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Devotions

Power to Resist the Devil

Gary WilkersonAugust 31, 2020

Growing up I never fully appreciated the mantle my father, David Wilkerson, wore in his role as a “watchman.” He spent hours wrestling with God over the difficult sermons he delivered regarding the subject of judgment. As a young man I failed to understand the purpose of prophetic messages. My Bible was filled with underlined passages about grace, peace, and the unity of Christians, not judgment, wrath, and societal chaos.  

As Christians, we know our hope doesn’t rest in this world. Right now, the enemy is stoking violence, and troubles have come to our cities more visibly than ever. Some of this is racial, some of it is economic. Satan has gained a foothold through violence, but he never settles for that — he always seeks to kick the door in and take over completely. And I believe he wants all-out war in the streets.

I tremble as I say this. Yet this is just one result of societies that turn themselves over to godlessness. When evil is called good, and good evil, God allows judgment to fall. He doesn’t do this to destroy but so that we may recognize the evil we’ve allowed and turn our hearts and hope back to him.

“Understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty” (2 Timothy 3:1). Paul doesn’t say this to scare us. He attributes it all to the sin of the human heart: “For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people” (3:2-5).

That is quite a list of sins. Yet Paul is talking not only to the world but also to us Christians: “having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power.”

Satan will continue to spew forth death and only one thing can resist his hell on earth: a church that is able to stand up and speak God’s Word boldly with integrity. Without a holy presence in this darkening world, the world will never know an alternative. Our mission is to preach the gospel of peace and justice, to bring hope where there is fear, and to restore life where it has been destroyed.

It's time to seek the Lord’s face and call on heaven to see a spiritual awakening in our society. 

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Distinguishing God’s Voice from Counterfeits

David Wilkerson (1931-2011)August 28, 2020

“I will bless the Lord who has given me counsel; my heart also instructs me in the night seasons. I have set the Lord always before me; because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved” (Psalm 16:7-8). David is essentially declaring, “God is always present before me and I’m determined to keep him present in my thoughts. He faithfully guides me day and night. I don’t ever become confused.”

Some Christians say, “The Lord never speaks to me. I don’t ever hear his voice.” I sincerely question this. How can we state that God’s Spirit lives and works in us, yet he doesn’t speak to us? If we say we live and walk in the Spirit — if he is ever-present in our heart, always at our right hand ready to direct our lives — then he wants to converse with us. He desires a dialogue; hearing from us and speaking into our lives.

Perhaps you’re afraid of listening to the “inner voices.” You think you’ll end up being deceived by your flesh, or worse, by the enemy. This is certainly a valid concern for every servant of Jesus. After all, the devil spoke to Christ himself. And he speaks to the holiest of God’s people today.

But all too often, such caution becomes a paralyzing fear that prevents many Christians from launching out in faith, trusting God’s Spirit to faithfully guide their steps. The truth is, those who spend time in God’s presence learn to distinguish his voice from all others. Jesus said of himself, “The sheep follow [the shepherd], for they know his voice … My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:4, 27).

We have a safeguard: Jesus, the Good Shepherd, will never let Satan deceive any saint who trusts fully in his abiding presence. He promises to speak clearly to all who commune daily with him. By contrast, if we don’t step out in faith — if we refuse to trust in the Lord’s guiding presence — we are sure to fall into deception. Why? Because if we don’t allow His Spirit to speak to us, the only voice we will rely on is that of our flesh.

God wants to speak to you today. He may do it through his Word, through a godly friend, or through the Spirit’s still, small voice, whispering, “This is the way, walk in it.”

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The Lord Is Present for You

David Wilkerson (1931-2011)August 27, 2020

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear” (Psalm 46:1). What a marvelous word — it’s just overwhelming. God is telling us, “Because of my Word, you will never have to fear. You can have peace like a river and a heart filled with gladness.”

The Lord knows we all face deep needs and troubles. We all encounter turmoil, temptations, times of confusion that cause our souls to quake. God’s message for us here in Psalm 46 is meant for just such times. Of all his wonderful promises, Psalm 46 is the one word we need to obtain his peace like a river.

God has promised us, “In your time of trouble — when you face a persistent, ever-present evil — I will be your very present help.” The phrase “very present” means “always here, always available, with unlimited access.” In short, the abiding presence of the Lord is always with us. And if he is present in us, then he wants continual conversation with us. He wants us to talk with him no matter where we are: on the job, with family, with friends, even with non-believers.

Scripture says, “When the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will lift up a standard against him” (Isaiah 59:19). It does not matter what the devil brings against us, God’s power in his people will always be greater than Satan’s assaults.

This verse from Isaiah actually refers to the flag-bearer who rode ahead of Israel’s army. The Lord always led his people into battle behind his own mighty standard. Likewise today, God has a glorious army of heavenly hosts who ride forth under his banner, ready to execute his battle plans on our behalf.

How does God bring us help in our troubles? His help comes in the gift of his Holy Spirit, who dwells in us and works the Father’s will in our lives. Paul tells us again and again that our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. We are the Lord’s dwelling place on earth.

You don’t have to work up some emotion in order to hear from God. The Lord says, “I abide in you; I am present for you, night and day.”

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Missing Out on Spiritual Blessings

David Wilkerson (1931-2011)August 26, 2020

According to the apostle Paul, we who believe in Jesus have been raised up from spiritual death and are seated with him in a heavenly realm. “Even when we were dead in trespasses, [God] made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:5-6).

So, where is this heavenly place where we are seated with Jesus? It is none other than God’s own throne room — the throne of grace, the dwelling place of the Almighty. Two verses later, we read how we were brought to this wonderful place: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God” (2:8).

This throne room is the seat of all power and dominion; it’s the place where God rules over all principalities and powers, and reigns over the affairs of men. Here in the throne room, he monitors every move of Satan and examines every thought of man.

Christ is seated at the Father’s right hand. Scripture tells us, “All things were made through Him” (John 1:3), and “In Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily” (Colossians 2:9). In Jesus resides all wisdom and peace, all power and strength, everything needed to live a victorious, fruitful life. And we are given access to all those riches that are in Christ.

Paul is telling us, “As surely as Christ was raised from the dead, we’ve been raised up with him by the Father. And, as surely as Jesus was taken to the throne of glory, we’ve been taken with him to the same glorious place. Because we are in him, we are also where he is. That’s the privilege of all believers. It means we’re seated with him in the same heavenly place where he dwells.”

Many well-intended Christians are missing these truths. They don’t have any difficulty believing Christ is there, but they miss out on the spiritual blessings that are bestowed in the throne room: steadfastness, strength, rest, ever-increasing peace.

You can take your position in the heavenly place with Christ and have his blessings flow through you on a daily basis. 

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Unobstructed Access to the Father

David Wilkerson (1931-2011)August 25, 2020

“I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things” (John 8:28). When Christ ministered on earth, he enjoyed full access to the Father. He said, “I can do nothing on my own. I do only what the Father tells me and shows me” (also see John 5:19, 30). Moreover, Jesus didn’t have to slip away to prayer to obtain the Father’s mind. Of course, he prayed often and intensely, but that was about fellowship with the Father.

It was a different matter in his everyday activities, whether he was teaching, healing or casting out demons. Jesus knew at all times that he was in the Father, and the Father was in him. He didn’t have to “go up” to the Father to know what to do. The Father was already dwelling in him, making himself known. And Jesus always heard a word behind him, saying, “This is the way … here is what to do.”

Today, we’ve been given the very same degree of access to the Father that Christ had. You may be thinking, “Wait a minute, that’s mind-boggling. I have the same access to the Father that Jesus, the Creator and Lord of the universe, did?”

Make no mistake: like Jesus, we’re to pray often and fervently. We’re to be seekers of God, waiting on the Lord. But in our daily walk — our comings and goings, our relationships, our family life, our ministry — we don’t have to slip away to beseech God for a word of strength or direction. We have his very own Spirit living in us. And the Holy Spirit reveals to us the mind and will of the Father. His voice is always behind us, saying, “This is the way, walk in it.”

The truth about our union with Christ was a hidden mystery to the church until Paul came on the scene. The Holy Spirit used Paul to open this mystery, which is, Christ in you, the hope of glory (see Colossians 1:27).

Beloved, this is not a complicated issue. Simply ask yourself if you have received Jesus not just as your Savior, but as the enthroned Lord in heaven. And have you accepted that the enthroned Lord lives in you? We have been given heaven here in our souls. Our Savior Jesus Christ came to give us much more than redemption. He came so that we might have fullness of life every day.

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