Jentezen Franklin - The Power Of We
I'm preaching this morning from Psalms 133, "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for people to dwell together". You know, you can dwell and not be together. But to dwell together. Marriage and family. In church. On your job. Dwell together in unity. The last prayer Jesus prayed in John 17, He prayed it five times in one chapter, the same prayer request. Make them one. Make them one. Make them one. Unity is a big deal. If the devil can divide us, he can conquer us.
And then it says in verse 2 of the precious oil upon the head, running down the beard, the beard of Aaron, running down the edge of the garments. He's saying the anointing is attracted to unity. And then he says something profound. It descended upon the mountains of Zion. "For there the Lord commanded the blessing - Life for evermore". God said I will command anointing and blessing on any people who will unite together, dwell together in unity. No wonder the enemy wants to divide our families, our homes, our lives. No wonder he wants us fussing and fighting with one another. Because there is a commanded blessing upon the house, the family, the people who dwell together in unity.
But listen to this great verse in Joshua 24:15: "But as for me and my house", here it is, "We". See, we go right over that. "As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord".
I wanna talk to you about The Power of We. When it ceases to be about me and my and it becomes about we, then there is a commanded blessing on your house. When your marriage is about more than me and my and it becomes we, there is a blessing. When your business has unity, and it's not about me and my, but it's about we. When we care for other people, God says I will bless that. He will transfer a blessing when we transfer the shift and the focus off of me and my onto we. We're so self-centered. We only think of ourselves. But today I'm preaching about the power of we. I'm preaching about the fact that Numbers 11:17, God said Moses, this is not a one-man show.
I'm going to take of the spirit that's on you, and I'm going to put it on the 70 elders. Because it's not about me and my. It's about we. I don't want my church to be built on one man. I want it to be about we're in this together. And I need you, and you need me, and together we are a force that hell cannot stop. That hell cannot defeat. It's not about me. It's not about my. It's about we. In Matthew 6, Jesus said in the ninth verse, pray this way. Our Father. Not My Father. I'm not praying for me. But He said the way that you begin prayer is praying "our". It's about we. It's not about me and my. That's the hour of power. Not "H, O, U, R", but "O, U, R".
When you begin to pray for others. When you begin to pray for your husband, your wife, your children, your fellow friends in the church, and in your family. When you begin to pray for others, God says pray one for another, that you may be healed. And so the most powerful prayer is when we pray "Our Father". Peter and John went up to the temple together at the hour of prayer and performed a miracle where the lame man was begging. But they were together, and they went to pray. When you understand how important it is to not be that person who's about me and my, as for me and my, all I care about is me and my. But you begin to understand it's about we. And the real strategy of hell has never changed. Divide and conquer. Just break things up to where it's all about me and my and forget about we.
And there the blessing is withdrawn. The anointing is withdrawn because the power of unity is one of... that's why Jesus said five times in the last prayer meeting He would ever have on planet earth. Now He's interceded in Heaven, but His last prayer request was, "Father, make them one". Do you understand that it's a unified response to the moving of the spirit that God looks for? We must be more than me and my. It must become a we. We used to sing a song: "Forget about yourself, and concentrate on Him, and worship Him. So forget about yourself, and concentrate on Him, and worship Him. So forget about yourself" - Me, my, me, my. "Concentrate on Him, and worship Him, Christ the Lord. Worship Him, Christ the Lord". Not you.
You know why Ananias and Sapphira dropped dead in the New Testament church? In Acts 6? They didn't give the money. Nobody was taking up an offering. There was a move of God. Nobody got up and said bring offerings. Nobody said it. But when the spirit started moving, the people started bringing. Selling things that they had, and bringing, and giving to expand the gospel. And the Bible said Ananias and Sapphira didn't flow with what God was doing. And even though grace was a baby, God said I'm gonna interrupt grace while it's still in the infant stage, and I'm gonna reach back into judgment, and I'm gonna kill me two New Testament members who refused to get involved in what I'm doing in my church.
You need me to take another offering? Isn't that something? Isn't that something? You think participation matters? That's not Old Testament. That's New Testament. There's something called the 20/80 rule. The 20/80 rule says that 20% of the people in a church participate. They participate in worship. They participate in serving. They participate in the vision. They participate in giving. They participate in lifting of hands and clapping of hands. Basically, 20% of any church, according to church, you know, specialists who study church growth, 20% of the people who attend a church participate. Eighty percent spectate.
What if we could reverse that in this church, and we could get 80% to participate, and the 20% is for the heathens who are lost, and they just come into our world. And our atmosphere is so fired up that nine out of ten people or eight out of ten people on the pew are just going after God with all their heart. They're like, "What is wrong with me"? At the Last Supper, Jesus said to His disciples, one of you will betray me. And all of them, look at it, all of them. The Bible said all of them said, "Lord, is it I"?
So many people come to church, and when they hear sermons, they think it's for everybody around them. Ooh, preach it. She needs it. He needs it. Boy, I'm so glad they came. I saw em in the lobby. It's exactly what they need. But notice the proper response is "Lord, is it I"? These are disciples. They wrote the Bible, y'all. And they're asking, "is it I". We come to church and act like everybody needs to really do something except me. But maybe you oughta sit there this morning while I'm preaching and say "Lord, is it I? Am I sitting up here like a bullfrog in a service, acting like I don't need to praise you? I don't need to participate? I don't need to get in your presence? I'm not thankful for all you did for me on the cross"? I'm not mad. I'm just happy. Just preaching the truth. Turn to somebody and say "Lord, is it I"? You oughta leave church asking that sometimes. Not talking about boy, they really needed it.
Acts 2:1. When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all, there was 120 of em up there. And they were all with one accord, look at that, in one place. All in one accord in one place. And that was before they received the baptism in the Holy Spirit. How much more, those of us who've been filled with the spirit, ought we to be in one accord, in one place, all together, praising and magnifying God? If we claim that we've received the fullness of what they received in the Upper Room, and that was before they had received it.
And then the Bible said, "There came a sound from Heaven like a mighty rushing wind. Filled the place where they were sitting. They were all filled with the Holy Ghost. And they all began to pray in the spirit". What are you saying? I'm saying that it was something about all in one accord. In one place. That God commanded the blessing flow to that people. When they got rid of the division. When they got rid of the me and my, and it became we. The reason God can't bless you like He wants to bless you is when you say, "Me and my is more important than we".
One of the biggest prayer we oughta pray is ,"unify us". The Bible said on the day of Pentecost, after they were filled with the Holy Spirit and came out of the Upper Room, they went into the streets. And we always talk about Peter preaching the first sermon that birthed the church. But the Bible said in Acts 2:14 that Peter's standing up with the 11. He wasn't standing there by himself. But when he was preaching, all 11 weren't sitting. They were standing. They were with him. They were standing together. They were creating a place that God could put the commanded blessing out of the temple into the streets of Jerusalem. They understood the power of unity. That this is not a one-man show. It's not about me and my. It's about we. And if we don't stand up... it wasn't eight of em standing. It wasn't seven of em. It was 11 plus 1 equals 12 disciples, and it brought the power from the Upper Room to the streets of the city. If you get raptured, it ain't gonna be about me and my.
1 Thessalonians 4:16: "For the Lord himself shall descend from Heaven with a shout, the voice of an archangel, with a trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ shall rise first", watch this, "And", everybody, "we who are alive and remain shall be caught up". If you're gonna get raptured, it's gonna be a "we rapture". And it's gonna be together. It's not about me and my walk with God, so I don't really - it's about we. We need each other. We need a church. We need to know that we got each other's back. That when I'm weak, you can pray for me. And when you're weak, I can pray for you. And sometimes you don't feel the praise, but it's alright. It ain't about me and my. We've got the power of we. And when we come together in the name of Jesus and begin to exalt Him, suddenly strength is transferred from one to another.
A great church is a "we church". I'm gonna show you something right here in Acts 19:34. And actually before it, it talks about a guy by the name of Demetrius. Demetrius was an idol maker, and the Bible said he made a lotta money making idols until Paul came into town, and preached, and shut him down. He preached Jesus, and the idol business went belly up. And the people of the city, watch this in verse 34: "All with one voice". Listen to that. All these people are idol worshipers, and all with one voice cried out for about two hours. Great is Diana, now all. Everybody was doing it. Not the three front rows. All the people with one voice to a false God for about two hours. "Great is Diana of the Ephesians".
Diana was the sex god. Had multiple breasts, and it was an idol that they worshiped. And they burned incense, and they believed it would give them power, and they believed that if they worshiped Diana that would bless them. And they would cause their nation and their people to grow and multiply. The God of fertility Diana. "Great is Diana of the Ephesians". And they stood and screamed it for two hours. All with one voice for two hours. I don't want two hours. I just want all in one service with one voice for two minutes. Not a few. All. In one service. For two minutes. To proclaim: "Great is Jesus Christ, the King of kings and the Lord of lords". The clock is ticking. "Great is Jesus Christ". All with one voice. "Great is Jesus Christ. The King of kings. The Lord of lords".
I dare you to open your mouth from the front to the back and declare His greatness louder than they did for a false god. All who know Him. All who have experienced Him. Come on. Praise Him. It ain't about me and my. Me, my. That's not me. Me, my. It's about we. Somebody shout, "Jesus Christ. Great is Jesus Christ. King of kings, and Lord of lords". Chant it just a minute. I don't care what anybody thinks. This is what made this church great. Freedom. We oughta get rowdy every once in a while. We oughta come together and with loud praise, raise the roof and give Jesus glory. It's more than noise. There God commands a blessing.
Hallelujah. Hallelujah. Praise the Lord. I need a commanded blessing on my family. I need a commanded blessing on my business. I need a commanded blessing on my endeavors. I need a commanded blessing and anointing on my life. It happens when we come together.
You can be seated. You know what the Bible said in Genesis 11? It's a remarkable verse. When we were in the old, old building, I preached a sermon on just this story when we first went there. Because God showed me something in this verse one day. He said the power and the key to success for Free Chapel, back when we were a smaller, much, much, much, much, much smaller church on Browns Bridge Road. He said you gotta get the people to be one. And He showed me this verse, and I never forgot it. "And the Lord said", talking about the people who were building the Tower of Babel, worshiping idols. "And God said, this people is one". Listen. They have one language. They're talking the same. They've got one vision. They got a vision to build something, and they're talking the same talk. We can do it. We can do it. We can do it. And they're worshiping demons. And this they began to do, and listen to what the Lord said. "Now nothing will be restrained from them which they can imagine to do".
And God spoke to my heart many, many years ago on that verse. And He said if you can get the people to get one vision, and get em to talking that vision, and saying it... if it'll work for devils, there is nothing that you can imagine to do that God won't do for the people who unite together. And God said, I gotta break em up. And you know the story. Tore down the tower, and messed up the one language, and gave different languages to everybody. Because He knew if they keep talking the same thing, if they keep seeing the same thing, if they keep going together in unity like that, nothing will be restrained from them that they can even imagine to do.
Now think about that in your own family. Think about that in your business. Think about that in your own life. How much division have you got? How many people are you not speaking to? How many people are you angry at? Because all the devil wants is you to stay that way. Because you can't have the power, and anointing, and the blessing of the commanded blessing without unity.
In John 5, there's the story of the Pool of Bethesda, and how the water would be troubled once a year. An angel would come and trouble the water. Make the water ripple, and make the water move. And when the water would move, listen to this, the Bible said the first responder, the first person to respond to the troubling of the water, if they could get in first, they would get healed. This happened for 38 years. A cripple guy, was lame, and he would hear the water once a year, but he couldn't, he said I have no man to put me in. And he would miss it because he was not the first responder.
Please understand what I'm saying to you. There's a principle here I want you to get. God loves first responders. And if everybody else misses it, if you'll be one of those people that are a first responder to the service. I'm not waiting on you to sing my song. Me and my. Me and my. Oh, when you've sung, "It is well", finally me, my, I felt something.
Nothing wrong with that, but it ain't about me and my. There's a greater cause than me and my blessing. It's a we blessing. And maybe that song that they sung with the beat didn't do anything for you, but there might be a teenager or a college student who they're like, "I like this place. I think I'll come back". And God loves first responders.
In other words, don't be the last one to clap. Don't be the last one to get up on your feet. Don't be the last one to raise your hands. Don't wait on somebody else to move when God says move in the altar service. God loves first responders. He loves people who just understand, if I obey God, I move from me and my to we. Because when people obey God, then they has a ripple effect. When an altar call is given, it's not about me and my. Gotta get to my car so I can go eat me some food. Just thought I'd throw that in there for free. It's about we. It's about souls. There's nothing more important. And you play apart.