I wasn't very happy last night. I forgot my IPOD and so couldn't spend the hours from 02:00 to 06:00 when it's usually quiet transcribing the glorious messages of Rob Rufus! But it actually worked out pretty well - and I wonder if it was a divine coincidence in light of my last blog. It was as though my heavenly Father was having a laugh at my expense and making me sit quietly just reading. Because fortunately I had taken Joseph Prince's book; "Destined to Reign". So I finished reading it last night and WOW am I glad I reached the end!
He shared something so profound and so obvious that I sat back and laughed out loud to myself. I - who prided myself on being well-taught in the Word - had totally missed this! My doctor of theology senior pastor never preached this! But here it is!
"As I was reading these Scriptures one night, the Lord asked me; "Why did that man have great faith?". I immediately replied that it was because he, being a Roman centurion, was a man of authority and thus understood the authority of the Lord Jesus. I was confident of my reply, having been taught that to have great faith, we need to understand the Lord's authority and the authority He has given to the believer.
The Lord said to me; "Good and what about the other person who I said had great faith?". He was referring to the Syro-Phoenician woman who had a demon-possessed daughter ... The Lord continued; "Well if the centurion had great faith because he understood authority, what about this woman? She was not a soldier - she was a homemaker". Now the Lord had got me there ... then the Lord said to me; "Son, look for the common denominator between these two people and you will discover the secret to great faith".
Boy I was excited! I was about to discover the secret to having great faith! But after more than half an hour, I was still sitting in my study, searching for the common denominator. I was searching and searching to no avail. I simply could not find the answer. Finally my "lightning-fast" mind told me I should ask the Lord for the asnwer. So I said; "Lord, You have to show me because I cannot see it".
Then the Lord said this to me; "Both were Gentiles. They were not Jews. One was a Roman and the other a Caananite. Both of them were not under the law of Moses and therefore they did not disqualify themselves. They were not under condemnation and so they could have great faith to receive from Me".
Do you know that there is a verse in Galatians that says; "the law is not of faith?". In Romans, it also says, "For if those who are of the law are heirs, faith is made void and the promise is of no effect". So clearly there is no way we can give people the law and yet expect them to have faith. The law will disqualify them from receiving any blessing from the Lord. It is only faith in His grace that will qualify God's people and cause them to have great faith to receive what they need from the Lord".
You might be asking quite rightly; "But what is faith?". Because the word can be understood in many ways. Perhaps the health-wealth-prosperity preachers have given the word a bit of a bad name. But despite the excesses I think they may have taken the word "faith" to - I still think they started off in their teaching with a point. Joseph Prince defines faith thus;
"Faith is not trying to make something that is not already there happen. Faith is bringing out of the spirit realm what is ALREADY there, what is ALREADY true of you. I am not telling you to confess something you are not".
And note this especially. It was so awesome I had to text it to Pete Day at some unearthly hour of the morning! And if I could have got online to blog it - I would have!
"Whether you confess that you are the righteousness of God in Christ or not, you are still the righteousness of God in Christ. But when you confess it, you become concious of it. You sense it and it becomes powerful and real in your life. You do not confess that you are righteous IN ORDER to become righteous. You confess you are righteous BECAUSE you are ALREADY righteous! ... That's not having faith in faith. It is faith in His goodness - faith in His grace".
Driving home with a big grin on my face looking stupid is becoming something of a habit only this morning I was repeating; "I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus"! Oh and if you are wondering why I've put a couple of pictures of Darlene Zschech worshipping - it's because my response to these revelations is worship and adoration at His great grace. And no one sums up a posture of worship like this amazing woman - who is one of my favourite worship leaders along with Kate Simmonds! The Australians have certainly discovered the key to worship.