And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your men shall see visions; And also, upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord come. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call. Joel 2:28-32
The quote above is the promise of God to those who belong to Him; made pursuant to the Lords promise to empower them for the Great Commission and other spiritual assignments. It is for this reason that He charged us to use our skills and knowledge to serve Him because it is the Lord that gives wisdom liberally. For the LORD gives wisdom: out of his mouth comes knowledge and understanding. (Proverbs 2:6) God knows the beginning till the end. In Jeremiah 1:4-5, God told His servant and great prophet (Prophet Isaiah) that he was chosen even before he was developed as a foetus in his mothers womb. Before his birth, he had been ordained. God has blessed many with beautiful talents and abilities and when they engage such talents, you would be amazed. As the Potter, He is free to do what he likes with his clay (Rom 9: 20-21).
Most times, comparison of yourself with others cause huge problems. We are all on different terrestrial journeys that terminate in either Heaven or hell, depending on our adherence to the commandments of the Creator Who has His stipulated standards. Every so often, we are bothered by our inability to fulfil the desires of our hearts. There are moments when God says NO in order to protect us from the deceits of Satan, and so orders us supernaturally to stay aside until evil occurrences pass away before continuing our journeys. During such periods, we tend to brood over unanswered prayers not knowing that God indeed has a better plan for us. Bishop Chris Kwakpovwe,, in one of his ministrations asserts that The Holy Ghost wants you to know that there is a champion (a Samson) within you; and you must not give up on any of your lifes expectation now! Nothing is impossible! Delay is a design when God is involved! Problems are the launching pads for progress! Hannah was slow; but she overtook her mockers! Samson came late, but he ruled! John came late, but he excelled! Elizabeth (Johns mother) was slow, but she overtook millions of women in Israel! Elijah overtook Ahab who was on a horse top! David recovered and overtook his adversaries! Therefore, your Father in Heaven will never forget you or His promises for you.
The real issue is that the barriers placed on your path immediately God makes a special promise must be prayerfully removed. God told the Israelites immediately they left Egypt that they would expand from coast to coast. Then I lifted up my eyes, and saw, and behold four horns. Cry yet, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; My cities through prosperity shall yet be spread abroad; and the LORD shall yet comfort Zion, and shall yet choose Jerusalem. Then lifted I up mine eyes, and saw, and behold four horns. 19 And I said unto the angel that talked with me, What be these? And he answered me; These are the horns which have scattered Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem. (Zechariah: 1: 16-19) The battle begins immediately we are born; or even right from the womb, when star gazers and stealers move against the actualization of the promises of God. Herod did when Jesus Christ was born but God was at work to prevent any calamity. Dont give up. Gods promises to Daniel, even after praying through was withheld by agents of Satan, and Arch-angel Michael, the angel of warfare had to go remove the hindering negative force to allow Daniel receive answers to his prayers that have been answered by God. (Daniel: 10)
To enjoy special favours of God, including divine protection, one must belong to Him, as the devourer is always on the prowl looking for those to afflict. Thank God for so many publications containing encouraging statements. Archbishop Peter Jasper Akinola once pointed out that It is quite possible for some people around you to succeed without Gods backing. Nevertheless, be aware that it is temporary success. It cannot be compared to what you get when you rely on God for lifting, promotion, riches, favour, fruit of the womb and other needs. God is able to give you all the good things of life. It is a matter of time. He adds that: Gods solution may seem to take a longer process from human perception, yet, it is the best. It is worth waiting for. The wisest man in the world said in one of his proverbs that The blessing of the Lord brings wealth, and He (God) adds no trouble to it Proverbs 10: 22. What exactly is the need that you think God cannot adequately meet in your wildest imagination? Talk of wealth and riches. He can offer you durable affluence crowned with long life. How do you faithfully hope and pray for answers to your prayers? The message for today if from Dr. Daniel Olukoya, General Overseer of the Mountain of Fire & Miracles Ministries Worldwide. It is titled:
MANTLE OF POWER: by Dr. D.K. Olukoya
1 Corinthians 4:20-20:4
Beloved, God has designed school of power for His children to enable them to flow in his great power at the fullness of time. When we talk of going through the school of power, it means to pass through a learning process, and with great expectation that at the end of the day, you will succeed. Many people will enroll in a school but not all of them will conclude the programme. Some will pass while others will fail. Some will fail because of unseriousness, nonchalance, lack of knowledge, or their inability to cope with the rigour involved. Others will pass because they will follow the teachings and discipline. Even those that will succeed will come out in different grades. I want you to believe that you will succeed in Jesus name. The questions are: Do you really desire to have power? Are you willing to pay the price, whatever it may cost? If your answer is in the affirmative, then you are ready to receive the mantle of power.
When we talk about the mantle of power, we are talking of an outward manifestation of Gods power. 1 Corinthians 4:20: For the Kingdom of God is not in word, but in power. Acts of the Apostles 1:8: But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. The word power here is got from the Greek word dunamis from which we get the word dynamite. So, we can say, You shall receive dunamis after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you.
WHAT IS DYNAMITE?
Dynamite is a powerful explosive used in mining. It is used to break mountains. It means that when the power of the Holy Spirit comes upon you, it will break every impediment to the glory of God. When the power comes upon you, every hindrance on your way shall be exploded. This power will only come upon you when you yield your life unto the Lord. That is why Isaiah 55:12 says, For yea shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. There is a going forth and a being led forth. When the Bible says you will go out with joy, it means that it is possible to go out with sadness. A lot of people go out and come back frustrated and unaccomplished. It says you shall be led forth with peace; that is talking about the peace of God being with you even when you walk through a bad environment. The Bible says that as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. As the Spirit of God leads you forth in this dark world, you will be at peace. The mountains and hills mentioned in that passage refer to hindrances on your way; such hindrances will break forth into singing. And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Everything will work for your peace. When the power of the Holy Spirit comes upon you, it will break up all the hindrances and they will give glory to the Lord. That is why you need the mantle of power.
Why do we need the mantle of power?
1. To witness Christ to the world: Acts of the Apostles 1:8 makes us to understand that the mantle of power will enable us to be Gods witnesses. Wherever you go, the fullness of Christ will spring forth through you.
2. To do exploit for God: Daniel 11:32: But the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits. In difficult situations, such people will be able to prevail by the reason of the mantle of power.
3. The mantle of power is an emblem of Gods presence: The presence of God causes terror to the enemies all the time. Psalms 16:11 : In thy presence, is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore. The joy of the Lord swells in you as the mantle of power falls upon you.
4. For ransom from destroyers: Hosea 13:14: I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: O death I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from mine eyes. You need the mantle of power to be free from the powers of the destroyers. The enemy is out to steal, to kill and to destroy. But by this power, you will be preserved.
5. For the manifestation of Christ: Jesus, who is seated at the right hand of power, said, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. He really gives this power to as many as trust entirely on Him. So, His manifestation is the mantle of power.
6. To prevent our hearts from fainting: Isaiah 40:29: He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might, he increaseth strength. The mantle of power is needed to strengthen our hearts because a lot of people today cannot cope with the situation of the present world. Satanic technology is advancing and the rate of growth of many Christians today is not adequate to withstand it. As a result of this, a lot of people are fainting and cannot really stand for the Lord. But the Bible says that God gives power to the faint and to them that have no might He increases their strength.
7. To prepare us as Gods battle axes: We need the mantle of power to become Gods battle axes. As the battle with the kingdom of darkness is getting fiercer there is need for us to cast off the works of darkness and put on the armour of light.
HOW DO YOU RECEIVE THE MANTLE OF POWER
Let us consider the case of Elisha. I Kings 19:19 21: So he departed thence, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was ploughing with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he with the twelfth: and Elijah passed by him, and cast his mantle upon him. And he left the oxen, and ran after Elijah, and said, let me, I pray thee, kiss my father, and my mother, and then I will follow thee. And he said unto him, go back again: for what have I done to thee? And he returned back from him, and took a yoke of oxen, and slew them, and boiled their flesh with the instruments of the oxen, and gave unto the people, and they did eat. Then he arose, and went after Elijah, ministered unto him. The passage is talking about the call of Elisha. The Lord led Elijah to cast his mantle on him, indicating Gods call on his life. We can learn some lessons from this passage.
1. The immediate response of Elisha to Gods call: The Bible says he ran after Elijah. A lot of us today know that God is calling us to specific things, but we find excuses to delay our response to His call. We procrastinate and by this, abuse His grace upon our lives. For you to receive the mantle of power, you have to immediately respond to Gods call. A lot of us would say that until this and that are fulfilled in our lives, we would not be ready to respond. If you really desire the mantle of power for yourself, you have to make up your mind to respond urgently to Gods call.
2. Elisha made preparation to follow Elijah diligently without looking back: He decided to give his parents a parting kiss. The Bible says that he took a yoke of oxen, slew them and boiled the flesh with the instrument of the oxen and gave people to eat. He organized a farewell party with all he had to tell his family that he was leaving them to follow the Lord whole heartedly and there would not be an occasion to turn back even if the way becomes tough. And even if he wanted to look back, there would be nothing to look back on. There is a need for you to prepare yourself as you respond to Gods call. You need to be ready to bear whatever it will cost you to follow the Lord. You need to be sure that you are not following Him just because of the earthly benefits that you will receive, but because of the eternal value attached. You need to count the cost if you need the mantle of power because if there is anything pulling you back as you respond, the fullness of the power will not be made manifest in your life. There is a need for you to prepare your home, check yourself and environment, because you cannot receive the mantle of power and be idle. God will imbue you with power for a purpose. And the purpose may be hard but you will make preparation for it.
The Israelites had no water until they dug the ditches. (2 Kings 3:16). There was no healing for Naaman until he had the seven dips. There was no oil until the vessels were gathered. And Jesus did not turn water to wine until the vessels were filled with water. There can be no harvest until the ground has been broken up. So you need to break your fallow ground. There can be no reconciliation without repentance, and no entrance into heaven without being cleansed by the blood of the Lamb.Beloved, you need to count the cost and be ready to pay the price. What is the price? You must be ready to surrender your life and lay your all on the altar of God.
3. Elisha did not make provision for any eventuality: He did not try to keep anything he would fall back on in case things did not go on well with the call of God. The Bible says that he slew the oxen with the instrument thereof and it was not done gradually. He submitted totally. Unlike a lot of people would say, I am trying, let me do it gradually. God wants an entire submission. A lot of people are not flowing deeply in the power of God because they are yielding gradually. They dont want to give all unto the Lord. They still consider some things in the world dear to them better than the riches of Gods glory. The Bible says that after bidding his family farewell, Elisha arose and went after Elijah, and became his servant. There will not be a quickening by the Holy Spirit until we are ready to give our all unto the Lord. The glory of the Lord will not be made manifest until all is laid at the altar. Elisha followed God diligently and the fullness of His power came upon him. 2 Kings 2:11-14: And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it, and he cried, My father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof. And he saw him no more: and he took hold of his own clothes, and rent them in two pieces. He took up also the mantle of Elijah that fell from him, and went back, and stood by the bank of Jordan; And he took the mantle of Elijah that fell from him, and smote the waters, and said, Where is the Lord God of Elijah? and when he also had smitten the waters, they parted hither and thither: and Elisha went over. He finally received the mantle of power.
Elijah told him that for him to have a double portion of his power, he must be diligent until he saw Elijah taken up. When the whirlwind from heaven was taking Elijah up, one would have expected that Elisha would first lay hold of the mantle of power, which was his priority. But the first thing he did, according to the Bible, was to tear his garment into two before laying hold on the mantle. A lot of us are in a haste to flow in the power of God without being ready to pay the price. The Bible says rent your hearts and not your garments. Before laying hold on the mantle of power, there is need for you to rend your heart. When you rend your heart, then you will rend the heavens and the power will fall on you. The inability to rend the heart, which is a sign of unbrokenness has sealed up the heavens against many. For the heavens to open unto you, there is a need to break your heart before the Lord. For a broken and a contrite heart, God will not despise. When you are broken before the Lord, you will receive the mantle of power. There is a need for you to rend your hearts today if indeed you want to flow in the power of God. In every aspect of your life, show forth His victory in every place by rending your heart. Then you shall be His true witness and an emblem of His presence.
It is Gods desire to empower us. But are you prepared to pay the price? Are you willing to lay all at His altar?
GIVE YOUR LIFE TO JESUS CHRIST
Without this mantle of power, powers of darkness will operate in a greater dimension and a lot of people will be rendered captive. God is not just calling us to come, warm the chairs and shout Alleluia. He is calling us to confound the works of darkness in our environment. A lot of us are falling short of this because of our inability to lay all at the altar. You can take the decision to come all out for Him now without any further delay so that He will not leave you behind. If there is anything in your life that you find difficult to give up for the Lord, take a bold faith towards conquering it. Remember that His grace is sufficient for you.
1. O Lord, I rend my heart today before You, in the name of Jesus.
2. O God, endue me now with the mantle of power, in the name of Jesus.
3. O Lord, let your glory overshadow my life, in the name of Jesus.
4. Pray that the Holy Spirit should put the sword of victory in your hand.
5. I paralyze every evil counsel against me, in the name of Jesus.
6. Let every evil priest ordained against me receive confusion, in the name of Jesus.
7. My body reject every evil arrow, in the name of Jesus.
8. Every spirit of war working against this country, be paralysed, in the name of Jesus.
9. All the satanic agents planning trouble for this nation, be paralysed, in the name of Jesus.
10. Let the spirit of peace reign in this nation, in the name of Jesus. The blood of Jesus work against every power of darkness working against my life, in the name of Jesus.
11. Father Lord, fill me afresh with your fire, in the name of Jesus.
12. I refuse to give up at the edge of my breakthrough, in the name of Jesus.
13. Let the fire of God consume every hindrance to my spiritual breakthrough, in the name of Jesus.
14. I loose myself from any bondage by the power in the blood of Jesus, in Jesus name.
15. Let the arrows of fire locate my oppressors and cut them into pieces, in Jesus name.
16. Let the stone of fire hit the forehead of my Goliath, in the name of Jesus.
17. I reject every spirit of fear, in the name of Jesus.
GIVE YOUR LIFE TO CHRIST
For those requests to be heard and for God to be attentive to your requests, you must belong to Jesus Christ who shed His blood for mankind and carried away our sins. That is the condition to access the Throne of Grace. God has no obligation towards you if you dont submit yourself to the Lordship of Christ and repent from all known and unknown sins. And if you use the name of God without belonging to Him, the repercussion would be serious than you can imagine. Are you one of those who believe the Lord cannot use you because you have sinned too much? There is no vessel that the Lord cannot use. Think about these Bible characters and how God used them mightily in spite of their imperfections: Noah was a drunk; Abraham was too old; Isaac was a daydreamer; Jacob was a liar; Leah was ugly; Joseph was abused; Moses stammered; Samson had long hair and was a womanizer; Rahab was a prostitute; David was an adulterer and a murderer; Elijah was suicidal; Isaiah preached naked; Jonah ran from God; Naomi was a widow; Job went bankrupt, and Peter denied Christ. The best option open to you now is to decide and go to the nearest Bible-believing church to you to confess your sins and embrace Jesus Christ as your Lord and Personal Saviour. God bless you as you take this step of faith immediately. You will never remain the same again.