Perspective

Perspective

So I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not cure him.”

Then Jesus answered and said, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me.”
Matthew 17:16-17

Men, Jesus has just come down from the transfiguration and is confronted by a man with an “epileptic” son. His son needs healing and the disciples could not do it. Bringing the boy to Jesus, Jesus answers; “O faithless and perverse generation, how long will I be with you? How long shall I bear with you?” Jesus is roughly 6 months from the cross. Knowing His time is coming short, He really wants to see His followers understand what He came to do. Not just to die for sin, but to reconnect man to the Father, and to dominion. Jesus is disappointed here. Jesus calls them faithless. We often use faith and belief interchangeably, but that is not accurate. The 9 disciples who remained behind “believed” in Jesus. But they failed in faith, or “seeing” the world through Jesus’ perspective. Jesus calls them a perverse generation.

Our flesh is corrupted, and seeing the world through the eyes of our flesh perverts our sight and thoughts. Seeing through Jesus, by faith, purifies what we see. When you turn on the television to the nightly news, do you see opponents? Do you see a mess you’d like to be excused from? Do you see brokenness and opportunity to shine His light into darkness? Are you angry with what you see or are you hurt and burdened for what you see? What we see says everything about our level of faith. How long will Jesus bear with us? How long until we see what Jesus would do and act accordingly? How long until we stop seeing a sick child and try to heal issues on our own? How long until we see a sick child as Jesus sees it, so we can then be vessels of Jesus’ healing power on earth? I ask myself as well. I want to “see” more, and I hope you do too.

Move forward men, looking closer at Jesus to see what He seen.

Vance Durrance

What does the world look like to Him? We can’t engage the world as He would until we understand the world as He does. We must pan back from our circumstances and ask Jesus for a Holy vantage point from which to acknowledge our surroundings.

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Keys – Kingdom Authority

Keys

And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” – Matthew 16:19 NKJV

Men, the gates of Hades will not prevail against “the called out ones” of Jesus Christ. Now He tells Peter, “And I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven”. Matthew 18 later let us know that all the disciples were given “the keys” as well. But what are these keys, what do they unlock, and what is behind these doors?

Let’s define a Kingdom as a territory/realm. Within the borders are protections, privileges, rights, responsibilities, protocols, and authorities. Jesus has come, not to set up a physical kingdom, that comes later, but a Kingdom system which is superimposed over the world system. The world system is governed by the ruler of the air, Satan (Eph2).

Having the keys grants those who have them the authority to act on behalf of Him who granted the keys, namely Jesus. In effect, having the keys grants those with keys authority to overrule the authority of the air, or the system of this world. When the world system is hurling insecurity and fear in our face, these keys grant us access to His peace and power and more. Peter was given keys to preach, and he did so with great affect, bringing in 3000 in Acts 2. Peter opened the door to Gentiles in Acts 10. Peter unlocked the door to healing miracles and more.

So, are these keys available to us? Consider Luke 10. Jesus gave authority to 70 believers to “tread on serpents”. Serpents are demon rulers over territory here in the world. Jesus prayed for “oneness” in John 17. The Kingdom of God which Jesus preached will never fall or fail. Authority granted in Kingdom supersedes all other authority. We can access these keys, but like a Good Father, He waits on some who He can grow into responsible children who will possess the keys with understanding and humility.

Peter, the 12, and those faithful to pursue great depth in their relationship with Jesus have been given “keys to the Kingdom”. Keys grant us access to Kingdom privilege, power and gifts; unlocking opportunities beyond a surface level relationship, and come with responsibility. Jesus tells Peter and the 12 that with keys, they can also “bind on earth” and it “will be bound in heaven”.

In addition, Jesus tells them, “whatever is loosed on earth will be loosed in Heaven”. This is all in context of Kingdom. In this Kingdom, Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father and is judge. Binding and loosing are contractual, judicial, and legal terms. If someone or thing is bound, it is presided over by authority.

For example, the covenants of God, His promises, oaths, agreements and boundaries are binding. Obedience to His precepts and law “loose” specific blessings. If something is loosed, it is freed, unhindered, activated etc. Jesus is telling the 12, and us, that we reciprocate legal business, through the Holy Spirit, with heaven and earth.

There is an active role for Peter, you and I to participate in regarding Kingdom business on the earth. Consider 1 John 5:14-15. We can ask God the Father and Jesus for anything –within His will– and it will be done for us. God sits on His royal throne and issues legal judgments and decrees that are then carried back to the earth and Kingdom business is accomplished. Agreements made here are also binding in Heaven. No wonder Jesus told us not to make oaths. Yes, Jesus is a comforting friend, closer than a brother, He is our defense, but He also holds legal authority with God the Father over all things in heaven and the earth.

Move forward, men, with keys. Jesus called Himself, “the gate”… into the Kingdom. Salvation only takes us into the gate. By walking close with Him, we learn to navigate the system of Kingdom and He grants keys of access to His power. Move forward, men, in obedience to His Word and precepts to function in His will. Consider the legal protocols of Kingdom. Immerse yourself with full surrender in His will and ask of Him. Watch it happen on earth as it is decreed from Heaven.

Vance Durrance

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Surely Die

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Something is missing from this passage…

[God said to Adam] “but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” –Genesis 2:17

Why aren’t Adam and Eve dead?

Lest we think the serpent spoke truth (Gen 3:4), let us examine this closely. Here are several points, all of which might be accurate.

First, consider that life is not just existence, but our spiritual fellowship with God, which was immediately broken at the fall (Rom 7:9-11). THIS is REAL death (Eph 2:1).

Second, death can be considered the process of our decay, and that at the very moment of partaking the fruit, humanity’s access to the Tree of Life was revoked (Gen 3:22-23), and they began to die.

Third, we might utilize the serpent’s question “Did God really say?” in a genuine search for wisdom (the purpose of the crafty snake, see Gen 3:1) in order to question our assumptions regarding what the Lord meant by “in the day.” Is not a thousand years as a “day” to the Lord in His patience (2Pe 3:8)? And note that even the oldest man fell short of 1,000 at 969 years (Gen 5:27).

Fourth, God is merciful, and has allowed them to live beyond the limits of His divine decree. This is not an unjust pardon, but a merciful delay, for every sin will be accounted for at the great white throne—or was accounted for at the cross (Rom 3:25; Rev 20:12-15).

“Or do you have contempt for the wealth of his kindness, forbearance, and patience, and yet do not know that God’s kindness leads you to repentance? But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath for yourselves in the day of wrath, when God’s righteous judgment is revealed!” –Romans 2:4-5

Lord, humble us to Your immense mercy today. Help us see the gracious breath that You do not withhold every day that we arise from our bed (Job 34:14). Open our eyes to the mercy of every ray of sun and drop of rain that continues to bless us with undeserved light and life (Mat 5:45). Grant us today a heart of thanksgiving for Your mercy!

Billy Neal

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