Mentoring today’s youth, Tomorrow’s leader II

Youthfulness is a period in life

In the part one of this article, we lay a foundation of some of the challenges facing youth in society where the boundary between right and wrong is almost completely annihilate.  We also spoke about how young adults need to know how to discover and develop vision alongside their ordained destiny in order to make the right impact.  Understanding how to engage life at its various stages of development is highly important for teenager to survive in the 21st century society.

Youth is that stage in life between childhood and manhood. This is a period in life where most teenagers generally view things from an exploratory viewpoint which most parents are clueless about. This stage must be precisely understood by the youths, parents and caregiver as one of the most important challenging aspects in human development. This period will eventually determine the outcome of a person’s future, so it must be handled carefully.  This period will eventually determine the outcome of a person’s future. Meaning, clear spiritual and mental insight is required to the characteristic of behavior at this point. Profiling this stage according to the revelation of the word of God will help the youth and parents alike to manage this transition in a less struggling paradigm.  What do I mean by this? Most teenagers grow up under the parent without them being truly known {identified} by their parents. The struggle of finding one’s identity in a vast pool of false identity, peddled by the media world can be a great challenge to any person who does not have the right parental value model.

Having said this, it is highly important for teenagers to be clearly aware that as much as their parents are given the core responsibility of properly raising them up, parents also might just be struggling with the same issue of insecurity, abuse and dysfunctional upbringing which most times affects their capability to function as parents.  I am aware that it might be very difficult for some of you to understand, but I presume that you as a Christian teenager need to understand the issues of all human dysfunctionality especially from a spiritual point. Humans, including Christian are all struggling with past failure and fears.  Irrespective of our age or stage in life, unresolved issues and challenges never pass. Time does not heal old wounds as they say if we refuse the entrance of the light of God’s word to penetrate and carefully deal with the strongholds.  We are all products of our social background. A background, mired in the old fallen Adamic nature. The more we become aware of our dysfunctional human nature and once we are ready to accept the right channel for redemption and transformation, the more precise our growth and development in becoming better humans.

The dawning of a new era

A new day is upon your life as a youth in this generation. If you allow yourself to be trained, skilled and empowered in this school of the Spirit, you will certainly gain the hedge of overcoming the hurdles and challenges of being a youth. When I say trained in the school of the Spirit, I am not suggesting some spooky religious activity men termed to be spirituality today. Allowing the Spirit of the Lord to train and empower you with the right mental and spiritual capacity means, you are required first to have a clear awareness of the Lords divine purpose and sovereignty over your life. In other words, you need to know that you do not belong to yourself irrespective of how or where you were born. You are owned by the Lord and he will gain the glory due to his name over your life in due time!

This statement might be very shocking for you to come to terms with due to the wrong upbringing. Many parents today do not have a clue concerning what it means to train up a child in the way he or she needs for growth because they are godless in their value and perception of existence. Millions of parents today are raising their children on the advice of media celebrities. A foundation of life based on humanistic idea can never lead to the accurate development of a child in becoming that respectful and honest teenager.   People want to live a life void of the influence and authority of their creator. This is impossible. God, our creator, did not design any of his creation, including man to exist without his direct influence over such a life.

To lay a solid foundation of how a teenager can successfully navigate the 21st century new age godless culture, without God as the central theme of such foundation will certainly be misleading and destructive. I am very aware that the growing culture and strategy of the 21-century leadership community is to completely do away with everything that sounds or look godly to the view of the society. This plan of the enemy is targeted towards recruiting youth who will become future leaders. The battle line has been drawn in the spirit realm and you as a youth need to understand this, so you don’t become a tool in the hands of a so-called new age movement that refuses to acknowledge the existence of God and anything designed to bring peace and stability to the human soul. One of the most important things you need to come to terms with as a youth is to realize that the cravings of your heart is far beyond what material things can meet. Your heart will continue to cry in longing for fulfillment until you find rest in God and him alone.

The scheme of trying to replace God

In the effort to try to fill this vacuum in the 21st century youth’s heart, most churches have adopted into their youth training program, life management curriculum program to help youth in resolving their problems. They have created some kind of Friday night Christian clubs where youths can get together to have fun. This they have done with the hope of replacing nightclubbing.  As wonderful as their motive may be, these programs still lack the spiritual force to imprint a lasting soul transformation value amongst young people.  Why?

Creating an alternative for God in the heart of humans all in the name of some so-called religious recreation on Friday night will never change the youth or bring the desired satisfaction to their famished soul. My duty, just as the duty of the apostolic patriarchs was, is to keep and preserve the ancient path of kingdom truth that transforms and reforms the core of all human hearts, including that of the youths. A truth not mixed with any form of human carnal wisdom is the only answer that can change the perception and desire of the youth.  As an apostolic believer, my core mission in this season is to see that all teenagers and youth are precisely introduced to the ancient tradition of faith, hope and love such that their destiny is discovered and fulfilled according to purpose. The values of godliness must return and be preserved in the hearts of the youth of this generation so that they can carry that holy tradition to the next generation.  It is of great importance that the precise knowledge and pattern of worshipping the Lord are kept for this generation.

The God factor in shaping your destiny

The battle of preserving the right spiritual atmosphere in every home and Christian fellowship ground is crucial if we are going to see the purpose and desire of the Lord for our youth development in these last days.  Knowing that the Lord has a plan for your life as an individual must go beyond a religious knowledge to a core revelational lifestyle of godliness and faithfulness. This spiritual information regulates your entire life’s decision. When you finally come to terms with the fact that nothing happens in your life without the divine permission of the Lord, you follow with the direction of the river of the Spirit. Knowing that the Lords divinely orchestrated how you came into this world can bring you quietness in times of pressure and identity crisis. Knowing also that your movement from point A to point B is divinely connected to the unfolding plans and purposes of the Lord for your life brings some kind of stability. Nothing happens to you by accident. Every person that come across your paths , good or bad, carries a divine impute in contributing to the shaping and development of your inner character and values in order to  fulfill your God given destiny.

This is what I meant by being trained in the school of the Spirit.   Now the question is have you inclined your ears to the inner voice calling for your enrolment in this type of training? No one in history ever fulfilled their ordained vision or dream without embracing their season of spiritual development and transformation. The grace {capacity} that comes through submitting your life on the altar of the Spirit gives you unprecedented acceleration towards your ordained destination. Bible icons like Joshua, Joseph David, Ruth, Mary to mention a few all give the precise pattern to how the youth of this generation can step into the area of leading their generation to the next position of relevancy.

This is the pathway and foundation of a meaningful life. These men and women all lived normal lives with extraordinary experiences that almost derailed their destiny.  All of them at a point had an experiential encounter with the Lord, not religion that brought them to their turning point. Unfortunately, today, many religious activities that are being peddled as the act of spirituality are driving people further away from the Lord including youths. Discouraging as this may be, you still need the foundation of your life to be solidly built on the core revelation of Christ, who is the accurate pattern {example} of all human existence. Moving away from religious, activity-based Christianity, to a relationship-based faith, will definitely enhance your revelational understanding of the Lord’s mind for your life.

Achievements cannot replay your need for God

As much as you need a good education as one of the important requirements in life, and I do advise you to do everything within your ability to get one if you can, but I need to remind you that your expertise and brilliancy in life will still not produce the desired satisfaction and fulfillment. Human life at best is not designed to be lived outside the ambiance of Christ governmental influence.  You do not have to agree with me, this is the plain truth.  If you look deep into your heart, you will notice that your unquenchable craving for alcohol, drugs, sex, crime, and gangster’s activities still does not satisfy the soul. Nothing satisfies your heart’s craving until the one who designs and created you in his own image and likeness is given his rightful place over the throne of your heart again.   To presume you will become anything outside His desired agenda and scrutiny is a big deception.   As a youth, I do understand that you are dealing with highly complex issues and challenge that requires your immediate, clear, direct and precise answer like yesterday. However, answering these very complex personal life-changing questions, are like sitting in a classroom where we are taught 2+2= 4. The classroom of life requires that we first learn to regain the Lords perspective to issues, and patiently develop the hearing ears, seeing eyes and understanding heart in approaching the question so we do not make a mistake. This is where the ministry of the Spirit comes to bear in assisting us. Does the Holy Spirit have all the answers to your question? Learning to depend on his guidance might take awhile but the moment you learn the act of listening and obeying him it becomes easy for you to navigate around difficult youthful challenges. Once you are positioned on this solid relationship with the Spirit of Christ no external pressure will easily control or entice you into doing things you do not want to do.

The truth is, if you do not have a close one to one relationship with your maker, you may not be able to live a full functional life. Mean, nothing you have, do or become will bring lasing fulfillment to your soul.

Time, your greatest treasure

Time is a priceless commodity we all take for granted until we are suddenly faced with the issue of death and life before we recognize its importance. Rich or poor, good or bad, we all have a free measure of time to carry out the Lords desired plans in the earth.   Just imagine if the Lord were to place a price tag on time, how much would you be able to afford to live by each day?  This is an important question we all need to think about over again, because they will help us measure the value we place on this precious eternal gift. You may not be rich in many things like gold and silver, yet your creator has given you just enough time to discover and fulfill your purpose of existence. Many have misused this precious gift to pursue things that further drive them away from the right course of life. Spending your God given time in trying to impress family members, friends and colleagues, without pursuing the core reason of your existence is like pouring water into an empty basket.

Opportunity to step into your future

The opportunity to envision and participate in shaping and developing the preferred future where youths become visionary leaders is here. The sociopolitical condition of the past decade incredibly shaped and impacted the consciousness of all humans in a way that requires strong leadership redirection. It will be an understatement to say the world has drastically changed and for anyone to be a key player in this new world order, he or she needs to be fully aware of the areas of change.   Productive life is solidly built on certain key values and visionary capacity that should inform and transform the concept of our views of engaging life’s most challenging areas.  There is no doubt that growing up in today’s kind of society where almost anything is permitted and acceptable, distorts your sense of responsibility and accountability.

The extreme of a democratic society without strong leadership values, produces a generation of families that loses the values of sound moral standard.  As youth, preparing for a future of stability and prosperity you must understand that the future does not happen by accident. Commitment, responsibility and determination to the course of your development set the stage for such manifestation.  The choices you make presently certainly determine and shape your future expectation.

As a young adult you need to precisely position in terms of making informed decision that contributes to the enhancement and development of society.  While the institutions, shoulder with the core responsibility to groom and create the right atmosphere for a productive visionary youth life seem to be collapsing without remedy, a new culture of responsibility and ownership must rise within the hearts of young men and women in determining their future. However, young adults today have the opportunity and resources required to shape their future and destiny in a positive way.  Choosing not to be influenced by the wrong company is one of the first and most important decisions that must be made.

Influence could be either used positively or negatively, depending on the one who gains its control.  The outcome of individual and corporate existence could be directly related to the power of influence. The influence of our parents, teacher, spiritual leader, friends and our childhood community all contributes to your development has a teenager. The lack of the right upbringing definitely increases the likelihood of being negatively influenced.  The society is an extension of the family. The family plays a very vital role in shaping and determining the type of society we live in just as religion, culture and tradition determine the believe system of each family.

The influence of our parents, caregivers and the immediate environment of growth play a role in determining the kind of person we’ve turned out to be. Follow the right steps that lead to a productive tomorrow.  The future is never an accident but the culmination of events both positive and negative we allow to guide and drive our lives. Since this article seeks to speak to the lives of youth who are in need of some kind of direction or advice, I will try as much as possible to be practical.  If you are reading this article, you must have passed several stages of your life where you have done things you are not proud of and if you are given another chance, you will like to amend them. Everyone in life, at a point, has been in that position of thought where we wished we had the power to undo the past. The truth is if you have the power to undo your past but still do not understand what made you say or do things irrationally, there is that possibility you will repeat the same mistake.

Today gives you the opportunity and capacity not only to learn from yesterday’s mistakes but also to help others become more aware of such wrong choices so they do not fall into the same wrong path. As part of being a young adult, there are enormous decisions and responsibilities waiting for you to be made. To say that most of you have not stumbled into these responsibilities will certainly be naive of me.  Before stepping into the arena of fulfilling those responsibilities, you need to acquire the right foundational skill and capacity; this includes information and education. Unfortunately, many have already stepped into fulfilling those responsibilities without solid based knowledge and wisdom.

Some might argue they do not have to be responsible for anything because no one was responsible for their life. That may be a fact, but the truth remains, how or where we are born does not exempt you from the challenges and responsibilities of life. You may not have had the chance of choosing your parents and where you grew up, yet there are countless choices you are expected to make in your adulthood that would not only influence your future family but the rest of the  society. Each stage of your life affects the next. Life is designed to function from different stage of development. Each stage contributes to the next stage. Whatever you have acquired as experience or information in your early childhood affects your view of life even at your teenage stage.  The growth stage process forms and determine the impact of development and transformation.  That is how life has been designed. We are all born to have some form of responsibility at every stage of development.  A new day has dawned upon the youth of this generation; the future is no longer predictable as it was in the past. Activities are taking place in the spirit realm, fight for the control of your soul and destiny.

A generation at the crossroad

There has never been a time in human history where the destiny of a generation is at such a risk like today’s generation. Everything in the natural realm is disintegrating due to the total collapse of what we have defined to be humanity. The theory of psychological social cohesion, designed to keep family and other social institutions running no longer work. When you listen to news, you wonder if there is an iota of hope for the youth of this generation. Things are deteriorating; both religious and political leaders seem to be running out of so-called managerial ideas. Resources are being mismanaged daily because they are not ready to deal with the core issues youth and teenagers are facing.  We live in one of the most spiritually blind generations since the birth of the Church 2000 years ago. This drastic shift in the spiritual atmosphere is negatively affecting both Christian and none Christian youth alike.

Putting the challenges of my teenage life’s experience into writing is one of the most difficult things I have ever done.  I guess it will only be fair to use myself as the specimen if I truly desire to reach the very core of this generation’s youth challenges. I do understand why so many spiritual leaders try as much as possible to avoid using their personal life challenges in dealing with these highly sensitive issues, like ministering to youth.  How can we sincerely bring love, direction, hope and transformation to millions of youth out there almost bleeding their life to death if we are not ready to be transparent?  I also understand that sometimes being open and transparent makes most people look weak and vulnerable, especially in a world where masculinity {strength} and the sense of being in control is highly respected and celebrated.

The truth is if anyone is going to enroll in the mission of youth development and transformation, they need to know that there is no silver bullet in handling their complex problem.  Most teenagers’ challenges are first parental related before they become issues of identity and insecurity. The lack of proper parenting or the issue of none existence of parents or the right caregiver are the basis of the challenges most youth inherits. We must be open, fair, courageous, sensitive and proactive in our actions.

My experience as a teenager

Looking back to my past experience gave me a life time opportunity to first see if indeed I have truly dealt with the past or if I am only pretending like most of us does. I knew I could not truly speak to the youth without carefully considering the world that shaped who and what I have become today. This is a serious issue. The world we all live in today no matter where you are under the planet is shaped by your past.

It’s amazing how we conclude on the issues of life when we get to a certain age bracket. One of the most exciting moments of my life as a youth, was when I gave my heart to the Lord in 1988 at the Christ Chapel international convention, Lagos, Nigeria.  For the first time, I experienced what it means to be loved and cared. Looking back at my past teenage years, I could say it was a challenging experience of various emotional battles.  The sense of loneliness, loss, insignificance to life, dominated my days of growing. Hatred so controlled my life that at a point, I contemplated suicide and the none-existence of God. There were questions bottled up in my heart concerning the issues of the faith, life, family, education and the future.

At a point, I thought of joining the Muslim faith, not because I really believed in the tenets of the religion but because the people who showed me some kind of care back then were of the Islamic faith, though I did not realize that people could show you care or love for their selfish agenda. Since my hunger to be affirmed grew stronger, that desire became the right platform for my Muslim neighbor to use in persuading me to their faith.  I searched intently to find some kind of identity. An identity I hoped will give me some kind of meaning and significance in my frustration and dissatisfaction.  I explored various passions of self-indulgence and emotional gratification to fill up the big gulf within my soul.

Every stage of human growth comes with their unique trials, fears and uncertainties that need precise understanding in handling them. Without the right awareness of what is taking place in and around your life we can become vulnerable to the negative voices that most time brings confusion and discouragement.  The enemy takes advantage of our ignorance, especially in areas of our social existence. It was just too difficult for me to fit into the world around me because of how I was made to see life. My teenage experience is an echo of so many youths out there seeking for some kind of guidance and direction from their parents who seem clueless about what teenage development is all about. This is one of the reasons why most young adult seem very isolated in their homes but amongst friends they are they seem to be the happiest people.  Even though this sense of happiness is short lived the rather spend their time with the friends.

To be continued

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CONCLUDING REPORT OF THE SCHOOL OF APOSTOLIC REFORMATION 2010, FRANSCHHOEK

CONCLUDING REPORT OF THE SCHOOL OF

APOSTOLIC REFORMATION 2010, FRANSCHHOEK

By Isaiah-Phillips Akintola

 

Matt 28:19-20

19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” NIV

Looking back to the call and vision of TGIC Franschhoek

The gatekeepers’ international centre has approximately spent three years laboring in the community of Franschhoek to bring hope, faith and love to the people. The key focus of this ministry, as the Lord continues to direct us here is to bring the people out of the mental stronghold of the historic past. This we have continued to do by rebuilding the right human value concept. Conquering the enemy within is prerequisite to overcoming the enemy without.  It has been proven that society only change when the mental and spiritual perception of people is positively affected. We have done seminars and workshops in time pass laying the right base for reformation and transformation. Bringing total emancipation to the various dimension of life’s existence has been the major focal point of our work especially on an individual basis.

The concept and strategy of doing ministry from region to region is constantly changing, as the message remains unaltered.   We felt that introducing a consistent training program that can help in building a systematic growth in the developing process of the community is a good idea. The desire to impart the right spiritual capacity and leadership ability for the next generation is a must for any visionary group. Hence, we introduced school of Apostolic reformation Franschhoek.

The cost of hearing the true gospel

On behalf of TGIC, I will like to use this opportunity to warmly appreciate all contributors to the successful hosting of school of apostolic reformation training 2010, Franschhoek, Western Cape. The school commenced with high expectation from the brethren who have for a while desired to partake from the present apostolic emphasis of the Spirit. Their expectation was not disappointed in terms of the high quality of resource and training model, though we faced cruel resistance from some of the so-called Christian leaders who believe they are in the position to determine what should be accepted or rejected within the community.

Their backwardness and blindness to spiritual issues hindered so many who loved to attend the training but told us they had been warned not to attend. The community of Franschhoek is such a small place so that whatever any person says spreads like a wild fire. Though we were not counting on the approval of these men to do what the Lord has mandated us to do we sought their approval because they’ve been working in the community before us. Courtesy and biblical principle demands that we follow such pattern when entering regions in the nation of the gospel of Christ. Galatians 2:2.

You may be wondering if it is necessary to put this negative challenge faced on record. Well, it’s time we make it clear to believers we are accounted for that there are some within the community of Franschhoek, who are standing against the spiritual emancipation and development of the people by indirectly resisting the present voice of the Spirit.  If we do not write about this injustice and ungodliness, committed in the name of protecting the people, how can believers know that they are being hindered by those who called themselves pastors and intercessors in the community? This injustice, done in the name of protecting their Church members must be stopped. The scripture says and you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.

True freedom is when you as a believer in the Lord is allowed to make your own {discernment} judgment through the leading of the Spirit of God in you. A message preached in the name of the Lord that keeps us under the control of any man is bondage. Christ came to set us free. This freedom includes liberty from those who brought the message. You cannot claim you are free while your fellowship centre controls and manipulates your entire life. As the day of the Lord gets closer, we are going to see more of this type of resistance from so called Christian brethren against their own follower brothers because they have received the mark of the beast.

The enemy will use many we think today to be Christian leaders to fight and resist the advancement of the gospel of the kingdom in their communities. Just as the advancement of apostolic truth faced resistance and persecution in the first century from the religious and political leaders of the day; so will we witness the return and increase of is type of resistance against the people of the way. Ministries like TGIC will be a target of the religious leaders in these last days. They will do everything within their power and authority to stop people from hearing this kingdom truth just as they did in the time of Christ.

Luke 11:52 “Woe to you lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge. You did not enter in yourselves, and those who were entering in you hindered.” NKJV

The price of seeking apostolic truth

The price of kingdom advancement comes with a high cost. To think that the gospel of Christ will be allowed to be taught easily in this last day without gross percussion and resistance is a big lie.  Becoming a witness for the gospel is more like you signing your death warrant. That should not get you afraid but prepare your heart for the ultimate price. The Lord told us that we shall be persecuted from city to city in the name of preaching the gospel. Why? The gospel is the only weapon that sets people free from the clutches of hell. It is an honor for this school to share in the battle of advancing apostolic truth in the community of Franschhoek. We have no doubt that such confrontation is only the beginning of what true seekers and preachers of apostolic gospel will face in these last days. Such challenge from the kingdom of darkness helps us to evaluate the impact we are making in the spirit world.  Secondly, the school has afforded believers in the community the right opportunity to know their areas of spiritual confrontation that requires precise intercessory capacity. Matt 24:14: And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. NIV

Whether the enemy likes it or not, the kingdom of this world is becoming the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ. Regardless of what religious Pharisees thinks about our place and position in this community, the will of the Lord’s counsel and purpose shall be done in the lives of the people. The Lord is delivering the people from satanic oppression that crippled them from advancing for decades. As we continue to see the ungodly apartheid spirit collapse in South Africa, the knowledge of the glory of God will cover the entire region, including Franschhoek.   It is important that we are able to measure individual and corporate growth of the purposes of the Lord within a family or community. The revelation of Christ only penetrates the heart of a community when the religious Pharisee spirit at the gates of authority is completely dealt with.  Disciplining the nations comes with high-level spiritual strategy. Strategy that can only be effective when the true revelation of the true gospel becomes rooted in the hearts of those the Lord has positioned at the gates.

Matt 4:16-17

16 the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.”  17 From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.”  NIV

Logistical challenges

It was very difficult finding a venue for the training but we finally got a place which I was later informed was formally used as a dumping refuse site for the community. What a place to establish the counsel of God. A place that was formally used for waste became the center for spiritual impartation and development.  This venue was temporarily given to us to by the wife of one of the faithful brothers in our fellowship. The building was part of the ground being used for a food garden project, managed by her for the community. As small as the venue, training commenced as scheduled. The brethren came with high hopes and expectations to learn, the spiritual hunger of some of them brought them again and again even though it was winter. Just seeing the hunger in the faces of these brethren tells me that there is hope for the community.   The atmosphere of the training sometimes was so electrifying that you could hear God saying, “I am raising a new generation of priests who will do my bidding”. You could sense the Lord was birthing something eternal in the hearts of the saints as old rigid religious mentality are battled through the power of kingdom truth.

 

Time of great refreshing

Pastor Edgars from Johannesburg was invited to lecture on one of the modules. What a glorious time of fellowship we had with this wonderful servant of the Lord. His ability to express the truth embedded with the revelation of church transition was very profound.  It was really a great time of spiritual impartation but we had to move again from the venue to my home, where we concluded the training with very few brethren left. Many who started the school did not finish. They had fallen away through various distractions set up by the enemy. This school was a parable to the community of Franschhoek and I truly hope they realize it.  The days we live in demands that we forcefully break away from every humanistic and religious affiliation that hinder us from moving into the realm of God’s intended. To remain where the Lord has left is to incur judgment upon our lives, family and ministry. The Lord will not bless or approve what does not bring glory to his name, including our unrefined characters.  Whether we like it or not, the kingdom of God is coming in full power and authority.

Hoping for the next door of opportunity

School of Apostolic reformation will certainly continue as the Spirit of the Lord provides opportunity in other communities.  Our core vision is to see that the gospel of the kingdom is accurately and passionately preached and taught all across the nation of South Africa and beyond.  We can sincerely say that the training was more than successful, irrespective of the trial or challenges posted at us. We are waiting on the next leading of the Spirit concerning the training and preparation of apostolic leadership in the nation of South Africa. This nation has an appointment with destiny and we must play our role as the Lords prophetic voice in preparing the way and making his path straight. For those of you who finished the first module of the training, I want to congratulate you because you have received an impregnation of kingdom seed that needs your watering daily until the full day of harvest. Do not let anyone talk you out of what you have received. Keep it and it will keep you in days of famine of the truth.

Rom 15:30-32

30 I urge you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in my struggle by praying to God for me. 31 Pray that I may be rescued from the unbelievers in Judea and that my service in Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints there… NIV

 

 

 

Exploring and restoring The kingdom message lesson four

EXPLORING AND RESTORING

THE KINGDOM MESSAGE LESSON FOUR

 

Struggling to accept the concept of a kingdom seeking God:

Over the last decade, the Church of Christ has witnessed an increase in the accurate restoration of revelation of the kingdom, while on the other side; we are also witnessing a vicious distortion and devaluation of the meaning of the gospel of the kingdom of God amongst mainstream Pentecostal preachers. The Lack of apostolic foundation has made many vulnerable to the enemy’s strategy of confusing Christians about the true meaning of the gospel. Distortion of truth is the oldest and most powerful weapon of the enemy. He used this strategy to defeat Eve and her husband in the Garden of Eden. If you allow the enemy to twist what the Lord has revealed in his word you will fall to his attack. It is extremely important that the footing {understanding} to which we approach the definition of the kingdom should flow from God’s viewpoint alone.

Matt 13:18-19 “Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: 19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is the seed sown along the path. NIV

Seeing from the Lord’s perception gives us a great advantage in the understanding of what the kingdom stands for. The Lord’s purpose from the beginning of time is to have a kingdom of people who can exercise their priestly ministry without restriction. The essence of redemption is to restore this purpose of living within the life of everyone who has accepted the name of the Lord. The enemy is very good at one thing and that is to pervert the principle and pattern of God. He knows he cannot stop the word of God, but he can try in distorting the truth from the minds of the immature.

Today, Christian media houses publish and sell anything as long as it is tagged ‘kingdom advancement’. Christian bookshops all across the globe are filled with humanistic materials. Know wonder many are struggling with Gods standard of true spirituality. Dropping the standard of the gospel is a powerful strategy of weakening and hindering many from pressing onward unto perfection. The term kingdom of God has certainly become the buzzword in today’s Christian circle. What characterize the preaching of the gospel of the kingdom? What is the hallmark of the gospel of the kingdom? How do you recognize a true message of the kingdom? What is the fruit of the message of the kingdom? You cannot preach or hear the message of the kingdom and not be revolutionized in your mentality. Everything Jesus said in his earthly ministry was with the view of bringing his listener closer to the place of seeing the reason of accepting the kingdom of God.

One of the most important subjects of apostolic truth that must be addressed in this new day is the reality of the kingdom amongst men. Jesus preached in his days saying; repent for the kingdom of God has come near you. This implies that proximity of the kingdom also draws by implication the very authority, supremacy and dominion of the king near the people. There cannot be a kingdom without a king. The principles and values that drive a kingdom are directly supplied through the ideology that defines the king’s life. Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. When new converts joins the community of God’s people they need to be precisely re-orientated on the whole essence of life and culture of the kingdom of God.

The focus and direction of redemption must be built on a solid foundation of Christ, being the king- the supreme ruler of our lives. Many struggled to understand what a kingdom is and represent in terms of Lordship and ownership. Moving from democratic default pattern of thinking to the kingdom perspective of existence requires a shift in the psyche. God rules through his sovereignty. The Lordship of Christ over your life has no limit or boundary. He does whatever he wishes whenever he wishes. This is difficult to absolve because it sounds like control to them. One of the reasons why believers are struggling to understand and accept the gospel of the kingdom in this season is because those who defined the theology of the kingdom did not gain God’s viewpoint of the kingdom before preaching it. When Church leaders are fashioning their own image of God within the mindsets of their followers, it is impossible for their people to come into the reality of the life and message of the kingdom.

One cannot claim to have accepted Christ and still lack the understanding of the kingdom. Salvation is the accurate footing and foundation of coming into the life and purpose of the kingdom according to John chapter 3. Many today understood Christianity as a democratic {party} social gathering, governed through popular opinions. This is far from the truth. Christianity is not democratic in any way. God is autocratic in his rule and every believer young or old should understand this order of leadership.

We may be living in a democratic society; you and I belong to another order of existence, shaped by a different governmental authority. God does not fit into our little weak social order. He is God all by himself and we must relate to him from this perspective lest we miss the whole essence of Christianity. The sovereign rule and dominion of Christ is not popular to millions attending most of the mainline churches and that explains why they tend to have numerical growth and resources to promote their humanistic ideology.

 

Rediscovering the whole essence of life

A whole process of rediscovering the very essence of life and destiny from God’s perspective lays the foundation of what the kingdom of God means and represent to anyone whose desire is to serve and follow the master. Believers must be taught that life in God, is not a onetime acknowledgement of a faith confessing but rather, a process of continual acknowledgement of his will and demands over your own. This groundwork of truth gives the right perspective and value to start the journey of spiritual emancipation and transformation.

The word kingdom is derived from the combination of two words; King and his Dominion. {King-dominion} The kingdom of God is the genetic term {name} for the rulership, sovereignty and life of God over all things. The kingdom of God is filled with divine activity that can only be explained or understood through those who have regained their spiritual sight according to John chapter 3:3. The operating system of the kingdom lies within the revelation knowledge of the Son of God and nothing else. Jesus said I am the way, the truth and the life, no man comes to the Father {the possessor of the kingdom} except through me.

 

This is one of the key principles in the scripture that gives us the clue to accessing the realm of receiving revelational knowledge. Some have argued that Christians have left behind the message Christ brought to earth and have gone preaching the messenger-who is Christ. This is utter blindness and misleading to what the purpose of the message of the kingdom of God represents. The revelation of both the kingdom and its final manifestation is captured in the very life, nature and mission of Christ to humanity. It is crucial that this piece of apostolic truth is engraved on the tablet of your heart, knowing that Christ is the central theme behind the gospel of the kingdom. This misjudgement explains the reason why many are easily deceived and confused due to the lack of proper revelational footing of Christ being the Son of the kingdom of heaven. Without him, there can be no accessing of heaven and the kingdom of God.

Meaning everything about the bible and the gospel revolves around the life, nature and glory of Christ. The scripture declares in Colossians that he is the express image of the Father, while the primary ministry of the Holy Spirit today is to continually testify of Christ glorious reign over all things. Whatever knowledge we are trying to gain or understand as believers without the precise seating of the revelation of the Christ will certainly lead to futility and error. No one can fully comprehend the kingdom without a precise revelational footing of both person and ministry of Christ being the pattern of God for both truth and the kingdom.

 

Foundation for the revelation of the kingdom

Remember in Matthew chapter 16: Jesus said to Peter after that powerful experience of identifying Christ as the Son of God. The Lord said to him flesh and blood has not revealed this to you but my Father in heaven. In other words, the Father is the revealer of the life and nature of his Son and gives the power or keys to access the kingdom. Your capacity to access the life and culture of the kingdom of God is exclusively based on your ability to gain the precise revelation of the Son of God. Peter was given the keys of the kingdom not because of his ingenuity or religious superiority but because he gained access through the revelation of the Son of God.

When you connect to the life of the Spirit through the power of regeneration of your walk with the Father, spiritual understanding becomes the by-product. Without a clear picture of why you need to make entering the kingdom of God a priority, you will definitely not see the reason of paying any price to enter. Once this knowledge is attained you become passionate and spiritually thirsty to develop an attitude that helps you build priority around the table of the word which builds the basic foundational structure to press towards the place where you are granted favour to access {revelation} spiritual realities beyond the natural realm of life.

The concept of flesh and blood not revealing Christ to Peter speaks of man’s sensual faculty of reliance. The best of human ingenuity do not have the capacity to find or identify the kingdom. Religious knowledge as we are going to see later on in the teaching does not have what it takes to discover the kingdom. A kingdom is known through its system of leadership or rulership. In other words, the king on the throne defines the purpose and direction of his empire and not the other way around. Kingdoms are made up of highly potent ideologies, cultures, traditional beliefs and ties that give and sustain the kingdom’s power of identity. This background defines the kingdom’s relationship with other communities around, either on the issue of trade or military companies. There is a clear lay down policy that informs and instructs how things are to be run within the empire even when the king is dead.

 

A witness account

Acts 1:1-3

The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, 2 until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to the apostles whom He had chosen, 3 to whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God. NKJV

This scripture certainly gives any seeker of kingdom truth the opportunity to allow his sanctified {mind} imagination to take him trough the last forty days of Christ’s instruction about his kingdom with his disciples. One could imagine each day’s teaching bringing more clarity and precision to the understanding of these men who will be shouldering the responsibility of carrying and representing the crusade he began some three years earlier. Every moment of this intensive tutorial class imprints the very essence of the very reason why Christ came to the world. What they struggled to understand before his death began to make sense even though they still hoped for the manifestation of a literal physical king {kingdom} to topple the tyranny of the Roman empire.{Act 1:6}

 

This, the master made them realize was not for them to know the time or hour but it will surely happen at God’s due time. What made this speaking of Christ more important to his earlier teachings? His last forty days expository teaching on the issues of the kingdom laid the foundation for the commissioning of the disciples in becoming true representatives of kingdom advancement in the earth.

Note that the Disciples were not a novice to the message of the kingdom of God. After all, most of them were with Our Lord Jesus Christ when he began his public ministry by preaching “repent for the kingdom of God is at hand”. The word at hand means so close that you can literally grab it, you can stretch your hand to receive. It is the same as saying the “kingdom has come near you”. The message of the kingdom of God or like some of the epistles prefer to use kingdom of heaven, starts with repentance but ends with the reality of immortality. {1 Corinthians 15:50-52} Immortality is the fruit {inheritance} of the redemption through the continual inner workings of the ministry of sanctification-regeneration. The message of the kingdom of heaven was the central theme of the gospel.

Right from the Old Testament to the new, we see a dominion and influence of two various spiritual characters seeking the agreement and corporation of man. We cannot accurately speak about the kingdom of God without mentioning the fallen kingdom of darkness seeking to retain its hold over the human soul. The subject of the kingdom is a highly complex one that most church leaders still do not have a clear insight into.

 

The level of damage organised Christian religion has done in defacing both the truth and life of the kingdom has to be accurately corrected before people can begin understanding the essence of kingdom gospel. Christ, in his introductive teachings began by introducing the importance of understanding both the meaning and implication of accepting the kingdom of God to his audience.

It was mandatory for them to be baptised into repentance in order to regain their relationship and position with God. This act opens the doorway for the restoration of lost spiritual sight and identity. One can clearly see that the teachings of our Lord during his earthly ministry were divided into two main categories: the first category primarily focused on introduction of the kingdom of God to lost sheep of the house of Israel and then to other gentiles. The Lord used ordinary day-to-day life experiences to expose and explain what the kingdom of God is like. This was to give them the opportunity to respond to the message of salvation and repentance in true clarity. Repentance is a solid apostolic foundational doctrine of the Church, introduced by the master as the opening point to a whole process of transiting and migrating into the preferred in Christ.

 

This truth lays the heart of right spiritual concept to the revelational knowledge of Christ-the pattern Son. This is the place where your dead spirit regains life through the quickening power of God’s eternal grace and love. This point of repentance could also be defined as the point where one’s spiritual sight starts gaining understanding according to heavens perspective. The message of repentance is highly crucial to the process of foundational spiritual understanding and migrating towards the destined realm of existence. As important as this message is, it only reveals one side of the coin.

 

Repentance was only an introductive reality to a whole spectrum of kingdom truth we are expected to apprehend in our journey to the City of God. The second phase of the Christ teaching ministry was afterwards reserved for those who would have gone through the humiliation of denial, rejection and disappointment of their human weakness towards the Messiah. These are the chosen ones despite the mistakes they made. They have been called and chosen to share the suffering of the master’s death, burial and resurrection. The last forty day of Jesus teachings was crucial to the destiny and advancement of the gospel of the kingdom within human hearts. This teaching was done after the disciples have failed and felt greatly disappointed about their lack of faith and trust in him who called and chose them. I do believe they felt more disappointed in themselves because the Lord had already told them they were going to desert him at his darkest moment yet he will not be alone. At the garden of Gethsemane where he called his disciples to join him in prayer he understood what was ahead of them, not even Peter, James and John amongst his supposed matured disciples will be able to resist the power of slumber.

 

Not only did they all see him perform great healings, miracles, signs and wonder they also were given the same authority and power to cast out demons when he sent them out two by two. They came back with the testimony that even the demons are subject to them. Yet, in all this backdrop of truth, they still failed. Could it be that they were allowed to fail so that the power of God could rest on them? They were allowed to get to the point of understanding a crucial principle that guides the culture and nature of the kingdom which is thou shall not depend on your own strength to stand for the truth. They had to learn that it is not by might nor by power but by my Spirit says the Lord.

 

Speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God

The presentation of truth to Christ disciples during his last forty days on earth was completely different in emphasis to his first three and a half ministry days on earth. Here is Christ rounding up the ministry of the Passover, preparing the disciple for their Pentecost, which ultimately will usher them into what will be known as the tabernacle experience. The masters eyes were on the completion of the day of Pentecost so that his eternal purpose for humanity can begin in full force.

It is important to note that the issue of the speaking of things pertaining to the kingdom is the key word in this journey. The word speaking…from the Hebrew Greek dictionary means {Lego} to lay forth, bring forth, starch forth, stand upright, reveal, break silence or extend. These meanings express the state and activity of Christ, both the impartation and instruction of the teachings of Christ to his disciples. This meaning of the speaking of Christ suggests that most of the words are present revealed truths that have not been heard before.

This word in context expresses both the order and pattern of imprinting an ideology in a systematic way. It is more like formatting the mental and spiritual psychic of the disciples so they can house the principles and instructions being given to them. This in return creates a solid value believe system that cannot be hindered, deceived, stopped or compromised by any negative external force. This gives us insight into what the Spirit of the Lord was emphasising during the last days of Christ ministry on earth. The speaking of the kingdom can only be fully understood after the experience of death, burial and resurrection.

 

Definition:

A kingdom is a state or people ruled by a king or queen. A Kingdom could also be defined as a sphere {realm, domain or area} of activity in which a particular thing {philosophy} is thought to dominate. Furthermore, kingdom could also be said to be the position of an ideology, culture or orientation of existence. This means that there cannot be a set pattern and strategic of governing! A kingdom draws its values of existence from its set ideologies.

The second point we will like to extract is there cannot be a kingdom without a king. The life of the king determines the condition of the kingdom! The king’s authority and power defines not only his influence over his people but also his capacity to expand his frontier. To the degree that he is able to stretch his influence of governance is to the degree his dominion and reign will be felt across his boarders. A kingdom must continually grow, develop and expand to maintain its influence and authority. A king must see for new frontiers to conquer in order to expand his territorial capacity.

Having said this, I will like you to remember that the very concept {thought} of a kingdom was initiated by God himself who is the king of kings and Lord of lords. The scripture says in Genesis chapter 1 after the creation of man in his very own image and likeness he gave him dominion over everything he had created both creatures and plants and the treasures within the garden. Here we see Adam being the first human crowned king. His sphere of influence, power, authority and dominion was marked out by the Lord himself.

One of the patterns of the concept of communicating spiritual things to man is through using natural physical things to explain spiritual realities. With this truth in mind, you still need to know that you cannot comprehend spiritual things except your spirit is regenerated. Rom 1:19-21 20 For since the creation of the world His {God} invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, NKJV

The place of awareness concerning spiritual truth and principles is highly vital in appreciating what the Lord desires to communicate to your spirit. Mind you, spiritual things are foolish {unreasonable} to the carnal un-regenerated mind. Why, His spiritual faculty is dead; while his human reasoning irrespective of its ingenuity cannot comprehend spiritual truth. I am trying to lay this solid foundational principle because it holds every other truth that will be considered as the Lord grants us permission. I will strongly recommend you read our material on rediscovering salvation; it gives a clearer insight into what salvation is and does concerning the reality of the kingdom.

With this footing in mind we can say the kingdom of God is a realm or domain where humans have freely allowed God’s will, purpose, counsel and desire to overrule [override] their world. Please note; God is the creator of the heavens and the earth. He rules over the entire universe, yet his rulership is based on certain premises that cannot be violated. The kingdom of God is a system of life within the community of God’s people where the Christ Lordship clearly understood and is given its full right of expression.

The Church of Christ was established for the core purpose of implanting and re-establishing the lost knowledge of the kingdom {Kings Dominion} within human mentality and in return, manifests the very essence of that knowledge and glory to all men. The Lord’s desires are for spiritually blind and crippled humans through the power of lifestyle to embrace his life and light for the regeneration and transformation. There is a Church of the bride that exists within the vast reality of religious and charismatic pollution today whose core purpose is to birth God’s eternal prophetic agenda that is expressed through the seed of the ministry of the kingdom of God.

This agenda {purpose} is far beyond what has been defined or preached to be ministry; it goes far beyond the expression of religious sanctity and charismatic gifting and power show we see around. It can’t be defined by what is seen with natural human sight, it is spiritually based, yet it impacts the course of history; it is presenting changing nations and generations yet unborn. It is the very essence why Christ came to earth.

The agenda of Gods kingdom cannot be exchanged or negotiated for money, political influence, ministerial position and power. It outlives our little achievements and the empires church leaders have built all in the name of God. This agenda is the very life and value that drives the heart of those apprehended for righteousness. Let’s see what John saw about the coming kingdom in Revelation 11:15 which says, 15 “The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign forever and ever.” NIV

The beginning of wisdom and understanding of the purposes of the Father start by becoming a student of the book of revelation. The word revelation means reveal. Many have been deceived to believe that the book is difficult to understand. I can assure you that if you will trust in the ministry of the Holy Spirit to lead and guide you into the volumes of truths in the book, you will start gaining insight into the mind of God for your life and generation. Although this material is not focused on expository teaching on the book of revelation yet, it is highly important to inform you that you can gain key revelational insight that enhances your nourishment and development toward the actualization of the kingdom mandate.

There is no way you can precisely understand the kingdom of God without first having the revelation of Christ. This is a basic fact! Understanding Christ nature and ministry lays the precise foundational blocks and values to what God’s kingdom is and not. The message that culminates the end of humanistic religious Babylonian Christian concept of worship {service} also ushered in the grand reality of Gods eternal kingdom upon human affairs.

 

There is a group of people in the earth today who have completely submitted themselves to the governing processes of conforming into the very nature of Christ so that they can accurately exhibit the power and dominion of his kingdom. They have allowed Christ to implant the seed of the kingdom within their heart so that they can become one with the Lord’s eternal will and purpose. That is why the scripture says the kingdom does not come by observation; rather, it is a hidden reality that first gains root through its seed implanted within human heart before power of manifestation takes place. This concept is explained by Christ in:

 

Mark 4:26-29

26 He also said, “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground. 27 Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows, though he does not know how. 28 All by itself the soil produces grain-first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head. 29 As soon as the grain is ripe, he puts the sickle to it, because the harvest has come.” NIV

In the scripture above, we noticed the message of the kingdom became pronounced during the ministry of the seventh angel according to Rev Chapter 11:15. Meaning, there has been a conscious progressive journey of one’s spiritual reality from one dimension of revelational truth until one gets to the seventh {day} position of kingdom expression. The full expression of the kingdom of God is built on the seventh or what is also known as the third day of the Spirit. The message of the kingdom declared during the season of the high-level matured prophetic apostolic lifestyle starts bringing the reality of Gods purpose to a closure. This is known as the seventh day of the Lord. This kingdom message cannot be given or received with religious human effort. Another thing we noticed here is the Characteristic attitude of the angel.

There was a loud blast of the trumpet and there were also loud voices from heaven declaring “the kingdom of this world has become the kingdom of our God and of his Christ and he shall reign forever and ever. This loud prophetic utterance coming from one is known as the heaven penetrated the hearts and lives of earth dwellers such that the entire human kingdom became invaded, and taking over by the rulership and dominion of God.