Christianity 201

September 3, 2016

Enoch Walked With God – Part Two

Filed under: Christianity - Devotions — paulthinkingoutloud @ 5:31 pm
Tags: ,

More from pastor and author Rick Joyner.

Day 127 – You Will Prophesy

Another remarkable characteristic about Enoch is that he is the first one recorded in Scripture to have prophesied (see Jude 14). Prophecy is a definite product of walking with God. When we walk with God, so that we are changed into His image, we will begin to see with His eyes, hear with His ears, and understand with His heart. God is beyond time. He sees from the perspective of eternity. To Him the future is just as clear as the present. Because of this, Enoch, who lived in the days of Adam, was able to look all the way to the end and see the second coming of the Lord with His hosts.

It is fitting that Enoch should prophesy of events all the way at the end of this age, since he is a prophetic model of the church at the end. The church at the end is going to walk with God, prophesy, and be caught up into the heavens to be with Him. That is why we see in Acts 2:17-18:

     ‘”And it shall be in the last days,’ God says, ‘That I will pour forth of My Spirit
     upon all mankind; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
     and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams;
     Even upon My bondslaves, both men and women, I will in those days
     pour forth of My Spirit and they shall prophesy.'”

Enoch was the first one after the Fall to recover the most important purpose for our creation, to walk with God. And when he did, he could not help but to prophesy. Why is this?

First, prophecy is not just predicting the future, but it is speaking on God’s behalf. Man was created to be God’s representative on the earth, to speak for Him. Remember, Jesus, the One all things were made through and for, is called “the Word of God.” It was by His Word that all things were made, and His Word, His communication, is found in everything that was made. That is why Jon Amos Comenius said “Nature is God’s second book.” This was a paraphrase of what Paul wrote in the first chapter of Romans, that the Lord is revealed in everything that was made.

God speaks. He made His creation to speak through, and man was the crowning glory of His creation. He made man in His image to represent Him, which includes speaking for Him. That is why it appears that everyone in Scripture who walked with God also prophesied. If we can recover our basic purpose to walk with God, we will also recover our basic purpose to speak for Him.

This is also your destiny. When you were redeemed it was the first step toward recovering the ultimate purpose that you were created for—to walk with God, and to represent Him on the earth. Because He is the Word, He speaks. We cannot represent Him without speaking for Him. That is why we are told in Ephesians 4:29:

     “Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth,
     but only such a word as is good for edification
     according to the need of the moment,
     that it may give grace to those who hear.”

Because Jesus Himself is the Word, words have infinite value. Words have power, for good or evil. Words have changed the world far more than armies or politics. Therefore, if we are walking with God, our goal should be for our words to be His words. As we are told in Proverbs 18:21, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”

What is the fruit of our words? Do they impart reconciliation, faith, love, joy, peace, and patience—the fruit of His Spirit? Do our words represent what the Lord is saying in that situation? Do they impart grace to those who hear them? If we are walking with God, they will, and we will also speak for Him. As the Word Himself told us in Luke 6:45:

     “The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good;
     and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil;
     for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.”

Is Jesus the One who fills our hearts? If so, we will speak His words.

Nowhere in Scripture does it say that you cannot do what Enoch did. The greatest testimony of the last day church will be that she walked with God, and she “was not,” because God took her, so she did not even have to taste death. She did not have to taste death because she died daily to herself by walking with Him every day, taking up her cross daily to sacrifice anything that was required to walk with Him. This is the ultimate quest of man. It is your ultimate quest—to walk with God.


Discover the full wealth of resources available at MorningStar Ministries

September 2, 2016

Enoch Walked With God – Part One

Filed under: Christianity - Devotions — paulthinkingoutloud @ 5:31 pm
Tags: ,

Today we pay the first of two consecutive return visits to the blog of Rick Joyner at MorningStar Ministries. Click the title to read at MorningStar Daily Devotions:

Day 126 – Walking With God

One of the shortest, but most remarkable stories in Scripture is found in Genesis 5:22-24:

      Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years
     after he became the father of   Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters.
     So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years.
     And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

Concerning this we read in Hebrews 11:5:

     By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death;
     and he was not found because GOD took him up;
     for he obtained the witness that before his being taken up he was pleasing to God.
 

In the last mention of Enoch in Scripture, but not the least important, we are told in Jude 14-16:

     And about these also Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam,
     prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord came with many thousands
     of His holy ones, to execute judgment upon all,
     and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds
     which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things
     which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.”
     These are grumblers, finding fault, following after their own lusts;
     they speak arrogantly, flattering people for the sake of gaining an advantage.

Enoch’s is one of the most enigmatic and important messages in Scripture. As we read in Jude, it is also one of the most important for the last days. The special fact about Enoch is that he walked with God. Adam was still alive when Enoch lived. It is probable that he talked with Adam about what it was like to walk with God in the Garden, and his heart was so stirred that he began to yearn for such a relationship with his Maker. One of the great, eternal truths is, if we seek God we will find Him. Enoch found Him. He recovered the most basic call of man that had been lost by the fall—the relationship we are called to have with God. Because of this he was delivered from the consequence of the Fall, which is death.

Walking with God remains the ultimate and highest quest of man. When this is truly recovered, we too will be delivered from the consequences of the Fall. Enoch walked with God so closely that the Lord took him directly to heaven. This was a foreshadowing of what has been popularly referred to as “the rapture.” As Paul wrote in I Corinthians 15:51-52:

     Behold, I tell you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
     in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye,
     at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound,
     and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.

Enoch was but the first fruits of the last day church that will also be caught up without tasting death. There have been many books written about how and why this takes place, and many have speculated about the timing of it, but the reason this happens is the same reason it happened to Enoch. The last day church will walk with God so closely that He will be obliged to bring them into the fullness of His presence, transforming them from the mortal to the eternal in the “twinkling of an eye.”

I have often heard Christians say that they were trying to decrease so the Lord could increase in their life. This seems noble, but it is not biblical, and is actually the opposite of what John the Baptist said, “He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30). If we try to decrease before He increases in our lives, we will just be empty, and the void will usually be filled with an evil, religious spirit. “Enoch walked with God, and he was not….” When we walk with God, we will decrease because He is increasing in our lives.

The Lord did not come just to make our lives better and easier. He did not even come simply to change us—He came to kill us! Even though Enoch did not “taste death” in the natural, his old nature was consumed in God. When it says that “he was not,” it means much more than him just disappearing. By walking with God His glory changed him, consuming his fallen nature and replacing it with His nature. The same is our goal—to be dead to sin, dead to our former lusts, dead to this world, but alive unto God.

Even so, if we try to crucify ourselves, the result will be self-righteousness. Our old nature was crucified with Christ on the cross. The rendering of our old nature as dead, so we can experience the resurrection life in Christ, is a process that takes place as we walk with God. We identify with His crucifixion, and therefore His righteousness. We will never be so good that we do not need His life and His righteousness. We are only able to enter into the presence of God because of His blood—His atonement. He will forever be our righteousness. Therefore, it is our goal to be found in Him, to abide in Him so that He might dwell in us.

The more we walk with Him and see Him, the more we are changed by who He is. When we focus on crucifying ourselves we are still focusing on self. We will never be changed by seeing who we are, but by beholding who He is. As we behold Him, we embrace and identify with His cross and His resurrection.

Christ is everything. He is the message and purpose of the whole creation. When we lose ourselves in Him we do not lose, we gain everything to infinity. We are exchanging the worthless and the death for that which is beyond valuation, and a life that cannot be destroyed. We will never make a better transaction.

Your ultimate purpose for being on this earth can be summed up in one thing—you are called to walk with God. Your highest purpose for this day is to walk with Him. If you do, you will also make the greatest transaction that can be made on this earth, exchanging some of the death in you for the indestructible life in Him.

 


The daily devotions are just a small part of the resources available at MorningStar Ministries

September 27, 2015

Enoch Walked With God

Featured writers here range from Reformed to Baptist to United Methodist to Alliance to Assemblies of God. Rick Joyner is a well known voice within the Charismatic movement that we’ve never included here, until today. Click the link below to read this daily devotion online.

Walking With God

Then Jared lived eight hundred years after he became the father of Enoch….
And Enoch lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah. Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years.
And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him (Genesis 5:19, 21-24).

Enoch is one of the most remarkable and inspirational characters in the Bible. He walked with God in such a way that he did not have to taste death because God just took him. We read in Hebrews 11:5:

By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death; and he was not found because God took him up; for he obtained the witness that before his being taken up he was pleasing to God.

Adam was still alive during Enoch’s days. It is probable that Enoch talked with Adam about what it was like to have walked with God before the Fall. Something must have stirred within him, a desire to have that same kind of intimate relationship to God that Adam once had, and he pursued it. God responded.

Nowhere does it say in Scripture that Enoch is the only one who can do this. In fact, we are promised in James 4:8, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” We are all as close to God as we want to be. The veil has been rent and we can all enter into the presence of the Lord by the blood of Jesus. We can be as close to God as anyone in the Scriptures has been. This is not a presumption, because the Scriptures are full of invitations for us to draw near to Him. He created us for that purpose, to have fellowship with Him. If there is anything that can measure the degree to which redemption has worked in our lives, it would be how close we are to Him. The only thing that prevents us from being as close to God as Enoch is our own desire.

Our God is an awesome, holy God. He is a consuming fire, and when we get close to Him the wood, hay, and stubble in our lives will burn. Even so, we do not have to wait until we are perfect to draw near to God, but it is by drawing near to Him that we are changed, as we read in Hebrews 4:15-16:

For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.

Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need.

If we sin and fall short of the grace of God, we must learn to run to Him, not away from Him as Adam and Eve did. We can never hide from Him anyway, but He has also proven throughout the Scriptures that He will not force us to come close to Him. We have to want to be close enough to Him to seek Him. He promised in Jeremiah 29:13: “And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” If we are going to be that close to Him, we must desire Him enough to sacrifice all of the things that would distract us. We must choose to draw near to Him when we could be doing other things.

We have another very interesting statement about Enoch in Jude 14, “And about these also Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied, saying, ‘Behold, the Lord came with many thousands of His holy ones.'” Enoch is the very first one recorded in Scripture who prophesied. This reveals the true essence and foundation of an authentic prophetic ministry, which is simply to get so close to God that you are His friend. Friends share their plans and purposes with each other. That is why the Lord said in Amos 3:7: Surely the Lord GOD does nothing unless He reveals His secret counsel to His servants the prophets.”

Nowhere has the Lord obligated Himself not to do anything without first revealing it to His prophets. He does this because He wants to. He wants to because the prophets are His friends. There is nothing that prevents us from being that close to God. There is nothing that says we cannot walk with God to the point that He just takes us up like He did Enoch. Could this in fact be what the rapture really is?