But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know .... from a Bible School, they even have ... Joseph even said to his brethren,.
“The grass withereth, the flower
fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.” - Isaiah 40:8
TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S Devotional Streams In The Desert Devotional ...................................................................................... Page 3 By A.B. Simpson Sermon The Road To Damascus ............................................................................................................. Page 4 Message By Pastor Daren Downs And We Know .................................................................................................................................. Page 5-7 Message By Pastor Duke Downs Harvest Time Reports Visitors From The Field Pastor Shmagi .................................................................................................................................... Page 8 Republic Of Georgia Bishop Reuben Kyule ...................................................................................................................... Page 9 Nairobi, Kenya Harvest Time Reports Ordination In Mexico ................................................................................................................. Page 10-11
When a human body is dying there are signs that can be seen as the life begins to fade away. Any sign of deterioration in our human life is cause for alarm and man seeks to salvage that life. But the spiritual life can decay just the same, and there are signs that the vital life has leaked out. There are things that can be done to maintain the spiritual life, but many are content to let it go asunder. The Christian life is nothing without true spiritual heat in the spiritual man and a hunger and desire for God.
Going Down The Road Of The Status Quo. The status quo is the place of the ordinary. It is when a new thing becomes old, and spiritual life becomes cold. It is when the supernatural becomes natural. When we became born again all things were new, the old life passed away. The new relationship with the Lord was exciting. Everyday we found something new in the Word. This is quite the same as our relationship with our wife or husband. There is nothing like that time of courtship, but a few years after marriage it seems that nothing is new and all becomes dull. It is said that the second year of marriage is the most trying because all of the emotion has worn off, and true deep love must now be cultivated if that marriage is to continue. The status quo is something that we all fight against. It is constantly trying to make our spiritual life ordinary. It tries to make the supernatural natural because the only way for the supernatural to continue to flow is by means of a deep relationship with the Lord. How do we know when we are in a rut? 1.) Our prayers are the same as always. 2.) We know we are in a rut when there are no new victories in life. 3.) When we find ourselves in the same position spiritually as we were a year ago we are in a rut. 4.) When we have adjusted to our current condition. 5.) When we are in the church physically but our mind is elsewhere. There Can Be A Desire In The Inner Man For Change, But Just Cannot Seem To Break Through. How many of us can say with Paul, “for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not” (Rom. 7:18). So much of the time there is a desire
for victory, but we seem to be so overwhelmed by the flesh and the old nature. Focusing on the problem alone won’t bring the victory. This is a trick of the enemy, to get us to focus only on the problem. Attacking the problem itself is usually just the flesh fighting against the flesh. Focusing on the problem alone won’t bring the victory. The whole of the solution will arise from our daily seeking of the Lord. It is all about our relationship with Him. Every trial will serve to draw us closer to Him or to push us further away. Sometimes we need a divine awakening to move us out of our comfort zone. Especially when we have allowed years to crust us over with spiritual complacency and death. Acts 7:54-59 “When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth. But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet, whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” That day Saul’s heart was pricked, but he fought it by persecuting the church – the Lord Himself. Resisting God’s dealings in your life will make you cold or even a hardhearted religious zealot. There are a lot of religious things we can hide behind. Acts 9:3-11 “And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do. And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man. And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened, he saw no man: but they led him by the hand, and brought him into Damascus. And he was three days without 4
sight, and neither did eat nor drink. And there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; and to him said the Lord in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Behold, I am here, Lord. And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, and enquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth…” What a radical change that came to the man Saul. Even his name was changed. A true encounter with the Lord Himself is the solution to our stagnation. Have you been going around in circles, are you like Samson grinding at the devil’s mill? Your day is coming. God hasn’t forgotten you. You may be there because you have failed a thousand times, but it only takes one complete breakthrough to change it all. This kind of determination needs to take hold of the church. It needs to take hold of you. The church needs to “pray through,” to give herself to the altar, until once more God lives in and through her. We can touch our world if we will touch our God. How Do I Come To This Encounter With God? First of all, stay in the faith. No matter how many times you've failed or how impossible it may seem. If there is only one pathway then you and I must trod that pathway. Getting on another road will only create another destination and wind us up in more trouble than when we began. We may come to it through some desperate solitary place. We may like Hannah come to the place where we just cannot take anymore and cry until God meets with us. Some have not even begun to seek God for an answer. Have You Come To Your Damascus Encounter? Have you met God in such a way that it drives you? Surely this is what happened to those in the upper room. They had so met God that it drove them to face whatever obstacles would lie in their pathway as they went to the ends of the earth. Perhaps many of us just need a fresh infilling of the Holy Ghost. Where will you encounter Him? We’re not talking about the everyday fellowship of prayer and the word of God, it will arise from that; but the place where we break out of the ordinary and become extraordinary. Oh God, I don’t know exactly what I need, but I am sure that it can only come from You.
But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
f we are a Born Again believer, the question must be settled in our heart, I love God and He loves me, so all things are working together for my good. When we are going through trials and extreme difficulties, the verse that brings much comfort to us is Romans 8:28. I know at times it’s difficult to see the hand of God in everything that happens to us. Sometimes trials and temptations that come to us are the result of our own failure or sin. Disobedience and unfaithfulness is a disconnect from the promise, and in this condition, things are not working for our good. God is never the author of these things and unless He is the agent in these matters, we cannot say, “thy will be done,” or, “all things are working for my good.” Many Christians are afraid to trust God with their all because they fear that man will hinder God’s plan in their lives. Satan will try to convince you that man’s plans will dictate God’s will for your life. He’s a liar. If you love God, Satan cannot destroy your life. Your love for God will turn Satan’s attacks for your good.
God Is In Everything That Involves The Believer. In order for us to trust God in everything there must be a total abandonment of self to God and we must have perfect trust in Him. We must know that God is in everything that has to do with those that love Him. To the child of God, everything comes directly from the hand of God, no matter who or what might have been the apparent source. If you limit your views to the present and the immediate, to determine your happiness then it will be impossible for you to understand the verse, “all things work together for Good to them that love God who are the called according to his purpose.” Meaning all things only work for good to them that love God. This is the prerequisite for this verse to wo rk i n o u r f avo r ; I t ’s determined by our love for God and not in our wavering in his love for us. If you doubt God’s love for you, you will not go any further in God. If you truly repented he will truly forgive you. And We Know all Things Work Together For Good... 5
Notice Paul says, “all things,” this means all things in Heaven, the Father, the Son, the Holy Ghost, angels, all things on earth, trials, temptations, persecutions, health, sickness, prosperity and adversity. All things work together for good to those who love God. The apostle Paul didn’t say I hope this to be so, but he said, “and we know.” It’s God’s will that you and I have a “And We Know” in our testimony. We know this from scripture; the whole teaching of God’s word verifies this truth. Matthew 10:29-30 -“Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.” Phillipians 4:6 - “Be Careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” This just means, we are not to worry about anything because our Heavenly Father cares for us. Jesus said; “Take therefore no thought for the morrow: For the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day
is the evil thereof ”-Matthew 6:34 In other words, tomorrow has its own problems, don’t reach out to tomorrow and bring its troubles into today. The Father is our defense. He is our fortress, our shield and buckler, the shadow of a great rock in a weary land, a covering from the tempest, rivers of waters in a dry land, and our refuge and strength. Romans 8:31 Says, “If God be for us, who can be against us,” even when it looks like we’re losing, we’re winning, because it’s working for our good. He is our shepherd: we shall not want, there is no need to fear, for our God is on our side. His promise to us is, “When thou passest through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee; when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” Isaiah 43:2 Psalm 89:9 – “Thou rulest the raging of the sea; when the waves thereof arise, thou stillest them.” Psalms 135:6 - “Whatsoever the LORD pleased, that did he in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places.” Isaiah 40:28 - “Hast thou not known? Hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, The Lord, The Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not neither is weary? There is no searching of his understanding.” Our lives are in God’s Hands. Nothing can happen to a Christian except with the knowledge and permission of the Heavenly Father. “He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust; his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; nor the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that
wasteth at noonday: a thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.”-Psalms 91:4-7 In verses 9-11 He gives us the reason: “Because thou hast made The Lord, which is my refuge even the most high, thy habitation; there shall no evil befall, thee neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.” Nothing happens to the child of God but that which must first go over the hedge of God’s presence round about us. Psalm 125:2 Says, “As the mountains are around about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people from henceforth even for ever.” Nothing can touch us except it climbs over the fiery walls of his encircling presence. Zechariah 2:5 “For I, saith the LORD, will be unto her a wall of fire round about, and will be the glory in the midst of her.” There is no power on this earth that can touch a child of God that is abiding in Christ without first receiving permission from God. God has a hedge around about his people. Satan found this when he tried to attack Job. He asked God, “Hast thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side?” Job 1:10 That means nothing can get to us, disturb us, or harm us, except it pass through the shadow of God’s Glory round about us. Only when God sees that it is best for us, He steps back and allows these things to come our way. God has a purpose in everything that affects His children, He takes very special notice of all things that happen to us, and He controls them according to His perfect will regardless of our position. Even 6
when it doesn’t look right, God is working it for our good. II Cor 12:10 – Paul said, “ I take pleasure in infirmities.” Rom 5:3 – says, “ And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also.” Heb 12:11 – “Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fr uit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.” James 1:2 – “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations.” II Cor 4:17 “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” I Peter 1:7 – says, “That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.” Matt 5:11,12 – Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad; for great is you reward in heaven.” If your love for God and God’s Love for you has got you in a very difficult place, you need not fret or fear, but rejoice because it’s working for your good. If sin or disobedience is your fate, repent. We find throughout the Bible many different places where God is working out his plan in the lives of individuals, through absolute adversity. When Joseph was sold into slavery because of his brother’s jealousy, I’m sure he couldn’t see the hand of God in this treatment. Step-by-step, God
revealed His will to Joseph, although it took thirteen years for him to complete his plan. We think one year is enough in our day, some think they received it by graduating from a Bible School, they even have a diploma to prove it. They just haven’t passed the test yet. Ish 40:31 – Says “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings as eagles; They shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” We must learn to walk by faith and not by sight. We must learn to walk by faith and not by sight, to follow The Lord one step at a time. It was wrong on the part of Joseph’s brethren to sell him, but God turned the evil work of his brethren into the greatest blessing of Joseph’s entire life. Joseph even said to his brethren, “But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.” -Genesis 50:20 Saints, God knows how to make even the wrath of man to praise him. Some things that seem to be adversities to us, are actually a blessing about to be revealed. God keeps some things hidden from our understanding until he desires to reveal them to us. This does not mean they don’t exist; just because the sun goes down at night, that does not mean the sun does not exist, just wait until tomorrow, it will appear. When the dark clouds cover us, just remember the Bible says, “The Lord hath said, that he would dwell in the thick darkness.”- II Chronicles 6:1 Though we cannot always see Him, remember He said, He would never leave us nor forsake us. When Joseph was sold into Egypt, and when Simeon his brother was
held in custody in Egypt, Joseph demanded that they bring Benjamin before they could receive food. Jacob said, “All these things are against me.” Gen 42:36. Joseph is not, Simeon is not, now their taking my Benjamin. Oh what despair! When he realized that if he kept Benjamin they would starve to death, he allowed him to go with his brethren. If Jacob had only known, all of these things were working together for his good, and God was using this method to preserve him and his family in the time of famine. If Jacob had only known all of these things were working together for his good, and God was using this method to preserve him and his family in the time of famine. As far as Jacob was concerned, the clouds of sorrow were hanging so low that
“...the question must be settled in our heart, I love God and He loves me, so all things are working together for my good.” -Pastor Duke Downs he could not see beyond his pain. Had he only realized that God always works out his will in the lives of those who will let him, he could have rejoiced in his tribulation. Jacob’s fears and griefs were needless, why? Because he was blind to the plan of God and because of limited human knowledge. His son Joseph was alive, Simeon was alive, Benjamin came home, and Jacob’s needs were met for the rest of his life. Oh, How we continually forfeit our blessings and we bare pain needlessly, because we fail to commit, and cast all our cares on him for he careth for us. “Oh, what peace we often forfeit, Oh what needless pain we bare, All because we do not carry, Everything to God in Prayer!” 7
Saints, let’s live each day resting in Christ, and commit our tomorrows into the hands of Christ. It won’t be long until we find ourselves thanking God for all things that come our way. If our heavenly father permits a trial to come, It must be the best thing for us, and it’s through this method that He is working out His will in my life. When we come through this trial, we will have a “And We Know” testimony. This is not to say, live anyway you want and “whatever will be will be.” But it is God’s plan for those who love him and are the called according to his purpose. This is the only way that we can live a perfectly happy fulfilled life. Surrender yourself to him and he will lead us by the still waters. He has a purpose for our life, and if we will yield ourselves to him, he will reveal it to us. When God’s will becomes our will, God will have His way. II Tim 1:12 – Says, “I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.” If we will turn everything over to God and commit it to His charge, everything, in life will come in line and everything will find it’s proper place in our life as it works for our good. Child of God, if you have distrusted God, tell Him you’re sorry, and that you’re now going to give Him your every care. Then begin to live your life in worship and thanksgiving, it’s done, it’s going to work out for my good, and his purpose is going to be my victory. “And I Know.” God Bless You, Pastor Duke Downs
VISITORS FROM THE FIELD Pastor Shmagi From The Republic Of Georgia
In the last few months, Living Waters has hosted several of the missionaries that we are supporting. In the month of April, Pastor Shmagi and sister Nino from the Republic of Georgia visited with us. Pastor Shmagi shared with us in the Sunday Evening service, and he also ministered at New Life Fellowship with Pastor Jonathan Skiles on Thursday evening. He shared his heart with us concerning the work in Georgia and their desire to ultimately reach the land of Turkey where multitudes of Georgians reside. Many of the Georgians in Turkey are now Muslims. In his message pastor Shmagi shared with us about “the cry of Hagar.” She fled from Sarai her mistress when she was mistreated, and she cried when she and her son Ishmael were sent away and about to die from thirst. God spoke to Hagar the first time when she had fled from her mistress: Gen. 16:9-12 “And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands. And the angel of the LORD said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude. And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the LORD hath heard thy affliction. And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren.”
Pastor Shmagi shared with us that the cry of Hagar is the cry of the Muslims today. They are lost and without Christ. Each time you hear the cry coming from the Mosque, think of the cry of Hagar. We have been encouraged to increase our support to help pastor Shmagi and the Word of Life church in Georgia to complete three of their building projects. They are building three churches and believe that when they are completed that God will open the door for them to go into Turkey and reach the Muslim harvest. They have already been to Turkey in the past, ministering at churches there. We believe that our Georgian brethren are a vital part of reaching the nation of Turkey.
VISITORS FROM THE FIELD (Continued...) Bishop Reuben Kyule From Nairobi, Kenya
On Sunday June 1, 2014, Living Waters was
privileged to have Bishop Reuben Kyule from Nairobi, Kenya share in our Sunday evening service. Bishop Reuben oversees the Bethesda Pastors Fellowship in East Africa. He pastors a church in the Eastliegh region of Nairobi. He has also been evangelizing for many years.
Bishop Reuben preached a stirring message from II Samuel 21 about Rizpah, and how we must serve, preach, and pray with the persistency that Rizpah showed in her time. In this story, we see the love of a mother that fought and protected the bodies of her dead sons. As the church, may we always remember to fight and intercede for the living around us. After the preaching went forth, an altar call was given, not for ourselves, but to intercede for the lost.
Although our church has supported Bishop Reuben for many years, it was such an honor to finally meet this man of God who shares in the same spirit and love for a lost and dying world. We are so thankful to be a part of the work that God is doing in East Africa, and we thank Bishop Reuben for being our hands extended. May God continue to bless and protect him and his family as they continue to preach the Gospel in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and surrounding nations. It was truly a blessing to have our friend and brother with us.
In Mexico What a blessed time we had this May visiting Agua Viva church and mission in Tijuana, Mexico. We traveled there to hold several meetings with the church and also to be a part of the ordination of Carlos Ramirez and his wife Ophelia as the associate pastors of the church. Our youth traveled with us and held a youth service on Saturday afternoon where pastor Mike Smith ministered, and the youth took part in sharing testimonies and singing. Brother Daren Downs, our missions director ministered Friday and
Saturday night and also Sunday morning. The highlight of our time there was the ordination service. Pastor Robert Frias, our prison pastor ministered at the ordination and pastor Dean Helzer of Agua Viva ordained Carlos and Ophelia. It was such a special time, for some years ago brother Carlos was saved in prison in the United States. He would help Living Waters prison ministry and pastor Robert Frias in the work in the prison. Upon being released, brother Carlos was immediately deported having been brought to the 10
States when he was just a boy, but never having gained citizenship. Being in the ordination service was such a picture of God’s grace. Dean Helzer spent nearly half of his life in prison, and now he stands as a missionary and pastor in Mexico ordaining another young man who was saved out of the clutches of the enemy. Then, to see pastor Robert Frias, another man saved from the prisons and out of the darkness and bondage of drugs ministering in the same service. This is where we see several ministries coming
together and working as one: missions, the prisons, and the church. Two other brethren attended the service that had also been saved in the prison ministry in the States and deported after their release. Both of these men are serving God and active in the ministry in Mexico. Words cannot express the beauty of seeing these men whose lives are so changed! Brother Dean commented that, “The words, ‘I love you’ were never heard in my life until I knew the Lord.” But now, to see brother Dean and his precious wife Maria; to see brother Carlos and the godly woman that the Lord brought into his life is a picture of love and grace that words could never describe. One of the clearest testimonies of Christ in the Agua Viva church is the love of God that flows there.
associate pastors at Agua Viva and they are teaching, leading worship and doing missions work, ministering in the prison and the local community. The expanding, thankful for support that possible.
work is everand we are so your prayers and make all of this
Brother Carlos and his wife Ophelia are full-time as
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Friday Meeting Talks, Volumes 1-3 by A.B. Simpson
A compilation of three books written by A.B. Simpson on Divine Healing.
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