Meet the Authors.

Sarah Burlingame is passionate about Biblical truth. Her diverse church background has taken her through Mainline Methodist, Evangelical, Charismatic and Roman Catholic circles. Her calling as an intercessor led her to receive a certification in Advanced Spiritual Warfare from LMCI (Liberating Ministries for Christ International) lmci.org . Sarah has served as a small group leader, worship planner, liturgical dance leader and online ministry coordinator. She holds a M.S. degree in Education and lives in northeastern Pennsylvania with her husband and their sons. They attend North Rome Wesleyan Church.

Joanne Reinhart asked Jesus Christ into her heart at the age of nine in a Sunday school classroom in Maryland. Her journey with the Lord took her through various careers, colleges, and universities. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in Art/Dance, Theology, and Education, and a M.S. degree in Educational Administration. Her passion for the Lord is evidenced through worship, dance, and teaching. She was liberated into her spiritual gifts and callings through the teaching resources of LMCI lmci.org . Joanne has danced and taught at Christian conferences and various churches in PA and VA. She currently teaches classical ballet and coaches dance for gymnastics. Joanne attends Lighthouse of Faith Church. She and her husband live in northeastern Pennsylvania.

Monday, June 5, 2017

A Secret Weapon




Recently, we wrote about the spiritual armor that is at our disposal.  Jesus Christ gave us this authority (armor) when we believed that He is the son of God and made Him Lord of our life. (Romans 10:9,10)

In Mark 16:17-18 Jesus said: “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My  name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” (NKJV)

As believers, we can do the things listed above.  However, most of these promises are rarely seen in Christian churches today. 
Sadly, the teachings of John Calvin left a very strong impact upon the church. We say sadly because one of the main tenants of Calvinism is the unscriptural belief that the manifestations of the Holy Spirit somehow stopped after the dawn of the church age. Staunch Calvinists will argue that the Holy Spirit performed miracles through the earliest Christians to jump-start the church. They will typically tell you that manifestations seen today in believers, such as speaking in tongues or words of prophecy are not from God. Some current denominations today are more strictly Calvinist than others but it appears that the negative effects of this powerless form of Christianity can be seen across the board.
Most Christians seem to be comfortable with ineffectual doctrine. If that were not true, then we would see more people praying in public because they would be confident that their prayers had the powerful backing of the Holy Spirit. But, we rarely see that, do we? Instead today’s Christians feel they should pray quietly, go to church once a week and attempt to “behave” like good people. We have forgotten about the day of Pentecost and the sovereign ability given to us.

 Acts 2:3-4 (NRSV) Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them.  All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

Yes, the Holy Spirit, who is the Comforter that Jesus said He would leave with us, gave us the ability to pray in tongues. You may call it a “prayer language” … it is a special gift from God to help us in this world. It is interesting to note that many of the observers of the newly Spirit filled Christians, thought those speaking in tongues must have been drunk even though it was early in the morning.

Acts 2:11-13 (NKJV) Cretans and Arabs—we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.” So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?” Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.”

Why did God make that point clear in scripture? Could it be because today, many people are quick to claim that the manifestation of speaking in tongues is not from God? 

It wasn’t only the early followers of Jesus who were accused of not belonging to God when the Holy Spirit came upon them. Jesus himself was accused of working with Satan. Take a look……..

 Matthew 12:22-32 (NKJV)
A House Divided Cannot Stand
Then one was brought to Him who was demon-possessed, blind and mute; and He healed him, so that the blind and mute man both spoke and saw.  And all the multitudes were amazed and said, “Could this be the Son of David?”
 Now when the Pharisees heard it they said, “This fellow does not cast out demons except by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons.”
 But Jesus knew their thoughts, and said to them: “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand.  If Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then will his kingdom stand?  And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges.  But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you.  Or how can one enter a strong man’s house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man? And then he will plunder his house.  He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad.”

These are very important issues to consider when attempting to understand the role of the Holy Spirit in our own lives.
In Ephesians 6:11-18, we are instructed to “put on the whole armor of God.” Part of the whole armor of God states that we should “pray always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit.” 

Ephesians 6:18 (JUB) praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit and watching in this with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.

What does praying in the Spirit mean?  Jesus told his disciples that they would receive “power when the Holy Spirit came upon them.” We mentioned this above but let’s take a closer look at (Acts 1:8). The word, power, is the Greek word dynamis = power, ability, workers of miracles, mighty works. 

Acts 2:4 (AMP) And they were all filled [that is, diffused throughout their being] with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues (different languages), as the Spirit was giving them the ability to speak out [clearly and appropriately]

That sounds pretty good as far as a spiritual weapon is concerned. We submit to you that “praying always… in the Spirit” is a secret weapon that many believers have missed.  We as believers have the Holy Spirit sealed inside us.  It is time to use that secret weapon in our lives so that we can attain the promises of Christ on the cross.

Ephesians 1:13-14 (NIV) And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,  who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.

When we do not know how to pray for ourselves, or a family member or friend, and we “pray in the Spirit” the Holy Spirit intercedes for us!
Romans 8:26 (NKJV) Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
Praying in the Spirit is also called: 1) our prayer language or 2) speaking in tongues.  So, if you have been in a Christian home group or church that believes “speaking in tongues” ended after the book of the Acts, well, why then is it listed in the whole armor of God in Ephesians?  Were you taught that the verses in the Pauline epistles about “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:16); and “continue earnestly in prayer” (Colossians 4:2) were prayers in your native language only?  Praying in the spirit is a “secret weapon” that many Christians have missed.

 Every year the church observes Pentecost…which occurs 50 days after Passover. As we have noted, Pentecost was when the early church received the power of the Holy Spirit. It was celebrated yesterday (June, 4, 2017) in the American church. Did you hear about it in the pulpit? Did you see the Holy Spirit noticeably working in your midst? Where has this power gone?  It was clearly given to us!
Even if your church wasn’t operating in the power of the Holy Spirit yesterday, it doesn’t mean that you need to live without the Comforter in your life.
Our prayer language (speaking in tongues) is a gift that we receive when we are born again as stated earlier.  This language is not something that we can understand in our native tongue, but it is called “the tongues of men or angels.” (1 Corinthians 13:1a NKJV)

The following is a list of the scriptural benefits or reasons for “speaking in tongues” by Rev. Paul Norcross (Kingdom Faith Ministries).  We trust it will be a blessing as you search the Word of God for this secret weapon of truth.
18 Scriptural Reasons for Speaking in Tongues (Maybe 19) by Paul Norcross
(S.I.T. = Speaking in Tongues)
1.  S.I.T is rest to our souls – a refreshing.  Isaiah 28:11-12; I Cor. 14:21-22
2.  S.I.T. edifies you.  I Cor. 14:4
3.  S.I.T. speaks to God mysteries.  I Cor. 14:2
4.  S.I.T. speaks the wonderful works of God.  Acts 2:11
5.  S.I.T. magnifies God.  Acts 10:46
6.  S.I.T. is perfect prayer for yourself.  I Cor. 14:14-15; Rom. 8:26-28
7.  S.I.T. is perfect intercession for others.  Rom. 8:26-28; Eph. 6:18; I Tim. 2:1
8.  S.I.T. gives thanks well.  I Cor. 14:17
9.  S.I.T. strengthens you with might in your inner man.  Eph. 3:16
10.  S.I.T. (“quickens”) gives life to your mortal bodies.  Rom 8:11
11.  S.I.T. puts to death the deeds of the body (“mortifies the flesh”).  Rom. 8:13
12.  S.I.T. gives us the “spirit of adoption” – an “Abba” intimacy with Christ.  Rom. 8:15
13.  S.I.T. bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God.  Rom. 8:16
14. S.I.T. confirms you are “joint heirs with Christ.”  Rom. 8:17
15.  S.I.T. is a sign for unbelievers.  I Cor. 14:22; Mark 16:17
16.  S.I.T. builds up your faith.  Jude 20
17.  S.I.T. helps us be filled to capacity with the Spirit.  Eph. 5: 18-19
18.  S.I.T. helps us keep from being deceived.  John 16:13; I John 2:26-27; Rom. 8:16
19.  S.I.T. helps build your immune system 30-40% according to Dr. Carl Peterson, brain specialist at the former ORU Hospital in Tulsa, OK.  It also activates a portion of the brain that does not have other known activity to medical science.  (We do not find this in scripture, but it is very thought provoking.)

Please make sure to visit Kingdom Faith Ministry by clicking the KFM button listed on our page.

In closing, we humbly want to express our love for the church as the body of Christ in this world. You are part of that body. We pray that the Holy Spirit fills your hearts and minds and overflows with love and power through each one of you. God bless you all!
 
~ Joanne and Sarah

John 4:23-24 (NKJV) But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.  God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”



1 comment:

  1. I don't babble, but when I speak in my own language, which is English, others can sometimes hear me in their own language. So I manifest the gift of tongues as it was given to the apostles on that first Pentecost.

    ReplyDelete