), be strong in the grace that's in you in Christ. The things that you've heard from me, among many witnesses, commit to faithful men and who can teach others".

In the church, Paul was a pattern of a spiritual father. He had someone committed to learn from him; he taught him, and he said: now the things I teach you, impart to the next generation, who will impart to the next generation. In other words, his whole mindset is: think generationally, you're to be a builder.

A lot of people are in church just to get blessed. I want to get a good message; I want you to pray for me. That may all be fine, but it's not the purpose. All of that is to lead you to become a builder - to take what you've got, and give it to someone else. Take what God gave you. If you got saved, then share your salvation. If you've got healed, share your healing. If you've got delivered, share about your deliverance. If you've got a breakthrough, share about your breakthrough. It's not just for you, it's to pass on to the next generation.

The plague in the church is people that are just me, me, me; they're self centered - they never give what they've got to anyone else. It violates the purpose of God. It unfaithfulness, is what it really is.

Every believer is empowered to be a builder.

1 Corinthians 12:7 - "Now to everyone is given the gift of the spirit (everyone, no exclusion). It's given freely to you, so you may profit others".

God's intention is for every believer to benefit, add value, and profit other people. To do that, he gives you the empowering. If you have no intention of building anyone else, then there will be little flow of empowerment; but if you commit to become a helper, a builder, a strengthener of others, God will make available for you the flow of His spirit - prophecy, words of knowledge, healing, all of these kind of things. They're available to meet needs of people. It's God's intention that every person does that.

Ephesians 4:16 - "The whole body is built by what every joint supplies"

Joints are relationships. When you gather in a small group, you form relationships. If something goes wrong, people around you know you well enough to know you're not good, and contact you. Some people form no relationships, then when they're in trouble, they're on their own - nobody cares for me. Well, you never did what you're supposed to do. Connect, build relationships and connections, and grow together, and love together, and walk through hardship together, and help one another - that's the church. That's what it looks like. It's concerned about helping, about growing, and so on. Every believer is a minister of God. That's the church Jesus is building.

In all of the pattern of building, the foundation is first. I must be born again. I must come to Christ, and receive his life into my heart, through repentance, and alignment with him. That makes me a child of God; and then I'm called to be a builder. God will give me a pattern. The pattern is always found in the word and principles of God. You've got to learn to read the word of God, study the word of God, take notes on the word of God, be a person who loves the word of God. That's where the patterns are. If you want answers for life, read the word of God. Build, based on how God says to do it. That's a smart way to build your life.

Personal prayer is strengthening your relationship with your father, so that you are empowered, and guided, and led. If you need wisdom, ask God, he will give to you, and help you. If you're going to be a builder, then build prayer into your life. Build the word into your life.

Here's a fourth principle: Build long-term. Don't just do things just for the moment, or for the next big hit or thrill; build long-term. Think about long-term building. Don't run around wasting your energy everywhere. Focus your energy on where you can produce fruit. Think about that, and then have an expectation, that if I do what God's called me to do, he's going to bless it and fill it. He will bless it, and fill it.

What am I meant to build? The first thing to build is: build yourself, build your own life. Don't go running around doing everything for everyone. Start with yourself. You can only give to others what you've got. Build your personal life. What are you responsible for?

Keep your body healthy, keep it strong. Build your physical man.

Build your spirit man. "He that prays an unknown tongue, builds up his spirit man". Build up your spirit man.

What about your heart? Does your heart need healing? Does your heart need renovation? Whatever your heart needs, get the help you need for healing. Engage with your heart, and build into your heart, the character qualities of Christ. No one else going to do it for you.

What about your thought life? The only person that's going to build your thought life is you. Stop feeding on the negative. Take the word of God, and start to retrain your mind, to think better, to think prosperity, to think largeness, to think generosity, to think blessing.

What about your faith? Your faith is built by time in the word of God. You're responsible to build your life.

What about your gifts? Developing your gift? You need to develop the giftings you've got. If God's given you music, develop it, invest in it. If He's given you creative gifts, invest in it. Develop them, they're your gifts. They're not just your gifts for now; they're your gifts forever, so invest in them, develop them. If you're good at something, develop it, train others, and multiply what you can do. It doesn't really matter what God has gifted you with, just develop it, and then invest it into others.

Can you see how accessible this is, for every person to be a builder. If there's damage, we'll fix the damage up. It's your job to repair the damage. If your fence breaks down, don't just complain; go fix the fence. If your house has paint falling off - don't stand around there bemoaning the weather; go buy the paint, and do the hard work to paint it. It's your house, make it look good.

The first place you start is your personal life, and then you work on the other areas as well. What about your marriage? What about building your marriage. If you're husband, God gives you the mandate to take the initiative. Take the lead.

You may have a better pattern, a better plan, and that's fine, good luck to you. It won't work out very good though. God won't fill it, and bless it. He doesn't bless what he hasn't ordered, otherwise he'd be blessing rebellion.

What about your family? Today we've got all this stuff going on. Education used to build children; now it tends to undermine family, so you need to build strong family. How do you do it? Why don't you search the word of God, and find out some of the patterns, and then talk to people who've done that, and then start to be a builder of family. What about finances? Are you just living week to week, or are you learning how to develop your finances and grow wealth; so you can become a giver; so you can leave something to the next generation. Even if you've got little, doesn't mean you can't do anything, just do something.

If you're going to go to missions, don't say: one day I'm going to go to missions. Start building your life with God, and open an account to put some money in, and then when the missions opportunity comes up, you're ready, you've been building. In the local church? God wants us to build in a church.

There was a point in Jesus life where he went up on the mountain, and he was filled with the glory of God, and he showed off what it would be like when he returned. The Bible makes it clear in the book of Romans, that Christ in us is the hope of a glory to be revealed in the future.

1 John 3:2 - "When he appears, we shall be like him, for who we shall see him as he is".

Everyone that has that hope of sonship are being filled with the resurrection glory of God, frees himself from defilement, and does all they can to be a child of God.

Closing Prayer

We just thank you Lord for your word to us, that the word just dwell richly in our heart right now.

Perhaps there's someone here, and you have not yet given your life to Jesus Christ. You've not yet recognized the life you're living is a life separate from God. It's a life driven by emotions and pressure and demands and the culture of the world. It's actually driven by sin. Sin is the separation of our life from God. It's those things that separate us from a loving father who cares about us, who wants to invest in our life, has a destiny for us. In one decision, you could change the direction of your life. That decision is to turn away from a self centered life, a life directed by what you want, and turn to Jesus Christ, asking him to forgive you, and give you a fresh start.

Is there anyone willing to make that decision today? God loves you. He's made a way for this to happen. He invites you just to respond. You don't have to fix everything up. You come as you are to Jesus Christ. God has invested much. He's given the life of his only son, to rescue you, and set you free from what's gripping your life; so you could become a child, a child of God, part of a royal family, given a fresh start.

What is stopping you saying yes to that? Is it what people think? Is it fear? What is stopping you responding to God's invitation? Why don't you just make the decision right now? I will respond to Christ today. I feel a pull on my life. I know the Holy Spirit is speaking to me.

Maybe you know in your heart that you got offended, or turned back, or you've just neglected your life with God, and the path you've taken is actually not a very productive path at all. You say: God, I want to return to you today.

Perhaps for others, you felt God challenge you to become a builder - a builder of your own life, builder of marriage, builder of family, builder in your area of business, in the area of your finances, a builder in the area of relationships, a builder of the area of your house group, small fellowship group, a builder of the church, in some area and way being a part of a team, helping build a place for God to inhabit. God's spoken to you about that?

Father. I just thank you for each person here today. I thank you for a great family of people. I thank you for wonderful people, so varied and so different, so gifted, so wonderful. I thank you Lord for the journey. You've got us on to fill us with your life and presence. Lord, we honor you and thank you today in Jesus name. Everyone said: amen!

Sons are Led by The Spirit (4 of 4)  

Tue 18 Oct 2022 « Back to Top

Video»  Audio»  Share»  Website»  

Israel was led in the wilderness, by the manifest presence of God; but Jesus was led by the spirit. This is better, so we can all disperse throughout the world.

The spirit is gentle. We are not driven. We make our own decisions, and take responsibility for them.

If you are led by the spirit, He's going to lead you into maturity. He going to want you to grow up!

Sons are Led by The Spirit (4 of 4)


I want to share a message called: Sons are led by the spirit of God.

In spite of what you may think, everyone's being led; it's just a decision as to what is leading you, in the decisions and direction of your life.

Main Message

Key verse: Romans 8:14 - "For as many as are led by the spirit of God, they are the sons of God"

When he's talking about leading, he means to guide, or direct; those who are guided or directed by the spirit of God. It means to motivate, by bringing an influence onto someone.

The Holy Spirit moves us, and brings an influence upon our life, that will guide us and lead us. It means to take with one to a destination. When it says we're being led by the spirit, He is taking us on a destination. He's taking us in a direction thats God has purposed for our lives. If you don't listen to the Holy Spirit, you come up with your own plan. How's that working out for you? Not always that good. It means to lead or guide someone, by attaching to them, as someone there to help them.

It's simple, so everyone can do it. To be led by the spirit means to be guided or directed. It means to allow him to move you, or influence you, in a certain direction. It means to follow Him, or let Him lead you to the destination He has for your life. That will vary for everyone, but it will have some things in common.

It means to respond to someone that's with you all the time. The Holy Spirit is given as your coach - everyone's got their own coach. You just need to listen to him. Listen to your coach. The Holy Spirit is a tutor, a personal tutor. You don't say you haven't got anyone, or you don't know anything; you've got the Holy Spirit to teach you. You don't have to be smart. You just need be a good listener, and have a humble heart. The Holy Spirit is our companion; He's with us.

John 14:17 - "... the spirit that's been with you, will now soon be in you..."

He will be within you. When you got born again, God himself came to dwell within you. He's got a reason for doing that. If the Holy Spirit is going to lead us, then He's going to be a friend. If you want the Holy Spirit to lead you, become a friend of the Holy Spirit.

What it doesn't mean... He will not tell you what to do in every part of your life. You're not going to say: God told me this, and God told me that; He's not going to be like that. God does not tell you what to do in every part of your life. He wants you to be responsible for your life. He may remind you; He may speak to you at a certain time; but He's not going to be interrupting your life to tell you what to do all the time. He expects you to grow up and take responsibility for your part in it. He will not control everything.

The Holy Ghost made me do it? No, that's nonsense. He didn't make anyone do anything. He does not control us, in our actions or decisions. You're the one who is in control. If you made a decision, own it. Don't go blaming it on God - that's what immature people do.

The Holy Spirit won't lead you to behave weirdly. He's not into weirdness; although when He manifests, weird stuff happens, but He's not going to cause you to be weird or unwise. In fact, if you're following the Holy Spirit, your decisions and your life will show evidence of wisdom and good fruit. The wisdom from above is gentle and peaceable and open to reason, easily entreated. He's not going to cause you to behave really weirdly, and unwisely, and then... but the Lord told me... No, He didn't tell you; that was something you got wrong. That's not taking responsibility; you made the decision.

In spite of what people think, He doesn't lead us primarily through prophecies. If you're basing your lives on prophecies, that's a mistake. It will lead you to problems. He speaks to us internally, and confirms it through prophecy; so be very careful about letting someone with a prophetic gift tell you where you should go, and what you should do with your life. The prophetic gift, a gift of prophecy is for encouraging, exhorting; but not telling you what to do, and where to go, and who to marry, and what business to start.

He will not lead you by your feelings. He's not going to lead us like that, by emotional feelings, or by circumstances. A lot of people look good, so that must be God. No, it can look really bad, and it's still God. It's nothing to do with circumstances. The Holy Spirit primarily does not lead us from outside us. In the old Testament, Gideon put out a fleece; so you hear this expression: put out a fleece. He wasn't sure; he didn't had the spirit of God dwelling in him. He wasn't confident, he was fearful; and so he asked the Lord to give him an external sign, but that's not how we're meant to live. That's the Old Testament - when you don't have the Holy Spirit within you. Don't go doing that now, like you're still living in the Old Testament. It doesn't mean that.

What it does mean, is that you engage in a personal, intimate relationship with the Holy Spirit. How can you be led by someone you're not listening to? He is dwelling within you, therefore, everything going on within you is affecting that relationship. You develop sensitivity, you become sensitive to when He's moving.

Over time, you get to recognize like a mother. If you've ever been in a room of crying babies, and one mother will say: that's my baby crying. How the hell can you know that's your baby crying? There's heaps of the babies crying! No, I know the sound, I recognize the voice. Or, if you've ever had anyone tried to prank you, and they ring up, and they speak to you over the phone, and try and pull a stunt on you, pretending to be someone else? Oh, no, I recognize that voice. You know the sound of the voice. Jesus said: my sheep will know my voice. I was in America, and someone rang me up, and said: this is Sean Connery here. I said, Sean Connery? What is he doing ringing me? But it wasn't him, it was someone imitating him - Pastor Jurgen! He does lots of imitations like that, especially on the phone.

What it means is, you can't be led if you're not willing to follow. I want you to understand it, and it's not weird; it's not way out there. It's not some kind of thing where you lose responsibility, or don't think, or don't engage; being led by the spirit is something very practical. It requires that you build an intimate relationship with Him, and maintain the relationship, and guard it. It means that you develop sensitivity, so you become aware when He's prompting you, speaking you, or guiding you, warning you. It means you learn to surrender, and yield willingly as an act of trust.

Being led by the spirit is a voluntary surrender, to trust Him, because He loves you. The core of it is trust. You can't be led anywhere you're not willing to go. It's as simple as that. Don't make your own decisions, and then blame it on the Holy Ghost afterward, and say: He led me there. No, He didn't. It was your decision; and now you're blaming someone else, like Adam did. The Holy Spirit therefore will lead you, and direct you, but He won't control you; that the decision is always left up to you.

His nature is gentle; so he's not going to control you, pressure you, or force you. When you are led by the spirit, you are voluntarily submitting to His authority - that He knows bigger and better than you do. He knows more than you do; and by following his leading, you're submitting to him. You're submitting to his leadership.

When you're controlled by someone, you're obliged to do something, you've got little free will in it. If you're led by the spirit, you're voluntarily yielding control to him; but if you're controlled by someone, then you, you feel obliged, or pressured, I had to do it. A lot of people live their life with ought to, must dos, have tos - all of that is not being led by the spirit. That's being led by something else, probably by legalism.

The Holy Spirit requires that we be responsible, sensitive, and learn to trust him, and flow with his leading. The Holy Spirit leads; but demons drive people. If you're driven, it's not the Holy Spirit - anything that's got that drivenness in it, not the Holy Spirit - it's demons, or the flesh, or both.

We saw those who were led by the spirit of God are the Sons of God. Now look at this verse:

Luke 8:29 - "Jesus had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man, and it often had seized him. He was kept under guard and he was bound with chains and shackles and he broke the bonds, and he was driven by the demon into the wilderness".

Notice that word 'driven'. It means to push someone, or to pressure someone. It's like you've got a heavy wind blowing you, and you can't do anything, because you've got no ability to resist it. I used to see that down in Wellington, you get these heavy winds come down through Manning Street there, and man, you'd see people there, and they're on a 45 degree angle leaning into the wind. It's quite something to watch them. If they happen to have a big coat on, and the wind catches them, then you'd see them get caught. Some elderly people, you see them get caught, and they're now up on their feet; they're being driven by the wind, quite a sight to see. If you're in a boat that's been driven by the wind, and you've got no power, that's a real problem. I've been in one of those as well! Boat, we couldn't start the engine, and the wind is driving us out to sea, and I'm on the oars, trying to pull back to shore.

That's called driven. It's a pressure, a force on you, and lots of things drive people; demonic spirits drive people. If you've got behavior that's driven or feels pressured, it's demonic, or of the flesh, just your old nature. Sometimes people are driven by their feelings. Some people are driven by negative thoughts. Some people are driven by mindsets, that this is the way I think. Some people have got strongholds in their family. We're like this; our family's like that; this is who I am. No, it isn't who you are. The first thing the Holy Spirit does, is tell you to become someone else.

Culture can drive people; people can be driven by their culture of origin. A lot of the ways New Zealanders behave, or Pacifica people behave, or Maori people behave, is driven by culture, which is influenced by spirits. You've got to discern in the culture, what is from God, and what needs to be redeemed. All cultures have got something good to offer - that's the gift of the nations to the world; but there's parts that have to be redeemed, because they're demonized. That's every culture.

In New Zealand, passivity is a big problem. Rejection is a big problem. Independence is a big issue. These are forces that people don't even realize are guiding the way they operate. When you go to other cultures, you find it quite different. For example in New Zealand, a "tall poppy syndrome" where people tear down someone who's an achiever; but if you go to America, it's not like that at all there. If you do something good, they say: good on you, mate. That's awesome! Great! Go for it! Go as high as you can! In New Zealand, its: who do you think you are? What is that? That is a cultural force, to bring mediocrity. It's a cultural force, to stop excellence excelling. It's a cultural pressure, that drives people.

As a teacher, I can remember being in a class, and the predominant pressure among that particular group was that failing was a good thing. You were the kind of big deal in the class, the lower the score you got. I said: what a recipe for failure, being driven by something designed to destroy you; but people can't see it.

We can be driven by fear. We're driven by media. If you follow the media, and read a lot of the media, chances are your whole direction of your life will follow, and the way you decide will eventually follow the course of media, which is full of fear and distortions. The news we need is what God is saying. That is the good news; everything is, it's a narrative, an opinion.

Some people are driven by a fear of being rejected, so all their decisions, and the way they do life, is based on: will the crowd like me, or will people like me? Will I fit in? Will people reject me? They're actually driven in their life by a spirit of fear - that's not being led by the spirit. Now, you can understand, if we're going to be led by the spirit, he's got a pretty big job ahead, because there's a lot of other things that are guiding us. He will work on those.

The Holy Spirit's guidance, when he guides you, its always going to be in harmony with His nature, which is very gentle.

Matthew 11:29 - "Take my yoke on you (my teaching, my lifestyle), and let me teach you. Learn from me, for, I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you'll find rest for your souls".

The Holy Spirit has the same nature as Jesus. If you're going to follow the Holy Spirit, you have to let him teach you, and his nature is gentle and humble. Gentle means, He doesn't boss people around, and push people around. Very gentle. In fact, so gentle, sometimes you may not recognize that's Him, because you're used to being bullied all the time by other things.

Demonic forces, in the flesh, bully us; but the Holy Spirit gently leads us. It's very, very gentle. Jesus said: take my yoke on me. That means literally, submit to my teaching and instruction how to do your life, because I am very gentle, and very humble.

He said: if you do this, you'll find rest for your souls. That means, you won't be living anxious, uptight, having to take medications all the time. You won't be living a stressed out life. A common thing that people complain about is they're stressed out. Well, what happened to taking the yoke of Jesus on you? You're stressed out by something; find out what it is, and exchange it for surrender to the Holy Spirit, and being led by the spirit. You will find rest for yourself. You'll experience it, after you've surrendered to his leading.

The scripture is really clear, isn't it? It tells you what to do, tells you why to do it, and then it tells you the result. Don't come all uptight and all anxious, and bring your tensions and anxieties and stuff into the home, and everywhere else; bring them to the Lord, and let them go. Learn how to drop into a place where you're surrendered, and at peace with the Holy Spirit. A lot of guys come home from work, and they're carrying all the junk from work into the home. Why would you do that? Everyone's been waiting for you all day to see you, and then you turn up, and you're stressed out, and not there. That's not loving, or being led by the spirit.

I want to show you where he will lead us, because he will lead us somewhere. He's not unintentional. God is very intentional in how he does everything. You should really get a hold of that. He's quite intentional, but he uses all sorts of things to get there. Being led by the spirit, there's many examples of it, but I'll just give you two...

I want to take the example of Israel, in the Old Testament; and then Jesus, in the New Testament; because there's a big difference between them, yet there's something they have in common.

Exodus 4:22 - "...“Israel is My son, My firstborn"

God calls Israel, which is a picture of the church, my son. He calls His people "my son". It's not a gendered term so much as a relational function between a father and his child; and a father's need, desire and responsibility to provide guidance, protection and provision. When he calls us a son, and he leads us, it's because he's a father. The Holy Spirit is the spirit of our father, wanting to father us in life. Maybe you never had a father, but you've still got the Holy Spirit, so learn how to let him father you.

Now how did they do it in the old Testament? A lot of people look back and say: man, I wish it was like that today; I'd love this!

Numbers 9:15 - "Now the day the Tabernacle was raised up, the cloud of glory covered the Tabernacle from evening to morning. It was above the Tabernacle like the appearance of fire".

Isn't that something? The cloud always covered it by day, and it had the appearance of fire by night. Whoa! They camped on a journey. They've got a destination God is leading them to, and He needs to lead them there. How does he lead them? He literally manifests himself in the form of a cloud. That was the cloud of glory. It was a cloud of God's presence; within the cloud, and was the spirit of God. It was shimmering, glistening, full of gold. It was something spectacular, and it came up over them, and protected them from the heat of the sun; and then at night time, when it was cold, it changed from being a cloud, and became a column of fire. Can you imagine watching it, as it changes from cloud, as the sun goes down, now it's becoming a fire that can be seen everywhere. Wherever you were in the camp, you looked up and right there in the center of the camp, there's this column of fire. How awesome is that?

It's interesting, just as a side note, that the way they arranged all the tribes, if you were to have a drone view, you would see the Tabernacle where the cloud was on, and it's the center of a cross. If you get the numbers of the tribes and work it out, it turns out it's actually a cross from the air. It looks like a cross, very much like the cathedral when Queen Elizabeth had a funeral. If you look down from the top, it's in the form of a cross. It's taken from the old Testament, from the pattern of the camp of Israel. When they camped, they camped in the form of a cross.

How would they know when to move, or where to move? Very simple. When the cloud was taken up from above the Tabernacle, after the children of Israel would journey, and the place the cloud settled, there they would place their tents, at the command of the Lord. They would journey at the command of the Lord, and as long as the cloud stayed above the Tabernacle, and they remained camping there. When the cloud continued long, many days above the Tabernacle, they kept the charge of the Lord, and didn't travel. When the cloud was above the Tabernacle, a few days, according to the command of the Lord, they remained decamped. According to the command of the law, they would journey. Whether it was two days (verse 22) or a month, or a year, if the cloud remained, they would remain encamped and not journey. When it was taken up, they would journey.

This is what it was like for Israel every day. When you got up, the cloud of God's presence is there, standing like a mighty pillar, shimmering with gold, a spectacular sight. Some days the cloud would come up, and it would begin to move. When they saw it moving, everyone had to pack up their tent, we're on the move. When the clouds stop moving, that's where the camping site is. God provided the camping site. They'd stop, put up the tents.

If they didn't follow the cloud, what would happen? No covering; no protection; no provision; you would be isolated from the body of God's people, and what they're doing. You would not enter your destiny, if you did not follow the cloud - very, very important. A spectacular thing to see, must've been wonderful to see it. Imagine standing there, looking at God himself, in a flaming pillar of fire, and He's going to lead us and guide us. How awesome is that?

The cloud was the tangible presence of God. Staying under it meant provision, protection and connection to the people of God, and your destiny. It forms the pattern, that God desires His people to be led by the spirit.

Here's the thing, the guidance in the Old Testament was external and visible. You could see it with your eyes. Wonderful thing. However, God's ultimate plan was we would be led by the spirit, but it would be invisible, and internal. External/visible; internal/invisible.

You say: I wish I had the cloud! I'd much rather have that! Well, that would be called being led by sight, rather than by faith. In the New Testament, there's a transition from external guidance to internal guidance; where the spirit comes and lives within you, and now you become gathered, and we become dispersed, and God goes with us everywhere we go. In the previous set up, the Tabernacle was only in one place. Now, God's presence can go everywhere in people. That's a much better plan.

We still want the old one where we can see it, but God wants you to understand, His plan is that you be led by the spirit - the invisible presence of God within you; not by something you can see, or feel, or looks favorable, but led by the spirit within. Those who are led by the indwelling spirit - they are the sons of God, and thats why being led is a continual lifestyle.

When you get into the New Testament, you find with Jesus, He follows this pattern. Jesus was led by the spirit.

Luke 4:1 - "Then Jesus being filled with the holy ghost, returned from the Jordan, and then he was led by the spirit into the wilderness... (where he had a season of fasting and prayer and preparation)".

He's just got to 30. He's been water baptized, and filled with the holy ghost from an open heaven.

He was gently led by the spirit. Where did the spirit lead him? Did He lead him out to start crusades? To start a big ministry deal? To confront Rome? No, it led him into the wilderness - the most barren, hostile, terrible place. If you go to Israel next year on the trip, one thing you want to see is the wilderness. It is horrible! It is a terrible, terrible place. No one in their right mind would go there; but He was led by the spirit, for preparation for His destiny.

Sometimes the Holy Spirit leads people into what seems to be restrictive, limited circumstances, invisible to everyone else; but He is preparing you through that. For me, that season was in a school of 25 children, buried in a little town called Dannivirke. It was out of sight of the world, of most New Zealand in fact, but the Lord told me very clearly: this is your place of preparation. Don't buck against it. Learn where He plants you.

People often say: I don't feel like it's going well for me; I'll go somewhere else, where it feels like it'll be better; the grass is greener. No, it isn't. Not in the things of the spirit. It's just the seduction away from the things that God called you to. Never go where it seems greener unless the Holy Spirit leads you.

He was led by the spirit.

Luke 4:14 - "He returned in the power of the spirit..."

There is a connection between being led into preparation, and returning in power. We just want to have it all happen to us in an alter call; but there's an actual personal life preparation that brings power to our lives. It's living a life depending on the Holy Spirit. A

What about Lazarus? Jesus friend. They told Jesus: your friend is sick and dying, come now! What does Jesus do? He cooks up a meal, and he sits down, and he takes a little bit of time. He just seems to fritter away two days; and they said: but it's your friend, and he's sick, and then they finally get there... He's dead! Understand what they're thinking - you're supposed to love him, he's your friend. Why don't you come and fix him, and heal him? They were upset with Him; and He said: if you can believe, you'll see the glory of God. In other words, I was led by the spirit to wait - because if I'd come, you'd have seen a healing; but by waiting, you see a man raised from the dead. He's been dead four days! Which is going to have the greater impact? Someone being healed, who is lying in a sick bed; or someone dead four days, and they're in decay - and they're recovered!

He said: if you will believe, you'll see something bigger and better. He was led by the spirit. Imagine the pressure of having to come and help fix that situation? Sometimes God delays, because he's got something bigger in mind. Don't worry about it.

Mark 1:34-35 - "Then He healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and He did not allow the demons to speak, because they knew Him. Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed."

There's a huge crowd, and they've been doing mighty miracles - the glory of God is there. The disciples come to him and say: come on, let's go. They're all waiting, ready to go. He's been up early and prayed, and He's led by the Holy Spirit to go somewhere else, so He just says to them: I must go to other cities, and other places to preach. In other words, by following the leading of the Holy Spirit, he was able to demonstrate a much greater power and presence of God, and the miracle of Lazarus. By following the leading of the spirit, he was not contained where God wanted Him to be contained. He could go and minister right across the nation.

That's why we have to be aware of the need at times, to release ministries to go out, so that the work is bigger than just me and my needs. I can remember when I was making a transition from teaching in Christian school to pastor, and God spoke to me very clearly about the shift, and I brought it to the leadership. I was surprised at the intense reaction, contrary to this direction, until I thought about it. I realized that what they want, is for me to continue to do what will meet their needs and bless them. They don't see the bigger thing that God has in mind, if I'm released from that to do this. You've got to follow the leading of the spirit.

Often when we follow the leading of the spirit, people are not always happy with it. Often the people we think would be happy, aren't happy; and particularly family aren't always happy. That's where the most painful and difficult decisions are made. When you make decisions to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit into your course and destiny, and family are locked into other thinking; and what you contained to do, what they think is best for your life. I'm talking from experience, for both of us.

Where does he lead us; and how does he lead us? Let's go back to that first verse again - "As many as led by the Spirit of God, these are the Sons of God".

When the Bible uses a word to describe people, it's very careful in the words the Holy Ghost uses, and sometimes when they're translated, we don't see the differences. We often need to look at the language to think: what was he saying? The word that's used there is the word "huios" meaning a fully mature son, someone who's grown up. Now the Bible uses other other terms.

When you're born again, 1 Peter 2:2 - "...like newborn babes...".

Nepeos, someone who's just born, and just needs a feed of milk. Desire the milk of the word of God, that you can grow. When you're born again, your condition is not a son; your condition is Nepeos - a little wee infant, needing milk, and the nappy is wiped. You don't want to stay there!

1 Corinthians 3:1-3 - "And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal, as to babes in Christ. 2 I fed you with milk and not with solid food; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able; 3 for you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and [a]behaving like mere men?"

Paul rebukes the Corinthian church. He said: I would really want to tell you some mature things, like you were spiritual people; but instead, you are carnal - because you're striving and competing. Someone says: I follow this one; someone else says: I follow that one. You're all in competition. When you're like that, you're like babes that need just the milk. He's saying then is that our condition can be described in different ways. Nepeos - little babe; or we could be a technon - a young person, growing young person, a young man.

The Bible says of young men - you are strong, and the word of God dwells in you, and you've overcome the wicked one. Different words are used to describe different phases of growth. The word Yuson is a fully mature, prepared son, ready to take on his father's business and represent him properly.

Those who are led by the spirit of God, where is he leading you? He's leading you into sonship; but if you don't know what that means, there's no reason why you would want to be led by the Holy Spirit. If you are led by the spirit, He's going to lead you into maturity. He going to want you to grow up! Tell somebody to grow up! It's so petty. It's so caught up with trivia, like a bunch of little children - gossiping, critical, all kinds of things that go on in church. Immature childish stuff. You have to grow up, if you've been in church for years, and you're still behaving like that. What's wrong with you?

Well, actually, it's the condition of your heart. In other words, you're in the best possible environment, receiving as much as possible, and yet you're not responding. When we don't respond, we stay childish. It's a journey for us all, and you never stop learning. I'm learning all the time. I'm thinking: oh man, I've got so much to learn. There's so much I don't know. God, I want to learn, I want to grow - maintaining the hunger. The humility that I actually still need to grow - no matter how much you know, you don't know enough.

The Holy Spirit then is going to lead you. No-one is born mature; you're born a baby, and then you become mature as you exercise and grow; but you become mature as a Christian by yielding to the Holy Spirit. The more you surrender, the more he's going to lead you to grow up and become mature; and a mature person is able to be a blessing to others. Immature people upset others all the time. If you're going to be led by the spirit, one of the things that you'll have to actually come to address is the self-centered life. Jesus said: if you want to follow me, deny self - that means stop being selfish. Stop thinking about me. First, stop thinking: what's in this for me? I'm a son of my father; I'm being led by the spirit - what's in this for my father? It's a whole different way of moving from being self-centered, and it's all about me, and what I get out of it, and what I can get from people; to actually: how can I represent my father, and be a son? Those who are led by the Holy Ghost, led by the spirit.

The self-centered life will always be fearful, and in control; but the Holy Ghost filled life will always be peaceful, and flow. It's quite a different life. It's a daily thing, a daily choice. The Holy Spirit is called the Spirit of Adoption.

Romans 8:14-16 - "As many as are led by the spirit, these are the sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but receive the spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, 'Abba, Father'. The spirit himself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the Children of God".

He's called the Spirit of Adoption. That doesn't mean you find a person who's got no dad, and put them in your family, and make them your own. That word adoption is the word whoithesia, to place into full sonship, authority and responsibility. That's one of the things the Holy Ghost does. One of his key things, He's called the Spirit of Adoption. That means, when you invite the Holy Spirit in, one of the key things He wants to do with you, is grow you up. God wants mature sons and daughters, who can care for others, invest in others, help others, and be a blessing to others. The older kids look after the younger ones. The older kids take on some responsibilities in the home, when they grow up. If you're grown up, presumably you've taken on a bit of responsibility; but if you're not taking on responsibility for anything, you're immature.

Let's talk a little bit about the Holy Spirit's Assignment, and then I'll show you how he guides us.

One of the first things he wants to do is of course, establish your identity: who you are, and your relationship with God as your father.

Without God, we are spiritual orphans. He said: the spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are the Children of God.

We should be able to answer the question: who am I? We attach our identities to many other things. We attach it to possessions, to positions, to power, to all kinds of things; but our identity needs to be established very clearly from the person within us: I am a child of the living God. I am a son and daughter of the living God - that's who I am.

The Holy Spirit bears witness with your spirit. It's an internal adjustment. When your life has been attached to other things, you've got to be willing to yield, and let the Holy Spirit show you where you've built your identity, and establish it on what God says about you, which is always internal. People build their identity on things external; but the Holy Spirit will want to convict you where you've done that, and shift you from that idolatry to where it's now internal. Your life is not about the things you possess - you're going to leave them all behind. Your life is not about the position; when you die, it's all handed over. When Queen Elizabeth was buried, they took away from the coffin, every evidence or symbol of the power and authority she had as the queen. Everything was removed, including the title queen. She was buried as an individual person. That's actually Godly, because its origins are in the Bible.

Whatever status and possessions you've got in the world, you don't leave carrying any of it; you have to leave it all behind, so it's not really that important. There must be something more important; it's being established in your identity. We have to establish our identity as a child of God, and repent, and abandon other sources. My role, position, title; none of that stuff. Who am I? I'm a child of God. I'm in love with him, and he loves me.

The Holy Spirit bears witness with our spirit. That means He confirms inside who you are. The devil will always get you to shift away from the word of God, and the spirit of God. He will try to get you to think: I must be bad, because I did this. No, you're just a child of God who had a slip. See the difference? Perhaps its, I can't really worship because there's all these things I've done; but they don't define who you are. They're just things you did. Separate your behavior from you. You are a child of God. You slip up from time to time.

Psalm 37:23-24 - "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord... Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; for the Lord upholds him with His hand".

You've got to establish that your identity is independent of how well you're doing at any point of the time. My children are my children, regardless of what's going on in their lives. Regardless of whether our relationship is strained, or tense, or there's difficulties, or things have happened - that makes no difference, they're still my children. Their identity is unchanged. It's in their DNA, literally.

When you're born again, spirit of God comes into you. In your DNA, is the reality I am now partly God in me, partly human. I'm a child of God. I'm a unique new creation. Do I do everything right? No, I do dumb stuff, a lot of the time. However, that doesn't change who I am. I'm a child of God, who's in a growth mode. I'm a growing up child of God. If I'm a growing up child of God, well, cut me some slack, in case I muck it up on the way. That's why the church has to be full of grace and truth. The truth means help people face stuff. The grace means if they fall over, it's OK. Come on, get up. We love you, it hasn't changed who you are, and hasn't changed our relationship with you.

The Holy Spirit then matures us. He first establishes your identity; it's an ongoing thing. Then you secure; you're not insecure. You're not upset by stuff. A lot of people are insecure and upset by you. They're all up uppity, immature. The Holy Spirit matures us, and develops us, and it's a process of growth. He oversees your journey, and uses everything that happens to you to grow.

Romans 8:28 - "All things work together for good, for those who love the Lord, and are called according to his purpose".

"Love the Lord" means I intend to keep his commandments and do what pleases Him. "And are called according to his purpose". In other words, I've embraced His call, and I'm doing my best to love Him, then everything, even if it's dumb stuff, bad stuff, upheaval stuff - no matter what it is, it all works. God uses it to shape you, to become the man and woman of God He wants you to be. That's a great freedom in life, isn't it? Don't worry about stuff happening! Who knows what's going to happen next. Every day is full of some new surprise. That's life. You can't control it all, so just work on the basis that God can use everything to grow me, if I just respond to the leading of the spirit. He will conform me to become Christ-like.

It's painful, but face your pain. Lean into God. Lean upon the Holy Spirit, grow up, and get love coming back into your heart, and love the person. Forgive the person. Now you've grown. What was meant for evil, turn for good. You can't lose. If you just respond to the Holy Spirit, you can't lose everything. Everything will work for your good.

When he says He's the Spirit of Adoption, adoption is yet to come, for believers. Adoption is yet to come. I can't go off into that.

Romans 8:17 - "If we're Children, then we're heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ, if we suffer with him, in order that we may also share in his glory"

"Suffer with Him" means if we walk, and identify with Him, and go through hardships of following Him, that we may be glorified together with Him.

Romans 8:18 - "For I consider the sufferings of this present time or age not worthy compared to the glory yet to be revealed in us".

There's something God is yet to reveal to the world, because the creation itself will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.

Romans 8:22-23 - "The whole creation is groaning and laboring with birth pains until now. Not only that, but we who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies".

"Eagerly awaiting the adoption" means the resurrection, the redemption of our body, the first resurrection. This is the great hope of all believers, that our body which is ache and pains and humiliating will be changed and transformed at the coming of Christ. This is the great hope of the church. You will be resurrected. There are two resurrections, and if we will purify ourselves and journey and walk with Him, we will make that first resurrection. It's called the Great Hope. It's a hope that causes us to press on and remain diligent.

The Holy Spirit leads and guides us daily; and he does it in two principal ways...

1) He does it through the word of God. You need to look and read and study the word of God. It's got the principles for success in life. The ways of God are written in the words of God. Make the Bible something you love to study, and learn, and grow to know it. Many times you may not get a prompting, or any kind of big thing, but if you know the principle of the word, you can act from the principle, like the Bible says.

Honor your father and mother, which is the first commandment with a promise - that it may go well for you, may live long. If you want life to go well, here's a principle: honor your parents. If you violate it, there's consequences; so very clearly, you need to learn what the word of God says.

The word of God's got a lot to say about Sexual Immorality. Those who practice these things shall not inherit the coming kingdom. You have to understand we live in a permissive culture, but what people don't understand is the great inheritance God has for those who will walk with Him.

2) The Holy Spirit wants to lead you. How is He going to do it? He's going to primarily do it from within, by bearing witness with your spirit. It'll be a guidance within.

He's got many channels he can use to speak to you. He could use the word of God; someone preaching; or He could use some person to speak to you, and in the middle of them speaking, suddenly you feel the witness inside that God is trying to get my attention on something. It could be an unsaved person, and they're having a rant at you, and suddenly as you're listening in the middle of it, you see God is showing you there's a character area He's wanting you to change. It could be a prophetic word that comes, and suddenly we witness God is wanting to lead you and direct you. It can come through so many channels. It can come through creation - just going out and being in nature, and in that time, suddenly as you become more aware of God, you start to become aware of the promptings of the Holy Spirit. Lots of avenues. It can be through music.

God is not limited how He gets the message to you. What you got to learn to do is tune in, in your spirit, to recognize it, that that is God speaking to me through. I can remember watching an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie, and at the very end there was this dance, and when this music come on, I felt tears come. I thought, what is that? This is an Arnie movie, you don't cry in Arnie movies. What is this? I asked the Lord to show me what was the trigger for my feelings, and He brought me back to something when I was 18; and the pain associated with that music said: it's time to resolve it.

God can use many channels, but the key is not the channel He uses, but that you witness in your spirit, that you become aware in your spirit. This is the primary way God speaks to you, from within - in your spirit. There's lots of ways you can do it. If you want to be led by the spirit, there's a couple of things to do, and then this is how He does it...

1) Position yourself for God to lead you. Don't just assume He's going to lead you; position yourself for it. The primary thing is you're hungry for God. You have a hunger for God, and you spend time with him. That's how you get to be led by the spirit.

2) Build a strong spirit man. You're going to be led by something. If your soul is strong, you'll be led by your thoughts, feelings, and emotions; but if your spirit is strong, you can be led by the Holy Ghost. Build your spirit. If your body is the thing that governs your life, you'd be led by hunger, and whatever desire for this and that. In other words, you'd be led by feelings; so build your spirit. If you want to be led by the spirit, don't make this a random thing. This is a lifestyle, intentionally build your spirit man.

How could I build my spirit man? And how do I hear when God's speaking to me?

How do we build the spirit man? A few simple ways...

1) Pray strongly in tongues. Build your spirit man.

1 Corinthians 14:4 - "He that praises an unknown tongue builds himself"

Build and strengthen your spirit man. Strongly pray in tongues; also meditate, picture, and hold in your mind The truth: Christ is in me. Every time you arise in tongues, the spirit of God is arising within you. Christ is in you, a hope of the glory of God to shine on your life in the future. Arise, picture it: God is with me; leading me, guiding me. Put it in a picture form; hold it, meditate on what God says about this.

Then quieten yourself, and become still, so you can hear God speak. Intentionally stir yourself. Don't be so passive that you fall asleep. It just means you're stilling your thoughts and your mind, by focusing your attention on the Lord, with a desire to hear. Now, when the Holy Spirit speaks, its characteristics will be: 1) inside your spirit. 2) gentle, because He's gentle. 3) spontaneous. It's suddenly comes!

It's easily cut off, because He's gentle. If you won't listen, or get busy with something else, it all goes, just like that. Shuts off, like He stopped talking to you. You have to actually welcome when He's starting to speak and pour into your life, and start to give you something. It will be flowing as He speaks, and could come in a number of forms. How would you feel it? Well, when the Holy Spirit speaks to you, probably the primary way is you feel a peace.

Colossians 3:15 - "Let the peace of God rule your heart".

If you feel peace, He's leading you. If you feel agitated, something is causing your spirit to be alarmed; stop. He can lead you by putting a thought into your mind, suddenly in the middle of worship a thought comes; and it's a quickening thought. It's like it's a healthy, good thought. I should write it down before I forget it. Sometimes you'd be just maybe in prayer, and then a picture impression will come. It's gentle, spontaneous. It flows into your spirit, and comes up into your mind, and suddenly it's spontaneously there. You have an impression, you may feel agitated, you may feel peace about something. Often He just leads us through peace. If you're feeling at peace, and you've prayed about it, just move forward in what you plan; but if you're agitated, stop. If your wife is agitated, stop. Walk in unity, its better to have unity than to push on anyway. Maybe she's the Holy Ghost warning you.

It flows. It may just come as a stirring, you feel stirred to do something. You can be in the middle of a meeting, and someone's preaching, and you don't even remember what they're preaching about. All you know is you felt the stirring in your spirit, like a need to do this rose up out of nowhere - that's Holy Spirit leading.

What if I need guidance? Now we need guidance in lots of areas. You need guidance in marriage, you need guidance in business and work, faith. We need the Holy Ghost to help us all the time; so here's one of the simple things: when you come to Him, don't come with an agenda. If you come with an agenda, well I got what I want - now, confirm it for me. You're going to hear what you wanted. That's why a lot of people hear the wrong things. They thought they heard God, but actually, they heard what was in their own heart. It's called praying to God with an idol in your heart. You've already decided what you want. You set your mind on it. You can come to God asking him to guide you; or, I've made my decision now, bless it.

We find that as pastors, people come, and they tell me: I've decided to do this; and they've come to ask my opinion on it. I don't have any opinion on it. You've already decided, so no reason to have any opinion at all. You've made your decision. You're not coming for advice. You're wanting me to confirm your decision. I'm not willing to do that, and even God won't do that. If you've made your decision, go with it. Let's see how it works out. Then when it's not worked out too good, see if you'll have the humility to turn to me and ask where it went wrong. He'll take you back to where you had your strong self will, and you had this saying you're going to have it anyway, and you ask God to bless it. It doesn't work that way. If you want Him to bless things, just submit them to Him and say: it's ok, Lord one way or the other. I'm quite happy. However, this works out. Lord, I just come.

A lot of the things in getting guidance, is to come to the place where you just submitted, that I'm happy with whatever pleases you father. He might say: what's the desire you've got in your heart? You'll find more and more, once you've learned to surrender to the Holy Spirit, He will expect you to come up with what you desire, and what you're dreaming about in your heart. The guidance of God is connected to the Holy Spirit, and also the desires of your heart; because you're not wanting dumb stuff, you're actually wanting things that are about destiny and future and blessing and so on.

Now, what if you don't hear God? There's some reasons why, and praying with an idol in your heart is one reason. Offenses will stop you hearing God, and being guided by the Holy Ghost. Having offenses in your heart will always block the leading of the Holy Spirit. The only thing you'll hear is: forgive him. I don't want to hear that! I want to hear something else! Too bad, until we got that sorted out, there won't be any flow. It's like an obstacle in the river, damming your life up.

It's not complex, its actually being led, and taking full ownership of your decisions; that you made the decision, and if it wasn't so good, maybe you missed it on the way. It's ok to miss it on the way. Where did I miss it? How did I miss it? What can I learn? Move on! Never get condemned by the fact that sometimes I didn't get it right. Sometimes when we get it wrong, we need to repent, because we realize actually I was quite willful. There was pride, I was resistant to counsel; so I need to actually repent, and then come back into being able to hear clearly again.

We need this guidance all the time. If you've got kids, you need guidance over your kids. God can show you things about what's going on in their lives, and then they wonder how you know. God told me! You get things come in your marriage, you need help in your marriage. I tell couples: first turn to the Lord, individually; then when you come to talk together, you'll have a better attitude, and be able to resolve problems. Otherwise you come, and you both want to make the other one agree with you - that will never work. You need guidance in relationships.

Get some advice from around you, and look and see if there's fruit of God being in the relationship. God's got certain ways He guides us. He guides us by his spirit, and He guides us in agreement with His word. He will never guide you by his spirit to violate His word. He will guide you by the inner witness of the spirit, and may confirm that through people around you. That's why we belong to a body, and we have people that we can share our lives with, who are wise, and they can give us wisdom.

If you're going to share, and ask people what they think of your advice, then do go to someone who's successful in that area. Don't ask someone who's a total financial failure, whether you should make this decision with your finances. That is just being just absolutely silly, and foolish. Make a decision: God, you dwell within me, you're leading me, you're leading me into my identity; you're leading me to become Christ-like; you're leading me to fulfill your course in my life. I thank you Lord that today, I'm led by the spirit, and you build it around your prayers. You pray on the spirit, you surrender your heart, surrender your inner man, surrender your ears.

Closing Prayer

Thank you Lord today, I hear your voice clearly, and I instantly obey. Thank you, holy ghost. You're speaking to me. I yield my ears, the ears of my inner man, and my outer man, to hear your voice clearly. Thank you that you're leading me, and guiding me. I desire to do the things that please you. You flow and pray like that. How many of you could do that? Every one of you can be led by the holy ghost. Every one of us can be led by the spirit. That's the greatest thing that's happened to us. We got the holy ghost. Let's just reach out now for the holy ghost to come. Let's receive what he Has. I want you to pray in tongues, pray in the spirit now, until you start to feel your spirit flowing.


Sermons | Collections | 中国
YouTube | Vimeo | Podcast
eBooks | Paperbacks
Transcripts | 成绩单
Facebook | Share
Donate with BitcoinDonate with DogecoinDonate with Litecoin