Monthly Archives: September 2015

Name It and Claim It

I have had issues with the term ‘name it and claim it’ and I have finally decided to address them. You see I have issues with the fact that some Christians abuse it, and others want nothing to do with it. I have even heard people say that it is completely unbiblical. It is true that the phrase does not appear in the Bible, but I am going to show you why it is biblical, and why we (Believers) have all done it at least once, but why we shouldn’t abuse it. I hope this clears up any confusion that you may have, and show people in both camps that there is some middle ground here.

Firstly, let’s deal with those of you that have no issue with the term, and possibly abuse it. God is not our genie. He is not just there to give us what we ‘claim’ in His name. We can’t just decide that we would love a Ferrari, name it and claim it, and then expect God to jump and give it to us. If you have used the term and expect God to jump, then you really need to think about who God is and who you are. I have been accused of doing this by people in the second category (I’ll get to you in a minute), but I don’t do this, I’ll show you the middle ground soon.

The second group of people are those that hate ‘name it and claim it’ and say that it is not biblical. Well, it actually is. Change the words slightly, let’s rather call it ‘believe and receive’, now that is biblical. Faith moving a mountain and all that. You see we need to believe to receive. Why is this? Is this not the same as the people in group one? No, you see God never promised us a Ferrari. God does make us promises though. If you don’t believe that you will receive what God has promised you, will you receive it? It is impossible to please God without faith. The other thing that I would like to mention to those who oppose ‘name it and claim it’, you have actually done it. Once, did you not speak out and declare Jesus as your Lord and Saviour? Named it. Then you declared that you were in fact a Christian and had been saved. Claimed it. Was there anything wrong with that? No.

Now before I upset both camps and get a lot of angry responses, let me explain the middle ground. When I speak a biblical promise over my life and declare that it will be so, I am not telling God what to do. I am telling my circumstances to fall in line with what God has promised. I am telling the demonic forces that are preventing God’s will from being done in my life, to get out of the way and release me. I am speaking things into my life, according to the will of God. You see, I have authority over my life, the demons, and my circumstances, I can command them. I don’t have authority over God, I can’t command Him. Fortunately for me, God has already done His part, I just haven’t received all of His promises in my life yet. That is not because He hasn’t done it, it is because they are being prevented from reaching me. This is what I am commanding, not God. In my opinion, naming and claiming things is merely speaking what God has promised into being. If you’re not doing that, you’re missing out. If you’re trying to tell God what to do, you’re asking for trouble.

Think about it this way. If I called you up and said that I had paid £500 (or $ if you’re in the States) into your bank account, but the money didn’t show for weeks, what would you do? Let’s say that I confirmed your bank details and they were OK, but your bank said that they wouldn’t release the funds, what would you do? Would you command me to send it again? No, it was a gift, you wouldn’t do that. Would you command the bank to release the money? Probably. I would do so if it were the other way around. Who are they to stop me sending you money? To command me to send it again would be rude, to leave it would be stupid, but to command the bank to release the money would be the best action to take here. That is what I am doing in the spiritual realm with ‘naming and claiming’ or ‘believing and ‘receiving’.

I hope that this has cleared some confusion. Read the Bible, find out God’s will, and then speak it into your life. Then go and live it.

Be blessed.
Richard

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Sailing with the Spirit

As with many of my posts, I don’t write them from a point of view of having achieved them, but more from a point of ‘let’s work on this together’. This post is no different, in fact, this is a word that God gave to me the other day. I think that it is probably relevant to many people out there, so I have decided to share it with you. I was asking God for direction, what I should do next as far as ministry is concerned. One of the ministries that I was involved in has come to an end, so I wanted to know where to next. What God told me is not really what I wanted to hear, but it makes sense, so I hope that it speaks to you.

God reminded me of a holiday that I went on, which I will now try and tell you about. I was about 18 years old, and my Grandad asked me to visit him for a week. He lived in Johannesburg (Now called Gauteng) and we lived in Cape Town, so we didn’t get to see him too often, so he paid for me to fly up and see him. Upon arrival, we went to a holiday house that he had on the Vaal dam. Now the Vaal dam was quite large, so we decided to spend 3 days out on my Grandfather’s yacht. I was not a sailor, and he was already getting on in age, so it would take a combined effort to sail for 3 days. We took the dingy out to the yacht, climbed aboard, and my Grandfather immediately started issuing instructions. I set up the sail, tightened all of the ropes and lifted the anchor, all under his instruction. We set off sailing. He was steering the boat, while I was following his instructions, changing tack when need be. We would head off to the starboard side and then the port side, all while maintaining a course. I quickly realised that you couldn’t just head in the direction that you wanted to go, you had to use the wind to get you there, and sometimes that meant heading in a slightly different direction and then changing tack. Now my Grandfather was a good sailor, so I listened to him and did what he said. I remember that holiday well, it was one of my favourite, but what am I telling you about it? Good question.

God showed me that He is like the wind in this story. He is the one who provides the power for you to get where you are going. The Holy Spirit is like my Grandad in the story, He will instruct you and steer your life, if you will let Him. Just like in the story, I had a job to do, and we have jobs to do in our lives. People often leave everything up to God, they say that they can’t do it in their strength, so they leave it up to God. This is not always right. Yes, sometimes we need to leave things completely up to God, but usually God wants to work with us. Or us with Him. It doesn’t matter how strong the wind was out on the lake, if I hadn’t lifted the sails and the anchor, we wouldn’t have gone anywhere. God will provide the power, He will provide all that we need to get to where we are going, and the Holy Spirit will guide us and steer us. Maybe we’ll go in a direction that we weren’t expecting from time to time, but He has a plan that we may not know, so we follow Him in faith. I believe that God wants to guide us and help us to achieve what He wants for us, but He wants us to be a part of the plan. We need to do something. We need to do what the Spirit calls us to do. I’m not taking away from God’s sovereignty, but what if God’s plan is to include us in His plan? Then if we sit doing nothing, will the plan still get done?

There is a danger in this plan though. Like on the boat, I could have tried to do too much myself without listening to my Grandad. This could have resulted in disaster. It is the same with us and God. If we start doing this on our own, and not listening to the Spirit or using God’s power, we will probably end up in trouble. Now I would never knowingly do this, however I sometimes get excited and rush off with my own plan. This is not idea, but I don’t want to go to the other extreme and not do anything. This is something that I need to work on constantly to get right. Don’t do too little, but don’t do too much in your own strength. How do you get this balance right? I don’t know, if you figure it out, let me know.

Go out there, listen to God’s instructions and then start moving. Even Paul tried different things until the Holy Spirit stopped blocking him and gave him direction (Acts 16:6-10). Paul was moving, trying what he thought he had to do, and the Holy Spirit guided him. He could have seen the other things as failures, but he didn’t. They were part of the journey. Paul was not just sitting down, waiting for the grand plan so that he could get going. I don’t want to do that either.

I hope that this story has been encouraging to you.

Richard

Understanding Prophets (and Fortune Tellers)

I wrote a post entitled the Difference Between Prophets and Fortune Tellers a while ago, and it has become the most read post on my blog, by a long way. I have had people reading this post just about every day since I wrote it. I realised just how big an issue this is, and judging by the searches done to find this post, people genuinely did not know the difference. I find this quite scary. Please read the original post if you haven’t already done so, then take a look below at some more information about the differences between the two.

I have the gift of prophecy, and I have prophesied over many people, and I have found one misconception about prophesy in particular. I would like to address that now. Prophesy is not just saying what will happen, it is speaking it into existence. Now before you start arguing with me, take a look at Ezekiel 37. Ezekiel is told to prophesy over the dry bones and they will come to life. He was not told to prophesy over the bones BECAUSE they will come to life, he was told to prophesy SO THAT they will come to life. There is power in a prophesy, if it does in fact come from God, it is more than just what is going to happen. I see two reasons for this, one is a Kingdom principal, and the other is possibly more of a ‘practical’ reason (not that the Kingdom of God isn’t practical).

I believe that we have the power to speak things into being which are not yet in existence. Romans 4:17-18 says, (as it is written, “I have made you a father of many nations”) in the presence of Him whom he believed—God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did; who, contrary to hope, in hope believed, so that he became the father of many nations, according to what was spoken, “So shall your descendants be. God did this in Genesis, He created the world by just speaking. I believe that God was demonstrating a Kingdom principal. Jesus spoke and people were healed. The disciples spoke and demons fled. Paul spoke and people were raised from the dead. The list goes on.

The more ‘practical’ reason is simple. We need to follow prophesies. If I prophesy something over you and you believe it, you will change your life accordingly. This is a good thing, if the prophesy has come from God. Let me use an example. If you’re desperate to find a husband or wife (depending on your gender) and God tells me that you’ll find your significant other in a specific church. What will you do? I would imagine that as soon as I tell you, you’ll be off to that church to look for them. This may be part of God’s plan, as He knows that you will grow at that church, and He has a ministry for you there. You have then taken action, and are now where God wants you to be. You grow spiritually, grow your ministry, find the love of your life and get married. The prophesy has then being fulfilled. A few reasons, God said that it would, someone spoke it over you and you did what you needed to do. Now I know that there are verses that says that we can not stop something from happening if God said that it would and I am not going to go into theology now, we can’t stop God from doing what He wants, but we can stop ourselves from receiving the will of God. Does God want you to sin? No. Do you sin? Yes. There, you have prevented God’s will in your life. We have a responsibility, but no one can stop God.

So why are prophets good and fortune tellers bad? Well, I said in the first post that prophets got their power from God, and fortune tellers get theirs from demons. I also said that most fortune tellers don’t know this, they believe that they have a gift and they use it as best as they can. They are not deliberately trying to deceive you, they are in fact deceived themselves. Think of what I have said if you receive a word from a demon. First of all someone will speak it over you, then you will believe it, then you will change your life to accommodate it. These actions can work for your destruction as well as your well being. What if we take the same scenario, but a fortune teller says that you’ll meet your husband/wife at a particular club. You then go and hang around there, with the temptation of drink, drugs, sex, profanities. Is that what God wants for you? Is that good for you? You’ll be on the look out for the ‘right person’ that you may end up marrying someone because the ‘fortune teller must be right’. Now don’t get me wrong, you may actually be happy, but see how far you are away from where God wants you? Now the thing is that God can tell the future. God can make you promises about the future. Demons can’t. They don’t know the future, nor can they make promises that will actually come true. They can only lead you to places where they know God doesn’t want you. They can only lead you on a wild goose chase, probably ending up with your demise.

If you have been to a fortune teller, don’t be disheartened, all is not lost. You can still turn to God and He will help you. Go to a spirit filled church and see if there is anyone there with a prophetic gift, ask them. Read the Bible. Ask God what He wants you to do. It is never too late. If you’re going to base your life on a word, would you rather it come from God or a demon? The scary thing is that even if you don’t go to a fortune teller, you are either for God or against Him, there is no neutral ground. It may be time to make sure that you’re for Him. If you are a fortune teller, why don’t you ask God to reveal the spirit (demon) that you have been hearing from, and turn away from the demon to God instead? It may be frightening at first, but you won’t regret it. I know of fortune tellers who have done this, and changed their lives completely. They now hear from God and would not go back for anything.

Watch out for some more posts about this.

Richard