Revelation 3:15-19… “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent” (KJV).
The message was written to the seven churches. Jesus knew everything about them, and He saw everything they did. He saw the motives of their hearts in doing what they did. He also saw that they were not on fire for God. They were stuck in neutral. They were stuck in middle ground. They believed in the Spirit, but were operating without the Holy Spirit. They believed in righteousness, but were tolerating unrighteousness. They were barring the Holy Spirit from participating in the church services.
This is what is happening today. Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 3:17, “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” (KJV). The embarrassing truth about many Sunday meetings is that the Holy Spirit is absent. He has been barred from participating. I had a dream/vision of a church meeting. Great joy came, and the people began to hold hands and laugh and dance. A word appeared as headline in a newspaper saying, “The Spirit of joy, the prelude to the coming of Jesus” (see Isaiah 61:3).
Have you ever asked, “Why isn’t the Holy Spirit moving in our midst?” Are there “bars” in place to keep the Spirit out, maybe for fear of what the visitors might think? I remember on two separate occasions being told when and how to minister in churches. “You will speak no more than 30 minutes. You will not speak of anything controversial. You will not introduce any supernatural element of the Holy Spirit in those thirty minutes and you will turn the service back to the pastor after you are done.”
I believe there is a fresh move of the spirit coming. Why? Because thousands upon thousands of good Christians are sitting at home because they can’t sit and watch the same old game being played every Sunday morning. The lack of God in the services is what gets to them, and quietly and without any fanfare they slip out the door. They are not hurt or wounded or rebellious. They are just hungry for the presence of God. A pastor from Auckland, New Zealand wrote on a prophetic website and wondered if what is happening (the people leaving) is the start of another “fresh wind of the Spirit.”
Our work as pastors is not to keep the Spirit of the Living God out of our churches in case it offends the Pharisee or the hypocrite in our midst. Our work is to keep the hypocrite and the Pharisee out of our churches in case they offend the Holy Spirit. Jesus said in Luke 9:26… “For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels” (KJV). Jesus rebuked the Laodicean church because they were lukewarm. They had a form of godliness but they denied the Spirit from participating.
Are there “bars” in your church? Remove them.
Pastor George Belobaba
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