Sermons   David Wilkerson Today, Daily Devotions

COMPARING OURSELVES TO OTHERS

by David Wilkerson | June 1, 2012

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In my younger years, I compared myself to certain others who appeared to be holy. These people seemed to be aglow — always upbeat, smiling, seeming much more Christlike than I. I never thought I measured up to their holiness, so I prayed, "Lord, make me righteous like Brother So-and-so. How wonderful it must be to live that way for You."

How wrong I was! These people were not who I thought they were. Indeed, I have learned that nothing is as it appears; no one is quite as evil or quite as good as he may seem. Rather, there is only One who is truly righteous — Jesus Christ our Lord — and His righteousness is perfect.

If we are in Christ, we have His righteousness and it is not attributed to us by degrees. No one receives more or less of it — rather, by faith we receive it in its fullness.

We are to measure ourselves by His righteousness alone and not by anyone else's supposed righteousness. "But they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. . . . According to the measure of the rule which God hath distributed to us, a measure to reach even unto you" (2 Corinthians 10:12-13).

Paul is saying here, "There's a rule you can use to measure yourself. It is this: Everyone who truly repents and believes in the perfect righteousness of Christ — who comes to Him in faith, believing in His work on the cross — is made perfectly righteous in the sight of God. You may not have everything worked out yet. There is still a daily work of sanctification through the power of the Holy Spirit. But you are accepted in the beloved, imputed with the very righteousness of Christ."

Dearly beloved, it is time you stopped putting yourself either up or down as measured against others. God has imputed to you the full measure of the perfect righteousness of Christ: "Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ" (Ephesians 4:13).

JESUS RANSOMED US

by David Wilkerson | May 31, 2012

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By Adam's sin, we all were made sinners and by Jesus' sacrifice, we are made righteous. Jesus ransomed us, paid the price, so that the devil would have no claim on those who repent and trust in Christ and His completed work.

All along God knew that man could not keep or fulfill His divine law. He had instituted the law to bring order to the human race, lest we destroy ourselves. The law was for our own protection; it was to make us realize that in our own strength and righteousness, we could not stand before a holy God. The law was a mirror God held up to us, saying, "Let me show you what I expect, what My justice requires. Here is My law and here is where you've failed, where you're living in sin. You have failed at this point . . . this point . . . and this point. No one is righteous enough to fulfill My law!"

The Pharisees tried to fulfill the law. They observed more than 600 regulations, from the washing of hands and pots to refusing to touch a Gentile. They tried to keep all the law, believing that one day they could stand before God and say, "I kept all Your laws. I did this, this and this. Now You are obligated to save me."

But no one can expect his good works to merit justification. God's Word answers, "If you've failed just one point of the law, you've failed the whole law!" If you expect God to accept you for your good behavior, forget it! You'll never be able to keep the whole law.
Because we couldn't meet justice's demands to fulfill God's law, Jesus came to earth and perfectly fulfilled the law of God. He never failed one point of it and He did it all out of pure motives of love. "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil" (Matthew 5:17).

When Jesus ascended to the Father, His perfect obedience had fulfilled all the demands of the law and His blood was presented in full payment for our sin. Here stood a Man in the presence of God whose righteousness was perfect and therefore acceptable to the Father.

OUR INHERITANCE

by David Wilkerson | May 30, 2012

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When Elijah went up to heaven, he left Elisha his cloak (2 Kings 2:13). Likewise, when Jesus went up to the Father, He left us His own garment — His perfect righteousness. He cast it upon us, as surely as Elijah cast his garment upon Elisha. The prophet's action was a type and shadow of what was going to happen when Jesus was translated to the Father. Indeed, we are heirs to a wonderful garment of righteousness that covers us completely, making us acceptable in God's holy presence!

This garment is our inheritance and God expects us to value it. He expects us to seek after it, to be willing heirs to His legacy. You may remember what happened when King Ahab came against Naboth, coveting his vineyard. Naboth valued his vineyard so much, he rejected Ahab's offer to buy it, saying, "The Lord forbid it me, that I should give the inheritance of my fathers unto thee" (1 Kings 21:3). He was saying, "God forbid that anyone should take my inheritance from me. It's mine!"

I believe the most important thing you can seek from God is the understanding that this inheritance is yours and it is waiting to be claimed. The knowledge of the perfect righteousness of Jesus will put you on a rock that is unshakable. It will end all your useless struggles and put you in God's presence justified and accepted.

If God has provided you with an inheritance whereby you can stand before Him with perfect righteousness in Jesus Christ, then you should want it. It should be an inheritance nobody can take from you. No lie of the devil should be able to remove it from your spirit, no man should be able to steal it from you, and no emotion should drain you of it.

Because God said it, you must lay hold of it! You need to seek it, go after it, allow your soul no rest until you get your hands on it. "Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you" (Matthew 6:33).

PERFECT RIGHTEOUSNESS

by David Wilkerson | May 29, 2012

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God accepts only one kind of righteousness — perfect righteousness. Nothing else will stand in His presence on Judgment Day. Unless our righteousness is absolutely perfect, He cannot save us, justify us, recognize or accept us. This perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ our Lord can be had only by faith.

The writer of Hebrews introduces us to the truth that this righteousness is the inheritance of all true believers. It is something Jesus has left for us, something that belongs to us, a legacy: "By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith" (Hebrews 11:7).

Noah became an heir not by building an ark, but by what he believed and preached. He grasped this knowledge of righteousness which God had revealed to him — a righteousness that is by faith — and he became an heir of a perfect righteousness!

Beloved, you and I were given a great inheritance when Christ departed the earth. He left us a title and deed to His very own perfect righteousness. Of course, Jesus lived in absolute poverty while on this earth; He owned no land, had no money. But He left us riches greater than the diamond mines of South Africa; greater than the oil fields in the Middle East; greater than the gold and silver buried under America's mountains. Jesus gave us an inheritance that can make us far richer than any person on the face of the earth. It is an inheritance to a perfect righteousness that allows us to stand before God without condemnation.

Once you understand this inheritance, you can stand against every devil in hell. Satan will not be able to accuse you before the Father, before your brethren, before your own conscience, because you are an heir to the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ!

GIDEON’S 300

by Gary Wilkerson | May 28, 2012

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“And Gideon came to the Jordan and crossed over, he and the 300 men who were with him, exhausted yet pursuing” (Judges 8:4, ESV).

Judges 7:1 tells us that Gideon and his 32,000 men were about to go to war with the Midianites who had well over 100,000 soldiers. Those are not good odds.

God said to Gideon and his men, “If any of you are weary or distraught or discouraged or fearful or timid, I want you to go home” (see Judges 7:3).

We see that 22,000 left and 10,000 remained and the Lord said to Gideon, “The people are still too many. Take them down to the water, and I will test them for you there, and anyone of whom I say to you, ‘This one shall go with you,’ shall go with you, and anyone of whom I say to you, ‘This one shall not go with you,’ shall not go” (Judges 7:4, ESV).

So now it’s 300 against 100,000!

Late at night with only 300 soldiers left, Gideon went to the camp of the Midianites and heard two Midianite soldiers talking. One soldier said to the other, “I had a dream. It was like a piece of tumbleweed was blowing around and when it blew through our camp it knocked all of our tents and armory down.” The other soldier answered, “That is Gideon and his soldiers tearing down our camp” (7:13-14).

What he heard brought such an encouragement to the soul of Gideon that he began to believe that he could win this battle. What is his response?

“As soon as Gideon heard the telling of the dream and its interpretation, he worshiped” (7:15).

Gideon began to worship! God’s goal in bringing us to a place of victory in the midst of our struggle, in the midst of our pain, is to cause us to exalt and worship Jesus Christ.

God is not after just the victory in your life — helping you in your finances, helping you find a job, helping with your marriage. He will help you with all those things, of course, but what God really wants is a people who worship Him.
 

KNOWING TIMES OF REFRESHING

by David Wilkerson | May 25, 2012

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I believe I am speaking to a number of godly people who love Jesus with all their heart and who are at a point of deep despair.
What is the way to victory?

1. Dive into God's Word. Lay hold of your special promise, take it into the secret prayer closet, and hold God to it. I present my favorite promises to God whenever I cry out to Him:

  • "What man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?" (Matthew 7:9-11).

Ask the Lord for good things for He is waiting to give them to you. Ask Him to set you free, to take away all your shame, to remove all the stain of sin. He longs to do it for you.

  • "Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen" (Ephesians 3:20-21).

Take this promise to God every day, saying, "Father, You said You would do well above everything I ask so today I'm asking You to over-answer my prayer." God is pleased by such faith!

2. Trust the Holy Spirit. The Father has sent His Spirit to reside in your heart but you must acknowledge that He is within you to answer. God doesn't have to send an angel to speak to you; He has already put His resources within you — the Holy Spirit Himself.

Say to Him, "Holy Spirit, You know the way out of this mess. I don't. It's completely beyond me. So I'm resigning right now and I give direction of my life to You. I know that what I'm going through is not uncommon to believers and I am going to hold the Lord to His great and precious promises. And then I will trust You to do the rest because You know the very mind of God!"

Dearly beloved, if you make this simple confession, you will know times of refreshing from the Lord. Even when you are ready to give up, He remains faithful to deliver you.

PRESSED BEYOND MEASURE

by David Wilkerson | May 24, 2012

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Perhaps like Paul, you are being pressed beyond measure, tested beyond your endurance. Your strength is nearly gone, and you are on the brink of giving up. You want to run, but there is no place to go. Now you say with Paul, "This is above my strength!"

So, what is the way to victory? All I can tell you is how God continues to bring me out. Here are two important truths He has given me:

1. Don't think you are experiencing some strange, unique battle. On the contrary, you are in good company. Recall Job, Jeremiah, Elijah, David, Paul — even me. What you are going through is common to believers throughout the centuries.

"Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy" (1 Peter 4:12-13).

2. When you think you can't go on another hour — when everything looks absolutely hopeless — cry out to God with all that is in you, "Lord, help!" Consider the counsel of the psalmist in the following verses:

  • "As for me, I will call upon God; and the Lord shall save me. Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice. He hath delivered my soul in peace from the battle that was against me: for there were many with me" (Psalm 55:16-18).
  • "I will love thee, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower. . . . In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears" (18:1-2, 6).
  • "O Lord my God, I cried unto thee, and thou hast healed me. O Lord, thou hast brought up my soul from the grave: thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit" (30:2-3).

Here is a key verse: "For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also, and him that hath no helper" (72:12). Jesus has sent the Holy Spirit to be your helper and He will not turn a deaf ear to your cry for help!

BUILDING ON THE ROCK

by David Wilkerson | May 23, 2012

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“Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock” (Matthew 7:24).

Beloved, you are not building on the rock if you need a preacher to thunder at you to obey God — if you need a set of do's and don'ts. You don't need a book of rules, you need a passionate love for Jesus. You need to be so in love with Him that you know what pleases Him.

The more you love Him, the easier it is to serve and obey Him. You will no longer care what the world says about you. You can answer, "I've heard from my Father and I'm doing the good pleasure of His heart!"

When your heart is enraptured with Jesus, such obedience naturally flows out. You won't have to constantly go before the Lord, crying, "Oh, God, break the power of the devil over me!" All those chains will begin to fall off as you get to know His heart!

Are you in love with Jesus? If your answer is yes, then I have several questions for you: How can you go throughout the week without spending time in His Word? How can you not yearn to get alone with Him in prayer? How can you not have a time of love talk with your Father, praising and worshiping Him, seeking to learn what pleases Him? These are foundational to obedience.

Jesus tells us, "He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him" (John 14:21). What an incredible promise — all based on an obedience of love.

Search the gospels and get to know Jesus' words as recorded in Matthew 5-7, beginning with the Sermon on the Mount. As you learn His words, do them! God's commandments are not grievous; they are not a heavy burden laid upon us. On the contrary, obeying them becomes easier the more you grow to love Him.

That is building your house upon the rock! Then, when the storm comes, you can stand unafraid. Nothing will move you because you are walking in loving, pleasing obedience to the Father.
 

SO THE WALL WAS FINISHED

by David Wilkerson | May 22, 2012

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Often Satan will attack you in order to stop a great work for God. He will put enemies in league together just to hinder your labors. They will come against you in unison, trying to discount the minister in order to stop the ministry.

You can be sure of this: If you are on a divine mission — if you are called to do a work for the Lord and are busy fulfilling that calling, trusting in Jesus — none of their plots will work against you.

Nehemiah was called by God to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. The work was progressing wonderfully, with the walls going up steadily. Suddenly Satan stirred up a hornets' nest to hinder it all. Four prominent leaders joined in a plot against Nehemiah: “They thought to do me mischief” (Nehemiah 6:2).

Four times these leaders set a trap. They called out to Nehemiah, "Come down off your wall. We want to have a conference with you. We insist you talk to us!" But four times Nehemiah answered, "I'm not coming down off these walls! I have work to do here because God has ordained me to do it" (see Nehemiah 6:3).

Beloved, you cannot get involved in arguing with people just because they want to argue. It's all meant to be a distraction. You must go on with God's work.

The reason Satan comes against your prayer life, your consecration to God, your walk with Him, isn't just to bring you down. He also wants to ruin the ministry God has given you. He wants to destroy anything you're doing that brings glory to God!

These four VIPs started a rash of rumors against Nehemiah. They claimed, "You're doing this for yourself, not for God!" One of them, Tobiah, sent slanderous letters to other leaders in Israel. All the slander, plotting and snares were designed to put fear into Nehemiah's heart, in hopes that he would get discouraged and run. Nehemiah sums up the scheme in verse 13: “[He was] hired that I should be afraid . . . that they might have matter for an evil report, that they might reproach me.”

But none of those snares could stop the work of God! Scripture states: "So the wall was completed. . . . When all our enemies heard about this, all the surrounding nations were afraid and lost their self-confidence, because they realized that this work had been done with the help of our God” (verses 15-16, NIV).

YOU CAN OUTRUN CHARIOTS

by Gary Wilkerson | May 21, 2012

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Jezreel was known as a city of chariots. It excelled in warfare because of its vast fleet of iron vehicles made for swift movement in battle. Chariots represent the strength of man. They signify the power to speed ahead with great agility, the ability to accomplish something through a powerful, dominating resource.

Today there is a "chariot lifestyle" — one of comfort and ease, where all our needs are provided. If we need something, we write a check for it. If we want to do something, we go ahead and do it.

To a Christian, the chariot lifestyle can have great appeal. In the world's standard of success, we see impressive "chariots" and "stallions." These are the means, the material wealth, that provide people with ease, security and comfort at all times.

But the servant of God does not seek those things primarily. Instead, he seeks to obey his Master's voice and pursue the concerns of His kingdom. The Christian learns early in his faith walk that by pursuing the Lord first, "all these things will be added to him" (Matthew 6:33).

This same believer sometimes may find himself without the needed resources to do certain things for his family. He doesn't see his calling or ministry being fulfilled, so he is tempted to think, "The resources are out there, and the world is using them to great effect but I don't have any of them. I need them to accomplish God's work. How can I get hold of them?"

Elijah knew better than to look to the world's resources. Imagine the scene as he addressed King Ahab. There stood the king, perched high in his brilliant chariot, towering over the lowly prophet. Yet Elijah spoke boldly to Ahab: “Prepare your chariot and go down” (1 Kings 18:44, ESV).

Next we read, "The hand of the Lord was on Elijah, and he gathered up his garment and ran before Ahab to . . . Jezreel" (1 Kings 18:46). God's man outran a chariot over a distance of many miles! How did Elijah accomplish this? The phrase "gathered up his garment" means, essentially, “to gird up your loins” which means that he prepared himself.

The apostle Paul tells us we have been called by God to run a race. Peter refers to this race also when he tells us to gird up the loins of our mind. He's saying we need to prepare ourselves for the contest by reinforcing our belief and trust in the Lord. When you see chariots in front of you carrying people swiftly toward their goals, don't despair. Do not be dismayed at the power they have and you lack. God has a different way for you. When you set your eyes on the Father and let His powerful hand come upon you, you too can outrun chariots.

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