Rabbi Schneider - How to Know God Supernaturally
You know it's always important to pray for the things that we desire that are Biblical, because Jesus said, "You have not, because you asked not". In other words when you and I ask we receive more. Once again Jesus said, "Ask and you shall receive". And so today as we're beginning this series on God's supernatural presence we want to be asking Father to bring us in to a greater reality of experiencing His supernatural presence in our lives. You see what we're going to be ministering to you, it's not just word, but we're talking about reality, spiritual reality. Paul said that when he preached the gospel it came to those that received it not in word only, but also he said in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.
So what we're after beloved, what we're hungry for is a reality. A reality of our relationship with God. We don't want to just believe doctrine. It's important to have right doctrine. God's word, His written word is the foundation for all truth, but we want to not just have doctrine. We want to have an experience with the reality of God's presence in our life. Jesus said to the pharisees, He said, "You search the scriptures, because you think in them you have life. Yet it's these that bear witness of Me and you refuse to come to Me that you might have life". In other words Yeshua was saying that the scriptures are designed to lead us into a living experience with God. And so I hope that what I'm sharing with you resonates with you. Everything that I'm gonna share with you is gonna be rooted and backed up with God's written word. I hope you'll never hear me teach, or preach anything that's not rooted in the written word of God.
But we have to understand that God's purpose and destiny for us is not just to read about what He did for other people in the Bible, but the Lord wants to bring all of us into a same type of experience. Not exactly maybe like the people in the Bible, but He wants us to experience His reality in our life just like Abraham did, just like Jacob did, just like all the prophets, all the apostles. You see we've been called into a real relationship with God and relationship is something to be experienced. What would you think about a relationship with your husband, or your wife, or some other person that you deem very close, what would you think about saying you had a relationship with that person and yet never experienced their presence in your life? It doesn't exist and so as we've been called into a relationship with Father and with Jesus through the Holy Spirit, we should be looking to enter into a deeper living consciousness of this relationship. And so I say all that to once again give an introduction to this series that we're calling The Supernatural Presence of God.
Now many of you know I'm a Jewish believer. I came to faith in 1978 as a Jewish person knowing nothing about Jesus. No one had ever witnessed to me. I had never read the New Testament. Jesus was as far away as me as the man on the moon. I never thought about Jesus. I never considered Jesus. He was just like on Mars for me, that was just not part of my world as a Jew. But in 1978, beloved, at the age of 20 years old I went to sleep one night, and in the middle of the night the Lord supernaturally woke me up. I was all of a sudden translated into what I would describe as a supernatural consciousness. Suddenly I was aware that I wasn't sleeping, that something was happening. My eyes were still closed, but I knew something was going on and then in an instant, just like that, Jesus appeared to me in a vision. He was on the cross. It was in color. Then a ray of red light from straight through the sky, a beam of light, came down from above onto Jesus' head and I knew as an American that the person on the cross was Jesus.
But when I saw that ray of red light beamed down beloved, on Jesus' head, I knew the beam of light was coming from God, because it was coming from straight through the sky and I knew that God was saying to me, "Jesus is the way to Me". Immediately I woke up. The vision lasted like no more than a second, or two seconds, but because of it's uniqueness, because it was so vivid, because of the consciousness I had when it happened, some how I just knew that God had just revealed Himself to me and showed me that Jesus was the way to Him. I looked at my clock radio, we had clock radios back in those days. It was 3:30 in the morning. I got out of bed. I went to the bathroom. I was so excited, because I knew that God had just revealed Himself to me. I got up the next morning after going back to bed, started telling everybody about it. Nobody reacted too much at first. They thought it was just a dream, but when I continued on my journey with Jesus I ended up facing all types of challenges and persecution as a Jewish person believing in Jesus in the Jewish community. But that's for a different time and a different story.
You can get my book, Awakening to Messiah. I kind of tell my autobiography there. The point that I wanted to make was that from the very beginning I came to faith, here me now, supernaturally through this vision. You could say it was in some sense comparable to the way that the Apostle Paul came to faith. Remember Paul was a bit like me in the sense that he thought Jesus was you know, totally not for him. He thought Jesus was not for Jews. He was actually on his way to Damascus to arrest any Jew that was declaring that Jesus was the Messiah and yet as he was on his way, many of us know the story, we see it recorded several times in the book of Acts. A blinding light knocked Paul off his horse. Paul was on the ground. He was surrounded by light and glory. He couldn't see and then a voice spoke to him and said, "Why are you persecuting Me"? And he said, "I'm Jesus whom you're persecuting. Now get up Paul and it's going to be told what you must do for Me".
And so Paul supernaturally came to faith when Jesus appeared to him. And many Jewish people and Muslims too that come to faith need a radical encounter like this, because we're so predispositioned from our upbringing not to believe in Jesus. For someone just to come up to us and try to argue with us that Jesus is the way, it holds no weight. So we need to supernaturally encounter the power of God to know that Jesus really is the Messiah and so that's what happened to me.
Now the reason again, that I'm sharing this is to say from the very beginning, because I was brought to faith supernaturally, I've always had a desire to experience more of God's supernatural presence in my life and this is kind of my reasoning. I thought Father, Jesus, if I was able to supernaturally and consciously experience Your power and Your presence in my life in that vision through which You saved me and by the way beloved ones I had several other divine encounters even some of them even greater than that, especially during those first five years of my walk with God. I've been walking with the Lord now for 40 years, but during those first five years I had several other just unbelievable encounters. Maybe I'll share a few of those with you as the series continues in the weeks ahead.
But I mean things that happened to me in the supernatural, that were just so even beyond convincing. I mean I would stake my life on the fact that I experienced the power and the presence and the Spirit of God, because of this I said to myself, "Lord if I'm able to experience Your supernatural presence, even if it just lasted a second or two in these times that You've showed up in my life". I said, "Why can I not always experience Your supernatural presence in my life"? And that became my goal as a believer, to be supernaturally aware of God's presence in my life. I wasn't after religion. I was after experiencing God. That for me is the goal. I want to, I want to know God and I want to experience God. And I think this is a biblcal framework. I mean, we need to believe truth, but we also need to experience the Spirit.
Jesus spoke about the marriage between the word and the Spirit. Jesus said, "The Father is looking for those that will worship Him," get it now, "In spirit and in truth". And so both are completely the foundations that our relationship is based on. The truth, our relationship has to be based on truth. We have to know who God is, know the gospels' foundational message. Jesus died, was buried, rose again for our sins, was seen by hundreds of eye witnesses and all the doctrinal meanings of that. Our faith is based on the truth, but it's also based on the spirit. Father's looking Jesus said in John 4, "For those that will worship Him in spirit and in truth". Not just in spirit, not just in truth, but the combination of the two and so I'm trying to make the point beloved ones that don't be afraid of looking, or wanting to experience God.
I mean shouldn't we desire to feel Him? What would you think of a marriage relationship with someone that had no feeling, never, you never felt a thing for your husband, you never felt a thing for your wife? What would you think of your relationship with your brother, sister, mom, dad, someone else that's important to you, in which you could never experience feeling, all you could do was just communicate words in the intellect? No, relationship involves feeling. Feeling makes us feel alive and Jesus said, "I've come to give life and to give it more abundantly". This abundant life that Jesus came to give, it has to involve feeling, right? I mean can we be satisfied without feeling something? Jesus said, "If you believe in me I'm gonna become within you," He said, "A well of living water". And He said, "It's gonna, you're gonna experience within you a well of eternal life" and He said, "And you'll hunger and you'll thirst no more".
In order to stop hungering and stop thirsting we have to feel something and so what I'm hungry for in my quest for God, going up the mountain if you will of faith, going up the mountain of deliverance, going up the mountain into victory, I'm looking to in a sense become one with God like Jesus is one with God. Not that I'm God, but Jesus prayed that we would be one even as He is one. I mean to know that God's in me, that I'm Him. Just like Jesus is. Jesus said, "The Father's in me and I'm in the Father". Jesus said, "And I'm in you". I want to know Jesus in me, around me. I want to be conscious of God. I want to be conscious of His love. I want to know who He is. I want to feel His glory. I want to experience His power. I want to know who I am to Him and all these things beloved, that I'm describing demand experience. They can't just be in the mind, they have to be in our heart and so once again we're calling this series, The Supernatural Presence of God, or God's Supernatural Presence.
Jesus said that when He went away, He said to the disciples, recorded for us in the gospel of John, that He would send us the promise of the Father. And then He said that the promise of the Father is the Spirit and Jesus said the Spirit would take of Him and then reveal Him, or disclose Him unto us. In other words Jesus said, "I'm gonna send you the Spirit and the Spirit will make Me real to you. The Spirit will take of Me, my very nature, my very thoughts, my very heart, my very feelings and He will disclose it, or reveal it unto you". So that we become the Bible says, partakers of the divine nature. Jesus actually said in John 14:21 and 23, that if we would love God and keep God's word, then Jesus said, "You will experience the love of the Father". Listen now and Jesus said, "And We will come to you and make Our home with you".
Think about that. If Jesus says you're gonna experience the love of the Father, you're gonna be loved by My Father and We will come and make our abode with you, or our home with you. Isn't this something that is to be experienced, to have such a deep connection with Jesus, of Him dwelling in us and us in Him, that we're totally satisfied? And so this is really as a believer, this is one of my primary goals, to come into a greater experience of these realities that I'm describing. Now as my journey as a believer began, again back in 1978, I started telling everybody about my vision of Jesus and some of the other things that God was doing. Eventually somebody said to me, "You need to go get a Bible". So I went in and bought a Bible. I started devouring the word of God. I mean I would read the word of God hours, every single day. And it was sometimes like the words in the written word of God would become like fire to me. I mean they were just burning in me.
People say to me today, "How have you memorized so much of the word of God"? But it was just like fire to me and I mean I just ate it. I loved it. I wasn't trying to prove anything. I just loved the word of God. So I started devouring the written word of God. And then someone said, "You know you need to start going to church somewhere". So I started going to churches all over the city. You know I would go to one church would have a meeting on Wednesday. I'd go to a Baptist church. I'd go to a Charismatic church. I'd go to a Presbyterian church. I'd go to a meeting of just young people. I mean wherever there was a meeting going on that I felt had something to offer, solid Bible teaching, I would be there. Different churches, different days of the week. So hungry.
And I was, once again I was looking to become fulfilled through a relationship with God. So I would listen. What can I do to enter in to what I'm searching for? What can I do to enter into this victory, this place of rest? And it seemed like all the sermons ended pretty much the same way. No matter what the topic was they ended with this application, you either need to pray more, you need to read the Bible more, you need to give more money, you need to witness more. And I was doing all those things as much as I possibly could. Really, I couldn't have been doing those anymore than I was doing them. But it seemed like no matter how I did those things I still wasn't finding what I was searching for.
On next week's broadcast I'm gonna continue this story and I'm gonna tell you what happened. After doing all the right things for years and we should do those things. I still do those things. I still witness as often as I can. I still tithe. I still give offerings. I still read the word. I still pray. I do all these things, but there was a secret that I was missing. There was a mystery that had not yet been revealed to me. And on next week's broadcast I'm gonna tell you what happened and what the Father revealed to me through His word and by His Spirit that helped me, listen beloved, enter in to a dimension of power. And once the Lord showed me this secret, bam! It was like from that day on a new power came into my life. I'm gonna share it with you. Make sure to join me for next week's broadcast beloved. This is an exciting series. It's my heart's passion. I'm still on the same journey. I'm still questing after God just like you, seeking to get a tighter and tighter hold of Him, seeking to know more and more of His reality in my life.