Chapter 1 Do We Win or Not? 1
Chapter 2 A Merry Heart 10
Chapter 3 Judgment 16
Chapter 4 State-of-the-Art Christians 26
Chapter 5 A Good Soldier 32
Chapter 6 Four Types of Leaders 40
Chapter 7 The Anointing 46
Chapter 8 Six Steps to the Anointing (God’s Authority) 52
Chapter 9 Hindrances to Faith 70
Chapter 10 What Are You Worth? 78
Chapter 11 Coming Into God’s Presence 81
Chapter 12 The Difference Between
True and Truth 87
Chapter 13 Why Are There So Many Denominations? 90
Chapter 14 Sound Doctrine 96
Chapter 15 The Difference Between Being Filled With and In the Spirit 99
Chapter 16 How to be Exalted of God 103
Chapter 17 How You Grow Spiritually 108
Chapter 18 Balancing Knowledge With Wisdom 112
Chapter 19 The Five-fold Ministry 116
Chapter 20 Are You Functioning in the Flesh or in the Spirit? 132
Chapter 21 Three Infallible Witnesses 137
Chapter 22 Unity - We Are One 154
Chapter 23 How to Develop Your Agape Love in Abundance 159
As children of God, we have access to all the grace we need in order to overcome the darkness of the world. Matthew 5:14 says we are the light of the world. As we abide in Christ Jesus, his light shines through us.
The darkness and spiritual confusion in our world are continually increasing. Many people see this taking place and become frightened and discouraged. Yet Romans 5:20b says, “. . . where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.”
In the chapters of this book, I deal with areas where many believers are walking in darkness. Each chapter could be a book within itself, but I am not trying to present a complete study on each subject. The purpose of this book is to share some key truths in areas that many don’t understand and to encourage the children of God to let their lights shine in a greater way.
A Simple Question
The title of this chapter seems like a simple question. If you are walking with the Lord, you should believe that the kingdom of God and those who are in it ultimately win. However, many church people don’t seem to believe this even though they should. They see the world becoming more and more ungodly and therefore, don’t truly believe that we as God’s children can possibly win.
It has become evident to me during my many years in ministry that people fall into one of the following categories if they don’t believe that those who are in God’s kingdom win:
(1) They are lost and have not come to the Lord as their Saviour.
(2) They are saved but do not know the Word of God.
(3) They are saved and know the Word of God but don’t believe it.
If you believe that failure is imminent, you need to examine yourself to see which of these categories you fall into. If you are lost, you need to get saved. If you are a believer but do not know what the Word says, ask God to reveal his Word to you by the Holy Spirit. In addition, ask God to lead you to a church where his Word is being taught in Spirit and in truth. If you are saved and know God’s Word, you need to repent of your unbelief and choose to believe what God says.
If you do believe that the people in God’s kingdom win, then I want to ask you another question. Does your positive answer spring from your hope that we win or from evidence of victory that the Spirit is producing in your life? Ask yourself if your daily confession and manner of life are good witnesses on your behalf. It is easy to say you believe that Christians have victory in Jesus Christ, but it is another thing to provide evidence in your own life to prove it. You should be able to prove what you believe by the way you live. James 2:17 says that faith without works is dead. When you say you believe something but have no evidence of obedience to prove it, you are deceiving yourself. (James 1:22)
Most believers won’t admit they don’t trust in what God says. However, when they look in the Word and see what is described as the evidence that should be manifesting in their lives, they realize they do not truly believe God and his Word. True faith is based on heart belief, not mental understanding alone.
The Real Problem
People are misdiagnosing their problems all the time, and they are looking everywhere but the right place for answers. They make excuses for why they don’t have spiritual victory, fellowship with God, and victory over their flesh and the devil. They suppose the reason they cannot walk with God in power is because they don’t have enough faith or need more of the Holy Spirit. But their quantity of faith cannot be the problem because Romans 12:3 says that all men have been given the measure of faith. Likewise, their problem cannot be a lack of the Holy Spirit either because they did not receive him in bits or pieces. When they received the Holy Spirit, they received him in fullness. They may not be appropriating all that he has for them, but they don’t need to receive more of him in the sense of acquiring a greater quantity of the Spirit.
The real issue is a matter of heart attitude. When you truly believe you win, you release your faith into God and his
anointing begins to flow in your life. In addition, you release zeal from within to make you more spiritually alert.
As a natural example of this principle, it is commonly known that there is a great difference between a boxer who steps into the ring to fight, believing he is going to win, versus one who believes he has already lost. A less proficient fighter who believes he can win often defeats a better fighter. He wins based largely upon his attitude. It is true that he must have some ability, but his attitude makes a major difference.
What You Truly Believe
If you truly believe that God is faithful and that you are a winner because you are in his kingdom, you won’t need a “back up plan” in the flesh to ensure that you don’t end up suffering loss. Take a moment right now to ask yourself the questions listed below. The answers will reveal what you truly believe about God and his trustworthiness.
If the answers to these questions have shown you that you don’t truly trust God or believe that you have victory because you are part of his kingdom, now is the time to repent. Go to your Father with an open, humble heart. Ask him to forgive your unbelief and commit your heart to trust him from now on.
In Christ, We Win!
If you and I are both in the body of Christ, I can’t win while you lose. Part of Christ’s body can’t win while another part loses. Can the shoulder, arm, and left leg of Jesus win and the right hand and the left elbow lose? Of course not! If you are a part of Christ, you can’t lose. The question is whether or not you are in Christ.
Did Jesus win the victory over satan and the world when he died and rose again? Yes! Then if you are in him and part of his body, you also win. You may not think you are an important part of Christ’s body, but if you are any part of his body, you win! On the other hand, if you are not part of Christ’s body, you lose. Jesus and those in him win. Those outside of Jesus lose. It’s as simple as that.
You need to ask yourself if you are spending your time in Christ or in the flesh. Victory is found in Christ, but satan has continual access to defeat you if you spend your time in the flesh. I would ask you to look at the evidence in your words, thoughts, motives, and actions. Then you will know what you truly believe in your heart.
When Do We Win?
Do we only win when the trumpet sounds? No, but many Christians believe we don’t win until the Lord returns. They believe if they can hold on until the trumpet sounds and get glorified bodies, then they will win. But the truth is, we win when we move into Jesus because he has already won.
On the cross, Jesus said, “It is finished.” (John 19:30) He didn’t say, “To be continued.” He completed the work of redemption and won the victory when he died and rose again. The battle was won when he went to hell and defeated satan and his principalities. He made a show of them openly, triumphing over them. (Colossians 2:15) He took away the keys of hell and death. (Revelation 1:18) He won the victory and has given it to us. 1 Corinthians 15:57 says, “But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and we are joint-heirs with him. (Revelation 17:14, Romans 8:17)
If we are in Jesus, we are winners now. But how can we be consistent winners? It’s very simple. We win by abiding in Jesus. John 15 relates the parable of the vine (Jesus) and how important it is to abide in the vine. Romans 11:11-24 tells us that the natural branches were the people of the Jewish nation. In order to provoke the Jews to jealousy and because of their rebellion, Jesus was given to the Gentiles. We were then grafted into the vine. God warns us that if he didn’t spare the natural branches because of their unbelief, he isn’t going to spare the wild branches that were grafted in if they don’t abide in faith. John 15:6 says if we do not abide in Christ and bear fruit, we (the branches that were grafted in) will also be cast aside. These scriptures show how important it is that we abide in Christ and bear fruit.
Evidence That You Believe
It might help you to make a list of the evidence manifesting in your life that proves you believe you win. Many believers never seem to think about examining the fruit in their lives, but 2 Corinthians 13:5 says to examine yourself to see if you are in the faith. The fruit you manifest is the evidence of what you believe.
You should ask yourself if you truly possess and manifest what you are confessing. Many believers confess to have fruit they don’t possess in the hope that they will receive it some day. They equate their hopeful confession with faith, but there isn’t much substance in that type of confession. To them, their lack of fruit seems irrelevant, but it is the evidence that they don’t truly have faith!
It is not what you confess, but the fruit you possess, that proves you have faith. If fruit is never produced, faith is lacking to some degree. It doesn’t take the Holy Spirit forever to produce fruit in you. How long have you been confessing fruit you do not possess? You may not yet have mature fruit in an area you are believing for, but the way you act is evidence that you have released your faith into God.
For example, do you believe that God can speak directly to your spirit? When I ask believers that question, most of them say things such as, “I don’t know. I think so. Yes, I believe he does.” But when I ask them if he speaks to them, they reply, “Well, no!” They believe in their minds, but there is no evidence of believing in their hearts. If you have believed that God can speak to you, there would be evidence in your life to prove your belief. You would be seeking him for directions in every area of your life. He would be directing your paths, and you would be continually developing deeper communication with him.
As another example, if a prophet in your church told you that an earthquake would destroy the building in thirty seconds, some of you might say you believed he heard from the Lord. However, if you remained seated, that would prove you didn’t believe him. If you had believed, you would have run for the door. Everyone would know who truly believed by who left the building.
Believing moves you to action because what you believe in your heart rules you. You only believe to the level that you are doing. At one point in my life, I thought I believed many biblical truths, but I wasn’t doing many of them. I was waiting for God to do something. Many Christians are waiting for God to move on their behalf, but God is waiting for them to obey him with faith!
There should be evidence (fruit) to prove you believe what God says. You should either be producing fruit or the preparation for producing fruit should be taking place. The process is set in motion as soon as you believe. You may not possess mature fruit at this point, but you should have “the substance” in place. What is the substance? The substance is the Holy Spirit working in you. As soon as you truly believe God is going to do something in your life, the work begins.
It’s very important to be honest with yourself and realize that you do not believe to any greater measure than what you are doing. I’m not talking about your efforts to do something but rather God sovereignly moving to bring fruit into being. As soon as you believe from the heart, God starts moving. That is why you have the substance of things hoped for at the moment you believe from your heart.
It isn’t necessary to go through elaborate rituals while trying to persuade God to do something he has already said he wants to do. When you cry out from your heart and say, “Lord, I choose to believe what you have said,” then God will start moving. He knows when you begin to believe from your heart.
A Personal Example
I will never forget the time when God showed me that religious rituals do not impress him. When I was a young believer I wanted to hear deeper revelation from God, so I decided to fast for three days. On the last day, I wanted to act especially humble so I got down on my knees to pray. All I could think about was the pain in my knees and back, and God wasn’t saying anything to me! Finally, I cried out from a humble heart and said, “God, I want to hear from you.”
I could feel God shaking his head at my acts of sacrifice. All of a sudden, I felt very foolish. God said, “Go fix something to eat. Then go into the living room, sit down in your chair, and relax.” So I got a sandwich and rested in my chair until I began to feel better. It seemed that eating and relaxing weren’t spiritual acts. But when I obeyed God, he started speaking clearly to me. He said, “You could have heard from me this way in the first place.”
God taught me that he is looking for a humble heart of obedience rather than acts of sacrifice or religious rituals. My efforts to impress him with rituals that originated from my reasoning and understanding did not move him, but he immediately responded when I cried out to him from an obedient, humble heart. Please understand that I’m not saying you shouldn’t fast as you seek God. I am saying that he is touched by your heart attitude, not religious acts you perform in an effort to make an impression on him. He always looks at why you do something, as well as the act itself.
You cannot do anything to earn God’s favor. He has already given you his unmerited grace. (Ephesians 2:8 and 9) God is not interested in the rituals you perform. Let me say it once again! What moves God is a humble, obedient heart that believes what the Word says about him.
Believe What You Already Have
The fruit in your life is based on the measure to which you believe what you already have. If you have already trusted God in one area of your life, you can choose to trust him with your whole life.
I train people for all types of ministry. One may be in the first level of training, one in the fifth level, and another in the tenth level. The only difference between the one in the tenth level and the one in the first level is that the one in the tenth level has found out what he already had when he was in the first level. All believers move into Jesus Christ when they come to him at salvation, but some of them do not believe they are in him. Their inconsistency and lack of personal knowledge of Jesus Christ adversely affects what they believe and their ability to mature.
Believe and Receive
I am what I am by the grace of God. (1 Corinthians 15:10) I have the liberty to be like Jesus. I have the liberty to be an overcomer. The devil still tries to lie to me, but it’s hard for him to win his case because I’ve got too much evidence (godly fruit) on my side.
Do you know why he convinces some of you? Because you don’t have enough evidence to refute him. He tells you a lie and you know it is a lie, but you can’t prove it by the evidence in your life. Revelation 12:11 says, “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony. . . .” When you start acting like who you already are and believe what was done for you on the cross, you will begin to have victory in your life. Jesus’ blood cleansed you and made you as white as snow. It made you a child of God and a joint-heir with Jesus Christ. It gave you the power to become a son of God. It gave you access to the treasures of heaven for whatever you need. It made you a winner.
You had to believe in your heart, confess with your mouth, and repent in order to get saved. Even if you haven’t been trusting God with your whole heart since your salvation, you can choose now to believe what he says. Faith is trusting God that he is trustworthy to do what he says he will do. You will never please God without faith. (Hebrews 11:6) You must trust him.
Open your heart to the Lord Jesus and lay down your preconceived opinions about him and what you think he wants from you. You don’t need to memorize more scriptures or perform more religious works to impress him. Submit your heart to your Lord with humility. Make sure the basic truths you already know are operating by faith in your life, and start looking for good fruit to appear. If you don’t see good fruit, ask the Lord to show you what is wrong and make the necessary adjustments. Repent, trust the Lord with all your heart, and begin to expect a harvest!