honor prophets

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3586 Nov 15, 2012
There is more reason to be encouraged through the good and powerful things that have been accomplished through prophetic ministry.

Many lives have been positively impacted for the Kingdom of God. God is in process of refining His Body to reflect His image. God works with His people throughout a lifetime here on earth. Paul sets the example, "Not that I've been perfected..." Let me tell you that without prophets and prophetic ministry there will be no open heavens, no power and no glory in the Church.

Whether you consider yourself a prophetic person or a prophet, both of which are in process, you are still a gatekeeper of Heaven that has the grace to open the way for others to have a living encounter with God. In simple terms, those who know the secret place with God are prophetic whether they call it that or not. It is not how we title ourselves, no badges are needed. It is the substance of Christ that God is after. There are many prophets in the earth that are not known, that God respects as such. The bottom line is that we all need to know how to connect with God in the secret place if we are to have any impact while on the earth. Just as Jesus said, "The Son can do nothing apart from the Father." It is the same with us.

John 5:19 Then Jesus answered and said to them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner."

The Validity of Prophetic Life

Jesus connected Himself and associated Himself with the prophets:

Matthew 5:11-12 "Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in Heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you."

Matthew 23:29 "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! Because you build the tombs of the prophets and adorn the monuments of the righteous..."

Prophet, prophets and prophesy are referenced over 500 times in Scripture, not including other variations of prophetic references. Compare that with all the rest of the 5-fold offices (teacher, apostle, evangelist, pastor) and you will see that the times mentioned on this area far outweighs all other Biblical offices. Not that this means it is necessarily more important, although we should give heed to this.

All parts and functions of the Body of Christ are important to God. With this it would still seem to be something important, at least in God's eyes. I would venture to say it is because the prophetic office, function or gift very much has to do with intimacy with God, hearing, seeing and speaking on His behalf. Keeping this in mind, what does God look for in those who really walk this prophetic line?
honor prophets

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3587 Nov 15, 2012
Here are some foundational characteristics:

1. Avoid a man-pleasing spirit.
2. Refuse to compromise, but speak the heart of God.
3. Embrace a spirit of honor that comes from a pure heart vs. gossips and backstabbers.
4. Committed to a close place of intimacy with God.
5. Walk with a consistent track record of faithfulness to God.
6. Disengage from a territorial and religiously competitive spirit.
7. Are quick to turn to righteousness when wickedness is revealed.
8. Are humble enough to admit it when they miss it.

The Holy Spirit Releases the Prophetic

Because intimacy with God is at the very core of being someone who sees and hears from God, it is only normal for prophets to operate in dreams, visions and revelation. In Acts 2 it is clear that when the Spirit is poured out prophetic life is released. An evidence of the Holy Spirit's work is the eyes and ears seeing and hearing in the Spirit.
Acts 2:17-18 "And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; and they shall prophesy."

To be prophetic is to be a normal Believer. No one needs to make an effort to be strange, but to simply see and hear in the Spirit. When we read the letters of Paul, even though he had been taken up in the Spirit to see things unmentionable, he does not come off as a man from outer space or on dope. He comes across as someone normal.

A mature vessel should be able to communicate what they have experienced in a way that is not overly-dramatic, drawing attention to themselves, but rather in a way that communicates the truth of the prophetic experience in a way that others can connect with.

Understanding the Prophetic

If people do not understand or are afraid of the prophetic they can shut themselves off to this aspect of God's way of speaking to them. Fear is a thief, but with understanding of the truth fear can be removed and revelation can be received. Paul prayed that we would have the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation. Revelation is the prophetic. When God opens our eyes to see and hear His heart and desires this is revelation given by His Spirit. We need to be completely open to how God would speak to us in His own ways.

1 Samuel 3:1 Now the boy Samuel ministered to the Lord before Eli. And the word of the Lord was rare in those days; there was no widespread revelation.

Amos 3:7 Surely the Lord God does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.

It is important that we have the Spirit of Revelation, for apart from God we can do nothing. We need to welcome the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation. This is nothing far out, but is very much part and parcel of the work of the Holy Spirit. Clearly in this verse above God shows us that His pleasure is for us to be connected with Him in such a way that His words are ringing clear in every person. He created us to be a prophetic people.
When people do not understand where others are coming from in regards to prophetic experiences they can be offended. When people are offended in the natural mind or jealous because they don't have any revelatory experiences, they are tempted to persecute and mock these experiences. Nothing will cut you off from a personal experience with God quicker than mocking another person's experience with God.

You may even pray for revival your entire life, praying God would use you in it, but if you mock others you may never see revival in your life, much less a bigger breakthrough in your region, beyond yourself.
calls to repentance

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3591 Nov 15, 2012
Repentance and the Way God Calls Holy

Many are calling for prayer for our nation. To that message I would like to add a call to repentance as well. Indeed, 2 Chronicles 7:14 not only calls us to pray but to follow through by humbling ourselves, aggressively turning away from evil. In that spirit, we then seek God's face. There is far too much compromise among us. We need a breakthrough into brokenness. A move of God is coming, but it will only be as deep as our repentance prepares us.

The purpose of this message is to take us beyond simply feeling sorry we sinned. God wants to bring us into an attitude of repentance that persistently returns to Him until the fruit of righteousness comes forth in our lives.

The Bible tells us that prior to the beginning of Christ's ministry, "there came a man, sent from God, whose name was John" (John 1:6). John the Baptist was sent from God. His baptism of repentance was not the last event of the old covenant to be completed; it was the first event, the ground breaker, of the new covenant. John was sent by God as a forerunner to Christ's ministry. His unique purpose was to immerse Israel into an attitude of repentance (Acts 19:4). He was called to go before Christ. His task was to "prepare" and "make ready the way of the Lord" (Mark 1:2-3).

Some measure of repentance always precedes the coming forth of the living Christ in a person's life. To "prepare" and "make ready" is the purpose of repentance. Let us be sure we understand: John's repentance did not merely make men sorry, it made men ready.

True repentance is to turn over the soil of the heart for a new planting of righteousness or directives from God. It is a vital aspect in the overall sphere of spiritual maturity. To truly change your mind takes time and effort. John's command to the Jews was to "bear fruit in keeping with your repentance" (Matthew 3:8).
high calling

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3594 Nov 15, 2012
One of the encouraging things I was shown when I was given The Vision of the Harvest twenty-five years ago was that there will be a generation of the most powerful messengers ever to walk the earth and all will be "eunuchs for the Kingdom's sake." This was not in the natural but in the spiritual. Just as natural eunuchs cannot even have a desire for the bride, but receives all of their satisfaction out of seeing the king's pleasure in her, so these will be for the Lord. Their whole desire will be to see the King's pleasure in His Bride, the Church. Their devotion will be to see the Church become what He wants, not what they or anyone else want. These are the true friends of the Bridegroom.
high calling

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3595 Nov 15, 2012
Have you noticed that there are no grandsons or granddaughters of God in Scripture? Everyone is first generation to Him. Our ultimate goal in ministry should be that regardless of what happens to us, if we were to die or fall away, those we have taught would not even miss a step in their pursuit of God. They will be unshaken if they were not built on a foundation of our teachings, but rather on a relationship to Him who can never fail or disappoint.

As stated, lambs, or young Believers, have to follow other sheep until they get to know the Shepherd and His voice well enough themselves, so it is not wrong to follow others until we mature. However, maturity is the result of getting close to Him, not just His people.

For this reason, I try to write and teach in a way that anyone at any level of maturity can understand and receive, but sown in almost every message is a call to those who are in pursuit of what the Apostle Paul called "the high calling of God in Christ Jesus" (see Philippians 3:14). As we discussed earlier, when Paul wrote in Philippians 3 that he did not think he had yet attained but pressed on, he was not talking about salvation or redemption, which he received the day he believed in the atonement sacrifice of Christ. He did not consider that he had yet attained, even when writing near the end of his life, a high calling that few Christians perceive. Those who know for sure is the greatest treasure that can be attained in this life. This is the ultimate pursuit, the ultimate quest we can have in this life.

Rick Joyner
MorningStar Ministries
high calling

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3596 Nov 15, 2012
The High Calling of God

As we talk of why we must have our own personal relationship with the Lord and not just follow others, we see an exhortation for this in The Song of Solomon. This Book was especially written for those whose life's pursuit is to become the Bride that our King so deserves. A key verse that all of these must learn is Song of Solomon 1:7:

"Tell me, O you whom my soul loves, where do you pasture your flock, where do you make it lie down at noon? For why should I be like one who veils herself beside the flocks of your companions?"

If we are just in the flock of His companions, the veils will remain and we will only obliquely be able to see His glory and be changed by it. This is why my goal in ministry has never been to make people my personal disciples but to help everyone I can to become a personal disciple of Christ Jesus Himself.

As we also can note from John 10, it is His sheep who know His voice, not His lambs. While we are young in the Lord, we will have to follow others until we learn to know His voice, but my hope is to have my own veils removed and those of all I can help along their way. We must see Him in order to be changed into His image, not just become the image of one of His friends.

What would any man think if his children all looked like his best friend? We need to consider what we're doing when we're leaders who are trying to get people to conform to us rather than to Him. Our lives can and should be good examples for others, but as the Apostle Paul stated, he was in labor until Christ was formed in His people. This is our goal.
pure hearts

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3597 Nov 15, 2012
Leaders with Pure Hearts

Beloved, we are in the midst of a great, divine acceleration in the Spirit. The Body of Christ is being prepared for a fresh, new day of God's plan. The Spirit of God is doing a new thing and we must be prepared to move with Him (Isaiah 48:6-7). Although this process could take a long time to mature fully, God has been preparing us for this day for many years! We are moving into the destiny the Lord has prepared for us before the foundation of the world.

This is a season of preparation. The Spirit of Truth is dealing deeply with Believers, calling us to no one and to nothing but Christ Jesus Himself with a holiness and single-mindedness like we have never before experienced. The Lord's people are being groomed to encounter Him in the fiery cloud of His Presence and God will be found by and in all who are seeking Him with their whole heart (Jeremiah 29:12-13).

Truly, "deep is calling unto deep" (Psalm 42:7). This is not the time to remain half-hearted and shallow: now is the time to launch out into the deep and cry out with the apostle Paul, "That I may know Him" (Philippians 3:10), to be conformed to His image and to carry His Presence. The Bride is being prepared to experience true union with Christ, to know Him intimately in order to be like Him in every aspect of our being, in spirit, soul and body.

Revelation of Purity

How is this transformation happening? The Spirit of Truth is highlighting purity and uprightness so we may all walk in true holiness and the fear of the Lord (2 Corinthians 7:1).
Truly, the Body of Christ is no longer satisfied with knowing our Lord and Savior as a doctrine of our mental understanding. As the Lord responds to the hunger of His people, He is revealing the Person of Jesus in the inward parts of our spirit. What we've understood with our "head knowledge," we will begin to experience through spiritual revelation. And as the eyes of our heart become enlightened, our character and lifestyle will be transformed. Integrity and honesty will become paramount. We will live each day in such a manner that greatly pleases the Lord (Colossians 1:9-10).
pure hearts

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3598 Nov 15, 2012
Revelation of Strategies

As a result of this deeper consecration to the Lord, many will receive divine strategies for this pivotal season. The Spirit of Truth is releasing revelatory insights for all who are willing to hear Him with a heart set to obey what He is requesting (James 1:22).

Prepare to see an acceleration of the advancing of God's plans and purposes. God will have a people of purity and power, who live, move and have their being in the absolute authority of Christ.

Revelation of Destiny

Whether or not you feel you are fulfilling your destiny, you are being prepared by the King of kings for His good purposes. You were chosen by God and have been given a divine destiny in eternities past. Why? The Lord is calling you to partner with Him to shape the future of the Kingdom of God! This seems almost too marvelous to be true, but it is the Word of God. Ephesians 2:10 explains:

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
What does it mean to be "his workmanship"? The Greek term translated workmanship is poeima, from which we derive the English word poem. Indeed, we are God's poem, written in ages past to be a living testimony of His presence on earth. Without exception, every Believer has been created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God has ordained for us.

Revelation of Anointing

The desperate cry of many Believers is: "Oh, Lord, let Your works appear unto Your people" (Psalm 90:16-17). The good news is that God's anointing rests upon pure, upright followers of Jesus and we will fulfill His purposes on earth. God has not only ordained good works for us, but He has also provided the grace we need to perform these works. We all have "an unction to function." Each one of us is anointed to fulfill the purposes of God.
worshipers of GOD

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3601 Nov 15, 2012
Army of Worshipers

If you are "ever praising" God (Psalm 84:4), your worship of God will transform the negative assault of the enemy into "a spring" of sweet, refreshing waters. No matter what befalls a worshiper, their "valley of weeping" always becomes a spring covered "with blessings." You cannot successfully engage in warfare, nor pass safely through the wilderness of this life, without first becoming a worshiper of God.

Therefore, it is essential to both the salvation of our souls and our protection in warfare that we be worshipers. The ship that safely carries us through the storms of adversity is worship.

Psalm 84 expresses in praise to God the wonderful effect worship has upon the soul. "How blessed is the man whose strength is in You, in whose heart are the highways to Zion! Passing through the valley of Baca [weeping] they make it a spring; the early rain also covers it with blessings" (vv. 5-6).
worshipers of GOD

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3602 Nov 15, 2012
It is an important truth: the hosts of Heaven are worshiping armies. Indeed, no one can do warfare who is not first a worshiper of God.

Yet, while this warfare shall culminate in the establishment of the Lord's Kingdom on earth (see Revelation 11:15), we must realize the essence of this battle is the central issue in our warfare today. Will we faithfully worship God during satanic assault and temptation? True worship must emerge in the context of our lives now. For no man will worship through the great battles of tomorrow who complains in the mere skirmishes of today.

You will remember that the Lord's call to the Israelites was a call to worship and serve Him in the wilderness (see Exodus 7:16). Indeed, when Moses first spoke of God's loving concern, we read that the Hebrews "bowed low and worshiped" (Exodus 4:31). But when trials and pressures came, they fell quickly into murmuring, complaining and blatant rebellion. Their worship was superficial, self-serving and conditional – an outer form without an inner heart of worship.

This same condition of shallow worship prevails in much of Christianity today. If a message is given that speaks of the Lord's great care for His people, with eagerness do we bow low and worship. But as soon as the pressures of daily living arise or temptations come, how quickly we rebel against God and resist His dealings! The enemy has easy access to the soul that is not protected by true worship of the Almighty! Indeed, the Lord's purpose with Israel in the wilderness was to perfect true worship, which is based upon the reality of God, not circumstances. The Lord knows that the heart that will worship Him in the wilderness of affliction will continue to worship in the promised land of plenty.

Without true worship of God, there can be no victory in warfare. For what we bleed when we are wounded by satanic assault or difficult circumstances is the true measure of our worship. You see, what comes out of our hearts during times of pressure is in us, but hidden during times of ease. If you are a true worshiper, your spirit will exude worship to God no matter what battle you are fighting. In warfare, worship creates a wall of fire around the soul.
worshipers of GOD

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3603 Nov 15, 2012
Worship: The Purpose Of Creation

We were created for God's pleasure. We were not created to live for ourselves but for Him. And while the Lord desires that we enjoy His gifts and His people, He would have us know we were created first for His pleasure. In these closing moments of this age, the Lord will have a people whose purpose for living is to please God with their lives. In them, God finds His own reward for creating man. They are His worshipers. They are on earth only to please God, and when He is pleased, they also are pleased.

The Lord takes them further and through more pain and conflicts than other men. Outwardly, they often seem "smitten of God, and afflicted" (Isaiah 53:4). Yet to God, they are His Beloved. When they are crushed, like the petals of a flower, they exude a worship, the fragrance of which is so beautiful and rare that angels weep in quiet awe at their surrender. They are the Lord's purpose for creation.

One would think that God would protect them, guarding them in such a way that they would not be marred. Instead, they are marred more than others. Indeed, the Lord seems pleased to crush them, putting them to grief. For in the midst of their physical and emotional pain, their loyalty to Christ grows pure and perfect. And in the face of persecutions, their love and worship toward God become all-consuming.

Would that all Christ's servants were so perfectly surrendered. Yet God finds His pleasure in us all. But as the days of the Kingdom draw near and the warfare at the end of this age increases, those who have been created solely for the worship of God will come forth in the power and glory of the Son. With the high praises of God in their mouth, they will execute upon His enemies the judgment written (see Psalm 149). They will lead as generals in the Lord's army of worshipers.

Adapted from Francis' book, The Three Battlegrounds.

Francis Frangipane
dcram

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3604 Nov 15, 2012
And the Year of the African-American Believer

This will be the year for the African-American Believer! There will an extra special move of God among African-American Believers, churches, and leaders characterized by the release of these nine powerful gifts.

Also, 2012 will mark the beginning of a new level of release of supernatural finances leading to extreme wealth. A curse is being broken off of the finances of many African-American brethren, and their personal and business finances will exceed their wildest imaginations – some even experiencing mega-wealth… all to the glory of God.

Finally…

Everyone relax! The world will NOT end in 2012, Jesus will not return in 2012, and the Church will have one of her most powerful years in 2012. All Believers must be about their Father's business, must make full proof of their ministries, and must do the greater works Jesus spoke to us about. The word of the Lord for all Believers for 2012 is: produce, produce and produce. Do more in 2012 for the glory of God. Amen!
dcram

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3605 Nov 15, 2012
The Gifts of the Spirit:
Back From the Dead!

1. The gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12) will make a stunning comeback in 2012-2014!

2. The laity, the Body of Christ at large, will be the target for this revival of gifts. This will be a "God's people" revival, not a leader's revival of gifts.

3. Virtually all nine gifts will come to the forefront of our meetings – if we will allow them to.

4. Apostles and prophets will begin to impart and activate these gifts to the churches they minister in – here and abroad.

5. Some of the best teaching in years on these gifts will go forth from America's pulpits as pastors/teachers everywhere contribute their part to this gifts revival.

6. Information, impartation, and activation of these gifts will occupy entire meetings.

7. Other nations too will participate in this gifts awakening with a special emphasis on Asian nations.

8. Three power gifts: gift of faith, gifts of healing and gift of miracles will be especially restored.

9. Signs, wonders, various miracles and gifts of the Holy Spirit will invade and ultimately destroy the works of the devil in 2012.

10. Those who find fault, or who criticize the operation of these gifts, will find themselves part of a group of Believers who will "miss God" and pay a terrible price for their skepticism and unbelief. These gifts will "polarize" the Church. Many will catch the fire, and many will not.

11. The Charismatic dimension of the Church will gain new credibility as these gifts are administered by quality men and women of character, integrity and honesty – displaying Christlikeness in their release of these powerful gifts.

12. This will be the year that the famous "nameless and faceless" generation of gifted men and women will finally arise among the nations.

Dennis Cramer
Dennis Cramer Ministries
HOLYSPIRIT fire

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3606 Nov 15, 2012
End-Time Baptism in Holy Spirit Fire

We have experienced the baptism in the Holy Spirit with speaking in tongues, along with empowered ministries and gifting. However, we have yet to come to this baptism in "Holy Spirit fire," which purges and purifies the individual in preparation for the restoration of the Apostolic office, and also an apostolic enabling with power within individual members of the Body of Christ. This will take the Church beyond all past and present attainments.

This end-time "apostolic" visitation will impart "Holy Spirit fire," which will prepare the way for the restoration of the Lord's shekinah (glory). This will result in a true purity of life and spiritual unity, in which the "creative word" will be spoken with authority.

Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds. II Corinthians 12:12

The manifestation of the supernatural is an indication of a true apostolic ministry. This apostolic restoration of the creative word, in manifested glory, will again greatly affect the nations in preparation for the Millennial Kingdom to be established.
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. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. Isaiah 60:1-3

In transgression, Adam lost the "shekinah" as his covering, which then became an enemy – a flaming sword that prevented all from coming to the Tree of Life. However, on the day of Pentecost, as one hundred and twenty tarried in the upper room, this "shekinah fire" became a friend who returned and sat upon each of their heads.

And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from Heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. Acts 2:1-4
Notice that they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, but the "tongues of fire" sat and remained on their heads. Something more had to take place so this "fire" could come within.
HOLYSPIRIT fire

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3607 Nov 15, 2012
In the progression of each of these visitations, which resulted in a gradual restoration of spiritual life and ministry, the "Charismatic" visitation should have brought the restoration of the apostolic.

Instead, this visitation remained a surface movement with an emphasis on gift ministries, especially healing and personal prophecy. Room was not made for the "fire" to come within and thoroughly purge individuals in preparation for the restoration of the "Apostolic Office" with apostolic anointing and power functioning within the Body of Christ.

Therefore, at this present time, the Charismatic visitation is fading. When some well-known leaders failed, their failure was an indication that the visitation, which they represented, had come short of the "fire," which would have so completely purged and cleansed that the failures that took place would not have been possible.
The fullness of the "apostolic" requires our seeing and being in the presence of the Lord. Only through an inner purging and cleansing will the Lord be able to come within His temple to restore the apostle to the same level of power (and greater), as in the early Church.

We are living in the time of the "parousia" of the Lord – His presencing, or appearing, to those who are being prepared to have a part in His end-time purposes. As Jesus appears to these, He will impart a true apostolic anointing with power and confirming signs.

Therefore, the present Word of the Lord is: "Because those who were bidden to the feast did not respond (denominational and charismatic ministries), the Holy Spirit is presently reaching out into the highways and by-ways, bidding ungifted individual members of the Body of Christ to enter and be clothed in apostolic anointing and power."

And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, "Tell them which are bidden,'Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.'" But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise... Then saith he to his servants, "The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.

Go you therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage." So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. Matthew 22:3-10

At this present time, the "spotlight" of divine activity is beginning to move from the pulpit into the pew. As those within the Body of Christ who have no "apparent" abilities or giftings respond, they are being quickened by the manifested presence of the Lord to prepare them to function in the restoration of the apostolic.
A new wave of apostolic authority will again greatly affect the nations as they are shaken by the power of God.

And he that overcometh, and keepeth My works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron... Revelation 2:26-27

The result will be the Kingdom of God established in righteousness and peace, and great joy will be manifest throughout the world, as Jesus is revealed as the King of all kings and the Lord of all lords.

Wade E. Taylor
Wade Taylor Ministries
Normand Guay

Winnipeg, Canada

#3608 Nov 15, 2012
---Bless the Jews and the Saints... Thankyou, GOD Bless and meet you in Heaven... May THE KINGDOM OF GOD WITH JESUS CHRIST COME SOON...
garment matters

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3609 Nov 17, 2012
Modest Apparel

(1 Tim. 2:9)

After reading Bro. Don McCord's remarks on "Modest Apparel," under the heading of "This and That" in the March issue, I am inspired to write on this subject. I
realize some, as on other important matters, pay very little attention to this plain teaching in the Word of God. However, this should cause us to teach more
instead of less on the subject. I agree wholeheartedly with Bro. Don that this applies to men as well as women, and must be heeded if we please the Father in
heaven.

Notice the text: "In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefaced-ness and sobriety, not with braided hair, or gold, or
pearls, or costly array; (and vs. 10) But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works." In Like manner means that he wills or commands what follows, as he had commanded what went before.

Adorn is to put in order, arrange, make ready. When they come to worship, let them not spend their thoughts in adorning their bodies. MacKnight comments: "What the apostle forbids is, that immodest manner of dressing which is calculated to excite impure desires in the spectators; also, that gaudiness of dress which proceeds from vanity, and nourishes vanity; in short, that attention to dress which consumes much time, leads women to neglect the more important adorning of their minds, makes them careless of their families, and runs them into expenses greater than their husbands can afford."

Modest means well arranged, seemly, modest; in simple attire that will not attract attention. It is orderly, that is decorous, modest in a moral respect.

They are to avoid conspicuous dress or showy ornaments—anything, in fact, which would be likely
to arouse attention or distract the thoughts of others. Shamefacedness is a sense of shame, modesty. Strong says: "Through the idea of downcast eyes; bashfulness
towards men, modesty or awe." This would lead them to avoid everything unbecoming in the mode of dress. Sobriety is soundness of mind, self-control, sobriety. Self- restraint; not yielding to vain impulses. It is moderation of the desires and conduct. The well-balanced state of mind arising from habitual self-restraint.

Now notice verse 10: "But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works." That is, good works are the only ornaments with which women professing Christianity should seek to be adorned. "But (adorn themselves) with that which becometh women professing godliness through good works."

There we have simply what Paul teaches in these two verses about modest apparel.
garment matters

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3610 Nov 17, 2012
Good sister, study this carefully and then be very careful to abide by it. Many times many want to become very technical and try to argue about just how long a
dress is supposed to be or how low the neck line should be, etc. I can certainly give you some safe advice and that is just have the length long enough that there
is no doubt and the neck line high enough that there is no doubt. In a word, just have on apparel that leaves no doubt as to its modesty.

A sister who is desiring to save her soul, and wanting to do as nearly right as she possibly can, will certainly adorn herself where there is no doubt whatsoever. She will not be found in shorts, tight skirts, men's clothing,etc. She will be endeavoring "to make her calling and election sure."

In 1 Peter 3:3, Peter is giving instructions in adorning, and the apparel to be worn. The word "apparel" here is the translation of the common Greek word referring
particularly to outer clothing. The purpose for clothing is for the protection of the body and for the sake of modesty and good taste. The purpose of apparel is for
the adornment of the body. Peter is not forbidding the wearing of clothing, but the donning of such apparel as these wives were using in an effort to win their
husbands to the Lord, clothing that the world wore, immodest, gaudy, conspicuous.

And oh, how many sisters today violate this command by being like the world in their dress! Then, in verse 4, he teaches them to have a "meek and quiet spirit."
A "meek spirit" is one not characterized by self-will, envy, pride, presumption or stubbornness; and a "quiet spirit" is one that is calm, tranquil, and at peace. We
are taught in 1 Tim. 2:2 to "lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty," and in 1 Thess. 4:11 "to study to be quiet." In view of this plain teaching, how can one get a remote idea that it is pleasing to God to dress and lead the lives that some do?

How can one lead a quiet life and dress immodestly, join in the worldly activities of the world? It certainly seems out of place, to say the least, for members of the church to be so interested in roller rinks, ice skating rinks, bowling alleys and what have you. What a shame for a church group to get together and go to such places for their entertainment, and especially on Lord's day evening after they have eaten the Lord's Supper. How can they be in that frame of mind? Many of the same ones, being aware of a singing, will never enter the doors.

Is that a meek and quiet spirit and devotion to the Lord? Yes, one departure leads to another. I realize that man will criticize and condemn for such teaching but just let any of us gainsay the scripture on this. May God help each of us to resolve to live closer to the Lord and further from the world; dedicate our souls, bodies and spirit to the Lord; live a quiet and peaceable life which is acceptable to God.
garment matters

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3611 Nov 17, 2012
But, I submit, that so far as we are concerned, there is something better than that. I'd like for you to listen to some things written aforetime, which the Bible states, that were written for our learning and admonition. In Deut. 22:5 from the Amplified Version, "The woman shall not wear that which pertains to a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment; for all that do so are an abomination to the Lord your God." The Revised Standard Version rendering is: "A woman shall not wear anything that pertains to a man, nor shall a man put on a woman's garment. For whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God."
We point out the fact that there was a similarity in clothing. But, I hasten also to point out to you the fact, there was exclusively a man's clothing. There was something that was exclusively a woman's clothing. God said they shall not interchange those things. In other words, God said, I want you to be able to visibly tell the male from the female of the species. We should appear to be, He's saying, the sex that we are, by the way that we dress. Again, I repeat, the world does not have to carry around an x-ray to see who you are. God doesn't intend that. In fact, He's oppose to it. You talk about a strong prohibition that he handed down to Israel, you listen to that! "The woman shall not wear that which pertains to a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment. For all that do so are an abomination to the Lord your God." That's a strong prohibition!

My question: Why that strong prohibition? We are not told right here, in that verse, except what's evident. I purpose, and you've got to take that, in the setting. It's given in verses 9 and 12, with some other things that He mentions here. I still think, as I said about two years ago, as we were studying a similar subject, at least in this respect of Christians marrying those that are unbelievers, not Christians, that the principle of 2 Corinthians 6, winds its way back and is based on an ancient principle of separation that God has required of his people in every age of time. I do know this, Israel was to be unlike those around them, and their daily activities were to constantly remind them, you are not the same as those other people. There was to be no unisex situation. There was to be no exchanging of garments. It was a strike at transvestism. Every authority I considered still said the strike was mainly against homosexuality and such is sin! Even the attempt has been made to elevate this thing to a degree of respectability. It is sin in God's sight! Wearing the clothing of the opposite sex labeled one and placed an insignia upon him. God said, I don't want my people in that place.

Now, you know, that donning certain apparel is to appear effeminate. We know that. Let me mention the word effeminate. It means soft or soft to touch. It is used of raiment. In Matthew 11 it talks about John the Baptist. You remember, it talks of his clothing. It wasn't the soft kind that may be found in King's houses. Then, in a metaphorical sense, in 1 Corinthians 6:9 listen to the company the thing is found in: "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind..." God absolutely insists we will not have this thing! We just won't. Let me point out to you that in Deut. 22:5 this thing of exchanging was in God's sight abomination. The word abomination simply means an object of great disgust! I can think of a lot of words, but when I say I am disgusted that's pretty strong. God said, I am disgusted with that kind of thing. It was highly detestable in God's sight. He promises that they who work abomination in Revelation 21:27 shall be forbidden entrance into that holy city.
BIBLE PRINCIPLES OF DRESS

Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

#3612 Nov 17, 2012
BIBLE PRINCIPLES OF DRESS FOR CHRISTIANS

__________

In I Cor 6:20, the Bible says, "For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's." We serve God with our body as well as our spirit, and this includes the way we dress.

It seems wherever I go, people are interested in Christians and clothing, particularly whether a woman should wear pants. The Bible, as in every area of our life, gives us guidance in this area as well. But before we get into specifics, let's look at a couple of basic Bible principles.

Phil 1:9,10 reads, in the Simple English Bible. "This is what I am praying for: I want your love to overflow more and more with a fuller knowledge and all insight.

Then you will be able to test what is best, so you will be pure and without guilt when Christ comes." The Bible does not contain a formal dress code such as, "The hem of the woman's skirt will rise no higher than 3 inches below the knee...", etc. Instead, God gives us principles which we are to use to make our own judgments on what to wear, what not to wear, how to wear, etc.

If we know these principles, we can use them in regard to any article of clothing, and, with confidence, be able to "test what is best"--to make mature decisions about what clothing will or will not be pleasing to God.

Now, why is it so important to want to please God, even in an area of our living such as the clothes we wear? In II Cor 5.15. the Bible says. "And that he died for which died for them, and rose again." We live to please God, not ourselves; pleasing God should be our number one desire, and this includes pleasing Him with proper clothing.

And whenever I hear anyone say (as I've heard said in regard to women wearing dresses or pants), "Why can't I?", or, "You show me why I have to!"--well, I know this is not a person whose primary desire is to please God. Sometimes the Christian must not just look at whether a thing is so wrong, but that perhaps it would be better not to--perhaps this other would be the better thing to do. This is how the Christian who truly lives for God views apparel and other areas of living. And now, let's go on to four Bible principles concerning dress.

First of all--God wants there to be a distinction between men and women, and this distinction extends to our clothing.

In Gen 1:27, the Bible says,‘Male and female created He them"--physically, God made men and women distinct from each other. And then, in Gen 3:16-19, we read that man was given the role of breadwinner and woman the role of child rearing--not only were men and women to be physically different, but God gave them distinct social roles. From creation, God wanted men to be men and women to be women.

And then, in the Mosaic era, we find passages under the Old Covenant such as Deut 22:5: "The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God." Clearly, God saw that clothing distinguished a man from a woman, and vice-versa: He did not want a mixing of roles, even in the area of clothing.

In the New Testament we read, in passages such as Ro 1:24-27 and I Cor 6:9,10, that God condemns effeminate men and masculine women. So, from creation, through the Mosaic era and into the New Testament age of today, God ordained a distinction between men and women and this distinction extends to our clothing. And there is no more distinctly feminine article of clothing in our culture than the dress--period. Ladies, in this age of ungodliness and reversing of the male-female roles, why pass up such an opportunity to enhance your femininity, which is pleasing to God and edifying to the church? "Test what is best."

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