|"BEHOLD, THE DAYS COME, (AND THEY ARE
HERE NOW) saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of
bread, nor a thirst for water, (these are the needs of the flesh) BUT OF HEARING THE WORDS
OF THE LORD.
Beloved we are in that day! A famine of the word of God. The prophet Amos is saying here that although there may not be any lack for the flesh, there will be a lack for the spirit! Jesus said in Matt 4:4 (while addressing the devil), and remember Jesus was in a time of fasting for forty days and nights, (no food, no water). He said, IT IS WRITTEN, MAN SHALL NOT LIVE BY BREAD ALONE, BUT BY EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDETH OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD. How could Jesus make such a statement as this? He was not the victim of spiritual famine! He had communication with the Father. He did not have food for the flesh, but His spirit was being fed and strengthened.
There are a people in these last days going to church every Sunday and Wednesday, and yet they are still hungry, still thirsty. Their "flesh" is satisfied their ears have been "tickled" they have been "entertained", but they are going away hungry, thirsty. God says to these in REV: 19:4.... AND I HEARD ANOTHER VOICE FROM HEAVEN, SAYING, COME OUT OF HER, MY PEOPLE, (notice he is talking to His people, those who truly know Him) THAT YE BE NOT PARTAKERS OF HER SINS, (that is , not caught up in her FOLLY and deceived by her carnal ways) AND THAT YOU RECEIVE NOT OF HER PLAGUES. (fall under her judgement). It is quite clear that God is calling His people to walk with Him in RIGHTEOUSNESS! Jesus said to his disciples in Matt: 5:6... BLESSED (covenant blessings) ARE THEY WHICH DO HUNGER AND THIRST AFTER RIGHTEOUSNESS: FOR THEY SHALL BE FILLED.
Although Amos prophesies a FAMINE of the word of God in these days, those who are "HUNGRY, and THIRSTY" will be filled. Never before has there been a time like we are in now. So many churches, so many seminaries, so many books and tapes and preachers! Yet so very little "TRUTH". Building programs, seminars, TV. ministries. They almost all leave you dry! Wanting for the life of God, a real move of His Spirit!
In some churches it is just plain dry, dead, and it seems in others there is a lot of noise, a lot of "JUBILATION, a lot of "SHOUTING," trying to convince every one that the Holy Spirit is moving there, but 'still' very little "REPENTANCE", "BROKENESS", or "GENUINE POWER," or manifestation of a real move of God.
Still in other places, it is nothing more than, streams of 'self help' talk, and motivational speaking, playing to the flesh, to keep the numbers coming, tickling the ears of the people who like their flesh stroked.
In other places, and denominations, salvation is about the 'only' message the people hear week after week, and they never have the opportunity to grow, to move forward, deeper in their relationship and understanding of God, and His Word. Still left starving. In other places, levity, and sports, are the highlight from the pulpit, again, stale food.
There is such a mixture of the words of men. Words that sound sweet and enticing and promise wealth and health, prosperity and popularity, peace and ease in Zion, all without, or apart from, walking in righteousness! BELOVED DO NOT FALL FOR THIS "SO CALLED GOSPEL" IT IS ACTUALLY NO GOSPEL AT ALL! Men build empires and kingdoms for themselves and make headline reputations, while the kingdom of God suffers violence from the hands of these 'self appointed' modern day 'False prophets' of health and wealth and greed, and the motivational speakers, along with the levity loving, sports loving, jokesters, that never come to the pulpit with a fire, never come with a pure word from the throne of almighty God, never come with a "thus saith the Lord! All the while, they get 'fat off the sheep'.
Beloved we truly are in a day when there is a "FAMINE OF HEARING THE WORD OF THE LORD.'' So many churches are dead! Void of the life of God! The pulpits are dry and void of fire! So many preachers are empty and dry, not having a fresh word from the Lord. I've been to a number of churches recently, not to judge, not criticize, but to be fed! What I saw in the house grieved me deeply, it cut to the heart! JOKES, one after an other, Pastors acting like stand-up comics in a bar room trying to entertain their congregation. Foolish talking and begging for funds to keep their playhouse going. All the time trying to "COVER UP" (in some places) why their attendance was down!
One pastor I heard said... "ANYONE IN THIS CHURCH THAT SAY'S OUR ATTENDANCE IS DOWN IS A LIAR AND THEY ARE GOING TO HELL!'' This same pastor bragged about his "CORVETTE" and said.. "IF JESUS WERE HERE HE WOULD DRIVE A CORVETTE TOO!" He talked, and told "ONE -LINERS" from 10am. until 11:30am., and had not been in the pulpit once! He just paraded in and out of the pews "PLAYING" with the people. The presence of the Holy Spirit was not there, just a deadness a dryness. The people hardly sang or clapped their hands. The air was filled with a "HEAVINESS" and the pastor went out of his way trying to "CONVINCE" us how anointed everything was.
Another place my wife and I went, the pastor preached off the front cover of a church bulletin! He talked about nothing for over an hour then said.. "LETS ALL STAND UP FOR MINISTRY." Then he said.. "IF YOU COME AND DON'T "LAUGH" AT FIRST DON'T WORRY ABOUT IT"! The whole ministry was centered around the ever popular "TORONTO, CANADA LAUGHING MOVEMENT". We went to church one Sunday and the man in the pulpit got up with a dry humor and one liners to entertain the people so they would begin to laugh, leaned on the pulpit and marveled at the "ANOINTING'' and the "AWESOME PRESENCE OF GOD". My wife and I felt nothing but coldness dryness emptiness! Twenty minutes of foolishness and jokes- then forty five minutes to an hour of "PERSONAL PROPHECY" in the pews!
One pastor said to the congregation before he began.. "WELL LET'S ALL BE RELIGIOUS THIS MORNING AND READ THE SCRIPTURE OUT OF THE BIBLE!" Still another told his people.. "ANYONE WHO SPEAKS AGAINST THE TORONTO MOVEMENT IS WORKING FOR THE ENEMY HIMSELF! "DON'T LISTEN TO ANYONE AT ALL WHO TELLS YOU THIS IS NOT OF GOD, THEY ARE TRYING TO BRING DIVISION INTO THE CHURCH AND THEY ARE OF THE ENEMY!" Beloved these churches are of Pentecostal and charismatic people! A people who should be on fire for God, and have a love for his "WORD". Instead they are content with "JOKES" and "LAUGHING'' and "FALLING ON THE FLOOR" having some "MAN TELL THEM THEIR FUTURE". Verse 13-14 in Amos 8 says.. "IN THAT DAY, (and that day is here) "THE LOVELY YOUNG WOMEN AND STRONG YOUNG MEN WILL FAINT BECAUSE OF THIRST. THEY WHO SWEAR BY THE SHAME OF SAMARIA, OR SAY "AS SURELY AS YOUR god LIVES, OH DAN" OR, "AS SURELY AS THE god OF BEERSHEBA LIVES" -- THEY WILL FALL, NEVER TO RISE AGAIN.
You see, God did not send the famine of hearing his word, his voice, to those who HUNGER AND THIRST FOR IT. No! He sent this dryness upon those who love their idols! Those who the apostle Paul admonished in II Cor 11:1-4.. vs 4 says.. "FOR IF SOMEONE COMES TO YOU AND PREACHES A JESUS OTHER THAN THE ONE WE PREACHED, OR IF YOU RECEIVE A DIFFERENT SPIRIT FROM THE ONE YOU RECEIVED, OR A DIFFERENT GOSPEL FROM THE ONE YOU ACCEPTED, YOU PUT UP WITH IT EASILY ENOUGH!" In other words "YOU FALL FOR IT!" You were foolish enough to listen to another gospel to receive another Jesus! And with it came "ANOTHER SPIRIT." This is the spirit, sad to say, that permeates so many many churches today. This spirit LEADS people away from the truth in Christ Jesus, NOT TO HIM! It points in the direction of "SELF- CENTERED." COMING to get a "GOOD FEELING" to be "ENTERTAINED", to be told my future by the "MAN WITH POWER." This breeds a religious spirit of PRIDE. It is nothing more than the Bewitching Jezebel spirit at work!
As weeks and months go by in this setting with little or no real truth COMING forth, no word, deception then comes in like a flood! They talk of "WINNING SOULS", but never stir the hearts of the PEOPLE with the word of God. Never give an altar call, "THAT IS TOO RELIGIOUS, TOO OLD FASHION!" Don't call anyone a "SINNER", that's "NEGATIVE'' We don't want to offend anyone! Lets all LAUGH OUR WAY TO VICTORY AND INTO THE PRESENCE OF GOD! LETS LAUGH OUR WAY INTO HEALING AND DELIVERANCE!
Folks, I believe as MUCH, or more than most, in the divine power of God. BUT NONE OF THESE THINGS IS A CURE-ALL FOR THE BODY OF CHRIST! OUR SALVATION, DELIVERANCE, HEALING, FORGIVENESS, HAS ALWAYS BEEN, AND STILL IS, IN THE BLOOD OF JESUS, AND HIS FINISHED WORK ON THE CROSS! We don't need "NEW IDEAS" we need the WORD OF GOD!
I'm not standing in opposition to God moving in his church however he wants to, we need a true outpouring of the Lord. But, God is opposed to a people when in their "PRIDE" they begin to leave BEHIND the word of God and seek "EXPERIENCES" and feelings and "MOVEMENTS," and think, truly think, that they need to continually employ "new modern day ideas," keep up with the times. When did God change? When did the preaching of the Word of God cease to be enough? No, now that is to old fashion, we need to find new ways, and invent modern methods, and have programs, programs, programs, more activities, more entertainment. You say, brother, you are repeating yourself here! Yes! It needs to be repeated over and over again, until we get it! Until the foolishness stops, until someone finally hears. Christ is all we need!
Beloved just listen to the voice of the Lord through the scriptures!
II Cor 4:5.. BUT WE DO NOT PREACH OURSELVES, BUT JESUS CHRIST AS LORD, AND OURSELVES AS SERVANTS FOR JESUS' SAKE. II Tim 4:2.. PREACH THE WORD: BE PREPARED IN SEASON AND OUT OF SEASON: CORRECT REBUKE AND ENCOURAGE --- WITH GREAT PATIENCE AND INSTRUCTION. I COR 1:21, GOD WAS PLEASED THROUGH THE FOOLISHNESS OF WHAT WAS PREACHED TO SAVE THOSE WHO BELIEVE. I COR 1:17.. FOR THE MESSAGE OF THE CROSS IS FOOLISHNESS TO THOSE WHO ARE PERISHING, BUT TO THOSE WHO ARE BEING SAVED IT IS THE POWER OF GOD.
Beloved this is exactly what the word of God has become in a lot of churches "FOOLISHNESS". It has been replaced with philosophy, spiritual sounding statements, men's dreams, jokes, and leading the people away from the "BREAD OF LIFE" and the "LIVING WATER", and into "EXPERIENCES" that will result in "DRYNESS" and a "POWERLESS CHURCH," while all the time they call it "AWESOME," "MIRACULOUS," "STAGGERING," ''WHAT A MOVE OF GOD" THEY SHOUT! Jesus said in JOHN 6:35, I AM THE BREAD OF LIFE. HE WHO COMES TO ME WILL NEVER GO HUNGRY, AND HE WHO BELIEVES IN ME WILL NEVER GO THIRSTY.
He said in MATT 5:6 BLESSED ARE THOSE WHO HUNGER AND THIRST AFTER RIGHTEOUSNESS FOR THEY WILL BE FILLED. And in JOHN 6:53-54 JESUS SAID.. "I TELL YOU THE TRUTH, UNLESS YOU EAT THE FLESH OF THE SON OF MAN AND DRINK HIS BLOOD, YOU HAVE NO LIFE IN YOU. WHOEVER EATS MY FLESH AND DRINKS MY BLOOD HAS ETERNAL LIFE, AND I WILL RAISE HIM UP AT THE LAST DAY."
Beloved God is saying to us that in this last day of "FAMINE IN THE LAND" there is ABSOLUTELY no need whatever for you to go HUNGRY AND THIRSTY... For HE is our BREAD, HE is our WATER. He is calling us, his people, to come and FEAST ON HIM! On his goodness on his love on his WORD. As God draws you closer and you allow him to look into the depths of your heart, CONVICTION will come, BROKENESS will come, godly sorrow for sin will come, then true REPENTANCE will be next, as God cleanses your heart he will flood you with HIS PRESENCE! JOY COMES, POWER COMES, LIFE COMES! You see TRUE POWER COMES FROM PURITY! You need not suffer in this famine if you sit at God's table and FEAST upon his WORD and worship HIM WITH your whole hearted obedience!
Again the words of Jesus in Matt 5:6 YOU SHALL BE FILLED!!!!! THAT IS A PROMISE! YOU SHALL BE TRULY FILLED WITH THE ABUNDANCE OF JESUS! You don't need to search for God somewhere in a "MOVEMENT". And if you're in a dead church, GET OUT! If they WON'T OPEN THE WORD AND FEED YOU, LEAVE! If all you're getting is games, and all they want to do is PLAY.. RUN!!
YES, RUN TO JESUS WITH YOUR HUNGER AND THIRST, HE WILL ALWAYS SATISFY YOU!!!! I leave you with Paul's words in Gal 1:8-10... BUT EVEN IF WE OR AN ANGEL FROM HEAVEN SHOULD PREACH A GOSPEL OTHER THAN THE ONE WE PREACHED TO YOU, LET HIM BE ETERNALLY CONDEMNED! AM I NOW TRYING TO WIN THE APPROVAL OF MEN, OR OF GOD? OR AM I TRYING TO PLEASE MEN? IF I WERE STILL TRYING TO PLEASE MEN, I WOULD NOT BE A SERVANT OF CHRIST.
CHURCH, CLING TO JESUS, TO HIS WORD!!!
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