I love the promises in Psalms. There comes a time in your life and mine when only God can satisfy. In my teenage years my prayer was, “My flesh longs for You Lord, I’m thirsting for You, I’m hungry for You,” – but more, the next verse, I’ve never forgotten it, “to see Your Power and Your Glory, NOW, as I have seen You in the past, in the sanctuary” – this is my heart’s desire, NOW! That just as I have seen the Power of God in the past, I want to see MORE, NOW, IN THE FUTURE. I have to live, I cannot die, they can’t take me until I see Your Power, Your Glory, NOW – GREATER THAN ANYTHING I HAVE SEEN IN THE PAST!
When our delight is in the Lord, there will be a tangible, physical evidence! We will be like a tree planted by rivers of water that brings forth fruit in season! Our leaves shall not wither! And whatever we do shall prosper! That’s a phenomenal promise and encouragement!
'Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper.' (Psalm 1.1-3, NKJV)
The Lord’s Coming is as a thief in the night. But for the believer, the Apostle Paul teaches that we should be living in expectation and anticipation of that Great Day, because in 1 Thessalonians 5 verse 4, he writes, “YOU, brethren, are NOT in darkness that that day should overtake you as a thief!” Paul is saying, as far as the world is concerned, the Coming of Christ will be a sudden unexpected happening – but you, brothers and sisters in Christ, should not be in such darkness that the Coming of the Lord will overtake you as a thief! The suddenness of the Coming of the Lord is a shock to the world, but not so to the Believer, who should be expecting it, because we are children of the Light and children of the Day.
If we are looking for revival, for the Power of God, it will come through a greater outpouring of the Spirit, a Latter Rain just as Joel prophesied. The church celebrates Pentecost year by year, as long as you think of it as something that happened two thousand years ago, you will never experience the fullness of what God intends. The prophecies, the Words of Jesus are quite clear, a GREATER outpouring MUST happen in the last days before He comes back.
I believe we are now literally living in the days of the latter rain, and that we should experience those same things the prophet Joel and Peter describe – but with an even greater anointing now, than happened originally with Peter and the disciples in the Acts of the Apostles! I have always believed this. From my earliest days of seeking the Holy Spirit, I always believed that there would come in the ‘last days’ a further and even GREATER outpouring of the Holy Spirit before the Lord returns. In my own ministry, I’m always looking for the increasing, GREATER miracles. I have seen phenomenal things, but I don’t want to say that they have been greater than the miracles Jesus did – but they ought to be, they HAVE to be! Come on! If Jesus was right in what He said, “YOU will do GREATER miracles than I do”, then we MUST…
What happened on the Day of Pentecost was an explosive start to the Church! Too many say, “That was in the past, it’s over, we can’t expect that to happen today.” Well, I’m sorry, I believe it CAN, MUST happen. I have seen most of the things outlined in the Acts of the Apostles and in the Epistles HAPPEN, and I EXPECT to see them happen in my life, in my ministry – NOW! We are all so familiar with Acts Chapter 2, we know what happened on the Day of Pentecost. We know Peter described it very clearly, saying, “This is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel, And it shall come to pass in the last days, God says, I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy.” Acts 2:16-17. We are all so familiar with this and with its fulfilment. But I want to deal with something which I believe is becoming something of a controversy. I expect these things in Acts 2, spoken of by the prophet Joel, to happen in my life and ministry. That’s what the Scripture says!
Why did God bring Israel out of Egypt into the Land by such a difficult route? They could have gone a different way. But God WANTED them to cross the Red Sea. Firstly, because it needed a miracle that God opened the waters, and once the Israelites had crossed over, there was no way back! But secondly, in opening the waters, the Egyptian army – at that time, the most powerful army in the world – was drawn into the sea with all its might, its chariots and warriors – so that when God released the pent-up water, the whole of the Egyptian army was drowned! The power of the enemy was destroyed!
I believe the Red Sea typifies the Blood of Christ. God opens a way into the Promised Land through the Blood of Christ – and also destroys the power of the enemy! But we have to fight to possess the land. I challenge you – your life needs to be a spiritual battle. The reason I have so much strength and health at my age it because I haven’t finished the battle yet!
So many look at the Promises of Scripture, at the Promises of Pentecost, and they say, “That’s for the past, it’s historic, it doesn’t apply today.” It is so easy to know what is in the Bible, but then dismiss it. We read it, study it, preach it, ‘spiritualise’ it, until there is a danger that we make it mean something else. But everything in the Bible can happen today! Don’t limit God. I want to challenge you to a new kind of faith. We are commanded to go in and possess all the blessings which God has promised.
1 Corinthians 12:31 says, ‘Covet the best gifts’. When I first received the Holy Spirit, I was thinking, “What gifts do I want?” I said, “Lord, more than anything else, give me the Gift of Faith” – because I saw that one gift as the major key that would open the door into all the rest of them! I can never claim to have the Gift of Faith, because I want to tell you quite bluntly, that gift is only as good as your ‘today’ – you have only got the Gift of Faith if you can put it into action today!!!