Sermons   David Wilkerson Today, Daily Devotions

LOVE NOT THE WORLD

by David Wilkerson | March 19, 2015

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The Word says, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world” (1 John 2:15). Jesus warned, “Beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth” (Luke 12:15).

Things—our possessions—can tie us down to this world. While heaven and hell prepare for war, we go shopping. Eternal values are at stake! The end of all we know is near—and we are busy playing with our toys!

Scripture says of Noah’s day, “They were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark” (Matthew 24:38). And of Lot’s day, “They bought, they sold, they planted, they builded” (Luke 17:28).

Now this activity wasn’t evil in and of itself. I’m sure Noah himself had to buy and sell. After all, he was in a building program for 120 years! But the key here is that the people did all these things even up to the day of judgment so no one was heeding, listening, preparing. No one was letting go of the spirit of bondage to material pleasures!

A missionary friend recently wrote from Hong Kong that he had eighteen Chinese students sleeping in his tiny apartment. The students, who were fleeing Communism, had no money and possessed only the clothes they were wearing.

These Christians are an example of people who have “let go.” They weren’t escaping their country because they want Western materialism. Rather, they simply wanted to be set free! They wanted to live in a country where the soul is free to worship!

By contrast, the Church is not escaping but digging in—to its TVs, its VCRs, its conveniences, its “good life.”

Ringing in my soul are those awesome words that Jesus gave to His servants when He said that for every idle word “they shall give account” (Matthew 12:36). If we must give account of every word, will we not be called to account for idle time and wasted money as well?

We all are going to stand before the Lord and give account. So we had better ask ourselves now: What are our reasons? Why are we so ill-prepared? Why so selfish? Why so wasteful?
 

THE FINAL BATTLEGROUND

by David Wilkerson | March 18, 2015

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“Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time” (Revelation 12:12).

Listen with your spirit to these words: Satan knows his time is short, for he has “come down” to the earth. This planet is the final battleground! He has prepared his forces, and his strategy is underway. All of hell is one big, satanic operations network!

Beloved, Satan’s main object is the elect of God. It is not the backslidden, apostate nation of Israel, nor a lukewarm, self-satisfied Church but rather, the spotless Bride of Christ! An elect, holy people consisting of blood-bought Jews and Gentiles—the true Church!

Satan is going to so thoroughly deceive the wicked that they will not repent even under the most severe judgment of God. “Spirits of devils, working miracles . . . to gather them to the battle of . . . God Almighty” (Revelation 16:14). They will not turn back to the Lord even if hell stares them in the eye. Only a people who are totally deceived could blaspheme God under a scorching sun that consumes!

The whole point of my message is this: While all heaven and hell have been put on alert, and everywhere in the spiritual realm the preparations are furious for the final hour, millions of Christians are fast asleep! This last-days spiritual sloth and sleepy unconcern have to be a source of bewilderment to both angels and demons!

The disciples slept through the Lord’s agony in the garden, and not much has changed today. Those followers were not prepared. They slept, and then they forsook the Lord and fled.

John the Baptist went before Jesus “to make ready a people prepared for the Lord” (Luke 1:17). The apostle John saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, consisting of a people “prepared as a bride adorned for her husband” (Revelation 21:2). Beloved, the Word is crystal-clear: We are to be prepared!
 

SILENCE IN HEAVEN

by David Wilkerson | March 17, 2015

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We are living in the days of final preparation. In heaven, in hell and on earth, tremendous activity is erupting as all of creation anticipates the culmination of man’s history.

If the Holy Spirit were to pull the scales from our eyes, we believers would be both joyful and horrified at what we saw. We would cry out, “What is going on? Why is everyone rushing about so determined, so intense? What is about to happen?”

Right now the heavens are ablaze with anticipation! Without question, a final conflict is coming—a time when every enemy will be put under our Lord’s feet. God is busily preparing!

If the veil separating the physical and spiritual could be lifted for a moment, what a sight we would behold! Everywhere we looked we would see preparations taking place. These preparations can be seen only as we are allowed glimpses into the eternal. And, without speculating, we can see what God has revealed in His Word about this final preparation taking place in heaven.

Revelation 6:1 says the Lamb opened one seal, and there was “the noise of thunder.” But following this is one of the most mind-boggling statements in all of God’s Word: “There was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour” (Revelation 8:1).

No angelic being cried, “Holy, holy!” No choirs sang—not a single sound was heard in all of God’s eternal kingdom! The heavens literally shook with a holy thunder but then God was silent. Christ and His Holy Spirit were silent. Why this silence? And why half an hour?

The prophet Zechariah provides a clue: “And the Lord shall inherit Judah his portion in the holy land, and shall choose Jerusalem again. Be silent, O all flesh, before the Lord: for he is raised up out of his holy habitation” (Zechariah 2:12-13).

Here we see God ready to claim His inheritance. All things have been put into place. Seven judgment-angels stand before Him, waiting to be given assignments to go forth and smite the earth. The time that was appointed from the foundation of the world has now come.

The words used in Scripture here speak of a holy hush, a great calm before the storm. And this silence is too holy, too incomprehensible for human minds. We can’t even speculate as to why, in this period just prior to the final judgment, God in His heaven is silent.
 

DON’T BE ANXIOUS

by Gary Wilkerson | March 16, 2015

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Let me ask you a simple question: Have you been set free? You probably think, “Of course! I’ve been redeemed and made holy by Jesus, and I live for Him. That’s every believer’s testimony.”

Now here’s a follow-up question: Does your everyday life reflect the glorious freedom you’ve just described? Would your friends, your spouse, your children say that you’ve been set free? Or are you like multitudes of Christians who feel they’re on a spiritual seesaw? Is your walk with Christ continually up and down, seemingly spiritual one moment and carnal the next?

We accept by faith the great theological truths about Jesus’ work for us—salvation, redemption, sanctification, deliverance. Yet for many of us, these are “spiritual truths” that exist in another world. We sing and rejoice at church over what Jesus has done for us—but is His gift of freedom a reality in our daily lives?

At times we all struggle to remain pure in thoughts and actions. Whenever we fail in our walk with God—which is often—we wonder, “Has God really set me free?” If your answer to that is no—if you feel stuck in an up-and-down life—maybe you worry about your standing with God. Perhaps at times you even question your salvation. Friend, that isn’t freedom. So what does it really mean to be set free in Christ?

The first evidence of this comes from Jesus, who says, “Which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? . . . Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Matthew 6:27, 33).

Lately I’ve been anxious about something very real: my age! When I was in my twenties, I looked at my dad in his fifties and thought, “He’s so ancient.” Now that I’ve reached my fifties and am well into the second half of life, I’m starting to freak out. What does Jesus say to me in my worries? “Gary, can you add a single hour to your span of life? Don’t be anxious.”

Christ offers the same words to all of us who fret about our spiritual lives: Don’t be anxious. Regardless of how broken down and teetering you feel about your walk with Him, He declares, “You are a new creation.” The moment you chose to follow Jesus, He made you new—and that never changes. Even when you think you’ve strayed too far, Jesus says the opposite: “Don’t be anxious. I have provided everything you need to have fellowship with Me.
 

PRAYER REVIVAL

by Jim Cymbala | March 14, 2015

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Revivals have never been dominated by eloquent or clever preaching. If you had timed the meetings of old with a stopwatch, you would have found far more minutes given to prayer, weeping and repentance than to sermons. In the “Prayer Meeting Revival” of 1857-59 there was virtually no preaching at all. Yet it apparently produced the greatest harvest of any spiritual awakening in American history: estimates run to 1,000,000 converts across the United States, out of a national population at that time of only 30,000,000. That would be proportionate to 9,000,000 today falling on their knees in repentance.

How did this happen? A quiet businessman named Jeremiah Lanphier started a Wednesday noon prayer meeting in a Dutch Reformed church here in New York City, no more than a quarter mile from Wall Street. The first week, six people showed up. The next week, twenty came. The next forty . . . and then they decided to have daily meetings.

“There was no fanaticism, no hysteria, just an incredible movement of people to pray,” reports J. Edwin Orr. “The services were not given over to preaching. Instead, anyone was free to pray.”

During the fourth week, the Panic of 1857 hit; the bond market crashed, and the first banks failed. (Within a month, more than 1400 banks had collapsed.) People began calling out to God more seriously than ever. Lanphier’s church started having three noontime prayer meetings in different rooms. John Street Methodist Church, a few doors east of Broadway, was packed out as well. Soon Burton’s Theater on Chambers Street was jammed with 3,000 people each noon.

The scene was soon replicated in Boston, New Haven, Philadelphia, Washington, and cities throughout the southern United States. By the next spring 2,000 Chicagoans were gathering each day in the Metropolitan Theater to pray. A young 21-year-old, newly arrived in the city, felt his first call to do Christian work in those meetings. He wrote his mother that he was going to start a Sunday school class. His name? Dwight L. Moody!

Does anyone really think that America today is lacking preachers, books, Bible translations, and neat doctrinal statements? What we really lack is the passion to call upon the Lord until He opens the heavens and shows Himself powerful.

 

Jim Cymbala began Brooklyn Tabernacle with less than twenty members in a small, rundown building in a difficult part of the city. A native of Brooklyn and longtime friend of both David and Gary Wilkerson, Cymbala is a frequent speaker at the Expect Church Leadership Conferences sponsored by World Challenge throughout the world.
 

A SINGLE STEP

by David Wilkerson | March 13, 2015

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Is it possible to really love the Lord, have a heart for God, spend time and money in His work, put God first, be dedicated to Him—and still hold on to areas of disobedience to the clear Word of God?

With all his heart Solomon wanted divine wisdom and discernment to know the difference between right and wrong. God appeared to him in a dream and said, “Ask what I shall give thee” (1 Kings 3:5). Solomon was given “an understanding heart to . . . discern between good and bad” (1 Kings 3:9). But God added this warning: “If thou wilt walk in my ways, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as thy father David did walk, then I will lengthen thy days” (1 Kings 3:14). Solomon heard a powerful sermon from God Himself! He had the sermons of his father David ringing in his ears and also the example of his father’s sin and consequent judgment. He had the law and the judges, including Deborah, Samuel and the prophet Nathan. David warned, “Keep the charge of the Lord thy God . . . to keep his statutes, and his commandments . . . as it is written in the law of Moses” (1 Kings 2:3).

Solomon knew the Word. As a result of all God revealed to him, he wrote over a thousand songs and three thousand proverbs! In his proverbs, he warned against the evil power of strange women: “Her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword. Her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell” (Proverbs 5:4-5). Oh, how he knew the Word! How good he was at preaching it to others. World leaders came to consult with him. But as wise, discerning, and God-blessed as he was, he still clung to areas of disobedience in his life.

Solomon took a single step of disobedience which eventually turned him into a hardened, sermon-proof, lust-driven man. He considered it a small indiscretion when he took the daughter of Pharaoh as his wife; to him it was just a marriage of convenience. He “took Pharaoh's daughter, and brought her into the city of David” (1 Kings 3:1). She was the strange woman Solomon warned against in his proverbs, the woman whose gate led to hell! The daughter of Pharaoh represents that single cord that still holds us to something of this world, a single, besetting sin that is not surrendered—that single compromise that always seems justified!
 

A MIND TO WORK

by David Wilkerson | March 12, 2015

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Prayer and humility, along with a hatred for sin, produces a “mind to work.” “So built we the wall; and all the wall was joined together unto the half thereof: for the people had a mind to work” (Nehemiah 4:6). True revivals of holiness always produce workers. Books and seminars and lectures don’t—but revival does!

When God is doing something genuine among His people, Satan conspires against it. “But it came to pass, that when Sanballat, and Tobiah, and the Arabians, and the Ammonites, and the Ashdodites, heard that the walls of Jerusalem were made up, and that the breaches began to be stopped, then they were very wroth, and conspired all of them together to come and to fight against Jerusalem, and to hinder it” (Nehemiah 4:7-8).

The enemy became very angry and conspired to come up against them to fight and to hinder! His tactic was to secretly infiltrate the body by sneaking up on them unexpectedly. “Our adversaries said, They shall not know, neither see, till we come in the midst among them, and slay them, and cause the work to cease” (verse 11).

They planned to bring into their midst a secret army of pretenders in disguise. The enemy had no sudden, open, frontal attack, but rather said, “We will come in the midst among them!”

The tactic was inside sabotage! The enemy said, “They will never know it is happening.”

And Satan’s strategy has never changed. Even now he is sending his “angels of light” into gatherings worldwide with doctrinal sabotage and seductions.

How can we detect them? What is our safeguard? “Nevertheless we made our prayer unto our God, and set a watch against them day and night, because of them” (Nehemiah 4:9). The key here is an intense hatred for sin, true brokenness, fervent prayer and constant vigilance—along with staying saturated with the Word of God.

Beloved, allow the Holy Spirit to probe your heart very deeply and very thoroughly, that you may walk wholly blameless before the Lord in this late hour.
 

GOD IS AT WORK!

by David Wilkerson | March 11, 2015

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In 1986 I walked through Times Square in New York City, weeping and mourning because of all the sin. I went back to my home in Texas, and for more than a year I wept and mourned. Then God said, “Go and do something about all the ruin.”

I had come and seen the destruction, but I was not fully broken until I was moved with hope to begin to rebuild the wall!

Have you been “viewing the ruin” in your own life? Like David, have you sinned and brought reproach on His name? Is there a breach in your wall, something that is not repaired?

Beloved, it is good to fall on the Rock (Jesus) and be shattered—to be broken into little pieces. When you see Christ in all His glory, the sight of Him will indeed shatter you. Even the good things in you—the talent, the efficiency, all your abilities—will be shattered when you stand before Him, helpless and drained!

Daniel said, “There remained no strength in me: for my comeliness (strength) was turned in me into corruption (ruin), and I retained no strength” (Daniel 10:8). Brokenness is the total shattering of all human strength and ability. It is recognizing the full reality of sin and the reproach it brings on Christ’s name!

However, brokenness is also recognizing this: “Stand upright: for unto thee am I now sent” (Daniel 10:11). It is the absolute assurance that things are going to change—that healing and rebuilding are going to come. Your ruins are going to be reclaimed for God!

It is a holy faith that says, “God is at work in me! Satan cannot hold me. I am not going to deteriorate or fall. My sin has grieved me, but I have repented. Now it’s time to rise and rebuild!”

Until you take hold of that hope, zeal and determination, you will not get past your tears. Your life may still appear to be a rubble heap, with mounds of dirt and broken-down places that need repair. But remember that you have His sword and tools in hand. And above you there is a big sign, posted by the Lord’s own hand, that reads: GOD IS AT WORK!
 

A BROKEN HEART

by David Wilkerson | March 10, 2015

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I once thought I knew what a broken heart was. I thought I had experienced much brokenness— until the Holy Spirit opened my eyes to a deeper meaning of the word.

David said, “The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit” (Psalm 34:18).

Brokenness is more than weeping, more than sorrow, more than a crushed spirit, more than humility. Indeed, many who weep are not brokenhearted. Many who lie before God and groan are not broken in spirit. True brokenness releases in the heart the greatest power God can entrust to man—greater than power to raise the dead, greater than power over sickness and disease!

The Spirit said to my heart, “I will show you what God sees as brokenheartedness so that I can release in you the kind of power needed in a time of ruin.” This brokenness results in a power to restore ruins—a power that brings a special kind of glory and honor to our Lord in troubled times!

Brokenness has to do with walls: broken down, crumbling, ruined walls. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and contrite heart. . . . Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: build thou the walls of Jerusalem” (Psalm 51:17-18). God associated the walls of Jerusalem with brokenheartedness.

Let me show you an example of a truly brokenhearted man: “And I arose in the night, I and some few men with me; neither told I any man what my God had put in my heart to do at Jerusalem: neither was there any beast with me, save the beast I rode upon. . . . Then went I up in the night by the brook, and viewed the wall, and turned back, and entered by the gate of the valley, and so returned” (Nehemiah 2:12, 15).

In the dark of night Nehemiah “viewed the wall.” The Hebrew word shabar is used here—the same word used in Psalm 51:17 for “broken heart.”

Some would think Nehemiah became broken when he “sat down and wept, and mourned certain days, and fasted, and prayed before the God of heaven” (Nehemiah 1:4). Yet his weeping and confessing was only the beginning of the breaking. Nehemiah's heart was not fully broken until he came to Jerusalem, saw the ruin—and set himself to do something about it!
 

CONSTANT BATTLE

by Gary Wilkerson | March 9, 2015

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Why do we sense we’re in a constant battle? It’s like the cartoon where a devil sits on one shoulder and an angel on the other, each warring for attention. We are engaged in a battle, but not that kind. Paul addresses our real dilemma in Romans: “We know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. . . . I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh” (Romans 7:14-15, 18, ESV).

Paul doesn’t mince words here as he describes his condition: “I am of the flesh. I do evil all the time. No good dwells within me.” So, is this Paul’s basic description of a Christian? Is he saying, “All your days will be full of such conflict”? Not at all.

Yet Paul presses in further: “When I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” (7:21-24).

Many Christians stop here and say, “That’s me—I’m saved but my life is wretched. There’s no way God could ever use me. I spend every waking hour just fighting off sin.” The problem is, these Christians don’t know who they are in Christ and that is exactly Paul’s point. He paints a full picture of our dilemma, describing our wretched condition, and asks, “Is there any way out? How can I ever be delivered from this? It’s impossible in my own strength.”

Then, in one of the most amazing passages recorded in Scripture, Paul gives us God’s response to the human condition: “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! . . . There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death” (7:25, 8:1-2).

There is a new law at work in you—because there’s a new sheriff in town! Jesus, the new sheriff, has run out the old, corrupt one—the “old man” of your flesh. You no longer live under the law of sin and death, for “the law of the Spirit has set you free in Christ Jesus.”
 

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