“Endued from On High”

“In those days came John the Baptist preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, and saying, Repent ye; for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

 For this is he, that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias (Isaiah),saying, THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING (PROCLAIMING) IN THE WILDERNESS, PREPARE YE THE WAY OF THE LORD, MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT. 

And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins (belt around his waist); and his meat (food) was locusts and wild honey.

Then went out to him, Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan. And were baptized of him in the Jordan.confessing their sins.

But when he saw many of the Pharisees, and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits meet (worthy of) repentance:

And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father; for I say unto, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.

And now also the ax laid unto the root of the trees; therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance BUT he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear; he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire

Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the graner (barn); but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.

But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? (you should be baptizing me, not me baptizing you)

And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer (allow) it to be so now: for thus it becometh us (is fitting for us)  to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered (allowed) him. 

And Jesus, when he was baptized went up straightway out of the water; and lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:

And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Matthew 3:1-17

You know, without a doubt, most would have thought John was a sight to behold, he had to have been, dressed in a camel hair tunic, wearing a leather belt, living in the wild, eating from the land, while the priests and Pharisees wanted the best of the best and to be treated as royalty, while John on the other hand had royalty living inside of him.

So there he was preaching, rather fervently, I would think, especially since we were told this concerning John, “For he shall be great (favored) in the sight of the Lord, and he shall drink NEITHER wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost even from his mother’s womb.” Luke 1:15

So as the births of Jesus and John had been foretold by the angel, he was filled with the Holy Ghost before even being born.

And as Mary witnessed to John’s mother, Elisabeth, sharing her own miraculous news to her cousin, we are told that the babe leaped for joy in her womb.

And by adulthood, he was unlike anyone that had ever encountered, He was very different from the priests, the people,and most of the Pharisees and all that claimed to have the only tickets to heaven at that time.

God created us to be different and different is what we need right now, as the world is playing footsies with the devil himself and that clock is inching closer to striking Midnight with each threat and act carried against Israel, as we have witnessed this past week, as the media cries on behalf of those who hope to destroy her, but oh my, if they only knew that God himself will come and fight for Jerusalem and that it is only a matter of time and no amount of money, politics, earthly power, or prestige will in any way have influence over those things which are to come.

The only hope is the only hope that has ever truly been, and that hope is Jesus, and we have to get on fire sharing the Gospel, our talents, and whatever God is bidding us to do, as time draws near, praying they will listen but you have to have God grant the favor so taht they will.

People could not help but to listen to John, as the calling of God on him drew people for that very reason, maybe in their carnal flesh, they came out of curiosity, to see and to hear, as Jesus even asked, but in coming, they heard and they were changed, they believed and they repented, and they were baptized.

John was sent here for a very specific purpose,and we all are, whether we ever realize that or , God to fulfil that destiny, nevertheless,we are all born for a divine purpose on this earth.

Fast forward a bit, through the arrest and crucifixion and resurrectionJesus gives them these words ashe appears supernaturally again to his disciples as the time draws nigh for him to ascend back into heaven.

“And as they thus spoke, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. But they were terrified  and affrighted (frightened), and supposed that they had seen a spirit.

And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts (doubts) arise in your heart? Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself, handle (touch) me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. 

And when he had thus spoken , he shewed them his hands and his feet. and while they yet believed no ( for joy, and wondered (marvelled),he said unto them, Have ye here any meat (food)

And they gave him a piece of broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. And he took it, and did eat before them.

And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. 

Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, and he said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved (was necessary) Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead on the third day; And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among the nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

And ye are witnesses of these things.

And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye (wait) in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with the power from on high.”  Luke 24:36-49

And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord (purpose) in one placeAnd SUDDENLY there came a sound FROM heaven as of a mighty rushing wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto then cloven (divided) 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 (languages),as the Spirit gave them utterance.

And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.

Now when this was noised abroad (sound occurred),the multitude came together, and was confounded (confused), because every man heard them speak in his own language.

And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans?

And how hear we every man in his own tongue (language), wherein he was born? Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and dwellers of Mesopotamia, and Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia. Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers (visitors) of Rome, Jews and Proselytes. Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our own tongues the wonderful works of God. 

And they were all amazed, and were in doubt (were perplexed), saying, one to another, What meaneth this?

Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.

But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken unto my words. For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the the third hour of the day.

But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;

AND IT SHALL COME TO PASS IN THE LAST DAYS, SAITH GOD, I WILL POUR OUT OF MY SPIRIT UPON ALL FLESH: AND YOUR SONS AND YOUR DAUGHTERS SHALL PROPHESY, AND YOUR YOUNG MEN SHALL SEE VISIONS, AND YOUR OLD MEN SHALL DREAM DREAMS:

AND ON MY SERVANTS AND ON MY HANDMAIDENS I WILL POUR OUT IN THOSE DAYS OF MY SPIRIT; AND THEY SHALL PROPHESY;

AND I WILL SHEW WONDERS IN HEAVEN ABOVE, AND SIGNS IN THE EARTH BENEATH, BLOOD, AND FIRE, AND VAPOUR OF SMOKE: AND IT SHALL COME TO PASS, THAT WHOSOEVER SHALL CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED.” Acts 2:1-21 

That blessed promise is still for us today, we just having to be a willing vessel and pray and seek God with our whole heart, as we seek, remember that this  happened to the disciples, suddenly.

To be endued, which literally means: “endow or provide with a quality or ability”

We can do nothing in ourselves but once we are indwelt with the presence of God, all things are possible, because it is no longer us.

God does what he wants, when he wants, and all things are in his time.and keep John in mind, people are never going to understand what they can not possibly understand until they experience it for themselves, and to experience it for themselves their hearts must be surrendered to God,

Many have mocked, especially those in the entertainment industry,not having a clue as to just how real God is, nor a clue as to just how serious an offense that is. Much like the Pharisees of the day always wanting something proven to them, God is not in the business of having to prove anything to anyone, because one day there will be no question of his existence or his power.

The Holy Ghost is a precious, precious gift, that can only be given from God.

And as we see all the turmoil of this world grow worse each day and all the things Jesus warned us of coming to pass, we need more than ever to be mindful of this precious promise and seek God and all of his fullness and allow that indwelling to guide us to be a light to those in darkness.

And to allow his presence to work through our mortal bodies as he sees fit, so they, as the men at the day of Pentecost can hear witness that they can understand and that the signs and wonders, healing and miracles, deliverances from drugs, alcohol, and bondage can come to those enslaved.

Have a blessed Pentecost, not just on the calendar day but pentecost, EVERYDAY!

Φλογιζω NBJ 2021/ Reverend Nina Brown Johnson

 

 

 

 

 

 

“2020 Constant in continuance”

“As he spoke these words, many believed in him,  If ye continue in my word, then ye are my disciples indeed: and ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.”  John 8:31,32   

Going to be going back to those passages in just a bit, but I wanted to stop there and talk about that truth, His truth, the truth that this entire season is supposed to celebrate. Jesus arriving on earth as a perfectly innocent babe, just as Jesus always was and still is and will forever be.

That is the truth that He brought to us, his beauty, his humility, and most of His grace.

A grace to so compassionate and so extensive that instead of destroying us in judgment against our sins, He chose to save us, save us from sin, save us from the devil, and most of all save us from ourselves. 

That is what I have always found so astounding and so amazing, not that everything about God and His majesty isn’t astounding, it is because He is supernatural while we are just barely natural!

But how a being who could speak everything that we know as the universe into existence, could separate the heaven from the earth and the heavens from the heavens and fling the starts, planets, sun, and moon into an endless space.

Created innumerable species on such a scale from the largest of beasts to the tiny little daphnia, who being only 0.01-0.20 inches in size has a beautiful little features including a perfect little heart that can be seen beating through its translucent body under a microscope, so tiny that this does not hurt them in anyway.

The SAME God who created the mammoths, the whales, also created the tiny little humming birds, the incredible assortment of color changing and electrically charge sea creatures and right down to the microscopic communities of absolute GOD GIVEN life.

And every single one with hundreds of types and varieties within their species, all intelligent, beautiful, and with uniquely their own social orders.

The birds who are especially brilliant with their dances of courtship and the bower-birds, the males building beautifully designed masterpieces of found art to impress potential mates, while other males seriously stake out his joint waiting for a chance to destroy it so that he can take out his competition for those potential mates.

And the male red birds who sing sweet songs as their “lady” birds set patiently on the eggs that will be their new family.

And all these much better parents and partners than their human counter parts on any given day.

And we could go on forever with example after example across the board of God’s creation.

And in all the splendor, all of the magnificent display of His creations, He came to save but one of all the kinds he created. the only species that ever questioned his existence, the only species that ever dared think itself quite so high, the only species that needed  a Saviour!

You can “see” this uniquely human attitude as we return to our scriptures, now bear in mind that these guys are actually saying this to God, the very one who created them!

And yet they question him.

John 8:33-43:”They answered him, We be Abraham’s seed, (descendants), and we were NEVER in bondage to any man: HOW sayest thou, Ye shall be made free? 

Jesus answered them,  Verily, verily, I say unto you, whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.

And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever (forever). If the Son shall therefore make ye free, ye shall be free indeed.

I know that ye are Abraham’s seed: but ye seek to kill me, because my WORD has no place in you.

I speak that which I have seen with my Father; and ye do that which ye have seen with your father.  

They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father, Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do the works of Abraham.

Ye do the deeds of your father.  Then said they unto him, We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God.

Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me.

Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.”  

They couldn’t hear, even though they probably had perfect hearing they still could not hear the word, even with the Living Word standing right in front of them.

And in our world today it is so easy to get side tracked to get out of focus with the truth of God’s word, as Jesus so simply stated as this, John 8:47: “He that is of God heareth God’s words…” 

And that is not even about hearing the literal voice of God (which I am not disputing that some do) He means His written word, his commandments, his teachings and all that he had others write to us when giving us the Bible as our handbook to survival of this world.

2 Corinthians 3:1-17: “Do we begin again to commend ourselves? or need we, as some others, epistles of commendation to you, or letters of commendation from you?

Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men:

Forasmuch as ye manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God: not in tables of stone, but in fleshly tables of the heart. 

And such trust we have through Christ to God-ward: 

Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God. 

Who also hath made us ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit; for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.

But if the ministration of death, written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not steadfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which glory was to be done away:

How shall not the ministration of the spirit be rather (more) glorious?

For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory.

For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excelleth.

For if that which was done (passing) away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious.  

Seeing then that we have such hope we use great plainness of speech:

And not as Moses, which put a vail over his face, that the children of Israel could not steadfastly look to the end of that which is abolished.

But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart.

Nevertheless when it (one) shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away. NOW the Lord IS that Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord IS, there IS Liberty.”

So basically what he was saying with much of that is this, as Moses face actually shone from being in the presence of God, and that glory was there even though the Mosaic law called for strict punishment and when the law of Christ comes into our heart how much more is that glory because the glory of that is the promise and hope of ETERNAL freedom!

And if you have Jesus and have his word and keep his word as he told us multiple, multiple times then we will have that promise.

Not much for him to ask, is it? And why doers he ask? For the same reason he warns and advises on any other subject… it is for us, for our GOOD. 

Psalm 119:11: “THY WORD HAVE I HID IN MINE HEART, THAT I MIGHT NOT SIN AGAINST THEE.” 

Lack of his word leads to sin and as his word tells us “sin leads to death” and death without him leads to an eternity no one wants to think of. 

So continue in him, in his word, and take him for his word and enjoy the goodness, mercy, and grace that he came to this earth to give us. 

What better way to start our new year in him, a fresh commitment to staying in his word and true to the simplicity of his word, not mega ministers not theories or thoughts but JESUS, and his word at face value, just as he intended, one of the many reasons he came, prophet after prophet he sent, but then he came and he told us HIMSELF!

Think of that as we go into 2020…

Φλογιζω NBJ 2019/ REV. Nina BrownJohnson