Volume 2000/9

 

The Harvest Is Ripe!

"He will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner"

(Mat.3: 12)

 

 

 

(From a sermon of Bro. Julius Adewumi)

I was in a vision one morning and the Lord came to visit our group. He told each person what is missing in his or her life, which we must work on. One person was told "you need to die to self". This is why I am giving this exhortation about what it means to die to self.

This has to do with obeying the word of God even when it is at odds with our self-will.

Apostle Paul wrote about obedience in Philippians chapter two. As you read these verses take note that attitude is an important part of obedience. You can obey cheerfully or with grumbling.

Philippians 2: 12-15

12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

14 Do all things without murmuring and disputing:

15 That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world.

Obedience is gladly doing what pleases the one that is in authority over you. Even if you don't feel like it, obey anyway, because God is working in you to do his will. Don't argue, for God wants you to be blameless. Do what God has told you in his word for you are an example in your dark and crooked world.

Is your normal response grumbling or arguing when you face an important duty or chore? Well, start today being glad to obey. Apostle Paul said, "Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you'll become blameless and harmless."

The bible is full of examples of people who were asked to do something they didn't want to do. This is what we want to meditate upon. Here are three examples of that. Abraham didn't want to sacrifice his son, Isaac, but he obeyed anyway. Moses didn't want to talk to Pharaoh, but he obeyed anyway. Jonah didn't want to go to Nineveh (even though God had to bend his arm to go) but he obeyed. They all obeyed.

When someone is in authority over us, we've got to learn not to argue but to submissively obey instructions, especially in offices. This is very important. When somebody is working for other people, there will be occasions when it looks as if you are the only one being called upon to do something. It can make someone wants to grumble.

I remember a fellow who was always complaining at work. Because he felt that the manager was calling only him to do what he thinks is the dirty job. Now in offices, such grumbling can make someone lose bonus or promotion. If he's regularly complaining, even though he does it, but with grumbling, it will remain in the mind of the manager.

When we say "die to self", the flesh always wants to agitate against uncomfortable instruction. But "they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts". (Gal.5: 24). We are to reckon ourselves indeed to be dead to self-will and alive to obey only the word of God. Since the word says, "let every soul be subject unto the higher powers", (Rom.13:1), we must strive to obey the word.

Now let me correlate it to the rapturing faith. The scriptures are the written instructions of God on how to obey him. If we submit ourselves to what he has written, then we are candidates to hear him directly. We will be able to hear his verbal instructions, and escape a lot of trouble.

The bible says, "They that are led by the spirit of God, they are the children of God."

When led by the Spirit, God gets involved in our day-to-day activities. There is a prophecy that said, "the cloud of God's presence will come down and rest upon this body of believers. Instructions from that cloud will guide our steps day by day. All those outside this cloud of God's presence will miss the rapture."

Just like we see in the story of Elijah the prophet. In 2Kings, it shows how God led Elijah closely.

2Kings 2:1,2,4,6

1 And it came to pass, when the Lord would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

2 And Elijah said unto Elisha, Tarry here, I pray thee; for the Lord hath sent me to Bethel. And Elisha said unto him, As the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. So they went down to Bethel.

Verse 4, "And Elijah said unto Elisha, tarry here, I pray thee; for the Lord hath sent me to Jericho. And he said, As the Lord liveth and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. So they came to Jericho. "

Verse 6, "And Elijah said unto Elisha, Tarry, I pray thee, here; for the Lord hath sent me to Jordan. And he said, As the Lord liveth and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. So they two went on. "

Now God was talking to Elijah. Elisha didn't hear God tell Elijah to go to Bethel, but God was instructing Elijah step by step as he was hearing instructions from the Lord. He might not have anything to go do in Bethel other than to visit those guys over there, but it was part of the preparation for being taken away. He was being led from one place to another.

By the time the rapture is about to take place, those who are going away, will have come to that point where they can hear God directly. Moving as God moves them, is the difference between those who are being led by God and those who aren't.

The Lord Jesus Christ said, "The wind bloweth where it listed, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is everyone that is born of the Spirit." (Jn.3: 8).

Similarly, those who are being led by God are as the wind, which bloweth and men do not know where it goeth or where it's coming from.

Who will God lead?

First, we've got to be submissive to the scriptures in humility:

"Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them.

Children, obey your parents in all things; for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.

Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged."

"Servants, obey in all things your master according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God." (Col.3:18-22).

We must begin by obeying such fundamental teachings of the word.

Sometimes believers may not see any spiritual development from their secular work. God wants us to learn how to be employees - Obedience and submissiveness. "It is God who worketh in us both to will and to do of his good pleasure". Sometimes he keeps us at a particular job, and he expects us to submit so that we can learn to be a servant. It's all part of the training. The bible talks about the Lord Jesus Christ, how he became obedient unto death. Hebrews chapter 2 says Christ became perfect through what he suffered.

(Hebrews 2:8-11)

8 Thou hath put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not all things put under him.

9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.

10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

11 For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren.

In verse 10, it says the captain of our salvation, which is Christ, was made perfect through the sufferings that he suffered.

Hebrews 5:8,9

8 Though he were a son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;

9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;

If we want to be exalted, we must be obedient to the word, in humility, for everyone that humbles himself shall be exalted, but he that exalted himself shall be humbled.

This scripture is telling us that Christ submitted to death in obedience to the Father. We also are called to submit to all the instructions and precepts of God in the bible in obedience, even if it seems inconvenient to the flesh. Those who are submissive to him as said will begin to hear instructions from the cloud of God's presence as candidates for the rapture. God will prove and test it. He will come closer and instruct once; maybe one does it. He gives another instruction and perhaps one does not do it. Then he withdraws and passes one through some more nudging and pruning until next test. Until we come to the fullness of the stature of Christ. - A perfect Lamb of God. Not everybody will get to that, but the first fruits must get to it before he takes them away. That's why they are called "first fruits". They are harvested from the Earth. (Rev.14: 1-5). This is what is delaying God. He has got some numbers, but they are not there yet. When all of the number (144,000?) has come to the fullness of Christ, the rapture can take place. The rest of the Christians will come later.

For example, Let's say God tells you to make a right and then a left. It may look as though the right and left, brings you back to the same straight line. No, it does not work that way. The Lord wants you to go right and then left.

It is obedience, following instructions step by step. (Read Rapturing Faith part 5). So what we are saying then is that, the Lord is waiting for the sons of God to come to that fullness of Christ. Many people think the fullness of the stature of Christ is the fullness of the supernatural power. But, the supernatural power won't come, until you have that supernatural obedience in your spirit. The bible says, "For as many as are led by the spirit of God, they are the sons of God." We need to pray that the Lord will help us to completely surrender. The Lord said we are to die to self. That is exactly what it is. That is what God is looking for. That is also why the scripture said, "Present your body as a living sacrifice unto God". A sacrifice is a thing that you kill and it is just lying dead. The fellow making the sacrifice can then take the carcass and put it on the altar. The carcass can not raise a finger, because it is dead. We should present our body to God like that. Not physically killed, but it means we should present ourselves, spiritually, as though we are dead sacrifices. He can use our hands, if he likes. He can use our legs, mouths, and all the members of our body as he wills, without struggling with him - a living sacrifice unto God. Our body usually tries to do what we want it to do. Not wanting to obey because it does not feel good. But God says the flesh must be slain at the altar of God.

Don't just do what you want to do. Even when Abraham didn't want to sacrifice his son, he obeyed anyway. Moses didn't want to talk to Pharaoh, but he obeyed anyway. Jonah (who God had to teach a lesson) didn't want to go to Nineveh, but he obeyed anyway. Sometimes when God chooses someone and they don't want to go, God may have to wrestle with him or her to obey.

The Lord also said, "My spirit will not always strive with man". We must pray for the body of Christ for the grace to submit to all the precepts of the Lord, no matter what the flesh says, that we may be candidates for the spoken word.

God is preparing a people that will obey him. All we need to do is to be submissive to the word of God.

When we surrender our hearts, and our will to obey the written word of God, the Spirit of God will begin a work in us for rapturing faith.

"For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." (2 Pet.1: 11).

In this exhortation I mentioned that, God wants you to be a sacrifice, like a lamb that is slaughtered and slain.

When the Holy Ghost came upon believers, they began to speak in other tongues. Watch this: each believer, who will speak in tongues, must surrender his/her tongue. Surrender your jaw, mouth, and tongue, as the Holy Ghost begins to flip it as he wills. That seems so simple, but it's not as simple as it sounds until you receive this experience of the baptism of the Holy Ghost. When the Holy Ghost comes upon believers, first thing is to surrender our mouths and jaws. It's not us who flip the tongues, it's the Holy Ghost that flips the tongue by himself producing the language. All you need to do is release your tongue. That is the beginning of being obedient. You now see that those who don't even have the Holy Ghost, and who don't believe the speaking in tongues, are missing out. They may not know how to surrender and submit the body.

When the Holy Ghost wants to take control of our lives, he starts by taking control of our tongues. When you look at the book of James, you'll see that the tongue is a very important element. (James 3:6). We are to present our body as a living sacrifice. It takes you to release your tongue and mouth so that the Holy Ghost can flip it and make you speak in tongues. That is how the Holy Ghost started his manifestation in us. We submit our tongues to him.

Think about that. That is the beginning of surrender.

May the Lord open your understanding, so that you can comprehend this.

Colossians 3:17-22

17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the father by him.

18 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

19 Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them.

20 Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.

21 Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.

22 Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eye service, as men-pleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God:

Begin, by obeying these written scriptures, and other scriptures in the bible. When your life is fashioned in obedience to the written scriptures, you are a candidate for the spoken word from the cloud of God's presence, which will usher the saints into the rapture.

May God bless you as you surrender to the word. Amen!

 

Bro. Julius Adewumi

Gospel Distribution Ministry

Box 30387, Phoenix, AZ 85046, USA.

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