We cannot call ourselves children of God while neglecting His Word. Indeed, the true child of God only lives by His Word. This message is for those who want to go far with the Lord and to those who lost hope. Given that this article is about the Word, do not neglect the Scripture quotations but read them diligently.
IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE WORD
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” Matthew 4: 1-4
Jesus was finishing a long fast that had lasted forty days and forty nights. Having taken the condition of a simple man, He was naturally hungry. At this very moment, Satan came to offer Him to transform stones into bread to eat. Jesus answered with ‘It is written’ and thus gave us straight the first lesson.
Very often, when we are tempted or tested, we tend to be shaken, and to lose our quietness and patience. We look for carnal solutions that, once applied, only worsen our situation. However the Lord shows us here the way to follow: looking at what is written, that is to say what God said.
Notice that the wicked one, seeing that Jesus referred to Scriptures, did all the same. So we can see that Satan has a very good knowledge of the Scripture and skillfully uses it to accuse us (in order to condemn us), or to make us doubt and lead us out of God’s will. Therefore we understand that before the enemy, a superficial or purely theoretical knowledge of the Scripture is not profitable. Indeed the Word of God is more than simple words. The Word is Spirit, the Word is Life (John 6: 63). The Word is God Himself.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. John 1: 1-4
Jesus reminds a fundamental and vital truth that YHWH already revealed to his servant Moses in Deuteronomy 8: 3: “Man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord”. Do we understand what it means?
The creation exists because God spoke. Likewise, you and I exist because God spoke. God is the only Being in the world and in the whole universe, who can create by simply speaking. Do we realise it, brethen?
Let all the earth fear the Lord;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
For He spoke, and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood fast. Psalms 33: 8-9
He “calls things which do not exist as though they did” (Romans 4: 17).
God does not get tired by doing things, He simply speaks and they come to existence. All existing things uphold by the Word of His power (Hebrew 1: 3). It means that when God acts, He only speaks actually. “For the word of God is living and powerful […]” (Hebrew 4: 12). Consequently, the power of God is in His Word because God is the Word.
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, […] full of grace and truth. John 1: 14
WHEN GOD SPEAKS
I often hear Christians saying that they have never lived anything special with the Lord, they have neither dreams, nor visions, nor particular gifts. Behind those words are hidden some frustrations, a kind of complex and the feeling of being neglected by God compared to others, who regularly live extraordinary things with Jesus. I would like to warn all those who develop such feelings in their hearts as they might become like Cain.
God’s love cannot be measured by the number of gifts that we manifest. The Holy Spirit distributes them to whom He wills, according to everyone’s abilities, for the edifying of the Church who is the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12, Ephesians 4: 7-16). Likewise, may those who manifest many gifts be vigilant and do not deceive themselves thinking that they are necessarily approved by God. The Lord only approves those who do His will (Matthew 7: 21-23). God’s love was manifested at the cross, He shed His blood for all men, the small and the tall, the rich and the poor, the popular and the one who will always be hidden. God loves everybody. His eye is on all His children, particularly on the least considered among men.
No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary. And those members of the body which we think to be less honorable, on these we bestow greater honor; and our unpresentable parts have greater modesty, but our presentable parts have no need. But God composed the body, having given greater honor to that part which lacks it, that there should be no schism in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. 1 Corinthians 12: 22-25
I would like to ask a question to those thinking that God neglects them. Did the Lord already speak to you?
HOW DOES THE LORD SPEAK?
God speaks in different ways and adapts His language so that we can understand it.
God speaks through dreams and visions
For God may speak in one way, or in another,
Yet man does not perceive it.
In a dream, in a vision of the night,
When deep sleep falls upon men,
While slumbering on their beds. Job 33: 14-15
Nevertheless, be careful as a dream can also be the work of the flesh (Ecclesiastes 5:3) or demons (nightmares, erotic dreams etc.). If you do love this kind of language and lack of discernment and spiritual maturity, you might be deceived. Do not neglect your dreams but test them in the light of the Word.
God speaks through prophecy
Surely the Lord God does nothing,
Unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.
A lion has roared!
Who will not fear?
The Lord God has spoken!
Who can but prophesy? Amos 3: 7-8
What a wonderful promise! The Lord, although He does not owe an explanation to anyone, reveals His secret to His servants the prophets. May God be praised “for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy” (Revelation 19:10), and all children of God are sealed with that Spirit (Ephesians 1: 13; 4: 30). God can thus use a brother or sister to speak to you through prophecy, but He can also directly uses your mouth to speak to you too.
God speaks audibly
God speaks audibly but most men tremble at the hearing of His voice.
Now all the people witnessed the thunderings, the lightning flashes, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking; and when the people saw it, they trembled and stood afar off. Then they said to Moses, “You speak with us, and we will hear; but let not God speak with us, lest we die.” Exodus 20: 18-19
“Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. Father, glorify Your name.” Then a voice came from heaven, saying, “I have both glorified it and will glorify it again.” Therefore the people who stood by and heard it said that it had thundered. Others said, “An angel has spoken to Him.” Jesus answered and said, “This voice did not come because of Me, but for your sake.” John 12: 27-29
Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, “It is done!” And there were noises and thunderings and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such a mighty and great earthquake as had not occurred since men were on the earth. Revelation 16: 17-18
Give unto the Lord, O you mighty ones,
Give unto the Lord glory and strength.
Give unto the Lord the glory due to His name;
Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.
The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
The God of glory thunders;
The Lord is over many waters.
The voice of the Lord is powerful;
The voice of the Lord is full of majesty.
The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars,
Yes, the Lord splinters the cedars of Lebanon.
He makes them also skip like a calf,
Lebanon and Sirion like a young wild ox.
The voice of the Lord divides the flames of fire.
The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness;
The Lord shakes the Wilderness of Kadesh.
The voice of the Lord makes the deer give birth,
And strips the forests bare;
And in His temple everyone says, “Glory!”
The Lord sat enthroned at the Flood,
And the Lord sits as King forever.
The Lord will give strength to His people;
The Lord will bless His people with peace. Psalm 29
The voice of God is so powerful and full of majesty that everyone who hears Him trembles, especially sinners. It is important to note that before their fall, Adam and Eve were not afraid of the voice of the Lord, but after their disobedience, it was completely different (Genesis 3: 10). Moreover, only those who have the Spirit of God can understand His language. This is the lesson taught in John 12: 27-29. Some people heard the sound of thunder but did not understand the language of God.
God speaks to our spirit
God is Spirit (John 4: 25). So He speaks to our spirit. When He talks to us through this ways, His voice is like a still small voice (1 Kings 19: 12-13) that we can hear inside us. In other words, He talks to our conscience, He communicates directly with our mind.
Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one. For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ. 1 Corinthians 2: 12-16
“This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them.” Hebrew 10: 16
When God speaks through His Spirit, the message needs to match with the Scripture.
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. John 14:26
However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you. John 16: 13-15
God speaks through Scriptures
And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts; knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. 2 Peter 1: 19-21
The Bible exists by the will of God. It is Him who ordered that those Words might be recorded and written. Why? Simply because He knows that oral messages are easily forgotten but writings remain. Indeed, man is limited and is not able to memorize everything, so Holy Scriptures are here to refresh his memory.
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Write this for a memorial in the book and recount it in the hearing of Joshua […]. ” Exodus 17: 14
“Thus speaks the Lord God of Israel, saying: ‘Write in a book for yourself all the words that I have spoken to you.'” Jeremiah 30: 2
I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book (…) ” Revelation 1: 10-11
Obviously, if God asked His Words to be put in writing, it is for our sake and to allow us to read it.
Then the Lord answered me and said:
“Write the vision
And make it plain on tablets,
That he may run who reads it.” Habakkuk 2: 2
Unfortunately, many Christians do not read the Bible whereas Scriptures are essential to our salvation.
For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. Romans 15:4
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3: 16-17
Neglecting the Scripture means rejecting knowledge. Rejecting knowledge is like rejecting God Himself.
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.
Because you have rejected knowledge,
I also will reject you from being priest for Me;
Because you have forgotten the law of your God,
I also will forget your children. (Hosea 4: 6)
On the contrary, those who diligently keep and study the Word of God become mighty in Spirit.
Now a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man and mighty in the Scriptures, came to Ephesus. (Acts 18: 24)
When God speaks, His message always matches with the Scripture. Consequently, every dream, vision, prophecy, revelation, illumination or interpretation should be confirmed by what is written.
… GOD VISITS HIS PEOPLE
So, did God already speak to you through one of the ways listed above? He certainly did. But did you really pay attention?
When God pushes you to meditate His word, He talks to you. When He enlightens you on a specific Scripture, He talks to you. When you have a strong conviction in your heart, God speaks to you.
Now the boy Samuel ministered to the Lord before Eli. And the word of the Lord was rare in those days; there was no widespread revelation. And it came to pass at that time, while Eli was lying down in his place, and when his eyes had begun to grow so dim that he could not see, and before the lamp of God went out in the tabernacle of the Lord where the ark of God was, and while Samuel was lying down, that theLord called Samuel. And he answered, “Here I am!” So he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” And he said, “I did not call; lie down again.” And he went and lay down. Then the Lord called yet again, Samuel!” So Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” He answered, “I did not call, my son; lie down again.” (Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord, nor was the word of the Lord yet revealed to him.) And the Lord called Samuel again the third time. So he arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you did call me.” Then Eli perceived that the Lord had called the boy. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and it shall be, if He calls you, that you must say, ‘Speak, Lord, for Your servant hears.’” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. Now the Lord came and stood and called as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel answered, “Speak, for Your servant hears.” 1 Samuel 3: 1-10
Many of us lived the very same story. God calls us during the night while we are deeply sleeping. We all felt this thing inside us that keeps us awake and pushes us to pray. It is actually the Lord who awakes us; He wants to talk with us. But how many of us answer the call of the Lord? Many of us prefer to comfortably stay in our bed, rather than listening to what the Lord wants to tell us.
And we dare to complain saying that God does not speak to us when we actually are neither willing to speak nor to listen to Him!
We dare to say that we do not live anything special with God whereas He visits us every time He speaks to us! What I just said shocks you? Read carefully the following passages from the Scriptures.
After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.” Genesis 15: 1
But it happened that night that the word of the Lord came to Nathan, saying […] 2 Samuel 7: 4.
And there he went into a cave, and spent the night in that place; and behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and He said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah? 1 Kings 19: 9
Moreover the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah a second time, while he was still shut up in the court of the prison, saying, “Thus says the Lord who made it, the Lord who formed it to establish it (the Lord [YHWH] is His name): ‘Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.’ Jeremiah 33: 1-3
Note that all those verses have a shared expression that is very common in the Bible : “the word of the Lord came”. Like said above, the Word of the Lord is YHWH God Himself.
I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns.He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. Revelation 19: 11-13
Not only God hears us when we speak to Him, but He also listens to us and answers. When God speaks to us, God comes closer to us, He visits us. That is why it is written: “But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.“ (Matthew 6: 6)
How many times did the Lord visit us in the secret place? And how many times did we ignore and despise His presence?
Beloved, do you realise that the Creator, the Only and True God, the Almighty wants to talk to you? What miracle do we need? What other sign and work do we want to see?
Now as He drew near, He saw the city and wept over it, saying, “If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. For days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment around you, surround you and close you in on every side, and level you, and your children within you, to the ground; and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not know the time of your visitation.” Luke 19: 41-44.
GOD NEVER SPEAKS IN VAIN
“For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven,
And do not return there,
But water the earth,
And make it bring forth and bud,
That it may give seed to the sower
And bread to the eater,
So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;
It shall not return to Me void,
But it shall accomplish what I please,
And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it” Isaiah 55: 10-11
For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Hebrew 4: 12
Contrary to man, God never speaks in vain. No jokes nor foolish talking comes out of Him. Every word that comes from the mouth of God is truth.
Listen, for I will speak of excellent things,
And from the opening of my lips will come right things;
For my mouth will speak truth;
Wickedness is an abomination to my lips.
All the words of my mouth are with righteousness;
Nothing crooked or perverse is in them. Proverbs 8: 6-8
All His words are weighed, measured and said for a specific purpose. So when God speaks, we need to listen to Him carefully. Let us watch over our hearts, let us do our best to make a good ground, so that the Word of God grows in us and produces good fruit (Matthew 13: 1-23).
God executes with accuracy all He says because He diligently watches over His word to accomplish it. (Jeremiah 1:12). An expression is very recurrent in the gospels “to fulfill what the Lord had spoken”. Jesus, the Word who became flesh, is the accomplishment by excellence of God’s promise. He is the Amen (literally ‘so it is’; ‘may it be fulfilled’), the faithful and true Witness (Revelation 3: 14).
For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory. 2 Corinthians 1: 20
Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Proverbs 30: 5.
Did God promise something to you? Be patient and live in sanctification. Keep the commandments of the Master, who will reward your faithfulness and renew His goodness towards you (John 15: 10). By the way, if we seriously think about it, we might all realise that God has already accomplished some of His promises in our life.
Let us store up the Word in our heart and let none of the Lord’s words fall to the ground.
For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. Matthew 5: 18
‘If you walk in My statutes and keep My commandments, and perform them, then I will give you rain in its season, the land shall yield its produce, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit. Your threshing shall last till the time of vintage, and the vintage shall last till the time of sowing; you shall eat your bread to the full, and dwell in your land safely. I will give peace in the land, and you shall lie down, and none will make you afraid; I will rid the land of evil beasts, and the sword will not go through your land. You will chase your enemies, and they shall fall by the sword before you. Five of you shall chase a hundred, and a hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight; your enemies shall fall by the sword before you. ‘For I will look on you favorably and make you fruitful, multiply you and confirm My covenant with you. You shall eat the old harvest, and clear out the old because of the new. I will set My tabernacle among you, and My soul shall not abhor you. I will walk among you and be your God, and you shall be My people. I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, that you should not be their slaves; I have broken the bands of your yoke and made you walk upright.’ Leviticus 26: 3-13
THE KEY TO MIRACLE: RESPECT OF GOD’S WORD
We have just seen in Leviticus 26: 3-13 that some blessings happen if we respect and live the Word of God. Note that material blessings listed in this passage of Leviticus actually depend on the presence of God in our life. Obviously, we are not talking about prosperity gospel based on the love of the world and its lusts. It is simply about the expression of God’s faithfulness towards those who fear Him.
Success according to God is glorious and miraculous. However, miracles only happen when we do what the Lord says. God often asks us to do things that seem weird, ridiculous or illogical. This is when we need to practise our faith.
Let us take some examples.
The walls of Jericho (Joshua 6)
To make the walls of Jericho fall down, God asked His people to march around the city seven days (Joshua 6: 1-10). Logically, in order to destroy the walls, they should have burned or catapulted some rocks at the walls. If the Israelites chose a human solution, they would have worn themselves out and their enemies would have finally destroyed them. But by obeying God, who only asked them to walk and blow the trumpet, the miracle happened.
Elijah and the widow of Zarephath (1 Kings 17)
Following the order of YHWH, Elijah proclaimed a drought in the land of Israel, which was ruled by the apostate couple Ahab and Jezebel. Naturally, with the drought came starvation and famine but this time, YHWH did not send manna nor quails from the sky. However, He told him, “Get away from here and turn eastward, and hide by the Brook Cherith, which flows into the Jordan. And it will be that you shall drink from the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there” (1 Kings 17: 3-4).
If God followed our human logic, He would have sent Elijah in a country where there was no famine. But He did not! God sent him to drink the water from a brook and told him that he would be fed by…. ravens! Had Elijah shared this recommendation with his peers, they would certainly have sent him to a psychiatrist. Despite this quite uncommon order, the man of God obeyed, and things happened like YHWH said.
This teaches us one thing: When God ask you to do something, do it! Do not ask advice to men who, despite their good intentions, can lead you out of the plan of God for your life.
Once the brook dried up, God sent Elijah to be fed up by a widow, a poor widow with a dependent child living in a country burnt by drought and starvation. There too, Elijah obeyed. It took some courage to go and ask this poor lady the little amount of food and water she had left. This courage was faith, and this faith was communicated to this woman. Despite the doubt that troubled her heart, she decided to obey the Word of God.
So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, indeed a widow was there gathering sticks. And he called to her and said, “Please bring me a little water in a cup, that I may drink.” And as she was going to get it, he called to her and said, “Please bring me a morsel of bread in your hand.” So she said, “As the Lord your God lives, I do not have bread, only a handful of flour in a bin, and a little oil in a jar; and see, I am gathering a couple of sticks that I may go in and prepare it for myself and my son, that we may eat it, and die.” And Elijah said to her, “Do not fear; go and do as you have said, but make me a small cake from it first, and bring it to me; and afterward make some for yourself and your son. For thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘The bin of flour shall not be used up, nor shall the jar of oil run dry, until the day the Lord sends rain on the earth.’” So she went away and did according to the word of Elijah; and she and he and her household ate for many days. The bin of flour was not used up, nor did the jar of oil run dry, according to the word of the Lord which He spoke by Elijah. 1 Kings 17: 10-16
The miracle is always preceded by an act of faith based on the Word of the Lord (Romans 14: 17). God does not require a big faith; a faith as little as a mustard seed is enough to perform great works (Matthew 17: 20).
We will never see the glory of God if we oppose the Word to human reasoning, if we are not brave enough, and if we refuse to go out of our comfort zone.
Healing of the man born blind (John 9)
This man was born blind. We do not know if he had heard about Jesus before. One thing is certain though, this was the first time the Lord used his saliva, his flob (!) to heal someone. When he heard Him spitting out, the blind man could have questioned the Lord, “What are you doing? Am I not humbled enough by my condition? Do you really need to put mud and flob on my eyes? And since when does the flob have therapeutic power?” However, the blind man not only accepted this, but he also obeyed without questioning when the Lord asked him to go and wash in the pool of Siloam.
Imagine: A blind beggar with dry mud on the eyes moving with difficulties toward this pool. Certainly, he was already despised by his peers. While he was on his way, he probably received more teasing and discouraging words. But he persevered and acted faithfully according to the words of Jesus. And the miracle happened.
The action of God is not logical for God does not need maths or a specific method to perform a miracle. Trying to study Him, to anticipate His reaction, to understand Him, to confine Him in a system, and to theorise the means of His action is like minimizing Him. He is God, He speaks and it is done. Nothing is impossible to Him, He does what He wants. Our portion is to obey and to listen to Him.
MAY JESUS ONLY SPEAK A WORD!
Now when Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to Him, pleading with Him, saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, dreadfully tormented.” And Jesus said to him, “I will come and heal him.” The centurion answered and said, “Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” When Jesus heard it, He marveled, and said to those who followed, “Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel! And I say to you that many will come from east and west, and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the sons of the kingdom will be cast out into outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go your way; and as you have believed, so let it be done for you.” And his servant was healed that same hour. Matthew 8: 5-13
Here is a man who distinguished himself at the eyes of the Master. He was a Roman centurion, a stranger, a Gentile. Contrary to the Jews, he did not have the privilege to know the laws of God from his youth. Nevertheless, he knew that Jesus was the Word manifested in the flesh, the Almighty God, who only needed to speak to heal his servant. “Only speak a word!”
Many of us need to see to believe. We want the man of God to move in a certain manner, lay hands upon us, make long prayers… when only one word from God is enough to change our situation. Just one word!
Nothing can resist the Word of God. No situation, no demon, not even Satan himself! God does not fight our enemies with carnal weapons; He does not fight like men, but He destroys them with the breath of His mouth.
And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. 2 Thessalonians 2: 8
The Word of God is a two-edged sword, the Word is Spirit (breath); God fights with It (Revelation 2: 16) and we also need to use It in our fights: “And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God“ (Ephesians 6: 17).
Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations […]. Revelation 19: 15
So if God can destroy the enemy by the breath of His mouth, which situation can stand before Him?
May Jesus speak to lift up our heads!
In Daniel 4, we can read the story of the King Nebuchadnezzar’s humiliation and fall. Contrary to what one might think at first, what happened to this popular king is not the result of a demonic attack but the work of God.
God firstly warned Nebuchadnezzar in a dream.
“These were the visions of my head while on my bed:
I was looking, and behold,
A tree in the midst of the earth,
And its height was great.
The tree grew and became strong;
Its height reached to the heavens,
And it could be seen to the ends of all the earth.
Its leaves were lovely,
Its fruit abundant,
And in it was food for all.
The beasts of the field found shade under it,
The birds of the heavens dwelt in its branches,
And all flesh was fed from it.
“I saw in the visions of my head while on my bed, and there was a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven. He cried aloud and said thus:
‘Chop down the tree and cut off its branches,
Strip off its leaves and scatter its fruit.
Let the beasts get out from under it,
And the birds from its branches.
Nevertheless leave the stump and roots in the earth,
Bound with a band of iron and bronze,
In the tender grass of the field.
Let it be wet with the dew of heaven,
And let him graze with the beasts
On the grass of the earth.
Let his heart be changed from that of a man,
Let him be given the heart of a beast,
And let seven times pass over him.
‘This decision is by the decree of the watchers,
And the sentence by the word of the holy ones,
In order that the living may know
That the Most High rules in the kingdom of men,
Gives it to whomever He will,
And sets over it the lowest of men.’
“This dream I, King Nebuchadnezzar, have seen. Now you, Belteshazzar, declare its interpretation, since all the wise men of my kingdom are not able to make known to me the interpretation; but you are able, for the Spirit of the Holy God is in you.”
Daniel 4: 10-18
God speaks my friends! If we sin and backslid, He warns us personally. And if we do not understand His language, He sends brothers and sisters to help us to understand. Let us never despise His reprimand and let us never neglect His warning because “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Hebrew 10: 31).
Then Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, was astonished for a time, and his thoughts troubled him. So the king spoke, and said, “Belteshazzar, do not let the dream or its interpretation trouble you.” Belteshazzar answered and said, “My lord, may the dream concern those who hate you, and its interpretation concern your enemies! “The tree that you saw, which grew and became strong, whose height reached to the heavens and which could be seen by all the earth, whose leaves were lovely and its fruit abundant, in which was food for all, under which the beasts of the field dwelt, and in whose branches the birds of the heaven had their home— it is you, O king, who have grown and become strong; for your greatness has grown and reaches to the heavens, and your dominion to the end of the earth. “And inasmuch as the king saw a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven and saying, ‘Chop down the tree and destroy it, but leave its stump and roots in the earth, bound with a band of iron and bronze in the tender grass of the field; let it be wet with the dew of heaven, and let him graze with the beasts of the field, till seven times pass over him’; this is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the Most High, which has come upon my lord the king: They shall drive you from men, your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field, and they shall make you eat grass like oxen. They shall wet you with the dew of heaven, and seven times shall pass over you, till you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses. “And inasmuch as they gave the command to leave the stump and roots of the tree, your kingdom shall be assured to you, after you come to know that Heaven rules. Therefore, O king, let my advice be acceptable to you; break off your sins by being righteous, and your iniquities by showing mercy to the poor. Perhaps there may be a lengthening of your prosperity.” Daniel 4: 19-27
Let us humble ourselves willingly, for if God does it, it shall be very painful.
All this came upon King Nebuchadnezzar. At the end of the twelve months he was walking about the royal palace of Babylon. The king spoke, saying, “Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for a royal dwelling by my mighty power and for the honor of my majesty?” While the word was still in the king’s mouth, a voice fell from heaven: “King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: the kingdom has departed from you! And they shall drive you from men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. They shall make you eat grass like oxen; and seven times shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses.” That very hour the word was fulfilled concerning Nebuchadnezzar; he was driven from men and ate grass like oxen; his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair had grown like eagles’ feathers and his nails like birds’ claws. Daniel 4: 28-33
What a fall! What a humiliation! Nebuchadnezzar used to be called king of kings (Daniel 2:37). This title perfectly illustrates his power, his glory, his wealth and his reputation. And it happened that because of his pride, his life changed in an instant, following the Word declared by God. From king, he became nobody, a crazy man, worst than a beast. This man, who used to live in luxury and opulence, was now living in the bush, four-legged, half-naked, eating grass, in total confusion.
Nebuchadnezzar fell from very high. His story should serve as an example for us. Let us take heed! The more lifted up we are, the worst the fall. I guess that his succession was already arranged since he must have been considered dead, lost forever. Who could imagine that such a man would be completely restored one day? Nobody, not even Nebuchadnezzar himself. Even after a complete restoration, he could not have hoped that his subjects would ever respect him again after seeing him behave like an animal. Let us be honest, we will never put our life in the hands of someone who suffered dementia during seven years!
Nevertheless, as soon as he repented and humiliated himself before the true King of kings, the unexpected happened. Why? Because God ordained it.
And at the end of the time I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my understanding returned to me; and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever:
For His dominion is an everlasting dominion,
And His kingdom is from generation to generation.
All the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing;
He does according to His will in the army of heaven
And among the inhabitants of the earth.
No one can restrain His hand
Or say to Him, “What have You done?”
At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my honor and splendor returned to me. My counselors and nobles resorted to me, I was restored to my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added to me. Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all of whose works are truth, and His ways justice. And those who walk in pride He is able to put down. Daniel 4: 34-37
Nebuchadnezzar’s restoration is simply miraculous. Like Job, not only was he completely restored, but he also received added blessings that he did not have before. Can you imagine the reaction of those who had rejoiced of his hardship and who thought he was completely destroyed?
Oh! how good and merciful is our God! He is righteous in His judgments and He is also of great kindness.
Beloved, it can happen that we live desperate situations, some problems for which there is no human solution. It can happen that we fall so low that our relatives can say nothing but “Curse God and die!” (Job 2: 9). But what matters is not what men say but what God says!
May Jesus call us out of our sepulchre!
The hand of the Lord was upon me, and he brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of the valley; it was full of bones. And he led me around among them, and behold, there were very many on the surface of the valley, and behold, they were very dry. And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the Lord.” So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I prophesied, there was a sound, and behold, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. And I looked, and behold, there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them. But there was no breath in them. Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.” So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army. Then he said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost;we are indeed cut off.’ Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will open your graves and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will bring you into the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will put my Spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it, declares the Lord.” Ezechiel 37: 1-14
Some situations have an odour of death. It can be an incurable sickness, a nervous depression with a strong suicide desire, or a general bankruptcy. Unless you have blasphemed against the Holy Spirit (Matthew 12: 31), there is still hope for you. Be patient and of good courage, do not forsake the faith since through your perseverance you will save your soul. Wait on the Lord and when He talks, listen to Him! Even if you look like a dry bone, God can give you life.
This passage of Ezekiel gives us a precious lesson about the power of the Word of God. Those bones lived again because Ezekiel prophesied. It is important to note that he did not prophesy by the flesh, but following the command of YHWH. The miracle happened because Ezekiel diligently pronounced the words that God put in his mouth.
Advice: If you want to help someone living a very difficult situation, do not carnally encourage him/her thinking there is any power in your beautiful words. Do not falsely prophesy, lest you draw a condemnation on you (Deuteronomy 18: 20), and arouse a vain hope that will only worsen the situation of the person. Only speak if God sends you. Do not say anything less or more than what you were asked to say. When a message or a prophecy are inspired by the Spirit of God, there is life. On the contrary, when it comes from the flesh or Satan, it produces death.
It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life. John 6: 63
Finally, I would like to finish with this sign God gave to his servant Ezekiel:
“Thus says the Lord God: “Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up from your graves” (Ezechiel 37:12-13).
YHWH said that His people would recognize Him when He will open the graves. When Jesus, the Word that became flesh, came, this sign was fulfilled! Jesus is truly YHWH. He is truly God.
What did Jesus do while Lazarus was decomposing in his grave for four days? He spoke!
Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them,“Loose him, and let him go.” John 11: 43-44
And when Jesus descended into the lower parts of the earth and preached to the spirits in prison (Ephesians 4: 9; 1 Peter 3: 19), what happened?
Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many. Matthew 27: 51-53
Death has no power before Jesus, the Word of God. Do not fear death. The day is coming when with a great voice, He will also call us out of our sepulchres.
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” John 11: 25-26
May the peace of the Lord be with you.
To Jesus alone be glory forever and ever.