UFOs and the Pyramids

December 31, 1979 was a turning point in my life. Up until that time, I was a person full of questions. I understand that everyone has questions, but I truly believe my questions were weirder than other normal people might have. I wondered, “Who built the pyramids?” “Do UFOs really exist? And if they do, are they aliens or demons?” “Why is it a UFO has never been sighted outside of the earth’s atmosphere?” “Does the lost City of Atlantis really exist?” “What about the 17 trillion mile gap in space in the Northern Hemisphere? Is it the entrance to heaven?”

My spiritual life was good. I loved God and earlier in the 70’s I had been filled with the Holy Spirit. I was normal in the pulpit, but I always had strange questions that seemingly could not be answered.

I had always imagined that if I could somehow talk to God, I would ask Him about these questions and I would find out once and for all who built the pyramids, and who was in the UFOs, etc.

Then on December 31, 1979, I had a dream. In my dream I was thrust before a large brick wall. The wall was thick and tall and was about thirty feet long. Standing in front of the wall, I noticed a light shining from the other side of the wall. The light got brighter and brighter until it was blinding. In my dream I couldn’t see my hands and I thought that this is what must have happened to Saul on the road to Damascus. Then I realized that God himself, with all of His glory and power, was on the other side of the wall.

The awesomeness of God’s power was beyond my comprehension. I immediately fell on my face and tried to push myself into the ground. All of my questions left me, and I began to scream, “Oh, God, have mercy on me. I am a sinner.” But God in His awesome love lifted me up and one by one He answered all of my questions without me even asking Him. As He gave me the answers to all my questions, with each answer I remember thinking, “Wow! That is so simple and it makes so much sense.”

As I woke up, I still remembered the answers. There were no more questions. I ran through the house to find pencil and paper. The answers were like birds in a cage with the door open. One by one they flew out as I frantically looked for my note pad. When I finally had my pencil and pad and flopped down on the edge of the bed to write down all of the answers, they were gone. But I had peace knowing that the mystery was not a mystery to God and that in reality the answers were simple.

From that day until now I have had peace concerning the so-called “mysteries of the universe.” God has the answers, and His Spirit is in me and I am at peace.

“And He said, ‘To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is given in parables, that seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand’” (Luke 8:10).

Devotion 0351

You Have Dominion Over Sin

“For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace” (Romans 6:14).

Sin in the heart hardens the heart and a hardened heart will not receive the Word properly. Without the Word, there is no faith. Without faith we cannot receive God’s promises and when we cannot receive God’s promises, Satan wins in our life.

If Satan wins a battle in your life, does that mean you are not saved? No. This has nothing to do with your salvation. When you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, this gives you the availability of the tools to defeat Satan. The number one tool is authority.

As a Christian, you have authority over the forces of the enemy. “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you” (Luke 10:19).

As a believer, you have been given authority over all the power of the enemy, but not every Christian walks in this authority. Nevertheless, the authority is still there.

The power over sin in your life is in you. Again, as it says in Romans 6:14, sin should not have dominion over you because you have been given the power of grace. Grace is God’s willingness and ability to empower you with His abilities. Since nothing can defeat God, with His power in you, nothing can defeat you.

So the next time you find sin creeping into your life, don’t run away from God and the things of God. Instead, run to God. Access His power and take dominion over sin.

Devotion 0345

Take the Word and Feed Yourself

Lazy people get spitting mad when they hear that the only way you can receive from God is to take in the Word of God for yourself. We must take the Word of God, which is Jesus. We must take the Word of God, which is the Messiah. We must take the Word of God, which is the Anointed One and His anointing. We must take the Word of God, which is the Son of God. We must take the Word of God, Who is called the Word of God in Revelation. We must take that Word of God into ourselves.

How do we do that? Romans 10:17 says, “So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” Do you want to get the Word of God in you? Do you want the Word of God to come alive within you? Then you have to hear it. The only way you are going to hear it, is if it is spoken and the only way you are going to hear it spoken is to either be around people that speak the Word all the time or speak it yourself. When you mutter the Word of God continually, the Word of God comes alive in you because you hear what you say.

Romans 10:17 says faith comes by hearing and hearing by the rhema of God. Rhema means the living Word of God. Faith doesn’t come by the logos. Faith doesn’t come by just reading the scriptures. Faith comes when God’s Word comes alive in you — when you know that word is true and that word is for you. God spoke that word, spoken specifically for you and that word comes alive. That is the living Word of God within you. That’s what it has got to become. Then that Word is spirit and life.

God’s grace will meet you where you are. If you are a new Christian and all you know is John 3:16, start meditating there. God’s Word tells us we are to daily renew ourselves through the washing of the Word. So, don’t be lazy and expect someone else to feed you all the time. Take the Word of God and feed yourself. Take the Word into your inner most being. Let it live inside of you and then God’s Word will do what it was sent to do in your life.

Devotion 0177

Jesus Prophesies the Coming of the Spirit

Shortly before the arrest of Jesus that led to His crucifixion, He spent time with His disciples and instructed them concerning things that were to come. He told them if they loved Him, they would keep His commandments. He also said He would ask the Father to give His disciples another Advocate who would assist them and be with them forever. He called this Advocate the Spirit of truth.

“When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father — the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father — He will testify about me” (John 15:26 NIV).

He went on to tell them the world would not accept the Spirit of truth because the world doesn’t know Him. Then He told His disciples they knew the Spirit of truth because He was with them, and in the future not only would He be with them, but He would be in them.

“The Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you” (John 14:17).

Although at this time the disciples did not understand what He was saying, He was actually foretelling that the Holy Spirit would inhabit born-again believers after the church was established. He continued by telling them it would not be long before He would no longer be seen on the earth by the world, but that His followers would live because He would also live. He said, “On that day you will realize that I am in My Father, and you are in Me, and I am in you” (John 14:20 NIV).

He told them the Father would send the Holy Spirit, and not only would He teach them all things, but He would remind them of everything He had spoken to them. A while later He told His disciples it was necessary for Him to leave because the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, would not come to them unless He (Jesus) left (John 16:7).

Jesus revealed insight to us about the work of the Holy Spirit. He said when the Holy Spirit came, He would prove the world to be wrong about sin, righteousness, and judgment because the prince of this world would stand condemned. He told His disciples there was much more that He could say, but they could not bear it at that time (John 16:12). This implied there would be further revelation concerning the Holy Spirit that would come later.

Then He further comforted His disciples by telling them that when the Spirit of truth came, He would guide them in all truth. He would not be speaking on His own, but He would tell them what was yet to come (John 16:13). He said the Holy Spirit would glorify Him because the Spirit is from Him. Then He made a bold statement by saying, “All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you” (John 16:15 NIV).

Jesus clearly told His disciples that He was leaving, but He would not leave them like orphans (John 14:18). He told them the Holy Spirit would not only be with them, but very soon would be in them and show them things to come.

“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come” (John 16:12-13 NIV).

Devotion 0640

The Spirit Upon Him

After leaving the wilderness and after learning that John had been put into prison, Jesus departed to Galilee. Then He went to Nazareth where He had been raised, and as His custom was, He went to the synagogue on the Sabbath and stood up to read.

When they handed Him the book of the prophet Isaiah, He opened the book and He read: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord” (Luke 4:18-19). Then He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. He told them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing” (Luke 4:21).

Needless to say, this caused quite a stir in the synagogue, and they even attempted to kill Him. But the point is this. Jesus defined the anointing of the Holy Spirit. He said because the Holy Spirit had anointed Him, He was commissioned to do the following things: 1) to preach the gospel to the poor, 2) to heal the brokenhearted, 3) to proclaim liberty to the captives, 4) to heal the blind, 5) to release people who are oppressed, and 6) to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.

When the Holy Spirit is present, His anointing seeks to accomplish the same purpose. We cannot limit the Holy Spirit to one gift, an emotion, or manifestation, but must allow Him to work to the fullness of His purpose in our lives.

God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him” (Acts 10:38).

Devotion 0639

Strength to Overcome

After His baptism, Jesus, following the guidance of the Holy Spirit, was led into the wilderness for forty days. Although there were wild beasts, the angels of God ministered to Him and protected Him. But Satan, knowing the power of the anointing of the Spirit, immediately began to tempt and test Jesus.

This is a template of what happens in the lives of Christians today. When the anointing of the Holy Spirit comes upon you, there may be physical attacks (wild beasts) and spiritual attacks (the devil), but if you are led by the Spirit, angels will minister to you, and you will be protected.

“Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?” (Hebrews 1:14)

“Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you” (Luke 10:19).

Although Jesus was led by the Holy Spirit into the wilderness, physical and spiritual protection was provided by the Holy Spirit. As with Daniel in the lion’s den, the beasts were subdued.

Devotion 0638

The Baptism of Jesus

“It came to pass in those days that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And immediately, coming up from the water, He saw the heavens parting and the Spirit descending upon Him like a dove. Then a voice came from heaven, ‘You are My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased’” (Mark 1:9-11).

John the Baptist and Jesus were related. The Bible says Mary, the mother of Jesus, and Elizabeth, the mother of John, were relatives (Luke 1:36). John baptized and preached repentance for the remission of sins. People from the land of Judea and even from Jerusalem followed his teachings and were baptized in the Jordan River.

In his preaching, John would say there was someone coming after him who was greater than himself and who would baptize with the Holy Spirit and fire (Matthew 3:11). On the Day of Pentecost this happened as the young church was baptized with fire when they received the Holy Spirit in the upper room.

“Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them” (Acts 2:3).

It was during this time of John’s ministry that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and John baptized Him in the Jordan River. As Jesus came out of the water, the heavens opened, and the Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus like a dove (Matthew 3:16). A dove is the symbol used by artists throughout the centuries to depict the Holy Spirit. However, the Bible is speaking figuratively and not literally. The Holy Spirit descended upon Him gently, like a dove.

As the Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus, a voice came out of heaven. It was the voice of Almighty God speaking to His only begotten Son and the voice said, “You are My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased” (Mark 1:11).

Devotion 0637

A Virgin Mother and a Heavenly Father

After Mary, the mother of Jesus, was betrothed to Joseph, but before they had marital relations as husband and wife, she was found to be pregnant by the Holy Spirit. Her husband, Joseph, was a good man and did not want to bring public disgrace to her. He had thought of a plan to secretly put her away. But while he was making his plans, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and told him he should not be afraid to complete the marriage with Mary as his wife, because the conception inside of her was of the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 1:18-20.)

After receiving this dream, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him to do and he took Mary as his wife, but he did not have physical relations with her until after the birth of her Son, Jesus. The seed placed in Mary’s womb was not seed from her husband, Joseph, but from the Holy Spirit. While the virgin birth is defined by the reality that she did not have sexual relations with a man before having a child, the truth is still evident that a seed was placed within her womb, because conception took place.

The Bible tells us that life is in the blood (Leviticus 17:11) and because the mother of Jesus was a virgin and His Father was heavenly, His conception was unlike that of any other man on earth.

“Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—” (Romans 5:12).

The Bible tells us that God has made from one blood all the nations of the earth (Acts 17:26). Because of the sin of Adam, sin was transmitted to all mankind. This is why no man—Enoch, Noah, Moses, Abraham, Elijah—none of these great men of God could save the world. No matter how hard they tried, no matter what sacrifice they made, and regardless of their obedience, their blood would never measure up to the standard of perfection required to complete the plan of salvation for man (Hebrews 9:13-14). All the fathers of these great men were earthly. Their lineage was from Adam and therefore their blood was tainted with sin.

While the mother of Jesus was earthly, His Father was heavenly and therefore His lineage was from above. Because the Father provided the seed at conception by way of His Holy Spirit, the blood of Jesus was different from the blood of any other human on earth, and the only blood acceptable for the altar in heaven.

This is why it was so important for Jesus to finish the work He was sent to do. Had He yielded to temptation and sinned, there would have been no purpose in His resurrection. He was the only hope for the salvation of mankind.

“For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).

Devotion 0636

A Checklist for Judging Prophecy

“Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith” (Romans 12:6).

Some people have difficulty understanding prophecy. Years ago, there was a lady who attended a denominational church that did not believe in the gifts of the Spirit. But she started seeking the fullness of God. She started reading material that talked about people getting a word from the Lord.

One day I was talking with her, and she said that after much prayer, that she had received a word from God. After asking her what the word was, she replied, “The word I received from God was pineapple.’” Well, according to God’s Word, all prophecy must be judged–“Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others judge” (1 Corinthians 14:29)–and I judged this “word” a little “fruity.”

Even though prophecy differs, it still must be judged. Here are three main criteria for judging prophecy.

1) Does it bring glory to Jesus?

“I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, ‘See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy’” (Revelation 19:10).

All prophecy must lift up and exalt Jesus. Any prophecy that lifts up a person or an organization above Jesus is not of God. A false prophecy will always try to divert the glory, the honor, and the attention to another individual or group.

“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world” (1 John 4:1-3).

Prophecies should never be flatteries or motivated by ulterior motives. The character of a prophet will reflect Jesus. “You will know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:16).

2) Does it agree with God’s Word?

The apostle Peter explained how prophecy is derived. He said, “For prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:21). Deuteronomy 13:1-5 tells us that we should never believe a prophecy because of a sign only. Deuteronomy 18:20-22 tells us that a true prophecy will always come to pass because God does not lie.

3) Does it produce liberty or bondage?

Prophecies are given through the anointing of the Holy Spirit. Ask yourself this question after hearing a prophecy: How does it feel in my spirit? Does it agree with the anointing in me?

“It shall come to pass in that day that his burden will be taken away from your shoulder, and his yoke from your neck, and the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing oil” (Isaiah 10:27).

A prophecy from God will always produce liberty because it is soaked in love.

“Though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing” (1 Corinthians 13:2).

Devotion 0344

Pressing into the Land of More Than Enough

In Matthew 6:31-33, Jesus promised that our needs would be met. “Therefore, do not worry saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things” [What things? What you eat, what you drink, what you wear] “the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things” [What things? The things you need] “will be added to you.” (Explanation mine.)

Most people have needs in their lives. The only reason we would need something is because we lack something. God wants us to attack the lack in our lives. He does not want us to be living in the “land of not enough.” He wants us to be living in the “land of more than enough.” He wants us to be living in the “land of abundance.” That’s what God wants for us.

Christians want that too. I don’t want to be living in the “land of needing my needs met.” I want to be living in the “land of more than enough.” I want to be living in the “land of abundance.” I’m sure you do too!

We can live in the “land of not enough,” “just enough,” or “more than enough.” During the time the Hebrews were in Egypt in captivity, they were living in the “land of not enough.” When you are a slave to something, you are living in the “land of not enough.” If you are a slave to sickness in your body, you are living in the “land of not enough.” If you are a slave to the payment book or the credit card company, you are living in the “land of not enough.” If you owe somebody anything, you are living in the “land of not enough.” You do not have your needs met. This is not meant as a condemnation. However, if you owe money to anyone, you are living in the “land of not enough.”

God wanted the Hebrews to move out of the “land of not enough.” He wanted to get them over into the land that was flowing with milk and honey. He wanted them to live in the “land of more than enough,” in abundance and overflow. That’s where He wanted them to be. He wanted them to live in His glory. But they were stuck in the “land of not enough.” Then, as they started to go to the “land of more than enough,” they got stuck in the “land of just enough.”

When they were in the wilderness, they had food, but only enough for one day. They did not have enough for tomorrow or the next day. They couldn’t store it up because it would rot. Remember the story of the manna? They couldn’t store it. They had just enough for one day at a time. That’s the area of having your needs met. They had shelter and they had food and water. Their clothes wouldn’t wear out. They had enough to get by. They had “just enough.” That’s the “land of just enough.”

Some Christians have moved out of poverty and settled into the land of just enough. Because they have their needs met, they think they’re living in abundance! They think they are prosperous! But they aren’t. They have “just enough.”

God wants us to move from the area of being in need, and move through the area of enough and beyond that into the area of true prosperity. He wants us to press through to where we can pray and believe for our dream. Beyond that, He wants us to press through to where we can live in divine health, divine prosperity, and live walking in the glory of God – the place where we give no thought to our needs. As long as the devil can keep us caught up in the area of “we need our needs met,” then we are not going to be thinking about the abundance of God and the ministry of God because we are going to be so caught up with thinking about the bill that is due.

How much time do you spend in a day thinking about, working toward, and figuring out how you are going to get your bills paid? How much time do you spend going to the doctor? How much time, money, and resources do you spend taking care and trying to get up to the level of just getting your needs met? Let’s learn how to press past the “land of not enough” into the place where God wants us to be – the “land of more than enough.”

Never seek to just get by, but always press in for all that God has for you.

Devotion 0106

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