Understanding and Breaking Free from Captivity and Strongholds (Part 2)

Remember!

Push play if you rather listen, for faith comes by hearing. Enjoy!

Prayer

Heavenly Father, God of my Lord Jesus Christ, I praise you and thank you for your revelation knowledge in this teaching. I thank you that this word falls upon the fertile soil of the heart of this child seeking to remember you. That this seed cannot and will not be snatched up, chocked up, or fall by the wayside. That the spirit, soul and body of this child has been prepared and predestined before time for what they are about to hear because of your great love for this child. That they will not only be hearers of this word but doers. I praise you Lord that there are no distractions as they listen. I speak in authority, by the authority given to me by my spirit being seated in high places in Christ Jesus at the right hand of the Father, with all things being under our feet. And because I have power over all the works of the enemy, every devil, demon, principality and power of the air, land and water seeking to afflict this child must flee. There is total peace and focus as your child listens to this word and is equipped to fight and is freed from all strongholds and regions of captivity. Bring them to a remembrance of you by the truth in what they read and hear in the mighty name of Jesus. Amen!

For a couple hours a day, I drive. You are probably saying to yourself – Ok, almost everyone drives. Sorry, I can be a little dramatic. Nope, the word I meant is creative. Ok well, I’m a part-time delivery driver. This assignment has mostly proven to be the best part of my day. I say mostly because, while it is true that to die is gain, this drive time with the Spirit has involved a lot of dying to self, and my flesh struggles with being a dead man. Every day for four or more hours, I deliver meals to people and spend more time with The Holy Spirit than I’ve ever in my whole life. It is a God focused time. I put on instrumental worship, and simply abide in the companionship of The Holy spirit. Some of what He has said to me has resulted in soul-changing revelation and healing. These dialogues have brought down strongholds I did not believe could be demolished, as well as ones I was unaware possessed my soul. Imagine weeping and grieving over the fact that you previously saw God’s face, but when you came into the world, you forgot, because as a newborn you began as a blank canvas. However, this does not last long since sin lurks like a nurse in most hospitals, waiting to inoculate you. After some time of being blindly enslaved to sin and death, you begin to understand that something is absent. A longing that feels like it’s on the tip of your tongue, a confession, but you’re not sure what it is. Some try to share with you what it is, but you can’t believe it’s that simple. Some try to show you, but their shallow, hypocritical lifestyles make the truth appear false. So you seek to fill the void, the deep dark seas of your existence, with whatever carnality you can absorb, oblivious to the Spirit of God brooding over you all this time, waiting for you to recognize that all of life is darkness, and oh how you have needed the light. Then, when you confess and believe, the simple, yet deep intricate spiritual meaning of receiving Jesus’ sacrifice, this triggers God’s revelation knowledge of what we all know deep down, even what is in all of creation, but refuse to acknowledge, as described in Romans 1:19-23.

19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

Your eyes are opened, and you begin to see that Jesus’ sacrifice is to reconcile mankind to the face we all once saw, without the barrier of us seeking to satisfy God through our works. To restore the intimacy that we all once had before the knowledge of good and evil divorced us from The Lover of our Souls. That in remembering God, we remember why we are here in the first place. That life is not meaningless, the countless lives lost for the love of mammon, wars, evolution (survival of the fittest), genocide, slavery, the inferno of industry, abortions, violence, abuse, the list goes on and on, summarized to the condition of sin. These lives, each one of them, precious to God. That when you enter into that agreement with Him, you walk in the purpose you agreed to come and fulfill once you regained your strength. That purpose being to strengthen your brethren, encouraging others in remembering Who they have forgotten by utilizing every amazing gift and ability God has placed in you no matter how small. The beauty of it is that you are not doing it any of it alone, and you are not expected to do it at all. It only requires you surrendering all you have back to Jesus for Him to multiply it and give it back to you so you can feed the multitudes and teach them to remember the One True God. After the multitudes have had their fill, look to see whether what is left over is not more than what you started with. A sower went out to sow, right? 

Luke 9:10-16 says this,

10 And the apostles, when they had returned, told Him all that they had done. Then He took them and went aside privately into a deserted place belonging to the city called Bethsaida. 11 But when the multitudes knew it, they followed Him; and He received them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who had need of healing. 12 When the day began to wear away, the twelve came and said to Him, “Send the multitude away, that they may go into the surrounding towns and country, and lodge and get provisions; for we are in a deserted place here.” 13 But He said to them, “You give them something to eat.” And they said, “We have no more than five loaves and two fish, unless we go and buy food for all these people.” (Note: The disciples’ intentions were good in that they did not want the people to go hungry, but they lacked faith. They had the mindset of the world, as well as some of the body of Christ today. They argue, despite their inability, that they must provide for the multitude instead of trusting Jesus to multiply the little they have. Then comes stress, anxiety, and worry, and they take matters into their own hands, draining the same people they seek to provide for dry with tithes and offerings in order to multiply. Don’t misunderstand, tithes and offerings have a purpose, but if it drains the people and they have less to eat than they give, it is not from God. In Acts 4:32-35 we are told that everyone gave and not a single person lacked. As we will read. Jesus took no tithes; He took no offerings, yet the people were fed. End note.) 14 For there were about five thousand men. Then He said to His disciples, “Make them sit down in groups of fifty.” 15 And they did so, and made them all sit down.16 Then He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the multitude. (Note: Jesus gave back to them what they gave Him. End note.) 17 So they all ate and were filled, and twelve baskets of the leftover fragments were taken up by them.

This portion of scripture is in every one of the four gospels, but John 6:14 includes this.

14 Then those men, when they had seen the sign that Jesus did, said, “This is truly the Prophet who is to come into the world.”

Our remembering God, as well as our faith in Him and allowing Him to utilize what He has gifted us, will cause others to remember and recognize Him as well. It is a ripple in the dark seas of life. I believe that every step Jesus took on the sea and the ripple it produced despite the storm, as well as Peter’s recognition of Him, was partly what allowed Peter to walk upon those ripples, on the water himself. Are we allowing Jesus to create ripples in our lives that will influence the actions of others?

One of the ways the Holy Spirit has led me in fulfilling my purpose as I have come to diligently seek to remember God’s face more and more is by leading me to pray for every single person and their meal before I deliver it. I sometimes wonder if that fast food meal is one of the best that individual has ever had, and I laugh about it. No, I’m not standing at people’s doors praying for them. I don’t see the majority of the individuals I deliver to, and when I do, I tell them to have a blessed day. It is always interesting the level of gratitude people express for the simple words. Have a blessed day! Yet again, this was not my idea to pray, and to be honest I often have not wanted to pray. Just being honest. My plan was to just drive around delivering food and make money doing it. Easy and simple right? However, God’s plan from the first day was for me to drive around and pray for people, which I have not wanted to do at times. Do I need to say it again? Just being Honest! Here’s the thing, He has never forced me to do it, but He has always encouraged me to, and in ways that would change my whole perspective and bless me. One particular day I felt like total crap in my soul. I did not want to pray for a single person, and I made it very clear to God. I remember I was laying all my complaints, and justifications at His feet. I was adamant that praying for people who did not even know I was praying for them would not be happening this day. I said to Him, “What does it matter anyway? With this present darkness all around us. The world is so dark I can feel it.” Despite my griping, His patience with me was tangible, and His response astounded me. The Lord said to me with no condemnation or rebuke, “Yes there is much darkness in the world, but all it takes is just a little light to cancel out the darkness. When people are in darkness and suddenly there appears even just a little flame, they are drawn to that light. I know you think what you do is insignificant, but your prayers are that flame that light, in the lives of these people who do not even know that they are receiving it. I honor your prayers for them, and by these prayers I draw them to the light.” When I heard this, I could do nothing else but praise and worship God. It changed everything about my day. I called accountability partners and told them the revelation. I could not keep this to myself. Even as I write this, I am overwhelmed by God, His mercy, His grace, and how much He loves every one of us. He then went on to say, “Every single one of you who have accepted me as Lord is an individual flame. In order for the darkness you currently face to be pushed to the outer rim and not so dominant and focused, you as flames must all come together. Individually or in your separate denominations you are not as effective as you could be as a blazing flame burning together for all the world to see.”  

14 “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. – Matthew 5:14-16

The Holy Spirit then shined the Light of Christ on a soul wound that has been tied to my distrust and skepticism of other people, especially other men. This is one example of a stronghold that I never expected to fall as a fruit of my time spent with The Lord on these drives. I have now gained brethren in whom I have trust, and desire to build with in hopes of contributing to the unifying of God’s people. God has brought one of these brothers and I together, making us very close through very trying circumstances. This relationship has grown me to be able to love and trust another man in ways I never imagined possible. I now see how Johnathan could love David as his own soul. I know, this is a very vulnerable thing for a man to say, but I seek to be transparent in these teaching as The Spirit leads. It is our hope that this will encourage someone through the exposing of my vulnerabilities. So, buckle up and let the Spirit lead you on this journey. If you don’t know The Holy Spirit, please get to know Him by accepting Jesus as your Lord and Savior. The Holy Spirit is an awesomely dedicated Friend, Helper, Comforter and Teacher. None of what you will read or hear comes from me for I am nothing without Him; it is all from Him. I just get to share the testimony of how He has freed me from the darkness by His wisdom. If you seek truth, not what the desperation of darkness forces into being true, then I implore you to say with your mouth and believe in your heart that Jesus Christ is Lord.

But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” –  Romans 10:8-11

1 John 5:10-11

10 He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. 11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.

It all begins with this truth, this confession, believing it in your heart. It is a journey so be patient. There is nothing wrong with you if you don’t feel anything, for this transformation is first spiritual. It takes time for it to manifest in the soul and flesh, but remember that it is a trigger, as I previously stated. In the exact instant you choose salvation, Jesus’ blood transcends all space, time, and realms specifically for you. Jesus then sends you the Holy Spirit, Who fills you and begins to lead you into all truth. The truth that every experience you’ve ever had has been designed to help you remember God’s face and why you’re here. God says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” – Jeremiah 1:5. God spoke these words to Jeremiah, a child of the old Abrahamic covenant; does He not speak even greater things to you, who choose to be a child of the new covenant of salvation through His Holy Son, Jesus? This is what you have been desperate for your whole life. God’s plan for you has always been good and not evil – Jeremiah 29:11. But the trials and hardships of this world fool us into believing that God hates us or that there is no God. However, when you come to know the truth, you understand that everything the devil intended for evil, God planned for good and for a purpose. This is precisely what the magnificent story of Joseph in Genesis teaches us.

Genesis 5:20

20 But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive. 

In this contemplation and deep conversation with the Holy Spirit concerning how I and every human being past present and future have seen God face to face before entering the darkness of the womb. I asked God, “so how does damnation work.” It does not seem fair that hell awaits those who once saw Your face, then separated from you believing they could make a difference in a fallen world. The Holy Spirit’s explanation was incredible, sorrowful, yet hopeful. Let’s look at 1John 4:12-19 and John 3:18-21

1John 4:12-19 says,

12 No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us. 

((Let’s break down verse 12 real quick. Keep in mind that this verse says no man has seen God, not no spirit. If we misinterpret what John is saying here, that will mean that even those who have died believing in Christ Jesus still have not seen God. I beg to differ. 

Revelation 6:9-11 says this, 

When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held. 10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” 11 Then a white robe was given to each of them; and it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer, until both the number of their fellow servants and their brethren, who would be killed as they were, was completed. 

After reading that verse, I think people including myself who was once waiting to be raptured have another thing coming. I kid you not, I use to say to this same brother I am close to almost every day that I am ready to get out of here, when all these pandemic shenanigans began. People have been behaving crazy, and I couldn’t stand it. Until one day the Holy Spirit led me to realize that I was thinking about this all wrong. That with the multitude of souls needing to be saved, did I really just want to run away?

Revelation has been unfolding the instant John was given this vision, wrote it down, and sent it to the various churches. For a long time, I believed we were waiting for the book of revelation to begin. How wrong I have been. I’ll only speak for myself because I’m sure others have already figured this out. Remember that throughout the Roman persecution of the church, many saints were martyred and continue to be martyred to this day. We can’t claim we’re still waiting for these things to happen since 5 of the 7 seals have been opened as of the time you’re reading or hearing this message. Those who were persecuted after the 5th seal was opened are both before and during our time. Read Revelations 6:1-11 and tell me that with all that has happened in the world after Jesus’ ascension, Revelation is not being actively fulfilled. If it hasn’t already, the sixth seal will be opened very soon.   

Concerning those who have died for the sake of the gospel and their testimony. I know certain denominations use 1Thessalonians 4:15 as an argument that those who have died have not gone to heaven yet, instead they are sleeping.

15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. – 1 Thessalonians 4:15

 But when we look at 1 Thessalonians 4:14 it makes it clear that what is being talked about is not spirit, but flesh sleeping. 

For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus. – 1 Thessalonians 4:14

How will Jesus bring those who are sleeping back with Him, if they are sleeping in the ground? We know that Jesus is not sleeping. Or will He bring their spirit back with Him to rejoin with their sleeping bodies?

Jesus in John 11:11-14 tells us plainly that a dead body is sleeping. 

These things He said, and after that He said to them, “Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up.”12 Then His disciples said, “Lord, if he sleeps he will get well.” 13 However, Jesus spoke of his death, but they thought that He was speaking about taking rest in sleep.

14 Then Jesus said to them plainly, “Lazarus is dead. – John 11:11-14

So, before Jesus’ resurrection, if a righteous person’s dead body is said to be asleep, where are their spirit and soul? This is where their spirit and soul was, according to the Lord of all Creation.

19 “There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day. 20 But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate, 21 desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. 22 So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

24 “Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’ 25 But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented. 26 And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’ – Luke 16:19-26

They were all in Hell, but Lazarus was in Abraham’s Bosom, a version of Hell that was very comfortable, but there was a great chasm that separated this area of rest from the realm of everlasting torment. Before you think, “Hey, maybe I’ll go to that place therefore I don’t have to surrender to Jesus, and I can still party like it’s 1999,” think again. Sorry showing my age there. That place of rest no longer exist, and this is why. The place of torment though, still does.

51 Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, 52 and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; 53 and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many. – Matthew 27:51-53

I am not 100 on this, but I am guessing Abraham and Lazarus was amongst those who rose from that grave. Also, if we have to wait for the saints who are asleep to rise from the dead before we may see God’s face, what does Matthew 27:51-53 mean? Matthew seemed to be saying that it has already happened. This was Jesus’ reason for spending three days and three nights in the heart of the earth, where His people were, in order to rescue them. – Matthew 12:40.  

Let us lay the dead to rest and focus on the spirit, which is the most important component of man since it has seen and will see God’s face even when our bodies are in the ground. This is the aspect of man that allows us to remember. 

Genesis 2:7 tells us that God breathed into the formation He had made from the ground and man lived. Man was an empty clay pot until God breathed His spirit into man, and he lived gaining a consciousness, a soul. It was not the other way around with the body already having a soul and gaining a spirit. 

Job 33:4 says this, 

The Spirit of God has made me, And the breath of the Almighty gives me life. 

This breath of God is a part of the Spirit of God which left Him and entered man. The enemy’s deception is to keep us focused on the body, which is not the most important thing. Don’t get me wrong: we must care for these temples because, as 1 Corinthians 6:19 teaches, our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. What I’m referring to is how the world’s enticements encourages us to focus on our bodies rather than our spirits. We dress up, sexualize, idolize, overfeed, underfeed, and defile these clay pots with all kinds of abominable behaviors, and we are clueless about the reality of the spirit, but the adversary is not, for he is a spirit. He knows that the realm of the spirit is our true reality, for God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. – John 4:24 He knows what we are capable of when the spirit of man is the focus and not the flesh, so he tempts us to focus on the lust of the flesh, eyes, and pride of life.

Jesus told this to Nicodemus in John 3:3-6, 

Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. ( Note: That Spirit is the God-breathed spirit exhaled into man in Genesis 2:7, which brings back to life the spirit that has always been in us and was once with God in the beginning. End note.)

I went through this exercise because the Holy Spirit urged me to. I’m not kidding; I was sitting up reading the scriptures because the Lord said I needed to in order to provide a clear picture of what this teaching is about. We are to remember God’s face and our purpose here, and in order to do so, we must understand His word. That there have been denominational misunderstandings that have caused doubt and turned people away from the truth. Every time I wanted to quit my digging and just move on The Spirit encouraged me, and I would ask, “Where to next Lord.” That is how much he cares about you, and you understating and remembering Him. 

We’ve finally returned to 1 John verse 13 and onward to discuss how people end up in hell. Unfortunately!

13 Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit.

14 And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world.

15 Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.

16 And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.

17 Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.

18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.

19 We love him, because he first loved us.

John 3:18-21 states,

18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”   

I imagine that because God is love and never deceives us, he explains our physical journey to each of us outside of space, time, and existence as we know it before we come here. Consider this: since we were once in Him and He in us, and He knew us, as He says in Jeremiah 1:5, it follows that we once knew all things. We knew what to expect if we came here, yet we did. We knew what would transpire once we passed through the portal and took our first breaths of this fallen atmosphere, unless someone who already remembered God prepared the atmosphere through prayer, for our first breath. Think on that! But because we were in Him and He was in us, we were confident that when we arrive in this realm, we would be able to make a difference. I imagine He assured us that each one of us would make a difference, but it would depend on if we choose the path of life He has set before us, or we follow the path of death He has set before us. He tells Israel and us through Moses in Deuteronomy 30:19-20.

19 I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live; 20 that you may love the Lord your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days; and that you may dwell in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give them.”

It is just how things work, not because God is cruel or enjoys playing games with our souls, but because these are the laws established because of disobedience in the garden, as described in Genesis 3. When Adam and Eve ate the fruit of disobedience and obtained independence from God, God’s written laws were activated, since God did not design us to be without choice; we are not robots. We believe we have freedom in this world, but we are instead enslaved and controlled by the use of our carnal desires against us.

One of God’s greatest blessings to all of creation, including the angels, is free will. We all have the ability to choose whether or not to love Him. To obey or not. God is love and desires our return to Him; therefore, as revealed in Romans 1Psalm 139, and most of all offering His only Son Jesus for our redemption, God inscribed a map into our entire being to help us remember Him. If we choose to reject His instructions and allow ourselves to be swept away by the distractions of this world and the lusts of our flesh, we have chosen the parallel path of death that was written into reality and leads to hell. Know this, hell was never made for us but prepared for the devil and his angels. – Matthew 25:41 This was never God’s heart toward us. Those who choose not to remember, or surrender live a life of death all their lives, and in the end, they choose death for all eternity. How it must grieve our Father’s heart to see us choose death to our own destruction and eternal damnation, with His heart aching for those who are lost for all eternity. God is the only Father in all of existence whose heart is forever grieved for the children He has lost.

37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 8:37-39

I’m going to share a revelation given to me by the Holy Spirit we are hoping breaks your heart into fallow ground that this seed that was given takes root.  

22 Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. 23 After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, 24 and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it. 25 Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26 When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.

27 But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” 28 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” 29 “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” 31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” Matthew 14:22-31

In this passage of scripture, Matthew shows something significant about Jesus, Peter, and us. We know that Jesus was able to walk on water by the power of the Holy Spirit, and Peter had faith in Jesus to do the same. But the Holy Spirit revealed something to me that I had never considered before. That in order for Jesus and Peter to walk on the water, their physiology, or the natural elements of the water, had to change. Because Jesus had the physical body of a man while yet being God, His body had to obey the natural laws of the world. But, through the power of the Holy Spirit and faith, his body changed to adapt to the molecular state of water, or he may have changed the nature of water to adapt to Him. Regardless of the two possibilities, Jesus, as the Word through whom all things were created, had complete authority over both His body and the elements of the universe around him, because he is in it and it is in him. – John 1:1-4. In the same instance of this incident of Jesus walking on the water as related by John. Jesus not only walked on water, but also transported Himself, His followers, and the boat to their destination.

19 So when they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the sea and drawing near the boat; and they were afraid. 20 But He said to them, “It is I; do not be afraid.” 21 Then they willingly received Him into the boat, and immediately the boat was at the land where they were going. John 6:19-21

Stay with me. I’m getting close to something here. We know that with the power of the Holy Spirit, anything is possible, and that it is not just Jesus who can do these things, but Jesus has given us power over all things, just as it was given to Him. In Acts 8:26-38, Phillip encounters the Ethiopian eunuch, ministers to him, baptizes him, and is teleported to another location by the Holy Spirit right before the eunuch’s eyes. I will only be providing verses 38-40, so please click on the link provided to read the complete encounter. 

38 So he commanded the chariot to stand still. And both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and he baptized him. 39 Now when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught Philip away, so that the eunuch saw him no more; and he went on his way rejoicing. 40 But Philip was found at Azotus. And passing through, he preached in all the cities till he came to Caesarea. – Acts 8:38-40

So, we see that as believers, if we follow Phillip’s example of presenting the genuine gospel and baptizing, these same miracles will occur in our lives and ministries.

Mark 16:14-18 says this,

14 Later He appeared to the eleven as they sat at the table; and He rebuked their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they did not believe those who had seen Him after He had risen. 15 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; 18 they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

The Holy Spirit is leading me to make this point. Jesus had and still has authority over His body and this world, but out of obedience to The Father and His great love for us, Jesus chose to be beaten so horrifically that he was unrecognizable as a human being. The movies we have seen do not do this scene justice, and properly depict what our Lord chose to go through for us. Jesus was given 40 lashes by Roman law with the Cat o’ Nine Tails. The Cat is made up of nine knotted thongs of cotton cord, about 21⁄2 ft long, designed to lacerate the skin and cause intense pain. It traditionally has nine thongs as a result of the manner in which rope is plaited. In some variations of the Cat pieces of bone or metal are used. I discern the 40 lashes symbolized the 40 days and 40 nights of flooding the earth, the 40 years in the wilderness, the 40 days of receiving the Law, and the 40 that set us free from the works of the Law. I’m sure there’s more to it than this, but I’m trusting the Holy Spirit to lead me and you into all truth, so please share it with me if you’re led to it first. These 40 lashes had ripped Jesus’ flesh off His body down to the bone, when He could have transformed His flesh into stone or steel, or the Cat o’ Nine Tails into flowers, and suffered no harm if He had chosen not to go through with the suffering. But in the Garden of Gethsemane, akin to the Garden of Eden, the sacrificed Lamb poured out to the Father, pleading with Him to let this cup pass from Him as he wept, and blood leaked from His pores. – Luke 22:39-44, Genesis 3:21, and Revelation 13:8. This was due to the fact that He knew what He could do as God, yet had to chose to be betrayed, humiliated, lied on, deserted, and tortured to death, and that was not even the worst of it. He then had to bear the weight of the world’s sins, past present and future. This would then separate Him for the first time from His Father and the Holy Spirit. As Jesus hung on the cross, his arms and legs dislocated from being pulled for the nails to penetrate through their marks and from the nature of the crucifixion itself. As He gasped for breath, seeking comfort as crucifixion suffocated its victim, he had to move up and down, scraping the splintered wood with His wounded flesh and bone. As He watched His beloved creatures, which He had formed and given life to throw religious quotes at Him, laugh, mock Him, and gamble for his possessions. Then with the weight of sin upon Him He cried out,

Eloi Eloi Lama Sabachthani? My God My God, why have You forsaken Me? Jesus was alone for the first time because of sin. It isolates us even in the middle of a crowd, even when we are surrounded by family and friends.

Sin makes you alone! Jesus knew our suffering, He bore our shame, He bore our loneliness. Sin makes us a bearer of burdens, but as everything has an opposite, this is also what love does. It bares all things. – 1 Corinthians 13. Jesus could have escaped, as some religions would have us believe, but He didn’t, and He didn’t because He didn’t want you to be alone and bear your sins any longer. He didn’t want you to remain in the dark any longer, therefore the Light of the World became darkness for the world. As I write and read this, waves of sorrow and joy wash over me. Tears flow from my eyes because of the depths of Jesus’ love in this truth. The world has deceived us with all of its fallen superheroes and idols, but there is only one genuine Hero in all of space, time, and realms, and His name is Jesus The Christ.

I am led to invite you, if you have never accepted Jesus as your Lord and savior. If you are ready to accept Jesus now, stop reading, stop this audio, and just talk to Him after I say this. Tell Him how much you need Him. He already knows, but this confession is partially to yourself; it is surrender. Tell Him you believe He is the Son of God, that you accept Him into your life, and that you will follow Him wherever He takes you. I promise if you do this your life will change. Again, it takes time, but if you are patient, as James 1:2-4 teaches, you will be made complete.

If you are hesitant to make the choice, Jesus still loves you, which is why you have been led here in the first place. That road map led you here. So keep coming back, reading and listening, for faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. Maybe what you read or hear later will ignite your desire to remember your first love God, again. This is truly our hope for you! 

As I was writing this teaching I heard and visualized Mufasa from the clouds saying to Simba, “Remember!” Mufasa was beseeching his son to remember who he was. To remember his purpose, to remember where he came from, to remember his father’s face. That his father’s face could be seen in his own reflection, his image, and likeness. That later, even his enemy mistook Simba for his father, Mufasa. May the enemy mistake you for your Father God! But the way Simba was living and the garbage he ate was not true life. He was living a life of deception. Simba was the son of the king, just as we are the sons and daughters of the King of kings, and our Father, Who art in Heaven says to us, “Remember!”