Joseph Prince - What It Means To Prosper In All Things
I want to share with you something that I think is going to be a great blessing, but before that, let's be reminded of Titus once again. Grace in three areas, all right, of our life. Grace past, grace in the present, and grace in the future. This is found in Titus chapter 2, all right? I think we have it somewhere, anyway, Titus 2 says, "For the grace of God that has brought salvation has appeared". The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared. And the word appeared there in the Greek is actually made visible, made palpable for you to look at.
When people ask me, "Pastor Prince, you like to say grace is not a teaching. Grace is a person. Where did you get that from"? Well, Titus tell us the grace of God has been made visible, has appeared to all men, amen? That which is, you know, intangible, and they can tell when someone had the grace of God. Well, grace appeared. Grace took visible form. "The grace that brings salvation has appeared to all men," so that's grace in the past, "teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, godly in this present world," amen? Being zealous of good works.
Now, here is where some people will say, "Well, you see, Pastor Prince, you're going to be zealous. You're going to teach people to be zealous of good works. You're going to teach people to live godly". No, the Bible doesn't say we teach. It says the grace of God will teach. The grace of God that brings salvation is the grace of God that is teaching us, amen? If we preach grace correctly, grace will teach people from within. Can I have a good amen? All right? Then we have grace in the future, and this is the part that's neglected by so many grace (lack of a better word) grace teachers and preachers. It seems like they have sort of like explained away the rapture.
They don't believe in the rapture anymore. They think that they are being modern. But let me just tell you this. It shows ignorance, 'cause the Bible talks about grace in three dimensions. Grace that has appeared, and grace in the past, grace that's teaching us in the present and looking for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, amen? Amen, looking for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. So that's grace in the future. Can I have a good amen? And if you think that looking for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ is a teaching that is not practical, let me tell you this. Every time you start thinking Jesus is delaying his coming, something morally collapse in your life, something degrading begins to happen.
When Israel said, "We don't know what happened to Moses. He's up there in the mountain for so long". Moses delayed his coming. The next thing you see is a golden calf. The Lord talks about a professing servant that says, "My Lord delays his coming," and start beating up his man servants and maid servants. What is the result? Our lifestyle is all affected by what we say in our hearts about the second coming, amen? When you look at the world we live in today, all right, we are coming to increasingly difficult times, perilous times the Bible says, amen? But there's hope for the believer. Jesus says, "Look up". He didn't say look for death. He says, "Look up. Your redemption," which is your bodily redemption, "draweth near," amen?
And people start saying, "Well, what's the practical thing about talking about rapture and all that? It's not practical at all". It's practical because anything that's from God is practical. Looking for the coming, every man that has this hope in him purifieth himself. It's the something that happens to you morally, amen, that brings you to a higher level, a moral excellence, a moral ascendancy, if you would. When you look forward knowing that Jesus is coming back, it purifies you. Can I have a good amen? In Romans 8 it says we are saved in this hope. Now, that saved there is not referring to salvation from, you know, eternal destruction and all that. That saved there is the word sozo. We are saved in hope.
The blessed hope is the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and when you have this hope, your body respond. You are being been sozod. And do you know something? Paul himself said it like this. "I say to you, by the Word of the Lord," it's not Paul's opinion, "that we who are alive and remain". Notice the only criteria is for believers to be alive and remain alive. When Jesus comes, you'll be going up. "For we which are alive and remain". Not we who are especially faithful. Not we who are obedient. Wonderful as these things are, amen, it says that we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together to meet the Lord in the air.
"This I say to you, not by my opinion," Paul says. "I say to you, by the Word of the Lord we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together to meet the Lord in the air. The dead in Christ will rise first, then we will meet the Lord". And the criteria is not your performance, your work. It is by grace. Actually, the rapture is nothing more than you receiving your bodily redemption. Redemption was paid for at the cross by the blood of our Savior, amen? We are saved spiritually. Our spirits are saved by grace through faith, amen? Our bodies are saved how? By our obedience? No, by grace through faith.
So the rapture is nothing more than us receiving our glorified bodies. People, we are not going to heaven floating around like spirit beings. We have a body like Jesus's body. In Philippians it says when he comes he will transform our vile bodies like unto his glorious body, and thank God he ate after he rose from the dead. So eating, then, is not for sustenance, but for enjoyment, for communion, amen? And the two angels looked like young men. They didn't recognize Jesus because not only he restrained their eyes, but he... I mean, he always looked young, but angelic beings always appear young. In heaven there's no one growing old.
So what he means is that when you receive this body, you will never again die, you will never again grow old, you will never again feel boredom, you will never again fall asleep when the pastor is preaching, you will never even have pimples let alone any disease or sickness. You will never again feel tired in this new body, which will be forever. And the Bible says that's what the rapture is all about. And someone says, "Well, the rapture is a new concoction that came in the 1800s and all that".
Let me tell you this. Matthew Henry, who is probably the commentary that most people read more than any other commentary, Matthew Henry who lived in the 1600s right after the Reformation in the 1500s, all right, in the 1600s, Matthew Henry, a Hebrew and Greek scholar, wrote a commentary on the entire Bible. Excellent. It's more devotional than a breakdown of Greek words and all that, but it's very exciting. I mean, if you want to be touched and be warm, you can read Matthew Henry. Matthew Henry in 1600s used the word rapture. He used the word rapture. It is not an 1800 concoction. Are you listening, people? Amen.
So the Bible tells us very clearly that the blessed hope is looking forward for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Now, we can use hope in a secondary way like having a positive expectation of good in our lives, but actually the blessed hope many times in the New Testament is referring to Jesus coming back. Can I have a good amen, people? And Jesus is returning, all right? There are two parts of the return. One is he returns for his bride, to remove us from this earth before the worst happens, amen? There'll be 7 years of tribulation. At the end, we are coming back with him. He will rescue Israel on earth. Before anyone destroys her, he will come in time, and he will come with all his saints. Praise the name of Jesus.
But Jesus in the upper room said... you know, people, if you can, you study the upper room, because many people know the Sermon on the Mount, which is wonderful, praise God, but they don't know the sermon on the other mount, which is the Mount Zion. Before Jesus left, he spoke in another upper room, another mount, which is actually church truths. Whereas Sermon on the Mount is also kingdom truths for Israel, but here it is entirely church truths. He talks about the power of his name, using his name in prayer. He talks about the Holy Spirit, the place of the Holy Spirit. He talks about the Christian will not need blood cleansing, that's once and for all, but the Christian will need to wash his feet, his walk with the water of the Word. "He that is bathed once and for all," Jesus says, "does not need but only to wash his feet with water".
I repeat. He that is saved once and for all by the blood of Jesus does not need only to wash his feet. It's not getting re-bathed, re-bathed, re-bathed. You know what I'm saying? Once you are saved, you are saved. You are saved by the blood. I say you are saved by the blood. From then on, all right, your feet get contaminated, amen? How do you cleanse yourself from all filthiness of the flesh and the spirit? How do you do it? All right, your spirit is still righteous, but, you know, dirt comes in and you hear bad things and all that. It comes not by the blood, it comes by the washing of the Word, all right?
That's another thing that we get from the upper room teaching, amen, which is a... some Christians find it, these are truths that they can't understand, but Jesus himself says he that is bathed once and for all, regeneration, does not need except to wash his feet. And that's by water, okay? A lot of diseases in the Book of Leviticus is cleansed by water. A lot of leprosy and all the pus and all that that comes out that's called uncleanness is washed by water. I suspect that the more water you receive, the healthier you become. And the preaching of God's Word will wash you. Amen, people? Praise the name of Jesus.
I want to read to you some testimonies that I think will bless you. Just two, okay? This is a sister from a country that I won't mention, but she has two problems. One is pornography. Yes, girls do have problem with that also. The other one is asthma condition.
I first watched Pastor Joseph Prince preach the gospel in television in 2011. At that time, my spiritual life was dry. I struggled to serve in church or even attend church, and I was undergoing depression. I tried listening to sermons that taught me how to live a life of holiness, of freedom. However, I experienced more fear, condemnation, and even bondage. After listening to some of Pastor Joseph Prince's sermons, I went on to read his books 'Destined to Reign' and 'Unmerited Favor'.
I also got hold of as many of his messages as I could and listened to them daily from 2012 to 2015. Today my life has been radically transformed. The grace of God has made such a huge difference in my walk with God, service in church, financial situation, family, and relationships. It has also given me a hope for the future and a joy for life. By listening to the messages on God's grace, relying on God instead of my own efforts to change me, and confessing my righteousness in Christ, I was freed from more than 25 years of pornography addiction.
I also got hold of as many of his messages as I could and listened to them daily from 2012 to 2015. Today my life has been radically transformed. The grace of God has made such a huge difference in my walk with God, service in church, financial situation, family, and relationships. It has also given me a hope for the future and a joy for life. By listening to the messages on God's grace, relying on God instead of my own efforts to change me, and confessing my righteousness in Christ, I was freed from more than 25 years of pornography addiction.
Now, you always find the same testimony like, "I confess," all right, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ, and then God freed me from this," in her case, 25-year pornography addiction. I'm not saying that this is not experienced by other ministries. I'm sure they are. But this is one ministry that almost every week we have people writing to us from all over the world telling us that they have been freed from addictions, whether it's porn addiction, whether it is cocaine addiction, whether it is alcohol. They've been freed. And we are receiving so many testimonies, people. There is something about this.
And I believe in confessing your sins, but I don't believe that this is the answer that God is telling these people how to be set free. Because if you confess that you committed, "Oh, God, I commit that sin again". Next 10 minutes, "Oh, God, I committed that sin again. Forgive me. Oh, God"... That's not the answer. The answer as in all things that a Christian life is faith, and faith is saying what God says of you. "I am the righteous". Even when you're doing the crazy thing, you say, "I am the righteousness of God in Christ".
You know, when you do someone wrong, you say sorry, right? I do that with my wife. I do that with my kids even. I say sorry. When I do wrong, I say sorry. So you can say sorry to God. No problem with that. But that's not going to help you overcome the addiction, amen? See, I don't believe you confess your sins, then God forgives you. I don't believe that. I believe God forgave you once and for all. In 1 John 2 it says that, I write to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you. Forgiven you there is in perfect tense. It cannot be repeated. It's once and for all. So either chapter 2 and chapter 1 are in conflict, or there is a way for us to understand this, amen?
So I believe in saying sorry to God. I believe that, but I don't believe that's the answer to overcoming the addiction. To overcome it, you need faith, amen? And faith comes when you release yourself and say, "Lord, I thank you. I'm the righteousness of God in Christ". What is confessing your sins? To say it with God, homologeo. Same word. Homo, same. Logeo, Word, in this case, God's Word. God says your sins are forgiven. Why do you say? "I confess my sins with God. I agree with God my sins are forgiven". Number one is sin. Number two is forgiven, amen? But confessing your sins can actually bring you into deeper bondage if you don't go by the way of faith, all right?
So I'll just stop there and let you know that the common thing I see in people who are set free is this confession: "I am the righteousness of God in Christ".
So by listening to the message on God's grace, relying on God instead of my own efforts to change me, and confessing my righteousness in Christ, I was freed from more than 25 years of pornography addiction. I was also healed of an asthma condition that had plagued me for 25 years. Moreover, my headaches went away as I meditated on the Word. I also received miracle of the miracle of financial provision after sowing to the gospel of grace. As a result, I was able to travel to Singapore and visit New Creation Church.
Praise God. Thank you, Jesus. Yee-haw! The next one is a brother from Texas. All right:
In March 2010, I fell down the stairs at home and shattered my leg so badly that I had rods, screws, steel claws, and plates surgically implanted in my leg. I spent hundreds of hours in rehabilitation, was bedridden for months, had to take different painkilling drugs, and was out of work for a year. I started drinking, and under the influence of alcohol I grew completely self-centered. I was in self-denial. Shortly after my wife and I divorced, I began drinking more and more, while painkillers left me in a state of stupor. I blamed the world for everything and stopped answering phone calls from friends. When I returned to work, I kept myself busy and pretended to be happy, but I couldn't wait to get drunk at home and experience temporary escape from my situation. Then there came two major changes for the better, each according to God's plan and timing. I was flipping television channels in 2011 when I came across Pastor Prince on television.
Do you know how many channels there are in America? I believe that I was born looking like this for a purpose. Don't blame my parents, all right? I was born looking like this. Not like Pastor Lawrence, you know, with the muscles and all that. One day I'll be like that, all right? So there's a purpose for everything, amen? You have a purpose in your life. That's why you look the way you look, okay? Don't blame your parents, amen? So he was flipping, and then he says:
His sermon was completely centered on Jesus and his grace. I was awestruck. I kept listening to Pastor Prince's teachings, which taught me more about Jesus, and without even knowing it repented of my old thoughts and ways.
I love this. I love this. He experienced repentance without being told about repentance. In the Old Testament, you repent and then God will bless you. That's true. That's Old Testament. But under New Testament, God gives you the grace, God gives you the goodness, and the goodness of God leads you to repentance. It is not your goodness, all right, it's not your repentance that leads God to be good to you. It is not your repentance that makes God good to you. It is God's goodness that leads you to repentance in the new covenant. Can I have a good amen? So pastors, leaders, let's expound on the goodness of God. And people, like he says, "I even repented unconsciously". I love that, amen?
I realized that there was so much more to life. Soon I gave myself to Christ by praying the salvation prayer along with Pastor Prince on television. I learned that I was a child of God, and that the way out of my struggles was through Jesus's work at the cross, not in my efforts. It was also during this time that my surgeon said he was taking me off all medication and painkillers. The more I listened to Pastor Prince's messages, the more I changed for the better, and the more alive I felt. Finally, I understood one important thing. My healing and turnaround had nothing to do with what I had done but what Jesus had done for me at the cross.
You know, one thing I... you know, you can always tell something's from God or not as to who does it glorify. Does it glorify man's efforts or glorify that one, our redeemer, our lovely Savior? All the testimonies is always glorifying Jesus. You know, and that's important for you to know. People can write books against grace and all that. Ask yourself when you hear a sermon, who is it glorifying.
The next life-changing event happened when I made contact with my high school sweetheart. We rekindled our feelings and were married a few months later. I was also set free from my addiction to alcohol within our first year of marriage. I am now FREE from both drugs and alcohol that were once ruining me. Thank you, Pastor Prince, for helping me turn my life around through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
3 John 2, "Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers". We started this last week, and we mentioned, you know, in passing that people will point their fingers at some groups and all that, even our church and all that, and they'll say, "Oh, that's a health and wealth gospel. Oh, that's a health and wealth gospel". They are showing their ignorance by saying that. Number one, I don't care if you're a professor or whatever. You're showing your ignorance. There's no such thing as health and wealth gospel.
In the New Testament it's always the gospel of grace or the gospel of peace. It's always the gospel of grace and the gospel of peace. When Jesus was here physically, it's called the gospel of the kingdom because he offered them the kingdom. They could have the king ruling them at that moment, but they rejected him. But Paul calls our gospel the gospel of grace and peace. Can I have a good amen? But it does produce provision.
Now, I didn't say everybody will be multimillionaires. It does produce provision, supply, blessings, amen, and also health. If not, then Jesus did us a disservice by going around healing all that were oppressed of the devil. He cleansed the leper, unstopped deaf ears, raised the dead. He did all kinds of miracles, miracles of healings of bodies, amen? At least there should be one place where our Lord at least call a guy who is healthy and give him some leprosy. You know, because consistently he's showing us that he's making people healthy.
So if you call this a health gospel or whatever it is, I'll just tell you read your Bible. Read the gospels for goodness sake. Who is our example? Jesus is. He that has seen Jesus has seen the Father. That's the Father's will, the Father's heart. Can I have a good amen? And provisions. He took little, five loaves, two fish. He multiplied to feed many. That's our Lord Jesus. Now, he didn't say that everybody will be multimillionaires, all right? He didn't promise that, but he did say that you will receive prosperity.
Now, 2 Corinthians chapter 8, "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor that you through his poverty might become rich". Now, some people will say, "Yeah, this means rich spiritually". Okay, let's take the argument. So, Jesus, though he was rich spiritually yet for your sakes Jesus became poor spiritually, that you through his poverty might become rich spiritually. Is that what you mean? "Oh, yes, yes". So he was rich spiritually, but became poor spiritually so that you can become rich spiritually.
Now, the whole thing, if it's spiritual, you have to be consistent it's all spiritual. But the unfortunate thing is that this chapter 8 of 2 Corinthians 8... you know what's the verse before this, the verses after this, the chapter after this chapter 9? You know what's there? It's all about giving money. The churches of Macedonia is telling Paul, all right, to collect the funds to give to the poorer churches in Corinth or in Rome. And Paul is telling the Corinthians, "Hey, you know what these guys did, the churches of Macedonia? They begged us to take their money to help the poor saints in Rome". He's challenging the Corinthians all about money.
That's where you'll find in chapter 9, the next chapter, God loves a cheerful giver. He who sow sparingly shall reap sparingly. He who sow bound - the whole context is about money, and therefore you cannot take this verse out of its context. You take the verse out of the context, you see the word con left. You con people, all right? No, my friend. This is not referring to Jesus on the cross being poor or whatever. It's referring to the fact that one of the last things he saw at the foot of his cross, all right, was his clothes. Probably his mother made that clothes. It's a beautiful-looking, seamless robe that he saw the soldiers were gambling for it. He probably had nothing on his body when hung on the cross. He became poor so that you can become rich. Can I have a good amen?
If poverty is wrong, then heaven should have some poverty, but no. So, friend, poverty is evil. But I am against preachers that almost like every other verse is about giving. Every other verse is about prosperity, physical. Everything, you know, and I think that there is some truth to like preachers should not live above if their church is small, all right. They should learn to sacrifice more for the sake of their church. If their church starts growing larger, then they can take some privileges and all that. But I think that pastors and leaders, I'm saying this from my heart, amen, do not let the wonderful name of Jesus be maligned. But on the other hand, God does promise provision, God does promise healing, all right? Can I have a good amen?
The end time church will be a church that be boasting in its riches, saying, "I am rich. I have need of nothing". Then Jesus says, "No, you are blind. You are naked", all right? That's Laodicea church. And Laodicea means people rule, which means there will come a time in the church there's no more authority. I come to church when I want to come, when I want to. I don't have submit to anybody. There's no deacon, nothing. Laodicea. People rule. Sad. That means what? Every man did that which is right in his own eyes, amen? So I don't want to become the Laodicea church. I want to be the Philadelphia church, which will coexist with Laodicea. That's another message altogether, and this is a leadership message I'm talking about. But I think you are all leaders, amen? You're all rising up.
So here it says, back to 3 John 1:2, "Beloved, I pray that you may prosper", in how many things? How many things? "So prosper in all things". Would that include finances as well? It has to. In all things. Includes your parenting, in your married life, amen, in your relationships. I mean, God says, "In all things". And the word all there is the word pas in the Greek, which means not just all in every but also in every type. It's variegated. It's different types of prosperity in every aspect of your life. Isn't it wonderful? And be in health, be in health, physical health. "Oh, Pastor Prince, this health here is spiritual health". No, "As your soul prospers," that's spiritual health, all right?
So health here is bodily health. So God is teaching us, all right, because beloved, it's talking about people who know they are loved. All right, "Beloved, I wish above all things that you prosper in everything". In everything. I pray that you prosper in everything, "And be in health, just as your soul prospers". So, today I want to focus on, "Just as your soul prospers". In other words, our prosperity and this health bodily is in exact proportion, just as in the Greek is the word kathos, which means in proportion to. Your soul prosperity.
Now, for many years, I've actually been taught that your soul prosperity is, you know, your mind being renewed, and it's a good teaching. All that is fine. Good teaching. No problem with that, all right? Soul prosperity means that you memorize one verse a day. That's fine, wonderful. Memorize three better still, all right? And you say that soul prosperity is, you know, this and that of fasting. I have no problem with fasting. A lot of us need fast, you know. We break fast, we don't break fast anymore. Morning is breakfast. What fast? They ate during the nighttime. They snacked. There's no more number break fast.
Anyway, you cannot die from not eating so much, okay? You can be healthy from not eating so much. But the thing is this, I am for all that, but isn't it better to see the context? Why is Gaius, this man John is writing to him, why his soul prospering? By the way, Gaius, verse 1, The elder (that's John himself), "to the beloved Gaius, whom I love in truth". Beloved, now, what was it that caused Gaius's soul to prosper? Because God did not put this little book in the Bible just to tease us or to write just to Gaius. It's for all of us. Gaius, his soul was prospering. Why was it prospering? Let's have the answer from the context, amen?
And notice he says, "Whom I love in truth". Everything got to do with the truth. You see, right after verse 2, verse 3, "For I rejoiced greatly when brethren came and testified of the truth that is in you just as you walk in the truth. I have no greater joy". Imagine the Father saying to you, "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth". Actually the last one, the article is missing there. It's actually the truth. "Walk in the truth". Now, this Gaius, he was prospering in his soul because he kept the truth, he walked in the truth. But when you ask people, average Christian, what is the truth here? They will say, "Don't tell lies. Speak the truth".
Now, that's important. All right, I don't like people that lie, especially in relationship with me. I find it very hard to get close to anyone who lies, amen? But the thing is this: the truth here is not talking about don't speak lies, speak truthfully. It's not referring to that. The truth always refers to Jesus. The truth always refers to Jesus. Jesus says, "I am the way, the truth, and the life," 'cause even as the truth is in Jesus, friend, the truth is about our Lord Jesus Christ. We must have accurate information and knowledge of him. The only way to grow and increase in grace, in God's favor in your life, you want more favor in your life, if you want more shalom, more peace, more well-being, more wholeness, more peace of mind, the way to have it is grow in grace.
Grace and peace be multiplied in the knowledge of God and our Savior Jesus Christ. Grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Another place says that. The only way to have more favor is not doing more. Doing good is important. Good works are very important. Good works are the evidence of our salvation, but it's not the condition of our salvation. The condition of our salvation is by grace through faith. No works. But once you're saved, the evidence will be there. Look at these testimonies of these people. You think they called that all these good works? No, I don't think so. They're just happy that Jesus did this for them. But though heaven will call it good works, amen, because it's the evidence of salvation, but it's not the condition. Good works is that the condition of salvation. Are you listening, people? Can I have a good amen?
And just like the Lord comes in, the Lord says, "I was hungry; you fed me. I was thirsty; you gave me drink. I was in prison; you visited me". And the righteous will say, "Lord, when did we see you hungry and fed you? When did we see you thirsty and we gave you drink? When do we see you in prison"? Okay, the righteous were not conscious of their good works. "When did we see you"? Now watch the other group. The sinners. The Lord says, "I was in prison; you didn't come and visit me. I was hungry; you gave me no food. I was thirsty, you didn't give me any drink". They said, "When did we see you hungry and not give you? And when did we not do this? When did we not do that"?
So people who are sinners in the story, salvation is not based on good works. It's based on grace, but it's evidenced by your works. So they are conscious of their works. Those who are rally safe are not conscious of their works. When did we see you? When we do this to you? This group says, "When did we not do this"? Are you listening, people? Amen? "Hey! Amen, Pastor Prince. Praise God, hallelujah". This Presbyterian church, I'm telling you. Okay, so the truth... Now, even Gaius... Gaius, by the way, the verse 1 says, Gaius, verse 1, "The elder to the beloved Gaius".
Now, this Gaius is probably the same guy who played host to the Apostle Paul. In Romans 16, Paul says, "Gaius, my host". You see that? Gaius, my host, all right? So Gaius is a very hospitable guy, all right? He walks in love. But the reason he walks in love is because he walks in truth. And the truth has got to go to Jesus. Now go back to 3 John again. "So I rejoice greatly when brethren came and testified". It wasn't that Gaius says, "Hey, John, you know that I love to give. I just love to give. I'm a giver, you know. I'm a giver".
Today we hear a lot of this kind of things about self-promotion. But actually, no one testified of the generosity of Gaius. It was the other people that testified to John. "I rejoice when the brethren came and testified of the truth that's in you, just as you walk in the truth". Now, this walking in truth is not walking in love. Believing the truth, walking in truth, will cause you to walk in love. The reason Gaius was generous, the reason Gaius walked in truth is because he believed the truth. I'm coming to that. Now imagine the Father saying this, "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth". So what is this truth? Has got to do with Jesus.
Now go to 3... 2 John, excuse me, 2 John. The John before this. Okay, this letter is very unique letter. "The elder," John himself, "to the elect lady and her children". Now this is the only letter in the New Testament written to a woman. For those who are against women, against women ministry, they got a problem with this letter. It was written to a woman and her care group in her house, all right? "To the elect lady and her children whom I love in truth, and not only I, but also all those who have known the truth". There you have it again. "Because of the truth which abides in us". What is the truth which abides in us?
Okay, I submit to you there's only one the truth that can abide in us. There's a Spirit of truth. The Holy Spirit is known as the Spirit of truth, and he is the one that abides in us. Am I right? Then he says, "And the truth will be with us forever". Who is the truth that will be with us forever? Jesus. So the one abiding in us is the Spirit of truth. The one that's with us is the Lord Jesus who is with us forever. He is the truth. Are you with me so far?
"Now, why all this, Pastor Prince? Why all the truth, truth, truth things, Pastor Prince". I'll tell you why. John is burdened with one truth, the truth of Jesus in terms of who he really is, 100% very God, very man. He's truly God, he's truly man. By the time John wrote his gospel of John and also the epistles, 1 John, 2 John, 3 John, there is this cult, this strong movement that happened. Even during the time of Paul, it already started. It's called Gnosticism. G-N-O-S-T-I-C. Gnosticism. By the way, you go to a bookshop and they talk to you about Mary Magdalene being the wife of Jesus, all that nonsense, that's from Gnosticism, all right? They come out of that. Gnosticism says that Jesus never came in the flesh, all right? They just say that because Jesus, you know, anything matter is evil, all right? In other words, you cannot rely on anything that's material.
Now that sounds very religious. You must abstain from everything that's material. Marriage is material, food is material, everything is material. You must abstain. It's all evil. They teach that. Another thing they teach is this, that Jesus is not God. Jesus is a human being, but God is the Christ. It's a separate Jesus and the Christ. So the Christ, they say... and you know what's the amazing thing? You know what I'm talking? Not too long ago I heard a sermon. I was there. I heard a sermon of dividing Jesus and the Christ. It's happening again.
Now watch this, John was concerned about this. This kind of evil, you know, heresies that's coming into the church. The Gnostic says this, "When Jesus was born, he's just a normal human being. But at the river Jordan, the Christ came on Jesus. The Christ came on Jesus, and then the Christ make him do miracles and all that. Then when he died on the cross, the Christ left him". You see that? Do you understand? That's what they teach, okay? Now, Jesus asked his disciples, "Whom do the men say that I am"? Peter says, "You are the Christ, one and the same. The son of the living God". Jesus says, "Blessed are you Simon Bar-Jonah, flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my father who is in heaven". Are you listening? Amen?
Do you know the phrase, Jesus Christ, Yeshua Hamashiach. Jesus Christ. Do you know who is the first person in the New Testament to use the word together, Jesus Christ? You know who in the New Testament? Jesus himself. In the high priestly prayer, Jesus prayed like this, "Eternal life is to know you," he told his Father, "is to know you and Jesus Christ whom you sent". Many years ago when I was a young boy... now I'm a young man. When I was a young boy, when I was in school. Yeah, right, man. Right, my man. Come on, man. I don't know how to grow old, y'all. And I remember I was involved in the occult. I wanted some power in my life and all that. And I didn't realize that I was going to the clutches of the powers of darkness.
Thank God, God delivered me, because I saw some, some of their, you know they have the Christ consciousness, the Christ, just because they put the word Christ. And today, you know, they have this book still, very popular, you know, and they want you to get the secret of something, you know, that will prosper you and all that. So I was caught in that, in this deception. But one of the things that caught me was because I was already going to church and I saw their books had this Christ thing. Christ, Christ consciousness. And then they say that everyone has the Christ in them. We need to meditate, or we need to do certain mantra, whatever, to get to touch the inner Christ. So Jesus actually developed that so highly, Jesus developed the Christ. See it's all Gnostic, and I didn't even know it. Are you listening? Are you listening?
The spirit of the end times is not anti-God. There are people who do bad things in the name of God. The Spirit of the end times is a spirit of the antichrist. They trying to take Christ Jesus out of the picture or separate the two. You understand? And that will affect your life. That will affect your prosperity. I'm tying it all back to this. Are you listening, people? Your soul prosperity will be affected. So John was concerned about this, and that's why in 1 John chapter 4, "Beloved, do not believe every spirit but test the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this, you know the Spirit of God".
People, there are many preachers out there, many preachers on television. How do you know the Spirit from God? By this, you know the Spirit of God. "Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God". Jesus Christ, one person, has come in the flesh of God. And every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. "And this is a spirit of the antichrist which you have heard was coming and is now already in the world. You are of God, little children". You have overcome all the antichrist. "Because He who is in you is greater than the devil in the world". That's the context. That's the context.
Now, listen, there are many antichrists but there's one the antichrist coming. He's probably here already, okay? But the way you overcome the antichrist is to know that greater is he that's in you than he that's in the world, okay? All right let's go back to the acid test given by the Spirit of God. Go back again to verse 2. Put them all out, okay? "By this you know the Spirit of God. Every spirt that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God. Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God".
Now, can I ask you a question? Yeah, what does that mean? You ever read that and you're wondering what does that mean? Okay, a few days ago, you know our worship leader, Sean, the guy has a beautiful voice. One day I'll have a voice like that also. Sean, the guy who is our worship leader, well, a few days ago, his first baby came, all right? Now I don't tell you... the baby was born. I don't tell you his son came in the flesh. How else would he have come? You follow what I'm saying? I don't use the term, all right, "Hey, his son came in the flesh". I don't say that. I say the boy was born, right? To say someone came in the flesh implies he preexisted. He came in the flesh. Are you listening, people? Are you listening?
John is combating Gnostic ideas because it's causing ruin to all the people's souls. He wants their souls to prosper so that when he prays for them to be prosperous outside and healthy, it's going to happen. But Jesus Christ came in the flesh. That means he existed before he took on human flesh. He is deity. I said he is deity, amen? Now we go to John's Gospel so we can see John's rebuttal to this. John's Gospel opens up, chapter 1, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God". He was in the beginning with God. Can you understand when I say when John wrote 1 John, chapter 1 of 1 John is not written to the believer? "My little children" only appears in chapter 2 onwards.
Chapter 2 onwards is written to the believer. That's why he writes to the believer saying, "Your sins are forgiven you". But chapter 1 opens in a very rare and unorthodox way. It says, "That which we have seen and our eyes have looked upon", that's double, "and our hands have handled and touch of the Word of life we declare to you, that you may have koinonia with us". Who was he writing to? He was writing to people who believed they were saved, but they're in Gnosticism. This chapter 1 is not written to believers, but it is written in the editorial way.
Like, John will say, "If we say we have no sin," does that mean that John admits he has no sin? Of course not. John knows he has sin. It's the Queen's English, is the editorial way. If we say it's including himself, doesn't mean that he's part of them. If we say, if we say, if we say but we do not, we're not saved. You know I'm saying? That's why I submit to you 1 John 1:9, for me, is not written to the believer. It's written to the unbelievers among the Christians who are Gnostics. He's telling them how to have fellowship with us. "Hey, we handle him. Hey, guys, we handle him. We were with him. We declared this person that we handle, we saw, to you, that you may have koinonia with us, 'cause every believer has koinonia, fellowship".
1 Corinthians 1:9. You know 1 John 1:9, right? 1 Corinthians 1:9 says, "God is faithful, by whom you were called unto koinonia with the Son". All believers are called into fellowship with the Son, okay? Okay. Now watch this. He said, "That which from the beginning we declare to you," in 1 John. Where he got it from? From his own gospel. "He was in the beginning with God". We're talking about Jesus, people. Hey, listen, listen, listen. You're probably sitting down there and saying, "Pastor, I want a breakthrough. Property market is bad, and here we're talking about Jesus. How will that help me"? Friend, you need a prosperity that, you know, will not cause you to be shaken in your soul. You need a prosperity that you can be cool while you're enjoying even outward prosperity.
God wants your souls prospering, amen? God wants you to be in health. There are people who are prospering by hard work, sheer hard work and all that, amen, in finances, in the property market, but they are very poor because they're not prospering in all respects. They're not prospering in all things. I've said before there are many poor people with plenty of money, but they're still poor. God wants you to prosper in everything, in all things. Do you understand, people? I'm sharing with you something the world cannot give you. The world can promise you, all right, how to become rich. You go to the bookshop, they'll tell you how to become rich, how to do this property market, how you can earn this amount every week and all that, but it's only one aspect, amen? Without the soul prosperity.
I'm teaching you how to prosper in every respect with soul prosperity and be in health, so according to the context, it's all gotta do with the truth, as the truth is in Jesus. Hmm? One time Paul was looking at Peter. Peter walked with Jesus, slept with Jesus, rejoiced with Jesus, saw Jesus on the cross. Paul never saw Jesus on the cross. Paul never walked with Jesus. Paul is somebody he goes "I was born out of due time". But one day, Paul saw Peter eating with Gentiles, and he was eating pork chop. Maybe he didn't. Okay, I do not know. This part is added. I do not know, but the Bible says he was living like the Gentiles. He was eating with them, okay? Whatever the food they had, Peter was there.
And then someone came in, just like some of you experience when the guy in white comes on a motorcycle, and he then put a parking coupon on your car. There it is again, all right? And you start running. Someone came running and say, "Pete, Pete, Pete, James's guys are here". Now, James is the pastor of the church in Jerusalem, all right? And James's guys are coming to visit, so Peter says, "Put everything underneath, all right? Throw away the ham. Throw away the sandwich". And all the while Paul was looking at all these things, and Paul waited until James's people were there. It's the only recorded open sin that is read for 2,000 years by all the people of God.
In front of all of them Paul look at Peter, who walked with Jesus. He said to him, "If you, being a Jew, live like the Gentiles", all right? He rebuked them, and this is the way... before I quote that, let me just tell you this. I'm quoting Paul now. "When I saw that they walk not according to the truth". When I saw they walk not according to the truth. When I saw they walk not according to the truth. Is the gospel truth? Are you listening? Was it Peter was lying? No. What was Peter doing? He was just eating, but the way they acted when the Jewish people who believe in law keeping came, all right, Paul says, "Hey, when I saw they walk not according to the truth of the gospel, I rebuke him before all of them, saying that, 'If you, being a Jew, live like the Gentiles, why are you persuading the Gentiles to become like the Jews? Knowing that a man is not justified by works of the law but by faith of Jesus Christ.'" Are you listening, people?
Even Barnabas was carried away by their dissimulation, their hypocrisy, so we need to understand what is the phrase "walking according to the truth". There are Christians who are moral outside, but they're not walking according to the truth. The gospel of grace will cause you to walk in the truth. Are you listening? It's all about Jesus and the gospel.
Now let's go back. God wants you to prosper, okay, in your soul, because everything, your prosperity in every area and your health is what? Just as your soul prospers. Just as. Kathos in Greek means in proportion to. And I want this church, I want those who are watching in GRC, I want all those who are watching online, on television, I want your souls to prosper until healing explodes in your body, until whatever you do prospers. Every area. But it comes with this, this way: who do you see of Jesus is so important? It can even mean eternal prosperity, heaven or hell.
Okay, go back to this again. So, "In the beginning was the Word, the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him". Jesus is the creator. He made everything. "And without him nothing was made that was made". Did you hear that? Nothing was made that was made, okay, without him. "In him was life, and the life was the light of men". Drop down to verse 10. "He was in the world". So, this one that's called the Word, who was with God, who is God, he was in the world, John said. "And the world was made through him, and the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own did not receive him. But as many as receive him, to them God gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in his name".
Now, watch this. This is powerful. Are you ready? Don't forget, what is John's reason for writing the Gospel of John? Because the Gnostics came in with their heresies, their lies, and he wrote the Epistles as well. And actually, those of you who study the Bible, we talk about growth spiritually, right? Fathers, young men, little children. There's a little children where it's used as a generic word of dearly loved children. That's the word teknon, but there's a word, paideia, which is a infant. An infant does not know Jesus. He's born again, he accepted Jesus, but John calls him an infant. He knows the Father only. Then comes the young men. The Word of God is strong in them. They focus on the Word, but the Fathers knows him from the beginning. We read just now, right?
Go back to the earlier verses of this chapter. "He was in the beginning with God". To know him from the beginning is to know Jesus. Fathers are those who know Jesus. This truth is not growing spiritually in the sense of doing more, but it's actually greater appreciation of Christ, okay? Now, watch this. Go back to verse 10. "He was in the world, and the world was made through him, and the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own did not receive him". But listen to what I'm saying. Do you know that these two words used twice, "his own"? This word used twice, his own. "He came unto his own, and his own did not receive him". They're not the same in the Greek.
Let me explain. Jesus came to his own. The gender there in the Greek is neuter, neither masculine nor feminine, which means it cannot be a person. It cannot be for the people. It refers to things. He came to his own things. He came to his own possessions. He came into his own world. He came into his own domain, okay? And the next one, "And his own". Now, this is masculine gender, all right, in the Greek, which means people. His own people did not receive him. You understand?
You say, "What do you mean, Pastor Prince"? Let me show you. He came to his own things. He came into his own world. Do you know that everything in his world recognize him? Do you know that? When he stood up, shhhh, the winds and the waves, whoosh, they kowtow before him. The things, the world, his created world, recognize him. The souls and bodies of men that come from the dust of the ground, the bodies of men recognize him. When he spoke the Word, the bodies that were dying, the bodies that were diseased responded to him with health. They own him. They own him. Demons scream and beg him. I love that picture, seeing demons begging. It's about time. Demons begging him not to cast them into the lake of fire before the time. Demons attest to him.
The Bible says the wild beasts, in the Gospel of Luke when he was tempted or tested 40 days and 40 nights in the desert, wild beasts were with him, wild animals, and they slept around him. Even the beasts of the field owns him. They recognize him. And even the fish of the sea, when there's a need for the fish, the fish obeyed him. The grave and death kowtow to him and give up their dead. They cannot hold back the dead in the presence of him. Even everything, his creation, recognize him. Even the corn and the wine. The corn produce from five loaves to plentiful, and the grapes, the wine, the water blush when he pass by. They attest to him. They own him. He came to his own. His own receive him. His own things, his own creation, his own possessions, his own domain, they all recognize him. Even the sea prop him up and let him walk on the water. His world owns him, but his own people did not receive him, referring to the Jewish people here. And somebody else did not own his glory: himself.
And I tell you something that might blow your mind, but Jesus, when he came in the flesh, he did not come to unveil his glory. He came in the form of a servant. In the book of Philippians, he did not count his equality with God something to grab, but he took upon him the form of a servant. Say "The form of a servant". And being found in the form of servant, being fashioned as a man, he live, in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, whenever you see Jesus coming to you, all right, people, I want you to see this: see kingly but kindly bearing. When you see Jesus from the back, you see Jesus talking to the multitudes, and then he sat down. And then he stands up. When he stands up, you see a kingly bearing, but kindly. That's how I see Jesus.
And you know something? He always veil his glory. When he does something right, he says, "Don't tell anyone about it," and then go. He will always veil his glory, but once a while there'll be a Canaanite woman who see through the veil of the flesh and say, "I know who you are. With you, even a crumb, even a crumb can heal my daughter". "Woman, great is your faith. Be it unto thee even as thou wilt". Went back, the daughter was healed.
Once a while someone like the Roman centurion will say, "I know who you are". I mean, there's a difference between familiarity and intimacy. That disciples walk with him day in, day out. They live with him, but they were not intimate with him. They were familiar with him. This man, the centurion, never walk with him, but he was intimate with him, which goes to show revelation comes by the Holy Spirit. It's fine, you can go to Bible school and all, no problem with that, but remember the Holy Spirit is the one that gives you revelation of Jesus.
And this centurion says, "I know who you are. I'm like a soldier. If I tell a soldier, 'Come,' he comes. I tell him, 'Go,' he goes. I'm a centurion, but you have power over disease. You have power over death itself. You only have to speak the word, and my servant back home will be healed". And Jesus turn around, look at all the Jewish people. "Truly, I have not found so great faith, not in Israel". Somebody look beyond the veil and saw he who came in the flesh, who was in the beginning with God. Hmm? Amen.
You know, when you read the Bible it's not always... I love the Holy Spirit, because in man's studies they try to put, oh, this story here, over here, but in Mark the story here comes after this story. How comes it's all haphazard? But what to the natural man is haphazard, to the mind of the Holy Spirit is divine order, like Luke 18 and Luke 19, all right? You have these two stories side by side. They didn't happen chronologically, in sequence, but the Holy Spirit put them for a reason.
In Luke 18 we have the rich young ruler. In Luke 19 you have Zacchaeus, all right? The rich young ruler came to Jesus and said... he was very wealthy. He's a yuppie, you know? He has everything. He said, "What must I do". No, he called, "Good Master, Good Master, what must I do to inherit eternal life"? He was boasting in his doing. He knows he has kept a lot of commandment. "What must I do, Good Master"? Jesus says, "Why do you call me good? There is none good but God". And that was it. Well, Jesus is not acknowledging his deity here. No, friend. He doesn't take flattery. "Don't flatter me. There's no one that's good but God. Are you calling me God"?
If he acknowledge Jesus as God, his problem is solved already. "Are you calling me God"? No, it just flattery. "What must I do"? Today we'll say believe on Jesus, right? But what did Jesus give him when he asked, "What must I do to inherit eternal life"? Jesus says, "You know the commandments. Thou shall not bear false witness. Don't murder. Honor your father and mother". Know what he said? "All these I've kept from my youth up. Lord, all these. All". He said, "All I've kept". Then Jesus says, "One thing you lack". Whenever you boast in the law, this is what you get from God. "One thing you lack. Sell all that you have and give to the poor and come follow me".
Wow, what an offer to follow Jesus. His name would have been one of the disciples, amen? And by the way, in case you get worried, relax. He doesn't tell everybody to sell all you have, 'cause not everyone has the privilege of following him also, all right? He was setting the guy up. "Sell all you have and give to the poor". Why? "Because the first commandment. You shall have no other gods before me". And obviously, this guy has the god of mammon. And the Bible says he got up. He walked away sorrowful.
Next chapter, okay? Next chapter, Jesus came out of Jericho, and on the tree there was a tax collector. His name was Zacchaeus. In Hebrew, Zakkay, all right? His name is Zacchaeus. I'll call him Zakkay from now on. There's a purpose for this. And when Jesus came out, Jesus saw him on a tree. And watch this. Everyone knew that he's a tax collector. A tax collector is like someone collecting taxes in betrayal of his country, for loyalty to another foreign nation that's conquered his country, and by that he's getting wealthy also. It's taking things that, later on, his own confession, he stole from people. He charged even more to make himself wealthy, so people in those days don't like tax collectors, okay?
Then Jesus look up, and Jesus saw Zacchaeus, and Jesus says, "Zakkay". In Hebrew his name, Zacchaeus is English. Zakkay in Hebrew. "Zakkay, come down. I must eat at your house". Today in Israel, even today in Israel, in the courts of law, when someone is acquitted the judge takes the gavel, slams it. And you know what he says? "Zakkay"! Acquitted. And when Jesus look up... have you notice he never call the rich young ruler in the previous chapter by name? And the guy kept most of the commandments. Never call him by name. Here he call him by name. "Zakkay," acquitted, from the mouth of Jesus, he who was in the beginning with God, the Word. "Come down. I must eat at your house". And he came down, and all the whispering. "A scandal of grace. Somebody must write a book. This is pseudo-grace. This is crazy grace".
So, Jesus walk kingly bearing. The Bible says his bearing is as the cedars of Lebanon, in Song of Songs. It's like when you see Jesus, faith is in your heart, amen? And there's a joy. It's not like this kind of, like, hypnotic eyes, you know? You cannot blink, you know? It's dignity with joy, kindly bearing, kingly bearing. He's always hiding his glory, but he cannot hide completely because here and there it shines out, like on the Mount of Transfiguration. At the end of the meal, they all ate, and Zacchaeus call his friends, as well, his other tax-collector friends, and they're all eating.
Zacchaeus stood up. "You know, if I have cheated anyone, I'll repay fourfold. And half my goods I give to the poor". Nobody ask him to do that. Jesus never followed him, saying, "By the way, thou shall not, thou shall not", behind him. He never said, Jesus never. And Jesus smile. I believe Jesus stood up, held him, and Jesus says, "Today, salvation has come to this house". Let's not forget he's talking to a Jew, right? So, let's make it Jewish. "Today, Yeshua has come into your house". Salvation is not an it. Salvation is a he. "Today, Yeshua has come into this house, even as much as he is the son of Abraham". "Son of Abraham" is a term not just used for Jewish people. It's a term used for people of faith. I said people of faith, because the reason he climbed the tree is to see Jesus. God loves it when you wanna see Jesus. You listening, people? God loves it when you wanna see Jesus.
Okay, Luke 18, Luke 19. Rich young ruler, Zacchaeus. The young ruler, Jesus gave him the law. Jesus gave him the Ten Commandments. Not all of it, a portion of it, but you know something? He could hardly give up $1, one shekel. For Zacchaeus, Jesus gave no law, only grace. It open up his heart, open up his wallet, open up his house, open up his life. Did he repent? The word is not used but there was repentance. It was the goodness shown first that resulted in the repentance. See, I like to believe and I like to think that our ministry is in this area and not in the old covenant way. Pastors and leaders, you're gonna hold back. By using the law, you're gonna hold back people's heart of generosity. But grace will open it up. Can I have a good "Amen"? Praise God.
So let's go back in closing to John 1, all right? "But as many as received Him," thank God there are those who receive him. They came to the Jewish people. Do you know that he came preaching the gospel of the Kingdom which means if they had believed him, the kingdom would have started and he would be the King. He would start reigning, amen. But because of their rejection, there is now a mystery. The church came in 2000 years of less but God is not finished with Israel yet. He's gonna return, all right, and deal with Israel but meanwhile there's this mystery, a parenthesis if you would, the church age where Jew and Gentile be brought in, all right, to make up the church, okay?
So, "As many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name". Next, "Who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God". Watch this. "And the Word," that was with God. "The Word," that was God, we read just now. "The Word became flesh and dwelt". He came in the flesh. So John is writing to combat gnosticism to say that Jesus existed before with the Father. "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. John", John the Baptist, "John bore witness of Him and cried out, saying, 'This was He of whom I said, "He who comes after me is preferred before me, for He was before me"'". Huh?
I used to read these and go, "Huh"? But when you see it, what a revelation. John says of his cousin, John was born six months before Jesus, all right? "John bore witness of Jesus, saying, 'This was He of whom I said, "He who comes after me"'", historically, he was born after John, six months after John was born. Jesus was born after John. "He who comes after me," historically, "is preferred before me, for He was before me". In eternity past, he always is. Hm, no wonder Jesus says in the book of Revelation, "I am the root and the offspring of David". Root and offspring? Root means I created David. Offspring means his descendant, right? I came from the line of David. Showing his deity, his humanity. He's very God and very man. Anything that takes away from that is the spirit of Antichrist, hm?
Your souls are prospering. I'm gonna pray for you at the end of service that you'll be in health even as your soul prospers, amen? Praise God, all right. Verse 16: "Of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace. For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him". Now this is amazing. Notice, and by the way, in the Greek, it's present tense. "The only begotten Son", that's Jesus, "who is; not who was". And in the Greek it's present, "Who is in the bosom of the Father".
Do you know Jesus never left the bosom of the Father. In other words, Jesus lived in the consciousness that he is God's beloved. He live in the bosom of the Father. Now, if he had said, "Who was in the bosom of the Father", that means once he was in the heart of God, he was in the bosom, in the love of God. Bosom is love, all right? Bu now he's extricated himself. That means as a man he wasn't there. No, he always live there. He always live in the consciousness of the love of God. Are you listening, people? In the Greek, it's present tense, constant present. He's in the bosom of the Father. When he cleansed the leper, he did it conscious of the Father's love. He always live in the love of the Father then Jesus say to us, "Now as my Father has loved me, continue you in my love. Be conscious of my love for you", all right? This is your home, my breast, my bosom, the place of love. This is your home. This is your refuge. These are secret place of the most high.
Oh, Israel, O Israel, how I wish Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how I gathered you like a mother hen will gather her chicks to her bosom, amen? He shall feed his flock like a shepherd, gather the lambs of the young and carry them in his bosom. He wants you to be in a place of love but one disciple found the secret. Who was it? John, amen? Amen, people? Seventy disciples, people serving Jesus and all that. But out of the 70, there are 12 apostles, right? Out of the 12, there's always 3 that has the inside story: Peter, James, and John. Out of the three, there is John, the closest. I don't know about you, but I don't wanna be in the 70. I don't wanna be among the three. I wanna be like John, y'all, amen.
What kind of ministry do you want? The people outside will not understand your ministry sometimes. But that's the kind of ministry I want. John lean on Jesus' breasts 'cause in those days they eat reclining, all right? They recline, they put one arm like that, their feet is behind, on the floor, and they eat like that, with their hand. So John was reclining. He's probably the youngest disciple but he reclined on Jesus's bosom. It's a picture of I'm not depending on my love. I'm not resting on my own bosom. Many Christians are trying to do that. They're resting on their bosom, their own bosom. You know, John is resting on Jesus's bosom. That means what? I'm resting on his love for me. My love for him fluctuates. His love for me is always strong and vigorous. His love for me is unceasing. His love for me is unconditional.
When I cannot love my family, man, I can lean on his love and his love will fill my heart and then I have love for my family. I must always be in the bosom. It must be a present tense for me. Are you listening? But then there was another disciple. His name is Petros, means stone. He represents the law. And he boasts of his love. He says that if all the other disciples, and to their faces, by the way. They were all there in their last supper. "Even if all these betray you, Lord, I, yo, me, the Peter, man, I will never betray you, I'll never forsake you. Where you go, I'll follow, even to the ends of the earth. I'll die for you, Lord". "You'll die for me"? Jesus says, "Before the cock crows today, all right, you'll deny knowing me three times".
Okay, and you know what happened? He denied knowing Jesus. Where was John? John was at the foot of the cross. Now watch this, people. The one who boast of his love for the Lord always falls. He meant well. He did love the Lord but God does not want you depending on your love for him. He wants you to depend on his love for you. Doesn't want your eyes to be on your love for him. I know you mean well. I know, "I wanna love God". I know that. God knows that. But God knows that you do not know your love is not strong. "But the greatest commandment says must love God all my heart, all my soul, and my strength". That's the law. We are no more under the law. God knew we couldn't, amen? And now God says, "Rest in my love for you". Even Jesus rested in his Father's bosom all the way.
Now Jesus is saying, "Rest in my bosom," amen? So Peter represents the one who boasts of his love for the Lord. John boasts of the Lord's love for him. This is the first chapter of John's Gospel. It ends with a bosom, all right? Down here. Let me tell you this. The last chapter of John, the Gospel of John, ends also with bosom. Let's go to it, and we'll end the sermon, okay? "Then Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following, who also had leaned on His breast", first chapter there's a breast, the last chapter there's a breast. In other words, first to the end of Christian life, there's nothing more than the love of Christ. It's not your love. "Peter, seeing him, said to Jesus," okay, let's see what John is doing.
By the way, the disciple whom Jesus loved, that's another message I have altogether. I want to share so much on this now, but it wasn't that Jesus loved him 'specially, but John knew it. Why? Because this is called the Gospel of John, you see? John is writing, "The he the disciple whom Jesus loved". John was practicing the love of Jesus for him. If I write a book, I'll say, "Three pastors were there last night at Starbucks: Pastor Gabriel, Pastor Lawrence, and a pastor whom Jesus love," amen? And he's got privilege to say the same thing of themself. So John was writing, being conscious. He always practice it. You don't find it in Matthew, Mark, and Luke, and only in his own Gospel. He's practicing the love of Jesus. So what was John doing? "Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following". He was following.
One reason why Caleb was strong at 85, more than three times the Bible says: "He followed the Lord". And here you have John following. "So Peter," verse 21, "said to Jesus, 'Lord, what about this man?'" referring to John. "Jesus said to him, 'If I will that John remains 'til I come, what is that to you? You follow Me'". So the one who boasts of the Lord's love for him was following. But the one who was boasting of his love had to be told, "You follow me". He was given a law. He was given a commandment. He was given an imperative, if you would, in the Greek. "You follow me". But John had no imperatives. John is following without even knowing he's following, because he was practicing the love of Jesus for himself.
C'mon, church, hallelujah. I believe this is a generation that God is raising, inasmuch as John's name means God's grace, Johanan. It means God's grace. Peter's name means stone, so typical. So, "But, Pastor, don't you think it's important to tell people what to do"? Yeah, in some circles, some places I go, I'll be telling them what to do, amen, because their trust is in themselves. And sometimes I'll say it to bring them to the end of themself. But for grace people, they're always conscious of the Lord's love for them, amen? We teach them deeper truths, church truth, epistle truths, amen. Why? Because they won't commit adultery. They have seen the truth. They have seen the one they love. They won't be going on drinking and all that, amen?
And it's too late, by the way, it's too late. Y'all can't hear it. You all see how beautiful Jesus is. You can't go too far. You'll be a miserable Christian trying to drink yourself and still, "I still see his glory, you know? It doesn't satisfy anymore. Used to be wonderful but this bottle"... Come back to church, amen. Go all the way with Jesus, amen, amen? "Doesn't seem fun anymore, hiding behind and trying to find ways to meet and all that. Doesn't seem so good anymore. And now we are quarreling all the time". Why? "You know, I don't know. I'm seeing his glory, amen". They were changed people. And that's why the only way for people like this to succeed in their sin is they leave church. It's easier.
The minister is preaching, you know, a lot of rituals and that kind of thing. People can keep their sin and not be convicted. But you preach a loving Savior, people don't feel at home, those who are sinning. So they leave. Pastors and leaders preach Jesus. That's what in the book of Acts, they all preach. They preach Jesus. Can I have a good "Amen"? But remember this. Don't just preach so much of his humanity, we forget his deity, amen? And just because he hides his glory, he used words like "If of myself can do nothing, but what I see the Father do". Don't use those statements and depreciate him. He's the perfect dependent man.
In fact, it shows his glory. He came to hide himself. He hides his glory. But sometimes, he lets out a little bit. Sometimes, someone sees his glory, amen? He's like the tabernacle being veiled, but inside you see the Shekinah glory. Praise God. When he comes again, there'll be no veil blocking that. He doesn't come as a form of servant anymore. He's gonna come back as King of kings and Lord of lords. And we all see him, amen? C'mon, church, praise him, hallelujah! Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord! Hallelujah! Amen?
So, oh, by the way, I preached a slightly different sermon in the first service. I preached about the power to get wealth. You shall remember the Lord your God and the signature of Jesus in the Hebrew, aleph tav. When God gives you power to get wealth, if it's so spectacular, like, all of a sudden someone came and gave you $10 million, it's so spectacular you said, "Oh, God, thank you, God," it's so obvious it's from God, right, for you? But if it happened supernaturally natural, chances are, like what happened to the children of Israel, it's like saying, "My power and the might of my hand, God made this wealth".
God says like this, in the verses before, God says, "When your herds multiply, when your flocks multiply, when your silver and gold is multiplied, and you live in beautiful houses, don't say in your heart, 'My power and the might of my hand God made this wealth.' But you shall remember the Lord your God for it is he who gives you power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant". Why? To establish his covenant that he swore to your fathers. Not the Sinaitic covenant; the grace covenant, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, hundreds of years before the Sinaitic covenant. That's the covenant God wants to establish.
Now watch this. I showed them the Hebrew, that in it there is this trick: sin nature of Jesus that's not translated. I think we can show them real quick, all right? You shall remember Aleph Tav, not translated. They're the first letter and the last letter in the Hebrew language, okay? And for years and years, even until now, the Hebrew Bible does not translate it because they do not know what it really means. It's just a marker. They just say it's a marker, it's a sign. But don't forget Jesus in the book of Revelation, he was talking to John, and John is a Jew. Jesus in the flesh came as a Jew. They are not speaking Greek. Our Bible says he said, "I am alpha". Jesus says, "I am alpha and omega".
Alpha and omega, the first and last letter of the Greek alphabet. But Jesus didn't speak Greek with John. He spoke Hebrew, right? So what did he say? "I am aleph and I am tav". I am the first letter of the Hebrew and I am the last letter, aleph tav. Reading from right to left, aleph tav. His signature. "You shall remember Jesus with your wealth, the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth that he may establish aleph tav". The reason God gives you wealth is not to establish your name. It's to establish one name: the name "Jesus". It is his covenant that God wants to establish. Praise God.
Stand to your feet, church, hallelujah, amen. Raise your hand to the Lord. Believers, start praying, start worshiping. I wanna give you a chance to put your trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible says: "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved and your house". I know you're concerned about your career. I know you're concerned about your children. I know you're concerned about the health of your body. But listen, my friend, with Jesus comes everything. Don't worry about these things 'cause the greatest thing you need to know is that your soul is prospering before God. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. There's salvation in no other name but the name of Jesus. So if that is you, pray this prayer with me. I'm gonna help you pray this prayer right now. Say:
Heavenly Father, no other name but the name of Jesus. I call upon that name. Thank you for your Son, your only begotten Son, that you gave up for me because of your love for me. And he died on that cross, bearing all my sins, as the Lamb of God to take them all away. And you raised him from the dead. Oh hallelujah, Jesus Christ is my Lord, in Jesus's name, amen.
You are saved, amen? If the Rapture happens tonight, you are going with us. There is no second train, third train, fourth train, no. Only one. You are going with us, but there will be people who are believing the book of Revelation, you see them. Those are not left-behind people. Those are people who got saved because they watch my sermons. My sermons will be still be left here, all right? My CDs and all that, I'll leave behind, okay? So many people get saved during the Tribulation but it's hard for them to be believers at the time, amen?
And to them, all right, Jesus will return, all right, to rescue Israel and them. But, church, Rapture can happen anytime. There is no sign to be fulfilled. We are getting ready, amen? Paul talk about it in almost every book of the New Testament, except for Galatians. Paul talk about the Second Coming of Jesus, amen? He's returning. Look at your neighbor's face and say, "There's hope for that face". New body, amen? Lift your hands all across this place.
Father, in the name of Jesus, I pray for everyone under the sound of my voice. Father, our hearts are full of Jesus. Our souls are prospering. And now, Father, I ask in Jesus's name, cause your people to prosper in every respect of their lives. Those of you watching in GRC, those watching by way of online as well as through TV, I speak the Word over you as well. In the name of Jesus I pray that every one of you prosper, your loved ones prosper, in every respect, and be in health, be in health, be in health, even as your soul is prospering right now, with the truth that's in Jesus. In Jesus's name, in Jesus's name, in Jesus's name, amen. God bless you.