Joseph Herrin (03-20-2016)
What follows is a correspondence I have had with a man in prison who has frequently expressed fear due to threats against his life which are present where he is incarcerated. Fear does not always bear evil fruit in our lives. There are times when Yahweh will use it for our good. The correspondence below begins with two letters this man wrote to me in the same week.
This is Randy. I am now on Parables Bookshelf series 1.9.2 (The Divine Quest), and love it. Sir, I’ve been in prison a while now and Satan has been at me with gangs and I struggle with this area of my life. Yes, God may be showing me and teaching me to trust and to stand in faith that He has got me cared for. Mr. Herrin, I’m trying really hard to have faith as Abraham and Paul, to be a humbled servant. I do pray with bowed head three times a day, also on my bed, etc., trying to be right. I do pray with a sincere heart and I recite Scriptures to Him also as I pray.
I have a question. When I pray, do I keep asking over and over daily? Like I’ve been focusing on faith and fear - asking for stronger faith and to take fear away. Do I keep asking over and over, or do I ask one time and then in my prayers start giving praise and thanks for God answering my prayer? Or is that like the “Prosperity Message”? I can tell the Lord has led me through many storms and attempts that gang members have tried to get to me to hurt me, and their next attempt is now (pill call) - 5:00 A.M.. I am in the hole, but I can trust none of them and their actions.
Mr. Herrin, I want faith to move mountains as Abraham - not as in the “name-it-and-claim-it” Christians. I want to learn and understand faith, and to stand on God’s word.
Sir, I also lost my mother on October 5th, 2015. She was 58 years old. I’m asking for a special prayer for my sister. She said she feels as if she’s in a fog. Some days she says she don’t care if she lives or dies, and it takes all she has in her to put one foot in front of the other. I ask for prayer that the Father God lift this fog from her, the depression she’s having. Again, do I keep praying this, or do I praise/thank God for it?
I did write to my sister and tell her to follow God and start going to church and to call on Jesus.
Please respond. Thank you,
Hi. This is Randy. Sir, I love you and your family. May the peace of God surround you and may you experience peace and joy. Joseph Herrin, I struggle on my daily walk and I do struggle with fear of gangs/gang members in prison. I really don’t know where to start at. But first, all the Parables, all of them, have brought light to my eyes and understanding on so, so much of my walk. Thank you. And I’m man enough to admit my faults. The epistle I sent you last year was wrong on many, many things. I’ve asked for forgiveness from the Father, and I ask you for forgiveness. Mr. Herrin, the last three newsletters on faith has really touched my heart, walk, strength. It’s hard, and yes I’m scared to endure some things again. I was stabbed in 2011, 6:30 A.M., while in the chow hall eating. But thank God, I’ve not had to endure more of that, but many, many attempts have been made since 2011.
I started my walk June 1st, 2011. I escaped, made channel 3 news at 12:00 and 4:00 P.M. - I ran because of my own lies and use of cigarettes and pot in county camp. But I’ve endured the hole since then at every camp, and well, I’ve turned to God/Jesus, studying and learning, battling with fear of gangs and demons of many types. As I read series 1.9.3/1.9.2/1.9.1 - this one understanding, to lean in faith came to me, for as you said, sight is the enemy of faith. Sir, I’m searching for deep insight, relief, bolder faith as Paul and Abraham, and to grow. I want to be part of the 144,000.
I lost my mom October 5th, 2015, and my fiancee moved to Florida. Yet all I want to do is preach the word of God and tell others that the message of Jesus equals love! I wrote a prayer this morning that I believe God gave to me. I am sending it to you to give you an idea of what my prayers are like. Please send the prayer back to me after you read it. I bow toward the floor in the A.M. before breakfast, then write prayers and read my Bible daily, a lot. Now I am in the Old Testament. I am on my second time reading the Bible from front to back. I don’t just read the Bible, but I am reaching toward being a man of integrity. Mr. Herrin, a man who was a preacher laid hands on me in 2002 and said God would use me as He did Paul of the Bible.
I’ve only endured one stabbing in 2011, and yes I am in fear of that kind of suffering, but still at the same time I stay seeking His will for my life. I’ve been struggling with the understanding of faith for a while. Sir, will you say a special prayer for me for protection from gangs, and to be bolder in faith. I am to be released in September 2016, so I have just a number of months to go, and all I want to do is preach and make it home alive.
I admire your writings. Yes, you’ve endured a lot of attacks of Satan. Sir, I get so overwhelmed at times and get confused as well. I need prayer and ask for prayer for my sister also and my roommate who has been in for 20 years and is asking for release in 2017. Mr. Herrin, thank you for your time and response to my 2 letters. I’m only seeking an honest, loving wife, to preach with integrity, and to have a home and to flourish with my new toolbox (Galatians 5:22).
May you have a great day. Amen. Your Friend,
It was good to hear from you again. You certainly wrote a lot at this time. I am blessed to see that the book you have been receiving in the Parables Bookshelf Newsletters has been stirring you up so much. I think it has had such an effect on you because it is a timely word that speaks to the situations you are facing in prison. When our life is threatened daily, and we carry a burden for the welfare of those we love (such as your concern for your sister’s depression), we find that we have a great need for faith. It is at such a time that Yahweh is able to speak to us and know that He has our attention.
Randy, I have no doubt that God has permitted you to face the various threats and difficulties in your life at this time in order to bring about spiritual growth in your life. When I first was led of the Spirit of Christ to leave my comfortable job and life as a computer professional in 1999, I had no idea of the experiences I would face. For several years I faced trials and difficulties every day. I had pressures without and fears within (II Corinthians 7:5). Every single day was a struggle between faith and fear. I felt like the weakest man God had ever chosen. I was beset with doubts and unbelief. Nevertheless, I did not turn back. I continued to cling to Yahweh and He saw me through every trial, every threat, every reproach, every fear.
In your letters you asked what the manner of your prayers should be. Should you continue to make the same requests to God day after day? Should you claim the answer you desire and begin praising God for giving you your desire?
Randy, these are excellent questions. They are questions every person who is subject to dire situations and great need should ask. I think it is a very good sign of your spiritual sincerity and seriousness that you are asking such things.
From what I have gleaned from the Scriptures, and from my own experiences, I have found that it is necessary to hear something from God BEFORE we are able to rest in a matter and switch from pleadings and petitions to praise and thanksgiving. I think many people err by being presumptuous. They ASSUME that God must give them what they ask for, whether it is to meet some desperate need, to protect them from injury or sickness, to keep them from suffering, or something else. Yet, in my life I have known all of these things. There are times when Yahweh chooses to subject us to difficult and painful experiences for our own good, for such things in their proper time can be a great aid to spiritual growth.
Randy, what we can trust God for is that He will always deal with us as a loving Father with His sons. He will never subject us to any trial, or experience of suffering, that is greater than our ability to bear. He will never allow us to face a greater threat than we can meet with calmness and peace. When it is our time to suffer, He will give us abundant grace to endure, and to overcome. He will even give us the strength and grace to forgive those who are our persecutors and to bless those who curse us, and do good to those who do evil to us.
Certainly we should pray and ask Yahweh to protect us from evil people and the attacks of Satan. If we are threatened every day, we should pray every day, committing our lives into the Father’s care and entreating His favor and protection. At the end of each day we can thank Him for bringing us through another day, and as we awake to each new morning we can thank Him for a night of safety and rest.
Randy, what Yahweh wants His sons to do is for them to approach Him as sons. We are not to come to him as wizards or enchanters who are required to say the right words in a precise way in order to get God to do for us what we desire. That is how Satan operates, but Yahweh wants us to be “real” with Him, and to pour out our hearts before Him. Be honest. Be sincere. Make your requests known to your Father, and do so with thanksgiving, acknowledging that He has heard you and that you trust in Him.
Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God. And God's peace [shall be yours, that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace] which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
It is quite natural for a man to have to struggle to arrive at a place of peace, for we are clothed with this weak and sinful flesh. We have to overcome the flesh in order to walk as spiritual men. We may have to cast down fears and unbelief 100 times a day, but as we do so we are overcoming sin and Satan, refusing to be ruled by our flesh.
As for repeating specific prayers, such as the one you wrote out, I have never been led to do so. I have preferred to allow my prayers to be more spontaneous, speaking to my heavenly Father whatever is on my heart. There have been times when I have “prayed the Scriptures,” as some describe it. I have taken the promises of the Bible, or specific Bible passages which apply to my situation, and I have spoken them to Yahweh. This has given me comfort, for I know He gave us these words of Scripture to instruct and encourage us. Many of David’s Psalms have often been a part of my prayers.
I think what we should seek to avoid is our prayers becoming mere repetitions. We should speak to the Father as we would speak to another person, disclosing to Him our heart, and inviting His response. There is no right formula for prayer, anymore than there is a right formula for me to write this letter to you. What you want from me is for me to connect with you spiritually, and our Father wants us to connect with Him as well.
I have prayed for you and for your sister. I have also changed the print queue for the newsletters you receive. I think you would benefit by reading The Gate and The Way, and Living Epistles. Both of these books address the subject we are discussing, and I think you will benefit from reading them.
May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days,
Hi. I hope you and your family are well. May the peace of God and the Joy of our Lord Jesus fill your day with His goodness. Mr. Herrin, I am still reading your messages you sent. Thank you! Sir, I am now back against the wall. Facing the road that lies ahead. I am really having to rely on Jesus in faith for safety. As you said, nothing good or bad happens without God’s say so. He truly controls all things in our lives. Gangs continue to plot against me. I have 6 months left in prison. I just tell God/Jesus daily, “I need you God/Jesus. I cannot do this alone. Guide my path. Amen!”
Good morning sir. (I received newsletter 1.14.4 - Awesome. I will read it today.) I very much need your help and guidance and understanding.
Mr. Herrin, gang members want to kill or hurt me. If I say anything to the warden he will only place me at one or two other prisons (Valdosta or Autry). I have been in both during my current sentence. Both are very rough prisons. I am not a snitch, but some of the gang members say I am. I’ve only asked the prison staff to keep me safe and unharmed Mr. Herrin.
I need your help on a spiritual matter. This morning I told the officer that God’s Holy Spirit told me to tell him that these people, the inmates, are not his friends. Sir, this thought was impressed on my mind, but to be honest, I’m not 100% sure if it was the Holy Spirit. I don’t want to blaspheme against the Holy Spirit. By me saying this, did I do that and not realize it??? (Help)
I don’t understand sir. I try hard daily. I read my Bible from 5 AM to 3 PM daily. I pray the best I can and know how. I had a preacher lay hands on me in 2002. He spoke in tongues as he prayed and then went on to tell me that God was going to use me as He used Paul in the Bible.
Mr. Herrin, I’ve been trying since 2011 to live for Jesus. I have prayed much, and yes God has answered so many prayers of mine. I just express praise, thanks for His guidance daily. But how does one know when it is the Holy Spirit speaking? Have I blasphemed? I need your insight - ASAP.
Please, I’m scared. I’ve prayed twice already asking for sincere forgiveness if I was wrong. I just want to preach by the Spirit and follow His will. I want my mouth when I speak to produce good fruit (Matthew 15:18-20, Luke 6:45, Jeremiah 17:9, Proverbs 18:21). I believe and know these things. I am always humble and meek. I share my food with others.
Mr. Herrin, for a long time I’ve wanted to tell others “God says this,” or “God says that.” I just want to help others. My soul is in a scared anguish of fear of gangs. This is a weakness I struggle with. I need your help, and please pray a prayer that I might understand what the Spirit is speaking to me.
I received your most recent letters. I have been praying for you regarding your safety and protection from gang members in prison. I will also ask others to pray for you as well.
After praying for you, a thought came into my mind that I want to share with you. In your letters to me you have expressed numerous times that you want to serve God and lead a life that is pleasing to Him. We often find ourselves motivated to make declarations of obedience and devotion to God when we are facing some severe threat in our life, but when the pressure is removed we find that our motivation is fleeting. Man has a tendency to relax his vigilance and to give into temptation when he feels more secure and less needy.
Viewing your record on the Georgia Department of Corrections website, it is evident that you have been a repeat offender. You have one of the longer rap sheets that I have seen. You have been in and out of prison like you were stuck in a revolving door.
Yahweh wants to break this cycle in your life, so He has allowed your experience in prison to get progressively worse. You were stabbed in 2011, and you have lived in fear of being attacked again ever since. I believe there is a purpose in this experience for you. Yahweh wants you to find the experience of being in prison so unpleasant, so frightening, that when you are released in six months time, you will walk in the fear of Him. He wants you to know that your experience will be even worse if you transgress again and are sent back to prison.
There is a passage of Scripture in Hebrews where the apostle Paul speaks of God disciplining all of His sons. Paul writes that the discipline of God will get progressively worse if we do not respond to it by changing our behavior.
You have not yet struggled and fought agonizingly against sin, nor have you yet resisted and withstood to the point of pouring out your [own] blood. And have you [completely] forgotten the divine word of appeal and encouragement in which you are reasoned with and addressed as sons? My son, do not think lightly or scorn to submit to the correction and discipline of the Lord, nor lose courage and give up and faint when you are reproved or corrected by Him; For the Lord corrects and disciplines everyone whom He loves, and He punishes, even scourges, every son whom He accepts and welcomes to His heart and cherishes. You must submit to and endure [correction] for discipline; God is dealing with you as with sons. For what son is there whom his father does not [thus] train and correct and discipline? Now if you are exempt from correction and left without discipline in which all [of God's children] share, then you are illegitimate offspring and not true sons [at all]. Moreover, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we yielded [to them] and respected [them for training us]. Shall we not much more cheerfully submit to the Father of spirits and so [truly] live? For [our earthly fathers] disciplined us for only a short period of time and chastised us as seemed proper and good to them; but He disciplines us for our certain good, that we may become sharers in His own holiness. For the time being no discipline brings joy, but seems grievous and painful; but afterwards it yields a peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it [a harvest of fruit which consists in righteousness--in conformity to God's will in purpose, thought, and action, resulting in right living and right standing with God]. So then, brace up and reinvigorate and set right your slackened and weakened and drooping hands and strengthen your feeble and palsied and tottering knees, and cut through and make firm and plain and smooth, straight paths for your feet [yes, make them safe and upright and happy paths that go in the right direction], so that the lame and halting [limbs] may not be put out of joint, but rather may be cured.
Randy, I am confident that Yahweh will protect you, and you will make it to your release date in September. At the same time, Yahweh wants you to so dread the thought of being returned to prison that you will be very careful to not fall back into old behavior patterns once you are released. There is no guarantee that if you re-offend and are returned to prison that you will survive another stint behind bars or that you won’t experience another stabbing.
Be assured that Yahweh is not seeking to torment you. He is disciplining you for your own good. You have not yet demonstrated that you will seek to live a life honoring to God when you are free, and out in the world. Yahweh is seeking to give you the necessary motivation to break free of old patterns and to establish new habits of righteousness and to live every day with a commitment to honor Him.
You mentioned a preacher speaking a word of prophecy over you in 2002. This has led me to conclude that you God was dealing with you back then, and you were even at that time attending church services and showing some interest in spiritual things. Yet, despite this interest back in 2002, you have been in and out of prison several times since then, and have been convicted of numerous offenses. As a loving heavenly Father, Yahweh wants to help you break free of this cycle. If it requires that He make prison seem like a very terrible place so that you would never want to be sent there again, He is doing so for your own good.
Randy, you have six months left before your release in which you can develop new patterns and habits. You can separate yourself from all sinful behavior in prison. You can choose each day to honor God in your words and actions so that when you are released these new ways of thinking and acting will already be established in your life.
I am going to print out and mail to you a writing of mine from many years ago. It is titled The Necessary Fear of God. I believe it will speak to you and help you to understand your present experiences.
In your letters you also mentioned a desire to speak the words of God to others, and your concern that you may have erred by telling an officer that God had a message for him. This is an important matter to consider, and I will share some things with you.
You have evidently had some experience with what are called “Charismatic Christians.” For example, you spoke of a minister who prayed in tongues over you and then prophesied that God was going to use you as He used Paul. Sadly, there are a great many people who speak words of prophecy over others that God has not given them to speak. Such ones are speaking out of their own souls, rather than speaking by the Spirit.
I do believe in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and I believe they are available to be used by Christians today. However, I believe these gifts can be misused and they can also be counterfeited. Satan has often used unclean spirits to place words and thoughts in people’s minds, attempting to trick them into believing they are words from God. Because the gifts of the Spirit can be abused, and can also be imitated, it is necessary to practice much discernment to know whether a word is from God.
In the book titled Sabbath, I spoke of people abusing spiritual gifts, using them in a way in which God does not approve. I will insert a portion of that writing here.
Yahweh is looking for man to also enter into this place of rest where there is no initiative anywhere in creation other than Yahweh’s own initiative. When the Father wills one thing, and others will something else, no matter how noble or good it appears, this is defined as striving. Striving is willing something that has not originated in the mind of the Father.
Christianity is striving continuously. They are always willing things the Father is not willing. They are continuously setting their hands to do things which they have not received by the Spirit of God. It does not matter how noble or right it seems. A person can share the gospel with another human being and be striving. A person can heal the sick and be striving. A person can cast out a demon and be striving. A person can prophesy and be striving. A person can perform all manner of miracles and be striving.
How can these things be? How could it be striving and sin to do any of these things? The answer is revealed in the following words of Yahshua.
“Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?' And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’”
The Lord reveals that on the day of judgment there will be many who will come to Him thinking they will receive praise and honor, yet dishonor and punishment will be their portion. What is the sin that these have committed? Their actions were that they were prophesying in His name, they were casting out demons in His name, and they were performing miracles in His name. What could possibly be wrong with these activities? Why are these people condemned as those who practice lawlessness?
Yahshua is not speaking against adulterers, thieves, or murderers here. Such transgressions were clearly forbidden in the ten commandments. If one has eyes to see, however, they will realize that what is spoken of here is also in violation of one of the commandments. The commandment is “remember the Sabbath, to keep it holy.”
As we have already defined Sabbath, it is entering into the rest of God. Sabbath is only doing that which the Father leads us to do. Whether one does an apparently good act, or an evil act, it is still a violation of Sabbath if the Father is not the originator of it. Any activity arising of man’s own initiative, even seemingly good deeds, is a violation of Sabbath. Yahshua did all of the things He spoke of in this passage; He prophesied, He cast out demons, and He performed miracles. However, He never did any of these things of His own initiative. He only did that which the Father instructed Him to do.
It was very possible for Yahshua to do miraculous works of His own initiative. Before He began His ministry He was tempted in this very point. After fasting for forty days in the wilderness we are told that He was hungry. Satan came to tempt Him and his first temptation was for Christ to turn the stones into bread and thereby satisfy His hunger. Yahshua could have done this.
One might ask, “What would be the evil of such an act?” Yahshua was hungry. He was the Son of God. It wouldn’t have hurt any man or any part of creation to turn the stones into bread. It would have only violated one thing, it would not have been the Father’s will.
And the tempter came and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread." But He answered and said, "It is written, 'Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.'"
Yahshua understood this matter of Sabbath and doing the Father’s will, and His answer to Satan addresses this very important point. In essence He said, “True life is found in doing only those things which God reveals to us.” In another place Yahshua said, “My meat is to do the will of the Father who sent Me” (John 4:34). The Father already had a provision for His Son’s hunger. After Satan departed we are told, “and behold, angels came and began to minister to Him” (Matthew 4:11).
Christianity at large does not understand this most vital concept. If put in a similar circumstance, how many saints would consider whether doing an act within their power is the will of the Father? Most only think of what they are able to do. They give no thought to whether the Father would have them do it. It is possible to prophesy, and many do so very often. Few consider whether the Father would have them do so. They only concern themselves with “Can I prophesy?” They do that which seems good to them, falsely believing that any prophesying is pleasing to the Father if it is a true word of prophecy.
Many saints are involved in casting out demons, and again most only concern themselves with whether or not they can do so, not considering whether it is the will of the Father. The same is true of performing miracles, including miracles of healing. There are some who say that it is always the Father’s will to heal and there is no need to seek the mind of the Father in this issue. Such people are deluded and they should take the words of Yahshua to heart. He said, “Many will come to Me in that day” and they will say, “Did we not do these things in Your name?”
The word many in this passage can have the connotation of meaning the majority. How incredible to think that the majority of saints will stand before Christ in judgment and they will falsely believe that they were pleasing God when they were doing all of these works of their own initiative. Yahshua clearly defines in this passage what pleases His Father. The one who will enter into the kingdom of heaven is “he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven.”
The saint who only considers what he can do is on the wrong track. His first thought should always be to discern the mind of the Father in any matter. If the majority of saints are displeasing to the Father, then there is no value in being in the majority. Simply because the masses of Christendom are thinking and acting in a certain manner is no reason to join them. What comfort will there be in knowing that you and a majority of saints hear the words, “Depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness”?
To those who still doubt the meaning of Yahshua’s words here, consider why He referred to these who were doing this prophesying, casting out demons, and miracles as those “who practice lawlessness.” Lawlessness is the state of being out from under authority. Lawlessness is having your own law, disregarding the established law.
Yahweh is the only true law. He alone has the power to determine what man should do. Yahshua proclaims that men who do the will of the Father in heaven will enter into the kingdom of heaven. Those who fail to do His will are considered lawless, even if their actions are seemingly good, and even if they appear to be of a supernatural nature.
You may wonder that the saints could perform such supernatural deeds if the Father is not directing them to do so. How could they have the power to do these things unless the Spirit is guiding and leading? The scriptures plainly reveal that men can do so. Yahshua could have turned the stones to bread, and likewise Yahshua has given the same power and authority that He walked in to mankind. Consider the implications of the following passage of scripture.
I Corinthians 14:27-33
If anyone speaks in a tongue, it should be by two or at the most three, and each in turn, and let one interpret; but if there is no interpreter, let him keep silent in the church; and let him speak to himself and to God. And let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment. But if a revelation is made to another who is seated, let the first keep silent. For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all may be exhorted; and the spirits of prophets are subject to prophets; for God is not a God of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.
The church in Corinth was a church that was out of order. There was great confusion in their meetings, and this confusion was not the will of God. What was the source of confusion? Were people fighting and screaming and fornicating and indulging in every form of debauchery in their meetings? No! (Although, these things did exist among them.) Their chaos was the result of people exercising spiritual gifts. They were speaking in tongues and prophesying, but it was sheer bedlam.
Did Paul say that these people were prophesying and speaking in tongues by the power of Satan? No, he never asserted any such thing. The anointing of God was present in these things, but these saints had not learned that they needed to submit all such activity to the Father and to seek His mind and His will. To exercise these spiritual gifts apart from the leading of the Father is lawlessness, and lawlessness leads to chaos, which is what they had in their meetings.
Did you note Paul’s words, “the spirits of prophets are subject to prophets”? In essence he is telling them, “Just because you can do a thing doesn’t mean you have to do a thing. Just because you can speak in tongues doesn’t mean you must. Just because you can give a word of prophecy doesn’t mean you have to do so. You can control yourself. The spirit within you is subject to you.”
Some saints mistakenly think that every time they sense a tongue or a prophecy is present within them that they must speak it out, even if it causes a disruption to the assembled body. No! Paul is saying, “You can control it. The spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets.”
The Father is not honored when people speak a tongue, when they prophesy, when they cast out demons, when they perform miracles. He is only glorified when people do these things as He directs them. Yahshua did not heal every leper. He did not open the eyes of every blind man. He did not heal all those who were sick. He only did those things the Father led Him to do. He did nothing of His own initiative.
What a critical matter this is. Christianity is running over with personal initiative. There is little consideration for the will of the Father. People only consider what they can do, disregarding whether it is the will of the Father. For this reason the majority will appear before the Lord on that day of judgment and He will say, “Depart from Me, you lawless ones.”
If the Corinthian believers had considered the words of Yahshua they would have seen their own error. He said, “For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me commandment, what to say, and what to speak” (John 12:49). Yahshua could have spoken many profound things. He could have proclaimed mysteries. He could have spoken astonishing revelations. When He taught He could have spoken plainly instead of cloaking His meaning in parables. He could have done all of these things, even as saints today can speak many things, but He did not do so. He only spoke that which the Father commanded Him to speak, and so should we.
There are many things people can do today, but they are not all the will of the Father. Many saints mistakenly believe that because something is supernatural that the Father must be the author of it. This is not true in the supernatural realm anymore than it is in the natural.
In the natural realm we are told that all things in heaven and earth have been created by God, and in Him all things consist or hold together (Colossians 1:16-17). The presence of God is everywhere in His creation, and we are told that He is “over all and through all and in all” (Ephesians 4:6). Yet just because He is present in His whole creation we cannot argue that everything done by man is the will of the Father.
Man was created by God, and man’s abilities were given to him by the same. The power of procreation is one such ability, and indeed there is much that is supernatural in this ability of man. We cannot say that because man can go out and have relations with any woman he desires, and that this intimacy can result in offspring coming forth, that it is the will of God that man do so. In fact, we have clear words from the Father telling us that it is His will that man should NOT be promiscuous in this manner. Yet the Father allows man to do this if he should desire.
It is no different in spiritual matters. The Holy Spirit has given gifts to men in the church, and they can exercise them much as they please, but it is not the will of the Father that they do so. A saint cannot assert that because he was able to prophesy that it was the Father’s will, anymore than he can say that because he could raise up offspring by a woman that is not his wife that it was the Father’s will. The scriptures state that spiritual gifts are good, given to edify the body, and it also states that children are a blessing from God. However, both spiritual gifts and the power of procreation can be misused in a lawless manner.
As one considers this, and as they understand what Sabbath truly means - perfect agreement with the Father and His will in every situation, it is possible to see that virtually all of the sins of this world are the result of Sabbath breaking. They are the result of man doing something of his own initiative.
Randy, what you did in telling the officer that God’s Holy Spirit had a message for him was not the same thing as “blaspheming the Holy Spirit.” If you misspoke and confessed it to God, then you are forgiven. You need not fear. At the same time, God would have you be very careful about putting words in His mouth. If you have sincere doubts about whether God has placed the thoughts in your head that you are thinking about sharing with someone else, be patient and ask God to confirm whether they are from Him, or from another source.
Where men often get in trouble is that they have personal desires in the matter. Maybe a person wants to appear spiritual to others. This is one of the most common snares. You mentioned in your letter that you have wanted for some time to tell people “God said this,” or “God said that.” Why have you wanted to do this? You said it is because you want to help people, but a desire to help people can lead to abuse as well. It is at times hard for men to know their own hearts.
In my own experience, I found that God began using me to speak to others by speaking to them things they did not want to hear and which I did not want to tell them. This is a true test of obedience. Yahweh will test His sons to see whether they will be faithful messengers of His words, or whether their motives are to be men-pleasers. He will place words in our mouths that are not pleasing to other people to test our hearts.
Yahweh will also through many experiences teach a man to die to the praise and criticism of others. He will teach His servants to die to the opinions of men. For years Yahweh chose for me to endure criticism, reproach, rejection, anger, and the false judgments of other men and women in order to teach me to die to the opinions of men. It is far more perilous to experience the praise and applause of men than to experience their reproaches and condemnation. This is why Yahweh has to teach His sons to die to ALL the opinions of men, whether good or bad, before He can use them in a significant way to speak His words to others.
Men’s opinions are worthless, and man’s praise or criticism only has value to the extent that it is in agreement with the thoughts of God. This is seen clearly in the life of Yahshua. Toward the end of Yahshua’s life, only a few days before He was to be crucified, He rode into Jerusalem seated on a donkey as the crowds cheered Him and shouted, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.” Just a few days later these same people were shouting “Crucify Him!” The same people who can be praising you one day, can be condemning you the next. Men and their opinions are faithless and fickle.
It is a fool’s errand to try to be a man-pleaser. As sons of God, the only opinion we should concern ourselves with is God’s. Randy, I share this to tell you that if you want to speak God’s words to man for any other reason than to obey and honor God, you will be at risk of sinning in this matter. It is easy to confuse wanting to help people with wanting to tell people things they will like hearing. I am suspicious of the word the minister spoke to you in 2002 for it was a word that you would surely like to hear. What man would not want to be told that God wants to use them like the apostle Paul? Such a word makes a man feel important. Do you also want to experience the sufferings that Paul experienced? You cannot have a ministry like Paul’s unless you are willing to suffer like Paul.
Randy, please understand that I am NOT saying that God does not desire to use you in significant ways, or that He does not have good plans for your life. But all such things are based upon whether we qualify ourselves to be used of God. It is necessary to separate yourself from sin, to live an upright and holy life before God if you are to be used of Him as a vessel of honor. Keep your focus on God and your heart set on pleasing Him, and He will use you according to His will.
May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days,
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