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How many of us are offended by people,leadership, groups and even churches, when in reality, we are being offended by the Lord Himself. There as a time that people that just got blessed by Jesus’ miracles felt offended and insulted by his message.
But Jesus didn’t give an inch. “Only insofar as you eat and drink flesh and blood, the flesh and blood of the Son of Man, do you have life within you. The one who brings a hearty appetite to this eating and drinking has eternal life and will be fit and ready for the Final Day. My flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. By eating my flesh and drinking my blood you enter into me and I into you. In the same way that the fully alive Father sent me here and I live because of him, so the one who makes a meal of me lives because of me. This is the Bread from heaven. Your ancestors ate bread and later died. Whoever eats this Bread will live always.”
59He said these things while teaching in the meeting place in Capernaum.
60Many among his disciples heard this and said, “This is tough teaching, too tough to swallow.”
61-65Jesus sensed that his disciples were having a hard time with this and said, “Does this throw you completely? What would happen if you saw the Son of Man ascending to where he came from? The Spirit can make life. Sheer muscle and willpower don’t make anything happen. Every word I’ve spoken to you is a Spirit-word, and so it is life-making. But some of you are resisting, refusing to have any part in this.” (Jesus knew from the start that some weren’t going to risk themselves with him. He knew also who would betray him.) He went on to say, “This is why I told you earlier that no one is capable of coming to me on his own. You get to me only as a gift from the Father.”
After this a lot of his disciples left. They no longer wanted to be associated with him. Then Jesus gave the Twelve their chance: “Do you also want to leave?”
We will have many of such ‘offending opportunities’ in our walk with the Living Jesus Christ.In Luke 2 from verse 25 to 35, we glean an interesting insight about an important ministry of Jesus Christ, that many people are not aware about, when the impact of this is real in our relationship with Him, even till today.
25 And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon, and this man was just and devout, waiting for the Consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. 27 So he came by the Spirit into the temple. And when the parents brought in the Child Jesus, to do for Him according to the custom of the law, 28 he took Him up in his arms and blessed God and said:
29 “ Lord, now You are letting Your servant depart in peace,
According to Your word;
30 For my eyes have seen Your salvation
31 Which You have prepared before the face of all peoples,
32 A light to bring revelation to the Gentiles,
And the glory of Your people Israel.”
33 And Joseph and His mother[h] marveled at those things which were spoken of Him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary His mother, “Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign which will be spoken against 35 (yes, a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.
One of his ministry is to offend them mind to reveal the heart.
Why does He do this?,
Where in Scriptures can we find an example of this to understand how He does this?
How can we recognize when He is doing this to us?
What would be our proper response?
What are evidence of improper response?
All these and many more shall be treated in the days ahead.
May the Lamb that was slained see the rewards of His sufferings
Richard Oluseyi Asaolu
“Come to the edge,” he said.
They said, ” We are afraid.”
“Come to the edge,” he said.
They said, ” We will fall.”
“Come to the edge,” he said.
He pushed them…and they flew.
Are you called to the prophetic ministry,have proven prophetic gifts or regularly experience dreams/visions/prophesying with nobody to relate with or someone who could help you understand your strange experiences?
From my training and wealth of involvement in prophetic ministry & gifts since 1986, I am taking up a divine challenge by commencing an intensive 3 year-closed door Prophetic Discipleship program in Abuja, Nigeria; involving just 12 people in the spirit of the following Scriptures below:
2 Timothy 2:2
And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.
The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.
I am looking forward to seeing God raise through this initiative about 40 trained people who are not less in their giftings and Christ-like character in the next decade.
This program is free, but I am seeking only those who are passionate and focused with prophetic gifts and/or ministry the Lord has entrusted into their lives for the mentoring program shall be intensive and a lot interactive.Our mentoring/discipleship philosophy shall be:
” I do it; you watch,
We do it together,you learn.
You do it, I watch,
You do it, a new person watches.” (Unknown)
If you are interested (or know someone who is), please send an email to me THROUGH facebook (http://www.facebook.com/richard.asaolu) stating:
- who you are
- who your spiritual leaders are, and
- why you wish to participate.
I’ll prayerfully consider each request and GET BACK ONLY to only those I feel the Lord wants me to invite to this Discipleship/Mentoring program.
Please feel free to forward this to your friends and loved ones who might be interested
After His Heart,
The Senior Pastor,
“Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being TRANSFORMED [Greek: “metamorphoo”, where the word “metamorphosis” is derived from] into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” 2 Corinthians 3:17-18 [NIV]
In 1845, a young man by the name Elias Howe came up with a bright idea of creating a lock-stitch machine with a needle that could go through a piece of cloth to sew garment wears of various designs for people, especially ladies. Seeing the market potential, Elias gave himself to developing this idea. With time, it became his passion.
However, Elias had a quandary; he just could not figure out how and where the needle eye should be positioned. Of course, we all know the answer now, but not Elias. He was a pioneer; such an answer had to be figured out creatively. The best idea his mind could come up with was having the needle positioned horizontally pointed at both ends, with an eye in the middle. That prototype was not without its own problems, requiring more solutions. In the course of pondering over this design brick-wall, Elias had a dream one night that told him the way out of the tunnel.
Watch what you call a Nightmare or “Pizza dream”
In the dream, Elias recalled being taken captive by a group of savage natives and thrown into a large boiling pot. As the savage tribe of natives were celebrating and dancing around him, the spears they were holding were making a distinct up and down motion. Elias observing eyes were drawn to hole at the tips of the spears.
Elias Listened to What his Dream was Trying to say to Him
On waking up, Elias pondered on the distinct up and down motions and the small hole at the tips of the spears the savage natives were holding. He suddenly realised that his sewing machine needle could likewise be placed vertically to allow it make a up and down motions with a thread strung through the small hole at the tip just as he observed in his supposed nightmare. Finally, Elias came to a conclusion that the dream was trying to speak to him the solution to his design problem.
Elias made the necessary changes the dream revealed by applying the new idea of relocating a hole at the tip of the needle, the threads were able to be caught after it went through the cloth, thus making his sewing machine operable. His new invention worked!
This savage dream with hole in their spears eventually helped Elias Howe to beat Singer (another sewing machine inventor) to the patent for the sewing machine. Howe originated significant refinements to the design concepts of his predecessors, and on September 10, 1846, was awarded the first United States patent (U.S. Patent 4,750) for a sewing machine using a lock-stitch design.
Elias by listening to his dream of “Savage People Holding Spears with Holes at their tips” dream in 1867 became one of the richest men of his day with the award of over $2,000,000 in patent and license fees and an amassed fortune of over $10,000,000.
What if Elias Howe had not paid attention to this dream by waving it off as just one of those “pizza dreams” What if he thought it was a nightmare, and then decided not to ponder on it? Elihu in Job 33:14-16 stated an important truth which was illustrated by Elias Howe’s story:
“God may speak in one way, or in another, yet man does not perceive it. In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls upon men, while slumbering on their beds, then He opens the ears of men, and seals their instruction…”
Elias found out through that dream, he was given sealed creative instructions. For many of us, the nature of the instruction is what is offensive to our minds. Because the dream came in for in form of a parabolic or symbolic language [requiring being interpreted or decoded], we tend to respond culturally; which is to get the sealed instructions thrown away or not pay attention to it.
Our Western rational culture has trained us to expect God to speak to us in a logical manner, otherwise it can not be God.Once God does not come through that avenue, then whatever comes that way CANNOT be God, we say. We claim to be open to God to speak instructions to us about successful living, but we just can not receive His “sealed instructions”, for they don’t make sense. A Jewish rabbi, Hisda (A.D. 200), once said: “A dream un-interpreted is like a letter un-read.” Treating dreams like “junk emails”, many “God-given emails or instructions” in the night season sent to our spirits in response to our enquiries or prayer for guidance on some specific situations sadly end up in our “memory trash folder” or worse still, “get deleted without being opened.”
How many times have you heard someone or probably it was you that commented to a friend, “I had a weird dream this morning…”.How much weird can the things of God be to a logical mind in the light of 1 Corinthians 1:27-28 that states: “ God selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is foolish to put the wise to shame, and what the world calls weak to put the strong to shame. And God also selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is lowborn and insignificant and branded and treated with contempt, even the things that are nothing, that He might depose and bring to nothing the things that are” [Amplified Version].
Biblical precedence, experience and history have shown that many God-given ideas were never logical or reasonable to the natural mind or culture-including the culture around the time when God walked the earth in the flesh through the person of Jesus Christ.How do we expect God to have made a 360 degrees turn in our “modern, highly rational culture” today?
Many God-given dreams will come in form of a package termed in our rationalistic culture as subjective, senseless and meaningless to justify what Paul in 1 Corinthians 2:14 said about the clash between a non-spiritual persona and the nature of wisdom from above: “The natural, non-spiritual man does not accept or welcome or admit into his heart the gifts and teachings and revelations of the Spirit of God, for they are folly (meaningless nonsense) to him; and he is incapable of knowing them [of progressively recognizing, understanding, and becoming better acquainted with them] because they are spiritually discerned and estimated and appreciated” [Amplified Version].
A “Last Days” Sign
The occurrence of people experiencing dreams, visions and prophecy has increased in our culture as a sign that we indeed are in the last days in fulfilment of the biblical prophecy of Joel 2:28 recounted by apostle Peter which in Acts 2:17 says: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams.”
Beyond being a “last days” sign, they are being poured out because God wants to help us see clearly into our times and into our future so that we could advance with all confidence in becoming ALL what he has purposed for us. Dreams, visions and prophecy are being released by God in our times to help us gain creative ideas into issues that naturally could not be reasoned out with our finite minds and understanding. They are being given to help us gain new perspectives into issues we might have missed or not heard of, because of our current paradigm from set opinions, past teachings or culture.Even when we don’t perceive it, scientific studies have shown that we all dream, so we all have the potential of being counseled by God in the night season.
God-given Dreams Have a Way of Challenging our Cultural Blindness
We all are born spiritually blind or insensitive to certain aspects of God until God in His mercy brings the new light to us through healing our blindness. However, the first step towards being healed of spiritual blindness is to acknowledge the possibility of being blind. Only those who are humble can receive help from their spiritual blindness. For many, the blindness is cultural worldview, teachings, customs or prejudice. Because we were born into this culture, we tend not to be aware of it, until God challenges it, some of the times, through divinely granted revelation or new spiritual light.
We read an interesting account in John chapter 9. I urge you to read the whole chapter [by clicking this link] to get the context of the story. However for the sake of my discourse, I am discussing verse 13 to verse 41. [MESSAGE TRANSLATION]
13-15They marched the man to the Pharisees. This day when Jesus made the paste and healed his blindness was the Sabbath. The Pharisees grilled him again on how he had come to see. He said, “He put a clay paste on my eyes, and I washed, and now I see.”
16Some of the Pharisees said, “Obviously, this man can’t be from God. He doesn’t keep the Sabbath.”
Others countered, “How can a bad man do miraculous, God-revealing things like this?” There was a split in their ranks.
17They came back at the blind man, “You’re the expert. He opened your eyes. What do you say about him?”
He said, “He is a prophet.”
18-19The Jews didn’t believe it, didn’t believe the man was blind to begin with. So they called the parents of the man now bright-eyed with sight. They asked them, “Is this your son, the one you say was born blind? So how is it that he now sees?”
20-23His parents said, “We know he is our son, and we know he was born blind. But we don’t know how he came to see—haven’t a clue about who opened his eyes. Why don’t you ask him? He’s a grown man and can speak for himself.” (His parents were talking like this because they were intimidated by the Jewish leaders, who had already decided that anyone who took a stand that this was the Messiah would be kicked out of the meeting place. That’s why his parents said, “Ask him. He’s a grown man.”)
24They called the man back a second time—the man who had been blind— and told him, “Give credit to God. We know this man is an impostor.”
25He replied, “I know nothing about that one way or the other. But I know one thing for sure: I was blind . . . I now see.”
26They said, “What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?”
27“I’ve told you over and over and you haven’t listened. Why do you want to hear it again? Are you so eager to become his disciples?”
28-29With that they jumped all over him. “You might be a disciple of that man, but we’re disciples of Moses. We know for sure that God spoke to Moses, but we have no idea where this man even comes from.”
30-33The man replied, “This is amazing! You claim to know nothing about him, but the fact is, he opened my eyes! It’s well known that God isn’t at the beck and call of sinners, but listens carefully to anyone who lives in reverence and does his will. That someone opened the eyes of a man born blind has never been heard of—ever. If this man didn’t come from God, he wouldn’t be able to do anything.”
34They said, “You’re nothing but dirt! How dare you take that tone with us!” Then they threw him out in the street.
35Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, and went and found him. He asked him, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?”
36The man said, “Point him out to me, sir, so that I can believe in him.”
37Jesus said, “You’re looking right at him. Don’t you recognize my voice?”
38“Master, I believe,” the man said, and worshiped him.
39Jesus then said, “I came into the world to bring everything into the clear light of day, making all the distinctions clear, so that those who have never seen will see, and those who have made a great pretense of seeing will be exposed as blind.”
40Some Pharisees overheard him and said, “Does that mean you’re calling us blind?”
41Jesus said, “If you were really blind, you would be blameless, but since you claim to see everything so well, you’re accountable for every fault and failure.”
Appropriate Response to God-given Dreams, Visions and Prophecy
We would be wise to respond like Peter to God-given dreams, visions and prophecy. Peter had no clue to his experience.The experience actually challenged his current worldview, but he responded appropriately not discarding it but by taking time to ponder on it, thus made room for the Holy Spirit to lead him into spiritual truths as promised by Jesus. I invite you to read with me and please take note of verses 14,17 and 19:
9The next day as they were still on their way and were approaching the town, Peter went up to the roof of the house to pray, about the sixth hour (noon).
10But he became very hungry, and wanted something to eat; and while the meal was being prepared a trance came over him,
11And he saw the sky opened and something like a great sheet lowered by the four corners, descending to the earth.
12It contained all kinds of quadrupeds and wild beasts and creeping things of the earth and birds of the air.
13And there came a voice to him, saying, Rise up, Peter, kill and eat.
14But Peter said, No, by no means, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common and unhallowed or [ceremonially] unclean.
[NLT] 14 “Never, Lord,” Peter declared. “I have never in all my life eaten anything forbidden by our Jewish laws [customs].”
15And the voice came to him again a second time, What God has cleansed and pronounced clean, do not you defile and profane by regarding and calling common and unhallowed or unclean.
16This occurred three times; then immediately the sheet was taken up to heaven.
17Now Peter was still inwardly perplexed and doubted as to what the vision which he had seen could mean, when [just then] behold the messengers that were sent by Cornelius, who had made inquiry for Simon’s house, stopped and stood before the gate.
18And they called out to inquire whether Simon who was surnamed Peter was staying there.
19And while Peter was earnestly revolving the vision in his mind and meditating on it, the [Holy] Spirit said to him, Behold, three men are looking for you!
Would you ask God to help you remove cultural blindness that may be causing spiritual cataract or blindness to His new light he wants to bring to you. Would you ask God to speak to you tonight.Would you invite the Holy Spirit to help you pay attention enough write the dreams the Lord begins to give you down.
Would you ask God to meet with you as you ponder on the meaning of these dreams on waking up. Ask Elias Howe about dreaming and dreams, he would tell you it pays to listen to your dreams. I add, your God-given night parables!
- Waldemar Kaempffert (1924), A Popular History of American Invention, Vol. II, New York Scribner’s Sons
Madame C. J. Walker (1867-1919), an African-American woman born to a former slave parents in America was cited by the Guinness Book of Records as the first female American self-made millionaire.
From nothing, Madame Walker founded and built a highly successful African-American cosmetic company that made her a millionaire many times over at the turn of the Twentieth Century. Walker suffered from a scalp infection that caused her to loose most of her hair at the closing of the nineteenth century. She began experimenting with patented medicines and hair-care products. Then, she had a dream that solved her problems.
In her own words, Madam Walker described the dream she had:
“He [God] answered my prayer, for one night I had a dream, and in that dream a big, black man appeared to me and told me what to mix up in my hair. Some of the remedy was grown in Africa, but I sent for it, mixed it, put it on my scalp, and in a few weeks my hair was coming in faster than it had ever fallen out. I tried it on my friends; it helped them. I made up my mind to begin to sell it.”
Walker became an entrepreneur, a philanthropist and a social activist. Describing her rise from a childhood in the poor cotton fields in the South to being the head of an international, multi-million dollar corporation at the July 1912 National Negro Business League Convention, Madam Walker was quoted to have made the following statement:
“I am a woman who came from the cotton fields of the South. From there I was promoted to the washtub. From there I was promoted to the cook kitchen. And from there I promoted myself into the business of manufacturing hair goods and preparations….I have built my own factory on my own ground.”
Job 33:14-15 [TEV] says: “…Although God speaks again and again, no one pays attention to what he says. At night when men are asleep, God speaks in dreams and visions…”
Just like in the ancient times, God is still interested in helping us reach the purpose for which He created us by giving us customized ideas that could help us solve our problems today. He does that many times through the written Scriptures.Despite that this is the primary ways He speaks, He has however has NOT limited Himself to that method of speaking . Just like in the ancient times when God spoke to the prophets through this special channel, through the present -day ministry of the Holy Spirit, God still speaks to us through dreams, visions and prophecy (see Acts 9:10-19; 10:9-21; 16:6-10; 18:9-11; Hosea 12:10, the Amplified version and Numbers 12:6-8). As we proceed to the end of times, the river of this divine means of communication will not recede, rather it will overflow the banks of our times.
Acts 2:17 says: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams.”
Madam C. J. Walker was one clear example of several ordinary people whose lives were transformed just by paying attention to God ‘s warning, guiding, encouraging and helping voice through their dreams.
An ancient wisdom of God is being released today. It is a channel of divine communication that we would be wise not to ignore.Even if we are not aware of it, God still speaks to His people through prophecy dreams and visions.It’s time to begin to pay attention to God’s voice in the night season.
Will you commence your spiritual journey with God tonight?
After His heart,
Richard Oluseyi Asaolu
Metamorphosis Learning & Outreach Centre
for Biblical Dream Interpretation & Prophetic Ministry
· On Her Own Ground: the Life and Times of Madam C.J. Walker, A’Lelia P. Bundles, 2001
· Hope in a Jar: The Making of America’s Beauty Culture, Kathy Peiss, 1999, Owl Books
1 [a]Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. Go near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools, who do not know that they do wrong. 2 Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God.God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few.[NIV]
1 [a]Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. Go near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools, who do not know that they do wrong. 2 Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few.[MESSAGE TRANSLATION]
Proliferation of public words as prophecy is a clear sign of immaturity in the prophetic.Prophetic people will be found speaking and journaling more words in their private, intimate interaction with the Lord more than their public ministry.Habakkuk in chapter 2 verse 1 wrote: “What’s God going to say to my questions? I’m braced for the worst. I’ll climb to the lookout tower and scan the horizon.I’ll wait to see what God says, how he’ll answer my complaint. [MESSAGE TRANSLATION]
Like in a romance relationship, lovers are eager to be around one another-interacting in an intimate manner.They just can’t keep from chatting.Yet, much of their intimate discussions are not meant for public consumption.That’s what makes the mature prophets people of few words.Prophetic authority is about ONE PERSON-God, and not the people.
3 Can two walk together, unless they are agreed? Amos 3:3 (New King James Version). There is a need for a paradigm shift concerning the prophetic in our generation.It’s ALL about Jesus, and not us [Rev 1:1; 19:10].
“Prophets are known here on earth by what they say, but in heaven, they are known more by what they keep and more that did not come to pass.” More to come on that next time.
After the Heart of the Master,
Richard Oluseyi Asaolu
Metamorphosis Learning and Outreach Centre for Biblical Dream Interpretation & Prophetic Ministry
Metamorphosis Learning and Outreach Centre
for Biblical Dream Interpretation & Prophetic MinistryAbuja, NIGERIA
Please join me sing “I Gotta Get Closer” to the Lord.
For our friends and guests planning to attend Congregational Meetings of the Metamorphosis Church, Abuja in December, please note that the month of December is our Sabbatical month.
Hence, there will be no Sunday meeting throughout December to afford our members an opportunity to rest, draw closer to the Lord, visit other churches and spend holiday season with their nuclear/extended family.Next meeting is on December 31st