Archive for July, 2012
In the authority of Jesus’ name, I rebuke that itching and command it to leave your eye now. And I believe you’ll find it changed.
Now, young lady, would you stand up? What were you going to say? Okay. Does the Bible say so? No, the Bible doesn’t say. The Bible says there are nine gifts, and that the Holy Spirit manifests them through whomever He chooses, whenever He chooses because every born-again believer has the Holy Spirit. Don’t you?
People say, “When did you get the Holy Ghost?” I got Him when I got saved. It’s when you got Him. How else could you get saved unless the Holy Spirit comes in, as the scripture says, and bears witness with your spirit that you’re born again?
So every believer has the Holy Spirit already in them. Now He is not going to manifest himself through a non-Christian. He’s not going to do that. So when you see these so-called psychics and these, you know, the Cleos and those people of the world, when you see them not giving any glory to God, you know they’re operating by a spirit of divination. And you’ll find that in Acts, I believe it’s chapter 16. And the apostle Paul cast that out.
Satan has a counterfeit. When you see these little—usually it’s a little house on a street that says “Psychic,” or “Palm reader.” By the way, let me give you a very stern word of warning. Don’t ever, ever in your life go to one, ever. Don’t ever have someone take Tarot cards for you. Don’t ever have someone hold your hand and try to figure out what’s going to happen because, first of all, it’s very real. And there may be some truth in what is said.
But let me tell you the other side of the coin. The Bible says that King Saul lost his throne because he sought the advice of a sorcerer. Don’t mess with that. You may very well get some truth, because satan also knows the Word of God. Okay? But just don’t ever do it.
Now you might be interested to know that the gift of prophecy has come through me. The gift of the discerning of spirits, the gift of faith, the gifts of healing, the word of knowledge, the word of wisdom. But did you know, never once in my life has the gift of tongues or the gift of interpretation of tongues manifested through me.
However, I pray in tongues every day of my life, and I can do it at will any time, night or day. So it’s different. Don’t confuse the two. Okay, somebody else, what did you get today that you didn’t know before? Stand up. Yes. Got it. Yep. Yep. You’ll never forget that, will you? That’s good, isn’t it?
You know who I got that from, don’t you? Anybody want to take a guess? That’s right. Somebody else, what did you get today? We’ve got a couple more minutes. What did you learn that you didn’t know before? Yes, real loud. The gift of tongues and the gift of interpretation of tongues is sovereign.
In other words, it happens only when He chooses. We can’t walk up and say, “Well, I believe I’ll just operate in a gift,” you know. We can’t do that. Can’t do that. That would be like me walking in, saying, “Well, I just believe that I’m going to decide right now the word of knowledge is going to work through me.” I’ll be embarrassed quickly.
Now there’s sometimes it operates when I wish it didn’t operate. You know, I’ve been in some situations where I didn’t want to give that word. But I have to be obedient.
Would you stand up? Which one of you over here has, your right eye has been itching real bad? Somebody in here has had a right eye that’s itching real bad. I thought it was on this side of the room. Is it you? Would you just stand up? I may get the right one, the left one. Just several of you lay hands on him.
And she was just a little bit intimidated because of her surroundings. And I can understand that. I can understand that. And she needed someone to prime her pump and allow her to say, “Okay, I can just be me and allow the Holy Spirit to move through me.” And she did, and it was wonderful.
But we’re going to have more of that because I want the operation of the supernatural on this campus. And I don’t care who doesn’t like it. You know, if someone comes to ORU and says, “Well, that’s not why I’m here,” well, fine. Go to some other university.
I’ll look them squarely in the eyes and say, “I will make it without you.” God will send students who want to be here for the right reason, to get an education in a Holy Spirit environment.
So, you know, don’t mess with me at that point because we’re going to be what God has called us to be. And it doesn’t make any difference to me if I’m in chapel in a suit like I am today because I’m got an alumni meeting this afternoon, or if I’m in jeans. I’m the same, the same me, no matter what I’m wearing. And so are you.
Now did you get anything this morning? Did you learn anything that you didn’t already know? What did you learn? Somebody stand up and tell me what you got today that you didn’t know before. Gift of tongues, interpretation of tongues must work together. That’s good.
Somebody else, what did you get today? What did you get that you didn’t know before? Just anybody. Just stand up and shout it out. Yeah, stand up. Different, that when you pray in tongues yourself in your daily devotional prayer language, that’s different than the operation of the gift of tongues and the gift of interpretation of tongues.
Another example would be in Matthew 14, where Jesus fed the five thousand with a couple loaves of bread and a few fish. Those are workings of miracles.
But God is still operating the working of miracles today. And I’ll give you one of the greatest examples of working of miracles that you’ll ever hear about, the fact that you got in to ORU. I mean, that you actually got here, and you could pay, and that you’re still here. You haven’t gone home. That’s a working of miracles, okay?
Because many of you thought you’d never, ever, ever make it into college. And you thought, I’ll never go to ORU. It’s not possible. But God worked a miracle. Okay, how many of you can testify? That’s what I thought. All right. That’s an operation of the working of miracles.
The third power gift is the gift of faith, the gift of faith. This is a supernatural faith that the Holy Spirit gives us. The gift of faith comes into operation when our faith seems to stop or reaches its limit.
There have been times in my life where in my own faith, in my own believing, I seem to have reached a plateau. I seem to have hit the ceiling. Have you ever faced something like that, where you believed all you can and you just seem to hit the ceiling, when suddenly something happens and you break through. And suddenly the sky seems to be the limit to your faith. Something happens, and you just, “Wow! I’m believing better than I thought I could believe.” That is when God steps in and operates a gift of faith through you.
Now one tremendous example is in the early days as ORU was preparing to be built, my father, who, by the way, celebrated his 89th birthday last Wednesday. And I’m going to see him. I’m going to see him this weekend. He’s out here, he and I are out here, I’m a teenager, I’m 12, 13, 14 years old. And he’s out here walking on these bare grounds.
That’s why mostly in third world countries, I pray for the sick before I give an invitation, because more people get saved after they see healings. It tenderizes their hearts.
Okay, that is how the gifts of healing operate. And one example that you can write down and study out yourself is in Acts, chapter 3, verses 1-9. This is a story of Peter and John, who were going to church, going to the synagogue, going to church. And they came through the gate, which is called the Beautiful gate, and there was a man who had been carried there every day, forty years of age, who was crippled.
And I’m sure most of you know the story. They said to him, “Such as we have, we give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ, rise up and walk.” And Peter put out his hand and lifted the man up, and he was healed. That was an operation of the gifts of healing. It caused quite a bit of problem, you know, in Jerusalem whenever they did that. But those are operations of the gifts of healing.
Now very quickly, the working of miracles. That’s the second one, the working of miracles. The second power gift is the working of miracles. This is a supernatural intervention of the Holy Spirit’s power to alter natural events or circumstances. Supernatural intervention by the Holy Spirit’s power to change or alter natural events or circumstances. You’ll find this throughout the Bible.
One example would be in the book of Exodus, the miracle that Moses did in Pharaoh’s court. The flies, the lice, the cattle dying, the blood in the water, the frogs, the hailstones, all those things were working of miracles.
When the Israelites crossed the Red Sea and the Egyptian army drowned in it, that was an operation of the working of miracles.
Another example would be in Joshua, chapter 10, when Joshua commanded the sun to stand still, and it did. Israel was about to lose the battle, and they needed daylight to finish the war. And Joshua spoke to the sun and commanded it to stand still. Really, what happened was, it wasn’t the sun that stood still. It was the earth that stood still, because the earth circles the sun. But we say the sun stood still.
And I thought, Well, that’s unusual that somebody would bring a dog to the civic center, when I recognized it wasn’t a dog. It was a human being. And I said, “Lord, reveal to me by the operation of the discerning of spirits what this is.”
And I heard this dog, what I thought was a dog, barking. But it was a person that was barking. It was a person barking like in a false tongue. Now there were four or five thousand people there.
I just started my sermon. And I was preaching, and I was trying to look around to see where this was coming from, when all of a sudden—there were two floors. Downstairs was a flat floor, and there was a balcony. And right at the back of the center aisle, there were two doors. And all of a sudden, the two back doors burst open.
Well, you can imagine a room that’s somewhat darkened, and the light is out in the lobby. This shaft of light came in the room. And I see this man, who is coming down the center aisle. He is barking like a dog. I’d never seen anything like it in my life.
He had what appeared to be a whip. It turned out to be a switch from a tree that he had made into a whip. And he was foaming at the mouth. Hollywood cannot touch what I saw that day. Steven King can’t describe what I saw that day.
And he’s coming at me. And it was a flat floor like this and loose chairs like these, and the people began to go this way, as if to say, “Let him pass.”
And he’s coming down the aisle. He’s barking. I’m not kidding, the foam is running down—I’d never seen anything like it in my life. And he’s cracking this whip over the people’s head, barking like a dog, coming at me.
Now I was minding my own business. There was a bunch of pastors on the platform, and I turned to them and I said, “Why doesn’t somebody do something about him?” when the Lord said to me, “Why don’t you do something about him?”
And we don’t recognize that that’s God giving us a word of wisdom. These gifts don’t just necessarily flow through someone who has a microphone in their hand, standing before 20,000, 30,000 people in Africa, or before a class, or before a chapel service.
And many people make the mistake of thinking, “Well, the gifts of the Spirit, Richard, are just for people like you.” Well, that could be nothing farther from the truth. The operation of the gifts of the Spirit are to flow through believers.
All right, how many of you are believers? Then you’re a candidate. Okay. And I dare say as we go through this, you’re going to find that these things have operated and possibly are operating now, and you’re going to have a better idea of what that is that you’ve been feeling. Okay.
So in dealing with the word of wisdom, I want to give you some scripture that you can write down of examples. Because you say, “Well, this all happened in just the New Testament.” No, that’s not true either. You’ll find the gifts of the Spirit throughout the whole Bible. And here’s some examples. In 1 Kings 17, verses 8-16, you’ll find an operation of the word of wisdom.
Now let me just pause right here and say that oftentimes God will manifest one or two or sometimes three of the gifts of the Spirit at the same time. You know, God is sovereign. He can do whatever He wants, and usually does.
All right, 1 Kings 17:8-16 is the story of Elijah and the widow of Zarephath. Now I’m sure that many of you are aware of the story of how Elijah had prophesied to King Ahab and the nation of Israel because of their disobedience, it was not going to rain. And there was a major drought in Israel.
And they got so mad at him, he had to run for his life. And God sent him down to a little place, a little stream of water, called the Cherith brook. And there he drank from the brook, and the ravens, the crows, came and fed him flesh or meat.
And the time came when the brook dried up because of the drought and the birds stopped bringing the food. And God spoke to him and said, “Go to Zarephath where I have commanded a widow to sustain you.”