Word on Fire

Paul writes to Timothy

'I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you'
(2Tim 1:6)

so, to help the church with this, we offer this brief word, because

“Is not my word like fire,” declares the Lord'
(Jeremiah 23:29)

Take Up Your Life By Faith

She was born normal on 27th June 1880, in Tuscumbia, Alabama. When she was 19 months old she had a severe fever and illness which left her blind and deaf. As a result she could not speak. Over the next five years she was a problem child, always in uncontrollable rage and violence. When she was seven years old her parents sought help for the young girl. Help came in the form of Annie Mansfield Sullivan. With love, patience, and understanding given by Annie, the little girl gradually awaken her intellectual faculty and was “born again”. The stubborn, headstrong, self-willed, and almost unmanageable child became patient, gentle and obedient. She developed an eagerness to learn. At 16 years old she could speak well enough to enter college, and she later graduated from Radcliffe College. After her graduation Helen Keller dedicated her life to bringing messages of hope and courage to the handicapped people everywhere. Helen Keller’s books were translated into more than 50 languages. She lectured in over 25 countries and raised millions of dollars for the benefit of the blind.

We're not all Helen Kellers. Praise God for this! Every one of us can be much more than copy of someone else; much more than a follower of someone else. God has a divine purpose for every one of us. He has detailed plans, and he has not forgotten what they are (Jer 29:11). He's just waiting for us to do what he calls us to do in order that we can experience his purpose, fulfill it, and discover so much more of the reason for our life (Eph 2:10)!

John 1:12 tells us this:
“Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God”

John shows us that there are four steps to being children of God. The first is to receive Jesus, and to do this means making a deliberate choice of who will be the Lord of our life. It doesn't happen by birth or by accident. The second is to believe in his name. This means to believe in his character, his ways, his authority, and his power in our life. He is the today as he is in the bible. Speaking of Jesus, the Psalmist writes (Ps 72:17) 'May his name endure for ever; may it continue as long as the sun'. Believing means acting on the reality of who Jesus is. He is Lord, Saviour, Healer, Deliverer, and Provider! This leads the believer on to a position of recognising that becoming a child of God is our right. The New Testament Greek word makes it clear that we have the authority to take this phenomenal step up in status. So many Christians live their lives content to sit at the gates of the kingdom, when instead they have the authority to enter in and share in all God's good things. When we at last grasp this, we come to the fourth step - that of taking action to become who we are by right.

A few years ago, whilst Susan and I lived in a house provided by the church, we owned a cottage that we let (or rented) to tenants. There was a fixed tenancy period (6 months), but at the end of that period, if we took no action, even though we had the right to reclaim what was ours, the tenant would have the right to remain in possession. Action needed to be taken to take the property back, and provided we took the correct action, the tenant had no right to oppose our action. Satan has only a tenancy of this world - and only a tenancy of your life, friend, if that Serpent still troubles you! He was evicted from heaven, where Jesus is Lord. Satan fell to earth, and occupied this 'vineyard' because of rights given him by Adam. The Parable of the Tenants in Matthew 21 gives us insight into the reclaiming of power and authority that can be ours in Jesus' name. Often treated just as an end-time parable, the story tells us more. The time for fruit (Mt 21:34) is now (see Jn 15:1-16). Becoming a child of God means bearing fruit for him. Hallelujah, we can!

Do you need a change to take place in your life? When Jesus spoke about his life in John 10, this is what he said:

“I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.” (Jn 10:18)

How was Jesus raised from death? Scripture tells us that he was raised by God the Father (Acts 2:24), by his Spirit (Ro 8:11), and this verse in Jn 10 makes it abundantly clear that this resurrection miracle took place at the choice of Jesus by his obedience to his Father's command. He was given authority, he recognised this and believed in the authority given, and he acted upon it in faith. Jesus took up his own life, by the power of the Spirit at work within him, in accordance with the Father's will. It is the same will and the same authority that today gives each and every believer the right to live out a life of victory.We too have a choice, to obey or not to obey, to live in the power and victory of Jesus Christ, or to live a mere shadow of this in compromises to worldliness. People who come to me for healing or for deliverance or for salvation come because they believe in what they hear about the God who lives in me, and so they receive the blessings that are God's desire to give them. They 'take up' what is rightfully theirs. Paul writes to Timothy in 2Tim 3:16-17
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

Scripture is 'useful', but like a welcome visitor to your door, like a pay-cheque in the mail, like a promise spoken, it must be received, believed, and its rights accepted and acted upon. Nothing is ‘use-ful’ unless it is fully used!

When Jesus was raised, scripture tells us that he was given the Holy Spirit. This may surprise some people, who feel that he already was filled with the Spirit.
“Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear.” (Acts 2:33)

Authority to 'pour out' the Spirit was not given to Jesus until after his death and resurrection (Jn 7:39). He did not have authority to glorify believers with this presence and power, because he himself was not yet glorified! But when Jesus gave up his 'old' life (authority to do that was his - see above), and he died to 'self', and he put faith is his Father's will - when he 'took up' his new life, then he was given authority (see also Php 2:6-9). when we do as Jesus did, giving up the old, taking up the new, we too will be empowered and authorised Spirit-pourers! Brother and sisters - take up your rights! Take up your life!

How? By faith! Praise the Lord, the means to new life is given to us. The gift of faith is given so that we might take up so much more. Paul speaks to the Galatians (3:26-27) saying:
You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptised into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.

Have you ever tried leaving home in the mere assumption that, somehow, after taking a morning shower or bath, someone else would clothe you? No? Why am I not surprised? Becoming clothed is a deliberate act, and acting out the new life of Christ is just the same. Faith, Hebrews 11:3 tells us, is the 'substance' by which God formed the universe. The Greek hupostasis means 'substance, foundation, substrata, raw material'. At Creation, God spoke a word, and the world was formed. God believed that it would be so - there could be no other alternative, because he is Almighty God! Examination of Gal 3:22 and Php 3:9 shows that the promises and righteousness given to us are because of the faith of Christ as he went to the cross and took up life again for our sake. A literal reading of Mk 11:22 - in Greek exete pistin theo - says this - have God faith! Have the faith of God, the type of faith exercised, demonstrated, and given. Have it, believe that it is yours, and put it into use.

This message is abbreviated from one which Chris has preached. If you would like to have Chris preach about the need for heavenfire in your church,
email or phone