God is sovereign, and the sovereignty of God means that He is self-contained, complete in Himself, and has need of nothing apart from Himself. There is nothing that happens which is beyond His influence, or His authority. There is nothing that He is not aware of. He has no limits and there is no measure to His power. He is the ultimate source of all power, authority, and everything that exists.
Colossians 1:16 “God created all things and holds all things together, both in heaven and on earth, both visible and invisible”.
Revelation 21:6 “God is above all things and before all things. He is the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end. He is immortal, and He is present everywhere so that everyone can know Him”.
Having said all that, how amazing is it that the sovereign God decided He would empty Himself and become as you and me, in a flesh body, being tempted with all manner of things we are tempted and tested by, so that He could accomplish our salvation and show us what He can do through the same human form as we have, with the same spirit that is available to us. But even greater in my mind is the fact that God made himself subject to Mary and Joseph, subject to earthly authority, subject to those who would condemn Him, scourge Him, and crucify Him, when He had the power to call legions of angels to destroy them all… But He became subject to man so that Satan’s power could be broken, and believers could have access to His power and authority to expand His kingdom in the earth and reconcile the world unto Himself.
GOD MADE HIMSELF SUBJECT TO MAN…. So that mankind could return to the relationship which He had with Adam and Eve before the fall…. The age of innocence, of righteousness and Godliness….
One of the most incredible statements in the entire bible is found in
Isaiah 45:11 “Thus says the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker, Ask Me of things to come and concerning the work of My hands, command ye me”. COMMAND YE ME!!!
What a statement…. That the sovereign God, who is self-contained, complete in Himself, and has need of nothing apart from Himself, would say to inferior beings such as us, “COMMAND ME”…..
As I try to wrap my head around that, I must also search out it’s meaning and how that would possibly operate in our lives, and at the same time not violate the sovereignty of God!
I believe we can get good insight on this, from a scripture found in
Hebrews 6:13 “For when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself, 14 saying, “Surely I will bless you and multiply you.” 15 And thus Abraham, having patiently waited, obtained the promise.
v16 For people swear by something greater than themselves, and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation. 17 So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it with an oath, 18 so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie..”
When God says “I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, then He is bound by the truth He has sworn by”….
To violate one word that He has sworn by Himself that He would do, would compromise His sovereignty. Basically, He would have to resign as God.
If you swear to someone that you would do something, and you swear it by your reputation, your family name, and Your track record of faithfulness, righteousness and perfection…. And you break your promise and fail to fulfill your vow… Your word is no good and should not be trusted.
We all have a problem with the “Do as I say not as I do” type of leadership….And certainly if someone is GOD, they could be that kind of being, I mean what could anyone do about it….. If our parents tell us to make our bed or pick up our room, but they don’t do what they’re telling us to do, it lacks a lot of credibility.
If they tell us to put sunscreen on when they’re not, or eat a nutritious meal when they’re not, it’s not very convincing. It’s about something called “mirror actions,” where children arehard-wired to act just like their parents do, after all, children want to be Just Like Us, from walking and talking to emulating behaviors and worldviews. They are greatly influenced by what we do and say….
One guy says that when he was growing up, his dad told them they should treat him like a god...so they pretty much ignored him until they were sick, hurt, or broke or generally needed something.
God puts it all on the line when He says He will do something…by laying His own reputation as God on the line….How much more could He do to show us His love, concern and compassion, than become one of us and struggle as we struggle, weep as we weep, bleed as we bleed, and experience weariness, weakness, pain, and suffering….. To care enough to place himself in subjection to the injustice, unfairness, cruelty, greed, prejudice, and judgmentalism that mankind must deal with…. I would believe a God like that, and I trust His word and His intentions.
So now, we come back to this amazing statement God makes…when he tells those He created…. “Command Ye Me”…. Our God is a God of integrity, who will always back up what He says and He will authorize those who act on it to be able to perform it, because He has bound Himself to His word.
Numbers 23:19 “God is not a man, that he could lie, neither the son of man, that he should repent. Has he said it, and shall He not do it? or has He spoken, and shall He not make it good?”
James 1:17 “Every good gift and every perfect gift comes down from above, from the Father of lights, with whom is no variation nor shadow of turning”.
Matthew 24:35 “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away”.
One verse of the old hymn, “Standing on the promises”… says “Standing on the promises that cannot fail,
When the howling storms of doubt and fear assail,
By the living Word of God I shall prevail,
I’m Standing on the promises of God”.
Those words are about Commanding God, by standing steadfast and unmovable as we take Him at His word.
Elijah activated it and the dead were raised, oil and meal were multiplied and a three and a half year famine ended in a deluge of rain….
Gideon commanded the sun and moon to stand still until the battle was won and it obeyed him….
Moses was told by God that He would be with his mouth and plagues came upon Egypt while the land of Goshen was protected…water flowed from a rock like a river, manna from heaven fed one million and a half people, the Red Sea opened so they could walk across, not one person was feeble or sickly, and even their garments did not wear out for 40 years in the desert journey.
People were raised from the dead, all manner of sickness was healed and every human condition was cured, Satan was bound and demons were cast out. The impossible was made possible because the God of the impossible said it would be so!!!
When Jesus showed up, for Lazarus, he was already dead. The sister of Lazarus had called on Jesus when Lazarus was just sick. When he got there Martha said, “If you had been here, Lord, Lazarus would not have died”… She had faith for the past, (all the what if’s) but she didn’t have the same faith for what God could do in the future. But what if God wanted to do it another way, than you had it in your mind or your plans for Him to do. You looked at it as a failure, God was planning something better and much greater. When Elijah was by the brook, he could have gotten bogged down in the “What ifs.” He was shut off from everyone, he could have felt like a failure, or that he had missed God, but the most powerful days of his ministry were just beyond the brook….God had something better!
David spoke the “I wills, instead of the “What if’s”… in Psalm 138:2 “I will bow down toward Your holy temple and I will praise Your name for Your love and Your faithfulness, for You have exalted Your name and Your wordabove all things”.
There is nothing that is not subject to His name and His word!
He is the great God, the mighty God, the Creator God. We can see His wisdom and His power manifested throughout creation. The heavens declare His glory; the oceans manifest His power; the mountains reveal His strength; the snowﬂakes illustrate His wisdom. All these marvels of creation demonstrate to us God’s greatness. But it is His Name and His Word that make Him available to us….. Through His name and His Word He does for us what nothing else can do….He makes Himself completely available to us.
John 14:12 Jesus says, “Very truly I tell you . . . I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it”
When my mom had her country store, before the days of credit cards, she would maintain a ledger book recording the activities of each customer’s account and the amount owed on time. She knew her customers well and how much they earned. A customer would at times send others to the shop with a list to make purchases and bring back materials needed for their home or business. Those sent in the customer’s stead (their children or workers) would be able to receive the goods “in the name of” the account owner. But, if they tried to purchase things different than what my mom knew the customer normally bought, the purchase would be denied until she could verify it.
Coming to God in Jesus’ name and the list of things He said he would do, is similar to those old financial transactions. Jesus is the holder of the account, and we are welcome to come to the Father in Jesus’ name to receive what we need. The Father willingly grants our requests because of the authorization of Jesus. Of course, if we are asking for things that are contrary to the character or will of Christ, then we cannot expect to receive those things. So we are encouraged to remain in the will of God and seek what it is He is looking for in our lives. I heard a guy say that God finally answer his prayers about winning the $15 million dollar lottery. The answer was no.
God is not promising to be our personal vending machine, but when we come with “Not my will but thine be done”…. He will not turn us away and will always have an open ear!
The other day I saw someone shaking and kicking a vending machine because what they wanted wasn’t coming out. This guy wanted to have it his way, but it wasn’t happening. He wasdefinitely not approaching with a “not my will but thine be done” attitude. Hey, folks even try to use the word of God to get their own way, but quoting the word won’t get it for you, unless your heart and spirit are submitted and your motive is to glorify God and exalt the Lord! I know folks that try to convince God that it’s for His good that they win the lottery. They’ll give to the church, help good causes and give to the needy, but where were they when God kept them healthy, protected them and their family from destruction and gave them chance after chance… They didn’t realize they had won the lottery every day…..
A minister parked his car in a no-parking zone in a large city because he was short of time and couldn't find a space with a meter. So he put a note under the windshield wiper that read: "I have circled the block 10 times. If I don't park here, I'll miss my appointment. FORGIVE US OUR TRESPASSES."
When he returned, he found a citation from a police officer along with this note: " If I don't give you a ticket, I'll lose my job. Jesus said “LEAD US NOT INTO TEMPTATION."
If You’re not praying in faith, you’re only wishing…..Perhaps we need to ask ourselves if we are like the church that was praying for Peter to get out of jail, and when God opened the prison, the church was shocked that he was knocking at the door. That’s called wishful praying. We know we should pray, but we’re praying our wishes instead of the word of God. God said HIS WORD WOULD NOT RETURN VOID, BUT WOULD ACCOMPLISH ALL IT WAS SENT FORTH TO DO!
The word of God is not a magic wand we use….There are no magic formulas. KAZAAM IS NOT THE SAME AS AMEN! When we pray “in Jesus’ name,” we pray according to the will of God; we pray for what will honor and glorify Jesus. God will provide the means necessary to accomplish His objectives, as He equips us to be His servants and His messengers of transformation. Ultimately, God receives all the glory and praise for what is done while we wait in the wings for the next assignment .
If I arrived home some evening, walked into the living room, turned on the light switch and nothing happened, I would know immediately that there was something wrong that was causing the electricity not to work as it should. Either I haven’t paid the bill, there’s a burned out circuit or a burned out bulb. But it would be ridiculous for me to say that electricity was a failure, or that I was never intended to have light in the house. I don’t pass judgment on electricity simply on the basis of my personal experience. But I begin the process of elimination until I discover what was preventing the light from coming on.
Jeremiah 29:12 “Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. v13 You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. v14 I will be found by you, declares the LORD, and I will restore you from captivity…”
If our experience is not corresponding to what the Bible says, then there is something wrong, not with the Bible, but with our experience. So when I come to a promise in the Word of God that is not being fulfilled in my life, I begin to ask the Lord, “How can this become real to me?” John 15:16 reinforces this conviction: “You did not choose Me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain; that whatever you ask of the Father in My name, He may give to you.”
How’s your fruit? What have you done with what you’ve been given? Barrenness is a curse and it can and must be broken just like any curse. Have you hidden your light, have you failed to give when God stirred you to give, or commanded you to tithe. (if you don’t tithe the bible says that the destroyer is having his way with you) Are you standing for Christ when others are backing down. Are you expanding the kingdom, or hiding in a corner.
God says, He appointed us to bear fruit, and if we are bearing fruit….using what He has given you… whatever you ask of the Father in His name, He will give it!
Prayer is not preparation for what we do, it is what we do! Jesus told us to pray continually, to seek his guidance continually, to listen to His voice within our spirit continually…It is not just speaking to God but allowing God to speak back to us, with instruction, and revelation which connects the past, present and the future….of God’s intentions.
IN JESUS NAME is not just a religious phrase, or just a christianeze term we use. It is exercising the power of attorney. It is a legal term which allows someone to fully represent someone else in any transaction which they might do in their absence.
A military person will give power of attorney to their spouse, so they may represent them and do whatever they might do if they were present, in their name. When Jesus said “whatever you ask of the Father in My name, that He may give it to you.” He was giving each believer, who truly seeks to represent Him and do His will, the power of attorney.
Fully authorized, empowered, and anointed in His stead….
John 14:7 “But I tell you the truth, it is for your benefit that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. v8 And when He comes, He will convict the world in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: v9 in regard to sin, because they do not believe in Me; v10 in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see Me; v11 and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world has been condemned.
v12 I still have much to tell you, but you cannot yet bear to hear it. v13 However, when the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all truth. For He will not speak on His own, but He will speak what He hears, and He will declare to you what is to come. v14 He will glorify Me by taking what is Mine and revealing it to you. v15 Everything that belongs to the Father is Mine. That is why I said that the Spirit will take from what is Mine and reveal it to you”.
Webster describes an advocate as… one who pleads the cause of another….one who defends or maintains the cause of another…. one who supports or promotes the interests of another…. Jesus says that’s what the Holy Spirit is for us…
Ron Dunn says that Several years ago he took his three children to the county fair with his brother and his family. Pretty soon he realized that what the kids were most interested in was the rides, so he bought a roll of tickets. He would stand at the entrance of every ride and he would give a ticket to each child. He wasstanding at the entrance to the tilt-a-whirl, and he had given out about four tickets, when a girl came up who wasn’t with their family and she was holding out her hand for a ticket! Ron says that he wasn’t about to give her one of those tickets. Then his son said, “Dad, she’s my friend. I told her you would give her a ticket.” Right then Ron says, he tore off a ticket and gave it to that girl — in his son’s name. The girl really had no right to the ticket, but because HIS SON HAD ASKED HIM TO DO IT, hedid.
Ron says, That day he was reminded that he could go to hisheavenly Father and ask for the desires of his heart in the name of Jesus. And because of what Jesus is and what He did at Calvary, God answers. God never hears me because of what I have done or because of what I am; it’s always because of Jesus. And the Father will move heaven and earth in order to honor the name of His Son.
Each day, we are faced with the decision to walk according to God’s purpose for our life or according to our own purposes.The only reason the Christian life does not work in many people’s lives is because they are trying to pull God into their will. We follow God when He goes where we want to go, but then we sit and pout with a ugly face when God does not. People are disappointed with God because they think they will be fulfilled outside of His plan. When we go outside God’s will to find what we want, we have to stay outside His will to keep it. That can all turn around, the moment we repent and come into “Not my will but thine be done.”
God loves us and He is crazy about us, and when we take one step towards him, he takes a hundred towards us. The father of the prodigal saw him afar off and ran to meet him. That’s what our Lord is doing right now. He has watched far off and sees us coming. He is running in our direction with the robe, the shoes and the fatted calf….He’s been waiting to bless you beyond your wildest dreams!
Take that first step and see for yourself! He’s been calling you back home to Himself. Nothing is worth being far off from Him. He’s drawing you closer. Don’t let anything stand between, run into the arms of his forgiveness and mercy. Feel the embrace of God upon your soul. You can make it happen today….He’s waiting to heal you, show you the way and turn it around….