Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then… Eph 6:13-14 NIV
Judgment – Believers are focusing on much that is wrong morally and economically in this nation and the world. There is a stream of the prophetic embracing an apocalyptic future on the premise of God’s judgment. There is also a stream of eschatology that can’t find the US in the book of Revelation… which leads to a need for the US to disappear for their interpretations to be correct. For this issue I recommend reading Victorious Eschatology.
I want to freely admit that there is much that is wrong in the US from both a moral and economic standpoint. God does have a basis to judge this nation. The enemy has always had a conspiratorial design to destroy this nation. God has shed His grace on her many times in history. What is new is that many are choosing to put their faith in the temporary or permanent demise of America. Garden variety fear is very common right now, and I am tempted to call it a spirit of fear. We should not be ignorant of the moral and economic facts or of the design of the enemy in this hour. However, the real issue is, “What is God’s plan and what conspiracy is the Holy Spirit working on right now?” And then we should ask, “What is my role in this Kingdom conspiracy in this hour?”
Say to them, ‘As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, O house of Israel?’ Ezek 33:11 NIV
Standing in the gap – The problem with embracing the apocalyptic prophetic scenario is that thoughts and beliefs produce actions. When we embrace the enemy’s plan and call it God’s judgment, we effectively sign up for the wrong team. Our faith and actions kindle more fear, and help produce the result we fear and the result the enemy desires most.
Sin separates us from God and puts a gap in our walls that allows the enemy to pour in and the blessing of God to pour out. “Standing in the gap” implies both prayer and action to rebuild the wall; mediation between God and the people who deserve judgment. I’m simply suggesting that our role (ministry) in this world is not sending people to hell and expecting the deserved judgment; it is reconciling those people to God. People do resist Jesus. That’s not our cue to ask God to strike them with lighting or economic collapse. People change in an environment of love. We can’t help people whom we despise and judge, even if we’ve discerned that their actions are evil. We should be a source of hope. What is most surprising about the nature of God is that He forgave me, and that He starts revivals and reformations in the least deserving places at the most unexpected times. I’ve grown to expect mercy to triumph over judgment because I’ve seen it in my own life.
But they did not receive Him, because He was traveling toward Jerusalem. 54 When His disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them?” 55 But He turned and rebuked them, [and said, “You do not know what kind of spirit you are of; 56 for the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them.”] And they went on to another village. Luke 9:53-56 NASU
Looking for mediators – It is the nature of God to search for those who will stand in the gap to hold back the forces of judgment. He takes no delight in the failure of nations, and the power of love and mercy is stronger than judgment. He delights in preserving people and nations, even if there is only a remnant to stand with Him in the gap.
Moses stood in the gap over the golden calf (Ex 32).
Elijah thought he was the only righteous person left and gave up, but God had 7000 more (1Kgs 19).
Jesus is making intercession for us right now, standing in the gap.
Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them. Hebrews 7:25
…Christ Jesus, who died — more than that, who was raised to life — is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?… Rom 8:34-35 NIV
Our Team – We’re the ones who are optimistic about the future – even of our own nation. As Kings, we have the wisdom, strength and courage to reverse the enemy’s plans and contend for our national destiny and ministry. We’re going to make a disciple of this nation as a platform to disciple all nations (Mt 28:19). If there is a gap, we’re going to go stand in it through prayer, politics, or business. Whatever is lacking, we will add, because “we are more than conquerors” and we have the mandate and the power to take dominion over circumstances and demonic activity. We circumcise conspiracies. We know we win in the end… and in the middle, and at the beginning. Like Caleb, we have a different spirit and we’re willing to be wholehearted in this battle. Our goal isn’t to preserve our lives; it is to give our lives to a solution, to do great exploits in the name of Jesus, and to celebrate great victories in the Kingdom… and we’re not waiting for heaven to see it happen.
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. Num 14:24-25 NIV
The Lord thunders at the head of his army; his forces are beyond number, and mighty are those who obey his command. Joel 2:11NIV (reread all of Joel 2)
As Kings, God is calling us to have this attitude in both our prayer and our initiatives in the Kingdom. I’m inviting you to pray this prayer with me and share it with others.
Father, we stand in the gap for the USA. In you, mercy triumphs over judgment and you take no pleasure in the death of the wicked. So, I declare the economy healed and prosperous… the state and federal budgets balanced and the national debt paid off. I release the power of free enterprise in a miraculous and sudden way. Let technological breakthroughs and entrepreneurial creativity and innovation break out in a new golden age starting in 2011. Let “Kings” arise in this hour and fulfill their destiny in the 7 mountains. Father, we declare these things in Jesus’ name for the sake of your calling on this nation and for the sake of your Kingdom. Let her continue to be the light and the glory… the example to the world of abundant life, liberty, and justice for all. Let her create jobs all over the world and be the engine that blesses the nations (Gen 12:2-3). Let her export your glory and your freedom from a cup that runs over with your blessing. Let the righteous rejoice and be glad and give glory to the King of Kings. Let them say, “In God we trust, for He has done a great thing in our midst.”
PS: the video version of this newsletter is also available.
John and Sue
Newsletter – If your newsletter comes incomplete (filtered), you can always catch the latest version in our archive along with 200 others. 1800+ people from around the world get Kingly encouragement from our weekly newsletter. Invite a friend to subscribe – they will be blessed.
How to Start a Small Group – Kings are increasingly getting involved in Bible study or mentoring groups to facilitate their “Release.” Here are some helpful suggestions www.Releasing-Kings.com/Starting-a-Group.html. We’ve also updated our Vision Brochure with graphics to show how to become a King and how you can help Release Kings. Lastly we’ve created a guideline to help you take your dream to the next level by considering the elements of a business plan. See Write Your Business Plan.
French Translation – Releasing Kings is now available in French thanks to the efforts of Cees Bakker and Support Ministries in the Netherlands. In France, copies can be obtained from Editions Menor or Librairie Chretienne CLC. The Title in French is “Libération des Rois pour le ministère dans le monde du travail”. Cees is also the guy who made the Dutch translation possible – available through his website. He can be contacted for Releasing Kings conferences in France and throughout Europe.
Other language websites –
Face Book – I’m posting more information on Face book at http://www.facebook.com/john.garfield1
PS: I want to recommend some follow-up reading.
Who is God by Harold Eberle provides the best explanation of a more relational view of God. It’s must reading that connects our perception of God with everyday life.
Releasing Kings for Ministry in the Marketplace takes that foundation into marketplace ministry and the entrepreneurial nature of Kings. Fruit in the marketplace naturally springs out of sound doctrine.
Desire to Destiny – Takes the foundation and marketplace ministry and puts them in the context of seven practical keys or stages of growth you can apply in your own life.
You’re invited into the vision to release Kings; communicate the message, make the money, and do the mission.
1. The Message – Our first goal is to get the Releasing Kings message into the hands of the messengers that will carry it… do it, preach it, teach it, example it.
2. The Money – The second goal is to help Kings break out of poverty by networking them with practical opportunities to prosper. We want to introduce them to the right people, the right opportunity, and the right financial approach.
3. The Mission – Network Kings with opportunities to mix business and missions. Accomplish the great commission through the marketplace and occupy the Seven mountains of: business, media, arts & entertainment, education, family and government in addition to the church. See video #1 and video #2