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August 16, 2020 12:01 am
Carter Conlon from the historic Times Square Church in New York City to see when we pray God starts to work when we pray the plan of God starts to unfold. That's why it is folly to go quickly into any battle, any situation without first hearing on the commander without first understanding or knowing what it is. The God wants to do. Thanks for joining us this week for a call to the nation with Carter, in second Kings chapter 6 we find Syria is at war with Israel. Elisha woke up early in the morning to find an army with horses and chariots surrounding the city. Elisha's servant asked his master, what shall we do, what a difference a day can make one morning you wake up seeing the troubles that surround you in your human reasoning. But you see things much differently.
The next morning because your eyes were opened, and you saw a miracle. Now let's join Carter asking the question, how will you wake up tomorrow so I can change please in your Bible.
If you haven't chapter 6, verse 14. Now it was a scenario where suddenly the people of God of that particular time woke up in the morning and by night is as in verse 14 there the enemy that was against them, the great army and surrounded the city. I don't know if you've ever woken up and you feel surrounded surrounded by your struggles or trials or problems and difficulties. Maybe it's an illness in your body may get something in your mind that is just a during the covert, 19 situation. A lot of people depression is visited there heart visited their home may be lost your job. You don't see any way forward may be feeling to being taunted by the voices of the enemy all around you and you just woke up this morning surrounded and the servant of the man of God. I gather from this particular passage he was the first one that got up and went out and so there's two types of men that are going to wake up this morning. The first one is the servant of this man called Elisha he gets up early and he went out and there was an army surrounding the city with horses and chariots. And his servant said to him, alas, my master, what shall we do so, he that's Elisha answered and said, do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them and Elisha prayed and said, Lord, I pray opened his eyes that he may see. Then the Lord open the eyes of the young man and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha's others is two types of men wake up to types of of the servants of God. Both are followers of God, you understand Elisha as a follower of God is called into the specific ministry and so is Elisha's servant. If you would ask this man are you a follower of Jehovah God of that time he was absolutely completely I I am part of the staff may put it that way. Of this, this man of God called Elisha I'm with them. I'm I mean his armor bearer, whatever you want to call himself on the servant and to hear he go somewhere I go with him. He does things I do and I'm I'm pursuing the same God that he is.
The problem is that this servant is a follower of God, but has little to no spiritual vision and there's a lot of people like that in the body of Christ and the church of Jesus Christ. They are followers of God in their zealous about God to go to church they go over the servants of God go they do the things they're asked to do, but they themselves have little or no spiritual vision. When the enemy comes in and in this case, like a flood, and their very first responses. What shall we do, God is not even in the equation of this man's question is looking for. We have to do something we have to do it and it has to be done by us and that's the problem with this kind of amend the natural mandate in the New Testament calls this a natural man this they have a spiritual life and they have come to salvation through faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. But as with this man. He sees with his natural.
He pushes forward with his natural strength and the reasons everything with his natural mind. In other words, is completely outside of where the strength of God really is in the power of God and the wonder of God the kingdom of God. There's this whole realm around him that he doesn't see about you tonight. I want to live there.
I never want to live there. I never wanted to live there.
Right from the beginning as a God I see something in in the word of God.
I see a kingdom that cannot be seen with the natural I and sometimes can be comprehended with the natural line. It can't be attained with natural ability. This is a kingdom God, where you operate and you invite us into this kingdom by faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary. You give us your Holy Spirit and you said when the comforter comes with the spirit of truth comes, it will take the victory that I have one for you and he will show it to you and he will show you things to come.
You will show you things that I have determined to do. He will show you things that you have inherited because of the sacrifice of the son of God on the cross and so many people. Maybe it's because we've were not having to fight a war that's beyond ardent natural ability.
I think this man probably had a reputation in the city maybe as he walked to the city that they said well there's the servant of the man of God there's so-and-so on while he's he's a holy man is a spiritual man. He walks with the men of God, and maybe done a few things that I brought him to some kind of a spiritual reputation, but one morning he wakes up surrounded one morning, there's something that sits outside the realm of his own possibility and he can't comprehend any way forward. He doesn't see any victory and he starts to try to reason starts looking inns in his own pockets starts looking at his own resume starts checking his own wallet starts looking for something that's within his own natural line natural light in his natural hand to try to win a supernatural victor that can only be won by God is. It is important now because we are in a battle now for the very soul of the nation where in the battle for the testimony of God in our generation and and were not to be able to reason our way or push our way through this were not available to build or do something in our own natural strength is going to win this victory today is Pastor Tim shared on Sunday. We either pray or I think I'm paraphrasing for him, but the way I heard it his will in prayer we don't win is either God has to fighter the fights not going to be one this. This is not something I love the illustration of of King Hezekiah presenting this threat before the throne of God than going to bed. I want everybody sleeping God sends the angel of the Lord comes down and slays 185,000 of the enemy that had surrounded the city one more time to see when we pray God starts to work when we pray the plan of God starts to unfold. That's why it is folly to go quickly into any battle, any situation without first hearing on the commander without first understanding or knowing what it is. The God wants to do.
First Corinthians chapter 2 says it this way. In verses 12 and verse 14. Now we have received not the spirit of the world. Remember this world only sees it with its natural light pushes with its natural strength and reasons with its own natural mind. But we've received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God that we might know the things that are freely given to us by God. Verse 14 but the natural man does not receive the things of the spirit of God for their foolishness to him, nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. In other words, the man who lives by his own strength.
His own reasoning. He can't know the things of the kingdom of God as it will always live in the realm of what shall we do, what can we do what ought we to do and will always be that reasoning in other words, the natural man will end up in a boardroom and not in the prayer room. Everything will be designed out of his natural mind and will come up with all these wonderful themes for the charts that are just so powerless is just a lot of denominations. I hate to say but it they're just known for adjusting the this year's theme is good is going to vent three rhyming words and this can be a whole year in a documentable boardroom somebody the first.
Maybe the most powerful guy in the room through the three words out and everybody just fell into line and they decided to do something and not realizing that not praying and not hearing from God just lends itself to a continuous road of increased powerlessness and eventually just irrelevance in the culture and the society that we now live in. In John chapter 6 verse five says Jesus lifted up his eyes and is seeing a great multitude coming towards him.
He said to Philip, where shall we buy bread that these may eat for this. He said the test and, for he himself knew what he would do so. This is the son of God is showing us how the kingdom of God works. He saw a great multitude mother was was a great need and he knew that Meade could not be met through human resource so he tasks the man who's been walking with them for a season. Philip should know better.
They knew he could do miracles. They knew we had power and immediately Philip resorts into his natural understanding. Philip said 200 denarii worth of bread is not sufficient for them that every penny of every one of them may have a little and also immediately this man seeing the size of the problem is looking in his pockets is looking to his friends and thereby much money do you have commented denarii. Do you have a much do you have the is is the ultimate being counter in the kingdom of God.
He counts the number of beings out there that are necessary than accounts number beings abdomen pocket is I'm sorry we don't have the resource now Jesus was testing him, never thought that when something comes your way. That you and I don't have the strength to meet that the need this before she ever thought that God just might be testing you over something adjusting.
Are you willing now to look away from your own resources.
Are you willing to look away from your own thoughts about the situation your own strength to achieve your desired ends or whatever you think the end is the God has would have you to have one of his disciples, and her assignments. Peter's brother said to him as a lad here was five barley loaves and two small fish. But what are they among so many than Jesus and make the people sit down.
There was much grass in the place of the men sit down and number about 5000. And Jesus took the loaves when it given thanks, he distributed them to his disciples and the disciples to those sitting down and likewise of the fish as much as they wanted. Now, first of all he tasks Philip it says in the Scripture, for he knew he himself knew what he would do. Now we know that the kingdom of God operates through faith only to follow me on this thread of thought he knew what he was going to do and he knew who his partner was going to be in doing it.
There's a little boy. Now the disciples didn't steal his bread and fish from this little kid is undoubtedly nowhere is gone maybe as normal limits passing through. I know it is on his way to school and this is his lunch that his mom set about to buy this for supper for the family, but as a little boy passing through Jesus member. He knew what he was going to do and his kingdom does not operate apart from faith. Remember in one passage of Scripture says he could do.
Not many mighty miracles there.
This particular town because of their unbelief.
So is this little boy passing through his got five loaves and two small fish and he just comes through the crowd and presents it to one of the disciples as a little child and says this should do it between me and Jesus we can feed this crowd unhooked you I got grandchildren and that's the way they are. They don't see impossibility they they don't they don't count the beings.
They don't look at the numbers.
Then I get up in the morning and look at the size if if Poppa tells them it's all going to be okay then minimizes all going to okay because Papa said so they don't have to figure it out. They can't drive a car if I told you were going to get ice cream today at 5 o'clock they know they're going to get for the R to get the is cream even though they can't drive a car they don't have to know how Poppa told him that's going to be done to see in this little boy. I just love it. It just it just presents his little lunch in spite of the thousands that are there, and Jesus already knew how much faith does it take for a miracle. My Bible says it takes the size of a grain of a mustard seed. That's what this little boy had had mustard seed faith and brought his little offering to Jesus and said you can between you and I we can do this and I've experiences my grandchildren so I know what this is all about. They they just have a a faith in them that God help us as adults to get back to it again. Jesus himself said Matthew chapter 18 in verse three. Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven that that doesn't mean that doesn't is not talking about salvation. That's talking about entering into this this place of of God's power. This place of God's wonderment.
This place of of the kingdom of heaven. This kingdom, the judge grows into something it's planted in the field of the grows. It's a small CIBA grows into something that can give provision and lodging for people around it.
It's it's it's something that God alone can do unless you be converted and become as little children, you will live like the servant of the lies you outside of the kingdom of doesn't mean it doesn't mean heaven is not your home. It means while you live on the earth. You live outside of this place of the miraculous outside of of the wonderment of saying God I only have like I'll I feel like sometimes I felt my life like I got less than this little boy, but I bring it to God. Anyway, as similar as you can use it and he always has used it and is fed multitude throughout the world through this little lunch bag of an offering called my life but I gave it to him. Not trying to figure it all out and even today I thank God that I don't have to figure everything out.
I bring it to him. I bring my little bit of faith to him.
I bring my little situation or my big situation to him and say, God, you're able to look after this. Sometimes we just go to bed and oversleeping goblets.
After our situation and does something that is so much bigger than we could ever have thought or even imagined. It sets our feet on a pathway. He does something through our speech. He he just does something in his kingdom that you and I can't figure it out what it is but we just simply bring it to him and say what I just believe that all things work together for good, because I love you and I'm the called according to your purpose. I believe that if a miracle is going to happen through this. Whether I understand it, or I don't.
I believe God that you're going to do something through the situation and my life that can't be done apart from you. I don't like living in the realm of natural reasoning and once you've tasted all for now I know what the Psalms that old taste and see the Lord is good. All once you've tasted of his favor. You tasted of his power.
You've tasted of his leaving of tasted of his ability, his willingness to take on nothingness and do everything through it. Once you've tasted you never want to go back to boardroom again. You never want to go back and be part of the crowd that gets up in the morning and says alas master, what shall we do, and Elisha's response was so simple he said, oh Lord, open his eyes that he may see in the Lord opened the eyes of the young man and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha so now is suddenly his eyes are open to a whole world. He the kingdom. He hadn't seen a power he was in the world that the willingness of God to act on our behalf. The love of God for those who are his servants. The presence of God, the power of God to intervene in every situation. Suddenly, his eyes are opened, and he sees the Army ready those that were sent of God. Those that are always there to fight this ever present help that the Lord declares himself to be his suddenly sees it upon the mountains, not just on one side not just on the east to the west, but all around more and mightier than anything that will ever come against the testimony of God in the earth or the children of God. And this is my prayer for you. Maybe you woke up this morning and you said alas master what shall we do, maybe there was a prior don't know what to do.
Maybe you got up and spoke to your wife or your husband or maybe to your mom or your dad said what are we going to do. I don't know what were going to do. We got to do something and your whole life is stuck in this narrow little corridor of human effort and human reasoning and human understanding in my prayer for you tonight is so God, would you open the eyes of your people.
One more time with the opening is your people in China that are listening tonight online. Thousands upon those in Korea those in Singapore those in Australia those in Canada, those throughout the United States. Those in Europe that are online listing and will be listening again tomorrow to this, would you open their eyes to see something God in our generation that we need to see again.
We lived in the natural for too long with too long tried to figure everything out with through long strategize ourselves to his spirit into spiritual impotence with too long lived on in a place where the power of God is not the reasoning of man is but the power of God is not and now we find ourselves overnight literally surrounded by enemies who are hell-bent on stepping out the testimony of Christ in this generation and we look at the that the power the magnitude of the things that are against us in like this servant of the larger we say, oh God, what shall we do, and the Lord says pray that's all I'm asking you to do is pray you bring it to me. You do what Hezekiah did you take the threatenings against your life and against your home and against her town or city or country of family or nation and you spread it out of my throat and then go to bed and relax and let me look after it.
I will answer your prayer. I will give you strength when you didn't have strength and give you Victor that you could never win in any amount of your own human effort. Once this man's eyes are opened, he sees a miracle, not that not only does he see the power of heaven around surrounding them. In this besieged city. But with three simple part with two simple prayers. After that one is is an entire army brought into captivity is an amazing that's of the word of God tells us right.
Our prayers are powerful. We have the ability to pull down strongholds and bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. We warn not against flesh and blood, but against powers and principalities and in the prayer closet. God has given us the specific ability to tear down these to tread on the serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy with the promise that nothing shall by any means hurt us. Then he sees Elisha, the servant of God is pray. Two simple prayers strike these enemies with blindness. In other words, don't let them achieve the desired end. There's the setting out to captivate the testimony of God, which is always what the powers of darkness will do. And so Elisha was this stricken with blindness. Don't let them achieve their goal.
We should pray that again in our generation for all of these things that have risen up to take away the testimony of Christ to redefine good is evil and evil is good. We should pray against strength of God with blindness. Let them not achieve the desired objectives and then he said to this foreign army come, follow me, and he led them right into the midst of Samaria into a place where they were taken captive by a praying mantis that amazing whole army is taken captive one more time by praying that then the king of course, of Samaria said shall I smite them.
Shall I smite them with Alexis and hope you don't you don't harm people you've taken captive by prayer to show them the kindness of God, he said, set the table, feed them and then send them home to their master. Show them that there's a power much greater than anything that they've ever understood the second out of the table. Then Elisha said now open their eyes that they may see in others open the eyes of our enemies and give them spiritual sight to see.
There is a kingdom bigger than theirs. There is a God when they deny that exists there is a power that's much bigger than any army in the face of this entire planet is sent them home and the Scripture says they never came back again nobody wanted to fight that kind of a battle in this poor servant, the got up in the morning and just in the space of a few short hours and days.
He sees something that is never seen before and how do you think you woke up the next morning for physical jihad shall be those chariots exempt assuming the soldiers again of heaven. So many couple called me to pray look at that so that I can pray.
Like Eliza, help me to see the power of God in my situation of me never to trust what I see with my natural eyes and think with my natural mind help me never to lean on what I can come up with in my natural strength. You show me your power, God, the let me settle for less. And so my prayer for you is really simple and ask that God give you spiritualize it out the nation like a simple prayer but it's not. You have to have that that faith of a child. You have to have that wonderment of God come into your heart, see if you don't have the wonderment of God. You will always reason everything was her natural mind. The wonderment of God says God is much bigger than me. God is good, God has a great plan. God is my father God is kind God can be trusted God's ways are not my ways and you have to have that wonderment. That's 100. Pray for you for that. God give you that wonderment of the child.
That expectancy because God said it is going to happen that sense of this deep inherent goodness that's found in God. This plan that is God for your life. It is so much bigger than anything that you've ever thought of for yourself. God has a much bigger plan for you than you could ever imagine. I will pray for you. That woke up this morning saying, what shall we do that tomorrow you wake up and say God is with me.
God is you wake up with a disturbances may not of changed but you got a bounce in your step got a light in your eyes. You got a joy in your heart sing. God is with me. I don't have to understand everything. I don't have to know how it all works out. God is with me polynuclear my enemies can bark over the wall. Only one God is with me.
God is with God's promise to keep in God has sealed me in his hand. No one can take me out of that hand. God has promised me is going to bring me to a desired end told me the thoughts of thinking about we are more than the grains of sand of the seashore. All thank God you been listening to Carter Conlon from Times Square Church in New York City.
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