Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Voice of the Holy Spirit

I was walking down the street in Taree, NSW, on my way to take a look at the Manning River. Suddenly the Holy Spirit said, "Stop. Turn right." It was quite an arresting voice.

So I turned right, instead of continuing on down the street to the river. I got a little way up the street, and then stopped. I asked the Lord why He led me here. I looked up, and noticed an indigenous radio station across the road named Naralingi.

Straightaway I crossed the street, and walked in.

A receptionsist asked, "Can I help you?" I proceeded to tell her that I had travelled to Taree with an aboriginal Pastor for meetings, and asked whether the station would like to interview him.

They were keen, so Pastor Francis Bundock and I came back and did a live interview. We even took our guitar into the interview and sang live. The interviewer was impressed that a non indigenous person and an indigenous person were working together.

After the interview, one of the staff out the back said all the hairs on her arms were standing up. She was touched by the anointing.

We also met someone later that night who had heard our interview.

Pastor Francis took a casette recording of his interview back home to Muli Muli, with rejoicing.

When I walked in off the street, the staff at the station didn't know Pastor Francis, much less me. But we ended up doing three live interviews in two stations.

That's an example of what can happen when you heed the voice of the Holy Spirit.

The Promise of the Spirit

I was stopped at the pedestrian crossing across the road from Brisbane's central post office. There was a man standing there selling newspapers. So I decided to witness to him while waiting for the lights to change.

"Are you a Christian?" I asked.

"Yes," he said, "I'm a Catholic".

I wanted to examine his faith a bit further though. So I asked, "Do you believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead?"

"Yes," he said.

"Do you confess with your mouth that God raised Jesus from the dead?"


I thought to myself, Well that's good enough for me.

So I thought I'd share with him about the baptism with the Holy Spirit. If he isn't already saved, he'll get saved in the process, I thought to myself.

Sometimes that's a good approach to take with Catholic people. They have all the right words about Jesus: but they can readily tell if they've received the Holy Spirit or not!

So I told him about the experience of being baptized with the Holy Spirit, and about speaking with tongues. He had never received such an experience and listened heartily. Finally I asked him if he would like to receive the Holy Spirit. He eagerly said yes.

So I laid hands on him, and he began to praise God and I heard him speaking in another tongue. All of this took place on the roadside at peak hour by a busy inner city pedestrian crossing.

Then the lights changed, and I said I had to go. I left him there smiling, with a glowing face, praising His Lord.

"The promise [of the Holy Spirit] is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call" (Acts 2:39)

Power to Be Witnesses

One Sunday morning I was sitting up the back in church, when suddenly I received an impression about the number three - and the words 'back pain'. I remember saying to myself, "I think I've got a word of knowledge" (I Cor.12).

At that very moment, the preacher on the platform, Evangelist Stuart Gramenz, said, "Somebody here has got a word of knowledge."

I waved and said out loud from the back of the church, "I think it's me! I'm getting the number three, and back pain."

"You put your hand on your lower back," said the preacher, "so, anyone here with lower back pain?" he asked the congregation.

And three people put their hands up.

"Go back to him and he'll pray for you," he told them.

So the three people came to me, and I laid hands on each one.

One of the men told me he was born with an unformed disc in his spine.

"Which disc is it?" I asked.

"Number three from the bottom," he said.

I knew this was the man the Holy Spirit had spoken to me about. so I laid hands on him.

Years later I was ministering in the town of Boonah, Queensland, and I saw one of those men again.

"Do you remember praying for my back?" he asked, "I'd had back pain for many years," he said, "and it's been real good ever since".

Then he asked, "Do you remember the man with the unformed disc? He is a friend of mine, and it was his first time ever to attend church - so it was a marvellous testimony to him."

Praise the Lord. Jesus has given us POWER to be witnesses to Him.

Jesus is Your Answer

Ever since I was saved at the age of twelve, I've been going out witnessing on the streets at night. One young man who we led to the Lord took us to pray for his sick mother. She was lying in bed, sick of a kidney disease. So we laid hands on her and spoke healing in Jesus' Name. I can remember how appreciative and happy she was.

She went back to her doctor, and he found she was healed. "What did you do?" he asked her.

She answered, "These boys came and put hands on me, and..."

"Well whatever they're doing, tell them to keep doing it," said her doctor, "because it's working!"

She gave her life to Jesus, and not only did Jesus heal her kidneys - he also forgave her sins, and began to heal her from a lifetime of troubles. Many years later she is still loving the Lord!

Jesus loves you too and He is your answer - for sin, sickness and heartache.

Praying for the Sick at School

When I was a student at High School, we spent our lunch hours witnessing or laying hands on fellow-students for healing or to impart the baptism with the Holy Spirit. One time we laid hands on a student whose doctor had told him he needed an operation on his leg. His doctor had warned him not to get any knocks on his leg in the meantime. After we prayed for him, the student went back to his doctor. Then the student came back to us and told us that the doctor examined his leg and said it seemed he no longer needed an operation. A short time afterwards the student happened to get a hard knock on his legs at school - but he was fine. It was a good witness to him about Jesus' love for him.

Friday, October 30, 2009

A European Union Doesn't Automatically Mean the End of the World

It’s happening again: some prophetic ministry is currently predicting the end of the world based on another conspiracy to unite the world’s governments into a One World Government. This time it’s supposedly scheduled to happen in December this year.

Such predictions come in cycles. Last time it came around, a new currency was apparently already in print and the New World Order was supposed to begin by early 1980.

Of course it didn’t happen. And similar failed predictions can be traced back through the ages.

But here’s a question: even if the whole of Europe does unite under one Government in December, how can that be a basis for asserting that Christ must return in our generation? Similar unions have happened before, and it didn’t mean the end of the world.

In fact, such unions haven’t always been a bad thing. For example, the United States of America began by a union of 13 independent colonies and grew over 172 years to become a union of 50 States. And in the process it unified over 500 indigenous nations.

Despite all its imperfections, was that union a bad thing? In many ways it enhanced the spread of the Gospel. It certainly didn’t mean the end of the world.

Similarly, The Commonwealth of Australia began by a Federation of six independent colonies and grew over 88 years to comprise of a total of 16 States and territories. It also unified over 400 indigenous nations.

Despite its imperfections, was that union a bad thing? In many ways it enabled the spread of the Gospel. It certainly didn’t mean the end of the world.

Go back further in history. The formation of the United Kingdom united at least three separate Kingdoms, kingdoms which had already united several separate nations and tribal groups before them.

The Union may have begun with hostility – but it became the largest empire in human history and many of its citizens cooperated to perform the strongest centuries-long missionary movement in history. The union certainly didn’t mean the end of the world.

So unions aren’t necessarily a bad thing, and they certainly don’t automatically indicate the end of the world - even if they happen in Europe.

Europe currently consists of about 50 or so nations. Equally large and far larger unions have already taken place in Europe, without eschatological significance. So another European Union won’t automatically mean the end of the world either.

Even if such a union ends-up being a bad thing - we still can’t assert on that basis alone that it automatically means the end of the world, because some similarly not-so-good unions have already come and gone without it meaning the end of the world.

Like the Soviet Union. And Nazi Germany. The Ottoman Empire. The Byzantine Empire. And of course the Roman Empire. Some of these unions were pretty bad; and each of them – not to mention Genghis Khan’s enormous Mongol Empire – took place in exactly the same locations that are today given so much eschatological significance – and yet they didn’t mean the end of the world.

So why should it be the end of the world now, just because some European leaders in October discussed some sort of a union for the purpose of dealing with climate change?

If you are going to assert that ours must be the last generation, you’re going to need a stronger basis than that. Otherwise your prediction might be at risk of being added to history’s long list of fizzled end-times predictions.

Why do men keep getting it wrong? Because Jesus said:

“But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father” (Mark 13:32).

Even so, come Lord Jesus!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Leading a Thai Buddhist Taxi Driver to Jesus

When I was in Chiang Mai in 1987, John Jaffe and I were riding a taxi on the way to a park where Stuart Gramenz and the local Hope of Asia church had organized an outreach activity for our team. On the way, we witnessed to the taxi driver.

John and I told him that when God first created the world, everything was good; and that sickness and death entered the world through sin; but God's gift is eternal life through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

John received a word of knowledge that the taxi driver had a back problem. The driver stopped the taxi, and let us hold out his legs, and we commanded healing in Jesus' Name. I remember the look of joy that came over his face.

And when we arrived at the park, the driver didn't leave us to continue working - instead he parked the taxi and stayed with us during our outreach. He heard our messages and saw us healing the sick through Jesus' Name, and he met some Thai believers from the Hope of Chiang Mai church.

About a year later, Pastor Phillip Mutzelburg made a return visit to Chiang Mai, so when Phillip returned, I asked him about the taxi driver. Phillip reported that the taxi driver was still in the church, still happily living by his newfound faith in Jesus.

Praise the Lord!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Key

Who has the key to the city of the Gold Coast?
Is it the Ministry with plans to boast?
Is it the church with programs from pillar to post?
Is it the person with strategies in which he is engrossed?
The key to the City is the Holy Ghost.
So it is those who yield to be His host
That shall see the harvest come in, the most.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Being a Witness Means to Do Miracles

Being witnesses unto Christ means to perform miracles. That's why Jesus said that you shall be witnesses unto Him after you receive power after the Holy Ghost comes upon you.

Power isn't necessary to speak mere words: but power is necessary to demonstrate miracles. The Apostles gave witness with great power. They were witnesses not by words alone, but by the demonstration of the power that is in the Name of Jesus.

The Apostles were witnesses unto Christ - so also was the Holy Ghost whom God has given unto those who obey Him. The Holy Ghost gave witness through manifesting His power and gifts. He, the Holy Ghost has been given unto us. Therefore, we, through the Holy Ghost, give witness unto Christ with great power.

People's faith should not rest in the wisdom of words, but in the demonstration of the Spirit and of power. For the Kingdom of God is in power, not in mere word.

Two days ago, the son-in-law of a couple whom I've known for nearly twenty years, received a miracle of healing. Years ago he'd had an eardrum removed during an operation. While sitting in a meeting two days ago - in Ipswich, Queensland, in which twelve churches had combined for a joint Sunday night healing meeting with John Mellor - he could suddenly hear out of that ear. I spoke to him and his wife afterwards. He said, "Everything sounds so loud now. And I don't have to speak so loudly anymore." (Evidently his wife used to tell him not to speak so loudly before, which he did because he wasn't able to hear himself properly). He spoke to me in a calm, soft, contented voice, praising God. Several people put their faith in Christ that night.