And they crucified Him – Art Katz

8 10 2009

I think we, every one of us ought to be humiliated of humbled every time we pick up the book of Acts and read the Glory that attended the life of that first Church. By contrast the most successful kind of Christianity that we know, the most charismatic, the most to be lauded and applauded is utterly anemic and does not bare comparison.

How is it that these rude men, fishermen and louts, who had no advantage of the kind we have enjoyed were able to turn cities upside down and shake the earth? Why is it we have not had a corresponding affect in our own generation?

The answer, in my opinion is, that in missing the cross we have missed the power of the resurrection, we have sidestepped the cross as a subject let alone as experience because we have no tolerance or sympathy for suffering.

The denial of self in any form is suffering and we have not been encouraged to that.

We have overindulged and spoiled our youth, compromised truth in our marriages, suffered causalities and losses among our ministers and given ground to the spirit of independence and rebellion in the churches. All because we cannnot stand pain.

We parents who indulge our kids rather that chasten them, are we being loving or self-indulgent?

We pastors who condescent to placate men, rather than speak the truth to them in love, why are we so sparing?

We saints who see the defects and things that need to be corrected in each other, why are we silent?

Where are the Pauls of our generation who will confront the Peters? Who have compromised the Gospel by being one thing with one group and another thing with another. Paul said he would not entertain that situation to go on beyond the moment for the purity of the Gospel’s sake. [Galatians 2:14-21]
I call that love. But you know that kind of love as an act is painful and it’s humiliating.

It’s easy to be misunderstood. For which reason we prefer to keep quiet, for which reason the world is running amuck with us and for which reason we move into increasing carnality not being corrected by one another.

The avoidance of pain is a costly avoidance. And the symbol of the cross at the heart of the faith is an invitation to share in His sufferings. In a world, our Christianity is degenerating into a middle class culture, a sanctifying cover-up for the status quo, a vacuous praise club, an equating of gain as godliness, a comfortable religiosity that leaves our real interests unchallenged and undisturbed in the avoidance of the cross of Christ Jesus.

Somehow am I naive to think we ought to look different, speak diffently, act differently that there ought to be such a savor and fragrance about us of Christ that it is a savor of death unto death to self and life unto life to others. The fact the world can so easily tolerate us, the fact of the almost complete absence of reproach, let alone persecution is itself a shameful testimony that we are so like the world that we cannot be distinguished from it.

We have lost even the difference, the sense of the difference, between that which is sacred and that which is profane. I believe that God could lay at the door of the church the full responsability for the present condition of the world. And the things over which we cluck our tongues and point our fingers and look distain down our noses about are the things which can be attributed to us. For we have not established in the earth a standard and an alternative to which a dying world might have turned.

They simply did not know that there is such a thing as that which is holy and that which is sacred. For we ourselves are wallowing in the things that are earthly, common, unclean and profane. The only alternative to which is eathly, carnal, sensual and devilish is that which is heavenly. And there is no way to attain to that which is heavenly independent of the cross of Christ Jesus.

If the prophet Isaiah seeing the Lord high and lifted up cried out, “Woe is me, I am undone! I am a man of unclean lips and I live in the midst of a people of unclean lips.-Isaiah 6:5
What then shall we say who are not prophets and oracles of God? We need to have our vision and our sight corrected. We need to address our lives to the plumb line of God. The standard of God tot he cross of Christ Jesus. Not academically, religiously or superficially but in the actual experience of our lives as those who have come willing to abandon everything.

Paul said, “I am determined to know nothing but Christ and Him crucified.-1 Corinthians 2:2

We desperately and urgently need to know Him – exactly as He is.

And they crucified Him by Art Katz

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Empowered by the Holy Spirit – Paul Washer

8 10 2009

Everything you are in public is formed by what you are in private. You can stand before any man if you stand before God. And to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit, not like these silly little evangelists that come in and have their healing lines and people falling down and all of the other circus and blasphemy that goes on. I am talking about really the power of the Holy Spirit, not some kind of circus show for money.

Like I have said, so many people say the Spirit of God is here.

No he is not, because if he was you would be dead.

We must be men filled with the Holy Spirit. We must be men who seek God. And let me tell you something. There is a big difference—and I want to point it out to you and it will probably get me in trouble if this goes on to You Tube—but it is this. There is a sense in which we look at Ephesians five, we look at Colossians 3:16-17 and we do understand that there is a direct relationship between the Word of God and it dwelling in our heart and the fulness of the Holy Spirit working through us. But there is another sense that if you are just a man who is sitting there meditating upon Scripture and thinking that because you are doing that you are going to be filled with Holy Spirit and have everything you need for the ministry you are wrong. You must go to God and cry out for greater and greater manifestations of his power in your life to carry out the task that he has given you. You must have that. You must go to him. It is an encounter with God.

Yes, founded upon his Word. Yes, everything God does with you in prayer must be conformed to his Word. But seeking God is more than just simply having a good Bible study. It is crying out to meet with the living God. It is waiting at his door step and rising up and not just simply believing by faith that he has done something to you. It is rising up and knowing that he has done something to you.

We have to be men, but not men like John Wayne or John Claude Vondom, not men strong in the flesh and strong in personality and strong in their presence and strong in their words, no, men strong, strengthened in the Holy Spirit.

The battle is horrifying. To think that you are going to oppose principalities and powers and mights and dominions, you are going to oppose the ancient serpent. You are going to go down into the well and fight hell itself. You are not going to do that in your physical strength. You are going to do that in the power of the Holy Spirit.

And do you know what is so sad today? What is so sad? It is that it is so hard to speak about these things. And do you know why? Because of all the corruption and that ludicrous activity of many, many groups that consider themselves groups filled with the Spirit when they are not filled with Spirit. They may be filled with a spirit, but it is not holy because whatever they are filled with causes them to do things that contradict everything we know about Scripture and the fruit of the Spirit.

I am talking about power, not to fall down on the ground and shake like a worm, not power to claim a Mercedes Benz, not power to say you healed somebody when, in fact, he didn’t get healed. I am talking about the power to live the Christian life, the power to walk in sacrificial love, the power to pray down strongholds, the power to preach the gospel. That is what I am talking about. That is what we need.

We can be men and women transformed, transformed.

Empowered by the Holy Spirit by Paul Washer

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Full Sermon at:

Watch ‘Where are the men?’

Read ‘Where are the men?’