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ACTS 29 TODAY

coming to the knowledge of the TRUTH

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A SUBTLE KIND OF UNBELIEF

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So I began a search to find out what kind of unbelief

Jesus was referring to. I discovered that it’s a subtle

kind of unbelief a person may not even know he has

until his life is over. If the disciples knew why they

couldn’t cast the devil out, why would they have

bothered to ask Jesus? They didn’t know, so they asked

Him.

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This subtle unbelief puts a ceiling on your life that

defies you to pull yourself out of the mess your life is in

or to accomplish the thing God wants you to

accomplish. As long as that ceiling is there, one year

will be like the next, until one day you’ll realize five

years have passed, and your anointing hasn’t changed;

in fact, nothing has changed. You’re just the same now

as you were five years ago. Why?

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Because you keep operating under an invisible ceiling

that hangs over your life, and you don’t even know it’s

there. And even if you did know, you couldn’t break

through that ceiling in your own strength.

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Let me explain a little more with this hypothetical

situation. Suppose five little crippled,deformed

children in wheelchairs are brought to my meeting,

their arms and legs twisted and their heads leaning

over to one side. I come in, and as I begin to preach, I

see these five little children.

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Now, I can’t blame the fact that the children aren’t

healed on their faith. They aren’t required to have any.

I also can’t say it isn’t God’s will to heal them, because

even though the disciples couldn’t cast that devil out,

Jesus revealed His will when He cast it out.

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So I walk over and lay hands on the children. I reach

down on the inside of me and pull out every ounce of

faith I have. I milk every cell, every fiber of my being

for faith to pour out on these kids — but still they don’t

get healed.

Suddenly Jesus in His glorified body walks in the room.

I say, “Jesus, I’d like to ask You a question.”

Jesus says, “Hold on just a minute, Brother Roberson.”

Then He walks over and heals everyone of those

children, just like that! He comes back to me and asks,

“Do you have a question?”“Yes, I do. Why didn’t You

heal those kids when I prayed for them?”

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Now, do you think Jesus is going to tell me anything

different than He told His disciples?No, He looks at me

and says the same thing: “They didn’t come out of their

wheelchairs healed because of your unbelief, Mr.

Roberson.”

I protest, “Jesus, that’s impossible! If there was any way

to have more faith, I would have had it. I turned my

being inside out; I pulled on every fiber within me. How

can You say they didn’t get healed because of my

unbelief?”

“Because there’s a subtle kind of unbelief in you that

you don’t know about, Brother Roberson.”

But this one thing I have discovered about Jesus, my

Teacher. He never outlines a problem like this without

going on to give me an answer before the teaching is

over. It’s not enough to outline a problem; I need an

answer. There must be some way I can deal with that

kind of subtle unbelief on purpose so that absolutely

nothing is impossible unto me.

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Fasting Helps Move Mountains

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In my search, somehow I knew my answer lay in what

Jesus told His disciples in Matthew17. I found that

answer in verse 21: Howbeit this kind goeth not out but

by prayer and fasting.

Jesus analyzed the whole situation in one word:

“howbeit.” “Howbeit” is an analytical word meaning

nevertheless or however this particular situation may

be. Jesus was in effect saying that even though

mountains can be moved with faith the size of a tiny

mustard seed, we will encounter some situations that

require prayer and fasting to overcome.

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Jesus was talking about a lifestyle of prayer and fasting

here. Most deliverance preachers in the old days taught

about and encouraged that kind of lifestyle. Today we

don’t teach or emphasize its importance nearly as

much. The result? Although we live in a time of Church

history when teaching the Word has risen to the

forefront, many are unequipped to do the Word, which

includes casting out demons and moving mountains of

all kinds.

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Often we associate fasting only with deliverance from

demonic influence because of Jesus’s statement here

that a certain kind of demon can be cast out only by

prayer and fasting. But Jesus also told His disciples that

the reason this devil wouldn’t come out was their own

unbelief (v. 20).

So Jesus didn’t just associate fasting with demonic

deliverance; He also associated it with moving your

mountain. He said, “If you had faith as a grain of

mustard seed, you could speak to the mountain and it

would be removed, and absolutely nothing would be

impossible to you.”

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be gone

Right after saying that, Jesus made the statement about

prayer and fasting. This indicates to me that these two

things have something to do with bringing me from a

place of unbelief —where my mountains refuse to

move, where everything is impossible to me — to a

place where nothing is impossible to me.

Therefore, my fasting doesn’t move God; He isn’t the

One stuck underneath an invisible ceiling. My fasting

also doesn’t move the devil; he isn’t the one with my

problem. Somehow fasting deals with my unbelief.

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But my question to God for so many years was this:

“What in the world does fasting have to do with

unbelief?” Of all the places to find that answer, I found

it back in Romans 8:

And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin;

but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.— Romans

8:10

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If Christ lives in you, you qualify for the rest of this

verse, namely, that your spirit is life. It has entered into

the zoe, seated-in-heavenly-places-with-Christ, God-

kind of life.

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But notice, the same verse that says my spirit is life also

declares my body to be dead. Well,I know my body isn’t

physically dead because I’m still wearing it. So what

kind of “dead” is Paul referring to? To understand this

passage in Romans 8, we must refer back to something

Paul said in Romans 6:6:

Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him,

that the BODY OF SIN might be destroyed, that

henceforth we should not serve sin.

What is this “body of sin”? It is no less than the old

nature inherited from the first man Adam before we

were born again. This is the “sin nature,” the

unregenerate spirit within us all before our spirit

passes from death to life in the new birth. It was that

sin nature that used to energize the lusts of the flesh,

such as self-exaltation and the love of money.

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So if Christ be in you, then positionally God has

declared the sin nature, the “body of sin,”to be dead

and your reborn human spirit alive unto Him.

We understand positional truth pertaining to our spirit.

For instance, we know that Jesus was made to be sin for

us and that we were made the righteousness of God in

Christ (2 Cor.5:21). We are now seated in heavenly

places with Christ Jesus (Eph. 2:6). We are above and

not beneath (Deut. 28:13).

However, we may know very little about positional

truth pertaining to our flesh. The essence of that truth

is this: The moment we were born again, God declared

the “body of sin”— the sin nature or the “old man” — to

be dead. Positionally, the flesh has lost its “power

source” to commit sin. It lost its right to dominate and

rule over us any longer.

So when you pray in the Holy Ghost, worship God, and

confess His Word, you are enforcing the positional

truth that your spirit is seated in heavenly places with

Christ Jesus. The more you pray in the Holy Ghost, the

more you execute that position of grace. On the other

hand,…………………… when you fast, you

are enforcing the positional truth that

the “body of sin” was crucified with

Christ and your flesh no longer has the

power to rule over the operation of your

spirit.

Thus, when you begin to fast and pray, you execute two

positional truths in the realm of the Spirit. That’s why

prayer and fasting are the power twins.

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Until next time

LARRY

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ACTS 29 TODAY

COMING TO THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE TRUTH

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WHAT JESUS TAUGHT ABOUT FASTING

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In Matthew 17, we find an account that reveals what

Jesus taught His disciples about fasting.

Jesus climbed up what we call the Mount of

Transfiguration with James, Peter, and John.There Jesus

had a visitation of God. Afterwards, He charged the

three disciples who were with Him to tell no man what

they had seen; then they came back down the

mountain.

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Meanwhile, the other disciples were trying to cast a

devil out of a man’s son at the foot of the mountain. The

disciples had cast devils out before this with no

problem, but now they had run into one that just

wouldn’t come out of the person. While they were

making their unsuccessful attempts, a crowd had

collected around them.

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The disciples were probably feeling frustrated,

flustered, and embarrassed. This is the situation that

Jesus, James, Peter, and John walked into when they

came down off the mountain.

And when they were come to the multitude, there came to him [Jesus]a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying,

Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatic, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water.

And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him.

Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me.

And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour.

Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out?

And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for

verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of

mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove

hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing

shall be impossible unto you.

HOWBEIT THIS KIND GOETH NOT OUT BUT BY PRAYER

AND FASTING.—

Matthew 17:14-21

So this man came to Jesus and said, “Lord Jesus, please

have mercy on my son. He’s crazy— out of his mind —

and often a spirit throws him into the fire. I brought

him to disciples, but they couldn’t cast this devil out.”

Notice how Jesus answered the disciples: “You faithless

and perverse generation, how long shall I suffer you?”

In other words, “How long am I going to have to do this

for you?” Jesus wouldn’t have said that if He hadn’t

expected His disciples to cast that devil out.

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Jesus rebuked the devil, and it departed out of the boy.

Then the disciples did the same thing I would have

done. They came to Jesus privately and said, “Why

couldn’t we cast that devil out?” (I definitely wouldn’t

have yelled that question over the heads of the crowd,

because Jesus would have probably yelled the answer

back to me: “Because of your unbelief!”)

Notice again Jesus’ answer to them in verse 20:

And Jesus said unto them, BECAUSE OF YOUR

UNBELIEF: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a

grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this

mountain,Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall

remove; and NOTHING SHALL BE IMPOSSIBLE UNTO

YOU.

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Jesus said the reason that devil wouldn’t come out of

the boy was the disciples’ unbelief.He went on to say

that if they ever learned to deal with that

unbelief,

they

would be able to say to a mountain, “Be removed!” and

it would obey them. Finally, Jesus said something

absolutely incredible: “Nothing shall be impossible to

you.”

So Jesus was saying that if I ever learn to deal with that

particular kind of unbelief, I have a promise from Him

that absolutely nothing will be impossible to me. When

I realized that truth, I wanted to know what kind of

unbelief Jesus was talking about here so I could isolate

it and deal with it!

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UNTIL NEXT TIME

LARRY

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ACTS 29 TODAY

coming to the knowledge of the truth

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PRAYER AND FASTING…THE POWER TWINS

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Let’s say you’ve just committed yourself to a season of

praying in the Holy Ghost. You’re hungry to know God

more intimately and to walk in His plan for your life, so

you’re ready and willing to yield to the Holy Spirit’s

purging process and to push through any impasses you

might encounter.

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But what about those areas in your life in which you

have been defeated time and time again? What about

those deeds of the flesh that have wedged themselves so

tightly into the nooks and crannies of your life — the

ones that taunt you into believing that you will never be

any better than you are now and that you will never

accomplish anything more than what you’ve already

accomplished? Is there anything that can help set you

free in these areas once and for all?

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I have good news for you — Jesus has given us an

important key for just such a purpose!It isn’t a very

popular key; yet when a person employs it, that key will

shut down the flesh nature with the same vengeance

that God used to slam the door on Noah’s ark against an

entire world that had gone the way of the flesh. That

key is fasting.

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You see, if you ever learn to shut your flesh down, you

will shut Satan down, because the only power he has is

through the seduction and manipulation of the flesh

nature, which includes the mental and emotional realm

as well as the physical body.

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My First Experience With Fasting

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God introduced me to fasting during a time when I had

reached an impasse in my prayer life. I had gotten so

hungry for God from just praying in tongues that I was

looking around for ways to get closer to Him. During

this time, my heart cry was “Help me produce

something for the Kingdom in the next month or two,

Father. I have to see something tangible!”

I found out right away that an impasse was overcome

more quickly when I fasted. Not only that, but the

workings of my flesh surfaced much more quickly as

well! I learned that fasting accompanied with prayer

multiplied what was already in me.

The first time I went on a fast, I had amazing results. As

soon as I came off the fast, every-thing in my world

went wrong!

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I came off this long fast, which I refer to as a “seeking

time,” and almost had to stagger into meetings. I had

weak knees, and it wasn’t from a lack of food! I could

hardly stand up to preach. It seemed as if God’s

anointing had lifted from me. When I laid hands on

people to pray for them, they wouldn’t have fallen

under the power of God even if lightning had hit them!

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On top of that, we were in debt for an entire month’s

budget. I tucked myself away to fast and pray — and I

came out of that time only to be more in debt than

before! I told God, “The least You could do is to

supernaturally arrange for the bills to be paid while I’m

locked away with You!”

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I was getting a little short-tempered about the situation.

Anger was building up on the inside because I wanted

to know why.

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I began to see clearly. I came to realize that during the

fast, certain areas of my flesh nature that hadn’t been

put to death in the past had come to the surface. When

these fleshly works began to surface, the anointing felt

less, but in reality was greater than ever before.

This is what Paul meant when he said in essence, “For I

would rather glory in my infirmities (or weaknesses as

a man) because when I am stripped of my dependency

on my flesh, it places my dependency on the Holy

Spirit” (2 Cor. 12:9,10). When we feel weakest in our

own natural strength, we are usually the strongest,

because un-mortified areas of our flesh are in the

process of dying.

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Fasting and prayer in combination help cause those

fleshly works to come to light in our lives more

quickly.Tests and trials will also bring them to light, but

I would rather not wait for the trials. Fasting and

prayer allow the Holy Spirit to reveal those things

hidden in darkness and to deal with them before the

trials come. This in turn causes our character to be

strengthened.

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Until next time

LARRY

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ACTS 29 TODAY

coming to the knowledge of the TRUTH

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STEPS TO INTERCESSION

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Intercession is born in us when the needs of others

move our spirit so strongly that we finally give the Holy

Spirit something to add His power to. That is when faith

in its purest form flows from our spirit.

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Let me tell you the steps that lead to true intercession

after you begin the edification process by praying in

tongues at your own will.

The Holy Spirit will first build you up to that place of

sensitivity we’ve been talking about.You will start to

look at your husband or wife or lost family member

and say, “Oh, God, above everything else, I would that

he [or she] be saved.” At this point, the desires of your

heart begin to change in the edification process. You

are taking the first steps toward intercession.

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Although you may think you are directing the Holy

Spirit’s prayer, you are not. You have your list of prayer

requests: Joe needs a car; Susie needs this; Jan needs

that. All of those things are almost irrelevant to God.

So you sit there with your big list and say, “Okay, I claim

all these things.” When you say,“I claim it,” God hears

it. Then you say, “Now I’m going to pray in the Spirit

about it.” At this point, the desires of your heart begin

to direct your prayers rather than your mentality.

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What did God say? He said that He would grant the

desires of your heart if you delighted yourself in Him

(Ps. 37:4). That means that if you delight yourself in the

Lord in prayer, the desires you have will come from

Him, and these are the desires He can fulfill.

As you pray in the Spirit, the Holy Spirit will begin to

plant a little seed. That is the conception of a miracle. It

is the birth plan for your backslidden spouse or your

child on dope or a lost relative. He plants that seed

directed by the desires of your heart. As you pray in

tongues,God will begin to form that little “baby” by the

authority of your spirit.

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Several months go by. You keep praying, and that

miracle growing on the inside of you begins to “show”

as you carry it to fruition.

Soon you don’t care if anyone around you is praying or

not. You get up early. You pray at all times of the day

and night. You walk around and crave spiritual things

that you never used to care much about.

The months go by as you continue to pray. Suddenly, by

an act of God’s will and not your own, it is time for

birth, and you begin to groan. The labor pains are

getting closer and closer.It is only a matter of time

before that “baby” is birthed in the spiritual realm.

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yes that’s me on the left 22 years old, 3 days after born again

After long hours of edifying myself through praying in

tongues, God began to slip me over into intercession to

birth things in the Spirit.

For example, I remember a time when the symptom of

partial deafness temporarily manifested in my body

while I was interceding. That night a woman who was

totally deaf came to my service, and God opened her

ears! She could hear music and the voices of her

husband and son for the first time in her life. Why?

Because God was able to bring me to a place in the

Spirit where I stood in the gap for this woman’s healing.

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So is it worth the hours and days and months that it

takes to build that superstructure in your spirit by

praying in tongues so that one day the Holy Ghost can

begin to use you in mighty intercession? Oh, yes, my

friend, it’s worth every minute.

It is a high honor to stand between Satan and the

people he is trying to kill, steal from, and destroy. And

nothing can compare to knowing that those you’re

praying for may have known hell as their eternal

destination — except that you paid the price to be

purged so you could stand in the gap and set the

captives free!

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For in these last days, many shall scurry to and fro.

Fear will encompass the earth.Men’s hearts shall fail

for looking upon those things that are coming upon the

world.

But run not here and run not there,for your answer is

within.

Look up, saith the Spirit of Grace, your redemption

draweth nigh.

Establish your feet on the foundational rock of doing

My sayings.

Be ye strengthened with all power and might in the

inner man, for it is the inner strength that will

accomplish My purpose in My people.

Through that inner strength will I empower you in

these last days to stand. (word given thru Dave Roberson)

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UNTIL NEXT TIME

LARRY

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ACTS 29 TODAY

coming to the knowledge of the TRUTH

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prayer-warrior

The Holy Spirit Helps Our Infirmities

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My experience was right in line with Romans 8:26,

which says the Spirit also helps our infirmities. That

means He helps in conjunction with someone who is

already helping.

This throws us back to verse 23, where Paul says that

we are groaning out of our righteous human spirit. So

when Paul says in verse 26, “Likewise the Spirit also

helps us…,” he is saying, “In the same manner that you

are groaning out of your human spirit, He will also help

you.”

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This is how it works. A mountain comprised of fleshly

works stands between you and God’s plan for your life.

The Holy Spirit will focus in on that mountain “with

groaning s that cannot be uttered” (Rom. 8:26). You

have entered a mild form of intercession, but it is for

yourself that you stand in the gap.

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These groaning s are not just referring to speech so

profound that you can’t utter it. It’s also talking about

reaching a place in the Spirit where you begin to hate

whatever stands between you and God’s plan so badly

that you enter into a state of groaning or grieving.

Your heart cries out, I wish this was out of my life!

Lord, I hate this!At this point, you have given the Holy

Spirit the faith He needs to come alongside and move

the mountain out of the way.

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If you persevere in prayer and refuse to let the

mountain defeat you, at some point you will experience

a “meltdown,” where the Holy Ghost removes the

mountain and you come out on the other side

victorious. Why? Because you cannot continue to report

to prayer and still retain your problem. You will either

have to quit edifying yourself and yield to those works

of the flesh or allow the Holy Spirit to purge them out

of your life.

The Holy Spirit will pull out the problem at the right

time, when you’re ready and can survive the purging.

Your part is to just keep praying.

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Don’t stop. Push through the impasse. The Holy Spirit

will illuminate this purging process for you, and when

it’s all over, you’ll be able to see and understand that

massive mountain that was removed from your life.

You will thank God that you are one step closer to

mighty intercession.

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Praying in Tongues vs.Deep Intercessional Groaning

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The combination of the two passages we’ve been

looking at in Second Corinthians 5 and Romans 8 settled

for me the age-old issue of the difference between

praying in tongues for personal edification and the

deep intercessional groans of the Spirit — that diversity

of tongues that is operated by God as He wills.

The truth is, even if you start out praying in tongues

with a cold, indifferent, stony heart,only two

ingredients are necessary to bring you to the place

where the Holy Spirit can move through you in deep

intercessional groaning s: your knowledge that your

indifference is wrong,and your decision to pray in the

Holy Ghost by your own will as often as possible.

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As you continue to pray in tongues, the Holy Spirit will

edify you and charge you up into the love of God until

compassion gets hold of you — until at times, as you

walk away from yet another person still bound to his

wheelchair, you feel as if you can’t even live unless you

see results. This is the kind of groaning that says, “I

can’t stand this anymore. It hurts too badly.I will put

aside all of my selfishness and strife and all of our

differences. I’ll do whatever I need to do to serve the

purposes of the Holy Spirit.”

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Putting our differences aside is a major part of what

delivers us into true intercession.Dead religion consists

of “I have my rights! Vindicate me!” That’s where most

of the church world lives, and that’s why most

Christians seldom visit the realm of miracles.

Therefore, the Gospel of glad tidings doesn’t reach that

little deformed child bound to a wheelchair. He doesn’t

get a chance at his reward because the Church failed

him.

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But when we get to that place where we groan out of

our righteous spirits over this world’s pain, sin, and

misery, we don’t want to fight with anyone anymore.

We just want to pray. So why don’t we put all of our

differences aside and start praying!

It is the groaning of our righteous spirits that the Holy

Spirit picks up on. If He examines me and sees that my

new nature is crying for help in groaning s — hurting

but not knowing how to pray as I ought — He says,

“Excuse Me, but I have been sent to help your

infirmities.I want to add My groaning s to your cries for

help, for that will translate to pure power for you to

rise above the inabilities of the flesh.

“You have come to a standstill. In your own strength,

you can’t pull this off. You don’t have the power. You

don’t know how to do it, but I do!”

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So the Holy Spirit adds His anointing of power — His

intercession, His groaning s — to blend together in

unison as one with the groaning s of your spirit. At that

point, He empowers you to rise above the problem and

do something about it.

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In Galatians 4:19, Paul made a revealing statement that

provides insight into the distinct difference between

tongues for personal edification and deep

intercessional groaning s:

My little children, of whom I TRAVAIL IN BIRTH again

until Christ be formed in you.

How many women pick the day to give birth to their

child? How many choose the day their baby will be born

without man-made intervention? How many stop the

process and say, “I think I’ll wait two days”? Not too

many, I would imagine. Women can start the child

bearing process as they will, but they cannot end it

according to their own will.

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In the same manner, at your own will you can start the

process that will lead to intercession and travail by

praying in the Spirit and edifying yourself. But even

after you have reached that place of sensitivity in

which you groan out of your righteous spirit because of

the imperfections of this world, the deep intercessional

groaning s of the Holy Spirit only come upon you as He

wills.

prayer-warrior


UNTIL NEXT TIME

LARRY

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ACTS 29 TODAY

coming to the knowledge of the TRUTH

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THE EARNEST OF OUR INHERITANCE

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Notice what else Paul says in Second Corinthians 5:5, as

he encompasses the entire ministry of the Holy Spirit in

our lives in this one simple statement: God gave us the

earnest of the Spirit.

To find out more detail about the Holy Spirit’s ministry

as the earnest of our inheritance,we have to go back to

Romans 8. Paul says in essence, “It doesn’t matter if

you’re imprisoned in a body that is capable of sin. Sure,

you’re still trapped here in hope of a glorified body. But

you don’t have to wait alone — you have the earnest of

the Spirit. And this is how the Holy Spirit carries out

that ministry.”

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If you’re at all familiar with the real-estate business,

you know that “earnest money” is a token of your

sincerity to make the purchase. It is money against the

promised possession.

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Well, when you were born again, God said, “I’m going to

give you a little bit of Heaven to go to Heaven with,

because when this purchase is finished, I want you, the

promised possession, to come home to be with Me.” So

God put His “earnest money” — the Holy Ghost — down

on you against the promised possession. In other words,

God sent the Holy Ghost as the earnest of our

inheritance to guarantee us three things:

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1.The Holy Spirit is God’s guarantee of the power to

fulfill your ministry hereon earth.He offers Himself in

edification through the supernatural language of

tongues to pray the plan of God into your life. He is

your only true promise of power and of divine direction

and leadership to fulfill your ministry. His is the only

earnest that will see you through. No other path holds

that guarantee.

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2.He is your guarantee of a glorified body.

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3.He is the power to finally deliver the purchased

possession — you — to God as He brings you on home to

Heaven.

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So the earnest of the Spirit guarantees to help you

fulfill your ministry, to deliver you to your glorified

body, and to bring you home to Heaven. That is God’s

guarantee to you: If you follow Him, He will never lose

His earnest money against the promised possession.

Never.

As you use that basic diversity of tongues called

tongues for personal edification, you begin to instigate

the earnest of the Spirit. At that level, the Holy Spirit

starts to deal with all of your problems, no matter how

bad they are. If you keep yielding to His work in you, He

will deliver you out of all of them.

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The ‘Ministry of the Earnest

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Paul describes how the Holy Spirit carries out His

“ministry of the earnest” in Romans8:26:

Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we

know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the

Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings

which cannot be uttered.

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We know from our earlier discussion that the word

“infirmities” refers to our inability to produce results

because of the limitations imposed on us by the flesh.

That’s why we who have the first fruits of the Spirit

groan out of our righteous spirits — we desire that

these limitations be removed. And the Holy Spirit in

like manner helps our infirmities.

I appreciate the Holy Spirit’s help, because I found out

long ago that I’m not too smart when it comes to

producing results in spiritual matters. For example,

when I look at a crip-pled, deformed child in a

wheelchair and come face to face with my inability

through unbelief to produce results, my righteous spirit

groans inside of me.

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If I knew how to pray as I ought, that child in the

wheelchair would rise up whole and normal and walk.

So the Holy Spirit has to help my inability to produce

that result.

You see, we all have a call and a place in God’s plan,

even that severely handicapped child in the wheelchair.

What glad tidings should we be preaching to that child?

“Little believer, you don’t have to be that way anymore,

because that wasn’t in God’s plan. You have a divine call

just like I do. And unless the Church can help set you

free of that condition, you will never fulfill that call as

God intended.”

If that isn’t our message, then what good is the Gospel?

Is it only for good-looking people who have money in

their pockets and drive a Lexus? Do we think that a

little deformed child is any less called by God than

ourselves?

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The preacher’s message should be “Captive, you don’t

have to be captive anymore. Blind,you don’t have to be

blind anymore. Poor, you don’t have to be poor

anymore. Prisoner, you don’t have to be locked up in

your own body anymore.”

If that isn’t the preacher’s message, did he stop where it

was comfortable enough to live the good life, forgetting

the desperate needs lying just outside his comfort zone?

Doesn’t he care about prayer? Is he so caught up in the

cares of this world that he thinks he can excuse him-

self? No excuse will hold water on that day when he

stands before Jesus expecting a big, fat reward, and

Jesus asks him, “Why didn’t you endure in prayer?”

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NOT

This is a realm of which few of us have any

understanding at all. When faced with some-thing like a

wheelchair case, we may say, “Well, I’m just going to

pray and believe God.” But if we really believed God

when we prayed for that person, why didn’t the person

get healed?No one knows — not even the person in the

wheelchair. But I’ll tell you who does know Holy Spirit.

And as the earnest of our inheritance, He is sent to help

us in our inability to produce results!

What does this have to do with intercession? Well, it

wasn’t until I had been praying hour after hour in

tongues for about two years that I began to experience

the deep intercessional groanings of the Spirit coming

from deep within my spirit as He willed.

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I wondered why I hurt inside, so God spoke to my spirit:

“Do you like the plan the devil has for the world?”

I answered, “No, I don’t! In fact, I hurt inside.”

He said, “Yes, you are groaning out of your righteous

spirit for the culmination of all things and for the

redemption of your body. You are groaning to see this

whole horrible mess come to an end.”

I said, “Yes, Sir, you’re right!”

I began to experience hurt that came from deep inside

of me every time I walked away from someone in a

wheelchair who didn’t get healed. I would know beyond

a shadow of a doubt that Jesus had borne that person’s

sicknesses and pains, yet I’d feel the limitations

imposed on me by the flesh. Or I would hurt inside

when I saw entire civilizations starving to death in

plain view of the world.

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I would want to do something about that person’s

crippled condition or the sad plight of those

desperately poor nations — but I couldn’t in my own

strength! However, the Holy Spirit could as He moved

on my spirit with tongues of deep, intercessional

groanings, activated severally as He willed.

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until next time

LARRY

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ACTS 29 TODAY

coming to the knowledge of the TRUTH

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GROANING WITHIN OUR RIGHTEOUS SPIRITS

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So how can we be confident of final victory in this

spiritual quest from selfish carnality, to enduring in

prayer through the purging process, to becoming a

prepared vessel that the Holy Spirit can use in

intercession? I found an answer to that question in my

studies and meditation of two different passages of

Scripture: Second Corinthians 5 and Romans 8.

The key to our ultimate victory is summed up in one

simple statement in Second Corinthians 5:5: God has

given to us the earnest of the Spirit. Let’s look at the

entire passage in context:

For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle

were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not

made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

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For in this [earthly tabernacle]we groan, earnestly

desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is

from heaven[our glorified bodies]:

If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked.

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For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being

burdened: not for that we would be unclothed[we don’t

just want to die], but clothed upon, that mortality might

be swallowed up of life.

Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is

God, who also hath given unto us THE EARNEST OF THE

SPIRIT.— 2 Corinthians 5:1-5

Now let’s go to Romans 8:22-25 and compare the two

passages. First, let’s look at verse 22:

For we know that the whole creation [every created thing] groaneth and travaileth[as a pregnant woman]in pain together until now.

All creation groans for its deliverance from the

bondage of corruption in which it was placed at the fall

of man. All of creation, right down to the last atom,

came under a curse at that time.Now creation,

pregnant with a new heaven and a new earth, groans in

travail like a pregnant woman waiting to give birth.

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Then in verse 23, Paul switched the emphasis from

creation to you and me:

And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.

Everything in creation that is imperfect is in a form of

intercessional groaning, waiting to be delivered from

corruption. That includes believers who have “the first

fruits of the Spirit.”

Notice Paul said that we have the first fruits, and we

wait for the second fruits — the redemption of our

bodies. What are the first fruits Paul is talking about?

Jesus died and arose from the dead, and those of us who

are born again have become the first fruits — the first

harvest — of His resurrection. When we bowed our

knee to the Lord Jesus Christ and were born again,

adoption papers were served on us, and we became His

first fruits.

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When I was born again, my spirit man was

instantly seated in heavenly places with Christ

Jesus.Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened

us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)And

hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in

heavenly places in Christ Jesus.— Ephesians 2:5,6

My spirit has taken on the express image of Jesus

Christ. It has been born of Him and consequently has

become the righteousness of God in Christ: For he hath

made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we

might be made the righteousness of God in him.Cor.

5:21). Therefore, on the inside of me, I have these

righteous feelings. Something in me is so holy that it

constantly wars with my flesh.

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We who have the first fruits of the Spirit — in other

words, we who are born again and have received the

earnest or baptism of the Holy Spirit — are groaning.

We groan within our righteous spirits, waiting for the

entire adoption process to be culminated or completed

at the redemption of our bodies — the second fruits.

The reason you are groaning on the inside of your

righteous spirit is that you are imprisoned in your

fleshly body. You live in there. Your flesh has death

working in it, inherited from the first Adam. It is not

only capable of sin; it will sin if you let it. That’s why

Paul says in Galatians 5:16:

This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

You are totally capable of walking in the flesh. Even

more than that, your body is imprisoned in a world of

warring and strife — a place where children are

starving to death and men kill each other, where sin

and perversion run rampant. Your righteous spirit

groans within your body, because you’re in an

imperfect world that has all this damnable sin, and you

are still capable of practicing it yourself.

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In fact, Paul said that all creation is travailing like a

pregnant woman, sold to the bondage of slavery, crying

and groaning to be delivered out of that bondage. I am

in the middle of all this mess, and the righteousness

that has been implanted within me makes me groan for

anew heaven, a new earth, and a new, glorified body.

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Saved by Hope

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This is starting to sound like the passage in Second

Corinthians 5, isn’t it? Remember what verse 4 says:

For WE THAT ARE IN THIS TABERNACLE DO GROAN, BEING BURDENED: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life.

What are we groaning for? We are waiting for our

adoption process to be made complete.When? At the

redemption of our bodies. In other words, when we are

clothed with our glorified body, a house from Heaven

not made with hands.

When Jesus returns, our bodies will be changed in the

twinkling of an eye from corruptible to incorruptible as

we receive our resurrected bodies (1 Cor. 15:52). That

time is coming. Bu tin the meantime, while we are still

imprisoned in our bodies, we need Someone to help

us.That’s why God gave us the Holy Spirit — to

empower us during this time of waiting to have victory

over the dominance of the flesh.

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Then in Second Corinthians 5:5, Paul goes on to say this:

Now he that hath wrought [or saved]us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit.

So God has wrought, or saved, us for the culmination of

His great plan. Actually, Paul is saying the same thing

but in a slightly different way to both the Romans and

the Corinthians.In Romans 8:24 and 25, he said we are

saved by hope.

For we are SAVED BY HOPE: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.

We are saved by the hope of what? We who have the

first fruits of the Spirit are waiting for the redemption

process to be made complete at the resurrection and

glorification of our physical bodies. We don’t see it yet,

so “we do with patience wait for it.” We don’t have any

choice but to wait. We can believe God for Jesus’ return

until we turn blue and seven shades of white and green,

but Jesus is still going to come back when God says it’s

time for Him to come back!

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until next time

LARRY

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