Monday, January 31, 2022

Warning against False Teachings /Obedience Through Test

Beware False Teachings

WARNING: As a Ministry, we received some concerns from brethren who reported that a certain 'apostle Peter Daniel' claimed that the Lord Jesus Christ appeared to him and told him that people who took the Covid-19 vaccination was going to go to Hell. We have written extensively on this matter in our 'Mark of the Beast I, II, and III' articles in which we explained and by virtue of a revelation from the Lord that the vaccine was not the mark of the beast. The Lord has revealed to us that the testimony of this brother or 'apostle' is false. 

Furthermore, Brethren, we must guard the truth we received and following Scriptural guidance is our only truthful measure. Indeed, the Lord did warn us that many false prophets will arise (Matthew 24:11), and our times have seen countless false prophets who are chasing fame and money from others while gathering a following for themselves.

Additionally, the article we wrote a few years ago goes with the heading as 'The unfaithful witness' and that vision we may now reveal actually refers to Pastor Chris from Christ's embassy. The Lord is NOT happy that he encourages people to smoke and drink. We appeal to you not to follow that teaching or encourage others to smoke or drink. We received revelation from the Lord regarding smoking and that those who smoke will end up in HELL. Anyone who encourages others to smoke will be responsible for their souls. 

Thus, the scripture that declares that we are the temple of God through which the Holy Spirit dwells in us is the appropriate scriptural reference pertaining to smoking, drinking, drug abuse, and any form of gluttonous indulgence (1 Corinthians 3:16). Also, the brother encourages greed as well saying that gambling is not a sin, this is equally encouraging people not to work but to depend on the spirit of 'luck' (Ephesians 4:28; 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12). As a former gambler myself, I can confess that gambling promotes greed and selfishness. It is a spirit that drives one which makes a person totally addicted and where there is an addiction there is a demonic possession (Romans 8:5-9). 

Finally, our theology should not encourage us to mislead others or be impetuous (Forwardness to try to please others) the Lord warned a few members of this ministry against such a spirit. As ministers of the gospel, our teaching should always seek to please God Almighty and not be men-pleasers (Galatians 1:10). Let us not lose heart or be discouraged dear brethren, the Lord is near!

 Lord, I Need Your Test to Prove My Love to You!

From the above heading, we are sharing a compelling testimony on testing and how the Lord Jesus Christ drew our attention to the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Having been a Christian for over 20 years, I have seen and met many believers who despise tests, and some of them don’t realize that testing is necessary and is meant for our growth and expression of love to the Lord. As the apostle Paul observed, tests produce the fruit of the Spirit in us (Romans 5:3-5). Most of us have read a newspaper article or storybook how a hero showed his love to someone, even to the point of death. This might be a true gesture of love, and we should appreciate that, but the death of Jesus Christ on the cross for our sins is even more priceless as it holds an eternal benefit to the entire human race (John 3:16). This is the love we should embrace willingly and without restraint. In sharing our testimony, we do not intend to bring focus to ourselves, but rather to prove the inerrancy and authoritative nature of God’s Word. All evidence of truth must be Scripturally-relevant and grounded on God’s Word. I, therefore, encourage you strongly in the lord Jesus Christ to ponder this strong Scriptural evidence and ready yourself to serve the Lord. We are all called to put our faith and love for the Lord to the test, through service and self- sacrifice. May the Spirit of the Living God guide and lead you into all His truth.

Tests Expose Our Hidden Weaknesses and Make Room for New Fruit

Truthfully, the tests that we pass through and those experienced by some individuals in the Bible were not necessarily pleasant experiences (Deuteronomy 8:2). Those being tested cried out to God for help! (Job 19:7; 30:20; Psalm 69:29). In this life, it is difficult to imagine how it would be if there was no test to bring out pain, excitement to show triumph, love to show belonging, and hurt to express a need for forgiveness. In the absence of the above, if there were no uncertainties and disruptions, the human experience would be meaningless, rigid, and without an adventure. When God placed the human race on the earth, He made us remember things we did in the past. However, He hid from us knowing the future outright, so that we might discover the future through Him (Genesis 2:16-17; Isaiah 46:10). To the human race, the future is uncertain, and by experiencing life, we discover our faults, the truth about things, and God’s grace in helping us cope with life’s uncertainties (Isaiah 58:11; Psalm 32:8). Therefore, the door of tests opens our lives to character building and brings our hidden weaknesses out for us to acknowledge and work on them. As humans, we grow and learn more about ourselves by self-discovery and through environmental pressures. Going through tests exposes our inner attitude and helps measure how much we value God, others and appreciate life.

Because we cannot foresee the future, the path ahead of us is hidden and uncertain, and we consciously sense the pain or excitement of our journey through life. When the going gets tough, we either decide to continue on our own or find help from God or others to ease the burden of our life’s journey. If we have built our lives through the experiences, sacrifices, and pain of others before us, this makes the journey through life more comfortable and with less effort. Unfortunately, when we are “cushioned” from the harsh realities of life or are building on someone’s foundation, we may become complacent and think that we do no need God because we can do everything by ourselves or through the help of others. Such a faithless attitude promotes spiritual laziness while developing bad fruit and attitudes which demons feast on to keep the person captive. Modern society, especially in the developed countries and urban cities across the world, is trapped in the comfort of effortless enjoyment of life’s luxuries because we can buy our way through. Under such conditions of ease, experiencing life through test helps to develop appreciation, gratitude, humility, and empathy as the hardships can help us identify with those needy in society and, hopefully, be moved to offer help where needed.

Today’s Christians, especially those who have embraced the feel-good, prosperity gospel, regard God as our servant whom we demand to help us when tests and trials strike us. Similarly, there are some fine and prestigious Bible institutions today, and in my experience, the individuals they have produced have the knowledge and the qualification on paper, but the heart is running without the real fruit of truth and of service to advance the Christian course. Conversely, we have a few Churches where the Bible is fully taught and the knowledge of the Word of God is at a peak with people using Scriptural references to comfort themselves and share with others as they await the soon return of the Lord—this is where we ought to be.

Jesus Christ our Supreme Example and Model for Obedience

Our Lord Jesus Christ was the only Person not born to uncertainty because He knew the arduous road that He would travel through this life; this was set out for Him from the foundation of the world through eternity (Ephesians 1:4, 1 Peter 1:20). His life unfolded as He willed it, and it turned out to be the way He purposely chose (John 10:18; 12:23-28; Luke 22:10-13, 20:19-26). Based on these Scriptural examples, there was nothing the Lord did not know. He purposely chose the Cross, including the suffering and the humiliation associated with it (John 10:17-18). He boldly and fearlessly declared: “I came to this hour” (John 12:27). The Lord’s fearless attitude showed purpose, destiny and a clear intent on accomplishing what He came here for, which is to redeem man from hell and rise again to go and prepare a place of rest for us, Hallelujah! (John 14:3).

He clothed Himself with the Fruit of the Spirit, most notably He was humble and became a servant to experience human pain, suffering, and shame (Philippians 2:6-11). The life and suffering of Christ were well chronicled in the book of Isaiah (Isaiah 53, for example) and many other passages in the Bible. This was a powerful statement of God saying: “I love My creation!” This complete work of the cross and our Lord’s resurrection ushered in a new dispensation in the order of creation. Through it, we see that this current state of all creation, including Heaven, is passing and a renewal is looming (Matthew 24:35; Romans 8: 19-23). All things are to be renewed and reconciled through Christ (Colossians 1:20), Who learned obedience through the things He suffered (Hebrews 5:8).

Obedience to God comes at the price of denying self in order to serve God. When we must obey, there must be no “what about me?” It is all about giving ourselves over for the benefit of others; this is the principle of the Kingdom of God (Philippians 2:3). Because we are in service to God, we can trust Him to provide for all our needs (Philippians 4:19). Hardships, which help reveal the condition of the heart, therefore, produce character (either negatively or positively) in our submission to God. Every born-again believer in Christ has a unique opportunity to experience salvation through test and service to God and others. Our salvation does not just come through repentance; it is also revealed through ministry service, obedience and the bearing of fruit (John 15:1-15). As it is, our repentance must lead us to bear fruit to serve God and others (Matthew 13:8). In a strongly worded message to his hearers John the Baptist said“The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire” (Matthew 3:10). To avoid being “axed”, we must resolve to serve Him faithfully through the fruit of the Holy Spirit.

The Fruit of the Holy Spirit: A Must-have for Believers

Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior displayed all the fruit of the Holy spirit through His life. His conception through the Holy Spirit had the ‘seed’ of the Fruit present to produce fruit (Luke 2:51-52). The fruit of the Spirit attracts both man and God to us, and as such our Lord did this. Our testimony and discipleship are shown not just through our knowledge of God’s Word, but through the fruit as well (John 13:35, Acts 4:13). Unsaved people are only attracted by the fruit we bear; they look for the fruit in us first before believing our witness and testimony, and then they decide to obey or despise the Lord. The Holy Fruit of the Holy Spirit encompasses very high virtues of excellence and perfection. Biblically, the God-Head is known through these eminent qualities, and Christ Jesus endows those He has called with these fruits (John 15:5). When we live by the fruit of the Holy Spirit, there is no law to convict or find the Holy Spirit guilty, because no unrighteousness, sin or prejudice is found in love. He, the Holy Spirit, being in us produces selfless justice and He defends the weak through the strong virtue of love (Romans 8:8-10, Galatians 5:22-25). We must follow the Spirit and His law of love will conquer all human situations.

How the Fruit Grows in a Believer

Every born-again believer who received the baptism of the Holy Spirit by faith should bear fruit in their lives (John 15:8). Our Lord Jesus said that the Holy Spirit would testify about Him and bring glory to Him (John 16:13). We will, therefore, bear much fruit if we are saved and apply the Word of God in our lives (John 15:7). As believers, why do we often desire the gifts more than the fruit of the Holy Spirit? From my experience, it’s mostly because we want the power to attract others to us and have convincing signs. While this is good, the Lord has also given the Fruit of the Spirit in the body and to individual believers to minister and display His character to humanity. Life is uncertain and full of pain and suffering, but the Fruit of the Holy Spirit gives us hope and helps us cope with life. As I alluded earlier, followers of Christ are identified by the fruits of holiness. Further below we will attempt to show how God used tests to help us appreciate the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, resulting in fruit-bearing.

Tests and Trials Produce Fruit of the Holy Spirit

If we commit ourselves to following and obeying the Lord Jesus Christ, we will face and attract persecutions (Matthew 5:11; 2 Timothy 3:12). This is part of the Christian experience because the cross requires us to die to self (Matthew 7:13). This is an essential Christian training, just like the Lord Jesus was tried and tested by Satan himself (Matthew 4). Now, He didn’t need to learn obedience; He simply had to show His obedience and submission to God the Father (Hebrews 5:8). The word ‘learned’ in the above Scripture refers to Him accepting suffering, rather than being tested to learn. If we submit to God, He promises to do the pruning and impartation of fruits while changing our attitudes (John 15:1).

When we go through tests and trials, we may experience pain, whether physical or emotional or both. None of us likes the discomfort of pain, especially emotional pain, which is much more unbearable because it leaves us without the fruit of peace. I have observed that every bad fruit is manifested when a person does not have peace within. The good news is that words of comfort can heal the heart of emotional pain and revive peace (Proverbs 16:24).

God Gives through People

The Bible clearly states that every virtue and gift from the Holy Spirit operates outside the human will; He distributes to each one individually as He wills, not as we want (1 Corinthians 12:11). In other words, we cannot simply force the Holy Spirit to conjure up a gift or fruit. He manifests as we willingly submit to His guidance and He does this to minister to a need in honor to God. Therefore, when the fruit of the Holy Spirit is manifested, it results in the growth of ministry, and the Lord wants to use believers to meet people’s needs through the fruit of the Holy Spirit.

Kindly allow me to share the following testimony. Before I got the job the Lord promised and subsequently provided back in February 2010, we were totally broke financially. My wife and I discussed the matter, weighing the options of where and to whom we could go for help. We decided to just use our faith and pray in agreement, asking the Lord to provide me with ‘taxi-fare’ to attend my scheduled interview. Since the Lord was speaking to us regularly and knew what I needed the money for, we decided to inquire of Him. When He visited Charis that evening, she asked Him: “Lord Jesus Christ, my father says he must go for an interview tomorrow, and he is asking if the Lord can please provide taxi-fare for him.”The Lord replied, saying: “I will send someone today to bring your father money [indicating the amount] for his interviewThe next day, my wife’s friend, who is not a born-again Christian, came over for a visit. Remember, the Lord did not reveal the identity of the person He promised to send to us. My wife’s friend reached for her purse and took out the amount money we believed the Lord for, without my wife asking her for it. This moved my wife into a rapturous joy without divulging to her why she was excited. Surely, it was not the money that stirred our excitement, but the faithful fulfillment of the Lord’s promise. In this situation, the Lord used the gift of giving through an unsaved person to meet a need. When we later revealed to this precious woman how the Lord used her, she was moved into tears and a feeling of being unworthy to be used so innocently by the Almighty.

We had a separate teaching from the Lord on how He chooses to bless. In my experience, the Lord may choose to bless us directly with the thing we trusted Him for, and in rewarding us He would surprise us and this gift from Him is always unexpected. In 2011, a sister in our ministry decided to bless my wife and me with a sum of money. While we had money of our own, and being conscience of the spirit of greed, we decided to ask the Lord through Charis if we could take the money from the sister. The Lord answered saying, Your father may take the money [indicating the amount] from My daughter Grace (not real name). It is not My daughter Grace blessing your father; it is Me.

Bad Fruit is caused by Satan

In yet another teaching, this time the Lord revealed to us that screaming which arises out of anger comes from the devil. In discouraging this kind of behavior, He rebuked a sister who was in the habit of screaming in anger, saying: My daughter Sue (not real name) must not scream; it is from the DEVIL. My daughter Sue must have a spirit of love”. I have added this to warn those mothers and fathers who like screaming to their children and others. The Bible talks about Satan being the king of terror (Job 18:14), and he uses screaming to induce fear and submission. So, be careful not to be angry and start yelling at the top of your voice! In contrast, the Lord gives peace to drive away fear. As a reminder, remember we cannot just switch the fruit of the Spirit “on” or “off”. The Holy Spirit chooses to manifest, influence and work through an obedient, discerning, and a God-fearing child of God. In a message to me, the Lord told me that obedience and faithfulness are very pleasing to Him because these are an expression of our Love for Him.

The Impartation of the Fruit of Faithfulness and Patience through Test

Let us briefly examine the Scriptures to learn how God brought forth the fruit of faithfulness and patience through test in some of His most notable servants. The Bible says that God tested Abraham through his willingness to obey Him and sacrifice Isaac (Hebrews 11:17). For Abraham to pass the test God gave Him, he had to obey submissively and by faith. We have had a firsthand experience that the test given by the Lord is not always easy. It involves a selfless giving and submission to His will. I will briefly share later how we were subjected to test by the Lord. Abraham, the patriarch, was called by God to leave his father’s land (Hebrews 11:8) and to prove his obedience to God who subjected him to testing (Genesis 22). In teaching Abraham patience, the Lord gave him promises which we might not be able to wait for so long. After his faith endured, Abraham received God’s promise (Hebrews 6:15).

Considering a few more examples of test in the Bible, the children of Israel were tested when God took them through the wilderness (Exodus 15). Even so, our Lord Jesus Christ was tested (Matthew 4). Job was also tested (Job 1), and so was the prophet Daniel and his friends (Daniel 6:16-28; Daniel 3:1-30). In addition, faithful women of God like Esther and Ruth endured test. Therefore, from the above examples, every man or woman of God who walks in obedience to Him will be tested. Testing might even happen at the expense of one’s life and against one’s personal interest (Luke 17:33 and Luke 14)—even to the point of death (Revelation 2:10). In this kind of experience, we willingly and submissively set our own goals aside to serve the greater good of others (Galatians 5:13).

Nowadays there seems to be some kind of competition among some Christians in their pursuit of worldly wealth. I can recall when I attended Bible school classes at a well-known charismatic church. We were encouraged to trust God for wealth with Scriptures being cited out of context to promote avarice. Just because God chose to bless Abraham and others, we were taught to claim the same right. Brethren, this kind of teaching elevates and inflates needs, more than holy living. In my understanding, this teaching runs similar to the one the prophet Jeremiah confronted when he challenged the “peace preachers” of his day (Jeremiah 28:9). Satan has set a trap and blind-folded many believers into believing that riches is what God wants for them. It is a shameful thing to show off our godliness through our wealth when we have neighbors who are starving. The question we should ask ourselves is, do we accumulate wealth to attract people to us and for power? Biblically, a truly humble servant of God serves and such a person hardly has any desire to be recognized by man (Matthew 6:1-4). While it is acceptable to give some of our money for the work of the Lord, we are also commanded scripturally to minister to those around us (Galatians 5:13). While using your money to support the work of God is an acceptable offering, how about us being the living sacrifice? (Romans 12:1-2, Luke 14, Acts 4 & 5).

Since the establishment of this ministry, we have been ministering to many believers who are struggling with some sinful habits. In helping me to minister to some of them, the Lord told us that their suffering is self-inflicted, with disobedience and a lack of faith playing a major part in their suffering. The evil desires and cravings feast on them, and they are being smitten by the weakness of the flesh, leading to disobedience (1 Peter 1:13-14). My godly advice to those who are unable to shake off bad habits is this: spend time daily reading the word of God and praying. As I personally discovered, if you do this, you will experience deliverance and the Lord will impart fruit in you for service. When we overcome tests and trials we receive more faith and fruit of the Spirit (1 Peter 1:6-7).

Today, the apostasy of the prosperity teaching only feeds the younger believers God’s promises without preparing them for real service through suffering. As it is, suffering produces character and character produces faith and it sustains with endurance (Romans 5:3-5). The Holy Spirit, who is our Helper, uses our knowledge of the Word of God. He convicts us so that we obey the Lord, and through our obedience, we are being pruned to bear fruit (John 15:1-2).

Trials to Test our Faith and Make us Dependent on God

I will now share some practical test we endured as a ministry and a family. We are not sharing this to attract attention to ourselves nor do we seek pity; instead, we are sharing this to encourage you and to let you know that the Lord is using tests to impart fruits of service leading to obedience.

Initially, we would like to use the word “suffering” in explaining some of our experiences. This was new a territory in our Christian lives, and we experienced some degree of pain, rejection and discomfort. Previously when we did ministry work, we did so with ease, without any kind of pressure or discomfort. However, similar to the Bible examples we cited above when the Lord gave us a test, a lot of people started withdrawing from us. It was like separating the faithful from the unfaithful. The believers who did not have faith thought that what we were doing by witnessing late at night and praying till late was both impractical and ‘ridiculous’. In our obedience, we acted by faith and we persevered patiently until we could understand what the Lord was doing. Below we briefly detail the various tests from the Lord. As you keep reading, put yourself in our shoes: Do you think you would be able to endure?

The Test of Late Night to Midnight Prayers

In November 2010, the Lord put my wife and me through a prayer and fast test for a full month. He told us through Charis that we must fast for a month and besides our normal daily prayers, we were to start with intercessory prayers from 11:30 PM every night. During this time of devotion, the Lord commanded that our children not be home when we pray. In other words, we should have no one disturbing us. The Lord did, however, allow us to spend some time daily with our daughters and just before dark we would take them to my mother-in-law who agreed to look after them. Our Sunday evening prayer times was especially meant to start from midnight. My wife and I agreed on a list of things to pray for weekly. As an encouragement to the husband and wife who are serving the Lord, praying together holds lasting peace in the family bond and it also gives greater breakthrough in family matters and problems. The Lord did not forewarn us that we would be attacked by the devil, but He promised us protection. At first, we did not realize what He was referring to. We only realized later that He would protect us from Satan’s attacks, and indeed, fulfilled this promise.

As we labored in these late night prayers, we experienced various attacks against our bodies and minds. At times, fatigue and sleepiness would set in, and we further experienced heavy attacks against our bodies, leaving us with feelings of deep discomfort. It felt as if our bodies were being tormented, and we had sleepiness and numbness. We felt as if we had no control over our bodies, and we sensed evil in our room with things making a crackling sound. There was a spirit of slumber too, causing me or my wife to fall into a deep sleep while still praying. We only realized this after being awakened by a strong hand from the Lord. As we continued, we would walk in our bedroom praying, sitting or lying down; and I at times would crawl on the floor trying my best to shake off the uncontrollable feeling of discomfort. To best describe that feeling, it was a restlessness, partial numbness and very irritating sensation affecting both the body and the mind. I knew my soul was troubled by this pressure. This attack from Satan, which included pain, fatigue, and discomfort to my body, was meant to discourage us from praying. It seemed that his attacks were particularly elevated on Sunday evenings. Our every longing was the completion of this task and, in the end, the Lord gave us the strength to overcome. This test brought about a great sense of deliverance from our own troubles. About three days after being on this assignment of fasting and prayer, the Lord commanded us, along with our fourteen prayer partners to pray for two weeks gathering together every night. These fourteen prayer partners were people the Lord asked us to find and pray with us, and He had given us one week to find them.

As a result of this late night prayer test, some women experienced persecution through their unsaved husbands. While others, whose husbands were saved, were pressured to stay at home using the “wife must submit” Scripture (Ephesians 5:22), and some others were not interested.To clarify the Scripture on submission, the only time we must not submit to man’s authority is when we must obey God (Proverbs 29:25; Acts 5:29).

In commanding these late night prayers, the Lord purposely did this to assess our attitude towards prayer and our obedience to Him. Let’s be honest: there are Christians who enjoy praying for their own needs but too busy to attend combatant or intercessory prayers for the good of others. They prefer being comfortable, but the Lord duly rewards the discomfort He allows us to face for the benefit of His Kingdom. As in our situation, many of the brethren who left due to the various pressures they had, re-joined their old habits of watching TV while restricting themselves to only Sunday services, without any active participating in witnessing or other affairs of the body.

After we completed this course of prayers over five weeks, the Lord needed my wife and me to get twenty people to pray with us every Saturday night while He would send us out to witness in our community every Friday night. He told Charis that we must start witnessing from 8:30 PM until about 11:30 PM. From the original twenty people, only six obeyed and joined me and my wife. We armed ourselves with prayer and some tracts; handing them out to everyone we came across on the streets. Because it was too late for us to knock on people’s doors, we also placed tracts in their postboxes and on their fences.

This was hitherto an unknown experience and we put our trust in the Lord, who protected us from dogs, thugs, and fear. We understood later that the Lord was targeting youngsters in our community who were either on drugs, clubbing and those going and sitting in the pubs to drink liquor. In our drive to ‘impress’ the Lord, we also went fearlessly into these pubs, handing out tracts while witnessing to the patrons. I was the only man witnessing with six very brave women, who left their husbands and children at home and gave up early sleep to chase souls for the Kingdom of God. This test went on for about six weeks until the Lord changed the times to our current witnessing time which was from 7:30 PM to 10:00 PM every Friday evening.

A Full Month of Witnessing and Fasting

In August 2011, the Lord told CharisI have a big task for your mother and father and the witnessing team on Monday”. When the Lord came that Monday, He said: The witnessing team must witness and fast for a full month starting tomorrow (Tuesday, August 2011) in (indicating the area) from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM every day. Your father may only witness with the team when he is off”. This message caught all of us off-guard and we did not have enough money for car fuel expenses and gospel tracts to go out witnessing. We called a meeting and as a team of seven, we discussed the task, planned and prayed while checking our resources. We ordered additional tracts from a local supplier and also requested for tracts and donations online from some faithful brethren. As a ministry, we give glory to the Lord for the believers who responded by faith, obedience and discernment by helping us in our hour of testing. Their response came as a great encouragement to us and to us, all these precious Christian brothers and sisters were united in purpose. Now may the Lord bless them with everlasting life and comfort them in their struggle of faith.

During our witnessing for the month, we were greeted by scorching heat during the day and bitter cold some nights, along with the fear of dogs and thugs since we were witnessing in a community where we were not known. Many times we also went witnessing while fighting hunger pangs, and we were tortured by exhaustion, fatigue and rejection. The Lord opened the hearts of some residents to open their homes to us to use their toilet facilities as we went along. We love our country and it is not my intention to use this book to speak down on our country, but the reality is, crime is a problem that affects us all. Every area has thugs and their share of gangsters. Although we feared for our safety, especially during the night, we obeyed the Lord and persevered by faith. Being all alone with mostly women, the Lord faithfully watched over us and protected us. In seeing us patrolling their streets, some residents mistook us for either night watchmen or villains, so as we approached them to witness and hand them tracts, some would run away thinking we intended to harm them.

In my absence, while I was at work, my wife and the rest of the team, all women, continued and went out witnessing all by themselves and nothing harmful happened to them. Praise be to God! As a challenge, we often ran out of tracts, but this did not deter us from witnessing. We would decide to witness door to door using our Bibles only and reserving whatever tracts remained to witness at night; we placed them in post-boxes, fences or slipped them under doors. Since it is a bit risky and somewhat odd to knock on people’s doors after 7:00 PM, we resorted to witnessing in lighted areas, like petrol stations and frequent hangout places.

Furthermore, we honestly thought we could do with some rest so we asked the Lord about our corporate prayers and weekly services. Instead, He regarded this work as fundamentally important and suspended our prayers until we finished this task. During the short breaks we had, we did short prayers which were our lifeline. As a team, we prayed in turns for about five minutes before leaving for witnessing. As unpleasant it is to say, frustration got the better of some of us, resulting in bitter feuds, but the Lord held us together, encouraging and rebuking the faithless. Geographically, this was a very large area, and we walked very long distances with some houses located sporadically.

Kindly allow me to share briefly my observation regarding the attitudes of some Christians including pastors. The church today uses the Sunday pulpit routine as an excuse not to witness to the unsaved. While enriching themselves with the tithes and offerings, pastors preach every week to the same people who ought to be witnesses themselves! What has become of servants called to serve if they only want to be leaders? (Matthew 20:26) Will the church become silent with the Gospel and allow the tyranny of the devil to use world leaders and evil men to silence us and make us feel ashamed of the gospel? The richness of our Christian history does not allow for silence, but bold preaching (Acts 18:9).

There is not enough time to mention every test we went through including personal test, but I tried to be brief. In addition, the Lord advised that we testify about this to highlight the importance of soul-winning and the need of the gospel to save sinners. My wife was about a month pregnant during our witnessing campaign in Orange Farm, south of Johannesburg. She never used her pregnancy as an excuse not to witness; in fact, the Lord encouraged her to witness with us until the last week before the baby was due to be delivered. She herself was very eager to go witnessing. Although I was concerned, I leaned on the Lord’s assurances, and so supported her efforts.

After my wife gave birth, the Lord gave us a new test: we were to have a deliverance service during our Wednesday services from 6:00 PM to 2:00 AM. Inside I grumbled: “Lord how could you choose this time for deliverance? Our baby daughter is only three days old and she needs her mother!” Although I was troubled, the Lord knew my thoughts, so we obeyed. This was a deliverance session, so no children were allowed. We made arrangements to take the baby and our other daughters to my mother in law’s place until after our deliverance service which ended 2:00 AM. On another occasion of testing when our little girl Cailin was about three weeks old, my wife longed to witness with me and the team. The Lord saw her heart’s desire and allowed her to join us on the witnessing field after the Lord gave us a new witnessing area to cover. My wife took the baby along, nursing her while witnessing. In concluding this testimony, my wife did not rest from service after she gave birth. After two weeks she was back full time in ministry work and during these times, we left our children in the care of my mother-in-law. Bless her heart! We pray that this testimony will move you into action.

This testimony is for encouragement and for the body of believers and our prayer is that the Lord will move many believers to faithful service and readiness. He is coming very soon. His promise to us was: “...I am coming very soon!” For those of you wondering whether to home-school your children or not in these perilous last days; this is a decision that parents should make through prayer and faith. He who promised is Faithful. He will not tarry long but come!

The Lord bless you to pass all trials and tests. May He protect you and help you resist and overcome the enemy to the end. Amen!

Blessed love to you all in Jesus' name,

Brother Glenn Van Rooyen.

Monday, January 24, 2022

Harboring Suicidal Thoughts

“For if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord's. For to this end Christ died and lived again, that He might be Lord both of the dead and of the living (Romans 14:8-9).

On Friday (21/01/2022) I (Brother Glenn) had a vision from the Lord. It was about someone very dear to us as a family and ministry. This person has been battling with suicidal thoughts and even had some suicidal tendencies. The Lord gave us this vision to share with the person concerned and indeed this applies to everyone who harbors suicidal thoughts. In the vision, the Lord said, "Anyone who takes his or her own life will end up in Hell".

The above Scripture is saying that all people whether saved or unsaved belongs to our Lord Jesus Christ. He died and rose again so that in everything He might have the preeminence (Colossians 1:15-20). Therefore, living without regard for God as if we own our lives has eternal consequences. Furthermore, as people we may claim certain rights and privileges from other people, but this right can never be claimed from God just like the clay can’t claim from the potter (Romans 9:20-21). Often, we hear people saying "it is my life, so I can do as I please with it". Sure enough! That is only as far as exercising our will to execute a decision, but even that choice we make has limits, and since God is Supreme Judge He will bring it to account against the rules He set out in His word (Ecclesiastes 3:17). As it is, based on these Scriptures, does that give us any right to life as we please?  No! If we choose against God’s stated rules, then we will to answer to Him and face the consequences of our actions, just like Adam, Eve and the Devil did (Genesis 3:14-19). Christ is the supreme Head and Judge over all God’s creation, whether by wish or will we are all subjected to His Lordship (Acts 17:31).

Suicidal People in The Bible

In the Scriptures, I came across seven (7) or more people who directly or indirectly committed suicide. Directly being those people who inflicted death on themselves, and indirectly those who instructed others to inflict death on them. For brevity, we will not deal with each ones circumstances that drove them to those decisions. We have however included the Scriptures for you to examine each case.

While we might consider Samson’s act as suicidal, he did so by sacrificing his own life to full fill his God-ordained mission. His was therefore an act of martyrdom, and as such he was honored as a faith hero (Hebrews 11:32; Judges 16:29-31). Abimelech had his armor bearer end his life (Judges 9:54), and King Saul followed Abimelech’s example by having his armor bearer kill him with a sword (1 Samuel 31:3-6).

Furthermore, we see that Ahithophel was disgraced and decided to hang himself (2 Samuel 17:23).  Zimri, on the other hand and like many people today, avoided arrest, set the King’s palace on fire and died in the flames (1 Kings 16:18). In the New Testament, we have Judas Iscariot, who after betraying the Lord hung himself in shame.  Judas was overcome by remorse and guilt feelings; this was his admission of guilt and he could not bear living with himself so he ended his life (Matthew 27:5). We know for certain that Judas did not go to Heaven (Mark 14:21). As for the rest of the others except Samson, their act of committing suicide was rather out of desperation and in disgrace trying to get out of their distresses.  This is the unfortunate trend people are following today. If they can’t find their way, they go the easy way and end their lives. While it is easy to consider suicide to get relief from present pressing circumstances, what we must consider before committing suicide is that we will have to give account for that to God (Genesis 9:5). Like I eluded above, we might have lived our lives as we please, but NO ONE or NOTHING is able to escape from God and His Judgments (Isaiah 45:22-24; Hebrew 9:27). As hard as this may sound, I don’t know of another reality as a Christian, except to ignore it like the atheist and those who follow other religions. However, even their reality won’t offer any escape, because and through Him (Jesus Christ) to reconcile to Himself all things, whether things on earth or things in Heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross” (Colossians 1:20). By all sound judgment, the Holy Scriptures tell us peace and reconciliation with God came through Christ Jesus; so, why ignore Him and perish? (John 3:16-18; John 3:36).

Is Suicide Hell Punishable?

There are many people who say that suicide is not a sin.  However, I would rather follow the counsel of the Scriptures than listen to the advice of others, especially when it comes to a serious issue that involves the sanctity of life or death. We must respect the sanctity of life; suicide is also called self-murder, and that is forbidden (Exodus 20:13). In the past, I have engaged in countless debates regarding causes that drive people to suicide; the reasons provided sound all so convincing.  However, the underlying principle is still an act of murder, therefore “…his blood will be on himself. But had he taken warning, he would have delivered his life (Ezekiel 33:5).  The Bible also says that "... the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death” (Revelation 21:8).

After having examined the Scriptures relating to suicide, we conclude from a scriptural position that committing suicide is punishable by eternal damnation (Hell). Brethren, remember when committing suicide we go against the Word of God and every act of sin is punishable, especially when we do so by disregarding the counsel of the scriptures.

In the adultery article, which we posted on this blog, the Lord said us that every person who knows His teachings and disregards them will be severely punished. During March, 2014 we experienced a spate of suicides in our community and one of these includes a young man we ministered to. His depression through drug addictions led him to suicide. After learning from his parents about his depression the Lord assigned one of our sisters who lived nearby the young man to encouraging him in the word. Therefore, after several prayers and visits, he did not heed the Word's counsel and more than a year ago he decided to hang himself. We would like to seriously warn people who have suicidal tendencies that the Lord said, people who commits suicide have made NOT right with Him. As it is, the Lord told us that suicide is a demonic spirit that deceives people into committing suicide to escape their troubles, but their end is Hell.

Finally, on Wednesday 26 March 2014 the Lord showed Charis in a vision a young man (whose mother is an active and faithful member of this ministry) who went to hell while screaming for help for committing suicide. This vision was shown as a warning to him to abandon his suicidal thoughts and to lead him to repentance.

We are not being insensitive to people who are facing challenging circumstances. They feel hopeless and trapped by their circumstances and want a way out. However, if you commit suicide my brother or sister, consider where you will end up! You have no say in the termination of your life; “God gives and only God has the Power to take lives” (Job 1:21).

Is Suicide The Only Way Out?

The answer is "No!" Suicide is NOT the only way out.  The Lord Jesus Christ can restore hope, purpose, fulfillment, and true joy to your life. Jesus has promised us life, abundant life (John 10:10), and through a personal relationship with Him He can fill us with the fruit of the Holy Spirit, which provides comfort for every situation and includes love, joy, peace and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). Additionally, the Word o God promises: "No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it (1 Corinthians 10:13). We should not give up but endure, no matter what circumstances we may face (2 Timothy 2:12).  The Lord, in His goodness and infinite wisdom, works all things for good, for those who love Him and have been called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

As an encouragement, stop complaining and stop your foul self-seeking moods; they are a danger to you and others.  "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well" (Matthew 6:33)and end your self-pity which sets you up against God and life. If you choose to end your life, in the end you will only have yourself to blame since the price for your life has already been paid by the Lord Jesus and it is your choice to accept (Romans 5:8). God shows no favoritism nor does He take any excuses (Acts 10:34); He has a rule for every sin in His book (Bible) and accordingly does He condemn or justify (Ecclesiastes 12:14). The Lord says pray and read His Word every day, obey His Word, praise and worship Him (Psalm 103:1-22).

In conclusion, hope is not lost when we are anchored on The Rock, the Lord Jesus Christ, but His grace abounds more (Romans 5:20).  Therefore, when faced with trials that may cause you to be tempted to commit suicide, don't give up. Instead, look to Christ to help you overcome (John 16:33) and surrender all to the Him and stand firm on the promises in the Word of God. Like Paul, boldly declare: "I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through Him who gives me strength"(Philippians 4:12-13).  For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come (Hebrewss 13:14 NLT).

If you have not made a decision to accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, or if you desire to renew your relationship with Him, simply pray this Prayer of Sincere Repentance to get you started in a new life and mean it in your heart. For any questions or comments on this article or our ministry, please contact us.

God bless you!

Brother Glenn.

PS: We'd like to share another vision given on March 28, 2014 posted here.

Monday, January 17, 2022

Are Christians Cheating On The Lord?

The Church and Individual Believers are Cheating On God

“Do not be deceived; God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows(Galatians 6:7 NIV)”

“One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much. If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you true riches? And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own” (Luke 16:10-12 ESV).

Brief Notice, this coming October of this year would mark our 10th year anniversary as an online Ministry and by the Lord's grace, we never failed to provide messages here and share whatever the Lord gave us to share over these past years. Looking back, we can say it was not an easy journey but as we continue in our God-called Ministry we learned that prayer, faithfulness and obedience to the Lord were some of the weapons we needed to arrive here. New articles and refreshing visions will be shared more regularly. Being limited in our being, we prayed and made ourselves available not to limit the Lord but to allow Him to express Himself mightily through us and for His Glory.  
We therefore urge you dear brethren to continue to pray for us as a family and ministry and to support our work in prayer and materially. We can safely share with you dear brethren that there are countless people around the world who writes to us expressing great joy about the impact this ministry has in their lives. By the mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ, their feedback serves as a great encouragement to us. Additionally, this ministry has a very large readership around the world and of the literally thousands who visits this blog monthly yet nobody cares about the well-being of this ministry except one brother. By saying this, we are not appealing for money or donations but caring brethren ought to discern that a ministry has needs and a ministry has needy people to care for (Deuteronomy 15:11). Also, while some has viewed us with suspicions our messages has never deviated from the Word of God and neither did our visions. Therefore, as we are waiting for the appearing of the Lord, we will continue to deliver his messages right here with the help of your prayers and support (1 Corinthians 12:14-26). 

Sometime ago, the Lord Jesus gave me a message to write an article 'Cheating On God'. Often, people think that it is impossible for us as humans to cheat on God. If we read further, we will find out how a person cheats on God. Also, generally cheating may be considered as infidelity involving relationships amongst people, in this work however, we will confine our discussion to cheating on God.

Beloved people, as you can see that it is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself who decides what we must be taught. I am equally an imperfect vessel and I give Glory to the Lord for choosing me to share His truths with you. Through His grace, I allow His Holy Spirit to direct every activity of my thoughts and conscience so that He be heard and obeyed. We seek to bring honor to our Lord and Master Christ Jesus than to us or our ministry. We serve Him and point man to Him for salvation and justification (Ephesians 1:7). We will again blend this article with actual experiences, Scriptural references and rebukes delivered by the Lord. Have you ever wondered which type of Bible translation the Lord is using when speaking to us? We must remember that Bible translations follow along certain editorial rules. The Lord is bound by none; when He brings a message, He uses words, phrases and expressions that convey the full message unambiguously. Furthermore, although the Lord gives the messages to Charis mainly in English, when addressing Afrikaans-speaking people especially in visions He conveys it in Afrikaans.

Cheating Ourselves and Others

Back to our message, the word “cheat” also means ‘deceive’. If a person is a cheat, then the person is unfaithful and dishonest. When we act dishonestly we are cheating on the truth (Christ) and we thus hide something sinful. We deceive others and ourselves for covering our shameful conduct. While we think we can ‘get away’ with whatever motivated us, with God we have become answerable because all we do will be exposed (Luke 8:17). As people, we cheat for various reasons, including satisfying a ‘need’ or some craving. We also do so to hide some of our mistakes. The list of reasons is long and you know why you cheated!

Cheating is dishonest conduct aimed at tricking someone. As it is, the Bible says: “Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but those who act faithfully are His delight” (Proverbs 12:22 ESV). Being guilty of cheating, we turn to lies to cover our deceptive ways. The voice of sin speaks so loud within us when our folly is exposed that we blame others or other things for our conscious mistakes (See Genesis 3:10-14). When we cheat, we deny ourselves correction and fruit bearing so that God be glorified (John 15:8). Honest conduct and faithfulness has always been associated with godliness and indeed its root is found in Christ (Hebrews 1:8-9).

Cheating on God and Its Consequences

Moreover, when we cheat the devil rejoices and God is saddened by our deceitful conduct (2 Kings 17:9-23). The children of Israel enjoyed a unique and an intimate relationship with God; they were chosen above all the nations of the earth, they were God’s “Segula” (treasured possession) [Deuteronomy 7:6]. The love the Lord Almighty bestowed upon the Israelites showed His faithfulness and concern for their well-being. He gave them victory over their enemies and provided them with great wealth and possessions. Moses blessed them saying “Blessed are you, O Israel! Who is like you, a people saved by the Lord? He is your shield and helper and your glorious sword. Your enemies will cower before you, and you will trample down their high places” (Deuteronomy 33:29). This was Israel’s heritage to enjoy the good of the land and to obey the Lord’s commands (Deuteronomy 28). They received every good and faithful promise from the Lord, until they became corrupt through cheating and their judgement was swift and decisive. They secretly did wrong things against the Lord, provoking Him to anger and jealousy and He removed them from His Presence (2 Kings 17:7-23). This was the consequences of cheating, although the Lord returned them to their land as He promised (Amos 9:15); they returned as a remnant (Ezra 2).

The Lord Rewards Faithfulness

This is a true saying, serving the Lord is the single highest calling and honour. While we are not saved by our own ‘good’ works, the Lord expects us to obey His word faithfully every day (John 12:26; 1 Peter 1:14). If we fail to observe the word daily, we are cheating. Before writing an examination, we are expected to observe all the rules and failure to do so results in possible expulsion. Likewise, we are building our life’s on the Word of God in preparation for His Kingdom (Matthew 7:24). The Lord supplies the ‘building material’, His Word, and once the ‘building’ is constructed He approves it as the Master Inspector (1 Corinthians 3:12).

Before I turn to testimonies, the Lord welcomed into His Kingdom a faithful servant who did everything well in acts of obedience (Matthew 25:21). If we say we serve God, let us show through our faithfulness and commitment to Him. The Lord sharply rebuked one sister in our ministry for condoning wrong things saying: “My daughter ……….. Allows drinking, smoking and worldly parties at her house but she is serving God”. This rebuke made us all take note of our walk with the Lord. The Lord Judges deliberate sinful conduct and this He regards as disobedience. This is cheating on God!

Also, cheating on our relationship with the Lord is a very serious sin that leads to Hell. This is unfaithfulness and He regards us as worthless (Matthew 25:30). When cheating on God we fool ourselves and people and our lost is very great as the above scripture declares. The Apostle Paul admonishes us to put all falsehood away (Ephesians 4:25).

Displeasing Ways of Cheating Against The Lord

The Bible chronicles an exhaustive list of cheating, and I will not rewrite it here, I will however point out the most common and frequent rebukes we received from the Lord as ways of cheating. One of our ministry members was solemnly rebuked by the Lord for repeatedly committing the same sins. I regard this as one of the toughest rebukes the Lord meted out. This rebuke, which was a full A4 size (8.3 inches x 11.7 inches) page of sins, brought a great fear upon us. The Lord brought out all the things the person was cheating on. I realised through this rebuke that Lord I am unclean and I could not survive if I received this rebuke. The Lord’s anger was evident through the words He gave. But great praise and glory be given to our Heavenly Father, our beloved sister humbled herself before the Lord and started working on those problems. He said things like, My daughter Grace is taking advantage of Me and My daughter Grace thinks I am a fool. My daughter Grace must fear Me! The Lord was displeased with her because she failed to rebuke people and overlooked people’s sins (Ezekiel 3:18-21); this was cheating on the truth and compromising faithfulness. The Lord lashed out on her keeping herself poor to avoid giving to others; this is unfaithful conduct and disobedience. The Lord made it abundantly clear through this rebuke that we should not look to others as a scapegoat to easily live, but to God. He alone can make our lives easy. Admittedly, I was rebuked for cheating on honesty when I blamed others for sins I committed knowingly.

Furthermore, accusing others falsely is a common sin we overlook. The Lord has repeatedly rebuked us for blaming others wrongly (Luke 3:14; Exodus 20:16). Blaming others is distortion of truthful conduct and truth is not seen and appreciated when we accuse falsely.

The Lord considers us cheating on Him when we don’t spend time reading the Bible daily. The entire body of believers are commanded to read Bible daily and not just our leaders (Joshua 1:8). Moses commanded the children of Israel to read and tell to their children and obey the Word of God (Deuteronomy 6:4-19). Only therein is prosperity. We are His bride and we must listen to Him; if we don’t who are we listening to? Surely, we are listening to something or someone else, the flesh for its cravings, the world, and the devil. If we are called as God’s treasured possession through our adoption in Christ Jesus then we are separated from the world to live for Him (Galatians 2:20). If we are the bride, then as a husband would be provoked to jealousy if his wife is comforted by another man, how much more do we think the Lord would be provoked to jealousy and anger if we turn to other voices for comfort -- like the woman in the vision who listened to secular radio all day and watching television to listen to teachings of other religions and men, or the vision of the pastor who was reading the Bible while listening to pop music (you can read both visions in the Vision of Judgement and Blessings for the Faithful article). This is cheating! This is foundational to our relationship with the Lord, are you listening to Him?

Still, not praying faithfully in our individual service to the Lord is being considered cheating. If we are not praying we are declaring self-reliance. The Lord delights in His children depending on Him for everything. Through prayer we express gratitude and dependence on Him. This is humility and service; the prophet Daniel took His prayer life and commitment to God very seriously that He prayed three (3) times a day (Daniel 6:10). David also prayed three times daily or more (Psalms 55:17). If we pray once or twice daily just to ease our conscience, are we not cheating? Also, if great men like King David and Daniel sought after the Lord through faithful service, how much more for us who have received the better promises (Hebrews 8:6). In the beginning of the Lord Jesus Christ’s visitations to Charis, He allowed certain things to happen to us in order to teach us. We prayed but not enough for our house. We were in arrears for quite a few months with our mortgage repayments. Furthermore, the Lord had us form a prayer group and some of our members started staying away and offered excuses. We turned to the Lord for a solution, just liked the Israelites when they were defeated by their enemies through their unfaithfulness (Judges 2:10-23). We asked the Lord why we were not getting our prayers answered. He told us that we were not praying enough and He considers a person faithful in prayers when we kneel and pray to Him at least three times a day, pointing us to the above Scriptures. I safely conclude in saying the Lord regards us as unfaithful and cheating if we do not pray at least three times or more daily. As further testimony: many, many brethren have requested us to inquire from the Lord a word for them regarding some problem they have or if their walk with Him was pleasing. The Lord would in most of the cases point to their prayer life and Bible reading, as well as witnessing. This to Him is foundational to being faithful. While these are the basic things the Lord looks at, it does not mean we are faithful in everything.

The Lord commanded a girl eight (8) years old to pray for an hour every morning from 6 a.m. She would get up at 6:00am but instead of praying she would either sleep or play. The Lord issued another message exposing her saying that she was cheating and not praying faithfully for that hour. I know of many believers who are cheating in prayers and Bible reading through the messages the Lord gives Charis. They are cheating by either skipping, or not praying heartily and faithfully. In addition, the Lord sees everything we do (Psalm 94:9-11). Some of our members were surprised when the Lord rebuked them for being unfaithful and cheating in fasting. They did not receive what they fasted for because of unfaithfulness.

Beloved brethren, God sees through our duplicity (Jeremiah 17:9-10) and He cannot be fooled. The lack of spiritual fruit in our lives is testimony that we are walking deceitfully and disobediently towards the Lord. We have endless problems and complaints because we walk deceitfully and most of this the Lord pointed out is caused by laziness and comfort. Today, He has sent us to say to you, “Stop cheating in your relationship with Me; you are the one deceiving yourself” (Galatians 6:7). Like the Lord repeated to a few of us, “If My son………. Or My daughter………. Carries on doing these wrong things he or she will end up in HELL”. I encourage you walk upright and in integrity without worrying to look every time over your shoulder, for your key to faithfulness is obedience to God and the Holy Spirit. Obey the Lord Jesus Christ, fear Him and complete this race faithfully (1 Corinthians 9:24; Hebrews 12:1). Please start today and earn the crown of life! (Revelation 2:10).

Have you been cheating on God? Have you been unfaithful to the Lord Jesus Christ, the only One who is mighty to save you from Hell and into His glorious Kingdom? Are you willing to repent from your sins and start running the race of life so as to earn the crown of life? If you are willing, please pray this Prayer of Sincere Repentance.

For questions or comments on this article or our ministry, please contact us.

The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you!

Brother Glenn.

Monday, January 10, 2022

Watch Out For Stumbling Blocks

“Temptations to sin are sure to come, but woe to the one through whom they come! It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea that that he should cause one of these little ones to sin” (Luke 17:1-2 ESV).

Also, “But take care that this right of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak” (1 Corinthians 8:9 ESV).

Biblically, the term stumbling block literally is a “behaviour or attitude that leads another to sin.” Our Lord calls it “temptation.” Temptation gets its sting from the sinful nature, and the sinful nature has an appetite for unwanted needs. These needs are unwanted because we have enough, but desire more through greed and selfishness. The Word of God categorically admonishes us “… and be content with what you have…” (Hebrews: 13:5 NRSV). As it is, there are stumbling blocks we create through selfish desires (James 4:2-3) and there are stumbling blocks coming from outside as our Lord pointed out above. Therefore, if we make ourselves unhappy by desiring things that are not really needed, we are being a stumbling block to ourselves.

What is the Purpose, and What are the Consequences of Stumbling Blocks?

For Christians, we know the drive behind a stumbling block is to hinder our walk with God. These hindrances can have a three-way effect: to derail our relationship with the Lord; or if we are vigilant we will use Satan’s plan of destroying us as an opportunity to glorify the Lord through our obedience; and this obedience leads to growth in our faith and in the Lord (1 Corinthians 16:13).

Therefore, every opportunity to do right or wrong-doing is dependent on our choice to obey or disobey the word of God. Like we mentioned in some of our past articles, the Word of God acts as a custodian to our conscience. The Bible addresses and lists the various stumbling blocks and in this way our conscience has a guide, and when we have a guide we must accept accountability too.

In the account of the fall of man, Adam and Eve were given the command to obey [The Word](Genesis 2:16-17), but the spirit of desire entered Eve, leading to the temptation (Genesis 3:6). Consequently, this led to the judgement of man and the tempter (Genesis 3:14-19). If they had obeyed, this would have resulted in a struggle-free life. The judgement handed down by God, as is evident from the above Scripture, was added to make us earn our living after we rejected through disobedience the free offer of eternal life. While the man and his wife offered excuses, this did not deter the Lord from executing His Judgements. This leads me to ask this question: do we allow others to make wrong choices on our behalf that lead to bad consequences? The serpent acted as a stumbling block to Eve, and in turn she became a stumbling block her husband; is this how we allow others to deceive us? This could be our wives, husbands, friends, pastors, or close family members; the consequences will be borne by us.

Furthermore, in our article titled Ignorant People, we alluded to the fact that when we are brought to account for wrong behaviour we often plead ignorance and as the Scripture says we cannot cheat God in this way (Galatians 6:7). I have another question: do we use ignorance as a stumbling block to our salvation? What a costly consequence! Remember, brethren, we must use stumbling blocks as an occasion to glorify God and to display the fruit of obedience.

The Lord Protects the Little Ones

I will share two short visions the Lord gave Charis recently and this morning (September 16, 2013) as warnings. These visions relate to temptations used by the devil as stumbling blocks. The Bible says, “Be sober! Be on the alert! Your adversary the Devil is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for someone he can devour. Resist him…” (1 Peter 5:8-9).

Kindly allow me to share a testimony with you: more than three years ago, the Lord gave us names of people to pray for. As a family, we have been praying diligently every day for these people. A week ago, one of these people, a young man, came to us saying he would like to make right with God, and he asked us if we could pray for him. Glory to God! We prayed for him and led him to the Lord and he instantly received deliverance from destructive habits. He immediately joined our group for fellowship and service in our ministry. This young man, Basil (not real name), went about sharing his joy with his former friends and many other people by handing out salvation tracts. The devil assigned one young lady to be a stumbling block to him. This is how The Lord exposed the devil and this young woman through this short vision by Charis:

“I was shown in a vision this morning (September 15, 2013) and saw Jenny (not real name) talking to Basil as they were standing on our kitchen stoop. In the vision, I perceived the Lord was angry with one of our ministry members, so I asked the Lord who that was, and He said,“This is just a warning for My son Basil from temptation”. The scene changed and I saw them both standing outside our gate leading to the street talking and smiling. I then saw a HAND; the Lord’s hand was pointing at Jenny repeatedly. They did not see or notice the HAND pointing and the vision ended”.

This was an actual incident witnessed by people and the Lord replayed it as evidence to show the young man, Basil, and this young woman that He is all seeing. This was a warning to Basil against temptation and to Jenny of consequences if she causes someone to stumble in the Lord. Do you know of Christians causing others to stumble in their faith? Do they know their actions hurt the Lord by leading others into disobedience? Well, the Lord’s finger is pointing at them in judgement!

Before I share the follow-up vision, Jenny responded to our message and accepted the Lord about two years ago; she attended our services and the Lord started giving her messages of rebuke and correction through Charis. After a few attendances she joined another group and bad-mouthed our ministry, and doubted saying the Lord was not speaking to Charis. Without us knowing of her malice and slander, the Lord gave her a message with a stunning rebuke exposing her wrong doings, yet calling her back to Him in love. This past Saturday, she called my wife asking if she may come to pray with us. Although she could not come due to some commitment on her side, the Lord knew her motive was not to come and pray, but to serve as a snare to Basil. The Lord revealed in a short vision this morning to Charis (September 16, 2013) her motives:

“In a vision this morning, I saw the Lord Jesus in His usual attire and Brightness, sitting on a chair in our living room. I heard Him weeping, and I asked the Lord Jesus “why is the Lord crying?” He spoke up and said, My daughter Jenny did not actually want to come and pray on Saturday; she wanted to come for wrong things. After the Lord said this, He disappeared and the vision ended.

In conclusion, the Lord protects all His children from the vicious attack of the enemy who preys on our ignorance of his schemes and our desire for pleasure. Also, when we associate with worldly friends, against the counsel of the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 15:33; 2 Corinthians 6:14), are we not setting up a stumbling block for ourselves?

Let us build up one another in love and out of obedience to Christ, so that we may be found worthy to inherit eternal life in God’s Kingdom.

Your brother in Christ,Glenn K Van Rooyen.

Monday, January 3, 2022

Appreciating The Gift Of Life

“For whoever wants to love life and see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit, turn from evil and do good, seek peace and chase after it. For Adonai keeps his eyes on the righteous and his ears are open to their prayers; but the face of Adonai is against those who do evil things” (1 Peter 3:10-12 CJB).

Many concerned brethren wrote to us inquiring about things they read which are supposedly from the Lord. As is apparent, we prayerfully and carefully examined some of these teachings in the light of the Scriptures so that the truth of the Bible remains our guide. Like we alluded elsewhere, our motive is to satisfy ourselves with the Truth and to allow such Truth which we receive by faith, to guide our conscience. When I witness to people I often remind them that abusing their bodies through drugs, alcohol and cigarettes shows little appreciation for the gift of life. Furthermore, our lives are not our own, it's been gifted to us by the Almighty God, that is why we will have to account for it either to be crowned with the gift of eternal life or for eternal damnation (Romans 14:12; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

This week however, the Lord has given us something new to reflect upon: loving and valuing our God-given lives. The Bible tells us that after God created everything, He was pleased and approved His work (Genesis 1:31). He set out laws for nature in terms of reproduction (Genesis 1:11) and He also set the reproductive laws in motion when He commanded both man, plants and animals to “be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:20-25). This is the Creator giving earthly life its orders, and being alive in this world we see this very thing still in operation around us. This is so because, He holds all things together by the Power of His eternal Word (Hebrews 1:3; Colossians 1:17).

Loving Our Lives to Please God

Since man is created in the image of God, man has been endowed with the power of will and choice (Genesis 2:15-17). Morally, man’s conscience needs guiding to determine rewards or punishment. Biblically, rewards would refer to the preservation of life which God promised to compensate our faith and obedience (John 3:16-18). While punishment refers to a total separation from God, we are promised life and perpetual existence in Him alone (John 1:4; 15:4-6). Scripturally, and by faith, we know God exercised His dominion over man and all creation on earth by allowing death and decay (Genesis 3:17-19).

Therefore, knowing that the reward for obedience is eternal life, loving our lives is to live pleasing to God (Colossians 1:10). The point I am making is this: Christ is life and our faith and obedience to Him equals our union with Him (John 17:20-23). This union is the life-sustaining nourishment leading to our preservation – eternal life. Just as much as life is interrupted when we separate a branch from a vine, likewise the life of a believer is interrupted and lifeless when we are not living in union with the Lord (John 15:5). Union or oneness with Christ Jesus is seen through the fruit He produces through us by His Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22; Romans 8:9-11).

Similarly, when the Lord said we must hate (Luke 14:26) our own lives, He meant we must share in His life of suffering and deny living for our own pleasures, but offer our lives in service to God (Romans 12:1-2). This is the life He called Aaron and his sons to a lasting priesthood to God; you and I have been called likewise (1 Peter 2:9).

Why Do Some People Hate Life?

I honestly don’t have all the answers to this question. However, having been endowed with all faculties common to man, I can testify that hard situations can make us give up on life. We often blame everything and everyone around us, but ourselves. Often, most of our problems are as a result of our own choices. The choices that landed us into trouble were self-driven and God had no influence in our lives. When this has happened, we may express our displeasure at life and even spend the rest of our remaining days complaining and being dissatisfied. Sadly, there are those who would try out God, and if God does not conform to their standards, He is not needed. To those people I say: shame on you! God’s life in you results in fruit for living (Galatians 5:22). This is what everybody will see and want, not our constant consciousness about our own lives. This is therefore a wasted life; it has no support from the Source, God.

In conclusion, a few weeks ago, the Lord showed Charis in a vision a young man who returned back into the world. In this vision he was portrayed as very old, wrinkled, frail and looking under-nourished. In the vision, while pointing at this young man an Angel,  “look at this worldly man”. This is the condition of a person who does not have the life of God: withered and without life support, dead from the inside. Brethren, your life is wasted without Christ and you show no appreciation to your life and existence if you choose to live apart from Him. Through this message, the Almighty God says: love your life and unify it in Christ Jesus (John 3:17-18). Love life which has meaning and value only in Christ and enjoy it in service to God and man!

Blessed Love,

Brother Glenn.