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David Wilkerson Devotional
- Mon, 24 Nov 2014 09:00:00 +0000: THE MEASURE OF FAITH by Gary Wilkerson - DAVID WILKERSON DEVOTIONS
The gospels make clear that whatever measure of faith we receive is up to us.
“The next day there was a wedding celebration in the village of Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples were also invited to the celebration. The wine supply ran out during the festivities, so Jesus’ mother told him, ‘They have no more wine’” (John 2:1-3, NLT).
Have you ever run out of anything? Perhaps patience for your rebellious child? Hope for your marriage? At this wedding in Cana, Jesus’ mother, Mary, saw that the celebration had run out of wine. So she went to Jesus and said, “Do something.”
Jesus replied, “My time has not yet come” (2:4). Mary could have accepted her Son’s reply as a firm edict: “Well, it has been sovereignly declared from heaven that wine won’t be multiplied at this wedding.” Instead, she acted like a good Jewish mother or any other kind of mom, for that matter—and ignored her son’s response. “His mother told the servants, ‘Do whatever he tells you’” (2:5).
Theologically, I am very big on the sovereignty of God. I believe nothing happens unless He decrees it. But sometimes God’s sovereign decree is, “I’m leaving this up to you.” The clear impression from this passage is that Jesus was not going to act on Mary’s request. He even had a solid theological reason for it: “My time has not yet come,” meaning, God hadn’t yet announced His public ministry.
But Mary could not wait on the calendar of heaven. She needed God to move immediately—and so the calendar moved! “Jesus told the servants, ‘Fill the jars with water.’ When the jars had been filled, he said, ‘Now dip some out, and take it to the master of ceremonies.’ . . . When the master of ceremonies tasted the water that was now wine, not knowing where it had come from . . . he called the bridegroom over. ‘A host always serves the best wine first,’ he said. ‘Then, when everyone has had a lot to drink, he brings out the less expensive wine. But you have kept the best until now’” (2:7-10). This was not just “replacement” wine. It was the very best!
A miracle occurred, surpassing even Mary’s expectations. Yet things could have been very different. She might have been discouraged by Jesus’ response. She might have accepted His words at face value, agreeing, “I guess it’s not the right time.” Instead, she made a withdrawal of faith from the heavenly bank when she hadn’t even made a deposit yet.
- Sat, 22 Nov 2014 09:00:00 +0000: THEY LIGHT UP THE SCREEN by Claude Houde - DAVID WILKERSON DEVOTIONS
One of the greatest surprises of a new believer who begins to read and explore the Bible is to discover that the men and women of Scriptures are so incredibly human. There is no makeup, no tricks and no face-lifts in the Bible narrative. There are no Hollywood scripts, no “too good to be true,” larger-than-life flawless heroes.
One of the reasons the Bible is the all-time worldwide best seller year after year is the fact that the action and characters found in its pages are simply fascinating. The Bible is the most read book in the world because the sixty-six books that make up the Scriptures are, in fact, a mirror in which we all find a reflection of ourselves sooner or later. Although the men and women of the Old and New Testaments are very distant from us in time, space, contexts, customs and cultural reality, they are right there, so incredibly close to us in their human experience and humanity. Take a look and you will have to admit that these people literally “light up the screen.” Reading the Bible is the ultimate “reality TV” experience! Each page is riveting and propels us into the front rows of the theater of human lives in connection with the Divine.
We are staggered, appalled, “confronted” and moved by their adventures, battles, hopes, doubts, passions and faith, because they are painfully and implacably like our own (or at least like somebody we know when it comes too close for comfort, so close in fact that we turn the mirror away). These Bible life stories make us both laugh and cry. Our spirits are crushed by their failures, shattered at the mistakes they make and lifted with every exploit.
These men and women of the Word of God are made of flesh and bone. They dream, suffer, fall, cry and are disappointed and betrayed by their closest friends and the people they trusted the most. Sometimes they are afraid of what’s inside them. They can doubt horribly and shake their fists at heaven in anger, confusion and sheer pain. They cut and bleed. They turn their backs on God and doubt His very existence, and then run madly toward Him when tragedy strikes. So strong and yet so weak, they do not do what they know they should and often end up doing what they hate and know is wrong. They dream of beauty and nobility, of a better world, of justice and of “starting their life over.”
The Bible is a veritable jewelry box, filled with rough diamonds. Each book and each chapter reflects a facet of the human experience in search of the essential, the eternal and the meaningful. As you read the Bible, you can discover God and find yourself.
Claude Houde, lead pastor of Eglise Nouvelle Vie (New Life Church) in Montreal, Canada, is a frequent speaker at the Expect Church Leadership Conferences conducted by World Challenge throughout the world. Under his leadership New Life Church has grown from a handful of people to more than 3500 in a part of Canada with few successful Protestant churches.
- Fri, 21 Nov 2014 09:00:00 +0000: REAPING IN JOY - DAVID WILKERSON DEVOTIONS
“Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou has not [scattered seed]: And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine. His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant . . . Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents. . . . And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness” Matthew 25:24-26, 28, 30). Who is this lazy, wicked servant and why was he cast into outer darkness?
First, he was a servant of God who was controlled by a secret sin. Jesus called him a wicked servant, which here denotes evil or something sinister. Although he is associated with a circle of servants who are busy, fruitful, and joyous, there is something hidden and unexposed in this man. He claims to know the Lord (“I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown”), but he has developed a perverted vision of the Lord because of unforsaken sin. He says, “Thou art an hard man,” which is another way of saying, “You expect too much from me; I can’t live up to Your demands for serving!”
It is sin in the heart that makes one say, “This is far too hard for me!” The yielded heart, on the other hand, becomes free, and obedience is no longer a burden. For the surrendered heart, it is all joy. “They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him” (Psalm 126:5-6).
A minister once heard some of our tapes and then told a friend, “No one can live like that! Everybody makes mistakes. You can’t live as pure as they preach!” He saw it as a hard message.
I wonder why.
- Thu, 20 Nov 2014 09:00:00 +0000: ON THE FRONT LINES - DAVID WILKERSON DEVOTIONS
Willing servants will not be afraid of “the lion out on the streets.” The lazy Christian says, “There is a lion outside and I’ll be slain in the street if I go out there.”
“The slothful man saith, There is a lion in the way; a lion is in the streets” (Proverbs 26:13).
Is there a lion out in the streets? Yes! A roaring lion seeking to devour. But Spirit-filled servants are not afraid of any lion. Before I came back to New York to pastor, the devil tried to put fear in my heart. I had seen what is coming and how wicked these streets will become. Satan said, “You’ll be slain in the streets!” But Jesus commanded, “Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind” (Luke 14:21).We are not afraid!
I think of how wonderful it must be to live in a quiet, secluded place, and many have that privilege. But there are growing numbers of Christians “taking to the hills” simply to hide out. The lion has chased them and they’re seeking a place of security. I have already been through that way of thinking. Gary North, a leading reconstructionist, wrote a book entitled Government by Emergency, in which he warns Christians to stockpile goods and guns, and then get ready to hide out and protect their possessions. The list he recommends includes liquor and tobacco to bribe (he calls it “barter”) law officials in a time of anarchy.
These are those who will cry out for the rocks and the mountains to hide them from His wrath (Revelation 6:16). “For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it" (Matthew 16:25).
This Spirit-filled, last-days Church will not hide, but will be on the front lines, fighting a good fight and bringing in a harvest of souls.
- Wed, 19 Nov 2014 09:00:00 +0000: THE LAST-DAYS HARVEST AWAITS! - DAVID WILKERSON DEVOTIONS
There is something unique and special about the servants who will bring in the last great harvest. First of all, they will not be afraid to “plow in the cold.”
“The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing” (Proverbs 20:4).
Jesus said that the field is the world, meaning nations, peoples, races. When I came to New York in 1958, the church, society, and the government all said that drug addicts were incurable—especially heroin addicts. They said in effect, “It’s too cold to plow! They don't want God. They can’t be reached.” But God said to me, “Go plow! That’s a diamond mine and I’m going to have a great harvest there.” And so He has.
Along our southern borders they are wringing their hands as millions of illegals pour in. In New York and California illegal aliens are flooding in from all over the globe. God has raised up churches to reach them for Christ because these newly converted Christian workers have seen it as a chance to plow. God has brought the mission field to them. Now young ministers, who were once illegal aliens, are going back to their homelands as missionaries to evangelize.
Yes! Cold waves of apostasy are sweeping the earth. The Jews are cold, as well as the Muslims. So many seem hopeless and hard. But the Lord says, “Don’t be lazy—go plow!” No group of people, no individual, should be considered too cold, too hard, or too far gone! Go and sow! Plow and you will reap! In this day of His power the Spirit will convict all.
Before establishing Times Square Church, we were told that New York was too hard, too wicked—there was no hope—no one would come out on a Sunday night for church. There was too much cynicism, too much crime and people would not leave their homes to come to Times Square at night, any night. It was supposed to be too cold to plow. But this packed church proves how wrong they were.
- Tue, 18 Nov 2014 09:00:00 +0000: GOD’S PEOPLE WILL BE WILLING - DAVID WILKERSON DEVOTIONS
Psalm 110 is a direct prophecy about a last-days people who “shall be willing in the day of [God’s] power” (verse 3). Martin Luther called this psalm “a glorious prophecy concerning the Kingdom of Christ.” He added, “It ought to be dear to everyone in the church.”
God’s people will be “willing” in that day; they will be spontaneous volunteers. Here is how God does it: When He determines that His day of power has come, He raises up holy prophets, watchmen, and shepherds who blow the trumpet. God supernaturally moves upon a people to respond. They heed the call to repent, to rally, and to rise up in faith to challenge the enemy. They wake up, go out, and challenge the powers of darkness. God’s people begin to cry out and He sends prophets to awaken the church.
So it was when Sisera and his great iron chariots came up against Israel. God raised up Deborah because “the children of Israel cried unto the Lord” (Judges 4:3). It was the Spirit of the Lord that came upon them and as Deborah later sang, “The people willingly offered themselves” (Judges 5:2). When the Spirit of God truly comes upon a people you don’t have to push, plead, pull, or threaten. They become willing in the day of His power. I see this happening here in Times Square Church. The Word is cleansing and the Spirit of God is coming upon many. We now have an abundance of volunteers, willing to do anything for Jesus.
“Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power, in the beauties of holiness” (Psalm 110:3). This is a prophecy that God will have a people who do not see holiness as a burden too hard to carry. They will not see it as something difficult or legalistic—but beautiful! They will not cringe under a hard message but, rather, they will see it as God cutting and polishing a diamond so that additional rays of light will shine forth. It is a certain prophecy that in a day of wickedness, a day of immorality, He will raise up a holy host, walking with joy in all His commandments.
- Mon, 17 Nov 2014 09:00:00 +0000: THE RESOURCES OF HEAVEN by Gary Wilkerson - DAVID WILKERSON DEVOTIONS
When it comes to the resources of heaven, the prophet Zechariah speaks a powerful yet mysterious word: “On that day the LORD will defend the people of Jerusalem; the weakest among them will be as mighty as King David! And the royal descendants will be like God, like the angel of the LORD who goes before them!” (Zechariah 12:8, NLT).
Zechariah was looking down through history to our day. Because of Christ’s work for us, even the weakest Christian will be as strong as David, Israel’s greatest king. And the strongest believer will “be like God,” meaning, like Christ. It all sounds outlandish. Yet in this prophecy, God gives us an image of the resources He has made available to His Church. The reserves of heaven’s bank are meant to come pouring out on us to His great glory, especially in our trials.
Much of the Church has yet to grasp this. When some Christians come to the teller’s window, they stand mute. The Holy Spirit asks them, “What can I do for you?” but they don’t know to ask for the wealth available to them. Instead, they answer, “Lord, just give me whatever You want to. I don’t have any ambition, but You are sovereign. You can do as You please.”
That may sound humble, even godly, but Scripture suggests this attitude actually frustrates the Holy Spirit. His response is, “What do you mean there’s nothing in your heart? Don’t you see the enemy at work ravaging the lives of people you love? Don’t you see loved ones in fear and bondage who would be set free if only they knew My delivering power? Look around. There are kingdoms to conquer, enemies to slay, demons to cast out!”
Paul tells us to “earnestly desire the spiritual gifts.” That means when we come to the teller’s window, our request ought to be, “Lord, I have the gift of faith. Could You also give me the gift of evangelism, so I might bring others to faith?” Or, “Lord, You’ve gifted me with prophecy. Please, give me a word today for my sister who’s enduring great pain with no hope.”
One of the greatest lessons my father, David Wilkerson, taught me was, “You can have as much of Jesus as you want.” My message in turn is to say to you: Go to the teller’s window and ask extravagantly!