This teaching includes a free sermon outline to download for personal use, message preparation or Bible study discussion.
In our last session we spoke about the baptism in the Holy Spirit with the supernatural seal of speaking with other tongues. I believe that in the purposes of God, the baptism in the Holy Spirit is intended to be merely a doorway. There has been discussion in the Pentecostal movement in past years as to whether it was a goal or a gateway. And there was a time when some Pentecostals took the attitude, “Well, I’m saved, I’m baptized in water, I’m baptized in the Holy Spirit. I speak in tongues, I’ve arrived.” Unfortunately, that’s incorrect and people who think they’ve arrived have just dropped out, that’s all. The baptism is not a goal, it is a gateway. It’s not the termination, it’s the starting point of a life lived in supernatural power. I believe that normally, in most people’s experience, the baptism in the Holy Spirit is the doorway to the supernatural gifts of the Spirit and to many other forms of supernatural experience. I believe it is impossible to live the Christian life to the full on the plane of the natural. It is permeated with the supernatural. Every chapter in the book of Acts—and there are 28—contains descriptions of events that are totally supernatural. The book of Acts is the only official record we have of what the Lord intended the church to be.
So, going on from the baptism I want to deal in this session and the next with the supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit. I’ll begin, I think, by just reading the list which is found in 1 Corinthians 12:8–10. If you check, you’ll find there are nine gifts.
“For to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit; to another, the word of knowledge through the same Spirit; to another, faith by the same Spirit; to another, gifts of healings by the same Spirit; to another, the working of miracles; to another, prophecy; to another, discerning of spirits; to another, different kinds of tongues; to another, the interpretation of tongues.”
It’s been common amongst Bible teachers to divide up those nine gifts into three groups of three. This is not doctrine, it’s just convenience. I’ll do it briefly before we focus on the particular gifts that I want to deal with in this session.
There are three gifts of revelation: a word of wisdom, a word of knowledge, and what’s the third one? Discernings of spirits. Those are three revelatory gifts.
There are three gifts which we can, for want of a better term, describe as gifts of power: faith, miracles, what’s the third one? Healings, that’s right.
And that leaves us with three which are usually called the vocal gifts, because they operate through human vocal organs. Interestingly enough, the gifts that always cause the problems are the vocal gifts because the tongue is the problem member in the body. What are the vocal gifts? Tongues, interpretation and prophecy.
We are going to deal in this session only with those three vocal gifts. We’ve spoken already about the seal of the baptism in the Holy Spirit: speaking with another tongue or a new tongue. That really is not the gift of tongues. The gift of tongues is called here and elsewhere “kinds of tongues” or “varieties of tongues.” In other words, it’s more than simply speaking with another tongue. I believe every believer baptized in the Holy Spirit has the divine right and gift to communicate personally with the Lord in another tongue at any time. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 14 about that, “He that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not to me, but to God. For no man understandeth it. Howbeit in the Spirit he speaks mysteries. He that speaketh in another tongue edifieth himself.” So there are three functions, three reasons for speaking in another tongue. Number one, you’re speaking to God. That’s a privilege. How many of you would agree that’s a privilege? Direct communication Spirit to spirit with the living God. Number two, you’re speaking mysteries, secrets, things that haughty little mind of yours doesn’t understand. And three, you’re edifying or building yourself up. A lot of people will ask you, “What’s the use of speaking in tongues?” Well, there are three precise answers. The use of speaking in tongues is to communicate direct with God, to speak mysteries, and to build yourself up. If there were no other reasons, those would be sufficient.
I believe that the full gift of kinds of tongues goes on beyond that. Kinds of tongues is different uses of tongues. Another kind of tongue is to speak out loud in the assembly in an unknown tongue with something that is to be followed by an interpretation. Another use of tongues is a sign to unbelievers. This is very rare, most Charismatics don’t think about it. But it happens at times that when God’s people are together or God’s people are ministering, a believer will speak a language which he doesn’t know but an unbeliever present understands that language. That’s a sign to unbelievers.
I remember one case of a young man who is now my son-in-law, many years ago was brought in from a street meeting in London. He was from Wales. As you probably know, the Welsh people have their own language which they’re very proud of. It was, quote, a gospel service and I’d just preached my gospel message and I was about to make my gospel appeal. An elderly gentleman there spoke in an unknown tongue. I was indignant, I thought that’s altogether out of order, he’s ruined my appeal. I don’t remember what followed that but one of my daughters had brought this young man into the meeting and he nudged her and said, “Why is that old man telling everybody about my sins in public?” It took ten minutes to convince him that the man didn’t know a word of Welsh but he was speaking Welsh, you see.
In Seattle, Washington some good many years ago now, from St. Luke’s Episcopal Church there, there was a lady visiting the sick in a hospital and she came to a man and she spoke to him in English and he didn’t respond, he didn’t understand. He was there in bed sick, so being one of those crazy Charismatics, she just spoke to him in tongues. He brightened up, answered her, she answered him back and they had a little conversation. The man was greatly encouraged. She didn’t know what language she’d been speaking. She learned later it was Canary Island Spanish, that was his language.
A friend of ours was in Russia not so long ago, a lady. And she was sitting next to a Russian in the subway and the man looked so sad and so downcast she thought, “I’d love to do something for him.” So she just trusted the Lord, opened her mouth and started to speak to him in Russian.
Those are exceptions, they’re not normal but they’re one of these.
And then I think there are many different forms of speaking in tongues like how many of you have ever had the experience of seeming really angry when you’re speaking in tongues? You know? I mean, you can’t believe it, it comes out like a torrent. I believe that’s when you’re confronting evil forces. You don’t know how to pray, you don’t know what to say, but the Holy Spirit comes through them.
And then there’s tongues which is just for worship. It’s just simply communication with God. In other words, tongues is a very rich field.
We’re not going to deal with that any further now but we’re going to go on to the other two vocal gifts: interpreting and prophesying. We need to begin with a definition. The gift of interpretation has no meaning apart from the gift of tongues. But, if someone has spoken in an unknown tongue by the Holy Spirit, the gift of interpretation enables either that person or another person by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, not through intellectual understanding, to speak out in a known language that which was said beforehand in an unknown language. Now, it is interpretation, it’s not exactly translation. That’s interesting because I don’t know how many of you have spoken through an interpreter in a foreign country. I’ve done it many times. We discover all interpreters are different. Every one uses certain words, some use a lot of words, some use fewer words. I remember we had a Canadian come out to Kenya when I was there, he was speaking through one of the best interpreters in the country. He said a short sentence and the interpreter took off and spoke for about two minutes. So, the Canadian turned to his interpreter and said, “Did I say all that?” So the interpreter said, “No, but in order to make them understand what you said, I had to say all that.” That’s interpreting. It’s communicating the sentence.
A brother that I know quite well from Britain who is now in the States told me that in the early days when they had Pentecostal rallies in the center of London, there was a situation in which somebody gave an utterance in tongues and they waited for the interpretation and when it came, it came from a man who was a Cockney. How many of you know what a Cockney is? Theoretically, born within the sound of the ?Beau bells? in London. I cannot imitate Cockney, it’s outside my abilities. But, the interpretation was this—and I don’t think you Americans will understand it: “Half a mo, my people, half a mo.” Well, “half a mo” is half a moment. In other words, hold on a moment, don’t be so rapid. You see, that was the interpretation. It’s characteristic as a Cockney interpretation. So, there’s quite a lot of room for flexibility in this area of interpretation.
However, it is communicating in an known language the sense of what was said previously in an unknown language.
Prophesying just goes one step further. Prophesying is speaking in a language that is known words that are given by the Holy Spirit. They do not proceed from human understanding, they are given supernaturally by the Holy Spirit. The difference between interpreting and prophesying is that interpreting is preceded by an utterance in an unknown tongue and related to that utterance; prophesying simply starts out in a known language. Very frequently, I believe, in places where God’s people are gathered in assembly there will come an utterance in a tongue which is followed not by interpretation but by prophesy. The utterance in the tongue kind of calls God’s people to attention and prepares the way for the prophecy that follows.
Now I want to lead you people, if you wish to be led, into the exercise of interpretation and prophesying in the next 30 or 40 minutes. I know it can be done because I’ve done it with large crowds of thousands of people. It doesn’t matter whether the crowd is small or large, all that matters is that people believe the word of God and are willing to act on it. If you come into this experience and you walk in it, it will bring you into a new dimension of personal communication with God.
I spoke to you yesterday about finding your place. I think I challenged some of you to seek God for your calling. This is one of the ways that God can begin to direct you into your place. I have seen people’s eyes fill with tears of gratitude when God through interpretation that they received themselves gave them words of direction for their life. It kind of made God that much more real to them. It made the whole spiritual life much more real.
I want to begin by just giving you some scriptural encouragements to exercise the gift generally. That’s step number one. The first scripture is in 1 Corinthians 12:7 and 11. Introducing this list of the nine spiritual gifts Paul says:
“But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all.”
Notice the gifts are manifestations of the Spirit. The Spirit dwelling within you is not visible, cannot be perceived by human senses. But the gifts that proceed out impact human senses. It brings the Holy Spirit in you into relationship to human senses. Though it’s given to an individual, notice it’s given for the profit of all. In other words, if God gives you, let’s say, a prophecy and you’re too fainthearted to give it out, not only have you cheated yourself but you’ve cheated the other members of the body of Christ. You see? It’s a stewardship, it’s not something that you just use if you feel like it, for yourself. Your responsible. God may want to speak to your neighbor through you. He may want to speak to the whole assembly. He may want to speak the preacher. So, don’t have the attitude, “If I don’t feel like it, I don’t think I’ll do it.” Because, that’s not responsible. It’s given to each one for the profit of all, for the benefit of all.
And it’s each one. Again, at the end in verse 11 of the same chapter:
“But one and the same Spirit works all these things distributing to each one individually as He wills.”
All right? Notice it begins and ends with each one. Paul’s attitude is each believer is entitled to his manifestation of the Spirit. But the Spirit decides what manifestation each one of us will have.
And then at the end of that chapter, verse 31:
“For earnestly desire the best gifts, and yet I show you a more excellent way...”
Which is, of course, the way of love in the next chapter. Well, a lot of people use that scripture as a stick to beat Pentecostals with. “Well, love is the more excellent way.” But that ignores the fact that Paul tells us to covet earnestly the best gifts. Love is not a gift, love is a way, love is fruit. So, if we don’t covet earnestly the best gifts, what are we doing? We’re disobeying scripture, see? Scripture tells us to do it.
Let me say what I said yesterday. The gifts are not toys, they’re tools. You need them to do the job. And if you refuse God’s equipment and can’t do the job, you’re going to be answerable to God for the job you didn’t do.
Then in chapter 14, verse 1:
A lot of people stop there but it doesn’t stop there.
“Pursue love and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.”
It doesn’t say pursue love or desire spiritual gifts. They’re not options, alternatives. It’s pursue love and desire spiritual gifts, but particularly that you may prophesy. Are you particularly desiring this morning to prophesy? If not, you’re not obeying scripture.
And then verse 26 says:
“How is it then brethren, whenever you come together, each of you has a psalm, a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation?”
When God’s people come together, we should not come each of us merely to receive, we should come each of us with something to contribute. One of the main ways we can contribute is out of the gifts of the Spirit. See, that’s God’s equalizer. Some people are naturally gifted, they’re intelligent, they’re educated, they’re articulate, they’re not embarrassed, they can stand up and often speak too long! But, there are a lot of others who are kind of mousey and they don’t have much and say, “What can I do?” Well, if it rested on your natural ability, that might be so. The truth of the matter is God gives you supernatural ability. Paul says He gives it to the part that needs it most. You have two people in a church. One is a doctor, the other is what we call in Britain a char lady. You wouldn’t know what that is, but a cleaning woman. In the average non spiritual church the doctor becomes a deacon, the char lady just sits in a pew. Everybody knows that’s her place. But when the Holy Spirit moves, the doctor is still a deacon but the char lady becomes a prophetess. See? That’s God’s wisdom, that’s God justice. If we refuse the supernatural, we just tie ourselves down to our own limitations.
Now, bearing in mind that these two happen to be in the wrong order, I said that’s just to keep you alert, we’re going on to what is number three on the outline is number two for me. Specifically to interpret. Okay? We’re going to come now to the point where I’m going to lead you into the exercise of the gift of interpretation. Are you ready to be led? That’s your decision. I want to point out to you that the Bible encourages us to interpret. 1 Corinthians 14:5:
“I wish you all spoke with tongues...”
How many Baptist churches acknowledge that? “I wish you all spoke with tongues.” How many is all? All is all, isn’t it. But that’s not all, that’s just the first part.
“I wish you all spoke with tongues, but even more, that you prophesy. For he who prophesies is greater than he who speaks with tongues, unless indeed he interprets, that the church may receive edification.”
Understand, the key word in this chapter is edify and edification. Everything is directed to building up the individual and the church. Paul says it’s fine to speak in tongues but you’re only edifying yourself. If you prophesy, you’re edifying the church, the whole assembly. But he said if you speak in a tongue and then interpret, that’s as good as prophesying.
And so he goes on in the same chapter, verses 12–13:
“Even so, you, since you are zealous for spiritual gifts...”
Are you zealous for spiritual gifts? All right. If you are, this applies:
“...let it be for the edification of the church that you seek to excel. [Don’t just restrict it to yourself.] Therefore, let him who speaks in a tongue pray that he may interpret.”
Now, I am naive enough to believe that if the Bible tells us to pray for something, the Bible wants us to have it. I cannot conceive that the Bible would say pray for something but it’s not God’s will. That seems to me incredible, totally illogical. So, the Bible says let the one who speaks in a tongue do what? Pray to interpret. So if you speak in a tongue, one thing you can do next is what? Pray to interpret.
Now, let’s go down to the bottom of the outline for a moment to encourage you. Two principles of petition. First of all, in 1 John 5:14–15:
“Now this is the confidence that we have in him [that’s God] that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”
The issue is are we praying according to God’s will? If we are, we know He hears us. And if we know He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petition that we asked of Him. So the issue is are we praying in God’s will? If we are, then we know He hears us. If we know He hears us, we know we have the thing we ask for.
Now, if God says let him that speaketh in a tongue pray that he may interpret, to me that indicates it’s God’s will for you to interpret. Otherwise, God wouldn’t tell you to do it.
Then about the time of receiving. This is very important. Mark 11:24:
“Therefore I say to you, [Jesus is speaking] Whatever things you ask, when you pray, believe that you receive them and you will have them.”
That’s not a fully accurate translation. The tense is wrong. What it says in Greek is “believe that you receive them and you will have them.” So whatever things you ask, when you pray, believe that you receive them and you will have them. So when did you receive? When you prayed, that’s right. And if you’re praying in God’s will, you know that He hears you and you know that you have what you ask. Okay?
So, what we’re going to do very simply—well, let’s look at the general assurance. We looked at it last time, we don’t need to turn there. Jesus said if you ask for bread, you’ll never get a stone. If you ask for a fish, you’ll never get a snake. If you ask for an egg, you’ll never get a scorpion. If you ask for something good, you will never get something bad. Turn to your neighbor and say that. “If you ask for something good, you will never get something bad.” Okay.
Now all we’re going to do is act on it. Are you all ready? This is how we’re going to do it. At a given signal from me, every one of you will turn to the Lord, shut yourself in and speak in a tongue. All right? You remember, your will is the switch. You switch it on, you switch it off. Don’t speak for about five minutes because your busy little mind will say, “How can I ever interpret all that?” See? Just start with a minute or two and don’t dribble off. That’s an awful mistake when speaking in tongues. Speak and stop. Okay? As a person who exercises the gift of interpretation, sometimes people speak in a tongue and you think, “I’m going to start interpreting” and then they go on another little dribble. And then another little dribble. Don’t dribble. Speak, stop and what do you do next? You say, “Now, Lord, in the name of Jesus, please give me the interpretation.” Okay? What’s the next thing you do? You interpret, that’s right. You believe you’ve received it. If you believe you’ve received it, what do you do with it? You use it. Don’t go on speaking in tongues. This is the reverse of the baptism. The problem with the baptism is people go on speaking their own language and so they can’t speak in tongues. Because, you can’t speak in two languages simultaneously. Now it’s the other way around. You speak in a tongue, you’ve got that far, you speak whatever you feel God would have you to say but God is very gracious. I mean, He won’t take you beyond the measure of your faith. Then you stop, no more speaking in a tongue. You say, “Lord, in the name of Jesus, please give me the interpretation.” Then you take a deep breath and you interpret. Okay?
I mean, I can tell you from experience I’ve seen this work for thousands of people. Because each one of us is an individual. The fact that there are a couple of hundred people maybe, that doesn’t make any difference to God. You are dealing direct with God. Okay?
When you speak, don’t speak so loud that you disturb your neighbor but speak loud enough to hear yourself. You understand? Break the sound barrier. Okay? And when we’ve done that for a little while, we’ll stop and check and go back.
Let me tell you something interesting. Normally when you interpret, it will take one or other of two forms. It will either be praise and worship or it will be God taking your lips and speaking to you a message for you. When I first started this the percentage used to be about 60 percent praise and worship and about 40 percent God speaking to you. But, things are changing and now it’s the other way around. Which to me is indicative that God wants more and more to speak to His people and it’s usually 60 percent or more that gets something personal from God, 40 percent that get praise or worship. You don’t determine what you’re going to get. That’s what the Holy Spirit decides. Be grateful for whatever you get, it’s glorious. Okay? Are we all ready?
Now you speak in a tongue, stop, say, “In the name of Jesus, please give me the interpretation.” All right?
You should by now have finished speaking in tongues, some of you have already received the interpretation. I’ll give you another minute or two but no more. Okay. We’re going to stop and check now. How many of you received interpretation? Just raise your hand. Keep your hands up a moment because this is a pretty good demonstration. I would say that’s 90 percent or near. Now, put your hands down and listen carefully. How many of you received praise or worship? Okay. How many of you found that God took your lips to speak to you? Look at that! It’s amazing. This is a real sign of what God is doing in the church. How many of you feel happy about it? I mean, let me say, how many of you got a word of encouragement from the Lord? Direction? Beautiful! Okay.
Now, those of you that didn’t receive, don’t feel left out. All you have to do is do what these people did, see? God has no favorites. We’re going to do once more, and this is the last run around with interpretation. So we just speak in a tongue, stop, ask God for the interpretation. Okay? I’m not going to give you a lot of time because the more time you get, the less likely you are to do it. Just plunge in with both feet.
Okay, we’re going to check now. I wanted to try and encourage people who may need it. How many of you this time received who didn’t receive the time before? Would you raise your hand. One hand there. Anybody else? Another hand. Praise God. Praise God. Good, the lady behind the camera received, that’s really good. She deserves a little extra encouragement! Amen.
All right. Now step three is very simple. What’s step three? Prophesy, isn’t it? Let’s look at a few scriptures again that encourage us to prophesy. We’ll start in 1 Corinthians 14:1. Why don’t we all read it together. We’ve got probably about four different versions here but let’s everybody read that so we know it’s there. Okay? Just wait till you find it, 1 Corinthians 14:1:
“Pursue love and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.”
Now, turn and read it to your neighbor. The Bible says we can exhort one another. You see? All right. 1 Corinthians 14:24–25. Here’s a description of a meeting of the church, you’ve all come together in one place. Paul says:
“If all speak with tongues, and there come in those who are uninformed or are unbelievers, will they not say that you are out of your mind?”
If everybody comes to a meeting and all they do is speak in tongues, which happens in some churches, people who are not believers just say those people are mad. But, Paul says:
“If all prophesy...”
Notice that. He assumes that all can prophesy.
“If all prophesy [that is speak in a language that’s understood], an unbeliever or an uninformed person comes in, he is convinced by all, he’s judged by all; and thus the secrets of his heart are revealed, and falling down on his face he will worship God and report that God is truly among you.”
Understand the problem with a lot of Pentecostals is they never went far enough. They spoke in tongues and didn’t go any further. And many, many people have walked into Pentecostal meetings and said, “These people are crazy, I’m not coming near them.” The problem was not with God’s provision, it was with God’s people who didn’t avail themselves of the provision. What we need to do is go on from speaking in tongues to prophesying. To giving people words about themselves that they know we couldn’t know naturally. You understand? The secrets of their heart made manifest.
Okay. Two more scriptures. Verse 31:
“For you can all prophesy one by one, that all may learn and all may be encouraged.”
How many can prophesy? Are you sure? Say it again. “All.” That’s right. Turn to your neighbor and read it to him or her.
All right. Now this is what we’re doing, you understand? Paul says you can have a learning session, it’s not a full scale meeting of the church, it’s a learning session. This is precisely where we’re at. You can all prophesy that all of you may learn. And trustfully, you’ll all be encouraged.
One more scripture which is verse 39:
“Therefore, brethren, desire earnestly to prophesy, and do not forbid to speak with tongues.”
Desire earnestly to prophesy. I pray God that He may put that in the heart of everybody here, an earnest desire to prophesy. You’re not being presumptuous, you’re not trespassing on God’s grace; you’re doing what God tells you to do. And you can all prophesy one by one, individually. That’s not to each other, we’ll come to that maybe later. But what we’re doing right now is we’re practicing. How many of you would recognize it’s nice to practice in a private situation before you launch out in front of the assembly? See?
Now, just because you’re religiously disposed, I’ll say a nice prayer for you before you do this. It will work without the prayer but you feel better if I pray. See? Then, you know what you’re going to do? You’re not going to speak in tongues, you’re going to? I didn’t hear you. That’s right. How many of you believe you can do it? Amen. Okay.
So, “Father, we just thank you for your blessed presence with us here through the Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit, we welcome you. We acknowledge you as the personal resident representative of the Godhead now on earth. We give you the honor that is your due. You are Lord and you are Lord here this morning. Lord, you brought us to this point where your people earnestly desire to prophesy. So now, Lord, in the name of Jesus, I ask you to release in them and through them the gift of prophesying. For your glory, in Jesus’ name, amen.”
It’s legitimate to speak out loud enough to hear yourself. There’s something about breaking the sound barrier.
(Prophecy given from in the congregation:)
“O my children, I have called you together to heal you. I have called you together, I love you my children. I will send you into all the nations of the world to teach my word. I love you my children. Rest in me. Teach my word. Make me known throughout the world. I love you my children. Rest in me. I love you my children.”
Amen. Well, that was a serendipity, wasn’t it? But don’t let that keep you from your personal encounter with the Lord. That was a word of encouragement to all of us. Thank God for it. But I want each one of you to be released individually.
God prompts me to tell you there’s no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. If you’re under condemnation, don’t accept it.
(Prophecy given from in the congregation but could not hear it on the tape.)
Praise God. What language did you get that in? You did? What’s your mother tongue? Well, why don’t you get something in French? No, really. Because your mother tongue makes it—I used to prophesy in French at one time. When I was with a French sailor in World War II I got the most beautiful prophecy in French. You know, there’s so much variety. Don’t be tied down.
How many of you got a prophecy? Just raise your hand. Well, that’s beautiful. Amen.
Now, those of you that didn’t, we’ll give you one more run at the jump, okay? Don’t feel discouraged. Just turn to the Lord and say, “Lord, help me. If I’m bound, release me.” Some are bound by fear, some are bound by embarrassment, but don’t let that hold you back. Okay? “Father, thank you for what you’ve done for your people here this morning. We pray now that you will release those who are bound by fear or embarrassment or any other force, Lord, and you’ll give them this beautiful gift of prophesying. In Jesus’ name, amen.”
Okay, that’s wonderful. Now we’ll release some of you who feel you’ve got a word that’s for more than you, speak it out to the people of God. Just stand up. If you’re speaking there, turn around and speak to the people so that they can hear you. And whatever God has given you, you give it to them.
(From the congregation:)
“This is to glorify the Lord, but it is for you and Ruth if you’ll receive them.”
Well, we’d be happy.
“Okay. The Lord is opening a door for you to go into India...”
Dear Lord! Sorry for laughing but we’ve been trying to avoid India so long! There’s a Jewish believer very close to us in Jerusalem, he has prayed himself blue in the face for us to go to India, so that is really not a prophecy, that’s a word of knowledge, but it’s very good. Thank you. That’s all I need!
So, anybody else got a word you want to give you to the people? And remember, it’s not for your profit, it’s for the profit of all. Yes, stand up, speak it out clearly.
(From the congregation:)
“O my children, how deeply I long after you. My bowels are moved for you. I would have you come near (unintelligible) to my feet. Come near to me and as I long after you, so I want you to long after me. I yearn after you. Come close and sit and commune with me privately. (unintelligible) I love you (unintelligible).”
Amen. Now, one danger is we hear prophecy and say, “That was wonderful,” and we do nothing about it. See? And in the end prophecy become ineffective. That’s happened in hundreds of Pentecostal churches and Charismatic churches. The Lord spoke specifically and He said, “I want you to come near to me and wait at my feet in private,” you understand? So there’s direction for many of you as to how God wants you to spend some of your, quote, spare time. Understand? Spend it in the presence of the Lord.
How many of you will act upon that if you feel that’s for you? Good. All right. Praise God.
Now let’s see if we have some more, we’ve had some beautiful words. How many of you would agree? Also, you’ll notice that when the prophetic gifts come, there tends to be a general theme that they follow, even from many different people. The theme here is God’s love for us, His desire to draw us to Him, and His desire to send us forth into all the world as His ambassadors, which is beautiful. My heart says amen to that. So, let’s just wait before the Lord, don’t be embarrassed, don’t be shy. If you feel God has given you something—if your heart is pounding, it’s probably you. Give me your hand first, stand up and we’ll take you next, okay? Stand up, this lady here.
(Could not hear the woman speak.)
Amen. Thank you.
(From the congregation:)
“I am the Lord God, I am your God. I will never leave you. I love you forever (unintelligible).”
Amen. See the theme is God’s love and encouragement. Yes, stand up, turn around, speak to the people.
(From the congregation:)
“This is my world. And my protection goes before you as you go out. So you have no reason to fear anything.”
Amen. I want to say some of what we get is incomplete prophecy. Perfectly valid but, you know, the first time you swim you don’t swim ten lengths. So, remember this is a thing we learn, it’s progressive. The exercise of the gifts of the Spirit, very few people start exercising them perfectly but people who wait to be perfect before they exercise them never exercise them.
So, thank you brother, I appreciate that. Is there anybody else? We’ll take my wife first, then the lady behind. Do you want to come and share my microphone? If you can get it on, you can get it off.
“‘I have looked upon your doubts and your fears. But I have also looked upon your love for me. And I want now to take away your doubt and your fear, and to reassure you that I will be with you in every situation, I will never leave you, I will never forsake you. Indeed, I will send my angels before you. And they will prepare the way and when you come in, you need only come in and gather the fruit. There is a rich harvest waiting. And I am equipping you to be laborers, to be gatherers in the harvest. So lay aside your doubts and fears, lay them at my feet,’ says the Lord, ‘and I will give you my joy and my peace and my power.’”
Now let’s act on what the Lord says. It’s so important that we just don’t hear prophecy and say, “Well, wasn’t that interesting.” I’ve been in Pentecostal and Charismatic churches where people would walk out of the church and say, “Wonderful meeting we had. Four prophecies.” I say, “What did the prophecies say?” “I don’t remember.” Well, what’s the good of God speaking if we don’t act on what He says.
Now, the Lord spoke through Ruth and He said there are many that have doubts and fears and you are to lay them aside. I want to pray for those that are troubled by doubts and fear right now. If you would raise your hand, I’m going to pray for you. See? My goodness. How is the church ever going to get in the world at this rate? I think what you need to do, I’ll lead you in a prayer. I think you need to say it after me. Say these words. “Lord Jesus, I trust you. You loved me enough to die for me. You’re my savior, my redeemer. I belong to you for time and for eternity. My life is in your hands. No one can pluck me out of your hands. Lord Jesus, I want to lay down fear, doubt and unbelief. I ask you to deliver me from these things now, in your name, Lord Jesus. Give me your boldness, give me your courage, give me your strength. By your Holy Spirit, I pray. By faith I lift up my hands and I receive now from you. Amen, Lord.”
“Jesus, pour out your Spirit of love of boldness and faith upon these people now. In Jesus’ name, pour out upon them, pour out upon them in the name of Jesus. Amen, Lord.”
Now, be a receiver. Don’t just take your hands down too quickly, be a receiver. Begin to thank Him. Arise and shake yourself, shake yourself from the bands of your neck. Loose yourself from those chains of intellectual reasoning and the natural mind and your own little abilities. You have a great God, a wonderful God. That’s right. Now let’s give Him a praise offering. Thank you, Lord. Amen.
Now this sister in the second row behind my wife, you had something. Stand up.
(Couldn’t hear the lady on tape.)
Thank you. I think it takes real courage when your first language isn’t English. I appreciate that. Thank you.
Again, I would like to say that’s not a complete prophecy, it’s just the beginning. Once you start it, don’t turn back. You see? When I get a prophecy, I usually get just the first sentence. Now if I sit there and think, “I wonder what I’m going to say after that,” I get no more. Because, without faith it is impossible to please God. But if I give the first sentence, then the rest follows. See?
Anybody else, yes. Up there there’s a young man with a left arm up. That’s right. I saw you the first time. Raise yourself up. You’re a lady! How could I tell? Can you be heard?
“You’re the beauty of the earth, my bride, the apple of my eye. My reason and my plan for you is that the world (unintelligible) the radiance of my love and of my praise. (unintelligible) life your voice and (unintelligible). Do not fear what other men may think. Speak my word and obey my word (unintelligible).”
Amen. Praise God. Now, that was complete. Praise God for that. That’s not the first time you’ve prophesied, or is it? A long while. You have let your gift rust, you see? You need to tell the Lord you’re not going to let that happen again. Okay.
Time for about one more. We’ll take this young man here. You are a young man, I’m sure of that!
(Could not hear the speaker on the tape, too much was unintelligible.)
Amen, thank you. Is that the first time you have ever done anything like that? Well, congratulations. Now, don’t stop. See how consistent the theme is? The love of God, His concern for us, that He wants us to be free from care and fear and to be bold?
Amen. I think we should just stand to our feet now and give the Lord a praise offering. Thank you, Lord. Praise your wonderful name, Lord. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Glory to your name. Alleluia, glory to God. Thank you, Lord. Amen.
God bless you. I think we meet again in about five minutes.
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