-Independence Day 2018: Freedom Comes from God

United_States_Declaration_of_Independence

Happy Independence Day 2018.

The following is our traditional message for the 4th of July:

Flags are flying, parades are moving, drinks are flowing, and politicians are speaking today in America.

242 years ago a message was confirmed by representatives of 13 colonies proclaiming their freedom, a freedom that was considered to be derived from God:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Much has been made of the variety of beliefs held by the founders of this country but their words and convictions remain not only on paper but also in the hearts of the people.

Declaration of Independence: The Emphasis Upon God

When it comes to the Declaration of Independence, the words- “by their Creator” were a major part of the message, the subject, and the emphasis.

Many secularists and atheists today want to de-emphasize the role of faith in the founding of this country to the point that many are attempting to actually rewrite history itself. For them, God could have easily been left out of the document with little or no effect.

But in the context of 1776, those words were the whole linchpin of the document and appealed to as the ultimate authority and source for the rights of the Americans to rebel against the King of England.

In the context of the 18th century the Europeans believed that their Kings reigned and ruled ‘by Divine right’ under the authority of God and were His direct representatives. In fact, the King of England was also the head of the church and was supposed to defend the Christian faith against heresy and all enemies. In that cultural context, to rebel against the King was tantamount to rebelling against God the Creator himself.

In the Declaration the founders made it clear that they were not rebelling against God but that the Creator was actually the ultimate authority they were appealing to saying that their ‘rights’ were derived directly from the Creator and not given to them by the King of England or some parchment or Parliament.

It was a radical document at the time and changed the whole course of human history and ‘the Creator’ was part and parcel of the Declaration of Independence and the ultimate authority appealed to in the whole process.            *Top

>>>Don't Miss an Update**Click Now** Get CHARISMATICA by Email<<<

-The World Turns Toward Jerusalem

Jerusalem_(5)

Last week the whole world turned towards Jerusalem. Some in praise and hope, others in condemnation. The opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem along with the 70 year celebration of the modern founding of Israel had ‘end-time’ prophecy buffs in overload. It also left Muslim leaders perplexed and angry.

Here’s an interesting article on this topic I found in the Charisma News:  “5 Reasons Last Week Was Incredibly Prophetic for Israel” by Asher Intrater

The conclusion of the article was particularly poignant:

These events represent a tectonic-plate shift in the spiritual realm. I believe we are crossing into a new period of prophetic fulfillment, whereby Jerusalem becomes both the center of international conflict (Zechariah 12:3), and at the same time there is the beginning of a new outpouring of the spirit of grace and supplication (Zechariah 12:10).

As all these events take place, let’s make sure we repent and turn our hearts anew to the Lord; so that on an individual level, we ourselves will be submitted to God’s perfect will and aligned to His righteous order.

*Top

>>>Don't Miss an Update**Click Now** Get CHARISMATICA by Email<<<

-National Day of Prayer 2018

Today is the National Day of Prayer. Every day is a good time to pray for our nation particularly today. Join thousands across America in prayer for our nation and people, Unity is the theme for this year. Something we really need right now. Here’s a link to the National Day of Prayer website.

2018 NATIONAL PRAYER FOR AMERICA:

Our Dear Heavenly Father, while we come to You in complete humility, we also come to You with boldness in the authoritative name of Your One and Only Son, Jesus Christ, who is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. In Jesus’ name, fill us now with Your Holy Spirit and lead us as we pray in Jesus’ name for America.

Oh God, we are burdened for our nation today. We turn from the sins that we have committed against your Word and your Name. We turn away from our contentious words and ways toward one another that has led us to division and polarization. We turn away from our disrespect and lack of dignity toward each other, and we turn away from our continual devaluation of all human life from the womb until death in this world. We also turn away from and refuse to participate in skepticism, criticism, and cynicism in our nation. We turn away from anything that divides us, and we run toward the gospel of Jesus Christ that is the only thing that has the power to unite us together.

Lord, in this critical hour in our nation, we pray for unity in America. Only You can bring unity, harmony, and oneness in America. As your Word calls us in Ephesians 4:3, “Making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace”, we ask You to empower us to make every effort to live in unity, to call for unity, and to forward unity in America continually.

We pray for the churches in America to unify in Jesus Christ and to pray as one unified spiritual family for America. May Your Church pray for America passionately, perpetually, privately, and publicly.

We pray for God’s power to unify families, workplaces, communities, and cities in America. By Your Spirit, lead us to forgiveness, reconciliation, healing, and unity.

We pray for people of all ethnicities and races in America to come together as one, living in peace and unity together. Oh Lord, because each of us is created in Your image, please give us the courage to stand against all racial and ethnic division, denouncing it as evil and sinful, while simultaneously coming together in unity with all persons knowing this is God’s will for us.

We pray in unity for the security of our nation. We ask You to preserve the United States of America from the forces of evil that are threatening our lives and our future. God, please guard all persons in public and private settings from anyone or anything that desires to harm us or take our lives. Our future is in Your hands.

We agree clearly, unite visibly, and pray extraordinarily for the next Great Spiritual Awakening in America. Oh Lord, wake up Your church spiritually and convict Your people to agree clearly, unite visibly, and pray extraordinarily until the next Great Spiritual Awakening occurs in our generation.

Oh God, we stand together upon Your words in Psalm 133:1, “How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony.” Through Jesus’ name and by the Holy Spirit’s power, we pray for all Americans to unify and to live together in unity.

In the mighty and majestic name of Jesus Christ who is the Only Savior and the Only Hope in this world, we pray. Amen.

Dr. Ronnie Floyd

President, National Day of Prayer Task Force
Senior Pastor, Cross Church

>>>Don't Miss an Update**Click Now** Get CHARISMATICA by Email<<<

-Revival Reports: 5 Churches

t_Doves002

Here are reports of five very different American churches where revival is ongoing or has recently happened. From Charisma News:

“5 Revivals Breaking Out Across America in This Hour

We have already posted on most of these but it gives us hope to see them all on the same page. Now if more churches around America can get on the same page with the Holy Spirit maybe we will see this list expanded before the year is over. I would like to see it spread like popcorn popping.

Notice that all of these are scattered around in different places. Not only that but across different denominational streams and affiliations.                *Top

>>>Don't Miss an Update**Click Now** Get CHARISMATICA by Email<<<

-The American Church Needs to be Resurrected

word-for-the-church-thumb

Yesterday we celebrated the Resurrection of  our Lord Jesus Christ. Today I submit that the entire American church needs to be resurrected.

Some church leaders are looking for a new awakening and others are calling for a new reformation—that too. But the  American Church that was so popular a ‘Palm’ generation ago is now being assailed in this culture and some are demanding its submission and ‘crucifixion’ while others are saying that it is already over for the church as we to knew it.

Meanwhile, many mainline church leaders are caving in and turning in the ‘unpopular’ parts of their Bibles to maintain ‘cultural relevance’ and respectability. Other conservative Christian voices are claiming that this culture is only going to get worse and the only thing left for the church is to be  ‘raptured.’

I believe that ‘a New Day’ is about to dawn upon the America church. Some will call it revival, others a new reformation, but the new move of God will resurrect the American Church and it will rise up and fulfill its calling and destiny while there is yet day.

I posted the following last year at the beginning of the new Biblical  (Jewish) year. I believe that it is still poignant and for today:

(Posted on September 30, 2017)

It is a new day and a new Biblical year and we are still looking forward to revival. But sometimes there is stuff that must come first or may come along with it that we would rather avoid. But the word ‘Revival’ only brings to our minds the ‘good stuff’ and all of the ‘not so good’ that came along with former moves of God is usually forgotten or disregarded. 

500 years ago on October 31, 1517 Martin Luther tacked 95 theses to a door in Wittenberg, Germany. Luther wanted to bring revival and reform to the church but schism came instead and a few years later he was excommunicated and then the wars followed for several hundred years. But the church was reformed and change came to all of the church regardless. One wonders if he would have proceeded differently if he had known all the stuff that was going to follow.

One thing for sure, the Reformation was a Move of God. More than anything else the most important result was access to the Bible and real knowledge of the written Word of God- the Logos. Before 1517 The Word was only available to the Priests, Monks, and scholars and very little of it was allowed to ever trickle on down to the regular folks. Not only that but ‘worship’ services were in Latin which only the educated could understand.

Coming out of the Reformation, services started being conducted in the vernacular and an exposition and teaching of the Scriptures became an important part of worship. Later the Bible was translated into the languages of the people and with the invention of the printing press it became available for regular folks. The church was changed by the Logos of God.

Most of us in Charismatic and Pentecostal churches look back on Azusa Street in 1906 as the beginning of another Move of God that changed the church. This time it was the Rhema Word of God that was restored along with all of the Spiritual gifts. A good historical case can be made that the ‘gifts’ never really departed entirely from the church but few regular folks in the church had the opportunity to experience them.

Now we are at a new crossroad where a significant part of the church is questioning whether the Bible is still even relevant and whether certain plain teachings in the Word should be disregarded or ignored. Ironically it is the old ‘Reformation’ mainline churches that are in the midst of rejecting their own foundations which were rooted in ’solo scriptura.’

The point is, major change and a new move of God including some kind of new ‘reformation’ is ahead for the church and we can expect that the revival we are hoping for may be far different than our romanticized expectations. Fact is, the church is always ‘looking forward’ to the past revivals and is never fully prepared to receive the new one.

To demonstrate what I am talking about let’s take a look at Acts. Before all of the good stuff in Acts 2 we find in chapter 1 that all the church devoted themselves to prayer. Since Pentecost came 50 days after the Passover they could have been praying solid for at least a month or so. Not only that, but for only this one time in history the entire church and everyone in it was actually prepared to receive a move from God.

Now for the scary part that may be relevant for us now or in the very least for the church some time in the future. We all like the ‘good stuff’ in Peter’s quote of Joel 2:

17 “‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares,that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,and your young men shall see visions,and your old men shall dream dreams;

18 even on my male servants and female servants
in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy. …

21 And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’

Here’s the part of Acts 2 / Joel 2 we would rather ignore. The verses between 18 and 21 (19 & 20):

19 And I will show wonders in the heavens above
and signs on the earth below,
blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke;

20 the sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.

In light of all of the major disasters lately, these verses might be far more relevant to a coming revival than we want to admit. Also, a falling away and major persecution might well come along with it.

It is time for the church to pray. It is always time for us to pray but especially now.               *Top

>>>Don't Miss an Update**Click Now** Get CHARISMATICA by Email<<<