Hosting the presence of God. A host is one who welcomes someone into their home. Think on that for a second, we have the distinct privilege to host the presence of God. I really just want to think about what I just said, that we have the privilege to host the presence of God. That God entrusted human beings like you and me to say, I’m going to put My Spirit in them and I’m going to live among them. He trusts us, not because of anything we did, not because of the way we acted; but because of His great love for us.
As I was preparing this message, it really is quite sobering when I think about the fact that God would allow me and you to host His presence. Just meditate on that and it literally will blow your socks off, not your mind, my mind is alert. I’ve been very conscious of my words lately.
Everyone of us has an assignment and God’s desire is that we would carry it out.
Go to John Chapter 1:29, this is actually in all four of the Gospels. In the Gospel we see different accounts of Jesus at His baptism. Jesus was baptized in water. In Mark 1:9closeMark 1:9 The Baptism of Jesus 9 In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. (ESV) (NKJV) it says that as Jesus came out from the water and that the heavens opened up to Him and it said that the Spirit of God a lighted on Him. In John chapter 1, its good to read all the Gospels because you get a different perspective of the same events.
John 1:32closeJohn 1:32 32 And John bore witness: “I saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. (ESV) says, “John bore witness saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove and he remained upon Him.”
Notice it says he saw the Spirit descending, now the Spirit of God is not a dove, it says it descended like a dove. It didn’t say, it looked like a dove, but the unique part of that Scripture says, “and it abode and it remained”. If you know anything about doves they are extremely nervous birds. They land in my backyard all the time, and all I have to do is open the window, peak at them and bam they are gone.
God has said that every member who has received Him, has received the Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit lives inside of you if you receive Christ. But this says that John witnessed The Spirit descending from Heaven like a dove and remains. Every one of us has the Spirit of God, but not all of us have the Spirit remaining upon us. Now think about this, if a dove were to land on my shoulder; I am conscious that a dove is on my shoulder and I want it to remain, and I began to walk. I would have to be very careful, walking very alert that the dove is there. I’m not moving quickly, because I want him to remain.
The Bible says that the Spirit just descended like a dove, but it remained. Remember doves are very nervous, when the atmosphere is disturbed the doves will fly away.
I’m not saying that Jesus is a dove and The Spirit of God is a dove, but there’s an analogy that we can learn from here. There is a metaphor here that we can learn something about. It says that Jesus was baptized and the Heavens were opened to Him. In Isaiah 64:1closeIsaiah 64:1
64:1 Oh that you would rend the heavens and come down,
that the mountains might quake at your presence— (ESV) it says, “Oh, that You would rend the heavens!’ In other words, tear open the heavens so that your presence would come down. Jesus accomplished that when He was baptized, the heavens were rend open and He saw The Spirit of God, He saw it. But also John says he saw The Spirit of God.
When I said that I’ve been very conscientious of my words. Sometimes we can do things unconsciously and pray for things and not realize it a lot of times. I know it is ignorance, but maybe we are already praying for something that has already been given to us. For example, if we say, Father open the heavens and pour down. But the truth is He can’t do that, because He’s already done that. He has already opened the heavens. Another one, I’ll say, Father be with me today; but He already said, I will never leave you nor forsake you. He can’t answer that prayer, because He’s already done this. Is this making sense so far?
One of the things that Jesus wanted to impart to you and I was joy. He wanted us to have joy and joy comes as a result of seeing our prayers answered. Again I want to emphasize that if we are praying for something that He’s already done, we are not going to receive the joy, because He can’t answer something that He’s already given us to possess.
So we have all been guilty of this, there’s no need to ask for His presence, because His presence is present. Again something that we do unconsciously, but I want us to get a deeper appreciation for the gift that God has given to us, the Holy Spirit. Because literally we can walk in rooms and change atmospheres, when we are conscientious of the dove. When we are conscientious that we are Hosting the Presence of God.
This has nothing to do with building you up or building me up, so that we can say oh look at the man of God. This is not what it’s about, this is about doing what Jesus did, which is to go into darkness and deliver people. You say to darkness, I’m here, I am the light and I’m bringing exposure to the darkness. It’s to bring God glory, not to bring us glory, not to bring man glory.
There are things that God has given us that we have to learn, that He desires that we possess them, that we take them. We can’t afford to walk around with this false humility by saying, I keep blowing it, I’m just not worthy. That’s just as bad as a man saying, hey look at me, I’m all that. That’s one extreme; but being to busy focusing on everything that we haven’t done, and we think that’s humility. That’s not humility. What we need to do is quit focusing on ourselves and focus on what He’s done. We need to possess what He’s given us, possess it.
Go to John Chapter 16:22 (John is an excellent book to study and to read specially chapters 12 – 17) Jesus said, “Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart rejoice, and your joy no more no one will take from you.” He says, “And in that day you ask Me nothing.” What day is He talking about. It’s that day when He’s departed, when He’s no longer with them. Verse 23 “And in that day you will asked Me nothing. Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you, until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy maybe full.” The Father desires that we have joy. Jesus said, the words that I speak, they are spirit in they are life. If I want life and if I want the Spirit of God, I must do as Jesus did, Jesus only spoke what He heard the Father speak.
If I’m speaking something that is contrary to the Word then I don’t have spirit. I don’t have life, I don’t have the Spirit and I don’t have the life of Jesus. Do we really understand what we possess? Do we understand what we possess, Jesus died on the cross and it says, “Him who knew no sin became sin, that we might become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.” What else did we receive, we received deliverance from death. No longer can death have dominion over us. We received redemption from sin, no longer can sin dominate our life. When you don’t know Jesus, then sin has every right to dominate you. You can think that you can control it, but you can’t.
If only we could get a picture of what we possess. Here’s an example: Jesus walking down the street, a woman with an issue of blood for 12 years paid a lot of money to try to get that issue taken care of; money could not fix her. But Jesus was walking down the street, Jesus is hosting the presence of God so much that people were talking about here comes that man. They didn’t even know who He was, but there’s something about that man. It says there was a woman who saw Jesus and she said, If I can only touch His hem, that’s all I need to do, just let me get in there. The Bible gives a picture that they were pushing, there was a crowd. Kind of like going to Costco on a Sunday or Saturday; you know what I’m talking about. People everywhere trying to get little demos, suppose to get one, but keep coming back three or four times. All these people were pushing on Jesus,
but this woman instead of pushing on Jesus, she decided to pull on something that He had.
She put a demand on Jesus, she knows there is something about Him, there’s a presence there. I’m going to put a demand on Him, the Bible says that when she touched his hem, Jesus stopped. Now here’s what’s unique about that story, we know that Jesus received the Spirit without measure, is He going to lose anything? But Jesus had so much of the presence of God, that when something left Him, He knew it. He recognized it and turned around and said who touched Me. Who put a demand on Me!
We have that same spirit that abides in us. The very same spirit that raised Jesus from the dead the Bible says that we have in us. Here’s another story in the Book of Acts chapter 3, keep in mind Jesus had spent 3 1/2 years with the disciples, teaching them, giving them His words. He said I gave you My words and they are Spirit and Life. Jesus has died and ascended to Heaven now, Peter and John there going to the Synagogue and see a man sitting there begging for money. Here’s what they said, silver and gold I don’t have, but what I do have I give you. What did they have, they possessed the presence of God. If you read the story, the Bible says that that man looked intently on them, like you have something I need.
Remember what I’m talking about today is not to build us up so people look at us. The worst thing that could ever happen to any man, especially a Christian is become so famous that people recognize you, but they don’t recognize the anointing in you. We don’t want that! We don’t want to be that person who says, I’ve got to go hear what that man is saying, they’re so famous! No I want you to come see Jesus, I want you to say there’s an anointing there. Jesus is in that house I want to go because Jesus is there. I don’t want to become so famous that people are looking at me instead of seeing Jesus.
Peter is saying something that we need to catch, “what I have”. Basically what Peter is saying, I possess something that am going to give to you. It was freely given to me, and I’m going to give it to you. Now it takes some faith to do that, but it also takes rest. It takes the ability to rest; it’s what He has given me, and I’m a possessor, host of the presence of God for the glory of God.
Turn to Romans chapter 14, we have to realize that when Jesus was teaching, He often said the kingdom of God is at hand. But He also said in Luke 17:21closeLuke 17:21 21 nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There!’ for behold, the kingdom of God is in the midst of you.” (ESV) He said the kingdom of God is in you. The kingdom of God, the King’s Dominion is in you. The King’s Dominion is in you. The kingdom of God is in you. In Romans 14:17closeRomans 14:17 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. (ESV) says, “The kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” Say, joy in the Holy Spirit.
According to Romans, The Kingdom of God is joy in the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is in you and I. The words that Jesus speaks, they are spirit they are life. The Kingdom of God is joy in the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is in me. The Holy Spirit is in you, therefore, I’m a carrier. You are carriers of the Kings Dominion, the Kingdom of God is residing in you and I. Because of that, by faith we have the authority and the right to walk up to somebody and say, “What I have I give unto you”. Then you take that wherever the Holy Spirit leads you to take that. But you have to first recognize that you possess something.
It’s like this, if you did not know you had millions of dollars, but you actually did, then you would never write a check for millions of dollars. This is not about money, just an example that you can understand. Let’s make it a smaller figure, $1000,. If I didn’t know I had a $1000 but there was something that I wanted that cost $1000. Then I would never write a check until I realized that I possessed that money. Well do you realize that you possess the Kingdom of God in you. Jesus said that He came to destroy all the works of the enemy. He came to destroy sickness, He came to destroy poverty, He came to destroy all those that were possessed of the enemy, of the devil. He came to destroy, He came to break every yoke, break it. He said the anointing breaks the yoke.
I don’t know if you know what that looks like, but imagine a 747 plane flying in the air and a bomb goes off, and that’s what you call breaking the yoke, it obliterates it. That’s what the anointing does. See I’m not shouting, I’m not getting you hyped-up; I’m not even preaching. I’m just talking calmly about the Word of God, I have to. Because what I’m talking about, if you could get a hold of it, it can change you and me. The words that Jesus spoke, He said they are spirit and they are life. There was a shift from the Old Testament to the New Testament. A while back we did a message on “Life After The Cross” (translated on the website also) but here’s what’s unique about what Jesus has done.
Before the cross in the Old Testament, we were not allowed to go into a place where there were lepers. In other words, I could not go into a colony where there was leprosy, because I would catch the leprosy. In the Old Testament, if someone was to bring a sacrifice and they spilled something that contaminated that sacrifice, it was no longer any good. However, in the New Testament, I can walk up to leprosy and instead of being contaminated, I can impart life because of the life of Jesus. You see in an Old Testament we were told to stay away from unclean things, in the New Testament we are told go into the unclean and bring deliverance.
Because you possess the Kingdom’s dominion now, you no longer are in darkness. You no longer are bound by things that were uncommon. Jesus hung out with sinners and He ate with them, but He didn’t just hang out, He changed them. He literally changed them.
We are part of the first Church, of the early church, that same church because it is growing and growing we are that same church. Look at Matthew 10:7closeMatthew 10:7 7 And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ (ESV) , I hope by the end of this day, you get a revelation of what you possess. Let me make a point, Jesus called His 12 disciples to Him and said, He gave them power. That word power means He gave them authority. He gave them the right, another translation says, He gave them the ability to speak so that what they say comes to pass. So Jesus gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, to heal all kinds of diseases.
Look at Matthew 10:7closeMatthew 10:7 7 And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ (ESV) Jesus speaking said, as you go (this is when He sent the 12 disciples out ), as you go, preach saying, the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand, heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons, freely you have received, freely give.” We have a commission to heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Some of you may be thinking, yeah, but that was for the disciples, but that’s not for us.
Okay let me ask you a question, if that statement was true, would the same Holy Spirit that lived back then be able to live in me? Does that same Holy Spirit have the same power that it had back then? It’s an obvious yes! What I’m talking about today is not a common subject in churches,I should say within religious organizations, they want us to be very controlled. They want us to dress like I am dressed today (in a suit), I feel very uncomfortable, I’d rather be in my jeans and a shirt; but that’s another story.
There is a form of religion, but every form of religion lacks power. Jesus came in power and demonstration of the Spirit. The reason it is uncomfortable sometimes to talk about the Holy Spirit is because, it almost gives people a license to do stuff that is wild and crazy. But God is not embarrassed about us acting wild and crazy, because when we will not get out and do something, we are allowing religion to control us. Because what are we saying, I don’t want anything out of the ordinary, I just want normal. But the anointing breaks things, it destroys things; so sometimes, we have to be willing to yield to the Spirit of God, and step in places that we don’t feel we can go. We were saved by grace, grace enables us to do things that we never thought we could do.
Did Jesus give these disciples a commandment, yes He did. What did He tell them, His advice, heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons; so what if that is not happening? Let’s say I decided to get bold and I go and do that. I go to somebody and I say, you know what I believe that Word, I am going to heal them. Here’s another thing, did you notice in that scripture, it said, heal the sick. He didn’t say pray for the sick. Think about that , He didn’t say pray for the sick, He said, I give you authority to heal the sick. I give you authority to cast out demons. I give you authority to cleanse leopards. I give you authority to raise the dead, He didn’t say pray for them. Who does the healing Jesus, we know that, but He didn’t say pray for them. He said cleanse them, raise them, think on that for a second. I’m trying not to get excited here.
Let’s say I decide to take a step of faith, and I go out and I do that and nothing happens. I pray for the sick, I said Father, you told me in your Word, it’s a command. You said heal the sick, I spoke to the sick and nothing happened. Here’s what I need to do, I keep believing the Word, but I go back to my secret place. I say, Father I feel the pain that Jesus feels right now; because Jesus came to deliver people, and I know You don’t make mistakes, so the problem could not be with You. Father, I’m coming back, I need to get in the secret place and find out why it didn’t happen. I just allow God to summon me back to that secret place, Father what do I need, show me, talk to me Holy Spirit; the problem is not with You.
Come back in secret. Here is what we need to do, get in a quiet place, cry out to God and then get in a public place and start exercising. Get in a quiet place cry out, “Father what is going on, Your word is true, I know it’s true.” Cry out and then get out in the public and demonstrate. When we are summoned, because something that God said we can do and it’s not happening. It’s like getting that summons for the court, like Dave come to court on this day. When Jesus is summoning us to the presence of God, He is summoning us to come back to the secret place and let’s have a talk.
The Word of God is true, so if it’s not happening, I must go to the secret place. When I come out of the secret place, then I need to get in the public place. When I get in the public place, I take risk. The Holy Spirit is all about empowering you and me to take risks. Faith does not come by sitting. Faith comes by me or you yielding our will to the will of the Holy Spirit Faith does not come by a sitting, faith comes by you and I yielding our will to the Holy Spirit. He will take you to some places, He will take you to some places. Most of what you and I need will be brought to us.
But most of what we want, we are going to have to fight for it. We will have to persevere, we will have to contend. We all have destiny, but that destiny is not going to be dropped in your hand. Every need you have will be supplied, but your purpose, your destiny, you have to fight for it. You have to do some battling, because there’s one trying to defeat you and trying to defeat me. He is not going to make it easy, but we need to persevere. We need to persevere, because God has given us words, and those words are powerful,
Remember your destiny must be fought for with purpose. We have to learn to encourage ourselves. Encourage ourselves, we don’t go back to a place of being down and out. We encourage ourselves with the Scriptures, with the Word.
Look at what David did. David had lost everything. He came back from battle and his family is gone, his wives were gone, all his children were gone. The Bible says that David encourage himself in the Lord. What did he do, he started remembering all those great battles that he did. Father I remember that I was out tending the sheep and I fought a bear, I took a lion and I killed a lion. He encouraged himself! Here’s a secret, what you do in the secret place, you kill bears and giants. If you can kill a bear and giant in the secret place, God will entrust you publicly to kill Goliath. But you have to take time to get in a secret place, that’s where the battles are won, in the secret place.
To often we want to do the big things first, but you have to get to that secret place. It’s like as we have been commissioned into a war. We are soldiers in the Kingdom of God, the Bible says in 2 Timothy 2:3-4close2 Timothy 2:3-4 3 Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. 4 No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him. (ESV) , no soldier gets himself entangled with the affairs of this life, but he keeps himself available for his master that he may serve him. Keep reading, it says something else, in verse eight, it says, freely you have received, so freely give. We freely have received this Gospel, we freely have received the deliverance, it was free that God delivered me from drugs, it was free that I got delivered from bondage, it was free and so freely I must give. How can I give to someone else, I need to recognize what I possess.
This is only an illustration, its not to make a point about me; but there is a time where I was spending so much quality time just in prayer, I was conscientious of God so much. A woman at my job said this, and it really surprised me, she said when you walk in the room it changes things, I sense God’s presence with you. I did not sense it, I did not feel it, didn’t know; but it showed me that we have the ability, when were conscientious of that Dove (an illustration he had done on a previous teaching). When we are conscientious that the Spirit of God within us, we have the ability to change atmospheres.
Jesus said, I am the light of the world, right; but when He got ready to leave, He said you are the light of the world. He transferred, it’s like the relay. He says I came, I’ve done my job, now here’s a baton. Pass the baton, it’s time for you guys. I’m the light of the world Jesus said now you’re the light of the world, go and spread that light.
Jesus was the perfect example of how we are supposed to serve God. Think about it, Jesus is God, but He says that He left everything. He came to earth and Jesus did not do anything except of what He heard the Father say. He would not do anything on His own because He emptied Himself. The Bible says He emptied Himself and became a man. He humbled Himself. Remember what I said about joy, do you know the Bible says that Jesus endured the cross for the joy that was set before Him. His reward was the joy. The cross was His reward, His death was joy. It says He endured the cross, because of the joy that was set before Him. When He completed that which the Father given Him, He would receive his greatest joy. The joy that is set before us , may we have an understanding of the divine presence that we carry.
Faith does not come from striving or toiling. Faith comes from resting. Faith comes from knowing that God has given me the power, the right, the authority to do things in His name. Not in my name, He made me a representative of Him.
Let’s look at something to bring this point home. When Jesus was in the earth, do you realize that Jesus released the presence of God when He spoke words . It says His words are life and spirit. Whenever He spoke, He released presence. Literally when people would see Jesus, they were like, that man, they sensed the presence of God coming. He released it.
We saw in the Book of Acts the disciples they went about releasing that presence also. When we tap into what the Father is saying in a specific situation, and we listen to the Holy Spirit; we make a declaration according to what He tells us. We can change atmospheres, but the key is we tap into what God is saying, we listen to what the Father is saying, and we yield ourselves to be a vessel. I will only say what You say, I will only do what You do, we can change atmospheres. We can change them.
Have you ever walked into a room where you just sensed darkness? I remember the first time I became a Christian and me and my wife were driving through I believe it was Sedona, Arizona. We had heard that this was a woooo, a mystic area. Well we hit a certain area, and all of a sudden we could feel the atmosphere change, you can sense darkness. Now what do you do when sense that? You don’t cow down, you say what you are. You stand up and you recognize, I am the righteousness of God and I will not bow down. Now you don’t do anything stupid, just be wise enough, don’t allow darkness to oppress you. Do you realize, let me just say it, if a person is constantly depressed and down, it is hard for that person to walk into a room and change the atmosphere. The reason why is because when you’re down, or depressed you are constantly looking inward. You’re really becoming self-centered, to be honest. We are so busy focusing on ourselves, that we can’t allow God to come out of us.
The reason we can change atmospheres is because the power that we have is not in us, it’s in Him. When we stop looking at ourselves, and what we are, and start looking at what He is. We have the ability, because we are possessing His presence to change the atmosphere.
Many of you men can identify to this. You come home from work, hard days work. You walk in and the first thing you do is, why aren’t the dishes done, where’s my dinner, and you literally change the atmosphere for the bad. Your wife was at home enjoying the presence of God, singing, taking care of the kids. Then we come and sprinkle the atmosphere with all this poison. See we have the ability to carry a presence with us and we speak words of death and we change the atmosphere. Now let’s reverse that, we come home and we say, Honey, thank you for all you have done. I sense the presence of God in here, you must be in this house with the Holy Ghost. And we come in with a thankful heart, with a thankful word. We say Honey, thank you for caring for those children, I couldn’t do it by myself. I thank God for you. We literally lift her with our words and change the atmosphere.
We can do that at work. We can go into our job and say, Oh I can’t stand being here today. And we literally change the atmosphere. But we can do the opposite, we walk into our job everyone had their head down. I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart, down in my heart, then everybody starts looking at you and say what are you so happy about.
Well let me tell you about it, I got saved back in 1981, next thing you know your trying to tell them, but they walk away, they didn’t really want to hear. But you see, we have the ability when we recognize what Jesus has done for us, and we allow that possession of what He’s done, we allow it to carry us. We can change atmospheres. It’s not so much with our words, but we entertain the presence of God. We host the presence of God and we allow Him to have dominion as He desires.
Matthew 10:12-14closeMatthew 10:12-14 12 As you enter the house, greet it. 13 And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. 14 And if anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town. (ESV) remember He sent them out. He says, “And when you go into a household, greet it. If the household is worthy, let your peace come upon it. But if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet.”
Think about what He just said about peace. Remember what I said earlier about the Holy Spirit came upon Jesus and it remains. That analogy is that a dove needs peace to remain. If you bring nervousness, you bring confusion, you bring strife, the dove is quickly gone. But Jesus says when you go, He is talking to His disciples, if the household is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not, let your peace return to you.
What He is referring to in this verse, is that we carry the peace of God, it’s something that possesses us. See in the world peace is known as the absence of conflict, the absence of strife, the absence of say war. That is what the definition of peace is in the world but, in the Kingdom of God, peace is the presence of something. Peace in the kingdom of God is the presence of God. His presence brings peace. So when He says if they are worthy, let your peace remain. But if it doesn’t just let your peace, the presence you brought into that house come back.
Here is an interesting story, some of you have been to Israel. Back then, when we sow a seed, this is way I heard it. We plow the ground first, then we sow the seed. But I believe in the Biblical days, they would sow a seed first, then they would plow. So when you go and deliver the Gospel to somebody, you sow a seed and they rejected it. Don’t worry, the plow is coming. Amen! You plant that seed, the plows coming and we know that when we plan someone else comes in waters and eventually God will bring the increase. So don’t be discouraged you keep planting the seed, the Word will go forth.
When we cooperate with the Holy Spirit, He is the heart and soul of ministry. He can take one simple thing, one simple thought that we get, and turn it into something supernatural; just because we are choosing to cooperate with Him. When you think about this, peace literally is the substance of Heaven. Do you realize, remember in the Book of Acts there was such a presence of God upon them, as they walked around. The Bible says there was such a presence, that the shadow of Peter, they said Peter is passing through and they were bringing out sick people. They said just get by the shadow, maybe even the shadow would heal them. A shadow has no substance, right? There’s no substance in the shadow, but it was the Presence of God that had the substance. People said, there’s healing taking place, just get around him. But remember those disciples they walked Hosting the Presence of God, they recognized that they were hosts of the Presence of God.
The thing that we need to get back into us is to realize that we are Host of the Presence of God. We have the right, because God has given us the Name of Jesus. We have the authority and we can walk into places and change atmospheres. If we would start training ourselves to pay attention to what the Holy Spirit is saying. Start listening, before we go into a place, start praying in tongues. We are listening and we say, Holy Ghost I’m about to walk into this place and I want to change the atmosphere. Walk around listening.
Years ago when I first personally got exposed to this type of teaching, the one thing that I did, I went into my secret place, then I went out to my public place. I took a risk and I said Father You have taught me something that I didn’t know that I had and I want to practice it. I started going out taking risks. It was amazing, God would give me words to go up to strangers that I did not know and I took a risk and I would say something. I was a little bit timid, but I would start with one word and the Holy Spirit would come and He would give me something. But I was speaking words that the Father had given me because I was not saying my words, I wasn’t making stuff up. I had prepared myself, I said Father I want to be a vessel useful for the Kingdom. I said Father, I want to be a risk taker, I don’t want to just sit. I want to go out and do this and I took a risk and because I spoke His words; He backed me up and He gave me more words. It takes a risk, it really does.
Turn to Genesis 8closeGenesis 8 The Flood Subsides 8:1 But God remembered Noah and all the beasts and all the livestock that were with him in the ark. And God made a wind blow over the earth, and the waters subsided. 2 The fountains of the deep and the windows of the heavens were closed, the rain from the heavens was restrained, 3 and the waters receded from the earth continually. At the end of 150 days the waters had abated, 4 and in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat. 5 And the waters continued to abate until the tenth month; in the tenth month, on the first day of the month, the tops of the mountains were seen. 6 At the end of forty days Noah opened the window of the ark that he had made 7 and sent forth a raven. It went to and fro until the waters were dried up from the earth. 8 Then he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters had subsided from the face of the ground. 9 But the dove found no place to set her foot, and she returned to him to the ark, for the waters were still on the face of the whole earth. So he put out his hand and took her and brought her into the ark with him. 10 He waited another seven days, and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark. 11 And the dove came back to him in the evening, and behold, in her mouth was a freshly plucked olive leaf. So Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth. 12 Then he waited another seven days and sent forth the dove, and she did not return to him anymore. 13 In the six hundred and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried from off the earth. And Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, and behold, the face of the ground was dry. 14 In the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth had dried out. 15 Then God said to Noah, 16 “Go out from the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons' wives with you. 17 Bring out with you every living thing that is with you of all flesh—birds and animals and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth—that they may swarm on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth.” 18 So Noah went out, and his sons and his wife and his sons' wives with him. 19 Every beast, every creeping thing, and every bird, everything that moves on the earth, went out by families from the ark. God's Covenant with Noah 20 Then Noah built an altar to the Lord and took some of every clean animal and some of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar. 21 And when the Lord smelled the pleasing aroma, the Lord said in his heart, “I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man's heart is evil from his youth. Neither will I ever again strike down every living creature as I have done. 22 While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.” (ESV) , this is an interesting story. I was talking to you about a dove, again I’m not making some theology up. Sometimes you just find interesting things in the Bible and it just makes you think. Ever had that? Remember in Genesis when God told Noah to build an ark, and the flood came. Go to Genesis 6closeGenesis 6 Increasing Corruption on Earth 6:1 When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them, 2 the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive. And they took as their wives any they chose. 3 Then the Lord said, “My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.” 4 The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown. 5 The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. 6 And the Lord was sorry that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart. 7 So the Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them.” 8 But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. Noah and the Flood 9 These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God. 10 And Noah had three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. 11 Now the earth was corrupt in God's sight, and the earth was filled with violence. 12 And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth. 13 And God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh, for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth. 14 Make yourself an ark of gopher wood. Make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and out with pitch. 15 This is how you are to make it: the length of the ark 300 cubits, its breadth 50 cubits, and its height 30 cubits. 16 Make a roof for the ark, and finish it to a cubit above, and set the door of the ark in its side. Make it with lower, second, and third decks. 17 For behold, I will bring a flood of waters upon the earth to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life under heaven. Everything that is on the earth shall die. 18 But I will establish my covenant with you, and you shall come into the ark, you, your sons, your wife, and your sons' wives with you. 19 And of every living thing of all flesh, you shall bring two of every sort into the ark to keep them alive with you. They shall be male and female. 20 Of the birds according to their kinds, and of the animals according to their kinds, of every creeping thing of the ground, according to its kind, two of every sort shall come in to you to keep them alive. 21 Also take with you every sort of food that is eaten, and store it up. It shall serve as food for you and for them.” 22 Noah did this; he did all that God commanded him. (ESV) , this came to pass at the end of 40 days when Noah opened the window of the ark, which he had made, he sent out a raven which kept going to and from until the waters dried up on the earth. He also sent out himself a dove to see if the waters had receded from the face of the ground.
Pausing for a second, do you know what the international sign for peace is, a dove with an olive branch. Internationally known as the sign for peace.
Verse nine says that the dove found no rest place for the sole of her feet. Let me back up I missed, verse seven Noah sent out a raven which kept going to and fro until the waters had dried up. Here in verse eight; he also sent out from himself a dove. It doesn’t say that he just took a dove and went like this; but it says as he took and sent out a dove from himself.
That’s interesting, from himself he sent out a dove. In verse eight, he sent out from himself a dove to see if the waters had receded from the face of the ground, but the dove found no resting place for the sole of her foot. And she returned to the ark to him for the waters were on the face of the whole earth. So he put out his hand and the dove he sent out came back to him.
Remember what I said about doves. What are they? Nervous, skittish they don’t like disturbances, they need peace, they need the presence of peace. Verse 9 But the dove found no resting place, so he put out his hand and drew her back into the Ark. Verse 10 says, and he waited yet another seven days and again he sent the dove out from the Ark and the dove came back to him in the evening and behold a freshly plucked olive leaf was in her mouth and no one knew that the waters had receded from the Earth. So he waited yet another seven days sent up a dove again which did not return to him anymore, so the dove went and found a resting place and did not return. Doves need a resting place, a place of peace. Just an analogy there.
Go to John Chapter 20, if we are going to be Hosting the Presence of God; one, we have to be resting in God. Remember what I said earlier, all of us possess, we have in us the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is in every believer, if you received Jesus Christ, but not everyone of us has the Holy Spirit abiding upon us. We can, it is available, but we must create an atmosphere for Him to abide. When I say abide, I mean so that others sense God’s Presence because of us, not because of us, but because we are Hosting that Presence.
John Chapter 20 verse 19 says, same day at evening, and this was after Jesus had been resurrected, says the same day at evening being the first day of the week when the doors were shut with the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews Jesus came and stood in the midst of them. So if you didn’t catch that, Jesus came without a door, He just appeared and look at what He said, “Peace be with you.”
Now if that was you or me, I think I would need Jesus to say that. If He just shows up, no doors open, He just appears, that’s a good word to hear, peace be with you. Verse 20 when He said this, He showed them His hands, His side and the disciples were glad when they saw it. So Jesus said to them again, peace to you. Now let’s pay attention to what Jesus is about to say, before I read it, remember He has ascended, He has come back. For 3 1/2 years He has been ministering to them, given them words of life, spirit and life. He had been speaking to them and now He and appears to them and this is where the passing of the baton really takes place right here. Verse 21 Jesus says this to the disciples, He says as the Father has sent me, I also send you. So He is commissioning them and said, Just as the Father sent me, what did the Father send Jesus to do? To do His will and He is saying just as the Father sent me, I’m sending you to do the Father’s will. Not to do your own thing, I’m sending you, that is a command. Verse 22 He breathed on them and He said these words, receive the Holy Spirit.
Many times we get this overshadowed, this Scripture right here, because a lot of times what we say is we are to go out and talk to others. The greatest thing we are suppose to do is preach the Gospel and that is important; but the greatest thing, if that were true the greatest thing would be when Jesus appears to them after His resurrection, His first words probably would have been go talk to others. But His first words were not that, He saids receive the Holy Spirit, think about it, it’s serious, that’s the first commission the disciples received. Receive the Holy Spirit, receive the peace of God, receive the rest of God, receive the Presence of God. Remember the Kingdom of God is within you. Jesus said, I am the light of the world, but as He was leaving, He said now you are the light of the world. He gave us a commission, received the Holy Spirit, receive the Holy Spirit.
Father, we acknowledge right now that Your words matter. That Your words are Spirit and they are Life. That you have commissioned us, that even as You were sent from the Father, that you have sent us. Father, You said unto us to receive Your Spirit, the Holy Spirit so in the Name of Jesus, we thank You for the Holy Spirit, we thank You that You have empowered us as vessels of honor to go forth and bring Your presence into atmospheres, that we can change darkness into light. Father, you said we are the salt of the Earth, You came as salt, but You said now we are the salt of the Earth. We are the remaining preservers Lord, so I ask on behalf of everyone here, forgive us for not acknowledging the things You have given us, You have given us possession of the Kingdom, You have given us possession of the kings dominion and we humbly receive it. WE humbly say, Thank You for allowing us to be Your representatives, Your ambassadors, we are Your ambassadors for Christ. Father, as we enter into our secret place, during this week, Father give us boldness to go out and exercise things in the public, to take risks, to demonstrate Your presence on others.
Receive God’s presence right now. Receive all that He has.