www.pentecostalcontinuing.org - BRIAN MASON
PENTECOSTAL HOLINESS CHURCH CONTINUING - Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set
You need Flash Player in order to view this.

But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God.
Acts of the Apostles chapter 5 verse 39

We need to live very near to God. May the Lord give us patience to take in this word. In these last days when the Devil is doing his utmost to discourage God’s people we have the hope that God will once more move upon us and make us see his glory just as it was when Jesus walked in this world. In this expected move of God I believe the Holy Ghost will do special wonders and miracles in these last days.

The apostles had witnessed the glory of Jesus when he walked in this world. Because they had witnessed the glory they were compelled to look to share this glory with all who would listen to the message of our dear Lord and Saviour. The apostles were bursting with a vibrancy which was unlike anything in this world as they were men who had been filled with the power of the Holy Ghost. They were not afraid to share the glorious news of our loving Jesus as the one who alone could reconcile sinners to God and bring many sons to glory.

We, too, when we know this wonderful Jesus who is our joy and peace, just like the apostles should take no rest but press forward for the mark of the prize of the high calling in Jesus Christ, earnestly contending for the faith once delivered to the saints. The apostles in the early days of the Church contended for the faith as found in Jesus Christ as they had no doubt that Jesus was the Son of God.

The Sadducees in particular were filled with indignation because they could not accept the preaching of the resurrection from the dead. The religious leaders in the main were antagonistic towards the preaching of the apostles. The Sadducees placed the apostles in prison in order to silence the message of Jesus. The Sadducees failed miserably. Our God is able to deliver his people from all the schemes of the devil when the devil seeks to silence God’s witnesses. Nothing is too hard for our God as what do we see happen? It was the intervention of God through his angel as the prison doors were opened and the apostles instructed to go and speak to the people in the temple. Although the religious leaders would not accept the glorious message about Jesus the people were hungry to receive the words of life; for this is what is stated in chapter 5 verse 20 which says, “ all the words of this life.”

The apostles obeyed the words of God rather than the words of men. God had his plan and this still applies today. This is to reach out into all the world with this glorious gospel message of Jesus Christ. It was Jesus himself who had instructed his disciples with the great commission:

Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.

St Mark chapter 16 verse 15

These words still sound out loud and clear today but few are prepared to accept that our Lord is calling for labourers to go into his harvest field of a world of hell - deserving sinners who are condemned to hell unless they are washed and cleansed through the precious blood of Jesus.

God will always have the final say in the affairs of men. We are told that when the officers came to the prison to take the apostles to stand before the council of the religious leaders they found the prison shut but the prisoners gone. Glory to God who is sovereign and none can stand against him when he acts and judges in the affairs of this world. This act of God shook the self - righteousness of the religious leaders. They saw that they were against an authority greater than their own. They could sense that their grip over the people and the comfortable life which resulted from this grip was not as strong as they had believed. As the apostles stood before the council the religious leaders were being brought under conviction that what they were seeking to resist may after all be the work of God. Peter a man filled with power and the Holy Ghost was not in the slightest moved by the threats of the high priest. Peter’s reply to the high priest was fearless as in saying that “ we ought to obey God rather than men” indicated that Peter was not only equal to dealing with all the high priest could throw at him but that God had the high priest in his hand and the high priest was powerless to stop this mighty work of God.

Peter was so in control that instead of it being a trial before the council this became a powerful presentation of the gospel. The message was so powerful that the council members were convicted of their sin as we are told, “ when they heard that, they were cut to the heart, and took counsel to slay them.” There was no repentance as these were lovers of self rather than lovers of God. Even in this ungodly council God had his man as there was one who had a heart which had been touched by God. Gamaliel was a man who had the wisdom to understand what was taking place. Gamaliel was able to explain to the council members that there had been other instances in the past which had presented a challenge to the council. These past threats had all ceased; when the leaders had died the threats had ceased. Gamaliel believed that the same could happen with the apostles now their leader, Jesus, had gone, but if this work was truly of God no matter what the council tried to do to them the work could not be ceased. This we know was the case as not only did the work not cease but continued to grow because God in the person of the Holy Ghost is still working throughout the world to draw sinners to a realisation of sin and to a knowledge of Jesus as their Lord and Saviour.

What a victory! God never fails. Although commanded by the council not to speak in the name of Jesus the apostles were not silenced. They rejoiced that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for our lovely Jesus. The apostles continued daily in the temple to teach and to preach Jesus Christ.

In our own day there are still threats to try and silence the gospel message. When we, too, like the apostles realise that if we have received the baptism of the Holy Ghost we also have the same power and authority as that which was evidenced in the apostles. This is because the Holy Ghost acts as God in this world through his empty vessels. Because we have the Holy Ghost acting through us we will see greater works because Christ had been glorified. 

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I , but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

Galatians chapter 2 verse 20

In the above verse Paul shows that we too (yet not I) but Christ have the authority to forgive sins and cast out devils. Note, though, this only applies to those who are baptised in the Holy Ghost as this is for men and women who live in the spirit and not in the flesh as no flesh can receive the fullness of God’s Spirit. 

Reader have you received the greatest plan that God has for your life because you have moved from one thing to another? If so become restful, believe God and have an inward cry. That inward cry comes from God’s Spirit as the Holy Ghost lives through you. Be so lost in God that He can grant you the desire of your heart. Are you reigning in life through knowing victory is in Jesus Christ? To reign in life means that you are over every human weakness, all is under your feet. In Christ we are over the devil, destroying his incoming, moving him away. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. This is the victorious life as seen through the apostles. This life of victory is still available today when we let God give us his plan and it is accepted on God’s terms.

Lord Jesus Christ we need to live very near to God, daily nearing our goal. Help us Lord, to take no rest but to be able to press forward for the mark of the prize of the high calling in Jesus Christ, earnestly contending for the faith once delivered to the saints. Lord how easy it is to miss the greatest plan because of moving from one thing to another. We need always to be restful, believe God and have an inward cry. Jesus my heart’s desire is to be so lost in God that He can grant the desire of my heart which is to live for God and God alone. Lord Jesus I need new bread, fresh every day for you are my daily supply as you are that bread which came down from heaven. Lord the spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. Sin has been dethroned, death has lost its sting and victory is in Jesus Christ. We are more than conquerors for to reign in life means we are over every human weakness, all is under our feet. Lord in Christ we are over the devil, destroying his incoming, moving him away. Lord people today are going down because they fail to rise in Jesus’ name and put to flight the enemy. Victory, glorious victory is yours dear Lord and Saviour for this prayer is for your honour and glory alone. Amen.