ARE WE TRULY FREE?

 

John 8: 31-32 says, “Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.  And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

 

We are living in world where everybody wants to be free to do whatever they want.  In the recent US Elections liberals have said they at free to do whatever they want with their own bodies – abortions, sex changes etc. Many have said that they are free to live any life they choose – sexual immorality etc., and many Christians voted for that and support it.

 

When someone becomes a Christian, he/she then becomes free from his/her old slave master and Jesus has bought him/her back from sin.  Once Jesus owns you, He becomes your Master and you become slaves to righteousness.  No one can have two masters.  You are either a slave to sin or a slave to righteousness.

 

In pursuing freedom or what freedom truly is, many lose their freedom and end up in bondage.  It all started in the Garden of Eden when God gave Adam and Eve everything they could ever possibly want or need.  They were free, but God gave them one instruction – do not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  That was an instruction requiring obedience.  But Satan convinced them that they are not free and that they should not obey that instruction so they can be truly free.  In other words, don’t listen to God, do what you feel like doing and then is when you are truly free.

 

Their act of disobedience caused them to lose their freedom and as such, their obedience to the alternate instruction caused them to become slaves to sin.

 

There is no organization that does not have rules and guidelines, but the guidelines must be Scriptural/

 




Romans 6 specifically teaches us about being slaves to sin versus being slaves to righteousness.  In Paul’s response to the supposition that Grace encourages or permits sin, he uses the analogy of slavery to combat a casual attitude toward sin and issues a stern warning on the consequences of yielding to sin.  A person is a slave of that to which he gives obedience or that which he recognizes as his master.  If he obeys the command of sin, then sin is his master and he is moving in the direction of eternal death.  If he obeys the command of righteousness, then righteousness is his master and he experiences true life.  Paul encourages those who were once slaves of sin to renounce it and instead become slaves of righteousness if they want to be truly free.

 

Holiness leads to freedom.  Sin is a slave-driving task master that demands total commitment and ultimate death.  No Christian can have two bosses, hence when one becomes a Christian, we must follow what our new slave master Jesus Christ instructs us to do.  We cannot be Christians while living the life of the world.  (Romans 6: 22)

 

John 8 also teaches us that if we are truly disciples of Jesus then we must abide by the Word of God.  The Word of God is hat helps us to maintain our freedom.  Most Christians don’t read the word, so how can they truly be free?  Every Christian should read John 8: 35 – 36, “And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.” 

 

The word ‘son’ here has nothing to do with gender – it has everything to do with your relationship with God the Father.  The Jews were saying at that time that they were free because they were children of Abraham, but Jesus was saying that if you reject the Son of God, then you have no moral relationship with the Father.  Likewise, many Christians say they are Christians, yet they refuse to abide by God’s Word and principles – the very God they say they serve.  They prefer to get the benefits of one who serves God while abiding by the instructions of the world. Party and fornicate all week – go barhopping, yoke themselves to whomever they choose, choose any shepherd they feel like on any given day, whatever they feel like doing, wherever and however and with whomever they choose – ignoring the principles of God or trying to merge His Word and Principles with the world’s views and opinions of God and His Word.  This cannot be so.  John 8: 42 – 44 reminds us “Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me. Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word.  You areXDS of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.”

 

Romans 8: 14 shows us that only those who are led by the Spirit are the sons of God.  What spirit is leading you?




 

Romans 8: 19 -21 says, “For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.”

 

Many in the prophetic circle often misquote this Scripture.  We cannot truly impact the earth unless we are walking in HOLINESS!  We are slaves to righteousness.  God owns us totally.  Sons walk in obedience.  Sons are free from sin.  Some Christians can’t even follow simple instructions.  When we walk in holiness we will see the manifestation in the environment so we won’t even have to point out global warming because sin affects all areas.

 

Truth be told, the world has the wrong concept of what freedom is and it is impeding us from truly experiencing genuine freedom – the kind that can only come from God.

 

I am a slave to righteousness and Jesus is my Master because He paid the ransom for me and bought me back.




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WHAT IS THE SCOPE OF YOUR CALLING?

 

Many times in the business arena and in the Church, leadership will get frustrated, and companies and churches struggle at times because they are unable to service those within. Until you identify who you are called to and where your greatest support lies, who supports your business/church you will not move forward.

Luke 4: 18 – 19, says, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,To proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.” My calling is to the poor in spirit, poor in finance, to set the captives free and to bring healing to the brokenhearted and recovery of sight to those who are blind spiritually and physically. So if you are a prostitute, if you messed up, if you are a misfit, if you are rejected, or if you are a sinner or you are unrighteous – WELCOME!




I am not called to righteous people, nor religious people, nor to those who have already arrived. Paul was called to the Gentiles so God gave him the grace to deal with the Gentiles. He was set apart (Romans 1: 1 – 7) Many leaders – whether business or church – are spending too much time focusing on the wrong areas. Some even get disheartened and discouraged when certain people within the society don’t accept them. You will not be accepted by everyone in the society it is not Scriptural. The Pharisees did not accept Him and neither did His own city/town.

When God gives you an assignment, keep going, keep doing good! Give hope to people! Stop moping and groping and focusing on those who criticize you nor accept you. Do an analysis and see who your biggest supporters are and focus on them; those who genuinely help you. Who are your biggest clients? Who always supports your work no matter what? Those who are called to you will follow you. Recognize that you are not called to everybody. Companies fall when they change their mandate.

I once worked with a very large company that was doing very well and when they began to change their focus and mandate, that is when the company started to shake and it has not been the same since. Acknowledge and embrace your difference and run with it. Many churches are diverting from the mandate – even transforming to attract a certain set of people; or doing things which are not Scriptural. Now the many churches are becoming a laughing stock. Jesus did not try to fit in at all. Stick to your mandate despite the challenges. Know your clientele know your sheep.




Many times the poor are more appreciative of the work you do and the sacrifices made and they need your difference. Many Pastors today say they are called to the rich, but the rich don’t truly need God until they become poor.

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MOBILIZATION FOR YOUR INHERITANCE

 

Prophetic Word For May

MOBILIZATION FOR YOUR INHERITANCE
(Numbers 1, 2 & 3)

By: Apostle Dr. Steve Lyston
The month of May – which is the second month of the traditional Jewish calendar – is critical to every believer. It is the most prophetic month for the year. It is the month of Iyyar, which means Increase in Revelation. So May is the month of Revelation. It is a time of mobilization, when God is putting the family in order and battle array to march into the Promised Land. It is a time of record and evaluation to see who is ready to be on the Lord’s side.

May is a time of selection. God is selecting His people for their purpose and their assignment, and He is pouring out. We will feel the Shekinah Glory like never before to lead us through Egypt. It is a time of healing and deliverance, renewal and strength.

Many things will begin to be rebuilt and re-established; God will deal with the Government of God/the Church, the Civil Government and the Family. God is shifting us from enslavement to occupation and dominion. It is a time of consecration, increase, the supernatural provision for the vision, fresh manna (Exodus 16)




It is a time of fresh revelation and instruction, redemption, and spiritual transformation and cleansing. (Leviticus 28: 15 – 16)

Anticipate great revelations.

Also, Isaiah 55: 12 – 14, it is a time when secret enemies will be revealed and exposed, particularly those within the Body of Christ. The Judases within the Body of Christ and the Political arena – particularly those advisors and counselors of government. Some are double agents and they will be found out.

This is the time the Absaloms and Ahithophels will meet their demise.

It is critical for leaders to examine those around them with serious pitfalls to watch out for betrayal.

This is the month that the Lord will bring conspiracies down to naught.

This is the month of double for your trouble.

Prodigals shall return and conspiracies, plots and generational curses shall be brought to naught.




God shall turn the counsel of the enemy to foolishness as in II Samuel 15: 31 which says, “Then someone told David, saying, “Ahithophel is among the conspirators with Absalom.” And David said, “O Lord, I pray, turn the counsel of Ahithophel into foolishness!”

It is a month of proper recordkeeping and administration.

The faithful shall experience great spiritual, financial and material blessing as well as an increase in Spiritual gifts; and God shall lead us into a place of plenty.

Begin to dig ditches! (II Kings 3: 16 – 17)

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CHOICES – WHAT WILL YOURS BE


Luke 23: 39 – 43 says: “Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, “If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us.” But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying, “Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”




The choices we make on a daily basis are the keys to life, change and deliverance. There were two thieves on crosses beside Jesus – one made the right choice and one mad the wrong choice. An innocent man was ridiculed, rejected, mocked, whipped, flogged and nailed to the cross. We see this happen on a daily basis today. We see people doing the same thing today to Jesus! They ridicule His existence, death and resurrection. Even personally as Christians, many are murdered, ridiculed and mocked for their faith. Some even wonder if, when they are carrying their cross, if they are cursed. But there is good news for all who suffered – HE IS RISEN! He has paid it all for us! For the sinners you have a choice – to believe and to receive Him. Don’t let family, pride, money, sex, material things, cause you to make the wrong choice. He is giving each person an opportunity tonight. Don’t be like the thief who rejected Him.

Romans 10: 9 – 13 shows us the way to Salvation. Just say this little Prayer:

Lord I am a sinner, I believe in you as Lord and Savior. I believe in your death and resurrection, Come into my heart. Wash me with your blood and save me. I confess all my sins. And I ask you to accept me as your son/daughter. Amen!

That’s it you are saved! Welcome to the Family




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ApostleDr Steve Lyston | Advice To Trump: Be Like Nehemiah

Michael Vadon – Donald J. Trump at Marriott Marquis NYC: Photo

 

Be Like Nehemiah

As the world awaits the proverbial ‘changing of the guard’ in the United States of America, some are fearful, meanwhile many are jubilant. As I have said many times before, God is the one who promotes and demotes. He does whatever He pleases. We may not understand God’s will, but we must pray each day. If President-elect Donald Trump wants to be successful and legitimately ‘make America great again’, then he should take a cue from Nehemiah.

First, Nehemiah identified who the survivors were, and in the case of the USA, the forgotten, the poor, fatherless, widows, the distressed, dejected, discontented, those in despair, the abandoned communities and the veterans and their families or surviving families. Repair and strengthen the institution of family which is broken. The family is the first line of government in any nation.

Nobody listens to the poor (Ecclesiastes 9: 16). Don’t listen only to the wealthy, but also to the poor. There are many who are poor with excellent solutions, but because of poverty they are despised and ignored. There are many who are rich but speak utter nonsense, yet it is gobbled up by the media and those lacking ideas. Wealth is not the mark of success. There are many who have been through many losses and failures, but have gained wisdom and have become true champions. It is sometimes a lack of opportunity or of a second chance that keep people in poverty.




Second, before making any major change, there will need to be four months of prayer to build a foundation, and for God to give Him guidance, tactics and strategies. The next four months will be critical to his presidency. Prayer is essential to leadership; he has proven this through his campaign. Prayer brings great vision to fruition. One of his prayers should be Nehemiah 1: 5 – 11, and that God will cause America to return to Him. He also has to repent on behalf of the nation for all that they have done, and for how America has, in general, forsaken God. He has to pray that God will forgive the mistakes of past administrations, and that God will heal the division within the nation.



As a wise leader, Nehemiah refrained from sharing his ideas with people until he has actually assessed matters and prayerfully considered the cost. There are two major things Trump has to do: repair and rebuild.

In repairing, Trump has to identify what was good from the previous administrations, then enhance and strengthen those things. For example, regarding immigration, he has to tread carefully, because part of what made America great was immigration. People came to America for opportunity, religious and economic reasons. They were welcomed and given the opportunity to legally inhabit, and that allowed America to be blessed. He has to discern who has come to build and who has come to destroy. Immigrants have been some of the most successful persons to help build America.

For example, the Transcontinental Railroad was built by the Chinese, which caused the nation to get a quick passage from east to west. The journey that usually took 4-6 months then took six days.

All eight great-grandparents of President John F. Kennedy and his siblings came to the United States on the ‘coffin ships’ to Boston Harbour and passed through the city’s immigration hall.

IMPORTANT IMMIGRANTS
Immigrants do not steal jobs; they do the jobs that Americans don’t want. Immigrants always help the economy, whether they come here willingly or are forced to. It is going to be critical who advises him on this issue, as this has the potential to create another civil war, something I have also seen in a vision. Allow illegal immigrants the opportunity of a pathway to citizenship as this will also contribute towards reducing poverty, because they will be required to pay taxes, contribute to the school and economic systems and the real estate industry, while reducing the burden on the government to provide public assistance.




Furthermore, the armed forces must become modernized, the space programme needs to be revamped, greater attention must be given for developments in livestock/agriculture, water and energy.

Maintain the dream act and sanctuary cities. Avail funds to faith-based NGOs, without discrimination, to rebuild communities. Aggressively deal with drug lords, extortionists and their partners, as their actions interfere with foreign exchange and trade.

Pay greater attention to giving our children high-quality education and to training the teachers.

Give debt write-offs to, and ease regulations on, Caribbean and African nations.

Give grants for development and expansion of solar energy technology for poorer countries. Then the people will unite and rebuild.

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Encouragement And Honor Will Increase Production

 

It doesn’t matter what field or profession you are in – whether you are an entrepreneur, a doctor, teacher, nurse, store clerk or politicians, head of state – we all need encouragement.

Oftentimes, people want others to feel as if they are not making a difference, whether it is in your personal life, job or within the nation. Regular encouragement will refresh, renew and refocus a person to continue to do the task that you are called to do.

There are many ways to encourage and honour someone. The first thing we must each learn to do is to encourage ourselves. Problems will arise – financial, marital, economic, health or national problems, but according to I Samuel 30, we must encourage ourselves in the Lord as David did!

David was facing familial and national problems. There was distress from every direction and fear consumed the people. They were ready to stone their leaders. But David strengthened himself in God. He realised that faith was his title/deed, and his faith in Almighty God was so lifted that it removed the mountains and brought the solution for him to recover all. Further to that, it brought spoils – great financial wealth – that would help him and his entire organisation and administration. Oftentimes, adversity comes to bring us back to our original focus and foundation.




There are many things we can do to encourage and honour someone on a daily basis. Each person needs it – it brings increase to your organisation, your nation and to your family.

Power, gifts and resources are tools given to us to motivate someone each day; and the things that we have been through in life and have overcome, we can use it to encourage and honour someone else who needs it! Seeing your life being an impact on the lives of others and bring change gives encouragement.

Regardless of the negative things people say about you, there must be some good that you have done in your life!

Honour is a major part of encouragement. The main fact that certain blessings and wealth cannot be transferred to individuals is as a result of a lack of honour. Abraham, one of the wealthiest men in the Bible, learnt the key of honouring – he knew how important honour was as a key to access and promotion in any situation.

He honoured God, the king and his own earthly father. As a result, great blessings, favour and wealth were given to him.

Exodus 20:12 reminds us that honour increases life. No nation will be able to turn until they learn to honour!
How To Encourage And Honor
Honor God by putting Him first in all things; in worship, in the giving of our tithes, offerings, time and resources! Proverbs 3:9-10 show us that honor encourages God, and God in turn encourages us through blessings, increase, wealth and prosperity.

Honour your staff and bosses through tangible rewards. I Peter 2:17 reminds us to, “Honour all men, love the

brotherhood, fear God and honour the king.” This means that honour brings access! Plaques, trophies and even a certificate can encourage and motivate an individual and increase production. Remember that our greatest assets are people – not hardware and software.

Additionally, employ the use of money when honouring your staff! Money will encourage a person – there is nothing wrong with money! Money is a legal tender that deals with our basic and daily needs; the lack of money can cause great distress and increase your medical expenses.




Honour your wife/husband by doing things for and with them that allow them to recognise that their value is greater to you than any material thing. Honour in your marital relationship increases its value and never depreciates!

I take this opportunity to honor God who has given us life, as well as the management and staff of the The Gleaner Company for the hard work they do to bring The Gleaner into the daily lives of its readers. Finally, I honor you, the readers of this column, for your continued support.

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THE PLACE

There are many doctrines and teachings regarding blessings and prosperity. Even some Christians have become unstable in pursuing prosperity; and some will ditch their church every 6 months in pursuit of prosperity. There are even teachers teaching about what is good soil versus what is not good soil, and if what they are teaching is true, then how would they explain wealthy cults and poor churches? For every Christian to walk in certain blessings, there are certain details they must follow in PROMPT OBEDIENCE! Your blessing is always at a place which God desires you to worship and make a sacrifice.




(Genesis 22: 1 – 4) There are even certain offerings which are voluntary and there are certainly those which are mandatory. For example, Sin Offerings and Trespass Offerings are mandatory for every believer to establish a covenant with God, which require consecration and holiness in order to receive certain blessings. That means you cannot make decisions based on how you feel about something or what you think it should be. You have to make decisions by the Holy Spirit and regardless of own you feel.

Furthermore, you cannot make decision by focusing on the natural things around you. You have to lift your eyes up and look to the mountains – meaning shifting your focus to the Spiritual. Then you will see your Jehovah Jireh. There are certain blessings that would come to you, but for the greater blessings, you will have to get up early and go to it! It will mean a consecrated lifestyle so that you can be sensitive to His Holy Spirit and the instructions He will give -that you may get to Mount Moriah which is mandatory for every believer.



Stop focusing on the church you attend and the pastor who leads you and become consecrated in order to get the covenant that God has in store for you.
Finally, good soil is your heart condition. (Ezekiel 17: 8; Mark 4: 1 -20)
Why are you not fruitful?

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NO SHEEP CAN SURVIVE WITHOUT THEIR SHEPHERD

 

Many times people say they have a great calling on their lives, but they refuse to submit to a shepherd.  Some think they don’t need any, while others – when they are corrected, they adopt another shepherd.  Yet there are others who allow other sheep to lead them.

 

Let us understand that sheep and shepherd are two different things.  Shepherd drive or lead the sheep, not the other way around.  If sheep don’t want to be led by a particular shepherd, Christianity is the wrong faith for them.




 

Every sheep needs a shepherd:

 

  1. To lead them in green pastures
  2. To shear them – prepare them for service to God
  3. To bring them fresh water and fresh grass in other words lead them into prosperity
  4. To protect them from wild animals and stray dogs (hirelings, wolves, false prophets, false teachers
  5. To anoint them with fresh oil – new anointing, prosperity and blessing
  6. To prevent them from spiritual blindness and spiritual deafness
  7. To guide and nurture them to ensure that they are walking in the right direction (Sheep tend to make silly decisions – walking with their heads down)

 

Oftentimes sheep are troubled by flies around the nose and ears – always attacking the head.  Then they lay their eggs on the damp of the mucus membranes (soft, weak areas) and if that connection is successful, the eggs hatch and turn into worms which crawls into the ears and noses of the sheep.  So it cuts off their hearing and their discernment. Then it leads to blindness.  This is why so many sheep have been swaying by every wind of doctrine and are following false shepherds.




 

Psalm 23 speaks clearly of the shepherd’s role, not only of the Chief Shepherd, but is an example of what all true shepherds should be. When the sheep goes astray, the shepherd has to anoint their heads with oil.  This will bring instant change and instantly kill all the worms and the insects that were buried in the heads of the sheep – false doctrines included; which will bring peace, quietness and healing.

 

The Good Shepherd will be instructed by the Holy Spirit on what to feed the sheep.  Most sheep tend to stray into different pastures looking for different foods to eat.  They oftentimes get diarrhea, foot rot disease and many other deadly illnesses.  This is why each sheep must have one shepherd.

 

The Shepherd Role Is Not Easy

 

The shepherd does not have an easy role, as it can be extremely painful and dangerous.  They are exposed to the following on a daily basis to keep the sheep:

 

  1. Stray dogs let in by the sheep
  2. Hirelings
  3. Wolves
  4. Mountain lions
  5. Other stray sheep who have been infected and who have been let in by the sheep themselves.
  6. Social Network
  7. Mainstream Media

 

There are many titles in the Bible, but, ‘Shepherd’ is the least used and the least understood.  A person can be ordained as a Pastor but the/she is not a shepherd.  In this time, where most of the sheep are in tune with Social Media, and all kinds of distractions, the shepherd’s role has become more dangerous because they are leading the sheep out by day and in by night.




 

Recognize that there is a difference between a Priest and a Shepherd.   The shepherd goes beyond pulpit duties.  When God is going to bring change to a church or a nation He raises up leaders with a shepherd’s heart.  Look at Numbers 27: 15 – 23. Eleazar was the Priest, but God did not choose him to be the Shepherd.  Only those with a shepherd’s heart will bring maturity and stability to the sheep or to a nation.

 

What is seen in the nation with the breaking down of families, the abuse and destruction of children, the political and economic instability and so on, is a reflection of the breakdown in the Church, Politics & Governments and Business Sector.  Shepherding is not confined only to the Church, but also applies to Nations as well.  Thus, there are Political Shepherds, Business Shepherds and it is imperative for us to recognize that. David also was a good shepherd who became a good king.

 

We MUST pray for good shepherds to arise and bring change locally, globally and in the Church. Surprisingly, when a shepherd falls, most people curse them and never forgive them. But we must remember that shepherds are Christ’s sheep.  When a sheep falls, oftentimes people are silent and nobody says anything.  We must be careful about how we treat shepherds or about what we utter against them; and when God forgives them, who is man to condemn them?

 

Understand that one cannot go from poverty to prosperity without their shepherd.

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