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DO WE KNOW WHO WE ARE?

      Why do we as Christians live far below the level that God planned for us to live on?  Could it possibly be caused by one or more of the following: (a) erroneous teaching; (b) misunderstanding of correct teaching; (c) no understanding or desire to understand what the bible says; (d) unbelief that God means exactly what He says.

          It is a known fact that if you hear or read anything, good or bad, long enough, it will have an effect on how you approach certain circumstances or conditions.  Your belief’s will be affected.  This is a basic premise of the teaching of not only Communism but also most cults operating today. Brain washing, as the United States found out after the Korean War in the mid-1950’s, was conducted in just this fashion.  Prisoners were not only targeted by loud speakers twenty-four hours a day but also required to read material written by Chairman Mao.  As I understand it, cults conduct more subtle forms of brain washing by having new adherents attend lectures, and read abundant literature,  its being typically slanted toward their objective of convincing one of the validity of their  being a “Christian” group.  Sadly, many Christians get caught in these traps laid by the enemy.  Mostly, I think, because they do not have a real grasp of who they really are, or should be, in Jesus Christ.  A lot of people have been told that life would be “trouble free” once they got saved.  If only that were the truth (John 16:33).   If we would but understand that saving is all God’s idea, and all His work (Eph 2:8,9). We should also know that the only thing  we must now do is serve Him with all our lives and not follow the things of the world (Rom 12:1,2).   When we became new creatures in Christ, all our sins were taken away (not covered over) by the shed blood of Jesus, and we were instantly made the righteousness of God in Him (2Cor 5:17,21).    This is the condition that Jesus expects us to maintain by confessing our sin, when and if we commit them, and accepting the Father’s forgiveness (1Jn 1:9;2:1). In the book of Romans, we see that both the Holy Spirit and Jesus intercede for us before the Father (Rom 8:26,34).   Search through the book of Ephesians and underline the phrases, In Christ, In Whom, In Him.

           Determine who YOU ARE according to scripture!! Develop a Righteousness Consciousness rather than a Sin Consciousness.  We must accept ourselves as we are. God does! Let’s let  God do His work, His way, in us!                    

          Over the last 1800 or so years, the church that was formed on the day of Pentecost has changed quite dramatically.  The only thing talked about then by the Apostles, was Jesus Christ and Him crucified, buried and resurrected.  There was nothing else to talk about.  Think about it, the twelve Apostles had just spent over three years walking with Messiah and learning to live as He did.  That was all they knew.  All the theological teachings that have come about since then are the result of mans idea of what God did and was doing through Jesus walking the earth as a MAN, the last Adam (1Cor 15:45).   

          The most important thing to realize and accept is that God said what He meant and meant what He said in the Word (2Pet 1:16-21).   Believing that God’s Word is the final authority, let us proceed. 

          I have heard numerous people make the claim that —“I’m just an old sinner saved grace”!  It  sounds real pious (religious), but it is errorBeing a sinner is a matter of lifestyle; committing a sin is a matter of missing the mark that Jesus set before us.   

          After being saved and put in right standing with God, you cannot possibly be a sinner (1Jn 3:9).  If someone continually sins after claiming they have been saved, then Gods seed (Gr:sperma) is not in them.  They are not saved!  Also, if you are continuing to sin, then what Jesus accomplished on the cross  was not as great as what Satan accomplished in the garden.   Do you really think that Satan’s victory was greater than Jesus’?  He is a defeated foe.  Jesus faced him as a man, and took the keys of hell and death (Rev 1:18) from him.   Our proper attitude should be:  I used to be a sinner; but I was saved by grace.  Therefore, I am now the righteousness of God in Christ.  He did all the work.  The only thing I have to do is accept the fact that it is accomplished.  Either you are a sinner or you have been put into right standing with the Father.  Think about it!    

          Another claim is: “God does not heal today!”  In Heb 13:8 we see that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.  In Mat 8:2,3 the leper knew Jesus could heal him but he did not know if He wanted to.  His reply, I will, is as good today as it was then.  One of the things that Jesus first commissioned  the Apostles to do in Mat 10:8 was to heal the sick.  In Mark 16:18 believers  are to “lay hands on the sick and they shall recover.”  In 1Pet 2:24 we read that we were healed by the stripes of Jesus. Compare that to Isaiah 53: 4,5  and you can see that Isaiah was looking forward to Calvary, while Peter was looking back on the work that was finished at Calvary. 

          If people were honest with themselves, they would see that one of the main reasons they are not healed is because of unbelief or other sin in their own heart or life.   Several years ago I heard about a person who had a terminal illness and the Lord prophesied that He would raise him up if  he would but confess the hidden sin in his heart.  He refused and  was not healed.  However, you cannot make a hard and fast rule that God will not heal if you have sin in your life.  After all, look at the sinners that Jesus healed during His ministry.  This is an area that we do not have full knowledge of.  All we can do is continue to lay hands on the sick and expect them to recover.

          I was called to a hospital several years ago to pray for a sister  who was very sick, not terminal.  After visiting for a while, I asked if I could pray for her.  She  said yes, just don’t pray for my healing.  I am bringing glory to God by being here.  Sadly, this is a lack of understanding of the word many people have.

          3Jn2 (Amp) states: “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in every way and [that your body] may keep well, even as [I know] your soul (Gr:psuche) keeps well and prospers.”  Jesus said in John 10:10 that “He came so we could have life and that more abundantly.” Also, in Act 10:38 we see that Jesus was anointed with the Holy Spirit and power who healed all who were oppressed of the devil.  Jesus stated in John 14:26 that the Holy Spirit would teach us all things, therefore, it doesn’t seem  logical that God would make us sick to teach us.    Faith  must be exercised to get and to stay healthy.  “Faith Giants” do not have more faith than anyone else.  They have just put their measure of faith (Rom 12:3) to the test more often.   We all start out with the same measure.

          I would suggest that you study the Word for yourself to determine if  God still heals.  Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God (Rom 10:17).You must be convinced of the truth in your own heart as taught by the Holy Spirit.  

            I am not attempting to set precedent or present  exhaustive teachings, just get people to “think for themselves” and not rely on others.  Romans 8:14 states: “ For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.”         

            I said for years that “Jesus lives in me”, yet I had very little reality of that knowledge. Paul says we are “alienated from the life of God through ignorance” (Eph 4:18).  Ignorance does not mean stupidity.  Ignorance simply means that you do not know.  I was a Christian many years in ignorance.  I did not know that I could experience the quickening, life-giving Spirit of God in me to bring me into the reality of what I knew. The Word clearly reveals that not only is it possible, but God expects us to mix faith with His Word and make it real in our lives. “He that abides in Him ought to walk even as He walked” (1Jn2:6). If we are not walking as Jesus walked, then we need to seek Him until His Spirit arises in us.By yielding ourselves to the Holy Spirit and allowing Him to do the work that He wants to do in our spirit, we will soon discover that living for God is not complicated or impossible.  It is wonderful. 

                                            Frank                                                      

      As you read and study this edition please do not be afraid of changes that may come into your life.  Remember, none of us like change.  I have heard it said, “all change is felt as a loss and is met with anger.” All of us like our comfort zone and generally would love to stay there. The problem is that God wants better for us. It is so easy to ignore the gentle (at times not so gentle) nudges the Holy Spirit  gives us to help us grow. There are times we will even want to shout “Blaspheme!” or “heresy!” or even rebuke the devil.   There will probably be times that you may get angry.  Frank got angry at God when He started dealing with his perfectionism. He would make silly mistakes that before he never would have made, and it really frustrated him. Praise God, He finally accomplished what He purposed for Frank in that area of his life. If we  but  have ears to hear and eyes to see what God is doing today we will know He is speaking change to everyone in The Church.

          When The Father moved us to Georgia in January 1994 to work with Berean, we had God in a nice little box neatly tied up with a big bow! We knew(?) who we were in Jesus and who He was in us! We had it all together or so we thought!

          Shortly after we came I went to New York on a ministry trip with Ed and Glenda. While there something happened in my spiritual life that is very hard to explain, but it changed my relationship with The Father forever.

          My beliefs, that I thought were unshakable,  began to shake! My solid ground seemed not so solid anymore. I was even questioning my salvation! It wasn’t any one thing that caused the shaking, but all of a sudden, I was very much unsure of all the things that I thought I knew.

          Glenda prayed with me and asked me to read a book, “Hinds Feet on High Places”. I found there were so many different levels of spiritual life that I questioned whether or not I had even begun!    I was so sure I had arrived, and then, the shocking news that a lot of what I had been taught by man had to go! It was not easy to let go of things that I had  believed  for over twenty-five years, but I knew I had to if I wanted to go on with the Lord.

          I even asked Him, what was I to do with the “New stuff” He was showing me? He reminded me of a Girl Scout song—”Make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver and the other is gold”. I knew then that He was going to help me sort it all out and I would know what was taught me by the Spirit, that I would keep.  The new things I have learned mix well with all the Spirit taught me in the past with no problem.

          I have a different walk with God now, but it only came as I was able to let man’s traditions and logic go and allow the Holy Spirit to be my teacher.

          All this to exhort you to listen with your Spiritual ears and don’t let tradition keep you from moving on in God.      I love you all —

                                     Barbara 

          As we all continue to grow in The Lord, let us ever keep our heart in tune to the Holy Spirit. As stated earlier, He is the teacher of the Church.  You can always be sure that whatever you receive from Him will be the truth.  Truth never changes but what is true can, depending on the circumstances.  For instance, suppose I’m at a meeting and I suddenly remember I am supposed to be somewhere else in fifteen minutes, which is at least forty-five minutes away. I make a quick exit and get tied up in traffic.  Obviously, I arrive late for the appointment.  I state boldly, “I ran into a lot of traffic.” True, but the truth is, I forgot the appointment which shows a lack of concern for others and also damages my integrity.

          The Word of God is forever the same. It is the only thing that we can rely on as a constant for guidance in our lives.  Hebrews states that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.”  When the Holy Spirit begans to cultivate His fruit through our spirit, we should also tend to be more constant.  We are told by Jesus to be ye also perfect (Gr:teleioi), even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect (Gr:teleios). We define perfect as: completness:— of full age, mature.  If completness is unattainable, then Jesus is pulling a very cruel joke on us. However, the  only way we will ever reach that goal  is by allowing the Holy Spirit to complete His work in us.

          Let us all, as Paul said, “Press toward the mark of the HIGH calling of God in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 3:14)

          We love all of you and constantly pray for God’s best for your lives.  Please continue to pray for us that we accurately hear The Lord’s voice as He leads us.

                              

                              In the Masters Service,

                              Frank and Barbara Doyle    

 

 

Published by

Frank and Barbara Doyle

Life Givers Ministries

PO Box 251

Lincolnton GA 30817-0251

phone: 706 359 6977

e-mail: frankd@minister.com