Individual or Mass
The Lord reveals in the Eastern Gates that we should gather what is already there before us. Don’t neglect small things. Collect this little that lies before you. And you will come to greater blessing.
Just as Ruth began by picking up the spikelets, she bent down for one, then another, and so she walked tens and hundreds of meters, gathering along the field and on the side of the road. This is a worker, this is a prophetic intercessor, she was gathering a spikelet after spikelet, and God saw it.
Therefore, gather, do not neglect the small beginning. Don’t expect great things only, do the little things that lie before you. Maybe you want great things, but there are already opportunities right before you, use them to get there in a legitimate way, not to take things through “ministry of a thief.” Usually these people take advantage of things that belong to others. But as for yours – earn your grace, reinforce your grace through your own work, through Divine habits that will push out carnal ones. And your life will be a testimony, not just words.
And be ready to accept what the Lord sends. Don’t store what you don’t need. Many people waste time and energy because they are engaged in activities that are useless and goals that will not benefit either you or your neighbor. Focus on what has fruit.
Preach repentance. Many people don’t come to God through us, because we preach about God, but don’t preach that people should repent. Think about it. The Lord said these words: “They went out and preached repentance; They cast out many demons and anointed and healed many who were sick” (Mark 6:12-13). And again: “From that time Jesus began to preach and to say: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17).
Let us look at how we preach the gospel. How do you speak about God? It’s so “delicious”, “cool”, you tell them how amazing the dish is, but you don’t let them try it. Why? Because God can only be “given” through repentance. He can’t receive God unless he repents. You can hear about Him without repentance. You can get “goosebumps” and excitement without repentance. But one can receive God only through repentance. Speak to him, convince the man that he needs to repent, convince him that he is a sinner, even if he doesn’t accept it, he will receive the right word.
Preach repentance and there will be results. Through repentance – it is like a hand, a lever arm – you will give God. “They went out and preached repentance”! Do you hear? This is sobering! Take this for yourself. We must preach repentance and not just speak about the Lord. These are powerful things, this is the truth of God.
Restraint, self-control will lead to patience and love. Without restraint it is impossible to come to patience, and without patience it is impossible to come to love. True love of God is not given just like that. Patience is a stepping stone to love. Sometimes we neglect it, but there is no other way. Because in self-control there is patience, in patience there is godliness, in godliness there is brotherly kindness, and in brotherly kindness there is love. You can’t love people if you don’t love brothers. Because after brotherly love begins love. If you don’t love the church, you can’t love people with God’s love. But through restraint, which is a step towards patience. If we don’t restrain and ourselves are intemperate people, how can we love? And this is the only way to show love – through showing self-control in faith.
Understanding, then self-control. Therefore, restrain, brothers and sisters, in this age of corruption and excess. Continue to hold on to Christ with patience. By your patience possess your souls! It’s normal to exercise patience. Today, the philosophy of excess, the philosophy of rebellion, freedom, brings destruction to the faith in Christ, in the faith of the Church, among believers, when people do not like to restrain – they rebel against restraint, they call it religion and so on. But the Bible is true, it endures forever.
This is not a sermon, but more of a collection of the revealed Word. And what lies in my heart, I want to collect – these pieces of bread – and feed with them.
Bert Clendennen spoke of the restoration of Pentecost through the way of the cross.
It is not through blessing, not through election, but the way of the cross. Every person who takes the path of the cross and carries his cross goes towards restoration of the essence of Pentecost. We spoke about awakening. We in Russia have a rather vague understanding of awakening. I was invited to share about awakening on one of the media channels, but I refused because I don’t see awakening the same way as those pastors. If we look at their model, it is basically a vision of the American model. When they give examples, they relate to Europe and America. They take Azusa, Wales, that’s all. Few of them even take the awakening of the nobility in St. Petersburg, although this can’t be called a reformation either, as what happened under Wesley, which changed all of England. The Wesleyan Methodist Church is one of the largest denominations in the world today. There was such an outbreak of awakening in St. Petersburg, but it can hardly be called a national awakening, because the hotbeds were later extinguished and pushed out. Under Prokhanov there was a powerful spread, evangelists preached in Orthodox churches, and there was a great mass, a great wave – I would not differentiate these awakenings, but perhaps I would connect them. That is, Russia was experiencing spiritual unrest.
Then came the 1990s, when the curtain fell, and this has the spiritual significance, because the world prayed for Russia, and “the water came pouring out.”
But today we see a weakened church. If we are honest, we will see that the Russian Church has nothing to boast about. We don’t see Russian Christians on mission. There was no wave of movement on mission. And we had no theology about awakening in Russia. We have American and European models. We have heard what Hudson Taylor said about the revival in Russia, what other great prophets who came said, but these are all not born within. But what next? And what about awakening?
Today I call for prayer for total awakening in Russia and for total planetary awakening. We understand that you can’t get out of context – the context of nations will still hold you. You can’t birth an awakening in your own country and the whole world wouldn’t matter. You will be allowed in as much as you are connected in the context of the world Apocalypse.
Where are we today in the book of Revelation? Who can point a finger at a verse and say, “We are here!” Where are the prophets?
Basically, today we have official global prophets who can allow themselves the boldness to speak about awakening among the nations – these are mainly English-speaking prophets. We hear these prophecies in English, not in Russian.
We need an understanding of “How?” when we pray for awakening. And we all believe in awakening! Because we are not pessimists. But what will it be? Few can describe in detail what it will be like. And today we need to pray for awakening to come. We don’t necessarily have to know. Rather, it refers to the apostles, the prophets who see. But we don’t have to see.
To know doesn’t mean to possess, and to possess doesn’t mean to know. I choose possession rather than knowledge. I would rather have it and not understand what I have than to know and not have it. So we need a revival, we need a vision of revival.
This is a very serious topic. A topic for spiritual people, for those with discretion and knowledge, for understanding of how we see awakening. Basically, the doctrine comes from English speech. You need a translator to explore the topic of awakening in depth. Isn’t this strange?! And you say that today the Russian Church is in glory? I think it is in a sad condition. Because we don’t see strong gifts of Apostles and prophets, we don’t see powerful gifts – we see ascension and purification. We are now in the stage of cleansing the church. Everything that screamed and glittered before today is dimming and falling. Churches of thousands are “thinning out”, they are “crumbled”. But sprouts are rising, they are invisible yet.
These are questions, portals that I’ve raised for prayer, reasoning, for our conversations, for our food. Because we must abide in high things when we fellowship at tables – so that we can share the Word and not trivial things. People who go to church should feel they are being built up. They are not “chatted” with religious things, but they are compelled to think, stirred up and not comforted. The man is dying spiritually, but they keep comforting him. And what have you done to him? – You’ve caused him harm. Because you were supposed to wake him up, he is on the way down. And you lull him even more into thinking that everything is fine with him, the Lord loves him. Why are you doing this?
Therefore, we need churches of righteousness today that awaken the human spirit, that bring him restlessness and are not afraid of being rejected. Christ never sought to please man. Never! He never said anything would be accepted by man – He spoke the truth of God because He was the Son of God. Why don’t we become such people?!
I see a great need today as I watch the youth and trends in God’s people – I see that there is a great weakness in the strength of an individual. We can hide behind tradition, behind ritual, behind religious bustle. But God’s Word says, “That the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” Do you know what this is? This is a universal soldier. A special forces warrior can not only stitch up a wound and perform artificial respiration, but also fly a helicopter, drive a tank, operate a submarine, conduct hand-to-hand combat, shoot from a sniper rifle, launch a rocket – that is, do everything related to war.
It is written, “that the man of God may be perfect,” but can’t Christ do everything? Prepared for “every good work.” Today the Lord wants to prepare these people. Not the crowd that fills the meeting, not the congregation with nothing better to do, they are just good “Amen” sayers.
I’m wondering what your idea of God is when you are taken out of context? Can you move in God, in the Holy Spirit? How much do you know God? What kind of knowledge of God is there in you? What kind of lion spirit is in you, how much can you alone fight with enemies and drive away the hordes? That’s what interests me.
The history of mankind was shifted through strong personalities. Crowds followed an individual. This is a philosophical question – whether the crowds made up the man or such man rose up by himself, this doesn’t really matter. Let’s call them geniuses. Dostoevsky spoke about the theory of the superman that one can’t really judge him because he is captured by action.
In fact, geniuses moved history: take philosophy, economics, art, geographical discoveries, space, the Internet and dozens of other areas – you can put a person’s name in everything. Everywhere you can put a human name, which was the door to an entire era or some historical section.
But in the church there is an impersonalized crowd of people. Look who we bring: these are people who are below us in intelligence and status. There are exceptions, but, basically, ninety percent, this is true – when a person comes to a community, to a structure, he sees what kind of people are there. And who would agree to stay where people are lower than him? Usually a person leaves such a site because he feels that he is not developing there.
Forgive me, I don’t want to offend anyone, but we really bring such people. Some churches don’t have students because there is no intelligence there, people don’t like to think.
My preaching is not easy. I speak about what worries me. And this is not an ordinary sermon. Here you have to work and strain yourself. I’m glad about this. This is where you need to push yourself. I carry the dimension in which I am. I don’t have to serve your needs. I serve with the gift that the Lord gave me.
Usually you bring people below you – poor, uneducated, with low culture. This is problem. But it is solved by your pushing the boundaries and developing yourself. This is the most direct way to improve the status of people in church – to develop yourself. But when a pastor grows old, he weakens, he becomes too heavy to rise – then what hope will there be for the people? The Church is growing old altogether, in unity.
And such areas as science, art, politics, culture, economics – these areas have heroes, geniuses, but in church we see an impersonal crowd.
I am calling forth personalities today, strong individuals, not just the masses! How easy it is when you come, hide behind your neighbor and simply sit. But we need to take responsibility for our generation! We need to take responsibility for what is happening on the planet. At least a little responsibility – personally. This is what the Apostolic Church means! When each one takes individual, personal responsibility.
Enlightenment or education. Education makes criminals even better villains. When a person goes to prison, he receives an education there and becomes a more dangerous person for society. If a person has no morals, doesn’t change towards humaneness, then he is made a professional for the evil.
Enlightenment stands against such education. We need enlightenment today, which will say: “Don’t do this, this is not you should do, not of your personality.” And the person turns away and doesn’t do this, because he is enlightened.
“If culture and art do not elevate a person, they are harmful,” said Michelangelo.
Where will our technologies take us? No one knows. Only some of the “minds” say: “Don’t give robots power! Limit them as much as possible. They will destroy us.” Did they bring us peace? Let’s talk about happiness – this is one of the purposes of human life. Have we become happier through them? Hardly! So much negativity, so much dirt!
What am I talking about? – About the fact that sprouts should come out of the church. The church should have strong people, strong individuals, not a crowd. There is a “slope” towards the crowd. It needs to be fixed. We will be perfect only together. It is written that we are called to understand the fullness of the love of Christ with all the saints, that is, together. But a “slope” to the side has occurred. Individuals are not visible in church. It is amazing! Did the Lord really command us to be dull and lackluster personalities?
We need to develop. Often we come and “hang” our responsibilities on God and our neighbor. Philosophers were looking for an answer – how to become a superman. It is a normal human desire to become a superman. And even holy monks wanted to become super believers. Francis of Assisi strove so hard that he received stigmata. He was motivated to become a superman. Many other ascetics, like Teresa and other mystics. Wigglesword wanted to become such a believer that he would become an Apostle of the Faith. Do you understand?
Many of the anointed ones from the cloud sought to be strong, not weak. These are all super people, super ordinary personalities, strong individuals. But in church I see that there is no desire to express individuality. Not through satanic rebellion and disobedience, not through the spirit of Cain, who killed his brother, but through positive routes, lines that are on the same, but multi-lane road of development. The Lord is inviting us.
It’s no secret that some believers have nothing to talk about. If you have white and black paint, then you are unlikely to paint colors. You will only have dark gray and light gray. And often believers have black and white, and that’s it. But Christ created the heavens! Look at the Universe, how colorful it is!
And I feel sorry when a person is good, kind, but uninteresting. I know that he’s neglected himself, he stopped fighting for glory. A rainbow emanates from the Throne. It is written that glory came from the Throne like a rainbow. Rainbow is glory. I think that a believer should consist of it. He must strive for it, drink it, clothe in it.
There are crises in a person that can plunge him into apathy. Age, life, there are seasons that include running out of internal resources. But you can either create a new era for yourself, or you can just call it a period of stagnation. You designate time for yourself.
Will the coming year be a year of stagnation or a new era for you? You determine for yourself how it will appear in your biography. I wish you all not to be deceived, but to seriously remain alone and weigh everything, look at your life. Is it a worthy one? Is it in the rainbow or the vegetation? Because you are full of complexes, full of internal strongholds. One or two services in church doesn’t mean that you live for God. You’re just saving yourself, but that’s not glory.
I’m sorry for you. Really. But I can’t help here. What I can do is proclaim and trumpet. Therefore, ascension of the man of God must take place. At our core, by default we are to ascend. “Let the man of God be perfect!”
“He made us kings and priests.” What priest, what “king”?! Look at you! He can’t even maintain hygiene. Cleverly arranged! If Jesus saved you, that means you don’t need to work on yourself?!
There is one cruel story, but I will tell it. One young gentleman met a young lady; she did not shine with intelligence, but she had freshness. She and her mother were impoverished. Ultimately, he fell in love with her, as it seemed to him, and an engagement took place. He went on a mission to Africa, where he gave himself completely because his bride was waiting for him. She had to finish her affairs. He served, saved the natives, and the entire community waited for them to be reunited.
And now the ship is approaching, a crowd standing on the shore, expectant for their return, everyone has already got off the ship, but the young man is not coming. Finally he steps down, our sad young man, and with him is a strange, neglected woman. She stopped taking care of herself, and he fell into the tenacious clutches of the mother-in-law and this woman. There was no smile on her face, no strength to put on one. She was neglected. The young man remained noble, true to his promise; he could not imagine that she would let herself go like that. I won’t go into details about how she let herself go. Because she had a “successful marriage”.
This is how the Bride can let herself go down, because the Groom hasn’t been coming for a while. She stops being awake, she is not worthy of Him any more, caring not to shine with beauty and glory. Think about it! This is very serious! We make our Lord unhappy when we treat Him and ourselves this way.
“If you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the flesh you will live.” (Romans 8:13)
The power of the individual. Weak individuals are the cause of weak churches. A strong church is the sum of strong individuals. It can’t be any other way. If you don’t develop, you will bring in weak people. These are the facts. We don’t stand a chance. Think about why the Lord would want such a Bride and what we represent to the Lord. And let’s draw conclusions.