October 18, 2012

muslim student's elbow healed

while walking into work, I noticed a muslim university student with wrapped elbow and wrist (what we call a "visual word of knowledge").  I stopped him and asked what happened.  He had injured it the day before playing volleyball and so I switched into Arabic and asked, "Can I read over you and God will heal you"? (which is the way a muslim would understand it).  He agreed.  For the first prayer, I had him put his own hand upon the elbow and prayed releasing the Kingdom in Jesus' Name.  The pain decreased but was still there.  I then asked him to give me his elbow and as I gently put my hands on the bandage I could feel the power of the Holy Spirit and prayed again.  This time the pain left and he was very thankful.  I look forward to seeing him again to discuss further what Jesus did to his elbow.  He and his girlfriend walked away with a lot to think about!

So challenged

Today I received such an encouraging email (and such a challenging one), that I had to share it.

Over the summer I led a couple of outreaches and affectionately called them "Love Invasions". A friend of a friend had been following our blog and listening to our podcasts for a while and decided that he wanted to "come and see" as he hadn't seen a lot of Kingdom healing even though he'd stepped out. EVERYTHING changed in the wake of the outreach. I think he was encouraged during the outreach - saw some healing, heard a lot of testimonies, but what he has done and entered into in the wake of that time back in July is what is so radical.

Today I received below email from him - I am sharing this because it is so amazing when someone "catches" the Kingdom vision and walks in it. Many even "taste and see", seem to catch a vision but for a variety of reasons don't seem to WALK IN IT. Jesus was pretty clear and James echoes His teaching that it is being "doers of the Word" that really counts (see Matt. 7:24 and James 1:22).

I was so challenged by the email, I just without hesitation approached a muslim university student where I work this morning with a bandaged elbow and saw God heal him. Thank you Eric for fanning my flame today and spurring me on to love and good deeds.

Here's a summary of the email:

- Still been trying to heal folks every day - all of the days since I was [with you] in July, I've either prayed, or tried to pray, for someone hurting or sick. Sometimes I have the wife do the prayin'.

- Loving people actively each day - whether that's through healing or other means - is becoming a lifestyle thing for me.

- I ordered the Father of Lights Deluxe Edition DVD this week. Can't wait to watch it.

- Dan Mohler and Todd White podcasts have completely changed me - their teaching on discouragement and offense is supreme in my mind, as it relates to identity. We've seen much fruit from it in ourselves and our closest friends.

- We've found some other folks in [our area] that go out and pray for healing - two college students (both age 19!). We had breakfast with them, it was so encouraging.

- I think the Spirit is wanting me to organize a group of healers within [our city] - so that if one of us is going to an event or just hittin' the mall to minister, they can offer an invitation out to all those that pray for healing in the area to come with. As of now, I know of at least 8 people from 3-4 different fellowships/backgrounds that would be happy to come be a part.

October 16, 2012

Correcting wrong thinking from the Book of Job

The Book of Job continues to be one of the most abused book in the Bible – often used to somehow override or trump the very Kingdom the clear teachings of the New Testament.  Here are some thoughts from Greg Boyd in response to a question:

In Job 1:21, 2:10, Job seems to accept “adversity” from God while continuing to trust him. Job blames his troubles on God (i.e. “He shattered me” [16:12], “He breaks me down on every side” [19:10], “For he performs what is appointed for me” [23:14])? In Chapters 1 and 2, God even seems to encourage Satan to harm Job. This seems to refute your reading of Job and the “warfare” approach to understanding evil which you advocate. Satan has to ask God for permission for all he does—which means God must have a reason for allowing every particular evil in the world. This isn’t about a battle between God and Satan, but about how God uses Satan to test us.

I will make four brief comments in response to your question.

1) You’re conclusions are based on the assumption that Job’s perspective on his suffering is accurate, in spite of the fact that his friends’ perspectives are clearly misguided and at the end of the book (chs. 38–42) God includes Job in his rebuke of them. It seems that neither Job nor his friends had the “right theology.”

Job attributes many things to God that we do not consider accurate or pious. For example, Job claims that God mocks the suffering of innocent people; God causes judges to make poor judgments; and God ignores the prayers of oppressed and dying people (Job 9:23–24, 21:17–26, 30–32; 24:1–12). Moreover, Job wrongfully concludes that God must be a ruthless predator who arbitrarily destroys him for fun (e.g. Job 10:8–10, 16:7–17; 30:18, 21). We have to be very careful, therefore, in extracting theological truth from the mouth of Job or his friends.

2) The genre of Job is poetic drama, and the prologue functions as a literary device to set up the story (like the conversation between the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16). So I don’t think it is wise to base doctrine on a literal reading of this passage (i.e. that Satan and God literally have conversations in heaven), since the genre indicts this was not its intended purpose.

3) Even if you insist on reading the prologue literally, why universalize this passage to conclude that Satan must always ask for specific permission to do things or that every atrocity is a “test”? Isn’t there something grotesque about calling (say) the kidnapping, raping and then murder of a child a “test”? What does the dead molested child learn from this “divine testing”?

4) Also note that Satan was “roaming about the earth” before he came to the throne, and there’s never a suggestion that he got God’s specific permission to do this. Indeed, God asks, “where were you?”

October 15, 2012

"Kingdom Appointments" with Muslims and Hindus (Part 2)

The Indian muslim man who was my "advocate" the other day has been calling me – I had gotten a word of knowledge about a problem with his wife's ears and had told him we would call her for her to be healed.  We called her today in India via Skype and the Lord took away all the pain in her ears – it was a problem she'd had since childhood.  In addition, during the phone call I got another word of knowledge about her left eye.  She in fact had had cataract surgery and had pain in that eye.  The Lord took away the pain in her eye which she'd also had since childhood.  God is moving in this muslim family.