Perhaps one of the greatest ironies in human history is that the Messiah was born in obscurity; Only "certain poor shepherds" witnessed this incredible event. Although most of humanity missed this awesome moment, a great multitude in Heaven understood its significance when together they cried out:"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom His favor rests." God's favor resting on men was the beginning of a new and awesome reality that was to change history forever.
Last month this favor was apparent as I traveled again to India. I was privileged to minister to tens of thousands of people and spoke many times, in different conferences and gatherings, as well as ministering to thousands of people through personal prayer. My schedule was beyond exhausting. Yet each time I spoke, God's abiding favor was upon me and His heart was poured out.
The spiritual warfare in India is some of the most intense I have ever encountered. Demonic worship is an open and important part of daily life. The nation's cities and towns are filled with temples dedicated to satanic forces and the spiritual opposition to the Gospel is great. In spite of tremendous resistance, I was protected physically and spiritually, and was enabled to overcome the enemy.
In one meeting alone, 25,000 people heard and received revelation on God's heart and purposes for Israel. At a three-day leadership conference, although the temperature and humidity never fell below 100 degrees Fahrenheit, we saw the impartation of important revelation on Israel and intimacy with God to the leadership teams of over sixty churches!
The favor of God resting on us transforms us from mere "natural men" to those who are filled with the very life and power of God. This is the testimony of our lives as we serve God here in Israel and throughout the world.
Congregation Ahavat Yeshua
Something wonderful is also happening in our congregation, "Ahavat Yeshua". Recently, there has been an increase in the manifest presence of God in our meetings. Since Passover and continuing through Shavuot (Pentecost), Asher taught on the Holy Spirit, and people hungry for more from God have been receiving. The level of anointing is increasing and people are being changed!
It is this abiding favor of His presence that brings about salvations, transforms lives and expands God's Kingdom. We do not want to win arguments about God, as the Kingdom of God is not a matter of words but it is about power in the Holy Spirit. (I Thess. 1:5)
The best way to win someone to Yeshua is to provide him with an opportunity to encounter the God of Israel. The only way for a non-believer or a weak believer to be truly transformed into a mighty man of God is through the inward working of the Holy Spirit.
Preparing a Place for His Presence
We have to "guard" His presence because I believe that the awesome favor of God, although powerful, is also very delicate. A graphic demonstration of this principle can be seen in the history of the temple in Jerusalem.
When Solomon dedicated the temple"The cloud filled the temple of the Lord, and the priests could not perform their service because of the cloud. For the glory of the Lord filled His temple." (I Kings 8:5) God's presence came in such a mighty way that all of Israel responded.
However, sin and self-centeredness caused God to later withdraw His presence from that same temple. That withdrawal was not sudden and dramatic but a gradual diminishing, as if to give people time to take note and repent and call on Him to return. Apparently no one even noticed that the very presence of God, the one thing that had made the temple a holy place, was gone. Life went on as usual, the meetings and priestly work continued. It took the coming of Yeshua to awaken some in Israel to the tremendous lack and hypocrisy in Israel's spiritual life.
The leadership team of Ahavat Yeshua and Revive Israel desperately desire God's presence. Although our meetings begin at 4pm on Shabbat, a large number of us arrive one hour before to pray. We also meet four times a week for extended periods of Spirit filled prayer, intercession and ministry.
We cannot force the presence of God to rest upon us. This is a work of grace initiated by Him. However, God responds to the condition of a heart, and His eyes search the earth looking for a place in which He can abide. May it be the passion of our lives to prepare such a place for Him in our hearts and to guard it so He might remain.
Also in this issue of the newsletter:
|Dan Juster: Loyalty and Lasting Relationships|
|Martin Shoub: Raising the Banner for the Gentiles|
|Moshe Morrison: Brought from Afar|
|Asher Intrater: From Assyria to Egypt - the Isaiah 19 Vision|