|Discernment Of Spirit (60-0308)|
1 Our heavenly Father, I want to express if I can this morning, how in my heart I feeled towards One, the holiest of Holy coming down to the earth and to redeem a sinner like myself. And I'm sure that these ministers that's present now can feel the same way, that it was by Your grace that we have been made the ministers of this covenant that Thou has given with Adam's fallen race. And we are here this morning, Father, gathered for no other purpose but to know and to–to study to know, rather, the will of God and what we must do to make Christ real to the people of this generation. Knowing surely that in the day of the judgment we will be brought face to face with this generation. And, being ministers, we will be judges. And the people to which we have spoken to, and their attitude towards the Word that we bring them, will determine their eternal destination. Therefore, Lord, in that day we would be a judge for or against the generation that we preached to.
2 Father, God, please, through Jesus' Name, let us not say one word that would be wrong. But may we have sincere hearts and open mind that we might receive the things that's Yours, that we might be able to go out into our different fields of work after today, and–and be better equipped because of our meeting with You this morning. Grant it, Lord. Won't You come and be our speaker and our ears, and our tongue, and our thoughts? Let the meditation of my heart, thoughts of my mind, all that is within me, and within these my brethren and sisters, may it be acceptable in Thy sight, Lord, that we might be so filled and charged with Thy Spirit of Your Presence here, that the room would become… the room, not so much the building that we are sitting in, but the building that we are living in, become altogether a cloud of the glory of God. We might leave here this morning so filled with the Holy Spirit that we would be more determined than ever before in life to carry the message to the dying generation that we're living in. Hear us, Lord, and speak to us through Thy Word, for we ask it in the Name of Thy Son and our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.
3 I wish to read, this morning, a–a portion of Scripture found in the Psalms, the 105th Psalm. I wish to read just a portion. You that keeps down these Scripture readings, I see many of them had been, were ministers and so forth. It's good to read the Word. (And now, what time do they usually leave, about twelve o'clock? What say? Thank you, brother.) Psalms 105:
May the Lord bless the reading of His Words. I have a few Scriptures written out here somewhere that I was going to refer to perhaps along the road.
5 I wonder today who's going to be the next President? The election's coming up, you know. Who's going to be President this next term? What if I knew? There's only One that does know, and that's God. And what if God would reveal to me who's going to be the next President, and I stood here in Phoenix and made a prediction that such-and-such a man would be the next President of the United States? And they would place that in papers and so forth, and I would hit it right on the dot. It would be perfect, and it would be all that I had said would come to pass. But what good would it do? What good is it anyhow if I–if I should do such a thing? The papers would advertise it, and it would go out maybe, if such a person could make such a prediction and it would be true, all the newspapers and magazines would–would pass on it.
6 But you know that God doesn't do things like that; God doesn't use His power and His gifts for foolishness. It's going to be, whatever's President, it'll be President. And to know now which would be President wouldn't help us one penny. It wouldn't do us one bit of good to know who's going to be President. So therefore, God doesn't do those things like that.
And then if I made such a prediction as that, and it come to pass, and the newspapers packed it, and the magazines, then it would be to my glory. People'd say, "Look what a great prophet Brother Branham is. He told us long before it happened just who would be President." And that would be to my glory. But God doesn't want… He's not interested in working things to my glory or to–to any other man's glory. He's interested to work things to His glory, something that will profit.
8 Like Paul said, "If we speak with tongues and do not have an interpreter, what good does it do? We only glorify ourselves," and that's–or "edify ourself." That's kinda out of the line for God. God wants to be edified Himself. And we're to not seek self-edification, but to edify God with all we do.
So therefore, I believe this morning, if I knew who he would be and exactly when he would be elected, and oh, how many votes he'd be over or under, or whatever it might be, it wouldn't do one bit of good to tell it. It'd be best for me just to keep it still if I did know it, not try to publish it, because there would be–there would be no reason for me to do it. 'Cause it's going to be anyhow, and it doesn't make us that much difference who's going to be President.
10 But God, when He uses His gifts, He uses them for His own glory, and for the glory of His people, for the glory of His church, for the edifying of the body of Christ, and for the glory of the Kingdom of God. That's why He gives these things in His church, why He has teachers, prophets, evangelists, pastors. They are for the edification of the Church and for the glory of God. The prophet is not to get out and mingle with the world and try to take a gift like Balaam did and make havoc, or–or money out of it, or something. If he's a prophet, he's supposed to reveal God to the church and stay out of the things of the world. It's all for the glory of God.
11 Now, we do have… And I think it's a good thing for us, as ministers, to follow our order, when we see such things in the world as we see today. And we have an order from God, is for the discerning of spirit, trying the spirit. I believe that that is a very great lesson for the church today, is to try the spirit of anything, have discernment of the spirit. I do not think that we should ever, by any means, ever try to judge a person by the denomination they belong to, or by the group that they are assembled with, whether they be Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian, Pentecostal, or–or whatever they are. We should never judge the man by the denomination that he belongs to. We should always judge him by the spirit he has (See?), the spirit. Whether he's latter rain or former rain or inner, outer rain, or no rain, or whatever it might be, we should never judge him by that, but by his spirit. We are to discern spirits. Watch what the man has in mind, what he has–what he's trying to achieve. If the man, by a gift, no matter how great the gift is…
12 Now, I want to get this to the church this morning, which in the different denominations you are still the church of the living God together. And this is the thing I want to get to you (See?), that we are really not divided. We are the stones that's cut in different forms, all to the glory of God.
Now, there is so much in the day that we live in pertaining to gifts. So many people judge people by gifts that they have. Well, I believe that these things are gifts. I believe that what we see take place is gifts, and they are God-given gifts. But we–if we do not use them in the right way that God intended them to be used, then we can do more harm with the gifts than we could if we did not have the gifts. The other night I made a statement at the pulpit, saying this, that I would rather see brotherly love existing among the church, if we didn't have one case of healing or anything else. See, we must know what these things are for.
14 Now, if a man comes and he has a great gift, no matter if he belongs to our denomination or another denomination, don't judge him by what denomination he come from, how he dresses, but what you want to see is what he's trying to do with that gift, what purpose he has. If he's trying to take his influence and build himself a great name out of it, I'd have discernment of spirit enough to know that's wrong. No matter how great a teacher he is, how powerful he is, how intellectual he is, or how his gift operates, if he isn't trying to achieve something for the benefit of the body of Christ, your own spiritual discernment would tell you that that's wrong. No matter how accurate, how perfect, how it is, it's wrong if it isn't used for the body of Jesus Christ.
15 To achieve something, maybe he's got a great gift that he could draw people together with a great intellectual or a spiritual power, that he could draw people together, and maybe he's trying to take that gift and make hisself famous so that he'll have a big name, so that other brethren will look up to him as some big person. Then that's wrong. Maybe he's trying to–to edify a certain thing here that he wants everybody else to get out of the picture and let him and his group be the picture. That's still wrong. See?
16 But if he has a gift of God and he's trying to edify the Body of Christ, then I don't care what he belongs to. You're not discerning the man, you're discerning the spirit, the life that's in the man. And that's what God told us to do. Not one time was we ever commissioned to discern the–the man's group. But we was constrained and commanded by God to discern the spirit in the man, what he's trying to do, what the spirit in his life is trying to lead him to. And then if we can find out that he's trying to lead the people (not to break them up, but to bring them together) and to bring the church of the living God, not all to one denomination, but to a understanding, a fellowship, a unity of spirit. Then if he is former rain or latter rain, or whatever it is, his spirit and his purpose is right. And the spirit that's in him, no matter what move he belongs to, the Spirit that's in him is trying to point the people to Calvary, away from himself or away from anything else, but his only achievement he has is to point them to Calvary. He doesn't care whether he's even knowed or not. He doesn't care whether even his own movement… which is fine (See?), it's good, if he is a Methodist, or a Presbyterian, or a Roman Catholic, or whatever he wants to be by denomination.
17 But what is he trying to do, the purpose of his heart that he's trying to get? Then you can see what's in the man's life, whether his motives is for his–his denomination, whether it's for hisself, whether it's for worldly fame, whether it's for big names, to say, "I predicted that, come just exactly to pass." Now, you see that's wrong right there, to begin with. But if he's trying to use what God's give him, as a teacher, as a prophet, as a seer…
18 A New Testament prophet is a preacher. We all know that. Just any minister that's a preacher is a prophet, a New Testament prophet, if he's prophesying, preaching, not to try to edify himself to make a big name, or to edify his organization. Which, he should be in an organization. Here I am without one, but yet preaching you should be. That's right. Every man ought to have a church home. You ought to have a place, not just to float about from pillar to post, but have somewhere that you go to church and you call it your church, somewhere you pay your tithe, and somewhere that you help support the cause. Take your choice, but then don't never disfellowship the other man because he don't belong with your group. See? Discern his spirit and see if he's got the same purpose in heart, then you got fellowship one with another. You're working for one great cause. That's the cause of Christ. I think that that is absolutely true.
19 Now, if we will notice the motives and objectives of the Old Testament prophets, them men had one objective, and that was Jesus Christ. They had one thing that their whole theme of the Old Testament was built around the coming Messiah. They–they did not go out and do things just for money or for fame. They had one thing, they were anointed with the Spirit of God, and they predicted the coming Messiah. And those men were so anointed with the Spirit until they sometimes acted like the Spirit that was within them, they spoke seemingly of themselves. Watch how the Spirit of God made them men act.
20 We'll take, for instance, Moses, the great prophet, how that that man had no selfish objectives at all. He could've been the king of Egypt. He could've had the world under his feet. But because that he was a prophet at heart, he refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, choosing rather to suffer the persecution and the trials of Christ, esteeming the treasures of heaven greater treasures than them of Egypt. He forsook and denied himself of the worldly fame, of the luxury and the–the things that life offers. He had to look beyond that. See, he–he could've been that.
21 Just take the minister today: if he has the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and he knows that if he preaches that Word, it's going to cut his fame down; it's going to put him in a little bitty church somewhere, or maybe out on the street. But he knows that something in his heart is burning. He sees the coming of the Lord. He doesn't care whether that he has a big church or a little church. He doesn't care whether he has today's food or not no food. He doesn't care whether he has good clothes or doesn't have good clothes, He's only mindful of one thing, and that's the very Life within him crying out. He's trying to achieve something for the glory of God, and that man, in doing so, will act the very Life of the Spirit that's in him. Do you follow me? He'll act it out.
22 Look at Moses when he come to a time that he displayed, all his life was the Spirit of Christ, for Christ was in him. Christ was in Moses by measure. Now, if we notice, he was borned in the time of persecution. The children was killed to try to get him, just exactly like they did Jesus. And we find out that when he come to a place that the children of Israel had disobeyed in such a way until God was angry with them, and He said to Moses, "Step aside and I'll destroy the whole group of them, and I'll take of you and raise up another generation."
Moses threw hisself in the path of God's judgment and said, "Take me before You take them." In other words, "Before You can get them You'll have to come over me."
That's exactly what Jesus Christ did. When God would've wiped the whole face of the earth off with these sinners, you and I, but Christ threw Hisself in the path. God could not do it; He couldn't come over His own Son.
And when God seen that Spirit in Moses, hanging in the judgment like a cross there, "You can't come to them; You'll have to take me first," see the Spirit of God in Moses? When he could've been king of Egypt, when he could've had every luxury in the world, to be popular, when he could've been the great king of the world at that time, but he chose to suffer the persecution and the affliction, for he esteemed the reproach of Christ greater treasures than that of Egypt…?… See, he threw hisself in the way. Why? It was God in Moses did that. The normal thinking, intellectual man would never do that, he would take the easy road. So no matter how much a fanatic Moses seemed to be, he was trying… You see, he was a true prophet of God, because he was trying to achieve something for the Kingdom of God.
26 Now, with his great gift of prophecy he might've been a wise man, could have stood up in Egypt and said, "Now wait, I'll prophesy so-and-so. I'll say so-and-so," and as with his prophesy. But it's… and, oh, he would have been world-famous. But that wasn't in his heart. It couldn't be in his heart.
So if you see a person with a great gift, trying to do something to glorify themselves, your own discernment of the spirit tells you that's wrong. But Moses was trying to achieve something for the glory of God. No matter how bad it was; how evil it looked, how much it was talked about, the Spirit in Moses directed him straight to the line of duty: the Spirit in him.
28 Look at Joseph; Joseph was… When he was born, he was loved of the father and hated by his brethren: perfect type of Christ. And the only… He was a blood brother to them, the same father. But the reason his brethren hated him without a cause, because God had made him a prophet, spiritual, a seer. And they hated him for that very purpose. But Joseph could not help it, because God had made him that way.
29 And watch the Spirit of God in Joseph. Watch what he did. He even acted the part of Christ. He was hated of his brethren, loved of his father, because of the Spirit made the difference. He was a spiritual man. He saw visions; he interpreted dreams. He did not do it for his own glory. He did it because there was something in him: the Spirit of God. He wouldn't have went out there by his own self, and have been thrown into a ditch, and have his poor old father to grieve all those years, sold for nearly thirty pieces of silver, taken up from the ditch, and became the right-hand man of Pharaoh, the king of earth at that time. And in his prison house there was a butler and a baker, and one was lost and the other one was saved, by his predictions in the prison house.
30 And did you notice Jesus when He came, He was loved of the Father. And the father gave Joseph a coat of many colors (the rainbow, a covenant). And the Father God gave his Son Jesus the covenant, and then the Jewish brother hated Him without a cause. He had no reason to hate Him; He was spiritual, and He was God's Word made manifest. He come to do the will of the Father; He come to fulfill the Scriptures. He came to bring them peace, but they misunderstood Him, and hated Him without a cause. They didn't stop to try to see what He was trying to achieve. They just judged him because that he didn't agree with them. They made… "He makes Himself so-and-so. He makes Hisself God." He was God. God was in Him. The Bible said God was in Christ, manifesting Himself to the world. He was the God of glory manifesting the glory of God.
31 Look at Moses; he couldn't help throwing himself there. He didn't do that hypocritically. He did it because God was in him. Neither could Joseph help being what he was, because it was God in him working or displaying himself through the man: never did he do it for self-glory.
Any man that… If those priests would've only had the discernment of spirit, as I'm speaking to you this morning, regardless of how much the world talked about Him, they still would've knowed if they'd have looked to the Word, if they would've seen His purpose. He was always doing that to glorify the Father. He said… They said, "Oh, this man's a great healer, He does these things like that."
He said, "I can do nothing till the Father shows Me. It is not Me that doeth the works. It's the Father that dwelleth in Me; He doeth the works." He never took the glory.
34 Neither would any servant of God take glory. Neither would any servant of God take a gift of God and try to glorify himself, or anything else, but his right achievement is to do something to the glory of God. That's why you see the same thing today. We must have discernment of spirit to see a person what they're trying to do. Are they trying to glorify God? Are they trying to glorify themself?
35 Now, the Spirit of God working in men makes men act like God. No wonder Jesus said, "Is not it written, 'Ye are gods'? And if they called them God to whom the Spirit of God came to, how can you condemn Me then, when I am the Son of God?" If you could see the Spirit of God in Moses, which he was God. Moses was a god. Joseph was a god. The prophets were gods. The Bible said they were. They were gods because it–they had completely surrendered themselves to the Spirit of God, that they were working for the glory of God.
And when a man is so anointed with the Spirit… Now, let this go real deep under the fifth rib on the left side. When a man is anointed of the Spirit of God, his habits, his actions, and everything is God moving in him. Sometimes he's misjudged.
37 Look at David, in the 23rd Psalm he cried, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" as if he was, if David was the man. "All they that pass me by shoot their lip out at me." He was so anointed with God, he was so perfectly surrendered to God, and the anointing was on him in such a way and when he cried by the Spirit of God, if somebody'd been standing there and say, "Why, look, he thinks somebody is shooting their lip out at him. Why has God forsaken him?"
It wasn't David; it was the Spirit crying out through David. "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? My bones all stare at me. They have pierced my hands and my feet."
40 Well, somebody said, "Listen to that hypocrite up there. Who's hands is pierced? Who's feet is pierced?" That's the intellectual.
But one who had discernment of spirit knew that that was the Spirit of God in him crying out. When a man is anointed of the Spirit of God, he's got the action of God; and the action of God is never to break us up. The action of God is to draw us together for we are one in Christ Jesus, and God's purpose is to bring us together. "Love one another."
42 Now, that great prophet, we see the Spirit moving in them, Jesus called them gods. He said they were gods. Now, when the Spirit come to them by measure, but when It come on the One, Jesus, which was the Son of God, It come to him without measure. The Fullness of the Godhead bodily dwelt in Him, for He was the perfect example. He was God of Glory manifesting the glory of God to the people, God in Him going about. Watch His life, all the Old Testament, He was the theme of the Old Testament. All the old prophets back in the Old Testament cried out, not to themselves; they cried out under the Spirit of God, making them act like God in so much that they were called gods, and then the Fullness of that Spirit was manifested in Jesus Christ.
43 Look at David when he was dethroned as the king of Israel, rejected by his own people, going up Mount Olives, north of Jerusalem, and he looked back over the city and wept because he was rejected. What was it? It was the Spirit of Christ.
Five hundred years later, the Son of David, Jesus, set on the same mount looking over the city as a rejected king, and cried, "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how oft would I have gathered you (your different denominations and everything) as a hen does her brood, but you would not. How oft would I have did it."
Now, the same Spirit that was in David, that was manifested in fullness in Christ, is in the Church today crying to the people, "How oft would I have gathered you." And when you see separations and–and differences and–and brotherhood broken up, and Christian life, one against the other, then it makes the Spirit of God in your heart cry out. You're trying to achieve something, a true prophet of God, a true teacher is trying to bring the church to a unity of spirit, a unity of spirit, that they might recognize God; trying to achieve it no matter what denomination they belong to or what about it. We have discernment of spirit to discern the spirit that's in the man to see if it be the Spirit of God or not.
46 Now, we notice when He was here on earth, how He went about doing good. I noticed another thing that comes in my mind. Did you notice when David was rejected as king? He went out of the city, and a little Benjamite, Benjamite, which was supposed to have been a brother to him, should've been sorry because he was rejected, but what… He was a crippled man. And he drug along there with his crippled condition, throwing dirt on David, and calling him all kinds of bad names, and cursing him in the Name of the Lord, cursing King David in the Name of the Lord, this little old crippled-up Benjamite. Watch the Spirit of God and the spirit of the Devil working.
47 Now, if you notice, he was crippled. It represents the spiritual crippleness of the people today that would make fun of the true Spirit of God in Christ manifesting Itself. That was the Spirit of Christ in David being rejected as a king. And today, when the people make fun of the people who has received the Holy Spirit and trying to achieve something to draw Methodists and Pentecostals, and Baptists and Pentecostals, and Presbyterians and all together as a unity, as a Body of Christ, and they see the Spirit working, and say, "Well, look, that's a Pentecostal. Away with him. I know one went off with another man's wife. I know this one got drunk. I know this one did this. I know this one did that." All that, but they're big enough to hide their own things; they can hide it. But David was exposed. Why? He had the Spirit of Christ in him.
That guard said, "Shall I take the head of that dog that would curse my king?"
49 Watch the Spirit of Christ in David, "Let him alone, for the Lord has told him to curse me." Do you catch that? "Let him alone; the Lord has told him to curse me."
Instead, today we want to get up our fists and fight him (See?), chop his head off, "Yeah, get him out; he don't belong to us."
"Let him alone; the Lord has told him to curse me." That little cripple running along there, throwing dirt on David…
That's what they do today on the Spirit of Christ. "They're a bunch of holy-rollers. Why, they're a bunch of this. There's nothing to them. There's nothing to Divine healing. There's no such a thing as Angels. There's no such a thing as prophets." All those things, "The days of miracles is past," throwing dirt. But let them alone. But when David returned in power (Hallelujah.), when he come back as full king of Israel… Don't worry; this Jesus, Who's Spirit we have today, acted His part out, will return again in a physical body, the second time, in glory, in power, and majesty.
53 That little dirt-thrower fell on his face and begged for mercy. "Let him alone," the Spirit of Christ in us. Don't excommunicate him. Let's remember that all these things has got to come to pass. We've got one thing to do: move on. God promised that He'd make everything work together for good to them that love Him. Let's keep the discernment of spirit, keep the objective right. We're here to serve God, each one fellowshipping, going along and serving God. If the man's got the wrong kind of an objective, then what will happen? See?
54 Now, we find out that the Spirit of God was in Him. All the old prophets spoke of Him. All the Spirit in portion, every little portion, wasn't glorifying hisself (true prophets), all the true prophets was manifesting Him, speaking of Him. And everything they said was fulfilled in Him. Showed it was the Spirit of God in them, it was fulfilled. What was it? God speaking of Himself. See? God manifesting Himself through these prophets.
55 Not taking glory, "Who'll be the next President? Who'll be this?" And hit you on the head, "Tell us who hit you and we'll believe you." That isn't it. It's something to manifest God. It isn't something to make Brother Weathers here, or Brother Shores, or Brother So-and-so out there, a great man, and make him a greater than the rest of the men of his group, make him the greatest man in Phoenix. It isn't to make William Branham something great. But what is it to do? It isn't to make Oral Roberts something great, Billy Graham something great. But it's the hearts, we're trying to achieve something for the Kingdom of God. It's manifesting God. All gifts and things doesn't make one greater than the other; it just makes us all working together for the perfection of the body to bring us together as one people, as a people of God. But when you see them going contrary, don't curse them; just let them alone, somebody has to do it. But wait till Jesus comes in power.
56 Now, we see all those prophets speaking. Every one of them was glorifying God and the coming Messiah. And when they got in the Spirit, they acted, and spoke, and lived the life out just like the Messiah did. If it did that side the cross, speaking of His coming, how much more will it after His coming, will put the Spirit of the Messiah in the Church to act, do, work, and live like the Messiah? It's the Spirit of God.
Discern that spirit; see whether it is of God or not; see whether it acts like Him, see if your emotions… If somebody kicks up something against you and throws dirt upon your life, when you know you're as innocent as you can be, and you know that you've got the Spirit of God, don't try to separate yourself, Don't try to act mean towards them. Don't curse them. Just walk on, knowing that God did that to give you a test to see how you'd take it. He'll have to come to it anyhow.
58 As I said the other day, I believe in Brother Fuller's church, of the bicycle rider in Canada. Well, all of them thought they could outride this boy, this little old sissy. And he's the only one that couldn't ride without holding the handlebars.
I'm glad I like the old handlebar riders, take ahold of both sides of the Cross and say, "Nothing in my arms I bring. Let me hold to the cross, Lord; I have no intellectuals. I have nothing. Let me just hold here, look way out yonder."
60 And they had a twelve-inch plank to ride for a city block to get a hundred-dollar Schwinn bicycle. All those boys who could ride without holding, go downtown and get their mother's groceries and come back without even touching the handlebars, they every one begin to look. They wasn't used to holding to the handlebars, and they fell off. But this little old boy got on there and held the handlebars and rode it to the end. They asked him, said, "How did you do it?"
He said, "Here's where you make your mistake, fellows. You're all better riders than I am, but you were looking here," and said, "made you nervous to see what… You was trying to balance yourself, and you fell off." Said, "I never looked here at all; I watched the end and kept steady."
That's what we're to do. Don't look to these little things now, "Did this one do this or that one do that?" Watch the end and keep steady. Christ is coming. Watch the end; just keep steady. Don't notice what's going on now. Watch what's going to go on out yonder at the end time, when we're going to have to stand and–and give an account for our lives.
63 David wasn't watching that little old Benjamite throw dirt on him; he was crippled anyhow. He never noticed him. He wouldn't even let the guard cut his head off, said, "Let him alone; God told him to do that. God told him to curse me; let him alone." For David knew that someday he was returning in power. That Benjamite would have his time.
Yes, that's it. The Church will rise in triumph. I was just sent to pray for His sick children anyhow. That's all I can do. Wherever they are and what church they are, it makes me no difference. I'm trying to pray for His sick children, trying to manifest the gift for His glory. That's the reason I never did belong to anything.
Now, remember, that's all right. See, I'm not–I'm not saying that now. I want you to get me clear that I believe that God's got Christians in every church, His children. He's never questioned me on that. I just sent to pray for the children, and to do these things, and to manifest Him,
66 Now, you see, Jesus and these prophets, everything that they spoke of had to be true, for it was the power of God in them, God Himself speaking through them of His own Self coming to His own glory.
"Who's President? Who's going to, is going to? Are we going to have enough rain this year?" That don't mean nothing. Something to the glory of God, something to set the church in order, something for the power of God; not to make yourself a name, but to make the glory of God manifested.
68 Now, we notice that all those prophets and all they said about Him, everything come to true because He was the theme of the Old Testament. Jesus, the Messiah, coming Messiah, was what every prophet looked from–from Adam to Mi–Malachi. Every prophet spoke of the coming of the Lord. Each one put his part in, because he was anointed of God. That's all he could speak of.
Now, wish we had more time on it. But watch. Everything that they said come to pass. Looky here. Let's just take some of the things the prophets said.
70 "A virgin shall conceive and bear a child." Did it happen? Sure. "His Name shall be called Emmanuel, Prince of Peace, Mighty God, everlasting Father." That's what He was, exactly, the "everlasting Father." No man shall be called father, on this earth, but God is your Father.
All right, now let's see again. "He was wounded for our transgressions; He was bruised for our iniquity; the chastisement of our peace upon Him, with His stripes we were healed." Pilate's judgment hall, while the very man, having His back lashed like that with a cat-of-nine-tail whip, didn't realize that the Scriptures said it would be that way. They didn't have discernment of spirit, those priests who said, "Away with Him, away with Him."
72 And on the cross when they shot out their lips, and things like that, when they heard Him crying, "My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" They didn't have discernment. See, they couldn't discern the Spirit. That's what David was speaking of in the 22nd Psalm; they shot out their lip not knowing they were doing it. Just the same as that Benjamite did to David. See, he thought David was all wrong 'cause he didn't agree with him on his principles of running his kingdom. He didn't understand that it was the Spirit of God in David doing it.
That's where we must discern today, the spirit of a man. What's he trying to do? What's he getting at? Not what group he belongs to, or what this, that, or the other, whether he's a white man, black man, yellow man, or whatever he is. Let's see what he's trying to achieve, and take that: see what he's trying to do for the Kingdom of God. If he's got odd ideas to ours, that's perfectly all right if he's trying to achieve something for the Kingdom of God. Discern that in him. If he's wrong, and true in heart, God will bring him around to the truth of the thing after while. Let him alone; let him alone; see what he's trying to do.
74 Now, we see here, then we find out in His–in His death, when He died at the cross, and crying all the things the prophets spoke of Him, "They pierced My hands and My feet." There it was fulfilled. The prophets was right. They thought it was themselves or cried like it was themself, but it was manifested in the cross.
"He–He was numbered with the transgressors." That's what he was done. He was with the transgressors. "In His death He made His burial with the rich." He did; He was buried in a rich man's grave. "I will not leave His soul… He will not leave my soul," said David, the Spirit of God in David speaking out. "He will not leave my soul in hell, neither will He suffer His holy One to see corruption," like as if David would be the holy One. It wasn't David, it was the Spirit of God in David crying out. See, the Spirit of God in the man crying out.
Someone said, "Listen to that old hypocrite up there."
He wasn't; it was the Spirit of God in him crying out. See, the Spirit of God manifests itself, "Not leave His soul in hell, neither will I suffer My holy One to see corruption."
77 Now, brethren, in closing may I say this; our time gets away. But look, may I say this in closing with these Scriptures here. Let's see. If a man, that all the Old Testament theme was about Him, all the holy prophets anointed with God's Spirit, if all that and everything that they said was fulfilled to the letter exactly in Him, surely that great Person called the Son of God ought to know how to set up the New Testament church. Don't you believe that? He ought to have a conception to know how to set up the New Testament church.
78 The first thing I want to call to your attention over here in Matthew, 16th chapter, that when He–He is speaking then, when He come down and was talking to the disciples. He said, "Who does man say I the Son of man am?".
And they said, "Some say You're Elias, and some say You're So-and-so, and some say You're So-and-so, and like that," different ones.
He said, "But Who do you say that I am?"
And Peter said, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God."
He said, "Blessed art thou Simon, son of Jonas, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father which is in heaven has revealed this to you. And–and I say unto thee that thou art Simon, or–or Peter, and upon this rock I'll build My church, and the gates of hell can't prevail against it." Now, there was speaking of the church. Now, watch closely, and if I'm wrong, God forgive me and you forgive me.
82 Now, the–the Catholic church says that that was a stone laying there, Peter, and upon Peter He built the church. Now, we know that that's wrong. We Protestants disagree with it.
But we Protestants said, "It was Himself that He built Himse–a church upon, Himself." But if you'll notice, I want to disagree with that, friendly. It wasn't that. It was upon the spiritual revelation of Himself. See? "Flesh and blood… You never learned this in a seminary, as good as they are. You never learned this by some church creed, as good as it is. It's all right, but flesh and blood has not revealed this to you. It's not a intellectual conception of how you can make your speech, how you must bow yourself, how or what great thing you must do here on earth. That isn't what it is. It isn't build a great thing or do a great thing. What it is is a revelation of the Word of God. He was the Word. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. And the Word was made manifest and dwelt among us."
85 He was… That was the revelation of the Word of God; the Spirit in Peter revealing by spiritual revelation that He was the Son of God made manifest, the God of glory manifesting the glory of God. "Upon this rock (spiritual revelation of the Word) I'll build My church." Why? If them prophets was under God, speaking by the Holy Spirit that that was the Son of God, the same Spirit on this side reveals right back the same thing. You see it?
"Flesh and blood," you can't learn it in a seminary. You learn your–get your D.D. and your Ph.D. and the L.D., or… Them's all right, wished I had it. That's right, but still that's not It. You don't have to have it, yet it's good to have it. You can be this plus; but if you have to rub out the plus, take this. This is that. If this ain't that, let me have this anyhow. I want this, this.
87 "Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you." You never learned it through the educational line. You never learned it through denominational lines. They're fine; education, denomination is fine. That's part of it. But people are laying too much to that and they're leaving the spiritual discernment. See?
"Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father which is in heaven has revealed this to you. And upon this rock I'll build My church, and the gates of hell can't prevail against it. "Will never be able to prevail," showed they would be against it.
Now, watch and see where the gates of hell is against. It ain't against the denomination. The government recognizes that. It ain't. The world recognizes our denominations, all of them. We have the right, each one of us as American citizens, we have the rights of denomination, which is fine; we appreciate that. But that's not what the gates of hell's against. It's against the spiritual revelation of Christ being here now, the same yesterday, today, and forever. That's what it's against. "The gates of hell shall be against it, but it shall never prevail."
90 There you are: spiritual discernment. Regardless of who it is, it's my brother as long as he's trying to achieve the same purpose that I'm working for. Let him be prophet, let him be pastor, let him be deacon, let him be so-and-so, let God honor him this way, that way, whatever it is, dishonor me, whatever he wants to do, but yet that's my brother. We're working for the same thing. We're sending our–our–all of our works into the same Kingdom yonder. He's working for the same thing I am. Spiritual discernment, spiritual revelation of God. Looky here, if you want it.
91 Jesus… I preached the other night somewhere, maybe down there, "It Wasn't So From The Beginning." We have to go back to the beginning to find our text now for just a moment. At the beginning there was Cain, intellectual, built a fine church (we would say), made a fine altar, offered up a sacrifice, prayed, sincere, gave thanks, paid his tithe, everything just as religious as Abel was.
92 But Abel (There was no Bible in them days.), but by spiritual revelation he seen that it wasn't fruits of the field that caused us to sin, it wasn't apples that they eat. See, it wasn't apples, revelation told him that. And it wasn't the fruits that caused him to come out of there. It was life, the separation of life; so he went and got a lamb and offered it in his stead by faith, which is spiritual revelation. Amen. The revelation of God, spiritual revelation, it was revealed to him. It isn't the fruit; it isn't apples; it isn't peaches, plums, and pears. It was a separation of life, so he went and got a life and offered it instead of fruits.
93 Fruits is what you–your works of your own hand, what you do there: "I'll go and build this. I'll go do this. I'll support that." That's good. He had an altar just the same as the other one did. Both of them had altars. That was good.
But it was the re–spiritual revealed truth of the thing, for the Spirit of God revealed it. And upon that rock, the rock that Christ died on, the Rock of ages, upon the rock that Abel's lamb died on… That little Abel, as he put his hands upon that little lamb, and its little white wool being bathed as he took a–a rock, they didn't have a lance in that day, and chopped its little neck like that and hammered it. And the poor little thing dying, the blood bathing his hands, and his little wool all bathed with blood, and bleating and crying.
95 What did it speak of? The Lamb of God, some four thousand years later, spiritually revealed the church turning Him down. And the people called Him Beelzebub and a devil, because all the prophets had spoke out. They denied the prophet. Oh, He said, "You build their sepulchers, and you put them in there, you whited-walls," He said to them. Without spiritual discernment, not knowing that that was the Lamb of God, that He was supposed to be that way and act that way, because He was fulfilling the Word of God.
96 And the Holy Ghost Church today, acting the way they do, doing the things they do, they're fulfilling the Word of God. Hallelujah. See, Peter said, on the day of Pentecost, "This is that." And he said, "It's unto you and to your children, and them that's far off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call."
Them same inspired prophets said the evening Light would shine, there'd be a former and latter rain together as in the days of grace. Looky here… What is it? The former rain's coming over, and the latter rain is past due. Then it's lapped over, and it's together, the former and latter rain together, the Holy Spirit made manifest by the power and the resurrection of Jesus Christ. There you are, coming together, the former… God's grace… He said, "As it was in the days of Noah." His grace was long- suffering. Here it is today, long-suffering, a lapover brings a cloud from the old days and a cloud from this day together. The former rain run in first; the first rain we've had, now here comes the latter rain coming over, the former rain coming over the latter rain, east and west meeting together, both rains falling together, Divine healing plus the Angel of God revealing the secrets of the hearts and bringing everything to pass. Oh, looks like true born children of God would see that. There you are, the Spirit revealing. Revelation, that's what Jesus said the church would be built upon.
98 Well, then somebody might raise up and say, "Why, sure, we So- and-so, we're built upon that."
Let's take His Word a little farther. The last commission to His church, He said, "Go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature." All the world… How long is it to last? All the world. To how many? Every creature. "He that believeth and is baptized," not the church, "he" is a personal pronoun. "He that believeth…" the individual.
As David duPlessis said about the grandchildren, there's no grandchildren in the Kingdom of God; it's children. Your father was Pentecostal and you're just coming here to this church because he come here to–to Eleventh and Garfield, received the Holy Ghost, just brought you in as a grandchild, you're wrong. God's got to reveal Himself to you.
And no man can call Jesus the Christ by intellectual conceptions. No man can call Jesus the Christ because he feels sorry for his sins and comes and repents. No man can call Jesus the Christ, only by the re–that revelation of the Holy Ghost making it known to him. "Upon this rock I'll build My church, and the gates of hell will never prevail against it." There's the revelation. There it is, what He's built His church upon.
102 Who did it, Peter? No, no, no. Who did it? Christ said, "The revelation of God, the Holy Spirit would bring it to you. A little while and I'll leave you, but I'll pray the Father and He'll send you the Comforter, will bring these things to your remembrance." Is that right? What He's doing this morning. And will what? "Show you things to come." The Holy Spirit in the church in the last day…
Now, you say, "Brother, hallelujah, that's my church."
Wait a minute. Jesus said, "This will all men know you're My disciples…" in St. John 13:35, "This will all men know you're my disciples, when you have love one for the other." The Spirit- revealed Truth of the Kingdom of God to come, looking out to the end yonder seeing what the prophets cried about, see what Jesus spoke about, and here the same Holy Spirit in you crying right back, "That's right. That's right." What is it? The spiritual revealed truth. I love my brother regardless of where they go to church, whether they're former or latter, or no rain at all, as long as they're in the Body of Christ, trying to achieve, not something for a certain purpose to–to manifest yourself on earth, but the purpose for the Kingdom of God and the glory of His coming, to reveal and make known His soon appearing.
104 Now, in closing, we want to think of this. "Upon this rock I'll build My church," correctly. And then we find out over in John 14:7, He said this, "The works that I do, shall you do also. The works that I do…" What kind of works did He do to make Hisself known? You remember about Peter (Don't you?), what we been talking about, Philip, the woman at the well, predicting it not to go to the Gentiles, but would be in the last days, as He said, "As it was in the days of Sodom, so shall it be in the coming of the Son of man." There's a revelation written in mysteries like this to the outside world, to the world that knows nothing about It. But you precious brethren, you precious sisters, you are not children of the darkness; you're not children of the night; but you're children of the Light, walking in the Light as He is in the Light; then we have fellowship one with another, while the Blood of Jesus Christ, God's Son, cleanses all our sins from all of us. There you are, the servants of the Lord…
105 Jesus… As I quote my Scripture over here, I got Mark 16, yes, Mark 16, He said, "Go ye into all the world." Here's what kind of a church He set up: the last commission to the Church, "Go ye into all the world, preach the Gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved. He that believeth not shall be damned." Now, look here, look at this spiritual discernment. "He that believeth and is baptized." He never exactly said which way, but we want to fuss about that (See?), the other thing. See? "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved." Whatever he wants to be baptized, that's up to him. If his achievement's for the Kingdom of God, come on, brother, we're marching on with the same Spirit. If I'm wrong, then you'll tell, it'll come out that way. And if you're wrong, it'll be that. But our hearts and our motives and our objectives is for the Kingdom of God yonder. Yonder we are, we're pointing to Calvary.
106 Me and my i–ideas, why, I got… I ain't got a brother likes cherry pie as well as I do, but we're brothers. See? None of them likes to hunt and fish like I do, but we're brothers. See what I mean? I got my own ideas, but that don't make him not my brother; his father's my father; his family's my family. There you are.
The patriarchs all differed one from another, but they was of one father and it should work to one thing, and they rejected the main one in there because he was spiritual. Don't you see it, brethren? Can't you see what I'm speaking of?
108 Now notice, and we're–in closing, "Go ye into all the world, preach the Gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved. He… [Blank.spot.on.tape–Ed.]…?… And these signs shall follow them that believe; in My Name they shall cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues." What is it? Spiritual revelation. See? "They shall speak with new tongues. If they take up serpents or drink deadly things, it shall not harm them. If they lay their hands on the sick, they shall recover." That was what the new church was. That's the kind of church that Jesus Christ, this great One that all the prophets cried out would do. We find His Spirit comes over here and predicts that His Spirit in the people would come right back and do the things that He did.
109 May I close in saying this. I got about a dozen more Scriptures here, but we haven't got the time. See? But listen at this. May I close in saying this. Every true borned again prophet of the Lord, preacher, Sunday school teacher, seer, apostle, missionary, whatever he might be, his whole heart is set, and he's so filled and anointed with the Spirit of God, so anointed… Whatever his office is, whatever it might be, to preach, or to teach, or to evangelize, or to see visions, whatever it is, he'll do it for the Kingdom of God. And the Spirit of God will speak right back through the man and manifest it's the Kingdom of God.
110 Then we… Me as a Baptist, I see you Pentecostals, you're my brother. You don't belong to the Baptist church; I did. That's the only church I ever did belong to, was the Baptist church. But that don't stand in my way; I see what the Spirit of God is with you. I see what you're trying to do. Well, if me, a Baptist, can feel that way, surely the Assemblies, the Church of God, the United Pentecostals, the Independents, and all of us brethren together ought to see that we're trying to work for one purpose. Let's have spiritual discernment.
111 Now, listen. In closing I'll make this last remark. Many are sick and weakly among you, and many are asleep, spiritually dead, because they don't have discernment of the Body of Christ. This sick body that we got… God help us to have spiritual discernment of that revelation of the Kingdom of God and of the love of God in our hearts, shed abroad by the Holy Ghost, to try to put our arms way out, say, "We are brethren." See what I mean? And every little gift that you have, don't use it to try to make it some great something for ourselves, let's make it for the Kingdom of God to work with everyone to try to uplift the cause of Jesus Christ, for His coming is soon. Do you believe it?
112 I'm so sorry to keep you so long. Brother David will be here tomorrow to teach you the Scriptures, but right now let's bow our heads just a moment. [A brother speaks in another tongue. A sister gives an interpretation–Ed.]
God bless you. Your pastor.