Monday, February 6, 2023

                                 THE PRINCIPLES OF FAITH                                                         by Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.

"And when they were come to the multitude, there came to Him a certain man, kneeling down to Him, and saying, Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatic, and sore vexed: for often he falls into the fire, and often into the water.

"And I brought him to Thy disciples, and they could not cure him.  Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? Bring him hither to Me. And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour.

 "Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said: Why could not we cast him out?  And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Howbeit this kind goes not out but by prayer and fasting." (Matt. 17:14-21) 

In this concise work we will consider Five Principles of Faith  and How They Function:

 1) Read and Hear God's Word.

 2) Think and Meditate on God's Word.

 3) Believe God's Word.

 4) Speak or articulate God's Word.

 5) Act upon God's Word!

Thousands have been saved and healed by our Lord Jesus Christ in our crusades listening to the preached WORD and through reading or having someone read these inspired messages to them.

You can do the same because God is no respecter of persons and what He will do for one, He will do for all who accept His promises and act upon them!

Although I preached these messages several decades ago, they are as valid and important today, as ever! Amen.   Max Solbrekken, Edmonton, 1993

CHAPTER ONE: BACK TO BASICS

"Without faith it is impossible to please God" (Heb. 11:6), but with faith "all things are possible." (Mark 9:23)

Faith and unbelief are diametrically opposed, because faith comes from God's Word, while unbelief germinates where "there is ignorance" of the Scriptures!

Faith is born of God but unbelief is the product of satanic invention for faith is a positive power, while unbelief is a negative force!  Faith is a divine gift, but unbelief has its origin in superstition, fear and unrighteousness!

Faith is rooted in trust, sincerity and truth, while unbelief is anchored in skepticism, resentment and deception!

Faith touches the heart of God and opens Heaven's store - house to believers.  Unbelief closes the "channels of blessing" and sets the soul on a rebellious course of self-will and transgression!

Faith works, and so does unbelief.  Both bring forth an abundant harvest; one good and the other bad.  One produces life, the other death - for time and eternity!

The best example of living faith is found in the dynamic life of Jesus Christ.  He did no sin, neither was guile found in His mouth.  He obeyed His Father's will so implicitly that "a voice came from Heaven, saying: This is My Beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased.  Hear ye Him". (Matt. 17:5)

No wonder Jesus could heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons, multiply the loaves and fishes, walk on the water, commandeer the elements and raise the dead! He always did those things that pleased His Father!

THE KEY TO MIRACLES! 

What is the Key to total Victory, answered Prayer and Prosperity? If we are to see the power of God in our lives, we must follow the example of Jesus in obedience, dedication, consecration and submission to God. We must follow the Master in a life of holiness, humility and single-mindedness of purpose!

Jesus said, "I seek not Mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent Me." (John 5:30); "For I came down from heaven, not to do Mine own will, but the will of Him that sent Me." (John 6:38); "My meat is to do the will of Him that sent Me, and to finish His work." (John 4:34); "I always do those things that please Him." (John 8:29)

Our Lord stated, "I must work the works of Him that sent Me, while it is day..." (John 9:4); "Not My will, but Thy will be done." (Luke 22:42) 

 We must do the same, if we want the SAME COMMUNION with "the Father".  If we do not have that fellowship, we cannot do the same works!

 Jesus said, "As My Father hath sent Me, so send I you". (John 20:21)  "The works that I do shall ye do also, and greater works than these shall ye do, because I go unto My Father". (John 14:12)

The Holy Scripture emphasizes, "And whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.

“And this is His commandment; That we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as He gave us commandment.  And he that keeps His commandments dwells in Him, and He in him.  And hereby we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit which He hath given us." (1 John 3:22-24)

   Here are the two essential things the Church of the Living God must possess, to do the works of God: First, believe on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ as Saviour and Redeemer. Second - to have fervent love (Gr. agape) one for another!

OUR ATTITUDE TO OTHERS REFLECTS OUR RELATIONSHIP TO GOD!

 St. John declared, "Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.  No man hath seen God at any time.  If we love one another, God dwells in us, and His love is perfected in us.

"Hereby know we that we dwell in Him, and He in us, because He hath given us of His Spirit.  And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world.

"Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwells in him, and he in God.  And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us.  GOD IS LOVE; and he that dwells in love dwells in God and God in him. 

“Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the Day of Judgment: because as He is, so are we in this world." (1 John 4:11-17)

The Bible says, "And now, little children, abide in Him; that, when He shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before Him at His coming.  If ye know that He is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of Him." (1 John 2:28-29) 
There are three hindrances to receiving the power of God!

1. SINS OF CARNALITY OF THE FLESH & MIND!

 The first great hindrance is the sins that we allow in our lives! Sins of carnality and worldliness of the flesh and the mind rob believers of the intimacy necessary to function as the true Body of Christ!

  The Bible says: “For they that after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh, but they that are after the Spirit the things that are after the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” (Rom.8:5,6)

 Living in continual sin automatically creates GUILT in a Christian’s spirit, straining the sweet fellowship between God and that individual! Sin causes a blockage in the flow of the Holy Spirit, because guilt brings condemnation and fear!

St. John wrote: "Beloved, if our hearts condemn us not, we have confidence to ask what we will and it shall be done unto us..." (1 John 3:20)

Guilt also brings DOUBT with it, thus hindering the ability to pray the "prayer of faith". Satan, the originator of sin, fear and doubt, is the winner in that situation. The only way back into fellowship with the Father is through REPENTANCE and TRUST.

The Scripture says, "...but if our hearts condemn us, then God is greater than our hearts and knows all things". (1 John 3:21) Our Lord knows that sin in our lives will rob us of faith and bring condemnation, but the shed blood of Jesus Christ is the remedy for sin and removes the guilt and condemnation!

The Bible states, “But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from ALL sin.” (1 John 1: 7)

JESUS’ SHED BLOOD BRINGS PEACE! 

"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit". (Rom. 8:1)

St. John stipulated, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness". (1 John 1:9)

Repentance brings immediate relief through God’s forgiveness. Condemnation leaves and faith rises in our hearts opening the door to God’s miracles in our lives!

The Bible states: “Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then we have confidence toward God. And whatsoever we ask, we receive of Him, because we keep His commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.” (1 John4: 21, 22)

Our hearts rejoice as we meditate upon the great salvation Christ purchased for us on Calvary's Cross!  Jesus is even now seated at our Father's right hand in Heaven, making intercession for us as our High Priest. 

And as our Advocate Jesus is pleading our case before the Father: "Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them." (Heb. 7:25) 

SATAN: ACCUSER OF GOD'S PEOPLE!                              

The Holy Bible says: "And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the Kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethen is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

"And they (believers) overcame him (Satan) by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony, and they loved not their lives unto the death." (Rev. 12:10-11)

 How to overcome: “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God and He will draw nigh to you.” (James 4: 7,8); “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist steadfast in the faith…” (1 Peter 5: 8, 9)

 God desires to forgive every sin and bring us into fellowship, so that our prayers may be answered.  The Bible says, "Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered". (1 Peter 3:7)

(II) – LACK OF TOTAL COMMITMENT TO CHRIST!

 Many Christians are not fully committed to Christ and His Gospel. They have very little desire to see His agenda go forward! They have not experienced His saving grace or sanctifying power, therefore, have no real understanding of spiritual things.

Or, they have - over the years - lost their focus of why Jesus came to earth in the first place. They have forgotten the awful price He paid in order to redeem fallen man! Like the Church at Ephesus, they have “left their first love.” (Rev. 2: 4)

 Following His program is not their Number One priority.  Some have ulterior motives and others are not willing to dedicate themselves sufficiently to the task.  Therefore, the work of Christ has suffered!

I have noticed in recent years, a lack of real desire and dedication in the lives of God's people to emulate JESUS!  He must be our example and role model!  We must obey Him totally, and put forth effort commensurate with His Person and Mission, which can be nothing less than Top Priority! 

There is, however, hope for all! Jesus said to the Christians at Ephesus: “Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works: or else I will come unto thee quickly and remove thy candlestick out of His place, except thou repent.” (Rev.2: 5)

 The candlestick or light stand bringing light speaks of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God and the Gospel! Ephesus today lies in ruins and the Church is gone. The Muslim hordes overran the area years ago and the Gospel light went out! How sad!

 The question is: Will that also happen to our beloved nation, because of the backsliding of our clergy and the worldliness of the Church in general?” I pray fervently, that such a tragedy will not happen. Rather, that God will be merciful and send us a grass-roots-revival that will change our spiritual landscape!

  The word Christian means, "Christ-like ones" and also has the connotation that we are members of "The Family of Jesus"!

 In his letter to Timothy, St. Paul throws light on this problem.  We see shades of FEAR developing in young Timothy, which the apostle seeks to dispel. "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of love and of power and of a sound mind." (1 Tim. 1:7)  Again He speaks of the fact that Onesimus, "was not ashamed of my chain." (2 Tim. 1:16)

Evidently, Timothy was feeling the pressure of St. Paul being in prison, wondering, "Who will be next"?  "Will I also be beaten, striped, imprisoned and martyred for the name of Jesus and because of my fellowship with 'this outspoken man' who always seems to be getting into trouble?"

Jesus emphazised: "Except a corn of wheat fall to the ground and die, it abides alone: but if it die, it brings forth much fruit". (John 2:24)

St. Paul taught us ‘How to Become a Man of God’. This was my premier message to 5000 preachers at the Assemblies of God Conference’ in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 1987 and also at the Christ For the Nations Bible Institute’ in Dallas, Texas.

THE KEY IS TO DIE TO SELF!

The old nature and the ‘old man’ in us, our ego, pride and stubborn will must die, so that God’s life will come to the forefront in our lives! We must be in total submission to the Holy Spirit and the Word of God!

Like St. Paul, we also must be captive to the Word of God! The great Apostle stated: “…I am ready not be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.” (Acts 21: 13) “…For the hope of Israel, I am bound with this chain.” (Acts 28: 20); “Woe is unto me if I preach not the Gospel.” (1 Cor.9:16)

Defending his courageous stand for Christ and His Gospel against the evils of the Roman Church, Dr. Martin Luther stated: “I am captive to the Word of God. Unless I can be instructed and convinced with evidence from the Holy Scriptures or with open, clear, and distinct grounds of reasoning ... then I cannot and will not recant, because it is neither safe nor wise to act against conscience." Then he added, "Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me! Amen."

 WILLIAM TYNDALE was a student in Cambridge when Martin Luther posted   his 95 Thesis on the door of the Wittenberg Church. He was troubled about the problems within the Church. In 1523 taking advantage of the recent invention of the printing press, Tyndale began to cast the Scriptures in the current English. His aims were simple but ambitious, as expressed to an educated man.

William Tyndale said: “I defy the Pope and his laws; and if God spare my life, ere many years I will cause a boy that driveth the plow shall know within his lifetime more of the Scriptures than thou dost.” 

He was born in Slymbridge in about 1496. After being educated at Magdalen HallOxford, he became a chaplain. While studying at Oxford he became very interested in the ideas of John Wycliffe and the Lollards. Tyndale became convinced that the church had become corrupt and selfish.

 Like Wycliffe, Tyndale thought it was important that people had the opportunity to read and interpret the Bible for themselves. Tyndale wanted to translate the Bible into English but at that time Henry VIII and the English church were very much against the idea.

In 1524 Tyndale went to Hamburg where he met Martin Luther and the following year moved to Cologne where he managed to arrange for his translation of the Bible to be printed.

In 1535 William Tyndale was betrayed by Henry Phillips and arrested in Antwerp and imprisoned in a castle near Brussels. He was found guilty of heresy and on 6th October, 1536, he was strangled and burnt at the stake.

 Tyndale did not die in vain. Two years later Henry VIII gave permission for the publication of the English Bible. However, people were not allowed to read it aloud to another person; nor were people below the rank of gentleman allowed to own a copy of the English Bible.

 St. Paul understood that the Gospel of Christ and fellowship with Jesus is more important than one's own life - which is only temporary!  Eternal life through Christ is much more important!  That is why he wrote, "For me to live is Christ but to die is gain". (Phil. 1:21)

 Many Christians have not learned that, "It costs something to be a man of God".  There is a price to pay - in order to have God's faith and power, operating in our lives!

And unfortunately many are not willing to pay that price, so they have only the message - without the power!  Preaching faith, but having only presumption.  How sad! This combination produces sensual, fleshly believers, with the "yuppie attitude" - WHAT CAN I GET OUT OF THIS FOR MYSELF? instead of the true Christian spirit of "What can I give?"

LORD, DO IT AGAIN!

Here is Billy Graham’s prayer: "Lord, do it again!  Do what You did when the apostles were called.  Do what You did following Pentecost! Do what You did with Saul of Tarsus, Augustine, Luther, Calvin, John Wesley, George Whitefield, D.L. Moody and William Booth.  Lord, do it again. And help us to reach the world for Christ.”

(III) AN ALMOST TOTAL ABANDONMENT OF FERVENT PRAYER BY CHRISTIANS AND CLERGY ALIKE!

 A number of years ago, a survey taken among Christians in the USA revealed that the average Christian spends 3 minutes in prayer daily and the average clergyman gives only 7 minutes to God in daily prayer!

 WHAT A SHAME!

They feast when they should be fasting and the supper room has taken priority over the Upper Room!  Remember, the Early Church was born in a prayer meeting!

One hundred and twenty believers were closeted in a place of prayer and supplication - seeking God for an endowment of power - when the Holy Spirit fell upon them!

In order for "the Church of the 21st Century" to grow, advance and occupy for Christ, an intense desire for prayer and seeking God must pervade the believing saints.  That was the SECRET of the success of the 1st Century Church!

We must continue until the fire of God falls afresh on the altar of our souls and WE AGAIN BECOME LIVING STONES crying out to a dying world, that Jesus Christ is Lord!

John Knox prayed: “O God give me Scotland or I die”! And the wicked blood-thirsty ‘Mary Tudor - Queen of Scots’ agonized that she feared the prayers of John Knox, more than the armies of England!

God heard and answered his prayers, and that is why Scotland is Presbyterian today and NOT PAPIST!

We must take as our models holy men and women of God who in past centuries, have shaken cities and stirred nations for God through their selflessness, fearlessness, piety and faith in God!

We must die so that He can live through us!  God has given us His blueprint for Revival and Healing: "If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land". (2 Chron. 7:14)

 There are four things we must do, if we expect God to send a gracious spiritual awakening and healing to this nation.

1)  WE MUST HUMBLE OURSELVES!

One of the five sins of Sodom was pride!  

“Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fullness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.” (Ezek. 16:49)

Humility is the opposite of pride and God "hates a proud look and a haughty spirit". (Prov.6:16-17)  HUMILITY THEREFORE REQUIRES REPENTANCE AND CONFESSION OF SIN!

God's Word states, "For thus saith the High and Lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, Whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the heart of the contrite ones". (Isaiah 57:15)

The Bible says, “But He giveth more grace. Wherefore He saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.  Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up.” (James 4:6,7,10)

By humbling ourselves we are saying, "God, take control of my life.  I want You to move into my life and set up Your throne in my heart.  From this moment forward, I desire You to take charge of my life".

Why is this so important?  God delights in making something out of nothing so that “No flesh should glory in His presence”. (1 Cor.1: 29)

PRIDE WAS SATAN’S SIN!

 Pride precipitated his tragic, awful fall! The Bible says, “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!

“For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:  I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.” (Isaiah 14:12-14)

“Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.” (Ezek. 28:17)

 2)  WE MUST PRAY!

There is an old adage: "Prayer Changes Things!"  That's absolutely right.  Prayer changes people and situations, as well! Jesus said, “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:  For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”

He admonished: “...Pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you”. Again, He said, "Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation.  The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak". (Mark 14:38)

IT ALSO CHANGES THOSE WHO PRAY!  

When we begin to pray in earnest, God communes with us and speaks to us by His Word and the Blessed Holy Spirit.  And it doesn't take Him long to soften our hearts, penetrate our minds and affect our stubborn wills.

One of the characteristics of the life of Jesus, was the regularity and fervency of His prayers to His Father, and the consistency with which His requests were granted! And if we hope to affect our families, our communities and our world for God, we must follow the example of Jesus and the admonitions of the apostles.

St. Paul admonished, "I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting". (1 Tim. 2:8)  "Pray without ceasing." (1 Thes. 5:17)

“Be anxious for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” (Phil. 4:6)

And St. James stated, "Confess your faults (troubles) one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed.  The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much". (James 5:16)

3)  WE MUST SEEK GOD'S FACE!

To seek someone's face speaks about closeness and nearness!  A personal experience is necessary. God desires our input - an earnest desire to WALK WITH HIM, so that we may see His face!

We cannot follow afar off and expect to enjoy God's special favour and smile upon our lives!  He is our Heavenly Father and desires the special Father/Son relationship which was purchased for us through the death of His Son!

Like a child sitting upon his father's lap touches his heart, so we touch the heart of our Heavenly Father when we draw near to Him. St. James said, "Draw nigh unto God and He will draw nigh to you" (James 4:8)

 Seeking the face of God also implies intense and specific effort in focusing upon God and doing His will! That is why Jesus said, "Strive to enter in", and St. Peter declared, "make your calling and election sure". (2 Peter 1:10)

God's Word says, "And ye shall seek Me, and find Me, when ye shall search for Me with all your heart." (Jer. 29:13)  The word ‘diligence’ is often used in conjunction with ‘walking with God’!

St. Peter writes: “Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:” (2 Peter 1:10)

 And St. Paul admonished:  “But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.” (1 Cor. 11:28)         

WE NEED A REVIVAL OF  EXPECTANCY & EXCITEMENT!

Below are excerpts of a speech made by Billy Graham at the convention of the National Association of Evangelicals in Denver, Col., USA, in the 1960’s.

His address was called, 'Spiritual Expectancy & Revival'.

"Here we have a great deal to learn from Pentecostalists and the Assemblies of God.  They have enthusiasm for Christ.  I do not believe in cheap sensational emotions for emotions sake.  But I believe we have gone too far and we don't have the feeling, the emotion, the tears and the compassion we ought to have.

"Our Lord wept publicly.  He was moved to tears.  And who can forget Gethsemane?  Emotion!  Dr. MacKay says that Naziism had fire, Fascism had fire, Communism has fire - The Church needs to catch fire!

Grady Wilson and I were in Moscow two years ago.  We saw 50,000 young people in Red Square, stomping their feet, clenching their fists and shouting, ‘We're going to change the world.  We're going to change the world!’  And they looked like they meant it.

"Where are the young people today - stomping their feet for Christ and saying, ‘We're going to change the world’?  There was feeling in Moscow.  There was electricity there.

"At Pentecost people thought the 120 were drunk.  People don't think we're drunk anymore - they think we're dead!"

 4)  WE MUST TURN FROM OUR WICKED WAYS!

There is nothing more abhorrent to God our Heavenly Father, than the transgression of His laws.  When we revolt against God's order, we sin against Him, ourselves, our neighbours and also the universe!          

This universe was created to accommodate order, precision and truth.  It operates on a tight schedule - planets orbiting in perfect precision, according to the WORD OF GOD.

In this generation, there has again risen to the surface, the age-old time-worn, damnable doctrine of Gia or Mother Earth worship.  The New Agers say that the earth has a spirit.  This lie has been handed down from time immemorial and practiced by the ancient Hindus, the Vikings and Indians!

OLD SIN FOR NEW AGE MOVEMENT!

And God hates it.  Hear His Word:  "Thou shalt have no other gods before Me". (Exodus 20:3)  "...and there is no god else beside Me.  Look unto Me and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is none else." (Is. 45:21-22)

Sin is an aberration and brings disorder; in the spirit, mind and body!  The word SIN, in the Greek means "missing the mark".  So sinning is certainly nothing to be proud of - for it always brings shame, remorse, sorrow, sickness and death!

In God's books, sinners are categorically classified as Losers!  Sin cannot produce Winners! Since Satan, the eternally lost entity and author of sin and rebellion, is a COSMIC LIAR and perpetual LOSER, why should anyone in his right mind, follow him? That doesn’t make any sense at all!
     Is it possible for a human being to know the Creator of the universe?   The Holy Bible states, only through His Son Jesus Christ are we able to know God! And only Jesus Christ can SAVE us from sin and darkness, through His vicarious death for us on the Cross and His resurrection from the dead on the third day! Amen.

Max Solbrekken World Mission, Box 22440 RPO Garside, Edmonton, AB T5V 1N6;  E-Mail: [email protected]; comehometojesus.ca; YouTube, Face Book. Donations can be made by E-Transfer. Make your donation to [email protected]

Sunday, February 5, 2023

                                                               

Pastor Max & Donna Solbrekken

GOD'S LOVE CAPTURED MY HEART
By Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.

 God is gracious and long suffering. He is righteous, holy, and merciful to all who call upon His Name in sincerity, repentance, and faith! He rewards such penitents who prostrate themselves in submission and the fear of the Lord.

He is not a God who is far off but is nigh unto them who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit. His peace fills the whole world and those who love Him and obey His Word of Truth. Without faith it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6), but with faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ and His glorious resurrection, all things are possible. (Mark 9: 3; 10:27).

Our Lord said: “No man can come to Me except the Father which hath sent Me, draw him; and I will raise him up at the last day. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me hath everlasting life.” (John 6: 44, 47,48). “Him that cometh unto Me, I will in no wise cast out.” (John 6: 37);

“Come unto Me all ye who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke easy and My burden is light.” (Matt. 11: 28-30)

JESUS CHRIST ABSOLUTE TRUTH!

Jesus Christ is the only way to God the Father. He declared: “I am the way, the truth and the life: No man cometh unto the Father but by Me.” (John 14: 6). “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, who will have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

“Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under Heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved. (Acts 4: 12)

God's great love captured my heart. His generosity made me His love slave (Gr. doulos). His compassion touched my spirit, His amazing grace made me His child for time and eternity! Through Jesus Christ's great Redemption, I was adopted into the family of God as a son and heir. (Rom.8: 16, 17). 

I am a messenger for Jesus and an ambassador for Christ's Kingdom! (Eph. 5:11; 6:20). “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him. And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as the Lord, and not unto men; knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye SERVE the Lord Christ.” (Col. 3: 23,24)

The Holy Bible says: “Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; He also has become my salvation. Therefore, with joy shall we draw water from the wells of salvation.” (Is. 12: 2,3); “Now the God of Hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power.” (Rom.15: 13)

Jesus stated: “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither it be afraid.” (John 14:27);  “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out!  For of Him, and through Him and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory forever.” (Rom.11: 33, 36)

JESUS CALLS US AND HE WANTS US!

This great Gospel hymn was written by Priscilla Owens, 1882.

 We have heard the joyful sound, Jesus saves, Jesus saves; Spread the tidings all around, Jesus saves, Jesus saves; Bear the news to every land, Climb the steeps and cross the waves, Onward, 'tis our Lord's command, Jesus saves, Jesus saves.

Tell to sinners, far and wide, Jesus saves, Jesus saves; Sing, ye islands of the sea. Echo back, ye ocean caves, Earth shall keep her jubilee, Jesus saves, Jesus saves.

Sing above the battle's strife, Jesus saves, Jesus saves; By His death and endless life, Jesus saves, Jesus saves; Sing it softly through the gloom, When the heart for mercy craves,

Sing in triumph o'er the tomb, Jesus saves, Jesus saves. Give the winds a mighty voice, Jesus saves, Jesus saves; Let the nations now rejoice, esus saves, Jesus saves; Shout salvation full and free, Highest hills and deepest caves, This our song of victory, Jesus saves, Jesus saves!

The Bible says: “...God's goodness leadeth me to repentance.” (Rom. 2: 4); “O give thanks unto the Lord; for He is good for His mercy endureth forever.” (Ps. 136: 1-3); “God is not a man that He should lie, neither the son of a man that He should repent (change). Hath He said and shall He not do it? Or hath He spoken, and shall He not make it good? (Nu. 23:19).  He states: “I have sworn by Myself, the Word is gone out of My mouth in righteousness and shall not return....” (Is. 45:23)

GOD'S PATIENCE OVERWHELMS ME!

His patience overwhelms me, and His grace is sufficient to meet my needs! David stated: “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath He removed our transgressions from us. Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him. For He knoweth our frame; He remembereth that we are dust.” (Ps. 11-14). God's wisdom is above all understanding and too great for human knowledge!

To compare a mountain towering above the earth to a pebble on the beach is beyond the scope of our ability. Comparing that huge mountain to the North Star, however, is an impossibility. Now try to compare sinful mortal man to the infinitely holy God, and human love to Him and His eternal love to us, and we have a snapshot of who we are and Who God is!

Martin Luther was found lying on the floor beneath a statue of Christ, sobbing uncontrollably, saying: “fur mich, mien Gott, fur mich.!” The revelation that Jesus Christ died for Him personally had suddenly reached his inner man and it broke Him. It is one thing to declare that Jesus died for the entire world, but it is quite something else to fully understand that He died for you personally! That is when the heart breaks and the tears flow!

“Who is a God like unto Thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of His heritage? He retaineth not His anger forever, because He delighteth in mercy. He will turn again, He will have compassion upon us; He will subdue our iniquities, and Thou wilt cast all their SINS into the depths of the sea.” (Micah 7: 18, 19)

What an amazing description prophet Micah gives of Almighty God. In very few words he allows us to get a glimpse of the eternal, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Creator and God. We see His most holy, compassionate, and good character. Micah asks: “Has anyone ever heard of anyone like the God of Israel?” 

He pardons us and forgives our sins. He overlooks the transgressions of His people and doesn't hold grudges because He is merciful. He will return to us and give us another opportunity and have compassion upon us. He will give us victory over our sins and failings. And He will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea, never to remember them anymore!

GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD!

The Holy Bible says: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3: 16); “Hereby perceive we the love of God, because He laid down His life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” (1 John 3: 16)

 “But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Rom.5: 8); “I am the Good Shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.” (John 10: 11); “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down His life for his friends.” (John15: 3)

“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us that we should be called the sons of God: therefore, the world knoweth us not because the world knew Him not. Beloved now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him for we shall see Him as He is.” (1 John 3: 1,2)

The Bible states: “I am crucified with Christ nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in Me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me.” (Gal 2:20);

“Set your affection on things Above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory.” (Col..3: 3)

St. John declared: “He that committeth sin is of the devil: for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil.” (1 John 3: 8)

HOW AMAZING IS GOD'S GRACE!

You may ask: “Why did Jesus come to this world?  He came to defeat the devil and destroy his works. He came to seek and to save those who were lost. He came to redeem mankind and He came to establish His Church, the body of Christ. Finally, He came to be our Justification, Wisdom, Sanctification and Redemption! (1 Cor.1: 30)

How amazing is the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ? There is nothing that could ever compare with the mercy and grace of God the Father sending His Son to earth to liberate us all from the kingdom of darkness and translate us into the Kingdom of God's dear Son! (Phil. 2: 5-11)

By taking our place on the cross, Jesus of Nazareth atoned for the sins of the entire world, past, present and future. He fulfilled Isaiah's prophecy of the Messiah who would take upon Himself the sins of mankind in order to free us all from the power of the world, flesh and the devil! 

The incarnated Christ met the righteous demands of Divine Justice in the Courts of Heaven and through His sacrificial death for us all, paid for our freedom and liberty. His pure and holy blood purchased forgiveness, healing, peace and eternal Life for all sinners who receive the crucified and resurrected Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour!

Taking away my sins and condemnation, the Lord Jesus made me a new creation. My sins were washed away through His atoning blood and inscribed my name in the Lamb's Book of Life in Heaven. His resurrection from the dead guarantees my justification. Praise the Lord!

The Bible says: “He (Abraham) staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God: And being fully persuaded that, what He had promised, He was able also to perform. And therefore, it was imputed to him for righteousness.

Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed to him; but for us also to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on Him that raised up Jesus from the dead; Who was delivered for our offences and raised again for our justification.”

“Therefore being justified by Faith, we have PEACE with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom we also we have access by faith into this Grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in Hope of the glory of God. And hope maketh not ashamed, because the Love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.

“For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die, yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by His BLOOD, we shall be saved from wrath though Him.

 “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled we shall be saved by His life.” (Rom.5: 1, 2, 5-10)

A NEW CREATURE IN CHRIST! 

The Bible states: “Therefore, if any man be in Christ Jesus, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (2 Cor.5: 17); “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God: Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus; Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are  past, through the forbearance of God.” (Rom. 3:23-25)

William Cowper tried to commit suicide several times. He was about to drink a glass of hemlock but his hand trembled and he dropped the glass. He tried to shoot himself but was unable to do so. Cowper sought to throw himself into the Thames River but was “strangely restrained.” The next morning, he fell on a sharp knife and broke the blade. He tried to hang himself but was found and taken down unconscious.

William Cowper was brought to St. Anselms Asylum. One day, he picked up a Bible lying on a bench. He read: “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.” 

He was born again as the Spirit of God fell upon him and instantly liberated by the Word of God and the Holy Spirit. He wrote the hymn, 'There is a fountain filled with Blood', and many other great hymns for the glory of God. John Newton, who had been a Captain on slave ships and an ungodly man, was converted and became Cowper's pastor and helped him greatly. Together, they authored a number of Hymns. John Newton wrote the hymn, 'Amazing Grace'.

JESUS' MIRACLE MINISTRY!

Jesus' ministry was miraculous and Spirit-filled. He believed the Word of God because He Himself is the Living Word and the Bible is the written Word. The Holy Bible states: “In the Beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. 

“The same was in the beginning with God. And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1: 1,2,14)

St. John stated: “He that committeth sin is of the devil: for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” (1 John 3: 8);

“Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is the Devil: and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” (Heb. 2 14, 15).

Through His vicarious death, Jesus Christ destroyed the Devil to deliver us! Christ's Victory was Satan's Defeat and our Liberty!

The Bible declared: “And Jesus returned in the Power of the Holy Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of Him through all the region round about, And He taught in their synagogues, being glorified of them all. And there was delivered unto Him the Book of the Prophet Esaias. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written,

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon because He hath anointed Me to preach the Gospel to the poor. He hath sent Me to Heal the brokenhearted, to preach Deliverance to the Captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised.” (Luke 4:14, 15, 17,18)

“How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: Who went about doing good and Healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with Him.” (Acts 10:38)

In His final remarks before ascending to His Father's Throne, Jesus Christ promised to send the Holy Spirit upon His followers, whom He commissioned to preach His Gospel of deliverance and power to the ends of the earth, with the guarantee that He would be with them to the end of the world!

    
“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in Heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you alway, even to the end of the world. Amen. (Matt. 28: 18-20)

The word always is a measure of time while alway, is a measure of distance! He was saying, I will be with you all the way, the total distance until the end of your journey!

GO YE INTO ALL THE WORLD!

The BIBLE says: “And He said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel unto very creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved. He that believeth not shall be damned.

“And these SIGNS shall follow them that believe; In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with other tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay their hands on the sick and they shall recover.” (Mark 16:15-18)

JESUS said: “Believe Me that  I am in the Father and the Father in Me: or else believe Me for the very work's sake. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth in Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do, because I go unto My Father.

“And whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, I will do it. If ye love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever; even the Spirit of truth; Whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not neither knoweth Him; but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you and shall be in you.” (John 14: 13-17)

“If abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.” (John 15: 7)

THAT THEY MAY KNOW!  

When Jesus healed the sick, multitudes followed Him to be near Him, to listen to Him, and to worship Him! His miracles drew people to Him and often caused them to believe in Him. And naturally, they were to relieve the suffering of a needy people who had been oppressed by the devil. Here is a case which proves that great truth:

“And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, not so much as about the door: and He preached the Word unto them. And they come unto Him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four. And when they could not come nigh unto Him for the press, they uncovered the roof where He was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.

“When Jesus saw their faith, He said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee. But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their heart, Why does this man speak blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God only? And immediately when Jesus perceived in His spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, He said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts?

“Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sin be forgiven thee, or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk? But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, He sayeth to the sick of the palsy, I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed and go thy way into thine house.

“And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch as they were amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.” (Mark 2: -12)

WHY WE PRAY FOR THE SICK!

“That ye may KNOW that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, He sayeth...Arise, take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house. He used the miracle to declare Himself the Messiah with power to forgive and SAVE sinners! The reason we also pray for the sick is to point them to Jesus, who came to save people from their sins.

In 1963, I was preaching at the Langley Pentecostal Church. JOHN ERHART was a fiery Pentecostal pastor. Many were coming each evening to be born again, filled with the Holy Spirit and healed of their sicknesses. The revival continued for several weeks. My radio broadcasts on Radio KARI were touching hearts for Jesus and some came from the Mission / Haney area and were filled with the blessed Holy Spirit.

Jean Hill, a Nazarene, was the first to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. She was fired up for God and some of her friends received the Holy Spirit. Jean was concerned about her loving husband Joe who was unsaved. He was an engineer on the railroad and away a lot. Joe was glad that she was happy going to church but he had no desire to do so. She prayed earnestly that he would also be saved.

On Sunday morning in the third week, I noticed that he was sitting beside her. I preached a strong salvation message and invited the lost to come forward to receive Christ. Then, I made a second call and invited all who desired to rededicate their lives to Christ or who needed divine healing to also come forward.

Joe and Jean came with quite a few others. I made my way to them. Jean introduced me to her husband. I asked if he wanted to be saved. He shook his head. They were on their way to the hospital but he desired prayer for healing as he was having terrible pains in his stomach area. He was scheduled for surgery later, but the attack might require immediate surgery.

I laid my hands upon him in the name of Jesus and called upon the Lord to undertake. All of a sudden, Joe cried out: “The pains are gone. The pains are gone. I am well.” I threw my arms around that big man as the tears were flowing down his cheeks and mine.

I said: “Joe, lift your hands and say, 'Thank you, Jesus! He lifted hands, and said: 'Thank you, Jesus.'  He said: 'O that feels so good'. I said: “Joe, say: 'Jesus, come into my heart.' He did, and then he said: 'That feels wonderful. The pains are all gone, and I can breathe well.' I said: ' Joe, You just got saved!'

And the whole church erupted in praise and glory to God. Joe Hill became a solid Christian and their home a Christian home. It was God's miracle that opened the door for his conversion! Hallelujah and Amen!

Max Solbrekken World Mission, Box 44220 RPO Garside, Edmonton, AB T5V 1N6  Email: [email protected]; comehometojesus.ca; YouTube; Facebook;  Donations may be made through e-Transfer. Make donations to [email protected]. May God bless you!