A Different Spirit

Numbers 14:24 (NIV), “But because my servant Caleb has a different spirit and follows me wholeheartedly, I will bring him into the land he went to, and his descendants will inherit it.”

God brought the Hebrew slaves out of Egypt, miraculously. Thier constant grumbling and complaining had finally gotten so out of hand that God tells Moses that He will scatter and destroy them all. In their place God promises to make a great nation out of Moses.

Think about this for a minute, if God’s patience was tried, what do you think poor Moses was feeling? Had I been him, I would have probably jumped at the chance to be rid of the great responsibility of leading an ungrateful people. Not Moses. He reasons with God and he prays for God to show mercy.

Numbers 14:17-19 (NASB), “But now, I pray, let the power of the Lord be great, just as You have declared, ‘The LORD is slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generations.’ “Pardon, I pray, the iniquity of this people according to the greatness of Your lovingkindness, just as You also have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.””

Of course God relents and this is what He tells Moses in Verses 20-24,

“So the LORD said, “I have pardoned them according to your word; but indeed, as I live, all the earth will be filled with the glory of the LORD. “Surely all the men who have seen My glory and My signs which I performed in Egypt and in the wilderness, yet have put Me to the test these ten times and have not listened to My voice, shall by no means see the land which I swore to their fathers, nor shall any of those who spurned Me see it. “But My servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it.”

Those who didn’t trust God, or the leader God placed over them, were not going to see the Promised Land. They instead, would die in the wilderness. They brought a bad report and believed a lie rather than the promises of God.

Fear and unbelief always questions, “Is it really mine?” and “Does He really want to do this for me?”

That wasn’t Caleb.

Notice that God said of him, “But my servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it.”

God calls Caleb “My servant.” Then points out that he has a completely different attitude than the others, and in some versions it says he wholeheartedly followed God or that he remained loyal.

Fear may question God, but Faith says, “If God said it, then it is true and He will do it.”

Out of all those people who came out of Egypt, all of the adult, only two got to enter into the Land that was promised, Caleb and Joshua. Not even Moses ended up going in because he disobeyed God in his own anger and impatience with the people. Another forty years of wondering in the desert was added to their time. Each person who hung on to the slave mentality died in that desert. Each one who lived in unbelief and couldn’t seem to take hold of faith, perished.

However, those who trusted God, were loyal, remained in faith, those men got a portion of the inheritance. Not just with their tribes, or part of a group. God blessed them each with their own land.

Those that perished are a warning to us, and those that received their blessing are a promise.

Hebrews 10: 35-39 (BSB), “So do not throw away your confidence; it holds a great reward. You need to persevere, so that after you have done God’s will, you will receive what He has promised. For, “In just a very while little, He who is coming will come and will not delay. But My righteous one will live by faith; and if he shrinks back, I will take no pleasure in him.” But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.”

What spirit is in you?

Unveiled

Exodus 34:29-35 (The Message Bible), “When Moses came down from Mount Sinai carrying the two Tablets of The Testimony, he didn’t know that the skin of his face glowed because he had been speaking with God. Aaron and all the Israelites saw Moses, saw his radiant face, and held back, afraid to get close to him. Moses called out to them. Aaron and the leaders in the community came back and Moses talked with them. Later all the Israelites came up to him and he passed on the commands, everything that God had told him on Mount Sinai. When Moses finished speaking with them, he put a veil over his face, but when he went into the presence of God to speak with him, he removed the veil until he came out. When he came out and told the Israelites what he had been commanded, they would see Moses’ face, its skin glowing, and then he would again put the veil on his face until he went back in to speak with God.”

II Corinthians 3:7-8 (NASB), “But if the ministry of death, in letters engraved on stones, came with glory, so that the sons of Israel could not look intently at the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, fading as it was, how will the ministry of the Spirit fail to be even more with glory?”

Moses had just come from the presence of God. What was the people’s reaction? They couldn’t handle the shine. He had to veil his face. God’s glory was such that there had to be a veil that kept anyone from entering the Holy of Holies. Human hearts couldn’t handle the glory. Our sin was like that veil keeping us from coming into the Throne Room. This didn’t please the Father, so He fixed it.

II Corinthians 3:18 (KJB), “ But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.”

Praise God, He sent Jesus to die on the cross for us. At His death, that veil was torn in two. Now nothing separates us from God. We come before him with unveiled faces and unveiled hearts. We have full access to the Father, not even a sheer piece of material in the way. There is nothing between us and Him.

II Corinthians 3:18 (Passion Translation), “We can all draw close to him with the veil removed from our faces. And with no veil we all become like mirrors who brightly reflect the glory of the Lord Jesus, We are being transfigured into his very image as we move from one brighter level of glory to another. And this glorious transfiguration comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”

If that doesn’t get you excited, this will- and now we are being transfigured into that very Image of Glory! We are becoming just like Jesus!

Prayer and Relationship

Work at your relationship with God. God can and will answer prayers of the unsaved, just because He loves people and wants to bless. He is sovereign and can bless whoever He wants to, however there is no promise or guarantee that He will. If you want your prayers to be effective, you must be in a relationship with the one who has all the answers. We know that we have to pray according to God’s will and we can never know His will without intimacy with Him.

Acts 19:13-17 (NIV), “Some Jews who went around driving out evil spirits tried to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who were demon-possessed. They would say, “In the name of the Jesus whom Paul preaches, I command you to come out.” Seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. One day the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know about, but who are you?” Then the man who had the evil spirit jumped on them and overpowered them all. He gave them such a beating that they ran out of the house naked and bleeding.”

This is a great example of how important it is to not just use the name of Jesus, but know Him as a person. These foolish sons of Sceva had heard of Jesus, but didn’t know Him at all.

In the Passion Translation, this was written in the study notes on these verses in Acts,

“True authority comes from relationship with Jesus Christ, not just using formulas or techniques. Evil spirits know about the depth of our relationship with God.”

Evil spirits know who they have to obey! Make sure you are in a right relationship with Jesus, because that is where our authority comes from. These Jews were using the name of Jesus as a technique, lacking all the power and authority.

What Are You Hungry For?

Our Church does a corporate fast every January. A time of pressing in to the Father, praying, and reading our Bibles. This is a spiritual fast, not a diet. Some opt to skip a meal and spend the time in prayer, others do a “Daniel Fast” eating only fruits and vegetables, quite a few do an “African Fast” where they eat only one small evening meal daily, and others choose to drink fresh fruit juice and veggie soup. A few choose to do a water fast where the only thing that passes their mouths is water. We are encouraged to at least do three days of the water fast. I have tried each of the above types of fasting and usually do a couple over the month of January.

I am now on my second day of a three day water fast. The first day, I literally thought I was starving. I even dreamed of food that night as I slept. When you are trying to fast, or even diet for physical reasons, it seems like every commercial is about food, every pin on your Pinterest page is some new wonderful recipe to try. You get hungry…for anything.

When I am not fasting, I may feel hungry, but not be really sure what I am hungry for. You may find me standing in front of the fridge looking at what is available. Or I might think I am hungry for something sweet, only to be looking for something salty right after I eat that cookie. We have all experienced physical hunger. However, there is another type of hunger. It was placed in each one of us. Sometimes we mistake it for a physical hunger, which probably explains standing in front of the fridge looking for some elusive fix.

Matthew 5:6 (ISV), “”How blessed are those who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because it is they who will be satisfied!”

This verse makes me ask the question, “Where is my appetite?” Is it for entertainment, for sports, for crafting, for anything to keep me busy, or is an unnatural appetite for food?

Jesus said that His “food” was to do the will of the Father and to finish His work.

What are you hungry for?

Building Your Faith

Romans 12:3 (KJB), “For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.”

We have all been given the measure of faith. I always felt like somehow I was lacking in faith, yet repeatedly guest speakers, prophets, and my own pastors would tell me that I was “full of faith” or “faithful.” Then I would feel kind of proud of myself, like I did something. Then the next trial would come, it would pull the rug out from under my feet and I would pray for more faith. I knew that “Faith came by hearing the word of God,” so I read my Bible sometimes even out loud, but I still had faith issues. Yes, I needed to hear God speaking to me through His word; I needed to find out what He had to say about me, life, and how to live it. However, I also needed to grow or build my faith by doing what that word said.

That is what God was trying to tell me through those pastors and prophets. Not that I had done something right, just that God had already given me the measure of faith. I owned it. I wasn’t lacking faith, I just wasn’t walking by faith. What had been given to me wasn’t being used right, or enough to make it grow.

While praying about faith, God showed me a can of hairspray. When we purchase it, the can is full of hairspray. We know it is there so we can push the nozzle and we know the sticky stuff will come out. We are that can. When we surrender to the Lord, He fills us up with everything we will need to walk with Him. We need to have to believe that when we push that nozzle of faith, that what is inside of us will come up. Think of the nozzle as God’s word. What does He say? Then walk out in faith in that word and the God that backs His word.

So we don’t need more faith, we just have to build up what we have already been given. If you need stronger arms, you don’t pray for another bicep, you work the one you have until it gets stronger. Our faith never gets stronger until we step out. For example, when we first hear a tithing message that explains why we tithe and what the blessings are, we step out and write that check, believing that what God said is true and that we will reap what we sow. Then, when He proves His word true and we have more money at the end of the month, our faith in His word grows. The same is when we receive a healing, no matter what the symptoms are, how we feel physically, we rise up and walk. We get out of bed and do what we don’t feel like doing. This is standing on His word, walking in faith, and how we strengthen our faith.

When God promises that we lack no good thing, this includes faith. We aren’t lacking! He gave faith to us as a gift. We just have to build up our faith muscles.

“Regardless of circumstances, regardless of influences about us, let us turn every problem into His care.Your worst enemy is yourself. It has come through Sense Knowledge that would limit you to your own ability.The language of the Senses is:”I can’t, I haven’t the ability, I haven’t the strength, I don’ have the opportunity, I have no education, I have been limited.”The language of faith says, “I can do all things in Him who strengtheneth me.””~E.W. Kenyon

I Get Him

Luke 7: 1-10 (Berean Study Bible), “When Jesus had concluded His discourse in the hearing of the people, He went to Capernaum. There a highly valued servant of a centurion was sick and about to die. When the centurion heard about Jesus, he sent some Jewish elders to ask Him to come and heal his servant. They came to Jesus and pleaded with Him earnestly, “This man is worthy to have You grant this, for he loves our nation and has built our synagogue.” So Jesus went with them. But when He was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends with the message: “Lord, do not trouble Yourself, for I am not worthy to have You come under my roof. That is why I did not consider myself worthy to come to You. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell one to go, and he goes; and another to come, and he comes. I tell my servant to do something, and he does it.” When Jesus heard this, He was amazed at the centurion. Turning to the crowd following Him, He said, “I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such great faith!” And when the messengers returned to the house, they found the servant in good health.

Jesus found this non-Jewish man’s faith to be something to comment on. He wanted to make sure that we all remembered this centurion’s words. “Just say the word.” He believed in the authority of Jesus and His word. This was before Jesus’ death and resurrection, before the Holy Spirit, yet this man had the faith that his servant would be healed simple because Jesus said he would.

What about us? We who know the price Jesus paid for our sin and our sickness, we who have the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, we have access to His word, bible teachers, preachers, and direct access to the throne room of God, shouldn’t we have such faith.

If God said it then it is so. If He promised, He will do it. It is already settled in Heaven. Jesus shed His blood to take away our sin. He allowed His body to be broken and bruised to take away our sickness. God hates both sin and sickness, they aren’t allowed in Heaven. We need the kind of faith that says “at your word, Lord, so be it!” If we have anything less, we aren’t pleasing Him.

Hebrews 11:6 (Berean Literal Bible), “And without faith, it is impossible to please Him. For it behooves the one drawing near to God to believe that He exists and that He becomes a rewarder to those earnestly seeking Him out.”

Paul knew about this kind of faith. That’s why he could say to those manning a floundering ship that had been driven by a storm for two weeks: “So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me.” Acts 27:25 (NIV) That’s why he could shake off that poisonous serpent.

The very best thing about this kind of faith, in this time of grace, is that it gets us more of Him. It isn’t that my faith gets me money, or health, or a great husband, and the perfect job. It gets us Him! The more we learn about who He is, who we are to Him, His promises and plans for us, what He has already done, His finished work, the closer our relationship with Him. This builds our faith, and our trust, and our love for Him.

What more do we need? When we get Him, we get it all.

Book Review for “A Heart Like His”- Christian Non-Fiction

What the book is about: “We all go through times when we feel insignificant or times when we feel certain that we have experienced a degree of failure from which there is no return. This is not a reality we experience alone, but is one that a man after God’s heart experienced as well. From shepherd, to refugee, to king of Israel, David exhibited the purest virtues and the most heinous sinfulness, but through it all his relationship with the Lord continued to grow.

A Heart Like His looks at this bond of mutual love and admiration between a man who was not unlike any of us and the one true God who is all good and all powerful. Beth Moore walks us through an exploration of David’s incredible life, drawing spiritual insights from a man who boldly fulfilled his divine destiny not merely by what he did, but who he loved and served. Bringing lessons from David’s life to bear on your own, this picture of a man who loved and followed God will help you to serve with a heart focused on Him no matter the circumstance.”

My Review: This is a great book on the life of David. His faith, his love for God, his sins, and his redemption. We all go through some stuff on our path. If you need some encouragement this is a good book for you. Beth Moore is an inspiring author. I can recommend for teens and up. I give it five stars.

Get it here.