Wednesday, June 24, 2015

A Victorious Church

As I was praying this morning I felt the Lord say, “Tell my people, it's time for them to come to their senses.”
I asked the Lord what He meant, and my attention was directed to the parable of the prodigal son.  He reminded me how the prodigal son left his father's house and spent all that he had on “riotous” living, worldly living, or sinful living.  Then he found himself in the pig pen desiring to eat pig slop, but then it says “he came to his senses.”  He had not been acting like the person that he knew he was supposed to be.
Then I was impressed with the thought that the Church can be victorious.
I immediately recalled these passages:
Acts 1:8
“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
Luke 10:19
“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.”
I John 4:4
“You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”
Joshua 1:3-5
“Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given you, as I said to Moses.  4 From the wilderness and this Lebanon as far as the great river, the River Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and to the Great Sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your territory.  5 No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life; as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you.”
I may not be what many would consider a “Bible Scholar,” but I can see in these passages that God identifies his people as victorious. The will of God for His Church is victory.  These passages of scripture and many others like them, paint the picture of a Holy Ghost filled, fire baptized church marching in victory, putting under foot anything that stands in its way.
We are not just survivors of sinful pasts trying to hold on and hang out till Jesus comes. We are not just a few leftover, beleaguered soldiers trying to hold the fort until Jesus comes and rescues us.  We are not the few, the weakened, the discouraged just trying to keep our heads above water and just treading water until we die.  Brothers and sisters, we are the victorious!  I read the last chapter of the book, I’ve had a peek at the end of the story, and I’m here to tell you this morning, we win!
Hallelujah, Thank you Jesus!  Thank God for that truth, but whatever you do, don't skip the rest of the book just to get to the last chapter, because the entire Bible, Genesis to Revelation, is a testimony of the victorious lives of God's people, and it’s a manual for the strategy of warfare and the key to victory over all the power of hell.
I know that most of us know these things, but sometimes we let them slip our minds, so today I want to remind you that the blood of Jesus is just as powerful today as it was the day that it was shed.  We must lift up the banner and we must continue to sing the victory march, “There is power, power, wonder working power in the blood of the Lamb.” 
The blood of Jesus is not just a defense against Satan’s attacks, the blood of Jesus is our spiritual weapon for busting through the gates of hell and setting the captives free. I may sound old fashioned but the Victorious army of the Lord is a people soaked in blood. There is a fountain filled with blood drawn from His veins, and sinners plunged beneath the flood lose all their guilty stains.
Too many of our churches today are anemic, the blood count is too low, and they have a blood deficiency. There is no blood in their preaching, there is no blood in their worship, there is no blood in their testimonies, and it is because there is no blood in their veins.  I know of one denomination that removed all hymns with the word blood in them because they were afraid of offending visitors.  And they wonder why they don't have victory in their lives, they wonder why they don't have any power, they wonder why Satan laughs when they try to bind him from their lives and doesn’t listen to them, and they wonder why they have no impact on their world for Jesus.
Revelation 12:10-11
“Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.  11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.”
The life of the Church, the body of Christ, is in the blood.
Our only claim to victory over the Satan and the powers of this present dark age, is the blood of the lamb.  We have been saved by the blood.  We are healed by the blood, delivered by the blood, justified by the blood, protected by the blood, and we can only overcome by the blood.
God has not placed us here, in this generation, and in this place, just to survive and maintain.  We have not been placed here and called just to blend in. We are here to take over!  When the church is walking in holiness, covered by the blood, baptized in the Holy Ghost, it is the most powerful force in the world.
Satan has tried to burn it out, flood it out, beat it out, and kill it, but the blood washed church is still alive and it is still marching forward, and it is still assaulting the gates of hell.  I want you to understand today that a church covered in the shed blood of Jesus, and baptized in the Holy Ghost is a force to be reckoned with.
Too many times the picture we get of the church is like the game when all the kids pile on top of one kid, a dog pile, and the poor kid at the bottom of the dog pile would struggle just to breathe. But that's not what the bible teaches us. If there was a game that was more biblically correct it would be “King of the mountain.”  The bible says: We are the head and not the tail, we are above and not beneath.
I John 4:4
“You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”
There's the secret to the victorious church, it' the power of the Holy Ghost, it's the power of the greater one in us.
Galatians 2:20
“I am crucified with Christ nevertheless I live yet not I but Christ liveth in me and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the son of God who loved me and gave himself for me.”
Through the power of the Holy Ghost the greater one lives in us. Greater than what? Greater than he that is in the world.  He that is in the world is the devil He goes by a lot of different names: Drug addiction, pornography, lust, sickness, disease, poverty, lack, depression, and suicide. It doesn't matter what name Satan goes by, the Greater One is living inside of you!  He is greater than heart trouble, cancer, diabetes, homosexuality, fornication, or adultery.  God is greater, and he is in you.
The church is supposed to be victorious, it's unnatural for the church to lose, it's unnatural for a child of God to live a weak, discouraged, and beat down life. We were created to exercise power and authority over the enemy. We are commissioned to cast him out, to deliver those in bondage, to preach hope to the oppressed and set the captives free.
Mark 16:15-18
”And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. [16] He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. [17] And these signs shall follow them that believe; in my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; [18] They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
Isaiah 60:1-2
“Arise shine, for thy light is come and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For behold the darkness shall cover the earth and gross darkness the people, but the Lord shall arise upon thee and his glory shall be seen upon thee.”
We are the church victorious and we are taking our place, we are taking our position, and we are reigning in life by the name of Jesus.

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