Michael Youssef - It Is Supernatural - Part 2
How do you react to the growing tide of the anti-Christian tide in our country today? There are two kinds of response. There are those who shrug and say, "Well, you know, that's just, it's hopeless. It's hopeless, Michael, just give up. Nothing we can do about it". Others says, "Well, it's prophesied". And then the other reaction is in anger, and they want to respond in all sorts of ungodly ways. Both of these reactions are in the natural, not in the supernatural, and, furthermore, reacting in the natural does not distinguish the believers from the non-believing world, but we are called to live and function and walk in the supernatural, not the natural. Someone said to me after last week's message, in the beginning of the series, "It Is Supernatural," and says, "Living in the supernatural, in this increasingly nature-worshiping culture, is impossible".
I said, "Absolutely, without Jesus it's impossible, of course". But if you are truly a child of the living God, then you must know that it is your birthright to live in the supernatural. It is your birthright to live in the supernatural. And just before you think I'm making the stuff up, I want you to turn to 2 Peter chapter 1, verses 3 and 4. Hear what the Word of God said: "His divine, his divine, his supernatural power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his glorious glories and goodness". Look at verse 4. "Through these he has given us", watch this, "he has given us his very great and precious promises", here's the purpose clause, "so that through them we might participate or be partakers of the divine or the supernatural nature of God in order to escape the corruption of this world".
Here's what the Word of God, telling us in the New Testament through the Apostle Peter: We are given the gift of being able to participate, to being partakers, to be part and parcel of the supernatural. Throughout this particular series of messages, "It Is Supernatural," I want to remind you again and again about your divine birthright. Spoiler alert, "Houston, we have a problem," and we have a huge problem. Many of God's people have either abandoned their birthright, or they are ignorant of their birthright, and that is why, beloved, there are professing Christians and professing pastors who are living in the natural.
Elisha was a man who stood against the natural current of culture. Elisha was a man who refused to abandon his spiritual birthright. Elisha was a man who wanted his contemporaries not to abandon their spiritual birthright. He was God-centered, and his life's purpose was the glory of God. His authority was the Word of God. His goals, life goals, is to please God, and that is not surprising, therefore, that he met a lot of opposition. You start living in the supernatural, and you watch out. The enemy is gonna go mad, and he's gonna attack you, but praise God, he's already defeated.
I wanna summarize this for you to understand it and comprehend it as a story, as a narrative. Here's what was happening. The king of Syria, when you hear Aram, that's another word, another term for Syria. The king of Syria is forever plotting to attack Israel, and, beloved, listen to me, Satan is forever plotting to attack you and your family. Elisha the prophet has been exposing these terrorist plots on the part of the king of Syria before they happen. He's exposing them. Consequently, the Syrian army is getting clobbered. Every time, they get clobbered. Every time, they get defeated. Every time, the plot is foiled. And that enraged the Syrian king, to say the least. Every time he made a plan to attack the people of God, that plan got foiled, and the king of Syria was getting madder and madder and madder.
So the first thing occurs to him, the first thing he thinks about is, "We have a mole in the palace. We have a spy in the palace. We have a deep state in the White House". And so one of his national advisers, security advisers, must be leaking to the press, and the word gets out before it happened. So he convenes this meeting in the Situation Room. Situation Room is self-protected, secret apparatus. All, they're sitting there, were all the generals. They were sitting, and they're ready. The king was ready to shoot the culprit. They were not meeting just to discuss. He was ready for revenge.
One of his advisers, a courageous guy who dared to speak because he could literally risk his neck, but he dared to speak. He said, "Let me tell you what is happening in Israel, King. There's a man of God in Israel. The God of Israel has his man Elisha with advanced knowledge of all of your plots, and furthermore, King, our gods, the gods of nature, are no match for Yahweh. Baal is trying to help us out, but he's no match for Yahweh. Baal is totally useless before Yahweh. Baal is no match for the God of power and might, the God of Israel".
There is a very important principle here. I don't want you to miss it. The devil uses his foot soldiers against the true believers. The devil is forever plotting and scheming against God's people, and if you don't believe this, you haven't read the Scripture lately. The devil is trying to mislead and misguide and distorts the truth about God to God's people. The devil is forever trying to destroy the righteous, all, but all of his plots will be foiled. All of his plans will be doomed. Satan tries to get God's children to retreat from the battle, but he and his cohort will be totally annihilated soon. Satan uses some misguided people to inflict damage on God's people, but he's all bark and no bite because, on the cross, Jesus knocked his teeth out.
So what does the nature-worshiping king of Israel do? Well, he worships the god of nature. What does he do? Of course, he thinks naturally. He thinks in natural realm, just like we're seeing people in our secular pagan society today. He sends a large team of special ops. These are the Green Berets of Syria, and he sends them out in the middle of the night to bring one man, one man, the entire army of Syria to get one man. Think with me about the foolishness of the natural mind. If God revealed the secret plots to Elisha, will he not protect him from being abducted? When you are under the cover of the Almighty, you will be protected. When you are under the shield of faith, you will be victorious. When you are under the shadow of El Shaddai, you will emerge stronger than before.
Look at verse 13, 6:13. Secular paganism can never see beyond the veil because you see, listen to me, there is a veil beyond which only those who love Jesus, those who are intimate with Jesus, can see it's beyond the veil, beyond the secular. That's what "secular" means. It's natural world that they cannot see beyond the veil. And the tragedy, the tragedy that makes me weep at times is that so many of God's people have ceased to seek to look beyond the veil. Peter said we are participant in what nature? We are partakers in what nature? The divine nature. So many of God's people today are contented to live in the natural. So many of God's people today refuse to claim their spiritual birthright, but, even so, I want you to just think logically with me. Just think logically.
If God reveals his secrets to those who fear him, will he not protect them eternally? Here's the problem: We don't understand that this is the family secret. It really is. Not everyone can comprehend the family secret, so, please, do not try to explain it to them until God opens their spiritual eyes. The secular, natural-mind people can never comprehend the supernatural. The secular, natural mind can never understand the power of the supernatural. The secular, natural-mind people cannot fathom the realm of the supernatural. They cannot understand what it means that the secret of the Lord is with those who fear him, that the secret of the Lord is with those who are daily in daily intimacy with him, that the secret of the Lord is with those who have surrendered themselves totally to him.
Listen, make no mistake about it. Satan's motive, just like the king of Syria's motive is to destroy the faithful. That's not a secret. Paul said, "Of his devices, we're not ignorant". Satan's motive, just like the Syrian king, is to undermine the confidence of God's people and their God, and that is why he is working overtime right now on the so-called Christian leaders. He is working overtime right now, and he's causing so many of them to fall like flies. What is he doing? Listen to me: He's undermining the believer's confidence in God.
Let me remind you again about this time in Israel, in this period of history. Israel was not a godly nation at that time. Israel was not fearing the Lord at that time. Israel had been compromising their faith at that time. Israel has been unfaithful to Yahweh. Israel has abandoned the authority of the Word of God. Israel has forgotten its godly heritage. Israel has been running after the gods of nature just like so many in the church today. Does this sound familiar? Oh, but listen, listen, listen, God is looking to bless the faithful. He really is. God is looking to use the faithful. God is looking to the faithful minority. God is looking for the few who are fearless, who refuse to compromise, and who are willing.
Satan, like the king of Syria, he knows that, if he can destroy the Christian leadership, the rest of it is gonna be a walk in the park for him, just a walk in the walk. Try to destroy the Christian leaders, and then the rest will take care of itself. And so the king of Syria sends mighty army to abduct one man. He sends the entire army in the dark of night to get Elisha. Why? Because, like Satan, the king of Syria knew that, if he could destroy the man of God, he could destroy the nation. Here's what happened. Don't miss what I'm gonna tell you. Please don't miss it. Here's what happened. Elisha had an associate, an assistant. Bible sometimes call him "servant," but he's more than that. He's supposedly to be his understudy.
This man was weak-kneed. He had a divided heart, and he had love for material possession. We're gonna see more of this man, Gehazi. In fact, I skipped the first six verses of chapter 6, so I'm gonna come back to it next message for a reason. We're gonna see more of Gehazi, Elisha's associate. This man lived with Elisha. This man saw the hand of God working in Elisha. This man experienced firsthand God's deliverance, supernatural. This man observes closely the supernatural intervention of God in the life of Elisha, but it did not change him. It did not change him. This hardness of heart that we're seeing in our culture can only happen through prayer, fasting, intercession for God to open hearts, open eyes.
Here's the good news: Satan and his foot soldiers often miscalculate. They will. Just live as long as I have, and you'll see it. They miscalculate. They miscalculate God's power, they miscalculate God's youth of his faithful children, and that's why Paul reminds the Romans, he said, "If God is with us, who can be against us"? Say that with me: "If God is..." I pity the one who stands against us. I really do. Genuinely pity, not just words. I don't think it's a stretch, and, now, you know, I'm faithful to the Scripture. I never try to modify it in any way, but I don't think it's a stretch to say that Gehazi, Elisha's associate, represents all of the professing Christians today, all of the smorgasbord Christians today, all of the compromising Christians of today.
These are the folks whose heart melt before Satan's treachery, immediately. Satan becomes belligerent, and they fear. Their heart melts like butter on the stove. And Elisha's assistant, Gehazi, sees the Syrian army surrounding the town, and he falls apart. I mean, he was falling apart. He was terrified. His heart was melting, and he says, "Oh, my Lord, oh, my Lord, we are dead. We are dead and done for. Call the undertakers. We're finished". That's a Youssef translation. That's what he meant. Beloved congregation, listen to me: You are never finished until God says you're finished. I am never finished until God says I'm finished. Listen to me, fear is not of God. Fear is Satan's primary tool against believers. Fear is an evil spirit that attacks believers, and if you surrender to it, he will have the upper hand in your life, and you don't want this to happen.
Elisha said to his weak-kneed Gehazi, verse 16, "Don't fear. Those who are with us are more than those who are with them". And I want you to think with me, okay? Just think with me when you focus on this thing. Probably Gehazi was thinking, "My boss has lost his marbles. He really has". Why? "Well, he looks out the window, and he sees the Syrian chariots and the armament and soldiers all geared up for battle, heh, and he thinks... what do you mean, 'Those who are with us are more than those who are with them?' Can you look? Can you see? There's nobody with us, buddy. Nobody's backing us". He was thinking of how he can defect and go to the Syrians and be one of them or pretend to be. He sees all of these powerful Syrian armies, and he says, "Boss, wake up and smell the coffee. Boss, stop living in fantasy land. Boss, be realistic. Boss, get your head out of the clouds, boss. Face facts. Boss, this is natural world, and we need to think naturally".
Look at verse 17, "Elisha prayed, 'Oh Lord, open the young man's eyes so he may see.' And the Lord immediately hears Elisha's prayer and answers it, and the eye of Gehazi is opened, the spiritual eyes, and poor ole Gehazi, he looks out there, and behold, the mountain was stacked with chariots of fire". Probably he was taken to the E.R. Remember this: Skirmish is all around us, but don't ever forget that you already have the victory. We already have the victory. Only the one who refuses to have supernatural eyes cannot see this. "And so the band of Syrians", the last verse, "ceased from coming to the land of Israel".
The rest is really detailed. It's wonderful details. Don't miss it. Don't miss it because you see the grace of God. The grace of God. Instead of killing the Syrians, they fed them. There's something I want you to understand. Please, listen to me. Please, listen to me. People, I don't care who they are, people are not our enemies. Can I get an "amen"? People, no matter what they say about us, no matter what they accuse us, no matter what they do, they're not our enemies. Paul said, "Our struggle is not against flesh and blood. It's against the spirituality and the power in the heavenly places". Satan is our enemy. In fact, I really, genuinely, I ache in my spirit over these people. I really do because, knowing what eternity is awaiting them, that doesn't make me hate them. Makes me love them more. The god of this world had blinded their eyes. They cannot see. The secret of the Lord with those who fear him, say that with me, "With those who..."
Beloved, there are only two kind of people. Listen, I'm about to close. There are two kinds of people: Those who fear God, revere God, honor God, and those who are terrified of God. Only two kinds of people. They're terrified of the day of judgment. They don't even... they deny it because they're terrified of it. And if you're terrified of God or the day of judgment, you can reverse that now, today, and you can move from being terrified of God to fearing God, making him to be your best friend in the whole world. Ask the Lord, "Open my spiritual eyes. Open my family's spiritual eyes. Open the eyes of those who are blinded by hatred. Open the eyes of those who do not know the Lord".