GWEA Monthly Messages
REVEREND GORDON WILLIAMS, FEBRUARY 2013
"Happy Lent!” This might sound strange to most people’s ears. But it is the 40 day period that leads us into Easter to remember the 40 days and nights that Jesus spent fasting in the wilderness (Matt. 4:1-11). It was then He was tempted by the by the Devil to see if He was ready to go ahead in His ministry which led Him to the Cross where He would die and be raised from the dead. He was the "Human Test Model” (Heb. 4:15) which proved that any man or woman who had Salvation and the Baptism of the Holy Spirit could successfully accomplish God’s Plan for their lives. When the Devil comes to tempt us, he always follows the same plan of temptation that he tried with Jesus.
First, he tested Jesus twice to see if He knew who He was: "If you are the Son of God” (Matt. 5: 3,6). He tests us to see if we know who we are: "If you are the son or daughter of God” (Jn. 3:3,5,7). The Baptism of the Holy Spirit with the "signs following” (Mk. 16:17-18) prove that we are children God (1 Jn. 3: 1).
Secondly, the devil suggested, "command these stones to become bread” (Matt. 4:3). Jesus knew that there was no shortage of bread in the world but there is a famine "of every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” (Matt. 4: 4). Too many churches think that they can attract people by giving them food without the Gospel of Salvation. The third temptation by the devil was to take Jesus up the 150 feet to the pinnacle of Temple and "throw yourself down” so the angels could catch him (Matt. 4: 6). Jesus knew that the angels’ job (Heb. 1:14) was not to be playing catch with anybody especially Him. This was the devil’s invitation to commit suicide. And anyway, our ministries are not supposed to be doing circus tricks.
Our business is supposed to be Salvation, the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and "Gifts of the Holy Spirit” (Rom. 12: 6-8; 1 Cor. 12: 8-10) which meets people’s needs and draw them to Jesus through "signs, wonders and miracles”. Entertainment is not the ministry of Jesus Christ. Jesus socked the devil back to reality when He said, "You shall not tempt the Lord your God”, meaning Jesus Himself. The fourth temptation was to show Jesus all the kingdoms of the world. The devil said, "All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me” (Matt. 4: 9). Jesus knew that all the kingdoms of the world belonged to Him. The devil was full of hot air (Eph. 2:2). He owns nothing but a reservation in the Lake of Fire (Rev. 20:10). Today, this temptation is the most successful amongst our churches and clergy who have accepted the lie that "all religions and their gods” is the same as the God of Israel: Yahweh in Hebrew and Jesus in Greek (Acts 4:12).
Anybody who worships any other so-called gods are worshiping demons or the devil (Matt. 4:9; 1 Cor. 10:20-21). A god by any other name is a demon or the devil. When we recognize that we are being tempted by the devil/Satan, we simply tell him, "Begone, Satan! for it is written, ‘You shall worship the LORD your God and Him only shall you serve” (Matt. 4:10). Take it as a compliment when we are tempted. When we have passed the test, Jesus has some exciting ministry for us to do. This is an exciting time to do ministry (Jn. 14: 12-14).
Yours in Jesus,
Rev. Gordon Williams
© GWEA, 2013