Season of Transition

Have you been following the Hashtag 365 Bible-reading Plan? It’s highly recommended since it helps to provide a blueprint for what God is speaking and doing in the church today. How many sermons or messages have you heard that speak of a “new season” or an arising Joshua Generation? This new generation of leadership has many insightful parallels and lessons that speak to our day. Are we discerning the Lord’s voice; are we perceiving that new thing God is about to do (Isaiah 43:19)?

The leadership mantle was now transitioning to Joshua. He assumed the responsibility in taking Israel forward into their inheritance as they continued their pursuit towards Zion. Israel was given this opportunity 38 years earlier but failed at Kadesh-Barnea due to a lack of faith. How would they succeed this time? What keys can we gain from their experience that can be appropriated into our lives in our transition to a new season?

1) The Keeping of God’s Law (Deut 31:11-30)
The Lord made clear that if His people would keep His laws, they’d have good success (Josh 1:8). He also warned of the consequences of turning aside. The Lord prompted Moses to write a song of their history as a reminder of what would happen in failing to keep His law (Deut 31). Moses even declared that they’d eventually forsake the law after his death (Deut 31:29). Is it any different today? People and churches seek to serve the Lord on their terms at the expense of His law. The fruits of history should serve as a reminder in helping to keep us walking in the fear of the Lord.

2) Learn to Walk in Humility (Luke 19:35-38)
Jesus was being celebrated as a king as he rode into Jerusalem upon a donkey – “Blessed be the king that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest” (Luke 19:38). The Lord was presenting himself as a priest in humility but they did not perceive Him in that manner (Isa 43:19). The people were rejoicing (vs 37) but the Lord was weeping (vs 41-44). They missed their moment of transition into a new season. May God grant that this never happens to any of us.

3) Know your Authority (Luke 20)
Joshua was given authority to lead the people into Canaan so that they could possess the land that God was giving them. There was a fresh circumcision and consecration required as they transited from the eastern shores of Jordan into Canaan.

In like manner there’s an authority that God is placing before Cornerstone. Our authority is secured as we learn to first yield to the sword in our own lives (circumcision) before wielding the sword throughout enemy territory (Joshua 5:13-15). The authority given will be tested and challenged. It’s a process that first begins within the heart of a believer before it’s realised in the extension of the kingdom. The Lamb comes before the Lion, the priest before the king 
(John 1:29, Rev 19:11-16).

4) A Surrendered Will (Luke 22:42)
As we journey onward towards Zion, we’ll constantly be challenged in the area of our will. Remember, it was in the area of the “will” where Lucifer sinned in heaven (Isaiah 14:13-14). Satan seeks to get man to exert his will in defiance to God. May we learn to pray as Jesus did at all times: “… nevertheless, not my will, but thine be done.” It can be an intense battle but it becomes easier as we make it a daily habit and prayer.

God’s on the move and He’s seeking to bring the church to higher heights in Zion. This season of transition must be discerned and appropriated. The psalmist speaks of Zion as the “city of our God” as well as the “mountain of His holiness”; a city of beauty and great joy that’s known throughout the earth (Ps 48:1-2). It’s God’s intent for all to dwell there. The charge and subsequent warnings to Joshua and his generation is a blueprint that helps show the way. 
Let the Hashtag 365 Bible-reading Plan continue to serve as a blueprint for your journey in this exciting new season.

Pastor Tim O’Connell

Success Comes In “Cans”

This weekend is all about souls and the value that God places on each individual person. 
I don’t know of anybody who can stir us up in evangelism like our speaker this weekend, J John.

Did you know that when you get to heaven, you’ll see many amazing things? But one thing you’ll never ever see again is a non-Christian. That’s a scary thought isn’t it? Five minutes inside eternity, I believe each of us would wish we had sacrificed more, prayed more, loved more, sweated more, wept more, and grieved more for souls. We cannot be the foolish son who sleeps during harvest time. We must be urgent to do the work of evangelism.

I remember Pastor Nicky Raiborde telling a story of a friend of his who lived in this apartment block. There were 40 families living in the block read more…

A Response to a Misleading Lie

There’s been a disturbing video that’s been making its rounds, promoting a Christian lady who’s a lesbian and Christian at the same time. She’s promoting the virtue of being a happy homosexual Christian.

I find this very disturbing and misleading, and I felt that it’d make a good teaching moment for us to draw a clear dichotomy between the two. Let me put it in simple and unambiguous terms: A homosexual Christian is an oxymoron. You cannot live a lifestyle that the Bible condemns and say you’re a believer in Jesus Christ at the same time. It’s not only theologically-unsound; it’s deceptive for untaught people watching it. So I feel it’s only right for me to respond to this, since the video was launched in public square.

The first thing we need to understand as believers is that her misleading testimony represents read more…

Principles To Live By

“But he shall not multiply horses for himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses, for the Lord has said to you, ‘You shall not return that way again.’ Neither shall he multiply wives for himself, lest his heart turn away; nor shall he greatly multiply silver and gold for himself.” Deuteronomy 17:16-17

These were the principles that were given by the Lord for kings that they should live by. They were instructed that they should not multiply for themselves horses, wives and wealth. The horses here speak about power and might, as in the ancient days, the most formidable forces in one’s army is the cavalry. I’ve heard these things said many times and in various ways, that the three principle temptations in any man’s life are exactly these three things – guns, girls and read more…

Success In Failure

Peter denied the Lord three times. The moment of denial was not muted or silent. Instead the Bible tells us that it was vehement. Matthew tells us that he made an oath, cursed and swore that he did not know Jesus. 

I’ve often looked upon the accounts of Peter’s denial with mixed emotions. If there is one thing that is certain, I do not want to be in Peter’s shoes. I look at it with much trepidation wondering if like Peter, my mistakes and failures are recorded somewhere in heaven where someday everyone may read about them. I would rather my mistakes and failures are covered and concealed than for them to become object lessons for the saints of God for all eternity.

Yet on the flip side of the coin, Peter’s life gives me great encouragement. I see a man flawed read more…

Outrageous Declarations

One of the things we’ve been exploring in the church is the subject of Decrees and Faith-filled Prayer. We realise the stakes are much higher today and with the threat of terrorism, wars, famines, you name it, the Church needs to up the ante. We cannot stay neutral, static and apathetic. We must engage and engage strongly. I was reading the latest post by Dutch Sheets, a mentor and dear friend, and he was speaking along the same lines. I’ve taken excerpts of his brilliant piece to share with you because I sense an increase in authority coming to the Church.

This is Dutch:
“Throughout my lifetime of prayer, the Lord has asked me to pray some pretty outrageous prayers, and make some extremely bold prophetic decrees. I wish I could say that in each instance I was full of read more…

Blessed Resurrection

One of the great misfortunes of society today, and more so in the West, is to have been more influenced by Greek thought and culture than Hebrew thought. This can be demonstrated in many aspects of life, including politics, architecture, leisure, sport – you name it. One of the things that the Greeks believed was that the body and the soul were two separate entities. The flesh was synonymous with evil, and thus, the body could be indulged, idolised or ignored. According to Greek thought, human beings are basically immortal souls imprisoned with mortal bodies. This restricts our development and we cannot realise our full potential until we’re liberated from our physical mortality. This can be partly achieved by treating the body with contempt, either in a disciplined or dissolute manner. However, it’s death that brings total and final release. read more…

From Faith to Faith

I’ve misplaced my spectacles on several occasions. Haven’t you? Each time I lose it, l search frantically where I might have left or dropped it. And often, I’ve no rest until I find it. So I’ll turn the house upside down to try and locate it, and then I’d come to my senses, sit down, and say to the Lord, “I don’t know where my glasses are but You do. Show me where it is.” And each time, in just a matter of an hour, the Lord shows me where it is, and it’s always there. Never failed. Not once.

So this time round, I was in the Bible College of Wales and I misplaced my glasses… again. I spent over an hour trying to search for it, but in vain. So I sit as I always do and say to read more…

Delighting in the Word

Can we ever over-emphasize the need to be trained and equipped? Whether it concerns our secular employment or our personal growth – it’s my staunch belief that if we’re not progressing, then we’re regressing. As the old Chinese idiom goes, “Learning is like sailing against the current – if the boat is not advancing, then it’ll be carried backward by the currents.”

I want to present to you several Scriptures for your consideration: “Be diligent to present yourself approved by God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of Truth.” 2 Tim 2:15; “That we should not no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting.” Eph 4:14; “For everyone who partakes only of milk is read more…

A Mindset to Prevail

On 9 September 1965, while flying his Douglas 1-4 Skyhawk over North Vietnam, James Stockdale came under enemy fire and his plane was disabled. He ejected from his plane and parachuted into a small village where he was captured and held as a prisoner of war for the next seven and a half years. During the time of his imprisonment, he was tortured no fewer than 15 times. He was beaten, whipped and strangled with ropes. He was kept in solitary confinement, in total darkness, for four years, chained in heavy, abrasive leg irons for two years, malnourished due to starvation, denied medical care, and deprived of letters from home.

Being the highest-ranked POW during that period of time, the Vietnamese tried on several occasions to use him as propaganda and in order to prevent them from doing that, he would read more…

Watch Your Words

There are some things that are worth reminding ourselves of on a regular basis and one of the those things is the power of our words. Here are some quotations for your enjoyment – “Think twice before you speak, because your words and influence will plants the seeds of either success or failure in the mind of another.” ~ Napoleon Hill; “Words are like eggs dropped from great heights; you can no more call them back nor ignore the mess that they leave when they fall.” ~ Jodi Picoult

More importantly, the Bible tells us over and over again the importance of governing our words, because of the power that’s contained in the words that we speak. Our words have the power to change our world, affect lives, give hope and inspire to action. At the same time, they can crush read more…

The Secret of Staying Youthful

Ephesians 5:27 is undoubtedly one of the greatest Scriptures, because here we’re told what kind of people the Lord is returning for. The apostle Paul makes it very clear: He’s coming back for a Bride without spot or wrinkle. The reference “without spot or wrinkle” refers to her garments. 

There’s not a single spot or wrinkle on her garment, something which the Lord had given to her. It’s the ability of the Bride to maintain purity and righteousness. But I also want to suggest to you “without wrinkle” speaks of the Bride’s ability to stay youthful. Jesus is not coming back for an old hag, but for a beautiful, drop dead gorgeous, youthful-looking virgin.

Looking youthful is a billion-dollar industry today. People will pay huge amounts of money to look young again. They go for plastic surgery, Botox, cosmetic or aesthetic read more…

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