Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Rob Rufus - "Knowing the Person of the Holy Spirit" - 3

Here are my notes from the 2nd in Rob Rufus's sermon series - "Knowing the Person of the Holy Spirit - His Names, Titles and Operations". The notes from the first sermon are here and the second sermon is here. I am so thankful to God for the internet that makes it possible for me to follow with City Church International, Hong Kong - this incredible series!! Rob preached this sermon last Sunday on the 23rd September.

"This conference is Glenda's initiative coming from God. As we have travelled the world many leaders have asked to come and stay in our home in Hong Kong and learn about the grace of God and signs and wonders. It is an honour that they want to come - but this conference was birthed to serve the international community. But we are only 3 years old and we are hosting an international community! God will bless us as we serve them. Have sent out 1, 500 letters to Hong Kong church leaders. Hillsong host a conference for 2 weeks every year and doctors and dentist will take time off to drive delegates to the conference. God is calling us to show just such generosity. Let's go over the top with exaggerated kindness to make our international guests to feel welcome. This will be a trigger and a catalyst as we welcome the international community! We want a flood of Cantonese people coming.

I am tired of Christian celebrities and conferences that announce the coming of a guru. God is bringing a seaon where He is using the little people of the Kingdom who don't know what they are doing and have no self-confidence. This is the Kingdom. Once they have had a taste of miracles these people will go for more broken limbs and deaf ears.

"(John 5, 14) Jesus said that the people didn't have to believe Him if they didn't see miracles and just so the Church can stand up to an unbelieving society and say you don't have to believe us if you don't see miracles".

"Your Kingdom is not about knowing concepts and bible academics and cerebral information but Your Kingdom is about divine encounters that translate into doing the ministry of the Lord Jesus".

The apostle Paul didn't come parading his intelligence and academics but came with weakness and fear and trembling. His words were not wise and persuasive but with a demonstration of the power of the Spirit. To make change we must dial down on our enthusiasm for the flesh and increase our dependence on the power of the Holy Spirit. This week I tried to raise someone from the dead - I am happy to report that I failed because that offends me and provokes me because it should be done as a normal practice. Jesus said "Go out ... raise the dead ... freely you have received and freely give". The secret is humility and weakness. Dial down the enthusiasm of the flesh. You tried to make this thing happen. The flesh of man represents human ability. You can't take responsibility for raising the dead - you can't do it - but I can. You dial down the flesh and I will dial up the power of My Spirit.

"The whole theme of Galatians is grace versus law or human flesh versus the supernatural. Whenever you see the word "flesh" in Galatians it means human effort trying to be righteous under the law of God".

But sadly the NIV translated "flesh" as "sinful nature" and it is very misrepresented. The Bible talks of Jesus coming in "flesh" which would then mean He came in "sinful nature". In the book of Galatians it says if you walk in the Spirit you will not fulfill the desires of the flesh. If you get to know the nuances of the Spirit then you will not elevate your flesh or dial it up in self-righteousness. In Galatians 6 it talks of "sowing to the flesh ... sowing to the Spirit". Eternal life doesn't mean living forever - we will all live forever either in heaven or hell! (John 17) "This is eternal life ... that you know Him".

"Eternal life means that you have a divine encounter with the living God and that you live with God and know God and hear His voice!".

If you live in the Spirit then you will experience eternal life! Want to talk today about the Holy Spirit in different titles and different Names because His Names reveal different aspects of His character to us. Pull the Word out of me today - have had to walk through intense spiritual opposition today because of this word. It is time to hear this word today. (Galatians 4:6) "Because you are sons God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts that calls out "Abba! Father!". The Holy Spirit is called the Spirit of His Son. That means that Spirit causes you to call out "Abba! Father!". It means "Papa!" or "Daddy!".

This isn't an academic doctrinal position but an experience - this is the Spirit of His Son bringing revelation that you are no longer a slave under law. God will no longer disapprove of you but you now have the FULL rights of a son!

Under the law God promises that He will not forget sin. Under grace and New Covenant He promises He will not remember our sins.

The Gospel is a revelation of how right you are with God through Christ Jesus. Jesus identified with you at your worst on the Cross so you can identify with Him at His best at the right hand of the Father.

Faith lives from the invisble realm where we are seated with Christ Jesus.

As you focus on grace there comes a mental peace to your life because grace takes the focus from your unworthiness to Christ's worthiness. It is not just Abba Father but it is a manifestation of the revelation that we have full rights as a son!

These truths are current now! All of that transacted - you move out from Old Covenant thinking into New. This doesn't just get you to heaven but brings mental peace on the earth.

The majority of people in South Africa are there who are mentally damaged and bruised because they were in shame-based churches who preached Old Covenant Law. If we do not preach the good news of the Gospel we are producing mental illness in the Church.

It is an incredible responsibility to preach and teach the Word of God. Much preaching and teaching is dressed up to look like New Covenant teaching but it is Law-based and Old Covenant.

Under the New Covenant if you are sinning currently and your sin stops God's favour on your life then your sin is more powerful than the favour of God.

Romans 5 says where sin abounds grace abounds much more. There are so few miracles in the church because there is so much flesh in the church trying to make you try harder. When the Spirit comes then revelation comes that we are sons with full inheritance. If you think that being holy means keeping the law and go on to break one, then God sees you as breaking every law. You lie and God sees you as not just a liar but an adulterer, an idolater, a murderer. But grace on the other hand sees you as permamently righteous! Grace abounds much more under the New Covenant!

Everywhere you teach this - alarms go off and people say "You are giving people a license to sin". I have checked the church out worldwide. They are sinning without a license! But in legalistic churches people just get better at sinning in secret.

Colossians 2 says we have been made complete in Christ! (2 Corinthians 3:7) - the ministry which brought death came with a fading glory. God has removed the ceremonial law of the 10 Commandments. What was written on tablets of stone? The 10 Commandments! We try so hard to keep the law but break one and we break them all! Try and sustain the flesh and you dial down on the supernatural! The reason the Israelites worshipped the golden calf was because they were self-righteous already. God brought them out of slavery already and announced the law already and told them to keep it fully. If you fully obey all the 10 Commandments the blessings will come! Israel should have said - no! We can't keep them! But they said - everything You say, we will do. So while God wrote the 10 Commandments they were worshipping the idol.

Please don't tell me law-keeping makes you holy. It doesn't. It makes you self-righteous.

The New Covenant starts in Acts 2 on the Day of Pentecost and they came down from the Upper Room drunk they were so full of God! The people down below had done something worst than a golden calf! They had crucified the Lord of glory yet got saved that very same day! Who could wipe out the 10 Commandments? God could. Colossians 2:14 - God cancelled the written code of the rules against you and nailed it to the Cross, triumphing over principalities and powers at the Cross!

When the Church preaches the Law to God's people, it re-arms a disarmed devil and gives condemnation rule in the Church again and cripples the working of the supernatural in the Church.

The Law was given (Galatians 3:23) to expose self-righteousness and to show them how unholy they were. People can see that the Law is standard exposing arrogance and pride and must throw ourselves on the New Covenant and the grace of God in Christ Jesus. People can sit and hear the message of grace but it's controversial because legalistic people ALWAYS want to bully and dominate people who are in grace. Pride says we can't embrace the message of grace because it looks like we have been wrong. That is being a Pharisee. They claimed they studied the Scriptures about the coming Messiah and yet He stood in front of them and because He was different they rejected Him. They were men of the letter - cerebral men. When you have the living Word of the Living Spirit - when something new shows up you have never seen before and it is God, you seize it. If it is a counterfeit then you can reject it and know it straight away. But if you live as a slave to religious systems you will worry and fret.

Look for the phrase; "Full rights as sons". (Galatians 4:1) "Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts crying Abba ... you are also an heir ...". Don't have a heart for religious calenders. Every day is a day to walk with God.

The first sign of legalism is that you lose your joy. What has happened to all your joy? The hardest thing as a preacher is to stir joy within a legalist.

Ishmael was born by ordinary means but Isaac was born by the power of God. Haggi and Sarah represent the two Covenants. The Covenant wrote on Mount Sinai produces slaves but the Covenant Sarah represents produces free men and free women. Who is your Mother? Romans 7 says we were married to the Law but then died to the Law! Some Christians commit spiritual adultary and go from the Law to Sarah. They don't know which one they belong to. Who is your Mother?! Haggi or Sarah? Even people of grace can be barren sometimes - you can have famine in the middle of favour. You are allowed to be joyful in barrenness!

Legalistic people love to dominate, control, elevate themselves as elitist and they love titles and control. They hate people of grace. They always point out your failures and your shortfalls and hate anything that encourages and uplifts.

Jesus the great High Priest wore ordinary clothes and let people call Him "Jesus". I am Rob. Not Pastor Rob or Rev Rob. That's why millions are leading institutional churches. But millions are gathering under the banner of grace. Don't be discouraged at the millions who are leaving.

It's better to be in the Caves of Adullum in David's Army than under Saul's legalistic rule.

The slavewoman's son will never share in the freewoman's inheritance. Kick the controlling spirit of witchcraft out! Get rid of condemnation! You are born under grace and have full rights as sons! Freedom! You don't need titles to be important but signs and wonders and the voice and Presence of God! What does the name Isaac mean? We are not children of the slave woman but the free woman! "Stand firm and do not let yourself be burdened again by a yoke of slavery". The yoke of slavery is the Law! We have churches around the world desperate for freedom but feel burdened by their sins. Everyone sins in this room! I don't encourage that - but even when you sin, you are STILL a son of God!

My obedience or disobedience does not make me righteous or unrighteous - my righteousness depends on the righteousness of the One Christ Jesus! Grace provides God's gift of righteousness!

The Law says "Do - do - do" to earn God's favour but grace says "It's DONE - you HAVE God's favour!".

Isaac means "Laughter". What is Sarah? Grace! What did grace give birth to? LAUGHTER! When the Toronto Blessing hit the earth, why did the majority of the Church call it blasphemy or evil? Why is joy frowned upon by most of the Church? Because they are children of Haggi. They felt elite because their failure to laugh is proof of their zealousness for God. Rather they are children of the slavewoman. When grace and Abraham got together they gave birth to laughter! What happens when you truly get a revelation of the grace of God? Laughter and joy will be birthed in your life!

Some teach that even if you don't have it now, just keep praising and He will give it to you. Error. Law - law - flesh - flesh! You have it NOW! You are not praising as a work of the flesh to earn it. You have it NOW! You are not praising to earn something! Maybe we have barrenness in our lives. Children - relationships - finance - husbands or wives.

When barrenness goes on in an area of our lives for a long time and are living in grace and believing in grace, yet grace doesn't seem to produce results, the temptation is to go back and try through the law to produce fruit. NO! If you are living in grace and haven't seen the signs and wonders in your life yet and are tempted to go back to a works programme of prayer and fasting and behavioural modification programmes you will drive yourself into insantity and become a religious nutter.

It is not your prayer and fasting that produces the supernatural in your life but rather your INHERITANCE in your life and one day you lay your hand on someone and miracles take place not because you have earned it but because of who your Father is.

(John 14:12) "I pray the Father and He will send you the Comforter who will abide with you forever". How many people can spend 9 hours in their prayer closet every day of the week? If that's what it takes to produce miracles then it is reserved for a few lucky full time guys. That's a works programme so that the Body of Christ will refer to gurus seeking them for themselves and what they do to earn the miracles.

Our heart in this church is to produce the Priesthood of every believer to run with the freedom of the New Covenant! Hong Kong needs it!

There are millions of God's people under the control of manipulating leaders who have taught the law and put them under such confusion and slavery and when they hear the light of grace and freedom and it is too much for those damaged souls and so they creep back into their pitholes of slavery. As a leader I need to be very patient and love and care for the people and bring them gently out into the glorious freedom and light of the Holy Spirit.

Don't come under the Law in trying to be free from the Law. The only One who can help you be free from the Law is the Spirit of His Son.