Sermons   David Wilkerson Today, Daily Devotions

STEPPING OUT IN FAITH

by Gary Wilkerson | September 17, 2012

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A short time ago I shared the first part of the story of when the Lord led my wife and me to London to plant a church. When we thought we might have to cancel our plans because we had nowhere to live, God miraculously provided a home through a businessman we met while on a missions trip to South Africa.

We had thought there was no hope, that we were not going to be able to make it and we would have to cancel our plans. But then we met this businessman. Only our God could orchestrate it so that a couple from New York would go to South Africa to find a place to live in London.

We moved to London and a few days after we arrived I took my son to a park near the house we were living in. As I pushed him on the swing set, I prayed, “Lord, You called us here to plant a church. Thank You for the house but I don’t know anybody here and I don’t know where to start the church.”

An older man walked up to the swings with his granddaughter. He turned to me, introduced himself, and asked me what I was doing in London.

“I’m a pastor,” I responded, “and we’re here to start a church.”

“I’m a pastor, too, and that’s my church,” he said, pointing to a beautiful, big church down the street named Holy Trinity Brompton.

I told him the story of Teen Challenge and Times Square Church and what we were now doing. The pastor invited me to his home later for tea and as we visited, he said, “I’ve been praying all afternoon and the Holy Spirit has put this strongly on my heart. We have a coffeehouse in an area where young people are into drugs and the party scene, and they are coming to Christ but there is no church. We have been praying that we could plant a church there but we have no pastor. Would you be willing to help us start this church? And would you be its pastor?”

I had been worried, but God had everything under control! The truth is, if we do not step out in faith, if we are not willing to risk, we will miss God’s best.
 

GO BACK TO BETHEL

by David Wilkerson | September 14, 2012

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God came to Jacob in a dream and said, "Go back to Bethel, the place where I first met you. Build an altar there, as you promised you would" (see Genesis 28:10-22 and 31:13).

Jacob had heard a clear word from God, and he acted in full obedience to that word. He knew that God would keep him, be with him, and fulfill His plan. Yet Jacob faced a peril that brought him to the very brink of destruction.

He was going back to face his brother, Esau, and his father, Isaac, both of whom he had deceived. At one point, a messenger came to Jacob, warning him, "Esau is coming this way with an army of four hundred men. He's out to get you!"

Scripture says, "Then Jacob was greatly afraid . . ." (Genesis 32:7). He quickly divided his clan into two groups, thinking, "If Esau kills one group, at least the other can escape." Yet, even in this most fearful experience of his life, we see proof of Jacob's broken, contrite heart:

"Jacob said, O God of my father Abraham, and God of my father Isaac, the Lord which saidst unto me, Return unto thy country, and to thy kindred, and I will deal well with thee: I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which thou hast shewed unto thy servant; for with my staff I passed over this Jordan; and now I am become two bands.

"Deliver me, I pray thee, from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau: for I fear him, lest he will come and smite me, and the mother with the children. And thou saidst, I will surely do thee good, and make thy seed as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude" (verses 9-12).

Jacob was holding to the covenant God had made with him. He was saying, in essence, "Lord, You made me a promise. I know I'm not worthy of it but You said You would go with me. But now I'm about to lose everything. I'm not claiming any goodness on my part but I love You and am obeying You. So, where is Your covenant, God?"

At the end of his life Jacob, a man with a contrite heart, could look back and say, “When my brother Esau threatened me, it looked like my life was over but God brought me out. My Lord was there the whole time!”

GOD, WHERE ARE YOU?

by David Wilkerson | September 13, 2012

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One night Jacob sat in an open field and had it out (wrestled) with the Lord: "God, how did I end up in this mess? You made such great promises to me. You told me You would guide me, keep me, fulfill Your plans in me. How could any of this be Your leading? What kind of covenant walk is this? Lord, I simply have no future" (see Genesis 32:24-26).

Now, you may reason to yourself, "Maybe Jacob didn't seek God about some of the choices he made. Maybe he acted out of his flesh.” Well, perhaps he did, but all that is beside the point. God could have intervened on Jacob's behalf at any time but He did not.

The fact is, we can have a contrite spirit and still have problems. You and your spouse may be going through a terrible trial. You have prayed, "Lord, I don't understand. I know my heart is right, and I'm walking with You, so why are You allowing this awful trial?"

Most of us think, as Jacob did, that contrite, praying Christians should not have to endure great sorrows. We should not have to face awful times or fearful conditions in which our very future is threatened. Yet, the reality is that humble, repentant, praying Christians still suffer great peril and sorrows.

Nowhere in the Bible does God promise to keep us from problems. Never does He promise us a smooth ride in our job or career. Nor does He promise us exemption from affliction. In fact, He says: "Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all" (Psalm 34:19). This verse does not say God delivers us from afflictions, but out of them.

Paul speaks of knowing the heights and depths of God's love for him. Yet the Lord didn't keep Paul's ship from sinking. In fact, He allowed the apostle to be stoned, beaten and disgraced. Paul says he was exposed to perils on land and on sea, from robbers and from his own countrymen.

At times we may weep, wondering, "God, where are You? Why haven't You taken me out of this?" But even though the Lord allows us to go through things that try our souls, in one way or another He delivers us out of them all, just as He did Jacob and Paul.

A CONTRITE SPIRIT

by David Wilkerson | September 12, 2012

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Why did God look so favorably upon Jacob, a deceiver? We read in Isaiah: "I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones" (Isaiah 57:15).

This passage describes a man who, like Jacob, is dejected, on the run, and God is reviving him, blessing him, honoring him. Isaiah adds: "But to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word" (Isaiah 66:2).

We know that humans consider the outward appearance, but God always looks at the heart. We can see only Jacob's covetousness, greed and manipulation. But God saw beyond his flesh and into something within his heart — a contrite, broken spirit. God knew that something in Jacob's heart was willing to be changed.

That is exactly what God is looking for in us. He looks for a broken, repentant heart He can work on. He cannot do anything with an Esau type, who takes the things of God for granted and weeps phony tears of repentance. Esau was sensual and his heart was hard. He was like many Christians today, floating through life with no purpose, wanting only to enjoy sensual pleasures along the way.

Jacob revered God’s Word. How do I know this? Think about it: Jacob must have heard his father, Isaac, repeatedly tell the story of how God had made a covenant with Jacob's grandfather, Abraham. He heard of the time Isaac was laid upon the altar to be slain, but when Abraham lifted the knife, God stopped him and showed him a lamb to be used for the sacrifice. Finally, Jacob also heard of the holy seed that was to come from the patriarchal lineage.

In addition to all this, Jacob's mother probably reminded him of the dream God had given her — that Jacob would be the holy seed. Jacob must have thrilled at the thought that one day he would be the head of the clan, carrying the torch of the lineage through which the Messiah would come!
 

JACOB’S LADDER

by David Wilkerson | September 11, 2012

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One of the most interesting people in the Old Testament is Jacob, a cheating, deceiving, manipulative man. Yet God loved this man dearly.

Jacob had tricked his brother Esau out of his birthright. When a famished Esau came in from hunting, Jacob offered him a pot of stew in exchange for his birthright. In their culture, the birthright was the right of the firstborn male to be the head of the clan. This included a “double blessing” — that is, receiving a double portion of all their father’s possessions. More importantly, whoever had the birthright was to be the progenitor of the patriarchal seed through which Christ would come: “And in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed” (Genesis 28:14).

Jacob had also stolen the patriarchal blessing from his father, Isaac — a blessing that belonged to Esau — by pretending to be Esau. When Esau learned that Jacob had stolen his blessing from their father, he was determined to kill him.

Their mother, Rebekah, persuaded Isaac to send Jacob away to where her brother Laban lived. She wanted Jacob to find a wife there and live peacefully. While Jacob was on his way, God gave him an incredible vision. He saw a ladder descending from heaven down to earth, with angels going to and from the throne of God, doing His bidding (see Genesis 28:12).

God was drawing back the curtain and showing Jacob divine activity that was going on all the time. All those angels were on assignment — going back and forth to the earth to guide and lead God’s people, minister to them, camp around them, warn them, protect them, guard them, provide for their needs.

Beloved, that ladder is still there! And those same angels have not aged a single hour since Jacob saw them. In fact, they are still working and ministering on our behalf today.

To Jacob, and through him to us, God then said, “I am with thee, and will keep thee in all the places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of” (Genesis 28:15).
 

THE SONG OF MOSES

by Gary Wilkerson | September 10, 2012

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Some reading this are saying, “I know God has given me a vision. He has given me a dream but my resources are too short to accomplish it.”

Moses said, “I don’t speak well enough” (Exodus 4:10). Others might say they don’t sing well enough or they don’t have leadership ability. But God says to you, “You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.” It is in the midst of being without resources that you see God’s glory.

I believe God sometimes withholds resources from us. He doesn’t do this to punish or hurt us but to reveal His glory, to show that He has everything we need — that He is in control of it all.

In Exodus 14 we see the children of Israel fleeing from Egypt as God sends them to camp by the Red Sea (Exodus 14:2). Camping by the sea at the right time is great but when you have an army of thousands of chariots and heavily-armed enemy soldiers coming after you, you might begin to think, “Uh-oh! This is not where I want to be right now. Maybe this is not the right time and place, God!”

When something like this happens there is a very strong temptation for us to begin to question God, to start saying, “Where are you, God? Why have You left me? Why aren’t You showing Yourself strong?”

We know the crossing of the Red Sea was a success! When the children of Israel crossed over to the other side, they began to sing what is called “The Song of Moses” or “The Song of Deliverance” out of Exodus 15:1-2 (ESV).

“I will sing to the LORD, for He has triumphed gloriously;
The horse and his rider He has thrown into the sea.
The Lord is my strength and my song
And He has become my salvation;
This is my God, and I will praise Him,
My father’s God, and I will exalt Him.”

This is our song, too!

2012 EXPECT Church Leadership Conference Colorado Springs, CO September 25th-27th

by World Challenge Staff | September 8, 2012

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Conference Overview

All over the world, pastors and church leaders labor day in and day out to bring His love to those in need. As a minister, you have no doubt experienced the joy of His hand guiding you. But like many, you may also have experienced the difficulty, the loneliness, the dryness, even the despair which can occasionally come to all of us who serve. The ministry you are about to be introduced to was established just for you, to strengthen you, to bring a fresh anointing of God’s love and divine healing into your ministry, into your family, into your church.

Please join us at the 2012 Colorado Springs Pastors Conference as we stand in awe at the healing work of God taking place in our very midst.

Speakers
Gary Wilkerson
Jim Cymbala
Carter Conlon
Claude Houde
Teresa Conlon
Tim Dilena

Register online at Wilkerson Publications

Register by phone at 903-963-8626

Venue
The Springs Church
1515 Auto Mall Loop
Colorado Springs, CO 80920
(719) 488-8331
www.thespringschurch.com
info@thespringschurch.com

Contact
Deanne Ward
deannelward@gmail.com

Suansee Chan
suansee@davidwilkerson.org
(212) 245-6026

 

SUBMITTED TO THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD

by David Wilkerson | September 7, 2012

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One thing that consistently robs us of our joy and peace with God is our endless striving to please Him in our flesh. We try to please the Lord in our human power but it will never be enough. Any victories will be short-lived, and the next time we are tempted, we will fall even farther.

Satan comes to you and whispers, "What about that sin you indulged in just yesterday? You are guilty!"

You can answer, "No, I've already asked forgiveness for that. And I've asked God to keep me from doing it again. It's all under the blood."

"But you are still tempted."

"True. But my Jesus has made a way of escape for me. His Word says I will be able to bear the temptation. He will deliver me, because He promised He would" (see 1 Corinthians 10:13).

"But God still has something against you. There are still unsettled matters in your life."

When the accuser brings up an "unsettled issue," some war that still rages within you, you can answer with this passage:

"And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled in the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight" (Colossians 1:21-22).

You can say, "Even when I was alienated in my mind by awful, evil works, even when I was in the pits of lust, even when I was one of God's worst enemies, the Bible says He loved me. He sought me out and reconciled me to Himself. He has translated me from the kingdom of darkness into His kingdom of light and made me to be at peace with Him. He loves me!"

The Bible says when we strive, we are "trying to establish our own righteousness." “For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God” (Romans 10:3). It is our flesh at work!
 

REDEEMED BY THE BLOOD OF JESUS

by David Wilkerson | September 6, 2012

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"I haven't yet attained — my flesh still resists the Spirit — but I am redeemed by my Savior's blood and I'm going to sing and shout praises to my God."

Does this sound like what you pray each morning? Probably not. Most likely, you start your day by finding ways to continue striving. You bite the bullet, promising God you will never return to your old ways.

When you win an occasional victory, you feel good about it. You tell yourself, "I did it! I knew if I would just put my heart and mind to it, I would get the victory." The tendency is to feel so proud about what you’ve done that you go around judging others who aren't victorious.

When I was younger, whenever I needed a victory over something, I would tell myself, "I'm going to do this if it kills me." A month would go by and I would think, "Those covetous thoughts are gone now. I'm free!" But it always proved to be only a partial victory. That is when discouragement would set in. I would cry, "Oh, God, I've begged you to deliver me, but You haven't. This thing is still in me." And I would blame God.

The fact was, I was so busy striving in my flesh to be righteous that I lost my understanding of true righteousness — the only righteousness the Father accepts. Only Jesus Christ stands righteous before God and when we stand before the Father, He accepts us only through Christ — through His righteousness and victory.

“What must I do?” you ask. Well, first, do not listen to the devil's lies. Second, get up on your spiritual feet and start giving praise to the Lord. Declare boldly, "By my faith in the blood of Jesus, I receive the righteousness of Christ. He has made me fit and qualified to worship and serve my Lord!"

"In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins" (Colossians 1:14). Redemption simply means "set free." We have been set free by Jesus' precious blood. We have the right to stand against every accusation and say, "I'm not buying that, devil. You've accused me for the last time. My Bible says I'm redeemed because I believe in what Jesus did for me at the cross. I confess my sins to Him and I am redeemed — free!"

 

HAVE YOU BEEN LISTENING TO THE LIES?

by David Wilkerson | September 5, 2012

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So, have you been listening to Satan's lies about your walk with Jesus? Have you been thinking you're unworthy, that you cannot worship God until you make everything perfect? I have good news for you. You already know Satan is a liar but I can prove to you that Jesus has made you clean, worthy to stand before Him and serve Him in faithfulness.

How are you made worthy? By Christ's sacrifice on the cross you are given every right to worship and serve the Lord.

"That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins" (Colossians 1:10-14).

The Greek rendering of this passage is: "The Father has made us fit, worthy, qualified in character — good enough to be partakers in the inheritance of the saints of light."

What Jesus did on the cross qualifies you for eternal inheritance. And if God has qualified you for eternal life, then He has made you strong in character. You could "sit down" from ministry for a month, a year, a whole lifetime trying to make yourself qualified for Him, working on your character in an effort to become good enough to be used of God. But you can never meet the criteria on your own.

Even if you were able to win victories over every wrong thing you have done, every wrong thought you have had, you still would not be qualified in God's sight. It is impossible. Why? Because God will not accept any righteousness except that of His own Son, Jesus Christ.

You cannot obtain the righteousness of Christ by working for it. The only way to obtain it is by believing and trusting God for it. It all happens by faith in what Jesus has done!

 

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