Joseph Prince - Greater Shalom And Security
Well, we are living in exciting times. The days ahead of us for the believer are days of hope and days that are full of the blessings of God. So with a positive expectation, we can look forward for good in our future, amen. The Bible says clearly, Proverbs 4, it tells us that "the path of the righteous is like the shining sun, That shines ever brighter unto the perfect day". Now, if you are the righteousness of God in Christ, which I believe many of you are, then your path ahead of you can only shine brighter and brighter unto the perfect day. The perfect day, of course, is the day when we see Jesus face to face. That's the end of all the sickness, all the depression, all the negatives of life. No more, the Bible says, will we ever experience all that, forever. And forever is a long time. I'm looking forward to that.
So for the path of the believer, it shines brighter and brighter. So even in the midst of this pandemic that we are in right now, for the believer, do not expect the same things that the world are expecting ahead of you. Friend, look forward with hope, and hope is a positive expectation of good in your future. The Bible says your path, because you are the righteousness of God in Christ, is gonna shine not just bright, but brighter and brighter, which means with every passing day, it is ever increasing, amen? The brightness, which means your days ahead are good days, praise the Lord. You know, the Bible says that he that will love life and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil.
So make sure that we don't speak like the people of the world with hopelessness, with helplessness, with a lot of complaining about the pandemic. We're looking at the dark side, we're looking at the giants, instead of looking at the grapes, hallelujah. Instead of looking at the land flowing with milk and honey, we are looking at the strong walls of the enemy, and you know that all that means nothing when Israel went into the land. That huge walls just collapsed with one shout, amen. They could have done it 40 years earlier. But alas, this is what happened, and Israel failed to enter the land. The land for us today is the land of rest. The Bible says God says, "I swore they will not enter my rest if they remain in unbelief". So the Bible says, "Let us labor therefore to enter that rest," amen? I trust that many of you are growing in the Lord and in wisdom and also in favor with God and man, just like Jesus did when he was growing up. He increased in favor.
Do you know favor can increase in your life? The Bible says in 2 Peter chapter 1: "Grace," that is favor, "and peace be multiplied," that means it can be increased. And how is it multiplied? "Through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord". Now, in the Greek structure, God there refers to Jesus, "through the knowledge of God, and Jesus our Lord". "Through the knowledge of Jesus our Lord". Knowing him is how the grace, the favor of God, increases in your life and also peace. Greek, eirene, and in Hebrew it is shalom. It is not just peace of mind; it is wholeness, it is wellbeing in every part of your body as well as your mind. So that's peace, and peace can be increased. We all know health can be increased, we know that wellbeing can be increased, but here the Bible says they'll all be multiplied to you through the knowledge of Jesus our Lord, hallelujah. Isn't that great? I'm looking forward to that happening to you, friend, that the days ahead of you are days of greater health, greater wholeness, greater favor, amen, amen, amen. In fact, the Bible says that we are already highly favored in the Lord Jesus because we are in Christ, praise God.
Now, I wanna share with you today the importance of seeing Jesus in the Scriptures. Many of you who follow our ministry, you know that we emphasize this a lot. This is the calling that God has given me to bring Jesus back to the church, and if you look at the first thing that Jesus did on the same day that he rose from the dead, the very first thing he did was he appeared to Mary to dry her tears. Wow, what a first thing to do when you rise from the dead is your first assignment of all the things you can, you know, think of, like, spending time with the disciples and all that; he thought of Mary, who was weeping. So Mary was the first person that saw Jesus in his resurrected form, hallelujah.
Now, the Bible says that Jesus dried her tears, just like the first mention of tears in the Bible was the tears of a woman, Hagar weeping for her son Ishmael. And the angel of God, which is in that context is a preincarnate appearance of Christ, spoke from heaven and says, "What ails you, Hagar"? And he has come to dry her tears. That's the first mention of tears in the Bible. And in the New Testament, the first mention of tears is also the tears of a woman, Rachel, weeping for her children. Rachel weeping for her children. You know, God bottles up our tears, the Bible says. He put our tears in a bottle, which means every tear is not forgotten before God. And one of the assignments of Jesus, as the Messiah, he says, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me to anoint me to preach the gospel to the poor and then to heal the broken heart".
There are a lot of broken hearts around us, you know, in the place where you are at. You know, if you look around you, there are people who are nursing a broken heart. You can't tell by their outward appearance, many a times, but there's a broken heart. There's a lot of broken hearts. And remember this: Jesus has come to heal the broken heart. And many a times, a lot of physical sickness and all that, is tied up with a broken heart. The Bible says that "a merry heart doeth good like a medicine". If you have a merry heart, it's like ministering health and wholeness to your body. A broken spirit dries the bones. That same verse says, "A broken spirit dries the bones". That's arthritis and all kinds of bone conditions that we don't want to have in our lives, amen? But a merry heart does good like medicine. Praise the Lord.
Now, why is it important for us to see Jesus in the Scriptures? Because to the degree you see him as he is in the Bible, to that degree you are able to receive. Your capacity for receiving from the Lord is tied up with seeing him. When you see him the way the Holy Spirit wants you to see him, you receive from him. You remember when he was in his hometown Nazareth, this is what happened: "When He had come to His own country, He taught them in their synagogue, so that they were astonished and said, 'Where did this Man get this wisdom and these mighty works?'" So these are people that he, you know, they knew him, he grew up in Nazareth, and yet when he did miracles in Capernaum and different places, at this point in time, Jesus was already well-known for performing miracles and everywhere he went, and they are saying this: "Where did this Man get this wisdom and these mighty works? Is this not the carpenter's son? Is not His mother called Mary? And His brother James, Joses, Simon, and Judas"?
So they got familiar with him. They went on to say: "'And His sisters, are they not all with us? Where then did this Man get all these things?' So they were offended at Him. But Jesus said to them, 'A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.'" Now, that means a prophet has honor except in his own country and his own house. "Now He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief". So you see that he did not do many mighty works because of their unbelief. And that unbelief has got to do with seeing Jesus in the natural. Now, that's the opposite of what the Holy Spirit wants to do for us. He wants to unveil Christ in the Scriptures as he really is, amen? And to the extent that we see him the way that God wants us to see him, to that extent we are able to receive from him.
Notice that the people in Nazareth, they could not receive from Jesus. I'm sure that there were many who were sick, many who had all kinds of diseases, just as much as there were in Capernaum. In fact, in another account, in a Gospel account in this same incident, Jesus said, "No doubt you will say to me, 'Physician, heal yourself. The miracles that we heard you do in Capernaum, do also in your city, in your own country.'" Country there refers to Nazareth, all right? "Do it down here". So they were mocking him, and then they did not see him the way God wants us to see him and, as a result, they were not able to receive. God calls that unbelief. So, child of God, to the extent you see Jesus, amen, to that extent you are able to receive from him. So I endeavor to really unveil Christ with every sermon, that we will see Jesus the way the Holy Spirit wants us to see him, and the Holy Spirit is the only one who can help us see him in the Word, amen?
Now, we don't see Jesus by trying to imagine or trying to look at a painting or whatever. We look at Jesus in the Word, amen. The Word is where the Holy Spirit, the canvas of our heart, he paints the picture, the hazon vision, amen, of Jesus, and that vision comes out from the Word, but by the Holy Spirit. You cannot just study the Word without the Holy Spirit, without dependence on the Holy Spirit. Remember this: God reveals his wisdom and revelation to people who are, like, childlike. They are humble and teachable, but those who think that they are wise and they think that they know it all, nothing is revealed to them. They can open the Bible, all right, and they receive nothing. In fact, Jesus said one time, "Father, you have hid these things from the wise and the prudent," wise and prudent in the natural, "but you have revealed them unto babes," amen?
So it's got nothing to do with our degrees and our educational achievements, all right? It's got nothing to do with that. How high your IQ is; nothing to do with all that. It's got to do with God's wisdom, God's revelation that comes to people who are humble. The meek will he guide in the Way, hallelujah. Now, I wanna let you know so that if we have needs in our life, let's say, for example, we need healing, we are not able to receive, because if we see Jesus in the natural or you watch a movie about Jesus doesn't mean you'll get a revelation of Jesus, all right? It can be a very interesting movie, it can be close to the Bible, and yet that's not the vision that God wants you to have. God wants you to have a vision that's painted by the Holy Spirit of Jesus as he is, amen. Amen, amen, amen, praise the Lord.
So I wanna share with you from Leviticus. Ha, ha, of all the books in the Bible, the book of Leviticus usually are the ones that are still, in most Christians' Bible, all right, it is still stuck together. People hardly teach on the book of Leviticus, but I wanna teach from the book of Leviticus chapter 1, all right, the very first chapter. And the very first verse says, "Now the Lord called to Moses, and spoke to him from the tabernacle of meeting, saying," and this word, "Now the Lord called," the word "called" is the Hebrew word where the name of Leviticus is taken from. Of course, Leviticus means levitical priesthood, but actually in the Hebrew, this book is called Vayikra. Vayikra means "called," "he called". Literally, it's the first word of Leviticus: "God called to Moses, and spoke to him from the tabernacle of meeting, saying, 'Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: "When any one of you brings an offering to the Lord, you shall bring your offering of the livestock, of the herd and of the flock".'"
Now, notice here, God is talking about the burnt offering. The word "offering" in the Hebrew, qorban. Qorban means to approach near. An offering means to approach near. So the offering causes you to approach God, come near to God, draw near to God. The Bible says: "Draw near to God and he will draw near to you". Now, this is the burnt offering. "If his offering is a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish; he shall offer it of his own free will at the door of the tabernacle of meeting before the Lord. Then he shall put his hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it will be accepted on his behalf to make atonement for him".
So notice that the Bible says that "if his offering is a burnt sacrifice of the herd," why? Because in this same chapter, there are three categories of burnt offering. The first one is what we are reading here, from the herd, a bullock, a son of the herd in the Hebrew. A son of the herd. And a son of the herd, usually this bullock is raised not to do any work in the fields, they're not raised for labor, but they are raised for sacrifice finally. So they are taken care of, and I believe that the story of the prodigal son, actually, the fatted calf there is the bullock, it's been fattened in the sense of prepared for sacrifice, not a fat calf. Now, the father said, "Bring here the fatted calf. Bring here the fatted calf and kill it," in the presence of his son. The father was so glad to receive the son back, and the father says, "Bring here the fatted calf and kill it".
Notice, usually you kill an animal behind the kitchen, all right, which is usually behind the house. But here, the father says, "Bring the fatted calf here. Kill it here," why? Because he wanted the son to see the price of forgiveness, amen? You know, for God to forgive us, for God to create the worlds, he only had to speak. But for him to forgive us, he had to bleed, amen. Jesus came and died for our sins on the cross. That's the price of our forgiveness, okay? He paid with his own blood, hallelujah. So the father says, "Bring it here and kill it". And the son saw what his sins cost and that sacrifice, the calf, became the righteousness of the son. Like I said just now, there are three categories. So the first one is the bullock. The second category is actually from the flock, all right, from the sheep, okay? The sheep.
Now, that's the median, all right, middle-income people. Those who are rich, those who are wealthy in those days, they're able to bring the bullock, like the father of the prodigal son. Those with a middle income, they probably bring in the lamb, okay, or a sheep. And that's what the Bible says for second category. The third category is the smallest of all the burnt offering. God says you can't afford to bring the bullock, you can't afford to bring the lamb or a sheep, you bring a dove or a pigeon, okay? A pair of doves or a pigeon. And these are birds, right? And they're small. Notice the decreasing sizes. A bullock, okay? Then we have a lamb or a sheep, okay? Then we have the bird.
Notice the decreasing sizes. It speaks of capacity. It speaks of our ability to see the work of Jesus at the cross and whether we are increasing in knowledge. If we are, like, we have a bullock-sized revelation of Jesus and his work at the cross, we have that capacity, that strong capacity to receive from the Lord because our capacity to know him has increased. We have a bullock-sized revelation. Or we have a middle-sized revelation, right? Which means this is where most people live, I believe. That's why the Bible reckons Jesus as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Not the bullock there, okay? But nonetheless, these are truths that God put in the Word for the three categories of burnt offering. Then we have the bird.
Now, for the bird, it's the lowest, of course, in the natural, back then, it was the poorest. The poorest would bring a bird which is abundant everywhere: the pigeon or the dove, and they would capture it. It's easier for the poor people. They know how to capture it and then they can offer that as a burnt offering to the Lord. But nonetheless, even though they are decreasing sizes and all that, they all have the same effect: they emit a fragrance to God that reminds God of his Son, because each of them represent the Lord Jesus Christ, amen? The bullock, of course, strong through labor. We see him, amen, coming to earth with a heart that's ready to serve and to die for our sins on the cross. And then the lamb. We see him, the Lamb of God, meek, gentle, lowly. Though the bullock is like a king, right, strong, the lamb is gentle and lowly. Then the bird is a creature of the sky, the heavens, amen. We see Jesus coming from heaven. So each of them portray the Lord Jesus Christ in his own way, so God does not say, "Until your capacity to see my Son becomes a bullock-sized revelation, then I accept your sacrifice, then I'll impute righteousness in you". God doesn't say that, all right? God accepts any capacity.
A little touch of the woman's hand on the hem of his garment caused her to receive all that Jesus had. Just a little touch. The Bible says she said, "If I may touch but the hem of his garment," amen? Just maybe one, two fingers, touching the hem of his garment, and she received all that he has. So, friend, it is not so much, you know, you've got to have a great revelation, but having a greater revelation of Jesus will cause you to receive more from the Lord, amen? But to be saved, friend, amen, many a times we get saved, we don't really know, you know, much about the Lord and we are afraid to go to hell, amen. We know that we have sin, we know we are sinners, and we need a Savior. And that much we know, okay? But we increase and we continue to increase, and when we increase in knowledge of our Lord Jesus, favor, grace, shalom, peace, wellbeing, wholeness, is multiplied to us, amen? Praise the Lord. So here we have the first one, which is a burnt sacrifice from the herd, which is the bullock.
Notice that it says here: "He shall put his hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it will be accepted on his behalf to make atonement for him". Now, the word "accepted" is the word "ratsah," which actually has the meaning of delight and pleasure. It's not just accepted with God. All that a bullock is, in its unblemished state, in its innocence, in its, you know, it represent Jesus Christ, I would say Jesus in his righteousness. All that he is as I lay my hand, so to speak, upon Jesus on the cross, like what this author is doing, he put his hand on the head of the burnt offering. That is a picture of identification. When you put your hand on the head of the animal, you're actually identifying with the animal. Now, in those days, when they sin, they bring a burnt offering, whether it is, most of them bring a lamb. Like I said, the middle-income people, which most people are at, they will bring the lamb. And Jesus is a picture of the lamb, but he's also the bullock. Jesus is a picture of the bullock. And here, the hands are laid on the bullock.
Now, this is not mentioned in the other two burnt offerings, the lamb as well as the bird, the pigeon or the dove. These two categories do not mention about putting on of hands. That tells us something. That tells us that they're lacking in the capacity to understand their identification in Christ. So to the extent that you lack, to that extent, you have that poverty of knowledge of the Lord. To that extent, you experience poverty of wisdom. To that extent, you experience a lesser capacity to receive from the Lord. Notice that this is only true, laying hands on the bullock is only true of the first category of burnt offering, which is the bullock. And here it says: "He put his hand on the head of the burnt offering," identification, like I said just now. In other words, all that the bullock is, it's a picture of Jesus in his righteousness, amen. That's why the bullock is without blemish. It's a picture of our Lord Jesus, so there's no blemish in the bullock, perfectly healthy, whole, and sinless, all right?
So it's a picture of Jesus Christ in his righteousness, so when we lay hands on our Lord Jesus, he imparts to us his righteousness. We identify with his righteousness. No more identifying with ourselves in our sin. No more identifying ourself in our lostness. No more identifying ourself in our condemned state. No more identifying ourself as being under the curse, but identifying ourselves in who he is, the righteousness of God in Christ. So as we lay our hands on our Lord Jesus, that's what happens when you put your faith in Jesus, you are trusting in the Lord Jesus, amen, you become the righteousness of God in him. Why? That's not your righteousness. You have no righteousness of your own. Neither do I, amen? But when we put our trust in Christ, all that he is becomes ours, amen? His righteousness, his right standing with God, hallelujah, becomes ours as a gift.
All we've got to do is this putting on of hands is actually a picture of identification, our belief in the Lord Jesus Christ, and then not only that. It goes the other way as well. Our sins are transferred into this bullock. And that's why the bullock is killed. It's killed as if it deserves a death, when actually we are the ones that deserve that death. But because the bullock, we lay our hands on the bullock, and we identify with the bullock's righteousness, the bullock identifies with our sin, you see, it goes both ways, all right? Our sins are transferred into the bullock, and the bullock's righteousness is transferred into us. I should say our Lord Jesus, you understand? When Jesus died on the cross, all right, all that he is as we trust in him, is transferred into us, and all that we are in our sins and include our diseases as well that came because of sin, is all transferred into Jesus Christ, hallelujah. And that's what happens.
Now, this truth, this reality, is not found in the other two categories of the burnt offering: the lamb as well as the bird. Interesting, interesting. The reason I'm sharing all this is to show you the things that make you wealthy spiritually. I'm not talking about money; I'm talking about wealthy spiritually. The things that make you strong, amen? And also your capacity to receive will be enlarged, hallelujah. Don't forget, to the extent you see our Lord Jesus, the more you see of him, the more you're able to receive from God, hallelujah. Praise the Lord. Let's go on. And the next verse says: "He shall kill the bull before the Lord".
Now, he, the offerer, kills the bull before the Lord. This is very interesting because in the offering of the birds, the pigeon, which is the lowest form of the burnt offering, now don't forget every form, regardless of whether it is the lowest form or not, is accepted by the Lord. Each one gives a sweet aroma to the Lord because it reminds God of Jesus. You don't have to have a great knowledge of Jesus to be saved, amen. To receive eternal life, hallelujah. You only have to believe on him with whatever knowledge you have, even a little knowledge, you believe on him, that he died for your sins on the cross, you confess him as your Savior and Lord, you are saved, amen. But your capacity to receive is affected directly by your revelation of Jesus, greater revelation, greater capacity. Or we should say, greater faith, amen? The bullock would definitely give you greater faith. Like I said just now, the offerer kills the bullock because God wants him to know that it is his sins that put Jesus at the cross. So, he's given the knife, and the priest tells him where to slay.
You know, there is an artery in the neck of the bullock where you slice it. It dies a pain-free death. It literally, it just bleeds, amen, and it dies, all right? It's a very humane way of killing and that's what the rabbis tell us and that's how they do it in the Old Testament. They just bleed, okay? But they say that when you kill an animal, you know, with pain and all that, it releases poison in their system. The animal is not good to eat, and that's what they say. So, here we go. The offerer kills the animal because God wants the offerer to know that it is his sins that put Jesus at the cross. Jesus came to die for your sins and my sins. We must take that place of acknowledging that, realizing that. You cannot come to a place where you say, "I have no sins. Jesus died for other people's sins". No, no, we have all sinned. We've all broken all the Ten Commandments. Yes, we've all broken the Ten Commandments, if not in deeds, in our thoughts, in our heart. We've all broken the Ten Commandments, and to God what you think in your heart, all right, is the same thing as committing the act.
So we've all broken the Ten Commandments. We are all great sinners. There's no such thing as someone, you know, a lesser sinner. We're all great sinners but thank God he's a greater Savior. Praise the Lord. And when you receive him into your life, believe on him, all your sins are put away, past, present, and future. Praise the Lord, hallelujah. Jesus, by the sacrifice of himself, has put away sins, the Bible tells us. Praise the Lord. "Having purged our sins," Hebrews says, "he sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high". In other words, he would not sit down had he not purged our sins successfully. So "having purged our sins, he sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high". So we see our place in this. It was our sins that put Jesus on the cross. But the Bible tells us that God made Jesus to be sin. Now whose sin was that? Our sins. "God made Jesus to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him".
So there's a divine exchange at the cross, amen? He took our sins and we take his righteousness, amen? On the cross, God treated Jesus like, you know, I mean, all heaven was, like, brusque to him, amen. Darkness over him. It's like heaven was closed to him. He cried out, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani"? "Oh, my God, my God, why have you forsaken me"? God made Jesus "to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him". So that we can cry, "My Father, my Father, why have you so blessed me"? He took our place that we might take his place. Praise the name of Jesus. So let's go back to verse 5: "He shall kill the bull before the Lord; and the priests, Aaron's sons, shall bring the blood and sprinkle the blood all around on the altar that is by the door of the tabernacle of meeting".
Notice, the priest's sons will "bring the blood and sprinkle the blood all around on the altar". The altar is like a square altar with four horns signifying it is made available, efficacious for the four corners of the earth. Jesus didn't just die for Israel; he died for the whole world. "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life". So the Bible tells us the blood that was shed when the offerers, you know, kills the bullock, the blood is taken by the priests in a container and then it is sprinkled all around the altar.
Now, the altar always represents the claims of God. The claims of God. God's holy claims on our lives. God has a right, God made us and God made this world and then God made us, amen, to enjoy everything that he has made, but we sin against God. We rob God of the glory and the honor. We didn't wanna worship him. In fact, we worship the created things instead of God, and God says, "Okay, this is the price," okay? "Sin will bring forth death," okay? And God warned Adam and Eve but this is what happened. Man has turned away. "All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; but the Lord lay on Jesus the iniquity of us all".
Oh, look at the heart of God. We took what God gave us: the best that he gave us was his Son. There's no other gift that's greater than Jesus himself. Wouldn't you say that? Amen, wouldn't you agree? The greatest gift is our Lord Jesus and yet we took the greatest gift and we demonstrated, like, to God like this: "This is what we think of your gift. We've put him on the cross". But God demonstrated his love and his grace by saying, "This is what I think of what you did. I'll make the cross the very foundation for the forgiveness of all your sins". Because at the cross Christ bore your sins and my sins and bore them away, hallelujah. Praise the Lord. So the blood sprinkled all around the altar means what? That Jesus has fully satisfied all of God's claims of righteousness and holiness on your life, amen. And God's claims have been fully satisfied. How? By the blood of Jesus. When the blood is sprinkled all around the altar, God is at rest about his claims on you for righteousness and holiness, hallelujah.
Now, if you look at the smallest burnt offering, the bird, they only ever mention that the blood is the blood, you know, they would decapitate the head of the bird, and then the blood is sprinkled on one side, only one side of the altar. That shows a limited capacity of understanding what the blood of Jesus has done for us. Friend, you know, many people, they just know that their sins are forgiven by Jesus's blood. They don't realize that they have been made the righteousness of God in Christ. What is lacking, that the other two groups of burnt offering? In the first category it says what? It says that we identify. Now, the identification is missing. It is missing, amen. But for us who have discovered that Jesus has become our righteousness because he was made our sin at the cross, for us it enlarges us, it increases our capacity to receive. So, how many understand, like, the path of the righteous is increasing, brighter and brighter. The revelations of God, of his Word, are all coming back greater and greater in these last days. Praise the Lord.
Now, let's go on. It says, now this is very interesting, in verse 6: "And he shall skin the burnt offering and cut it into its pieces". "He shall skin the burnt offering and cut it into its pieces". Now, this is not mentioned in the offering of the sheep, nor the offering of the bird. But it's mentioned here. "He will skin the burnt offering and cut it into its pieces". Wow, what is this? Friend, Jesus, before he went to the cross, they stripped him. They literally scourge him of his skin. Here, you have the reality of "with his stripes we are healed". And it's not mentioned in the offering of the lamb, nor the burnt offering of the pigeon or the dove. It is mentioned only here in the burnt offering of the bullock. That tells you it takes a greater capacity to understand, amen, greater wealth spiritually, greater riches spiritually, hallelujah, amen.
How many know that when you're filled with God's wisdom, no, not trying to be smart in your own intellect or your own IQ, okay, but wisdom of God, you're actually increasing the capacity to understand more what Jesus did at the cross? So you can receive more. So to understand "with his stripes we are healed," is to have a richer capacity. You see in the category of the offering of the burnt offering of a lamb and the bird, there's no mention of this lamb is actually skinned and all that. It is skinned, but it's not mentioned. In other words, God is saying, "It takes a greater capacity," amen. You will receive more as a result. So this truth that God is restoring to us in these last days about "with his stripes we are healed," that healing is our portion, amen. As well as provision. It's not something that we need to reject and say that, "Oh, in church history we don't find the mention of all these things," and all that.
Friend, we're not going back through church history. They had the light, they received from God at that time, but the light is ever increasing. In our day we look for the light that God is giving us, but it all must be from the Word, amen, praise the Lord. So Jesus, have you ever asked yourself why is it that Jesus was scourged before he went to the cross? Now, most criminals, okay, most criminals either they receive scourging or death on the cross. That's what the Romans would do, okay? For a lesser crime, right, that doesn't deserve the death penalty, they'll probably be scourged. But for something greater, they'll be put on the cross. But Jesus was scourged and then put on the cross. Why? Because Pilate in the natural thought that maybe if I scourge him and he's bleeding really bad, all the skin off and all that, and I present him to the people, the people will be softened and they will let him go, right? Which they did not. They even cried, "Crucify him. Crucify him". So it was like a probably, a quote, unquote, "mistake," but in the predestination of God, in the foreknowledge of God, God had Jesus scourged for you and I before he died on the cross.
So why was he scourged? Because the Bible says: "With his stripes we are healed". The provision at the cross was for the forgiveness and cleansing of our sins. But when his skin was stripped, it is for our healing. It's for our health. "By his wounds you are healed". "By his stripes," by that skinning, okay, literally in the King James Version, "He shall flay the burnt offering". Remove all the skin. Mm, think about it, friend. And notice the order. Notice the order here, okay? The order is that identification first, before the healing. Notice? In verse 4, it tells you that you put your hand on the head of the burnt offering. That is declaring, like, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ. Jesus is my righteousness," right? Then comes verse 6: "He shall skin the burnt offering". That tells us that before we are able to receive healing, we must know that we are the righteousness of God in Christ. This is something that is revelatory, something that, you know, even the order of it: righteousness produces healing.
There's a verse in Isaiah that says this, Isaiah 32, verse 17: "And the effect of righteousness will be shalom," will be peace. And peace, don't forget, it's not just peace of mind. Peace is also wholeness, health. To the Hebrew, even today in Israel, you ask them, "What is shalom"? they'll tell you, "Health, wholeness, wellbeing. Even prosperity". Peace, the effect of righteousness will be peace. There must be righteousness first, before there can be peace. "The effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever," hallelujah, hallelujah. Let's go on with what we can learn about the cross through Leviticus chapter 1: "The sons of Aaron the priest shall put fire on the altar, and lay the wood in order on the fire. Then the priests, Aaron's sons, shall lay the parts, the head," say "the head," "and the fat in order on the wood that is on the fire upon the altar; but he shall wash its entrails and its legs with water".
Now, all this is mentioned, all right, the order of all this is mentioned also in the offering of the lamb. So what is the head, legs, and entrails? All right, the head, Jesus, don't forget, this offering is Jesus, all right? Jesus is this bullock. The head represents "He knew no sin". He knew no sin. The entrails, the inside, the inside of the animal, represents "In Him is no sin". And the legs, the outward walk, represents "He did no sin". So he knew no sin, in him is no sin, he did no sin, and yet he died for u s. The Bible says: "And the priest shall burn all on the altar as a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the Lord". Notice, "A sweet aroma to the Lord". All this reminds God of his Son, the Son that he loves. When God smells the sweet aroma, just like he smells the burnt offering of Noah, the first thing Noah did in the new world after the flood receded and he came out of his family, out of the ark with all the animals, the Bible says: "Noah offered to God a burnt offering, and God smelt the burnt offering, a sweet aroma". It reminds God of his Son, and what did God say? "I will no longer curse the earth ever again with a flood," God says.
And there's always a blessing. When God smells the sweet aroma, the Bible says that we are unto God a sweet aroma of Christ. We are unto God a sweet fragrance of Christ, amen? And the Hebrew word here, sweet aroma, is actually aroma of rest, literally, the word there is aroma of rest to the Lord. It's the same word where Noah got his name from: Noah, nuach, is the word "rest". Is a sweet aroma of rest to the Lord. God finds his rests in the sacrifice of Christ, amen? God is not mad at you, God is not looking out to curse you or to condemn you. God is looking forward with rest in his heart, based on all that Jesus has done, to justify you, to heal you, to provide for you, to be good to you, hallelujah, amen. And now he has a righteous foundation to do all that because of the death of Jesus on your behalf, praise the Lord. Thank you, Jesus, amen, hallelujah.
Now, friend, we are all a sweet aroma unto Christ now because we've identified with this sacrifice, so all of us, when we come near to God, I want you to picture this, every time you come near to God. When you come near to God, it's like God smells a sweet aroma of Christ, amen. Because we are now, the Bible says we are in Christ, we are now a sweet aroma to the Lord, amen. Think about that. Every time you come to God, are you conscious whether, you know, God is looking at my sin, my coldness, you know, all the negative things you can think of when you're self-occupied. No, no, friend, that's not the Bible way, Bible says: "Come boldly," and you can come boldly when you know that every time you come near to God, God smells a sweet aroma.
Remember when Jacob deceived his father, Isaac? Now there was a deception, but nonetheless, the principle holds true. You know, he put on the skin of a goat and the father thought it was the older son, Esau, and the father blessed him by saying this: "See, the aroma of my son is like the aroma of a field which the Lord has blessed". And then he gave the firstborn blessing, pronouncing the firstborn blessing, upon Jacob, thinking it was Esau, all based on the smell. Now, God is not deceived. God sees clearly what Jesus did at cross, and God smells a sweet aroma every time you come near, amen. It's a sweet aroma of Christ, hallelujah. Praise the Lord. Every time you pray, I want you to picture that, amen. It's gonna revolutionize your prayer life. You will find yourself coming to God at every turn. Praise the Lord. Thank you, Jesus.
Now, in the book of Leviticus we have the burnt offering. Then we have the meal offering which is a grain offering, flour offering, which reminds God also of Jesus, amen, because Jesus, the bread of life, of which flour is, bread is made from flour. And then we have the peace offering, and then we have the sin offering, and then we have the trespass offering. Five offerings to depict that one single sacrifice of Christ on that cross, hallelujah. Now, for the third offering, I mentioned just now, peace offering, in the book of Leviticus, we find it in chapter 3 of Leviticus. It tells you that "he shall offer from the sacrifice of the peace offering an offering made by fire to the Lord. The fat that covers the entrails and all the fat that's on the entrails".
So, the peace offering... let me just tell you this. The word "peace offering" is actually in the Hebrew, in the plural, like you say in English, it sounds a bit funny but, you know, peaces, "shelamim". It's not shalom, it's the word "shelamim". Shelamim in Hebrew, plural of the word "shalom". In other words, it's peace in all its completeness. It is peace in all its plenitude. Peace all around, peace not just for your spirit, but also for your soul, for your mind, for your emotions, and for your body. It's peace all around. When you say "shalom," already that's the word "completeness". Shalem is the word "completeness". Shalom. You know, it's also the word for payment. In other words, that shalom comes because of payment, like in Israel when you say, "I will pay for something," you would say "Anim mishalem". Anim mishalem means "I will pay for this".
Notice the word "shalem" from the word "shalom"? So the word "shalom" is peace, but it's also the word for payment. So in other words, this shalom, this health, this wholeness, this wellbeing, this peace that you have, don't forget, is paid for. It cost God his Son. But now that it's paid for, receive it. Hallelujah. Receive it, in Jesus's name. So, there's an offering, all right. Of all the five offerings, there's an offering called peace offering, or I should say peaces offering, many kinds of peace, amen. And in these peace offerings, something is very interesting. He takes the fat that is on all the parts of the animal, and don't forget, the animals here represents Jesus always, and the fat, the word cheleb for fat in Hebrew, means the best. You shall eat the best of the land. The word there is cheleb, fat, fatness. It means the choice fat. The fat of the animal that's above the liver, that's above the kidney, all that fat is put on the altar of burnt offering, but put on the burnt offering. The burnt offering is there already. Then the priest will take the shelamim, not an animal sacrifice but the fat of it is put... let me just show you the next verse. Let's look at verse 4. "The two kidneys and the fat that's on them".
Notice, "he takes the fat on them by the flanks, and the fatty lobe attached to the liver above the kidneys, he shall remove; and Aaron's son shall burn," what, "the fat on the altar upon the burnt sacrifice". So, this fat of the shelamim, the fat of the peace offering is burned where? On the altar upon the burnt sacrifice. So, the bullock is there already burning, okay? And then the fat, the best of shalem is burned on the sacrifice for a sweet aroma to the Lord. You know, in the natural, if you burn fat on meat, and the fire is burning below, okay, after for a while the fat will melt. And when it melts, it actually enhances the flame that produces even a greater fragrance. Hallelujah. So, the fat here represents the riches of the person of Jesus, and that is often at the cross when Jesus died. You know, God alone can appreciate this. And we're trying to understand what happened, but it's not necessary for our salvation. Remember that. It's tied up with our riches in Christ, amen, growing in wisdom and favor with God, hallelujah. Friend, at the cross, the riches of who he is, is based on the fact that he offered himself as a burnt offering.
Now, with the fat, the peace, you know, peace is what? Health and wholeness, as well. It's predicated upon the burnt sacrifice, which is a picture of righteousness, understanding righteousness. Amen? Healing will come. Healing must have a foundation. Your wholeness, your health, your peace must have a foundation, and the foundation is burnt offering. And what is the main characteristic of the burnt offering? It's not just die on the cross, but identification, amen? Righteousness. That happens every time we confess, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ". Amen. So, healing flows. Every time you confess, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ," healing flows. Every time you confess that, you know you are getting stronger, healthier. It might seem like, you know, the sickness is shouting at you, and the pain is screaming; but, you know what?
Friend, the more you confess it, it's dying. Just as when Jesus cursed the fig tree, it still looks alive, it still looks, you know, vibrant and all that; but the next day, when they came back, it was dead, dried up from the roots, amen? So, it is dead. The moment you confess, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ," health springs forth. Hallelujah. Health springs forth, my friend. Praise the Lord. Just like the fat of the shelamim, the health is based on the righteousness, amen? Praise the Lord.
I want to read to you a testimony that came in, and this is from a sister in Singapore, and it says this:
I received Christ as my Lord and Savior when I was 23 years old. Since then, the Lord has poured countless blessings into my life and over-exceeded my expectations; however, there was an area in my life that I couldn't seem to get rid of. At the age of 16, I started smoking. And since then, I have been bound by this habit.
So, it had been seven years.
The addiction got so bad that I often started and ended my day with a cigarette. When I was stressed and burdened, my first response would be to smoke. Even when I was resting, I would want to smoke. I tried to quit many times, but I would not make it past two days. Every time I tried and failed, I would condemn myself and feel guilty. Some of my well-meaning friends and family members would also add to my sense of condemnation by saying things like, "You're not giving glory to God when you smoke." Last year, I decided to try to stop smoking again; however, during the middle of the week, I gave into temptation and ended up smoking even more than before. This time, though, I practiced what Pastor Prince always taught: to speak and declare that "I am the righteousness of God in Christ."
That's the burnt offering.
Declare, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ," even in the midst of my addiction. So, I spoke and believed that I am the righteousness of God in Christ, even though I was still smoking. When I did that, I felt like I was a hypocrite, but I just kept declaring and resting in the truth that I was righteous in Christ, despite my actions. By the end of the week, I finished smoking my last pack of cigarettes and asked the Lord to not let the craving return again. Since then, it has been a year, one year, and I no longer crave for cigarettes. For seven years, I have been believing and hoping for deliverance in this area. But in less than seven days of declaration, deliverance came.
Shelamim, amen, the peace offering, hallelujah, predicated upon the righteousness of God, okay.
Deliverance came. In less than seven days of declaration, deliverance came without any withdrawal symptoms. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Amen. To him be all the glory. I am finally free from my smoking addiction after 14 years.
Hallelujah, we rejoice with this sister. But notice that wholeness, amen, that health, that deliverance sprung forth after confessing, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ". After you declare it, you will not even feel it. You might think that it's not true and all that. In fact, you will feel like a hypocrite because when you are doing that, whether you are watching porn or whether you're drinking, or you are smoking, if you want deliverance, start confessing, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ," and see those things fall off like dead leaves off a tree. Just see Jesus on the cross and declare, "He was made sin, that I might be made the righteousness of God in him". And then you'll be able to see that "with his stripes, I am healed". Because all that follows up on the heels of understanding that you are the righteousness of God in Christ. Remember that, my friend. Amen?
Another interesting thing we see is this. When God talked about Jesus as the high priest after the order of Melchizedek... remember Melchizedek in the Old Testament? In the book of Genesis, he came to Abraham. Bring what? Bread and wine, a picture of the Communion, right? And Abraham tithed to him the 10%. All that was before the law. And then later on, one of the most frequently quoted verse from the Old Testament in the New is, "You are a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek". God spoke to Jesus. "You are a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek". It behooves us then to read that passage in Genesis and receive every nugget that we can learn off because that's the way we flow with our High Priest today.
That's the way we can receive from our High Priest today. Whatever is true then is true for us today because today Jesus Christ is not after the order of Levitical priesthood, which is you obey, then you are blessed. If you don't, you are cursed. No, no. We receive from him based on Melchizedek, which is blessing, blessing. Melchizedek's mouth blessed Abram. The first word out of his mouth is, "Blessed be Abram of the most High God". And then he blessed God. "Blessed be the most High God". Hallelujah. Friend, he tells us in Hebrews 7 very clearly here, "For this Melchizedek, king of Salem". Now Salem here, this is in the New Testament, it's actually the word shalom in the Hebrew, all right? It's actually Jerusalem, like Jerusalem is Yerushalayim. It's from the word shalom, City of Peace, King of Salem, King of Peace, Priest of the most High God, "who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, to whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all, first being translated 'king of righteousness,' and then also king of Salem, meaning, 'king of peace.'"
Now people ask sometimes, "Pastor Prince, why do you teach sometimes on meaning of names and all that"? Well, the Bible does, my friend. This is the riches of God's Word. Even the names have meanings. And here, the writer of Hebrews, by the Holy Spirit, tells us Melchizedek means King of Righteousness. And he's the King of Shalom. Therefore he is the King of Peace. But notice righteousness comes before peace. He's the King of Righteousness before the mention of that he's the King of Shalom. He's the King of Righteousness. What does that mean? He's able to give you righteousness, amen. He's able to make you righteous like no one can. He's the King of Righteousness. Unless you see him as that then you are able to receive King of Peace. He's able to give you that health, that wholeness, that well-being, amen, that deliverance from the troubled mind, amen, that freedom from depression, hallelujah, that freedom from panic attacks.
I see God setting people free right now, in Jesus's name. There's someone who just felt like, you know, literally, you felt like a darkness, you feel like there's been a dark cloud over your head, literally over your head, like a dark cloud. You even see the dark cloud, and you feel like light just shined through. It's like your mind has been liberated, like a dark cloud just lifted, and now you are filled with joy and peace. My friend, please write to us and let us know about it, okay? Praise the Lord. God has set you free; and whom the Son sets free is free indeed. Praise the Lord. Hallelujah. Now something very interesting, we're all priests and kings, right? We're all priests and kings, and there's a verse in Leviticus 7, verse 8, very interesting. It tells us that "The priest who offers anyone's burnt offering, that priest shall have for himself the skin of the burnt offering, which he has offered".
Now, remember, the skin of the burnt offering, we learned about they stripped the animal of the skin, which is a picture of for our healing. "By his stripes, we are healed". Now, how do you receive the benefit of it? One of the ways here is that the priest who offers anyone's burnt offering, that priest shall have for himself the skin of the burnet offering. So, I'm telling you this. A lot of the priests in those days, they have a lot of leather goods, amen, in their houses, amen, leather stuff. Why? Because they offer a lot of people's burnt offering on behalf of them. They offer that. Every time they offer that, that skin belongs to them. That means, friend, if you understand that you are a king and priest today in the eyes of God, God has made you kings and priests. Praise the Lord. Your priestly functions worship, praise, thanksgiving. When you intercede for other people, you're also functioning in the priestly office, like a priest. It's your royal priesthood, amen, to bring forth the praises to him, who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Amen.
So, here he says, "If you offer someone's burnt offering, if you see them as the righteousness of God in Christ, you will have the benefits of the skin". Amen? You will have the skin for yourself. In other words, "With his stripes, you are healed". Now we're seeing an example here, remember, it started off with Job. Job was suffering. He had boils, diseases from the top of his head to the soles of his feet. He lost his children. He lost all that he had, amen. Everything seemed to be taken away from him except his wife. And at the end of it, this is what happens. Now, God is talking here to the three friends of Job that came to comfort him, but ended up afflicting him, ended up tormenting him. And they said wrong things about God to Job. And now God tells them, "You take for yourself seven bulls and seven rams, go to My servant Job, and offer up for yourselves, a burnt offering; and My servant Job will pray for you. I will accept him, lest I deal with you according to your folly; because you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has".
So, Job is doing the part of the priest now. Drop down to verse 10. "And the Lord restored Job's losses". The Lord restored Job's losses. He lost his children. Guess what? He got new children back, double, and the quality of the children, all his daughters, the Bible says, are the most beautiful in the land. And he lost his wealth. He got double back. It was all doubled back to him. He lost his health. It was all doubled back to him. When did this happen? When did God restore Job's losses? "And the Lord restored Job's losses when he prayed for his friends. Indeed the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before". Twice as much, hallelujah, twice as much, double blessing, double restoration, more than what he lost, amen. But when it happened? It happened when Job took the part of a priest. Even though his friends spoke against him, he actually offered the burnt offering, seeing them in the righteousness of God in Christ. When he does that, he received the benefits of the skin offering, which is health, double health. Hallelujah.
And I've done that also. When I hear people speaking against me, or writing against me, or whatever, one of the things I do is that I go to God and say, "Father, I thank you that that person is the righteousness of God in Christ, and I pray that you'll give the person the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of you". And I bless the person, in Jesus's name. 'Cause I know, I know that when I do that, I will have for myself the benefits of that skin of the burnt offering. Hallelujah.
Now, one last verse, and then we'll close. Go back to Isaiah 32. "And the effect of righteousness," shall be what? Shalom. You can say health, wholeness, the effect of righteousness. What's gonna happen if you keep on confessing every day, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ"? There will be shalom, shalom for your mind, shalom for your body, shalom in your relationships, shalom in your heart, shalom everywhere. Praise the Lord, praise the name of Jesus. "And the effect of righteousness will be shalom, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever".
The word trust here is betach in Hebrew, which is the word for security, quietness and security forever. I'm telling you, friend, the whole world is looking for this. They want health, they want wholeness, they want freedom from depression, from lack of security, they want quietness. And friend, all of these are available as a result of you being made the righteousness of God in Christ. That's the effect of it, the byproduct of it. Let's keep on reading. "My people will abide in a peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places". Not the people of the world, "My people. My people, who are the righteousness of God in Christ, they will abide in peaceful habitation and secure dwellings, in quiet resting places. And it will hail when the forest falls down, and the city will be utterly laid low". But you know what? "My people will dwell in a peaceful habitation".
So, in the midst of the hail, I can say in the midst of the pandemic, in the midst of all the viruses, the Delta variant, as well, when the forest falls down and the city will be utterly laid low, many cities all over the world are utterly laid low. God says, "My people will dwell in peaceful habitations, secure dwellings, because they are the righteousness of God in Christ". May this be true for you and your families. Praise the Lord. Thank you, Lord Jesus.
Friend, if you've never made Jesus your Lord and Savior, only when you confess him as your Savior and Lord, you become the righteousness of God in Christ. All your sins are remitted from your life. They are put away by the blood of Christ. And that's all you need to know, amen? That's all you need to know to be saved. Praise the Lord. Believe on Jesus Christ, that he died for your sins on the cross, and then you receive his righteousness. He took your place, that you might take his place. He took your place as the person under condemnation, that you might take his place as the person who is acquitted, the righteousness of God in Christ. He takes your place of the curse that you might take his place of the blessed one. Blessings all over, blessings, all kinds of blessings, amen, because he took all kinds of condemnation and curse at the cross. Friend, if you want that, pray this prayer with me right now, from your heart. Say:
Heavenly Father, I thank you that Christ died on that cross for all my sins. And on that cross, he was made sin with my sins, that I might be made the righteousness of God in him. Jesus Christ is my Lord and my Savior, and I thank you, Father, all my sins are cleansed, washed away by the blood of Jesus. Thank you, Father. Even as I draw near to you from now on, you smell a sweet fragrance of Christ in my life. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, amen.
If you prayed that prayer, you are now a child of God. All your sins are put away, amen. You are a brand-new creation in Christ, hallelujah. Please stand to your feet, church, at this time. All right, one thing about standing to your feet, it does something. And the Bible says there are positions, as well. I know people say it's the posture of your heart and all that. But you look in the Bible, even Paul says, "I bow my knees". You know, it's good for us to be in a low place when you're praying. If that is convenient for you, do that, amen. You'll find it does affect your inside posture, as well. And when you're needing something, or you want a declaration over your life, stand to your feet and receive it, amen, amen. Are you ready to receive the blessings for this coming week? Praise the Lord. God says to Aaron, the first high priest of Israel, "Say these words over the people, and I'll put my blessing on them".
The Lord bless you and your families throughout this week. The Lord bless you with the blessings of Abraham. The Lord bless you with blessings of favor, health, and prosperity. The Lord bless you especially with the wisdom and the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord blessed you. And the Lord make his face to shine upon you, be gracious to you, be favorable to you, and the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and your families, and grant to you and your loved ones his shalom, well-being, peace and wholeness. And the Lord keep you, preserve you and your loved ones throughout this week from the COVID-19 virus and from the Delta variant. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord keep you and your loved ones from all evil, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. And all the people said amen. God bless you.