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Daily Bread NOV/08/10
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Sunday, 07 November 2010 15:01
1 Corinthians 3:3 - For you are still carnal: for as long as there is
envying, strife, and division among you - are you not carnal and behaving
like men?

God has higher expectations of us than for us to walk as men. We have been
born of the Spirit, and are to give ourselves entirely to the disposition of
the Spirit. Paul told the Romans that we are no longer in the flesh, but in
the Spirit. Now instead of allowing envy, strife, and divisions - we are
supposed to walk in divine love and peace. If we would give ourselves to
peace, then the peace of the Holy Ghost would flow out of us with such an
arresting power that it would drive out strife and divisions.

Christ Jesus is our peace, who has removed all divisions (Ephesians 2:14).
Jesus is the Prince of Peace, and when we allow Him to reign over us, then
there can be nothing less than peace that passes understanding (Isaiah
9:6-7; Philippians 4:7). Peace comes to us as the blessing of the Lord
(Psalm 29:11); and it is our responsibility to pursue peace, and to endeavor
to keep the unity of the Spirit by remaining glued to the peace that has
been provided to us in Christ Jesus (Psalms 34:14; Ephesians 4:3; 1 Peter
3:11). The heavenly realm is a realm of an abundance of peace (Psalm 37:11;
Psalm 72:7; Isaiah 55:12; Romans 14:17). We must understand that the kingdom
of God is manifested through peace, and we are commanded to allow the peace
of God to rule our hearts (Colossians 3:15; Romans 14:17). God has perfect
peace, and an abundance of peace that is like a river for those who will
keep their thoughts in the things of the Spirit and trust in the Lord
(Isaiah 26:3; Isaiah 48:18; Isaiah 54:13; Jeremiah 33:6). We know that we
are walking in the ways of the Spirit because the effect that we will have
is peace (Isaiah 32:17; James 3:18). We have been given the goodness of the
realms of the glory of God, which we now have the pleasure of walking in:
the place where mercy and truth meet, and where righteousness and peace kiss
each other (Psalm 85:10). If we are willing to walk in wisdom of God, then
we will discover that all her paths are peace (Proverbs 3:17). The message
that we are to both preach and live is a gospel of peace (Isaiah 52:7; Nahum
1:15; Romans 10:15; Ephesians 2:17; Ephesians 6:15). God is the God of
peace, and if we allow Him to rule over our decisions and emotions - then we
will always be governed by peace, and the results of our actions will be
peace. There is a great peace that we can walk in that will keep us from any
kind of offense (Psalm 119:165).

People who allow hurts and insecurities to dominate their lives are always
on the defensive. The defensive posture is one of war and strife, which
destroys friendships and hinders any deeper form of sensitivity to the Holy
Spirit. Those who give place to a defensive posture (who are always on guard
against others that they believe are out to get them) find themselves
overreacting - and not only fighting against themselves, but also making
themselves foolish in the sight of all who look on. If you have a problem
with being on the defensive or being easily hurt, the first thing you need
to do is to understand the state of insanity that you have allowed to
develop in your life. Refuse to yield to any such impulse, no matter how
justified you may think your feelings are. Rather, give place to both making
and pursuing peace. If you will calm down and never react out of a state of
being offended, and take a second look after such an emotion is past, many
times you will discover how wrong you would have been to react defensively.
If you desire to see the Lord, then you must follow peace with all men, and
walk in holiness (Hebrews 12:14).
 
Daily Bread NOV/06/10
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 06 November 2010 12:22
Philippians 2:7 - But made himself of no reputation, and took the form of a
servant; and was made in the likeness of men.

Jesus did not come in the power of the Spirit to become famous - He came to
meet the needs and touch the lives of others. The anointing and the gifts of
the Spirit have been given to us not for ourselves, but because God sees our
love for others and willingness to lay down our lives for them. Too many
have somehow turned these sacred anointings and divine abilities into things
that would serve their own self-interest and ambitions. The true anointing
of God and flow of the Spirit will never accompany such a profane motive.

If you want to learn to flow in the Spirit and function in the anointing of
the Holy Ghost and power, then you must be willing to give your life for
others. It is by becoming a servant that we learn to walk in such glorious
apparel.

Those who refuse to walk in submission show themselves to be arrogant and
proud: seeking their own reputation. Those who seek the approval of others
witness against themselves that they are unrighteous. Those who demand the
honor of others do not have the humility of Christ. Those who make
themselves "lords" reveal that they do not have the nature of Christ Jesus,
and are instead serving another master. Come let us walk in the footsteps of
Jesus. Let us take up his yoke and learn if Him! Let this mind which was in
Christ Jesus be also in you.
 
Daily Bread NOV/05/10
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Friday, 05 November 2010 11:25
Galatians 3:27 - For as many as were baptized into Christ were endued with
Christ.

The most important thing for us to understand about this statement - before
discussing anything else - is that Paul was not referring to water baptism,
nor the baptism of the Holy Spirit, but salvation: which is the baptism into
Christ. When we are born of God and become a new creation, the life that we
inherit is the life of Christ (2 Corinthians 13:5; Galatians 2:20;
Philippians 1:21; Colossians 1:27; Colossians 3:4; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 1
Corinthians 6:15; 2 Corinthians 3:3; 2 Corinthians 5:14,17; Galatians 4:19;
Ephesians 4:15). Being born of the Spirit is a baptism into the death and
burial of Jesus, as well as into the resurrection and new life of Christ
(Romans 6:3-6; Colossians 2:12; Colossians 3:1-4). A new way of life has
come: we have been baptized into the new creation! The old has passed away,
and now we are to walk in newness of life - a life that is created in
righteousness and true holiness in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 4:24; Colossians
3:10; 2 Corinthians 5:17-18).

We are the sons of God, and the life of Christ Jesus is expressed through
our lives by the Spirit of God that dwells in us. The nature and glory of
God is supposed to be in us like a wellspring springing up. However, we
still have our own will and our own opinions that we can choose to walk in.
If we choose we can neglect the gift of God and walk in blind disobedience
to the will of God, we will have very little proof that we were ever born of
the Spirit and endued with the life of Christ. We must make a decision to
walk in the Spirit, be endued with Christ, and strengthened with His mighty
power in our inner being (Romans 13:14; Matthew 16:24). We are to
continually yield our members to God, and be filled with the Spirit, and
allow the issues of the life of God to flow out of us with rivers of His
presence and goodness (Romans 6:13,19; Ephesians 5:19; John 7:38-39).
 
daily bread
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Thursday, 04 November 2010 12:43
1 Corinthians 1:7 - So that you are not lacking in any spiritual gifts, as
you eagerly await the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Many sincere and hungry people in the church are at a standstill when it
comes to operating in the gifts of the Spirit. They know that they are to
desire the spiritual gifts, and especially prophecy, but they don't
understand how to begin (1 Corinthians 14:1). In many instances we observe
one of two extremes: either people are so zealous that they step out in
their own desire and make a mess of things, or people don't step out at all
in fear of doing something wrong. What we all must come to realize is that
God has made the gifts of the Spirit purely relational. The deeper we move
into relationship with the Holy Spirit, the deeper we will be affected by
the promptings of the Holy Spirit.

The gifts of the Spirit flow out of our interaction with God and our
obedience to do the things that we know to do. This of course all begins
when we are baptized in the Holy Ghost according to Acts 1:8 and Acts 2:4.
There are four training grounds where we learn to more effectively function
in the gifts of the Spirit:
1- Giving ourselves to the study of the word of God.
2- Giving ourselves to prayer that touches the realms of glory (too many
pray prayers that are like reading a message off a piece of paper, instead
of talking to the Father from the heart).
3- Allowing a deeper participation in praise and worship.
4- Doing those things that you know the word of God has commanded, such as
speaking to others about their souls.
When we are participating in these spiritual things, we discover the
inspirations of the Holy Spirit that lead us into a deeper and more
diversified manifestation of the gifts.

Many times I have been worshiping the Lord and suddenly have a vision. I was
not asking for it or thinking about functioning in the gifts, but as I was
caught away with singing and enjoying the presence of the Lord, the Holy
Spirit gave me something to do. For me the vision always results in a word a
knowledge, which then leads to a miracle or a healing. I have watched as
others have been caught away during worship - and suddenly they realize that
their pain was gone, or their deaf ear could hear, or some other
supernatural touch from heaven had affected their spirit or body. One
example of how far these inspirations are from our own thinking and
understanding took place in a pastors and leaders meeting that I was
ministering in. As I was preaching, my eyes were drawn towards a pastor that
I had some issues with; and suddenly the word of the Lord came to me for
this person. As my heart was being flooded with this word of greatness and
encouragement for this precious man of God, I was thinking how can this be?
I refrained from saying anything for a while, and then after being
continually compelled by the Spirit, delivered the word to this pastor whom
I had misjudged.

Flowing in the gifts must be left in the realm of relationship, and the
strong compelling inspirations of the Holy Ghost. The deeper we will let our
affections and emotions go into our love relationship with the Lord Jesus,
the stronger the unctions of the Spirit will be. The same way that peace and
joy come is the same way that prophesy and visions also come. If our
thoughts are caught away with how to function in the gifts, and trying to
get a prophecy, nothing good will come of it; but when we simply allow the
things of the Spirit (like prayer and praise) to carry us away into
affection towards God, the river of God's inspirations will flood our
hearts. One of the greatest ways to begin to experience the Holy Spirit
speaking through you is to involve yourself in reaching the lost. If you
will step out in obedience and faith to see the miracle of salvation come to
those whom you come in contact with, you will step into a realm where all
the gifts of God will function through you. It is the will of God that the
manifestation of the Spirit function in each person's life in the context of
the church as well - so begin to give yourself to a deeper participation, so
that there may be a more glorious manifestation of Jesus in your life! (1
Corinthians 12:7).
 
Daily Bread NOV/03/10
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Wednesday, 03 November 2010 13:50
1 Corinthians 12:13 - For also by one Spirit we are all baptized into one
body: whether Jew or Greek, whether slave or free; and all drink of one
Spirit.

The glory that was given to us by the Lord Jesus Christ has resulted in a
miraculous oneness through the operation of the Holy Spirit (John 17:21-23).
The Holy Spirit has taken us collectively and baptized us into one body: the
body of Christ Jesus. Paul said to the Galatians that as many as have been
baptized into Christ have put on Christ (Galatians 3:27). Through this
baptism, the expressions of the glory and power of Jesus Christ are
manifested through us individually and collectively. However Paul does not
focus on the individual expression of these gifts, but on the collective
expression of these works of Christ in the church (1 Corinthians 12:7-11; 1
Corinthians 12:28). Each person in the church has the responsibility to
submit themselves to this baptism into Christ. When we enter the church on
every occasion, the Holy Spirit desires to baptize us into the body of
Christ - so that the glorious church may manifest the person of the Lord
Jesus. In order for this to be a reality, there must a submission and
humility like that expressed when Jesus took towel and basin in hand and
washed the disciples feet (John 13:12-14).

Paul couples drinking of the Spirit with being baptized into the body of
Christ. When we drink of the Spirit, the rivers of God's life and power flow
from our lives (John 7:38-39). The wellsprings of His goodness and nature
bubble up from the depths of our being (John 4:14). It is here in this place
of cooperating with the Holy Ghost that the realms of the miraculous life of
Jesus are revealed. If we do not allow the Holy Spirit to lead us and guide
us, and take control of the our assemblies - then there will be no
expression of the church, nor of Jesus, nor of the kingdom of God. We must
recognize that the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each person; but
unless we submit to Him and drink, there will be no river. We must honor the
Holy Spirit, and realize that He wants to sovereignly divide these gifts to
each person according to His will. He was sent to take all that belongs to
Jesus and reveal it to us, so that the good things of God might be expressed
through our lives (John 16:13). He has come to glorify Jesus; and without
His work Jesus cannot be revealed. If we believe that the church is
something that should be placed within the framework of what men can do out
of their own abilities - we have altogether missed the message of the
gospel.
 
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