The Holy Ghost & The Body Of Christ
By Verbal Bean
The operation of the Holy Ghost is through the church.
One evangelist told me, “I never think whether the church is watching television, in sin, that’s up to them.” I go after the sinner.” He got results, because his faith overpowered any hindering elements. But I told him, “Even though you did persist and get results, you and your wife could go to a leper colony and have babies as often as nature would allow, but don’t forget those babies were born in a leper colony.
I don’t care how many you pray through, if that church is not where it ought to be, holiness wise, doctrine wise, you are actually endangering those that are being born, to become susceptible to the same disease. What good have I done if I’ve produced a child in an environment that will later kill him? I’d almost rather have them stay in sin, than to have them come into an environment that would later endanger, and contaminate him.
So, let’s enter into some of the points of the body.
“And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it” (I Corinthians 12:26).
God works as a body. If my right arm is infected by some disease, my entire body will suffer a slowdown as a result.
“Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Ask now the priests concerning the law, saying, If one bear holy flesh in the skirt of his garment, and with his skirt do touch bread, or pottage, or wine, or oil, or any meat, shall it be holy ? ” (Haggai 2:11,12).
Here’s one bearing holy flesh in the skirt of his garment, and he touches bread. By touching bread with the holy flesh, does that make it holy. The answer is, “No.” On the other hand, “…If one that is unclean by a dead body touch any of these, shall it be unclean? And the priests answered and said, It shall be unclean ” (Haggai 2:13).
It’s almost a frightening thing that sin has a power the gospel doesn’t have. Let me clarify what I mean. The gospel could do it, if the will of man would allow it. But since the will of man is involved, the
gospel will not force itself. God is a Gentleman. He only knocks at the door.
Let’s use the preacher with holy flesh in the skirt of his garment. He has a mightily, anointed sermon. He preaches it. Does it necessarily make that sinner back there clean? It could, if he’d allow it, but it doesn’t automatically. It doesn’t make the saint clean. You could have had a song service to where the rafters were ringing with glory, and still there could be someone sitting there with sin in their life. It didn’t do a thing to them. The preacher is preaching what God gave him. He found the will of God, but it did nothing to their lives.
On the other hand, here is the same pottage, wine or oil, and a man comes in that is unclean by touching a dead body. He touched the same things that could not be affected by holy flesh. Shall this make it unclean, and the answer was, “Yes.”
How is it that mightily anointed preaching will not necessarily affect the sinner, but on the other hand the sinner in Zion can affect the ministry, song service, prayer, or altar service?
I have seen whole services tied up, and I didn’t neglect prayer those days. I prayed until my insides felt like they were coming out, yet the services were tied and bound. I had a message from God, but it wasn’t going out like it ought. The songs died. What’s wrong? Men, we’re talking about the works of the Holy Ghost. What would the Holy Ghost do? It will not only bless, but it will correct, straighten out, cleanse and purge. The ultimate goal is results. Jesus Christ made it clear, the reason a tree was purged was that it might bring forth much fruit.
When I was in California, those men worked on those peach trees, and it looked like they were ruining them. They’d cut them until it looked like there wasn’t going to be anything but a stump left. “You fellows are cruel with these trees!” But they understand that to do this, will bring more peaches at harvest time.
But, if suckers are allowed there’s going to be less fruit, and the fruit will be smaller, knotty, and less juicy. The Great Dresser of the vineyard understands this, and the reason you’re going to get purged every now and then is so you might have great results.
Brethren, you might as well face it, if you’re going to have mighty revivals, and have great results, you may overlook a lot of things, but the Holy Ghost won’t. If you’re going to follow the works of the Holy Ghost, it’s going to lead you, one of these nights to stop the show, and say, “It’s time for a purging. ” You’d better know God, because this is a serious moment in the lives of the church.
I’ve seen churches that went through this purging stage, and if God
hadn’t helped us to know exactly what to say and do at the right time,
the thing could have been split wide open into splinters. Don’t think,
“Well this is a part of my ministry, so I’m going to carelessly get up
there and poke around at sin tonight. Know it is God, but when it’s
God, follow it.
Here’s this man, that has been pastoring a church, and can’t figure out why he can’t pray anyone through. Maybe he’s wondering why the church isn’t growing. If he understood this lesson, he could do something about it. I believe God calls in specialists, sometimes. If man has sense enough to do it, God would have the wisdom and ability to qualify a specialist.
If I was going to go to a physician, and had something wrong with my nose, I’d rather go to a man that’s been dealing with noses all his career. God has a work of the ministry, and this is one of them. The quicker you learn it, the greater the results. I don’t say you won’t pray people through. I won’t say there won’t be any blessings. There will be. It’s like a blister on the bottom of your foot, it doesn’t kill you, but it sure slows you down.
Let’s say we’re in a church service, and there’s a man in the congregation with sin. That sin in his life, as a member of the body, will hinder the anointed sermon from having its ultimate result. It will hinder the song service from having its ultimate results. I don’t care how much you’re in the will of God, it will actually slow it down. I didn’t say it will stop it. Sometimes it would be a blessing of God if it did totally stop it. I have seen where He did stop revivals, for our sake, to get infection out of the body.
The church is slowed down, the sinners are not coming, the altars are empty, or if there is a seeker, maybe they’re not praying through, and you wonder what the tie-up is. He’s saying in the Scripture that sin can defile that which is normally clean and good. Bread, wine, oil, and pottage have spiritual parallels. When you’re preaching, you’re handing out bread. Oil is a type of the Holy Ghost. All of this is going to be affected by what’s in the body.
This finger can get so infected that fever will cover my body. It didn’t kill me right then, but something’s got to be done with it. No doctor that has any sense is anxious to cut off a finger, but sometimes it requires amputation to save the body.
No one should glory in running a saint off for any reason, but believe me, there comes a time when the purging of the body comes, the only way to save that body is to lose certain members, when their hearts will not break, and they will not humble themselves. You have tried everything you know, and the Bible gives you the methods to try. Go to them, take somebody with you, bring them to the church. Deal with them with love and longsuffering. If you still cannot get results, an amputation may be the only way to bring healing and salvation to the body.
Sin has a tremendous impact in the body. As I have said many times and repeat, I’d rather preach to ten thousand snuff-dipping, whoremongers, thieves, liars, and stealers, than to preach to three unconsecrated saints. The sinner can’t do a thing to my anointing, but the saint can. That doesn’t mean I won’t go ahead and preach the will of God, but the ultimate results will not be as great, because what I preach goes through that church to the sinner.
If you’re going to have power and impact on the lost, you first need the church with you, and their hearts clean, or you will not get the ultimate results.
There are examples in the Bible of how innocent people were hindered by the sin of one.
There were innocent men killed the day Akin sinned. God displayed His indignation against sin in his body, when the church was at its peak. Freshly born, with anointed power, in walked a man that lied to the Holy Ghost. God manifested to that new-borne church His feeling about sin in the church. The Book of Acts is more than an example of doctrine, as far as baptism and Holy Ghost. It’s an example of revivals too. If you could understand that the Book of Acts is a pattern for mighty, and fearful revivals, your ministry could take on a new dimension. Signs, wonders, healings, and sins being handled.
This is a part of the ministry I don’t like, but you can’t pick your parts, and say, “I like to preach this, and nothing else.” If God’s dealing with you to be a blessing to a church, your only hope is to follow Him.
There is no set order in handling these situations. I’ve gone to churches and prayed thirty people through to the Holy Ghost, before God would stop and get sin out. The only explanation I have, is a doctor would not operate on you if he knows you’re already physically weak. He’ll build you up, first. God has sense enough to know when a church can take it, and when they can’t. In His mercy, He’ll sometimes, build their faith up. He may be building their faith in you. Not to glorify and honor you, but after all, they’ve got to have a certain amount of confidence in you. You get up and say, “Look, God showed me there’s adultery here in high places,” you’d better hope they trust you!
Of course, I’ve had those that didn’t. An old boy came to me one night, and said, “I don’t believe it. I’ve been around this church all my life, these are clean people.”
I said, “There’s already been about three or four adultery cases that have confessed.”
Let me stop and say this. The tendency is, if God ever uses you in that ministry, you’ll want to tell everywhere you go, and tell what God showed you, where, and in whom. But that’s a very unfair thing, to take advantage of a person who would come to you, and cleanse their heart, for you to tell it everywhere you go. It’s unfair to the pastor and the individual.
Of course, there’s no way in the world to totally prevent it. If you get up before an audience and say, “There’s adultery here!” They are going to go out and say, “Brother Bean found adultery there.” There’s nothing you can do about that; but, at least don’t glory that you found it. We should be sad that it was there. The tendency is to tell where God ever used you, and in miracles or healings, tell it, for His glory of course. But in sensitive areas, it’s best not to do it.
I use general experiences. For instance, I might say “I was in a place one time, and God showed me a certain thing.” But I try to respect the pastor, and his feelings. If you go calling a name of a church, a preacher may go there later, and he may try to pick out the one you were talking about. As a result he may create in his own mind a doubt about a good faithful saint.
Look what God required of the church in the wilderness,
“(For ye know how we have dwelt in the land of Egypt; and how we came through the nations which ye passed by; And ye have seen their abominations, and their idols, wood and stone, silver and gold, which were among them:) Lest there should be among you man, or woman, or family, or tribe, whose heart turneth away this day from the Lord our God, to go and serve the gods of these nations; lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood; And it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he bless himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst: The Lord will not spare him, but then the anger of the Lord and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and the Lord shall blot out his name from under heaven” (Deuteronomy 29:16-20).
God said this day, every man had better stop and search himself, because you’re passing through nations that have sin, and you see their abominations, and you come out of them. There’s a possibility of your picking up things that should not be, including attitudes, and spirits. Notice He said the “root” that beareth gall and wormwood. It didn’t say it had to be full blossom. The “root” of it. Here’s where the operation of the gifts of the Spirit are an advantage. Anybody can look at a tree and tell what fruit is on it. If you see open rebellion, nobody has to tell you there’s a rebellious person. But what we need is an accurate discernment of the mind of God, to get to the root of things. What caused it, or get to the root of it, before it develops.
The old saying is as true as can be, “A stitch in time, saves nine.” Brother, to get to the root of something in the church, before it develops, saves a lot of trouble, and maybe a lot of souls. The only way in the world to do that, is to have an accurate reading of God. I know of no way to do it, except the operation of the gifts of the Spirit. If they do not operate in your life, or in the life of someone in that church, then there’s no way to get to the root of that sin; because, generally, it’s so well concealed that no one will know it until the dirty work has already been done. Here’s where the Holy Ghost and its workings through the gifts is extremely valuable.
I repeat, people who say churches do not need the gifts, are saying that a body doesn’t need eyes, arms, or other specialized parts of the body. I believe they are as much a part of the body for its coordination, work, and progress as any other thing.
Some have the idea that all we need is doctrine. In the first place, the gifts of the Spirit are a part of the doctrine. God put the gifts in the church for a reason. Some teach that when a church has reached the stage of perfection, it no longer needs the gifts. I must answer, we won’t get there until we have delivered up to Him the kingdom to Him that gave it to us. We’ll need the gifts from here on in.
Here are two million people marching along, and all of a sudden Moses says, “Stop boys, and search your hearts. You might have a root of bitterness in your hearts.”
Oh, I don’t know the times that the Holy Ghost has moved in to save a church serious trouble by finding bitterness when it was only a root. You can walk into a preacher’s church as an evangelist, and God will show you some of this, and help you remove it, and save him from it. Somebody says, “I can’t get revivals for him. ” There will be no problem after that.
“For though I made you sorry with a letter, I do not repent, though I did repent: for I perceive that the same epistle hath made you sorry, though it were but for a season. Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing” (II Corinthians 7:8,9).
Will you notice how carefully this apostle tried to preserve life in this church? Never let it be a ministry of death! I’ve seen men who looked as though they enjoyed killing a congregation.
There was a saint that came to a certain pastor one place, and said, “I’ve been in this church for fifteen years. I have not heard my pastor say one time, ‘Saints, I love you.’ It was always, ‘You’re doing wrong. You need to straighten up. Bless God, get in or get out!'”
Paul said, “I’m sorry that you were hurt, yet I know it was for your good. I wasn’t sorry, because it was doing you good.” When love is in your heart for humanity, you’re not going to enjoy crucifying them, or, making them look like fools, and hypocrites. Finding a hypocrite will not be the greatest ambition of your life when you love souls. It will cause you to feel sorrow.
Notice, Paul was saying, “I didn’t want to hurt, or grieve you, I’d rather you were blessed, but it was necessary. It had to be done. “That ye might receive damage by us in nothing. I don’t want to damage you.” You could overexercise the authority of the ministry and damage the saints, or sinner.
You can get the feeling, “I’ve got the badge now!” I’ve seen a few officers in my life, that the gun did something to them. But, our goal should be for helping, when somebody is spiritually sick, or discouraged.
Look at it as if it were your own child. Do you get down on your child when he comes down with the flu? Do you hate your child when he has a bad disease, and is about to die? How should you feel about your saint that has a spiritual disease, and is about to die? Throw them on out! Kick them! “Bless God, you ought to have had more sense than to catch that disease! ” Well maybe they ought to have had, but our love should reach for them to recover them.
“My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation” (James 3:1).
That doesn’t mean don’t preach a standard, or require holiness. I believe God requires of me to forbid anything on my platform that is not dressed right, or living right. But, on the other hand, don’t enjoy
being a master. The first thing you know, you’re going to present so many things to be done, you can’t do them yourself, and you’ll receive the greater condemnation.
“For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge! In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter” (II Corinthians 7:11).
There was a boy found in the church in a terrible sin. Paul rebuked the Corinthian church for their lethargy on behalf of the sin. He charged them.
“…Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump ? ” (I Corinthians 5:6).
He made them clearly understand that this sin that they allowed to exist in the church was hindering the entire body. He told them after the sin was removed, what it did for them. One man is the sinner now. The whole church reaped a great benefit from the heart searching which came as a result of one man’s sin.
Paul recognized the damage that sin does to the message.
“It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife. And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you. For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed, In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened”
(I Corinthians 5:1-7).
That’s a predicament for a church to be full of sin, and yet proud, puffed up. Feeling like, “There’s nothing wrong around here! Our Sunday school average is above somebody else’s!” Church attendance doesn’t always mean anything. It’s good, but that’s not all of it. They hadn’t done anything about the sin.
This purging came, and Paul was saying this is what it did for you as a church.
The reason I’m going into this, is there are a lot of preachers, and saints that do not believe that you can fool with sin in a church. I’m trying to assure you that it is one of the works of the Holy Ghost.
I’ve had young men come to me and say, “I felt the service tied up in a certain revival, and I felt God dealing towards the church, but the pastor told me not to fool with it.” I don’t mean to be unkind,
Gentlemen, and I would never want you to be unkind, but as kind as you know how, dismiss yourself from that man. Go where somebody wants all that you’ve got.
I’d rather preach one revival a year, and it be all God has for me, than to go to a man where I have to tie one hand behind me to please him. Don’t be tempted because you don’t have revivals scheduled. Don’t go to a man who will not allow you this liberty and privilege. Don’t abuse it, but for God’s sake, don’t hide it. If God is dealing with you to clear out some sin, it is God’s ordained right to move on you, young man or old, it doesn’t make any difference.
Go back and read the first chapter of Jeremiah if it bothers you again, and remember what God told Jeremiah. Don’t say, “I’m a youth.” You go and say what needs to be said. He said go tear down, throw down, and pluck. That sounds rugged doesn’t it? That’s rugged preaching when you go to tearing down, and throwing down, but then He said, “Plant, and build. ” Don’t tear it down, without knowing how to replant after you’ve got it tore up.
I want you to have boldness towards this ministry. It’s God’s ordained plan to keep the church clean, and purged. Paul was saying what it did for the whole church to cleanse one man.
“For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you” (II Corinthians 7:11).
The whole bunch was sinning. You start digging after sin in the church, you’ll have to hear a dozen minor apologies. The tender ones will get up and say, “My Lord forgive me, I haven’t been praying, or I’ve done this little thing. ” You almost want to scream at them, to set down and hush. You know that’s not what God’s after. It’s something worse than that. But it’s making every conscience sensitive, and this helps a revival. “What carefulness it wrought in you.” Everybody’s starting to walk on their tiptoes. “Yea what clearing of yourselves.” When this fear settled on this church, and the Apostle said, “When you get together, deliver that person to Satan, so that the flesh may be destroyed. Pass judgment on him, that his soul may be saved. Tell him that I have agreed that this be done, because it’s affecting thewhole
In effect Paul was saying, “Since this fearful service, what clearing you fellows have done! You didn’t just get that fornicator, you probably got that one backbiting against his neighbor. You start to digging after one, the fear of God starts falling, and everyone there will search their heart, if they’ve got a heart at all.
I don’t say this for humor, although it is a little humorous. I had a pastor say this about a couple of preachers. He said, “When two or three saints get a little slack on their tithing, or start backing off, all I have to do is announce that certain preachers are coming. Man, they start paying tithes, and praying back through! Because they know when he gets there, he’s going to find them in the Spirit.
What does this do? What carefulness it wrought. What an advantage that is. It’s not that a pastor wants to threaten saints with a certain man, but after all, anything you can do that’s legal to keep them living for God, you’ll do it! You want them saved in the Judgment. His ultimate purpose isn’t to get saints to pay tithes again, but he said invariably it works. Why? Because that congregation recognizes the gifts operating in a man’s life will find them.
“What clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation” (I Corinthians 7:11).
You now hate everything appearing sinful. Before, you were sitting around looking over at a church where they wear jewelry, watch television, and attend ball games. You were beginning to wonder if there was any harm in all that. They seem to be doing good. They’re growing. Yeah, but the Holy Ghost came through like a cleansing tornado! Now, you’ve got indignation against sin. I don’t want to touch anything that would make me get back into that fearful place.
It creates indignation in the heart of a saint against sin. You couldn’t hardly cram it down them. They won’t get around it.
“Yea, what fear.” Do you believe we need fear? Is fear an essential element? I wouldn’t want to live for God simply out of fear, but do you believe it’s essential? Our churches need a revival of the fear of God.
I told you before about this woman who God had used so accurately. She got up one night and said, “You said in your bedroom thus and thus.” A man came running to the pastor, and said, “Man, I said it! Not a word more or less! I said it to my wife, and she’s the only one who heard it. I’ll guarantee, if I ever sin, I’ll not come to this church. She’ll tell everything about it!”
What fear. The fear of God is a valuable thing to have in a church. The works of the Holy Ghost in the church, operating like they should in search out and cleansing sin from the body.
” Yea what vehement desire. ” I have never seen a heart-searching in a church that was not replaced with new desire. When a man’s sin has been discovered, and somebody miraculously discovered it, then he knows it was God. Once he’s repented, he wants to make up to God for what he’s done wrong. “I want to serve you now. You were merciful enough to have a man come in here and tell me. ”
I’ve had saints stand and say, “I was lost before this revival.” New desire is there. They don’t want to get back to that place. “I see what made me get there, it was the lack of zeal. I wasn’t working, praying, or doing what I ought to do. It got me into this shape.” Now that this great heart searching has come, what desire it has built up!
What’s better for a church than having a sensitive conscience, carefulness, and fear. Now they hate sin, and have desire. Now you can have revival!
I’ve had them get so mad at me they wanted to choke me, because sin was in their lives, and they knew when I came God was going to use me to get it out, and they hated me for it. The spirit in them hates what they know to be true.
One Sunday school superintendent for seven years had been drinking, and smoking, as a deacon, Sunday school superintendent, song leader, and usher! At one time, he was the only man in the church. I’ve never in my born days seen a more perfect hypocrite, and I’m not using that word casually. He gave the most offerings, and never missed paying tithes. Wouldn’t take a vacation where he’d miss Sunday school. While other saints were gabbing after service, he was picking paper off the floor, and you can’t hardly get a saint to do that in normal conditions. On announced work days he was the first there and the last to leave. In every respect, perfect, except for drinking and smoking!
That’s like one lady said about her husband, “He’s not so bad, it’s just that sometimes he cusses when he gets drunk! ”
This man was loyal to his pastor, but somehow or another he got mad at me, because God showed me a dream one night. I saw him sitting at a bar drinking and smoking. I got up the next night, and said, “All right, God showed me a man in this church who was smoking and drinking.” Sure enough. His wife was in the church, and she knew it. In fact she later admitted that she had found him drunk. He was drinking odorless vodka. After it was revealed, he hated me. In fact, he didn’t like me to begin with, but he put on like he did. He’d do anything I told him.
After God so accurately revealed him, he said, “In the first place I don’t believe in dreams!”
Naturally, he wouldn’t. I wouldn’t believe in gallows if I was fixing to be hung, would you?
“In the second place,” he said, “That goes to prove my point. You can go as high as you can go in a church, and still be a hypocrite.” I guess that’s all he was trying to prove.
Before, in that church, we couldn’t pray anyone through. No way! Their worship was dead! I never was in such a place! The song service would die. You’d get up to the pulpit, and instead of preaching, you felt like you were choking to death, because the Spirit was contaminated in everything God wanted to do. After that boy was revealed, he got out.
Afterwards, the power of God moved greatly with shouting and worshipping. The pastor told me about a year later, “I can’t have church without them shouting, worshipping, and praising God!” We got the leaven out.
“What zeal, what revenge. ” I want to get to feeling like I want revenge against the devil for whatever he’s done! I want to pray about fifty through to avenge myself of what the devil’s done. I felt that way for all churches, when I rolled in as an evangelist. If sin was there, I wanted to get vengeance against him. Smear it in his face, and pray about a hundred through to the Holy Ghost, for what he had done to that church all those years! If that’s wrong, you’ll have to forgive me, I’ve felt it all my life.
“…In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter” (II Corinthians 7:11).
Then Paul gave instructions how to handle the man that repented. After this man came back and repented, he made them understand not to forever cast him off, but show him mercy and love. Finding the sin is not the total answer. The men that brought the woman to Jesus in the act of adultery, found her, but they didn’t have the cure for her. Don’t just search for the ability to find sin, have the cure for it.
“To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus” (I Corinthians 5:5).
This means, simply turn him over to Satan. The one who inflicts pain, disease, and death, by the authority given to the ministry, this is what some folks don’t understand. Brethren, don’t ever misuse it, but the same way you lay hands on sick, and say, “Satan, come out!” or “Disease, come out!” or “Affliction, be though removed!” The same hands can put it back on, either for cursing or blessing. This is a message of life unto life, or death unto death. The Scripture clearly teaches
that the ministry has that authority. Paul was saying, place in his body a judgment, and put him out from among you. Sever him from the church, and deliver him physically into the hands of Satan. Let a disease come on him, let a judgment fall on him, that he might fear, tremble and repent. God uses this, but don’t abuse, or misuse this. Here’s a personal experience. The Holy Ghost revealed to me that a man was guilty of two major sins: adultery and perversion. God read off the judgments that were going to fall on him. The Spirit said, “Unless you repent, your sins will be manifest to the public, and you will chant your sins behind an insane asylum wall.” The boy didn’t repent.
The pastor asked me a short time after the revival, “Do you know where the boy is? In an insane asylum! And the sin that he committed was published in the paper with his name and address, that covered a hundred and fifty thousand subscribers, twice.” God wanted to make sure that those that didn’t read the paper the first day, read it the second.
God said his sin would be manifested. His sin was molesting a little child, and forcing an afflicted sister-in-law. Both sins were in his life. He refused to repent, so God turned him over to Satan.
“That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish” (Ephesians 5:27).
Brethren, we need the works of the Holy Ghost to come and help us, and I’m not underestimating the preaching of the Word. The Word of God will cleanse, but unless we have an anointing, a move of God, and the works of the Holy Ghost, we could preach until we fell in the pulpit, and people are still going to sin. I have found that unless there is a pinpointed manifestation, some people will never repent.
You could preach every verse in this Bible on adultery, and that man could sit right there, and not be moved. You can get up and say, the Spirit showed me, such and such a thing happened, at such and such a place.
“But if all prophesy, and there come in one that believeth not, or one unlearned, he is convinced of all, he is judged of all: And thus are the secrets of his heart made manifest; and so falling down on his face he will worship God, and report that God is in you of a truth” (I Corinthians 14:24,25).
When you reveal the secrets of his heart, he’s going to say, “God’s in this place.” Whereas a sermon may not reach him. He might say, “I’ve heard that all my life.”
Men that are totally dependent on the preaching ministry will simply not reap the souls that you will reap by allowing the Holy Ghost to use you in other areas.
After all, there are five ministries, and nine gifts. There’s a time when you use the ministry, and there are times you use the gifts. It doesn’t mean that the ministry couldn’t operate the same as the gifts. A prophet can use the gift of prophecy. He doesn’t have to be a prophet, but he can have both the ministry of the prophet, and the gift of prophecy operating in his life. The delivering of the prophecy came through the office of the ministry of the prophet.
God uses these ministries, and He uses these gifts. Find your ministry, then let God use you in these gifts, and you’ll get results. There’s nothing like getting up and saying, “I feel tonight that there’s a man here that in a week will be behind bars, due to committing a murder, unless you repent!” Don’t expect them to believe you, most of the time, but you obey God, and faith will be established.
The next week the man comes up and stands in the service crying, saying, “Dear Lord! I didn’t believe that man last Sunday night, when he said, ‘There’s a potential murderer here, and that someone would be behind bars in a week’s time.’ I’m the man! If I hadn’t prayed I’d have been behind bars!
I left that service last week, and got on a train, and fell asleep. While sleeping a black man came and kicked me on the shin, and said, “Move over, I’m going to sit down by you.” And a Southern man as he was, he got his knife out, had it opened at the man’s throat!
It hit him like a bombshell. That preacher said there’s a potential murderer here tonight. He said, “I folded my knife back up and put it in my pocket. The only reason I’m standing here is because a man got me in an altar last weekend! ”
I could have preached on murder, but he wouldn’t have applied that to himself. When I think of what the Holy Ghost can do, and yet I think how far from it we are sometimes, it grieves me. The Holy Ghost can do more in one revelation, than you could do all week long with all the ability you have.
Believe, trust, have faith, and don’t question the Holy Ghost.
“Go near, and join thyself to this chariot” …Philip ran” (Acts 8:29, 30).
He didn’t stop and say, “Is this God here? Man, I’ve never felt this way before! First of all, that’s a colored man, and I’m not supposed to ride in the same seat with him! ”
The chariot would have been gone. And we miss it! Believe me!
Let’s say that Philip would have done like we do. You know what would have happened? That Eunuch would have kept riding. How many Ethiopians have passed us, while we stood and said, “Man, I don’t know if that’s me or God.
The twelve tribes of Israel served God instantly day and night. Remember, you’re on twenty-four hour call. When you said you’d preach, you signed up for the rest of your life.
Brother White, do we have the five-fold ministry today?
(White) Yes sir. There has never been a time in the New Testament church when there has ever been anything taken from the ministry. It is not complete without the five-fold ministry. Each office is to be filled. God’s purpose is for the perfecting of the saints in the church. I conclude that it was never intended by the apostles for any part of the working of the Spirit of God to diminish. For the church to grow, each of these offices must be in operation, regardless of what office it might be, each one has it’s respected place, and is essential today.
(Bean) Do we need prophets, and apostles?
(Bean) The homogenizing effect of this modern trend is to say, “Preacher,” generalizing it. But it’s more than that. Brethren, you have a ministry. I believe a man’s ministry can change. A man has to be capable of change. To change from evangelistic to pastoral.
Brother Lee, give us some points.
(Lee) I have seen in my own ministry what I felt was a change. I have been evangelistic, but have later returned to pastoral. I fear that the five-fold ministry is not in operation like it should be. I feel like carnality has moved in, and spirituality has been pushed out; therefore, God has not used them like He could have, had we been more inclined to spirituality.
(Bean) Here’s a point that I’ve contended all along, and it’s a partial reason for the burden I’ve had for such an institution as this. In no area that I knew, was there any sunlight being given the little, withering plant, called the evangelist. It is taught in every school and conference I know to learn to be a good pastor, official, or both. If you attain one of these, that’s the ultimate. The spotlight is there. Naturally a young man reaches for what the spotlight is showing. As a result, we have no evangelists that amount to anything, because that ministry is given no sunlight. But, the Lord helped me believe this institution is going to pull the shades back. We’re going to give sunlight to the work of the evangelist, because it’s a needed work.
That doesn’t mean the pastor doesn’t sometimes do the work of an evangelist. The Bible teaches he does. But find your calling, and let’s give credit.
The teacher is another area that hasn’t been given full credit. To me there is nothing more blessing than a man who can teach. I know of a few who are teachers by calling. They may not necessarily make you shout, or you may not even have a reaping, but, Friend, they can help you. They can instruct, and help your saints develop. That’s a needed ministry. After you’ve reaped, you’re going to need some help to develop them. So find your ministry, develop it, and then obey it. If God changes you, fine, but let’s not generalize the ministry.
It’s been reflected on so many times, “Go out and evangelize a little while to get some experience, and then find a church.” What does that tell our young ministers? That the evangelistic ministry is nothing more than a maneuvering ground. It’s going to boot camp. But Friend listen, an evangelistic ministry is needed as a seasoned ministry. Amateurs are on the field until they get experience, and all the time in the back of their mind they’re thinking, “As soon as I get a little experience, I’m going to get a church!”
How are you going to have revival under such an influence as that? You need a man out there that says, “Look, I’ll be here next year by the help and grace of God.” I’m not here to look for a church, or to just get experience, I’m here to do the work of an evangelist!
Brother Solomon, give us some points.
(Solomon) I’m pastoring a church now, but I can’t pastor by myself. It takes the different ministries. There are times you need an evangelistic ministry, and if it’s not there, you’re hurting. I’ve heard people make light of evangelists. A name would come up, and they’d say, “Ah, he’s only an evangelist. ” But I believe it has the same importance as any other ministry.
(Bean) The same men are squalling for an evangelist right now! And they’re wondering why they don’t have them. But you have discouraged them, and on some occasions, starved them. I never did experience it, but I’ve heard men say they actually felt they were on starvation wages. Then you want somebody to come reap your harvest, and to do it your way.
I’m not building up resentment between evangelists, and pastors, because that’s dangerous. I’m simply saying there is an unfairness. There is not enough light shining on the different ministries. Give them their place and let them operate! Everybody else back off and say, “It’s time for the teacher.” Let the glory be given him, let the double honor that goes along with teaching be given. This man comes along and prays fifty through, and he gets all the glory. That’s good, give him the double honor. But on the other hand, somebody needs to establish those folks. The pastor has to stay there and do all of that. He’s got a work to do. These ministers are very valuable.
I do believe all five fingers of God are still on His hand today. I don’t believe He cut any of them off. I believe in apostles. I believe a man who is called to establish churches is an apostle. I believe Brother S. R. Hanby in New York, and Bill Dross are apostles. Men who are used of God in the establishing of churches. Usually more than one church. The man who built it, and is still there is a pastor. But the man who can go on and build churches, and not necessarily stay very long at one. He goes on and establishes another. This is a qualification in the ministry of an apostle. A prophet came to the apostle Paul. I don’t believe the idea that there are no prophets. “Nobody has a divine word for future events. ” “Prophecy is simply preaching. ” It’s not Scriptural. There is a definite work of a prophet, a man who knows some things that are not necessarily revealed in this Book. We’re dealing with the twentieth century. This Book did not say, “Thou shalt not chew tobacco. ” There are a lot of things that are not in this Book that we have deal with, and a lot of things are going to happen, and a prophet is to know them.
In addition, there is the gift of prophecy. The prophet may use the gift of prophecy, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that a man who uses the gift of prophecy is a prophet.
I believe a prophet has a ministry that not only foretells immediate happenings, but he will indulge into the words of prophecy in this
Book. A prophet would have a better chance of understanding Bible
prophecy, because that’s his realm. That’s the orbit he’s in. Not only
immediate future, but distant future.
A man can have more than one ministry, but he is not by calling necessarily more than one of the ministries. He is apt to teach, or be an evangelist, but his calling is to be a pastor. Any gift, or any ministry can overlap the others.
(White) Brothers Dross and Hanby are qualified for any office in the ministry. They have proven their ministry through the years by the results they’ve had. We couldn’t say definitely that at all times the five-fold ministry would be exercised in their work. But still they were qualified for them, when the Spirit of God would lead them. I believe that the Scripture teaches us that we are to qualify for an office before the office is given, and before God would use us for that purpose.
(Bean) As I understand it, a man is qualified as an apostle, because in the establishing of four of five churches, a man will have had at intervals used all of the ministries. He has a certain amount of evangelism to get a church going. Then he teaches doctrine. He needs to be a pastor and a teacher. Not all at one lick, but in intervals. He possibly could be used as a prophet. When you are establishing churches, you are exercising more spiritual muscles, than pastoring a church. You’ve got to get them in, teach, correct, and evangelize. It is possible that an apostle will at some point overlap into the rest of these ministries.
That’s why I believe the apostle is first on the list. Not because one finger can boast against another, “I don’t need you,” but because he has exercised himself in most of the other ministries, and possibly
some of the gifts.
(Student) I’ve heard talk recently about William Branom. I’ve heard a lot of wild things about him.
(Bean) My personal opinion is, I believe he started out all right, but ended up wrong. The man was in false doctrine when he died. But when he first started out he definitely was used of God.
This is a danger when the gifts of the Spirit are operating in the ministry. If a man is not careful, he’ll get where he’s not teachable. He says, “I get mine straight from heaven.” At no time should any saint or preacher get to the place that he cannot be stopped, and taught. A teachable spirit is your only salvation. When a man gets where he does not hear from anybody but God, you can figure he’s on his way to some false doctrine.
I believe he was misused. He got into the wrong hands, and was shoved out into the cold so long, until he didn’t have much of a chance. It’s very possible the man in his early stages as a minister, could have been taught. When he first started out he was very humble, but he got into very dangerous doctrine. But without question, I felt the Spirit, tested it, and saw the miracles. I saw cancer fall off hands. I saw a lame boy walk, and stood at the door when he came out. Miracle after miracle after miracle. I felt the glory of God, but that’s when he first started.
The reason I’m elaborating on this is to show you, there’s been others that have risen the same way, and fell. This is why the gifts of the Spirit are fearful things to a lot of preachers, and don’t even want to mention them. Because, very few people could handle it, and retain their humility and doctrine. It’s hard to reach a balance some way or another in this thing. I don’t know why it should be. The early church had them.
A man was telling me that God was dealing with him to go strictly out praying for the sick. I said, “Would you please do me a favor. Don’t specialize in healing, and, preach the doctrine.” Why can’t we take advantage of the gifts, and embrace the doctrine? What happens, they get out there, and they get to feeling like, “If I preach doctrine, I’ll injure faith.” So they stay on the faith issue until there is no doctrine. And man, there’s no way in the world you can stand without a foundation of doctrine.
On the other hand, here’s another man that only wants to preach holiness. Holiness, holiness, doctrine. He preaches it until he doesn’t have a lick of faith left. Why can’t somebody preach both faith and holiness? Both faith and doctrine? And that’s what we’re trying to establish right here in this room. I believe it can be done. I believe there’s such a thing as standing in the pulpit with a miraculous ministry, for the salvation of souls.
If William Branom would have started out without backing away, saying, “Look, you’re going to be lost if you’re not baptized in Jesus’ name.” He believed in baptism in Jesus’ name. Or if he’d have said, “Don’t get into the world.” He wouldn’t have had to say that, but about twice, in one campaign. They’d have sold their televisions, and brought the money to his meetings.
Use it to embrace truth. But so many times it leads completely off into a tangent, and that’s what is very dangerous. God’s church is going to have a well-rounded ministry, or it’ll die. That’s why we need to find out what is our ministry? The church needs it.
I went to a church and preached three nights to the saints. The pastor’s wife said, “We don’t need that!” She thought all they needed was a big revival. The very time she said that, one of her main singers
in her trio had committed adultery with seven men, three of them preachers, and she said, “I’ve got some more I’m going to get!”
We don’t need that! You see what an unbalanced situation can develop? We’d better have it well-rounded.
A pastor told me he couldn’t get an evangelist. I said, “You want me to tell you why? I’ve been here a week, and they don’t even know I’m here. He gave no honor to the evangelist. What good can a man do if he gets no honor.
I know of a community in Holland. For over a hundred years, not one new person moved into that community. As a result they’d intermarried until they had married brothers and sisters, and they were literal idiots. Have you ever heard of point heads? They had them. Strange looking creatures. Because there was no influx of any new blood. What you’re going to do, feeding them one ministry all the time, is make a bunch of spiritual idiots.
(White) Agabus was mentioned as being the prophet that warned Paul of the things that were before him. There’s nothing more said about Agabus, and his ministry. But it is inconceivable that God would use that man for one specific occasion, and his ministry was completed. I conclude that Agabus was as useful as any of the other ministers. Because there is not any more mentioned, doesn’t mean that prophecy was through. There’s a number of the apostles that are not mentioned after Pentecost, yet it’s inconceivable to think that their ministry ceased shortly after Pentecost.
I’ve heard this argument on prophecy. “God doesn’t use prophets today as he did then. You’ll notice that Agabus only prophesied one time. ” That argument has no foundation. It won’t stand.
(Bean) You may think I’ve gone totally crazy, wild, or latter rain, but I believe with all my heart, if a man will walk humbly with God in the office of a ministerial prophet, it’s the will of God if I needed a word from God, if that man would stay humble. “I’m at the end of the road, and I don’t know what to do. Would you pray with me?” And while praying, he would rise up and say, “I have a word from the Lord for you. ” The office of the prophet to guide these other ministries into greater victories, or saving a church from falling, or protect their lives from physical danger, or a soul from failing. I’ve seen it operate! Who can operate it without getting the feeling, “Everyone comes to me,” has been the problem. It’s hard for a man to stay humble and operate it.
(Student) What is the office of a deacon?
(Bean) We had a certain place where the deacons were running the church, and I was trying to prove it wasn’t their office to run the church. The first time deacons were chosen was simply to serve tables. Evidently it developed into a little deeper ministry.
A man was so angry with me, he said, “Do you realize you have degraded us as deacons, to dishwashers!” The only foundation is simply, they took care of managing the supplies, and keeping food on the tables. Not one time is it mentioned that they had the governing factor. They simply served in the capacity of assisting the preacher in material things. Every day they had to feed the widows. They kept it going so the preacher wouldn’t have to.
I believe all the deacons of the early church were trainee-preachers. A saint doesn’t seem to fit in those areas. It does something to them. I feel the deacons were young ministers picked out of the congregation. It was a form of training to them.
In old Mexico, men come to a pastor, and say, “I feel called to preach.”
He’d say, “Good, we need a janitor!”
He’d make those fellows serve about a year as a janitor. This is the general way of getting into the ministry in old Mexico. He may after a while put you up as a choir leader, or a Sunday school teacher. After a while he’d say, “Okay, you’ve proven yourself in all these offices. Let’s go out and see if you can preach. Get up there, but don’t stay long, because you know you don’t have all that much to say, but I want to see if the anointing comes on you. ” And boy, he’d better fire away!
Then he’d say, “Go preach!”.
I believe there is a basic dedication for saints and ministers. Basic dedication, holiness, and a clean life. Then, when it leaves the sainthood, and goes into the ministry, there is another level of consecration. Often, we justify ourselves by saying this ministry doesn’t require much consecration. I would rather think that there are ministries that may require more of your time in fasting and prayer. All ministries require consecration, but my opinion is that there are some that would require more.
The life of the prophet in the Old Testament is an example. He was never to be bound by anything. He had to have a freehand. His time had to be his and God’s. That’s why there was no provision made for him financially, except the freewill offering. This is similar to the ministry of an evangelist or a prophet. There are finer points of consecration for certain ministers.
For example, an evangelist can spend more time in prayer than a pastor. The pastor shouldn’t justify himself, and say, “I’m a pastor, so I don’t have to pray as much.” But I know as an evangelist, I had more time to pray than pastors. That conscientious pastor was taking care of problems that had to be taken care of while I was in there praying. The liberty I was granted as an evangelist, are the same granted unto the prophets.
Prophets had free time, with no specific boundaries. It seemed that God fixed it so that man would have more time, and liberty, than the fellow that stayed right there with his office of the priesthood.
Some men have to pray more than others, no matter what ministry they’re in. Their personality, and character requires it. This does not justify the man that doesn’t pray. To keep my body under subjection may require more for me than another man.
I’ve seen men that had a greater walk with God, than I’ll ever see, and I had to do far more fasting and prayer than they did. The individual determines a lot, but don’t take this and say, “Well, I’m the kind that doesn’t have to have it.” You’d better not! I’d rather judge myself a little harshly, and say, “I’m the one that requires more.” If I go without praying, I am as lifeless, helpless, and useless as a baby. When I’d go to pray for the sick, the devil would say, “Yeah, look how full your belly is! How can you pray the prayer of faith?” So I’ve got to take care of that.
We get what we commit to God. Jesus did not commit Himself unto them for He knew what was in their hearts, even though they had already believed on His name for the miracles. He would not commit unto them anything further, because He knew their faith was only in the miracles. They didn’t want the doctrine. They didn’t want to eat His flesh, and drink His blood, so He didn’t commit Himself. The deeper you go, the more you’re going to get from Him.
God did not change from the Old Testament, how He would talk to a man. The way He talked to Abraham, and Daniel was as common as could be. After all, the reason God put man in the garden was to fellowship with Him, and get love and adoration in return. Calvary brought us back to a
lot that was lost in Eden. One thing that Calvary brought us back to was the ability to commune with God. Of course, before Calvary, God communed with mankind. This is what produced the thought in my mind to preach on the communication gap. It grieves me that in the Old Testament it was a common thing to hear from God, so why should it be less even after Calvary, seeing God has provided better things for us? I feel we, in our unbelief, have produced a communication gap that God didn’t plan.
He also spoke to the men in the New Testament. It was no different. He said to Paul to go to Macedonia. He told Philip to join himself to the chariot. It seems these men had a consciousness of the will of God. Somewhere in our thinking, and teaching, there has been doubt created. God has been shoved so far into the galaxies beyond, that it’s hard for us to believe He’ll actually talk, and commune with us. I’m convinced it’s His will and pleasure to communicate to my heart, what I need to know for the ministry. You and I need to eliminate that gap. We need to hear His voice for whatever we do.
“…Samuel” (I Samuel 3:6).
The boy didn’t understand it was God calling. He thought it was Eli calling him. I’m emphasizing how common it was for God to speak to those men. Eli was backslid, but he still knew about God talking to a man.
“…Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, Lord; for thy servant heareth” (I Samuel 3:9).
It grieves me to know that God would like to communicate with us, but we don’t walk closely enough to Him. There’s been a tremendous doubt built up. I’ve had God speak to me, and I’ve told audiences about it, and I’ve actually been questioned about it by saints, that have been in Pentecost for a number of years.
“What do you mean, God spoke to you?” Totally unheard of for them. You’d be surprised to know there are Pentecostals who believe God does not speak to us anymore, except through His Word. I won’t receive that, because of experience, and necessity. We need to hear a clear answer from heaven.
If I’m going to be an ambassador of Jesus Christ, I need to commune with the country that sent me out. Our ambassador to France would be ineffective if while in France he lost all contact with America. Can you imagine what chaos and problems would result if an ambassador no longer had any communication with the country he represents?
Brethren, it makes no difference how many have taken it, and gone wild. Anything to do with the gifts of the Spirit will have dangers. God has a traffic light for all this. You have a caution light, a red, and a green, and you need to learn the signals. Don’t ever get to the place that you so thoroughly hear from God, that you won’t accept teaching. We should have a communication with a country that has sent us out.
What if the United States wants the ambassador to France to carry out a certain order and has no communication. How can he be successful on his job? I don’t believe you’ll be successful until you learn to hear from the country that sent you out.
You can’t do that with frivolity, and carnality. Paul explained that you’ve enlisted in an army.
“No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier” (II Timothy 2:4).
You need to be single-hearted to get these things from God.
There’s a danger I’m facing, and every pastor and evangelist is facing. The duties of the ministry have enlarged far beyond what they used to be. It has become expected of a preacher to be an ambulance driver. We’re supposed to know a little about law. Someone comes to us, and asks, “What am I supposed to do? Should I sue this man?” What I’m saying is that the material duties of a minister have enlarged. We can become so occupied with problems of saints, and materials. I don’t object. I don’t mean that I’m grumbling tonight, at any duty that is mine. But these things sap you, and distract your attention.
This is why the apostles chose the deacons, to prevent them from the constant daily fooling with material things. Let us give ourselves unto the will of the Lord with prayer and fasting. As a pastor, you can go all day long and do nothing but attend to the material things of saints. They want you to go inspect a house they want to buy, look at a car they’re thinking about buying.
In addition, you can get involved, that you can’t have a singleness of heart. Several times, it has been a strong opportunity and temptation to go into business. But invariably, the Holy Ghost said, “You can’t do it.” And I thank God! I’m involved with a land deal for a school, and I’ll have to say even though I will not reap one penny (it’s all for the cause of God), it has been a taxing experience. I’ve preached against it, and I’m still against preachers going into business.
There are occasions where you have to work, for example, while starting new churches, if there are not other available sources of finances. Paul worked. We can’t deny he was a tentmaker. But I don’t believe his tent-making sidetracked his mind. While he was sewing hides, he was meditating on God. If you want your ministry to die, get involved in business.
That’s why a man cannot hold political office. To begin with, God’s against it. But if you want to ruin yourself, get a position. I refuse. I am too involved now to please my own heart. But a man has to be able to get alone with God, often, and think on God, if he’s going to stay in communication with the Spirit.
“But they that will be rich fall into temptation, and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition” (I Timothy 6:9).
You’ll have the temptation, because as a preacher you have friends around that can offer leads to get into business. Please believe me, even if it’s for the work of God, it’s going to cost your spirituality. This is the reason why many are not hearing from God. Their minds are preoccupied with this life.
“. . . care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful ” (Matthew 13:22).
Don’t ever think you can’t get your neck in that noose. Cares of life is not sin. It’s not going to a picture show. But they are taking away from you the chance to get alone with God.
Let me say this humbly, yet clearly. The sweetest moments of my life, when I had the greatest anointing, was when I was spending the most time talking to God. Alone with God. Not visiting with the pastor. Not visiting with the saints. Even sometimes having to leave my wife.
We’ll get into this down the road, but if you’re married, don’t forget you have family obligations.
“…He that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife” (I. Corinthians 7:33).
If you don’t plan to be a good husband, don’t get married. Plan to give your family time, because while you’re busy over here, you could be losing your family over there.
But without question, the most powerful moments in my personal experience were when the singleness of heart was achieved, spending hours alone with God. Not always praying aloud. Sometimes sitting, thinking on God, His Word, and His will.
I highly recommend that a young man preach his prayer. I don’t want to be misunderstood, because I have a lot to learn myself. After I developed to a certain stage in the ministry, I learned that I could save my voice without screaming, but I wouldn’t even recommend that until a certain stage of your ministry.
I was awkward in the pulpit, and you may also feel that way in the pulpit. Do you ever feel like you don’t know what to do with your hands? You don’t know whether to look straight at them or over to the side. You need to preach your prayer. When you go to the prayer room, pray with anointing. You’d be surprised, you’re actually training your body, mind, and soul to respond to anointing.
I beg you, in the name of Jesus, to not be satisfied until God is talking to you. I may go a step further and scare you, and all those that hear the tapes, but I don’t think you ought to be satisfied with mental impressions of the Spirit. Seek after a personal visitation. I don’t feel like I’m doing wrong to say, “God, talk to me tonight by dreams or visions.” I’m not too far out of line. The early church had constant visions, and angelic messengers sent to them. After all, He said,
“Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation” (Hebrews 1:14)?
As heirs, there are available to us, an angelic host, and they have different offices, jobs, and ministrations. I teach the ministry of angels to the churches where I go. We’ve had them minister, mightily! It’s a great asset in revivals to teach people to have faith in God’s angels. Not to worship them, because the Bible teaches against that. Some groups worship angels. Angels can’t bless your soul, but they can make your hide crawl! You get in the presence of one, and see! I’ve been in the presence of angels of God. They’re here now, but I’m talking about a knowledgeable presence that they are right there. It leaves you very weak. It should be sought after. This is of course a communication with God. It should be a common thing, when you and I live in a realm of consecration.
Men, don’t ever doubt that God wants to use His angels in your behalf. You can actually order angels to come fight with you and for you. That is your privilege as a God-called preacher, as an heir, to say, “God, send me some angels.”
I’ve assigned them jobs during the service. “The one that touched Isaiah’s lips, stand right here! You that have the job of assisting in the musical field, stand over here next to the choir. Go in the homes that we can’t get into, and stand by that sinner man. Every time he about gets to sleep, roll him over and show him a vision of hell. Touch him, pinch him. ” That’s not imaginary, that works!
When you start revivals, demons are shipped in to oppose you. It’s possible if you started a revival in Houston tonight, demons would be shipped from South America to come oppose you, because there’s a limited amount of them. Wherever the battle is the hottest, they call for reinforcements. That’s why in revival you’ll notice, if a saint is going to get carnal, he’ll get carnal in revivals. If a sinner husband is going to get mean, it’ll be during a revival. It used to be back in the country, that invariably if that cow would come in late, it would be during revival. That may sound ridiculous, but anything the devil can do to oppose revival.
If the devils can come in, surely we could get some help from God’s angels, and that’s Scriptural. Did not Gabriel tell Daniel that he was sent
“To give thee skill and understanding” (Daniel 9:22)? In Texarkana, we were sending out angels in a revival, and if He didn’t have enough for that revival, He can make some more, He made them. A woman said, “I’ve got a boy in Kansas City, would you send one up there?
I said, “Certainly, and it won’t cost a thing! He won’t have to ride a train or bus!
So we shipped one up there. Later on, I came back to Texarkana, and the boy had, in the meantime, moved to Texarkana. I met this young man after service. He said, “You don’t know me, but do you remember sending an angel to Kansas City?” (At the time we sent it, he didn’t know we were doing it.) “I was the boy to whom you sent the angel! I was laying on my bed one night, and a man clothed in white came in my room and stood by my bed. It like scared me to death! I fell down on my knees and screamed at God. Oh my God, save me! I got the Holy Ghost!”
Later on, his mother told him what had happened. We literally shipped an angel up there. This is a common occurrence for men who know how to use them. We have been taught (and I don’t say this unkindly), to learn to be good preachers of sermons. That’s not the only equipment God wants us to have.
Didn’t God send angels to deliver the apostles out of jail? Didn’t an angel stand by Paul the night the boat was about to sink? When it looked like all hope of being saved was gone, Paul said,
“..1 exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but of the ship. For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom l serve” (Acts 27:22,23).
That should not be a strange, once in a lifetime thing. I’m an heir! Since I’m an heir, that means I’m a child.
The big plantation owner has servants by the hundreds, and he has a boy, too. The boy is grown, and he’s suppose to have good sense.
“…The heir as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all” (Galatians 4:1).
As long as you and I are children in our thinking, we won’t differ from a servant. The child doesn’t know what a million dollars means. That’s why he has to ask his wealthy daddy for a nickel. When you grow up you ought to have sense enough to say, “Dad, I don’t like the color of that new Cadillac you bought me six months ago,” conscious of what dad owns! And don’t ever doubt it, my father enjoys bestowing upon me great things, especially for the service of the ministry!
It grieves me to the core, when I think about the total unbelief we have. We go out with our little sermons, and that’s all. We preach them, and nothing happens, then we go on and say, “Bless God, our
message is too hard, nobody’s going to receive it.” You give some of the things that God has available for me, and I could preach that the moon is made of cheese, and they’d believe it! It’s not the message, it’s the power!
That’s why Paul was questioning some young fellows, that had evidently been to Bible school or something, and got smart. They must have been good preachers, and had been bragging about their sermons. He said,
“But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord will, and will know, not the speech of them which are puffed up, but the power” (I Corinthians 4:19).
I’m not interested in how many big words you know, and how you can arrange them. I want to know what kind of artillery you have.
Brethren, we ought to be men. If this plantation owner has a grown boy, and he has good sense, he’ll commit to him certain jobs. He’d say, “Look son, I want this job done. Tell me what you need. Do you need a new tractor? Do you need more men? Just get the job done!”
God’s not necessarily looking at expense accounts. Cost doesn’t mean
anything to Him. He could give you and me everything we need to have a
hundred-soul revival, and still wouldn’t have spent anything. You’re
not going to run heaven out of soap.
“Get the job done, Son! If you need these ten men over here, they’re
our servants. They’re hired to help us. You can tell them what to do.”
I believe God has said this to me as a son.
“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on is name” (John 1:12).
I am a son of God, right now. Not going to be, I’m one, right now! We’re joint-heirs with Jesus Christ. We’re servants and friends. As an heir, I’m his son. As a joint heir, I’m his wife, servant, and friend. What I can’t get as a friend, I’ll get as a servant! And what I can’t get as a servant, I’ll get as a son. And what I can’t get as his son, I’ll get as his wife! I have four possibilities. And here we sit,
sucking our thumbs, and wondering why we can’t have revival!
First of all, let’s stop the communication gap. Second, let’s start looking at what is available for us as sons of God over this great plantation. Given to us are an innumerable host of angels!
“The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them” (Psalm 34:7). “The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them” (Psalm 68:17).
I’ve counted over a hundred million angels mentioned in the Bible. That’s not exaggerating Gentlemen, that’s the truth. Is this so far out that it appears to be a fairy tale? Right now, angels are standing at attention, ready for the charge of his sons.
We shipped them out of Miami, Florida one time. I said, “I want that train that filled the temple Isaiah saw, to go up and down this road in front of this church! They can go night and day, since they don’t need to rest.” You don’t ever see them sprawled out on the lawn catching their breath! They are tireless beings. I assigned that same train. They didn’t retire and go to the old folk’s home! They’re still existing the same as Isaiah saw.
“Go up and down the road outside! When people drive by, get in the car and ride a ways with them. Make them look this direction. Touch and stir them, make them feel strangely.”
One night I walked in, and God had given me a message. This time, before I got up to preach. I started preaching, and there was a couple sitting in the back, and the man came to the altar. He prayed a few minutes, then said he wanted to be baptized. We baptized him, and then he went back to praying, and received the Holy Ghost, and shouted his shoe off!
Then he told us the story. He said, “Believe me! This is strange, but my wife and I were headed for my church. The church we’ve been attending, and we got lost! We drove until eight o’clock, and we were driving by this church, and saw the revival sign. I said, ‘Well, we can’t find our church, let’s stop here!”
Don’t tell me an angel didn’t get in that man’s car, and get him lost, going to his own church. Don’t tell me an angel didn’t turn his head, and say, “Look here!”
They came in and he said, “Preacher you looked around most of the people in front of me, and looked square at me, and every word you said, was to me! I knew it was for me, and I knew I needed to go to the altar!”
They were in theater-type seats, and a lady was on the other side of him. He said, “I hated to walk in front of that woman. But without a word being said, she got up and moved to another seat.”
One angel with “Usher” on his lapel (statement made with humor) said,
“Lady, you’re in the way!”
Brother Duke was preaching in Sharks, and a man in that service rejected God, and was driving down the road. All of a sudden, bang! He went off the highway. He looked over at his wife, and said, “Did you hit me?”
She said, “Why Silly, no!”
He said, “Well something hit me up side the head!”
They knew there was something strange. They turned around and went back to Brother O’Brien’s parsonage, and received the Holy Ghost around one in the morning!
You know what it was? Did not an angel stop Muslim between two narrow gaps? Wasn’t a sword drawn, yet the mule saw him before Muslim did? You talk about a communication gap!
I wish I could shake you men into believing what I’m saying. For so long, it’s been pounded into our heads, “Don’t reach for such miraculous things, you’ll go off the deep end. ” You can go off the deep end. I’m here to say you can. But why can’t a man still be taught, still love the truth, still have concern for the brethren, still being in subjection one to another, preferring one another, honoring other men’s opinions, why can’t we do that, and still have visitations from God?!
Look what Peter had! Yet Paul said,
“…I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed” (Galatians 2:11).
Peter could have said, “Look Buddy, I’m getting mine straight from God! How many visions have you seen? I’ve seen plenty! I was delivered out of a jail by an angel! Don’t come here telling me anything!”
No. He didn’t have that attitude. He was conscious of still being a man, weak, and in need of training and teaching. God placed these ministries in the church for the perfecting of the saints, and to assist the man that’s staying in line.
Remove the doubts and fears, and available to you at your fingertip is the ministration of angels.
I was praying with a church one time for a man. I told them, “I want you to ask God to send an angel to him today, and make him know how hot hell is!”
He came in with his arm burned! That angel got him up against that boiler, and shoved him against it!
Angels can be a blessing to you in a revival, but they won’t do what you’re supposed to do. I was praying in one place, “God, send angels in every home, and get them out here to church.”
The Lord spoke back, “That’s your job to knock on doors! I’ll send an angel to help you, but they’re not going to do your door knocking!” Now, there are some homes you can’t get into, and they’ll go in there.
I’m going to use angels. I can’t do this by myself. You’re going to need everything that He’s made available. The gifts of the Spirit, the ministry of angels, and the assistance of the other ministries. I’m going to try my best to get them all!
(Student) What if a pastor doesn’t believe what you’ve been saying about angels?
(Bean) My ministry fell into a pattern. Men wouldn’t ask me unless they wanted what I had. When they learn what you’re going to do, and what you have done, you don’t have to sift them, they sift you. First thing you know, the ones which will ask you will want all you have. And always question them to begin with, “Do you want all I’ve got?” Clear the deck before you go there.
There’s a lot of unbelief out there. When you say you’re about to send out a bunch of angels, people will look at you like you’re crazy, but I’ve seen it work so forcefully that they couldn’t deny it themselves.
The possibility of a physical angelic visitation is according to the measure of our faith. If he can speak to me, mentally, and make me to know things miraculously, I don’t see why it would be much more effort for him to present to me a visible angelic visitation, or an audible voice.
I’d be afraid to say I have heard an audible voice from God, because I couldn’t possibly say for sure, but I’ve heard it so clear it seemed like an audible voice. I have seen visions, and I’ve had it spoken to me so clear, it seemed audible.
On one occasion I was in the church by myself. Now if people walk in on you and see you doing this, they’ll think the poor boy has gone crazy! But it didn’t matter to me. When you get into the spirit world, and a miracle realm, you’re going to forget somebody’s ideas. I don’t believe we ought to make a fool out of ourselves. Substantiate what you do with scripture. Don’t go wild. But if you have Bible for it, go on.
I went to every individual seat, and I said, “Angels, sit here, here, here, and here.” I pointed to the doors of the church and said, “When a sinner walks in, drop a blanket of conviction over him. Make him feel strangely. ”
I had finished saying this, and the pastor’s wife came walking through hurriedly over the platform, and I said, “Would you mind stopping and standing here for a moment?” I was going to test what had happened!
The woman stood there for a little while, and goose bumps came up on her, and she said, “I’m getting out of here!” It literally scared her so she couldn’t stand there.
One night I was praying in a church, and when I walked to a certain place, my knees would get weak, and it wasn’t a blessing. My physical frame felt the presence of a higher power. This is the way angels cause you to react. They can’t bless your souls. They’re not gods. They can only be ministering spirits to us.
I’d walk into that area, and I’d feel so weak, that I think a time or two I did fall to my knees. I’d get out of that area, and it wasn’t there. I felt God, but I didn’t feel the strange sensation. God made me to understand there was an angel standing there.
At this particular place, that night when the saints came in and sat down, it looked like almost invariably their hands would go up! I could hardly wait to tell them what was happening. “Folks, when you came in, you sat down on the lap of a big angel!” These angels didn’t bless their souls, but these angels prevented spirits. They can clear the air for us.
(Student) Have you ever seen an angel?
(Bean) No. I’ve seen Jesus himself, but I’ve never seen an angel to my knowledge. Maybe in a dream, but not looking at them.
An angel can’t bless you, but being in the presence of one makes you conscious there’s somebody with you. Remember when Joshua walked out, and there stood one? Joshua said,
“Art thou for us, or for our adversaries? And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the Lord am I come (Joshua 5:13).
That made that old boy feel good. He may not have talked in tongues, but the captain of the host standing around there might at least give me a little more courage.
You may all quit school, and say, “That man has gone crazy!” But, I’m going to tell you what I know!
I have been in places where God made me know without question that the seat of Satan was in that church. That’s Scriptural.
“I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan’s seat is”
There are spirits that can literally set up a throne room in churches. And I’ve been where there was as many as six spirits throned in the church. For years that church fought battles with those spirits. Nobody ever broke through them. They sat there as kings, reigning, preventing a move of God. I assigned angels to literally take them out of that church! You might say, “How do you know they did it?” There was a witness of the Spirit the whole body knew when it happened. I want you to know I’ve had them dethroned, and drug out of there by angelic beings! As a result, the glory of God came in strongly.
I was in a little church where you couldn’t get an “Amen,” a blessing, you couldn’t sing. You choked when you prayed, and preached. The seat of Satan was right there in that building. I’ll never forget the night that he was dethroned. I personally wrestled with Satan, myself, like you’d wrestle with a man!
The song service was going on, and all of a sudden I had taken all I could take. This was after about ten weeks of fighting him, and I was sick of it. All of a sudden, travail hit me. I hit the floor, wrestled, rolled, beat the floor, and rebuked! When I finished, you should have seen my suit! I was exhausted. I couldn’t wrestle with a man, and be any more exhausted than I was.
While I was on that floor, I said “God, my bones will bleach on this platform! I’ll not move until You move that spirit out of this church, and send an outpouring of the Holy Ghost like You did on the day of Pentecost!”
I was tempted to get up and sing a chorus to try to stir it up. But I was not going to do it. Who said they sung a chorus at Pentecost? Sometimes, Gentlemen, you’ve got to pray it down. “God, You’re going to do it Yourself. I’m not going to get up and say ‘Come on saints, come on, come on!’ Tonight, it’s coming from You, and You’re going to take that devil out of here!”
About two or three hours later…
(Student) You wrestled for two or three hours!?
(Bean) Oh yes.
(Student) On the floor?
(Bean) On the platform.
(Student) What was the church doing?
(Bean) A few were praying. When the spirit of travail comes that heavily, they’d have to be mighty backslid not to feel it.
I’ll never forget it. All of a sudden that power was dethroned, and when it did, I looked around, and exactly what I was asking for occurred. I didn’t see a saint that wasn’t either knocked out on the floor, running the aisles, or in some manner manifesting the Holy Ghost! This was a church where no shouting, liberty or joy occurred. That preacher was, at times, so depressed because of the seat of Satan, that he felt out of the will of God. The song leader would get up there and that spirit would grab her and put her into a melancholy spirit, and she’d start an old, sad song.
Finally, I stopped her one night. I liked the old song, but dear God, not every night in revival! I said, “Sister, I don’t want to hear that song anymore in this revival.”
The power broke, and a year later the pastor said, “We can’t have church hardly, for shouting!” Satan was dethroned.
To explain to that church, what had occured, I had some men sit down, and I told them, “Your name is such and such.” I named the spirits that were in that church sitting there crowned. I said, “You represent the devil of so and so. ” Then I got some more men, and I said, “Youre present angels. I’m going to show you, visibly what happened here. I’m going to be the voice of God. You angels, grab them and go!”
I made those angels grab those other men, and throw them out the front door! I said, “Wave bye as they go! ” That was a demonstration of what happened invisibly.
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12).
What did he say our weapons are?
“…Not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ” (II Corinthians 10:4,5).
At your fingertips, if you’ll be sensible, humble, honest, clean, prayerful, and dedicated, are an innumerable, powerful artillery. Boys, it’s there! Angels!
(Student) How do you overcome fearing the presence of God?
(Bean) I’ve had that problem, and all I know, is to ask God to take that fear away. I pray “God, don’t give me more than I can handle. If You see what I’m asking for will destroy me, don’t give it to me. Give me a deeper humility. A deeper foundation to where I can handle it, and not be exalted or afraid.”
There’s the exercise of it. I think that you grow into it. The further you get into it, the more often you hear God’s voice, the more relaxed you are with it.
Brother Huff Sharer’s father was very relaxed in God’s presence. It was common for him see a vision, hear a voice, and see angels.
They were living in a little tent. Some Camelites had burned their brush arbor down two or three times. This particular night they came on horses, and rode up to the little pup tent, and said, “Send the preacher out, and we’ll leave the family alone. Otherwise we’re coming in after all of you.” They meant business.
That tent was at the edge of the woods, and Dad Sharer told the family, “Don’t worry, let’s pray”. After they had prayed, and the horses were breathing by the tent, he pulled the flap back, and peaked out, and he said by every tree there stood an angel. The woods were loaded with them. Nobody said a word, but then a horse left, and another rider left, until they were all gone. What they saw I don’t know. They might not have seen it, but they could have. But if they didn’t, maybe the angels said, “You fellahs had better get out of here!”
When Huff Sharer was a little boy, he was sick at the point of death for days. On New Year’s Eve night, dad Sharer got his hat, and said “I’m going to the watch night service.
His wife said, “I never questioned him before, but I questioned him that night. You mean to tell me you’re leaving me with a dying baby by myself?”
As he walked out the door, he said “At the stroke of midnight, he’ll be made whole! ” She was angry, hurt and confused, until she didn’t know what to do with herself. She sat their musing over the unfairness, and his unthoughtfulness. “Doesn’t he care for me and the baby?”
Time flew by much faster than she realized, and there he lay in the corner. The old clock started striking. When it hit the twelfth lick, Hush raised up, and said, “Mom, I’m hungry!”
Dad Sharer explained later why he left the way he did. “God spoke to me and said, ‘You’re not trusting Me with the baby. You think you have to stay beside him.”‘ Don’t misinterpret this to mean you should leave home every time your child gets sick. But this was a test of his faith.
God said, “If you’ve left it in My hands, go on to church, and at the stroke of midnight I’ll heal him!”
We must stay humble, stay with the truth, and prefer one another. When a man gets into this realm, if he’s not careful, he’ll look on the other man, “Who are you?” A man who’s going to walk in this realm will need to stay humble, and prefer his brother. He’s going to love the ministers. He’s going to be taught. Let another preacher, every now and then bring that file, and go to work on you. I don’t care how spiritual you are, you need it. Brethren, we can go there if you’ll hear this.
There’s a man I’m thinking of right now, who’s been used mightily of God. But nobody can talk to him. A saint that gets to that place is dangerous. Always acknowledge, “I can be wrong.”
You’d better believe I haven’t seen all I want to see! Man, you better believe I haven’t. I’m fixing to hear from heaven!
There will be many times in your ministry, you will have to leave the gaiety, and frivolity. You’ll be tempted to envy. You’ll be tempted to get bitter, and bitterness is not worth what you can gain from denying yourself, and let God’s anointing come on you. There will be times you’ll almost feel jealous of other men. Other men, saints, even preachers will do you wrong. You’ll be tempted to despise men, and wish them harm. But Gentlemen, it’s not worth it. Let them go. God will handle them in due season. You stay in the Word, and keep His anointing on you. If I was to trace down every story that was told on me, where I was misrepresented, “Bless God, I’m going to find out who said that!” I might have been able to straighten it out, because it wasn’t true, but on the other hand, while I was doing that, I may have left this anointing behind.
It’s not worth sidetracking for any reason, from a path that leads you to a mighty anointing. The reward is beyond words, because you’re going to see souls pray through. You’re going to see saints and other preachers transformed. To walk into a church that’s dead, lifeless, carnal and worldly. Nobody praying through, and walk out of there a few weeks later, and the church is full of real zeal, burden, worship, and new saints. The preacher is on fire, and he has a new vision. Man, it’s worth every tear, every day of fasting, and isolation!
Oh, you’ll think to go with the party. I’ve had them to come by, “Go riding with us. Let’s go here, let’s go there.”
“I’m sorry, I’m in a battle. I’m a soldier, and I can’t be entangled with the affairs of this life.”
I don’t miss a day praying for God’s anointing to be on you. For God to make you preachers that we’ve never heard before.
There is not much of a gap between a mental impression of the Spirit, and an audible voice. I have no scripture that states the difference, but I cannot imagine as far as God is concerned why it would be harder for Him to say it audibly, or give a vision, than it would be to impress. I believe it’s a barrier of unbelief that needs to be broken down for that communication would be more audible, more vision. It’s not that God has to show us visions. Like one young man said, “If I can’t get the faith to raise the dead, I’m not going to preach until I get it.” We’ve got to do what we can, with what we have, and grow in God.
“…Add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity ” (II Peter 1:5-8).
We must grow in the wisdom and knowledge of the Lord, by using what’s available to us, until the rest comes.
I don’t believe that seeking for a vision should be the ultimate of our prayers. I don’t mind saying that I’ve asked for them, and I’ll continue to ask for them. If He doesn’t choose to give them, I’m not going to be discouraged. I’m going to use what He gives, until He sees that I’m worthy, or prepared for it. If we see or here from God, we’re more tempted to be exalted than if God would have simply impressed our mind with a thought. I feel that is an area of hindrance to us. God knows when to trust us. The more humility we attain, the more willing to give God glory, the more God can trust us with greater things. Which to us are greater, but I don’t believe to God it makes any difference. In our weaknesses, God knows we couldn’t bare it.
I told you about Dad Sharer inquiring about his wife. God spoke to him, “She could not bear it because of her nervous condition.” Many things determine why we don’t have more visions, but there’s nothing wrong with you praying, that God give you the basic foundation that would not destroy you, if you saw a vision, or heard an audible voice. Most of the men and women I know who have continued in God, who have seen and heard these things, are almost casual about it. Don’t misunderstand, they appreciate, and it’s great in their life, but it’s not so great that they get hung up on it. They’re looking for something else in God. They’re not making the total issue out of, “I saw something!”
I met a man in Columbia, South America, by the name of Jospena. He was a Catholic, then he became a Nazarene, and then, while praying one day God spoke to him audibly, “Jospena, go to Valencia, and you’ll find a man by the name of Larson, and he’ll tell you what to do to be saved. He had never been to Valencia, and never heard of Larson.
He caught a bus and went to Valencia, and looked several days, and finally found a Baptist preacher that was acquainted with Brother Larson, and as a result he received the message, and was delivered. He was pastoring ten churches by canoe, the last I heard.
He did not get hung-up on, “I heard a voice.” In fact, he wasn’t even the one who told me about it. More important to him is the fact he received salvation! To some people, it would have almost been salvation to hear the voice. You could have hardly got them beyond that point.
If you and I could adjust ourselves to not make a big issue, to glorify flesh. “I heard a voice! I saw something!”
The children of Israel got a little experience around a mountain, and they circled, until finally Moses one morning said, “You’ve encompassed this mountain long enough. Head North.” We get a little experience, so we revolve around it. That doesn’t please God.
“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before” (Philippians 3:13).
I believe he was speaking of both successes and failures. Be able to take success and failure, and say “that back yonder in the background. I will only use you for future advancement. I will only use success and failures to get more from God.” Why am I wanting more from God? The ultimate goal is to get souls. Not for myself, to make a ministry, to make a name, or to have people stand up when I come in. If you always keep the ultimate goal, souls, you won’t have as great a possibility of becoming exalted.
Gentlemen, I know of those that started out used of God, but they got to where they were hung-up on experiences. Jesus said,
“…Rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven” (Luke 10:20).
“…Whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted” (Luke 14:11).
Settle it! It’ll work. It’s a law. You can’t go around it. You’re no exception. If you get exalted, you’re going down. If you humble yourself, you’re going up. It’s a law that God said would work, and I cannot change it. It is forever settled. Anything we do, we need checks and balances on it.
God has spoken to me in dreams many times. I do believe it is a means of communication to our hearts. But not all dreams are from the Lord’
“For a dream cometh through the multitude of business” (Ecclesiastes 5:3).
We often have used the term, “That was a bean dream!” We ate too many beans. The condition of your body can determine dreams. I’ve been sick, and dreamed I was sick. But in the middle of all of this, God can talk to you with dreams. It seems He uses more than others, and why He chooses that I do not know. I don’t know whether I should tell you to ask for one. I do. When I need to hear from God, or even when I pray before I go to bed. Whether I have special issues at stake or not, I always say, “God, would You talk to me tonight by a dream or vision?” And He has done it very accurately. In fact, it’s almost scary, the things that God has shown me were to happen, or what I needed to do. Not only in spiritual, but in material matters.
The night before I went to buy an automobile, God showed me a warning in a dream. I was driving a car that I thoroughly liked. It was the right price, and I was excited about it. Then I started to turn a curve with it, and there was a strange feeling in the steering. A voice said, “The motor inside is in bad shape. ”
I forgot the dream, and the next day, Mother and I went car shopping. I found one I liked. When they quoted me a price, I couldn’t believe it. It was what I wanted. We got into the car, and at this time I hadn’t thought of the dream. I was about ready to say, “I’ll buy it. ” I turned the corner, and that feeling was in that steering wheel! I said, “Uh huh, mother, I dreamed of this car last night. There’s something wrong with the engine.” I drove it back up, and told them I wasn’t interested.
God would like to do this more for us, if we’d allow Him. And how much He could save us in worry, time and money.
“In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:6).
The old timers understood that lesson. That’s why they prayed over everything. Anymore, if we can’t get it here, we can get it there. For your own faith, health, and welfare, you could learn to hear God’s voice, more, even in business matters. When you go to establish a church, don’t go buy the first piece of property that looks good. Pray over it. Pray over your revivals. Pray over everything! After all, we’re human, and we’re limited.
You can go ahead with your own wisdom, and do certain things, and succeed, but on the other hand you may not. I want Him to be my partner in everything.
It’s not always easy to know a normal dream from a God-given dream. I’ll tell you how I check mine. If the Holy Ghost chooses to deal with me in a dream, my experience has been it will definitely disturb me. It will stay with me. It will become a source of burden to me. I cannot easily get it out of my mind. Generally, if God has given a dream, I will be left with a strong desire to know its interpretation. I will
start picking at and dividing the dream, putting it in sections. Generally, the dreams God gives you will be in parable form. You will dream not of the exact thing. If you are going to battle a spirit, you may dream of a serpent. Not always is the person in the dream the one that will be involved in the fulfillment of the dream. He uses people, and places.
Strangely, when God gives my mother and me dreams, often take us back to our old home place. That place doesn’t have anything to do with the fulfillment of the dream, but the Spirit carries us back there to show what He’s talking about.
So it’s generally parables, types, and allegories, and then you have to interpret them. There’s where searching and seeking after God comes in.
Was not Nebachadnezzar’s dream in parable form? Almost all the dreams are. Nebachadnezzar was troubled over his dream. That’s exactly the feeling that comes to you, when it’s from the Lord.
“The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream; and he that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat? saith the Lord ” (Jeremiah 23:28).
If you’ve been given a dream, tell it as a dream. I always make it clear, “This is a dream.” It is a safeguard to leave the possibility that it might not be from God. We realize that we could dream that our baby was going to die, or a loved one was going to die, and that would trouble you, but it may not mean a thing. The devil has access to your mind, even when you sleep.
I’m not going to base major decisions on dreams. I don’t believe I am scripturally obligated, though I know God talks to me in dreams, I leave it open that this is a dream.
I told you about a man (a Sunday school superintendent, drinking and smoking for seven years), that God showed to me in a dream, sitting in a bar, with a can of beer in one hand, and a cigar in the other. I never did find out, but I can guarantee he smoked cigars. All I found out was he smoked. This was specific. Very, very seldom does this happen. But God knew I needed that, and He gave me a specific man, doing a specific thing.
When I told the pastor about it, I said it was a dream, and I’m telling it as a dream. When I got up in service that night, the Holy Ghost by this time had assured me, by thorough examination that it was from the Lord.
I told the congregation, “I dreamed a dream. A man in this church…” I checked it out until the Holy Ghost witnessed with my spirit that it was from Him. It can be very valuable to you, if God can use you that way. But don’t lean all together on it. As I said, the devil has access to your mind, both awake and asleep. It can be difficult to know if it’s from God since there are three spirits involved; yours, the devil’s and God. Don’t ever doubt it, the devil can talk to you.
I was sitting at the Culdrid Bayou, on Brother Joe Duke’s lot, in my trailer. My wife and I were making plans to go to California. I was sitting on my couch, and exactly like the Holy Ghost talks to me, here came an impression. “You will be killed in a car wreck, on your way to California.” I don’t want to be killed in a car wreck. Is this God saying, “Don’t go?”
I want to tell you, I was in some dilemma, because never had I had the voice speak to me like that. The devil has given me impressions, but never before had I felt it the same way I feel the Holy Ghost talk.
I started praying, searching, and checking that spirit.
“…Try the spirits whether they are of God”
(I John 4:1).
All I know, when you’re in that dilemma, is to do what I did, I prayed, prayed, and prayed, until I said, “God if this is not You, let this subside. Let it die, and fade from my feelings. ” Which it did. But it never left my mind.
God is so kind and considerate, that if the devil gives you a feeling, and you will soberly and sincerely pray, God will remove that from you. You won’t feel it. But I always say, “God, if this is You, rather than remove, increase it.” And He has done that. God will not let the devil go beyond a certain point.
Remember, the devil has access to your mind. You could be talking in tongues, under the influence of the Holy Ghost, and the devil could drop an evil thought in your mind.
That’s why some men feel badly, because they’ve had an evil thought,
but thinking of evil doesn’t mean you’ve sinned.
“For the word of God is quick…and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12).
My faith is, if this is the devil giving me this feeling, God will only let him go so far with it if I ask Him, “take this away from me. Make the devil leave me alone, and hush. If not, turn it on stronger!” My faith is, God will do that. That’s the only way I know of how to check it.
I went on out to California, and had great results, and I never even had a flat. It was the devil. On the other hand, here’s a possibility. The devil may have planned this, and because I prayed, God prevented it. Don’t ever disqualify the possibility that sometimes God says, “This is going to happen, but if you pray through over it, it won’t.” You prevented it by prayer, and that’s why He told you. That doesn’t mean it’s not the will of God for me to go to California. It’s possible it’s still His will. But the devil may have been planning an accident, and God knowing his plan, said, “You’ve got to pray, because this is being planned.” And, because I prayed, it was prevented.
At this time I was physically whipped. When you get down physically, you can get feelings that you won’t get at other times. When your nerves are bad, and your body’s down, don’t trust your feelings. You can have some strong impressions when in bad physical condition.
Any deficiency in your body has an effect on your spirit, if you’re not careful. If you’re tired, weak, exhausted, or sick, your own human spirit is more active.
Elijah became weary and tired, therefore he got discouraged. It used to be that people thought if a preacher took a vacation, he was carnal, but you can get so tired, you’ll dread the anointing. Your human spirit can take advantage of you, as well as the devil. From personal experience, physical weakness can produce a depression in the mind and spirit, and this is where the devil can move in. Depressed minds are like shadows for him to lurk in.
Jesus gave us an example, when he was tempted after he fasted forty days. The devil came to him vividly. You’d think you could fast yourself plum out of the presence of the devil. But you don’t do it. He’s always there. He definitely has access to your mind.
You can dream vulgar dreams, and be consecrated, and dedicated to God. I hate them, but who hasn’t had them?
I learned this about dreams, or any revelation you can get from the Lord. God Himself will change on you. Here I am going along hearing from God on a certain matter, and all of a sudden, it would scatter. I believe He does that on purpose, to make you reach for Him, and He’ll start talking to you in another way for a while.
When I was praying whether to marry my wife, along came a flood of dreams. Man! I dreamed of seeing her in blue jeans, hair cut, carnal, and it scared me nearly to death. “My Lord God, are You showing me that she is inwardly carnal, and down the road, this is what she’ll be?” The devil got in there and messed up my radar. That’s the only way I can explain it.
Through much prayer, God also gave me a dream. But He was also speaking to me by other methods, in addition to the dream. If you start leaning one direction all the time, God will knock that prop out from under you, and make you start reaching in other directions. He has many ways of talking to us, and He doesn’t want us getting into a rut.
Dreams are valuable, and are an asset. God uses them because He cannot get our mind still, long enough while we’re awake to talk to us, so He puts us asleep.
This isn’t fleecing. This is following the Spirit, rather than watching some physical reaction. When I say “Increase this feeling. ” It’s not what I call fleecing the Lord. It’s asking the Lord to speak more forcefully.
The term fleece came from the man that put out a fleece of wool to dry and wet all around it, then to be opposite. So fleecing the Lord would have been “God if this is from you, have a man come tell me not to go to California.” Generally, fleecing is separate and apart from your being led of the Spirit. Having a difference of feeling in Spirit, is not fleecing the Lord.
We’re constantly in a battle with spirits, so God, take away those not of You, and come in closer if it is.
(Student) Last night you said you had a vision of Jesus. Would you describe that?
(Bean) I’ve had two. One of them was His outline, the other was while I was a child. I saw Him in the old building we lived in. He was sitting at a table, and I knew Him. I recognized Him as Jesus, even though there were people around him. In the vision, I was laying there talking to Mother.
I have never seen the perfect features of the Lord. I was aware it was Him, but was not aware of distinct features. It wasn’t like being in the presence of angels, because I was perfectly relaxed.
The other occasion, I was sitting up here on the platform, and I saw Him back in the corner. I saw an outline, and believe that was according to my faith. I believe I could have seen a more perfect focus if my faith would have been where it ought to have been. His appearance lasted no longer than a minute.
By experience, there is a difference between the presence of the Lord, and the presence of His person. He is here anytime we meet together in His name. But I have felt it, and felt to tell the audience, “He is not only here in His Spirit, He is here in the person of Jesus Christ. His body is here! He’s walking the aisles of this church.” There’s a noticeable difference in my feelings when that happens.
I’ve been under the power of God to where it made me jump, laugh, fall, cry, crawl, and travail. But there’s as much difference in that feeling when He comes in the glory of His person, as the difference between daylight and darkness. It’s more power, more affection. It’s more of everything. I don’t know how else to explain it. You don’t see Him, but sense the glory of His person. And Friend, when He comes, you know He came to do something, and this builds faith.
I don’t say this to exalt myself, I’m only using it to stretch your imagination about what God will do in this realm. I’ve been preaching, and on occasion praying for the sick, and people that I have reason to believe were honest, have seen the Lord standing beside me while I prayed. He was there, right beside me, visible to them. I felt Him, but they saw Him.
On another occasion, a person who did not like me, and had preconceived ideas about me, but he came to me after church one night and apologized, and forever became a friend, after this happened. “While you were preaching tonight, there was a glow over your head while you preached. I saw it visibly, and I am forever convinced that God is with you. I don’t glory in that, I’d rather my life convince them. But these are the possibilities when God is moving in a place to build faith, to help you as a man to be able to put the message over. The ultimate goal is the salvation of souls.
I’m not trying to promote myself. We’re on the subject, and I can better tell what I’ve seen. This does not affect my ministry one way or another. I’m going to preach the word. I’m trying to live as closely to God as I know how, and digging as deeply as I can. Constantly trying to advance in God, and then I trust Him, that as I need these things, He will allow me this. I don’t seek for these things. I pray that God would use, and give signs and wonders. I ask for that, but I don’t generally tell Him what to do, I try to live to where He can do it, and to trust me not to become exalted after He’s done it.
My mother-in-law is a very modest person. She does not tell three fourths of her experiences with the Lord. She has them and goes on, and they’re between her and the Lord. But she came to visit a revival we were having in Texarkana. I was standing there, and all of a sudden, the Spirit made me know that I was not going to preach that night. My mother-in-law told me very reluctantly and modestly after the service, “A strange thing happened while you were standing there.”
Here’s what makes it strange. As I remember, I closed my Bible. But she said she saw an angel standing by my side, and he took my Bible and closed it. Which confirmed to me that the purpose of it would be to make them understand that there are times when God doesn’t want you to preach. God showed his angel to assure me. He closed my Bible, and made someone visibly see it. This was to confirm that was the will of God for that night. These things are faith-builders for saints. It’s the only reason you would use them. Some things you see from God, you can’t tell anyone, or God will quit telling you. What is not for faith building for saints, and is not edifying to the body, you should keep it to yourself.
Some things God shows you, it’s not time to reveal anyhow. God may show sin in the church, but it might not be time to tell it. Wait on the hour. The Spirit will make it known.
You’ll have a lot of jokes made about your dreaming. They call me Joseph, since I dream so much! It doesn’t make any difference if God is talking to me. I’m going to listen.
“For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels” (I Corinthians 11:10).
I believe that every child of God has assigned to them at least one angel, for their protection as their guardian. Some men actually believe that they are alike. In other words, they are us, glorified. They are actually made in our image. This I cannot prove or disprove.
As a result, if this angel is assigned to you, or to a woman, because of this like image, it is a disrespect to that angel, because of God’s commandment for her not to cut her hair. It could mean that the angel
ceases to be her guardian, because she has broken the law of God. These are quick conclusions that I’ve always had in the back of my mind.
When you preach to a general congregation, such as a camp meeting, when you’re sensitive to spirits and needs, there will be almost a thousand jump at you. You’ll feel the need so varied that it will throw you into a confusion.
It was a common thing for the old timers to have the devil come visibly, to attack them. In fact, it appeared that those the closest got the visitations.
Brother Dowden years ago told us about an experience he had in prayer. While he was deep in the Spirit of prayer, Satan came and challenged him, visibly. He stood there, and Brother Dowden took his Bible and he started striking at him with the Word, in Jesus’ name. Every time he would hit at him with that Book, the devil would decrease in size, and back up. Until finally the devil was in the corner, and he was a little bitsy thing, and Brother Dowden gave him one last lick.
A preacher friend of mine in California, and his wife had gone to bed, when suddenly she said, “Did you feel that?”
All of a sudden this visible form of the devil, (In every case that I know of, he was seen as a very handsome man, and on some occasions, had no shirt on, and was dark complected.) The preacher grabbed him by the throat and began to choke him. When you attack the devil, you can expect a fight out of him.
There’s nothing to fear from the devil. He can attack, but he can only go so far. If you can take the fear of the devil out of your life, it’s like taking that wire away from that switch to that light. You’ve taken the source of energy. If there’s no fear the devil can’t operate in your life. The only open door to him is fear.
The seat of Satan can get established in a church in a time when certain men in the church get rebellious, and get the upper hand. In the one place I told you about where we demonstrated what happened. This was the place where the man was drinking and smoking for years. That man’s sin furnished a seat for Satan in the church. There must be some form of sin to open that door. A time of rebellion, no consecration, or sometimes a preacher himself can fall, and allow Satan to set up a seat in the church.
When a preacher exercises the authority God gives him, Satan has little chance to do this. The only time spirits can successfully tie a service up, is to have an open door of unconcern, unbelief, or sin in the life of a saint.
You may have noticed a church that has a victorious service one night, the next night it’s so tight you can’t even sing. When you see that happening, you can about mark it in your books, there’s sin in that church. That devil cannot operate that successfully, unless there is an open door for him somewhere in that church.
The reason it may fluctuate between an overcoming service to a tight service, is that on occasion the power of the faithful saints might prevail over the seat of Satan for a particular night. The next night the good, faithful saints might get content, and relax, and then he comes back in on them.
You have the human spirit, God’s Spirit, and satanic forces, now which one is telling you to do something. It’s amazing how “Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light” (II Corinthians 11:14).
He will bid you, “Come.” He will bid you to go in certain directions,
that he knows is a trap to us.
Not only in the direct opposition to demon forces in a human being, but you need to know how to oppose, and how to use the Spirit of God in detecting what spirit is present, and how to handle it in a service.
Sometimes a demon spirit will oppose you in a service. It will attempt to bind and tie it up. You may know what it is, but it doesn’t always mean that you need to attack it that night. You could be caught over here fighting over that one little skirmish, and lose a major victory.
I had one occasion where I went to preach for a man who had suddenly had an explosion in his church. In fact, when I use the word explosion, it’s not to be humorous, because I had a dream about him before I went there. I saw him standing on the platform, and the thing exploded. One arm went one way, and a leg the other. I told him about it, and that’s spiritually, what happened.
An official called him, and said, “What’s your problem?”
He said, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“Your deacon board has been calling me. ”
“I know nothing about it! You’ll have to give me time to check.”
Come to find out, his deacon board had met with a former pastor on the bank of a river, and had made plans to eject him. What a shock.
Of course, there’s more to it than I can tell you, because it would make it look like I was reflecting on certain things. Man-made offices cannot handle in their capacity situations like this. It takes the Spirit of God, and a ministry.
I told an official one time, “If you’ve ever done anybody good, you didn’t do it as an official, you did it as a minister of some type. Whatever your ministry is, that’s how good was done.” There’s no need
for us trying to substitute a new cart, for carrying of the ark. God has a plan, it’s supposed to be on the shoulders of the priests.
God’s method of perfecting a church is not using a man-made official. It’s the five fold ministries, and the gifts of the Spirit. That shouldn’t be offensive to anybody. I believe everybody that knows Bible would agree to that.
We started a revival. Every night this devisive group came out. They wouldn’t have missed. Usually people that are half backslid will miss church, but this bunch wouldn’t have missed for anything. They wanted to somehow break in on it, and tear it up. They had the word from another preacher, “Tear it up! ” You’d be surprised to know he was a well known man, and he’s still well known. He had been visiting in their homes, sleeping on their beds, eating their food, visiting them in the hospitals.
The pastor taught against wearing rings. The other preacher would say, “Ah, forget it! Put your ring on, it won’t hurt. ” All this was being spread through the church. In the midst of this, we started a revival.
Now you’d better learn this, or the devil will get you in a big mess. All I did was follow God, and He helped me. I’d have to calm that pastor down, nearly everyday. I’d say, “Man, wait a minute.” He was going to use every bit of his pastoral authority, to disfellowship the whole band, and get rid of them.
I said, “Let’s give God a chance.”
They’d come to church and stare at us. They wouldn’t worship. One of them bragged, “I can stare him down, so he can’t preach! ”
That’s why they were coming, to tie it up.
One came up to me one night and said, “Well, I hope you have a revival, but I promise you one thing, I don’t believe you will. As long as Judas Iscariot is sitting up there on the platform. ” (He was referring to the pastor.)
I said, “So far it looks like we may stand a pretty good chance. We’ve already prayed thirty-five through!
It’s amazing how God worked. If you let God lead, you will be kept from serious problems. But the temptation is, “There he sits, I’m going to shoot at him tonight!”
I would have spent the whole revival knocking on a few old knotheads! That’s what they wanted me to do. That’s what they came for!
We’d shout, talk in tongues, pray people through, and they sat there, hoping, “Maybe tomorrow night they’ll fight us, and then we could get a stink stirred up!”
Every night they’d go call this other preacher after the service. He’d
wait for the news after every service.
They wanted to fight us so badly. Some nights they’d walk up to me and say something. Finally this fellow walked up to the pastor and said “Yeah I’m in the flesh, and I can get more in the flesh!”
These spirits tried to prevail in that place. Satan’s tactic to destroy that revival was by trying to distract us. There are times to go to war, and times not to. You’re not always losing when you’re not
We could have been led off by fighting, thereby being pulled outside the city. Have you read that in the scriptures? Here came a few that hit the wall with their battering rams, and arrows. They got everybody chasing after them, and then ran, but they were attempting to pull the enemy out of the city, then the main army would move in behind them. This tactic Satan has learned. If he can ever get you out of your place, your orbit, or out of the will of God, he’s going to defeat you.
Occasionally, the Spirit would let me do at least something. Elijah mocked the prophets of Baal, because of the great victory and the power of God. He knew what God could do. There they were calling on their god. The only thing God would let me do was smear a victory in their face.
We announced a tent revival. It was in the fall of the year, and was getting a little late, but it still would have been fine, except our tent came in two weeks late. By the time it arrived, it was supposed to be winter.
They mocked us, “Ha, ha, ha! They’re going to have a tent revival. ”
It reminded me of the spirit that would attack Nehemiah and his men, trying to get them to come off of the wall. They said they were too busy. They didn’t have time to fool with them. One of them posed as a prophet, and said he’d better hide in the temple or those boys would to destroy them. Nehemiah said,
“…Should such a man as I Flee? and who is there, that, being as I am, would go into the temple to save his life? I will not go in” (Nehemiah 6:11).
I’m not going anywhere! I’m working. That devil even tried to use the temple to try to get him to flee into it. Anything to keep him from doing the will of God. Remember that opposing forces towards your ministry will do anything to get you out of the will of God, and into the flesh, to get you warring the wrong way, because the devil knows, you are no match for him out of the will of God.
So, sure enough, it was winter, and they were mocking us. “Who are these Jews to think they can build a temple.”
I said, “We’re going to have a tent revival.” It’s almost funny now. It wasn’t too funny then. We put our tent up in spite of their mocking us. We began to pray. This is a fact, Brethren, in that city for three weeks, the paper and the surrounding cities reported record-breaking heat for that time of the year! We had the time of our lives! We kicked sawdust, and prayed people through! And that bunch was saying we can’t have a tent revival. All this time we shouted, and ignored them. Every now and then, the Holy Ghost let me say, “The Lord is blessing this tent revival the devil didn’t want us to have!” But I did not take that group as a subject.
Now other places I’ve gone, the Spirit would make me do it. So you can’t form a pattern. You’d better follow that cloud, wherever it’s going. If it stops, you stop. “Why is it stopping here? We’re up on the side of a hill, and the tents won’t even be made level?” Don’t argue with the cloud, stop and drive your stakes!
It may start to move as you get the last stake driven! The kids are tired and crying, and the messenger screams, “The cloud is moving! Pull your stakes up, and let’s go!”
“I just got set up!”
It doesn’t make any difference, the cloud knows what’s best. The Bible said the ark was three days ahead of the children of Israel seeking them a place of rest. It knows where to stop, and we’d better know where to stop.
We had a time! Sometimes that spirit of opposition would rise up in a service so strongly, but then the Holy Ghost would give me grace to overlook, and ignore it.
I heard the pastor praying one day, and if God would have answered his prayer, there would been nothing left of any of them! “My God, come in this place, Lord, and send a storm in here! Tear every brick in this church down!
After church I said to him, “I know God didn’t hear a thing you said today!” He was anxious to disfellowship them, and get something done.
I said, “I feel like I’d like to finish this revival in the municipal auditorium.
The dissenters began saying we couldn’t get it, and if we got it we couldn’t afford to pay for it. Why God wanted this done, I don’t know. I felt the impulse, and the faith. Don’t move on impulse, you must have faith. We had our tent revival, it was going well, with the weather staying nice. The only time we had rainy, bad weather was on our nights off. It would clear up on Tuesday, and be clear through Sunday night.
I said, “It’s time to go to the auditorium.”
Those opposing spirits were doing their best. Anything we presented, they said, “It can’t be done.
We went to see the manager of the auditorium, and he began checking his log book of dates. He turned three or four pages, and he said, “You know that’s strange, for four weeks we only have one night taken, and that’s towards the end of the fourth week, and that could be put off! As far as I’m concerned, it’s clear for four weeks.”
“All right sir, that will be fine. Now, how much will it cost?
He said, “We normally get around forty dollars per night.”
For a small church with a limited income that was a lot of money. Especially if you’re going to go on for three or four weeks. They had to pay me, and the building.
But he looked and said, “I tell you what I’ll do. I’ll let you have it, just pay the janitor seven dollars a night! ”
I never had more fun in my life! We got into that auditorium, and here that bunch would come. You’d think they’d be embarrassed to show up, after saying it couldn’t be done.
We shouted, and ran up and down in that building. There was a thin wall between us and the fire department, and a wall between us and the police department on the other side. We’d go to shouting, and those firemen would come out and look at us. We had the time of our lives praying people through to the Holy Ghost! I think fifty or more received the Holy Ghost!
Still, nothing was done. Let me show you how accurately the Holy Ghost can work. Not one of us knew the plans of this preacher, and this group. We knew they wanted to split the church, but we didn’t know the plans for this certain night.
I was sitting in that service, and the pastor got up and started a chorus, but they weren’t singing that night. Something was wrong. He stopped and said, “Let’s stop and pray that God would give us the spirit of singing.” They prayed, and it was worse.
All of a sudden the Spirit spoke to me, and said “Take it right now!” I told you, I usually do not know what I’m going to preach until I get up there, but that night, while he spoke to me to take it, he gave me the message to preach. I waited a minute or two. You just don’t take the service from the pastor, even kindly, until you know it’s God. The Spirit spoke again forcibly and said, “Take it now!” I said, “Brother, would you mind, I feel led right now to preach. ”
He said, “Sure.”
I knew he felt that way. He’d assured me over and over, “Whatever you feel led to do, whenever you feel, do it.”
That’s a wonderful thing when you can work with a man like that. And if you’re an evangelist, always remember, to show kindness to that pastor.
I’d never ride with a saint, go in their homes or eat with them, without permission from the pastor. If you’ll show him that you’re not trying to hurt him in any way, he’ll trust you. It’s worth it.
I got up there preaching, and what do you think happened? This preacher that had met with the board on the bank of the river, walked in! Immediately the Spirit spoke to me, and let me know that the message was for him! I had already read my text and started on it, when he walked in.
If I hadn’t moved as God directed me, that preacher had planned to take advantage of the testimony service, and get up and say, “All of you that want to go with me, follow me out of here tonight! ”
Another point he was going to use, was to force that pastor to call on him to testify. The pastor had him in the church before, and gave him a big offering, because he was a missionary. He had treated him as nicely as he could, and all this time he didn’t know he had been meeting with his board. If he’d have forced the pastor to call on him, this could have influenced the whole church against the pastor, because they loved the man. It would be like me coming back here, and whoever was pastoring, would not even call on me to testify. The saints would feel badly. He was going to put the preacher on the spot, and when he’d call on him to testify, he was going to say, “Okay, anyone that wants to follow me, let’s go.”
But God was a jump ahead of him. I didn’t know he was coming, but the Spirit did. Instead of his walking in at about the time of testimony service, I was already up to the pulpit, so there wasn’t any chance for him to stand up.
I had a message for him, and you talk about anointing! The Spirit anointed me that night!
He saw we weren’t going to fight, and we had already prayed more than fifty through. I had told the church they needed to get a bus, to start bringing them to Sunday school.
That bunch said, “There’s no way we can afford a bus! ”
That was on a Friday night, on Saturday evening there was a brand new bus sitting out on the lot!
Everything they opposed, God seemed to try and hurry and answer it, in our favor! Because we were following Him. We weren’t doing it out of spite.
Finally, this preacher told his little group, “Let’s go across town, and start a work.”
So he gathered up his group. It cleaned the church out. Everything opposing us, left. He went over there and started, and it wasn’t but a few weeks, until they got in a fuss over who was going to play the piano! They split into splinters. Some moved to California. Since they had already left the church, they were too embarrassed to come back. The old boy that was called to preach, or thought so, was a little weak-minded. Just enough for the devil to be able to use. Would you believe, he came back and fell at the pastor’s feet, apologizing and begging, “Please forgive me, I’ve done wrong. I want to be saved!”
God knew this man would come back, but that other bunch wouldn’t. So he used him to lead them off, and get them out of the way, and it was important for it to be that way, because his brother and sister were still in the church. They didn’t go with the split. They were trying to stay faithful to the church, but were on the border. If the pastor would have ever dis-fellowshipped this boy who felt called to preach, the brother and sister that stayed would have been offended, and would have taken their friends and family, and another bunch would have failed.
The brother knew the pastor and I had never done a thing. We plead with them to repent, so he couldn’t say, “He was unfair to my brother. ” All he could say was his brother had led a rebellious group off, and it’s his fault.
In opposing forces, it’s not always in a fellow sticking his tongue out at you, and foaming at the mouth. The devil can oppose you in revival, or in a service, so follow God closely. Don’t get in the flesh and start striking. There have been more churches torn up over a pastor who could not control himself. When he knew he had an enemy, he took the pulpit, grabbed a club, and started in on them. You can starve good, faithful saints, while you’re trying to whip one.
It’s hard to go anywhere where Satan is not prevalent, but where evil is more prevalent, I avoid those places. We should avoid any place that might reflect on your character. The sinners know that it is a den, and here you are, a preacher. What are you doing here? They don’t know but maybe you’re there for the same reason they are. If you didn’t know it ahead of time, then you can get up and walk out. I have done that. We don’t want our good, evil spoken of. We want to shun the appearance of evil. Avoid those situations as much as possible.
I feel that if we were closer to God, and the communication gap wasn’t there, the Spirit could tell us these things ahead of time. Don’t feel condemned that you’re not always at that point, but we could be led if we would obey the Spirit a little more.
Sometimes you’ve got to go on in, to check out that feeling, building your faith that if you felt it again, you’d rely on it more.
Brethren, hear me tonight, I’m as serious as I’ve ever been in my life. The reason I’m teaching on these things, and trying to get it instilled in your heart, if I can. I hope you see more than I’ve seen. We are approaching a time that if we don’t depend on God wholly, we’ll never make it. I believe God is going to force us to trust Him. Not only for healing. I believe that too. I believe He’s going to force us into a position to trust Him. The Apostles did not get deliverance, because they called an attorney. They got deliverance, because they had a church praying, and they were praying. Their deliverance came by the operation of the Spirit of God, the works of the Holy Ghost.
There were times when Paul used only knowledge he had gained. They were fixing to whip him, but he knew what the law said.
“…Is it lawful for you to scourge a man that is a Roman, and uncondemned ” (Acts 22:25) ?
He saved himself a good whipping that day. I don’t think the Holy Ghost would mind us doing that.
Paul didn’t necessarily use the Holy Ghost, or a gift that day. He used what he knew was available, and legal, and I believe in that as much as possible, but the further we go the less legal things are going to mean to us.
A saint called me today, and he was very disturbed. He was from another church. His boss told him. “You Pentecostals, let me tell you this. In two years, you will either be in the ecumenical catholic church, or you’ll be a communist, or you’ll be dead! ” This boss was a Catholic.
It’s in the works, all these other groups are slowly going together. I can site you many cases. In Joplin, Missouri, a ministerial alliance voted there should be only one church in that city.
Up north, where during the summertime they can’t get enough to come to church, they trade out. What few want to go to church, they’ll line it out, “All right, next Sunday the Lutheran pastor will be your pastor. All you Baptists, and Methodists that want to go to church, are welcome at the Lutheran service. The next Sunday will be the Baptist, the next, the Methodists, ” and so on.
A young Pentecostal girl was working in Springfield, Missouri. She lived in Joplin, and she was talking to a young lady that worked in the office of a diocese. She asked the girl where she was from, and what religion?
“Oh, I know. We have the address of every Pentecostal church. Your church is on such and such a street, isn’t it? And you have one of your saints living beside your church, don’t you? We have the address of every one of them. ”
Now, that’s not for play!
One of our preachers was riding on a plane with a Catholic priest. He didn’t let the priest know who he was at first. He questioned him about the growth of the Catholic church. He didn’t let him know that he was a Pentecostal preacher.
Before it was over with the priest said, “It’s in the plans that we’re going to somehow conquer the Pentecostal movement. Our first step would naturally make the preachers back down or kill them. ”
Gentlemen, the hour is approaching. I’ve prophesied it, that the day will come in America that we will either join the ecumenical council, or face persecution.
The ecumenical spirit’s mainstay at this time is to oppose communism, and if you’re not in the ecumenical movement, you’re a communist.
Our missionaries are looked upon by the government of South America as communists, simply because we won’t join hands with the Catholic church.
In America, I realize there’s not that much pressure. How could a democracy ever get to where we couldn’t have free religion? I’ll show you how. First of all, if you don’t join the ecumenical movement, then you’re a communist. The United States government has laws on how to handle communists. You can see how we would not join in with them. But we’re going to be pressured to join.
This Catholic told this boy today, “Oh yeah you’ll join. They are already making plans to pressure the Pentecostals. The Baptists are already giving way. Next are you Pentecostals. You’ll join or die! ”
They’re going to worship the image of the beast. The image is a likeness to something original. The original was the old Roman Catholic church and it’s influence over the kings of the earth, then it got wounded, but that wound was healed. That Catholic church wound is being healed mightily, and they’re joining together, and there will be a mammoth church. But it will all be Catholic in sympathy.
A priest walked the streets right here in Houston, and waved at all the other preachers of all denominations, saying “Come on home to mother.” He was talking about the Catholic church.
Up in Arlington, one of our preachers was trying to get a loan, and there was no reason to be turned down. He had plenty of money in the bank, and a good-sized church. But they turned him down because he was not a member of the Federal Council of Churches. Every major institute that lends money is going to this route.
What’s this going to do to us? We won’t be able to reach out and get our lawyer. It will force us to trust God, and the workings of the Holy Ghost. I’m afraid we’re not ready for that. Our people aren’t even looking that direction. “It’s always going to be like it is.” I don’t say I know all about it, but I do feel these are steps that Satan is taking to advance and close in on us. We’d better have some Holy Ghost.
Sister Thompson in South America said they were meeting in a service one night. All of a sudden an old man, who had never done it before, began to speak out in tongues. The pastor sung him down, you know, kind of like we do anymore, when people don’t want to hear tongues, they’ll sing them down. After a while he spoke out a little louder, and he started giving the interpretation. “Flee, flee for your lives! Flee quickly! Run!”
After he’d given it out two or three times, the pastor began to feel the anointing. They immediately ran out of the building, and some of them didn’t get far enough from the building. They heard the killers when they came in the church, kicking over pews, throwing song books, and cursing. God knew they were coming, and they had it in their plans to kill every saint in that building.
The gift of the Spirit operating, saved their lives. I’m not saying to run a church on the gifts of the Spirit. I preached for a man that did that. He and his wife both fell into sin. You can’t run a church on gifts. They’re not to be used that way. But on the other hand, you’d better have something from God in these last days, or we’re not going to be delivered.
It used to be that you could pray in the morning, and get a real good blessing, and could last you for a week. But you pray this morning, and by noon it doesn’t even feel like you prayed. It’s the gross darkness that is covering the people. You need to learn to go back no matter what you feel. Even though we enjoy feelings, and we have our feelers out trying to find the will of God, when it comes to this human body, and how it feels, we can’t go by that. I have to make myself go pray many, many times.
As I taught on prayer, one of the best ways is to set a time. The Spirit seems to meet me better when I have a set time to pray, rather than wait around until it’s convenient.
The spirit that moved in on Abram is the thing that affects you the most in your prayer, preaching, and services.
“And when the fowls came down upon the carcass, Abram drove them away. And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him” (Genesis 15:11,12).
Sometimes while praying, you feel like you’re going to go to sleep. I feel it reading my Bible, more than when I pray. I can begin reading my Bible, and nine times out of ten the devil will try to make me go to sleep. We’ve got to fight! We cannot succumb to that. Naturally, you boys working hard everyday, it’s a physical reaction also, but don’t always blame it on that. The devil can literally make you sleepy. It doesn’t make any difference whether you’ve worked or you haven’t, if that spirit comes on you, resist him, and you’ll get through to God.
Besides, you’re learning to war. You’re building up your spiritual muscles for fighting in other areas. If he whips you in prayer, you’re whipped! Stay there until you get through. Don’t give to that spirit, “Oh well, I can’t touch Him. I’m going home.” Don’t do that! Show the devil you’re going to stay there. After you’ve done that a few times, he’ll know how persistent you are, and he won’t bother you half as much.
It helps me to get my mind on God by bringing to mind scriptures. I start in my prayer, quoting scriptures that will inspire me to believe God. Or I’ll start a worship and thanksgiving for things He’s done for me. I’ll focus my mind on past blessings. Whatever is hindering me, I’ll stop it, and go to something that’s working.
If you always pray softly, you’re going to have a greater fight with sleep, and unconcern. I don’t believe I have to scream to get God to hear me, but you’d better pray loud enough to keep yourself awake! I used to pray at the top of my voice, or I thought I wasn’t praying. I’ve learned better than that, but on the other hand, there comes times right now, to get through, I’ve got to scream at God. You can get into the rut of whispering a little prayer, and your mind wondering off everywhere.
A young man came to a conference we had especially dedicated to evangelists. He had never found his place in God. He was carnal, and wouldn’t pray. He had never found his place. I gave a little lesson on how to pray people through to the Holy Ghost. That boy caught that. It rang a bell in him.
It was a simple as it could be. I got a man up there, and sat him down on the altar bench, and we went through it like he was seeking the Holy Ghost, and gave a few pointers.
That boy caught it, and went with his brother in revival, and everyone he put his hands on, prayed through. They started praying through like that. He didn’t have any knowledge that he was called to preach, because he was so far away from God, but that made him pray, it made him hungry. He was liking it! The last I’d heard was he helped pray sixty-five through in revivals.
The problem is, that some of the simplest things can be taught on working in the altar, and at times it’s almost so simple it’s ridiculous. But I’ve seen preachers get up that could preach conference sermons, and even get them in the altar, but still couldn’t pray them through. As far as their preaching, they could preach, but couldn’t pray anyone through.
He either doesn’t know how to follow God in an altar call, or he doesn’t know how to pray them through when he gets there. Somewhere between finishing a sermon, and finishing an altar service, there is a missing link. God’s plan is after you’ve preached, for you to get results.
Don’t be like the man Brother Green was talking about who said his message was so hard, nobody was going to believe it. By the time he turned Brother Green loose, he had everybody convinced that his message wasn’t going to be accepted that night. I’m not teaching psychology, but faith cometh by hearing. If all you hear is negative, you’re not going to believe it. The attitude of a preacher can determine results.
If a man believes God to turn the power on as long as he’s preaching, and then he believes that when he’s finished preaching, the power cuts off, man, I believe God’s going to turn it on stronger when it gets to that altar service, because that’s the ultimate goal of a service.
There’s no substitute for a burdened heart. Don’t cease to pray for having a burdened heart. When I stand in that pulpit, I may be stuttering, and can’t hardly think of anything to say. But if I’ve got a burdened heart, and people feel that while I’ve stood and done nothing but cry, from a broken, burdened heart, I’ve gotten more people in an altar, than if I’d have preached any sermon I’ve ever preached.
People can tell if you’re a playboy, using psychology, or you’re wanting your sermon over so you can go home and eat after church. People aren’t crazy. But, when they sense a burden, and that you’re interested in them, they may be fighting with everything in them to keep from going to that altar, yet if you convince them you’re burdened, it’ll make the difference.
I’ve actually been so burdened I’d get sick to the stomach. I’d tell them that. I want them to know it. “I’m so burdened, I’m sick right now. I’m concerned for you.” If you can convince them of that, and talk of your burden for them, sometimes that’s altar call enough. Some folks think they’ve always got to tell some scary story, just express a burden.
You have to watch it in altar call, that you don’t go too far, and hinder what’s in the altar. I’ve actually done it myself. Trying to reach more, and maybe some that were already down there got up and left. You can defeat your altar call by dragging it too long. Unless the Spirit is telling you it’s tonight or never, and you feel so compelled to go on, you’d better leave it, even though you still feel it. If you have some in the altar you can drag it so long until they’re dead and lifeless. Besides, you dragged the saints through this burden, and it’s kind of hard, sometimes, to come immediately with heaviness. The saint may feel like crawling off and praying themselves. They need to have enough spark of life to bring life to the seekers.
A fearful type service is almost dangerous, especially if you have one or two that have gone past the stage of repentance. They’re in the stage where they need to be worshipping God. The saints still feel the fearful service, they don’t feel like getting down there, and saying, “Come on Brother, let’s praise the Lord!” They still feel the effects of that fearful service.
Brother Free said once, “Don’t ever destroy your possibility for a future chance. ” Unless the Holy Ghost has told you, this is all of it. Don’t cut him off. Don’t hang onto him until he won’t ever come back. Leave him feeling that way. I know you’re not through with him, you wanted him to come. Sometimes it’s good to leave him hanging there, because he’ll go home, and think it over. If you drag it out until the anointing leaves, he’ll go home and say, “I can’t take that,” and he won’t be back.
There’s an anointing to pray in the altar if you’ll seek after it. I believe in the laying on of hands. I believe there is a power in the ministry, and that’s where it ought to be, that you can lay hands on the seeker, and the spirit that binds them can be released. Don’t let it defeat you when everything you lay hands on doesn’t fall out talking in tongues. You’ve got to have the heart in a certain condition, before they’re ready for it. You play an important role in that. I pray with a seeker. If I detect he’s a new man, or woman, I pray with them. I repent with them. I don’t want you to think that I’m not sincerely praying. I pray to God where the man can hear me praying. There’s not a thing wrong with that.
Let’s say you don’t feel a seeker has repented yet. I’ll get down there with him, and talk to him. I may say, “Man, don’t be lost. Please don’t be lost. Please, don’t let this man burn in hell.” And I mean that, I’m not playing. I also want him to hear it. That helps him to see his lost condition. “My God, forgive this man of his sin. Come on Neighbor, ask God to forgive your sin. He loves you. All your sins will be washed away. ” Give him hope that he can get forgiveness. A lot of times they don’t feel they can get forgiveness. Give him hope. Talk to him, pray with him, pray for him. Put words in his mouth to say. He doesn’t know what to say. If you’d back off and leave him, he’d quit. He doesn’t know what to do. So it’s up to you to guide him.
He doesn’t know when to quit repenting either. So after I feel, and I see signs that he’s repented, like tears falling on the altar (lean on the Spirit to help you to know when he has truly repented), I can feel when he’s forgiven. He may still be repenting, but I feel his forgiveness. Don’t let him go on, and on, because you’re wasting yours and his time. You’re creating unbelief in his heart. You’re giving the devil a chance to convince him there’s no hope. Stop him now, and tell him, “God’s forgiven you, and don’t think of it again. Let’s love him now! ” Nobody ever got the Holy Ghost without praising God. Never have, never will!
One old boy, I let him go, and he repented for a solid hour. I stopped him and said, “You’ve repented enough to save the world. You’re grieving God. One time to ask God to forgive you, and He’s done it.” If you repent, and spend another hour saying the same thing, you’re saying that you don’t believe He’s done it. That’s insults God’s mercies. He’s anxious to forgive. That’s why they can walk down the aisle and get the Holy Ghost. That’s why they can stand in the back and get the Holy Ghost. It doesn’t take long to repent, if the person is sincere.
One time to say, “Forgive me. ” That doesn’t mean that if there’s things in his life, he doesn’t need to make it right. For instance, if he stole, he needs to take back what he stole. I still believe in old fashioned restitution. There are limitations to that. A man can be in a situation to where he doesn’t even know where he got it.
After repentance, direct and lead the seeker into worship. A sinner doesn’t know what to say. It’s confusing to try to think what next to say. All the words of praise we can almost say in our sleep he doesn’t know, they’re uncommon to him. The Bible has given a remedy for the seeker.
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13).
I get them to forget all the words of praise, because that’s cumbersome to them. They’re having to think, “What am I going to say next?” To prevent that, the Book said call on His name, and we’ll be saved. What is his name? There’s power in that name! You tell him there’s power in that name! It’s like hitting the devil with a baseball bat, every time you call Him. This is the quickest way to get someone through to the Holy Ghost. If you leave him to search out his own words, he’ll seek God for months.
After he’s repented, focus his attention. I can close my eyes an say your name, and see you plainly. I say the name, and it make me think of you. We’ve never seen Jesus, but it helps to focus attention on the one who’s going to save them. Whatever imaginary picture he may have o fJesus Christ, by calling on that name it’s going to make him think of Him. That’s who he needs to thin of, anyhow. Besides, there’s power in that name. And if we cad on His name we’ll be saved. That’s a promise.
So explain to them, “Start calling on that name, and don’t stop until you’re talking in tongues. Now after awhile your tongue going to say something besides ‘Jesus. “‘ Tell them what to expect or the devil will beat them over the head. Just as sure as he start to stammer a little bit, he’ll stop and swallow, to try to straighten it out, to say “Jesus.” Correct him. “Now look, you stopped, don’ do that anymore. That’s ill manners to try to talk when somebody else is talking, and God was trying to talk then!” Always say, “] it sounds wrong, it’s right. If it sounds right, it’s wrong.” You’re supposed to stutter, you’re suppose to stammer. Pound that into hi mind, because the devil’s saying, “That’s you doing that! Don’t b a hypocrite! You know you didn’t feel all that much! You got you tongue twisted up! ”
An old boy in Mississippi, after he had talked in tongues, I said “What happened?” I was smiling, because he had prayed through
He said, “Oh, I got to saying Jesus too fast.”
The devil made him believe that. Everyone that prays through has to go through that.
That’s where they get hung up. Just as they start to speak in tongues, the devil says, “You’d better not do it. You’ll be hypocrite. ” They want to be so sure it’s God, until they’re actually not letting God. It’s your job to pound it into their head.
One night, God told me this guy was going to get the Holy Ghost. So I called him up out of the audience. The service was dead and dry, nothing was moving, I said, “Come on, you’re going to get the Holy
Ghost.” So he went to talking in tongues and backing off.
People that don’t know how to pray in the altar, ought not be allowed a hundred miles from the altar service. Saints can kill them. That old saint walked up there, and said, “Come on, Brother, you’ll get it! ” And here he’d been talking in tongues! You can imagine what that would do. I saw him kind of dying and withering. I heard what that old boy was saying, so I elbowed him out of the way, and said, “Look at me a minute.” And he could tell by the tone of my voice, that I believed he had it. He said, “Oh boy!”And he didn’t talk in English for another two hours. He got so drunk, he shook hands with a baby. But if I’d have let that saint go, it would have killed him. And he would have become a chronic seeker, because he would have never believed in receiving the Holy Ghost.
If I see something going wrong, I’ll take control if I can. I made one angry one night. I said, “If you’re not going to pray, go home!” The old boy said, “Okay, I’ll go home, and I won’t come back! ”
I said, “Fine and dandy!”
I’d rather offend a saint, if they’re that easily offended. But when it comes to a soul, I feel that I’m obligated to fight everything to win that soul to God. Saints should be strong enough to take whatever instructions we give them to help pray the seeker through.
If the seeker won’t do what you tell them to, I tell them, “Look, you’re going to have to listen to what I’m saying. You’re going to have to be obedient, or you won’t get the Holy Ghost. ” When I see that they won’t do what I say, I won’t waste my time.
You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. Sometimes it’s a spirit in them resisting you. That’s not them. When I realize that, I take control of that spirit, rebuke it, and cast it out, to where they can be normal. Sometimes it’s a demon in them. They’ll hate you for a moment. I’ve actually had them get angry, but it was a spirit in them that made them angry. They wanted deliverance. Cast the spirit out, and then they’re ready.
You’ve got to have authority when working with human beings, spirits, either one. If you’re timid and backward, the devil will forever back you into a corner, and people will to. People are looking for leadership.
Some question me about stopping a seeker, yet that alone helps me to establish authority. “Hold it a minute.” Then, I tell them what to do. Why go for an hour, knowing he’s making a mistake, and we’re all wearing ourselves out, when you know what he’s doing wrong. Stop him and straighten him out.
We were having a fellowship in Brother Kilgore’s church, and they were all wanting me to preach. But the Spirit said, “No, I want an altar call. ” You can imagine the pressure of being up there with preachers behind me, and saints wanting to hear you. I minded the Lord that night, and this fine man came to the altar. I saw he was about to the breaking point, but I detected that was where he had been every time he went to the altar. I wanted to help him over that point. So I stopped him, and he was in the spirit too. Know what you’re doing, of course, but when you see an error, correct it.
I stopped him, and he told me later, “That made me angry! There I was getting the first good blessing I’d had, and I figured, ‘Buddy, you’ve ruined me! I’ll never get back into the spirit!”‘ But when I stop them I have the faith that they’re going to go back and get some more. My faith is that God will honor me enough. I told him what he was doing wrong. He started praying again, and he got the Holy Ghost, and started speaking in tongues. Now he thinks I’m the grandest thing. He was so glad I stopped him.
Here’s the way I work it in revivals, and even now for lack of strength. I’ll let the saints get with the seeker and pray them up to a point. It’s doing the saint good, and saving me strength. If the saints aren’t doing a good job of getting the seeker going, I’ll go down and get him started, and then back off, and let the saints take it again. Anytime you can let a saint pray one through, it’s best to let the saint, because of what it does to the saint. But I let them pray them up to where I can see they’re about to go through, and my faith is that when I lay hands on them, I believe with all my heart, that they’ll go right on through. Whereas I could have prayed them up to that point, and then laid hands on them, but by that point I’d be exhausted, and I’ve got a lot of praying to do.
I let the saints pray with them as far as they can. If they’re not doing too well I’ll move in. In fact, I feel an obligation if there’s more than one in the alter, to move around from one to the other and keep them all going. This one may need to be worshipping, the other may need repenting. So I run up to this one and say, “Come on, let’s repent.” I go to the other, “You’ve repented enough, let’s praise God!” Wherever they’re at, you feel, and work with them, and then back off and let the saints take them. At times I’ve prayed with them until they’re talking in tongues, and I’m pretty sure they’re talking in tongues before I leave them, and then I back off and let the saints have them. The saints will be rejoicing with them, and what it does is produce a healthier baby, because of the environment around them. The saints are worshipping with them. The saints are praying back through. It’s to the advantage of the saints to be right there when they’re praying through. A saint that prays in an altar will hardly ever backslide, because they have to pray through too many times themselves. I’ve often said in teaching a seeker how easy it is to get the Holy Ghost, “I got the Holy Ghost fourteen times, trying to get you to get it once!”
You need a discernment to know what spirit may be holding them back. The more you pray in the altar, the more you learn.
It may be unbelief or sometimes the Spirit’s made me to know they haven’t yet repented. Something’s holding them up. They’re not yet willing to give something up. I’ve left them, because I felt like they never got willing during that service to give up what was holding them back. I try to find out what it is. “Do you know of anything in your life, that you’re not willing to give up?”
I’ve had to teach working in the altar in my revivals, because saints will ruin you, if they don’t know how to work in the altar. You’d better know how to teach them, or you’ll spend your whole revival praying, fasting, preaching all your sermons, getting them in the altar, and still praying nobody through, because you let saints mess it up. I’m not going to do that. It’s too hard. It’s too important. If I see error in the altar, I’m going to teach the saints their error.
One of the great errors, is to grab the seeker and shake the living daylights out of them! Saints need to be careful about that. We were praying with this guy one time, and he was very ticklish, and these boys were grabbing him in the ribs. They’d go to work on him, and he’d bend over laughing, and they thought he was getting a blessing! And in reality they were tickling the boy. He hated to tell people, but finally he backed off, because he couldn’t take any more. The more he’d laugh, the worse they’d tickle.
When I lay hands on them, I try to lay it on their head. What if they have a sore, and you slap them on that sore? Maybe they’ve got back trouble, and you’re pulling on them. How can they get their mind on God with that happening? I keep that seeker where he will be in no uncomfortable position. If you see he’s tired kneeling, stand him up. In the first place, it will change his attitude anyhow. To stand up is
a time to rejoice.
Try not to spit in their face. A lot of times I’ll hold my hand between us, because they can hear me. At least I’m stopping some of that spit. I’ve seen men that had been eating garlic, and then they’d get up in the seeker’s face. Man, he can’t get his mind on God with that!
The Spirit will overpower a lot of things, but on the other hand there’s no need for us to have to make the Spirit overpower some of this that we can do ourselves.
That seeker is fighting the battle of his life. There’s more devils around an altar, than anywhere in the world. That’s why altar work is strengthening to anyone who does it, because you’re opposing spirits.
The majority of the time, there’s nothing major keeping a man from getting the Holy Ghost. Don’t try to make it major if it’s not. Every time a particular man would go to the altar, and kneel down, the devil would put it in his mind, “Is the cow’s horns above the ears or below?” I know it’s crazy, ridiculous, but it would make him so angry, that he’d get up. Then the devil wouldn’t let him think of it until the next night, when he knelt down. One day he thought of it, and looked, and got the Holy Ghost that night!
The devil plays on their minds. That’s why you need to be there with some words. “That’s not you, that’s God! Quit doubting God! Come on, man, that’s God on your tongue!” Because there’s thousands of demons, more or less, fighting their minds.
One boy at a tent revival, knelt down at the same place every night. When they had cut the grass, they left a stalk. Invariably while he was kneeling that would rub against him, and he couldn’t get the Holy Ghost. One evening, he went to another meeting, and got away from thatstalk, and prayed through.
The majority of the time, it’s not that much keeping them from getting the Holy Ghost. Usually it’s something silly. It’s up to you to guide over any obstacles. Put faith in the name in their hearts.
What’s around a seeker can determine what he gets. I emphasize that every saint should pray through. It’s hypocritical for the saint to tell the seeker to yield to God, when they haven’t yielded to God in months. A child born will be no stronger than its mother.
Often, those that pray through at the beginning of a revival, have more difficulties, because they were born in the day of bondage. The church didn’t have enough liberty yet. Those that get it towards the end of revival, are healthy, because the church is healthy. That’s why it’s so important to get the church where it ought to be in God as quickly as possible, so everyone you pray through will be born healthfully.
I hate to say it, but you’ll run into small churches that don’t want growth, because it challenges their position. It’s amazing, but I’ve been in churches that didn’t want anybody praying through. Someone might come in and get more attention from the pastor, than they did. If you want me to get mean, let me find that spirit!
“…For ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are enter to go in” (Matthew 23:13).
Take time to teach working the altar to saints. If you don’t you’re leaving that church, and the bunch they prayed through, unable to pray others through. You have the church moving in God, sinners coming, and yet you didn’t teach them how to handle it after you left.
The Above Material Was Taken From “The Works Of The Holy Ghost” And Was Privately Published And Edited By S. G. Carrel, 1993, Pages 97-181. This Material Is Copyrighted And May Be Used For Study & Research Purposes Only.