WORKSHOP ON THE RAPTURE N°8
This teaching is the 8th part in a series of nine. Please read the other 8 parts.
We need to count the blessings of God in our lives in times of discouragement. We always need to count the blessings of God and ponder them in our hearts.
We heard a testimony that really touched us. The person was insisting on tithing: Tithing is a very important point that may be the cause of several people missing the rapture, or even the kingdom of God. Not giving tithes is robbing God. We have everything to gain by obeying God. All that the Lord demands from us is for our good. When we serve the Lord with a sincere heart, we are the ones who gain.
Can we know exactly when we lost our first love?
The first love is the foundation of all things. We can find ourselves putting the word of God into practice without having the first love. In the first love, we serve God with joy, we do not need to wait to be asked to do something. Many discover the loss of their first love, so how to know when we have lost it? How to recover it? How to find it? When exactly did we lose it?
Rev 2:5 "Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place - unless you repent."
The Lord to help us, asks us to remember what happened, when it happened. Because something might have happened, it could be a door that we opened.
The causes of the loss of first love
Infiltration of our midst by agents of satan: The agents of satan who infiltrated our midst, who were taken for zealous sisters, zealous brothers, who were accepted and loved, have been the reason why many lost their first love. Because knowing that the one who has been called brother or sister was the cause of all our misfortunes, is quite shocking and may cause us to lose our first love. To determine the causes of the loss of our first love could help us answer the question when was it lost?
This is a very important element. It is difficult for us to say exactly when we lost our first love. We might remember some circumstances in our lives that might have led us to lose our first love. But knowing when we lost it is difficult. When the sister asked her question, it made me think of sleep. It is easy to know when we slumber, but difficult to know when we are carried away by sleep.
You understand why we spent a lot of time in the past in warfare. That is why we took a moment of prayer to beg the Lord to reveal to us the agents of satan who are still hiding among us. We found out that some of those who were called brothers and sisters, were real agents of satan sent to devour and destroy us. Meanwhile they were being known to be brothers, and sisters. When you realize that the one whom you loved as yourself, as Jonathan loved David; when you realize that he was an agent of Hell sent to destroy you, before you pull yourself together you receive a blow and the first love disappears. At least, this element explains the loss of first love for some of us. When you can know how you lost your first love, you can therefore determine when you lost it. Many people after the teaching on hospitality, generosity, committed themselves with zeal and joy to apply this word, but were devoured by the agents of satan who were among them. That is why I warned the brothers against the practice of liberality without discernment.
That is what makes the walk with the Lord difficult. The Lord Himself never said that the walk with Him is easy. He asks everyone to carry his cross and follow Him. The cross is something painful; it is not a pleasant dish to swallow. These are some elements that make the walk with God complicated, elements that we can call elements of obtuseness.
On the one hand the Lord asks you to exercise hospitality and generosity, and on the other hand, the Lord tells you: woe to you if you do these things without discernment. It is obviously at this level that the notion of discernment comes in. If the church as a whole is what it is today it is because of the lack of discernment. In assemblies, there are more agents of satan than children of God. Nobody realizes it. People gather every day and believe to praise God and to get ready for the rapture. That is why as you've seen, very few people will be raptured in the coming days.
And speaking of generosity, we are therefore faced with something we must do, because it is an obligation. And we also realize that to do this thing also entails risks. Therefore it is necessary to reason well before doing such a thing. Sometimes with all the disappointments, we sometimes take a step back and ask: but who is a brother, but who is a sister? There are many zealous brothers who found themselves discouraged after falling into the trap of sorcerers they loved, lodged and took charge over them for over a decade. They loved them as their own children, just to realize that their misfortune came from these "orphans" from these "widows"... These brothers therefore came to this conclusion, but if this is the situation that we now live after having taken care of "widows" and "orphans", who is therefore an orphan? And who is a widow?
This point on the infiltration of agents of satan is capital, and could help many who have been victims of the incantations of those sorcerers to know what was the cause of the loss of their first love.
We chase away agents of satan from our midst because if we let them in our midst, we are almost certain to miss the rapture. Why? Because they are there to pull us back voluntarily whenever we want to move on. Many of them fought us saying that we drive out people from the Church. If already the walk is beyond us when we are alone, let’s imagine when agents of satan are there to pull us rather backward, so that we do not make a single step forward.
Revelation 2:2 "... I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people..." This is one of the things that the Lord approved in the midst of the brothers of Ephesus. The Church of Ephesus was approved by the Lord because they drove out the wicked from their midst. Understand that we have not been wrong by doing this work; we even regret the times we did not act in time. We will screen our midst to be sure that we have left only those who, like us, want to enter Heaven.
The notion of distraction: This is the trap that the agents of satan have set for us. And if we are not careful we will definitely fall into it.
First love and the story of kings: I come back to the aspect that says you can put God's word into practice without however having first love. At times it is said that a king returned to the Lord, and it is even added that he returned with all his heart, but notes however, that the high places did not disappear.
Joash 2Kings 12:1-3 "In the seventh year of Jehu, Joash became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem forty years. His mother's name was Zibiah; she was from Beersheba. 2Joash did what was right in the eyes of the Lord all the years Jehoiada the priest instructed him. 3The high places, however, were not removed; the people continued to offer sacrifices and burn incense there."
It reminds me of the church of Ephesus, they did what was right before the Lord, however the Lord reproached them for the loss of their first love. What strikes me here is the fact of working without having the first love. You can work for the Lord without doing as the Lord wants. The Lord said they really did it, but the first love was lacking in the practical phase.
Josiah 2Kings 22:1-2 "Josiah was eight years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem thirty-one years. His mother's name was Jedidah daughter of Adaiah; she was from Bozkath. 2He did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and walked in all the ways of his father David, not turning aside to the right or to the left."
The cause of the loss of first love
We therefore note the infiltration of our milieus by agents of satan as the main cause of the loss of our first love. Because anything that causes us to lose our first love is as a result of incantations that we suffer from and especially those we incur from agents of satan that are among us.
There are difficulties of life that make us lose our first love. When sorcerers are among us, they do everything to block our projects and push us into sin. They make us sick, and all these things affect us and make us lose our first love. When our projects are blocked, discouragement sets in. When they lead us into sin, our momentum is slowed down.
If a group of children of God was really a group of children of God, walking with God would be very easy. Liberality, hospitality, love would be easy. When the Lord tells us to love one another, it is only possible among true children of God. Because it is in a natural way that they love themselves, for the love of God is in them, meanwhile when people do not have the same spirit, living unity according to the Lord becomes complicated. It is therefore imperative that the Church drive out from their midst all agents of satan. That is the reason why the teaching on spiritual warfare is very important.
Hypocrisy comes in the Church just because of agents of satan. Many marriages and families are broken just because those concerned have lodged so-called brothers and sisters. There are people who have found themselves in adultery, in discouragement for having helped and loved by ignorance those they believed to be brothers and sisters.
The real reason for the loss of our first love is the presence of agents of the world of darkness in our midst.
This is the reason why the early Church, which remains a model for us, a reference, was a milieu of children of God. And the Lord wanting to preserve this milieu so that it remains a milieu of God's children, immediately struck Ananias and Sapphira for lies telling, what we can call a simple lie. That is why I am telling you that as long as there will be a single agent of darkness among the people of God, he is going to make others lose their first love. Because he will cause them to lose their zeal, to come late to meetings, to murmur, to begin to sleep, to fall into sins, to block the projects of people by their incantations. That's why we start so zealous and we end up completely cold or snoring altogether.
Question: Speaking of the cause of the loss of first love, knowing that the Lord warned us and told us that tribulation or suffering are part of blessings before Him. What then should we do in order not to find ourselves in discouragement when we suffer these things, since we know that they will come our way, the Lord having warned us before hand?
Answer: We really need to learn to consider these things as blessings. If we learn to see our trials as blessings, we will know how to bless the Lord for each of them. For if these things lead us to discouragement, it is because we do not consider them at all as blessings.
How to deal with difficulties: when faced with difficulties, we need to encourage one another, since we all suffer the same trials. We need to find refuge in the word of God, plunging ourselves fully into the word of God.
However there must be a difference between the trials that come to us from people outside, that is to say, our colleagues or our classmates and those that come to us from within. It is easier for us to recover from trials that come to us from outside. When our sufferings come from within, from people we have loved and adopted, the situation is more complicated. For when we realize that our misfortune comes from an act of kindness done to an agent of satan, it is really a shock.
Question: Before we talk of discouragement, it is better to first of all ask questions like; who is to blame? Did the Lord plan that we would receive arrows from within, if we receive arrows from within; is it because of our ignorance, of our negligence? We must first of all establish the level of responsibility of each and everyone before talking of discouragement. Whose fault is it? When the agents of satan devour us, do we need to blame someone else or ourselves?
Answer: it is when we start to see things like our brother that the solution becomes easy, when we are able to establish the level of responsibility of everyone. Without trying to blame God; the fact that we consider Him to be our father sometimes leads us to forget that part of the responsibility falls upon us. We earlier spoke of who is an orphan and who is a widow. I would still say that a great share of the responsibility falls on us. I had warned brothers against taking people in their homes without discernment. Many violated this law and lodged sorcerers who completely devoured them. The fault is therefore ours.
Ananias and Sapphira: Because people were living what the Lord wanted, the Lord picked Ananias and Sapphira at the door. Now who is therefore to blame if after having lodged people for ten years, they devoured us? What is our responsibility in these things?
A great part of the responsibility falls on us. When obedience is total among children of God, we escape all the traps of agents of satan or almost all of their traps.
Question: What becomes of the case of the people we believed were widows, orphans, or so-called beloved whom we believed were trapped in the bondage of satan, and for whom we took the risk to help believing that they would change. What about Achan who was among the people?
Answer: With discernment, we can detect people who are there to harm us. But discernment alone is not enough, we need revelations from God. If we are to talk about responsibility, we would at least throw a part of the responsibility on the Lord who is our Father, our Shield, our Rampart, our all. This is why we sometimes feel discouraged.
Living without discouragement would be ideal, but it's almost impossible. If to avoid suffering from the hands of agents of satan, we put people out as soon as we see a small mistake or an element which is not very correct, when and how will we exercise our patience? It is necessary that every one bears this fruit. We also need to dig around, to water, we also need to do all that. Let’s learn patience that the Lord expects of us. The walk with Christ on earth is such that if nobody persecutes you, even the walls of your home will persecute you, because we must be persecuted.
The Lord sometimes leaves some cases in order to build us up, train us, to put in us His character and develop in us what He expects of us. Here's the good thing that we can learn from what we go through in the hands of agents of satan. But if we could do without it, it would be ideal. We will therefore establish our own error or fault in all that we suffer, negligence, ignorance, stubbornness, lack of discernment...
But we notice that even if we avoid all these things and apply our discernment, there will still be some cases that we will escape us, because God wants us to go through that in order to acquire His character.
Let’s return to the Lord and tell Him: Lord, we have tried this or that but it did not work, please grant us Your revelations. Let us tell Him: Please Lord we believe to have already received all the teachings we needed to have received through the agents of satan, have mercy on us and grant us Your revelations and help us return to our first love.
The Lord tells us: things that cause scandal must come, but woe to those through whom scandal comes.
Question: What do we do with the agents of satan that are caught committing their witchcraft in the assembly and they are still allowed in the assembly under the pretext that they have repented? Especially since we must return to our first love, to prepare for the coming of the Lord. Knowing therefore that they are the source of all our problems what becomes of them?
Answer: I would like us to come back to the topic that we studied during the retreat, so that those who were not there can benefit from it. Because with this notion of the rabble which we studied during the retreat, the Lord had awakened and revived us. He really spoke and instructed us. I propose that we come back to this passage of Numbers. If we make every effort not to forget what the Lord has given us, we would be raptured.
Grace be with you all who have Jesus Christ as Master!
feel free to make copies of this article and give them out.
To download it, click HERE , or on the PDF icon.