Derek Prince - 4 Steps To Lay Jesus As Foundation In Your Life
I would like to suggest to you four successive phases through which Peter passed in this encounter. First of all, confrontation. Jesus and Peter met face to face. There was no mediator, no priest, no one in between them. It was a direct, personal confrontation of Jesus. And that’s what we have to come to. Jesus said in another place: "I am the Door By Me if any man enters in, he will be saved". There’s only one way into the kingdom of God. That is through The door. And the door is not a church it’s not a doctrine, it’s Jesus, "I Am The Door".
Secondly, the confrontation was followed by revelation. A revelation, granted by God the Father through the Holy Spirit. Jesus said: "Flesh and blood has not shown you this". You cannot arrive at it by your natural senses there has to be a revelation. Again, this is essential. No one can know Jesus as He truly is in His eternal Sonship of God without a personal revelation. You can study theology, you can go to a Bible college, you can even become a minister. But, without this personal revelation of Jesus you cannot know Him. And this revelation comes from God the Father through Jesus Christ the Son.
Let me ask you, don’t respond, but have you had that personal encounter with Jesus? I have. More than 50 years ago in the middle of the night in an Army barrack room in World War Two I encountered Jesus. I didn’t have any doctrinal knowledge, I didn’t have any... evangelical language, I couldn’t say I was saved or born again I learned all that later. But I want to tell you I was changed radically and permanently changed. I wasn’t made perfect, in fact, let me confess to you I’m still not perfect but I was changed, for the better.
Then there has to be an acknowledgment of what the Holy Spirit shows us. We have to say: "Yes, I believe, I receive". We have to make some kind of response. It’s not automatic. It requires something happening in us.
And fourthly, there has to be a public confession of our faith in Jesus. That's what Jesus brought Peter to, "You are the Christ, the Messiah". He made it public. People speak about secret believers and I acknowledge there are secret believers, especially in countries where to acknowledge yourself as a believer would be to be put to death. But I don’t think that anybody can permanently remain a secret believer.
Let me read to you what Jesus said in Matthew chapter 10, verses 32 and 33. Matthew 10:32-33: "Therefore, whoever confesses me before men, him I will also confess before my Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies me before men, him I will also deny before my Father who is in heaven". So Jesus in His characteristic way doesn’t leave you three choices. Only two. You either confess or you deny. And if you fail to confess, in an appropriate situation, you are in effect denying.
So, each one of us, at some point, has to come to the place where we openly acknowledge our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. And this is a critical moment for many. I discovered in the army, after I had become a believer, that the best thing to do was to let everybody know the first moment you met them, where you stand. Then you never have to go back and say, "Well, I didn’t really tell you at first, but"...
So, I did something which is not a religious act but every night in the barrack room, wherever I was, I would kneel down at my bed and pray. That just told them that’s the kind of person you’re dealing with. And it was much easier. I saw other Christians who waffled and didn’t come right out with saying what they believed and it was much harder for them to go back afterwards and make the right confession. So, I want to recommend that to you. You don’t have to stand on the street corner and preach. You don’t have to be a preacher. You can be a housewife, you can be a student. But wherever you are let people know, you believe in Jesus, He’s the Son of God.