“DEAR GOD, GIVE US ANOINTED MEN AND WOMEN!”
By Rodney W. Francis
It is a difficult, even unpleasant thing, to try and compare the experiences and exploits of the Christians in the Early Church to that which (generally) exists in our churches today. Yet, even though we know we are not flowing in the same realm of ministry and authority, we nonetheless still claim to have received the same initial experiences.
But, what about the reality, power, and fruits of these experiences in the light of the fruits of the early Christians after they had had the same experiences? While we must not come into condemnation over our seeming lack, it is good for us to face the challengethat we need not be a 21st century Christian failure. God is still speaking today and His Word is still the great “blue print” of the plan of God for us and, if we are willing to line ourselves up with what He says ~ which is always confirmed by the principles contained in the Bible ~ we will find satisfaction and fulfilment in doing His will. When we are anointed by the Holy Spirit and being led by Him, He will always draw us closer to JESUS, Who speaks to us today. When we do what He says, then the anointing is released to enable us to fulfil what He asks of us, with a supernatural element and ability to demonstrate God’s involvement in what He wants done.
IS SERVING JESUS WORTH LIVING ~ AND DYING ~ FOR?
The early disciples lived for their cause ~ and even died for it. “And they did not love their lives to the death” (see Revelation 12:9-11 , NKJV). Nothing was held back from their Master. JESUS was LORD, full stop! Opposition and persecution confronted them; the accuser of the brethren (Satan) accused them, but the Word of God declares:
“They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb (Jesus) and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” The more they laid down their own lives, the more God was able to pour into them His anointing, His life, His power, by the Holy Spirit. The secret of their overcoming the devil ~ and the strength of the word of their testimony ~ lay in the fact “they did not love their lives to the death.”
Some years ago a song came out entitled, “Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die.” How true! We can also say that many Christians want to effectively serve God, but they are not prepared to lay down their own wills, plans and ambitions in order for God to really use them. Tragically, many Christians are never encouraged to step out in obedience to God’s voice and will, and so never experience the supernatural side of Christianity. Some teachings have developed to keep us “locked into” a system that only allows us to function by the permission of those leaders over us. The result is a dissatisfied and powerless witness of the Christian faith. I have been on both sides of this. And I have come to the conclusion that the voice of God holds all priority over every other voice today! The Bible and experience teaches us that when we are doing the will of God, others will question and challenge that! So we have to know Jesus, His voice and will, above all else! Then we will see more of the fruitfulness and supernatural provision of God in and through our lives.
THE ANOINTING IS GOD’S SIGN OF APPROVAL
“Dear God, give us anointed men and women!” Men and women who care not for the opinions of others as long as they can live in the will of God (we need to accept the fact that people are entitled to their opinions, but you do not have to believe them ~ but know what God has called you to do). To walk in the anointing may not mean proclaiming only those things that people want to hear. The anointing is the Holy Spirit of God in and upon you to enable you to glorify Jesus Christ; to uphold the truth of what He says to you; to set the captives free . . . whether it be sin (that which blocks and robs us of right relationship with God through Jesus), sickness, or a religious spirit! (And we are living in days of much sin, sickness, and deceptive, religious spirits!)
The anointing speaks of and symbolizes the “oil of God poured into and over our lives.” It was applied to those people and things that were set apart unto God. It speaks to us of the Holy Spirit coming to us like an “ointment poured forth” to enable us to function according to the plan and purposes of God (1 Samuel 10:1 ). The anointing is God’s sign of approval upon us! Because we are given a free-will, we have the choice of either functioning according to the anointing of the Holy Spirit, or we can function according to our own natural, logical thinking. The results are miles apart!
If it took the anointing of the Holy Spirit to make Jesus’ ministry on earth effective and acceptable to the Father ~ and it did ~ how do we dare think we can serve God in any measure without the anointing of the Holy Spirit today? We just cannot do it! (But we’ll continue to try). Let us meditate upon Luke 4 and Acts 10:34-48 with regard the anointing. Isaiah 10:27 tells us: “The yoke (“that which binds us to other people, or things”) will be destroyed because of the anointing.” The anointing is God’s sign of approval!
SPIRITUAL GIFTS ARE PART OF THE ANOINTING!
Included in the anointing are the Gifts and Ministries of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:1-11 ).These nine beautiful Spiritual Gifts are given so that we may function in a realm of supernatural knowledge and actions (prophetic acts). They have not passed away (as some may teach), but they are a vital part of an anointed life-style. I can honestly say that in all the 50 years of being in Christian Ministry, nothing has opened doors of ministry opportunities to me more than allowing the Spiritual Gifts to operate through my life (and I have served in most church positions, locally and nationally). They have opened the world up to me, and I have the privilege of travelling and ministering to multitudes of people because of them. The best testimonies of God impacting other peoples’ lives are those that have included the operation of Spiritual Gifts. God gave them in the Holy Spirit because He knows how desperately we need them functioning in our lives, and for the benefit of others. Spiritual Gifts operate when we obey the voice of God ~ and there is always someone waiting on the other side of our obedience! We neglect them to our own loss. I say it is time to get serious about Spiritual Gifts being released out of your life!
EVERY MINISTRY MUST BE ANOINTED
It is my conviction that the anointing of God’s Holy Spirit must be upon any and every ministry that is going to represent God, or seeks to accomplish anything for God.
Yes, even The Gospel Faith Messenger Ministry must carry an anointing of God upon it, or else it will become just “another ministry,” or “another bunch of zealous people doing their own thing” (in the name of Jesus, of course! That makes it sound more spiritual ~ but it is the fruit produced that counts).How tragic that would be! To think that so much time, effort and sacrifice could be poured into a work, that is all to no avail as far as God is concerned, because it failed to accommodate the essential ingredient of the anointing! Let me add this: it is the anointing that makes a person or ministry eternally fruitful ~ not outward size, success or money (tragically so many Christians are more money-focused than they are anointing-focused. If we live in God’s anointing, money will not be the problem, because God provides for that which He wants done. The key is for us to be generous givers ourselves – Philippians 4:15-19 )!!
I say it again: “Dear God, give us anointed men and women!” Men and women whose lives are full of the Holy Spirit and are radiant for the resurrected Jesus Christ ~ WHO LIVES TODAY! As long as the Living Christ is having His way in our hearts, there will be no problems about the anointing.
Let God anoint you afresh and lead you to hear more clearly His voice and word to you, through a personal communion with Himself, and so equip you in such a way that your life will take on a new dimension in God that will be glorious.
“But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you know all things” . . . “But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him” (1 John 2:20 , 27).
God’s approval is far, far more important than the credentials of men! His will is far more satisfying than serving the systems of men ~ no matter how attractive they may seem. May we all in this urgent hour of time know a very real and definite anointing in our lives that will cause us to do what the Master has planned for us. He is no respecter of persons (Acts 10:34-35 ) and will meet with all who will meet with Him. God Bless You ~ and God bless this Ministry to you in a very real way. Amen.