New Wine for New Wineskins December 2010

By , January 30, 2011 1:14 am

Let the Weak SpeakLet the Weak Speak (Part 28)

The Prophets – Walking the Talk (3)

Remember – the purpose of this series is to release the potential that is within us to build successful ministries, kingdom businesses, and to be world changers who really make a difference in this world.  That will always involve change but we don’t need to panic because all of the change God requires from us is by way of exchange.  And so we simply come to the place of exchange – the Throne of Grace – where we have the opportunity to trade our weakness for his strength!

We are no longer wearing ourselves out chasing signs and wonders – we are signs and wonders and so we are destined to be the most exciting thing that is going on wherever we are!

Isaiah 8: 18

18 Here am I and the children whom the LORD has given me!
We are for signs and wonders in Israel
From the LORD of hosts,
Who dwells in Mount Zion.

Joel 3: 9 – 10

9 Proclaim this among the nations:
“Prepare for war!
Wake up the mighty men,
Let all the men of war draw near,
Let them come up.
10 Beat your plowshares into swords
And your pruning hooks into spears;
Let the weak say, ‘I am strong.’”

IT’S TIME TO LET THE WEAK SPEAK!  LET THE WEAK SAY, “I AM STRONG!”

We have been going through the Hebrews 11 “Hall of Faith” and looking at the lives of some of those listed there who although they were far from perfect were successful in overcoming the weaknesses of their flesh and fulfilling God’s purpose in their generation by faith!

In the past few sessions we continued doing what the writer of Hebrews does and began to race on through the rest of the folks that are mentioned here who all overcame their weaknesses by faith and saw the supernatural strength and power of God manifested in and through their lives!  So far we have looked at Rahab, Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, and Samuel, Elijah, Elisha, and Isaiah.

Hebrews 11: 31 – 40

31 By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace. 32 And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets: 33 who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. 35 Women received their dead raised to life again.

Daniel and his friends were signs and wonders in Babylon as God supernaturally delivered them.
It is in Daniel that we are told:

Daniel 11: 32

32 .. the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits.

These four Hebrew youths refused to eat the king’s fancy food or drink his wine.  The man in charge of them was afraid that they would start to look poorly and that the king would have his head.

Daniel 1: 11 – 20

11 So Daniel said to the steward whom the chief of the eunuchs had set over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, 12 “Please test your servants for ten days, and let them give us vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13 Then let our appearance be examined before you, and the appearance of the young men who eat the portion of the king’s delicacies; and as you see fit, so deal with your servants.” 14 So he consented with them in this matter, and tested them ten days.
15 And at the end of ten days their features appeared better and fatter in flesh than all the young men who ate the portion of the king’s delicacies. 16 Thus the steward took away their portion of delicacies and the wine that they were to drink, and gave them vegetables.
17 As for these four young men, God gave them knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom; and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.
18 Now at the end of the days, when the king had said that they should be brought in, the chief of the eunuchs brought them in before Nebuchadnezzar. 19 Then the king interviewed them, and among them all none was found like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah; therefore they served before the king. 20 And in all matters of wisdom and understanding about which the king examined them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers who were in all his realm.

By refusing to depend on the natural means of strength they accessed the supernatural strength of God and excelled in everything.  The Lord is calling a generation of young people who refuse to eat the delicacies of the prince of this world!

Later on Meshach, Shadrach, and Abed-Nego got themselves in trouble when they refused to bow down to King Nebuchadnezzar’s  image of gold.  The king had them thrown into a fiery furnace heated seven times hotter than normal but the LORD supernaturally delivered them according to their faith!

Daniel 3: 16 – 17, 24 – 30

16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. 17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king….
18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.

There was apparently some doubt here that was about to be burned up!  As soon as they got in that furnace any question they might have had concerning whether or not God would deliver them got instantly fried!

24 Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished; and he rose in haste and spoke, saying to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the midst of the fire?”
They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.”
25 “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.”
26 Then Nebuchadnezzar went near the mouth of the burning fiery furnace and spoke, saying, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here.” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego came from the midst of the fire. 27 And the satraps, administrators, governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together, and they saw these men on whose bodies the fire had no power; the hair of their head was not singed nor were their garments affected, and the smell of fire was not on them.
28 Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, who sent His Angel and delivered His servants who trusted in Him, and they have frustrated the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they should not serve nor worship any god except their own God! 29 Therefore I make a decree that any people, nation, or language which speaks anything amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made an ash heap; because there is no other God who can deliver like this.”
30 Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego in the province of Babylon.

How does God perfect our faith?  In the furnace of affliction!  He will allow us to go into the fire as often as is necessary in order to bring the imperfections in our life to the surface so that they can be skimmed off and so that our faith can be completely cleansed from all the impurities of doubt and unbelief!

1 Peter 1: 6 – 7

6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

But it is only the imperfections that he is after.  We are completely protected in the furnace!

Isaiah 43: 1 – 3

1 “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are Mine.
2 …When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you.
3 For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour

Years later Daniel is the victim of a jealous conspiracy and ends up being thrown into a lion’s den.  But even the pagan king had been so impacted by Daniel’s faith that he believed that Daniel’s God would deliver him!

Daniel 6: 16 – 28

16 So the king gave the command, and they brought Daniel and cast him into the den of lions. But the king spoke, saying to Daniel, “Your God, whom you serve continually, He will deliver you.” 17 Then a stone was brought and laid on the mouth of the den, and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the signets of his lords, that the purpose concerning Daniel might not be changed.
18 Now the king went to his palace and spent the night fasting; and no musicians were brought before him. Also his sleep went from him. 19 Then the king arose very early in the morning and went in haste to the den of lions. 20 And when he came to the den, he cried out with a lamenting voice to Daniel. The king spoke, saying to Daniel, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?”
21 Then Daniel said to the king, “O king, live forever! 22 My God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you.”
23 Now the king was exceedingly glad for him, and commanded that they should take Daniel up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no injury whatever was found on him, because he believed in his God.
24 And the king gave the command, and they brought those men who had accused Daniel, and they cast them into the den of lions—them, their children, and their wives; and the lions overpowered them, and broke all their bones in pieces before they ever came to the bottom of the den.
25 Then King Darius wrote:
To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you.
26 I make a decree that in every dominion of my kingdom men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel.  For He is the living God, and steadfast forever; His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed, and His dominion shall endure to the end.
27 He delivers and rescues, and He works signs and wonders in heaven and on earth, who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions. 28 So this Daniel prospered in the reign of Darius and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian.

Daniel goes on to fulfil a prophetic ministry that sees his people delivered from captivity and that also still speaks in our generation concerning the end times!

It is when we are willing to make ourselves vulnerable through our obedience to God that we are made strong with his strength and become signs and wonders!

LET THE WEAK SAY, “I AM STRONG!”

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