Each of us has a mission. That mission is to multiply spiritually into others. Part of that process is to set people free from the bondages that they are in. In order to multiply in others and free them it will take supernatural power.
We do not naturally have supernatural power. Our only power is no more than flesh and blood.
But we need more than flesh and blood. We live in a natural world that is full of impossible situations. We are often in bondage to a sin, thought pattern, or addiction. Our relationships are many times dysfunctional. We find ourselves lacking the knowledge and wisdom to move beyond our current circumstances. Simply put, we have gone as far as we know to go and nothing is working.
What we need is a supernatural move of God. We need God to bring the supernatural into our natural world. We need the power of God, revelation knowledge, deliverance, hearts changed, and souls saved.
It should be obvious, but the natural cannot go into the supernatural without help from the supernatural. Supernatural beings can come downinto our world, but natural beings cannot go upinto theirs.
As Christians we are blessed to have the Holy Spirit as our intermediary. He bridges the gap between the two worlds.
There is a basic scriptural principle we need to know to walk with the Holy Spirit. That principle is found in James 4:10.
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
Humility is a basic principle needed to walk with God. Without it there is no access to Him.
Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Matt. 18:4
For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. Matt. 23:12
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 1 Pet. 5:6
What does it mean to be humble?
A definition of humble in the dictionary shows two things:
1. not arrogant or prideful
2. deferential or submissive respect.
We have to Humble Ourselves
A major point from James 4:10 is that wehave to humble ourselves. The Holy Spirit doesn’t do it for us.
What good is humility if we don’t do it ourselves? If we are forced to be humble, then are we really humble? We cannot pray, “God make me humble.”
The same process that we came through to become a Christian is the same process that we need to continually live in.
Humility is saying that I am nothing without Jesus and everything with Him. When we voluntarily acknowledge this and walk in it we are humble. When we don’t we are arrogant and walk according to the natural.
Actions Alone Do Not Move God
Actions alone with out the right motives will not move God. The earth is full of people of various faiths performing ascetic and self-mutilating things with out moving God. Humility moves God. Humility is acknowledging that God is God and we are not! It is an internal attitude that will produce external actions eventually.
We have much movement in the Western church but no powerbecause we are not humble. We do external actions without the internal attitudes. We are arrogant and not submissive towards the Holy Spirit. Busyness does not necessarily mean godliness. We put our confidence in our buildings, structure, education, and money.
How do we Humble Ourselves?
There are 4 major ways to humble ourselves:
3. Living a Submitted Life
The first 3 have been talked about a lot in the church – but not the 4th — fasting!
Fasting is always linked in Scripture with humility.
Yet when they were ill, I put on sackcloth and humbled myself with fasting. When my prayers returned to me unanswered, Psa. 35:13
It is a topic that is almost never talked about in the Western church. It is almost a foreign concept. Something that civilized nations don’t do. It is thought about as only something that desperate people do. But I submit to you that the Western church fulfills this verse:
having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. 2 Tim. 3:5
This perfectly describes most of the church today. Why? Because we are not desperate. We think the formis Christianity and is enough. But it is full of movement and actions but God is not impressed with these things.
I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see. Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. Rev. 3:15-19
If we want the supernatural, we must humble ourselves. Fasting’s primary purpose is for self-humbling. To go where we want to go and see God move like we want Him to move we have to become humble people—we need to fast.
Fasting was practiced regularly by God’s people throughout the Scriptures. The essential nature of fasting is renouncing the natural to invoke the supernatural. The most natural thing for us to do is to eat. When we give up eating we are deliberating turning away from the natural and asking God for the supernatural.
Fasting in and of itself if done as a formula or ritual will notmove God. Fasting shows us our weaknesses. Fasting reveals our heart attitudes. As we take those weaknesses and heart attitudes to God for correction thenthis produces humility and the movement of God.
When we fast we are acknowledging that He has to move or we are doomed. There is no natural strength in us to make anything happen.
REPEAT — A Major Purpose of Fasting is self-humbling.
When we humble ourselves then God will promote what we are praying for.
NT Examples of God moving through Fasting
Jesus starting off his ministry with fasting. Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. Luke 4:1-2
Commissioning of 5-Fold Offices was done with fasting
In the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen … and Saul. While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 3So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off. Acts 13:1-3
When there was fasting they got supernatural revelation
Raising up Elders/Leaders.
Paul and Barnabas appointed elders for them in each church and, with prayer and fasting, committed them to the Lord, in whom they had put their trust. Acts 14:23
Major decisions were accompanied by fasting! How often does this happen in the church today? These were regular occurrences in the early church.
3 Duties of the Christian
3 duties we find of the Christian are to give to the Needy, Pray, and Fast.
“So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full….And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full…. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, Matt. 6:2, 5, 17
Notice in all 3 instances Jesus used the wordwhen. Do we doubt that we should pray or give to the needy? It is equally our obligation to fast. It is not just ifbut when.
The Hindrance to the Supernatural is our Flesh
So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. Galatians 5:16-17
Our flesh is the hindrance to God.
The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; the sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God. Romans 8:6-8
It is an Issue of Showing Who is in Control
When you fast you quickly realize who is in control – your flesh or the Holy Spirit.
because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. Rom. 8:14
It is a very humbling thing when you can’t fast food for any length of time. Many people can’t go without food for more than a couple of meals. This shows that in the end your stomach will rule you not the Holy Spirit. It reveals who our real master is.
Our flesh has to become subject to the Holy Spirit. The final goal is not to go without food but to be totally led and sensitive to the Holy Spirit. The “I want”, “I think”, and the “I feel” has to be replaced by what the Holy Spirit wants, thinks, and feels. Fasting very quickly shows us if this is a reality.
To do otherwise is saying that the body is actually our God because we are driven by it’s desires not God’s. Derek Prince says, “Your body makes a wonderful servant, but a terrible master.”
Fasting quickly shows us who is the Master. As we learn to make the Holy Spirit the master we start to enter the supernatural world!
Latter Rain– We are wanting the latter rain! This is an agricultural symbol of the best rain of the season. It was the rain that brought in the final and biggest harvest for the year. In the church we need a harvest of holiness, passion, and souls. It will take much rain for this to happen. It will take much supernatural!
“When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place. I have chosen and consecrated this temple so that my Name may be there forever. My eyes and my heart will always be there. 2 Chronicles 7:13-16
23Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month. 24And the floors shall be full of wheat, and the vats shall overflow with wine and oil…. 28And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: 29And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. Joel 2:23-24, 28-29 (KJV)
When you need a supernatural breakthrough humble yourself and fast!