Joseph Prince - His Word Brings Life And Healing
Welcome back to a New Creation Church online. You know, I always look forward to sharing God's Word with you. I'm excited with God's Word. In fact, for the past weeks, the Lord has been giving us a revival in His Word. It's back to the Bible, amen? And he's imparting a fresh love for His Word. So, I'm so excited about the Bible because every time, you know, I get into the Word of God, I'm seeing new things, and God is opening my eyes. And after all these years, you know, like, you have passages that you are familiar with, and you thought you know them, but all of a sudden God opened my eyes, and I begin to see things that I've never seen before, and some of these things I'll be sharing with you today. But God's Word is what gives us life.
The Bible says being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, even by the Word of God which lives and abides forever. Think of that. There's corruptible seed, and there's incorruptible seed. We are born again of incorruptible seed, God's Word, amen? So, if you live by God's Word, and that's what Jesus said. Jesus said, "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth from the mouth of God". When you think about it, we know that we can't live without food; but by the same token, Jesus is saying that all the more you cannot live without the Word of God. Friend, the Word of God is what gives us life. In the very beginning, when God made man, God made man from the dust of the ground, but man was like a mannequin. You know, he has form, he has all the features, but lifeless. So, which part of man was it when God breathed into man, what brought that life? It was the breath of God. The breath of God gave life to man in his spirit and then permeates in his soul, and then life to his body.
And I guess life, in our body, is how health is manifested. If we are sick in certain parts of our body, it's just an indication that in that area of our life, there is a lack of life or death has set in. You know, when you think about it, there are forms of death. The Bible talks about, for this reason, not observing the Lord's Supper in a way that is worthy of him... in other words, Jesus died on the cross for our sins. In his own body, he removed our sins. But also, in his own body, by his stripes, we are healed. So, when we don't discern that, we are actually submitting ourself to the law of death that is already released in this world. So, God does not want us to be condemned with that same condemnation, that rule of condemnation that came in when Adam sinned. There was like the law released, that if you sin, you die. And the first stage of death is actually this constant fatigue, tiredness, like lifelessness, and then sickness is another form of death, and then sickness finished is death itself.
But God's Word gives us life, amen. God's Word is God-breathed. The Bible says all Scripture is given by inspiration of God. That word there, "inspiration of God" is one word in the Greek. It's literally God-breathed. So, the very breath that gave man life, that's the life that we are to live by, that's the Word of God that gives us life. And the more you spend time in the Word of God, you're actually resuscitating, reviving, vivifying your body in such a way that you feel the abundance of life that Jesus came to give. And friend, you know, whenever we feel like blah, we feel despondent, we feel depressed in our minds, it's just a sign that death has crept in those areas, even in our emotional areas. And the Bible... in fact, if you read the Bible carefully, not only is God against sin, God is against death. And when Jesus died on the cross, for all those who believe on Christ, there is a release in us.
The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus... notice, I love that, the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made us free from the law of sin and death that is in the world, and that law of sin and death was released when Adam sinned in the garden. And God does not want us to fall under that curse, under that sin. So, God says, you know, to offset that, when you partake of the Lord's Supper, partake in a way, right, worthy of his sacrifice. That means you must remember what he did, amen? You discern what he did. You don't dishonor it by just taking as mere food or drink, all right? You take it as what the Lord has done for you, and you say, "By your stripes, I am healed". Amen? And the Bible says, "For the lack of this," for this reason, singular reason many, and I've always said this.
You know, when you look at the word "many," you know, it tells you the reason why many are sick in the church. "For this reason," singular reason, didn't even say it's because of their constant sinning or because of their constant, you know, bad attitudes, or whatever it is, a lot of people say it's the reason behind sickness. But actually, the Bible says, "For this reason," one reason, "many are weak and sick, and they fall asleep," which means they die before their time. And what is it, the singular reason? The verse before that says, "Not discerning the Lord's body". Amen? So, we receive life by discerning the Lord's body. But how do we learn all this? What have I just shared? I've shared God's Word pertaining to the Lord's Supper. It's not enough just to say, you know, "Okay, now I've found the formula. If I'm sick, I know what to do. I just take the communion". No, friend, it doesn't work like that. Everything in the kingdom of God works by faith and "Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God".
We need to saturate ourselves in the washing of the water of the Word, amen? Literally saturate ourselves with the Word about the Lord's Supper before we partake it in faith, amen. In fact, the revelation of the Lord's Supper has got to be strong before you see the results that God wants you to have in your life, amen? And, you know, I've written a book on the Lord's Supper. I'm not saying that you must read that book; but, friend, it sort of like consolidates all the truth from the Word of God. So, when you go through it, it's like the washing of water of the Word, an impartation of faith in your heart, because faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. You know, the Word of God is incorruptible seed. Like I share just now from 1 Peter, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible seed, which is the Word of God, which lives and abides forever".
So, the more time you spend in the Word of God, you are spending time with life flowing into your spirit, into your soul, into your body. The very life that gave us that life, our beginning, amen, of existence, with that life of God, when God breathed into us, that very breath is now within the pages of this book. Every Scripture is given by the breath of God, by the inspiration of God, literally, in the Greek, the breath, God-breathed, God-breathed. So, the same life, when you are sick, you go into the Word of God. The Bible says, "Attend to my words, incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them not depart from thine eyes, keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are Life to those that find them, and health to all their flesh". It's obvious that, you know, life is not just your heart beating, amen? You can have your heart beating, but not have that life that God talks about.
God is saying, "You spend time in my Word. They are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh". That doesn't cover, you know, just the specific areas of sickness in your life. It covers the entire body. Health to what? All, in the Hebrew, kol, all their flesh. It benefits every part of your body when you spend time in the Word of God, amen? And every time I find that I spend time in the Word of God, you know, and I have a time of revelation in the Word of God and communion with the Lord, I always stand up, and I go out with joy. In fact, the Bible says in Isaiah 55, God says, "My Word", God's Word is so concentrated in heaven, for us to receive it like that, you know, God's wisdom is beyond us.
So, God says, "My wisdom, my ways are higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts". But then he says this in Isaiah 55, "For as the rain comes down and the snow from heaven, and do not return there". Now notice the verse before this tells us that his thoughts are beyond our thoughts, his ways higher than our ways. It's like concentrated wisdom. We're not able to digest it. We're not able to assimilate it. We're not able to understand it, but God is so kind, God is so good that he allows his wisdom to come like rain, rain comes down. Friend, if rain comes down, you know, let's say rain has been coming down for about the last four hours.
Now, imagine, think all that water, all that rain, you know, can you imagine how many tons of rain that is? And if you let all that rain fall, one splat, just splash like that, without making it drop in droplets, you know, it would destroy things on the earth. But the same amount of rain falling and mixing with the dust and the particles of the air, and God allowed it to become rain or snow, now when it falls even on the smallest flower, it refreshes that flower. It reinvigorates that flower. It is nourishment to that flower. Amen? It doesn't hurt. So, that's what God's wisdom comes, if it's all concentrated, we can't take it. All right? But God allows it to come in bite-size, amen, portion after portion, like the manna. "For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and do not return there, but water the earth, and make it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater". Seed to the sower and bread to the eater.
So it says, "So shall my word be that goes forth from My mouth. It shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it". So, God's Word comes down just like the snow and the rain will cause the seed to sprout, to become fruitful, right, God's Word tells us, "My word is the same. It will not return to Me empty, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it". So, if you're sick in your body, amen, listen to Scriptures of healing. Listen to God's Word, God-breathed words on healing, amen. I've consolidated all this, actually, in one audio that you can listen to. We have rains and different sounds that, you know, from nature, God's creation, to help. But it's the Word of God in it that I want you to listen to. If you are sick, saturate yourself with the Word of God. Saturate yourself.
So, these healing Scriptures are available, but it's not just mine. Any other person sharing healing Scriptures, you can listen to them, amen, as long as you're receive the Word of God pertaining to healing. And the very seed that God is speaking in the Word, the Word is likened to a seed. It will always reproduce itself. So, words of healing will reproduce as healing in your body, amen? So, when you receive God's Word, you're receiving prosperity, because the Bible says, "So it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it". So, if God sends his Word to me, his Word prospers me. Hallelujah, amen. Look at the result after this. In verse 12 it says, "For you shall go out with joy". "For," that means because of God's Word, "you shall go out with joy, and be led out with peace. The mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing before you, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands".
Notice, you go out with joy, and you are led out with peace. These are the two things I find so true in my life, that every time I spend time in the Word of God, and after I spend time in the Word of God, it's like there is a joy beyond the, you know, the normal joys of life. It's like beyond my emotions, like a joy within, and then I feel like deep down there's a peace that leads me. I make the right decision because from then on I'm led forth with peace, like this verse says. I'm led forth with peace. I go out with joy, and I'm led forth with peace. It's like a picture of receiving God's Word early in the morning, amen, before you go out in the fight of life, hallelujah, and then you go out with joy, and you are led forth with peace, amen.
Notice what's going to happen. The mountains and the hills will break into singing. They'll clap their hands, right? Instead of the thorn, instead of the curse shall come up the cypress tree. That's your Christmas tree, by the way. Imagine God using that. I'm sure that God knows there is going to be something celebratory of his Son's birth. So, instead of a thorn shall come up the cypress tree, a tree of blessing, a tree of joy. And instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree, hadass tree, the name of Esther, hadass, Hadassah. "And it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off". So, all these trees speaks of people.
So, when you spend time in the Word of God, and you are filled with joy, and you go out, you are led with peace in all your decision making, you are led with peace, hallelujah. There's a peace to do something. There's a lack of peace, which means what? Abstain from doing bad, amen? Don't go into that. Don't indulge in that, amen? Follow the peace. And everywhere you go, when you do that, when you go out with joy, and you're led forth with peace, the mountains and the hills, the mountains are the VIPs. The hills are the people, the common folk, right? They will all clap their hands. And instead of the curse will come up the cypress tree. In other words, blessing everywhere you go. Where there used to be a curse, it will start to blossom. You are a blessing everywhere you go when you're filled with the Word of God. Hallelujah.
May this be true in your life from this day forth, amen? Because right now you are receiving God's Word. Right now, you are receiving God's Word. So, when you receive God's Word, be expectant to go out with joy and to be led forth with peace from this day forth. Hallelujah. I want to share with you something that the Lord shared in private with his disciples. Publicly, he shared a truth. But it's very interesting. He shared a truth publicly, actually, but this truth is so precious to him that he said to his disciples, "The reason I didn't share with them openly, but in parables, is because this truth is so precious about the kingdom of heaven, how it operates. I don't want the people who don't treasure it to receive it. I want people who are hungry and whose hearts are towards me to receive it".
Let's read this parable. And it's the parable of all parables. In fact, "On the same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the sea. And great multitudes were gathered together to Him, so that He got into a boat and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore. Then he spoke many things to them in parables". Now, this is the first time Jesus started speaking in parables in his ministry. In the gospel of Matthew, you will find he was speaking plainly. Even in the Sermon on the Mount, he spoke plainly, but now he starts to speak to them in parables, saying, "Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them. Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up, they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked them. But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty".
Wow, look at this again. Some fell on good ground and the crop comes in these measures: some a hundredfold. Now, don't we want that? Don't we all want a hundredfold? We don't want sixtyfold, amen? We don't want thirtyfold. But I believe it's also a picture of the sequence, the consequence of having the Word of God falling on good ground. First of all, you will experience a thirtyfold harvest, then a sixtyfold, then a hundredfold. "He who has ears to hear, let him hear". This is so vital because this phrase appears more than once in this passage. "He who has ears to hear, let him hear". Hallelujah. Now, he's going to go on to tell his disciples why he shared to the public, to the crowd in parables. The next verse says, "And the disciples came and said to Him, 'Why do you speak to them in parables?' He answered and said to them, 'Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. For whoever has, to him more will be given, and he will have abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him.'"
Now, later on we're gonna answer this question. What is this, "whoever has, to him more will be given"? What is this? Has what? So, it's not declared to us here what he has; but later on, if you follow along, you'll find the answer to what this man has. He has something that caused him to have more given to him. But the one who has something already, right, if he does not have this, that God wants him to have, even what he has will be taken away. Now, the Lord Jesus proceeded to explain to his disciples. So, in other words, he's keeping truths in parables. So, people think that Jesus shared in parables to make things clearer to people. No, that's illustration. He will illustrate, yes.
Some illustrations are to make things clearer, but parables are actually shared in a way that is public. It's public sharing so that those who are hungry for God's wisdom, those who are hungry for God's Word, they're the ones that will penetrate beyond the kernel of the seed and right into the seed itself, the life itself, amen, the wisdom itself, and God will give him revelation for the one who is hungry. But the one who has a lackadaisical attitude, an indifferent attitude towards God's Word, even though they are listening, even the crowd down there listening to Jesus, they're not able to receive the wisdom, the revelation, the blessing that is inherent, the virtue that there is in that Word. They're not able to receive it. Why? They don't have a heart for it. So, actually, the sower and the ground, the four types of ground is a picture of our heart, four types of heart that he's talking about. And this one particular heart attitude that actually receives the bountiful harvest, a hundredfold, sixtyfold, thirtyfold, and that is the one I'm coming to right now.
So, let's look at what Jesus said about his parable to his disciples, because he told them that unto them it's given to know. Verse 18, "Therefore hear the parable of the sower: When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it", there you have it. They hear it, but they don't understand it, "then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside". So, people that hear God's Word, and they have no heart to want to understand or even ask God for wisdom or seek the Lord to have that Word revealed to them, God says these are the ones that become prey to the enemy's theft. Right? The Bible says, "The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy," John 10:10, "but I am come that you might have life, and have it more abundantly". That's what Jesus said.
Now, if the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy - notice the sequence there. He comes to steal first. What does he steal? Then he kills, and then he destroys. He steals the Word of God. Based on this, he steals the Word. Why do you think the thief comes to steal, of all the things he wants to steal, he steals the Word of God. You thought he might want to steal your health, you know, steal your relationships with your wife, or your husband, or your children. No, no, no, he knows when he steals God's Word from you, he steals all these things, because these things are a consequence, a harvest of receiving God's Word in your life. So, he knows when he take God's Word out of your heart, you have nothing to reproduce in your life, because the power is in the seed, and the seed here is the Word of God, hallelujah.
So, the devil comes to steal the Word. He's so afraid that you will receive God's Word. He is so afraid. That's why he says priority number one is to come and take the Word away from your heart. But thanks be to God, we read in this verse that for those who understand, the devil cannot do that. It's only those who do not understand. Then comes the wicked one and snatches away the Word that's in his heart. So, let's seek to understand God's Word, amen? The next verse goes on. "But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy". They hear the Word of God, or they hear the preaching of the Word, and they say, "Oh, that's good preaching. I like, enjoy that, amen". They will shout, "Amen," and things like that, but "yet he has no root in himself, but he endures only for a while. For when tribulation or," that's trouble, "or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles".
In other words, the devil will try to take God's Word out of your heart. If he can't steal it from you because you understand it, the next thing he wants to do, right, he will try his best to cause some trouble or persecution to arise because of the Word. It says, "because of the Word". He's after the Word. He's trying to remove the Word. He's trying to say, "This Word is a lie. You cannot believe this Word. See, look at your circumstance. There's trouble, there's persecution". Stand steady. Amen? The Bible says this man, he received the Word, and he received it with joy. His immediate reaction is joy, but he has no root in himself, so he endures for a while; but when trouble comes, persecution comes because of God's Word, he lets it go. He gives up because he has no root. And thus, the Word becomes unfruitful in his life.
And the third category, "Now he who receives seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it". Notice that? The one who received seed on the good ground, good heart; the ground is always the heart here. He receives it, he hears it, and he understands it. He is the one "who indeed bears fruit and produces some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty". So, in other words, it behooves us to understand God's Word. We are hungry for the Word of God. We want God's Word expounded to us, hallelujah. We don't wanna hear psychology being preached. We don't wanna hear scientific facts being preached. We don't wanna hear the opinions of experts being preached. Wanna hear the Word of the living God, hallelujah. And when you spend time in the Word of God, and you seek understanding like in the book of Proverbs, lift your voice, amen?
Cry out for knowledge, cry out for wisdom, seek for her as for hid treasures, you shall understand the wisdom of God and find the knowledge of the Lord, hallelujah. So what we're gonna see here is, what causes one to have this hundredfold harvest in his life? It's the same Word of God that goes into all the four types of heart or ground. It's the same seed that goes into... the seed is the Word of God. They heard the Word of God. It's like speaking of, like, the audience in Jesus's time. They were there, they heard his preaching, but there are four types of hearts. And there are those whose hearts are, like, on the wayside. These are seeds sown on the wayside.
Notice the wayside speaks of people who are sideliners, they are people who are not in the center. In other words, they're not really, it's like they hear the preaching online, for example, on Sunday. God's Word is being preached, right, on Sunday, but it's like, they may switch it on and then they get distracted with doing other things and they might be looking at their phone and, you know, it's like they expect the seed to fall on the wayside. They're hearing but they're not understanding. You know, have you ever had that experience, guys, where your wife is talking to you, you hear words, but your mind is on something else? You're thinking about golf or something, right? And then she says, "You're not listening to me," right, and then you repeat the very last line that she said just now. You are hearing, but you're not listening.
So God says, and he said more than once in this passage here, "He who has ears to hear, let him hear," the Lord said. And your hearing is vital. You need to hear it first, but then you need to be not on the wayside, to be in the center, receiving God's Word. And then another thing Jesus said in this parable, look at what he said about the way you hear, what you hear and the way you hear. "If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear". Again, the emphasis, "If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear". "Then He said to them, 'Take heed what you hear,'" the subject. We all wanna hear God's Word because God's Word is incorruptible seed. God's Word is what regenerates us. God's Word is what raised Jesus from the dead, hallelujah, amen. We don't just, corruptible seed, men's words. Men's words may or may not have fruit, but not the kind of fruit that God's Word will produce in your life. "So take heed what you hear. With the same measure you use, it will be measured to you; and to you who hear, more will be given".
Now, look at this. Here is Mark's account. By the way, just to let you know that in the parable of the sower and the seed, it appears in the synoptic Gospels, which is Matthew, Mark, and Luke; not in John, but in the first three Gospels. And in all three, you have different insights of the sower and the seed, and one of them will say: "Take heed what you hear," like over here, Mark would say that, but Luke will say something else. In other words, Jesus said two things, but Mark's emphasis was on the first, what you hear, and look at Luke's emphasis: "Therefore take heed how you hear. For whoever has, to him more will be given; and whoever does not have, even what he seems to have will be taken from him". Now, we've found a clue to what the very thing that we shared just now. What is this "having" thing? "Whoever has". Has what? "To him, more will be given".
Now we see it. To the one who has this hearing attitude, hearing heart, wanting to hear the revelation of the Word, wanting to understand the Word. Whoever has this heart. Not only, he said, take heed what you hear, the subject itself, which is the Word of God, "Take heed what you hear, but how you hear it". How you hear it, hallelujah, for whoever has this hearing heart, this hearing attitude towards God's Word, the Bible says, "more". I like the word. Say the word "more". "More will be given to you". Say "More will be given to me," amen. Then he says, "The one who does not have this hearing heart, even what he has, even what he has will be taken away". And we know who takes it away. "Will be taken away". It's so important for us to understand this because both are important: take heed what you hear and how you hear. So it's obvious Jesus said these two in one sentence, and Mark record the first and Luke the latter. And Jesus said, "Take heed what you hear and how you hear".
Let's go back to Mark again. And Jesus says, "Take heed what you hear and how you hear. With the same measure you use," so, if you use a thirtyfold measure, you give thirtyfold attention, thirtyfold focus, thirtyfold devotion to it, it will be measured to you, guess what? To you, he will measure what? The same measure you used. Same measure you use, it will be measured to you. Thirtyfold, you get what back? Thirtyfold benefit. Thirtyfold virtue out of thirtyfold revelation, thirtyfold wisdom, thirtyfold harvest, whatever verse it is you're meditating on. It's a verse on healing, you will receive healing by thirtyfold. And he's saying this: it's not because it's God's will. It is saying it's your attitude. "The same measure you use".
If you listen to God's Word with 100%, with the same measure, I'm using the measure of 100% attention to God's Word. So don't be distracted, friend. If you can, every Sunday, just give that time to the Lord. And isn't it amazing how the devil will always try to tell you to catch up on something you have not done during the whole week that you could have caught up on, but you didn't, all right, you didn't do all those things, and all of a sudden, while you're listening to God's Word, the devil will say, "You know what? You didn't read this book. You have not read this book. Hey, how about this? You didn't contact your friend. Hey, look at your phone, all right, there's a message that just came in". It's like all hell break loose sometimes, all right, when you are about to receive God's Word.
The warfare, my friend, is actually getting to God's Word. There are so many things trying to hold you back from hearing God's Word because the devil is so afraid. Yes, friend, he's afraid that you will receive God's Word because he knows that his influence and his power in that area of your life will be broken; why? Because the Word of God is greater than him, hallelujah. So take heed what you hear and how, your attitude. What kind of measure are you giving? Are you giving 100% attention or are you giving sixtyfold attention? Are you giving 30% attention? The same measure will be measured back to you. In other words, you give hundredfold attention, 100% attention, a hundredfold harvest. You'll get full harvest, full results, complete fruitfulness, hallelujah. And I wonder, and I know many of you do as well, but notice, "with the same measure you use". It's gotta do with your hearing, how you hear.
So this is what he's talking about. "Whoever has, to him more will be given; but whoever does not," have this hearing heart, "even what he has will be taken away from him". Then Jesus shared another parable here, "And He said, 'The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground, and should sleep by night and rise by day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how.'" I like this. "He himself does not know how". So this man scatters seed on the ground and he goes to "sleep by night and rise by day". In other words, he just leads his normal life, "and the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how". So the ground, we've established, Jesus himself said the ground is our hearts. In other words, as you're listening to God's Word, and friends, today, there are many ways to listen to God's Word.
As you're studying God's Word, you're actually listening with your inner ear. You're actually listening. And even reading, faith comes by hearing. It's not just hearing audibly from outside. As you're reading, you're also receiving. But there are many who receive by hearing, literally, from outside. And we thank God that now we have the advent of audio books, and audio books is, like, the trend now, and there are people who don't like to read. They find their concentration is not there, but they'd rather listen on the go as they are doing things, you know, they're listening to an audio book. They can finish many books that way. Friend, how about prioritizing God's Word? Prioritize God's Word. Just listen to God's Word. If you're not the reading type, all right, listen to God's Word. If you are sick in your body, it's not enough just to say, "Okay, I'm just gonna take Communion," right, "and that's how I know I'll be healed". Yes, friend, but you need the Word about Communion. You need, you know, it's not just a, it's not a magical formula, friend. it is actually a revelation.
This is a time of Communion with the Lord, having that revelation where, you know, you see what he has done for you. You love him, and then you receive from him, hallelujah, and that can only come about as you get fresh revelation. Even though you knew it before, you need a fresh revelation. Every time, amen, you come to the Word of God, it start telling you something, and this is why meditation is so important. Keep on mulling over God's Word. Keep on musing over God's Word. Keep on revolving God's Word in your mind, day and night, and the Bible says the one who does that, whatever he does shall prosper. Not only that, his leaf will always be green. In other words, he's evergreen, he's always young, he's always vigorous, he's always fresh, even in his old age. And whatever he does, I like that, whatever he does prospers.
And the promise is what? The one who meditates, the one who meditates on God's Word. Because, you see, meditation is actually causing yourself to hear the Word again. When you meditate, you hear the Word again and again, hallelujah. And another way is to listen to preaching, good preaching. Make sure that preaching is on the Word of God, and as you're receiving the preaching, your understanding, guess what? It will grow. But this parable here that Jesus is sharing is about a man who's hearing, and he is actually speaking or reading the Word of God and he's in contact with the Word of God, and the Word has fallen into his heart.
Now, God is saying that this man does not need to worry about how the seed grows. "He knows not how". All he gotta do: make sure he's listening, make sure he is hearing, have a good heart towards hearing, amen, to hear, to receive, to understand. If he has that heart, the Bible says he can go to sleep night and day, just live his normal life, and you know what? The harvest will come. The seed will sprout and grow. He himself does not know how. I like that because many a time people say, you know, "You've gotta know how the process works. We need to have intelligence about these things. We need to participate with God. We need to cooperate with God".
Friend, our only cooperation is to receive the Word. The Word itself does the job. You know, when a woman receives seed from the man, she don't have to worry about the first month, second month, third month, how, you know, her body is responding, how the body is, the body is helping to help create that precious life, that precious new form and body that is being formed in her. She don't have to worry about all that. The seed takes care of itself. All the wisdom, the DNA and the genes and all, all that is in, and the wisdom of God is actually in that seed to reproduce another human being. When you think about it, when God talk about the seed in the beginning, God said, on the third day, actually, think of it, when God introduced plants into this earth, this is what God said: "Then God said, 'Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb that yields seed, and the fruit tree that yields fruit according to its kind, whose seed is in itself, on the earth.'" Notice that? "Whose seed is in itself".
So God introduced the grass and the herb and the trees, and then he says, "Whose seed is in itself". So the apple fruit, the seed is in it, all right? Whatever it is, the pear, the vine, all the seed is in it. "And the earth brought forth grass, the herb that yields seed according to its kind," again, reminding us it's according to its kind. "And the tree that yields fruit, whose seed is in itself according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. So the evening and the morning were the third day". Now this is the first mention of number three in the Bible, and the law of first mention applies here. Every time something is mentioned for the first time, there's something significant for us to take note of. And number three is the number of resurrection, as well as manifestation. Jesus rose from the dead on the third day. He manifested himself as the risen one on the third day.
So for the first time, God said, "Let the earth bring forth grass. Let the dry land appear". And then God says, "Let trees appear. Let plants appear. And all the fruit trees bearing seed in itself, reproducing after its kind". It's like God foresaw, and all this was done on the third day. It's like God foresaw Jesus coming in on the third day, resurrected, hallelujah. And he's telling us that every seed, even normal seed, even back then, thank God, all the salad you ate yesterday, all right, all the fruit trees today are all a reproduction of the very first seed that was there in the garden of Eden when God first spoke; and not only the garden of Eden, all over the earth, you know, when God first spoke. It's amazing how seed reproduces itself, hallelujah. It's amazing. It's like, on the third day, God talked about seed, and seed has resurrection power.
You know, in the 1960s when they were doing some excavations in King Herod's palace over at Masada, they found an old pot and it had seeds, you know, different kind of seeds and, plus, a date, a Judean date palm seed in it. So what happened is that they kept the seed for some time, and notice, this is in Masada, which is the lowest place on planet Earth, so it's very dry and arid in that place. And they kept that seed. Now, that was in the '60s, but in 2005, they planted that seed. And that seed, based on carbon dating and all that, is about 2000 years old, from the time of Jesus, and that's the time of King Herod as well. And that seed, they planted that seed, that Judean date palm seed. They planted that seed in Israel, 2000-year-old seed, and guess what? It started sprouting again. Whoof! Remember, the Bible says, "The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree".
I think God is sending a message to Israel and to the world that he's gonna resurrect Israel, hallelujah, praise the Lord, and all of us in these last days. And there's a promise given that they shall always be fat and green. And the word "fat" there is vigorous and the word "green" is ever-young, hallelujah. And the promise given in Psalms 92. But here, the seeds had a sprouting, 2000-year-old seeds had a sprouting again. And you know what? It's called the Methuselah tree. Let me show a picture of that. Here it is in a place in Ketura. They planted this seed, taken from Masada, and it started to blossom and now, last year, 2020, it's about 11 feet tall already. And now they are using this Methuselah tree, they say it's a male tree, to pollinate the other female palm trees in Israel. It's starting to become fruitful again.
No wonder God says in Psalms 92, "They shall bring forth fruit in their old age. The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree". And the next verse says: "They shall bring forth fruit in their old age," hallelujah. "They shall be fat," or vigorous, the Hebrew word is vigorous, "and green". Ra'anan, green, forever green, hallelujah, praise the Lord. Thank you, Jesus, hallelujah. So this is the Methuselah tree. So, think of it: this is the power of resurrection. A 2000-year-old seed. It's supposed to be dead, deader than dead. Ha-ha, but it starts to resurrect again.
You know, I was meditating along these lines and, actually, I was reading something else and my Bible happened to fall into this particular verse in Leviticus, believe it or not, but Leviticus, where it says this: "And if a part of any such carcass falls on any planting seed which is to be sown, it remains clean". Now, this is one of the laws they had back then. "If a part of any such carcass". Now, this carcass is a carcass, you read earlier verses, it talks about the gecko lizard, it talks about different kind of reptiles and, you know, animals that are dead bodies. "If their carcass falls on any planting seed which is to be sown, that seed remains clean".
Now, this kind of verse really got me going, you know? Do you understand that? I didn't understand it, but as I meditate on it, God opened my eyes and I began to see something here. God is saying, from this one verse, God is saying that carcass is a picture of corruption and death. If it falls on any planting seed which is to be sown, that seed remains clean. Now, that means death and corruption cannot overpower that resurrection life that is in that seed, hallelujah. That life is greater than corruption and death. That life swallows up death, hallelujah. When you have God's Word in your life, amen, death cannot overtake you. Corruption cannot seize you, because the seed of God's Word in you is greater than them, hallelujah. Hallelujah, amen.
So if you are struggling in any way, whatever area it is, whether it's lack in your life, you know, you need to pay up for some bill that is longstanding and you're not able to, that means there's an area of lack; whatever it is, or you're struggling with some symptoms in your body; my friend, spend time in the Word, especially the Word pertaining to these areas, hallelujah. Saturate yourself with the Word of God. Start hearing sermons, preachings, amen, where the Word of God is being shared, expounded, where the kernel of the wheat is broken up and you see the germ inside. You see the revelation being unfolded to you. Because when the Word of God drops into your heart, you will manifest that harvest in your life. And the way you hear it, the measure you give to it is the measure that you will receive. Hallelujah.
Aren't you excited to receive God's Word today? Praise the Lord. And I'm so glad because right at the end Jesus gave them a practical lesson. Look at this. At the end of the parables, Jesus actually gave them a practical lesson. "All right, boys, here's a lesson". On the same day, notice, "On the same day," the same day he shared all these parables, "when evening had come, He said to them, 'Let us cross over to the other side.'" Stop. "Let us cross over to the other side". Now, applying what we have learned, friends, what we have learned is that take heed what you hear and take heed how you hear. Now, who is talking? Jesus. "Let us cross over to the other side". Cross, say over, cross over. Say over. He didn't say under. We're not going under. We are crossing over. Now say, "to the other side". To the other side.
So, if you meditate on his Word, you'll start thinking, "Let us cross over to the other side". Now, what measure do you give to his words? "Oh, he's just saying something. He's hoping this will happen. Oh, he's just expressing a wish. You know what? It may or may not happen". Is that how you hear this Word? Is that the kind of measure you give to God's Word? Because with the same measure you give, that's the measure you receive. Now, Jesus said, "Let us cross over to the other side". You know what Jesus did? "Now, when they had left the multitude, they took Him along in the boat as He was. And other little boats were also with Him. And a great windstorm arose". Now, in the Greek, the word "great" here is megas, which is where you get the word mega. It's "a mega windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that it was already filling. But He was in the stern," in the back part of the boat, "asleep on a pillow".
Woo-hoo! I love it. He was sleeping at the back of the boat in the midst of a mega storm. Think of it. You know why? Because he said it, he just said it, "Let us cross over to the other side". He believed that what he says will happen. Hallelujah. And he went to sleep. When you receive God's Word, and you meditate on it, and if a storm starts, you know, first of all the wind comes, right? It's stronger and stronger, and then the waves starts getting higher and higher. I guess these are the moments that, in spite of... remember, let's put all the parables that we've learned together, right? Trouble is arising because of the Word. Trouble is arising because of the Word. The devil wants to steal that Word away from your heart, and he wants to steal your joy, he wants to steal your peace, he wants to steal your faith. And for the disciples, they were panicking. They are not meditating on the Word of Jesus. They're not giving the due measure that his Word deserves.
Notice, they're not meditating on, "Let us cross over". Peter didn't say to John, "Hey, John, hey, guys, chill. He said cross over, remember? He said just now cross over. Come on, let's go to sleep with him. Hallelujah! Come on, let's lie down. Let's be cool. Let's play Monopoly while we are reaching there. Come on, we are going over. He didn't say let us go under. He said, 'Let us cross over to the other side.'" When he says cross over, you cannot go under, hallelujah, in spite of the storm. And it was a real storm, a mega storm, and they were afraid. "They awoke Him and said to Him, 'Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?'"
Now, friends, I don't believe for one moment that they were just panicking because they had never seen that kind of storm or just the fact that they are afraid of storms. No, these are experienced fishermen. They have seen many storms in their life. So, when they are afraid like this, that means there's cause in the natural, there's cause to be concerned. These are experienced fishermen, so I don't take it away from them that this is some storm, you know, to be afraid of in the natural. But then the Lord is teaching them, in a big way, amen, in a way that is like illustrative sermon of what he has just taught them. This is where the rubber meets the road. And the word "understand," when you receive God's Word, you must understand it, is the word "suniémi," and the word suniémi is where you put on there, putting two and two together.
When the man doesn't understand God's Word, the enemy comes, the devil comes and snatches away the Word. That man has no suniémi. He's not able to take, look at God's Word and not able to put two and two together. That's a wisdom. That's an element of wisdom called suniémi in the Greek. Amen. God gives us all that suniémi. Amen? Praise the name of Jesus. And the Bible says, "Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, 'Peace, be still!' And the wind ceased and there was a great calm". Now, just now there was a mega storm. And the word now "a great calm" is the word mega calm. So, the word mega is being used again, and peace be still. Have you noticed that Jesus actually was not awakened by the storm? He was sleeping.
Look at what awoke Jesus. It was the cry of his disciples. It was the ones that he loved. You, you are the one that he loves. When you cry to him, do you know he's all ears? Like a mother, a mother can sleep, you know, in the midst of a storm, but a little tiny whimper from her child next to her, and she's awake. Other things might not wake her up, but, you know, it's a cry, it is a response of love. Look at what made Jesus rise up. What makes Jesus awake? Not the storm, not what the devil is doing. He's not moved by that. And friend, the devil is doing a lot of stuff in the world today. And, you know, it's important you've got your ears, your ear gate and your eye gate, because these are the gates that lead the things into your heart, whether it's God's Word, or words of the world, or the enemy, but the enemy is putting out words out there to replace God's Word. Have you noticed?
So, friend, you know, I don't think it's good for you to be saturated with social media all day and looking at this person's life, that person, what this person is saying. It's all words, words, words, and they can poison your heart. They can poison your attitude. They can cause a discouragement to come in. They can cause you to be depressed, or even listening to the news all day. It's okay to have the general news to know what's happening. You need to be in touch with what's happening, amen. You are living in the real world, but to be absorbed and to look at the same news again and again because you have nothing else to do. Instead of spending time in God's Word, you are listening to all this, and you are filling your mind with the negatives. No wonder the fruit that comes out of it is despondency, misery, you know, you are stressed, you are puzzled and confused about what to do next, when you're a child of God. The fruit that should come out of your life is to go out with joy and be led forth with peace. And everything that's a curse around you will be transformed into blessings. Hallelujah. And that's what God has for you, my friend. Praise the Lord.
Be careful. Take heed what you hear. Like I said, it's okay, you know, to take a look at social media once in a while, amen, but realize the danger is there. You can actually get so absorbed in it, it robs you of your time. Now the devil has managed to rob you of God's Word that's in your heart. You know, give God the honor and the power in his Word. Hallelujah, praise the Lord? Put the Bible everywhere you can. In your, in your toilet, amen. You know, when you are happy, and you are restful, it's a good time to just take the Bible. You're watching a football game on television, put the Bible next to you. Then you can pick it up, just open up. It's okay to open at random and start reading the Word even during such times, yes. You know, really just people will say, "Look, you know, you ought to give God the full attention," that kind of thing.
Hey, you know, you've got a chance to read God's Word at any time during the day, do it. You do not know. You rise, and sleep, wake up, you go back to bed, you listen to God's Word, amen. You do not know how it's growing, but it's growing. I want to encourage you, even with your children, they might not seem like they have a heart for the things of God. I don't know, you know, what age your children are at this time, but the younger they are or even the, you know, at the age of maybe preteens and all that, you might think that they have no heart for the things of God that you will see manifest, especially in the teen years. But when they are younger, they don't let you know that they are receiving, that they are experiencing the presence of God.
I remember when I was a child, I experienced for the first time in a church, I experienced the presence of God, and I didn't even know how to describe it. I didn't even know it was the presence of God, but I experienced it, but I couldn't tell my mom about it. And, you know, just the other day, I was with Justin, and he was watching his favorite TV show, which we allowed him to watch at that time. And I sat beside him, and just thought of sharing him the Word of God about Jesus' temptation in the wilderness and how he responded with, "It is written, it is written". So, I showed him the Bible, and every occasion Jesus said, "It is written". And I told Justin, "See, Justin, 'It is written.' Jesus kept on saying, 'It is written, it is written.'"
And my nine-year-old was like a bit distracted looking at me and looking at the verses, and then looking at his TV program. You know, I didn't want to switch it off, because it was his time to watch. Actually, I was intruding into his time, and we allow him to have that time. But I was actually just sharing God's Word, because I knew this principle. The man sows the seed, and he goes asleep, and rise night and day, and how the seed grows he knows not how. But, you know, just, I just shared with him how Jesus said, "It is written," when the devil said, "If you are the Son of God," if. And I told him if is a doubt. The devil always try to make you doubt that you are the beloved son of God. I shared with him how I noticed that, you know, the Father just said, "You are my beloved Son," and now the devil says, "If you are the Son of God".
Of course, the devil left out the word "beloved". He cannot remind Jesus he's God's beloved. So, and notice "if" is doubt. If, if, so, I don't know whether he's listening, but I just said it anyway. It was a short time. You don't have to take too much time in sharing God's Word with your children. But the very next day, we are doing something on errands and all that, and Wendy was with me, and I said something about, you know, going out, and, you know, we have all this COVID-19 things. Now they are saying it's airborne and things like that. And I said something like, "If," you know. I said, "If," which is not a statement of faith. I heard my son behind me, "Abba, 'if' is doubt. The Lord will protect us, not if". I stand corrected. But it was just last night, and he looked like he's not paying attention.
Fathers and mothers, as we parent our kid, you know, as the Lord leads you, just drop the word. Drop the word. They are listening. They might not appear they are listening, but most of the time they are listening. Most of the time they are receiving, and the Word can penetrate into the deepest, you know, in the innermost recesses of their spirit, where it will germinate. It will sprout. It will bring forth fruit. And one day when the fruit comes back at you, maybe not the very next day like Justin did the other day, right, but at other times it will just come forth, or one day they come to a place of consciousness, a realization of the reality of the presence of God.
I remember when that day happened, when I first prayed as a young man, and I realized that God is actually hearing my prayer. I felt God's presence, and I felt that my prayers are being heard. I'm no longer saying prayers like I used to say when I was a child. Now I know I'm praying to a God who is listening, to a Father who is listening. And that will happen to your children, as well. But don't be discouraged and say, "Oh, you know, I don't think they're interested in it". You know, you give them up. You write them off even before you give them a chance. Let God's Word have the power. It's not your persuasion. It's not your words. Just quote the Word. Just share with them a little teaching that God showed you or whatever. Say, "Hey, this is very interesting. I saw this in the Word of God".
You can share with them about the Methuselah tree, and talk about the power of the seed, and the power of God's Word. You can share this sermon with them, but don't make it a long sermon, you know? When you pray with them, there are two things you need to do with your children for a successful parenting, Christian parenting. We don't want to raise them up for the world. Raise them up for the glory of God, amen? The first is play with them. Secondly, pray with them. Remember these two things, right? Play with them, pray with them. You cannot just play with them and don't pray with them. It won't work. Don't just pray with them and not play with them. They can get very angry as they grow older. All right, they think that all you want is just to demand from them. All right? But there's no play, there's no time. So, do both. Play with them and pray with them. Amen? Praise the Lord, hallelujah.
Well, friends, if this has spoken to your heart, I pray that you will prioritize God's Word from now on, knowing that everything that you want in your life is not going to come by your efforts, your labor, your smartness, your intelligence. It's going to come by the Word of God that you receive in your life. It might not germinate immediately. It might not sprout immediately. But in the days to come, you will see it. In fact, Jesus said, "He sleeps night and rise by day, and the seed shall sprout and grow, he himself does not know how. For the earth yields crops by itself". In other words, that's what happens. You put the seed into your child's heart, and it will yield by itself, not your persuasion, not your wisdom, not your labor, but by itself. The power is in the seed: "first the blade, then the head, after that the full grain in the head. But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come". Hallelujah.
Let me close with this, back to what Jesus said. "'Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?' And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, 'Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?'" Notice they feared exceedingly. Now we have the third use of the Greek word mega. There was a mega storm. Then there was a mega a calm. And now there's a mega fear. They are afraid of this wonderful person, our Lord Jesus that was in the boat with them. They realize, "Oh, my goodness. Who is this man, that even the sea and the waves obey him"? Friend, he is the Son of God. He's the Lord on high, mightier than any enemy. He's on high over the COVID-19 virus. And as he is, so are we in this world. The Lord on high is above all, sovereign, supreme. As we put our trust in him, he gives us his wisdom in bite size, like the snow coming down, like the rain coming down. Amen?
I pray that this has blessed you, because I know that in the days to come, the Word of the living God is what matters in these last days. Because there's going to come a time, the Bible says, in fact it's happening already, that there will be a famine, not a famine of food or famine of water, but a famine of hearing the words of the Lord. In other words, people are not hearing the words of the Lord anymore. The supply is there, but they're not hearing the words of the Lord. And because of that famine, everything in their life becomes like famine, desert, dry, arid. But friend, you can be a fruitful tree planted by the rivers of water that brings forth your fruit in your season. Your leaf will not wither and whatever you do will prosper. Hallelujah.
I see you as that man. You see, I just gave you the Word of God. If you can receive the Word of God that I just, it comes in picture form, as well, praise the Lord, and the Word describes the blessed man, the man who meditates on God's Word. You're like a tree. Hallelujah. You're evergreen, and whatever you do prospers. Praise the Lord.
I see someone who is grabbing your chest. You've been having chest pains for some time right now, and right now you're feeling warmth come into your heart, into your chest area right now, in Jesus' name. God is healing you. God is restoring you. Hallelujah. In fact, I have this word coming out: "Wait on the Lord, and he shall strengthen thine heart. Wait, I say, on the Lord, and He shall strengthen thine heart". There's a Scripture verse for you, my friend. Amen? You're gonna have a brand-new heart, a young heart, a vigorous heart. Praise the Lord, thank you, Jesus, hallelujah. Where sin increase, grace super abounds. Amen. Where disease increase, grace, healing grace, health grace super abounds. Praise the Lord. Thank you, Jesus. Hallelujah.
There's someone, also, you've been having some like a tooth and gum condition in the back of your mouth area. God is healing you right now. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Receive that healing. Praise the name of Jesus.
Someone with a back condition, your upper back, you know where your shoulder blades meet, right in the center there, slightly more to the right, you're having pain there. God is healing you, readjusting you, restoring you, in the name of Jesus. Just stand up. Move your back right now, in Jesus' name. Hallelujah, praise the Lord. See what the Lord has done. Hallelujah, thank you, Lord Jesus. Thank you, Lord Jesus.
And there's an elbow condition. It's like you move your elbow to a certain angle, and you can't do it anymore. It's with pain. All right, move in that angle right now, in Jesus' name. God is healing your elbow. Praise the Lord, hallelujah. Write to us and let us know when you experience the hundredfold healing. Praise the Lord. It's happening right now. You are receiving a complete healing for the elbow condition. Do write to us and let us know about it. Praise the name of Jesus.
There's someone also, I see like you're having migraine headaches often. And even just now, you're having a migraine attack just as the service was starting, and right now it's a bit more eased off, but God is saying he's going to give you a permanent healing for this, right now, in Jesus' name. It's been happening to you quite often. Right now is your freedom. Receive that healing, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah. Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, praise the Lord.
There's an elderly man, you've been worried about, there's a fear of death that has just come into your life. You never feared death before, but it's like you fear death now. It's like everything you see is like you see yourself dead, you know, and the enemy is playing with your mind right now. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord, through his perfect love, evict that fear out of your heart, in Jesus' name. In Jesus' name, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, be free from this fear. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, you will live long.
Listen, it is written, "With long life he will satisfy you". Receive that word. Say, "I receive that word". Amen. Just like the disciples, they should have meditated on that, "Let us cross over to the other side. We are going to the other side safely". And so did they, they went to the other side safely, and so will you. With long life, he satisfies you. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Praise the Lord.
If you have never made Jesus your Savior and Lord, I'd like to pray with you right now. Pray this prayer from your heart, wherever you are. Say:
Heavenly Father, I thank you that Christ died on the cross for my sins, and that you raised Him from the dead when I was justified in him. I thank you, Father. Jesus Christ is my Lord and my Savior, and I thank you that from now on, my life is a life of favor and holiness, and righteousness with you. Thank you, Father God, there's an overcoming life. It's a victorious life, in Jesus' name.
Hallelujah, praise the Lord. Yes, friend, that's happening to you. It took place right now, in Jesus' name. Your life is different now. It's like the Word of God has come in, like I said just now, and you're born again. From now on, you'll walk the heavenly life. Praise the Lord. Praise the name of Jesus, amen, praise the Lord, hallelujah. There's someone else I see struggling to, in fact, you've been watching for some time now, but there's a part of you that is pulling you back from believing. Let me tell you something supernatural. It's not from God. It's an evil thing. And in the name of the Lord Jesus, be free right now to receive the Lord Jesus Christ, in Jesus' name. The darkness has left. You are free to receive Jesus right now. Just pray that prayer that I prayed just now, amen? Just say:
Lord Jesus, come into my life. I confess you as my Savior and my Lord. I trust in you, Lord, amen.
Praise the Lord Jesus. Hallelujah. Stand to your feet, church. This coming week, hallelujah, we're going to receive God's Word. We're going to go out with joy and be led forth with peace throughout this week. Amen?
This coming week, the Lord bless you with the blessings of Ephesians 1 and the blessings of Deuteronomy 28. May they all manifest in your life this week. The Lord keep you and your loved ones, protect you from the COVID-19 virus, from every sickness and disease, from every danger and harm. The Lord keep you from the power of the evil one through his blood. The Lord make his face to shine on you, be favorable to you. May you experience the favor of God everywhere you go this week, and may you always be, through the grace of God, at the right place, at the right time throughout this week. The Lord lift up his countenance on you and your loved ones, and grant to you and yours his shalom, peace, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. And all the people said amen.