Welcome and thank you everyone, for being with us on this 2020 Palm Sunday celebration …Winnie and I have hung palm branches on our balcony, just our small way of saying “Hosannah to the king”
I guess you could say we’re shouting it from the roof top…(or the 4th floor anyway) As you can see behind me, Palm Sunday reminds us that, whenever Jesus shows up, thank God, He changes the atmosphere. We know that this is what took place on that first Palm Sunday. Many ran through the streets shouting out to everyone…Jesus is coming, Jesus is coming this way!
The atmosphere of the routine, everyday stuff of life, was charged with expectancy, and celebration filled the air as everyone strained forward to see Him. fear, and darkness and uncertainty were replaced with the reality of their hopes fulfilled… “Hosanna To The King” they shouted, as Palm Fronds were waved and garments were cast on the ground before Him.
On Palm Sunday, the rulers of darkness were served notice that the king of righteousness, truth, and kingdom authority was on His way to the final battle, and they were all on high alert as they began to develop their strategy to stop Him at any cost.
Satan is referred to as the prince of the power of the air (or the atmosphere) …. He had done so well, so long in controlling the atmosphere of the world system as the dark prince….
Now Jesus comes, riding on a donkey’s colt, He had clearly shown His purpose for coming to earth…. He was bringing heaven into earth. He came to change the spiritual climate…and the pervading atmosphere… “For this purtose was the Son of God manifest, to destroy the works of the evil one!” The High atmosphere of heaven had invaded the low places of the earth! Jesus had told all His followers to pray and release the atmosphere of “His will to be done in earth as it is in heaven”…
I think of The song “When you walk into the room” beautifully describes that… “When you walk into the room, everything changes. Darkness starts to tremble at the light that you bring. And when you walk into the room, every heart starts burning and nothing matters more than just to sit here at your feet and worship you. When you walk into the room, sickness vanishes as a mist. Every hopeless situation ceases to exist. And when you walk into the room, the dead are quickened too ‘Cause there’s resurrection life in all You do”.
Paul writes about this process of changing the atmosphere in Ephesians 2:5 “But God, has quickened us (made us alive) together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), v6 and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus… ”How important it is that we understand our part in changing the atmosphere… The atmosphere at the high elevation of a mountain, is different than the atmosphere at the foot of the mountain. It’s about elevation.
God is declaring that if we can increase our elevation and by so doing, we usher in heaven’s atmosphere, it will change the atmosphere in the earth around us as we become living portals which bring heaven into the daily affairs of earth.
Are we giving the Lord acceptable praise…..If you only praise God when things are going well, your praise has not matured yet. If you only praise God when you feel like it, your praise has not matured yet. If you only praise God when you come to church, your praise has not matured yet. If you don’t understand that praise is Spiritual warfare, your praise has not matured yet. If you only praise God for what He does and not for who He is, your praise hasn’t matured yet….Hosanna To The King! So when the bible tells us to give Him high praises, it is praise that has moved to another elevation, We’re growing and expanding in our praise….Oh, yes, Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and come into His courts with praise….
Matthew 6:33 But seek first (continually seek) His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you”. The mission we have been given in every situation, is changing the atmosphere and praise and thanksgiving is an important key…..
When the Israelites entered Canaan, God gave them a unique command,
Numbers 33:53 “And you shall dispossess the inhabitants of the land, and dwell therein, for I have given you the land to possess it”. The word that comes to my mind is “leveraging”…. God was saying, I give you my power to overwhelm the inhabitants of the land, to bring about a huge return and the very best outcome as you invest in the land I have promised you.
The command to “dispossess”, occurs 48 times in the Old Testament in some form. It means to replace something that is there, with something that never existed before…. To set up a new standard, To build a new culture, To serve a new king….
Look at this statement from Jesus Himself…. Matthew 11:12 “From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it”.
*…..Someone was flying for the first time, in order to get home for Easter. They were very nervous, they even lifted their feet when the plane took off to lighten the airplane…. But something happened that changed the atmosphere for them, from fearful and worried, to calm and assurance. You see, they looked up 3 seats in front of them and there sat their favorite TV evangelist. Well, that woman knew that nothing was going to happen to THAT PLANE as long as he was on board.
What happened…. For that woman, the evangelist was carrying faith, blessed assurance, grace and favor, the presence of Christ, the anointing of an overcomer, and the ambassadorship of the kingdom…And he was there to remind her to change the atmosphere, and not be overcome by flying too low in her faith!
Notice it says in Ephesians 2;5 that “He has (already) quickened us together in heavenly places with Christ”
The authority and dominion which the Lord Jesus walked in, has become the right and privilege of all believers:
Jesus physically ROSE from the dead, so, we are spiritually being renewed, revived and restored, and strengthened within….
Jesus ASCENDED into heaven , so, we can ascended into heaven, because we have access to the throne of God, which is over all the things that want to stop our calling, our anointing and our God ordained outcome…. Jesus SAT DOWN in heavenly places, so, we can sit down in heavenly places which is a description of getting the situation we’re in, off of our backs and under our feet….
One day every Christian will physically rise, ascend, and sit down in heaven, but RIGHT NOW this is true of all believers spiritually.
Ephesians 2:5 uses the term “Heavenly places”….What does the phrase "THE HEAVENLY PLACES" mean?
Some translations say "the heavenly realms," "the heavenly sphere," or "the kingdom of heaven."
Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 12:2 that he was once "caught up to the third heaven." The first heaven is the atmosphere. The second heaven is space. The third heaven is the dwelling place of God. The third heaven is the same as "the heavenly places." Ephesians 2:6 describes every Christian as seated in heaven with Christ. What does that mean for you right now? THE CHRISTIAN NO LONGER BELONGS TO THE WORLD—HE IS GRAFTED INTO THE KINGDOM OF GOD. (That’s what the salvation quickening does for us)
The Bible commands us, Romans 12:2 "Be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing or (elevation) of your thinking”. . .
Christ commissioned Paul to go to the Gentiles Acts 26:18 "to open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and FROM THE POWER OF SATAN UNTO GOD".
Our calling is now and always, to change the atmosphere. The reason you have been under such heavy attacks from the enemy, is because he knows that you have the potential to change the atmosphere and sway people’s hearts towards God. So he sets up detours, and pitfalls and snares along the way. He hits you with matters of the heart, for he knows that where your heart is, your treasure is also… Satan’s greatest fear is that you will become what God always intended for you to be….
Philippians 3:20 (The Passion Bible) Paul talks about this " But we are the people of heaven on earth as we cling tightly to our life-giver, the Lord Jesus Christ…”
The Christian lives a life which overcomes the world. 1 John 5:4-5 "WHATSOEVER IS BORN OF GOD OVERCOMES THE WORLD: AND THIS IS THE SOURCE OF OUR VICTORY "
I hope you know that when you go to the store, there’s a greater reason than the milk, bread and eggs on your list….When you go to the mechanic you’re going for a greater reason than getting your car fixed… When you’re on the job, you’re there for much more than a pay check. God has put you there to change the atmosphere!
It’s all about what we allow to capture our heart, our affections, and our desires.
A newspaper article told of a man who once found a $100 bill on the street and he resolved that from that time on he would never lift his eyes while walking. He bought a metal detector. The paper went on to say that over the years he had found, 29,516 metal buttons, 54,172 bottle caps, 15,000 nails, two sets of false teeth, a nose ring, 18 pennies, a bent back, and a miserable disposition. But he also lost something—the glory of sunrise and sunset, the radiance of the stars, the smiles of friends, and the wonder of the world all around him.
I’m afraid that some Christians are like that man. While they may not walk around, constantly staring at the ground, they are so engrossed with the things of this life that they give little attention to heavenly values. How can they change the atmosphere anywhere?
You can’t give something you don’t have…. You can’t call others to a place you have not come to yourself… You can’t teach what you have not learned…You can’t impart what you have not received….
There is a wonderful statement in Ephesians, about changing the atmosphere in the earth, and creating an open heaven…. Ephesians 1:19 “and what is the surpassing greatness of His power unto us who believe. It is the workings of His strength and His might” Strength and might are two attributes that flood the atmosphere where His presence is. Strength and might are released into the spirit of God’s people enabling them to cast off their burdens and supernaturally believe the impossible is possible. It ushers us into a place called “we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us”!
What an amazing thing it is to see the glory of the King saturate a place and to witness the release of His holy zeal that transforms downcast souls into mighty ones! HOSANNAH TO THE KING!!! Strength and might come when we usher in His presence, when the mighty ones “give unto the Lord, the glory due to His name,” when we “worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness”
When the atmosphere changes, repentance comes! Yes! The Spirit of Truth begins to convict our hearts, and causes us to be conscious of righteousness and holiness…. The Spirit of Truth is manifested to reveal things hidden and things veiled in shadows. In this atmosphere, those who are bound by deceptions and dark manipulations, step into the light and are released from the weights and encumbrances which have hindered and distracted them.
A holy atmosphere is ushered in, where amazing things happen and transformation can take place. Bondages are broken, the light of heaven begins to shine, truth has the power of penetration and lives are changed forever.
It is an atmosphere where every knee bows, and every tongue confesses the Lordship of Jesus to the glory of God…..HOSANNAH TO THE KING!
It’s like throwing a stone in a lake and the circle of change gets bigger and wider and the ripples go out further and further until they touch every part of the lake.
Listen to David’s declaration of a change in the atmosphere in
Psalm 29 Give unto the LORD, O you mighty ones, Give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due to His name; Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. The voice of the LORD is over the waters; The God of glory thunders. The LORD is over many waters. The voice of the LORD is powerful; The voice of the LORD is full of majesty. The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars, Yes, the LORD splinters the cedars of Lebanon. And in His temple everyone says, "Glory!" The LORD sits enthroned over the Flood, and the LORD sits asKing forever. The LORD will give strength to His people; The LORD will bless His people with His Shalom”.
David is comparing an open heaven to a great wall of water breaking through and flowing over everything. Imagine rivers of waters breaking the banks, overflowing the land, and overturning all that stands in its way. David is using these forces in a good way to describe an atmosphere of God breaking in upon the world systems. What can stand against It, and what can hold it back….. Nothing!
In an atmosphere of breakthrough, everything of heaven is intensified and amplified in the earth . Everything increases because the atmosphere has changed, breakthrough has come! Expect a new level of ministry, of gifting, of signs, of the anointing, of wonders, of healings, of miracles, of finances, of wisdom, of revelation, of understanding, and of destiny in your life! Expect more than you have experienced before…..
Heaven is on a collision course with the world system, which has held your job, your home, your community in it’s grip…. Do you need wisdom and direction? Do you want to take your spiritual experience a couple of mega notches upward? Are there brass doors, bars of iron, or hard, impenetrable ground that has prevented breakthrough of any kind in your life – it has withheld your financial break through, spiritual break through, or a break through in the areas of healing and deliverance? Do you have a heart for souls but haven’t seen the harvest? Genesis tells us that at a time when the earth was without form and void, God spoke forth and His words collided with the chaos and the darkness….. The Father spoke forth and commanded “LET THERE BE LIGHT”! And the atmosphere changed…. Light broke through, boundaries were established, harmony and order began to take the place of a chaotic earth as the darkness was driven back….
God is causing a great exchange to take place through His agents in the earth. The words that drove back the darkness, the chaos, and the toxic atmosphere in Genesis, is in our Spirit now, waiting to be spoken out of our mouths.
It’s Palm Sunday, the king is entering triumphantly… Let us lift our Hosannahs!
Matthew 16:19 “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven”.
Sometimes it’s letting go of the old so we can receive the new thing of God that will change the atmosphere, and usher in the fulfillment of all that God has promised, is our greatest challenge. We want what we’re comfortable with, while at the same time we desire what we know deep down He has in store for us. But this new wine cannot be contained in the old containers of our comfort zones. May we be so consumed with His pleasure in and through us, that it will neutralize our need to hang on. Lord, we let Go! That we may receive every good and perfect thing which comes from the Father who now invites us to enter in ….
Let me close with the words Paul received of the Lord…..
2 Corinthians 12:9 And He said unto me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in your weakness. Most gladly, therefore, I will boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest on me”.
Paul is describing a mature faith, which fully understands the concept… “It is not I but Christ in me, the hope of glory”.
You know, the donkey that Jesus rode into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, knew that all the applause wasn’t for him, We must be like that donkey, our job is to bring Jesus everywhere we can, and He’ll do the rest! The quickest way to destroy the heavenly atmosphere, is to start thinking that you are some great thing, because God is using you. When we feel like it all depends on us, we have opened the door to paralyzing fear, intimidation, doubt, guilt and limitations everywhere we go and in everything we do….Hey, we are just the mail man, delivering the mail. Just be God’s delivery system, and there is no end to what He can do in your life!!!
Isaiah 43:19 “Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth, shall you not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert”.
I want to close with this prophetic word God put in my spirit… I wrote it down…
This is the hour that Jesus is shaking up our world view. I see Him calling out to many who have been sick, frail, in tremendous pain, weak, wounded, plundered and some who have just given up. He says over us, “Dead bones – (our life, our families, our situation, our churches) – COME TOGETHER. Be joined in faith, built up and restored.”
And there is a new thing happening now. Right Now Today! With every connection and organ and cell in place working properly. Being brought together and being made whole.” And we are coming together, we are being healed and being united. We are being given the strength to stand in the brilliant, transformative truth that is pouring through us and regenerating us.
“Breath of the Spirit – fill with Life! It is time. Now is the time. So, Arise My Love! The grave and the grip of death, which wants to send us backward instead of forward, no longer has a hold! It’s time to dance!! New songs are being birthed, Beautiful songs of the Spirit arise. As we Praise, see what He is about to do! The bells of Freedom are ringing!” Shouts that shatter barriers and break down dividing walls have been amplified! Holy Spirit, enter into us in a fresh visitation. Open wide our hearts and spirits to You. Help our unbelief. Before I go any further, I am seeing someone in my spirit, who is just drained and emotionally numb. The spark is gone, you’re running on empty…Be filled with the spirit, I release the rivers of living waters to flow out of the inner well that Jesus talked about. Be renewed in your very soul. I release your song, I release your dream and your purpose. Be restored and whole to your very core, in Jesus name!
There’s also someone who has gotten on the wrong path, and you don’t know how to get back to where you once were… May the Holy Spirit lift the veil from your mind that you can see clearly and may He give you wisdom from above to bring it all together… In Jesus name… Lord, we invite You into our bodies, minds and desires. Strengthen our spirits to be able to receive revelation of who You really are and Your great design, in and through us.
Open the dusty drawers of our heart and soul, clean out things in our closets that simply clutter and take up space, with no purpose or profit. Cleanse, purge, prune us of all that is not of You. Reveal to us the places of unbelief or pride, fear or doubt, anger or bitterness. Root it all out, Jesus. Plow up our hearts to be ready with good soil for all the seeds of Your Word You want to plant in us. Fruitful, beautiful things from You that can now grow and abound. We now take up the weapons, the tools and authority You have given us and bring every thought captive for Christ. We now receive creative designs, fresh insight, new direction, and knowledge and wisdom that is from above. To the praise of Your glorious grace! Let us receive it, in Jesus Name!!!!
Till next time….HOSANNAH, TO THE KING OF KINGS, HOSANNAH!!! (wave palms)