Making a Transition of Change: “Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming (season of migration or time of transitioning); but my people know not the judgement (ordinances) of the Lord. How do ye say, we are wise, and the law of the Lord is with us? Lo, certainly in vain made he it; the pen of the scribes is in vain”. (Jeremiah 8:7-8 brackets mine).
This passage expresses the heart of God through His prophet Jeremiah. It was a deep concern and response to the attitude of His people towards Him. Their claim was that they were wise and had full understanding of the ways and dealings of God, and that they were current and right in the sight of God. In reality, they missed God, and became disobedient making His instruction to them of no effect. They were not honest. They did not repent and turn away from their wickedness and ask, “What have we done?” They went their own ways like horses charging into battle.
Consider the comparison of the people of God and their slackness in knowing and understanding the season and timing of God to their migration or transition with God. Church leadership of today are caught up in the same web of ignorance and as a result we are often late in bringing the people of God into the times and seasons of God. We live in the past moves and not in the current move of what the Spirit is saying to the Church now, by revelation. In fact, we hold to past moves and revelations, and thereby resist the new revelation that God is releasing to His Church today.
The claim to Pentecostal experience and heritage is hindering our move into the next level of God in the Feast of Tabernacles. Our allegiances to a revelation have become a resistance to the whole counsel of God. A revelation is not the totality of the whole counsel of God, so we must accurately discern the word of God so that we can move on with God.
We must be flexible to allow for change in our mentality, doctrines, beliefs, philosophy and understanding in God as we explore His word (The Truth).
God is a progressive God. His word and revelation are progressive and if we are to be current and relevant in the things of God, then we must move on with God in His purpose and plan for us. The fact is that we cannot move on with God and remain where we used to be.
“If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), which in other ages was not made known (not revealed) unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed (made known) unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit”. (Ephesians 3:2-5 brackets mine).
The revelations of God are progressively unveiled to us. There are certain truths and revelations that the Lord has not revealed to past leaders and ministries, but He has reserved them for the day in which we live, to accomplish a certain purpose. Certain mysteries and revelations were not revealed in past ages, but are now being revealed to us by the grace of God, by His apostles and prophets through revelation of the Spirit of God.
The unfolding of God’s purpose is determined by times and seasons, and is initiated by new revelations from God. Our response to this revelation brings us into a new season in God. The Church has come into a new day and season in God. Progressively, God is showing us His original pattern and making us understand His plan. He is showing us how far things have moved away from His plan and is revealing the process of restoration that is to align us to His purposes. We must accurately align our lives and ministries to God’s ways and purpose. Like the sons of Issachar, we must be wise and have understanding of the times and seasons of God, so we can then position ourselves to know what we ought to do and be in tune with Him and His moves.
“And of the children of Issachar, which were men that have understanding of the
times, to know what Israel ought to do”. (1 Chronicles 12:32a).
The moves of God should not be worshipped, no matter how glorious and wonderful the experience, because God has given all things for a time and season, and when He accomplishes His purpose He moves on to the next level and dimension of His goal.
“Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare: before they spring forth I tell you of them.” (Isaiah 42:9).
“Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it?..” (Isaiah
Note that, the former things are come to pass. They do not come to stay. God declares and reveals new things to us to accomplish His purpose. Once fulfilled, God moves on and does a new thing. Our adherence to the past hinders our transition into the new. Forgetfulness of the past must come upon the Church, so that we can begin to reach out to God for the new and for greater heights. The passing away of the old does not mean that there is a defect in that program or that God has failed in that process or plan. The season we are in requires a change to the new.
God wants to move us from the old into the new in our understanding and revelation of Himself, and the things He is now doing in the Body of Christ and upon the earth. Old paradigms, patterns and principles will reproduce old structures and past leadership styles that have not accomplished the purposes of God. A transition must be made in this present move of God. Transition is part of the process of our maturing in God. In these days of transition, a commitment to the movement of the Spirit is required.
An unknown author once said, “Everything God has created goes through a transition easily and expectantly, except man. Creation responds to a preordained command and renders its faithfulness simply because it is the season. Nature experiences change as a normal part of life, but we who actually have understanding of the importance of process, have great difficulty in allowing the transition to become a finished work, not recognizing the significance of each season as an integral part in the process of maturing in God and being current with His present move.”
The Church is in a season of progression, progression into the fullness and purpose of God. It is impossible to live and operate in an old system and expect to soar in a new dimension, unless we respond to God’s change in us. Only God is able to give wings to our purpose, so we can rise up as new and soar to the heights of glory in Him.
The sense of urgency for this to occur is palpable. God’s grace and anointing are being poured out upon us. We need to be alert to the fact that God is moving with haste, consummating and finalizing things for the fullness of His Kingdom to advanced and be established in the earth.
Hindrances to the Move of God:
“Who is the wise man that may understand this? And who is he to whom the mouth of the Lord has spoken, that he may declare it, for what the land perisheth and is burned up like a wilderness, that none passeth through? And the Lord saith, Because they have forsaken my law which I set before them, and have not obeyed my voice, neither walked therein; But have walked after the imagination of their own heart, and after Baalim, which their fathers taught them” (Jeremiah 9:12-14).
The above scripture verse reveals hindrances to the move of God and our spiritual development and maturity in God:
Disobedience & Rebellion to the Voice of God: Our well-being is a result of our obedience to God and our true walk with Him. We must come to the place of total obedience to the voice of God, as disobedience and rebellion towards Him causes us to hold to the past and hinders our transition into the new.
“Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; Put your burnt offerings unto your sacrifices, and eat flesh. For I spoke not unto your fathers, nor commanded them I the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices; But this thing commanded I them, saying, Obey my voice, and ye shall be my people, and walk ye in the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you.” (Jeremiah 7:21-23).
Movement must occur from being effective church leaders towards personal significance and fulfillment as able leaders of the Kingdom. There must be a paradigm shift as we walk in obedience.
The Imagination of our Heart and the Narrow Concept of our Thoughts: Our response to the revelation of God’s word will determine our place in the purpose of God and His present move. The truths, mysteries and revelations that the Father is releasing to us in this present move can be dismissed because they cannot be explained, however God works in an unpredictable way and scripture reminds us that His thoughts are higher than our thoughts and the imagination of our hearts (Isaiah 55:8).
“Now unto Him (God) that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we
ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.” (Ephesians 3:20 brackets mine).
We must begin to move beyond the narrow concept of what can be understood with our mind. Our mentality must be shifted into a Kingdom mentality so we can comprehend the fullness of God’s purpose, being careful in our definition and perception of God, His word and revelation, lest we make the word and the move of God vain, calling it profane due to our narrow way of thinking and reasoning.
The Tradition of our Fathers: When our mind becomes stuck, set in experiences, a truth, a revelation or a certain doctrine, we cannot move beyond that; as a result religion and tradition begin to creep in, making the word of God of no effect.
“Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have
delivered: and many such like things do ye.” (Mark 7:13).
Tradition is any religious practice, statement, precept, legend, custom, belief, system or teaching that is handed down from one generation to the other by word of mouth or by practice that replaces the revelation of the Spirit of God. Traditions are developed to replace the word of God and moves of God (what He is doing and where He is). It is easy to lose focus on God and become busy with religious activities and programs thinking that God is in those activities when He is not.
The Pharisees and Sadducees were known agents who promoted traditions (Mark 7:3). In the Church today, the manifestation of a Pharisee and Sadducee spirit is visible when God begins to move the Church forward into a new dimension of spiritual truth and revelation in changing the order and structure of existing revelation in the Body of Christ.
“Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying, why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they wash not their hands when they eat bread. But he answered and said unto them, why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition.” (Matthew 15:1-3).
The Pharisee and Sadducee spirit is an in-built character in a passive and traditional Church that claim hold to the voice of the past moves, and reject the present voice and truth of God. As a result the spirit of rebellion is released, manifesting as stubbornness and unwillingness to yield to the present move of God in the earth.
Ignorance & Unbelief: Zeal without knowledge cannot produce the purpose of God. The danger faced in this present move of God is the lack of understanding and accurate perception of the blueprint for building apostolic Kingdom churches. Our effort to build our own kind of house, ministry and Church for God to inhabit, has resulted in unfruitful labour not in accordance with God’s plan.
“God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwells not in temples made with hands: Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed anything.” (Acts 17:24-25).
“Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it:” (Psalm 127:1a).
“See, saith He (God), that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee.” (Hebrews 8:5b brackets mine).
God is moving progressively and continually. Let us move with Him, focus on Him and tune into Him as He brings us into our inheritance. We must posture ourselves and be set apart for the promise.
“And it came to pass after three days, that the officers went through the host; and they commanded the people, saying, When ye see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the priests the Levites bearing it, then you shall remove from your place and go after it. Yet there shall be a space between you and it, about two thousand cubits by measure: come not near unto it, that ye may know the way by which ye must go: for ye have not passed this way heretofore. And Joshua said unto the people, Sanctify (posture) yourselves: for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.” (Joshua 3:2-5 brackets mine).
“And when the cloud was taken up from the tabernacle, then after that the children of Israel journeyed: and in the place where the cloud abode, there the children of Israel pitched their tents. At the commandment of the LORD the children of Israel journeyed, and at the commandment of the LORD they pitched: as long as the cloud abode upon the tabernacle they rested in their tents.” (Numbers 9:17-18).
The cloud of God is moving and taking us to a new place. We must make the transition and move beyond our present level, order and place into a more accurate position. Moving on with God requires changes. In God, change is a continual process of progression because our God is a progressive God, accordingly He requires that we progress with Him if we are to walk with Him, lest we fall short and remain where He was. He doesn’t stop until there is an ultimate completion of His purpose in the earth. He is eternal and limitless. God is so compounded that the fact is that it is not possible to go on with God and remain where we used to be. The purpose of our progressive walk with God is that He seeks to develop a more intimate relationship with us. The depth of our experience and relationship with God will determine our effectiveness and productivity in His Kingdom.
The Ark of the Covenant represents the Lord and His presence among His people. God’s requirement was that the people become focused on the Ark of the Covenant (The Lord and His presence). They were to remove from their place, and go after it (The Ark of the Covenant – The Lord and His presence); so that they would know the way they must go. As a result of this, the people of God were not to build any permanent abode, because they were required to move when the Lord moved. They had not passed that way before, and He was leading them in a new way. There was always a man on the watch-tower whose eyes are on the cloud with a trumpet in his hand, and when the cloud moved he blew the trumpet to sound the alarm for the people to gather-up and move with the cloud.
We are walking in a new season and a new way in God that has never been walked before by any man. God requires that we focus on Him so that we do not miss the direction of His move. God alone sees the end from the beginning and He alone can show us His ways.
I appreciate the works of great leaders who have lived in past seasons and moves of God, but their books cannot produce the purposes of God for the season in which we are now living. That which they possessed was good for their season and was able to bring them into the grace and dimension in which they operated, but they cannot show us the present ways of God because no one has ever walked this way before.
Among ministers there is a lack of understanding and clarity regarding the purpose of God. The business of the Father cannot be run by the way we think or expect it to be run, however, we need to know the blueprint of God; His mind and His will, so we may carry out His instructions and commands in the exact manner.
I know leaders who have implemented the Cell Group Principle in their churches (learnt from other nations). The program failed. The next option being contemplated is the G12 Leadership Principle (learnt from books, tapes and seminars from South America and the West). The men who received the revelation of the Cell Group and G12 Leadership Principles and implemented these in their churches and nations were right. We need to recognize that every word and revelation given to a man for his Church and nation is different to that which God is revealing to another. When we copy from others, we miss the whole agenda and purpose of God in that which He seeks to do through us in our local assembly and in our nation.
We must understand the building processes of God according to biblical principles and patterns. God does not build ministries alike; it is man’s way to make each one like the other. We cannot build the model of the church of Africa, in Asia or Europe. Each local assembly will have her unique characteristics. In seeking to establish biblical principles and patterns, we should not allow methods to become laws and enforce these on others as a formula.
Tradition develops when focus is lost, when there is no clear accurate word proceeding from heaven for us to understand what God is doing, or wants to do through us in this time and season. A transition has taken place in the Spirit that needs to be recognized. In fact, God has moved and a new day has dawned upon us. The prophetic trumpet is blowing and the apostles are setting the alarm. It is time to move on!
The Principle of Corruption:
God has placed a principle of corruption on every past word (yesterday’s manna) so that it stinks. Manna was only good for that day and was not to be stored for the next (other than the Sabbath day). So it is with every word that proceeds from God. We must be prophetically attuned to what the Lord is saying and doing now, during this restoration period.
“And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, It is manna: for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, this is the bread which the LORD hath given you to eat. This is the thing which the LORD hath commanded, Gather of it every man according to his eating, an omer for every man, according to the number of your persons; take ye every man for them which are in his tents. And the children of Israel did so, and gathered, some more, some less. And when they did mete it with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over, and he that gathered little had no lack; they gathered every man according to his eating. And Moses said, Let no man leave of it till the morning. Notwithstanding they hearkened not unto Moses; but some of them left of it until the morning, and it bred worms, and stank: and Moses was wroth with them.” (Exodus 16:15-20).
God will always speak to us what we need to hear and not what we want to hear. Our minds should not be programmed to a truth, but be flexible to the truth. We must always be flexible and quick to respond to His word and change accordingly, not letting the past hold the future hostage.
Copyright © 2017 by Israel Onoriobe
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