Joseph Prince - Wisdom For Holy Living
Y'all ready for God's Word? Let me tell you God's heart for you, okay? The heart of our Father for you is that there's more to life than just living day-to-day, you know, providing for our children, planning for the future in terms of holidays. You know, all this is wonderful. It's part and parcel of life. It's what, you know, makes life enjoyable, amen? But God's calling for you is eternal. There is an eternal call on you and I that goes beyond this life. The Father and his children, his family, God has the whole universe for our inheritance, amen.
And God has repaired a beautiful place, paradise, heaven, whatever you call it. The Bible calls it a New Jerusalem for us to live in forever and ever and this time with a body. We're not gonna float around like a, you know, a spirit or a soul. We're gonna have bodies. The Bible says our bodies will be transformed like Jesus's body when he rose if the dead. We'll live in bodies. We're able to shake hands. We can relate to one another and life there, even though we can't imagine here on earth, we cannot fathom it because we've been so confined. Like, you know, there's Chinese proverb that says, don't ask the fish about water, right, why? Because the fish is so used to the water, he cannot describe it. We are so used to this life, we cannot fathom a life that's better. We enjoy the pleasures and entertainments of this life. We cannot imagine there's something greater but I'll tell you this, God created this life, right?
So, when God tells us something is better, God knows how you design your body in such a way in that glorious body you can take all the pleasures, and the joys, and the blessings that God has for us in our eternal call, amen? So, very soon Jesus will return. You see, your life is not just, you know, day-to-day, but very soon Christ will return. We'll receive our new bodies and he will rule on the earth, amen. His kingdom will be established on the earth. He'll set every wrong right, amen. He will rule. You know, he redeemed this earth, he redeemed all of us by his blood, but we know there are forces. Sometimes people are liberated but the enemies are still the squatters, or the enemies are still holding on to the land so the land has been purchased by the rightful owner now, but there are people refusing to leave the land or their enemies trying to oppose the new owner.
So, the same thing for the Lord, he has redeemed us by his blood but when he comes again, he's gonna redeem by power, amen. He's gonna redeem by power and the power of darkness, the devil, will not be able to hold anything back. And the Bible says, we are waiting for the redemption of our bodies, amen. So even right now, our bodies are aging, we're advancing in years. Like for me now 35 years old is not easy, you know what I'm saying? But, you know, even then we don't have to accept. Growing old is a curse, amen? So, while we are waiting for Jesus to return, let's believe God for renewal of youth and strength, amen. Praise the Lord.
But the good news is that when Christ returns, we'll have a brand-new body. Even this body right now we still need healing here and there, amen? We need repair. There's wear and tear, but that new body needs no repair. It will never grow old. It will never have disease. We'll never feel tired, and we'll never die ever again; what a life. We cannot fathom it, but it's gonna be greater, amen? Life is more than just living day-to-day, hand-to-mouth, preparing our children for PSLE. No, it's more than that, amen? Life is eternal and the eternal life that Christ came to give us is something that you don't want to miss. Praise the Lord.
Now, we're continuing our teaching on hesed wisdom, grace wisdom, and we have looked at the person of Solomon but remember this, some people still have this idea that Solomon grew up with a special brain. You know, I was sitting with a Jewish leader recently, a statesman, a prominent man, and I asked him, "Why do you think that the Jewish people are able to tap into that brain power"? You know, he actually has no answer. He says, "By necessity, but actually there are a lot of communities that also confine in dire straits and difficult situations where they don't tap into the brain power but Jewish people, it is because of God's blessing".
They're no special than us, but God called them and because God called them, God is able to release into their lives something that he gave Solomon and this is found in 1 Kings 4. It says, "And God gave Solomon wisdom and exceeding great understanding and largeness of heart, like the sand on the seashore. Thus Solomon's wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the men of the East and all the wisdom of Egypt. He was wiser than all men — than Ethan, and Heman," and all the rest. And the Bible says that all man came to hear the wisdom of Solomon. Now, it tells us very clearly that God gave Solomon wisdom. If that is how Solomon got his wisdom, then you and I can rejoice because if God gave it to him, God can give it to us. Can I have a good amen?
Obviously wisdom from God is not cultivated by education. You know, we study a lot. We educate ourselves, but what education does is that it helps you accumulate knowledge, but wisdom is the ability to use that knowledge, and not only use the knowledge. Because we are very poor, we are very limited, we are bound if we only use knowledge that we know, or that we have, or we possess. But the thing is that God can give us wisdom beyond ourselves, beyond our age, beyond our experience, beyond our education.
There is something called the spirit of man on the inside and the Book of Proverbs, the book of wisdom written by Solomon by the Holy Spirit says this, that the spirit of man is the candle of the Lord or the lamp of God. The spirit of man is the candle of the Lord. God lights up the candle and then you have inspiration. That's why sometimes before you sign something, before you decide on something, before you say yes to something, there's something on the inside telling you no, don't do it. There's no peace. And it goes beyond your analytical mind. Before your mind can analyze, before your mind can do the deductions, before your mind can weigh the pros and the cons, something inside you tells you, no, no, don't get into a relationship with this person. There's something scratchy on the inside. There's no peace. And when you obey it, you find that the explanation always comes later. The understanding comes later. The knowledge comes later. But before that, this is faster than your brain.
And David says in the Psalms, "Thou has put wisdom in the inward parts". God puts wisdom in the inward parts. It's not your brain. It's not just your brain. God puts wisdom in the inward parts, and your inward parts is quicker than your brain. You will see things before you understand it, amen. How to explain what you see, you cannot explain but you see it and that's what preaching of the Word is all about. It is preaching things and then you're able to see some things, but it's hard for you to explain. But many a times what my ministry does is that a lot of people say this to me that "you put words, you put theology, you put explanation to what I already know inside. When you explain the God of the Bible in the way, actually I know him to be like that. I knew him to be like that. But you put words, you give me verses. You give me the Scriptures that substantiate what I already know". And that is true ministry. Ministry must confirm what you have in your heart and that's why when you share truth, it resonates with your spirit. Can I have a good amen?
And the Bible teaches us, let's look at if God gave Solomon, where does this giving take place? How does it come to us? In Proverbs chapter 2 it says, "For the Lord--" Let's all read together. "For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding". The Lord gives, what? Wisdom. Now, the next three words, say it together. "From his mouth". The Bible is God breathed, the Bible is God breathed. 2 Timothy 3 tells us this, but evil man before - drop down to verse 16. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God. The word "inspiration" of God is the word Theos. The word "Theos" means God, neustos, which is breathed. All Scripture in the Bible is God breathed and God made man from the dust of the ground. That's his body.
So, man was like a mannequin, and God breathed into man and man became a living soul. It was the breath of God that made man a living soul and all Scripture is God breathed. That's why man does not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. If this is God breathed, our very existence, our life, even our health, depends on the Word of God. If we are lacking in that life force, in that health, amen, then we can go to the Word because God's breath is all over this Word, amen? We can breathe in the breath of God that gave us life in the first place. Can I have a good amen, amen?
And that's why the Bible says, you know, when you spend time reading... I know of one person who was diagnosed with a tumor of the jaw and it was a malignant tumor. And I don't even believe he was a Christian but he went home. He was quite depressed and he told his wife, "Can you bring me the Bible"? All of a sudden, you know the wife was quite partial because he never reads the Bible. So, she brought the Bible to him and he started reading the Bible. So, from one day of reading, became another day of reading, become protracted times of reading. He got interested in the stories. He start reading the Bible. He sort of forgot about his symptoms and all that. In due course, he found that his symptoms got lesser and lesser as he read the Bible more. Then one day he went back to the doctor and doctor says, "I can't explain it, but it seems like it's gone into remission or the condition is no longer there, but probably it will not last". Well, since that happened until now, many years have come and gone and it's never returned.
Just spending time in the Word, there is a breath that first gave you life, amen? And that's why in Proverbs 4, verse 22, it says for God's words they, they God's words, are life to those who find them and health, to how much of their flesh? To all their flesh. So, spending time in God's Word is able to give you life and health to all your body. Don't try to spiritualize this, spiritualize this. It doesn't say health to your spirit, it's health to all, to all your flesh, amen? Some medicines are specifically targeted like a magic bullet for one particular organ, one particular condition, but God's words is the only medicine that is health to all our flesh. Can I have a good amen?
And that's why going back to 2 Timothy, it tells us about the end times. You go bark verses earlier, verse 13, it tells us about the times. This is Paul's swan song. It was the last letter that Paul wrote. He said, "I fought a good fight in this letter. I've kept the faith. I've finished my course". Paul's race is up. He wants to meet the Lord and this is the last letter he wrote. And he talks about the times that we'll live in. He talks about our times. He prophesied about the future and this is what he said, "But evil men and imposters will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived".
Isn't it true that evil though we evangelize and we try to reach as many people as possible, the gospel of Jesus Christ and thank God many are responding, amen? Many are responding to the gospel but then the fact remains that in the world, Paul prophesied in the days that you and I live in, evil men and imposters will grow worse and worse. They will deceive and people will be deceived. Don't be deceived. How can we not be deceived. You know, today we live in a world where wrong is right and right is wrong. They are really defining a lot of things and our children are confused if we don't give them definitions about life, amen?
Even the definition of holiness, for example, holiness is not just oh, you know, you live in such a way that you look down on other people. You know people have this idea of holiness like, "I'm holier than you, stay your ground and don't come near me. I'm holier than you". No, this is this thinking pride, amen? This is pharisaical, this is what Jesus came against, amen. Jesus's holiness was such that he never compromised on sin. He never compromised. He never came down to the level of people he ministered to, yet he moves amongst them as one of them. The appellation that the Pharisees put against him was meant to insult. They called him the friend of sinners and yet it became a most glorious brand of grace that he would wear everywhere he goes, amen? A friend of sinners, what a wonderful appellation, amen, of our Lord Jesus.
But his holiness wasn't such that, you know, it's like "Holier than thou, don't come near me". In fact, he invited them to come to him. He touched the leper and they were cleansed. He cast out demons. He ministered healing to the blind. He raised the dead and he moved amongst them blessing them, always healing, always repairing, always lifting, always encouraging, always showing God to them, what God really is like, and that's holiness. Holiness is uncommonness. The opposite of holiness is not sin. The opposite of holiness is common, commonness.
So, when God says, "I make you holy," even in the Hebrew, the word kadosh and in the Greek for holiness, hagios, it all means set apart. There are some things in your house, it is so special, you set it apart under lock and key, amen? Even your clothes that you like, you separate them from other clothes because you know that it cannot get crumpled like other clothes. It's special and all that because you value them. Well, holiness means set apart for God's purposes and plans, amen? It is not holier than thou attitude. It is actually being princely, being the sons and daughters of God. God says, "You are now sons and daughters of God. Walk worthy of the calling by which he called you". God called you for the heavenly call. So when people are around you, they sense like they're with someone who smells the atmosphere of heaven, and yet the person is relatable. The person is homely, yet there is something that will not compromise on the morality or the moral atmosphere of that day. Can you understand what I'm saying?
And the Word of God is able to bring you to that place when you read God's Word, Jesus said it like this, "Sanctify them through thy truth. Thy word is truth". And then he said this, "For their sakes, I sanctify myself". So, if sanctification is just as don't sin. Some people say holiness means don't sin. If that is defined as holiness or sanctification then what did Jesus mean when he say, "For their sakes I sanctify myself"? Jesus has no sin. No, the word "sanctify" means set apart for God's purposes. That means you become uncommon. Where most people are depressed, you have the peace of God that passes understanding. Where most people are crushed and, you know, they are really looking for answers, you walk with certainty because you know who loves you and you know the calling by which he called you.
In a world of conjectures, and perhaps, and maybes, and suppositions, you live in a world of certainty. You know who made you, amen. Men who live by their brain power, they try to reason God out. They sit in judgment of God's Word when God's Word should sit in judgment over them. They are but a created being whose breath is in their nostrils, yet they sit in judgment of the Bible, amen? When the Bible, the Word of God, will judge them one day.
We claim, you know, we say things like, "Well, you know there's nothing-everything's by happenstance. You know, the world started with a big bang. God didn't create everything". Everything that is blown or out of chaos never comes out in cosmos, never comes out in order. Everything that's blown up is in dissipation, is in disarray, it's in confusion. It's never in proper order. Look at the earth. If there was a big bang and I believe when God says, "Light be," there was a big bang, amen, amen? But order came out of it, divine cosmos came out of it. You know, the earth, if the earth is just a few miles, not hundreds even, a few miles away from the sun, it will freeze. If the earth is just a few miles nearer to the sun, it will burn. Everything is exactly where it's supposed to be, but no one created it. It just so happens to be.
And man says, "Well, we all came from" Where did we come? "Well, we just came from, you know, monkeys all the way down to the" So, first it was a tadpole that beginning to begin. Then he was a frog with his tail tucked in. Then he was a monkey up in a banyan tree. Now, he's a doctor with a PhD. All right, so, let me tell you this, evolution is still a theory. Don't let anyone tell you it's a fact. It is still a theory, amen? We live if a world where there's a lot of theories and suppositions and but the Bible says, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth," amen. And that's why you have something more than just a brain. You have a gut feel, an instinct. You know things, amen? And with the Holy Spirit there, you know even better. You're acute, you are sharp, praise the Lord.
We are called to live life more than just our physical needs being fulfilled and being satisfied. We know that that doesn't satisfy us deep down on the inside because we are more than just a soul and a body. We are a spirit being. Can I have a good amen? So, the Lord gives wisdom, amen? And it says that what must you do when in a world of deceiving and being deceived? You must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them". And that from childhood, you have known the holy Scriptures. Paul is writing to Timothy telling him, "Remember this? All right, from childhood, you have known the holy Scriptures, the Word of God, the holy Scriptures that is breathed by God". These holy Scriptures are able to make you wise for salvation through faith, which in Christ Jesus and the Word which are able to make you wise.
The word "able" there is dynamite, dynamic, dynamo. It's from the word "dunamis". It is able to dynamite you into wisdom. It is able to empower you. It's able to make you wise. Actually the word to make you wise is one Greek word, sophizo or sophizo. The word "Sophia" in the verb form is sophizo. It's able to make you Sophia. It's able to make you wise. By the way, Sophia is the Hebrew for chokhmah, for wisdom. The most frequently used word for wisdom in the Old Testament is chokhmah. In the Greek translation, the Septuagint of the Old Testament where it says chokhmah, it says Sophia. Right, Sophia is chokhmah in Hebrew which is the wisdom that God gives.
Now, there's wisdom that God gives to the world as well to govern the earth, to govern the nations, to come up with innovative ideas for the betterment of mankind's life. You know, there's a wisdom that God causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust, his sun to shine on the righteous and the unrighteous, but there's a wisdom that God gives only to his children and this come from the Scriptures which are able to make you wise.
Wise, it's able to make you wise, unto what? Unto salvation through faith is in Christ Jesus. Make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ. Now listen, many of us think that well, it's just for that purpose, to make us to bring us to a saving knowledge of Jesus and then it's done. No, no, no, this verse is not talking about just a saving knowledge. The word "salvation" is an all-encompassing word. It is the word for healing. This word salvation, soteria, is the word for healing. It's the word for wholeness. It's the word for completeness. It's the word for peace. It's the word for prosperity, amen?
So, when Jesus came, had it been Greek, right, God would have said, "Call his name soteria," but because he came as a Jew, God says, "Call his name Yeshua," which is the Hebrew for soteria in the Greek. It's an all-encompassing word. When they touch him, whatever they need, all right, salvation imparted to them. If they need healing, it was healing. If they need five loaves and two fish to multiply to feed the hunger of more than 5,000 people, it became so. Whatever the need was, salvation was there to provide. Can I have a good amen? So, God's words, as you spend time with it, it's able to make you wise, sophizo you to all the salvation, that rich word "salvation". Whether you need healing, whether you need a supply in your life, it's able to make you wise for that and release faith in you, faith in Christ. Isn't it wonderful, amen?
Let's say, you know, you are in National Service and you are serving your nation, right? You got all kinds of people in your platoon, all kinds of different levels and all that. Remember what I said, being holy is not having holier than thou attitude, it's being princely. It is like someone is in the presence of a princess and yet the princess is dressed like any of them, but they sense that person has a call higher than them. You know, it's like a why do people value diamonds? Well, they're uncommon. Rocks are not, stones are not, they're a dime a dozen.
Friend, don't be common. God has called you to be holy or God has called you to be uncommon. Where people are divorcing, you're staying true. Where people hate, you love, amen. And even your life, there is a radiance even in circumstances that are hard that people can see that radiance and they will acknowledge that in you are the truth. You know, when, you know, in the army especially, there's always a desire to be different, I mean to be one of them, to be like he's in the group, you know? To be cool. "I want to be cool, I want to be part of them," but really it is a lack of moral fortitude. It's a lack of courage that causes us not to be uncommon. Even though we want to do what's right, we are afraid that people will laugh at us.
I remember when I was posted in the Navy and we had this long attachment where our navel ship would be going to Taiwan. And there were we, we would dock after many days of out in the ocean. We were very glad to arrive our destination at Kaohsiung, Taiwan. And I remember it was my first time there. A few of them were some of them, among my friends were regular, some of my superiors were regulars, and most of my friends were not. They were national servicemen like me. But I did not know why they were so excited when they dock. And then there was a fence at the naval base in Kaohsiung and there were all kinds of ladies on bicycles down there. "Hey," waving, waving. I thought they were being friendly so we waved back, hallelujah, you know? And my friends were all excited and all that. Some of them had been there before, you know, so they knew what was in store. I didn't understand. I was just waving at them. I thought they were being friendly. Then we got a chance to have some R&R, some days off and we went off together, my friends and I.
You know, I have some good friends with me and most of them were not believers. In fact, all of them, I think, were not believers. And we went out, you know, and just for a whole day of fun and all that. We ate, we shopped, and all that and as the evening dawned, I could hear them converse with each other. When they switched in the Hokkien a lot, I know they are saying something to each other. They think I do not know but I know. My mom is Hokkien. So, I know what they're saying, they're saying that, you know, "Yeah, we like to go there, but he's here with us. What should we do? You know, he's a Christian, right? And so how to go"? So, I told them, "Hey guys, I think I'll go back to the ship".
Now, no one does that. You know, you're supposed to be enjoying your day, your off and new day, and you know you're supposed to enjoy your day off. And, you know, instead of going... who goes back to the ship? You've been on the ship for days. So I said, "I'm going back. Hey guys, you just go ahead whatever". And they, "No, no, join us". I know they were going to pretend, you know, but I said it's okay, all right? So, I went back to my ship and I remember that when I arrived at the dock and those guys who were on duty on the ship, they look at me and say, "Aiyoh, why are you back"? I said, "No, I just want to come back". Another one says, "Siao". Siao means crazy, all right? Another one of them said, "Why not take my post, you know"? But, of course, we can't, we have different vocations and all that. And they called me all kinds of things, and I just walked all the way in and propped myself in my bunk somewhere, opened my book and started reading.
I felt very lonely. It was very quiet, virtually no one on board except for those on duty. And it was very lonely, all right, but I took my time. And there was a voice that was speaking to me. "You know what's wrong? Have some fun. Go out, you know? Join your friends". But there I was all alone, and I knew that there was a call on my life. I was reading the Book of Proverbs in those days. I would read things like this in the Book of Proverbs, "For at the window of my house," Proverbs 7, Solomon says, "I looked through my lattice, my curtain, and I saw among the simple. I perceived among the youths, a young man devoid of understanding". So, no wisdom, no understanding. Passing along the street near her corner, he took the path to her house in the twilight, in the evening, in the black and dark night. And there a woman met him with the attire of a harlot, a prostitute, and a crafty heart.
Now, this is not just applicable for those women that you see sometimes when you, you know, you are at a certain mall somewhere or whatever and you pass by. If you're in the upper floor, you know, and the door is open, they say, "Hi". And you turn around and they are dressed in that kind of attire. You know what I'm saying? Y'all don't look like you don't know what I'm talking about, okay? And this can apply not just the kind of situation where it's definitely a clear-cut case, but also that flirtatious colleague that you have in your workplace, that girl that's flirting with you and you enjoy it, secretly you enjoy it. It applies to situations like that.
Well, let me show you the ending of it, all right, for women as such. Right at the end it says this, drop down, "She has cast down many," not a few, "many wounded, and all who were slain by her was strong men. Her house is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death". I'll read things like this and I did not know that it has sophizo effect on me, amen? So, even though I was a young man, still am at 35, you know, I didn't know it had a effect on me that this verse also come to my mind. And I looked at those women and I realized that, okay, they look attractive, amen, just like that lady at the mall. She looks attractive waiting outside, asking you come in for a massage or things like that. But the thing is this, what you do not know is these verses that says that she will slay you down, many of you wounded. Her chambers go down to death. I'm not just referring to AIDS, I'm referring to all kinds of death.
Well, anyway, there I was all alone in my bunk. They came back very late and when finally we took off back to Singapore, that many days in Singapore, one by one my friends, they came to me and they will say this to me, "You know, when I go to the restroom, I feel pain, you know, like burning sensation, why"? I say, "I don't know, you need a blood test for that". You know, then another guy will come and you can't really do any blood test on board because you have to go back to Singapore. Many of them, they came to me and said, "You know, I have these rashes in that area and all that, how come? Do you think I contracted something? Do you think I..". You know, I said, I do not know.
All right, then another one comes say, "Ay," explains the same thing. "I don't feel comfortable when I go to the restroom". But one person on board never had to worry about all that. All the way back to Singapore, this person knows that he knows that he knows that he won't get it. I knew in my heart I never did it so I never have to worry about it, you see? There's something more powerful than nuclear weapon and the Russian guy who with the Jewish connections and all that actually who did the nuclear weaponry equipped Russia many years ago with the weapon. Before he passed on he said this, "There is something more powerful than nuclear weapons". This Russian guy who said it, the one who created the nuclear armory for Russia. He said this, "Something more powerful than nuclear weapon and it is the truth". Pontius Pilate asked Jesus, "What is truth"? Veritas in Latin. He asked him, "What is truth"? Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. You shall know the truth and the truth will set you free".
Sometimes you can be misunderstood. You can be like Joseph and all the rest. You can actually be maligned and all that, but truth will always, always outlast a lie, always. And if you know you did the truth. So, for me, all the journey back, I was the happiest person. And I kid you not, a few of them that I prayed God heal, a few of them I prayed went for a blood test and all that, came back okay. And a few of them were married, regular men and all that who are regulars, you know, who sign on and all that. They are people who are my friends, you know, but they're not faithful to their wives. There are some of them, they were diagnosed with certain conditions but they were few who came to Jesus. But one person that had peace in his heart all the way back. Y'all know who is it by now, right, amen?
Why? Because now was I trying to "I'm holier than you, I'm better than you"? No, no, of course not. Hey, but for the grace of God I'll be just, you know, I'll be indulging in sin but because the Word of God sophizo me. It set me apart. "Sanctify them through thy truth," our Savior prayed. "Thy Word is truth". God's Word has a power to separate you from the evil of this world and separate is not just separate from. It's separate unto his purity, his beauty. We are designed for beauty. We're designed for wholeness. We were designed for symmetry. We were designed for order and when our world is out of whack, we get depressed. Ugliness is nothing more than symmetry, beauty out of order. There is a moral beauty. There is a beauty that is not holier than thou attitude. It is like, "I'm with y'all but for the grace of God". Can I have a good amen?
See, a girl was teased by her friends because she's a virgin. In the world today, can you believe it? People are teasing, making fun of someone because she's a virgin. One day she asked God for wisdom, she got tired of her friends, her classmates making fun of her and she turned around says, "For you to be like you, one night will do it. For y'all to be like me, never again". Now, I want to say a word here. There is no condemnation to you if you've lost your virginity. God can still restore the spirit and glory of virginity. If you turn to him, he still can restore that, especially when it was taken from you. So, I'm not condemning or putting down anyone here. I'm just telling you that God wants us to live the princely life, the life of the princess. Can I have a good amen?
Yet, it is the prince that came down to wash our feet, amen, to lift us up, amen. Where the word of a king is power, our Lord Jesus went around using that kingly power to cleanse the leper, amen, to heal the sick, to bless and set free the oppressed. That is our life. That is a calling of true holiness. Holiness is uncommonness so dare to be a Daniel, dare to be an Esther. In the world that compromises, you don't. Can I have a good amen? So, go back again to 2 Timothy, the Word of God is able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
Let's suppose one day you are reading God's Word. Not only it has this holy effect, sanctifying effect. Sometimes you can feel it but don't depend on feeling. When you are sick, the best thing to do is to spend time, especially at home, right? Or something in the hospital, R.I.B., rest in bed. C.R.I.B., crib, completely rest in bed. You got plenty of time to read, amen. You can relax. You can just read and the world we live in today, even in the dark you can read without, you know, disturbing your wife or your husband. But reading is a lost art. When you spend time reading the Word of God, it has an effect of life, and therapeutic, and healing. We learned that just now. Not only that, it has an impartation of wisdom. You're no more the same. You don't have to understand everything.
When a child washes his hands, he doesn't know all the components of H2O and all the chemicals that make up the water and what not. All he has to do is use it. God's Word is not for you to understand everything. I don't understand everything. I'm still learning like every one of you. At the age of 35, thank God I still got a lot more to go. But, you know, when you wash your hands, the boy doesn't understand everything. Are his hands still clean? Yes, amen. Just use it. If you read God's Word, it has cleansing effect. It has a healing effect. The word "Rapha" it comes from the Hebrew word the root word is "Rapha," which is let go, relax. I can't explain to you, it's not like when I read God's Word straight away I get healed, but there is a relaxing effect. I start feeling like, you know, I'm in touch with reality. I'm in touch with the truth, yet there's some very, I would say, even gory details and violence in the Bible, yet there is a beauty and how it all turns out that sort of like has a therapeutic affect on me. When I see God in it, I get hope. I find courage, amen? Can I have a good amen?
Supposing you're reading one day and you're about to confront your husband about some bad habit he has or, you know, something or you're about to confront your teenage boy about something and all that, and you are reading your Bible for that day. I'm just giving you an example of sophizo, how God's Word is able to make you wise. And let's say you're about to give the tough approach, you know? And or you might be a young person, you're wondering what kind of speech you should have because all your friends are using profanity and vulgarity. And it's kind of cool and you don't use it means you're out of it, you're not cool and all that, you know, and you're wondering what kind of speech to have. Well, one day you are reading the Word of God and you're wondering how to influence this person who is a person of influence himself, okay, whatever it is.
Then you come to Proverbs 25. You're reading this, "By long forbearing is a prince persuaded, and a soft tongue breaketh the bone". So, you are reading this and you're wondering, "I'm going for an interview or I'm meeting up with my boss. I'm gonna talk to my boss about this or whatever. How do I impact this person of influence"? And God is saying, by long forbearing. Or you want to talk to your husband or you wife and, you know, many a times when you get aggravated, your flesh is getting aggravated. It's not your spirit, right? Your flesh is getting aggravated. You can never impact someone when your flesh is being aggravated. Flesh activates flesh and then the flesh activates the flesh and then you return the flesh activates the flesh. That's how husbands and wives fight, amen?
Somewhere along the way, someone needs to have long forbearing. Long forbearing means, what? The two bears you must have in your marriage is bear and forebear, and if she want to bring along, she can bring Winnie the Pooh bear, all right? But if someone is long forbearing, you listen to the person. You let your husband say it out, talk it out, or you let your wife share her heart out. Just like the Queen of Sheba, she came to King Solomon and the Bible says she asked him all the hard questions that's on her heart. The king here is a picture of Jesus Christ, our King, who is the greater than Solomon. What's the response from the King when you reveal your heart to him?
The Bible says, "There was not a thing that Solomon did not answer her or reveal to her that was on his heart". In other words, when you come to God, don't come with this protocol prayer, "Oh, almighty God, we know you're the great one and we come to you," you know? And God is thinking, "What are you talking about"? And just says, "Lord," matter of time he'll give up. No, come to God, "Abba Father," and then tell him your worries and you cares. Tell him, "I'm worried about this, about my son. I'm worried about this. I have this fear about this symptom in my body. I've got this concern about this. I'm afraid I'm losing my mind. I'm afraid of..". Whatever it is, tell the Lord, pour out your heart like Queen of Sheba did. She poured out all her hard questions that's on her heart to King Solomon and the king in turn did not hold back one thing that was on his heart in terms of the answers.
So, as you open up to the Lord many a times I find I may take a walk and just pour out my heart to the Lord, things that you cannot even reveal to your best friend, things that are so intimate you just tell God. The more honest you are, the more you'll find this experience an amazing one because you'll find God's response. Sometimes it comes back like a peace. Sometimes it may not come then and there, but the answer comes the next day or the day after. It will come. As you pour out your heart, you expose your heart to the Lord, the Lord opens up his heart to you and gives you the secrets of his heart. Can I have a good amen?
So, you learn by long forbearing it's a prince. A prince is someone of influence, someone of position, and a person who can make things different for you. So, you learn by long forbearing. It can be your wife. She's a princess in your house, right? How do you persuade her? By long forbearing. And in case you are buying into this philosophy of tough talk from Iron Man, from all the heroes and the superheroes and all that, all right, you know, you learn from the Word of God it's a soft tongue that breaks the bone. The real Iron Man, if he's married to a wife, he will have to learn to speak gently to her as well, amen. You cannot just go around with profanities all the time and expect a happy marriage.
All right, so you learn a soft tongue is so powerful it breaks the bone. The words that remain until today are words that our Lord spoke. Great men have spoken down through history with no profanities, and it's remained to this day, and it still transforms lives. Our Lord Jesus, perfect example, amen. His words still transform lives. A soft tongue is so powerful. Don't underestimate. It breaks the bone. Or maybe you're not reading this, but one day you're reading a story in the Bible, in the Old Testament. How can the Old Testament apply to today? And maybe you are at a place where you are in a position of leadership and you're wondering how to relate to people. And then the Lord shows you, because you wanna be tough, you know? And in the world that we live in today and even the media and all that, it's telling us to be tough.
All the heroes are tough. So, we gotta be tough. And then we start reading this story about how King Solomon passed on. And you know the story of King Solomon? He had wisdom and all that, but one thing though, he departed from the Lord later on in his life. He started worshiping idols. Now, one thing about God is that the gifts of God is without changing of his mind, without repentance. But his wisdom, King Solomon's wisdom became corrupted. Just like Lucifer, when he fell and became Satan, God did not say his wisdom departed. God says, "Now your wisdom is corrupted. You have corrupted your wisdom". So, there's a wisdom. The devil uses music. The devil uses approaches to the young generation, amen. But his wisdom is corrupted.
So, Solomon in his old age, when he departed from the Lord - don't forget, no matter whatever you do, wisdom is not an it. Wisdom is tied up to the Lord. And you depart from the Lord, you depart from wisdom. In Proverbs 9, it says, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom". And one thing the devil today, compared to you, the devil does not have is that wisdom. His wisdom is corrupted, not the kind of wisdom that God gives you, because you know why? He doesn't fear the Lord, therefore he has not even begun in wisdom. You have the fear of the Lord, therefore it's the beginning of wisdom. Can I have a good amen?
So, you are reading the story one day and you're thinking, "What sort of approach, what kind of leadership should I have? Amen, should I be aggressive, assertive, passive"? All these trees, what the world says be assertive, but sometimes assertiveness can go into aggressiveness. It's very subtle. No man can be balanced without the Holy Spirit. So you are reading this story about Solomon. In his last days, he taxed the people very hard, amen, so the people were not happy. When King Solomon passed on, his son took over. His son's name was Rehoboam. Say, "Rehoboam," somebody. Yeah, Rehoboam. Okay, Rehoboam had people come to him led by a guy called Jeroboam. Rehoboam is the king, Solomon's son. Jeroboam came with the people of Israel, and they pleaded with the king, the new king, saying that, "Your father made our taxes very heavy, and oppressed us, and all that. Could you just relieve it for us, please? Could you relieve it"? He says, "You guys go off for three days, all right. Come back after three days and I'll give you an answer".
Let's follow the story. So, you are reading this story one day and you are asking God what kind of leadership you should have. So, "King Rehoboam consulted the elders who stood before his father Solomon while he still lived". So, these elders are elderly people, and they stood and they heard the wisdom of Solomon that you and I have access to in the 31 chapters of the book of Proverbs. This man lived day and day out listening to the wisdom of Solomon before he departed from Lord. So, this man was also wise man. And King Rehoboam asked them, "'How do you advise me to answer these people?' And they spoke to him, saying, 'If you will be a servant to these people today, and serve them, and answer them, and speak good words to them, then they will be your servants forever.'"
Right? You got it? Servant, servant leadership. The only servant leader that I know of that epitomizes beauty of holiness is our Lord Jesus. He's a King, but he's a servant. He uses his position to bless, amen? So, be a servant king to them. Speak good words to them. And then, "He rejected the advice which the elders had given him, and consulted the young men who had grown up with him, who stood before him. And he said to them, 'What advice do you give? How should we answer this people who have spoken to me, saying, "Lighten the yoke which your father put on us"?' Then the young men," wanting to be tough, they watch a lot of Avengers stories and all that, everyone is tough. One has a hammer, one has this, one have fire. Always rough, you know? And the world thinks that's the way marriages that's how we build good relationship.
And the young men advised him, "This is how you speak to them, okay, who said to you, 'Your father made our yoke heavy, but you make it lighter on us' - thus you shall say to them: 'My little finger shall be thicker than my father's waist! And now, whereas my father put a heavy yoke on you, I will add to your yoke; my father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scourges!'" In the Hebrew, it's actually with scorpions. I'll make it even worse. And he thinks that this tough talk is what gets the people, you know, establishes his position as a leader, a person of power. "So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam the third day," all right, when he told them to come back. Verse 13, "Then the king answered the people roughly, and rejected the advice which the elders had given him; and this is what he said according to the advice of the young men, right, 'My father chastised you with whips, I will chastise you with scorpions!'"
Church, you know what's the result of this? Have you heard about the Old Testament, the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah? You ever wonder why there's a split? It happened here. Jeroboam, the leader of the one who represented the people to bring up the question to the king, right after this, he said, "Away Israel, off to your own tents," and they split into the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom. The southern kingdom, which is the kingdom of Rehoboam, the kingdom of Judah, were only made of two tribes, Judah and Benjamin. The rest of the ten tribes went north. Very sad. You think words don't matter? Words matter. How we speak to people matter. Words cannot be recalled. Only one person who never had to retrace his steps, never had to recall a word, and that's our Lord Jesus. In him is no sin. He did no sin. He knew no sin. But you and I, man, we need Jesus as our wisdom every single day of our lives, amen?
Or perhaps you are thinking, "I'm reading the law. Why did God give us so many laws? And we're not under the law, but under grace". For example, you read Deuteronomy 35, verse 4, right? It tells you this, Deuteronomy 25, verse 4, "You shall not muzzle the ox when he treads out the corn". Okay, the ox is eating, going round and round treading the corn, separating the grain from the chaff. Why did God give us this law? Maybe God is kind to animals. Yes, he is, but it's more than that. Paul used this in 1 Corinthians 9 and he taught us to pay our leaders well. Leaders that preach the Word of God, all right? "Do I say these things as a mere man? Or does not the law say the same also? It's written in the law of Moses, 'Don't muzzle the ox when it treads out the grain.' Is it the oxen that God is concerned about"? Or is it more?
Drop down, "Or does He say it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written, that he who plows should plow in hope, and he who threshes in hope should partake of this hope. If we have sown" Paul is saying, "If we have sown spiritual things unto you, is it a great thing if we reap your material things"? Every pastor who preaches the Word of God faithfully, any church that's watching me right now, you ought to take care of your pastors. You ought to make sure that the one who preaches the Word - and that's why God gave the law. From the law, you draw wisdom. The Holy Spirit is able to translate that into wisdom. And Paul uses this same phrase in 1 Timothy 5. He says this, "Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honor". Double honor here is double pay actually. In the NLT it tells you, "Elders who do their work well should be respected and paid well".
Okay, go back to the New King James, "Especially those who labor in the word and doctrine. For the Scripture says, 'You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain,' and, 'The laborer is worthy of his wages.'" You know who said, "The laborer is worthy of his wages"? Jesus. Jesus said this. The laborer, his ministers. Now, I wanna say a word, because this church is nice to me, no problem, okay? I don't draw a salary from you all, but you are all nice to me. But listen, I want to speak a word to all the council members and leaders of churches all over the world that's listening and following this ministry. Take care of your pastors. When you take care of them well, they will minister to you well. They will feed you well. Make sure they don't have to buy those thick books, and study, and commentary, and all that with their own money. Build for them a library. If they feed well, they will feed you well, amen?
Take care of your pastor. Make sure that they rest well. Let them go for holidays, amen. And you church people sponsor them, amen? But this is not for this church. This church, I put a law on them, they cannot sponsor me. I pay for myself and I don't draw a salary from this church. It's because it gives me the freedom to say things like this at times like this. And this is something from the Lord from me, okay? Make sure you take care of your pastors. Okay, now, so, you draw wisdom. Even in leadership, you can draw wisdom from these kind of things, amen?
Let me bring this to a close, but I just wanna say this to you. Do you know that in spite of the wisdom of Solomon in all these areas, you know he departed from the Lord? He left the Lord, and therefore his wisdom became corrupted. Whatever you do when you are separated and you've lost - can you understand when I say you need that vital contact with Jesus every day? We know we are the body of Christ and there can be no separation. I understand that, but you know what I mean when I say, "We need a vital contact with Jesus". You all know when there's a contact with Jesus, something streams and flows from him into your spirit. You can't explain it, but you know it. That's life. There's a quickening. There's a warm heart, Emmaus Road experience. It's like you went through a bath. And that's what we're gonna have this coming encounter night. Amen.
I'm gonna preach myself happy. But you know that there's a wisdom that Solomon says that there are three things, he gave us a quadruplet of four line of wisdom sayings, okay, in the book of Proverbs. It's a quadruplet. He says, "Three of them," the first three lines, "is too wonderful for me". The word "wonderful" there is the word "pele," where Pele, the player, got his name from, from his father. Even Brazilian and all that, but the root goes all the way back to the Hebrew. "Pele" means miracle, miracle-working, wonderful. Jesus's name, his name shall be called Pele. His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, literally Pele. So, here, Solomon says, "Three of them is too wonderful for me," pele, all right? It's beyond me. It takes a miracle to understand. Then he says, "The fourth one, I don't understand". The fourth one I don't understand.
So, I want to challenge you all. Right now, I want to challenge you all. Can you understand these four? Okay, those of you who heard the first service and you are here, you are disqualified, okay? The first four. Let's go to the quadruplet in Proverbs 30. "There are three things which are two wonderful for me, Yes, four which I do not understand: The way of an eagle in the air". So, there are three things too wonderful for him. The fourth, he says, "I don't understand". This is the wisdom of the man that the Bible says God gave him wisdom and the wisdom excelled the wise men of the East, even in China. His wisdom was such is excelled all the wise men in Israel, and their names are given in 1 Kings 4.
And yet he says, "Three things I don't understand. It's beyond me. The fourth one, I don't understand". So, the first one is, "The way of an eagle in the air, The way of a serpent on a rock, The way of a ship in the midst of the sea, And the way of a man with a virgin". Now, the fourth one he don't understand, "The way of a man with a virgin". He says, "I don't understand this". Now, you're talking to a man who has 1,000 women in his life. So, obviously it cannot refer to natural, you know, understanding, the way of a man with a virgin, okay? It must mean something spiritual, right? So, years ago, I asked the Lord. God opened up this passage to me. I said, "Open up this passage. Give me your secrets in this passage". Because I was challenged by the fact that Solomon cannot understand it, okay, and I would try to break the code.
So, I asked the Lord, "Give me something that is from you. It must be from you," I said. So I asked him many years ago and he has given me the answer, I believe. I'm gonna submit this to you, and you see whether it corresponds with what you have in your spirit, whether it brings up the amen in you, okay? Cool? All right, once you know this, hey, it gives you bragging rights that you know something that Solomon don't have, amen? No, I'm just teasing. All right, so, all learning should humble us. And that's what I wanna say this, that there are people who know Bible knowledge, but it doesn't give them a greater revelation of Jesus and his wonderful person. Because that's what humbles us. You know, when you realize who God is, you are grateful to have anything from God, amen? What are we but what he has made us to be?
Well, church, the first one, the way of an eagle in the air. There are four books on the story of Jesus. How many of us agree that every lock can be opened by the key, Jesus Christ, our Lord Jesus? How many agree with that? Christ is the theme of the entire Scripture. Am I right? You read the story of Joseph, a man rejected by his brothers, loved by his father, became the bread of life to the Gentile world, married a Gentile bride. Later on, he came to his brothers. They didn't recognize him. Then the second time he appeared, they recognized him. What is this? The story of a man who was persecuted? Yeah, you can learn a lot of things. The Bible is multi-layered. But above all, it's a story of Jesus. Joseph was loved by his Heavenly Father, sent with blessings to his brothers, yet they rejected him. The Jews rejected him, amen, and he became the bread of life.
For 2,000 years, Jesus Christ, who is a Jew, has become the Bread of Life to the Gentile world. Predominantly the church is made up of Gentiles, even though there are Jews, but not many. But later on, God has not forgotten Israel, amen? In the first coming, they didn't recognize him. In his first appearance to them, they didn't recognize Joseph with all his royal regalia and eye shadow, Johnny Depp makeup, all that. But the second time he revealed himself, they recognized him. And what did he do with all the power he has? He forgave them. That's what's gonna happen when Jesus returns.
The Bible says Israel was surrounded by all the nations. Zechariah tells us that. All the nations will surround Jerusalem. That's why when you read the Bible, it sophizos you. Why is it important that Jerusalem become the center of Israel? Does it really matter? Is it worth all the trouble? You will understand by reading Scriptures. The Scriptures talk to you about Jerusalem, how Jerusalem become a burdensome stone in the last days and all nations will try to deal with it, in the book of Zechariah. It tells us about how Jesus will return to Jerusalem. On Mount of Olives, his feet will touch down.
Why in the scheme of things this is so important? Why spiritual forces are at work in this battle over small real estate in the Middle East? It tells us why Russia is trying to accumulate its forces in the north of Israel, because one of the prophecies that has not yet happened in Ezekiel 38 is that Russia will come down from the north to attack Israel, and that has not happened. And that's not Armageddon, so it tells us that in the end times, people will see an event happen in Jerusalem and the whole world will see it. When it was written, John on the island of Patmos, satellite was not even heard of. But in the book of Revelation, every tongue, every nation will see the dead bodies in the streets of Jerusalem. It's talking about our times. The Bible is more modern than you think.
So, the Bible sophizos us, prepares us. History is learning what happened. The Bible will teach you why it happened, why Hitler tried to kill six million Jews and did kill six million Jews, why Israel came back as a nation in 1948. It tells you why. So, back to this. There are four stories of Jesus, 89 chapters in four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. When it comes to the early church, in the entire book of Acts, there's no story that's repeated four times. Why is God saying four stories of Jesus, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, four Gospels we call it, and yet it talks about the life of one man, his death, his resurrection, portrayed in different ways.
My teaching on the four faces of Jesus and the four Gospels is all out there. You can get it. It will give you wisdom. It will sophizo you, amen? It will help you understand. There are four colors in the Tabernacle, and then there are four Gospels. Now, watch this. The first one is the Gospel of Matthew. IT talks about Jesus as the King, the King of the Jews, right? What animal is portrayed there? There are four... by the way, if you go to the throne of God today physically, you will see... how many are glad you can go to God's throne any time, amen? But physically if you are there now - don't be in a hurry, okay?
I'm just saying. Physically if you are there now, all right, you will see on the throne of God, the throne of God is not like a static, you know, inanimate throne. It's a throne made of four faces. And you will find the faces of the cherubim, the face of a lion, the face of an ox, the face of a man, and the face of an eagle. The four faces of Jesus. In the Gospel of Matthew, it's the face of a lion, the king of the beasts, because the Gospel of Matthew is portraying him as a king. And that's why the genealogy of chapter 1 of Matthew does not trace all the way through the man Adam, the first man, but it traces all the way to Abraham and David. The promise of the King, because it's the Gospel of the King. And the lion is portrayed there because the lion is the king of the beasts.
Second gospel, gospel of Mark does not talk about genealogy. You don't ask a servant about his pedigree. So, it starts off by Jesus, working, working, working, healing, healing, repairing, repairing, restoring, restoring, and it's just work, work, work. And the face there is the face of an ox, the gospel of Mark. Then we have the third gospel, the gospel of Luke, and in no other gospel we find the phrase, "The Son of Man" so often used because it's a gospel about Jesus the man. And that's why in the gospel of Luke, his genealogy is traced all the way to Adam, the first man. And what is the face of gospel of Luke? Man, the face of a man. But the last gospel, gospel of John, there's no genealogy, why? It's a gospel that portrays his divinity, that Jesus is God. It starts off like this, in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God, and the Word became flesh.
So, which beasts were not mentioned yet out of four? The eagle. You know why? The eagle flies in the heavens. There are people, there are pilots who fly really high in the atmosphere and they've seen an eagle fly near them, higher than them. The eagle, of all the birds, flies the highest in the atmospheric heavens. So, eagle, the way of an eagle in the air is who he is. Don't think that his history began in the virgin's womb, no. He was with the Father, he came down. Like an eagle from the heavens, he came down, amen, and he was planted in the virgin's womb to become a complete man. Do you know that in heaven today, Jesus is one someone that he never was in the sense that he always was divine, but he never was a man. But today, he went back as a man.
Do you know that he's in the highest place in the universe at the Father's right hand? Do you know he's there representing you and I? Do you know that God wants you to think of him, not as God, that he is always is, but that he was or so before that he came as a man, but today he's a man. He's one of us. One of us made it to the highest place and he represents us. And what he did at the cross, the Father attributes to your account. He imputes to your account and as Jesus is, so are you in this world. He wants you to think of Jesus as a man, a man representing you. That means God sees him and sees you in the same way. He sees him as you, hallelujah. Okay, so the way of an eagle in the air is who we is. Okay, you ask yourself whether it sits well with you, this is what the Lord gave me. The next one, the way of a snake, a serpent on a rock. From an eagle he became a snake on the ground from the uttermost to the gutter most. He came down all the way for us. He came down and as he stole Nicodemus that night, as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so the Son of Man must be lifted up.
Remember the story of in the Old Testament how the children of Israel, they started murmuring against God and then the snakes came in? See, God protected them all the while. The snakes were there, but God protected them. And the snakes came biting them, right? And then God told Moses to build a bronze serpent, bronze means judged, judgment, bronze serpent and lift it up high, a cross. And everyone who was sick, everyone who was bitten, whosoever looketh liveth, the Bible says. Whoever looks, God healed. Whoever looks, lived. All those who looked at their wound died. If you look at your sin, you look at your sin and your corruption and all that, you'll die. But if you look at Jesus, he's the answer to your sin. He's the answer to your problem. He's the answer for everything in your life that has fallen. Look away from self to Christ. So, serpent on a rock. If you look at Calvary, the place of the skull of where he was crucified, it's a huge rock. It is built on a rock precipice, right? So, the eagle became a serpent on the rock, what he became. Does it sit well with you so far?
The third one, the way of a ship in the midst of the sea. You're like, huh? The way of a ship in the midst of the sea. "I know, pastor, you gotta learn how to sway, man, sway with the flow, go with the flow, you know?' No, no, that's not it. What is it? The way of a ship in the midst of the sea is why he came. You see, a ship, in those days like a cargo ship, it carries containers. Even today, we get our goods like containers containing petroleum, especially designed containers. Then there are containers containing furnitures, containers having all kinds of metals in it. So even today, even Solomon's time there's no planes and all that but even today, we still have cargo ships. So, transversing the ocean. The ocean is like, you know, when you travels, a ship travels, usually it's a far country so God sent his Son loaded with blessings, full of grace and truth like the Father sent David to meet Goliath. David was a type of Christ. He came with bread. Jesus came from the house of bread, Bethlehem, came with blessings for his people and he conquered a greater Goliath for you and I, right?
So, Jesus came to this earth loaded with blessings for us. Although man rejected him, those who believed, God gave them power to become sons of God. He came like this cargo ship traversed the ocean, amen, from a far country from heaven to earth, from an eagle to the snake, that's pretty awesome. That's far, that's far. That's amazing. Amen, what he became, why he came. And the last one is what? Solomon says, "I don't understand". This man who has 1,000 women, concubines, porcupines, and wives, he says, "I can't understand the way of a man of a virgin". Obviously, he's not referring to the natural, right? Now, I'll guarantee you are, you have the wisdom God. You know why? Because you have something that the people in the past don't have, there's something hidden that was revealed to the church, amen? What do you think this is? Jesus and the church. This is whom he loves, right, who he loves. He loved the church. Am I right?
By the way, do you know that a lot of things that's written like I showed you just now, "Thou shall not muzzle the ox" in the Old Testament, it's written for our times. It's written for us. Like 1 Peter 1, can you show them first 1 Peter 1? "Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you. And the prophets when they prophesied, they said, "Wah, these are great blessings, man. I wonder which generation is it for. Is it for the people Israel? I'm prophesying great things. God will not impute sin to them. God will forgive them of their sin, heal their diseases and they'll be not just servants but sons of the most high God. Who are these people"? And they were searching what? "Or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow". Next, "To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us".
So, the prophecy, the benefits was not to them at that time, but it was for us. All right, "They were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things which angels desire to look into". That's why the angels are portrayed as looking at the mercy seat. They're inquiring. Even angels are learning about salvation from us. You know what is God's best-kept secret that even Solomon did not know? All the prophets, and the saints, and the righteous men in the Old Testament never even knew about this secret. God kept it. You know what's the secret? The church, the church. The church is God's best-kept secret. The devil wants to make a church into like something sacerdotal with priestly all that kind of thing and all that, or something outward like a building and all that. No, the church is the greatest organization in society that ever existed in the universe. It is the only society that I know of on earth where your disqualification, your disqualification is your qualification to enter and to join.
Look at Ephesians 3, real quick. "In other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to his holy apostles and prophets that Gentiles should be fellow heirs". Drop down all the way to verse 8, "To me, who am less than the least of all saints, this grace was given that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery," all right, "which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God". But verse 10, look at verse 10, "To the intent" Now watch this, don't miss this, "To the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places".
That's why I said your calling is greater than just preparing your children for PSLE. The calling that God has for you is eternal. It's a calling to make known to the principalities and the powers of the universe. And who makes known the wisdom, the manifold wisdom of God, the man he variegated, you know, wisdom of God, the many streams of rivers of God's wisdom? Who will make known to the principality of the powers? The church, that's why we're getting started, people. It'll be made known by the church. So, the church is God's best-kept secret. All the anointings of God in whom I hid all the treasure, in Christ, I hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. In the last days, there'll be diseases that cannot be healed except in the church. There'll be new strains of viruses. There'll be answers in the church. God will raise new Joseph's, like the Joseph of the Bible, with wisdom to help the nation that he's in for the contingencies that will happen, exigencies and all that. God will prepare the church. Out of the church will come creative ideas that will bless all mankind. It will all happen in the church.
Now, we are an expression of a local church, but we are part of the universal church. Plus, we're all members of the churches that are in Singapore, in America. There's a great church in Dallas called Grace Revolution Church. It's a church to be marked. In the annals of history you look back, that church made a difference. And I'm telling you, church. We are in the best organization. Even though that's not the right word but I'm gonna use it, in the whole universe, amen? So, I'll close with this. The way of a man with a mate, he gave his life. Husbands, love your wife as Christ loved the church and gave himself for her. So you see, the reason God gave you a wife is not for you to tell her, "Go make MILO for me". God gave you a wife, not for you to just pour everything on her. All that is fine, it's all part and parcel, but God gave you a wife for you to love, amen, and then she'll make MILO for you. But God gave you a wife to love, why? She's a picture of you, the church, amen? Husband, love your wife as Christ loved the church.
Why did God give you children, babies, why? The first time you had a baby, you held a baby, you realized all of a sudden you gotta clean the poo, you gotta clean the baby. The baby don't have to perform for you to love the baby. You realize all of a sudden, "My goodness, this is a picture. I'm being set up". God reason, God made us fathers and mothers, it's we are being set up to understand the Father's love for us. You may poo but he will still love you and he'll still change you. All of a sudden, you don't see the what, you see the why. You've got wisdom now. Life is not just, you know, why do we eat food, food that are dead, amen, why? Because from death, Jesus's death, came food for all mankind, that's why we eat fish, we eat chicken that must be killed before we can enjoy them. Everything in life speaks of him, every animal.
That's why Solomon spoke the wisdom of... I got no time to go into all this but come back to this again, all right? The way of a man with a virgin. Husband, love your wife. And drop down, the same chapter it says what? Of a husband and wife, "Man shall leave his father and mother joined to his wife, the two shall become one flesh". This is a great mystery, I speak concerning Christ and the church". Just remember does she have to qualify for your forgiveness? No, because Christ forgave you, right? Men, men? Christ forgave you, right? How did he do it, freely? You forgive your wife freely, not much amen. I'll try again. You forgive your wife freely, amen? It's a great mystery. The reason God has marriage put on this earth here from the beginning is because God want you to understand Jesus and his bride. The man must be put to sleep before the bride comes out of his side. Jesus died and out of his side came the church made of Jew and Gentile, hallelujah.
Go back to quadruplet, we'll close with that. By the way, you know, when they advertise, whether it's the Navy or the, you know, pilot or whatever, Air Force and all that, they say, "Join and have power in the air of the land and the sea, or we conquer the air, the land, and the sea," right? Look at this, the air, the rock, the land, and the sea, okay? Now, let me tell you something, when God looks on earth, God sees only three groups of people. God doesn't see different races. God see only three groups of people. Either you're a Jew, and he has a covenant with Abraham concerning that, or you're a Gentile, a non Jew, or you're a church, a church made up of Jew or Gentile, doesn't matter. Now it's a church, new identity. When God looks down, God sees three groups of people. Your Bible is divided into written to the Jews, or the Gentiles, or to the church, and many a time you read them, you must know what it's meant for but it doesn't mean you cannot benefit from it. A bee goes from flower to flower. He doesn't take away the flowers, he goes for the nectar, the honey, but he leaves the flowers behind. What is written for the Jew is for the Jew, but it can still draw honey. You can still draw honey and all the promises of God in Christ is yes and amen, amen? But you gotta discern these three groups of people when you study the Bible, okay?
Now watch this, watch this, go back to quadruplet. The air you know is from heaven, right? Okay so that's out from heaven. So, rock there is the lamb, the Jew. Jesus became a serpent in the Jewish land, okay? The way of a sheep in the midst of the sea, sea is always a picture of the Gentiles, the sea roaring in restlessness. It's a picture of the Gentile nations. In the Book of Revelation, he saw a beast come out of the sea, out of the Gentile nations, not Israel, the sea. Israel is always the land. And finally the way of a man with a virgin, the church. Does this quadruplet sit well with you in your spirit? It bears witness with you? Is Christ in the center? That's how you judge revelation you receive from God, and I pray that you've been blessed by this. And all the people said, amen.
Every head bowed, every eye closed all across this place and everywhere that's watching this right now, praise the Lord. In a while I'm gonna bless you and pray for your protection. We don't take things for granted. Heard the news about Ebola being on the rise, and what we don't want is Ebola to take wings and fly internationally but nonetheless, whatever happens in the future, church, God has the answer and God loves you. All across this place, friend, the gospel is very simple. Gospel means good news and the good news is Christ died for our sins and God raised Jesus from the dead when you were cleared from all your guilt and your condemnation for your sins. The idea that if you were not cleared, Christ would not have been raised.
That one act at Calvary so glorified God. God is eternally pleased with that one act that if anyone would believe what God says, the way of a ship in the midst of the sea is for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son like a ship stacked with all kinds of goods and blessings. That whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. If that is you wherever you are right now, all across this place, you say, "Pastor Prince, I want to pray this prayer. I want to put my trust in Christ that he died for my sins". The Bible says whoever believes, not whoever performs, not whoever keeps the Ten Commandments, not whoever serves God, but whoever believes. All it takes is for you to believe that what God says about his Son and what his Son has done for you is true. You say, "amen" to it and eternal life is yours. If that is you wherever you are now, pray this prayer with me.
Say, "Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of your Son, my Lord Jesus Christ, who died on that cross for all my sins and was raised from the dead when I was cleared from my sins. Thank you, Father, I'm now your son, greatly blessed, highly favored, deeply loved, and Jesus Christ is my Lord. In Jesus's name, amen".
Stand to your feet. Praise the Lord. Amen, if you prayed that prayer, my friend, you are now a child of God and you have qualified, amen, your disqualification is your qualification. You are now part of the church of God, and your salvation is forever. Get to know your calling and all of us have a place in this calling, amen? Lift your hands all across this place. This coming week, the Lord bless you, the Lord keep you, bless you with the blessings of Father Abraham. Keep you close to his heart, under his wings, keep you preserved and protect you from every danger, from every sickness, from tragedy, from every harm, from all the powers of darkness. The Lord make his face to shine upon you and your loved ones, and the Lord grant to you and your families, his shalom peace, health, wholeness and you have favor everywhere you go. In Jesus's name, and all the people said, amen. God bless you.