God takes no delight in the testings of his children. The Bible says Christ is sympathetic toward us in all our trials, being touched by the feelings of our infirmities. In Revelation 2:9 he tells the church, “I know thy … tribulation, and poverty…” He’s saying, in essence, “I know what you’re going through. You may not understand it, but I know all about it.”
How often have you heard Christians say, “God is doing a new thing in his church”? The “new thing” they refer to may be called a revival, an outpouring, a visitation, or a move of God.
Yet very often, this “new thing” of God dies out quickly. And once it has faded, it can’t be found again. In this way, it proves not to be a move of God at all. In fact, Christian sociologists have tracked many of these so-called visitations. They’ve discovered that the average span of such an event is about five years.
As Jesus made his way toward Galilee, he came to Jacob's Well in Samaria. Weary from the journey, he stopped to rest there, while his disciples went to buy food. In the meantime, a Samaritan woman came to the well to draw water. Jesus made a simple request of her: "Give me to drink" (John 4:7).
Here on the streets of New York City, you can buy a Rolex watch for fifteen dollars. A salesman yells, "Get your Rolex here," and he flashes a shiny timepiece with the word "Rolex" on its face. As you examine the watch, everything about it looks like a Rolex. But, as every New Yorker knows, these watches aren't truly Rolexes. They're simply "knockoffs" - cheap copies of the original.
Incapacitated - what a frightening word! It means "deprived of capacity or power to perform; rendered unfit, useless; disqualified."
According to God's word, sin is the great incapacitator. It affects ministers and laymen alike - robbing them of all power and usefulness, leaving them dry and empty, and removing all ability to fulfill the eternal purposes of Christ.
There is only one kind of righteousness that God accepts — and that is perfect righteousness! Nothing else will stand in His presence on Judgment Day. Unless our righteousness is absolutely perfect, He cannot save us, justify us, recognize or accept us.
Yet, is there anyone brazen enough to think he can stand before the throne of Jesus Christ and present something of his own doing — good works, good behavior, all the dos and don'ts he observed — and call it perfect righteousness? No — never! Such a man will find himself on that day wearing filthy rags!
I want to tell you about an anointed servant of God who hated sin as few people ever have. His hatred for evil was so passionate, so intense he was ready to kill all transgressors.
I am speaking of Saul, the first king of Israel! No person in the Old Testament expressed a greater hatred for sin than did Saul.
The title of this message is no joke — I'm not being facetious. I believe the Bible speaks very clearly on this subject of demons: They can't swim — because they hate water!
Rest assured, if you are trying to walk righteously before the Lord, you are being tested! If fact, the deeper your walk with Christ, the more intense your testing will be. Scripture makes this clear:
"The people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.... Now when they shall fall, they shall be holpen with a little help.... And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white, even to the time of the end: because it is yet for a time appointed" (Daniel 11:32-35)
Let me share with you what I believe God has shown me about His judgments on America — judgments that have already begun. Recently, while deep in prayer, these words rang over and over in my spirit: "The beggars are a sign! The beggars are a sign!"