Creflo Dollar - Life After the Cross
Say it again. Say it again. Say it again. You're blessed because of who? You're blessed because of who? Now, if you believe that, if you believe that you are blessed because of Jesus, lift your hands up right quick. I believe I'm blessed because of Jesus. All right, all right, now watch this, now say this out loud, "The blessing is working in me. The blessing is working through me. The blessing is working for me. The blessing is working. I'm blessed 'cause of Jesus. I'm blessed because of Jesus. Not because of what I did first. But it's because of what he did first".
You see, after the cross, the order changed. It's no longer what you do first that enables God to do, but it is what Jesus does first that enables you to do. Y'all didn't hear what I said. Before the cross, it was about you having to do something first in order to enable God to be able to bless you, but after the cross it's what Jesus did first in order for Jesus to enable you to be blessed. Because of what he did, I have been enabled to be blessed. But under the Old Covenant, before the cross, it was something I had to do first in order to enable him to bless me.
See, we still going to church with that same attitude, "I got to do something for him to bless me first". No, he's done something first so you can be blessed. After the cross, the order was changed. It's no longer if you first, it's Jesus first, and then you are able to receive what he did. Did y'all get what I just said? So the order changed. So are you saying that obedience is not important? No, I ain't saying that. I can hear some of them now, "Oh praise the Lord, we ain't got to be obedient". No, that's dumb.
Now, hear what I'm saying. I'm not saying that obedience is not important. Obedience has its place in our life but not as the requirement for the blessings. Obedience has its place in life but not as a requirement for the blessing. So the phrase, "Obedience gives birth to blessing," throw it in the trashcan. That is now invalid. Obedience after the cross is no longer the requirement to get blessed. Before the cross, it was a requirement. Under the Old Covenant, before the cross, obedience was the requirement for the blessing. But after the cross, Jesus and your faith in him is the requirement for the blessing. Are you listening to me?
Obedience is still important but, you know, none of us under the Old Covenant, none of us, we didn't have the ability to be perfectly obedient. You were destined to fail. Eventually, you wasn't going to be obedient somewhere. There was no wonder in Exodus chapter 20, I don't believe I'll go there, but go to Romans chapter 5:19, let me show you something.
Obedience is still important. However, people are not able to be perfect in themselves, that's why Jesus came to be the perfect Lamb of God for us. We are not blessed because of our own obedience. We are blessed because of Jesus's perfect obedience. We are not blessed because of our own obedience; that was under the covenant. We are blessed now because Jesus is perfect obedience. Let's read out loud, Romans chapter 5, verse 19. Ready? Read. "For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made," what? So we've been what? Did we become righteous? What happened? We were made righteous through what? The obedience of Jesus Christ.
So our own obedience still has its place, not as a requirement for blessings. So, if it's not as a requirement for blessing, what is our obedience? Our obedience, listen to me carefully, our obedience is now the fruit of the new nature. Our obedience is now the response to what Jesus has already done. Oh, follow me, folks. Follow me. My obedience, see, when I got born again and I said I believe Jesus, he created the new nature on the inside of me. So now, obedience in my life is not the requirement for the blessing, it is now the fruit that I can produce because I'm a new creation tree. And as a new creation tree, obedience is the fruit that I bear.
All right, let's work on this for a minute. Our righteous lifestyle will not produce righteousness, but righteousness will produce a righteous lifestyle. A holy lifestyle will not produce holiness, but holiness will produce a holy lifestyle. Good works won't produce salvation, but salvation produces good works. In the Old Covenant before the cross, men were working hard to be righteous, but after the cross Jesus made us righteous and now, we can produce the fruit of righteousness.
Now, we're going to take our time with this because I got to get this in your thinking. He made me righteous. If I believe that, then I can go and produce different. See, the apple tree ain't got no struggle in trying to produce apples. Once you got the tree, you can get apples. See, once you realize who you are, you can get the fruit. "I'm a new creation. I obey. I'm not obeying so I can get blessed. I believe Jesus, that's why I'm blessed. I'm blessed because of Jesus. I'm not blessed because of obedience giving me blessings".
And all over in the church world, you can turn Christian TV on today and you'll find somebody saying, "If you do this, then God will do that". Here is a key to knowing if you're operating in the Old Covenant before the cross are operating in the New Covenant after the cross. If it's what you do first in order for God to do, you are operating in an invalid covenant. You are using a credit card where the number has been canceled. When you operate in the New Covenant and you realize it's what Jesus has done and now, I got to believe it and receive it, now your credit card account is valid and it is in force.
Look at what I'm saying, all of our lives it's always been about, "I got to do that first and then God will do this. I got to do this first and then God will do that. And I got to do that first, it's got". And we think well, praise the Lord. You know, "Well, I got to come to church so God can do this, and I got to pray five hours ago so God can do that. And oh, if I do this, then God can do that". No, you don't get it. It's not you first no more. You are not the priority. Jesus is now the priority.
Now, let's look at these three things very, very carefully. Let's go Romans chapter 5, verse 17. Now, I want you to picture, the whole time here, I want you to picture a three that gives birth to fruit. Picture a tree that gives birth to fruit. You're that tree now. You're that tree. There are certain things you can give birth to now that you could not give birth to. You are bearing fruit. Your obedience is now fruit bearing. Your obedience now is a response to what Jesus has already done.
Now Romans chapter 5, verse 17. Let's look at is. "For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and they which receive," what? "The gift of righteousness shall reign in life by Jesus Christ". Now notice, righteousness is a gift. You can't work for you, you can't earn it, you can't deserve it. It's a gift. What do you do with a gift? You do what? Receive it. Somebody shout, "I receive righteousness".
All right, now, once you receive righteousness and you receive this truth, "I am righteous because of what Jesus did. I am righteous because of what Jesus did". The day you believe you are righteous, now guess what's going to happen? You are now going to give birth to the righteous fruit. Unless you become the righteous tree, you can never give righteous fruit. See, we've trying to get some righteous fruit without even having the tree. We've been looking for righteous fruit. "Oh, let me do right. Oh, I'mma try to do right. I ain't gon' cuss no more. I ain't gon' fornicate no more. I ain't gon' to do this no more". And you can't, you can't get no fruit without the tree. You got to have the root and the tree in order to get the fruit. So, we've been focusing on how we can get the fruit. Where the fruit at? Where the fruit at? No, no, no, no. Where the tree at? Where the root at? Are you following me?
Say, "I am righteous". Take a deep breath. Now, I can produce fruit. Let's go to 1 Corinthians. 1 Corinthians 1:29. I tell you what, the devil is shaking in his boots. He says, "Oh my God, these people have dismissed the 'if you' and now they have faith in Jesus Christ. Oh, what am I gon' do"? This message was so strong, so powerful, I was going to do some flying in an airplane, and I thought, "Well, I might need to cancel that. The devil mad. Maybe, I fly when I get this first series out. He tripping out right now. Let me", 'cause you don't even know how this is impacting you.
When you get home today, you're going to be like, "God, dog, I just didn't know". And you gon' catch yourself doing stuff before the cross, and you gon' change it and you gon' see big-time results. Big time. Big time. Say this out loud, "I'll never be broke, be sick, be in lack, another day in my life". I prophesied to you unusual breakthroughs, praise the Lord. And I'm telling you right now in the name of Jesus, you better get ready, things are about to change in your house. Those of you who are unemployed, get ready for the job. Those of you have been believing for a raise, get ready for the raise.
Hallelujah. God's getting ready to switch some things along. It's not that he getting ready to do it, he's already done it. You getting ready to believe it. Somebody just shout real quick, "I believe". That's all he need. That's all he need. Something good gon' happen to you. I said something good gon' happen to you. I don't know how it was before you got here, I don't know what they were telling you before you got here, I don't know what was hurting before you got here, but I'm telling you right now, this is the day that the Lord has made. You will rejoice and be exceedingly glad in it. The order has changed. And we are celebrating Jesus and we're celebrating the cross, but we are celebrating a change of order. Hallelujah. We don't pray for victory, we pray from victory.
1 Corinthians 1:29. If you're there, "That no flesh should glory in his presence". "No flesh should glory in his presence". So what God is saying is God does not get the glory out of you doing something out of self-effort. He gets no glory out of your performance. He gets no glory out of you doing something first and then going bragging to other people, "Well, see I did this and that's why God did that". Y'all see that. Verse 30, he says, "But of him are you in Christ Jesus". Say, "I'm in Christ Jesus". Oh, praise God. "Who of God is made unto us wisdom". Who he has made unto us wisdom. He has made unto us wisdom.
So, here's what he just said, oh my goodness, you have formed in you now the root and tree of wisdom. Say out loud, "I have wisdom formed in me. Therefore, I can produce the fruit of wisdom". So I'm going to challenge you with something. Stop saying out loud, "I don't know". Every time you come to something you don't know, remind yourself of the tree that you are. "I have wisdom formed in me. Therefore, I believe I receive the fruit of wisdom". Say it out loud with me, "I have wisdom formed in me. Therefore I receive the fruit of wisdom. I can give birth to wisdom". Say out loud, "I'm wise". You can bear fruit of that. All right?
So he's made unto you, wisdom. Look at what, "He made unto you righteousness". Say, "I'm the righteousness of God. I am the tree of righteousness. I can give birth to righteous fruit". Don't let the devil tell you, you can't stop misbehaving. Just remind yourself, "I'm the righteousness of God. I have the power to bear fruit". A apple tree doesn't struggle bearing fruit. You will never pass a apple tree and hear the apple tree saying, "Oh, ah. Ah". "What you doing apple tree"? "I'm trying to get this fruit out". So likewise, with a Christian, it happens naturally. And I prophesied that you're about to be supernaturally natural. And he says, "He's made unto you sanctification".
Now, this is a big one here. Sanctification is also here translated holiness. So he's made unto you sanctification. You are not sanctified because you wear a long dress. You're not sanctified 'cause you don't wear no makeup. You're not sanctified 'cause you have a dollar on your head. You are sanctified because Jesus sanctified you. He made you to sanctify a tree, and now you can give birth to sanctify fruit. Now, let me put it in terminology we can understand. You not holy 'cause you behave holy. See, you got to realize, you've got to conceive what is already done that you can't see first before you can see the fruit of what he's already done. He made you holy.
Somebody shout, "I am holy". Rat, R-A-T, quick as a rat. I'm right now I'm holy right now. Do not wait until you see holy fruit to agree with Jesus that you are holy. You have to argue with Jesus I am holy right now 'cause he made me holy, and by faith, I receive that I am holy. And once you receive that by faith and I am holy, you now will produce holy fruit. All right, now here we go, we gon' say it. Say out loud, "I'm holy". Look at some of you, your weave just twitched. Say it again, "I'm holy". "I'm sanctified".
Now, somebody say, "How you gon' say that"? Jesus said that. Jesus said he made me holy. He made me sanctified. So what I do is received by faith what he did. See, if he made me holy first, then I can produce the fruit of holiness second. Say, "I'm holy".
Now, that'll mess up religious folks 'cause you know they judgmental. They only see things from a fruit-bearing stage. They don't understand that God is working in you and that God is forming things on the inside of you. They don't understand that he put a root in you, he put a seed in you, and that seed is growing, and that root is growing, and everything's growing out, and if they keep watching your life, they gon' see what you said you are. Hallelujah. I prophesy in the name of Jesus, we're about to give birth to fruit.
Say it again, "I'm holy. I'm sanctified. I'm righteous. And I'm wise". He said he made you a redemption. Now, redeem means you've been delivered. So everything you find yourself in bondage to and you're trying to get out of that thing, the first place you got to start with is accepting that he made you delivered. Every time you have a thought to smoke weed, remind yourself, "I'm not that tree no more".
Now, now, that weed gon' to be talking to you from your memory. But on the inside, you got a tree of redemption. And the tree of redemption will produce the fruit of redemption, but that's where you got to start first. Every time you have a thought about going and sleeping around, or committing adultery, or looking at pornography or whatever the secret thing is you got hidden in the booth in the back in the corner, in the dark, whatever that is, whatever that is, don't just look at that kind of fruit.
You tell yourself, "I'mma delivered tree. I'm a redeemed tree. I produce this fruit". And remind yourself, "I don't have to do that 'cause I'm not that tree no more. That tree dead. I'm now part of the Jesus tree, and I can give birth to this fruit," and it'll start happening because you believe that you are, but you got to remind yourself. See, most of your battles are going to be fought between your two ears. Most of your battles are going to be fought in your mind. And you got to tell yourself that what you're thinking is not in line with who you are, and you got to get your thinking in line with the Word of God because that's the real you.
That's the truth about you. And you got to tell yourself, "I am redeemed, I'm sanctified, I'm holy". And then somebody say, "You ain't no holy and redeemed". I was with you last night. I know exactly what you did". Say, "Look here, man, let me tell you something. Let me tell you something. I didn't believe who I was, that's why I did that". That's why Adam and Eve did what they did in the garden because they didn't believe who they are. But Jesus in the wilderness believed who he was, hallelujah, and he overcame the devil, and you and I need to believe who he made us.
Quit letting everybody tell you who you are. "You black. You unsuccessful. All y'all do is mess up nice neighborhoods and jack your car up, and put oil spots on the driveway. All y'all do is rob, and steal and shooting, and y'all just a menace to society". No, you put a hold on that right now. "No, no, no, no. I don't know who you talk, you ain't talking about me. You ain't talking about me. Now, that's what I used to be, but hallelujah, that man is dead and now I am in Christ Jesus. I'm a new tree, I'm a new specie of being that's never existed before. I am intelligent, I am wise, I am delivered, I am anointed, I'm a hard worker, I got millionaire status, I'm an entrepreneur, I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me. I'm black and I'm beautiful. I'm awesome. I'm amazing. And I am not cursed".