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Archive for April 17th, 2017

from JO’s sermon tonight:

in the Old Testament, the only way that they could have forgiveness for sins was to sacrifice an animal; without the shedding of blood, there was no remission for sin. every year, the high priest would go into the holy of holies, the most sacred place in the temple, and offer a sacrifice for his sins and the sins of all the people; it was called the day of atonement. If the sacrifice was acceptable, their sins would not be taken away, they would be covered; they would be good for another year. if everything wasn’t perfect, the sacrifice wouldn’t be acceptable; they wouldn’t have God’s blessing.

God wanted to make a new covenant that would permanently take care of sin, but it would take a special kind of sacrifice; the blood of goats and bulls wasn’t good enough. one day, when John the Baptist was ministering:

John 1:29 (ESV)
29 he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!

when Jesus shed his blood and died on the cross:

Hebrews 9:12 (CEB)
12 He entered the holy of holies once for all by his own blood, not by the blood of goats or calves, securing our deliverance for all time.

his blood put an end to the old system of sacrificing again and again, hoping that we would be forgiven. now, we can live with the confidence that all of our sins, past, present and future, have been, not just temporarily atoned for, but washed away; this is the power of the blood.

when Jesus hung on the cross, he took all of our mistakes, failures, weaknesses, all the times we’ve blown it or ever will blow it, and forgave it. God has already forgiven you.

but this sacrifice won’t do you any good if you don’t receive it. if you go around guilty, condemned, trying to pay God back for your mistakes, no, the price has already been paid. receive His mercy, love. every day; “Father, thank You that I am forgiven, redeemed.” the accuser will tell you just the opposite; “God’s not going to forgive you, look what you’ve done, the way you’ve lived, you knew better than that.” it’s easy to believe these lies, go around with a heaviness, no passion for life; do you think that your mistake was too much for the blood that Christ shed? you’ve been redeemed by the sinless, spotless, all-powerful son of the living God; no mistake that you’ve made is too much for this blood. shake off the guilt, quit living condemned, and receive the forgiveness. we are under the new covenant. we no longer have to rely on the blood of bulls and goats; because of the blood that Christ shed, our sins have been permanently taken care of.

2 Corinthians 5:19 (NLT)
19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them.

He has blotted them out.

too many people live condemned, always thinking about their past mistakes. they’ve asked God to forgive them every day for years, but they don’t understand; the first time they asked, God forgave them. since God let it go, why don’t you let it go, forgive yourself, and move forward with your life? as long as you’re looking backwards, living in regret, beating yourself up over past mistakes, you will never step into the new things that God has in store. you’ve been redeemed, restored.

Isaiah 44:22 (NASB)
22 “I have wiped out your transgressions like a thick cloud
And your sins like a heavy mist.

we all make mistakes, and have times when our lives are clouded by poor choices, but:

Isaiah 43:25 (NIV)
25 “I, even I, am he who blots out
your transgressions, for my own sake,
and remembers your sins no more.

quit remembering what God has forgotten; when you dwell on the past, relive your mistakes, all it’s doing is causing a new cloud to form. God is for you; the enemy is against you. you get to cast the deciding vote; are you going to believe the lies, live guilty, think you couldn’t be good enough for God to accept you?

Ephesians 1:6 (WE)
6 We have been accepted by God through Jesus Christ

will you receive it, start acting like a child of the most high God? after all that Christ has done for us, the incredible price that he paid on the cross, it doesn’t bring him any honor for us to go around feeling unworthy. let’s do our part and start believing that we are redeemed, forgiven, with an everlasting release from our sins.

for hundreds of years, the Israelites were in slavery. God sent plague after plague on the Egyptians who were holding them, but Pharaoh wouldn’t change his mind. when God commanded the death of every firstborn, the Israelites were given special instructions to protect them:

Exodus 12:5-13 (NIV)
5 The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats… slaughter them at twilight. 7 Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses… 12 “On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn of both people and animals… 13 The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are, and when I see the blood, I will pass over you. No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt.

when you say, “as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord,” what you’re doing, in effect, is putting the blood over your door post. when you’ve accepted the sacrifice of Christ’s salvation, that’s a place of protection; no weapon formed against you will prosper. there is a bloodline that the enemy cannot cross. if the blood of an animal could keep them safe in the old days, how much more so the blood of the son of the living God?

I’m not saying that negative things will never happen, you’ll never have a difficulty, that’s not reality, I’m saying that nothing will happen without God’s permission; because of the blood, there’s a hedge around you and your family. you don’t know how many things came against you, but because of the blood, they had to pass over. the forces of darkness are not moved by what family you come from, what church you go to, how many good deeds you do; what they respond to is the blood over your life. all through the day, “Lord, thank You that my children, my finances, my health, my future are covered by Your blood.”

God gives every person a chance; there will be destiny moments where you can make a decision that will set you on a better course to become who you were created to be. in the scripture:

Joshua 2:1-4 (NIV)
2 Then Joshua son of Nun secretly sent two spies… they went and entered the house of a prostitute named Rahab and stayed there…3 So the king of Jericho sent this message to Rahab: “Bring out the men who came to you and entered your house, because they have come to spy out the whole land.” 4 But the woman had taken the two men and hidden them.

Joshua 2:14-18 (NIV)
14 “Our lives for your lives!” the men assured her. “If you don’t tell what we are doing, we will treat you kindly and faithfully when the Lord gives us the land.”… [tie] this scarlet cord in the window through which you let us down, and [bring] your father and mother, your brothers and all your family into your house.

Joshua 6:25 (NIV)
25 Joshua spared Rahab the prostitute, with her family and all who belonged to her, because she hid the men Joshua had sent as spies to Jericho

the scarlet cord represents the blood; as long as you keep the blood over your life, enemies, sickness, defeat will have to pass you by. you’re protected by the blood.

Genesis 4:8-10 (NIV)
8 … Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.
9 Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?”
“I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
10 The Lord said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground.

Cain didn’t realize that the blood still speaks.

when the soldiers crucified Jesus, it looked like his enemies had finally finished him off; they didn’t realize that 2000 years later, his blood would still be speaking. his blood still cries out for mercy, healing, provision, freedom, redemption, salvation, abundance. Jesus not only defeated Satan:

Revelation 1:18 (GW)
18 I was dead, but now I am alive forever. I have the keys of death and hell.

Hebrews 2:14 (NASB)
14 Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil

you may be facing some obstacles, but the good news is, the blood still speaks for you; “you are more than a conqueror, you can do all things through Christ, the forces that are for you are greater than the forces that are against you.” when we make mistakes, we can live guilty and condemned, or we can let the blood speak for us; “Father, thank You that I am forgiven. I receive your mercy.” when we face an illness, we can accept it as our lot in life, or we can let the blood speak; “Father, thank You that You were wounded for my transgressions; by Your stripes I am healed.” when people come against us, we can get upset, try and pay them back, or we can let the blood speak; “Father, thank You that You’re my vindicator. You said that the trap that the enemy set for me, they would fall in themselves.”

God told Cain:

Genesis 4:11-12 (NIV)
11 Now you are under a curse and driven from the ground, which opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. 12 When you work the ground, it will no longer yield its crops for you.

this is symbolic of what Jesus did for us; when he shed his innocent blood, what the enemy used to be able to do, because the blood has been there, it’s not going to work anymore. things that used to grow in you, addictions, bad habits, a temper, the blood has canceled that out. Instead of accepting things that you know are less than God’s best, why don’t you start saying, “Father, I want to thank You that the blood that Jesus shed has canceled out every negative thing in my life; addiction, depression, spirit of lack. Lord, I want to thank You that I’m free.” when you thank God for the blood, the enemies tremble; the blood reminds them of their defeat, that what they used to be able to do, they cannot do anymore.

Revelation 12:11 (MEV)
11 They overcame him
by the blood of the Lamb

keep this blood over your life, children, business, future; if you’ll do this, God promises He will protect you, cause things to pass over you. because the blood is still speaking, every generational curse is being broken, strongholds are coming down, what’s held you back in the past will hold you back no more. victory, breakthroughs, health, restoration, the fullness of your destiny.

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