Keeping What God Has Given You
Rev. Toh Nee Lim | On 21, Jul 2016
Scripture Reading; John 10:10; Galatians 3:13-14
‘The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’
‘Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us. For it is written cursed is everyone that hangeth on a tree that the blessings of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ.’
Christ has been made a curse for us, being hanged on the cross (the tree) that the blessings of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ. We are not Jews but Gentiles and as Gentiles it is clearly stated in the Word of God that the blessings of Abraham might come on the Gentiles; that is us. I sincerely believed that we are given the Abrahamic prosperity (the blessings of Abraham). The first promise that God gave me when I step into the Philippines in 1986 was the Abrahamic call and prosperity.
God wants us to be a blessed people. As a good Father, He wants to give us good things to enjoy in this life. What are the good things that God wants to give us?
He wants to give us good health
He wants to give us strength
He wants to give us prosperity
He wants to give us healing; mental, emotional and physical healing.
He wants to give us a wonderful family and many other things we can rejoice in.
However, there is an enemy that will steal and kill destroy all that God wants to give us or already has given us. A number of you have already lost some of these blessings of God. A number of you are in danger of losing these blessings. My title is keeping what God has given you. What can we learn from these two portion of scriptures?
1. 3 Things the Devil wants to do
I told you last Sunday that you have an enemy. That enemy is the devil. I am going to show you passages of scripture that tell you three things that the devil is intent on doing to you if you are ignorant of his devices.
Matthew 12:43-45 says, ‘When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through the dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none. Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first.’
I shared with you last Sunday that when I was delivered from demon possession, finding and feeling real peace, joy and life in my soul; and the devil came back immediately, trying to take over my soul again. I thank God that I resisted him and it was a night of wresting and my weapon was the word which I read and read and read until the demons left me alone. I have to be very honest that when I was a very young Christian, full of the fire of God, when I was in school canteen, full of students, I literally can hear demons laughing from the body of some of the students, even though it was the students that were laughing. Yes, there are more and more people in this world that are possessed of demons and they don’t even know. I also shared last Sunday how Mary was healed and baptized by the Holy Spirit and again the devil tried to go back to her again and again but she resisted until he finally left her alone. Matthew 12:43-45 is a very real encounter to me and Mary.
You will notice three things that the devil is determined to do. He said:
Firstly ‘I will return’. He will return unto his house. He calls your body his house. Our body is not his house but he claimed it to be his house. Secondly he says, ‘I will steal, kill and destroy.’ Thirdly he says, ‘I will devour’. I Peter 5:8 says, ‘I will devour’. These are the three things he is determined to do.
I will return
I will steal, kill and destroy
I will devour.
A pastor has a big church. A pastor loves his church members. He always wanted to teach the Word of God. He is not interested in preaching nonsense, unbelief, doubt and frivolity and waste people’s precious time. He felt he had a responsibility to teach his people something that will make them stronger and better Christian. But in the midst of the crowds are some who are ready to commit suicide. They are searching and are desperate. In fact he shared that there was a young man that came. He only visited the church once. They didn’t have enough time to help him. He went out and killed himself. After his death, the pastor went to his home. The pastor has never been there before. He didn’t know the family. The boy had shot and killed himself. It was such a tragedy.
Let’s not go far in our example. Let’s discuss our church members. In this week, I was informed that a number of people are very sick. There was one that had pneumonia and Tuberculosis. She needs more than 150 jabs. She is now so skinny and the mother could not come to church but had to take care of her. Then there is father whose daughter has leukaemia. She has been in and out of the hospital. I want you to empathise how a father would feel if your daughter had leukaemia. Then we had to pray for others who had to go to hospital because of some growth in the body. Personally I know of two persons, not from this church, but Christians whose children committed suicide.
The message today is to inform you, or rather God’s people of the precious grace, mercy and knowledge of God. You need to rise up in these last days with a personal knowledge of who you are in Christ and not have to depend on personal personalities. Pastor James only comes once a year and actually he didn’t come this year. So are you going to wait for another year for these special personalities to come and minister to you? You have to rise up, knowing who you are and claim your rights as a child of God. You can stand in the thick of the battle unwavering and unfaltering, with the Name of Jesus Christ, and send the devils and the diseases and sickness and attacks fleeing in terror from you! It is important that you know how to keep what God has given you. God has given you so much. You had enjoyed the blessings of God. You had enjoyed the wonderful health, financial prosperity, emotional stability, mental peace and marital blessings for so long and now the devil is returning to you, wanting to steal, kill and destroy and devour all that rightfully belongs to you.
2. Satan’s attack
I want you to know that you will not enjoy the blessings of God without being contested by your enemy. I look at a family. A lovely couple with children. They enjoyed the financial blessings. Had a beautiful home. They love God and things looks lovely and beautiful. As an outsider you are blessed by seeing the blessings of God upon this family. Then suddenly things starts to fall apart and it seems that every good things is going to be taken away. I repeat. I want you to know that you will not enjoy the blessings of God without being contested by your enemy. He will leave you alone for a while and suddenly he makes an attack and surprise and alarm you. Many people lose what God has given them when Satan makes an attack. Many go back to poverty, emotional instability and mental torment. They say, ‘I thought God healed me. I thought I had the blessings of God. I thought God had visited me. It looks like I have lost it all.’
A powerful healing evangelist was ministering in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He called for the deaf to be ministered for healing. A woman totally deaf came forward. She was not just partially deaf, but totally deaf in both ears. She came up on the platform along with others. The healing evangelist came against the deaf spirit, commanding it to go in the name of Jesus. And it left immediately. She then had perfect hearing. She came back the next night and the healing evangelist saw her sitting there in the audience. When the healing evangelist gave the invitation for those who needed to be healed, someone urged her to go forward. She was totally deaf again. The healing evangelist cast out the deaf spirit again and she had perfect hearing instantly. She could hear anything. It was demonstrated on the platform. On the third night, the healing evangelist saw her sitting out there and he noticed that she lifted up her hand again indicating that she needed healing. She was sitting beside a man. And the healing evangelist said to the pastor of that church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, ‘See that woman sitting out there besides her husband? She’s totally deaf again.’ The pastor replied, ‘Oh, brother, don’t be too concerned or alarmed about that. You see, that man that she’s sitting beside is not her husband. She is living with him in adultery, in open violation of God’s law. The deaf demon does leave her every time you command it to go in Jesus’ name but the very minute she steps back in that house, that demon power has access to her and takes her hearing again. She is not going to change. You might as well just leave her alone. She has chosen her pathway.’ She lost her hearing by giving place to the devil. Ephesian 4:27 says, ‘Give no place to the devil.’ On the contrary, God says, ‘Resist the devil and he will flee from you.’ Did you know that you can lose your blessings by ignorance as well as sin?
Hosea 4:6 says, ‘My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.’ They are destroyed because of ignorance. What people need is not inspiration but information. The Word of God is not only information but overlooked truth. Truth is original information. Everything God says is original. The bible is God’s information, original and truth. The truth will set you free.’ Look at the devil’s attack. He says, ‘I will return to my house’. The devil is too ignorant to know that your body is the temple of God. He still thinks it is his house. I Corinthians 6:19-20 says, ‘What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own.’ That is truth, original information. Everything that God says is original. So once you know the truth, ‘Resist the devil and he will flee from you.’
3. Don’t blame God.
As a pastor, I deal with lots of tragedies. People come to me in brokenness and in tragedies. I hear them cry, ‘Why has God done this to me? They get mad at God. Rather isn’t it refreshing to hear this, ‘Why has the devil done this to me? I’ll never serve him. I’ll never give in to him. He’s a bad devil.’ Instead people get mad at God for what the devil does. The devil does it, and tells them that God did it. Doesn’t this sound familiar. Remember that Garden of Eden. He tricked Adam and Eve and tells them that God does it. And what did Adam and Eve do? They blame God. For Adam he said, ‘The woman you gave me.’ For Eve, she said, ‘The snake you created tricked me’. They blame God. Today history is being repeated. Somebody said, ‘Well, God killed my mother.’ He didn’t kill your mother. ‘God killed my daddy’ No, God didn’t kill your daddy. ‘Well, God took my health.’ No, God never took your health. The devil is determined to steal not only your health but to kill you. He wants to kill you. He wants to kill me. He wants to kill my wife. He wants to kill my children. Never has the devil and demon forces been more active than today. They have come forth in a mighty fury. They have made sons and daughters into homosexuals and lesbians. They have made husbands into drunkards. They have broken up families. Homes are going down the drain all over the world. Men and women are feeling the assault and the attacks of the enemy forces. If there was ever a day we need truth it is today. Satan is out to do three things in order to take from you what God has given you.
He wants to return to his house
He wants to steal, kill and destroy
He wants to devour you and your blessings
But I have news for you. We have the truth. A pastor got on a plane and sat on it. The man next to him pulled out a newspaper full of bad news. The pastor pulled out the bible. The pastor punch the devil in the rib and said, ‘you have the bad news, I have the Good news.’ The pastor started to underline the bible. He underline nearly everything in the bible. As the pastor was reading the bible and underlining, the man kept watching the pastor in astonishment. He then said to the pastor, ‘Why do you underline everything? The pastor replied, ‘I just underline what is good. Thank God, all the bible is good.’ We have to thank God a million times for the Word of God. You need to feed on the Word of God so you will know how to keep what God has given you. The bible reveals your right and privileges in Christ.
4. Hold Fast
Revelation 2:25 says, ‘Hold fast that which you already have.’ The reason God tells you to hold fast is because there is a force that is going to seek and pull your blessings away from you. You are not going to keep your healing and you are not going to keep your blessings and you are not going to keep all the good things of God if you just lie down on your back and be lazy and let the devil slip up and take them away from you. The bible says, ‘Hold fast what you already have. Hold it fast. Many Christians are not fighting for what is rightfully theirs. The devil comes around to steal everything. Please remember that devil is never a gentleman and he takes what is not rightfully his. And we Sons and daughters of the living God. Or are you going to just lie down, roll over and act like it is the devils. You have a legal document – the bible. Read it to the devil and command him in Jesus’ name to go. You said, ‘Pastor what to hold fast to?
Firstly hold fast to your confession. Hebrew 4:14 says, ‘Hold fast to your confession.’ The confession that you make is a public confession. You let others hear your constant confession. This is something we all must do. The Scriptures make plain that a public profession of faith is something that is required of God’s people. It speaks of the fact that we are to confess “with our mouth.” We have to say something as the people of God. We have to say something concerning what we believe.
I talked about speaking just last week. I said when you pray, you are speaking. As a speaker your words are powerful, because you are linked to the King of Kings and Lord of lords. You are a child of the living God. When you are speaking you are speaking God’s word. When you are speaking you are speaking to the devil. Let God’s Word live big in you. Col 3:16 says, ‘Let the Word spoken by the Christ, the Messiah, have its home in your hearts and minds and dwell in you in all its richness’. Live in the Word. Speak the Word. Learn it until, like Jesus, you can say, ‘It is written’ to the devil. And whip the devil every time he attacks you. Renew your mind in the Word of God. Think the thoughts of God, your heavenly Father. Hold fast to these confession. These are some of the confessions we can make:
I know I am in Christ
I know what I can do in Christ
I bear the Name of Jesus
I am washed by the blood of Jesus
I am in the family of God
I have the life of God in me
I am filled with the Spirit of God
I am in the kingdom of God
In the name of Jesus I cast out demons
I resist the devil and he flees from me
Curtis Bell is a member of a big church, a Baptist church. He was the church administrator. He has been in charge of all the church building programs. Years ago when the church believed in the baptism of the Holy Spirit, he was one of the first to receive the Holy Spirit baptism. But before that, constantly he suffered with allergies and hay fever. When the hay fever season come he really suffered. This went on for many years before he received the baptism of the Holy Spirt. But after the Holy Spirit Baptism, he learned of God’s promise to heal, exercised faith in these promises and God healed him instantly. He went for many years without one symptom. One day, many years later, he was in Northern Houston ploughing in ragweed. All at once, every symptom came back upon him. His eyes began to water. His nose began to run. Every symptom came back to him. He was shocked. He stopped the tractor. He thought a minute. Thank God he had been under some good teaching from that church. His first thought was, ‘My God, I thought I was healed; everything is back to me again. Then the Word of God rose up within him. He bristled. He got angry and he said, ‘No you don’t devil. No you don’t devil. You are not going to put that back to me again In the name of Jesus I command you to go.’ Every symptom left instantly. He had never had one symptom since.
I remember that when I was young, I was hospitalized because of kidney problem. My urine was coca cola colour. No exaggeration. When I was in the CAT in school I would just faint when standing too long. It became so bad that the officer in charge told me to quit. I was very skinny and I believed my skinnies has to do with my kidney problem. Then I received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. When I went to the army I don’t faint anymore. I was not fearful of fainting. I believe God healed me totally until today. What did God says, ‘I am the LORD that healeth thee.’
Secondly stand fast and use the name of Jesus. Don’t give the devil one thing God has given you. It does not belong to him. You have a legal document. It is written in the Word of God. The legal document says, the abundant life. “Abundant life” refers to life in its abounding fullness of joy and strength for mind, body, and soul. “Abundant life” signifies a contrast to feelings of lack, emptiness, and dissatisfaction. When this abundant life is being taken away from you, use the Name of Jesus to get it back. How to fight the devil? The Name of Jesus. A little girl was once asked how she defeats Satan. She said, “When Satan comes knocking at the door of my heart, I send God to answer the door. When Satan sees God, he says, “Ooops, I am sorry, I must have the wrong house.” The reason why we need God’s strength and help in battling Satan is because we as humans are powerless when it comes to battling Satan alone. He is too strong for us to fight alone. We need Jesus’ name to help us conquer Satan.
In Acts 16:18, the Apostle Paul was having some trouble with a slave girl who was demon possessed because she kept shouting. Finally Paul became so troubled that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her. In Luke 10:17, Jesus had sent 72 disciples out to minister to the people. And after their journey they came up to Jesus and said, “Lord even the demons submit to us in your name.”
Perhaps more than any other leader in the 20th century, Winston Churchill rallied a nation to believe in what it could do. His speeches during World War II not only express resolution, but a profound peace of mind and a feeling of “rightness.” Here are some of his words to England and the world:
“You ask what is our policy? I will say: It is to wage war, by sea, land, and air, with all our might and all the strength that God can give us…You ask, What is our aim? I can answer in one word: Victory…at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be; for with victory there is no survival. “We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be; we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.” Brethren, this should be our attitude as well. And we have the Name of Jesus as our weapons.