On the Wednesday night service (Jan 5th), midway thru worship I got called to the call center to answer phones. On the phones we are ministering to people all over the USA and from around the world. I picked up calls one after the other. “Ring Ring Ring” everywhere! I prayed for healing, salvation, and baptisms in the Holy Spirit. It was amazing how even thru the phones the power of God was touching every single one of those people that called. This one lady called me, saying that she was flipping thru the channels to find a rock and roll station, but came across our service. All of a sudden she feels something come upon her and starts shaking and fell to the floor. So she called our prayer line while still stuck on the floor asking what this was. So I told her that it was the power of God on her, that it was the Holy Spirit! Then I asked her if she received Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior and she said no. So of course I prayed the prayer of salvation with her! She prayed out the whole prayer and right at the end all of a sudden she started to speak out in tongues! So during that phone call she received Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior AND she got baptized in the Holy Spirit! It was amazing! I am so excited for the days to come and to see the power of God MOVE! GOD IS GOOD! AMEN!-Michelle Y.
But the angel said to them, Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people. 11 For to you is born this day in the town of David a Savior, Who is Christ (the Messiah) the Lord!
Luke 2:10-11 AMP
Christmas is a time of great joy. There was great joy at Jesus’ birth—not just because a cute, little baby was born, but because of all He was destined to do for mankind, in His death, burial, and resurrection!
You have loved righteousness [You have delighted in integrity, virtue, and uprightness in purpose, thought, and action] and You have hated lawlessness (injustice and iniquity). Therefore God, [even] Your God (Godhead), has anointed You with the oil of exultant joy and gladness above and beyond Your companions. Hebrews 1:9 AMP
In Psalms 45:6-7, a prophetic word is given concerning the Messiah, which Paul quotes here in Hebrews. Jesus was anointed with the oil of joy and gladness above and beyond His companions because He loved righteousness and hated iniquity. Joy was His reward. True joy—the joy every human heart is so hungry for—is only available to the heart that is submitted to Almighty God! Jesus is God, Himself, but still, He submitted Himself to the will of the Father. His obedience was absolutely necessary for the fulfillment of the Father’s plan of salvation for mankind, however, Jesus did not obey because He had no choice or because He was forced to; He obeyed because He chose to, and therefore, He was anointed with the reward of great joy.
Therefore then, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [who have borne testimony to the Truth], let us strip off and throw aside every encumbrance (unnecessary weight) and that sin which so readily (deftly and cleverly) clings to and entangles us, and let us run with patient endurance and steady and active persistence the appointed course of the race that is set before us, 2 Looking away [from all that will distract] to Jesus, Who is the Leader and the Source of our faith [giving the first incentive for our belief] and is also its Finisher [bringing it to maturity and perfection]. He, for the joy [of obtaining the prize] that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising and ignoring the shame, and is now seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2 AMP
The good news is that Jesus never yielded to the temptations of sin, or His own flesh, or His own will or desire—He endured the cross, ignoring the shame, because of His expectation of the joy that would follow as a result of His great sacrifice. Jesus knew the terrible things He would have to endure and still He committed Himself to do everything that was required of Him, without complaint or argument. This was the course of His appointed race. You and I also have an appointed race. It is not an easy race—it is very tough, at times—but there is a joy-reward that lies before us when we obey God and run our assigned course. There is no reward for disobedience—there is no blessing in choosing our own way— we are blessed when we choose to go God’s way for our lives!
Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory. 1 Peter 1:8 KJV
Now to Him Who is able to keep you without stumbling or slipping or falling, and to present [you] unblemished (blameless and faultless) before the presence of His glory in triumphant joy and exultation [with unspeakable, ecstatic delight]. Jude 24 AMP
Let us rejoice and shout for joy [exulting and triumphant]! Let us celebrate and ascribe to Him glory and honor, for the marriage of the Lamb [at last] has come, and His bride has prepared herself. Revelation 19:7 AMP
The Good News for the believer is that there is joy unspeakable and full of glory—wonderful, triumphant joy and exultation (unspeakable, ecstatic delight)—waiting for us in the presence of the Lord. If we, the Bride of Christ, prepare ourselves for heaven, by obeying the heavenly call, we will live to join the lavish, joy-filled, heavenly celebration that has been prepared for us—the Marriage Supper of the Lamb!
You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy, at Your right hand there are pleasures forevermore. Psalms 16:11 AMP
From life’s first cry to final breath—and on into eternity—if we remain in God’s presence, we will continue on in His joy.
The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship.” 21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:19-24 NKJV
1. You worship you know not what.
a. This sounds like the modern-day church.
b. As we have traveled around the world, it has been interesting – and in some cases, disturbing – to see what goes on in the “Church” under the guise of “worship”.
c. Jesus said, in verse 23, that the Father is seeking TRUE worshipers. The Father is seeking people who will worship Him from their mouth AND their heart.
d. You worship in vain if your mouth worships, but your heart is not submitted to God. Matthew 15:8-9 NKJV – These people draw near to Me with their mouth, And honor Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.
e. It is unprofitable to offer a sacrifice of worship from a disobedient heart. 1 Samuel 15:22 AMP – Samuel said, Has the Lord as great a delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.
2. Being a true worshiper.
a. Worship is from the heart.
b. Worship is not a religious act of posture, stance, or tone. It is the heart crying out. Psalms 42:7 – Deep calls unto deep.
c. 10 lepers were healed – only one came back to say thanks. Nine were cleansed, but only one was made whole. Luke 17:15-19 KJV – And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.
d. True worship does not spring forth only in “good times”, it springs forth out of and in the middle of the darkest seasons of life.
– Jonah in the fish’s belly
– The three Hebrew children in the fire
– Daniel in the lion’s den
– David tending sheep
– Paul and Silas in prison
– Jesus in Gethsemane
– All circumstances don’t have to be the best for worship to be true worship. True worship originates from a heart; whose trust, hope and faith are in the Lord and not in a temporary situation.
3. True worship comes from a pure heart.
a. A heart that is pure and holy.
b. A heart that is ablaze – on fire.
c. A heart full of passion.
d. A heart full of faith.
4. True worshippers worship the Father in Spirit and in truth.
a. There is a difference between Old Testament worship and New Testament worship.
b. OT – God inhabits the praise of His people.
c. NT – God inhabits His people of praise!
d. Rejoice and give thanks – always – for all things! Ephesians 5:18-20 KJV – And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
e. Worship will never stop – for all eternity we will joyfully worship Him!
5. Let this month be a month of worship.
a. Every day – thank Him and give Him praise for His goodness, mercy, and grace!