The Golden Chain

One morning in 1988 my wife received a dream from God as she awoke. I had just finished praying when she came down the stairs. As she described the dream, a vivid picture came into my mind as if it was my own, and with that came the interpretation from the Lord. It all remains as clearly today as when it happened.

In the dream my wife saw a very old, strictly orthodox religious man, leading a woman by a thin gold chain attached to a bracelet on her wrist. The woman was also very elderly, and had obviously been subject to the old man for a long time. The chain however, was extremely thin. She could easily have broken the flimsy restraint, but was thoroughly conditioned, afraid of going beyond familiar confines.

They were walking through a school yard, and as they passed, the old woman reached out, grasping my wife in a desperate embrace around the shoulders. Then like a drowning person, she would not let go. Repeating, “Help me, help me,” she dragged my wife downwards with her.

Almost brought to the ground, my wife pushed the old woman away with all of her might. Now free and leaving them both behind, she was instantly running with great leaps and bounds down a main residential road. As she ran, my wife passed lines of people from many nationalities and religions, all sitting beside the road.

This whole scene took place in the small town where we attended church.

The old man in the dream represents tradition, and the old woman, the church. The gold chain represents the thin thread of lies that keep the church in fear. Running in leaps and bounds represents the joy, liberty, and power we will find when we break free of man-made religion and follow the heavenly man, Jesus. And the people at the side of the road are the nations, who will witness the glory of God as the remnant of God sheds the shackles of tradition and walks in truth and power before Jesus returns.

Religious tradition is one of the cloaks that Satan wears in the church. Listing his many ploys would require a whole book, but his goal is always the same – to replace Jesus as the head of the church.

It is plain from scripture that the church ought to be governed by the gifts of the Spirit, and not by the institutions of man. For when the Holy Spirit is in charge, Jesus is glorified, the church grows in faith, the world sees the miraculous power of God, and multiplied souls enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. Every Christian denomination started this way, as men and women were touched by the Holy Spirit and learned to submit to his leading.

But over time, Satan subtly hides behind naturally gifted, self-willed men and women, who love to have the preeminence, who worship the work of their own hands, who use pious, reasonable sounding arguments to lead the church away from a vital, living relationship with the Holy Spirit. Then, not knowing the Spirit, well meaning underlings preach self preservation to the natural man, as the spiritual man who craves to be given for others withers and dies. Finally, gasping, the church latches on to anything she thinks will help, trying to rise above the world she knows is sinking.

So it is with great sadness that God and those who know the Spirit view much of what passes for spirituality in the church today. It seems that the hope of the world is blind and failing at a time when lost souls need someone to show them light and a new way to live.

Jesus wept at this terrible, terrible wrong in his day. He wept because the word of God declares freedom from every doubt and earthly restraint, but instead the people of God willingly maintain the chain they could so easily break.

Now. Can I tell you the secret to a life of power in Jesus Christ, where you can experience the full measure of God’s liberty and joy? It is not complicated. Jesus taught us what to do.

Instead of loving yourself and the world, love your neighbour. Lay down your life, abandon your ambitions, forsake your own comforts and pray earnestly for souls. Can you do that?

I have learned that I am unhappy when I am double minded, and fearful when my eyes are on the circumstances around me.

But when I pray and share Jesus’ love for souls, I see that he is already moving in sovereign power, that many are answering his call, and that soon he will do something the whole world will notice.

In the word of God it is written. God always has a remnant who walk as Jesus walked.

I received a word of knowledge from the Lord in July 2003. “The church is about to have a short period of tremendous success, but then persecution.”

God has been preparing again, a remnant who will fulfill his word in the final days, and there will be a great harvest in every corner of the earth. But it will not be without cost. As revival goes throughout the land, persecution will arise, and a conclusive choice will have to be made. Either forsake your life and follow Jesus Christ to certain death, or choose to preserve your life and fall away to the Antichrist. For many years I have sought a gentle way to say that, but there is none.

It also grieves me to say that the distinction will not be obvious to everyone. Only Jesus’ disciples will have their eyes open. If you take up your cross, you will be his disciple and you will understand. But if you refuse God’s way, you will not understand or be ready for all that happens as the end of time approaches.

If this message finds a place in your heart, I feel confident saying that you have probably been mourning the same things I am writing about. But rejoice now, for during this difficult wilderness God has been teaching you to trust him, to follow Jesus without qualification or fear, and soon he will release you into his new work.

Are you ready? Embrace your cross and carry it to the end.

GOD will take care of you. He will make you stand, and not fall.

Do You Want The Power of God?

I hope it is evident as I write about personal experiences, that this is not the story of what a man can do when he is in God. No, mine is the testimony of what God can do when he is in a man. God took my hand and has carried me every step of the way, and I have witnessed so many miracles in the process that now I just have to praise him.

I told you in previous posts about being born again and about the Baptism with the Holy Spirit. These are both vital experiences. You must be born again (there is a natural birth and there is a spiritual birth) because the Father’s true love can only be revealed to you by his Spirit. And you need to be baptized in the Holy Spirit because he is sent to give you the power to live right and to battle dark powers.

But there is another person in the Godhead. His name is Jesus. He is the Word, the “stone of stumbling.”

I am going to present you with the words of Jesus that were presented to me just hours after I was born again. Cross this line in the sand, and you will see love and power from God like never before.

The day I was born again I started reading the bible at Matthew’s gospel. I loved what it said. It felt so familiar, and my new heart was a clean slate, ready for God to write his laws there. Maybe that day or the next, I came to Jesus’ words in Matthew 10:39, “He that finds his life shall lose it: and he that loses his life for my sake shall find it.” Those words literally leapt off the page, going straight to my inner self with perfect clarity. And this may be a foreign concept to our modern minds, but from that moment forward I fully expected to someday die for Jesus and the gospel.

Does that sound crazy? No one would expect that, would they? But that is what Jesus said, and I’ll tell you why he said it. Jesus’ words are the dividing line between those who truly love God, and those who say they love God but in reality love themselves. And if you want the power of God you must love God with everything in you, love God even more than you love yourself, and then be ready to give yourself completely if necessary to serve God and your neighbour.

And Jesus did exactly that. Two thousand years ago, after four hundred years of prophetic silence, while the people of God debated the word of God, the Father sent Jesus into the world to do “among them the works that none other man did,” (John 15:24) rebuking theoretical preaching and false teaching with a display of miraculous power and selfless compassion unequaled in human history.

You see, before time began, Jesus agreed to lay down his life to rid the world of sin and to demonstrate the love of God. And that decision brought the promise of God’s power to him.

And to this day, the revelation of Matthew 10:39 remains the most important ever given to me, because embracing death for the sake of Jesus and the gospel brought the promise of God’s power to me.

Now to believe and follow Jesus in this way is not strange. In fact it is the experience of many Christians in many parts of the world today, who are ready, before the end of time, to lay down their lives for Jesus in a final display of God’s miraculous power and undiminished love for this dying world.

How do I know? Because Jesus said, “and this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” (Matthew 24:14)

So, do you want God’s power?

First, if you catch yourself debating internally or with anyone else about God’s word, pray and deal with that first. And don’t try to figure out what your cross is, or understand every last detail of what dying for Jesus means. That kind of questioning is just another excuse for not stepping over the line.

Then, don’t be afraid. Let the word of God wash away all of your doubts. Oh… that is true freedom, when Jesus’ words become better to you than life itself.