New Wine for New Wineskins January 2022

By , January 1, 2022 12:41 pm


Perspective Is Everything 

Part Five

The prophetic declaration we have been given as New Wine Church for the year 5782-2022 is  “The Year of Reconciliation”. 

2 Corinthians 5: 17 – 21

17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. 20 Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. 21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

This fits perfectly with the current series as we have been saying that it is time for ministry, that it is time to be a continuation of Jesus’ ministry.  Jesus came to reconcile the world to God and he has passed on the ministry and the message of reconciliation to us.

Ephesians 4: 11 – 12

11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying [building up] of the body of Christ

As previously stated throughout this series there are many ways that we can be equipped for ministry, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that we are fully prepared for ministry – particularly a ministry that is a continuation of Jesus’ ministry. The truth is that is time for us to be a continuation of Jesus’ ministry, and perspective is everything.

The first thing that we should note is that ministry is work.

Revelation 3: 2 – 3

2 Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have found your works unfinished in the sight of my God. 3 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; hold it fast, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.

Jesus, in addressing this church in Sardis, refers to unfinished works.

John 4: 34

34 Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work….”

John 5: 36

36 But I have a greater witness than John’s; for the works which the Father has given Me to finish – the very works that I do – bear witness of Me, that the Father has sent Me.

John 17: 4

4 I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.

John 19: 30

30 So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.

Jesus obviously placed the utmost importance on finishing the work he had been sent by his Father to accomplish. It seems that he also viewed the finishing of the work he committed to us to be of similar importance.

John 20: 21

21 So Jesus said to them again, “Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.”

The Greek word translated peace means prosperity. The Hebrew word for peace is shalom. Jesus is basically saying: you will have everything you will ever need; there will be nothing missing and nothing broken; you will be fully equipped with an abundance of everything you need in order to finish the work I have commissioned you for.

Jesus was born fully equipped. He was born righteous, healed, delivered, prosperous and untainted in any way by any manifestation of the curse. All he had to do was live the life.

John 1: 4 – 5

4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend [overcome] it.  

After thirty years of living in full possession of these foundational realities in a very low-key and low impact manner, Jesus is baptised in water, the Holy Spirit comes upon him, and he is led by the Spirit into the wilderness for a forty-day period of fasting culminating in an encounter with the darkness and all of the subtle attempts of the accuser to infiltrate and compromise him. But Jesus, the word of God in the flesh, emerges from the time of testing completely victorious and he comes out of the wilderness in the power of the Holy Spirit. At that point everything changes very dramatically as he launches out into public ministry.

John 14: 11 – 13

11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves. 12 Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. 13 And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

Listen again to these familiar words:

John 3: 1 – 8

1 There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2 This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him. 3 Jesus answered and said to him, Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 4 Nicodemus said to Him, How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born? 5 Jesus answered, Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, You must be born again. 8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.

Jesus stated categorically the imperative of our being born again from above.  The reason being that when we are born again we are born again complete with everything that Jesus was born with the first time.  We are born again righteous we are born again healed, we are for again delivered, we are born again prosperous, we are born again fully equipped with everything we will ever need and are no longer no longer tainted in any way by any manifestation of the curse. All we have to do is live the life.  The truth is that we live what we believe and so if we simply and only believe the declaration of God’s word then we will live according to that word.

We are born again as a new creation.

2 Corinthians 5: 17 (Amplified)

17 Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!

We have a new creation life where the old is gone, and so we must decide whether we believe the old is really gone or not. We have a new creation life where the fresh and new has come. We must decide whether we believe that to be true or not. It has to be one or the other because it can’t be both if we are going to live the new supernatural life that is lived by faith.

Remember, perspective is everything.

If we try to live the new creation life from the perspective that we are still in possession of our old nature we will be caught up in an endless struggle with dead flesh.

1 Corinthians 15: 45

45 And so it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being.” The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.

We were born first time around with the nature of the first Adam – a fallen and sinful nature. Praise the Lord that we were born again with the nature of the last Adam – the heavenly man – Jesus.

Everything that we lacked naturally is superabundantly supplied to us supernaturally at the time of our being born again.

The old nature has passed away and so it must be buried and we can be resurrected to live according to our new nature. There is a process to this that can be swift if we have the right perspective, and perspective is everything.

Ephesians 4: 22 – 24

22 Strip yourselves of your former nature [put off and discard your old unrenewed self] which characterised your previous manner of life and becomes corrupt through lusts and desires that spring from delusion;

23 And be constantly renewed in the spirit of your mind [having a fresh mental and spiritual attitude],

24 And put on the new nature (the regenerate self) created in God’s image, [Godlike] in true righteousness and holiness.

Sometimes people can fail in their application of the third step because they miss the second step.  They then fall back to the first step and spend years wrestling with something that they have already been provided with victory over.  So many of God’s precious people are running around trying to apprehend what is already theirs and asking God for things that he has already supplied them with.

When the new nature is confronted by the opportunity to sin it rejects it as something that is alien to it; when the new nature encounters symptoms of sickness it rejects them as alien to it; when the new nature meets with oppression it rejects it as alien to it; when the new nature runs into the limitations of poverty or any other manifestation of the curse it rejects it as alien to it.

The five-fold ministry of apostles, prophets, evangelists ,pastors, and teachers are there to initially equip us with and then to remind us of these spiritual realities.

As I was meditating on this it came to me that the first disciples turned the world upside down or right side up because their lives were turned inside out. That is what the power of the Holy Spirit did on the day of Pentecost and that is what the power of the Holy Spirit still does. Religious tradition tries to change us from the outside in but the power of the Holy Spirit in our born again spirit changes us from the inside out.

I was reminded recently of the word that the Lord spoke to me at the end of 2019 as we were entering 2020 – the year of the unashamed.

He said that it was not going to be about rehearsing who we are in Christ or even celebrating who Christ is in us – both of which are essential and foundational revelations – but it is about proclaiming who HE IS. Effectively reaching the lost begins there, whereas discipling the found begins with the other two.

The world needs to hear and be reminded of who HE IS.

It is time for ministry, it is time for Jesus’ ministry, and perspective is everything.

Listen to Jesus in one of his prophetic declarations that we tend to prefer to pass over because in our over-sensitivity we can’t always reconcile it with our current understanding of what is very often a seriously diluted gospel message.

Luke 12: 49 – 56

49 “I came to send fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! 50 But I have a baptism to be baptised with, and how distressed I am till it is accomplished! 51 Do you suppose that I came to give peace on earth? I tell you, not at all, but rather division. 52 For from now on five in one house will be divided: three against two, and two against three. 53 Father will be divided against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.”

Is he saying that is the way that he wants it to be? Of course not. But he is saying that it is how it will be sometimes, and we need to be prepared for that so that we stay in love with Jesus first, and then stay in love in our attitude towards those who oppose us without yielding to the pressure of their opposition.

54 Then He also said to the multitudes, “Whenever you see a cloud rising out of the west, immediately you say, ‘A shower is coming’; and so it is. 55 And when you see the south wind blow, you say, ‘There will be hot weather’; and there is. 56 Hypocrites! You can discern the face of the sky and of the earth, but how is it you do not discern this time?”

In recent days I have felt a fire being kindled in my spirit and I can only put it down to the work of the Holy Spirit.

So how should we be discerning this time? Obviously the best place to start if we are to understand the time we are in is the prophetic word of God. 

2 Timothy 3: 1 – 5 (TPT)

1 But you need to be aware that in the final days the culture of society will become extremely fierce. 2 People will be self-centered lovers of themselves [men will look out only for themselves] and be obsessed with money. They will boast of great things as they strut around in their arrogant pride and mock all that is right. They will ignore their own families [be disobedient to parents]. They will be ungrateful [rejecters of grace] and ungodly.

3 They will become addicted to hateful and malicious slander [they will be devils]. Slaves to their desires, they will be ferocious, belligerent haters of what is good and right. 4 With brutal treachery, they will act without restraint, bigoted and wrapped in clouds of their conceit. They will find their delight in the pleasures of this world more than the pleasures of the loving God. 5 They may pretend to have a respect for God, but in reality they want nothing to do with God’s power. Stay away from people like these!

This so accurately describes our current cancel culture of godless progressivism with its amorality and it’s social media-driven cults of celebrity and the open promotion and celebration of perverted practices accompanied by the hedonistic anthem of, “If it feels good do it,” whatever it is.

If we can’t discern the times that we are living in then we might be in trouble in terms of reaching the lost world we have been commissioned to reach and we may end up with unfinished works.

I keep hearing people talking about a great awakening and my spirit says bring it on, but right  now the devil has introduced his counterfeit great awoken-ing and it is rapidly changing the culture in which we live as the influence of “woke-ness” impacts on every aspect of society.

Ephesians 5: 1 – 14

1 Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.

3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; 4 neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not be partakers with them.

8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose [reprove – reprimand, rebuke, reproach, scold, admonish, chastise] them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things that are exposed [reproved] are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light.

14 Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.”

It is time to wake up to our calling and our commission because it is time for ministry. It is time for Jesus’ ministry, and perspective is everything.

When Jesus spoke to the church in Sardis he wasn’t rebuking them for what they had done wrong, but for what they hadn’t done, for their unfinished works. They had laid the foundation, but they hadn’t continued to build on that foundation. Where is the foundation laid? In the ground. Remember the parable of the talents and the guy who took his one talent and buried it in the ground. When the master returned he handed back what he had been given with no increase. He thought he had secured it where it would be nice and safe – he didn’t even risk banking or investing it, never mind trading with it. Was his master impressed? Not at all.

I believe this guy represents a convert who never becomes a disciple, someone who responds to the call to come but never obeys the command to go. Someone who starts but never finishes the work he was called and commissioned to accomplish.

It is time for ministry, time for Jesus’ ministry, and perspective is everything.

It is time to call people to discipleship, to really become like Jesus, and not just like the pre-baptism Jesus who, although he was perfect had a very low impact on the community around him – but the Holy Spirit-anointed Jesus who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed, the fearless and fired-up Jesus who wasn’t afraid to confront what was wrong in the world, including the religious world.

As one old preacher I used to listen to would say:

Pentecost is God living through a human vessel. It is God the Father, through God the Holy Ghost, displaying God the Son, through a human vessel called the Church.

For me that perfectly describes the difference in perspective between doing witnessing for Jesus and being witnesses to Jesus.

It is time for ministry. It is time for Jesus’ ministry, and perspective is everything.



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