Jentezen Franklin - The Spirit Of The Carpenter
If you have your Bibles, I'd like for you to open them with me please to the Old Testament Book of Zechariah 1. Zechariah 1. Look at this, in Zechariah 1:17. "Again, proclaimed saying: Thus says the Lord of hosts, 'My cities shall again'", listen, "'Spread out through prosperity. The Lord will again comfort Zion'", or my people. "'I'll again choose Jerusalem.' And when I raised my eyes and looked, there were four horns", he's having a vision now.
"And I said to the angel who talked with me, 'What are these?' So he answered me, 'These are the horns that have scattered Judah, Israel and Jerusalem.' Then he showed me four carpenters, and I said, 'What are these coming to do?' So he said, 'These are the horns that scattered Judah, so that no one could lift up his head'", notice that. "'No one could lift up his head, but the carpenters are coming to terrify them and cast out the horns of the nations that lifted up their horn against the land of Judah to scatter it.' He said, 'I am going to prosper and bless you'".
As a matter of fact, he told Joshua in Joshua 1:5, that: "No man will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. No one will stop you from doing what I've called you to do". He went on to say: "And you shall have good success". These are Bible words. "I'll prosper you wherever you go, wherever the soles of your feet go. I'll give you good success, I'll prosper you". What God was saying is, "You're going to have good success all the days of your life". He said it to Joshua, and he says it to his people: "And no man will be able to stand before you and stop you".
Every relationship God entered into, he lifted people. He built up people. He multiplied their life. He increased their life. It's so important to understand that God's dream for you is so much bigger than what you dream for you. And he said, "I have a promise for you, and here's the promise. You can prosper, and you can have, in this life, good success", because that matters. If you think God's not for you, and if you think God doesn't want you to do well in life, and enjoy your life, and have a blessed life, you'll never see it. And it's so important to get your thinking right, to understand.
God said, "No man standing before you will be able to stop you. If they oppose you, I'll deal with the opposition". But you have a promise that God can prosper your life. I don't care what your age is. I don't care who you are. And that you can have, you shall have good success. I love those words. I love those words, that they're in the Bible. That's why in Zechariah 1, the text starts out with God prospering his people. Notice in that verse, it said that he prospered them, and when he began to prosper them, they began to spread out.
See, when God begins to prosper a person's life, spiritually, physically, emotionally, when he begins to bless you in every area that trinkles down to your finances and every area, it begins to spread you out. You begin to go to places you never dreamed you would go. When God begins to put his favor on someone's life, it begins to take you beyond anything you ever imagined. You begin to go to places. He spreads you, notice prosperity and the blessing of God begins to spread you out.
He said, "I'm spreading you abroad. I'm spreading you out. I'm taking you to places you never dreamed of. I want you to have a vision bigger than where you are now, what you're doing now. I have not designed small things for you. I'm going to spread you out. I'm going to take you to places that you never dreamed you would go".
And watch this, just as he was spreading his people out in Zechariah 1, and prospering them, then he had a vision of four horns that rose up to oppose and scatter and defeat the people of God. And notice what their assignment was, to so oppose and stop God's people from realizing the good success, the prosperous journey that God wanted them to have in life, and the Bible said those four horns... now, horns in the Bible represent power. These are spiritual powers or we would call them spirits. He saw in a vision four horns, or four spirits, that came to oppress God's people, stop them from having a big, abundant, blessed life, and the Bible said so oppress them and catch this verse, that: "They could not", listen to this, see this mental picture: "They could not lift up their head".
They were so oppressed that they walked around like this. Not looking up, not looking out, not confident, not blessed, but oppressed, and to the point that no man lifted his head. As soon as God spoke prosperity to them, four horns came to hold them back. But then, he said, "I saw something miraculous in the same vision. I saw four men coming in the spirit of a carpenter". He said, "I saw four carpenters". Now, that represents Jesus, because Jesus was the carpenter's Son. Joseph, his earthly father, was a carpenter, and Jesus worked all of his life in a carpentry shop.
A carpenter is somebody who built your house or built the apartment you live in. You know what a carpenter is. It's somebody who builds. Notice the spirit that Jesus comes in. The enemy comes to oppress you, so that you can't even lift your head up, and you go around, defeated and oppressed. But here comes the spirit of the carpenter to build you up, to raise you up, to lift up your head, so that you will look out and see greater things.
And I'm here today to proclaim a word over your life, the spirit of the carpenter is going to come on you while you sit under this message today. And the enemy's tried to hold you down and suppress and stop, but I see the spirit of the carpenter coming to build you up and to raise you up, and listen, no man will be able to stand before you. No man living, no man dead, no voice in your past, no voice in your future, no voice in your present can stop you, because the spirit of the carpenter is upon you. Take a praise break, and I'll keep preaching.
Oh. So I'll speak from my own experience real quick. Now, I'm not going to preach long. For me, in my life, and in this ministry, those four horns represented four spirits. The first horn represents the spirit of lack. For you see, the enemy would love to attach to your life at an early age the spirit of lack. The spirit of lack is when you have in your mind there's not enough. There's not enough. I'll never go to college, because there's not enough. And it's not just money, it's not just financial things. Lack of education, lack of love, lack of finances, lack of joy, lack of confidence, lack of self-esteem, so that you go around, and you can't even look anybody in the eye. You don't have any confidence in yourself. It's a spirit of lack and intimidation.
You were created in the image of God Almighty. They may have said you're a slow learner, they may have said you'll never be anything. They may have said you're just trash and your parents never did anything, and you'll never do anything, and the enemy, like a horn with a spirit of lack, lack of affection, lack of love, lack of having a father, lack of having a good influence and environment that you were raised in, but that spirit of lack is defeated by the spirit of the carpenter, who can come and build you up and raise you up into who God called you to be.
I'll never forget it, it's like it was yesterday. But we were in the old building and we had some great needs and we'd started television, and we'd use the same cameras for, I think it was close to 15 years. It was crazy. I walked in the little studio, if you could call it that, that we had, and they had all the equipment and our TV guy at that time had a roll of duct tape that was attached to his belt. I'm not joking, and the whole time we would be trying to film a program, he knew that before we could get through, something was going to break.
It would be a light that would fall, some raggedy, little light, or something, some camera cord would break off, some cable on some other camera, or some thing back there in the machine room back there would fall to, and he was just going around, most of the time, while we were taping, and I'm trying to do a TV show, and he's ripping off, he's got it down to an art. He's ripping off duct tape and bam, and putting this light up, and putting that camera, fixing that cord, and he's just everything. It was ridiculous, and the Lord spoke to me in my spirit, and he said, "Are you tired of duct tape level"?
I looked around, all I saw was black and silver duct tape all over the place, and the Lord said, "You know you'll get what you believe me for, 'For as a man thinks, so is he.' And if this is what you think I'm capable of, that's all I'll ever be able to do for you. But if you'll believe me, I'll take you from this level, out of duct tape level, into exceedingly, abundantly above all that you could ask or even think". You've got to get free from the spirit of lack that keeps your head down.
And I just want to shout a minute, in my space, because look what the Lord has done. It's a debt-free property. We don't owe a penny. Those cameras, everything in here, is debt-free to the glory of God. I'm preaching not just to old people, I'm preaching to young people, I'm preaching to middle-aged people, that your God will supply all your needs. He's a big God, and you've got to get free from the spirit of lack.
Some of you, the enemy's already told you you'll never be able to do anything. You don't have any money. No. You don't have enough this. You don't have enough talent. You don't have enough good looks. You don't have, but you've got a great God. You forgot the God factor. You're focusing on who's against you. But no man will be able to stand against you because of the God factor in you. Greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world. And the Lord is my shepherd. I feel like preaching today. I keep trying to turn it down. The Lord is my shepherd, and I shall not want.
Shake off that spirit of lack, and believe God for more than you've ever seen before. Give Him a shout of praise, and I'll try to behave. I'll try. Calm down. Calm down.
The second horn is the horn of limitation. You see, if the enemy can't get you bound with a spirit of lack, that it doesn't exist and this is all I'll ever be and all I'll ever have, then he'll come with a spirit of limitation, which says things exist, but not for me. Oh, he'll do it for Jentezen, or he'll do it for this one, or he'll do it for that one, but not for me. There's this ceiling over my life, a spirit of limitation. There's a barrier. I can go this far, but I can't get to that next level of success, that next level of the dream that God has given me.
Large elephants are held in place by ropes and wood stakes that have just been driven into the ground with a hammer. And even though these large elephants are massive and powerful, they are held with a rope tied around their leg, that they could just shake and the stake would fly off, and the rope would be freed. Why do they stay there, bound, just because they can feel a little rope around their ankle? The key to it is when they have an elephant that's born into captivity, they will take that elephant, while he's small, and they will put a chain, a metal chain, a large chain, around his leg, and they will take a cement block that has been put in the ground and buried, that is attached to that chain, and they said what happens, listen to this, this is amazing.
What happens is after a period of time, after trying and failing, and trying and only going so far, and trying and, oh, I hoped but it didn't happen, finally, something clicks mentally in that elephant to where he stops trying, because he accepts the fact, "I'm limited, and I'll never go further than where I am right here, right now". After awhile, he stops believing. He stops believing that he can go further, that he can do more. And I'm telling you, I'm preaching to people right here, right now, at all of our campuses, and on television, and around the world, I'm telling you, the enemy of our soul, that horn, that second horn, is the horn of limitation.
The truth is, the elephant is bigger. The elephant is mightier. The elephant is stronger. You are not the person you were before Jesus came into your life. When Jesus came into your life, he gave you power, and you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you, and don't you allow the enemy to place a chain of limitation on you. Every so often, you have to push against the limitations that say you're going this far, but no further. Spirit of lack, the spirit of limitation, then there's something in the Bible.
Paul the Apostle talked about, "Satan, I tried to go to a certain place", and he said these words: "Satan hindered me". What does that mean? Satan hindered me? He said, "I went and Satan hindered me". Satan has hindered me. I want Blake to come up here real quick. And what he was talking about is he said, "I'm on my way, I'm on my journey. I broke through from lack, I broke through from limitation. I'm not going to be held just because nobody in my family's ever done it. I can do it because God told me I could do it", but then in front of him, he said, "Satan hindered me". What does that mean? It's like you're moving, but you're making progress, but it's like it's a fight. It's like let in a little bit, but it's like I'm making progress and I'm trying to push him in that hole right there. But it's jabs and it's aggravations and it's attacks, and it's a struggle, all the way.
And this is how it is with a dream, come here. This is how it is with a dream, some of you don't understand. Some of you've tried and failed two or three times, and you don't understand why you sit on that nice, cushioned sit. You don't have any idea the demons we had to fight. And there were times when I couldn't get there that way and I had to roll that way and I had to go this way and I had to go... and oh no, my head's going down, but here comes the spirit of the carpenter, and he'll build me up, and I pushed some more. I can go, we can do it, church.
And if that's not enough, come here, Tracy. Here it is now, so you've got hindrance in front of you, and then there's one other spirit. There's something behind me, the Bible calls it a devouring spirit. And so, I took this ground, now you back up a little bit. And I took this ground, but here comes the devour, and what does the devour, this one fights me about my future. This one's trying to come behind me and steal what I've already won. So I've got a hindering spirit in front of me and a devouring spirit behind me.
And just when the enemy thinks he's going to win, Zechariah said, "I saw in that same vision, just when the head was down and defeated, and it looked like it was over, I saw the spirit of the carpenter". Thank you. I saw the spirit of the carpenter come and raise and build up God's people. And I've just come in this house today to encourage somebody. The devouring spirit that's behind you, he said, "I will rebuke the devourer for your sake". And for the hindering spirit before you, he said, "No man will be able to stand before you. No spirit of limitation", and sometimes people with their words, listen, can build a house of limitation around you. And all of your life, because you were told you couldn't, the house of their words has completely limited you in your own mind, that you can't do it.
But here comes the spirit of the carpenter, and he says, "I'm here to build you up. I'm here to raise you up. You shall mount up with wings like eagles, you shall run and not be weary, walk and not faint". And I wrote down, I felt what I had from the Lord for this group today. Number one, the Lord says, that, "For your trouble, you shall have double". Just like Job. Here's the second thing I heard going, if this goes off in your spirit, you need to respond to it. The Lord said, "Key people are coming into your life". Key people. You're not going to get there without key people.
When I was preaching on limitation, one of the guys jumped up on his feet this morning, threw up his hands. He's real tall, and he was praising God, and it just hit me. There's one of those key people, because he started out poor and broke. You wouldn't believe how poor he was. You should hear his story. But now, he owns, I think it's about eight McDonald's. He owns them. Franchises, the whole thing. And then, sitting on the front row was a guy named Zack LaRoy, and he started a little chicken firm, a little chicken shop down the road in Athens, just fried chicken and a piece of bread is how he started it.
Now, it's Zackby's Chicken. He was sitting on the front row. I'm saying to you, you don't believe what I'm preaching. I know what I'm talking about. God is bringing into your dream key people from the north, south, east, and west. I want you to believe the spirit of the carpenter's coming on you, and you're going to do, you're going to build what God told you to build. You're going to raise up what God said you're going to raise up. The third thing I heard the Lord say is, "I will break the spirit of limitation, and I will break the back", oh, I love that.
I heard in my spirit the Lord say, "Today, if you will proclaim, I will break the back of the spirit of failure". Well, I just spoke it, and if you believe it, respond and God will back it up. I do believe it. Hindering spirits will move, no man will stand before you. Success will come from the north, the south, the east, and the west. Here's a big one, and your head will be lifted up. Just because it's never been done, doesn't mean you won't do it. No man will be able to stand before you.
So I close with this. My God will make you an asset owner, a land possessor, a wise investor, a Kingdom builder. Opportunities are coming to you. A new level of success is coming to you. Key people are coming into your life. I come with the spirit of the carpenter. Some of you came in here, but you're leaving here because I come with the spirit of the carpenter, Jesus Christ. And I build you up in your faith, to tell you that God is going to bless you with good success.